Saturday, November 18, 2006

Robin Hood. Episode 7: Brothers In Arms.

Story: Robin Hood and his outlaws ambush a peddler, Lucky George, who unbeknown to them is working for the Sheriff of Nottingham. On their way back to camp they chance upon a group of people about to horse whip a thief. This thief turns out to be Alan A’ Dale’s brother and is admitted into the band. Meanwhile Lucky George has returned to Nottingham and told the Sheriff about the ambush in the forest. The Sheriff becomes convinced there must be a spy in the Castle, informing the outlaws about Lucky George's cargo. He instructs Gisborne to find out who it is.
Before going about this task Gisborne pays Marian a visit, and gives her a present of a necklace he has only just stolen from the neck of one of the girls on his Estate, (sentimental fool that he is.) Later, when Robin sees the necklace about Marian's neck he recognises it, and also becomes rather jealous of Gisborne's advances. Marian gives him the necklace so it can be returned to its rightful owner.
The following morning Alan's brother has gone missing from camp, taking the horses with him. It transpires that he is about to rob Marian and her father (not knowing who they are), and a fight ensues between him and the Night Watchman. This is a great scene, with Marian's father, usually completely disapproving of his daughter's masked activities, looking on in admiration as she struts her stuff with considerable panache. Robin Hood arrives during the heat of the battle, and resolves the situation. Marian tells him of a consignment of silver which is on its way through the forest; information she overheard whilst in Gisborne's company. When Robin intercepts the consignment it turns out to be a trick, intended to help the Sheriff flush out his spy. Gisborne is convinced the spy must be his sergeant, and tortures him to death whilst Marian listens with some guilt to his screams.
It seems Alan's brother will not heed the advice of the other outlaws, and once again sets out on his own to prove himself. In the process he is arrested and sentenced to hang. Of course the television audience, together with the peasants around the gallows, expect Robin Hood to turn up in the nick of time with his trick arrows and save the day. But Keith Allen's Sheriff is not that dumb. He's brought his personal entertainment forward by one hour...
When Gisborne sees the necklace has been returned to its original owner by Robin Hood he realises Marian must be the spy, and the Sheriff encourages him to go and enjoy himself there and then in punishing her. The final scenes which follow are then perhaps the best in the series so far. Marian is genuinely afraid of what Gisborne might do to her and her father, and tries frantically to bluff her way out of the situation. For one brief moment a happy ending seems possible as Robin climbs her balcony and, out of Gisborne's vision, passes her the necklace so she can prove her innocence. But Gisborne is not about to let his advantage go. He tells her the Sheriff will never trust her now anyway, and that only by becoming his wife will she be safe. A heartbroken Robin turns away as Marian whispers her apology to him before closing the shutters...Comments: Great episode. Really well written and constructed. Keith Allen is just superb as perhaps the cruellest Sheriff we've known, and it was good to see one of the outlaws (Joe Armstrong as Alan A’ Dale) take the spotlight. More of that please. I also enjoyed the scene where Jonas Armstrong climbed up to Marian's balcony, and nearly managed a kiss. Errol Flynn and Douglas Fairbanks would have approved! (I wonder if he does all his own back flips?) But the icing on the cake was certainly the climactic scenes between Lucy Griffiths and Richard Armitage; she trembling with tears of fear, and he pressing his advantage to gain her hand in marriage. Excellent stuff from Armitage, and the kind of scripting I've been waiting for him to get his hands on. Also, I loved Marian's bravery when feeling she was surely about to die at Gisborne’s hands, and went into a speech about the state of the nation.

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Tasha said...

Hi,RH,
Totally agree with your comments.RA was superb & I feel, in his performance, he is helping the younger actors in their performances.Joe Armstrong was excellent too.I'm sure his Dad is proud of him.

12:22 PM  
Blogger Clement of the Glen said...

I think this series is what they call a slow burner. The stories are certainly improving and I am getting used to blanking-out the costumes, particularly Lucky George’s, who looked like a cross between General Custer and Arthur Daily.

Of course the poll winner, Lucy Griffiths (told you so!), stood out again. (Lulu, I am writing a new series. It’s called ‘The Night Watchman and her Merry Men’.) And it was nice to see some different camera angles and the forest looking a bit greener!

Does Alan A Dale play an instrument?

1:24 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Tasha,
I confess that ending had me quite choked. Truly excellent.

Clement,
You better get that script done fast, because the BBC must surely be considering a spin off series in the same way they did with Dr Who's "Torchwood". (Hmmmm, a Lucy Griffiths after the 9 o'clock watershed...)

