Learn about the History Channel TV Show Vikings

The show Vikings is a top-rated tv series created by Michael Hirst and broadcasted by the History Channel. It was filmed in Ireland and premiered in 2013, but it rapidly became highly successful and gathered a massive community of fans. Seven years later, in 2020, it ended once the second half of its sixth season was broadcast, and now anyone can watch it on Amazon Prime Video.

It features a spin-off series titled Vikings: Valhalla, created by Netflix and premiered in February of 2022.

This show was inspired by the books of one of the best-known Norse heroes, Ragnar Lothbrok. The Vikings TV series portrays how he goes from being a farmer to raiding England and becoming a Scandinavian king with the help of his warriors.

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Vikings is inspired by the brutal and mysterious world of the early medieval Scandinavian countries, especially the tales of the legendary Ragnar Lothbrok. Although it isn’t 100% historically accurate, the show describes the lives of these Norsemen based on several stories and historical sources of the period. It is crucial to remember that these tales were written around 400 years after the described events.

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First Season

This Iris-Canadian co-production was developed by Octagon Films and Take Five Production. It had a $40,000,000 budget, and the filming began in July 2012. Some of its most remarkable locations were Ashford Studios in Ireland, Luggala, and the Poulaphouca Reservoir in the Wicklow Mountains.

Second Season

After the fantastic success of the first season of Vikings, it was renewed for a second season with 10 episodes, featuring Ciaran Donelly, Ken Girotti, and Kari Skogland as directors. The show’s producers also announced new characters, such as Björn, the King Ecbert of Wessex, and several other recurring characters.

Third Season

Morgan O’Sullivan, Alan Gasmer, John Weber, and Sherry Marsh were some executive producers credited for this season. The production team included Frank and Nuala Moiselle as casting directors, Richard Ryan and Franklin Henson as action designers, Mark Geraghty as production designer, and PJ Dillon as cinematographer.

It also featured a Norwegian music group called Wardruna, which created the background music for most of the season’s scenes.

Fourth Season

This season started to be produced before the previous season had even aired. It added some locations in Dublin, Wicklow, and Canada. Some new actors also appeared, such as Peter Franzén, Dianne Doan, and Jasper Pääkkönen, who had significant roles in the development of season four and recurring seasons. Josh Donaldson also made a guest appearance, as he is a huge fan of the show, and the producers decided to let him play a character named Hoskuld.

Fifth Season

Once the series was renewed for a fifth season, it was announced that Jonathan Rhys Meyers would be playing Heahmund. He explained that during his character research, he was amazed to find out how warriors were so religious yet brutal during their fights.

Adam Copeland also had a role for this season, where he played Kjetill Flatnose, another violent warrior who became a loved character for the recurring season. Other popular new characters were White Hair, played by Kieran O’Reilly, and King Hemmig, played by Erik Madsen.

Sixth Season

The final season of Vikings features Danila Kozlovsky as Oleg of Novogord. Katheryn Winnick directed an episode in which several Scandinavian artists contributed to creating a magnificent soundtrack with Nordic folk influences. Some of these artists were Danheim and Wardruna.

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Vikings: Valhalla with Norman King William

The sequel series of Vikings is called Vikings: Valhalla, which was announced during a long wait after the ending of the final episode of Vikings season six. It was created by Netflix and Jeb Stuart and set 100 years in the future after the end of the original show.

Vikings: Valhalla started as an eight-episode show, premiering in February of 2022, but it has now been renewed for a second and third season.


This show starts 100 years after the last Vikings’ season and showcases the tension between the Vikings’ pagan beliefs and the English royals’ Christian beliefs. During this time, Freydís Eiríksdóttir and Harald Hardrada start an epic journey through battlefields to ensure their survival and the glory of all the Vikings. It also shows the Battle of the Stamford Bridge, which marked the end of the Viking Age.


The shooting of Vikings: Valhalla was interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic, as it started in early October 2020, but it was rapidly suspended due to the increasing number of COVID-19 cases on the set. Once everyone had recovered, the shooting was resumed at Ashford Studios in Ireland.

Some of the directors of the second season were Niels Arden Oplev, Hannah Quinn, and Steve Saint Leger.

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Vikings premiered in March of 2013 in America and Canada. It rapidly gathered a vast audience, which caused it to be renewed repeatedly until it finally reached its last season on 2017. The second half of this Vikings season was broadcasted in December 2020 on Amazon Prime Video.

Although the History Channel originally created this show, it was broadcasted in other places of the world through other platforms. In the UK, people could only watch it through LoveFilm and Amazon Prime Video. On the other hand, in Australia, people would watch it through SBS One and FX.

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Vikings received terrific reviews from the very start of the show. It featured an average rating of 71%, according to Metacritic. Several other critics praised the casting and how they managed to create a show that looked natural and authentic due to its settings and costumes.

