Vikings: ‘Definitely challenging’ Lagertha star on the toughest moments of season one

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Fans are still waiting for the epic saga of Ragnar Lothbrok and his sons to conclude after the sixth season of Vikings saw the death of beloved character Lagertha. The long-standing main cast member Katheryn Winnick has opened up on the toughest part of bringing the shieldmaiden to life in the first season on History and Amazon Prime Video.


Episode six, Death and the Serpent, of Viking’s climactic six season brought the tale of Lagertha (played by Katheryn Winnick) to a tragic end.

Following a foreboding prophecy from the Seer (John Kavanagh), the premonitions came true and the shieldmaiden was indeed struck down by a son of Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel).

Blinded by madness and hallucinations, Hvitserk (Marco Ilsø) kills Lagertha when he mistakes her for Ivar the Boneless (Alex Høgh Andersen).

Saying goodbye to Lagertha was not only one of the most heart-wrenching moments for long-standing fans of the series, but also for Winnick herself and the series’ showrunner, Michael Hirst.

After almost six entire seasons of Vikings, Lagertha has become just an enduring and iconic a hero as Winnick’s on-screen love interest, Ragnar.

It’s unclear when the final half of season six will eventually air, but there has been some speculation Winnick and Fimmel could appear for one last cameo before Vikings comes to an end.

In the meantime, fans have been looking back at the story so far and reminiscing about the epic family saga.

Back when the first season of Vikings aired in 2013, Winnick’s female Viking hero was sadly a less common sight in historical dramas of the same ilk.

Pioneering small screen action heroines, Vikings remained historically accurate by putting Lagertha and the shieldmaidens on equal footing with the macho male warriors.

However, Winnick admitted it was often hard to keep up during the first season’s most gruelling battle sequences.

Speaking to Collider upon the release of the first season, Winnick admitted it was difficult to strike a fine balance between Lagertha’s physicality and her emotional core.

She explained: “As her husband goes off to raids, Lagertha has to deal with the community and hold the community together, and still struggle with the personal conflict of her husband being gone and the fact that their relationship is tested.”

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“She also has to deal with the village and the other Vikings and her daughter, and other tragic things that happen. For me, it was definitely very challenging.”

Although Lagertha was often left to deal with more subtle conflicts while her husband took to the battlegrounds, Winnick was still given the chance to don some armour and get her hands dirty.

Unfortunately, going toe-to-toe with her male co-stars took some getting used to.

Winnick continued: “It took a little bit of getting used to, especially because the Viking cast members are all 6-foot-5 and huge, but it really helped with the character since she is a shieldmaiden.”

“In those times, women were actually allowed to fight on the frontline with their husbands and their brothers and other men, so it was nice to be able to mirror that and get a chance to hang out with these guys.”

Lagertha quickly proved herself as a formidable force in the series, and even outlived Ragnar after his shocking death at the end of season four.

Following her departure in season six, Katheryn Winnick is taking a break from medieval battles to solve a puzzling murder mystery in new crime drama Big Sky.

Vikings season six will conclude in 2020 on History and Amazon Prime Video.

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