After six seasons, the History Channel’s Vikings has had its fair share of memorable main characters but, its lasting appeal has been the side stories of its compelling supporting cast. Whether these characters inspire your sympathy or your enmity, it is hard to deny the rich array of multifaceted characters from top to bottom.
After all, how many television shows can say they lasted two seasons after their main protagonist’s death? So let this article be our ode to the supporting cast that helps make and maintain Vikings as one of the most memorable shows to ever land on our television screens.
11 Count Odo
He died as he lived, being whipped in a dungeon. The man who was trusted to guard the gates of Paris against the Viking siege, the very same man who entertained dreams of glory and marrying Princess Gisla, actually held a secret fetish that would ultimately be his undoing.
In his dungeon of sin, he abused his mistress Therese, while spilling blood and innermost secrets. In an attempt to gain more power, Therese divulged Odo’s desire to be emperor, ultimately leading to Odo being flogged to death by Therese’s brother Roland on the orders of Emperor Charles.
10 King Aelle
The only thing notable about King Aelle is his deep fanaticism in his Christian faith and his hatred towards Ragnar and the Viking invaders. His thirst for heathen blood was so formidable that he sacrificed his own brother in an attempt to crush the Viking invaders before they were able to march on Northumbria. To his credit, he did manage to kill Ragnar in season 4 but only because Ragnar allowed it. Ragnar’s demise proves to be a costly mistake as Ragnar’s sons make quick work of the king.
Once a renowned battle-hardened warrior in his youth, Kjetill now appears to be just another simple farmer seeking a better life in a foreign land with his family. However, his former self is soon brought out when a deadly dispute erupts with a fellow follower of Floki, Eyvind. The dispute leaves dead family members on both sides, eventually culminating in Eyvind and his family being excommunicated from the other settlers. Feigning support he pretends to help Eyvind’s family, who are freezing to death. His true intentions soon come out when he massacres Eyvind and his entire family, much to Floki’s horror.
A Frankish slave originally hailing from China is first introduced in season 4, when Ragnar takes interest in her. In an attempt to please her captor, she gives Ragnar a drug to help him manage his physical and psychological pain. However, Ragnar soon becomes so addicted to the drug he cannot live without it. In one instance, Ragnar makes the mistake in telling Yidu about how the Viking settlers in Wessex were slaughtered, something she later threatens to tell the others. His response to this threat was drowning her in front of his sons.
Lagertha’s abusive second husband Sigvard, Earl of Hedeby was known for his drunken outbursts and jealous rants about Ragnar. Not only was he abusive towards Lagertha but to Bjorn as well, regularly criticizing and humiliating him in front of favored guests.
After Lagertha returned from assisting Ragnar in ridding Kattegat of Jarl Borg, Sigvard was furious with her. He had his men beat her as a show of force. Lagertha eventually had enough. When he tried to strip her in front of guests, she stabbed him in the eye, while his cousin beheaded him.
King Horik’s only surviving child, like his father, could be remorseless and self-centered. His single purpose in life was vengeance on those responsible for his family’s death. His rivalry and deep hatred for Bjorn only intensified when Torvi, Erlendur’s wife, began a relationship with Bjorn, eventually leaving her husband for him. Erlendur accepts her decision to leave but forces her to leave their baby with him. After two failed assassination attempts against Bjorn, Erlendur finally meets his end when Torvi shoots him in the chest with an arrow.
Knut appears in the first season as a supporter of Ragnar’s plan to sail West. In truth, Knut is a spy for Earl Haraldson. He meets his end when he attempts to rape Lagertha but is quickly dispatched by the shield-maiden. When Knut does not return to Earl Haraldson, he demands to know what happened to him. Ragnar falsely claims to be the guilty party, claiming Knut tried to rape his wife. Haraldson calls for a trial but Ragnar is found innocent when Rollo testifies to the truth of his words.
While having an overall small role in season 3, it isn’t his on-screen actions that make Brihtwulf infamous. Instead, fans despise him for raping Kwenthrith on multiple occasions when she was a little girl. He even forced her older brother to do the same. After King Kenelm, the older brother of Kwenthrith dies, a civil war ensues when Brihtwulf, who with the support of Kwenthrith’s other brother, declares himself King of Mercia. With the aid of Wessex and Viking soldiers, Kwenthrith gets her revenge when Brihtwulf is killed in battle.
Like father like daughter, Judith the daughter of King Aelle was just as brutal as her father but surpassed him when it came to strategic planning. Judith married Aethelwulf, Prince of Wessex, but soon found herself out of his good graces when she became pregnant with Athelstan’s son. Though she continued to remain relevant thanks to King Ecbert. After forcing her oldest son to abdicate the throne and then later poisoning him, she secured Alfred’s place as King of Wessex. Successful in securing her son Alfred the throne, she died shortly afterward of cancer.
In many ways, Magnus lived an unfortunate life. Used as a pawn by his mother, Queen Kwenthrith, to hold onto power. He grew up being told his father was Ragnar Lothbrok. Fearing revenge from Ragnar for killing Viking settlers in Wessex, King Ecbert keeps Magnus close, awaiting Ragnar’s return. When Ragnar does come back to Wessex, he refutes that Magnus is his, resulting in Magnus’ banishment. Now as a man, he seeks retribution by joining the Heathen Army against King Alfred and Ivar’s forces. He is unsuccessful in his attempt when he is killed during battle.
Source: ScreenRant – Movies