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"Still enjoying Vikings?" Topic

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1,751 hits since 11 Jan 2019
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
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Personal logo Flashman14 Supporting Member of TMP11 Jan 2019 2:18 p.m. PST

The History Channel series …. I'm at S1:E6 and see the episode count skyrockets after this one. So far so good though.

Benvartok11 Jan 2019 2:20 p.m. PST

No, last season was a struggle and this one I have managed only till Ivar became a god. It has certainly jumped the longship.

Still an enjoyable first few seasons and worth a watch plus Ragnar lives on, in 28mm, in my army thanks to Stronghold miniature.

Winston Smith11 Jan 2019 2:21 p.m. PST

I could never get past the way the lead Viking talked. Ragnar just annoyed the Hel out of me.

tigrifsgt11 Jan 2019 2:24 p.m. PST

Less and less with each episode.

Wargamer Blue11 Jan 2019 2:28 p.m. PST

I'm really enjoying it

Old Peculiar11 Jan 2019 2:37 p.m. PST

The series has been rubbish from start to present, but reasonable couch potato fodder!

Personal logo svsavory Supporting Member of TMP11 Jan 2019 3:41 p.m. PST

My wife and I find it entertaining. I myself am more interested in the goings-on in England, though.

Old Glory Sponsoring Member of TMP11 Jan 2019 4:54 p.m. PST

Accepting the realities of what is is, my wife and I thoroughly enjoy it.

Hlaven Supporting Member of TMP11 Jan 2019 6:02 p.m. PST

Not as good to me now as previous seasons and characters. But I still enjoy it. I never miss a new episode and or record it.

Personal logo Doctor X Supporting Member of TMP11 Jan 2019 10:38 p.m. PST

It has certainly jumped the longship.

Well said

ZULUPAUL Supporting Member of TMP12 Jan 2019 2:50 a.m. PST

Watched one show, didn't care for it.

Vigilant12 Jan 2019 6:18 a.m. PST

The current season (5) looks good but has totally given up on history. I could accept the stories around Ragnar as part of the Norse Saga style, where actual history was second to a good story. But when you start changing recorded history with the goings on at Alfred's court changing who was king, how they died etc it is getting harder to watch. The characters are still fun, but the stories are getting painful to watch.

Personal logo Saber6 Supporting Member of TMP Fezian12 Jan 2019 8:05 a.m. PST

I prefer Norsemen

Perris070712 Jan 2019 9:14 a.m. PST

Still can't stand to look at the Wessex soldiers and their 15th century helmets. Rest of the show is ok. At least the Vikings haven't leaped over the shield wall to attack the Saxons…

kodiakblair12 Jan 2019 9:42 a.m. PST

Stopped watching once they reached France.

Old Glory Sponsoring Member of TMP12 Jan 2019 5:37 p.m. PST

Its dark ages Fantasy -- that's all.

nevinsrip13 Jan 2019 12:15 a.m. PST

Hail Ivar!!!

nevinsrip13 Jan 2019 12:21 a.m. PST

"Still can't stand to look at the Wessex soldiers and their 15th century helmets."

In a country where more than 75% of the people can't name the Vice President, you're worried about 15 th century Wessex helmets?
Take a random sample of 10 people and see how many even know where Wessex is?

Thanks, Perris. I got a real chuckle out of that.

Pan Marek Supporting Member of TMP13 Jan 2019 9:22 a.m. PST

Another thread proving that TMPers should never, ever watch any TV, films or Youtube having anything to do with an historical period.

Why do they do it? They clearly do not enjoy it.

kodiakblair13 Jan 2019 12:39 p.m. PST

Folks do know this show has been cancelled ?

GGouveia13 Jan 2019 2:31 p.m. PST

Not cancelled, really a closing after the next season. Michael Hirst has another Viking series planned that covers I'm guessing the 11th century perhaps.

kodiakblair14 Jan 2019 12:17 p.m. PST


"in early development" doesn't mean anything will get made.

Viewers numbers dropped by nearly 15% from S:5 Ep1 to S:5 Ep17. Figures are worse among the 18-49 demograph, down 28.97%.

Of course Mr Hirst has plans for a spin-off,that's his job,but whether any network finances it is another matter.

French Wargame Holidays14 Jan 2019 2:11 p.m. PST

hopefully the next one he makes will not be bikies in longships

Winston Smith14 Jan 2019 5:08 p.m. PST

I highly suspect that in the Sagas history took a back seat to a good story also. With the usual caveats of who was the writer writing for.

