Saturday, 28 March 2009

Robin Hood. Series 3 Episode 1: Total Eclipse.

The story: A man dressed in the style of a monk or priest, comes ashore alone on an English coastline. He is a black man, with the physique of a warrior and an educated accent. He has come looking for Robin Hood.

Robin himself is dashing through the forest towards Nottingham, hell bent on revenging Marion’s murder, but with John, Much and Allen in pursuit, all pleading for some measure of cautious restraint. But Robin cannot be pacified: “Robin Hood is dead”, he screams. “He died in the Holy Land with Marion. All I have is vengeance!” He dismisses his outlaw band, leaving them behind, and crying out “Gisborne dies today”.

When Robin Hood reaches Loxley it is with bow already drawn for action, and a final kiss to Marian’s wedding ring on his lips. He fires an arrow through the window of the Manor House Loxley took from him; his arrow finds his arch enemy waiting. In response to Robin’s challenge, Gisborne seizes his sword and runs eagerly to accept the fight, whilst the mysterious “priest” looks on from the sidelines. However, always eager to make use of any evil advantage in order to gain the upper hand, Gisborne seizes a small girl from the crowd and runs with her to a high ridge overlooking the river, threatening to throw her over the side unless Robin surrenders. Robin tells the girl not to be scared, to which she simply replies “I’m not scared. You are Robin Hood”. Such is the faith the people of England have now placed in the man who has become a living legend.

In the ensuing fight Robin strikes his head on a stone, then to be quickly seized by Gisborne and cast over the side, down into the waters below. Much surges forward to seek revenge by killing Gisborne in return, but is quickly overcome and arrested by Gisborne’s ever present minions, whilst John and Allen make their get away. Only now does the pace of this opening episode to Series 3 of Robin Hood, drop down a gear. It has been an exciting and action packed re-launch.

Whilst John and Allen search in vain for Robin Hood’s body, a messenger from Prince John delivers an ultimatum to the Sheriff of Nottingham. The Prince is angry at the Sheriff’s blunders in the Holy Lands and as punishment is insisting that Nottingham pay higher taxes, or a new Sheriff will be appointed. Guy informs the Messenger that Robin Hood is now dead, and offers Robin’s outlaw pendant as proof. But if he’s really dead, where’s the body?

Once back in the dungeons, the Sheriff tortures Much in an attempt to find out where Robin Hood has been hiding his loot, and simply won’t believe Much when he says it was all given back to the people. Playing for time, Much leads the Sheriff into the forest, promising to show where the loot is buried. Of course, once in that forest, it isn’t long before John and Allen come to the rescue.

It is of course the priest, now introducing himself as Brother Tuck, who finds the body. Robin Hood purists might dismay at being deprived of the old tale of the Friar carrying Robin across the river, and engaging him in combat (just as we were saddened not to have Robin Hood fight Little John on a bridge in Series 1), but we do get to witness Robin and the Brother at loggerheads when Tuck takes Robin to a cave, and ties him up whilst attending to his wounds and spoon feeding him soup. Tuck finally explains his motives to Robin. He tells Robin that the once proud people of England are now “broken”, and that only one name seems to bring them, hope; that name is "Robin Hood". And so it is his desire to see Robin Hood once more lead the fight against oppression. But Robin will not be persuaded: "I gave everything I had", he protests, “I even gave the life of the woman I love”. But Brother Tuck is both persistent and eloquent in his response: “I have nothing in my life but my God and my country”.

This is a nice touch. The Legend of Robin Hood will always be relevant to current affairs, and one can argue that this is particularly so in recent years. So, to have a “Brother” of ethnic descent be the one to say those words, and to go seek out the man who can raise England’s hopes and aspirations once again, is to my mind a particularly good bit of writing.

As Robin Hood continues to insist that he wishes to be regarded as dead, Tuck hatches a plan based around a scientific manual in his pocket. First he informs Gisborne that Robin is secretly buried at Dead Man’s Crossing, and then informs the Outlaws that Robin is alive and well at that same place. Of course, when the two sides meet up at the crossing, the Outlaws are arrested and thrown in the dungeons. (Editor: If the Sheriff charged these guys rent for all the times they stay in those dungeons he wouldn’t have to raise taxes!) When Robin Hood hears from Tuck about their arrest he is of course eager to help them, at which point Tuck tells him of the rest of his plan…

