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  • pianys4 March 2013
    I've been looking forward to a viking film or TV series for many years, and when my wishes were finally granted, I was very worried that this production was going to be total crap. After viewing the first two episodes I do not worry about that anymore. Thank you, Odin:-)

    As a person of some historical knowledge of the viking era, I can point out numerous flaws - but they don't ruin the story for me, so I will let them slip. Historical accounts about those days are, after all, not entirely reliable.

    Happy to see Travis Fimmel in a role that totally suits him. A physical and intense character, with that spice of humor that is the viking trademark from the sagas. Gabriel Byrne plays a stern leader, that made me think of him in "Prince of Jutland", and Clive Standen seems like he's going to surprise us.

    Been pondering the Game of Thrones comparison, since I love that show too, but in my opinion Vikings has its own thing going on. Way fewer lead characters to begin with, and also a more straight forward approach. Plenty of room for more series with this high class!

    Can I wish for more than the planned nine episodes, PLEASE!!!
  • Be thankful for what we got.. seasons 1 through 3. Fascinating program. The story of Ragnar, the acting of Travis Fimmel and the extraordinary detail made the first three seasons compelling. Tostig. My god, the guy had what less than twenty lines and stole the show. And then the bottom fell out of the show. Supporting characters were tasked with carrying the show and they weren't up to it. What was an epic story morphed into an epic cluster____ of pointless events, battles and internal squabbling to the point where I don't care who wins or loses anymore. And I"m sick of Lagertha and Boneless. Oddly enough, a secondary character, King Harald, had potential. Too bad he's sidelined as semi-comedic material. Excellent actor.

    But give the show credit -- remember how great the first three seasons were.
  • I've been waiting for someone to make a good series about the vikings. I'm from Norway myself, and I'm naturally interested in our history. I've only seen two episodes so far, but I have to say - it really looks promising. The surroundings and nature in the two first episodes is exactly how it looks in "Vestlandet", the western parts of Norway. Stunnings fjords with waterfalls cascading down the sides. It really looks authentic.

    The acting is mostly top notch, a few short scenes aren't that great but it's hardly mentionable. It seems like in the beginning, people are speaking an incomprehensible Norse/English mix, and then they continue speaking a modern English. It's pretty clever actually. Fun fact: When the Vikings invaded the British isles they could understand each other's languages.

    The story itself is really exciting, and I just want to watch more.. I can hardly wait for the next episode to be released.

    I don't know so much about the Ragnar Lodbrok character, but Rollo (Gangarolf) is a very famous character in the Norse sagas.

    I highly recommend this show, and I really hope they continue making this for several seasons.
  • cathkvam9 January 2019
    S1-3= 10 stars....and then the show died. S4 and 5 is a complete mess with no substance...sooo disapointed.
  • Very good show and then suddenly it was sliding down the hill. And now it is just a soap where you will have a lot of deja vu feelings and weird choices. "No I will not do that!" "Ok relax, I think this and this ok?" "Yes! I am convinced!" or "yes I am in love now!". Also there is not much character development. Most main characters are hollow persons who can drop dead or just vanish without having bad feelings. Also the strong characters from the first seasons are degraded. But yet somehow I want to know what will happen, but every episode I am getting less interested. I think it is a good moment to stop this series.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    So this show was fantastic out of the gates! Lagertha, Ragnar, the Seer, Athelstan, Floki so many dynamic characters come in and out and have a great role in the show. However now it has all just gone to pot and jumped the shark. I truly loved the show in the first 3 seasons. This last season honestly I wish I'd never even bothered. Just wish I'd ended when Ragnar left.

    #Spoilers below ...for those who have not seen season 5.5 stop now.

    **************

    So now. The show has just lost all sense of its origins and purpose. I was really hoping to see Bjorn become a mighty warrior like his father and take up the mantel of Ragnar even if displaced by Ivar. Now he's just a pouty baby and screwing anyone in sight and dropped the mighty warrioress Torvi?! Wtf?! . And they shaved his freaking head and Alfred's hair cut WTAF?? They both look completely STUPID now. It's hard to take it seriously now at all. If anyone cut their hair it should have been UBBE! To shed his viking hair since it has religious and cultural significance but he is supposed to be Christian now so it would make sense for him. So why would mighty warrior Bjorn shave his instead?!

