It’s no secret I’m a Viking lover. I’m absolutely dying to get back to my Maidens of the Shield series, which is next on my list btw. So when I saw the trailer for the new History Channel show called Vikings, you can imagine how excited I was. You can find the website here.
Besides, who can deny that this face is just gorgeous. Travis Fimmel plays Ragnar in the series and I am salivating. Love this man. He is an Australian actor and former model best known for his Calvin Klein campaign.
What fascinated me the most about this show last Sunday was how historically accurate it was. Although, I shouldn't have doubted it since it is hosted by the History channel. However, we all know most movies or shows are “Hollywoodized” for the masses. Don’t get me wrong I love the entertainment value more than the accuracy but it was interesting to find one that had both qualities.
While I loved the story-telling in Braveheart one of the things that kept me from becoming too engrossed was the fact that I knew Wallace was really a landowner and not a poor man. Another annoying fact was the Scots no longer painted their faces. That was an act of the Picts. And my personal pet peeve was that Princess Isabelle was a mere four-years-old during Wallace’s lifetime.
Some of the movies that historians complain about are Gladiator, Pearl Harbor, 300, (which let me be clear is my all-time favorite movie) The Last Samurai, and Robin Hood. I’m sure there are many, many more. But that’s what made this series so shockingly surprising. For once, it was accurate! The only inaccuracy that I've noticed so far is that the Vikings attend the Althing which was the first parliament ever created in history. But in Iceland and not Scandinavia as he show suggests. However, everything else I have fact checked and found right! I’m amazed. Shocked. Delighted! You can imagine this is like a sugar rush for a history lover like me. I'm giddy like a little girl with her first crush.
For instance, Vikings were known seafarers and their ships were truly their way of life. The show accurately depicts how the ships were built. Viking ship builders were very revered. They only used oak trees because Yggdrasil, the tree of life in Viking mythology was made of Oak and held up all nine worlds.
Another interesting fact they got right was about shield maidens. They were women warriors in Scandinavian folklore and are mentioned throughout the Sagas. Valkyrie’s were based off of shield maidens in mythology.
Another thing they touched on and got right was the fact that women’s rights came way earlier than we first imagined. Namely during the Viking age. Women were allowed to own property and divorce. They were held in high regard and any man who abused a woman was immediately punished and scorned. I’ll get more into Viking women, their rights, marriage and divorce in my next blog post.
But for now I’ll leave you with the official trailer for Vikings. And hope you join me in learning about a very fascinating culture and people. What other shows or movies do you know that are accurate or inaccurate? And how do you feel about inaccuracies in multimedia?