I have no historical bones to pick. I just don't like the actor playing Ragnar. grin
Please do not act as if I'm required to watch a show simply because it's semi historical. I had a good fun time watching "Turn", especially with Snidely Whiplash as Simcoe. I even converted a 28mm mounted officer to resemble him.

dapeters15 Jan 2019 11:02 a.m. PST

I have to say I agree why do almost all of the male characters speak the way they do? Yes it's also a guilty pleasure.

bigdennis Supporting Member of TMP16 Jan 2019 11:57 a.m. PST

I like it very much. Great production values and characters

Lost Wolf18 Jan 2019 4:26 p.m. PST

I enjoy it. Ivar was bad enough until he was bewitched.

David Digger25 Jan 2019 6:41 p.m. PST

Travis Fimmel was brilliant and it is understandable that the show's following has diminished since the death of Ragnar.

It isn't a documentary and I don't expect it to be historically accurate (if one can be historically accurate without genuine primary sources) but it is great that it doesn't go too far off historical timelines.

I'm just finishing the second last season and still finding it entertaining.

huevans01103 Mar 2019 8:15 a.m. PST

Gave up after the first season. I thought the Ragnar character and actor was brilliant (Travis Fimmel?)!!! But the storyline got weaker and weaker.

79thPA Supporting Member of TMP14 Jun 2019 10:41 a.m. PST

I stopped watching a number of seasons ago. It is almost impossible for a series like this to hold my interest long term.

Uesugi Kenshin Supporting Member of TMP14 Jun 2019 10:53 a.m. PST

I've tried watching the series twice. I love Travis, but I just couldn't stay with the series past season 2.

John Edmundson15 Jun 2019 1:25 a.m. PST

I had mixed feelings. I liked the theme song and Gustaf Skarsgard as Floki, I put up with the inaccuracies because it was kind of fun and my wife loved reminding me that she's descended from Rollo. But when the evil Muslim (dubious enough in the current climate) was depicted as a cannibal feeding human flesh to the Vikings it lost me right then.

wmyers15 Jun 2019 6:59 a.m. PST

Perhaps a bit of historical research into Muslim cannibalism was/is in order before such reactions:

"He [Khalid] ordered his [Malik's] head and he combined it with two stones and cooked a pot over them. And Khalid ate from it that night to terrify the apostate Arab tribes and others. And it was said that Malik's hair created such a blaze that the meat was so thoroughly cooked."

(From Muslim historian al-Tabari's multi-volume chronicle "al-bidaya w'al nihaya", "The Beginning and the End."

In the Islamic conquest of Spain. According to Muslim chronicler Ibn Abdul Hakam, after capturing a group of Christian winemakers, the Islamic invaders:

"… made them prisoners. After that they took one of the vinedressers, slaughtered him, cut him in pieces, and boiled him, while the rest of his companions looked on. They had also boiled meat in other cauldrons. When the meat was cooked, they threw away the flesh of that man which they had boiled; no one knowing that it was thrown away: and they ate the meat which they had boiled, while the rest of the vinedressers were spectators.

These did not doubt but that the Moslems ate the flesh of their companion; the rest being afterwards sent away informed the people of Andalus [Christian Spain] that the Moslems feed on human flesh, acquainting them with what had been done to the vinedresser."

Tarek ibn Ziyad was another jihadi extraordinaire, revered for burning his boats on reaching Spain's shores as proof of his commitment that only conquest (jihad) or death ("martyrdom") was acceptable. He also had Christian captives slaughtered, cooked up, and apparently eaten in front of their fellow hostages. Then, according to Muslim historian Ahmad ibn Muhammad al-Maqqari:

"[Ziyad] allowed some of the captives to escape, that they might report to their countrymen what they had seen. And thus the stratagem produced the desired effect, since the report of the fugitives contributed in no small degree to increase the panic of the infidels" ( The History of the Mohammedan Dynasty, p. 276).

During the earliest Muslim invasions of Christian Syria, one of Muhammad's companions, ‘Ubadah bin al-Samat, told a Christian commander:

"We have tasted blood and find none sweeter than the blood of Romans."

He was referring to Byzantines and/or Christians.

John Edmundson16 Jun 2019 4:07 a.m. PST

Only the first of these actually suggests that cannibalism (which is in complete contradiction to the halal laws) happened. And it sounds very like the others where it is implied as a way of frightening the enemy. That's been widespread throughout the history of war. The only place I see these quotes being cited as serious evidence of cannibalism is on Islamophobic websites because they are not taken literally by serious academics as evidence of cannibalism having a legitimate place in Islam.

