A Society Without War- Vinland Saga S2 Ep 15 Review

Thorfinn and Einar ruminate on what it would take to build a society without war. Arnheid inadvertently frees her husband Gardar from captivity.

Due to the retainer’s taking pleasure in the sport of killing slaves for no grievable offense other than their bemoaning social standing, I find it extremely hard to care when Gardar begins mowing them down indiscriminately to escape and regain his freedom.

Read Last Week’s Episode Review.

Vinland Saga Season 2 Episode 15 Review

“There’s no point if you use war to keep peace.”

Thorfinn destroying Canute’s new philosophy

Well, it seems Thorfinn just shot down Canute’s whole ideology in under 5 seconds.

Violence and War in Nordic Culture

While listening to Thorfinn’s speech about his ruminations on war in their culture, it reminded me of something I read some time ago.

Most people watching know that Vinland is a real place, and is somewhere in Canada to this day. America during the time Thorfinn and Einar were projected to live in our story had rarely been traveled to by outsiders – or so our history books state.

In truth, people crossed at will for the most part, until an extremely catastrophic event that Plato wrote about caused the amount of mud found in the Atlantic Ocean to be impassible.

Only in the late 1400s did a crew find their way back, utilizing navigation routes they traveled centuries earlier.  (i.e., the Spaniard who allegedly was led to our country by a shooting star ((or luminaries))– according to his own logs.)

Artist depiction of a certain swarthy Spaniard 'explorer' on the way to discover a continent already bearing the name America in the 1400s - This Country of Ours by Henrietta Elizabeth Marshall (1917)
Artist depiction of a certain swarthy Spaniard ‘explorer’ on the way to discover a continent already bearing the name America in the 1400s – This Country of Ours by Henrietta Elizabeth Marshall (1917)

Anyway, I’m losing my point – in one of (the many) books I’ve gathered about my homeland, there is a written account of the Vikings who came and formed Vinland. One book goes on and on at length about the “first white baby” born in America despite failing to recognize that Europe (with the late exception of Albion at the time) was wholly swarthy – the author also mentioned evidence of earlier Viking settlements.

“Which leads me to add one Remark: That the Number of purely white People in the World is proportionably very small. All Africa is black or tawny. Asia chiefly tawny. America (exclusive of the new Comers) wholly so. And in Europe, the Spaniards, Italians, French, Russians and Swedes, are generally of what we call a swarthy Complexion; as are the Germans also, the Saxons only excepted, who with the English, make the principal Body of White People on the Face of the Earth. I could wish their Numbers were increased.”

Benjamin Franklin’s (1751) Observations Concerning the Increase of Mankind

We already have accounts of tribes that spoke Welsh and hints of a hidden history concerning certain princes who hid out in our lands and spread their culture about – and evidence of Viking civilizations come in the Kensington Runestone discovered in Minnesota at the turn of the century last worth living in. (1898 to be exact – sorry to be dramatic but when I read older histories and accounts I’d much rather be living in the 1700s and 1800s as opposed to the primitive way we live today.

Kensington Runestone as seen in the Alexandria Minnesota Runestone Museum via reddit
Kensington Runestone as seen in the Alexandria Minnesota Runestone Museum via Reddit

Shoot, I’d even take the 1500s on a good day – I’d go straight to California.)

(Oh, the Bat Creek Stone written in Welsh was found in 1889 in Tennessee. It reportedly reads “Madoc the ruler is he” which supposedly marks the grave of the runaway prince I alluded to earlier. I guess he couldn’t make it to the Avenue of the Dead to be buried amongst the other royals and gods down in sacred Teotihuacan, Mexico.)

Tennessee Bat Creek Stone 1890 Lithograph
Tennessee Bat Creek Stone 1890 Lithograph

There was another book, as well – as they all blur together at this point – that spoke of a man who told a tale of entering a cave, and deep within its mountainous caverns finding a lake with a fully intact Viking ship from centuries earlier.

As these tales go, the man tried to come back to the location but could never find it again. I don’t know if he spent his life (and fortune) searching for the elusive cave, or ended up going mad and finding it – never to be seen again. I really need to look up a newspaper article of the time to find out – since they actually told in-depth news in the papers back then.

*sigh* now I’ve gone and made myself sad again. Let me get back to the focus of this episode –

Thorfinn’s Quest for Vinland

Thorfinn remembers his dream of Vinland and discusses the idea of a warless society with Einar
Thorfinn remembers his dream of Vinland and discusses the idea of a warless society with Einar

After Thorfinn and Einar weigh the causality of building a society far away from their warring one, Thorfinn finally remembers Leif and the last thing they spoke of – Vinland.

While it is completely natural for Einar not to remember encountering Leif maybe four years ago now after being freshly sold into slavery, I was almost hoping the name Leif would set off a little bell in his mind. It is also completely believable that Thorfinn doesn’t remember anything that happened aside from Askeladd dying by Canute’s hand up until this point since his emptiness cleared his mind of all fear, emotions, and thoughts he had during his Warrior period.

I know Thors eventually found people willing to follow him and settled down in Iceland to escape the war, but where is Thorfinn even going to find that many vagrants and outcasts in his Nordic society? I know we’ve met the odd woman who was being sold into slavery or running for her life, but for the most part, he hasn’t really encountered anybody who wanted to be saved?

Or rather, since Thorfinn had been too busy mowing them down with blade and dagger maybe he just didn’t notice all of the potential lives he could have saved and brought to Vinland.

Either way, I think I’m going to end this one here.

This is probably the last day of peace Ketil's Farm will experience for a long while...
This is probably the last day of peace Ketil’s Farm will experience for a long while…

But, tell me your thoughts.

Do you think Gardar ripping out a man’s esophagus with his teeth is a mark of the abuse he suffered while enslaved?

Why do you think history continually lies and tries to rewrite what was common knowledge centuries prior?

Leave your thoughts in the comment section below, we’d love to hear from you! Also be sure to follow us for more Vinland Saga Season 2 Episode Reviews and Discussions!    


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Author: In Asian Spaces

I write in my personal time and I haven't published much at all. I don't know if that qualifies me as a writer or not, but I'd like to change that. I have a deep passion for travel, cinema and (mainly) East Asian things, but I plan on writing various things to keep it spicy. Let's prosper together ~ よろしくおねがいします。

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