Since the beginning of Netflix’s The Last Kingdom, Uhtred’s destiny was to reclaim the land that was taken away from him as a boy and avenge his Viking family murder. The later has been accomplished and along the way, his ambitions did vary but the end goal of Bebbanburg was always there. Then finally, in season 4, we see Uhtred return to Bebbanburg with men, his son and a plan, however, the plan quickly folded as his uncle’s son’s unexpected arrival foiled Uhtred’s takeover and honestly, I’m happy that he failed.
Now, I should state that this is coming from someone who has not read the books and doesn’t intend to until the show ends, as I don’t want to spoil it for myself. I know that there are many The Last Kingdom fans who are in the same boat as well. So, this is a theory about the show alone and I know from people who have read the books, the show hasn’t exactly followed the book’s story 110% exactly the same way, which is common for TV shows based on novels.
However, in saying that, I assume that if I did read the books, Uhtred will eventually reclaim Bebbanburg but I’m just glad it didn’t happen in season 4. I know that the man has already achieved a lot outside of Bebbanburg and avenging his family (both families) fallings were just a couple of his successes. Although, if Uhtred was to reclaim Bebbanburg, I feel his story will be at its end and even if there is anything after that, it will feel like a side-quest.
By still having Bebbanburg in a state where it’s even further away from Uhtred’s grasp than what it has ever been, it means there’s still a lot to come. I say that it’s further away, as Uhtred’s has clearly been affected mentally from his failed attempt, which has damaged his confidence. This is something that hasn’t happened too often before in his life. In addition, his uncles’s son looks like a formidable, battle-hardened opponent with strong men to call upon. Furthermore, Bebbanburg will likely be defended with technology that surpasses main-England.
If you are a Viking’s fans and remember Ragnar’s assault on Paris, you will see that the crossbow is not a weapon to be taken lightly. This is a weapon that Uhtred hasn’t had much experience with, is essentially the medieval version of the machine-gun’s introduction to World War 1 and just like that weapons introduction, it’s going to be very hard to counter with less-advanced technology like a bow.
Uhtred does still have powerful allies but it’s doubtful that they will aid him in this adventure if high-casualties are expected. As a result, without an army to call upon himself and while up against the enemy currently occupying Bebbanburg, it’s going to make The Last Kingdom season 5 all the more exciting. This is something that may have not been the case had Uhtred already conquered Bebbanburg.
You can get your hand on the whole book series that The Last Kindom is based on in the link to Amazon here: https://amzn.to/3ct0PLO