So in a departure from the norm, here’s something from the good folks at HISTORY TV18! I got copies of their new show Vikings from them, and have a review – and, as a HUGE bonus, you guys get to possibly win some awesome HISTORY TV18 goodies as well – all you need to do is read the review and answer the questions below, in the comments. I’ll pick a winner by 15thApril!
Vikings is a near-realistic portrayal of old Norse culture during the Dark Ages. It’s been given a swipe of classic Hollywood polish, but this really makes it a bit more interesting without taking away from the actual meat of the show.
It’s very refreshing to see a historical show that’s been given a bigger budget than some of the traditional dramatic recreations on documentary-style shows. The lead character, Ragnar Lodbrok (played by Travis Fimmel) is the quintessential iconoclast figure, someone who we identify with immediately – season 1 is the story of how he convinces (in typical Norse fashion) his band of warriors to begin raiding west, into England – no small feat, since he had to basically invent the technology to sail out of sight of land and accurately keep to a specific latitude.
There’s a lot of family drama and local politics, but the fact is that anyone watching this show will likely be watching for the battle sequences – and these are impressive for the most part, especially in the portrayal of the weapons and tactics used by the Vikings – but you have to realize that this is probably where that Hollywood masala comes in the most. Real combat in the Dark Ages was a lot more brutal and unforgiving than what’s shown here – and the chances of surviving an encounter as many times as our protagonists do is miniscule.
Still, the show is incredibly entertaining and a lot of the episodes end on very satisfying cliff-hangers, as Ragnar navigates the treacherous waters of the North Sea and the local politics of Kattegat, the village / proto-town near his homestead.
Tl;Dr: Entertaining show, great cast, what it loses in realism it makes up for with budget and scale of production
The Vikings Contest:
Three questions (the answers to which can be obtained with some basic Google-fu)
- What’s the name of Ragnar Lodbrok’s village?
- What’s the name of the actor who plays Ragnar Lodbrok?
- What is the name of the character who builds Ragnar’s new boat that takes him across the North Sea to England?
Type your answers into the comments box below! As I mentioned earlier, I’ll be picking winners on April 15th. Vikings starts 31st March and is on every Mon-Wed, at 9PM on HISTORY TV18.