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I love Vikings! I’m hoping to get into a full re-watch soon. Such a gorgeous show. I could watch it on silence just to appreciate the cinematography, location, costumes, set design, and hair. But then I’d miss the story and music.
Re: The violence. I agree with “the violence is treated with an odd sort of respect…” I just re-watched the blood eagle scene before commenting, so I could see how they shot it. There is one shot of a blade in the beginning, one swing of the axe in the middle, and then Jarl Borg’s body is shown at the end, from a distance, though it is clear what has been done. The rest (six minutes!) of the scene is shots of faces, reactions, and a few shots of trickling blood and skulls. The whole scene is brutal, yes, but combined with the music and lighting it is also trance-like–fitting, since it’s a religious ceremony. And it was respectful–but also very brutal.
But, yeah. I’m crazy about this show.