Saturday, December 09, 2006

Robin Hood. Episode 10: "Peace? Off!"

Story: So, This soldier arrives in Sherwood Forest apparently wearing 21st century British Army battle fatigues. He's come from Iraq, sorry the Crusades, and he's not best pleased 'cos somebody's tattooed his chest. (Soldiers tend to do that when they get drunk). In fact he's so angry he's setting fire to Christian churches, and Robin has to rescue him. The outlaws call him Harold, and lock him up until they can find a way to appease his anger.
Later on they come across a wagon in the forest containing a grotesque mask, which they assume to belong to a sorcerer. When Harold catches sight of the mask he goes wild and attempts to slit Djaq's throat, which is good news for Gordon Kennedy because at last it gives him something to do - throw a rock at the back of Harold's head, and later carve a cross on a tree for good measure. Robin determines he must trace the source of this rage in Harold, and sends Will to find out who the owner of the mask and wagon is. (Not for the first time in the series he will later send someone else to do exactly the same task, in this case Marian.) When he goes to ask this favour of Marian she is beaming from head to toe over the gift she has received from Guy of Gisborne. Guy had been moping about, and the Sheriff had told him any woman can be bought with an exotic gift. Guy indeed reveals some understanding of Marian's character and, instead of repeating earlier mistakes and buying her trinkets, he gets her a horse. The Night Watchman's ideals are for the moment at least thrown aside, and there's no disguising her obvious pleasure.
Meanwhile, back at the Castle, the owner of the mask turns out to be a Saracen prince, and a guest of the Sheriff of Nottingham. He believes he is there to give Prince John a peace offering to end the Holy Wars. The Sheriff believes he is holding him prisoner until a ransom arrives. (Oh boy are they both in for a surprise.) The peace offering the Prince has in mind is the grotesque mask, which happens to be an acupuncture devise and not at all an instrument for raising the Devil, like those silly Anglo Saxon outlaws would have you believe. However, when the Prince goes to retrieve the mask from the forest he is captured by Robin Hood.
When Djaq recognises the Saracen as an important prince, Robin realises a ransom must be on the way. They don't have to wait long before Pans People turn up, suitably attired for the panto season in ice blue flared Lycra, and a treasure chest. Djaq seems alarmed at their appearance, but the boys are expecting entertainment. "Is it 'cos I'm a girl that you won't listen to me", Djaq says, taking her gags from Ali G. But Robin doesn't have time to answer before the elegantly synchronised martial arts display gets under way. The humour reaches a climax back at the Castle, as Robin and the Sheriff stand back to back against the nimble ninja onslaught. Lucky for them Tattooed Harold arrives just in the nick of time...
Comment: Absolutely hilarious. Sometimes intentionally so. But look on the bright side, it could have been "Robin Hood Men in Tights" (the only film I refuse to review on the main Robin Hood blog).

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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).

10:20 PM  
Blogger Emily said...

Am I really the first to leave a comment this time! I'm surprised, seeing that I live in Canada!
Nevermind - back to Sherwood - This episode *was* hilarious - the fighting scene with the ninja chick assasins was great.
There was only one person (perhaps two, as in Sir Guy of Gisbourne) but the Night Watchman was sadly missing from that scene.
In fact, Marian seems quite distracted lately (disappointingly so).
I very much enjoyed seeing her fight in Episode 7, and I have to admit, the Seracin Ninja Chicks' fighting style reminded me quite a bit of Marian's own in some ways - though hers seems more Asian.
We hear a lot about the "Night Watchman" but we don't actually see her doing very much.
It seems that in the last few episodes, she has been more repetitive - and getting rather less bright.
I'm thinking Marian needs a good strong plot to let us see what's really going on with her - and with Guy. And with Robin for that matter.
The only thing of note I think she said was about Robin only asking her for favours and not giving her presents.
As far as strong females go, Djaq had a lot more brains than Marian in this episode.
I think even Robin agreed.
I would like to see more Night Watchman.
It's interesting to know a little more about Djaq's past two - being in the service of the Prince. What this means exactly, I couldn't quite tell.
Another point of note - Much and Allan agreed, and wasn't Robin funny with the mask? I liked how they showed how superstituious a lot of people used to be.
I could go on, but I'll leave that for later.
By the way - the Marian in the Chastity belt with the red hair that I was asking about? That was Robin Hood Men in Tights, I've since found out - no wonder the memory is so terrible ;)

5:43 AM  
Blogger robin hood said...

hi emily.
I think my disappoinrment with the episode, especially as we near the end of the first series, is more than apparent.

