Vikings According to the History Channel

I remember when the History Channel was just endless clips of black-and-white WW II newsreel footage. That was a while ago. Though I've not watched it more than a minute or two since the 1990s, I'm given to understand that, these days, the channel is much more about the history of Bigfoot and aliens than it is about Hitler.

"Good luck storming the monastery."

"Good luck storming the monastery."

So it was when I came across comments on Facebook by someone who had just watched a show called "Vikings" and wanted to complain: it had no story, nothing to connect the violence, sex, and blood. The History Channel had chosen to jump from documentaries into narrative historical fiction. Naturally, I decided to check it out.

As a writer of medieval-style fantasy, involving swords and sailing ships and ancient myths, I feel I must keep abreast of developments like this. And going into episode one with my expectations about as low as they could go, my take is...Hey! Not bad. It's no Game of Thrones, but it's also no Spartacus: Sticky, Steamy Sand. Facebook opinions aside, it's getting generally positive reviews, and I'd recommend it for anyone who's into medieval drama or history. And while the writers may have gotten a few of the details wrong for the sake of convenient story beats, as this article points out, there's still a lot of good feel and flavor to be enjoyed.

Best of all, it has a bad-ass fighting female character, played by a beautiful actress, based on a real historical figure.