Vikings returns Wednesdays on November 28 at 9pm on History. Fans have been promised a “decent into darkness” for the second half of Season Five and a snazzy new look for Ivar. Will Fenrir finally swallow the sun? Or will an eruption in Iceland blot out the sun across Europe. Volcanic ash killing a flock of ravens would explain Ivar’s new crown.
When we left Vikings TEN months ago, Ivar had defeated Lagertha’s army. Hvitserk stayed with his baby brother, despite Ivar’s constant insults and threats to kill his pet Hvitserk.
Floki offered himself up as a sacrifice to the gods in Iceland, to atone for the settlement’s blood feud. Ubbe is shacking up with Torvi. Bjorn’s new wife, whose name I didn’t bother learning, died in battle. (For those keeping count, that makes three wives for Bjorn.) In England, Judith managed to get her second son, Alfred – from her affair with Athelstan- crowned king. Aethelred was thrilled.
And sorry folks, but Ragnar didn’t magically appear in the first half. He is really, really, honest to Odin, really dead. No amount of complaining about it on every History social media post is going to change that. Watch anyway because Ragnar had a dream, and you betray him if you don’t watch it unfold!
If you can get over never seeing Ragnar again, here are some reasons to watch the rest of Vikings’ Season Five. Hint: None of the reasons include Lagertha’s new “shock-and-awe,” silver look. Just nope.
Uncle Rollo’s Back
Our favorite Uncle Rollo gives the best gifts and always has a place for us to crash. He sent Hvitserk home with an army to defeat Lagertha. We still don’t know why. He arrived after the battle, no doubt against his wife’s wishes. Is Rollo enforcing the promise to spare Bjorn? Will he turn on Ivar and help Hviterk? Will Rollo create an alliance with Ivar against the English? His offspring do overrun England in a few generations. (In fact, Meghan Markle married a descendant of Rollo. How cool is that?) Or maybe Gisla’s dead and Rollo wants to win over Lagertha. Wouldn’t that be glorious – Gisla being dead, I mean? Rollo with Lagertha wouldn’t work out well, considering her history with everyone who professes to love her, then takes away her power. Hell, maybe Rollo, wants Lagertha to sacrifice him to the gods, like Floki.
Hvitserk’s Game Plan
I’m most curious about Hvitserk’s motives. He sided with Ivar over Ubbe at the last minute. Why? Ivar constantly taunts and belittles Hvitserk. Is he upset with Ubbe playing the oldest brother card. Hvitserk really liked Margrethe. Ubbe seemed to marry her just to show up his younger brothers. He also took Hvitserk for granted. Or does Hvitserk think Ivar has the best chance of success. Or maybe Hvitserk thinks Ivar will be easy to kill whenever he feels, and he can make an alliance with Uncle Rollo.
Harald is Single Now, Ladies
Look at that face! Most fans don’t care, but I love this character. He’s helping Ivar for now. However, he still wants to be (and according to history he was) “King of All Norway.” Harald has to turn on Ivar at some point. And despite knowing not one thing about women, he’s a big ole romantic, in his slightly sociopathic, but totally normal-for-a-Viking, way.
His captive bride and unborn child were killed by Lagertha, so he needs to avenge them (even though the child probably wasn’t his, and his wife BEGGED Lagertha for death). The Seer said Lagertha would be killed by a son of Ragnar, so I don’t think Harald will avenge his wife.
Season Four’s battles weren’t up to regular standards. There was too much hype of grand brother-against-brother-river battles, that amounted to nothing but bad camera angles and a sad not-battle-ready Ragnar. It didn’t compare to Seasons One and Two. But with Ivar in Season Five, we’ve had great strategies to balance out the Tarantino-ish gore in Wessex and York. Does Ivar have more tricks up his sleeve? Or did Alfred learn all Ivar’s strategies when they played chess as boys? Will they be equals?
Hirst likes to repeat story lines. Ragnar had Athelstan. Ecbert had his Athelstan and Ragnar. Ivar had his Heahmund. And now Lagertha has Ivar’s Heahmund. Who will be the new Viking/Christian bromance in the season’s second half? Will Lagertha convert Heahmund, or Heahmund convert Lagertha? Or will Heahmund be kidnapped by yet another Viking?
There is also the matter of Alfred and Aethelred. Aethelred, the blood heir to the throne, wasn’t too thrilled with mom picking Alfred as the king.
Aethelred was his father’s favorite, but granddad and mom always loved Athelstan and Alfred best. That story is a wee bit familiar. Will that resentment end Ecbert’s dream to unify England?
Previously, on Vikings…
I know you just heard it in your head. Yes, Ragnar is dead, but his spirit lives on in every episode. Whether deliberate or simply a lack of budget, Travis Fimmel is still the show’s introductory voice.
Tune in November 28 at 9pm to see who rises and falls.
Picture source: History Vikings & Jonathan Hession