    There are NO interesting or dynamic characters or situations whatsoever this season. They are all washed up and annoying. Ivar is just a crybaby lunatic. He has no reason for his "madness" and just looks like he is having a temper tantrum. And makes no sense why anyone would follow him and not just kill him in his sleep abd be done with his stupidity. Let's not even talk about the miserable failure of Floki and his flock. Good gracious is that a bore!

    Just put this show out of its misery or bring in tge writers and directors of season 1-3 or fire them if it's the same folks because they surely have lost their way!

    Last but not least why do these shows murder history for the sake of TV?! It's ok to take some license but geez to straight up stab holes in it all for literally NO reason is absurd. Keep stuff historically accurate whenever possible. If you adlib that is fine or use it as a jumping point. Or make up a new character to fit in the timeline. Don't wake up long dead ghosts to play a role in a timeline they don't exist in. It makes no sense at all.
  • I've watched the two first episodes of the series and I can say that I'm POSITIVELY surprised.

    I didn't know if this would be any good but I'm most certainly intrigued. It's well written, exciting and charming. The show is very enjoyable, especially if you're interested in Scandinavian/European history.

    I love Norse Mythology and I am very happy that this show aired, I just hope it continues going in a good direction. :)

    All in all I can't wait for the remaining episodes and if you're considering picking this show up I'd definitely recommend it.
  • I really enjoyed this first episode. Writing is strong. Acting is good and more importantly I am really fascinated by the characters. The most impressive thing however was the look of the show. Photography, art direction and just whole look is so lush and rich looks like a feature film. Cant wait for episode 2! Both Travis and Gabriel Byne both shine in their roles. I do hope a season 2 is in the works. I have read a lot about vikings and I can see the makes really went to great lengths to bring the true viking ways to the screen. Especially the religion and gods. I am a fan GOT and this show is great that it delves into the ancient world, but this show has a different flavor. More raw and intense, but still with a nice magical feel to it.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    First of all let me say the first 3 seasons were good, in fact the first two were just great. There is Viking tradition, there are interesting social and cultural differences between Northmen and others, there is vibrant Viking society and mainly, there is Ragnar; cunning Ragnar, who would "give far more than his eye to acquire knowledge". He is a man of progress, whose logic and wit wins against rigidity and stupidity. He is the man, who comes up with new ideas and surprises everyone who wants to defeat him. Finally, he is the only one capable of carrying this show and pushing it forward.

    The third season is also pretty good, although it had slowed down a little bit, dragging the story slowly around, but who cares when Ragnar is going to raid the Paris whatever the cost!

    As much I like the first three seasons, there is one thing that kept bothering me throughout second and the third one especially. Every time Ragnar kills some of his enemies (earl Haraldson, king Horik), he creates some kind of vacuum in the society he is not able to fill. Yes, he becomes earl and than king nominally, but he doesn't quite behave like one! I mean as Haraldson had been an earl, he had counselor Svein for the dirty stuff and his guard, he was a judge (in fact), blessed children etc. and all in all there was a lot of things happening around him in Kattegat. Not so with Ragnar; he is just kind of there, not ruling whatsoever, and sometimes it just feels like anarchy there, which I find not entirely plausible. Additionaly, as I have mentioned, there is a feeling of emptiness because of this, emptiness, which I am not quite able to describe. Maybe it is happening, because the second and third series already follows more story lines and can't concentrate on Vikings more, which is in my eyes a threat for this show.

    Season 4 takes the good things from its predecessors - throws them away - and builds on flawed stuff of the first three seasons - which is emptiness, story distraction and fade-away from Ragnar. Starting with the most serious issue - Ragnar, it was perhaps the worst decision in the whole show to screw him up. For the entire season 4a, he feels old and tired, doesn't have any desire to explore and raid, doesn't care for his people and children much, and as if it wasn't already too bad, we have to watch him as he becomes a drug addict. This alone is just enough for me. The writers basically take the character majority of viewers cares about most and flush him into toilet. I know he must die eventually, but instead of seeing him suffering for about 9 hours (!!), it would be better to kill him off at his zenith.

