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The Last Kingdom - Episode 1.04 - Advance Preview + Dialogue Teasers

© BBC Pictures

As this show is an adaptation of a very well-known series of books, and of course incorporates real life historical events too, this preview for the episode covers more information than I would normally include. Therefore if you aren’t familiar with the material, or haven’t read the extensive press release already issued, then please be aware that this will contain spoilers.

Uhtred’s decision to stay with the Saxon’s rather than leave with his foster brother, Ragnar Ragnarson, and Brida has made someone very unhappy. No prizes for guessing who that person causing the trouble is either. Odda the Younger failed to get a king he could manipulate on the throne, and is feeling decidedly left out of the proceedings at court where his father has become Alfred’s right-hand man. Ever one to bear a jealous grudge, he does his best to halt the marriage between his rival and Mildrith. Uhtred’s new bride, a country girl, arrives in Winchester under a thick veil which hides her features from her husband to be until they are at the altar and there is no turning back.

It’s not Mildrith's looks that are an issue however, she is a beauty who he falls for instantly, but marrying her will present additional problems for the naïve warrior. We know from Alfred’s tête–à–tête with her Godfather, Odda the Elder, last week that he is determined to have his men’s loyalty by making them bound to him through God, duty and the land of Wessex. So it should be no surprise that Mildrith’s father died owing a great debt, which will obviously be passed on to any husband, keeping Uhtred pretty much under his control for now.

Be prepared for another time jump soon after the nuptials, as we move ahead fairly quickly after the marriage to year or so down the line, when Guthrum grows bored and decides to break the treaty and starts raiding across the Wessex boarders. This time Alfred does bring Uhtred along to the battle, although when the Dane pleads for a truce instead of fighting and a hostage exchange is agreed upon, he is not quite so pleased to find himself part of Alfred’s grand plans after all. Once again the king appears to be gaining the upper hand, using all of his cunning and strength of will to break the younger man down until he can bring himself to trust him.

He knows that he will be safe enough in the Viking’s camp while Ubba is away in Ireland avenging Ivar’s death. But when he returns there will be no hope for him, or any of the other Saxon captives, ever being allowed to return to their homes. He is reunited with both Ragnar and Brida however, who are now a couple and both urge him to forget his oath to Alfred and return to his Danish roots. Can Uhtred turn his back on his new wife, and their new born child, to rejoin his old family in their fight for revenge though? And what will happen when Ubba and his troops return from Ireland, swelling the number of Vikings to a point where they can renegade on Guthrum’s truce?

The show continues to be one of my favourite at present, there may be a few liberties taken with the historical content but I can’t fault the performances, or the engaging storytelling. I found myself enjoying the relationship that Uhtred made with Leofric during the training session at the end of the last episode, so I am pleased to see that the two get more screen time this week. I’m a sucker for a good bromance, and these two characters have just the right amount of snark and accord to make their friendship both amusing and yet still retain a certain amount of respect for each other.

I was also pleased to see a favourite actor of mine also taking on a larger role this week. Lorcan Cranitch’s Father Selbix has been seen only briefly so far, most noticeably during the coronation of King Alfred, but he gets a chance to stretch his acting chops this week when he also becomes one of the hostages sent over to the Viking camp. I’m sure those who know their history will be aware why he is among the chosen few. Once again, Alfred is using his knowledge and spy network to gain the advantage, but only as long as he is not the one taking any of the risk himself of course.

Episode 4 airs on Saturday October 31 on BBC America at 10pm, and on BBC Two on Thursday 12th November at 9pm. Below are a few dialogue teasers to see you through until then.

“MY NAME IS UHTRED! By all means call me earsling for not seeing this sooner”

“The kingdom of heaven is his to share, I’ve told him. A man can change Uhtred”

“God will bless your loyalty. But with luck he will fall in battle, and soon”

“He will bark at her Odda I’m sure, but his real anger will be reserved for you and I”

“I’ve missed him. I miss you both”

“I’m sorry the day has been a disappointment for you lord, for us both”

“If they keep going to the west, in a day or so they’ll come to the fortress at Werham”

“He’s watching how you behave, he’s judging you as a lord”

“You could bathe all day long and you’d still stink of pig shit”

“I am Guthrum, and one day I shall be your king. Do you understand what I have said? You will all say, yes lord”

“She’ll be pious alright. If she were a leg spreader, Alfred would have been on her by now”

“We have been watching the ships, which remain on the Thames. A mistake”

About the Author - Sandi
Sandi is part of the Senior Staff at SpoilerTV having been a contributor from back in the Lost days of DarkUFO, and who now writes previews for Banshee, The Musketeers, Poldark, and other UK shows. She also enjoys watching and commenting on other shows such as Vikings, Orphan Black, Game of Thrones and The Flash.
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