Vikings season 6: Did Erik the Red and King Harald meet in real life?
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The final season of Vikings introduced several new characters into the Viking world, including Norse explorer, Erik the Red (played by Eric Johnson). In the series, Erik is an ally of Bjorn Ironside (Alexander Ludwig) and by default, fought alongside King Harald (Peter Franzén) to defeat the Rus Vikings. Did Erik the Red and King Harald ever meet in real life? Express.co.uk has everything you need to know.
Did Erik the Red and King Harald meet in real life?
In the Vikings season six finale, King Harald was injured in battle on the beaches of Kattegat.
He had allied with his enemy, Bjorn Ironside, in an attempt to defeat the invading Rus Vikings, led by Ivar the Boneless (Alex Høgh Andersen) and Prince Oleg of Novgorod (Danila Kozlovsky).
The last viewers seen of King Harald was when him lying on the floor, with his Norwegian crown rolling falling from his head.
Newcomer, Erik the Red, picked Harald’s crown off of the ground, leading many viewers to suspect Erik will try and claim the Norwegian throne for himself in the final 10 episodes of Vikings.
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If Erik the Red does make a bid for the Norwegian throne, show creator Michael Hirst will be deviating from the true historical narrative.
Show creator Michael Hirst has blended historical fact with fiction over the past six seasons, so there is the huge possibility Ivar the Boneless or Erik could become king of Norway.
Not only was Erik the Red never the King of Norway, but he and King Harald Finehair also would have never met in real life.
Erik was a Norse explorer, who in mediaeval and Icelandic saga sources is described as finding the first settlement in Greenland.
He is believed to have lived from 950 until 1003, two decades after King Harald’s existence.
King Harald is believed to have lived between 850 and 932, reigning Norway between 872 and 930.
He was succeeded by his son Eric I, also known as Eric Haraldsson or via his nickname, Eric Bloodaxe.
Speaking to Entertainment Tonight earlier this year, actor Eric Johnson who plays Erik, gave some further details about his character.
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He said: “For Erik, he has got his own agenda too, he has to look out for himself.
“He comes into this in a very compromised situation, he comes in as a man of the forest which means he doesn’t have any rights and anyone can kill him without any consequences.
“At any point in time if Bjorn doesn’t like him it’s like, “Oh you’re out in the forest again”, it’s a bit of a balancing act.’
Show creator Michael Hirst teased the fate of Harald, revealing fans will not find out if he survived his injuries until episode 11.
Speaking to TV Guide after the season six finale, Hirst said: “ I think perhaps one of the unexpected things about that episode, the last episode of 6A, was how definitive it seemed to be that this is a wipeout for the Vikings that we’ve never really seen.
“And you know, we’ve seen the power of the Rus. I mean, those extraordinary scenes in episode nine, when we see the Rus army marching out and we realized just how formidable and huge that army is.
“And so it’s not a surprise that the Vikings can’t hold them. And yes, a lot of people, a lot of Vikings are killed.
“And Harald and Bjorn are certainly extremely seriously, seriously wounded and likely to die. But what happens after that is saved for [Episode 11].”
Vikings is streaming on Amazon Prime now
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