This week, things continued to move right along as Vikings Season 3 Episode 3 gave us the defeat of Mercia and the mention of Paris. We know Ragnar becomes obsessed with the mythical city; it's all about fame with these guys.
King Ecbert continued to charm Lagertha, while Athelstan got more comfortable with Judith. They all shared a warm bath with a side of sacrifice.
Sadly, Torstein joined the Gods in Valhallaha and Floki was pretty pissed off about it.
Considering Vikings Season 3 Episode 2 was titled "The Wanderer," we certainly learned much more about him this week instead. Did he say he was sleeping rough and cut his hand on a scythe? And the women seriously fell for that one? I wonder if we'll learn how Harbard cut his hand. Did Siggy just have a bad feeling about the guy or did her life experience kick in?
Kevin Durand was brilliant as Harbard, and completely unrecognizable with that beard and accent. Though he temporarily cured little Ivar, something is definitely off. Story time was fun, and it was Helga that figured out he was Thor in the story.
What's it all mean? Is Harbard good or evil? What's he want with the women of Kattegat? What's the deal with the dead boys fished out of the sea?
What was wrong with Aslaug offering the stranger dinner, shelter and letting him know all the men were gone? Woman are you insane? Siggy's face was priceless.
But do not think I offer nothing in return; I tell stories. Stories about my own travels. Stories about the Gods or both. As they say, I sing for my supper.Harbard
Back in Wessex, King Ecbert found himself defending his actions against his noblemen. It was clear during Vikings Season 2 that Ecbert was simply positioning Kwenthrith to take Mercia from her. However, when he referred to her as a puppet I couldn't help but think of Lagertha. He's playing a similar game with the shield maiden/Earl isn't he? Boy is she going to be pissed when he takes back his land and sends the Northmen packing.
It seems both Kings were having issues with their men. Floki was also questioning Ragnar's decisions. Of course, he's been judging Ragnar since Athelstan came along. This week he was pretty clear it's either their Gods or the Christian one. There can be no reconciliation between the two. In a way, Floki was seeing the future clearly when he said, "The triumph of the Chirst God will mean the death and destruction of all of ours." That's ultimately how things went down.
Historically, we know the Viking culture was assimilated into mainstream European and Christian culture. Floki is actually making a ton of sense, but Ragnar's far too focused to pay any attention.
This is not about you Floki. It's about our children and their children. It is about our people's future. And I do not want there to be endless conflict between us and the Christians.Ragnar
I was glad to see that Rollo took Torstein into battle and Ragnar allowed him to go first. We know that according to their beliefs dying in battle was a one way ticket to Valhalla. Though the scene where Torstein braved the enemy arrows was painful to watch, he died bravely. I had a feeling we were going to lose some characters this season. Since Ragnar, Bjorn, Rollo and a few others are "historically" safe, that meant Torstein, Athelstan, Floki, and Siggy are fair game.
The battle at the Hill of the Ash was another brutal affair. I mentioned last week that Porunn was going to get herself killed. I hated seeing her go down. Luckily she survived, but now she's horribly scarred. Will their baby make it? Ragnar was wounded as well.
I'll admit, when I saw all of Prince Burgred troops I was caught off guard. I didn't realize Prince Aethelwulf's men would rain arrows down on them from above. They set the prince up nicely, an he surrendered. I loved when Ragnar slammed his head into Burgred's face. Fimmel's expression was fantastic!
Lagertha learned Old English quickly didn't she? I can't figure out if Ecbert is truly smitten with her or, as I mentioned before, if it's all part of his end game. Either way, he's got her where he wants her. Do you think Lagertha's aware of what is going on? Bath time certainly was interesting, and mostly uncomfortable for Judith. She's got the hots for our ex-Monk. Will they hook up?
Lagertha: Is this really a bath? It is very big.
Ecbert: So, who will join me?
Ecbert: Let us talk about the Romans. Most of what they built here now lies in ruins, but there is another place. A great city which the Romans built, and it still stands to this day. It is a city called Paris, in a land called Frankia. I visited there with the Emperor Charlemagne.
Athelstan: I once visited Paris myself. It is set upon an island in the middle of a great river called the Seine. It has high walls and ramparts all around it for many miles. I remember when I saw it for the first time, it was like a dream. As if it were not real; a vision.
Lagertha: How far is this city?
Did King Ecbert just introduce Paris as a challenge to lead the Northmen out of Wessex? It certainly seems like the main players on Vikings have their own little Game of Thrones going on. I'm very curious to see how things between Ragnar, Ecbert and Lagertha play out. Was anyone else turned off watch our heroic shield maiden kiss the English King?
Athelstan was putting the moves on Judith, wasn't he? I can't imagine him kneeling in front of her in nothing but a towel helped matters much. Is it wrong I want to see those two give in to their desires? I know, I know... but she's married and he's an ex-Monk. Whatever, you only live once and when you find that kind of connection, I say go for it.
When Ecbert arrived with the good news that Mercia was defeated, I wasn't expecting Lagertha to invite him to a sacrifice ritual. Was Judith that obsessed with Athelstan that she recommended they stay? I've always enjoyed the way this show portrays Viking culture and their rituals. While it seems cruel and barbaric to us, those were there beliefs so why not explore them on the show? Lagertha is a vision even drenched in ox blood. Sorry, I just had to throw that out there.
What did you think of "Warrior's Fate"? Will you miss Torstein? Is Floki getting on your nerves? Does Harbard posses special powers? How do you feel about Lagertha and King Ecbert? Your turn friends, please hit the comments and share your thoughts with me.
As always, remember, you can watch Vikings online via TV Fanatic if you ever miss an episode and need to catch up.
NOTE: Vikings Season 3 Episode 4 will be titled "Scarred" and airs on March 12.