I’m eleven episodes in and I can tell that this is going to be an epic story. Vinland Saga is a story that takes place during the medieval period up around the Nordic territories. It follows the tale of a boy as he becomes a man and a Viking. It is not lost on me one how odd it is that I, an American, is watching a Japanese anime about Vikings from Denmark.
Vinland originally takes place in Iceland. A war is coming and the men in the village are recruited into it. One of the boy’s in the village sneaks onto the boat and is not prepared for the horrors that await him.
It’s still early on so I’m not sure where the series is going. So far, we’ve got a bunch of well animated fight scenes as well as emotional moments. What I really enjoy about historical fiction is when the show delves into the life and attitudes of the people of the time, regardless of whether it was entirely accurate enough. There are plenty of small scenes that give glimpses into the culture and beliefs of the time and they help flesh out the world. The majority of the story is still focused on the main characters, but you can tell that the author took a lot of time thinking about the culture of the people at the time.
The animation is fantastic. I can’t discern any drops in quality between action scenes and normally animated scenes.
Overall, this is a great bit of historical fiction. The story is heavy and dramatic, with a tone not unlike from Game of Thrones or Vikings. It’s just a quality production and easy to recommend to adult viewers. There is lots of violence and blood, so maybe you shouldn’t let kids watch it.