Can you keep up with all the good series and TV shows out there that are either finished or still ongoing? Well, we can’t.
There are so many good options nowadays and even old ones that are returning or are classics that we don’t find enough time to pick one or binge every series we would like to watch. But, hey! We’re doing our best.
Among the most recent shows, we decided to stop skipping for others is Vikings, and we don’t regret having pushed it a few places to the top in order to watch it because it was definitely worth the ride finally.
We’re confident that over 70% of people have heard or read about the series before, but if you are part of the other 30%, we can tell you this: you need to go and watch it for good.
After all, it isn’t one of people’s favorites series of the last decade for no reason, and although we found ourselves a bit doubtful about the plot and if we were ready for what the series would bring, we’re happy with left our prejudice behind and gave it a try.
If you’re still disputing yourself as to whether watch it or not, we can give you a few details that will help with the decision or help you learn more about the series you have liked for a very long time.
Cast & Aggressive Plot: What Is Vikings About?
If you are not familiar with Norse heroes and stories, you might find yourself in a bit of a surprise when deciding to watch the series.
After all, the Vikings TV show is inspired by one of the best-known legendary Norse heroes that were quite present in England and France.
Thus, the Vikings TV series is more than a simple show created by someone without any knowledge. Instead, the creators and production made sure to come up with ideas from great legends and focus on the real Vikings raiding and culture.
But where does the series set us in specific? Well, we will have to include some details to the basic yet crucial plot.
This series was inspired by stories of the Norsemen from early medieval Scandinavia and is specifically based on the adventures of Ragnar Lothbrok, the Viking chieftain, and his family.
The characters and places involved are included in the 13th-century sages titled Ragnarssona þáttr, and the other ones are Loðbrókar.
Other sages like Saxo Grammaticus’ “Gest Danorum” from the 12th century as also considered for the show storyline.
The Norse legend sagas were partly fictional stories based on the Norse oral traditions. These tales were written around 200 to 400 years after they occurred.
The historical records of the Viking raid upon Lindisfarne are used as inspiration, as is Ahmad Ibn Fadlan’s 10-century account of the Varangians.
The series starts at the beginning of the Viking Age. This is marked by the Lindisfarne Raid in 793.
The show focuses on portraying Ragnar as a farmer who ends up rising to fame after raiding into England successfully and becoming the Scandinavian King thanks to the support of his warriors and family.
This plot and storyline are followed during the first seasons, but the later ones will go over his sons and their adventures in Scandinavia, the Mediterranean, and England.
Thus, you have a wild ride to follow from the Scandinavian King you’ll finally learn about (or maybe you already did) and his sons through their adventures and conquers.
Inside the Production: Cast & Team Members
It isn’t a secret for anyone that to bring such a show to the screen; it is only natural to have more than a few cast members involved as extras and even for the secondary crew.
But even more, people who are willing to do the big work behind the cameras and handle all the costumes, scenography, and more.
With a series focusing on historical drama and action-adventure genres, the creator and writer Michael Hirst had a lot of work to do, considering he was the only one in charge.
Meanwhile, the executive producers were Morgan O’Sullivan, Sheila Hockin, Sherry Marsh, Alan Gasmer, James Flynn, John Weber, and Michael Hirst.
On the other hand,
Steve Wakefield, Keith Thompson, Sanne Wohlenberg, and Liz Gill were part of the producers.
Finally, we have several production companies involves with the series based on the season since some left it while others took it.
TM Productions, MGM Television (which is the distributor as well), and Take 5 Productions remained throughout the seasons. Still, Octagon Films and Shaw Media were for 1-4, while Corus Entertainment took it from 4-6.
Over ten people were involved as the main team for editors and cinematography, and we can tell you this list just keeps going for the rest of the roles behind cameras.
Last but not least for this part, History Channel was the actual company behind the decision of producing the series and where it aired first.
But focusing on the primary ones and some of the recurring characters, who were in charge of bringing the characters to life? Here are a few:
- Travis Fimmel as Ragnar Lothbrok.
- Katheryn Winnick as Lagertha.
- Clive Standen as Rollo.
- Jessalyn Gilsig as Siggy.
- Gustad Skarsgård as Floki.
- Gabriel Byrne as Earl Haraldson.
- George Blagden as Athelstan.
- Donal Logue as Horik of Denmark.
- Alyssa Sutherland as Aslaug.
- Linus Roache as Ecbert of Wessex.
Some of the main cast stopped appearing from season 4 and onwards due to changing the followed characters and story. However, most of them became recurring characters, and don’t think the ones above are the only ones.
Many other actors and actresses were involved, especially in the later seasons.
Popularity & Numbers: Was It a Money-Maker?
Even if you’re not familiar with the series, we can tell you it broke some records and is among the ones people love, for real.
With six seasons in total and running from 2013 to 2020, the first three seasons were quite popular worldwide to the point of having a renew or the fourth season with an extended order of 20 episodes instead of 9 and 10 like the previous three.
The other two seasons (fifth and sixth seasons) followed the same number of episodes that were cut into two parts.
When the first episode was released, most of the critics were favorable. Still, Vikings fell into the common comparison to other series like “The Tudors,” “The Borgias,” and even “Game of Thrones” in terms of how ambitious it was.
In our opinion, we shouldn’t try to compare the series based on the fact they have sex scenes (yes, warning here).
Instead, what about focusing on the plot and storyline for each and come up with an idea from there. After all, Vikings are different in their own way, and according to many reporters and critics, it is just barely similar to “Game of Thrones” just because it came out later.
Despite this comparison, Vikings received over 90% score in Rotten Tomatoes, and Metacritic gave a solid 75%+ in most of its seasons.
While we cannot share the specific number and revenue for the production companies, series usually base their success on viewers.
When the series premiered, it drew six million viewers in the USA only and reached the goal of topping broadcast networks.
In other territories such as Canada, the series drew about 1 million viewers.
What we can share when it comes to the monetary part is that each episode of Vikings had a budget set at about $4 million, especially for the last seasons.
But what about the actors and actresses? Were their salaries fair enough?
Since the payment is set per season but also episode, it is a bit hard to follow the salary unless the details and agreements are disclosed.
However, the main character for the first four seasons of the TV show, Travis Fimmel, earned about $400.000 per episode during the last season.
As the main cast for all seasons, Katheryn Winnick also earned about $400.000 per episode for the last few ones.
Other members of the primary crew were earned between $200.000 and $250.000 per episode, but details weren’t specifically disclosed.
For season six, most of the main cast earned an extra for their roles, and as part of the usual deal, companies make with their members as saying “goodbye” to their characters.
6 Astonishing Facts About the Vikings
- All the tattoos appearing on the series have a meaning, so better watch out for them!
- There’s a lot of discussion around the characters of the series in history and whether they are mythological ones or were actually real, like Ragnar Lothbrok.
- Katheryn Winnick, who plays Lagertha (a very loved character), is a skilled martial artist.
- “Viking” isn’t referred to as a race or ethnicity. Instead, unlike what people believe, it is a profession based on the act of raiding.
- Ragnar means “keeper of the fort” while “Lothbrok” translates into “hairy trousers.”
- The voices added in the background aren’t speaking English. They are Icelandic, Danish, Norwegian, and Swedish.
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