The following day the three Outlaws are facing execution when, without warning, a full eclipse of the sun begins. Brother Tuck tells the crowd it is God’s punishment on Nottingham for what the Sheriff has been doing, and a degree of panic ensues in which John, Allen, and Much escape. Then, as the moon passes and the sun streams down into the castle courtyard, a familiar silhouette is standing on the battlements with bow drawn. The Legend that is Robin Hood has returned once more to defend his people! But first to Gisborne, now pinned helplessly to a door by Robin’s expert arrows. Will Robin Hood kill his enemy? “I live in Hell”, confesses Gisborne, almost welcoming the prospect of death…

Later on, deep in the forest, under the very trees where he once proposed to Marian, Robin Hood kneels alone and buries the ring she wore in death. “I’ll never stop loving you”, he whispers.

Comments: Much better than we expected? I think so. Full honours straight away to Richard Armitage. I think his new look in this episode at least is absolutely brilliant, and his performance excellent. One has the feeling his character (and script), has much more clarity now. A tour de force.

And Brother Tuck? Well, traditionalists like me have been wanting to see a “Tuck” reinstated since the start, and David Harewood is well suited to the part. I did find the “science book” all a bit predictable by now (shades of Djaq), and would have liked his anger to be a bit more convincing. I’m hoping he has some serious flaws in his character. (Like Michael McShane’s Tuck in the otherwise generally disappointing “Prince of Thieves”).

What’s missing (apart from Lucy)? The element of mystery which the Night Watchman provided; and the charisma of Djaq. Also, the humour of Much, Allen, and the Sheriff was not quite as evident as before. But overall, a really good start to Series 3. Above: The silhouette of a Legend. Below: One final kiss of remembrance.

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51 Comments:

Blogger robin hood said...

Robin Hood Series 3 Cast:

Robin Hood - Jonas Armstrong
Guy of Gisborne - Richard Armitage
Tuck - David Harewood
Sheriff of Nottingham - Keith Allen
Little John - Gordon Kennedy
Much - Sam Troughton
Allan-a-Dale - Joe Armstrong
Sir Jasper - Lee Ross
Mary - Ellie Darcey-Alden
Abel - Alexis Latham
Younger guard - Andoni Zorbas

28 March 2009 at 21:23  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

good start to the series but not the same as before it doesnt in my mind grab you like the last series and i do not like this kate either she is replacing marian and the bbc knew it and they did it anyway but we,ll see how it goes

28 March 2009 at 22:34  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi anonymous.

Perhaps a bit too early for me to comment too much on Kate, as she wasn't in the episode. But I share your concerns about a new love interest.

29 March 2009 at 00:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that it was a pretty decent start, although missing Marian desperately. I will try to keep an open mind as the episodes come. Can someone clue me in to the reasoning behind Kate/Robin relationship? What's the point if he's leaving at the end of the season? All it's going to do is tick me off. I'm clearly not over Marian's death. :-)

sjl

29 March 2009 at 00:22  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi

I think I'll wait and see exactly what the relationship turns out to be before passing comment.

But the series does obviously need a strong female character, and let's face it, in real life people do get over even the worst of tradgedies and "move on".

However, like you, I am certainly missing Lucy.

29 March 2009 at 02:26  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Utter and total crap.

The BBC trying to brainwash kids by pretending there were black people in Medieval England. Re-writing history as usual.

And no Maid Marian.

Boring.

Should have ended it at series 2. My favourite TV show just became ruined.

29 March 2009 at 05:17  
Anonymous Tobias said...

Better than expected.
Especially the writing is up a notch.
I thought the biggest problem with series 3 woould be to explain, why Robin doesn't kill Gibourne right on return.
They adressed this issue boldly and resolved it as well as was possible in my opinion.
As for a black man playing Tuck,
i see no brainwashing there, since they don't even try to explain his "blackness". I see it rather as a black man playing a white guy, which to me is the ultimate equality.

I also liked that they introduce the new characters one at a time.

29 March 2009 at 09:30  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Anonymous,

Regarding black people being in England in Medieval times: Yes there were. One source you can check out is this link, where that very question was posed to Yahoo:

http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20060913100505AAx2vYc

Brother Tuck's background has not been fully established, and one should not automatically assume he is somehow lefty over from, or a result of, the slave trade. Black persons did travel Europe as merchants, for example. And one only has to think of Shakespeare's Othello to know what positions of authority were held.