I'm loving her wardrobe now. It's kind of a fun part of the series, speculating what she'll wear next. But I agree Lucky George was ludicrous. I honestly didn't realise the programme had started when he came on the screen.

3:18 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

BBC Robin Hood 2006 Cast:

Robin Hood - Jonas Armstrong
Marian - Lucy Griffiths
Guy of Gisborne - Richard Armitage
Sheriff of Nottingham - Keith Allen
Little John - Gordon Kennedy
Much - Sam Troughton
Alan A'Dale - Joe Armstrong
Will Scarlett - Harry Lloyd
Anjali Jay - Djaq

(Basic cast only).

4:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah me too, i didnt know robin hood had started either! T'was a good episode. It was really shocking when the sheriff had already hung the 3, i actually thought that he was joking and it was just a trap...i dont know why. I must admit i was laughing at the cruel joke! Then i finally realised that it wasn't a joke after the episode had finished and it really hit me thinking about how cruel that was...i guess i was too absorbed in the Robin, Marian, Gisborne love triangle to notice. The acting was good, i could really see how hurt Robin was left after what had happened but maybe a bit more crying from Alan would have done the trick..i mean he did just loose his brother.

Clement, as long as Harry Lloyd stars in your programme i'm absolutely positively fine with that :) Lulu xx

8:55 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

How could Marion have said that? i thorght that Robin would sort it out but he didn't and it was so sad.
I was suprised that Robin believed Marion when she told Guy she despised Robin, i honestly thorght He was an idiot to believe her
she had to lie.
Does anyone know if someone has been cast as King Richard.
Robin and Marion always end up together, they are just doing it the real life way.
Jesiixxx

11:32 AM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Jesii,

There is real wisdom in your words. The real life Robin Hood would have only been a teenager when he came to people's attention. Maybe 17? 19? And at that age what boy deals with those kind of emotions too well? As you rightly say, they are "doing it the real life way", and first love is difficult.

I hope they do get together in the end. BUT, I wonder if the Night Watchman was to get her own mini-series (like Dr Who got Torchwood), would the BBC keep them apart?

Only time will tell.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would love to see some romance as well, i am a true romantic myself, and mayeb just a kiss would lighten my spirits.
They are made for each other, and i wish that Marion would be a bit kinder to robin, i hate to see him so down like in the last episode when she said she despised him!
i nearly cried!
Freya

8:23 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Freya,

I agree with what you say. But Marian is clearly upset with him for leaving her and going to the Crusades. Robin believes that was the right thing for a man to do at the time. Marian, a woman, sees no value in a war overseas when so much is wrong at home.

8:41 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

This was truly the best episode of the series that I've seen so far.
It was fast paced with so many twists and turns!
The ending was truly heartwrenching for both Robin and Marian, because you can see how much they care for each other. These two say so much more with their eyes and facial expressions than all of the dialogue. Marian was trying to truly convince Sir Guy of her innocence - her simple words to Robin "I'm sorry" at the end was more than just for agreeing to marry someone else. It was for what she said about him. She's been trapped by Sir Guy - I wonder if she can truly "handle" him as the intrigue gets thicker.
I loved the scene where we finally get to see a few of Marian's moves - she's an amazing fighter. I was thoroughly impressed, and I am dying for Episode 8.

12:52 AM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Emily,
Yes I think this episode marked a real turning point in the series. It's much better focussed now on how it wants to relate the legend.

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is a guess
Guy of Gisborne fourght in the Holy Land:either as a Kinights Tempelar or : as a deserter for the Sarasons
That is how he gets this Tatoo
(And how, maybey, Guy and Marion don't end up together.)
Just an idea.
Jesii

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh my god, doezn't Jonas look gorgeous in this episode!
i wish he had managed that kiss! he looked so forlorn after she'd agreed to marry guy.
aaaaw!
freya

9:04 PM  
Anonymous riya said...

freya and emily, i agree, the climax was totally heartwrenching, and guy nicely used the advantage he had...
the look robin had in that scene, awwww....made me wanted to go and hug him....in fact i was wishing marian would throw guy out of the window, i was so caught up in the scene (wishful thinking, i know, given he's sheriff's man friday, it'd have had disastrous effects on marian and her father)...oh god, what an episode!
PS - my comments are late as i'm just catching up on the series in US

1:40 AM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Always nice to hear the reactions Riya.

7:23 PM  

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