The BEST Episodes of Merlin (2008)

Every episode ever - ranked by fan votes!

Last Updated: Apr 21, 2021

Network: BBC One

Merlin is a drama series based around the legends of the mythical wizard and his relationship with Prince Arthur. Set in the early days of their relationship, it shows the development of each in his respective field, finding his way on the path to future greatness. Humour, danger and excitement abound, accompanied by mythical creatures, magic and of course much medieval swashbuckling.

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The Sword in the Stone (2)

#1 - The Sword in the Stone (2)

Season 4 - Episode 13 - Aired Dec 24, 2011

Morgana and Helios have successfully captured Camelot, and Merlin and Arthur are outlaws on the run, in the last episode in this season of Merlin. Trapped in Ealdor with a ruthless army closing in, their situation becomes desperate. Arthur must take control before Camelot is lost forever… But faced with Agravaine’s betrayal and the strength of Morgana’s force, the young King has lost his conviction. Only Merlin can restore his faith, and only an extraordinary act can prove to the King that he was born to rule. Will the young warlock convince Arthur before his dreams of Albion fall to pieces?

star 8.34
1,675 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Julian Jones
The Coming of Arthur (2)

#2 - The Coming of Arthur (2)

Season 3 - Episode 13 - Aired Dec 4, 2010

Will Arthur be able to save Camelot from the evil Morgana? Morgana, newly crowned as Queen of Camelot, begins a reign of terrible evil over the innocent citizens of the kingdom. Counting on Morgause and her immortal army at her command all hope seems lost for Uther, who is forced to witness how his kingdom crumble under the unimaginable cruelty of his own daughter. Meanwhile, on the outskirts of Camelot, Arthur recovers his strength and plans a counter attack with the help of a few loyals at his side: Gwaine, Lancelot, Elyan and Percival. However, Merlin is aware that not even a skilful warrior like Arthur can defeat an immortal foe without magic. Will he be able to reclaim the great sword Excalibur from the Lake of Avalon in time to save the lives of those he cares the most about?

star 8.33
1,928 votes
Directors: Jeremy Webb
Writers: Julian Jones
The Diamond of the Day (2)

#3 - The Diamond of the Day (2)

Season 5 - Episode 13 - Aired Dec 24, 2012

And so it seems the Prophets did not lie. As the great battle rages on Camlann's mighty plain, Merlin faces his moment of destiny. Can he find the strength to save the man he made a King; the Camelot they fought to build; and the brotherhood they shared?

star 8.28
1,116 votes
Writers: Julian Jones
The Diamond of the Day (1)

#4 - The Diamond of the Day (1)

Season 5 - Episode 12 - Aired Dec 22, 2012

High in the mountains, a great horde gathers; Morgana prepares for war with a vengeful Mordred at her side. Merlin feels the weight of his destiny like never before as the ancient prophecies play out with terrifying accuracy. But before he can save his beloved Camelot, he must save himself. For it is not just the kingdom Morgana wishes to destroy – it is also Emrys.

star 8.12
1,292 votes
Writers: Jake Michie
The Sword in the Stone (1)

#5 - The Sword in the Stone (1)

Season 4 - Episode 12 - Aired Dec 17, 2011

Morgana is now the head of a vast Southron army and a deadly net is closing around Camelot. After the sorceress strikes everyone is forced to run for their lives including Arthur. It is down to Merlin to try and save Arthur from Morgana's clutches.

star 8.07
1,670 votes
The Last Dragonlord (2)

#6 - The Last Dragonlord (2)

Season 2 - Episode 13 - Aired Dec 19, 2009

The Great Dragon is finally free. Full of rage, he attacks Camelot with pitiless intensity. The castle is crumbling and Arthur's men cannot hold out much longer but only a Dragonlord can kill a dragon and Uther wiped them all out years ago. Or did he? Gaius admits one such man could still be alive and in hiding. The last Dragonlord is the key to Merlin's own past as well as the future of Camelot, but will Arthur and Merlin find Balinor in time to save the kingdom?

star 8.00
1,624 votes
Directors: Jeremy Webb
Writers: Julian Jones
With All My Heart

#7 - With All My Heart

Season 5 - Episode 9 - Aired Dec 1, 2012

Merlin knows he must act fast before Morgana’s twisted control over Gwen gets further out of hand. But only the most powerful magic can save the Queen and this will not be easy, even for Merlin. As the High Priestess tightens her grip on Camelot, one thing is clear - she will not give up her puppet without a fight.

star 7.97
1,272 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Richard McBrien
Le Morte d'Arthur

#8 - Le Morte d'Arthur

Season 1 - Episode 13 - Aired Dec 13, 2008

On a hunting trip, Arthur comes face to face with a creature of great power from the old religion. When Gaius informs them that it can only be killed by magic, Uther refuses to listen and sends out his knights to kill it. Arthur is fatally wounded and Merlin must go to the Isle of the Blessed to save him. But will he be able to pay the price?

