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Sunday, January 29, 2017

Vikings 4.19: On the Verge of History

Vikings 4.19 pitches us onto the verge of the ultimate battle - at least, ultimate for this season - between the invading, revenge-seeking sons of Ragnar, and King Eckbert's chosen defending leader, his own son  Aethelwulf.  The final scene is fine classic: Aethelwulf and what's left of his army, ravaged by Ivar's clever appear-and-run strategy, finally charging headlong into the Vikings.

Based on what we've seen, there's no way, short of a bolt from the blue that destroys the Vikings, for Aethelwulf to win this.   History, for those who want to consult it, is unclear in how it relates to this battle.  In general, we're told the Vikings were not that much of a threat to Wessex in Aethelwulf time - clearly not exactly the case in this television portrayal, certainly not in a psychological sense. And we're told that Aethelwulf did fight two battles with the Vikings, the first in Carhampton to the east, the second on the Thames, and that he was defeated in the first, won the second, and obviously therefore did not lose his life in either.

Clearly, if his penultimate episode is any indication, there's no way that Aethewulf can win it.  And frankly, it's hard to see at this point how he'll even survive.  The circumstances of his survival in this coming week's episode therefore should be interesting indeed.  Who among the Vikings will save him?  How and why?   My guess is Ivar may surprisingly choose not to kill Aethewulf, who after all was not the one really responsible for Ragnar's death.  But we'll see.

Meanwhile, Lagertha's holding forth back home is fun to see, but adds little to the historical tapestry in England which is the centerpiece of this story.  For that reason, I regret Lagertha not being part of this expedition.  But we'll see how at least some of this turns out this coming week.

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 ... Vikings 4.10: "God Bless Paris" ... Vikings 4.11: Ragnar's Sons ... Vikings 4.12: Two Expeditions ... Vikings 4.13: Family ... Vikings 4.14: Penultimate Ragnar? ... Vikings 4.15: Close of an Era ... Vikings 1.16: Musselman ... Vikings 1.17: Ivar's Wheels ... Vikings 1.18: The Beginning of Revenge

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

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