Historical accuracies are an issue all Robin hood fans can either challenge or embrace, not the least of which is "Was Robin Hood himself even in England in Medieval times?"

I can only say that my own personal view on the matter is that Robin Hood, in its original form, is a great story with a great "message". I believe that story has been enriched, since 1985, by the presence Outlaws of differing ethnic descent. So I'm liking Brother Tuck being there for that reason alone. To me, it's not brainwashing. To me it's "inclusion".

But everyone is entitled to express an opinion.

29 March 2009 at 14:08  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Tobias,

The fact Robin Hood never actually kills Guy (or the Sheriff), is a bit like the way superheroes never get old (at least not in "real time".)

I agree with you about introducing characters one at a time. It looks like next week we get the "new girl in town"...

29 March 2009 at 14:14  
Blogger Paige said...

Hi Robin Hood!

Great overview! I've been reading you site for a while, but I'm not sure if I've ever left a comment.

I'm going to be posting my thoughts (at length) on my own blog. Is there any chance you could link to it? The site is scifihoodie.blogspot.com I have already linked back to here, as I love your commentary on episodes.

Anyway, this episode gave me hope that I may yet enjoy this new series. A lot of that depends (as I'm sure most people are thinking) on how I like this new 'Kate' character. She's going to have a lot to overcome, since my first reactions to her character are negative.

Thanks!

Paige

29 March 2009 at 23:33  
Blogger pAu said...

Gracias!!!
Hermosa Pagina!!!!

Desde Argentina la visito siempre...

Besos a todos!!!

30 March 2009 at 00:16  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Paige,

Yes indeed, I will always reciprocate links, and only remove those links if 1. People delete me, or 2. Their site goes out of date.

I like to share The Legend.

I share your hopes for Series 3. As regular readers will know, I was (am) a big Lucy fan, and had my doubts.

It can't have escaped everyone's notice that "Kate" is already getting comments even though we haven't seen her in an episode yet.

I think the way to look at it is that she isn't the "new Marian". She's a new character.

30 March 2009 at 00:27  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hola pAu.

Gracias. Me alegro de que te gusta mi página. Mejores deseos de todos en el bosque de Sherwood.

(pAu said: "Thank you. Beautiful Page. From Argentina I always visit her. Kisses to all". But I had to use an on-line translator to reply).

30 March 2009 at 00:34  
Blogger Joni said...

I'm not sure what bothers me more - the fact that Robin moved on rather quickly from the Marian thing, or the idea that if he didn't the entire third series would consist of moping angsty-ness. Ugh. There really isn't any good way for them to work out of the mess that was S02-12/13. No matter what they do it's still going to be a random illogical mess. I guess in the end (even if I hate it) it's probably best for them to just kind of forget it ever happened and try and pick up the pieces? (Grumble.)

30 March 2009 at 01:15  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I wounder what happen to the sword that killed Marine. The ring is not marins engagment ring her engagment ring was green.

30 March 2009 at 01:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I nearly cried when robin burried Marins ring. And said I well never stop loving you

30 March 2009 at 01:36  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Joni,

I'm the last person to defend the loss of Marian. As I said at the time, the idea had no merit whatsoever. Not artistically, and certainly not commercially. However....

Has Robin "moved on rather quickly"? It seems like he's a total mess to me at present. And of course Robin was no stranger to death, especially via the horrors of war. That experience, plus the fact that life expectancy in those times would have only been about 30, must have given him a different perspective than us.

I think he views it as Marian dying "for the cause", as a fellow warrior, and not as a senseless death. And that in the end is why he's returned to his original mission to protect the poor of this Country, rather than fight dubious wars in other lands.

30 March 2009 at 01:42  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi anonymous people,

Interesting point about the ring. No doubt someone has some good close up shots to do a comparison? (Internet colours can be misleading).

Guy probably put the sword up for auction on e-bay. He's a bit sentimental like that :)

30 March 2009 at 01:45  
OpenID dcwash said...

Overall, I was quite happy with the episode. It did what it needed to do to introduce Tuck in a good way and to link everybody back to the end of the last series in a credible manner. I've read some comments elsewhere that it seemed like Robin wasn't as torn up about her death as Gisbourne was, but that makes sense to me--after all, Gisbourne's the one who killed her, not Robin! And, contrary to a lot of people, I'm actually looking forward to Kate. Partly that's because I've liked Joanne Froggat in the things I've seen her in and think she'd be a good fit with the rest of the actors, and partly because of what little I saw of her in this: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/7954788.stm
(That's NOT spoilery. It's a BBC interview with the show's fight coordinator about how they do these things, in general, with a lot of video of them rehearsing a particular fight scene in their street clothes. OK, I suppose it could be considered spoilery in the sense that you see what location they're going to have a fight in, but that's it.) It looks to me that she more than holds her own with the physicality that the role demands.

