How The Vikings Cast Feels About Getting Older On The Show But Not In Real Life

Vikings Lagertha Katheryn Winnick
(Image credit: Jonathan Hession/History)

As fans know, Vikings has chronicled a vast amount of time in its characters' lives. Since the series began, it has time-jumped over many years. For instance, Bjorn has gone from being a young boy to a full-grown man, and the role was naturally recast. And the same goes for Ragnar's other sons. While they have aged, a couple of the series' original cast members have stuck around to continue telling their characters' stories. So how does the Vikings cast feel about their characters aging ahead of them? At Vikings' 2018 San Diego Comic-Con panel, Rollo's portrayer Clive Standen said:

One of the best parts of being in the show is that, usually in a show when you cover so many years, they recast the actor. They can have a 60-year-old actor playing Rollo in his later life. This has been part of the acting challenge for all of us. When I first came into the show Rollo was 32, something like that and by the end of it he's in his sixties. So, you're getting to play a character over such a massive character arc. He's dealing with like I talked about you see Rollo when he comes back he can't do a lot of things anymore. He's dealing with things physically. It's such an amazing challenge and such a journey to go on rather than handing the reins off to another actor.

It is hard to think of how far Rollo has come from that 32-year-old guy to the one he will be in Season 5B. Not just in terms of age either. Clive Standen has seamlessly seen Rollo through his physical and mental maturation as the show has endured many time jumps. As Standen accurately points out, when it comes to the longevity of playing the same role, it is rare for a primetime actor to see a character through many years.

And therein lies the magic of Vikings allowing its cast to tell these stories. If you ask me, the show has made a smart move playing it that way. Despite her son aging, Lagertha had remained physically unaffected for the most part. That began to change in the midseason finale of Season 5.

Lagertha's hair turned white, signaling changes on the horizon when the show returns. At the SDCC panel, which CinemaBlend's Jessica Rawden attended, Lagertha's portrayer Katheryn Winnick added to Clive Standen's thoughts regarding aging on Vikings and gave hints as to what's to come for Lagertha as she embraces a new look, saying:

I'm going to add to that too. With Lagertha she's been there obviously she started as a young farmer to queen to where she's at now. And as the seasons continue to grow you will see a physical change from her. Not only physically, mentally, you will see that she's in a different place. As an actress I'll be honest with you... it's slightly challenging to let go and allow yourself to play older, unfortunately because you have that fear sometimes that you always look good as a female actress... I definitely embraced it. I spent a good three hours a day in prosthetics to allow Lagertha to change and I hope you guys will enjoy it.

Sounds exciting! Vikings creator and showrunner Michael Hirst gave credit to the series' makeup team, who recently received an Emmy nomination for their incredible work on the series. With Katheryn Winnick teasing a three-hour stay in the makeup chair, it sounds as though Lagertha will be undergoing a considerable physical change. It has been a long time coming, and it will be cool to see Winnick play this new version of Lagertha.

While subtle physical changes to show a character's maturation are often utilized by Vikings, it sounds like Lagertha's transformation will be quite profound. Showing the aging process is essential. Albeit, the characters' children aging is often the most substantial hint of how many years have passed. Watch Lagertha and Rollo's stories continue to unfold when the show returns.

The second half of Vikings' fifth season (also known as Season 5B) premieres November 28 on History. For other new television shows set to arrive this fall, check out CinemaBlend's guide to TV's fall premieres. For new television shows to watch while you wait for the return of Vikings, check out CinemaBlend's summer premiere guide. For more about Vikings, check out the show's official site.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.