1st episode of the fifth season of The Last Kingdom. The last kingdom season 5 episode 1 streaming

With a brief overview of previous seasons, some narration, and a cold open that shows Brida luring someone into diving into a boiling Icelandic geyser and setting out for battle, it’s quite clear what The Last Kingdom‘s fifth season is all about in this premiere. 

the last kingdom season 5 episode 1
the last kingdom season 5 episode 1

Although there is always a conflict in Bernard Cornwell’s rich historical novels, this time it is more pronounced. 

It’s important to note that this conflict is deeply personal, that it has been developed over four seasons, and that it appears to be brewing in every corner of the known world, which is the impression we get after this carefully constructed hour skillfully builds up to a few final moments of bloodshed, betrayal, and carnage.

Brida Has Returned

Brida Has Returned
Brida Has Returned

The premiere episode of The Last Kingdom Season 5 begins several years after the events of the previous season. Brida has mostly been forgotten by the public, despite the fact that her daughter is now an adult and an army is gathering at her side. 

Uhtred, on the other hand, hasn’t forgotten her and is confident that she will return one day.

Brida tells the hushed audience that her child is a seer and that she will choose one of them while placing a blindfold over her child’s eyes. And that individual is sacrificed to the Gods in exchange for a safe journey off the island – as well as for battle.

Uhtred notices that something is different at Runcorn, which lies on the boundary between Mercia and Northumbria, and claims that the air is rotten. 

Aethelstan is also a little older now, and with Blood Month upon them, he aims to murder a beast in order to prove his worth to the group of people.

He nods his head and walks off into the woods, a jubilant crowd following behind him. Instead of a beast, Aethelstan discovers a group of assassins waiting for him, intent on killing him. 

After defeating the first two, the third flees into the woods to avoid capture.

When Aethelstan returns to the alehouse to celebrate his triumph, Uhtred notices birds falling from the sky, which he interprets as an extremely terrible sign.

This causes Uhtred some alarm, and when an unknown ship is observed turning into the riverbed, the army is well prepared to deal with it. 

The real Rognvaldr is up in York with Stiorra and Sigtryggr, inebriated, persuaded that the Gods have rescued him, mumbling that he’s changed his ways. With him speaking Icelandic and wearing white makeup, I believe we’ve figured out what’s happened to him: He is now living in lieu with Brida.

In any case, the ship docked in Runcorn is owned by Eadith, who is interested in trading. She shows up, and for the time being, Uhtred is at ease with himself. Aethelflaed appears shortly after she has paid her respects to Alfred. 

But Cynlaef is all grins as he takes in the splendor of Lady Aelfwynn’s beauty and admires it. Aethelflaed receives the same treatment from Uhtred. She is, however, accompanied by a new priest, Father Benedict, who is also present. 

There is a rumor that he lost his fortune while in Rome. He walks outside and delivers a lecture, but something makes him stop in his tracks.

Rumors abound that the Danes are launching an attack along the shore. It has been discovered that Raiders are wearing white marks, and when Uhtred learns of this, he believes that he is in serious peril.

 Fortunately, this comes to light very quickly. After being stabbed, Uhted’s kid staggers up to Uhtred, where he accuses Brida of being the perpetrator.

During the Battle of Winchester, it was revealed that the assassins hired to kill Aethelstan were actually hired by Aethelhelm, who is still intent to place his easily influenced grandson, Aelfweard, on the throne of England. 

For the time being, the lone assassin has been ordered to stand down as Edward continues to govern. His political manoeuvring, on the other hand, is still in evidence.

That planning comes in the form of Rognvaldr luring Brida and her troops into York, where they immediately begin slaying the innocent Christians. 

Stiorra is pushed to take refuge in her chamber by her maid, who is convinced that Brida will do everything she can to track her down.

The Review of the Episode

The Review of the Episode
The Review of the Episode

Brida is back, and she’s coming for you with a fury. Since the last season, some years have passed, and Brida’s daughter is now an older woman who lives by her side.

Despite the fact that political manoeuvring is still going on in Wessex as a result of Aethelhelm’s influence, the true portrayal of Aethelstan as a capable and honorable combatant is refreshing to witness, given that he goes on to become one of the greatest Anglo-Saxon Kings in history.

So far, the tale has been satisfactory, easing back into an introduction for our protagonists while also presenting new participants to this war.

War is on its way, and given Brida’s bloodlust and determination to retaliate against those who have wronged her, it is expected to be a particularly bloodthirsty conflict. Is this one more battle too many for Uhtred to handle on his own? We’ll have to wait and see what happens!

The premiere episode of The Last Kingdom season 5 is reviewed here

The premiere episode of The Last Kingdom season 5 is reviewed here
The premiere episode of The Last Kingdom season 5 is reviewed here

Beyond that opening sequence and a concluding scene in which she rides triumphantly into York with a phalanx of enraged men, their faces symbolically painted in white and their weapons aimed at anyone who happens to be in their way, Brida is barely visible. 

She is felt throughout the episode, particularly in Runcorn, a border town on the boundary between Mercia and Northumbria, where Uhtred is maintaining an uneasy peace by repelling raids, encouraging trade, and rearing Aeathelstan in the most cautious manner imaginable. 

This is the age when all children reach when they assume they are adults but are still children at heart, and Aethelstan wants to go to battle to show himself as something other than the b*****d lad that everyone despises him for being. Uhtred would prefer it if he didn’t do so.

One gets the idea that he won’t have much of a choice in the matter any way. After being attacked by three men who we later learn are in the employ of Aethelhelm, whose plotting with Aeflaed proceeds apace in the court of King Edward despite the monarch’s clear mistrust and hate for him, Aethelstan is taken prisoner during a Blood Month hunt.

 If you tell Aethelhelm that his grandson Aelfweard, a lame youngster with a horrible haircut, is more capable of inheriting the throne of Wessex than Aethelhelm’s grandson Aethelstan, who fights off and kills two of the invaders, he will be laughed at.

At least for the time being, the extent to which this overlaps with Brida’s campaign is still up in the air. Despite the fact that they are separate plotlines, they can’t help but get entangled as the story progresses because everyone involved in one is also involved in the other. 

Rognvaldr, for example, is largely dismissive of the threat posed by the Danes, believing reports of Rognvaldr’s conquests at sea to be exaggerated. 

However, in York, we see Rognvaldr ingratiate himself with Sigtryggr by inflating his self-pitying alcoholism in order to request safe passage for “some of his people” who have been wrongfully accused of raiding.

 Stiorra’s concerns are unfounded, and Sigtryggr sympathizes with his brother and agrees to open the gates, completely unaware that he has consented to open the gates to Brida and her entire army. Oops.

Aethelflaed arrives in Runcorn with her mother Aelswith and daughter Aelfwynn, as well as a preacher named Father Benedict, who is ostensibly there to replace paganism with a love of Our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ but is really just a delinquent gambler who needs to be placed where he will cause the least amount of damage to his coffers. 

The persistent march of Christendom is felt over in Sigtryggr, too Nonetheless, it is no coincidence that the concept of “progress” is associated with the notion of everyone being driven to think the same thing.

It is the arrival of Uhtred’s son, who appears to have been castrated if the bloodstains on his tunic are any indication, that brings Father Benedict’s big debut to a halt, and all of Uhtred’s worst fears about Brida’s return are confirmed in the blink of an eye. 

However, while he stands by the river, yelling her name and putting his soldiers on alert, he receives no answer, as Brida is somewhere else at the time. A complex game of vengeance, politics, and war is currently under progress.

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