    Another issue, that hardly appeared in the first three series - there are many meaningless scenes which just kind of fill the time. Consider the whole Wessex feminist thing with Judith - so much time is wasted on her becoming tough and independent, but I don't see a reason why - this is something suitable for 20th century, not 9th. On the other hand there is not much explanation on key events such as why Rollo gave up on his manhood and turned into french nobleman and loving husband so easily.

    The emptiness and anarchy I was talking about is really apparent in season 4. It is no more the king Ragnar and his people or the vibrant society from early seasons, it is a mixture of random characters with no depth being around. Typical ruling day of king Ragnar consists of throwing knives, ignoring everyone, doing crazy stuff and taking drugs in the shack, stalking on the rooftop and making a foreplay with that Chinese girl. Björn tries to look as serious as possible, which makes his character so flat it makes me wonder about Ragnar's successor's ability to lead the show (I doubt any of the sons is capable of that). Than the whole thing with Erlendur's revenge is wasted, as everybody knows from the start Björn will not die and Erlendur has even got no plan; when Kalf was still alive, there was a chance to take advantage of it, but now he wants to kill Björn and then will see what's next, probably.

    I totally agree with others that it has become a soap opera. Consider king Finehair's arrival. It peaks at the end of an episode, when he basically says in front of everybody he wants to overthrow Ragnar, but that situation is not expanded in the next episode, which is typical for soap operas. Speaking of new characters, they are very uninteresting, and especially Yidu is a complete waste of time, and besides I find presence of a Chinese in the fjord disturbing, she just shouldn't be there; her only purpose is to be a drug dealer anyway. Then there is lot of uninteresting talking about family, children (everybody is with a child now, hearing this gives me an allergic reaction) and how it is being a father, which is just boring. And I can't help myself, but the families look like projections of 21th western family values - different from earlier seasons where we could see more freedom in sexual life and less sensitivity about children and death. Overall the episodes are too talkative and while basically nothing happens in most episodes, everything must have happened in the last one and it created a big mess, but I will not comment on that.

