And so we near the end of this extremely uneven series. It’s going out with a two-parter, which we know will see the departure of Jonas Armstrong’s Robin, and will no doubt make some more changes to set things up for the next series, assuming there is one, that is…
So on, with the plot, such as it is. Isabella is rounding up all the able-bodied men in the area to provide soldiers to fight for Prince John against the allegedly returning King Richard. Just for once, she doesn’t start with Locksley, so Robin and the gang get there just in time to see off the soldiers and get the men into the forest.
Isabella has acquired a delightfully sinister new henchman called Blamire, who’s so scary that he even gets special music on the soundtrack. He’s even got a sinister voice. Their nice little chat is interrupted when Archer (half brother to Robin, Guy and Isabella, do keep up) shows up. He introduces himself as her brother, but she’s not at all impressed and orders that he should be locked up and never allowed to leave the castle. Naturally, he escapes twenty seconds later.
Having avoided a family reunion, Isabella decides to do something more entertaining to get to Robin, and comes up with a couple of silly plots to divide the outlaw gang. She “persuades” Kate’s mother to tell Kate that Robin is in love with Isabella and to plant evidence on Robin. All very silly, and would only work on the terminally dim, so naturally it has the required effect. Her other Cunning Plan is to have it declared that Allan a Dale has been most helpful and is no longer an outlaw. He even has “immunity from prosecution”, which is nice. And again, if Robin and the gang were just a wee bit brighter, they’d realise this was a set-up and wouldn’t leave Allan tied up in the camp when they go off later…
Now then. Archer plans to break into the castle to prove to Isabella that she’s not all that safe, and needs him to protect her. He finds out about a secret tunnel that the Proper Sheriff had built as an escape route. So of course, Guy, Robin and Much are planning to gain access to the castle by the same route.
Archer manages to get there first, as Robin and the guys have been a bit delayed by Kate going off in a strop and Little John trying to strangle Allan, and Robin having Allan tied up. Archer arranges a little surprise for Robin. Tuck tries to persuade the men of Locksley to stand up and fight for what’s right. They seem a little reluctant. John tells him that the fighting bit is their job anyway, so off they go to the castle gates.
The plan is to stop all the food supplies for miles around being taken north to supply Isabella’s army. How they plan to do this with just the five of them isn’t really explained all that well. While Robin, Guy and Much get a little delayed by being trapped between two gates and having a few tonnes of limestone rubble poured over them, Kate’s mother admits to her daughter that Robin does not in fact have a thing for Isabella, and she’s sorry and all that.
Allan manages to untie himself and wanders into the forest where he sees something that makes him want to run and see Robin. Tuck and Little John have arrived at the castle, where they’re joined quite unexpectedly by the enthusiastic, if unarmed men from Locksley. But they’re not going to try fighting, oh no. They’re going to have a nice sit down in the road and block the way, and obviously the soldiers won’t hurt them because, err, well, I’m sure Tuck had some reason for believing that, but it’s a little hard to be sure.
While Robin, Guy and Much are struggling to keep their heads above the rubble that’s filling the chamber, Allan is running through the forest collecting arrows in his legs and back, finally falling to the ground. He looks up and sees someone he wasn’t expecting.
At the castle, the gates open. Blamire, seeing John, Tuck and the peasant army, gets a wee bit annoyed and orders his soldiers to draw their swords, which they’re quite uncharacteristically reluctant to do. Blamire decides to make a start himself, but despite being a fully-qualified sinister henchman, he can’t make himself slice Tuck. Isabella, who’s been watching all this, shoots Tuck with a crossbow. OK, he’s only hit in the shoulder, but I’m pretty sure the usual reaction to that is more than a bit of a wince. She then orders them all to be cut down, which is when Kate arrives and suggests that they start with her, an unarmed woman. Well, Blamire decides to give it a try, and he’s just about to get into some sword action when Archer decides that maybe he’s been working for the wrong side and throws what was either a dagger or possibly a Kung Fu throwing star thingy. I’m pretty sure it was the star thing, actually. And at that point lots of fighting starts.
While Archer takes Kate to help him rescue Robin, Isabella is a little upset to find that Blamire isn’t really working for her at all. He says he has to be somewhere else…
Having rescued Robin and the others, Kate gets back into the castle and has a bit of a fight with Isabella. Everyone else arrives soon after, and somehow or other they manage to take the castle and Robin gets to do a speech about the castle belonging to the people, and how they’ll hold it for King Richard.
But before everyone can get too excited, a bundle wrapped in sacks is found at the gates. Robin unwraps it to find the ever so slightly dead Allan. And as if that wasn’t enough, there’s a rather large army approaching. Blamire rides out to meet its commander. Someone we haven’t seen for a while. It’s the not dead at all Proper Sheriff!
Errr, is it bad that I cheered the return of the show’s best quality bonkers villain?
Anyway, lots of action next week as they somehow bring this mess to some kind of a conclusion.
 This guy is definitely a henchnman.
 Doing the traditional villain bit of not actually killing the person who’s going to cause them trouble later
 I decided to avoid the possibly confusing pronoun there
 Well, as Isabella is the Sheriff, and she’s a bit pants at the job, I thought I’d refer to our scenery-chewing chum as the Proper Sheriff
 And that’s another thing – how come all those arrows don’t seem to do much damage?
 They’ve never minded chopping up a few unarmed people before. Maybe it’s the sitting down bit that does it?
 I said these guys weren’t all that bright, didn’t I?
 Though why they’d bother for a bloke who couldn’t be bothered visiting his own kingdom is beyond me
 We’re running out of core characters…
 And frankly, the series has suffered