Among the more unlikely successes of recent cable memory, few were as unpredictable as Vikings. Nobody was expecting a History series—History! The channel for dads to fall asleep to!—to capture the public imagination, and yet the saga of Ragnar, Lagertha, and their various warriors and family members became a TV sensation, drawn in by a mixture of gritty violence and intense emotion. Now the saga is returning, with Netflix showing off its first look at spin-off sequel series Vikings: Valhalla today at Tudum, the online fan event named after that sound you hear sometimes in front of TV shows.
Rather than try to pick up the plot threads of the flagship show’s final season—it’s kind of hard to pen a direct sequel to something titled “The Last Act”—the new series jumps forward a century or so, following various Norse heroes in the 10th Century CE or so.
But from the show’s first-look teaser, we’re definitely still firmly in Vikings territory. Which is to say, we’ve got plenty of blood and men in boats, plus lots of oath-y language about whether “Your fight is my fight” and the solidarity of the Viking people. The trailer focuses primarily on Sam Corlett’s Leif Eriksson, the famed explorer frequently credited with being the first European person to set foot on North America. Not that he’s doing a lot of “exploring” in this one: It’s all about the battles and the oaths with this guy, accompanied by his sister, Freydís Eiríksdóttir, played by Frida Gustavsson. Also, lots of swords and axes, because, well: Vikings.
Valhalla stars Laura Berlin, Corlett, Bradley Freegard, Leo Suter, and Gustavsson. The series is being showrun by Jeb Stuart (Die Hard), working with original Vikings creator Michael Hirst. The series began filming last year; no word yet on when it’s likely to hit the Netflix airwaves.