Such a treat, to have season 5 of Vikings to watch! And Floki’s journey, trusting his life into the hands of the gods, giving up all means of navigation, was marvellously rendered, the singing and the praying and the exhausted joy of reaching land.
What a character, Floki is… not lovable, sometimes letting down those who love him, but intellectually he is the only character in Vikings that can compare to Ragnar, while spiritually he stands alone – for good and for bad. I never forgave his killing Athelstan, but his pagan piety (which is very different from Christian piety) is very deep.
Floki is essential to the overall arch of the series, as he made sailing to England possible with his boat-building innovations; I wonder whether the real ship-builder who built the new type of ships (with a flexible hull and an adjustable mast) was as interesting.
AND, I didn’t know that he is a historical figure: Hrafn Floki, Floki the Raven, was the first man to reach Iceland on purpose. I learned that in the Medieval Icelandic sagas course I am taking. Maybe Michael Hirst meant to mould Floki the boat builder on this explorer from the start, or maybe, like with Rollo, he chose to make his character fit into a historical figure later; in both cases, I think it worked out very very well.
I have borrowed the map from the course material, I hope it is ok.