On the other hand "These first-hand stories agree that in 1098, after a successful siege and capture of the Syrian city Ma'arra, Christian soldiers ate the flesh of local Muslims. Thereafter the facts get murky, Rubenstein says. Some chroniclers report that the bodies were secretly consumed in "wicked banquets" borne out of famine and without the authorization of military leaders, Rubenstein says. Other reports suggest the cannibalism was done with tacit approval of military superiors who wished to use stories of the barbaric act as a psychological fear tactic in future Crusade battles. link This is only one of a number of such cases of propagandistic claims of crusader acts of cannibalism.

Are we to believe from this that there's a history of Christian cannibals that justifies the one main Christian character in a TV show acting like Richard the Lionheart in the Romances, first personally savouring, then subsequently feeding Muslim flesh to Saladin?

In the interests of honesty, such dark moments in our past (and the elaboration of them for propaganda purposes) should be addressed. But I don't think that spirit of honest exploration of history was what motivated the makers of Vikings.


wmyers06 Jul 2019 7:08 p.m. PST

I don't think that's a valid reference "some chroniclers" and then refuse to cite the sources.

You may see various quotes on various websites, but just because you do not like them does not invalidate them.

John Edmundson06 Jul 2019 7:55 p.m. PST

"reference "some chroniclers" and then refuse to cite the sources."

I don't think this is a case of "refusing" to cite sources. It's not an academic article.

I'm not sure whether you doubt the allegations were even made or only doubt that they had a foundation in actual events.

It's my view, from what I've read, that there was an incident of cannibalism by crusaders that was then very possibly used in various propagandistic ways. It is likely that the same happened in the case of Muslims. Neither suggests that cannibalism is condoned or widespread amongst adherents of either faith. Remember that the Romans believed (or chose to claim) that the Eucharist proved Christians to be cannibals. In an era where Muslims have gone from Oriental curiosity to arch-villain, we need a measured, historically contextualised approach to such claims. The crusades were many things, from periods of interfaith cooperation, exchange of knowledge, alliance and understanding at one end of the spectrum to great brutality at the other. Great acts of goodness were demonstrated by leaders of both sides and also great acts of horror.

Just a couple of months ago, one kilometer from my workplace, a "Christian" terrorist slaughtered 51 Muslims and injured another 50. I had terrified kids in lockdown in my classroom for about 3 1/2 hours. I teach Muslim kids (Indian, Afghan, Kurdish) every day I go to work. I know Muslim families. My ex wife is Muslim. That makes my kids nominally Muslim (certainly in the eyes of anyone who wants to compartmentalise rather than get to know them. I lost two friends of 30+ years standing to that terror attack. Neither they, nor, I am sure, any of the other 99 killed or wounded, would have dreamed of considering cannibalism an acceptable act. He (the killer, Brenton Tarrant) drew on just the sort of stereotyping that "Vikings" played on.

"You may see various quotes on various websites, but just because you do not like them does not invalidate them."

Absolutely true. I have engaged with these sources (that you quoted previously) and considered what various academics have had to say. I have come to the view, as stated above, that such claims are largely propagandistic and do not suggest cannibalism to be acceptable in the Abrahamic faiths. We need to bring all our critical faculties to bear when reading (or viewing) material on this subject, as with any other subject, precisely because people like Brenton Tarrant, and, it would seem, the makers of "Vikings" cannot be relied upon to do so.

We should, emphatically, not be censored by such actions as his, but we do need to be responsible in how we depict the "other", especially during an epoch where those depictions come laden with highly charged political implications.

As wargamers, we come upon much more information about past and distant societies and eras that most. It is a great opportunity for us to demonstrate the nuance of understanding that such study requires.


Puster07 Jul 2019 3:49 a.m. PST

I had not the impression that Muslims were depicted specifically cruel in "Vikings", especially not compared to the samples of other cultures and beliefs.

On the other side – once you censor yourself on your artistic liberties on that matter, you have lost that freedom. What for?
Anybody offended on this scence is not prone to common sense anyway.
As a Muslim I would have been far more offended by the idea that a powerful Emir on the Northafrican coast would live like a poor tribal chieftain in the desert, when he has cities like Tunis or Algier to rule from. THAT was a bad clichee if Vikings ever used one…

That said: still enjoying the series, but its of course no historical documentation – not in general nor in detail, though it certainly paints its story on a beautiful tapestry.

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