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Wednesday, August 18, 2010:
Walk down memory lane: "Nothing's Forgotten. Nothing is ever forgotten..."

I originally wrote this post several months ago, maybe even a year or so ago, but I never finished it. Now, as I'm struggling for posts due to time constraints, I found this draft, and decided to tweak it a bit. Here is my small tribute to a show I obsessed over when I was a teenager, and one I remember quite fondly today :)

My infatuation with Robin Hood and how it all started:

I'd read books and seen movies over the years of course, but it wasn't until I saw "Robin Hood and the Sorcerer", the double-length first episode of "Robin of Sherwood", a short-lived British series which first aired in the U.S. on Showtime, when I was around 12 or 13 years old, that I was completely enthralled anew by the legend, especially this version of it. Having already read several romance by this time, nothing could have been more appealing than this mystical, gritty version starring the swoon-worthy Michael Praed, who was only twenty-two at the time he played the part.

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In this first episode, Robin of Loxley is trying to save Much, the Miller's son, from being caught poaching, and is instead caught by Guy of Gisburne and thrown into the dungeon, where he ends up meeting Will Scarlett (played by Ray Winstone, who incidentally was in "King Arthur" 20 years later), whose wife had been raped and killed by Guy's men. Robin and the other outlaws escape, and Robin is soon chosen by Herne the Hunter to be a protector of the English people, becoming the hero we know as Robin of the Hood.

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When he first encounters Marian of Leaford, he is immediately drawn to her, yet his intensity at first seems to scare her off. But Marian turns out to be no shrinking violet; her delicate beauty hides an independent streak that soon has her running off with Robin to join him and his men in the forest. Capable of handling a sword and outshooting any man save Robin, Marian is a force to be reckoned with in her own right. Her useful skill as a spy had her risking her life to bring information from the castle into the forest.

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Of course by this time, they have fallen madly in love, and along with the other outlaws, risk their lives trying to fight for the poor while they do everything in their power to outwit the Sheriff and Guy. And the rest, as they say, is history...

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I was at that perfect impressionable age to totally fall in love with Robin, and Michael Praed played the perfectly dreamy Robin quite perfectly. There was always a sadness to him, a longing inside for something that could never be: an idyllic world where good people had long, happy lives and that innocents would never be hurt, children would never die, and he could live in peace and comfort with his lady love. But part of the romance of the legend is the tragedy. I mean how interesting would his adventures be if he was never in any real danger? Robin Hood was the ultimate romantic hero, and rarely captured more perfectly than in the dark, intense, passionate portrayal by the beautiful Michael Praed.

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And of course I would be extremely remiss if I did not mention the haunting music from the Celtic group Clannad, who released the soundtrack for the movie entitled "Legend". It's one of my all-time favorites, so bittersweet and poignant.

What is your favorite romantic legend?

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  1. I have this series in DVD too - not the other one with the different Robin, just the one with Michael Praed. He is too dreamy to believe isn't he? And of course I have Season I and II of Robin Hood with *dreamy sigh* Richard Armitage. Forget about boy Robin in this version. It's all about Guy. Can you imagine what a feast for the eyes it would be if they somehow combined them? With Michael Praed as Robin and Richard Armitage as Guy? And I also have the movie with Kevin Costner as Robin Hood. And I've seen the one with Sean Connery. The only one I've missed is the one with Russell Crowe as I'm sure when I was a very wee lass I saw the one with Errol Flynn. And of course the Disney cartoon one with a foxy Robin *g*.
    Oh - and I've also never seen Men in Tights - the send off of Robin Hood.

  2. I LOVED this series!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I too watched it faithful as a girl. Loved when pbs picked it up and showed it again years later. Have not been able to buy it yet, but it is on my list to buy. this and Disney's Robin Hood are the two things that started my RH fascination. (Incidentally my oldest daughter's name is Robyn). Like the Sean Connery version and the Kevin Costner version. Have not seen the Russell Crowe one yet, but heard I was not missing anything so going to see it on video.
    @KristieJ Michael Praed and Richard Armitage together would be AWESOME! (Though i am not sure if he has aged well, so we might need a time machine)

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