star 7.96
1,390 votes
Directors: Dave Moore
Writers: Julian Jones
Arthur's Bane (2)

#9 - Arthur's Bane (2)

Season 5 - Episode 2 - Aired Oct 13, 2012

As dawn breaks across the icy tundra, Merlin and Arthur are close to exhaustion. With each tortured step, the fortress of Ismere looms ever nearer and Merlin's fear intensifies. What game is Mordred playing? And what powerful secrets are Morgana and the druid Ruadan (Liam Cunningham) searching for amongst its twisted catacombs? It seems like this time, not even Merlin can stop Arthur from walking right into the lion's den… For in this bleak and transient wilderness, only one thing is certain: the great trial for Albion has finally begun.

star 7.95
1,397 votes
Writers: Julian Jones
The Coming of Arthur (1)

#10 - The Coming of Arthur (1)

Season 3 - Episode 12 - Aired Nov 27, 2010

Arthur and Merlin embark on a dangerous mission to capture the Cup of Life, a powerful magical artifact that carries the gift of immortality. However, before they are able to retrieve the Cup they fall prey to Jarl, an unscrupulous slave trader. They manage to escape when a trusted friend comes to their rescue but with Jarl's help, the Cup of Life ends up in Morgause's hands. Now that the dreadful sisters count on an immortal army at their disposal, will Morgause and Morgana overthrow Uther once and for all?

star 7.94
1,740 votes
Directors: Jeremy Webb
Writers: Jake Michie
The Hollow Queen

#11 - The Hollow Queen

Season 5 - Episode 8 - Aired Nov 24, 2012

When Merlin agrees to help a young Druid boy, he has no choice but to leave Camelot on a dangerous mission. And with the citadel distracted by the visit of the fearsome Sarrum of Amata, it seems that no one will notice his absence. But as the sky darkens, so do Merlin's suspicions - is there more to Daegal than meets the eye? And can a man as ruthless as the Sarrum ever really be trusted? Too late, the young warlock realises he's made a terrible mistake.

star 7.89
1,192 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Julian Jones
The Darkest Hour (2)

#12 - The Darkest Hour (2)

Season 4 - Episode 2 - Aired Oct 8, 2011

The kingdom is on the brink of collapse and Morgana poised to strike, in the final part of this opening episode of the fantasy drama. As Lancelot races back to Camelot with the dying Merlin, Arthur must continue on his mission to vanquish the Dorocha without them. Though the Knights know their journey to the Isle of the Blessed is fraught with danger, none could anticipate the sacrifice Arthur intends to make there. Friendship and loyalty are tested to the limit, but in the end, it's the power of love that changes all their lives for ever.

star 7.89
1,630 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Julian Jones
The Kindness of Strangers

#13 - The Kindness of Strangers

Season 5 - Episode 10 - Aired Dec 8, 2012

Morgana leads a terrifying manhunt in pursuit of her old foe Alator of the Catha, for she knows without doubt that he can tell her exactly where to find Emrys. Merlin's life is in severe danger, so when the mysterious Finna offers to help him, is he right to trust her?

star 7.87
1,082 votes
Directors: Declan O'Dwyer
Writers: Richard McBrien
The Secret Sharer

#14 - The Secret Sharer

Season 4 - Episode 7 - Aired Nov 12, 2011

Morgana joins forces with enigmatic wizard Alator to uncover a secret that could change the course of destiny, as the magical drama continues. With allies on both sides of the castle walls, can anyone stop her before Merlin's greatest secret is revealed?

star 7.86
1,626 votes
Writers: Julian Jones
The Drawing of the Dark

#15 - The Drawing of the Dark

Season 5 - Episode 11 - Aired Dec 15, 2012

Mordred finds himself torn between loyalty and love, but little does he realise that the path he chooses will shape Camelot's destiny. As the drums of war beat ever louder, a desperate Merlin feels trapped by the cruel circle of fate - is he powerless to stop his dreams of Albion from crumbling to dust?

star 7.84
1,147 votes
Directors: Declan O'Dwyer
Writers: Julian Jones
The Hunter's Heart

#16 - The Hunter's Heart

Season 4 - Episode 11 - Aired Dec 10, 2011

Morgana ends up discovering a powerful ally in the Southron warlord Helios and they come up with the perfect plan to bring Camelot to its knees. With Arthur preoccupied by the beautiful Princess Mithian, it ends up falling to an absent friend to raise the alarm.

star 7.84
1,650 votes
The Tears of Uther Pendragon (1)

#17 - The Tears of Uther Pendragon (1)

Season 3 - Episode 1 - Aired Sep 11, 2010

A year after her disappearance and when almost all hope is lost, Morgana returns to Camelot. While Merlin is afraid she might remember the circumstances of her disappearance and give him away in front of the king, a delighted Uther announces a banquet to celebrate. However, soon afterwards evil magic starts to take hold of the king's mind, putting the safety of Camelot at risk as he is consumed with hallucinations and enemies reach his door. Merlin suspects Morgana is behind the enchantment but his search for the truth puts his life in peril while Arthur is forced to take control and face new foes on his own. Will they succeed to rescue the king and Camelot from destruction?

