I'm Richard I, from the Third Crusade!
(Richard the Lionheart was coronated as Richard I. Richard is notable for being involved in the Third Crusade.)
That only leaves room for you in second place!
(Richard the First and the Third Crusade's names include the numbers one and three respectively, meaning the only number missing is two, which Richard says fits Lodbrok's position in the battle, thus making him lose.)
The chivalrous swinger of the sword and mace
(Richard practiced chivalry, which was a code of honor that knights typically followed in battle. His primary weapon was a sword known as the Lionheart, which is named after him. A mace is a handheld weapon tipped off with spikes.)
And I kill you when I spit like a pit full of snakes!
(According to legend, Ragnar was executed by King Ælla of Northumbria, who threw Ragnar into a pit of venomous snakes. Some snakes, like the spitting cobra, are capable of spitting their venom when threatened. To "spit" also means to sing rap. Richard is says that he will kill Ragnar with his rapping like the snakes killed Ragnar in the legend.)
I'm the number one Dick risin' up to make you feel small,
(Richard again makes a play on his regnal name of Richard I, "Dick" is a term for the penis. It is also a shortened version of Richard. For a penis to rise up would mean to get erect. Richard says that he is superior to Lodbrok and has a larger penis than him, thus he makes Lodbrok feel small/inferior.)
My battering ram slams through your shield wall!
(A battering ram is a weapon that is mounted on wheels and used to bust down walls and castle gates to allow besieging forces to enter fortresses. Vikings were rumored to have fought in formations known as shield walls, which consisted of Vikings raising their shields to conceal their bodies. Richard says that his battering rams will plow through Ragnar's armies. Richard may also be using the battering ram as another euphemism for his penis.)
I'll announce at the next of your things
(A "thing" refers to a single-chamber parliament as used throughout Scandinavia, which dates back to earlier Germanic cultures. Richard says he will present his next argument at a thing when it meets, which follows.)
That I'm chomping through your family like boneless wings!
(Boneless wings are chunks of formed and breaded chicken served as an appetizer or party snack. One of Ragnar's sons was Ivar Ragnarsson, who is also known as "Ivar the Boneless". Richard uses chomping through as a way of saying he will kill Ragnar's family as easy as chomping through the meat in boneless wings.)
Of course you got avenged by a kid with no bones
(After Ragnar's death, his son Ivar the Boneless went to England with an army in order to avenge the death of his father. Richard says that it was expected for this to happen, in a way calling Lodbrok boneless. To be boneless means to be weak physically or mentally.)
Your own story ended worse than Game of Thrones!
(The series Game of Thrones was notable in the late 2010s for having an ending that many fans considered disappointing. Richard is saying that the ending of Ragnar's legends are even more disappointing than that of Game of Thrones.)
Your son killed your ex, your ex killed your wife,
(In the series Vikings" Ragnar's second son, Hvitserk, was hallucinating and, mistaking her to be his brother, Ivar, kills Ragnar's first and former wife, Lagertha. Prior to this, Lagertha murders Ragnar's second wife, Aslaug, out of revenge for taking her husband away from her.)
I'm the Lion King, man, but that's a messed up circle of life!
(A reference to the widely popular 1994 Disney animated film, The Lion King, Richard makes a comparison with his position as king and his title of Lionheart to call himself a Lion King. "The Circle Of Life" is the beginning song from The Lion King and refers to the life and death of all living creatures and their place in the food chain. Richard says the line of Ragnar's family killing each other forms a circle of life in itself that is messed up. Richard I is also calling himself the Lion King, referencing to his nickname, the Lionheart. Coincidentally, in another animated Disney film, Robin Hood, the character of King Richard, based on the real-life Richard I, is portrayed as a lion, also as a reference to his nickname of the Lionheart.)
Half-assed head tats can't be condoned!
(Richard takes a jab at the tattoos on the top half of the sides of Ragnar's head and says that no one could approve of them because they are ugly and incomplete from too little effort. Ragnar is depicted with these head tattoos in the series, Vikings.)
It's like you raided the face of Post Malone!
(Post Malone is an American singer known for his face tattoos. Raided refers to entering a place by force and stealing the property's belongings, something Vikings often did. Richard jokes that Ragnar looks like he raided Post Malone's face and stole his tattoos.)
I'm scared of no foe, I'm backed by the Trinity,
(Crusaders fought in the name of God. In Christian theology, God is represented by a Holy Trinity; The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Richard claims that he doesn't fear Ragnar since God is on his side.)
