Lagarfljótsormurinn, named after the river Lagarfljót in which it is said to reside, had already become famous in Japan, now it seems to have cast American audiences under its spell as well.
Under the headline “Folklore 'River Worm' spotted in Iceland”, NBC wrote yesterday:
“Iceland is buzzing over a water creature that looks a lot like the Loch Ness Monster. This video was shot a week ago, and it shows what looks like a swimming worm. Some believe could be Iceland's legendary sea monster called the ‘River Worm’. The creature is seen twisting in the river.”
Meanwhile, ABC asks: “Does the fabled Loch Ness monster of Iceland really exist?
Scientists are skeptical. But a new video alleged to have captured images of the monster has gone viral online, raising the debate over its existence anew.”
The same question has been asked by the British media. The Mirror quotes cryptozoology expert Loren Coleman, who said he suspects “a greater degree of human hoaxery.”
“What concerns me the most is the robotic look of this creature,” Coleman is reported to have said. "If you look at that head, it appears like somebody's put a constructed anaconda head there, and behind it, the natural movement of a snake should give a much more flowing curve to the sections.”
Others believe the footage simply shows a discarded fishing net moving with the current in the partially-frozen river Jökulsá í Fljótsdal, which flows into Lagarfljót.