The Paris story has been my favorite, as I've said many times, every since it began last year. Last night pitted Rollo at his civilized/savage best against Ragnar, not as his best, with two brave, powerful forces. Without Rollo, the French would have lost. With Rollo, the French just manage to get a victory, but one which sends the Vikings - or the Vikings not French - back to Scandinavia.
The point is that Rollo is still a Viking deep down, even as he has wholeheartedly accepted that he must be the one to defend the French. That's what love of a woman, more than love of a civilization, did for Rollo. But no Frenchman would have put a sword though his second-in-command, who dared to suggest retreat. That sword was pure Viking. And our knowing that makes Rollo's "God Bless Paris," delivered in Latin, bloodied, and barely able to stand, all the more impressive.
Meanwhile, and years later, the introduction of Ragnar's sons as young adults was great to see. Ragnar's apparent reclamation of his authority, after he returns from years of unexplained absence, was also one of the best scenes in the series.
Questions remain for the second part of the season. What happened to Lagertha, badly wounded as she attempted to come to Ragnar's help, as Rollo was beginning to get the better of him? What's the story in England, with Ecbert moving into an ever more powerful position? There are hints of what's to come, with Bjorn calling upon Floki to help get to the Mediterranean. And, of course, history tells us that the Vikings will reach Iceland, Greenland, and North America, as well.
Lots of great stories ahead. I'm looking forward to this superb series taking its time and years and years to tell them.
See also Vikings 4.1: I'll Still Take Paris ... Vikings 4.2: Sacred Texts ...Vikings 4.4: Speaking the Language ... Vikings 4.5: Knives ... Vikings 4.8: Ships Up Cliff
And see also Vikings 3.1. Fighting and Farming ... Vikings 3.2: Leonard Nimoy ...Vikings 3.3: We'll Always Have Paris ... Vikings 3.4: They Call Me the Wanderer ... Vikings 3.5: Massacre ... Vikings 3.6: Athelstan and Floki ...Vikings 3.7: At the Gates ... Vikings 3.8: Battle for Paris ... Vikings 3.9: The Conquered ... Vikings Season 3 Finale: Normandy
And see also Vikings 2.1-2: Upping the Ante of Conquest ... Vikings 2.4: Wise King ... Vikings 2.5: Caught in the Middle ... Vikings 2.6: The Guardians ...Vikings 2.7: Volatile Mix ... Vikings 2.8: Great Post-Apocalyptic Narrative ... Vikings Season 2 Finale: Satisfying, Surprising, Superb
And see also Vikings ... Vikings 1.2: Lindisfarne ... Vikings 1.3: The Priest ... Vikings 1.4: Twist and Testudo ... Vikings 1.5: Freud and Family ... Vikings 1.7: Religion and Battle ... Vikings 1.8: Sacrifice
... Vikings Season 1 Finale: Below the Ash
historical science fiction - a little further back in time