I have to tell you, every episode of Vikings seems to change the game to a point that watching it, you just sit there and think…. What can happen now?
This weeks episode of Vikings is no exception. It’s stunning. With amazing performances from Clive Standen and Travis Fimmel in particular. Both actors were so good this episode.
Anushika did a great recap, check it out below!
Vikings: S3E9 “Breaking Point”
The episode opens with Ragnar looking not too peachy. His kidneys really took a blow when he fell off that wall. The entire camp seems to be in such a slump. Ragnar approaches Floki, who looks completely broken down. He is a lost sheep stripped down mentally and physically. Floki’s apology holds no ground with Ragnar. He walks away claiming, “The others will try again tonight”, as he continues to maintain his distance from the rest.
Middle of the night Lagertha leads her shield maidens through the water towards the gates. The towers are heavily guarded. They climb on to the towers and hide among the shadows taking each soldier down one by one swiftly. These ladies are such bad asses. Definitely Viking Ninjas.
Panic stricken Princess Gisla hands out knives to all the women, “Make sure they do not capture you alive” Wow, she might be on the wrong side. Princess Gisla could totally be on Lagertha’s army as she possesses all the characteristics of a true warrior that her father desperately lacks.
Lagertha sets fire to the gates signaling all the Viking warriors assembled just outside the gates. She opens the great door and let everyone into the tunnel towards the city. They all bum rush towards the soldiers stationed at the opposite end.
Oh the French! They do know how to put on a show. As the warriors approach the entrance, they release a massive spiked spool. Rollo takes charge and controls the situation. How HOT is Rollo? I mean this man is the ultimate beast! You just keep falling in love with him every episode. He single handedly put a stop to this giant spool. No barrier can stop Rollo from advancing on towards the gates and he more than proves his sheer strength and bravery in this episode. With the Spiked spool under control, the warriors charge onwards. Even Princess Gisla is taken by his ruthlessness. Rollo has no bounds as Berserker blood courses through his veins.
Ragnar is still taking the back seat and watches the madness from a great distance. He is fighting his own battle between life and death. It’s truly nerve wrecking to see him being so helpless.
Count Odo urges the Emperor to join the army to give strength and faith to the soldiers. To his disappointment, the Emperor refuses his plea. Not so shocking since he hid himself behind walls throughout the first battle. The count mentions his grandfather and the Emperor snaps, “I am not Charlemagne”. Yeah you aren’t!
The French army outnumbers the Viking army yet again. Once realized, Rollo urges his men to fall back. As the Vikings retreats, Rollo charges towards the gates and jumps inside the walls just as it was closing up. Oh Rollo! You deserve your own Kingdom. Earl Siegfried and Sinric, the Wanderer gets captured by the French army. Sinric’s knowledge of the Frank’s language pretty much saves their lives, at least for the time being.
Meanwhile, feeble Ragnar sees Athelstan appear out of thin air. Athelstan extends his arm towards Ragnar, but his image pulses between Christ and the Wanderer bearing Ravens we witness during season one. Athelstan feels so close but yet so far away. The next instance, Ragnar finds himself in a pool of blood. He collapses into his fetal position. As Athelstan’s image drifts away into the fog, Ragnar pleads, “Don’t abandon me”. It seems like he is going through the peak of his spiritual crisis. The pulsating vision of the Christ, the wanderer and Athelstan comes to a dead halt as the Ravens transform themselves into a two legged creature. Not quite sure if we are going through a magic mushroom trip or it’s just due to the great loss of blood, but we feast our eyes on Ragnar looking down on Ragnar curled up in a pool of blood. Yup, we are seeing doubles people. Nevertheless, you can’t deny all the signs. It’s not simply a coincidence.
