The Most Nerve-Wracking Moments In ‘House Of The Dragon’ Season 1

“House of the Dragon” Season 1 was a big treat and maybe HBO’s way of redeeming itself after the horrors of the final season of Game of Thrones. The series is based on the best-selling book “Fire and Blood” by celebrity author George R.R. Martin, and explores the events of the Targaryen Civil War, also known famously as the “Dance of the Dragons.”

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Season 1 of “House of the Dragon” was packed with tons of bloodshed, betrayal, Dragons, and some equally brutal and shocking moments that made us jump out of our seats. So, without further ado, let’s take a deep dive and explore the best nerve-wracking moments from the “House of the Dragon” Pilot season once again. 

Spoilers Ahead

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Viserys Losing Both His Wife And Newborn Baby

King Viserys badly wanted a male child who’d be his rightful successor and one day take his place as the King of the Seven Kingdoms and the Protector of the realm. There was no end to Viserys’ happiness when he knew that his wife, Queen Aemma, was expecting. The King organized a tour to commemorate his son’s arrival. But his happiness was short-lived when he was made aware of the arising complications. This scene is one of the most depressing, intense, and equally difficult to film, says actor Paddy Considine. After returning to Aemma’s chambers, he learns from Mellos that the baby is in the breech and that the mom and infant may perish as a result. Mellos suggests a method where the mother’s tummy is sliced open to release the baby. The baby could survive, but Aemma will definitely die. Viserys agrees to it. Painfully, Queen Aemma gives birth to the son Viserys has always wanted, but she does not live to see him grow up. Regrettably, Baelon, the newborn royal, passes away just hours after his birth, leaving Viserys, The Peaceful without a wife and a male heir. 


The Battle Of Stepstones 

Throughout episodes 2 and 3, the show oscillates between the King’s Landing and the Stepstones, where the exiled Prince was fighting a bloody war alongside Lord Corlys, the ruler of Driftmark, against the Triarchy. The crab feeder was murdering Westerosi seamen and troops and stealing their riches. The death bestowed upon them was slow and equally brutal. The crab feeder was killing Westerosi sailors and soldiers and was plundering their ships. Crab Feeder was feared for nailing his enemies to a wooden board on a beach infested with flesh-eating crabs. Since he was losing a lot of money due to the looting of his fleets, this matter was of particular concern to Lord Corlys. His heart’s desire was to conquer Stepstones and gain control of the Narrow Sea. Daemon was summoned by the King of Tides, who suggested joining forces against the Crabfeeder.

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The Sea Snake was astute, and he exploited Daemon’s desire for fame and attention. Later, upon reading his brother’s letter, Daemon flies into a rage, crosses the stream, pretending to surrender, and starts slashing his way through Triachy’s forces. He was heavily outnumbered but was soon joined by Corlys’ forces and Sea Smoke, which quickly ended the three-year-old war. Daemon followed Crabfeeder to his cave and came out with his severed corpse. 


Daemon And Rhaenyra Sharing A Passionate Moment

Scenes from Episode 4 show the Rogue Prince and his niece making out in the dark alleys. During night, Rhaenyra left her chamber through secret tunnels built by “Meagor the Cruel” unbeknownst to her sworn protector, Ser Criston Cole, dressed as a page boy with her uncle, and together they visited brothels. The two were clearly experiencing a passionate moment as they were shortly seen caressing and embracing each other. Daemon’s intentions were clear; he wanted to get inside his brother’s head. He tried a similar tactic when he stole the dragon egg just to gain an audience with his brother. Demon’s reluctance to sleep with his niece suggests there may be an ethical boundary he won’t cross. He had no intention of using Rhaenyra for his personal gain. He adored his niece and couldn’t come to terms with what he was about to do. 

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Sir Criston Beating Joffrey To Pulp, And Choosing Sides 

There is a long tradition of violence during weddings in Game of Thrones, and House of Dragon is no exception. Sir Criston Cole couldn’t control his anger and kept the fight on with Joffrey, which resulted in his death. Criston and Rhaenyra were bedding one another, unbeknownst to everyone, and when he asked her to leave everything behind and begin with a fresh start by getting married, she denied it. Furthermore, the princess got engaged to Laenor Valeryon, the heir to the seat of Driftmark, to strengthen Westeros’ naval prowess, which made him pretty mad! Later, when Laenor’s lover, Joffrey Lonmouth, approached Criston and disclosed that he knew the secret of his and Rhaenyra’s, Cole lost his cool and started punching till he bled to death. Afterwards, the knight shed his robe and pulled out a dagger to take his own life but was stopped by Queen Alicent Targaryen. This was a defining moment for the show as it contributed to Ser Criston Cole officially joining the “Greens.”


Queen Alicent Demanding Lucerys’ Eye

Aemond always longed for a dragon, and his quest nearly had him killed by Sunfyre. He hated that everyone except him had found their beasts. His wish finally came true in the 7th episode of the House of Dragons. After Laena’s death, Vhagar was left unclaimed. In the ungodly hours, the Prince left his chambers, climbed on Vhagar’s back, and took the beast on a cloudy ride, finally bonding with it and claiming it as his own. After landing, he was confronted by Laena’s daughters and Rhaenyra’s sons. The verbal spar quickly turned into a physical one, and Lucerys cut Aemond’s eye. Rhaenyra was summoned, and the Maester deduced that Aemond’s wounds would heal, but his left eye was entirely lost. This dramatically angered Alicent, and the Queen ordered her sword protector, Ser Criston Cole, to gouge Lucery’s eye, which he refused. Lastly, Alicent took matters into her own hands and attacked Rhaenyra, which left her bleeding, revealing Alicent’s true nature.

