Vikings Recap: S4-E1″A Good Treason”
The Vikings missed a last second chip-shot field goal as time expired to put an end of their Super Bowl hopes and their 2015 season. That kind of heartbreak is childs-play when compared to blood sport that the Nordic Vikings experienced. The History Channel’s original program Vikings debuted it’s 4th season last evening and it was choked full of backstabbing, betrayal, intrigue and one particular gross out moment that still has me cringing. Let’s break it down:
The Gates of Valhalla
A gravely injured Ragnar and crew return from their successful campaign in Paris. Ragnar en route has a vision of the gates of Valhalla, a welcome sight of reward after a lifetime of battles. But those doors slam shut just short of his arrival. Does this mean his work is not yet done?
We’ll Always Have Paris
Ragnar’s brother Rollo has stayed behind in Paris to join in wedded union with the French Princess Gisla. Gisla of course is highly against the prospect of marriage to a barbarian but a girl’s gotta do what a girl’s gotta do. The most lighthearted (if anything in this show could be deemed as such) comes in their bridal suite, while both yell at each other in their native tongues and Gisla dreadful awaits the moment of consummation, Rollo actually offends her further but opting to go to sleep rather than ravage her.
Please note, this is where Lorena Bobbitt, centuries later, learned how to seize the moment from this.
Her: You know I will cut you right?
Him: I’m going to sleep
Her: But I will cut ya!!!! (knife in hand)
Her, in a moment of inaction: Aw man!!!!
The Ghastly Moment of the Night
Speaking of Lorena Bobbitt…
Kalf has also returned home from Paris to his land of Hedeby. He makes the declaration that Lagertha and he are now equals and will rule the land side by side. This sends the sexist nobles into a hissy fit, especially Erlundur and Einar. Erlunder threatens Kalf that his family gave him power and it can just as easily be taken away. Kalf backs down and at an assembly of the people, encourages those who oppose Lagertha to stand and make their mark on the flogging pole. When they do, archers open fire and quell the rebellion before it ever begins but the real moment of fun comes when a mortally wounded Einar has his….eh, hemm…manhood forcefully removed, courtesy of Queen Lagertha’s blade. Oh the humanity!
Betrayal, Betrayal, Betrayal
The central theme of the premiere, and apparently this season, will be betrayal. Let’s look at our characters and their turncoatery:
- Floki: The Odin groupie who should really be in an insane asylum murdered Ragnar’s close friend Athelstan last season in a profound act of betrayal and perhaps jealousy. Now he will have to answer for that act.
- Queen Aslaug: It is perfectly clear that the Queen no longer has any affection for Ragnar. She seeks out the council of the Seer to determine of the future shows her as the sole ruler of the realm.
- Bjorn: Ragnar’s eldest son exposes Floki’s betrayal to the people and has him arrested, but without intention, he has betrayed his father’s true plans for Floki and has robbed him of his planned revenge.
- Rollo: After his conversion to Christianity and marriage to Princess Gisla, Rollo’s fellow Vikings demand an audience to air their grievances. When he approaches their camp however, he orders his new French army to massacre them all, including women and children.
Vikings is a deliciously wicked guilty pleasure. It has everything that a Game of Thrones has, excluding the meta-physical and full nudity, but in ways the story-lines are actually more enticing than the HBO giant. Thursday nights just got a lot more brutal.
4.5 Runes out of 5
Corrected, thank you for the pick up!
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