Merlin is back! Season 3 premieres on the SyFy channel on January 7th at 10/9c and we got a chance to chat with star Colin Morgan. When we last left our magical friend, he found out that his father was a dragon lord, and the king's ward and fellow magic user Morgana (Katie McGrath) disappeared. Guess who the big bad is this season? Morgan talked about where we left him in Season 2, gives us some secrets from Season 3 and explains a pretty darn funny YouTube video that's been making it's way around the net. Note: For the purpose of clarity, I've replaced the UK 'series' with the US 'season.' Oh, and in case you were wondering, that little tidbit on Morgan's IMDB page, saying he's allergic to tomatoes and had to wear protective cream during scenes in the stocks? Not true.
Newsarama: Is it weird to be talking about Season 3 when it's already aired in the UK?
Colin Morgan: Yeah, it's really interesting looking back on the whole series. It's been another huge step for all the characters. So much has changed and I know it's just starting over in the states. It is weird revisiting it, but it's also been a learning experience to look back on it and moments that you've missed. It's like talking about good memories.
Nrama: In Season 2 you fought trolls and warlocks. You found out you were a dragon lord. So what moments can we look forward to in Season 3?
Morgan: One of the big thing that changed for Merlin at the end of Season 2 was that he met a huge, important figure from his past, his father, who he lost. But he gained from him the power of the dragon lord, which was a big step, I think, for Merlin, both emotionally and in terms of his powers and his ability. So that's where we leave Merlin on his personal quest. But we start off the third season a year in the future so a lot has happened in that year. What exactly has happened, we're not sure. We only know that there has been a search for Morgana by Uther (Anthony Head) and when she does eventually turn up, she obviously throws a huge wrench in the works for Merlin. He considered her gone, but she's back and ready to wreak havoc, which she does in abundance in the second part of the two parter opener of the third season. And that's a very big, dramatic war and Lord of the Rings-style things happen in the opener, which is very quickly contrasted by some of the more comic episodes throughout the series, one of which, Richard Wilson who plays Gaius gets possessed by a goblin. [laughs] We have other romantic confusion going on when Arthur (Bradley James) meets a princess who is actually possessed by a fairy. Also a lot more dramatic things which are elements from Arthurian legends, including the Crystal Cave and elements involving a certain kind of table [laughs] which appears much later. So lots of big things happening and comic moments with the charm the show normally has, as well as big character changes.
Nrama: According to Twitter, everyone is desperate for Merlin to hook up. Are we going to see any of that this season?
Morgan: [laughs] Well, I am too! Merlin had his first love in the second season with Freya, and she's very, very sadly lost, and I think it was a big, big blow to Merlin. There is some emotional things for Merlin coming up. But love interest-wise, it's pretty quiet. [laughs] He doesn't get a lot of love interests, or else no one is really attracted to Merlin. He's a lonely guy! [laughs]
Nrama: No! That's sad! But you have the relationship with Arthur...I'm only joking a little there.
Nrama: What's the relationship with Arthur like this season?
Morgan: It's great. They're still obviously in the master/servant relationship, so that's always going to be there. That's the structure of Camelot. It has been for years and that's the way it will be, but these guys have been through so much together. There's a friendship there as well. You're seeing them at a stage that you would anyone who has known each other for three years and been through what they've been through, except these guys have much more at stake. These guys are very much aware of what their friendship pivots on, which is that he must see Arthur fulfill his destiny, as Merlin wants to fulfill his destiny. So I'd describe it as a friendship with huge things at stake. Only Merlin is the only one who is aware of it. Again, they're forging ahead. And of course there is that normal charm there that you've got with the Arthur and Merlin scenes, the servant and master scenes, but it's more about them moving towards King and advisor, I would say, which is more like the legends of old.
Nrama: So, there is a particular video of you on YouTube, which is making the rounds called, 'You're the Voice.' I love it! Do you want to explain that?
Morgan: [laughs] Well, that was actually...that video appeared...we randomly did it one day. I don't know if anyone knows how the song came about. So I will tell you. [laughs] There is a film called Hot Rod, don't know if you've seen it, but it features that song. I was singing it on set one day and I was going, who sings that song? And everyone kind of knew what it was, but didn't really know what it was about or the words. So Bradley kind of researched it and proceeded to sing it quite a lot that day, and we thought it be quite funny to mime it on camera and put music to it, which someone did...so it seems it's taken off. [laughs] I've received countless videos from people with their own versions of it, including a whole primary school class who did a music video of it. [laughs] So it's really taken off! It's crazy!
Nrama: Is there any particular research you've done from an Athurian book you've loved that you'd like to see in the fourth season?
Morgan: One of the stories that I really loved from the research that I've done is the Crystal Caves, which actually featured in the third season. That was my favorite thing, this cave filled with crystals which show reflections of the future, which Merlin was able to use. We've only seen it affect him. In the fourth season, I'd like to see him perfect it and use it as a tool. So if that's something that can be revisited, since it was one of my favorite things that we've done from my research, that would be great.What moments are you excited to see?