Vikings: Valhalla is quick to wrap itself in the embroiling storyline of Norsemen’s conquest in England, yet still remembers past Viking warriors such as Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel) and his brother Rollo Sigurdsson (Clive Standen), as it should. Though surprisingly, the series also reminds viewers Rollo is more than just a footnote in history but rather a pivotal bloodline to conquer England. However, the same cannot be told for Ragnar and his sons.
The original Vikings series had many historical discrepancies, largely due to the uncertainty if Ragnar and his raids were mythical tales or real history not recorded in writing. Nonetheless, the series stayed true to Rollo’s real legacy as the first King of Normandy. Although the original show cut short Rollo’s journey, it assured fans of his greatness early on.
The Seer from Vikings foreshadowed Rollo’s rise to power
Initially, it was the seer’s prophecy foretelling Rollo’s fruitful legacy but in fact, Floki (Gustaf Caspar Orm Skarsgård) even echoed the seer’s sentiment in Vikings season 4’s Mediterranean raid arc, foretelling Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig) his uncle would become more famous than any of the Ragnar sons. Unfortunately, Vikings: Valhalla reminds fans of Rollo’s legacy through Laura Berlin’s Emma of Normandy.
The great-granddaughter of Rollo was the Queen of England during her marriage to Aethelred and remains in power even after his death, due to her new union with King Canute (Bradley Freegard). Right from Vikings: Valhalla episode 2, the series points out Emma’s Vikings lineage, suggesting a descendant of Rollo would be better equipped to face King Canute.
While Rollo was banished by Norse people for his betrayal during the Paris siege – his great-granddaughter is accepted in open arms. Even convincing Canute’s father, Sweyn Forkbeard (Søren Pilmark) that, “The blood of your people runs in my veins.”
With Rollo’s legacy on the forefront of Vikings: Valhalla arc, Ragnar Lothbrok, Bjorn Ironside, Ivar the boneless (Alex Høgh Andersen) and rest are left in the bleak shadows of history. Interestingly, the show might be more historically accurate than its predecessor. If so, then perhaps it could conclude with William of Normandy taking over England.
Historically, William, the conqueror laid claim to England in part through his connection to Emma. Although Vikings: Valhalla is expected to conclude with the downfall of the pagan warriors, it would be a satisfying end to see a descendant of Rollo sit on the throne, staying faithful to history.
Ragnar’s legacy may pale against Rollo though arguably the two aspired for different dreams, as shown in Lothbrok’s final words to the Seer. But brother-to-brother, the king of Normandy and his sons’ legacy sail high while Ragnar and sons have one thing in common, they’re sadly all dead.
Vikings: Valhalla is currently streaming on Netflix.
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