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Who would have thought the priest would play a crucial role in Canute’s awakening moment in being a king? But I for one love it.
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27 Replies to “The Essence of Love – Vinland Saga Episode 18 Review”

  1. This is one of the most amazing episode of the Vinland Saga. And zi loved the fact that how it avoided that cliche fight and action in this episode, just for the sake of the views. No. The creator went with this philosophical episode even though he might knew that not everyone will be able to digest it. Bravo. Man, bravo. 😊 Plus the fight between Thorkell & Thorfinn was such greatly animated with subtle and extremely well-done and man were the transitions so powerful. The reality of Thorfinn not able to kill or harm Thorkell much is also praise-woethy. And man, the THORvs reappearance was so NOSTALGIC. PERFEXT EPISODE. ANXIOUSLY WAITING FOR EP 19. 😊

  2. I’ve been looking forward to this episode since I started reading the manga. And man, Wit Studio really nailed it. One of the best episodes for sure.

    The priest’s speech… it really makes you think. It makes sense especially for this time period and it rings so true for today and probably for all time. At the end of the day, we only really care about the people we choose to, who are closest to us in bond. We can be kind to others by nature but still we don’t really care about them the same way, which is neither a good nor a bad thing; just how humans (and any other animal really) are. I loved how they cut between Canute hearing the priest talk about death being the epitome of love and Thorfinn thinking about his father and how he died as a true warrior. Canute crying over Ragnar and wishing he had been born as his son had me tearing up :’( but him standing up to Bjorn with THAT look, challenging God himself to build a paradise rivaling heaven for humans after realizing they’ve been exiled from salvation gave me chills… his eyes have become powerful like a king’s now. I’ve loved his character since he was introduced but his development makes him even better and is just amazing to watch. I can’t wait to see what’s next in store for him, painful as it’ll be… Canute is just best boi :’)

    This is where Vinland Saga really shines and it’s these episodes and scenes I love the most and that get stuck in my head long after I’ve read/seen them, the action is there of course in all it’s brutality but the themes it explores… just. Wow. People who come to this series just for the action miss out on basically the entire point of the series. From the very start this isn’t your typical shonen show and I’m really glad it isn’t, it has me on the edge of my seat anticipating dialogue like this

    I love Thorfinn and Thorkell’s dynamic so much… seeing Thorkell respect and care for him is great and cute in a way 🙂 and when Thorfinn was launched into the air… man, I FELT that. The action is top notch here. Really amazing episode

  3. i wasnt expecting a canute moment to be impactful. i was just looking forward to the thorfinn and thorkell duel just like everyone else, and this anime just outwitted us. no pun intended 😂

  4. Me before starting the episode: Bruh, the fight are gonna be fucking awesome
    Me after finishing the episode: Bruh, the dialogue were so fucking awesome
    This is like the third time this happen XD

    This episode was fucking incredible, this episode show that Vinland Saga is not about the fight but the dialogue and character and the story, anyone watching Vinland Saga for the action and fight will be disappointed, in the comment section of the site (which I shall not name) that I was using to watch the episode, most people were disappointed, that they wanted to see the fight and not this "Cringy stuff with the priest and prince", those people won't see the greatness in this episode, which is kinda sad

  5. Great character development out of Canute and the Priest this week. Canute will finally step up to the plate as a rightful heir hopefully

  6. This episode was very interesting. The concept of Love and Discrimination was something that catches my attention. Like dang dude.

  7. I hope this truly at the end of its adaptation gets to be seen as the critically acclaimed series it is. It is on another level with the greatest shows I've ever seen and I realise this is just the beginning.

    Just like the priest….. I was jaw-dropped by this episode. Simply outstanding.

