The Last Kingdom is a British historical fiction television series based on Bernard Cornwell’s The Saxon Stories series of novels. The final season (Season 5) aired on Netflix on March 9, 2022, and we thought about doing a Round Table Review for this one. Joining me (Rike) are Nathalie, Jen, Alicia and Michelle. Are you ready for this one? Let’s go then, but don’t forget: Destiny is all.
Q: Do you think that Brida (Emily Cox) would have been a great ally to the crew one day or was she beyond redemption?
Nat: Honestly, I don’t think she was able to be redeemed. There was so much anger in her, and it has gotten worse over the seasons. I feel like the Viking way of avenging the people you cared for are rooted too deep inside of her. And even if she was able to miraculously put aside that anger and heal, she has hurt so many people, if Stiorra (Ruby Hartley) hadn’t killed her, someone else probably would have.
Jen: I’m torn on this one. While I do think that it would have been hard for her to actually redeem herself in a proper way, I couldn’t help but feel a little bit bad. After all, it’s those kind of characters that often make a show interesting and give it some extra spice. Can’t always agree with all characters after all. That being said, if she wouldn’t have changed anytime soon, I doubt she would have survived much longer anyways.
Alicia: No, I don’t think so, she had lost all sense of stability to me, she was impossible to be trusted, even when she “saw the light” for moments, her hate and anger were deep in her, and losing her child would make it even worse.
Shell: Love blinds those that love. There is no way she could have been trusted after all she had done, and Uhtred (Alexander Dreymon) couldn’t see that. Stiorra did her father a favor.
Rike: To be honest, I felt kinda bad for her when Stiorra killed her. She did a lot of bad and unforgiving things, so I don’t blame people for being happy about this. I have to admit that I also jumped on the train at first and was like: “Please, someone just make her disappear for good.” But once she was actually gone it didn’t feel right for me. Maybe deep down I still had hope that she would become her old self again. The Brida we knew before she ended up as a slave. This death didn’t leave me as emotionless as I thought it would.
Q: Which character’s death was the worst in your opinion?
Nat: Without any doubt Osferth (Ewan Mitchell). For me, seeing this character grow from a literal baby monk that can’t wield a sword to save his life to being the man that he was. It definitely shook me, but what brought me to tears was Finan’s (Mark Rowley) reaction. That scene just broke me.
Jen: Osferth! 100%. I think all of our hearts broke a little at that moment. Not only because I got attached to him and he deserved all good things in the world but also because I don’t even want to imagine how the rest of the crew must have felt. Finan blamed himself for this death. They all were clearly affected and it just stings even thinking back to that moment.
Alicia: The worst as in painful, was definitely Sigtryggr’s (Eysteinn Sigurðarson) death and close second was Osferth, because you don’t see it coming, both so heartbreaking.
Shell: For me it was Sigtryggr. I did not expect to love his character so quickly! He was truly doing what he thought was right for his people and pleasing to his gods. It was heartbreaking to see Uhtred’s anguish, knowing his daughter’s heart is breaking, while agreeing to Sigtryggr’s last request to execute him himself, an honored warrior so he could go to Valhalla.
Rike: Definitely Osferth. Not a single doubt. I fell in love with his character and the “gang” as I like to call Uhtred, Finan, Sihtric (Arnas Fedaravičius) and Osferth. They belong together and it broke my heart to see Finan blaming himself for his death. Osferth deserved better. There wasn’t even a “funeral” or anything, right? Maybe I got super emotional watching his death scene. It all went by super fast and I was speechless but not in a good way. But at least now Baby Monk is with god and is watching over the rest of the gang.
Q: The long lost son, Osbert (Olly Rhodes), of Uhtred is back now being a teenage boy. How do you think Uhtred is going to react?
Nat: I think Uhtred will welcome him with open arms after the shock wears off of course. I am more curious on how young Uhtred and Stiorra will react to seeing their little brother. I would’ve loved to see a little more regarding this, but we still have a movie to see. Who knows what that will bring.
Jen: I I think in the end Uhtred will ultimately be happy and will take good care of Osbert. I can see him becoming very protective over him and sort of act as a mentor. However, it will probably take a little while. After all, he didn’t quite see this coming and I can only imagine what shock it must have been at first sight.
