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This week Vikings enters the mysterious new world known as “the place where Ragnar no longer lives.” Fortunately, a “special someone” drops by to help everyone with the transition! Who could it be?
Although Ivar has brought news of Ragnar’s death, Lagertha is slow to believe he is really gone. She realizes that she will have to rule alone, and shows she’s a better leader than anyone else in Vikings-land by accepting the burden so she won’t disappoint Ragnar, the gods and all of the shieldmaidens who sacrificed their lives to put her into power. I hate to break it to Lagertha, but even if Ragnar lived, you’d still be ruling alone. Remember back in the day when he took off for years at a time, then came back with pregnant slores? Picture that for the next 30 years.
Meanwhile in Wessex, Ecbert is in denial in the face of Aethelwulf’s desire to plan for the return of Ragnar’s sons. Ecbert’s like: “Oh no, we’re good. Ragnar, who is totally reliable, did me a solid by turning his sons on King Aelle, because he totally forgave me for slaughtering his entire village that I was entrusted to protect. I’ll just be over here teaching Alfred knitting and hair braiding now that we live in a post ‘getting attacked by Norse heathens’ Wessex.”
Ecbert’s new motto – coming to a coat of arms near you!
I’m sure you’re totally right, big guy! *WINK*
Rollo is back!
And when we get our first glimpse of him sans French perm, he looks burly, manly, hot Jesus-ey and really, really . . . smelly. For real, I’m a little fixated on how stinky they all look: stuck in a lull and marinating in their own testosterone – ewwww.
Awww, Rollo, you still sexy – even with stinklines!
Stinking up the other boat, Harald and Halfdan wonder if the lack of wind means the gods have abandoned Bjorn, and begin to plot Bjorn’s (and Kattegatt’s) overthrow. Hey, Harald – have you smelled yourselves? I suspect the gods were doing you a favor by cutting the wind. The slightest breeze and the Moors would have been on to you a hundred miles out!
The Norsemen encounter Algeciras, on the Spanish coast, and the butchering commences!
Scenes like this slaughter make me understand why I revel in the times when the Norsemen f*ck each other over. Honestly, they kind of deserve it. Live by the sword, die by the sword and all that. It’s a little harder to deal with when they start slicing through the families out taking an innocent evening stroll around the second-hand Agrabah set (reduce, reuse, recycle, y’all!).
🎵 of Vikings chopping off our heads 🎵
But for normally enthusiastic killer, Floki, something just isn’t right. He has admitted to Helga that he feels hollow inside (sensing Ragnar’s death, perchance?) and needs more . . . something. He’s drawn to the mosque, where he observes men in prayer, who don’t seem to be crapping their pants at the appearance of a 6′-4″, clown-faced emm-eff. Floki saves the worshippers from Harald and Halfdan (except for that one guy – oops), which raises some interesting questions about the future of Floki’s spirituality.
I see what you’re doing here, Michael Hirst! This entire story line is nearly identical to Ragnar’s first raid on Wessex. The navigation glass. Sailing into the unknown. Encountering and developing a fascination with a new religion. Taking prisoners who will potentially serve as a bridge between cultures. He’s basically using the successful Vikings formula to usher in the next generation. Very clever, sir.
Orson Welles approves
I suspect the harem prisoner that Bjorn was eyeing may become the new “Athelstan point-of-view” character. Or perhaps the fake daughter that Helga totally did not kidnap. Or maybe Athelstan will rise from the dead to become the new/old Athelstan character (reduce, reuse, recycle!). A girl can dream, can’t she?
Along with the whole “burden of ruling” thing, Lagertha has one other big-little problem: Ivar. Being the only one who actually liked Aslaug, he’s pretty hell-bent on revenge against Lagertha. (TBH, shooting Aslaug in the back has even me seriously side-eyeing her). So he gets to work in his shop, forging some kind of ingenious Lagertha-revenge device made solely from a cotter-pin, horse dung and a tube of the Seer’s lipstick.
Channing Tatum welding – you’re welcome
Alright, fine: it’s a knife. He’s making a knife. But apparently one that is perfectly calibrated to pierce Lagertha’s left eye, and travel directly to the brain area. Lagertha, normally I’d tell you to sleep with one eye open, but in this case imma suggest some kind of titanium sleep mask.
Speaking of eyes, and lack thereof, one-eyed Odin offers Ragnar’s sons closure by bringing proof of his death. But good news: according to the Seer Ragnar made it to Valhalla after all!
Congratulations! We (mostly) knew you could do it!
Join us next week for more Vikings!
What’s the next stop on Bjorn’s world tour? Will there be showers? Will Ragnar’s sons stand a chance against Alfred’s knitted tea cozies? Why is Judith being all weirdly step-motherish to Aethelwulf? Will Lagertha be able to ship Ivar off on his mission of vengeance before she loses an eye?