Vikings: 10 Most Disturbing Moments

Crucifixion, torture, sacrifice - Vikings sure was a disturbing show!

Vikings Athelstan
History Channel

Vikings were not lovely people; in fact, their conquests were some of the most notably violent and barbaric events in the course of human history. Having a culture that centres almost entirely around war, violence and sacrifice is undoubtedly a recipe for bloodshed, and that's what the Vikings thrived on.

Seeing as History Channel's series based on this historical period was intended to capture the spirit and vibe of these people - even if accuracy wasn't always the priority - it goes without saying that the show was chock full of gruesome scenes and horrifying segments.

Throughout the show's lifetime, there have been some devastating and haunting scenes that were hard to sit through. Even lovers of gory storytelling were probably set aback by some of the barbarism that went into making this show so visceral, and that is part of why the series stands out as unique and memorable.

The following ten scenes are the absolute pinnacle of Vikings' disturbing moments, as they treated the viewers to some genuinely nasty images, and forced fans to watch their favourite characters go through hell.

This list will contain substantial spoilers for the entire show.

10. Target Practice

Vikings Athelstan
History Channel

There are times in a show when you don't even need to know a character all too well in order for their death to be disturbing. That was certainly the case with the one-bit part of Swithun, the Bishop of Winchester, who faced a horrifying fate at the Vikings' hands.

After the Vikings attack the town of Winchester, this unlucky religious figure confronted Athelstan, threatening him with crucifixion - which was an awful spot of foreshadowing - thanks to his supposed abandonment of Christianity. He was then taken by Floki, stripped down and tied to a pillar. There, the Vikings revelled in joy as they launched arrows into the poor defenceless elderly man.

Luckily - in a way at least - Athelstan took pity on the unfortunate soul and slits his throat in a sign of mercy, knowing that a quick death is better than this. Although this character was antagonistic towards him, Athelstan's mercy was a great sign of the former monk's righteous character.

Seeing this unlucky and harmless figure being powerless to defend himself, and the pure joy in the Viking's demeanours as they riddled him with arrows was nothing short of disturbing.

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Michael is my name, overanalysing comedy is my game! I’m a Bristol-boy who moved out to Surrey to get his BA and then moved on to get an MA from the Guildford School of Acting. I am your bog-standard freaky geeky lad.