• Network: Starz
  • Series Premiere Date: Apr 1, 2011
Metascore
58

Mixed or average reviews - based on 26 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 11 out of 26
  2. Negative: 2 out of 26
  1. Reviewed by: Brian Lowry
    Mar 28, 2011
    60
    While stately and reasonably smart, the first three episodes unfold at a less-than-galvanizing pace, featuring a young King Arthur whose appeal seems more calibrated to please the "Twilight" demo than action-craving men.
  2. Reviewed by: David Hinckley
    Apr 1, 2011
    60
    Bower starts out seeming just a bit too young and green to command the throne, though he may grow into it as the weeks go along. The rest of the cast play their positions well, from the conniving Morgan to the inscrutable Merlin. And if once in a while things look like "The Young and the Restless," well, some truths are eternal.
  3. Reviewed by: Rob Owen
    Apr 1, 2011
    40
    This retelling of the Arthurian legend feels overly familiar and there's just not enough that's new or different to make it worthwhile.
  4. Reviewed by: Matt Roush
    Apr 1, 2011
    40
    Rarely has the story been rendered so dreary and insipid.
  5. Reviewed by: Matthew Gilbert
    Mar 31, 2011
    60
    It's all extremely familiar material, despite plot tweaks here and there, and yet the show is still somewhat charming in its emphasis on idealism and bravery. Flimsy, but charming enough.
  6. Reviewed by: Robert Bianco
    Mar 31, 2011
    37
    There are a few amusing, if not always sensible, twists, and after a rough start, Bower does display some charm and skill as the boy king. But even so, a story meant to sing simply doesn't.
  7. Reviewed by: Verne Gay
    Mar 31, 2011
    58
    Nice looking, but not nearly enough action.
  8. Reviewed by: Tim Goodman
    Mar 30, 2011
    70
    Fiennes gives Camelot some feistiness and playfulness, and the whole affair is boosted by the fiery Green, a bit part by James Purefoy, plus strong performances in the supporting cast (and yet more wonderful costumes by Joan Bergin, who worked her Emmy-winning magic on Tudors).
  9. Reviewed by: Maureen Ryan
    Apr 1, 2011
    60
    The main thing Camelot has going for it is a lively, unpretentious desire to entertain. It doesn't take itself overly seriously--Merlin has a wry sense of humor--and there are some capable action sequences amid scenes of rustic splendor.
  10. Reviewed by: Alan Sepinwall
    Mar 31, 2011
    50
    The series as a whole seems much more interested in the love triangle involving Arthur, his bravest knight Leontes (Philip Winchester) and the beautiful Guinevere (Tamsin Egerton) than in actually showing the growth of a king. It doesn't help that parts of that story are bizarrely anachronistic.
  11. Reviewed by: Tom Gliatto
    Mar 18, 2011
    63
    As Merlin, Joseph Fiennes is more like a trainer-dietitian than mentor, but he's lively. Eva Green, as Morgan, is coldly beautiful and magnificent in Camelot couture. She's enchanting. But I don't see Jamie Campbell Bower's Arthur having the resolve of a king. [28 Mar 2011, p.54]
  12. Reviewed by: Ellen Gray
    Mar 31, 2011
    70
    Bower's not the most compelling hero--and Fiennes can be a bore--but the story, however twisted, remains amusing.
  13. Reviewed by: Linda Stasi
    Apr 1, 2011
    75
    Unfortunately, lightweight Bower (more Dude Arthur than King Arthur) and an even lighter-weight Egerton can't carry a series, let alone a kingdom. Nonetheless, it's still lots of lush, plush, silly good fun.
  14. Reviewed by: Ed Bark
    Mar 30, 2011
    75
    It all gets pretty involving in time. Based on the first three hours, this is a sturdy production from a producer/scriptwriter (Chris Chibnall) whose well-appointed credits include Torchwood, Doctor Who and the United Kingdom version of Law & Order.
  15. Reviewed by: David Wiegand
    Apr 1, 2011
    50
    Pieces of the familiar Arthurian epic are preserved in the script, but that doesn't mean the characters fit our images of them.
  16. Reviewed by: Mark A. Perigard
    Apr 1, 2011
    67
    This is "King Arthur Begins." Fiennes seems determined to play the Joker. Whether this interpretation of the sorcerer will cast a spell over viewers is uncertain.
  17. Reviewed by: Hank Stuever
    Apr 1, 2011
    30
    At this stylish intersection of a Lollapalooza concert and last weekend's Renn faire, we will fight to the death for the crown and all that, guided by Campbell's scrawny, underwhelming, indie-rock Arthur and a malevolently intriguing, shaved-head take on Merlin from "FlashForward's" Joseph Fiennes.
  18. Reviewed by: Mary McNamara
    Apr 1, 2011
    40
    Despite the interesting twist of overt sibling rivalry, Chibnall seems to be making a blood and gore version of "The Princess Diaries."
  19. Reviewed by: James Poniewozik
    Apr 1, 2011
    40
    Even on the level of it's-just-entertainment, Camelot is exceedingly silly.
  20. Reviewed by: Glenn Garvin
    Apr 7, 2011
    80
    Starz, however, has re-imagined the doings of Arthur, Guinevere and the gang as a bloody, bodice-ripping medieval soap opera, and the result is surprisingly satisfying.
  21. Reviewed by: Matt Zoller Seitz
    Apr 4, 2011
    40
    Camelot teeters on the edge of camp, but it doesn't have the nerve to pitch itself into the abyss and just be trashy.
  22. Reviewed by: Nancy DeWolf Smith
    Apr 8, 2011
    70
    Some fans apparently don't think the sloe-eyed blond actor Jamie Campbell Bower is studly and thrusting enough for Arthur. But boyishness gives him room to grow, and there is plenty that's masterly about Joseph Fiennes as Merlin, who is occasionally seen in a studded hoodie and always shrouded in mystery, but other otherwise all man.
  23. Reviewed by: Mike Hale
    Mar 30, 2011
    70
    Mr. Fiennes is fun to watch as an arrogant, punked-out Merlin; he's much more interesting than Jamie Campbell Bower, whose lightweight Arthur, to this point, doesn't appear to deserve all the attention he's getting....Best of all is Ms. Green, the Bond girl and Bernardo Bertolucci dream object, as Arthur's sister and rival (known here as Morgan). Her intensity is a good match for the show's gloomy-doomy, psychologizing mood.
  24. Reviewed by: Paige Wiser
    Mar 31, 2011
    75
    Fantasy epics aren't really my thing, but this stylish, intense series should satisfy sci-fi fans for some time.
  25. Reviewed by: Keith Staskiewicz
    Mar 28, 2011
    75
    A few key tweaks to the story and Joseph Fiennes' puckish interpretation of the king's right-hand sorcerer keep the legend from getting too stale
  26. Reviewed by: Phillip Maciak
    Apr 7, 2011
    50
    It's not easy, with all the silly one-liners, oddball plot twists, and frat-party ambience, to get terribly invested in who will win the power struggle that Camelot dramatizes. But if Fiennes and Green could stage a coup, wresting control of the show from its tawdrier impulses, then that might just be something worth watching.
User Score
5.3