  8. The eyes chico, they never lie… Askeladd, the general from Wales (forgot his name), and a couple others have always been discussing how Canute's eyes or face expression were not the ones a king should have. But we've seen a clear emphasis on this episode on his eyes, the same eyes that pacified berserk Bjorn and made the priest drop his booze. Canute's expression has evolved on pair with his character development, coupled with the amazing yet subtle choices of background music at the corrects moments this masterpiece of an episode made me feel warm inside and off to a happy Sunday. 20 minutes per episode is too little for this series, they always run so fast. Vinland should have 40 minutes episodes like the HBO productions has, but then that is an impossible dream.

  9. The back and forth between the duel and priest's speech delivered one of the most crucial (IMO) revelations of this episode that stuck out to me. When priest says "death is what completes a man" they show Thorfinn picturing his father's final moments.

    I never thought about it before, but Thors said "I am not yet perfect because I have to rely on the sword". But later seeing HOW he died told us that he was, in fact, complete. Because Thors himself was relieved at his death and how it would save his kid. This is such a powerful connection – maybe you can not tell while you are alive what it means to be a true warrior. But only when you are about to die you can look back and see what you are leaving behind and what your death means – that is when you can become complete. Now I can see that Thors knew that. That's why he was relieved. In his final moments he was finally able to see that his battles and struggles were not in vain.

    I think what Thorkell talks about, the essence of a TRUE WARRIOR is not something both he or Thorfinn can find while being alive. Only in death one can judge their path and see if they were worthy or not, if their battles had meaning or not. This is something everyone should strive for – to live in a way where you can look back in your final moments and think to yourself "yeah, now I am complete".

    Just wow.

  10. I love how they transitioned in between Thorfinn and Thorkell's discussion about what makes a true warrior and Canute's discussion with the priest because they are closely related. Thors was the closest thing to love from the perspective of the priest.
    Canute's character took a 180 turn but his reasons for changing made sense. Ragnar dying gave him an even clearer perspective.
    The philosophy from the priest is perfect for this series because of the time period.
    Perfect episode imo and for people who are complaining about not having enough fights, just go back to watching cliche shounen anime, this series aint about that.

  11. I’ve seen forums of people complaining that Canute took up too much time and took away from Thorfinn and Thorkell’s fight. Like are you serious? You’ve been watching the show for this long and you don’t even know what kind of show it is you’re watching? Were you seriously only in it for the action? This is like one of the best episodes of the series. So much character development and philosophical points brought up but “no I need muh cool fight.”

  12. Priest was correct about what love is. People only care about those who are close or dear to them. They can't possibly care for all the people who are suffering throughout the world and thus, no one and nothing truly loves in this world. They discriminate against others by loving only those they choose to.
    However we can't and shouldn't achieve true love because I think that's something abstract beyond our reach. One thing touched me in this episode though. "If I had been born as your son, everything would've been better" That line hurt me. :'(

    Canute development is real. It was so epic when he scared Bjorn with pure resolve and anger at God. He's asking the same question I was when I first started questioning religion as a teenager. Canute is now by far my favourite character and I had a feeling he'd become one.

    This show is pure greatness.

  13. Canute has changed. He is now becoming a king. Aside from Canute’s transition, the kick to Thorfinn from “best girl Thorkell” was so high. Will Thorfinn be able to hold his own against “best girl Thorkell”? Who knows? Anyways, Vinland Saga is an awesome anime. Other than that, cool:).

  14. Everything with Canute this episode was beautiful, like DAMN.  Wit adapting everything so well thus far brings so much happiness to my fangirl self. xD And poor lil Thorfinn getting kicked that high and far from fairest maiden Thorkell the Thicc.  Oof.

  15. Canute's dream and transformation were so good. This adaptation is absolutely amazing: the directing, soundtrack, voice acting (Kensho Ono, my god) – everything was perfect.

  16. I expected more fighting but it was a meaningful episode. Canutes balls finally dropped and understands his true purpose and Thorkell finding answers through Fighting 💪 It's been a phenomenal and bumpy journey bro

  17. What an amazing episode. If Wit can successfully adapt the remaining chapters of the prologue in season 1, this anime will become top 5.

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