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Hvitserk and Ivar both played a major role in the death of fan favourite Lagertha in the latest instalment of Vikings. Unfortunately, viewers have pointed out a major blunder in their character arcs ahead of the medieval drama’s return to History and Amazon Prime Video.
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Fans have been debating about a potential blunder in the development of Hvitserk (played by Marco Ilsø) and Ivar the Boneless (Alex Høgh Andersen) between Vikings’ fifth and sixth seasons.
Despite their bad blood, the brothers and sons of former lead Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel) were surprisingly civil when they reunited in the most recent episodes.
Their allegiance had previously fallen apart during season five after Ivar’s betrayal, and Hvitserk was given a bleak vision of Ivar’s future during a visit to the Seer (John Kavanagh).
The conflict left Hvitserk with deep emotional scars, which led to the most tragic moment of Vikings’ sixth season so far at the start of 2021.
Drugged and plagued by hallucinations of Ivar, Hvitserk killed shieldmaiden and fan favourite Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick) after mistaking her for a serpent, a representation of his rival.
However, some viewers were baffled when the pair shared a rather heartfelt reunion in the penultimate chapter of the first half of season six.
In episode nine, Resurrection, Hvitserk confessed to Lagertha’s murder, later joining Ivar to storm the beach of Vetfold and overthrow Bjorn Ironside (Alexander Ludwig).
Throughout the lengthy wait for the midseason premiere, fans have been debating the brothers’ inconsistent relationship over the last few years.
One critical viewer took to Reddit to flag Hvitserk and Ivar’s reunion as a major plot hole.
User WeirdImprovement posted: “I find it really strange and jarring […] Hvitserk has been seeing Ivar in his head and was driven by drug induced hallucinations to kill someone based on his trauma.
“[Yet he] behaves quite normally around him when they reunite before the Rus attack, to the point of sleeping on his shoulder.”
All seemed to be forgiven between the feuding brothers in the midseason finale, all in spite of Ivar’s callous treatment of his family and lust for power.
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Their allegiance proved pivotal in the last episode before Vikings took a break, and Ivar took advantage of his hordes of Rus fighters to ambush Bjorn with a potentially fatal blow.
Now Bjorn seems to be set to join his mother and father in Valhalla, in no small part thanks to Hvitserk’s contribution to the invasion of Vestfold.
If this criticism holds water, it could mean a major continuity error is partly responsible for two of the most impactful deaths in Vikings’ history.
However, another fan argued in the comments: “When soldiers get PTSD from war and go back they don’t normally break down and experience it worse, if anything they get over it being back in war.”
And the original viewer conceded: “This is very true, it could just be him coping in his situation or trying to repress it because he has nowhere else to go.”
Still, most Vikings fans agreed Hvitserk’s development from battle-worn victim to combat-ready warrior was handled rather clumsily.
Season six’s second half will draw the epic story to a close, so it’s hoped the iconic characters’ final episodes won’t be quite so rushed.
Vikings Season 6, Part 2 will be released in 2021 on History and Amazon Prime Video.
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