The problem for me has been that the series lacked an overall vision from the start. One has the impression of writers submitting scripts to a director with no-one having established exactly what the overall intent of the programme is, other than entertain on an add hoc basis from weekend to weekend.

Your point about the superstitions of the day: I've always believed (as stated on the main blog ) that the superstitious parts of the legend are essential. That's what made the mystic Robin of Sherwood such a classic, with its pagan mythology, and it was one of the better aspects of Prince of Thieves if you recall the Witch in that. But, for me, the "Peace Off" episode fell far short of exploring those superstitions.

10:43 AM  
Anonymous Tasha said...

A lot of criticism about this episode across the Web,especially the ninjas,which are seen as ludicrous.I actually enjoyed it, now I know all the anachronisms are a deliberate policy by the producers.I thought there were lots of different layers.Kids could enjoy the fighting with no blood being spilled.Adults could appreciate the parallels with what is going on in the world today.
There was even a link between Prince Malik & Rudolph Hess coming to Britain in WW2 to try & make peace between Germany & Britain.I don't know if the writers had made that connection themseves though.
Quite agree with the comments made about Marian.I still find LG a disappointment in the role.An actress with more experience would make the relationship with Guy & Robin really sizzle.

11:08 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ok, the good first; i thought this episode was good fun, the nigas being female was like 18th century feminisme! i think no-one should take this too seriously, it is a family show that has to be simple enough for little people like my 8 yr old sister to understand and enjoy. i still think jonus armstrong is sex on legs (lol) and is a good robin. the bad; the nightwatchman sucks, we NEVER see marion strut her stuff, which she does well. after last weeks budding romance i was hoping for something romantic or something between marion and robinh, instead marion and gisborne are starting to have some chemistry and she couldn't hide her joy at seeing a nice horse. bad. in the next series could she start to fall for gisborne? bad. so i hope next week redemes itself. xxx

12:33 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Tasha, and "anonymous",

Whilst I agree that there is a need for the show to be "family orientated", I still think this episode was trite.

The Errol Flynn version, whilst not my idea of Robin Hood by a long way, was "family oriented". As was the first non-cartoon Disney version, and Richard Greene's 1950's series. But all those gained a clasic status because they had a well defined direction.

12:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

thnx for replying!
i agree that the series has absolutly no 'whole series focus' and i wish it did, as it would make it loads better. perhaps this is because there is another series? (i kind of wish there was not another series as i dont know how they are gonna maintain a good story line through out another whole 13 episodes)still i do enjoy it every saterday xxx my name is clara xxx

2:44 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I actually enjoyed the episode! I was getting bored with the last 2 and my boyfriend couldn't help remarking: oh for goodness sake, this sucks. But last night was a bit different and had a bit more spice to it.

4:18 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Clara,
I just hope that the second series will show a little more investment. It's not a matter of money (although one or two costume ideas would be nice), but thought and time on character development.

I appreciate Will Scarlet is "cute". But is he going to be required to do little else but stand stock still facing the camera for another 12 episodes? I know a second series has been booked, and that all these young and excellent actors will be on board. But does anyone know if the more experienced players are staying with it? Is Keith Allen still going to be there?

Thanks for the input. A lot of people certainly did enjoy it and its good they make their voice heard.

5:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

is it just me, or does everyone want Marion to slap Robin for being soooooo anoyiny.
he is treating her really badly.
loved the fighting women.

