Season 3, Episode 5
Air Date: Thursday, March 19, 2015 at 10 pm ET/PT on History®
“You did the business so well.” – King Ecbert
After helping Princess Kwenthrith (Amy Bailey) rise to become Queen of Mercia, and seeing a record number of characters having sex in last week’s episode “Scarred,” the departure to Kattegat marks a return of some harsh realities for the Northmen.
Contrary to previous homecomings, this one isn’t surrounded by joy. In Kattegat, they’re basically welcomed with bad news and anxious women. Many in the village lost loved ones while several men and women are tending to injuries from the battles. Even their fearless leader, Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) isn’t excited to be home. It’s not a good sign when Ragnar’s already dreaming about new adventures before he even sets foot in his own home. With these big plans, will Ragnar be able to charm his way to entice his fellow villagers to take on Paris?
Here are some of my favorite moments:
Moment #5 – Something Smells Fishy
The honeymoon is finally over between Ragnar and Auslug (Alyssa Sutherland). Considering the shaky foundation of how their relationship started, I’m not surprised there is trouble brewing between these two. Upon arriving home, Ragnar doesn’t offer her loving words but a merely inquires about their sons. This is a reflection of the sad state of their relationship and has to be a tough pill for Auslag to swallow. She regularly questions if Ragnar ever truly loved her. To make matters worse, Auslaug must deal not only with Ragnar’s indifference but with his persistent suspicions about the nature of Siggy’s (Jessalyn Gilsig) death. “Why did you leave Siggy to look after my sons?” he insists. Later, he demands an explanation from Auslaug about who Harbard (Kevin Durand) is. What isn’t said between these two is equally as important if words would have been uttered.
Moment #4 – Rollo’s Devastation
Always a glutton for punishment, Rollo (Clive Standen) doesn’t deal well with the loss of Siggy, sending him into a downward spiral. He goes back to his former routine of being drunk and violent as a way to punish himself. He’s clearly lost and it is extremely touching to see Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig) get into a fight with Rollo in order to save his life.
Moment #3 – It’s a Bird,It’s a Plane…
It’s Harbard! Oops, I mean, Odin! Harbard being a deity has been hinted for a while but the significance of the revelation lands on the ever zealous Floki (Gustaf Skarsgård) to be the one who confirms who Harbard is; “He’s a god.” This isn’t a good thing because it will only serve to embolden Floki more to challenge Ragnar about his alliance with the Christians. Floki also says something interesting about Odin/Harbard’s visit: “If it leads to death, it leads to life.” Does this mean Auslaug will be giving birth in nine months? Oh, the suspense!
Moment #2 – The Threesome: Ragnar, Lagertha and Kalf
It appears that in Viking culture, they hold strong to the belief to tell people the truth like it is, except when Ragnar weasels his way out of a conflict with Kalf (Ben Robson), much to Lagertha’s (Katheryn Winnick) disappointment. In spite of my annoyance at Ragnar for leaving Lagertha out in the cold after she’s been there for him in times of trouble, I thoroughly enjoyed how Lagertha deals with an overly confident Kalf. After Kalf reveals he still desires her while also plotting against her, she asks, “What am I supposed to do with that knowledge?” This is a priceless moment. Talk about being full of one self!
Moment #1 –Things Don’t Go Floki’s Way
After putting up with Floki’s bullying for years, I applauded Athelstan (George Blagden) when he finally tells Floki off. “I don’t know why Ragnar listens to me, not when he can listen to you Floki.” Althelstan’s words might not sound like an insult but the attitude in which he said them was fabulous. Bravo for the former monk! I was more thrilled to see Floki becoming envious hearing about the chats Athelstan and Ragnar were having. The icing on the cake when Ragnar doesn’t react to gossip as Floki expects. Floki is smart, in an untraditional way, but he’s missing a filter. How can he expect to keep friendships when he is constantly taking jabs at the Lothbroks and everyone who doesn’t share his vision of the world? Floki is finding himself moving further away from Ragnar’s inner circle. The big question is —will he find a way to get close to Ragnar again or will Floki try to seek revenge instead?
After all is said and done, in “The Usurper,” there are two characters who appear to be having the time of their lives, in spite of the various misfortunes surrounding them. One of them is the Seer (John Kavanagh) who is greatly amused by Rollo’s pity party. The Seer’s hearty laughter at Rollo is truly something else! Then, what is really interesting is the big decision Ragnar makes despite what the Seer says to him. Is Ragnar purposely daring the gods or is he getting too full of himself? The other character having a grand ole time is King Ecbert (Linus Roache). Roache deserves an Emmy® or Golden Globe ® award for his performance after the attack at the Viking settlement. One certainly has to appreciate him as a master puppeteer because with his ruse, he permanently rids himself of those who challenge his rule. Although, he’s not the only schemer in this universe, and as much as he is shrewd, there are many parallels that have been drawn between him and Ragnar. After all, we‘ve come to see that power changes people. We’ll have to wait and see if Ragnar is able to anticipate Ecbert’s next moves.
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© 2015, elleL. All rights reserved.
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