‘Vikings’ season 5 - Ivar the Boneless - Alex Høgh Andersen
Alex Høgh Andersen plays Ivar the Boneless on ‘Vikings’ season 5. Instagram/Alex Høgh Andersen

King Ragnar (Travis Fimmel) is arguably the most beloved character in “Vikings,” and his absence in season 5 may be affecting the viewership of the show. A new report has analysed the number of the show's downloads in P2P networks, finding a drop of 18 percent this year.

Since 2013, the year the show began, “Vikings” has been growing from strength to strength, grabbing the attention of fans from across the globe. For the first time this year, there has been a drop in viewership in P2P networks, according to a report by Tecxipio Magazine.

There were only 353,691 downloads of the season 5 premiere episode “The Departed,” compared to the 434,751 for the season 4 premiere. This is a drop of 18.64 percent. Readers should note that the numbers are higher than those of season 1 and 2, which suggests that fans may only be adjusting to the loss of Ragnar. The audience may take time to connect with the new lead, Ivar (Alex Høgh Andersen).

In terms of popularity, “Vikings” still holds its ground compared to other TV series currently on air. The show ranks at number 5 in the list of most watched shows in the first half of 2017.

Russia tops the list of countries where the TV series is very popular in P2P networks, followed by Brazil. The US ranks fifth, followed by Australia at the sixth position. The other countries in the top 10 are Spain at number three, France at four, the UK at seven, Canada at eight, Poland at nine and Ukraine at ten.

The next episode of “Vikings” season 5 is set to focus on the rivalry between the sons of Ragnar. Will popular characters like Ivar and Lagertha (Katheryn Winnick) manage to help make the show even more popular?