Vikings: Season 3 (2015)

vikings season 3 poster


What I liked: 

  • The battle scenes. They are still incredibly well done, and always thrilling to watch.
  • The score for the show is so suiting and it comes together well.
  • How things skipped between Wessex, Kattegat and wherever the vikings were raiding and warring.
  • The understanding yet mistrust that is evident between Ragnar and King Ecbert.
  • Seeing how faith is still so important here. Athelstan finally got his “sign”, so to speak, and it brought him great happiness, though it definitely threw him back to the status of outcast. Ragnar was not too bothered about Athelstan’s faith, as long as they were friends. Later, it was immensely interesting to see how Christian vs Nordic faith had become such an issue for Ragnar, and how it tore at him.
  • The siege that went down in Paris! OMG! You all know that I am immediately sold the second there is a siege. This was no different. It was intense, it was bloody, it was vicious, violent and seemed so superfluous at the best of times.
  • The concept of who the real barbarians are. The vikings are painted as uncouth animals due to their traditions, but when you look at what the Christians do, they are equally savage in their own way. So ultimately, who is at fault here?

Both of these scenes just gave me goosebumps…

vikings season 3 headsvikings bjorn paris invade

What I didn’t like: 

  • Floki really went all darkside here. It was well done, but it crushed me, it didn’t gel always. At the end of season two it was presented that the strife between Ragnar and Floki was all fake, yet in this season it started up and they were immediately at odds again.
  • End of season two showed us that Ragnar was all in love with Lagertha again, and that they were not together, but she was aware. Here we return and Ragnar simply doesn’t love Princess Aslaug anymore, but nothing is happening with Lagertha, either, so it just felt a little pointless.

vikings ragnar and ecbert

I have been eagerly awaiting the new season of Vikings. The show is that good. When it was time to watch, my fiancé and I made the laughable decision of “watching one episode over brunch” which, naturally, turned into the whole season. Bang. Just like that. Over. It was worth every second of the time spent watching it. There was just so much going on in this season I didn’t even know where to start. I obviously expected Kalf to screw Lagertha over, that was going to happen, and King Ecbert cannot be trusted even when your eyes are on him, so there were no surprises there, though both takeovers were handled extremely well. I was not a fan of how it started with Ragnar and Floki at odds again, I genuinely thought that they had sorted things out, but here we were with them once again. It didn’t progress as smoothly as it could have. I was devastated to see Floki finally take that step against Ragnar and kill Athelstan, it was truly something that crushed me. He was a favourite character of mine. Ouch. Religion was again important here, and it brought about some crazy things all over the show, I was a huge fan of how that was done. The brutality was not held back here again, and I think that the History channel is onto something with this show. The cast does wonders with the material that they are given, and there are so many moments where your heart jumps into your throat before you can even process what has happened. The vikings moving on to invade France was something I have been waiting for for ages now, there is so much that could be going on there and I was dead right in that assessment. It was brutal, violent, extreme, entertaining and nerve-wracking, so the goods were delivered in typical Vikings style. Floki has definitely finally lost his marbles, and his descent into madness is a gripping watch. Well worth the watch!

vikings season 3 athelstan

Vikings: Season 1 (2013)

vikings season 1 poster


What I liked:

  • The documentary/series style presentation.
  • The costume and set design was fantastic. I have to hand it to them – everything looked authentic and beautiful.
  • The “court” proceedings.
  • The rituals were grand and detailed.
  • The score complemented the show every step of the way.
  • The opening credits/intro. I just loved that song, the scenery, the imagery, all of it.
  • The women were also strong, not merely there to bear children and keep house. They were respected, and they were warriors.
  • The relationship between Ragnar and Lagertha. It was deep and complex and multi-layered. I also love that she was by his side is every way – not just at home, but in battle, too.
  • The scenery is stunning. All the panning shots of Scandinavia and England was gorgeous.
  • Travis Fimmel was a stroke of genius to portray Ragnar. He captured his cheekiness, his fearlessness, his love for his family, his loyalty. He also seems just that little bit off the rails, detached from certain things, and I like that.
  • Gustaf Skarsgård as Floki. I absolutely adore this character. He is amusing as hell, loyal, different and most certainly a scene stealer.
  • The distinct differences portrayed between the Scandinavian gods and Christianity from the west.
  • How seriously Floki took his faith, and his disgust that Rollo would be baptised – it just showed you that faith was no mockery for him.
  • The friendship between Athelstan , the priest, and Ragnar. Initially this started as something cold, but I loved how it warmed up between them, and how Athelstan tries to find a way to fit into his new Scandinavian home.
  • The Seer (Kattegat’s oracle) looked terrifying, epic and brutal. The Seer truly highlights the difference in religions.
  • The brutality and purity of the Angel of Death.
  • The gradual decay between Ragnar and Rollo is heavy to watch. It starts so subtly, and before you know it, they are openly at odds.

vikings season 1 floki and ragnar

What I didn’t like:

  • Yes, yes, petty me, but the sudden switch to English. I understand why it was necessary, but there were a few times you had to remember why this Norseman could suddenly chat with the Saxons, but bear in mind that he was the only one in his lot that could understand them.
  • Another small thing, but how the accents slipped from time to time. Jarring.
  • The battle scenes were great on one hand, but really tame on the other.

vikings season 1 beach landing

WOW! What a show this is! I really love Norse mythology and lore, etc. I think it is fascinating and wonderful and intricate and strange, so naturally this was going to grab my attention. Plus, the vikings are fascinating. The brutality, the way they did things, the raiding, all of it. This show was so appealing. It starts with a bang, in the battlefields, and it progresses from there, introducing us to Ragnar, having us follow him on. His simple life of a farmer and his relationship with his wife show us a whole different side of the man, and it is something else. Seeing how Ragnar found a way to take the ships West was something to experience, and just getting on board with the raid had me hooked. Meeting Floki and watching the building of the boats was something that I liked, as the vikings were renowned for their ships. Vikings was also lucky because it had some pretty damn good camera work to carry out the epic story. Athelstan was a character I found to be incredibly intriguing, what with his plight from being snatched from England and moving to a Scandinavian country. He changes from being a regular slave to being brought into Ragnar’s confidences, teaching the man as well as learning from him. I was crushed to see him taken with to Uppsala for the rituals, and I was really glad to know that he escaped becoming a sacrifice. I was enthralled with that sequence of events, it was another look into their religion. Also, who the hell knew that Fimmel had it in him to be such an outstanding viking? Looking at his pictures and his other work, I would never have thought he could pull off the role of Ragnar, never mind owning it like he does. I thoroughly enjoyed that the history was presented as a story in a series way, which is great. Vikings depicted how ruthless the Norsemen were, and I was so happy to see that they didn’t have the helmets that have become so popular nowadays. Vikings also shows us how much warring there was among themselves and not only with the raids across the lands. It peeved me that Ragnar hooked up with the princess, even though I was waiting for it after he spoke to the gods about the woman who would bear him children. Not the point, I was with Bjorn in my unhappiness with Ragnar and his stupid mistake, especially seeing as I felt his marriage to Lagertha was damn near perfect. Then let me talk about Floki: can I just mention how much I adored this character? He was amazing, hilarious, always around Ragnar, and he was loyal as hell. Gustaf Skarsgård’s casting was also just a thing of beauty, and I really felt that Floki could contribute so well to a scene as well as steal it. It seems the Skarsgård family is always destined to provide favourite characters and entertainment. If you have not picked up from my writings here, I cannot recommend Vikings enough.

vikings season 1 temple uppsala