    For me, Vikings end with the season 3 and the 4a just does not exist. I am actually reviewing the first season recently and friend I enjoy it as never, because I have found the old Ragnar again and the true nature of Vikings with him.
  • matsulaurila7 December 2018
    Warning: Spoilers
    The moment that Ragnar dies, the whole show dies. Simple. After that just miserable screenwriting and poor acting from everyone trying to mimic Ragnar.
  • There have been one or two negative reviews posted about this show and I have to say that after 2 episodes, I really like it... nit pickers may say that there are historical inaccuracies, but there are also many myths dispelled ... and with the appearance of Valkyrie on the battlefield at the very beginning of ep1 to take fallen warriors souls, unless you are deluded and believe in that being factual it was clear from the very outset that there was always going to be some dramatic license used. Others say the show is too Hollywood, this has to be the case to some extent but by no means is this another mass produced piece of garbage, unless you want the show cancelled after the pilot it must appeal to a mass American audience as entertainment it isn't a documentary. I personally feel that the show DOES have a European feel which is absent in many historical dramas, the locations are beautiful, the cast has been well selected and act their parts fantastically well. The good guys are instantly likable where as the bad guys you just can't wait to see them get whats coming to them, that is always a good sign as far as I am concerned as i want to see what happens to them and am looking forward to the next episode. So don't be put off by the pedantic armchair historians out there give vikings a chance.. it is what it is.
  • pkelly1200210 March 2013
    There are some Hollywood liberties taken during the show this is to be expected it is a show. If you made a show about everyday life during the vikings time most would be dull and not exciting it is not like they went to battle everyday. The show has a lot of historical basis with some liberties taken to liven the show up. It is well produced and has great cinematography . If , you are however looking for a straight fact based view on vikings go to the library and pull anthropology research journals out. For everyone else if you like battles with historical styles, understandings of how they navigated and views on the social structure of the vikings then you will get a understanding. You will also see how laws and ethics were for the vikings so yes there is some historical accuracy to the show . All in all if you want entertainment mixed with history it is a great show.
  • The first 3 seasons are excellent. I used to recommend this series to all my friends. Few episodes, good story, unique characters. Then the fame came and brought greed. History Channel decided to double the earnings by doubling the number of episodes in season 4. Without enough content to fill the episodes, the show became slow and boring. I decided to stop watching it by the end of season 4 because I realized it was declining. I don't want to screw up my good memories.
  • Maybe it isn't real 100 percent history. Some liberties were taken, but for the most part is seems to ring true.At times it almost seems like a contemporary crime drama, but the facts are there-the raids on British monastaries that did occur in the late 8th century, a fairly realistic depiction on what Norse life was probably like at this timeline, the spectacular countryside with its majestic forests and rivers, and the depictions of the Vikings themselves. Savage, eager to loot and plunder, but nevertheless bound by a sort of code of honor. Their acts are savage and the chieftan seems more like a medieval Godfather who uses his power for his own personal gain and who is not above killing somebody on the spot if he is displeased with his actions. The storyline is fairly literate and not the usual mindless adventure that too many of these movies present to us, and the characters are convincingly drawn and likely motivated. The music is good and the full size replicas of the ships are very accurate. Even the deliberate pace works to its advantage, we are never rushed and the story develops as it moves along. It is never dull and there is plenty of interest to engage the viewer. However, if you are put off by graphic violence , don't watch it. Those times were fairly brutal. Fine entertainment . Enjoy it.
  • The series starts well and gripping until 3rd series after which it gets chewy like bubble gum. Producers get greedy and trashing out episodes. While that part of world is easy on relationships, here it gets crazy by greedy producers. Thousands of people die but not many of the protogonists. Rajnikanth movies in comparison look very realistic and authentic. After watching few episodes in series 4, regret of manhours wasted watching this unending saga. Avoid like plague!
  • As usual on IMDb fictional dramas set in a particular period in history attract the bores that insist on bleating 'its not historically accurate'. Well just ignore them as this is a fantastic and exciting look at the relatively unexplored Viking world. In the same vein as other fictional historical dramas such as Spartacus or Rome the plot centres around a single character and their family. We then take a brief look into their world and are shown how dangerous a place the world was at this time. The show has a quality feel to it not like some of the more poorly made historical drama around today (sorry but Camelot was just awful!). The sets are impressive and believable and the direction and framing of each scene is obviously set by a skilled hand. The characters are all interesting and likable and the acting is top notch. The only negative I could draw on was that there could have been a bit more action in the first episode but what action there was was very well done. My advice to you, just watch and enjoy it for what it is and don't be out off by the history buffs. If we insisted on only ever watching historical drama that was 100% accurate I'm pretty sure we would be watching none at all. Great show, a solid nine out of ten.
  • Please no more supermodels in a historic show, bring in some real acting, there are some good actors around, such as ragnar, floki or king ecbert, the kids are also great, but it´s not enough to sustain 5 seasons.
  • miles_awayro-263-44115316 January 2019
    Warning: Spoilers
    Since Ragnar is gone the whole set is slow and boring .
  • It is my first review on IMDB, with such disappointment i felt like i had to do it and as a big fan, it is really hard for me to rate this gem so poorly but here is my reasons:

    First seasons was so great, i was telling everyone that this show is way better than Game of Thrones and was so hyped about it,and i guess this is the reason for the big failure followed by next seasons. Not sure whether the producers decided to make it as provocative and shocking as GoT or they were out of ideas and decided just to add random boring side stories and dialogues. I wont mention specific scenes to avoid spoilers, but the last season is such a waste of time, there is like 10 percent progress and the rest is boring, emotionless, banal dialogues with characters who you got no emotional bond with and even question their existence in this series (not minding the horrible acting from some of these).

    * I would like to mention, that those who just started watching or about to start, please mind that the first 3 seasons are excellent and worth watching.

    **Sorry for my poor English as it is not my main language.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    This review is more an objection of the departure from true history than a marked comment on the show itself.... I love the characterisation, sets and plot...

