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VIKINGS Recap: Two Journeys (Season 4, Episode 13)

VIKINGS Recap: Two Journeys (Season 4, Episode 13)

Hope you haven’t forgotten what happened during last episode, because the gods have granted us with all the spoilers. May your mind be as keen as Lagertha.

The episode headliners for this week’s two journeys were obvious going in: one following Ragnar’s pathetic raiding party of revenge with Ivar in Wessex ,and another following Björn’s quest to the Mediterranean with his merry band of followers, Floki, Helga, Hvitserk, Harold Finehair, Halfdan the Black, and—oh—60 longships filled with willing and able Vikings.

But you didn’t think it would be as simple as that, did you?

Though the second set of journeys have escalated things a bit quickly, another civil war is upon us whether we want it or not. Timing was key for Lagertha and her warriors of Hedeby to dethrone Aslaug—but why go for it at all? This feud between our two polarizing Viking women isn’t exactly the clearest part of the coup. We know that Lagertha thinks Aslaug is unfit to rule, which is partially true, in the past Queen Aslaug has been pretty careless when it comes to keeping track of her citizens. (Sidenote: there’ve been some questions regarding Aslaug’s vision scene from last episode—a hidden miscarriage brought on by her grief is my only explanation for her bleeding. But was she carrying Harbard’s or Ragnar’s child?)

Some tough choices lay ahead for Lagertha’s seemingly simple plan—like two full grown sons of Ragnar and Aslaug. The whole lock-them-up deal was a bit of cannon fodder IMO; you’d think that these two warriors could have come up with a way to break free or fight back. Here’s hoping that they rage at the last moment in the next episode. In all, though, this isn’t shaping up to be as legit a civil war as the ones in past seasons, but hey, at least we got to see Astrid in action! A worthy hand-to-hand tactician indeed.

Also there’s a certain mystical object from Norse mythology in play this week…

The sword that Aslaug adorns herself with is most likely Gram, the reforged  rune-covered golden sword that Odin gave to Sigurd (Aslaug’s father) to slay the dragon Fafnir, amongst other tales of heroism from the Völsunga Saga. (If you’re a fan of the show, reading the Völsunga Saga is the next step if you haven’t already.) Not too shabby, Aslaug. But is wielding Gram enough to save her from certain death? Will the gods favor the skill and bravery of Lagertha or the mythical lineage of Aslaug?

Now back to our raiding pairs and the return of those cheery Wessex folks, King Ecbert, Judith, and Aethelwulf. A touching moment between Papa Ragnar and Ivar helped solidify their relationship—which is pretty important considering that they’re the only Vikings alive in Wessex at the moment. In order to deal with Wessex, though, they need one another physically and mentally. But they’ve got a long way to go until those bonds are forged—they’ve only just now started to bond in a way that was never possible in Kattegat. Points for parenting on the fly! And some points for Ivar’s good humor despite it all. (Still a legit jerk though.)

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And then there’s Rollo. Rollo, you see, has been busy in his coastal home. Blessed with three little kids of royal parentage, Rollo seems to be in the perfect position for a quiet life, filled with longstanding fame and power as a Duke. Despite high tensions—mostly prompted by Gisla’s never-ending reservoir of shade—Rollo’s thirst for adventure won over. Now he leaves behind his pissed-off wife and sulking French children, but that might be because she never really saw Rollo embracing his peak Viking side. (Try staying mad at this epicness!)

Finally, after a much needed history lesson for Björn, the full scope of his journey across the Holy Roman Empire is just now sinking in. Unlike Ragnar’s rash and deceptive attitude with foreign leaders, I think Björn might actually have a better chance at remaining diplomatic in order to get to these distant lands. (I mean, you can’t argue with that Ironside charm.)  But it’s Duke Rollo with his current French allegiance that I’m more wary off in the coming episodes. Björn’s going to need to prepare himself for more negotiations, more compromises, and more Floki sass. (All the Floki sass please!)

Before we go, click on this link to hear a dope remix by RHINO of the Vikings Fever Ray theme song ““If I Had a Heart” because we love it so much. And check back here for the episode 14 recap, “In the Uncertain Hour Before the Morning.” Leave your Vikings comments below.

Images: The History Channel
GIF: VikingsHistory/Tumblr

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