Alicia: Definitely he is happy that his lineage will continue on Osbert, He will try to make the most of the time with him, and share all his experience, since he will be the heir to Bebbanburg, next Uhtred son of Uhtred.
Shell: I believe he will be very happy. It will be his children, especially Stiorra that will be reluctant to just welcome him.
Rike: We all know now that he’s quite good when it comes to watching over and teaching children. He’ll probably be happy and welcome him with open arms after some time. However, I think there might be some kind of doubt and emotional behavior in general in the first place. But Osbert is Uhtred’s son after all and I do agree with what Alicia said. One day he’ll be the heir of Bebbanburg if nothing else happens before that.
Q: Lady Aelswith (Eliza Butterworth) always was a strong woman. Do you agree with the fact that she changed a lot throughout the series and aged in reverse?
Nat: I think it’s pretty well known that people do not like her, but after last season, I think she made it to people’s favorite characters list, she made mine anyways. She is still the powerful fierce woman she has always been, she just matured in ways I think none of us expected. Major respect to Eliza Butterworth for her amazing performance.
Jen: She definitely had a lot of character development, but in the end i’d say that i’m still neutral on her. There were moments where I hated her but there were other moments where I was cheering her on. She still didn’t become one of my favorite characters, but it was certainly nice to see her “grow up” over the course of the show.
Alicia: I think it’s pretty natural for people to become wiser through the years, so I’d say yes, I agree, but hey, she”softened” with Uhtred, but she is still a strong woman. About her aging, I think she is the only one aging “for real” in the series.
Shell: This season she really came into her own. She had been through so much up to his point, it would have had to humble her and open her eyes. I loved the evolution of Lady Aelswith!
Rike: One could say I truly didn’t like her at all back in the Alfred (David Dawson) days. She was always pissing me off to be honest and I didn’t like her behavior and actions at all. For me they made no sense. But this season everything changed. I don’t want to say that she wasn’t a grown up woman before but now she truly acted like a badass grown up woman. She changed for the better. At least in my opinion. I loved watching her whoop some butts every then and now and tell Edward (Timothy Innes) to shut up if necessary. Not saying that it was always helpful, at least she tried. Go Lady Aelswith.
Q: Do you agree or disagree with the statement that Edward kinda turned into the villain with the decisions he made this season?
Nat: I don’t necessarily see him as a villain, more like someone that is trying to do right by his people, in some ridiculous ways. Disrespecting his sister’s wishes, and in the way it was done was by far the most unethical one. I feel like at times you could see bits of Alfred in him. I don’t know if it was just me, but that was very cool to see. But yeah, let’s just say he wasn’t my favorite character, and I often found myself wishing he would just be gone.
Jen: I do not see Edward as a villain, even though I do not agree with most of his very questionable choices. In my opinion, he’s still ‘far away’ from being an actual villain though. Most of the time he probably simply didn’t know better and even though his actions should not be excused, I do think that deep down he didn’t actually mean all the harm that he caused.
Alicia: I never saw Edward as a villain or the bad guy. He simply made mistakes and was badly advised. His youth and lack of experience, his pride, made him decide wrong sometimes. Also, trying to fill King Alfred’s shoes is not an easy task. But I think that his heart was in the right place, otherwise, Uhtred would never have supported him.
Shell: His power seemed to completely ruin his ability to be compassionate and make wise decisions. Uhtred had to remind Edward of his father’s dream to unite England as one kingdom in order to convince him to rescue his niece, who he promised his dead sister he would protect! Absolutely a villain in season 5.
Rike: Maybe not a true villain but his decisions weren’t the smartest if you ask me. Sometimes he sounded like he lost control and puberty hit him a little late. However, what a perfect acting. Well done Timothy Innes. Couldn’t have asked for a better Edward in my opinion. He could be a pain in the ass and he made me hate him from time to time. However, this just underlines that he did a great job.
Your score on Season 5 of The Last Kingdom (1-10):
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Rike is a very optimistic person who's trying to make the best out of everything. She's passionate about traveling, concerts, football and conventions. Most of the time she’s carrying her camera around to capture some moments. Her favorite football club is Borussia Dortmund and if she’s not watching the games on tv she's probably being in the stadium supporting the team.