Disaster and distrust on Vikings

“Up unto the overturned keel, clamber with a heart of steel. Cold is the ocean spray, and your death is on its way.”—Rollo

“This is how you repay me? Everyone wanted you dead. I kept you alive. And this is how you repay my love!?!”—Ragnar

We’re so not used to seeing Ragnar this way. Addicted to drugs, making quick decisions, doubting himself. And worse, having everyone around him wondering if the great king is off his darned gourd. We’re also not used to seeing the vikings defeated so handily. Yes, Paris’ soldiers repelled Ragnar last season, but he got the last laugh with that Trojan horse move. This time around he was soundly, horribly beaten by Rollo and Count Odo, mainly because the former knows exactly what his brother has planned and can counter those moves. There’s no way Ragnar could have expected a chain would be hoisted between the forts to stop the longboat advance, but that didn’t make the situation any better. Throw in a well-placed bog to slow down Lagertha’s rear attack and a throng of French soldiers riding into he viking camp and the whole invasion was a disaster.

Floki, meanwhile, is at a crossroads. Helga was gravely injured in the camp attack but he was saved from drowning by Ragnar. Will he once again align himself with his old friend, or continue to support the rival King Harold?

As a matter of fact, the only bright spot in “The Profit and the Loss” was Ecbert being handed Mercia—and its crown—by the Prince, who was tired of battles and wanted only to present himself to the Pope as a peasant. Unwilling to hand over power to Kwenthrith, he’s just made Ecbert the most powerful man in England.

And let’s just pretend that weird scene between Floki, Aslaug and Harbard didn’t happen, OK?

Vikings airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on History.