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The Last Kingdom Season 1 Episode 4 Recap – Episode 4

BY Kean

Published 1 year ago

The Last Kingdom Season 1 Episode 4 Recap - Episode 4

On the day of Uhtred’s marriage, Young Odda offers to give him silver if he walks away. However, although he is somewhat unsure, Uhtred decides that he will marry the lady. He tells Leofric that he was unaware of the lady’s existence until the day before. He wasn’t even allowed to meet her or see her. Odda is there, and the lady that Uhtred will be marrying is Odda’s goddaughter.

Young Odda tells the bride that if she doesn’t want to do it, then she should say so. Odda tells Father Beocca to make the ceremony quick because he needs to talk to the King. Uhtred paid a bride price of 33 pieces which he handed to the bride’s godfather, Odda. Before the ceremony started, Uhtred tells Odda to give the 33 pieces to the bride.

When the bride removes the hood from her head, Uhtred is struck by her beauty. The ceremony is quick, and when it is done the bride starts crying. Her name is Mildrith, a pious and beautiful lady. After the ceremony, Odda tells King Alfred that it is done. Alfred knows that Uhtred will be angry once he finds out the truth, and Mildrith is his beautiful consolation. He needs to test Uhtred and so he came up with a plan, that Uhtred will soon find out.

On their way to the farmstead, Uhtred wonders why Alfred has given him such a beautiful bride. He wonders why Mildrith didn’t marry. Mildrith doesn’t want to be the one, to tell the truth, but Uhtred immediately finds out that there is a debt to be paid. Mildrith says her father wanted to find favor in God so he devoted a tenth of his land to the Church, and the church is entitled to its yield. So, even when crops failed and the Danes raided, the church demanded its yield.

Her father owes the church 2000 shillings and the amount increases each year. Alfred can remove the debt, but he chose not to. Leofric laughs at Uhtred and reminds him that Alfred thinks, and Alfred wants him to obey. The people of the land welcome them when they arrive, and Mildrith hands the families silver she received as a bride price. Uhtred finds out that Mildrith only received 18 silvers. He also tells her to watch the farmstead master, Oswald, because he seems too well off even when the crops fail.

On their wedding night, they fought. However, on the next day, Uhtred says he doesn’t blame Mildrith for the debt, but Alfred. And he says that he will make sure that Mildrith will get the rest of the silvers that were promised to her. Mildrith accepts that God has a plan for making her Uhtred’s wife. Months after, Mildrith is now pregnant. And the Danes are back. Uhtred tells Oswald to take care of the people and hide them, while he and Mildrith will go to Alfred. He doesn’t know that the marching warriors are with Brida and Ragnar. 

Uhtred advises the king that they should march quickly to Werham before their enemies grow in numbers. The others are against this, but Alfred follows Uhtred’s advice.

Later, Uhtred confronts Alfred for not telling him about the debt that came with marrying Mildrith. But both Alfred and Father Beocca say the debt was never a secret. Not long after, the fortress of Werham has fallen, and they need to march to fight Guthrum’s army. But Alfred has told Uhtred that Ubba is in Ireland to avenge the death of his brother. This means that Guthrum will have to fight without Ubba and his men at his side.

Inside the fortress, Guthrum tells Ragnar that Ubba has reneged. He is well aware that Alfred is not going to attack because Alfred knows that they are low on supplies. They can’t even raid the nearby villages because they are sure that Alfred will empty the grain stores. Guthrum tells Ragnar that Ubba has put them all in danger and until he returns they have to make peace.

The gate of the fortress opens and Guthrum and Alfred talk to make a deal. Alfred offers them food and ale for one month until the ships that Guthrum calls for arrive. Guthrum asks for more time but Alfred says 1 month is his limit. He adds that by that time the sea storms will have arrived already, God’s storms.

As a sign of peace, each army will send 10 of its men to be hostages. Alfred asks one priest to be one of the ten hostages that will be sent into the fortress. He knows that Guthrum is curious about their faith and so he wants the priest to teach Guthrum and provide instruction. He thinks that if ever Guthrum considers being baptized, then the war is over. Alfred also sends Uhtred as a hostage who will be his spy inside.

Once Uhtred hears that Ubba has returned, he will escape and light a beacon on top of the hill to signal others. Uhtred doesn’t want that Alfred is always testing him. He knows that when Ubba returns, all of the hostages will be killed. But Alfred keeps on mentioning that Uhtred doesn’t worship the same god that he is worshipping. But he says that if Uhtred dies, all his debts will die with him. 

And so Uhtred and the others go into the fortress as hostages. There he sees Brida and Ragnar. Brida is with Ragnar now, and Uhtred says he’s happy for them. He tells them that he will soon be a father and he wishes to see his wife and child. He admits to Brida that he will alert Alfred once he finds out that Ubba has returned.

Meanwhile, the priest spends time with Guthrum telling him about his faith. However, when news arrives that Ubba has returned, Guthrum first kills the priest before killing the other hostages. Uhtred fights back but soon finds himself cornered. Ragnar and Brida come to rescue him. Ragnar tells Guthrum that if he wants to kill Uhtred, he must kill him first. But Ragnar reminds Guthrum that his men will not follow him. So, Guthrum lets Uhtred go. Uhtred hugs both Brida and Ragnar and says he will be with them to avenge their father.

The ships are seen on the horizon. Uhtred quickly lights the beacon on top of the hill to alert the others just as Alfred told him to do. 

Our Thoughts:

Uhtred is a warrior. But we can’t deny that most times, he is also lucky. If Ragnar was not there to defend him, Guthrum would have killed him already. And Alfred will never stop testing Uhtred. He needs Uhtred to follow him, but because Uhtred does what he wants to do, Alfred needs to make sure he always has something he can use against Uhtred.

Maybe Uhtred thinks that he still has a lot of control over his life, but Brida is right. Most things that happened to Uhtred from his marriage to Mildrith up to the point of being a hostage, are all because of Alfred. Mildrith seems like a good person and Uhtred likes her too. But it will take Uhtred forever to pay the debt of Mildrith’s father. Why can’t he just negotiate with Alfred that he will give his services again to him if he removes the debt?

Uhtred is doing all this to get what belongs to him. But, because he married Mildrith, he is now tied to the land in Wessex. Alfred is now his King. And we think as long as Alfred wants him around, Alfred will ask him to fight for him. Of course, Alfred will always have something to use to make Uhtred say yes. Uhtred doesn’t really have a choice. If he lives and dies of old age, his child will inherit the debt. But, if he is to die in battle, Alfred will remove the debt. But we know he won’t die. So, the only answer we are looking for is how he’s going to pay his debts. 

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