Vikings: What We Really Suspect About Travis Fimmel’s Exit From The Series

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In Vikings, Travis Fimmel played Ragnar Lothbrok, the father, the fearless warrior king of Denmark and the undoing of England and France. In feats drawn from the Dark Ages historical record, he plundered and burned his way across the North Sea until the end of Season 4, when he was captured by Kings Ecbert and Aelle, and history was turned upside down.

As unorthodox as it may have been for the series to end Ragnar Lothbrok, the true story helps explain the decision of the case. Vikings is specifically a historical drama, emphasis on the second half of that equation; it draws its plots from the 13th-century medieval sagas of Lothbrok, who had died several centuries earlier. And we’re actually not entirely sure that man ever existed.

According to those traditional legends, around the year 866 CE, Ragnar Lothbrok did indeed meet his end at the hands of King Aelle and his cruel and creative nest of serpents. As for Aelle, she died (this much is certain, because the story cares about kings) the following year in battle with the hated Viking armies, though probably not by the same extremely brutal method (the “blood eagle”) depicted. in the program.

The character’s departure, then, was not so much written as written in the historical record. Travis Fimmel’s departure had always been intentional, because Vikings wanted to reflect the generational shifts in royalty in the Middle Ages, so his character’s demise came as no surprise to the actor. In fact, he was actually able to stay on the series for much longer than originally intended; Initially, the idea was for him to die in the first season as a more direct consequence of Aethelwulf’s murder.

It’s lucky for us that the show’s creatives decided to stay Ragnar’s execution. Had he died in the first season of Vikings, we wouldn’t have seen him fake his death as a Trojan Horse plot in France and climb out of a coffin, or been invited to watch the mighty warrior use an unlucky priest for the practice of archery, and many other iconic scenes from the series.

Really, it is a victory for all that Ragnar stayed so long before his glorious death; the only loser here is historical accuracy, and it’s not like the History Channel cares much about that. But for all the fans, losing Travis Fimmel in a glorious character was like a bucket of cold water without a doubt.