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Fans of History’s Vikings might be waiting impatiently for the show to return, but in the meantime, Titan Comics have unleashed a brand new story arc following the events of the mid-season finale, in which a sibling rivalry culminated in a violent showdown.
Vikings Uprising #1 is absolutely brutal, starting off amidst a bloody battle in which two brothers, Ragnar and Rollo, are at odds with each other. The fallout of the battle is felt by Ragnor, and he returns to his kingdom a broken man, distant to his family and his subjects. Elsewhere, his ex-wife Lagertha flees Paris and returns to Upsaala seeking holy guidance, only to be met with the aftermath of slaughter. With civil unrest brewing within the kingdom and the king’s life far from safe, it would appear that his problems are only going to worsen.
Whether you’re a fan of the show or not, Vikings Uprising #1 is a marvel of a comic that deserves your attention if you’re a fan of history, violence or even human drama. The most interesting aspect of it is the way in which the events of the war take their toll on Ragnar’s psyche, as he spirals into addictive tendencies, post-traumatic stress disorder and paranoid. However, another great aspect of Vikings Uprising #1 is the focus it places on Lagertha. Here she is centralised more so than she is in the show, and you really see her come into her own as a fierce leader and empowered female character. Cavan Scott understands this world, and he writes the characters how we already know them, but also adds brand new dimensions which feel natural.
The artwork from Daniel Indro is absolutely stunning as well. The panels are gritty and pulsating with tension and rage, and violence is tangible in every frame just waiting to explode. Suffice to say, the art complements the story rather perfectly, and considering that it’s a story rooted in violence and turmoil, you’ll understand just how raw and visceral the illustrations are.
Overall, Vikings Uprising #1 comes out swinging triumphantly. Fans of the show will love it, as will comic readers looking for a story that’s violent and thrilling, yet imbued with social commentary in regards to war, class divisions and gender politics. This gets my full recommendation and I can’t wait to see what the next issue has in store for us, but I get the impression that it’ll be just as packed with thought provoking themes and wonderful carnage. Pick it up immediately.