House of the Dragon Season 1 Ep 4 is the fourth instalment of an American fantasy TV drama series based on the Fire and Blood novel written by George RR Martin and is a prequel to the highly successful Game of Thrones TV series. House of the Dragon will focus on the war of succession within House Targaryen, the ruling House of Westeros, almost 200 years before the events depicted in Game of Thrones.
S P O I L E R S
Entitled “King of the Narrow Seas”, House of the Dragon Season 1 Ep 4 picks up some time after the defeat of the Crabfeeder at the end of the last episode. Rhaenyra continues to spurn hopeful suitors for her hand and returns to King’s Landing just as Daemon delivers the Crabfeeder’s sword to be added to the Iron Throne. Daemon bends the knee to Viserys and the brothers are reconciled.
It also seems that Alicent and Rhaenyra are reunited as they bond once more under the Godstree. Surely, there cannot be lasting peace in King’s Landing, can there? Of course not! Daemon steals Rhaenyra for a night out in disguise and seduces her (!) in the bowels of the brothel. Unfortunately, the coupling duo are spotted and this will be an important plot point moving forward. While it is clear that uncle and niece were seriously petting, did they go ‘all the way’? Unclear. Daemon seems to stop short and leaves Rhaenyra dissatisfied – which may explain why she subsequently returns to her room to seduce Ser Criston! What is a Game of Thrones sequel without copious amounts of sex!
The uncle-niece tryst is reported back to Lord Hightower and he conveys the news to Viserys. Viserys is naturally livid, confronts Daemon and banishes him from King’s Landing when the latter asks to take Rhaenyra as his second wife (!) Rhaenyra – when accused by her father – accepts her recklessness and the fact that she has to wed the son of the Sea Snake but demands that Lord Hightower be removed from his position as the Hand for his selfish ambition, which Viserys agrees to.
House of the Dragon Season 1 Ep 4 finally develops Rhaenyra into an intriguing character beyond the whiny, grumpy brat she has been portrayed as thus far. Not only is she able to exploit and enjoy her wanton (sexual) services but she has become a political animal as well, with the removal of the Hand. The entire incident between Daemon and Rhaenyra brings into focus a significant theme. As Viserys tries his best to appease the other Houses, Daemon and Rhaenyra are effectively telling him that as Targaryens, they can do whatever they want and not care about what others might think – after all, they are the House of the Dragon! This conflict and disconnect will inform the rest of season 1 we believe!
The Final Analysis
House of the Dragon Season 1 Ep 4 is definitely the strongest episode yet. Full of plot and character development and the nuanced focus on the relationships amongst Viserys, Daemon and Rhaenyra is gripping TV! Highly recommended!
Now streaming on HBO Max.
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