I do have a few qualms about what this episode might lead us to. For instance, as much as I liked Tuck, he seemed a little too perfect to me. I hope we see him mess up at some point, or get in trouble and need to be rescued, or something else that demonstrates human frailty. I understand why this episode would be so grim, but I hope the fun everybody seems to have making this show comes back soon--there was just so much joy in the show in the past, and that was one of its main selling points.

30 March 2009 at 03:22  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Robin, love your blog.

I have to say I enjoyed this episode as I was a big Marian fan and wasn't looking forward to the next series. I'm giving this series a chance, but introducing a new love interest for Robin is not realistic at this point especially if he is leaving at the end of this series. It took all of series 1 for Robin and Marian to become a couple again and they had a long history to work from. Even if Robin is moving on and continuing to fight for England, (one of Marian's dying wishes), him finding a love interest this season is not plausible to me. Is it possible Kate is a love interest to another member of the gang?

Jess

30 March 2009 at 05:10  
Blogger Katie said...

Can everyone back up for one second? WHEN DID WE FIND OUT IT WAS AIRING MARCH 28?? I've been checking every week for a while now and there was no news! (Granted I'm in the States, but still!) Was there just NO marketing for series three? I CANNOT BELIEVE I didn't know about this.

30 March 2009 at 05:13  
OpenID dcwash said...

They didn't announce the airdate until March 17th, apparently in response to the announcement that the airdate of Primeval would be that same day. Then, there was a FLOOD of talk show appearances and interviews, though they've only gotten around to updating the website in the last couple of days. Actually, it's a whole new site, not an update: bbc.co.uk/robinhood

30 March 2009 at 05:32  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Dcwash,

I do agree that Joanne Froggat has done some excellent work in the past, and that people should at least watch a couple of episodes with her actually in it before passing judgement. (After all, it wasn't her who killed off Marian).

But the problem I think she faces is this: Lucy Griffiths brought a certain charisma to the screen which went beyond that which the programme makers could really plan for. In other words, following her role as the central female character is like trying to follow Diana Rigg's Emma Peel, or Billie Piper's Rose Tyler. It's not just the role, it's that on-screen presence which somehow reached out to the audience in a way which can never quite be planned for or predicted.

I think Kate is likely to be "action girl", and be very good at that. A "Purdy" for the Forest. (Sorry if these TV references are dating me!) But the Marian character had the mystery of Night Watchman, and the teenage angst of parental relationships. It's a very rich and complex pair of shoes for anyone to have to fill, and will need more imaginative writing than just a "good kick boxer".

And finally, you say Tuck was "a little too perfect to me" - well, for me also. I hope that changes.

30 March 2009 at 13:40  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Jess,

thanks for the kind words. I think the people who pass through and leave the comments are responsible for keeping everything interesting.

Regarding "new love interest": All I've seen is the one small kiss in the trailers. Robin's a young man, in a lot of pain. Maybe a good "hug" is what he feels he needs most to help him try and move on. (You get my drift). Maybe the "not realistic" issue could have been better resolved if we were seeing him a year later rather than three months. After all, we've all had to wait that long!

"Is it possible Kate is a love interest to another member of the gang?" - well, Allan is definately already up for it judging by his face on next week's trailer.

30 March 2009 at 13:41  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Katie,

The start of Series 3 came as something of a surprise even for the U.K. Hoodies. I myself only caught sight of ONE trailer for it on ONE occasion. After which I caught a repeat of a brief chat with some of the cast on location. (I think that was on Sky). That was the one in which Jason re-affirms his decision to leave, and the rest of the cast saying how they are sworn to secrecy about how it happens.

30 March 2009 at 13:41  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm all worked up about even the idea of a Robin/Kate relationship because I'm still holding out that when Robin leaves at the end of series 3 (let's face it, dies at the end of series 3)that he'll be reunited with Marian in heaven in a small scene for all of us to see.

It will complicate what I've got worked out in my head! LOL -sjl

30 March 2009 at 16:00  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi sjl

I can't help but wonder myself if Lucy will make a little cameo appearance at the end.....

