Vikings: Valhalla season 2 review: Mediocre follow-up to its predecessor

In Vikings: Valhalla season 2, Freydis establishes a new Uppsala for followers of the old gods while Harald travels great distances to raise an army and reclaim the throne of Norway. The season is streaming on Netflix.


Sweyn Forkbeard has wrested control of Kattegat from Olaf and installed his grandson, Swein, as King of Norway. Rather than hang Olaf for his crimes, he commands him to be the King’s protector.

Freydis travels to a place called Jomsburg where Vikings live in peace and hold onto their traditional beliefs. However, she soon realizes that the leader of the Jomsvikings discriminates between his people and the refugees that come to their home in search of safety.

Harald has one goal in mind which is to regain the throne of Norway as was promised to him but he must travel across continents to gain the support to do that.

Leif travels along with him as he goes through a crisis of faith and meets a scholar who introduces him to many new things.


Frida Gustavsson has a lot of responsibility as Freydis this season and she takes it on adequately. Gustavsson’s character spends most of her time in Jomsburg and goes through a host of emotions throughout.

Leo Suter’s performance isn’t all that impressive as he spends most of the series doing the bare minimum to depict a man with just one goal in his kind while occasionally drifting from that goal.

Sam Corlett initially showcases a character going through grief quite well but that disappears soon after he meets Mariam and he then becomes a brute in love. There isn’t anything particular about his performance that stands out.

Jóhannes Haukur Jóhannesson, Laura Berlin, and David Oakes among others serve up good performances without truly pushing the boundaries of what can be considered extraordinary or brilliant.


The depiction of the different cultures around the world is wonderful and informative. Having the characters travel to different countries opens up many opportunities for the story.

The locations are another high point of the series as the ice fields of Russia, the island sanctuary of Jomsburg and the early days of London each depict a unique environment with its own vibe.


The story is excruciatingly slow and rarely engaging. Running three parallel plots without them intersecting means the series tries to do too much within the 8 episodes.

The fight sequences feel authentically choreographed but the camerawork during those fights is deplorable, to say the least. The camera cuts are chaotic and the viewing experience is uncomfortable.

Forkbeard’s decision to have Olaf be Swein’s protector is a strange one and he makes an ominous declaration before disappearing for the rest of the series. Olaf sleeps with Aelfgifu and dies without any external ramifications for their adultery which makes it ultimately inconsequential.


Vikings: Valhalla season 2 is not as intriguing as the first season and trudges along to the end. It feels more like the initial History Channel offerings that are focused on the historical aspect and dial down the rest. The performances are decent without ever being inspiring and the tone of the narrative remains mostly tame.

Vikings: Valhalla season 2
Vikings: Valhalla season 2 review: Mediocre follow-up to its predecessor 1

Director: Ciaran Donnelly, Monika Mitchell, Jan Matthys, Emer Conroy

Date Created: 2023-01-12 13:30

Editor's Rating:

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