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‘Vikings’: Episode “Hell” Recap

Photo by Jonathan Hession

Kattegat suffered a significant loss last week with the death of The Seer. Meanwhile, Floki (Gustaf Skarsgård) made a difficult decision to rid the colony of the feuding families. And in England, King Alfred (Ferdia Walsh-Peelo) prepared himself to go into battle with King Harald (Peter Franzén).

In this week’s Vikings, we will find out who survived the battle and how some of our characters dealt with the consequences of their decisions.

Wessex

Photo by Jonathan Hession

King Harald and his army are only a couple of days away. King Alfred promises Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick), Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig), Ubbe (Jordan Patrick Smith), and Torvi (Georgia Hirst) that if they win against King Harald, he would not only have the strength but the will to give them the lands that his grandfather promised them.

Ubbe shows King Alfred the catapult that they discovered from the French when they fought against them in Paris. He then goes in for a surprise attack on King Alfred to teach him a valuable lesson, “never hesitate.” The two then fight as King Alfred proves he has been doing well with his teachings.

On the eve of battle, Torvi insists that Ubbe wear both the cross and the bracelet of their gods. Ubbe is then summoned by King Alfred who needs assurance that his plan will work. Ubbe insists that it will and he then harshly states:

“You need to find your courage. You need to believe in me, but you need to believe in yourself. Or you are not fit to wear that crown.”

Photo by Jonathan Hession

Meanwhile, Bishop Heahmund (Jonathan Rhys Meyers) wakes up from a nightmare. He tells Lagertha that the Lord visited him and showed him Hell. He fears that is where he will go if he does not give her up. Even though she tells him it was just a dream, Bishop Heahmund doesn’t believe it. In her anger, she leaves him with her final words:

“I think you always loved your Lord, your God more than you ever loved me. I don’t think you ever did love me. Your soul, whatever that is, meant more to you than I ever could.”

The following day, Ubbe approaches the enemy camp to see King Harald. He introduces him to Jarl Olavson (Tomi May) and his wife, Gunnhild (Ragga Ragnars) and they reminisce about fighting in York. King Harald wonders why they are siding with the English. He suggests that they join them, but Ubbe instead insists that they find a compromise. He also divulges that he was baptized which surprises King Harald. Ubbe requests that they tell him how much would it cost to leave Wessex. King Harald tells him to return the next day, and he will provide that information.

As both sides gear up to fight, Bjorn spots Magnus (Dean Ridge) from afar. Magnus takes it upon himself to go to King Harald’s camp, and he tells him he is the son of Ragnar and wishes to fight against King Alfred. This bit of information alerts King Harald to the fact that they were never going to come to a compromise and Ubbe was stalling. When no one shows up for the meeting it only confirms what King Harald had figured out; they were tricked. As they rush to the battlegrounds, King Alfred, Ubbe and the rest of the army are already set up.

Photo by Jonathan Hession

In the next few scenes, we see both sides suffer the consequences of war as King Alfred is shown speaking to his men and covered in blood. Ubbe sets a fire that surrounds King Harald’s army.

The Vikings appear to be losing, and some even start to flee as an arrow kills Jarl. In the midst of dodging swords, Lagertha sees Bishop Heahmund be pulled down from his horse. Meanwhile, Aethelred (Darren Cahill) saves King Alfred after he gets thrown to the ground by a heathen.

While Bishop Heahmund fights on the grounds, an arrow hits him. As he screams for Lagertha, more arrows puncture him and then one final blow of a sword runs through him. Lagertha is also wounded and watches helplessly as Bishop Heahmund dies.

On the other side of the battlefield, Bjorn confronts Gunnhild. She manages to get one swing of her sword and grazes him in the face. He then swiftly turns the table and captures her. King Harald sees defeat and retreats his army.

The Saxons claim victory, and King Alfred says some final words for Bishop Heahmund. He then tells his people that they could not have won without the help of their Viking allies. In the aftermath of the battle, not only did we lose Bishop Heahmund, but it appears that Lagertha is now missing. While King Harald and the army head back, Magnus has also joined him and does not see this battle as a complete loss.

“I have faith that we should prevail. No doubt at all. Our gods will utlimately triump over the Christian God, who is a usurper, who has no meaning. It’s not real. And one day not so far away, the name Jesus Christ will be utterly forgotten.”

Photo by Jonathan Hession

As the English celebrate their victory, Queen Judith (Jennie Jacques) watches in distress. Before King Alfred had left to fight the Vikings, he had one of his men arrested for treason. Queen Judith had taken on the task of getting information out of the traitor. She seems to have the stomach for such things. After severe torture, Queen Judith receives the information needed. During the celebration, she divulges to King Alfred what she discovered about the conspiracy and who is involved. With a tear in her eye, she tells him that Aethelred is their leader.

Kattegat

Photo by Jonathan Hession

King Ivar (Alex Høgh Andersen) takes The Seer lifeless body and burns him in the woods. The next day, Hvitserk (Marco Ilsø) goes to The Seer’s home and finds that he is not there. Instead, he comes across fresh blood where he once laid. He is dismissed by King Ivar when he confronts him. However, before he leaves, he tells King Ivar that he knows. This statement seems to affect him because it alludes to the fact that he knows The Seer is missing because of King Ivar.

King Ivar then tells his people the news of The Seer’s disappearance. He promises to find whoever did this and will make them pay. He then reiterates that he is a god and that the people shouldn’t be afraid of that fact. Hvitserk looks on in disbelief as everyone in the hall praises King Ivar. King Ivar then has a statue of himself put up in the middle of the town.

Will King Alfred keep his promise to Ubbe, Bjorn and Lagertha? What will King Alfred do with the information Queen Judith provided about his brother, Aethelred? What happened to Lagertha and how will she deal with another loss of another lover? Will Magnus and King Harald come back to fight again? Will the people of Kattegat find out the truth about what happened to The Seer? What will Hvitserk do as he grows more frustrated with King Ivar?

Vikings airs on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. EST on History.