30 March 2009 at 19:34  
Blogger evielyn said...

Hi Robin

I must say I thought the 1st episode was better then I was expecting I liked the touch very early on even before the credits when Alan said "calm down we have been travelling for months" Something that wasn't picked up on on in the final episode of S2 when they went to the holy land only a small thing but it does set the scene and establishes just how long and ardous travelling was in those days.

I also liked Sir Jasper its about time that the Sheriff has someone even slighly higher up then him who can pick on his failings and report them back to Prince John and a couple of times it was mentioned that he wasn't indispensable a point that you have also made Robin about the Sherriff's job only being a badge of office.

I think its too early to say about Kate in one of her interviews I think it was on Paul O Grady's show Joanne said that although Alan and Much made a play for her she liked Robin best but Jonas said that Robin was in turn drawn to Isabella he also said on a digital spy interview that I saw that although Robin would always love Marian he couldn't go on moping for the complete series, he also said that a "few of them" were departing at the end of S3 so a cameo by Lucy would be lovely I think its pretty well established how he feels I and letting Guy "stay in Hell" was also a good touch so we will just have to wait and see

I for one am enjoying it so far although I do appear to be in the minority

30 March 2009 at 20:00  
Blogger D Schram said...

That was a solar eclipse not lunar. That Tuck is pretty smart, he's going to be the brains of the group. Nice to have someone to give them spiritual guidance.

30 March 2009 at 21:00  
Blogger evielyn said...

He is really cool especially the way he handled Robin I think everyone there has met their match he is supposed to be well travelled as well. A nice touch I thought, a new slant on an old legend.

30 March 2009 at 21:09  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi evielyn,

It's like old times when you drop by.

It's going to be interesting seeing how the outlaws respond to Tuck's combination of brains and brawn. John in particular may have issues if one remembers his contact with a certain Crusader called Legrand.

I'm enjoying it to. I haven't yet been reading around other sites to judge people's reaction, but let's face it, the entire series has always had its critics.

------------

Hi D Schram,

And thanks for the correction. As you can imagine, saturday evening is a bit hectic getting things typed and "out there". But many thanks. I shall sort it out.

----------------

Everybody,

One thing I would have liked to have heard: When the Outlaws did that little ceremony, burning Robin's Arrows, I wanted John to say "Him we liked".

A missed kleenex opportunity I feel!

30 March 2009 at 21:38  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unlike you and many here, I got over Marian's loss over a year ago. Grieving for a long time over a fictional character is not something I'd ever be able to do, though I had a short period of denial and can understand. With that said, this episode went exactly where I wanted it to go. There is ample evidence of Robin's deep grief and determination to continue to do the right thing, having been shown the way by Tuck, by devoting the remainder of his probably short life to the people of England. Very moving. But the writers, having set up the special spot where Robin has buried Marian's ring for safe-keeping (his only token of her since he was forced to leave her body behind in the place of his nightmares--how horrible), and also giving us Robin's childhood story from his father that the dead become the stars and so are always with us -- the writers have already set up two important ways that Robin can communicate to Marian (and I don't mean "with," just "to"): by looking into the night sky and by returning to the tree where he has symbolically buried her body.

Fantastic start!

bennie

31 March 2009 at 06:04  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Bennie,

- and welcome. You make some very kean observations there. Thanks.

31 March 2009 at 11:24  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for the welcome. I plan to come back. You have a really informative and well-balanced set of Robin Hood blogs.

bennie

1 April 2009 at 06:34  
Blogger robin hood said...

Thanks Bennie,

and to think these blogs all started off, long before Jonas arrived, with a few postcards of Sherwood Forest...

1 April 2009 at 09:30  
Anonymous Kristine said...

This episode (Total Eclipse) was even better than I expected. Great action sequences, an excellent Tuck, and best of all, a hot, dark, and sexy Guy with a fantastic new hairstyle ;D But it tortured me. The highlight of watching this season was to see Prince John and Guy of Gisbourne together (aka Edward Rochester [Jane Eyre] and John Thornton [North and South] together. *Sigh*) I kept expecting Prince John to come up, even in a teensy scene, but he never showed up. :( So does anyone know if Prine John makes an appearance in Cause and Effect?

2 April 2009 at 06:15  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Kristine,

Whilst i myself might not find RA quite as "sexy" as you do, I do think his new look is great. I was concerned because on one of the interview clips we've seen, it looked more like he was dressed in some kind of hippe robe or something...

