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Vikings: Valhalla Season 1 Ending Explained: The Double Crosses, Deaths, And More

sam corlett leif vikings: valhalla netflix
(Image credit: Netflix)

I suppose we now know for sure that it can never be said that Vikings: Valhalla is any kind of pretender to the throne when it comes to keeping the Vikings franchise alive with its battle-filled, double-crossing drama. The sequel series hit Netflix and delivered exactly what many fans of its parent show would have wanted. This includes the Vikings: Valhalla Season 1 ending, which featured so many twists that it may have been hard for some viewers to keep track of what Freydis, Harald, Jarl Haakon, Leif, Queen Emma, and everyone else was really up to.

So, for you now, we have a rundown of the biggest moments from the Vikings: Valhalla Season 1 finale. But, beware! If you haven’t finished the series just yet, the following is FILLED WITH SPOILERS! Now, on to the good stuff!

kåre harald vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Harald Double Crossed Olaf And Kåre!

Well, at first it looked a bit like Harald had abandoned Jarl Haakon, Freydis, and all of Kattegat as they prepared for the coming war against Jarl Kåre and Harald’s brother, Olaf. He took off in the wee hours of the morning and switched sides, which did turn out to be his attempt at getting more information about the other side. When Harald manages to convince Olaf and Kåre to have a parlay with Haakon, he’s able to slip Leif their plan of attack, so that Kattegat could be better prepared.

asbjørn krogh nissen kåre vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Olaf Double Crossed Kåre!

It was pretty clear from the beginning that neither Olaf or Kåre really trusted one another, despite their alliance to bring down Kattegat, and this became particularly obvious once the battle for Kattegat began. The plan had been for Kåre’s forces to attack the main gate by land, while Olaf’s ships took advantage of the very high tide to attack by sea and split Kattegat’s already relatively small force.

However, while Kåre was doing as planned, Olaf sent non-fighters on his ships so that Kåre’s army would be the only one fighting for a time. This meant that they would weaken Kattegat alone, and leave Olaf and his actual army free to swoop in later and finish Haakon’s fighters off so that Olaf could take the city alone. This is kinda just what happens when you let your ally see you talking to an empty cage, Kåre!

pollyanna mcintosh queen Ælfgifu

(Image credit: Netflix)

Queen Ælfgifu Double Crossed Forkbeard, And Might Pay Dearly For It!

King Canute really (reasonably) pissed off his wife, Queen Ælfgifu, when he went and married English Queen Emma behind her back. So, Ælfgifu took it upon herself to take control of his fleet, sail to England, and withhold the mighty force from Forkbeard (who was ruling England while his son, Canute, was gone) unless he banished Emma back to France. Which he did, with Ælfgifu then refusing to tell him where the fleet was. 

But! The banishment was a scheme concocted by Forkbeard, Emma, and Godwin. While Ælfgifu was away securing a partnership between her fellow Mercians and Forkbeard/Canute, her fleet was located and she returned to see Queen Emma back on the throne. My guess is that Ælfgifu, at the very least, will be imprisoned by the time Season 2 comes around, if not outright beheaded.

freydis kåre vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Freydis Finally Killed Kåre!

Speaking of beheading… The fight that’d been coming for several episodes finally came in the Vikings: Valhalla Season 1 ending, when Freydis faced off against Jarl Kåre, Killer of Pagan Innocents (not his real title). After his army breached Kattegat’s defenses and stormed the city, Kåre saw Freydis and some other shield maidens carrying a gravely wounded Jarl Haakon into the Great Hall and followed.

There, after attending to Haakon as much as possible in the middle of a bloody battle, Freydis leaves the room to find Kåre waiting for her. The fight is tough for both parties, but Freydis is able to use her hidden dagger to weaken Kåre enough to get him on the ground, retrieves the sword she was given at Uppsala, and swiftly beheads him, making the finale very emotional for her. Good riddance! 

haakon caroline henderson vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Several Good Characters Also Died!

No one is going to miss ol’ Kåre, but there are definitely others we'll miss. Farewell, former shield maiden leader, Altora, who was taken out by one of Kåre’s most dangerous men after his army got into the city. Jarl Haakon also seems to have died from her two-arrow injury, after delivering words of encouragement to Freydis. While this happened before the battle, I think we should all pour one out for Audun, who agreed to be sacrificed so that he could take the prayers of everyone in Kattegat directly to the gods. And… this is a tough one, but we also said goodbye to yet another Greenlander, when Olaf killed Liv. 

sam corlett leif vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Leif Is Pissed!

Oh, sweet, tough, always-willing-to-fight Liv! She never backed down in battle, but was caught off guard by Olaf, who ran her through with his sword, right in front of her love, Leif, as they’d been fighting basically back-to-back. Leif immediately dropped everything to get her to safety, but after not being able to promise her that he’d meet her in Valhalla, she slipped away in his arms.

As Leif was mourning, though, a group of men came into the shed he’d taken Liv to so that they could rape some women they’d captured. And, those ladies got kinda lucky, because when they didn’t heed Leif’s warning to get out, he went and killed every single man in a fit of berserker-worthy rage. I mean, he warned them, you guys.

søren pilmark forkbeard vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Forkbeard Is Coming For Olaf!

And we come to yet another double cross! Olaf helped King Canute secure England, but on his way home, stopped to tell Queen Ælfgifu that her husband had likely already tossed her aside for Queen Emma. Then, he revealed that he wanted to rule Norway, which he knew would be challenged by Canute, and asked Ælfgifu to deny Canute access to his fleet. Once Forkbeard got wind of all of this, he got his own force together, left England with Queen Emma, and sailed to Kattegat, where he arrived right as Olaf was celebrating his victory. What will happen to Olaf in Season 2? It probably ain’t gonna be good!

harald freydis vikings: valhalla netflix

(Image credit: Netflix)

Freydis And Harald Escaped Kattegat Alive!

Harald was able to get back to the city and begin to fight for Kattegat, but took an axe to the gut, which sidelined him. After Freydis dispatched of Kåre, she saw Harald, got horses for both of them, and they managed to ride out of Kattegat before Forkbeard showed up. Where will they go to recover and will they try to take back the city? We’ll have to wait for Vikings: Valhalla Season 2 to find out!

You can revisit the full first season on Netflix, but for more on the small screen, check out what to watch if you enjoyed Vikings: Valhalla, the 2022 TV premiere dates, and see what else is coming with the 2022 Netflix TV schedule

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