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The Vikings on History channel New Season starts tonight


JMS

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This show is kind of a guilty pleasure of mine.   It seems like it's mostly accurate too;  but the vikings weren't really into high culture or anything.   They were charming when they had to be,  they were brutal and theiving when they could be.  and above all they were opportunists who happened to discover the B2 bomber of their day... The Viking Long ship.

 

The show covers the period of first raid by the Vikings on the British Isles.  Near the the beginning of an era where the combination of the viking raids,  the Islamic Empire, and the bad leadership of the Catholic Church pushed Europe into 700 years of dark ages.

 

It's worth checking out if you haven't seen it...  It's a little bit like a well done "A team",  set around a legendary viking leader Ragnar Lothbrok, who was for a period the scourge of France and the British Isles.

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Vikings are very interesting... I probably won't watch it on tv but I did listen through the Great Courses lectures about Vikings by Kenneth Harl. Highly recommended, check your local library!

Fun trivia... there is currently a denialist movement in Russia about the Rus bring Vikings. They say Rus were Slavs and yay Russia.

(Widely accepted theory is that Rus were Vikings who got that part of the world going by establishing posts for trading with Constantinople, settling as rulers and eventually assimilating into the Slavic society)

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All the Kenneth Harl lectures I've listened to, including the one on the Vikings are indeed quite good, but he goes so quickly from one name/event to the next that if your mind wanders for a moment or two, you're screwed.

Philip Dailaeder is my favorite Great Courses lecturer when it comes to the Middle Ages.

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Vikings are very interesting... I probably won't watch it on tv but I did listen through the Great Courses lectures about Vikings by Kenneth Harl. Highly recommended, check your local library!

Fun trivia... there is currently a denialist movement in Russia about the Rus bring Vikings. They say Rus were Slavs and yay Russia.

(Widely accepted theory is that Rus were Vikings who got that part of the world going by establishing posts for trading with Constantinople, settling as rulers and eventually assimilating into the Slavic society)

 

Russians really believe that? Reminds me of the Indian denialists who believe the nonsense out of india theory. They say that Sankrit evolved independently in India despite mountains of evidence to the contrary.

 

 

I like this show though, I don't have to think too hard about it I can just enjoy it. 

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Russians really believe that? ...

Not all Russians obviously, but there is a movement... There is this comedian guy, one of a handful popular comedians during the late USSR years. He decided to add some meaning to his life by pushing this nonsense.

I didn't know this until i worked with a guy who was into it... That, ancient aliens, secret energies, conspiracies, and every other crazy thing out there. Hoot.

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OK, I have to say I found it amusing that in the battle at the beginning with the 2 brothers on opposite side, that they played shirts and skins so you could tell the two sides apart.

 

They were beserkers, who would fight bare chested or without mail shirts reportedly.  Beserkers were supposedly able to commit acts of fearful strength and ferocity.  Rollo was definitely beserking out in that scene.

 

That was a really well shot scene.  I love the cinematography of the show.

 

Didn't expect Lagertha to up and leave in the first episode though.  Thought that switch was going to take more episodes.

 

Also, I think it's kind of weird that the main deviation from the legends that the show has made is that Bjorn was actually Aslaug's son, not Lagertha's.  Wonder why they made the change?  Aslaug's sons with Ragnar were essential to her identity.  I think Ragnar not having sons with Lagertha would have made it a lot more obvious why they'd divorce, and he'd shack up with Aslaug.

 

It would have also made Lagertha's miscarriage the season before more compelling, and it would have prevented a pretty big plot hole that emerged--Ragnar being devastated by the loss of his future son and heir.  The way the show did it, you were just kind of like, "uh... Ragnar, you've already got a son with Lagertha who is like 14."  Bjorn is Aslaug's son.  Bam, plot hole fixed.

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They were beserkers, who would fight bare chested or without mail shirts reportedly.  Beserkers were supposedly able to commit acts of fearful strength and ferocity.  Rollo was definitely beserking out in that scene.

 

 

True, that's one way it has been reported and If that helps with your willing suspension of disbelief, that's fine.  But there is debate about the term Berserkers:

 

 

The word, however, may also mean "bear-shirt," reflective of the shape and nature of the bear assumed by these warriors. More literally, it may refer to protective bearskins that such warriors may have worn into battle. 

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From Wikipedia, who is "never" wrong..... ;)

 

 

he name berserker derives from the Old Norse berserkr (plural berserkir). This expression most likely arose from their reputed habit of wearing a kind of shirt or coat (serkr) made from the pelt of a bear (ber-) during battle.

The element ber- was sometimes interpreted as berr-, meaning "bare", which Snorri understood to mean that the warriors went into battle bare-chested, or "without armor" as men of Odin.[5] This view has since been largely abandoned.[6]

 

 

Have not seen this show, but will give it a try.

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They were beserkers, who would fight bare chested or without mail shirts reportedly.  Beserkers were supposedly able to commit acts of fearful strength and ferocity.  Rollo was definitely beserking out in that scene.

 

That was a really well shot scene.  I love the cinematography of the show.

 

Didn't expect Lagertha to up and leave in the first episode though.  Thought that switch was going to take more episodes.

 

Also, I think it's kind of weird that the main deviation from the legends that the show has made is that Bjorn was actually Aslaug's son, not Lagertha's.  Wonder why they made the change?  Aslaug's sons with Ragnar were essential to her identity.  I think Ragnar not having sons with Lagertha would have made it a lot more obvious why they'd divorce, and he'd shack up with Aslaug.

 

It would have also made Lagertha's miscarriage the season before more compelling, and it would have prevented a pretty big plot hole that emerged--Ragnar being devastated by the loss of his future son and heir.  The way the show did it, you were just kind of like, "uh... Ragnar, you've already got a son with Lagertha who is like 14."  Bjorn is Aslaug's son.  Bam, plot hole fixed.

 

Maybe Aslaug will name her son Bjorn to take the place of Lagertha's Bjorn, since he chose to go with his mother instead of staying with his father.  Bjorn kind of disinherited himself.  Bam, plot hole fixed!  ;) 

 

I need to check out this legend.  Any good references?

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I need to check out this legend.  Any good references?

me too...I read something about a Ragnar being just under Thor in Norse mythology, but that's all I've come up with so far.

Nice payoff for Rollo's life...and the declaration that "we must follow the law". :P

From the previews of the rest of the season, it's gonna be awesome. Glad we've finally got a thread for it.

 

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me too...I read something about a Ragnar being just under Thor in Norse mythology, but that's all I've come up with so far.

Nice payoff for Rollo's life...and the declaration that "we must follow the law". :P

From the previews of the rest of the season, it's gonna be awesome. Glad we've finally got a thread for it.

Found a couple of sources on Ragnar Lothbrok, but be aware they contain a huge spoilers on how the show is going to end up.

http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/489597/Ragnar-Lothbrok

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ragnar_Lodbrok

http://nancymariebrown.blogspot.com/2013/04/the-real-ragnar-lothbrok.html

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