2 April 2009 at 11:06  
Blogger Katie said...

Okay, now that I have gotten over the shock of discovering mid-pizza-slice "OH MY GOD ROBIN HOOD IS FINALLY BACK HOW DID I MISS IT?", here are some thoughts from a Die-Hard:

One of the first things Robin says to the gang is "Stop holding me back" - we've seen Robin go off the handle on Much before when Marion was about to marry Guy, and yeah, he always apologizes...but maybe he really means it. Contextually he means from killing Gisbourne, but does Robin really believe the gang is holding him back? Without Will and Djaq, the more technical and scientific minds of the gang are gone, leaving Robin with Much's dedication and John's strength - but maybe that's what Tuck is really adding back into the mix: some rational and logical thinking. Also, even though we don't want to see Robin act like a prick, this is a man who was raised to be a member of the aristocracy. It's not farfetched to think that every once in a while, he considers himself a bit above his company.

However, I must say (though I really, really hate to do so) that I am sympathizing with Guy. I think the writers are doing a phenomenal job of continuing to give him a three-dimensionality that makes every terrible act of his palatable in context. No matter how awful he is, or if he's about to throw a little girl off of a cliff (which let's face it, he didn't need to do, he could have just put a sword to her neck back in the village - but then how would Robin almost die to create some tension with the Sheriff?) I still find myself making excuses for him. And that's what you need in a good villain - you have to love them as much as you hate them. Guy has really become the true villain and usurped the Sheriff a bit. And we finally get to see him stand up to Nottingham!!

As for the comments about Tuck, he's definitely got some more tricks up his sleeve. He looks so mischievous all the time, and fights too well for a mere priest. I wouldn't be surprised if he's on a quest for penance himself.

Overall I think the episode was great in setting up season three, and I loved the Robin/Guy tensions. I think it's headed in a good place. As for Kate's imminent arrival, I think The Powers That Be know better than to try to make Robin truly love her. Way back in episode one we saw Robin slummin' a little with the Dyer's daughter, and he still loved Marion then. I'm not advocating (in fact, I think Alan deserves a love interest since Djaq chose Will) but it would not be unbearable done in a light manner.
What's bothering me are the little inconsistencies that aren't necessary. I love the costume upgrades everyone seems to have, but there's no reason for them. In fact, everyone is supposedly EVEN POORER, I don't know why all of the sudden they'd get new clothes. And there doesn't seem any reason to not use the correct ring. It's not the one from Lardner or the Ruby from Richard, so where did that spontaneously emerge from the ether? That upset me a bit. They could have at least made an attempt to explain.

Ah, well. Rant over.

2 April 2009 at 15:56  
Blogger evielyn said...

Hi Robin & everyone

I also think that Tuck is real cool but David Harewood said in an interview that he gave that Tuck definately has a secret in his past so that should be interesting seeing that come to light.

I also agree about Robin he can't go through the whole 13 episodes wearing his heart on his sleeve we all know how he feels and as he now seems to have come to terms with her death I think leaving Guy to live with it is brilliant. Revenge is a dish best eaten cold who knows what will happen before the finale I don't think for one minute it is over with. I think it will be the downfall of Guy if the first episode is anything to go by afterall I don't think anyone around Loxley is unaware of what he has done Richard said in an interview that Guy's biggest problem is his jealousy of Robin he wants to be loved like him but doesn't know how to command the respect and loyalty that Robin is given. Life does go on and if Robin should flirt with Kate or even Isabella it doesn't mean that he loves Marian less Jonas himself said in an interview on Paul O Grady's show when asked about the relationship swith Kate that Robin was more drawn to Isabella and there again you have the class thing Marian was a noblewoman as is Isabella Joanne also said that things were very complicated in her storyline!!
I wondered about the ring but as Marian had( "packed a trunk" the Sheriff series2 episode12) quite possibly it was one that she took with her Robin would have been given all her effects afterwards so maybe it was one of those that he chose I don't think for one minute we have seen the last of that either I'm certain it will be dug up again before s13

Gosh what a lot I have written I watched the story agin last night I am enjoying it. I had better go and do something practical now like lying down in a darkened room or washing up

2 April 2009 at 17:55  
Anonymous Annie said...

Hi, Robin,

Given the hole the show-runners dug for themselves in series 2, this episode was better than any of us could have expected and I agree the writer accomplished a good deal in 45 minutes. That said, I'm already ambivalent about series 3, especially with the direction Robin's character seems to be going. Now he's a figurehead: George Bush to Tuck's Karl Rove.

