This show has had it share of historical inaccuracies, but none of them were as bad as the episode Viking vs Samurai. This has to date been the closest ancient match up with a difference in the end results being less than 5%. There were many things wrong with this that gave the Samurai an unfair edge. The first thing being the srmor of the Viking. which was underestimated. This show has a history of using improper chainmail and this time was no different. The use of butted or unrivited chainmail in battle is ridiculas, it took too much time to make and did not offer much more protection than leather armor. The Vikings wore mutiple layer of leather armor with their chainmail for greater protection and this was not taken into consideration. The leather and rivited chainmail would have stopped all the Samurai's slashing and stabbing attcks on the body and arms, as well as the wide tipped arrows from the Yumi bow (you need bodkin arrow tips to pierce chainmail).
Another major problem with this match up were many the weapons in general. The most glaring example of this is the Samurai's Kanabo, it was a large unwieldy weapon that if ever used would have been about 10 lbs not the 35 lb one used in the shown ( this alone would have taken away a decent amount of the kill it got), and it was not used by the Samurai but foot soilders, to be honest this weapon was more in place in mythology than on the battle field. Another issue I took with this episode is the Viking's shield, it would have never been used alone it should have been coupled with the sword (like the targe and dirk for William Wallace), they said in the aftermath that in the sim the shield was counted with the other weapons but without the tests this is a skewed result. The sword and shield should have been paired and his special weapon should have been another weapon like the atgeir or the seax.
One other weapon that I alone believed tipped the the scales were the long rang weapons. While Vikings could throw spears with devistating results, the warbow would have been the long range weapons of choice. The Viking long bow had a very high draw strength (believed to be between 90-120 lbs) this gives it much penitrating power than the Yumi bow. This coupled with Viking's various arrow tips would have helped change the end of this fight. The Viking's had armor piercing tips, broad tipped arrows (like the arrows for the yumi), and the fire arrow (which unlike the arrow's SunTzu used were designed to spray tar cover linen over the target to catch it on fire, this would have either made the Samurai take off his armor;which was mostly mad of bamboo and leather not steel, making him more vunerable, or try and put it out which would require completely smothering the flame which would also open him to attacks).
So in the end the Viking got a raw deal simple because he was fighting a warrior often over glorified by the media. While the Samurai is a skilled and powerful warrior in his own right, I do not believe ina real fight he would be able to over come the Viking's superior strength, armor, and sturdy weaponry.
Admin Addenum: There is now an official show complaints blog. If you wish to continue whining, do it there. This blog is very old.