Alan A Dale - Recap
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The episode opens with Little John visiting his lover, Meg, in the village of Wickham, where they go into her hut together.
After the opening credits, we see the familiar sight of Nottingham Castle, where the Sheriff and Gisburne have a very brief conversation about duties for the next day, including a hundred court (see episode notes) in Wickham.
Back to Wickham and it's morning. Meg and John have obviously spent the night together, and when we see the merry men, we find out it's clandestine as he told them he was going fishing. When the Gisburne does arrive, John makes for a hasty retreat and gets caught up by Murphy's Law, in the form of tripping over some barrels. Making a dash for the forest, the soldiers give chase, but John is quickly lifted into the trees by Will and Nasir via a rope.
Robin can see clearly through the fishing story and chastises him for going to Wickham, and making the villagers suffer for his benefit. Afterwards, to lighten the mood we see the merry men having fun with quarterstaff practice.
Enter: Alan A Dale. A bad singing and hilariously melancholy minstrel. When the merry men discover he has an empty purse, they allow him on his way. Marion, making conversation as he rides past asks if he is heading to Nottingham to seek his fortune, however, he replies he is going to kill the Sheriff, which certainly got the groups attention.
In Nottingham, the Sheriff and Gisburne are discussing the incident in Wickham and the Sheriff decides to fine each villager 100 pence (the value of six months wages he claims) and at the same time doubles the price on the heads of the merry men. The Sheriff also ponders whether he made the right choice to marry Mildred ( "a pansy-faced 16 year old virgin... that's if she still is a virgin of course").
Back in Sherwood we are filled in of the background of Allan and Mildred and how they came to be parted. Tuck gets the idea of the dowry, and while Marion wants to help the girl, Robin is more inclined to go for the money. Different motives, same objective. Much sees them heading to fetch Mildred and decide to wait for them in the morning, heading back to Nottingham. The ambush is well planned and well executed, except for Gisburne's mad dash on horseback, taking the girl with him. Robin gives chase and catches him, knocks him off his horse, and they both land in the mud. The fight as best as they can in the mud, until the Sheriff arrives and Robin has to make a run (swim) for it. The Sheriff tells how the dowry was taken to Nottingham already by way of the Newark road. So despite all their efforts, Robin Hood and his men were completely unsuccessful, and it's back to square one.
Meg goes to the Sheriff and tries to alert him of Robin Hood's intent of attacking, but he's having none of it and throws her out, yet keeps it in mind that she could be correct. Back at the camp, they are preparing for plan B. This seems to including taking on the persona of clergymen. They have captured and tied up the real men, taken their clothes and headed for Nottingham. Tuck, John, and Will arrive in a cart driven my Marian and Much (dressed as a girl).
They perform the ceremony and towards the end, Will runs in dressed as a soldier alerting them of outlaws in the courtyard, which draws Gisburne and his men away long enough to capture the dowry and the girl. In Sherwood Alan and Mildred wed, then the dowry chests are opened to find rocks. So Mildred gives her necklace, which the Sheriff gave to her, to Robin Hood... then the two ride off together on a horse.