In Vinland Saga Season 2, Episode 8, Thorfinn continues to suffer from nightmares haunted by the behavior from his youth. Thorfinn wakes and according to Einar he was “screaming more than usual,” and uttered Askeladd’s name. The following morning Einar and Thorfinn get to work on their farm. The retainers watch, jealous of their success. One retainer claims that “the world will fall into chaos if slaves are treated the same as retainers.” However, some of the retainers find this argument to be silly.
“the world will fall into chaos if slaves are treated the same as retainers.”
Thorfinn tells Einar who Askeladd was and what happened after that lead to his current situation. He claims that he no longer hates Askeladd and without it he doesn’t have anything to live for. His hatred consumed him and now he has nothing. Sverkel interrupts them and tells them if they “have time to talk, they have time to work.” He teaches them to how to fish with a net. Neither Einar or Thorfinn catch anything. Sverkel gives Thorfinn some advice. If Thorfinn is “empty” on the inside then it’s actually easier to become “reborn.”
Do you think people can change?
Thorfinn wonders what it takes to change. Einar tells him that he’s already changed as he no longer looks like a warrior. When they reach the farm they discover that it’s been sabotaged by the retainers. Einar, enraged heads to confront the retainers claiming that he wants to “kill,” them. Thorfinn tries to appeal to Einar, telling him that he has no proof, but Einar isn’t hearing it. Einar explains that because they used the soil’s fertility and won’t have anything to harvest.
The dynamic in the episode is interesting. As Thorfinn tries to leave behind his violent past, Einar seems to be heading towards adopting a more violent life. From Thorfinn’s perspective he doesn’t have the moral high ground to condemned the retainers. Thorfinn succeeds in stopping Einar. Pater is called and decides to investigate. He recalls his experiences as a slave and tells them not to give up. Everything seems fine until Thorfinn and Einar encounter the retainers. They gloat and mock Einar as his rage spills over and he tries to punch one of them.
Before he does so Thorfinn steps in and knocks one of retainers out. An all out brawl breaks out and Thorfinn freezes up, while Einar get jumped.
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