I'll conquer you on my day off like you were Sicily!
(Richard arrived in Sicily while traveling to Palestine and ended up conquering it despite no initial desire to do so, having only done such because he was threatened and his sister imprisoned. He tells Ragnar that he'll face the same fate.)
Threatening to conquer Ragnar is bold
(Lodbrok opens his verse by taunting Richard, telling the latter that challenging him is an unusually gutsy move considering what became of Richard, which follows.)
For a king who got whacked by a ten year old!
(While besieging the castle at Chalus in France, Richard was shot with a crossbow bolt and gangrene set in. Richard requested the archer who shot him to visit his bedside. The archer turned out to be a boy named Bertrand who Richard pardoned with a hundred shillings. Despite being pardoned, Bertrand was executed anyway after Richard's death. Lodrok continues his line by mocking Richard for all of his accomplishments, he still gets killed by someone way weaker than him.)
I'll sacrifice you to Odin while drinking horns of mead!
(Vikings were known to drink mead, an alcoholic drink brewed with honey, yeast, and water, and used drinking horns, fashioned from cows' horns, as cups. Drinking horns full of mead were also present at blots, which were Viking ritual sacrifices to the gods such as Odin as a way of communication, which Lodrok threatens to do the same to Richard.)
Good thing you hold a Red Cross, because that's who you're going to need!
(The British Red Cross is a United Kingdom chapter of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, an international humanitarian movement. Additionally, Richard I is commonly seen with a shield bearing St. George's Cross, a red cross on a white background that serves as the national flag of England. Lodbrok says that Richard's shield is convenient, for he will need the Red Cross to recover from his defeat after the battle is done.)
You built your army by raising English taxes!
(Richard spent most of his reign warring, so he levied heavy taxes on England to fund his exploits and thereby strengthen his armies.)
I raise my army taxing English asses with my axes!
(One of the countries Ragnar pillaged was England, and he claims that his form of taxation was killing English warriors. Ragnar's weapons of choice were war axes.)
Who are you to talk about the circle of life?
(Ragnar responds to Richard's prior The Lion King diss on his family, claiming that it is ironic considering the following line in regards to Richard and his own family.)
Your old lady can't feel the love on any night!
(Referring back to The Lion King, "Can You Feel The Love Tonight" is another popular song from the animated film. Richard's mother, Queen Eleanor of Aquitaine, plotted to overthrow her husband, King Henry II and encouraged Richard and his brothers to overthrow their father. Ragnar points out the irony that Richard previously dissed him for his family members killing each other when Richard's own mother felt no love for her husband and had her sons overthrow him. Richard the Lionheart was also believed to have very little interest in women and eventually married late to Berengaria of Naverre, whom his mother chose for him to marry. It is believed they never consummated their marriage and so Naverre would not feel any love from him.)
Your only son was illegitimate, you heired on the side,
(Richard had an illegitimate son, Philip of Cognac, whose mother was unidentified. An heir refers to the birthchild entitled to property or rank upon the parent's death. To have "heired on the side", Ragnar is referring to the fact that Richard had no children from his marriage to Naverre as they never consumated their relationship and instead had a child with another woman outside his marriage.)
I'll twist your spine like the end of the Plantagenet line!
(The House of Plantagenet was a Royal house whose family held the English throne from 1154, with the accession of Henry II, until 1485, when Richard III died in battle. Richard III had a disability known as adolescent idiopathic scoliosis, which resulted in his spine being severely curved and unaligned. Ragnar threatens to twist Richard I's spine just like Richard III's was twisted.)
I'm just a warrior, I'm not a linguist
(Ragnar was a warrior, so linguistics wouldn't be of much interest to him. He follows up on why Richard is an exception in the next line.)
But I think the king of England should probably speak English!
(Despite being king of England, Richard I lived in France most of his life and spoke French as his first language, not English. Ragnar finds this to be oxymoronic. This lyric might also be Ragnar stating that what Richard said in his verse doesn't make sense.)
You took Acre and Jaffa like a piece of cake
(During the Third Crusade, Richard joined forces with King Philip II of France battling the Muslim forces of Saladin in the Seige of Acre and succeeded in conquering the city. After this, Richard and his forces marched south and captured Jaffa. Ragnar states Richard conquered these cities easily like he was taking a piece of cake. This is also a reference to the chocolate sponge cakes, Jaffa Cakes.)
