Thursday 10:00 PM on The History Channel Premiered Mar 03, 2013 Between Seasons



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The History Channel's scripted drama chronicling the adventures of Viking warrior (and supposed descendent of Odin), Ragnar Lothbrok. Curious as to what lies to the West, Ragnar devises a plan to rebel against the long tradition of raiding East. Originally intended as a mini-series, Vikings was renewed for a second and third season.

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  • Blood versus nudity

    I'm enjoying the Vikings series thus far, working my way through season 2. I just had to shake my head at the skewed "morals" of the show's producers and/or editors. Why is it acceptable on the one hand to show the historically "accurate" violence of the time period, with no shortage of bloody spears and axes plunging enthusiastically into shoulders, backs and abdomens, while the "accuracy" of pagan nudity is shied away from wherever it is encountered? It's a bit silly. Why is it "acceptable" to show (and revel in) the dripping gore of human and animal sacrifice, but not allow even a glimpse of nudity from a culture that was not shy about it? It's almost laughable how the show bends over backwards to avoid showing anything more than a male warrior's muscular torso.

    Okay, the History Channel is not HBO, and I'm not suggesting that the producers should become gratuitous about depicting pagan sexual habits or give us giggling Valkyries in metal bikinis, but a realistic balance of tasteful AND historical would be nice.

    Prime example: when princess Aslaug is encountered bathing in a stream. Showing her naked beauty would have been both proper and relevant to the story. It would also have been fitting with Norse and Celtic folklore. And yet, the camera makes painfully clear that nudity is "bad" and we don't even glimpse one passing buttock, never mind full frontal nudity - Odin forbid! As an aside, I think this scene would have been far more effective had Ragnar come upon Aslaug himself and joined with her in a mystical fit of passion heralded by some powerful god-like omens, giving more strength to the idea that their union was inspired by the gods and their child destined for greatness. To have this encounter relegated to an introduction by kinsmen was a lost opportunity to make this an epic moment, and it would have made Ragnar's decision to marry this woman more understandable, since we know how much he loved his wife, Lagertha. Ragnar could otherwise have offered to "adopt" his newborn son and sent Aslaug on her way - polygamy wasn't the only answer. Anyway.

    Another typical example is when, in season 1, a slave girl is publicly sacrificed by the "angel of death," having her throat slit. Chances are good she'd have been naked, as would have been the nine men who were chosen (or volunteered) for sacrifice to appease the gods. Also, when Ragnar and Lagertha were in their home, making love (and sought to lure their Christian slave-priest into bed with them), it would have been a fitting temptation for Lagertha to wantonly display her pagan charms to the priest (a few seconds of tasteful nudity, not a burlesque show), but again, such "accuracy" is painfully avoided, even where it makes perfect sense and would enhance the storytelling.

    I can understand that the History Channel might like kids to watch the show with their parents or maybe even their teachers - to learn about Viking culture and the history of how the Norse and the English became friends - but this is clearly at odds with the idea of which is more harmful to impressionable minds: a nude, sexy Viking woman, proving they did have breasts and/or buttocks, even back then, or an eviscerated Viking, bleeding as his life ebbs from him, and his wife and children stand by, weeping. To me, and anyone not stuck in Victorian England, the latter is clearly more traumatic, and no one was ever emotionally scarred by a shapely pair of buttocks.moreless
  • Vikings

    I am a Norwegian with real vikings as ancestors, and I feel that the show is disrespectful towards the memory of the vikings. I think that the people that have made the series are portraying their own ancestors, which are the British, as much better, more stylish and sofisticated. And they are also portraying the vikings as animals. I mean, where in history is it documented that vikings picked up and kissed street rats that walked around in France, like Ragnar did in season 3? I really doubt there is any evidence of that.

    They also show them eating like pigs. I think they're doing this, because they want to make the vikings seem like they are really inferior to their own ancestors, which they want to make seem much better and innocent. But it is not like they were innocent nice people either. The British people have a long history of being brutal, so it is not like they should get any sympathy for being attacked. Because there's no reason to feel sorry for them, the way they acted. Still the series has an angle that makes it look like the British are sooo innocent, and are made to be the people your supposed to sympathize with. The series also looks like a little badly made "history reenactment" program. It is also a busted myth that the vikings were very dirty, actually they cleaned themselves often.

    When attacking in France in season 3 it is also a killing of a viking that is made to be funny, so it is obvious that what the producers want to do is to ridicule people that are dead, that can't talk for themselves. I haven't watched all the episodes, but I watched the whole first season and some other episodes, and I feel that is enough. It's cool that they wanted to make a series about the vikings, but not with that angle, which actually is quite provocative.moreless
  • Vikings ROCKS and sets the bar for others.

    I've fallen into interest for shows through streaming that I would otherwise have never had the pleasure to see. Vikings is one of them but is flat out the best thing I've seen since Breaking Bad though I wouldn't compare the two other than in excellence. Basing a show loosely on historical events is awesome, as a history buff it think it introduces a whole new type of show. Dramatic, thrilling, informative (yes, admittedly with a * on historical accuracy given the nature of the accuracy for the period and Hollywood freedoms taken). There are other interesting periods in history, characters, and events that could be the basis of like shows. But for now I'm just reveling in the excitement of Vikings and watching Ragnar and Lagertha team up and create a show were few episodes are wasted and seasons should be longer. I hope this show lives long and the ability to keep the creativity remains at the level set to date. I had to re-evaluate my whole 1-10 scale based on this much like Breaking Bad caused me to do (that as it was a great show that ended with everything wrapped up with satisfying closure... done was done). Vikings can go many ways but to date the show has me hooked and after having the pleasure of streaming seasons 1-3 it's killing me waiting for season 4 and the spoonful at a time cadence regular programming enforces. Ragnar kicking butt with his ex on his side has proven to provide regular doses of excitement I hope will continue for years to come. As I said, if it runs out of story (how history runs out of story is hard to imagine) I love the notion of the history channel taking it sideways and doing the same in different regions and cast of characters in which the world was formed and cultures and countries formed, molded and shaped.moreless

    one of the best show OUT!!!! Its a must watch! #RAGNER
  • One of the best shows!!!

    This show has everything in it drama, action, comedy, betrayal and many exciting other features. I just love this tv series!!!

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