TV ReviewsVikings Season 4 Episode 17: The Great Army Review

JasonJanuary 11, 2017

With Ragnar Lothbrok now dead and everyone knows about it, the characters of Vikings must move on, hatching new ideas to move or to avenge his death. Such is the case in this new episode, entitled “The Great Army”. In truth, this episode was a bit crammed, spanning several months as we see many of the characters going to and fro, discussing the matter of “What there going to be next? “in the coming war to avenge Ragnar Lothbrok.

Continuing from last week, the big tension-filled arc in “The Great Army” was that whether or not Lagertha was going to be killed in tonight’s episode by Ivar. Despite Ivar hatching a plan with Ubbe, which almost worked, Lagertha’s life was spared by the arrival of Bjorn, who returns home from his raiding voyages in the Mediterranean. I kind of knew that she wasn’t going to be killed in tonight’s episode, but I have feeling that she might be killed off in the season finale or (possibly) the beginning of the next season.

Interestingly, the past couple of episodes have seen more of Ubbe in the main spotlight and becoming more of the central “glue” to the sons of Ragnar as well as challenging Lagertha in a sort of more “passive aggressive” way (i.e. freeing the slave girl Margrethe). Will that changed since Bjorn has returned? As for Ivar, despite sporting a new haircut (a bit longer and slick back to make him look a bit older and cooler), he’s still pretty much a great ball of wrath, with a lot of pent-up rage and anger in his cripple body (still plotting and scheming over Lagertha’s death). However, it was nice to see him a bit happy when Floki builds him a chariot, so that he could move around in battle. We also see Ivar again butt heads with his brother Sigurd, seeing that the two don’t see eye to eye over the death of their mother. With Bjorn returning home, we also see the return of Hvitserk, the weakest of the four brothers. Perhaps we’ll see more of him in the future episodes.

As for Rollo, he leaves Bjorn’s raiding party, deciding to return to his home in Francia, despite him making an offer to Bjorn and his Viking brethren (a piece of land in Francia), which, of course, they refuse. Unfortunately, Rollo’s wife Princess Gisla is not so much happy to see her Viking husband again, shouting what I assume are some pretty harsh words in French as well as punch him square in the face. I personally hope there’s more to Rollo’ story in the coming episodes because (if it isn’t), his storyline in this second half of Season 4 has been pretty brief and a bit boring from the season’s first half.

Over in Wessex, King Ecbert had a small scene in this episode as he shared an important lesson in ruling with young Alfred (Isaac O’Sullivan). It will be interesting to see where the importance of Alfred lies in the coming episodes or rather probably next season of Vikings.

Continuing the story in England (or rather North Umbria), Judith, King Ecbert’s daughter-in-law / mistress lover, pays her family a visit. She warns him about the revenge of Ragnar’s sons and implore him to reconcile the alliance with King Ecbert. Aelle, in return, dismisses the notion. It wonder if he will change his mind when the sons of Ragnar arrive on his shores.

In conclusion, “The Great Army” was, more or less, a “calm before the storm” type episode, with much of the episode trying piece itself together with many of the various characters. It was good, but mostly “filler” stuff to propel events / characters forward. The sons of Ragnar are gathering their army and will be soon traveling to England to avenge their father’s death. Hopefully, (next episode) will there will be more battles to come and see some of that Viking action.

Score: 7.5 / 10

If interested, check out my movie blog @ Jason’s Movie Blog for my reviews of current movies.


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