10:57 AM  
Blogger Clement of the Glen said...

Looks like the BBC have been reading your Blog, Robin (I wish a few more would read mine!) Friar Tuck is getting a reprieve after he was snubbed in the first series- and they want Matt Lucas (of Little Britain) in the role!

“But Hood's rotund sidekick Tuck, an old favourite, was dispensed with from the first BBC comeback series on the grounds that he was viewed as a "laughing stock".
Critics believed that "laughing stock" was code for Tuck being too fat and a poor role model for kids.
BBC One Controller Peter Fincham revealed a change of heart at the channel's season launch.
He said he wanted Little Britain star Lucas, 32, to play the role, but that he had not been approached formally.
He said: "The series wants to evolve and he is a great character.
"If Matt Lucas said he'd play him I would be very happy. I did mention it to Matt and he said he would love to do that."
The revival of Robin Hood stars Jonas Armstrong in the lead role, who follows in the footsteps of Richard Greene in the 1950s and Michael Praed in the 1980s.
Comedian Keith Allen, who chanted the 1998 World Cup hit Vindaloo, plays the Sheriff of Nottingham. “

I was very disappointed with the last episode and truly hope the story line picks up!

3:23 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Thanks Clement, for such an extensive input.

Matt Lucas?? Seems a bit weird at first. I'll have to ponder over that one...

But if the BBC have decided to actually put some time into investigating the actual source of the Robin Hood legends, and the rich tapestry of characters therein, well that's good news indeed.

3:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pity that i watched this episode at a sleepover, with consequences that i could barely hear it, what with pizza being delivered and a smart mouthed girl stating the obvoius every 5 minurtes! (good thing i haven't shown her this site or i'd get it tomorow.)
i then missed it on sunday because of a carol concert.
is it ever repeated on bbc1 during the week? But accordng to my other friends it didn't have much of robin hood really so hey ho.
please reply

5:01 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ive been thinking and i reckon that gisborne should see marion with robin and get very jealous and react some revenge in the 12th episode. Then in the final episode maybe there could be a huge fight scene ending in robin getting hurt? Or maybe gisborne or some one could order marions father to be killed, in a public place, then robin gets hurt being pointed out (unintentionally) by marion (she runs over to him in distress ect) that would be interesting. and also i would like it ti be more obvious that robin is actually helping the poor rather than just thinking about how awful war is. a combination would be great. what do you think? xxx clara xxx

6:11 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

You really didn't miss much. It was a poor episode. It is repeated a "few" times in the week, but only if you've got cable. I hope you enjoyed the pizza. We don't get that in Sherwood Forest. Just venison.

I particularly like your last point about reminding everyone he's on the side of the poor, and not just worried about the war. Well said.

6:32 PM  
Anonymous Tasha said...

Oh Please,NOT Matt Lucas.I like him usually,but I think the whole series could change with such a high profile performer in it.There's enough humour in it with the Sheriff & Much,any more & it could become too jokey & silly.

8:28 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...


I fear the series is simply being driven by the BBC controllers desire to sustain the Dr Who's level of viewing figures through the winter months, rather than anyone at the BBC having a particular knowledge or interest in Robin Hood.

Why else did all those outlaw's roles get swapped around? Or simply not developed at all. Apparently not for any artistic or creative reasons that I can see.

I think he's looked at the Friar Tuck of "Prince of Thieves" where the role was also played by an established comedian. However, in THAT film the role was fulfilled really well. So maybe it'll be okay???????

9:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Clara i was more thinking marion goes out as the night watchman and starts doing good etc etc. then gisborne catches her and sees the horse he gave her then realises its her? uh oh. then that would be the end of the series lol.

5:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i was just wanting something BIG to happen, you know like some one dying or getting hurt or marion (finally) joining the men in the woods, so the next episode would be different in some way. so yeah, gisborne finding out marion was the nightwatchman would be fabby. gr8 idea lol xxx clara xxx oh and someone said that marion should get cross with robin for not buying her pressies and stuff- duh! He lives in the woods! what would he get her, a twig!! lol

5:27 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Yes, after recent weeks when we saw the romance build, and Guy getting suspicious about Marian, everything just fell flat last weekend.