Back inside the Frankian walls, Earl Siegfried and the Wanderer, Sinric is brought upon the Emperor. Sinric claims, “I belong to no country. I belong to no people. I just belong to the wide wide world”. Count Odo inquires about Rollo. I guess Rollo not only caught Princess Gisla’s attention, but also the Count’s during the night raid. Sinric offers them insight and reveals Rollo’s identity; “He fights like a crazy bear”. They find him useful and the perfect means of communicating with the Northman. Even though Count Odo wanted to use the Earl as a bargaining chip, Princess Gisla showed no mercy; “If you care for me at all Count Odo, you will bring me his head”. Dam woman! Earl Siegfried gets beheaded, but he does not go down quite easily. He takes matters into someone else’s hands. Yup!
Meanwhile in Wessex King Ecbert takes yet another step towards Princess Judith. He announces Aethelwulf’s safe return from Mercia. Both are definitely over “excited” about the news. He makes it clear how far he would go to protect Alfred. Moreover, he requests a “reward” from Judith for his unconditional protection. Wow, very subtle King Ecbert! The master of manipulation is no match for Judith. She knows his true intentions and his hidden agenda. King Ecbert, “I want you to be my mistress.” He is one twisted King. For the sake of Alfred’s safety, Judith obliges to his proposal.
Back in Kattegat, Queen Aslaug deals with her own priest problems. Let’s just say that things did not go too well for the priest. Unlike Ragnar, Aslaug was not looking to make best friends with a Christian.
In the midst of the chaos, France is overcome by an illness that plagues the entire city. Emperor Charles breaks down under pressure. He clearly cannot handle the ever growing burden. Count Odo advices him to come to terms with the Northman as they are running out of fresh supplies and soldiers.
King Ecbert and Judith celebrate Aethelwulf’s return. It’s quite an awkward gathering. Poor Aethelwulf has no idea what’s happening right before his eyes. However, he confronts King Ecbert about using him as a pawn to conquer Mercia. Once the King assures him of no such intent, Aethelwulf cheers his father; “Most loving loyal true farther in the whole world.” Judith’s “Are you kidding me” face is priceless. She barely manages to keep a straight face during the whole ordeal.
Meanwhile on the other side of the sea, French solders approach the Vikings with Sinric. He brings news from Count Odo. Bjorn speaks in behalf of Ragnar. He really steps up to the plate. Rollo frees Sinric from his bounds and after witnessing what he is capable of, no one dared to lift a finger against him. As soon as the soldiers leave, the Viking leaders start arguing among themselves while Ragnar fails to get a word in edgewise.
They all failed to come to an agreement. Ragnar Snaps, “I did not become Earl because I aspired to be one. It came about because of other peoples’ actions. And I did not become King out of ambition. Once again, I had no choice as a result of other peoples’ actions”. He puts his foot down and shuts everyone down. “King Ragnar, that is my name” Dam straight! After seeing him feebly struggling by himself, it was a breath of fresh air to see him take his rightful place in command and put everyone else in their places. Reality-check indeed! He has a strong presence even though he looks like a dead man walking.
Ragnar leaves everyone behind to discuss terms with the Franks. He calls out the Franks bluffs once they threaten with reinforcements. He was not interested in any of the riches the Franks were willing to offer him. His request was simple, but held such value beyond any treasure. Ragnar’s request shocked them all; “I want to be baptized” Ragnar hasn’t given up on Athelstan. He is willing to go as far as renouncing his own Gods in order to reunite with the tiny Viking. A dying man’s wish. Ragnar has no intention to waste any time. The episode concluded with the rest of the Viking leaders arriving on site as Ragnar gets baptized in front of them all. Oh snap!
I know they have all tolerated Ragnar’s decisions and actions when it came to Christians, but this might be their breaking point. Will they follow a Christian King? I guess we’ll have to wait another week to find out. This episode was more like “Born Again: Part-2” Did Ragnar go too far? For someone who always fought for the good of the people, was this a selfish act? Which side are you on?
Until next time, Happy Raiding!
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From left to right- Floki (Gustaf Skarsgård) Queen Aslaug (Alyssa Sutherland), Siggy (Jessalyn Gilsig), King Ecbert (Linus Roache), Rollo (Clive Standen), Athelstan (George Blagden), King Ragnar (Travis Fimmel)