House of the Dragon season 1 episode 8 recap & review: The Lord of the Tides

The eighth episode of House of the Dragon sees the royal families gathering at King’s Landing to determine who will inherit the Driftwood Throne. The episode is now streaming on HBO Max.


It’s been six years since Laenor faked his death and Rhaenyra married Daemon. Rhaenys receives news of her husband’s injury from a battle.

For now, it’s assumed that it’s fatal and his survival is in question. Therefore, Corlys Velaryon’s brother, Vaemond, wants Rhaneys to start considering who will inherit the Driftwood Throne.

Rhaenys has made up her mind that Laenor’s son, Lucerys, will be the one, as per Corlys’ wishes. Vaemond, on his side, argues, calling himself Corlys’ own blood and the closest kin he has.

Furthermore, he claims he doesn’t need Rhaenys’ support to put forth his petition as he knows the crown will side with him and won’t let Laenor’s son, who is actually the blood of Ser Harwin Strong, take the throne of Driftwood.

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Daemon receives the message regarding Vaemond’s quest for the throne. He and Rhaenyra decide to travel to the King’s Landing.

While King Viserys is bedridden, it’s Alicent and her father, Ser Otto Hightower, the King’s Hand, taking care of the kingdom.

Alicent is still trying to straighten up Aegon, who over the years hasn’t matured at all. He recently harassed a servant named Dyana.

Alicent makes sure that Dyana keeps her mouth shut but fails to convince Aegon why he needs to be more serious about his reputation and claim to the throne.

She tells him about the shame he has brought on her and his wife, Helaena, who is also his sister. Aegon continues to be oblivious to this. This results in Alicent slapping him and telling him that he is no son of hers.

Meanwhile, Daemon and Rhaenyra pay a visit to King Viserys, whose health has deteriorated over the years. Half of his face has been covered with bandages.

When Daemon tries to speak to him about the succession of the Driftmark, Rhaenyra stops him and opts to calm her father down by introducing him to her and Daemon’s sons, Aegon III and Viserys II.

Daemon and Rhaenyra question Alicent about the change the Hightowers have brought to King’s Landing, especially during King Viserys’ absence.

Jace and Luke walk through the training sessions. They notice a skilled Aemond defeating Ser Criston Cole in combat. Aemond addresses his nephews, but the arrival of Vaemond Velaryon interrupts the conversation they were about to have.

Rhaenyra talks to Rhaenys near the Weirwood tree and asks for support. She proposes the marriage of her sons to Laena’s daughters if Rhaenys will back her.

This way, Jace and Baela’s children will be the heirs to the Iron Throne and, at the same time, Luke and Rhaena’s children will be the future rulers of Driftmark.

Rhaneys wonders if this is a generous offer or a desperate move and chooses to stay alone.

At night, Rhaenyra visits Viserys and questions his belief in the Song of Ice and Fire. She claims that her being the heir has divided the kingdom. If Viserys wishes her to bear it, she wants his help to defend it.

The next day, Otto Hightower sits on the Iron Throne to discuss the succession of Driftmark on behalf of King Viserys.

Vaemond puts forth his proposal. When Rhaenyra’s time comes, Viserys enters the hall to take his seat from Otto. As he struggles to climb up, he is aided by Daemon, who puts the crown on his brother’s head.

Viserys declares that the succession is already settled. He suggests that only Princess Rhaenys could offer a keener insight into Lord Coryls’ wishes.

Princess Rhaenys sides with Rhaenyra and wants her son, Lucerys, to inherit the Driftwood Throne, as the son of Laenor Velaryon and as per Corlys’ wishes.

Furthermore, she also accepts Rhaenyra’s offer of marrying her sons to Lord Corlys’ granddaughters. King Viserys moves on to make it official.

An enraged Vaemond criticizes the king’s decision and questions the lineage of Rhaenyra’s sons.

King Viserys demands Vaemond’s tongue for such a vile accusation, but before the guards could make a move, Daemon kills Vaemond by cutting his head in half, thus letting him have his tongue.

The royal families later come together for a dinner, including Viserys, who seeks to bring everyone together. He removes his mask and reveals his face, which isn’t handsome anymore.

He makes a final plea to bring his loved ones together. Everyone at the table agrees to fulfill the king’s wishes and reconciles with each other. Even Rhaenyra and Alicent raise a toast to each other and spark a new beginning in their friendship.

While the adults try to keep their issues in the past, the kids continue to be at crossroads with each other. Aegon and Jace take shots at each other, while Luke giggles when a pig is served to Aemond.

Once King Visersys is taken back into his room, Aemond raises a toast of his own, wishing for the health of his nephews by mocking them as the sons of Ser Harwin Strong.

A fight breaks out between them before Daemon comes and stands in their way.

At night, Alicent visits Viserys, who mistakes her for Rhaenyra. He answers Rhaenyra’s question regarding his belief in the Song of Ice and Fire to Alicent.

He says Aegon would be the one to reunite the realms, and she should make this happen. Though he believed he was talking to Rhaenyra, Alicent thought that the king wanted her son Aegon to ascend the throne.

Thus, Alicent embarks on a mission to make sure she fulfills Viserys’ wishes.


  • Despite a gruesome death, the episode turns out to be the most heartwarming one so far in the show and probably marks the exit of Paddy Considine as King Viserys. It was a quite strong and wise character.
  • Emma D’Arcy and Olivia Cooke have grown into their roles and it’s hard to not notice their picture-perfect performances.
  • We continue to have a more mature Daemon. The time he confronted Aemond was a cool stance. It’s almost like looking into a mirror for that character.
  • The dynamic between Daemon and Aemond would be interesting, as the latter was quite impressed with Daemon when he killed Vaemond.
  • The heartwarming episode ends sowing seeds for a civil war that will probably transpire during the finale and eventually into a new season.
House of the Dragon season 1 episode 8
House of the Dragon season 1 episode 8 recap & review: The Lord of the Tides 1

Director: Geeta Vasant Patel

Date Created: 2022-10-10 06:30

Editor's Rating:

Also Read: Ser Harwin & Lyonel Strong’s deaths in House of the Dragon explained