Ever since the announcement was made that Jonathan Rhys Meyers was joining the cast of Vikings, the news has been scant in relation to his role. Finally, in the Season 4 finale, viewers got their first glimpse of his character, Heahmund, a religious warrior who also has a penchant for the ladies. Now, as news of a Season 5 premiere date seems imminent, is there anything else we know about Heahmund?
SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses Season 5 of History Channel’s Vikings. Please proceed with caution if you wish to avoid spoilers.
Jonathan Rhys Meyers’ character, Heahmund, burst onto the Season 4 finale of Vikings in the very last minutes of the episode. From this encounter, viewers learned that he was a religious man who also liked to have women on the side. As the scene ended, Vikings fans also saw that Heahmund had a sword emblazoned with the word “ananyzapata.” The meaning of this word has several translations, but many of them point to a meaning that could give it religious connotations, but also indicating a warrior-like translation. Considering Michael Hirst has previously said Heahmund belongs to a group that were an earlier version of the Knights Templar, this meaning seems fit.
But what does this mean moving forward in Season 5 of Vikings?
Some fans are already speculating whether Heahmund might be the sort of character that is there entirely for titillation. Considering all viewers got to see of Heahmund in the Season 4 finale of Vikings was of him burying a man and then having sex with the man’s widow, many wondered if the character was merely there for shock value or for gratuitous reasons.
However, according to an interview Jonathan Rhys Meyers did recently with Collider, even though Heahmund was shown in a scandalous situation at the end of Season 4, his character has a very particular reason for being there.
“[Heahmund has] got a particular reason for being there. It’s not a stunt. He’s not a gratuitous cast member, there just to keep you entertained. There’s a reason he’s there, and it’s a very particular reason. If he doesn’t perform the duties that he’s meant to perform, the story won’t move the way that it’s meant to move, and historically it won’t get to where it needs to go.”
Of course, if Heahmund is a religious man and the Vikings are still pagans, the reason for him being there could be as a catalyst to move the story along to future events in Vikings. This is something Jonathan Rhys Meyers alludes to in the interview, indicating that the show’s creator, Michael Hirst, is someone who knows enough about the history of the Viking and Medieval eras to use a character such as Heahmund as a catalyst to move the story forward.
“Of course, [Michael Hirst]’s going to have things planned. He’s not going to throw in gratuitous stunt characters to make things more interesting, but he has to twist and manipulate history a little bit because this is TV and you’ve gotta keep it moving.”
How do you think Heahmund will affect the upcoming storyline in Season 5 of Vikings? Let us know your thoughts and theories by commenting below.
You can view the official trailer for Season 5 of Vikings below.
Vikings has been confirmed by History Channel as returning in 2017 with Season 5.
[Featured Image by Jonathan Hession/History Channel]