Recap: Vikings 4.4 "Yol"

Mar 10, 2016 by Sarah Moffatt

This week gave us several pivotal moments for pretty much every character we’re truly invested in. From Floki to Rollo to Bjorn, we’re starting to see the winds change and the season four ship turn for its intended destination.

Ragnar is still playing the “poor, pitiful me, I survived and I’m king and I never asked for either of those things” card. I admit, I had grown tired of his moping about getting to keep his lavish (by those time’s standards) life, but now I’m really interested in his weird mindset that he now has a partner in Yidu to share it with. “I’m torn between the compulsion to either kill myself or everyone around me” is a strange way to begin a new romance, but I’m sort of digging it.

Yidu brings an interesting dynamic to Ragnar’s life: she’s a slave who shouldn’t actually be a slave; she comes from another part of the world with different beliefs and customs; and she’s into some weird Chinese voodoo. I mean, he swallowed a live snake whole. Whole! He finds a deeper connection with her that he clearly doesn’t have with Aslaug anymore – maybe he never did. Obviously, Aslaug is over him; no matter the time period or customs, wives don’t usually suggest their husbands take a lover. It’s curious to me what the heck Aslaug has up her sleeve, and something tells me it will have something to do with their surprise guest, King Harald Finehair. Harald and Aslaug seem to have history together – and perhaps a future, since it seems his goal is to become king of Norway. Based on Ragnar’s cold greeting to Harald, it’s safe to say things are about to turn upside down in Kattegat.

We saw the moment when Bjorn became who he is destined to be the moment he threw his fish hooks into the berserker’s face and wrapped him up in the tree before gutting him like a fish. Then he went to see Lagartha, but we know he really went to see Kalf and Erlendur because they put the hit out on him. As payment, Bjorn decides he’s going to take Erlendur’s wife, Torvi, back to Kattegat and she willingly goes with him. A weird turn of events, but probably something that will play heavy in Bjorn’s continuous growth into a badass.

Rollo finally wins his new wife’s heart, but only after she asks for a divorce and a cardinal comes from the Vatican to grant the annulment, which was only legal because they had not consummated the marriage yet. Rollo’s timing for showing off his new French skills was a little off, but better late than never. Princess Gisla seems to really be into her new husband now, which makes his surrendering his Viking bracelet all the more interesting. Perhaps he really is committed to his new life in France. Or more likely, his new life fighting against his brother.

Watch Vikings Thursdays at 9pm ET on HISTORY.

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