star 7.84
1,892 votes
Directors: Jeremy Webb
Writers: Julian Jones
Another's Sorrow

#18 - Another's Sorrow

Season 5 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 27, 2012

With Princess Mithian as the perfect bait, Morgana conjures a deception so powerful that the whole of Camelot is taken in - even Merlin himself. But as the storm clouds gather, will the young warlock see through the lies? Or will Morgana at long last fulfil her dreams of revenge?

star 7.83
1,254 votes
Directors: Ashley Way
Writers: Jake Michie
The Darkest Hour (1)

#19 - The Darkest Hour (1)

Season 4 - Episode 1 - Aired Oct 1, 2011

Evil sorceress Morgana summons mighty gatekeeper the Cailleach, who opens a door to another world from which hellish creatures pour forth. As Arthur and his loyal knights take up arms, Merlin discovers the only thing that will stop them is an unimaginable sacrifice.

star 7.80
1,754 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Julian Jones

#20 - Aithusa

Season 4 - Episode 4 - Aired Oct 22, 2011

A mysterious visitor arrives in Camelot seeking a very special prize: a dragon's egg.

star 7.79
1,589 votes
Directors: Alex Pillai
Writers: Julian Jones
Arthur's Bane (1)

#21 - Arthur's Bane (1)

Season 5 - Episode 1 - Aired Oct 6, 2012

Camelot faces a new golden age, but even as the city flowers, the dark seeds of destruction are being sown. In the frozen wastelands of the north, men are disappearing without a trace. King Arthur and his knights undertake a dangerous mission into the unknown in search of answers - but once there, Merlin finds himself locked in a battle unlike any he has fought before.

star 7.78
1,404 votes
Writers: Julian Jones
The Dark Tower

#22 - The Dark Tower

Season 5 - Episode 6 - Aired Nov 10, 2012

When Gwen is snatched from Camelot without warning, Merlin knows there can be only one person responsible: Morgana. Arthur is determined to rescue his Queen – but it's not going to be easy, for she is locked in the Dark Tower, a place that haunts the dreams of men. Arthur and his Knights must embark on a quest like no other, battling through a landscape riddled with hidden dangers, perilous obstacles and magical beings. As they near their goal, Merlin's sense of dread reaches breaking point. What twisted game is Morgana playing? And more importantly, just what is the final test that awaits them in the tower?

star 7.78
1,278 votes
Directors: Ashley Way
Writers: Julian Jones
The Disir

#23 - The Disir

Season 5 - Episode 5 - Aired Nov 3, 2012

In the inky depths of an ancient pool, three soothsayers cast a dark judgment upon the King of Camelot. But despite Merlin’s warnings, headstrong Arthur refuses to take the words of the Disir seriously and their fury rains down on Camelot. Only the greatest sacrifice can appease them, and with the kingdom in jeopardy, is it one that Arthur is prepared to make? Faced with the King’s uncertainty, Merlin has just one chance to save him from his destiny, but this decision comes at the highest price.

star 7.78
1,290 votes
Directors: Ashley Way
Writers: Richard McBrien
The Eye of the Phoenix

#24 - The Eye of the Phoenix

Season 3 - Episode 8 - Aired Oct 30, 2010

Arthur embarks alone on a quest to prove himself worthy of the Camelot throne by retrieving the Golden Trident from the Fisher King. With the Prince beyond the protection of the citadel, Morgana takes the opportunity to use her dark magic. She gives him a precious bracelet that contains a Phoenix Eye, insisting that he wears it at all times for protection. However, the magical jewel takes away Arthur's life force and he is left defenceless in the Fisher King's perilous realm. With the help of Gwaine, will Merlin be able to reach Arthur in time and fulfil his own quest to protect the future king of Camelot?

star 7.76
1,879 votes
Directors: Alice Troughton
Writers: Julian Jones
The Tears of Uther Pendragon (2)

#25 - The Tears of Uther Pendragon (2)

Season 3 - Episode 2 - Aired Sep 18, 2010

With the help of the Great Dragon, Merlin manages to return to Camelot only to find out that is it on the verge of invasion: Morgause and Cenred have teamed up and plot against a weakened Uther. Cenred's initial reluctance is won over by the fact that they count on an ally within Camelot walls who will ensure the castle is taken. Uther is unable to rule which forces Arthur to step up front and defend the citadel agains Cenred's powerful army. With the help of Morgause and to make things worse, Morgana plays a deadly card and summons a skeleton army to wreak havoc within the castle walls. Camelot's fate rests once again on Arthur's shoulders and Merlin's magic as they fight in their own way to hold off both an army of the living and an army of the dead. Will they manage to succeed?

star 7.75
1,888 votes
Directors: Jeremy Webb
Writers: Julian Jones