Is Commander Ballantine Dead in Willow?

Portrayed by Ralph Ineson, Commander Ballantine is an important supporting character in the Disney+ fantasy adventure series ‘Willow.’ He is the Commander of the Pacalcade and serves directly under Queen Sorsha of Tir Asleen. Ballantine is especially close to Jade (Erin Kellyman), whom he has raised and trained since she was a child, regarding her as a daughter. During the fight with the Gales, the monstrous group that the Crone sends to capture Prince Airk, Ballantine is infected and subsequently becomes possessed. If the events of episode 3 have made you wonder whether Ballantine is dead in ‘Willow,’ this is what you need to know. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Does Commander Ballantine Die?

Ballantine is an elite knight of Tir Asleen, in charge of the defense of the kingdom. He is the perfect knight — brave, honorable, and an exceptional warrior. He is the father figure in Jade’s life, having raised her since her biological parents were killed while crossing the Barrier.

On the night of Airk’s abduction, Ballantine fights with several Gales. Among them, The Lich is the one who infects Ballantine. After realizing that Dove, the unassuming kitchen maid, has left the city on her own to rescue the man she believes she loves, Sorsha sends out Ballantine to retrieve her, not knowing anything about the infection. It is revealed that Dove is Elora Danan, the child with the mark of prophecy from the 1988 original film.

During the journey, Ballantine becomes completely possessed by the infection and either kills or infects the men accompanying him. They arrive at the Newlyn settlement shortly after Willow (Warwick Davis) and the others have left and follow their target’s trail until they catch up with them. While Elora is busy practicing her magic, Ballantine ambushes and captures her.

When Willow and the remaining questers realize that Elora has gone missing, they try to find her and encounter Ballantine and his men. Jade realizes something is wrong with her adoptive father and pleads to let her help him. But by then, Ballantine is already beyond help. Willow tries to use smoke to confuse their adversaries, but it only allows Ballantine and his people to escape with Elora.

At one point, Elora manages to escape from Ballantine’s men. She then runs into two woodswomen — Hubert and Anne. Dressed in what mysteriously looks like modern-day lumberjack attire, the two women discover who Elora truly is and swear their fealties to her. When Ballantine inevitably finds them, he and Hubert fight. Although it seems that Hubert has mortally wounded him with her axe, he survives because of the possession and seemingly kills his enemy. Anne is also killed by one of his men soon after.

Meanwhile, Willow realizes that Ballantine is taking Elora toward Nockmaar Castle, the former stronghold of Queen Bavmorda, and leads the questers on the trail of the possessed knights.

The two groups clash at a graveyard where an inn called The Slaughtered Ram once stood. Kit (Ruby Cruz) and Thraxus Boorman (Amar Chadha-Patel) soon join the fight, but the heroes are still no match for the possessed knights.

After Silas ( Graham Hughes) is fatally wounded, Willow uses the magic he has been saving up, which exorcises the evil controlling Ballantine and his men. Finally himself again and close to death, Ballantine asks Jade to kill him. Even though she vehemently refuses to do it at first, a heartbroken Jade eventually grants her adoptive father’s final request, killing him with a single swing of her sword.

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