While a flawed Robin is interesting, I'd like to see some growth on his part. Would he really have abandoned his last promise to Marian, even though he's had three months to mourn and reflect? To me this is another case of the writers using gimicks to move the action rather than letting the plot emerge from the characters.

I'm obviously in the minority, but I already find Tuck's character plenty flawed. Manipulating Robin and his gang (not to mention risking their lives) to accomplish what Tuck judges to be a greater good shows he's not immune to the greatest of the 7 deadly sins: pride.

2 April 2009 at 19:33  
Blogger evielyn said...

Hi Robin & Everyone

Tuck is a very flawed character I think he really has a past that may be he isn't too keen on resurrecting I like the way he dealt with Robin but as Alan said to him at the end "don't use us again for your own ends" he is good but one does wonder waht he is really after

I only hope that the writers have taken notice of all the adverse publicity that emerged after Marian's death and have acted on it. As I have all ready said I thought the 1st episode was very good if the writers continue in a like vein it should be a cracking 3rd series as long as they don't lose their way!

2 April 2009 at 19:47  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Katie,

Okay, here's what I reckon regarding your first points:

"does Robin really believe the gang is holding him back?"

I think there's truth in that. Especially where Much, his ex-servant is concerned. And it's because of this that the Outlaws threatened to desert him in the first place. As Allen so rightly pointed out in the past, when King Richatrd returns, Robin will be looked after. But what do the others stand to gain?

"Guy has really become the true villain and usurped the Sheriff." It's certainly looking that way. I know it's only been 1 Episode, but I reckon Guy was scripted FAR better than before.

"I wouldn't be surprised if Tuck's on a quest for penance himself." That would be good. Because, let's face it, if he's going to be that "nice" all the time he's going to get annoying. (At present I like him).

"I think The Powers That Be know better than to try to make Robin truly love Kate." And I'm hoping you're right. As you say, that kiss seems no more than transpired between Robin and Dyer's daughter on his journey back to Loxley.

"The Ring". I didn't notice this. I reckon it's set to become some huge conspiracy theory amongs the Hoodies. (Lucy, if you're reading this, you haven't got the ring have you? As a souvenir maybe?)

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Hi Evielyn,

Thanks for the tip about Tuck's "secret in his past." As has been said, he needs a little something to spice up his character.

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Hi Annie,

"George Bush to Tuck's Karl Rove." - dear Lord no.... I myself thought of Robin in this episode as moving from the deranged "loser" he'd become in Series 2, as his men deserted him, and he embarked on slaughtering his enemies, to reverting to the "give to the poor" philosophy, and to do that he had to pass through "I don't want to be a hero" stage (all without passing "Go" or collecting his £200!)

Regarding seeing some growth in Robin's character, I do know what you mean. For example, when I'm sorting through my screen shots to put the pictures together, Jason does seem to have just the one facial expression at present. (In keeping with the script I of course appreciate).

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Everybody:

Because I am using the "old" Blogger Template, I can't put the "Followers" gadget on my page. But I will link back to anyone who links to me, IF they want me to, as long as they have an active, regularly updated website or blog. Just let me know.

2 April 2009 at 20:22  
OpenID dcwash said...

This is as much a hunch as based on anything concrete, but several things about the first episode gave me the feeling that there's been a major infusion of cash put into the production of the show, and, perhaps as a result, there's somebody else in charge. In general, the BBC seems to be paying more attention, what with the DVD's already scheduled to appear right after the end of the series, a new website, new crew members, and even a different look to the show. Plus, some of the old characters seem to be heading in a subtly different direction--compare how many lines John had in this episode with the whole of the last series, for example, and Allan suddenly seems about ten years older, in look as well as in attitude.

Again, it's just a feeling, and I don't really KNOW anything, but there it is.

3 April 2009 at 22:11  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi dcwash,

Your hunches are usually close to the mark.

I must say, based on the first episode only of course, I really like the costumes. And do I note a bit of "green" creeping in now? (As in Lincoln?)

However, I am always going to miss Lucy's Top Shop improvs!