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Daemon’s Plan To Remove Laenor Out Of The Picture

Rhaenyra was by no means a naive princess; she knew that the Hightowers would do everything in their power to stop her pursuit of the Iron Throne. After Daemon’s wife’s death, Rhaenyra asked her uncle to wed her to strengthen her claim to the Iron Throne. Daemon agreed, but they needed Rhaenyra’s current husband, Leanor, out of the picture. The Rogue Prince trusted Ser Qarl for this job, for a safe passage through the Narrow Sea and for more gold than he could ever spend. But the truth is revealed towards the end as the audience sees a bald Laenor leaving Driftmark on a boat with Sir Qarl cutting his ties from the ongoing unrest. Laenor tricked everyone by placing a badly burnt corpse in his room. Rhaenys and Corlys mistook the corpse for their son’s and wept, not knowing that Laenor was alive and well and on his way to free cities.


King Viserys’ Finally Succumbing To His Wounds

In Episode 8, Viserys took his last breath and, with his death, snapped the last remaining thread that was keeping the “House of The Dragon” together. The show and the Iron Throne itself haven’t been good to King Viserys. We see Viserys’ deteriorating health over the course of the first season. After acknowledging his daughter’s rightful claim to the Iron throne and her son’s legitimacy, he tolds his daughter and grandsons to join him for supper. During the feast, the King removed the gold mask that had been covering his left side, showing his decaying visage and hollow eye socket. His health quickly deteriorated, and he was taken to his room, where he perished. The spectators had grown fond of the Targaryen ruler, making his demise all the more tragic.

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Alicent’s Misinterpretation Of Aegon’s Dream

The next one on our list is “Aegon’s Dream,” aka “A Song of Ice and Fire,” and its misinterpretation by Queen Alicent. The secret of Aegon’s dream about the “Prince That Was Promised” was passed down through the generations by every Targaryen King to their heir. This is the same dream that drove the Targaryen King to mount his dragon, “The Black Dread,” and conquer the seven kingdoms of Westeros. He dreamed that an unknown evil would annihilate the realm. This gloom, as Aegon put it, would put an end to all life on Earth. A Targaryen ruler with the strength to unify the realm in its struggle against the impending darkness will be the only thing that stands between life and destruction. He even carved the vision onto his Catspaw dagger.

In the final moments of Episode 8, Queen Alicent sat beside her dying husband. Earlier, the King was visited by his daughter, Princess Rhaenyra, who wanted to talk about Aegon’s prophecy and asked him whether he believed in it or not but was met with his silence. However, the following night, King Viserys confused Alicent with Rhaenyra and spilt all the beans. Alicent, who was completely oblivious to the dream, assumed that her dying husband, the King, wished to crown their son Aegon II as the protector of the realm.

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The Beast Beneath The Boards

“House of the dragon”s episode 8 was one of the best episodes so far and catapulted the HBO spin-off to a new height. When Alicent broke the news of Viserys’ death to his daughter Helaena, the latter warned her of the “Beast Beneath The Boards.” This didn’t make any sense at that moment, but the episode’s final moments reveal this detail in a very explosive fashion. Rhaenys is released by Ser Erryk so that she can escape  King’s Landing on a boat and journey to Dragonstone to seek a safe harbour. But the duo is parted while the soldiers are leading the inhabitants of the town toward the Dragonpit for Aegon’s crowning. Rhaenys witnesses the Greens anointing Aegon and Ser Criston bestowing the Conqueror’s crown on Aegon. She then discreetly moves towards Meleys via the tunnels underneath the large hall. They both emerge from the pit at once, wreaking mayhem and slaughtering a substantial percentage of the gathered crowd. Despite having the opportunity to scorch her enemies with her dragon’s breath, Rhaenys opts to fly away instead.


Prince Lucerys And Arrax Caught Between Vhagar’s Jaws

In the finale episode of the “House of the Dragons,” Rhaenys informs Rhaenyra of Hightower’s doings and pledges her allegiance to her niece, the rightful heir to the Iron Throne. Lucerys requests Rhaenyra to send him to Harren Hal to ask for Lord Burros’s support. Upon reaching Harren Hal, Prince Lucerys notices Aemond’s dragon, Vhagar. The discussion quickly turns ugly as Aemond throws his dagger towards Luce, demanding him to gouge his own eyes as a payback. To avoid bloodshed in his halls, Lord Burros turns down Lucerys and orders his soldiers to escort the Prince to his dragon Arrax when he senses Aemond’s real intentions. Lucerys mounts his dragon but is soon followed by the one-eyed Prince. The battle ensues, and Vhagar emerges victorious by slaughtering both Lucerys and his dragon, Arrax.

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Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh Shandilya
Rishabh considers himself a superhero who is always at work trying to save the world from boredom. In his leisure time, he loves to watch more movies and play video games and tries to write about them to entertain his readers further. Rishabh likes to call himself a dedicated fan of Haruki Murakami, whose books are an escape from his real being.

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