House of the Dragon season 1 episode 1 recap & review: The Heirs of the Dragon

House of the Dragon follows the story of House Targaryen and their rule of Westeros and the seven kingdoms. Episode 1 is now streaming on HBO Max.

Recap

The story of Jaeharys and how he chose his heir, Prince Viserys, at the end of the first century of Targaryen rule over Westeros. Time moves forward to the ninth year of Viserys’ reign, 172 years before the birth of Daenerys Targaryen.

His daughter, Rhaenyra Targaryen completes a ride on dragonback and visits her mother, Aemma, who is pregnant. Rhaenyra is told that being a mother is one of the duties of a woman of the court and that she’ll be in that position one day as well.

A meeting of the Kings council is taking place with Viserys being informed of a possible enemy amassing in the distance and the progress of the City Watch under the command of his brother,

A meeting of the King’s council takes place with Viserys being informed of a possible enemy amassing in the distance and the progress of the City Watch under the command of his brother, Daemon. The Hand of the King, Otto Hightower then brings up the subject of the ‘Heir’s Tournament’, held in honour of Viserys’ unborn child.

Viserys is eager to have a son so that the issue of his rightful heir is resolved. Rhaenyra meets with Daemon and they talk about the upcoming tournament.

Rhaenyra spends time with Alicent, Otto’s daughter, and talks about her father’s need to have a son and how he doesn’t give her much importance.

Viserys has a wound on his back that he got from sitting on the Iron throne and Grand Maestor Mellos and Otto agree that this condition must be kept quiet until it is cured.

Viserys visits his wife who is taking a bath. They talk about the fate of their unborn child and Aemma says this is the last time she’ll go through this after multiple failed attempts to bear a son.

Daemon hypes up the City Watch before taking them out into the city to punish criminals in public. This gruesome event is discussed with the council the next morning as Daemon claims he was simply enforcing the crown’s laws.

He and Otto do not agree on his methods and Viserys chooses to be diplomatic and calm the situation down.

The games of the heir’s tournament have arrived as knights from all the families compete. On the same day, Aemma goes into labour.

Ser Criston Cole and Daemon compete against each other with Criston coming out on top much to the annoyance of Daemon. Aemma faces complications as Maestor Mellos suggests cutting the baby directly out of the womb.

Viserys agrees to the procedure even though it may come at the cost of his wife. She bears a son but the baby dies soon after the birth. The next day, the Targaryen mourns the death of Aemma and the baby.

Soon after, the council discusses the question of the King’s heir following the death of his son. Otto suggests naming his daughter as heir while there is also debate over the suitability of Prince Daemon due to his impatience.

Otto asks his daughter to comfort the King in his time of grief. Daemon celebrates the death of his nephew because it makes him the heir by tradition once again.

The celebration is made known to Viserys, who chastises his brother for his behaviour and states that he will be announcing a new heir. Daemon complains about not being given a role of importance in the court by his brother.

Viserys calls for Rhaenyra and tells her that she will be his rightful heir and serve as Queen once he is gone. He also tells her of their ancestor, Aegon Targaryen’s prophecy of the end of the world of men.

Aegon dreamt that the end would be brought about by a harsh winter coming in from the north and whatever dwells within its winds. He tells her that the only way to combat this threat is if Westeros stands together with a Targaryen on the throne.

Review

  • The first episode of ‘House of the Dragon’ has the same grand air about it as its sequel, ‘Game of Thrones’. Much of what made that series popular seems to be employed here as well.
  • The special effects are a spectacle to behold. The different dragons and locations within King’s Landing appear sprawling and majestic.
  • Right from the first episode, several characters are brought into the light, promising the usual politics of the court as everyone has their own motivations and goals.
  • Paddy Considine and Matt Smith play the Targaryen brothers, each with their own distinct personalities and it will be interesting to see how they progress.
  • If at all there is a gripe, it is that the fight sequence between Criston and Daemon was not captured well with the use of way too many camera cuts. This made it difficult to really focus on the scene.
House of the Dragon season 1 episode 1
House of the Dragon season 1 episode 1 recap & review: The Heirs of the Dragon 1

Director: Miguel Sapochnik

Date Created: 2022-08-22 06:30

Editor's Rating:
3.5

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