Exclusive Vikings preview: The first appearance of Erik the Red

King Harald Vikings 606
Peter Franzen as King Harald in Vikings episode 606 Death and the Serpent. Pic credit: History

Wednesday’s episode of HISTORY’s Vikings, called Death and the Serpent, promises to be a big one in more ways than one, as we approach the meaty part of the first half of the final season.

The holiday break left fans hanging onto two intense storylines.

The first being Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick) and her farming village’s last stand against the outlaws of Kattegat. The other being the first election for one king to rule over all of Norway. We have an exclusive clip of some of the fallout of the latter, which introduces another key figure in Vikings history.

The world has not looked kindly on Bjorn Ironside (Alexander Ludwig) since becoming king. Just because he is the eldest son of Ragnar Lothbrok, he shouldn’t have expected things to go so smoothly.

His first act was banishing Ivar’s (Alex Høgh Andersen) men outside the gates of Kattegat, only to see them terrorize Lagertha and the nearby widows and farmers whom she has befriended. His pants have gotten him in trouble again, this time with a slave named Ingrid (Lucy Martin), and Ivar has a new BFF in Rus.

Then, Bjorn had to go rescue King Harald (Peter Franzen), who was being held captive by King Olaf (Steven Berkoff), who then suggested that Norway be ruled by one king.

There’s reason to believe that no matter how the election shakes out for Bjorn, whether he wins or loses, King Harald (Peter Franzen) will not happy and in this exclusive preview clip, Kjetill Flatnose (Adam Copeland) comes to his aid.

But who’s the other guy?

That would be Erik Thorvaldsson (played by The Knick’s Eric Johnson), also known in history as Erik the Red, father of another famed Norseman, Leif Erikson. For historians watching the show or fans who want to know more beyond what the show covers, Erik the Red is an explorer who lived during the years of 950-1003. He is largely credited for discovering and establishing the first settlement in Greenland, even though Icelandic sagas suggest that there were others who attempted this feat before Thorvaldsson.

Erik’s act of bravery will earn him an alliance with Bjorn Ironside, and a long run on the remaining episodes of the series.

Be sure to tune in to HISTORY’s Vikings on January 8 at 10 p.m. ET/PT,  to see how this plays out and what happens to Lagertha.

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