Mixed or average reviews- based on 47 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 8 out of 15
  2. Negative: 4 out of 15
  1. Apr 4, 2011
    4
    Lightweight is the only way to describe this re-telling of Arthur. I was expecting Son's of Anarchy medieval and instead we got BBC's MerlinLightweight is the only way to describe this re-telling of Arthur. I was expecting Son's of Anarchy medieval and instead we got BBC's Merlin with boobs and swearing. Oh! Joseph what did you sign up to? Full Review »
  2. Apr 2, 2011
    3
    Unlike Spartacus Blood and Sand, this one doesn't even try to sell you that it's a historical reenactment. Morgan La Fay apparently shops forUnlike Spartacus Blood and Sand, this one doesn't even try to sell you that it's a historical reenactment. Morgan La Fay apparently shops for her clothes on Hollowood Blvd., and buys her make up there while she's at it. No matter, there's plenty of sorcery too account for those dominatrix meets party at mom's skimpy clothing, and not too many actual cheap woolen mantles of the time period, not to mention lots of phrases like The King is Dead, Long Live the King, which wasn't used until the time of Charles VII, which aws in the 15th century, almost 1,000 years later. The show gets a ten for James Purefoy, being all manly and capable, and a -7 for all the other things wrong with it. Hey at lest there
    some improbable female nudify - those hollywood blvd. party outfits that look like a vogue editorial shoot get featured quite a bit, but the plot mking sense? Fuggedaboudit.
    Full Review »
  3. May 19, 2011
    3
    I started watching this to help battle my withdrawal symptoms from waiting for the next episode of Game of Thrones. I'm up to episode 07 now,I started watching this to help battle my withdrawal symptoms from waiting for the next episode of Game of Thrones. I'm up to episode 07 now, and I'm finding this increasingly more unwatchable every episode. While the young King Arthur might be good looking, I find his character completely unsympathetic, rather unbelievable and and even somewhat annoying. The thing that bothers me the most perhaps is that this whole thing has the feel of a cross between Robin Hood and Days of Our Lives, or even better yet, one of the Spanish Novelas that run nightly. Didn't the Knights of the Round Table wear Armor? I haven't seen any yet. I'm watching this on my computer and frequently just skip ahead a bit because what is happening onscreen is soooooo trite.

    I suppose I'll keep watching. I just wish I could find something better to watch.
    Full Review »