4 April 2009 at 00:30  
Blogger evielyn said...

Hi Robin
I just wondered if it was me but I thought the show seemed differant Slicker I think is the word I used to myself. More back stories have started all ready with Sir Jasper laying down the law the Sheriff did look worried a couple of times after all he has to answer to some one and I thought the scene with Much in the dungeon was good we haven't seen any instruments of torture before have we? (at least i don't think we have ) I also thought the Nottingham scenes were more authentic as was Locksley village more going on in both of them. It does seem as if someone has been paying more attention to detail & taking more of an interest. Maybe after the shambles of the final 2 episodes of s2 lessons were learned and they are trying to make amends.

I also like the costumes I think they are great

4 April 2009 at 19:14  
Blogger Joni said...

Robin,

Just got around to reading your comments. I would say, though, that while that's a completely valid historical point - this show seems to have issues occasionally with having their pie and eating it too. They set themselves up for things and then forget conveniently about them, either raising the "we're a modern show" flag or the "historically, this is more accurate" banner whenever it's convenient. Or just forget their own set up - for example. . . shouldn't Nottingham have been burnt to the ground during their exodus to the Holy Land?

5 April 2009 at 03:20  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Having a black guy play Friar Tuck is like having a white guy playing Martin Luther King.

It's stupid.

5 April 2009 at 07:39  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi Joni,

Inconsistencies have been a long running problem with the show, it's true.

Historical references are "insinuated" rather than stated. For example, bringing in the Irish cause in episode 2, (and excuse me if my history is way off), this episode invokes by insinuation such names as Dermot MacMorrough, the Irish King of Leinster, who invited King Henry 2 to invade Ireland so he could regain his throne of Leinster. In fact he was a "traitor" to Ireland, because Henry took over. But that I think is the kind of thing you mean, after which they'll spin of on what you call the "modern show" approach.

I have to say, I prefer it when they have "fun" with it all (within reason). Which brings me to...



Hi Anonymous,

I think putting the fictional Friar Tuck on a par with Martin Luther King is a slightly strong analogy. But I do agree, if the subject were Ali, King, Ray Charles, Stevie Wonder, Malcom X, etc., then yes it would be very stupid indeed.

However, and this is only my opinion, telling such a great story as the Legend of Robin Hood, which appeals to cultures the world over, there is scope to be "inclusive" of those cultures. For example, it's highly doubtful Robin Hood would have harboured a Saracen outlaw, but since Nasir (Mark Ryan) appeared in the 1980s, EVERY interpretation of the Legend has included a "black" outlaw: Morgan Freeman's Nazeem in "Prince of Thieves", Hakim Alston's Kemal in the "New Adventures of Robin Hood", and Anjali Rose's Djaq in Robin Hood 2007.

Because where Robin Hood is concerned, I myself favour entertainment over strict historical truths, I think this policy of "inclusion" is a good one. It also raises interesting issues, such as the tensions between different faith systems, especially where reference to the Crusades is made.

When I visit Robin Hood's Tree, the Major Oak, the souvenir shop is full of children from all backgrounds. It might suprise me that the "Crusader's sheild and vest" with it's St George Cross, is a popular purchase with every one of them, but to the children it's just a fun story. Everyone gets included.

Also, whilst on the topic of Brother Tuck, we know so little about him as yet. For example, do you think he's truly a man of the cloth? He might be hiding his identity.... Certainly he has a secret.

5 April 2009 at 11:13  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have just been thinking ahead of tonight's episode and i think Archer is going to need time to grow in to the role as surely they cant show to many Robin Hood qualities in this series as it would take away from the legend they are setting up for the New robin to live up to so i think the Actor must have a hard job as people will want him to shine as the replacement but he will not want to upstage robin/Jonas as Robin needs to complete the legend then die so Archer can step up to the challenge and follow in his brothers footsteps

so i think it is unfair to judge him on playing the new robin hood until potentially the 4th series.until then i think we should enjoy him for what he is.and not preempt ...i thought Archer was great fun in Enemy of my Enemy

20 June 2009 at 18:05  
Blogger pallu said...

There's a huge error in the episode. The night before the eclipse, Tuck and Robin are sitting below a full moon - which means only a lunar eclipse is possible. Yet the next day there is a solar eclipse which needs a new moon. How could there be such a glaring oversight?

28 September 2009 at 05:31  
Blogger robin hood said...

Hi pallu,

Thanks for pointing that out.

I think one really had to suspend belief altogether to get through the whole series.

28 September 2009 at 09:53  

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