But never attacked Jerusalem, for Christ's sake!
(After taking Acre and Jaffa, Richard and his forces headed for Jerusalem which was his main goal. Richard, however, was unable to claim as he was required to head back to England as his brother, John Lackland, was attempting to take control of the country. Thus, Richard had to hastily arrange and peace treaty with Saladin, ending the Third Crusade. "For Christ's Sake" is a blasphemous expression used to express surprise or outrage. The goal of the Crusades was to secure Jerusalem for Christian peoples, i.e. in the name of Jesus Christ, the rabbi and faith healer who taught there and who is believed to be the One and Only Son of God. Ragnar mocks Richard for failing to claim Jerusalem for Jesus.)
Saw the Holy Land but couldn't go all the way
(Following the previous line, Ragnar says Richard was able to see the Holy Land of Jerusalem, but was unable to conquer it like he had intended.)
We should call it the Crusade of Richard the First Base!
(First base is one of four bases to run in baseball. Ragnar makes a play on Richard's title of Richard the First (Richard I) with first base as a diss to how Richard was able to conquer the first bases of Acre and Jaffa, but unable to go all the way in taking Jerusalem. This could also be further insult to Richard's marriage to Naverre as first base also refers to kissing in a relationship before moving onto sexual intercourse, and Richard never consumated his marriage with Naverre.)
Richard the Lionheart:
Sail back north with your barbarian goons
(A barbarian is a human who is perceived to be either uncivilized or primitive. Richard says Ragnar should sail back up north with his army.)
Because I'm tearing down your legacy: leaving it in runes!
(Runes are the letters of the runic alphabet, initially utilized by the Vikings. "Rune" also sounds like "ruin", making this a pun on Richard's part to say he will destroy Ragnar's legacy until only written records survive.)
Your real self next to your legend disappoints!
(As most of the exciting stories of Ragnar are rooted in legend, it is likely many of his exploits never happened and that the real historical Ragnar would disappoint in comparison to the legend made about him.)
I see you shaking in your shaggy little pants like "Zoinks!" (Ha!)
(Lodbrok's name means "Shaggy breeches", referencing his clothing. "Zoinks!" is the signature phrase of Norville Rogers from the Scooby-Doo series, whose nickname is also Shaggy. In Scooby-Doo, Shaggy's personality mostly revolves around eating a lot of food and being a coward.)
Who invented the royal me? We!
(The "Royal We" is an archaic grammatical rule used by the English monarchy to the effect that individual rulers referred to themselves using plural pronouns (e.g. we, us, our) rather than singular ones (e.g. I, me, mine). The introduction of this rule is accredited to William de Longchamp, the Lord Chancellor under Richard I, thus Richard would have been the first king to use it. In this line, Richard switches the pronouns "me" and "we" from their grammatically correct places to emphasize his use of the rule.)
Who's the predominantly fictional MC? Thee!
(Following from the previous line, the word "thee" is a similarly archaic pronoun equivalent to the word "you". As mentioned earlier, Lodbrok is a legendary figure and while most said about him is found in legend, there is little evidence if he did actually exist, unlike Richard. MC means "Mic controller", thus Richard is calling him both fictional, and also saying his rapping skills are fictional too.)
You're a wannabe, mon ami, kneel down and honour me
("Mon ami" is French for "my friend", Richard the Lionheart understood and spoke French.)
Richard coming through in the end like Sean Connery
(A reference to the ending of the 1991 film Robin Hood: Prince of Thieves, in which Sir Sean Connery had an uncredited cameo as Richard; he would see his cousin Maid Marian wedded to Kevin Costner's Robin of Loxley. Throughout the film, Marian touted her closeness with Richard and held faith that he would act to quell the brewing conflict between Loxley and Nottingham. He "came through" for her, but halted the wedding to give her away.)
The double-coronated blood and gore gourmet
(Richard I was officially coronated in 1189, before being coronated once more in 1194 due to fear that his imprisonment and ransom had compromised his title. Richard calls himself a connoisseur of producing blood and gore.)
You might have the axe, but I make a body spray!
(This line makes a play on that Lodbrok preferred axes in combat, as well as on the AXE line of personal hygiene products, among which are body sprays for men. Richard was supposedly ruthless in battle, so he brags that while Lodbrok might use an axe, Richard himself has other, more gruesome methods of putting down his opponents, which would make them spray blood from their wounds.)
