This week’s House of the Dragon, entitled “The Princess and the Queen” fast forwards 10 years after the marriage between Rhaenyra and Laenor. We have now switched over to the adult actors who will be playing Alicent and Rhaenyra- — and even Laenor — while the show also takes a deeper dive into what the political climate of Westeros is after all the betrayal and secrets of the past few episodes.
The thing is everything happens so quickly. We are introduced to new characters, such as the children of both Alicent and Rhaenyra, along with Harwin Strong… but we aren’t told much about their backstory. Who they are, what their motives are, etc.
The ten-year time jump did get us to, what I would expect is, the meat of the story. But… I do wonder what the showrunners were thinking. A part of me wonders if this was supposed to be a mini-series, or perhaps they were unsure if they’d get a second season, but this was the first episode that I wished hadn’t jumped so much.
By its title, we have started to see the allegiances starting to form in court. We see that Ser Criston Cole is a confidant of the Queen now — probably because she stopped him from committing suicide after killing Joffrey last week. But in the past ten years, sure he’s got himself a cool haircut; but he has also become incredibly bitter and angry towards Rhaenyra.
Which again… I can’t help but wonder… why?
And how did Rhaenyra go from Cole to Strong? How did they meet? How did they keep their affair a secret — or well, as much of a secret as they could? What has everyone at court been saying about Laenor being away for so long? Rhaenyra very open speaks to Laenor about his flings with other men for the past ten years… has no one else said anything?
We just come into this episode with tensions high and the desire to know more was really overshadowed by almost everything else.
Specifically, what else has brewed between Alicent and Rhaenyra over the past 10 years? Is the strife between them really because of what happened with Cole? Because that seems like such a big grudge to hold against someone. Why didn’t they just.. talk it out once in the past 10 years? And why… why is Alicent so hell-bent on making Viserys believe that Rhaenyra’s three sons are not her husband’s?
She’s taken an almost… creepy standing on this issue — asking to see the baby right after it was born. What did she think would happen? They’d dye its hair if she waited 2 days?
I do appreciate Viserys in this situation though. He looks like death- I have no idea how he’s still alive because I thought for sure he’d be dead after how he looked last week- but his willingness to just play devil’s advocate when it comes to genetics, made me laugh.
Because why do Alicent Hightower’s children have blonde hair, but Rhaenyra Targaryen’s do not? How does the blonde hair only come in handy when it’s convenient? Because I remember it not being present when a Targaryen needed to be hidden among some Starks for many years as well.
Either way, now that we have come to a point in the timeline where all the highest-billed actors are on screen, I hope we can slow down and really build up the plot and emotions, and character development. I want to see it. I want to feel it. Yes, some could argue that Game of Thrones took too much time sailing seas over the course of one season… but I’m sure we can find a middle ground between the two.
Let’s find out.
Random Thoughts Throughout the Episode:
- Another one of Daemon’s wives has died. Though, at least he seemed to actually like this one. Watching Vaghar have to kill Laena her master was heartbreaking… I am getting too attached to these dragons
- So… Larys is just a psychopath, huh. Okay. Cool.
- Do dragon eggs really not hatch for kids who are half Targaryen? Because that makes no sense — since Aegon has one.
- Why is Aegon so mean? Why is he masturbating in public? What was the point of this scene?
- I miss Milly Alcock and Emily Carey.