    But the show has now lost me as it's story arc has gone from Ragnar's adventures (historical legend, no factual base so OK to dramatise) into tampering with the actual, true historical timeline. King Ecbert was long dead when the great heathen army landed (so was Aethelwulf!!). Anyone remember Aethelred the Unready??

    To be honest to the real history the show should begin with a warning "Beware real history has been warped to suit our script"

    See https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Æthelwulf, https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alfred_the_Great etc

    Likewise the show seems to neglect all the other brothers of Alfred- who were all kings in their own right...

    The saddest thing of all is that this TV series will now become the "true" history and the thousands of people who get their world view through TV shows will now believe this timeline... shame on you script writers, shame!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Thank you travis Fimmel for an amazing seires amazing story and great acting. The plot is dark and engaging season 1-4.5 Till the episode 'All his angels'. Then they lost the plot and it just seems like the are dragging the show for no reason anybody becomes anybodys lover son is not son and uncle becomes the father daily and goes all gives you totally daily show vibes. Loki still tries to hold down the show but with the sense of adventure and storyline its just losing its touch. I will suggest season 1-3 a must watch Season 4 Not bad Season 5 Ignore
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Vikings is fresh, smart, as historically accurate as it can be considering the people they're talking about had runes as an alphabet, but the charisma of the story was the rise of Ragnar and his precise & quiet war strategy and tactics. Once that was gone and a bunch of Disney kids took over, it fell flat and stale. Unfortunate really because seasons 1-3 are possibly the beat thing on TV since The Sopranos. Killing Athelstan was also a bad choice because his dynamic with Ragnar was the real love story of the show. Still, a big fan, but now I watch it more out of obligation then pleasure, which is a sign that maybe I should stop? Tell me Seer! Should I give up on Vikings?
  • It was good but now it isn't! I could say a lot but i'll sum up to this: No interested characters left on the show. Also it seems like all the Vikings have become more stupid! They lack common sense! I mean, come on.... Ragnar was a pioneer, didn't they learn something?
  • Warning: Spoilers
    As other users noted, it is becoming a soap opera. The whole thing with Rollo also doesn't make sense: why kill your own followers if the Emperor wants you to prevent other vikings from sacking Paris? How does that fit with the history of settling Normandy with a viking band whose leader is named Rollo? By the way, what happened to England (besides the rubbish going on in Wessex)? Ragnar Lothbrok is getting spread a little thin here. Worse than that, the constant infighting, betrayal and Ragnar's weird mind trips is really bogging this show down. If they don't get back to pillaging and exploring soon, I may not stick around. The show started off strong, but I get the feeling that nobody expected it to make it to the 4th season. The first 2 seasons were strong, and I recommend them. However, the project is now so diluted by the four different story lines that it is now lost its way.
  • I am delighted to see all the reviewers energetically debating the merits of "The Vikings" first episode----it demonstrates that they acknowledge the historical value of the period the show is portraying. Yes, there were historical inaccuracies in the plot. This will enlighten the scriptwriters to the fact that viewers ARE paying attention! That being said, I thoroughly enjoyed the first episode---all that lush eye candy for a novice historical student of the Viking culture! This episode has chosen to jump in at some point in time, and chose the year of 793----without all the back story of a long and comparatively stable history of trade with the "southern lands". The Scandinavian countries were undefined and fluid at that time, and were generally lumped into the "heathen" northmen.

    In order to impress the pope and to be acknowledged as the holy Roman Emperor of Europe, around the year 772 Charlemagne took a great interest in converting the heathens to Christianity. In his campaign to forcibly convert the northmen, he first baptized, then brutally murdered the recalcitrant civilian pagans----many, many thousands at a time. The northmen who managed to escape to their more northern cousins told of the brutality (and extraordinarily rich) Christians. The attack on Lindesfarne was undoubtedly vicious, but did not occur without previous provocation.

    We all watch the show for different reasons, but if the producers can keep a reasonable level of historical accuracy, and weave in the interest and action needed to balance the whole show out----I can see a long run for "The Vikings". I am watching.
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