They also celebrated the lack of graphic violence and sex, as well as how the crew developed each character’s depth and emotional awakening. Still, the show delivers just the right amount of gore and blood people expect from a Vikings show, but it never loses its focus on the story like other shows would.

Historical Inaccuracies

Although Vikings is a fantastic show, it has many historical inaccuracies worth mentioning. Lars Walker spoke out about this in the magazine The American Spectator. He explained how the Viking Age’s government was supposed to be democratic instead of autocratic, as well as how the Scandinavians couldn’t ignore the existence of Ireland and Britain. It is also crucial to point out that the most severe Scandinavian punishment was outlawry instead of the death penalty.

Another historian who criticized the show’s accuracy was Monty Dobson, who mentioned that Viking clothing was highly inaccurate in the series. Vikings also incorrectly portrayed the temple at Uppsala, which is a critical element of Christian architecture.

Real historical figures inspired several characters of this drama series, and after comparing their real-life counterparts and thoroughly investigating in history books, you will find several historical inaccuracies that were added to the plot to make it more appealing to the general public. Therefore, you must remember that this is a work of fiction and isn’t an accurate representation of Nordic history.

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Other Vikings TV Series & Movies

The Northman

It is impossible not to include this fantastic movie on our list, as it is one of the best Vikings movies ever made. It is based on the Scandinavian myth that inspired Hamlet. Rober Eggerts created this masterpiece, which consists of the Viking prince Amleth, who dedicates his life to getting revenge on his uncle, who murdered his father when he was just a kid. Remember, it is a highly graphic movie, which may not be your cup of tea.


This historical drama has certain features that will remind you of Vikings, and although it is highly underrated, we encourage you to check it out. It aired on National Geographic and featured great battlefields and wars in the late 1600s. This show’s first episode is one of the most impressive on this list, as it features an incredible cast, a thick plot, and a high budget.


This Netflix show highly resembles Vikings, but it isn’t as popular or good as the original show. Still, it is worth mentioning on this list, as it portrays the lives of the tribes of German warriors during many battles against the Roman Empire. You will be able to see how the characters develop throughout the show, and many violent conflicts add depth to the plot.

Raised by Wolves

If you loved the first half of Vikings, you probably remember Travis Fimmel, the star of Raised by Wolves. This is a sci-fi series created by HBO and filled with a lot of nostalgia and questions about religion and the difficulties of parenting. Therefore, this is the show for you if you want to see a more goofy version of Ragnar Lothbrok.

Game of Thrones

Game of Thrones is probably one of the most popular TV shows of the decade, so you have probably already watched it. However, this is the perfect time to do it if you haven’t. You will find the best battle scenes of the century and fantastic dragons that will make you think they’re real. Game of Thrones is a show filled with drama, politics, and a lot of blood that you don’t want to miss.

The Last Kingdom

This show is one of the most similar to Vikings on this list, so if you want to continue the adventures of Ragnar Lothbrok and his fellow Vikings, you should consider watching it. The events of The Last Kingdom overlap with Vikings, as they’re loosely based on the same story. Still, it will show you many different things and storylines you didn’t get to experience before.


If you enjoy comedies more than dramas, Norsemen will give you the Vikings aesthetic you’re looking for with a lighter mood and a fantastic sense of humor. You won’t find any complicated language, as the script is intentionally modern and silly, which is a tremendous break after all the dismemberment you saw on Vikings.


After experiencing the success of the recurring seasons of Vikings, History decided to produce more historical dramas, which is why they created Knightfall. This is set in the 14th century and follows the story of Landry de Lauzon, who decides to seek the Holy Grail that recently reappeared in France.

Black Sails

This underrated drama will be your favorite if you like pirates more than Vikings. It portrays the intricate pirate culture in a way that has never been seen before. You will see different factions from distant shores who battle against each other for the same treasure. Although it doesn’t have as many open battles, its intricate and strategic plot is sure to entertain you.


Some people like Vikings because of how bloody and gory it is, and that’s completely okay. In those cases, we love to recommend Spartacus, as it is one of the most brutal shows ever made. It is set in the Roman Empire and tells the story of brave gladiators who murdered people as a sport. In addition, it features a lot of sex and nudity, which is a must for people who love series like these.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is There Any Historical Truth to the Vikings Show?

Yes. Although it isn’t 100% historically accurate, it has several factual details about the Viking Era and its culture.

Why Do They Keep Changing Languages in Vikings?

Some foreign characters in Vikings speak different languages. This is done to show how the other characters can’t understand them and give a sense of authenticity to the series.

Are the Languages in Vikings Real?

Yes. All languages used in the show are real. In fact, when the characters aren’t speaking in English, they’re speaking in Old Norse.

Bottom Line

Vikings is a fascinating series that showcases a whole new world filled with history and depth. Therefore, this is the perfect show for you if you’re a fan of Nordic history.

If you love Vikings and wish to know more about their lives, you can check out the rest of our website for more information.

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