“How the little piggies will grunt when they learn that the old boar suffered!” Such words were echoed in this new episode of Vikings, which was appropriately titled “Revenge”. And it was bloody and gruesome as the sons of Ragnar finally got their chance to avenge their father’s death. However, before that took place (during the last ten minutes of the episode), the rest of “Revenge” was filled with sinister deeds, a marriage, a sacrifice, and interesting father / son conversation.
Before the whole “bloody revenge” bit, this episode once again showed the brutal and fierce ways of the Norse culture, showcasing Lagertha, in order to please the gods in their endeavor to attack the Saxons, performed a sacrifice to the gods…and I mean a human sacrifice. Yes, Vikings does it again. It’s always interesting to see the Norse culture (lifestyle, practices, religion, etc.) in the show and it feels authentic rather than just gimmicky. Thus, it was a big moment, with Lagertha (looking cool in her white garb and with a white owl on her shoulder) stabbing an eager young Viking, who was eager to die as he grabbed hold of Lagertha’s blade and pushed it further into his body. I guess some people are ready to die for what they believe in.
It also interesting to note that during the sacrifice ceremony, Bjorn and Astrid shared another “love making” moment. I don’t know what to think of this relationship. Is it something deeper between the two of them or is it just to release for both of them. Who knows? Maybe I’m just over thinking it….haha!
Meanwhile, King Harald had his heart pierced (or rather romantically crushed) as he comes across the woman who stole his heart long ago. Everything he’s done, all of his schemes to become king of all Norway has been to win her hand in marriage. In this episode, however, Harald finds out that this particular woman has already been wed to a common Earl after telling him he’d have to achieve greatness to be with her. Of course, Harald is considerably mad over this new revelation from his love, which almost pushed him over the edge and killing her. However, his gesture of undying love for the woman was to not murder her. Such a nice gesture! Will this fuel his fire to overtake Kattegat and betray the sons of Ragnar.
There was also a wedding in “Revenge”, seeing Ubbe marrying Margethe. Interestingly, his brother Hvitserk has also fallen for Margethe, although Ubbe made his claim to her first. However, to their surprise (and to mine), Margethe decided to “share the love” with the two brothers and took them both to bed. Interesting. At least it gives Hvitserk a bit more character development beyond that just standing in the background of Bjorn’s expedition.
Another interesting scene in this episode was a short scene that didn’t need acts of violence, sex, or revenge, but rather a simple conversation between father and son. Who I’m talking about is King Ecbert and his son Aethelwulf. Aethelwulf has always been tool for Ecbert to use and to discard and he knows that, confronting his father on such actions. In truth, I kind of feel bad for Aethelwulf as his father has expressed his love for many people (Ragnar, Athelstan, and even Aethelwulf’s wife Judith, who he’s taken as a mistress), but he’s never expressed his love for his own son. He can’t even say muster to say the words “I love you” to Aethelwulf. Ecbert has always been a interesting character throughout the course of the show and this latest conversation with his son is another interesting shade to his character.
There has been a couple of short time jumps during this second half of season 4 as this episode shows “the great army” of the sons of Ragnar arriving in England very quickly and so was the battle against King Aelle. They showed the massive Viking army appearing over the horizon and charging towards King Aelle’s army, but then cut to the end of the fight, with Aelle in the clutches of Ragnar’s sons. Whether it was due to production budget costs or not, it just seems a bit underwhelming as we’ve been hearing about this great plan of revenge and the great army that the sons of Ragnar are amassing and to not show the battle. I’ll admit it…it was a bit disappointing.
Of course, what wasn’t disappointing was the actual revenge against King Aelle, with the sons of Ragnar brutally torturing him in a very intense and almost grotesque way. It was great, but also a bit unsettling. In the end, it was effective as Ragnar’s son finally got their vengeance on their father’s killer, with King Aelle meeting his demise on their hands and becoming a gruesome “blood eagle” corpse.
Sweet revenge, a wedding ceremony, and the invasion of England has begun in “Revenge”. There was a lot going on in this episode and was met with some a satisfying taste. It showed how the sons of Ragnar (and their army) are a force to be reckoned with (Wessex is next on their sight) and the battle to overtake Kattegat is looming in the coming episode. With only two more episodes left in this season, there a lot of ground to cover and I can’t wait to see what happens next.
Score: 8.0 / 10
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