Kris Holden Ried as Eyvind, Gustaf Skardsgård as Floki Photo: Jonathan Hession / History
“The Lost Moment” begins right where “A New God” left us, with the self-anointed god Ivar ranting about his divinity and promising his people (and fellow gods) a sacrifice. The tease was that it would be Hvitserk, ever sulking and drunkenly puncturing his younger brother’s pretensions toward godhood (and impossible fatherhood). Ivar gave his brother the scary Ivar smile, and Hvitserk was nowhere to be seen when the hooded figure of Ivar’s intended victim was paraded in chains in front of his terrified people.
It’s not Hvitserk, as it turns out , but a blonde woman who sort of but not really looks like Lagertha that Ivar tries to pass off as “the witch” who killed his mother. Hvitserk is safe to grumble from afar, where he is comforted by a new love interest to replace the mercifully at-peace Margrethe as he wonders, in post-coital reverence, what the gods have in store for him. As with everything that happens under the rule of an amoral, truth-averse, hair-trigger impulsive leader, the intended majesty of Ivar’s grand gesture is undermined by poor planning and the mistaken belief in his own infallibility. Sure, it’s dark, and there are not high-definition cameras in the ninth century, but Ivar is left essentially shouting “fake news” when one of Lagertha’s shield maids loudly denounces the sacrifice as a sham while being manhandled out of earshot by Ivar’s men . Later we see how invariable Ivar’s ruse has been when a trio of rebellious conspirators are brought before him, one of them spitting Ivar’s untrustworthy sacrifice of mercy back in the supposed god’s face. “The Lost Moment,” right until it’s gory final moment, is an effective frightening portrait of a society in the hands of a madman whose only recourse is to braze out every half-believed grandiosity emerging from his bottomless well of need and lunacy. 1
9659006] Gustaf Skarsgård as Floki Photo: Jonathan Hession / History