Warning Major Spoilers if you haven’t seen this episode!
I’m having a difficult time with why this episode is entitled “The Key.” Maybe because Ivar freed Prince Dir. Is that the key to his success?
This week Gunnhild learns her dream of an attack on Lagertha’s village was true. And Bjorn’s son was killed. It’s ironic that she has second sight, just like the second woman to carry Ragnar’s children. Gunnhild thinks Bjorn has made a mistake in letting Ivar’s henchmen go free. Lagertha thinks there is no way of judging. She would think that, since it’s her son making the mistakes.
Gunnhild and Lagertha spend the rest of the episode prepping for another battle and bonding with younger shieldmaidens. It seems there’s very little left of Lagertha’s story, if all she has left is reminiscing with the next generation.
The earls and kings arrive to vote for the King of All Norway. Is this the “key” to Norway’s future? Bjorn has no desire to be king in an uncontested election, so all leaders are up for election. The election starts, despite Flatnose and Harald plotting something. Hirst would like us to believe, that the plot is against Bjorn. But Harald, with all his faults, has honor. He didn’t allow Ivar to attack Bjorn. He came to Bjorn’s aid. And Bjorn came to save Harald from Olaf. He has no quarrel with Bjorn. His quarrel is with Olaf’s double cross. I think they plan on attacking crazy Olaf.
Hvitserk uses Ivar’s old iron gate to hide from ghosts. Thora’s ghost finds him anyway. She makes Hvitserk swear to avenge her death and kill Ivar. He swears on his arm ring.
Prince Oleg has forged titles to the lands in Scandinavia. Ivar doesn’t seem impressed with winning lands through deceit. Although he has solidified his partnership with Prince Igor, who turns out to be an adept liar for his age.
My Favorite Moments
Buffy, the famous Shield Maiden
Lagertha, not sounding like herself, confides to Gunnhild that she doesn’t think they have the forces needed to take on the bandits. Lagertha is done fighting. It’s sounds vaguely like Buffy the Vampire Slayer after she was brought back from the dead.
Katheryn Winnick has advertised that she directs episode 8 this season, so I predict Lagertha will die within the next two episodes. I predict she dies protecting her only grandchild.
The Adventures of Ivar & Igor
Ivar frees Prince Dir with Prince Igor’s help. Ivar told Prince Igor that they are playing a trick on Prince Dir. So what is the real goal here? Will Ivar turn on Dir? Or did he say it was a trick because of Prince Igor’s open contempt and cruelty towards Dir?
Oleg claims Igor is more likely to be kidnapped now that Dir is gone. Despite the threat, the young prince is able to hold his own against Oleg’s inquisition on the escape.
Hvitserk escapes his demons with drugs and mead again. Poor Hvit-sey gives away the very arm ring he swore upon, for drugs and alcohol. He knows he should be working towards a goal, but his mind is sidelined with PTSD.
The Seer visits him in the drug den. His story line seems to be changing course – FINALLY. Poor Hvitserk has only been Ubbe and Ivar’s errand boy. The Seer tells Hvitserk, “You’re not yet fit for your purpose. Either you have no purpose. Or the purpose is beyond the end you figured. Altered in fulfillment. Altered in fulfillment.” So typical of the Seer, the prophecy is clear as mud. Maybe this is the key alluded to in the title!
I think it means Hvitserk wasn’t meant to kill Ivar. Maybe he was meant to kill off the current horrible version of Ivar. One can only hope for the sake of the brothers.
Bjorn the Manwhore
As the earls and kings arrive for the election, Harald greets and schmoozes the dignitaries – like a REAL king would do. Bjorn, by contrast, concerns himself with another hookup. Can someone please tell me why he’s everyone’s obvious choice for king?
It Will Be Different with Me
Someone’s in love with Bjorn – again. Ingrid awaits Bjorn on the docks. Far from begin the seductress who was helping Bjorn fulfill his destiny, she is lovesick. Torvi gives some sage advice, to NOT wait for him. “I waited for Bjorn many times. And each time he returned, he was always further away.” Torvi doesn’t argue with the poor creature.
Prince Oleg introduces his future bride. She looks just like Freydis. Is Ivar going crazy from guilt, or are the gods playing with him? Will her appearance make Ivar lose focus on his goals? Or will he kill her again?
Ubbe the Delegator
Hvitserk and Bjorn are speaking to the dead Seer. And Ivar is seeing his dead wife. It occurs to me that Ubbe is the only son of Ragnar who isn’t breaking under pressure. When word arrives that Ivar has been found among the Rus, Ubbe is calm and collected.
He sticks to his word of no longer speaking to Hvitserk. He delegates the task of informing Hvitserk to a shieldmaiden.
Harald and Olaf have already voted for Bjorn. Will Bjorn be King of All Norway? Tune in next week to find out!
Picture source: History, Vikings, Bernard Walsh & Johnathon Hession