The series needs to end on a real high if it's going to get the high ratings next year. A lot of people "on the streets" just don't seem to like it at all, and may not give it a second chance.

It certainly needs developing more.

5:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

yeah i mean there is real room for a fabby series; great goodlooking cast, good story lines they just need to be developed (kinda alot) i hope the series does something different so it can start the new series on a better note xxx clara xxx

7:19 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

whats venison?
do you know how many series there are going to be? will the next episode have more of robin hood? when will the next series come? oh, and you'll be pleased to know i'm getting a NEW dvd player and the first 5 series on dvd!

6:05 PM  
Blogger robin hood said...

Venison is roast deer. It's what me and the outlaws have always eaten, although I'm saddened to hear some poachers now come into the forest at night to kill the deer and sell the meat to restaurants. That's not right.

There is definately going to be a second series, and it seems like ALL the actors have agreed to come back for it. Whether or not it continues after that depends on how successful it is. The second series will be on during the autumn of 2007. (About a year away). So in between the BBC will be showing the new Doctor Who series, with the new Doctor's assistant now Billie Piper has left.

Good news about the dvd player.

6:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

ooh i just had to write! i have just seen a TV mag for the next three weeks, from what i can tell it looks like the series is back on track! cant wait till tomorrow! clara xxx

7:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i'm reely shocked- i was looking through the radio times and it said that on the new years eve episode 'Robin, unable to come to terms with marian DEATH...' and i'm just like WHAT! please tell me it's not true- it would make me feel much better :(

5:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi freya
er i dunno if u r gonna see here agen but dont PANIC, Lucy Griffiths has been cast agen for the second series as marion so she doesnt die, but robin thinks so. a escape plan from gisborne? as i imagine gisborne will try to enfoce marrage as king richard has arrived back in england, the wedding bells are ringing!!!! clara xxx

8:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

dear clara
good idea- that will probaly be it. I just panicked, and wrote it down without thinking. you are much cleverer person than me. congratualtions.
can't wait till saturdays episode can you?

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi freya
yeah cant wait, and cant believe that there r only 2 episodes left!! lol *rather stupid really!!!* anyway i paniced too, so took the time to figure it out! the series wouldnt be te same without marion and robins romance!! clara xxx

9:10 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hiya clara
i'm going to miss this episode because im at a xmas party so i dont no what to do! i dont have sky and my dvd player has broken. argh! give me an idea! i cant wait until it comes out on dvd! help me!

8:30 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

hi freya
er, tricky! do ya have digital? well its shown on bbc3 on sunday, but otherwise your gonna have to just get the jist of it by this blog!! bummer. poor you still hope you have a gooood time at ur xmas party. i luurve this site cos of the pics, they are so good! thnx to the blogger!!! such a good site dont ya think? clara xxx

6:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

OMG OMG OMG OMG i was sooo worried that Marion wud just die. She defo doesnt does she?

8:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

i dont think shes dies, i think she comes bac alive lol,

because shes in the next series!! woo!

10:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank god, the last episode will rock if she isnt really dead. If any1 has any other info on this plz plz plz tell tell tell!

6:09 PM  
Anonymous riya said...

well, i agree with most comments that this episode did nothing much to move the main plot forward, it seemed more from, let's put more current news/feeling/opinions into the story perspective...
and all those assasination squad stunts, don't get me started...
too bad bbc wasn't so focussed during the 1st series, as they didn't know if the series had a future or not....
definitely needed some nightwatchman action between episodes 8-12, i guess marian was too upset with marrying guy or something...
and now for my fav dialogues (needless to say, b/w lovebirds robin n marian)
marian- some men take pleasure in giving gifts to others
robin - really, was it a lot of pleasure, and how do you plan on reciprocating?

2:06 AM  

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