Vikings. Season 2, Episode 7

Season 2 of Vikings continues to be exciting. This show has me so whipped that I’m constantly checking the time to see how much of the 45mins is left, hoping more of the story will unravel before each episode ends.

I’ve just seen Episode 7 and men, I’m pumped! The episode begins to hint at betrayals to come. I’m thinking…ahahhhh….I see where the lies and deceit will come from, then WHAM!….the plot takes a turn that dissolves whatever theories I imagined. Opening scene with King Horik walking into the great hall, big smile already on my face because the camera movement there is just sweet. Camera begins from a top view, then smoothly transitions to a front view of Horik walking in with his son. I love these types of movement, not random, not meaningless, but well executed to lead the viewer to where the action is about to take place. Delicious!

Season 2 really came alive for me at the third installment, but men oh men, episode 7 delivers on all fronts. The cinematography is awesome. One of my favorite things with Vikings has always been the approach to lighting, especially with dark scenes. I love the warm rim lights on the beardy men faces that separate them from the background. It’s obviously they give as much thought to shadows as to the bright areas of faces.

This style of lighting for me adds substance to the characters and a mystic realism to their delivery. It creates a mood that makes me feel present, like I’m in the scene, if that makes any sense….lol. Take for example the scene with Ragnar in the great hall standing behind curtains, watching both friends and foe, people whose lives are now connected to his for different reasons. Two words, delicious and absolutely engaging. Uhmmmm, maybe three words but who’s counting. The lighting and camera movement invite you to his eyes, his thoughts, his suspensions and possibly his fears.

The strongest scene for me in this episode for me is Jarl Borg walking through the crowd, towards center stage to meet his death. Quickly realizing the plan to free him is a hoax, he shows neither protest nor fear. He accepts the faith about to befall him and embraces it with bravery. I have to admit, I didn’t expect his calm resolve. Previous scenes of him in captivity showed a man half ready for his end. Someone still clinging onto life, connected to the things of the world, the flesh. Lord knows I held no love for the man but in the end, enduring all that pain without a squeal, he surely won my respect. Off he goes to his next paid gig, bloody rich actors!

Another scene I really enjoy is Ragnar meeting his newly found ally in the woods. Sitting tall on a horse with a conquering smile on her face, Lagertha, beautiful and strong as ever. Once lover, wife, trusted advisor, now a leader and soon to become expedition ally. With few words spoken between these two, I always feel the affection between them. Ravishing.

Ragnars’ little boys were left back stage in this episode, allowing us to explore the plots of others around him. I suspect we’ll see more of them next week on episode 8. Until then, lets hope Jarl Borg is accepted in Valhalla.