Lionheart's the sobriquet but I'll strike like a cobra!
(Due to his military reputation, Richard was given the "sobriquet", or nickname, of Richard the Lionheart. Richard says that he may have the name of a lion, but his striking skills are akin to that of a cobra. This may also refer back to Ragnar's death in the pit of snakes.)
If I wanted to fight loser Vikings, I'd go to Minnesota!
(This line references the National Football League's Minnesota Vikings, who, in spite of their best efforts, have a history of being on the wrong side of close games, especially in the 2010s. Throughout their 40-year history, four Super Bowls and a number of conference playoff games were lost by the Vikings as a result of miscues from players and coaches alike. From this, Richard says that fighting Lodbrok, a figure based on Viking lore, is proving to be a waste of time and that battling the Vikings would be a better match for him. Incidentally, the only team consistently worse than the Vikings year-over-year is one of their division rivals, the Detroit Lions; the former hold an overall record of 78-39-2 over the latter as of the battle's release.)
You want to fight me?! Take off the tin shirt
(Ragnar says that if Richard wants to fight him he should take off his armour and face him using pure strength and military tactics instead.)
I'll be waiting in my birthday suit, going berserk!
(Viking warriors known as "berserkers" are said to have gone into battle totally naked except for bear or wolf pelts draped around them; they are believed to have taken mind-altering drugs or large quantities of alcohol before fighting, making them crazed savages in combat who would ignore pain, bite the edges of their shields, and even kill any of their own men who got in the way. The English word "berserk" comes from this Viking practice. The phrase "birthday suit" is often used to describe nudity. Ragnar threatens to fight Richard as a berserker while nude.)
Ding-dang-dong, morning bells warn about me at the break of dawn
(A reference to the French/English nursery rhyme "Frère Jacques" (which is known in English as “Brother John” and may have referenced the death of Richard's brother John). The song is about a friar called brother John who overslept and must ring the church bells for the morning. Its final lines read, "Morning bells are ringing/[Ding-dang-dong]!". Church bells tended to be used to alert about the attack of Viking warriors like Lodbrok, warning civilians to run or hide from the raiders.)
And I'm putting you to sleep like your brother John!
(King John was the brother of Richard the Lionheart, who before his actual reign tried to spread the rumor that his brother had died in the Holy Land to take his crown. Continuing the "Frère Jacques" reference, Lodbrok repeats his threat to kill Richard like how his brother faked his death.)
Leaving monks in chunks on Northumbrian lawns
(Northumbria was a territory in what is now northern England and southern Scotland, extant before Richard's reign. It was also, per legend, one of Lodbrok's most frequent raid targets. Churches and monasteries were places of frequent Viking attacks due to the rich treasures found inside and the peacefulness of the monks.)
Because I'm the All-Father's spawn!
(Ragnar claims he is the son of Odin, also known as the All-Father.)
You couldn't even beat a Salad in a fight!
(Saladin was the first sultan of Egypt and Syria. He is described as the Christian Richard I's Muslim counterpart. Richard I had finalized a peace treaty with Saladin, ending the Third Crusade before Richard could capture Jerusalem. Lodbrok interprets the act of peace-making as Richard being so weak that he couldn't beat a salad if he was to fight said mixture of pasta, vegetables, fruits, or nuts.)
You're as soft as Monty Python knights!
(A reference to the knights from the 1975 British comedy film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, who are known to be incompetent and cowardly. Ragnar takes a dig at Richard by saying he's comparable to them.)
You went from chainmail to chained up in jail
(Chainmail is a heavy fitting armour. After being shipwrecked in the Adriatic, Richard was captured and ransomed by the Duke Of Austria.)
Til Mommy drained England to pay for your bail!
(Following from the previous line, the ransom for Richard's release was costly and his mother decreed in England that a quarter of every man's income for a whole year would be used to secure Richard's release.)
But no king's ransom will save you from these bars, son
(Ragnar makes a play with prison bars and bars in rapping, as the ransom raised was able to save Richard from behind the prison bars, but would not be able to rescue him from Ragnar's raps.)
I'm eating you alive like the gangrene you died from!
(Gangrene is a type of tissue death caused by a lack of blood supply. Richard developed gangrene after he was shot with a crossbow bolt which eventually killed him. Ragnar says he is eating Richard alive as in dominating him in battle much like the gangrene ate through his body tissue and killed him.)