Episode 8 of House of the Dragon is out now on HBO Max and Disney+ Hotstar. It will be an excellent episode. Due to the fact that it focuses mainly on deciding who will inherit the throne of Driftmark, as Lord Corlys “Sea Snake” Velaryon (Steve Toussaint) is believed to be gravely injured, there is considerable interest in the show. Quite strange that a member of Game of Thrones’ main cast has been killed off screen in the prequel spin-off series.
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The Lord of the Undercurrents could have been the title of House of the Dragon episode 8. Even though everyone is aware of it, almost no one admits that war is inevitable and just around the corner. This, if you can call it that, is the calm before the inevitable storm.
There is something strangely calm. It has been six years since the events of episode 7 of House of the Dragon. King Viserys Targaryen (Paddy Considine) is no longer the king he used to be. He’s nearly faceless, bedridden, and surviving on poppy milk. The Hightowers are essentially ruling in his absence: Queen Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke) and her Hand of the King father, Ser Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans).
The Hightowers are naturally not inclined to let the standard inheritance rules apply to Driftmark due to the Velaryon household’s strong ties to Princess Rhaenyra and Prince Daemon — who are both married to Sea Snakes’ children.
Episode 8 of House of the Dragon emphasizes political machinations and back dealings rather than bloody vengeance. During this time, the Hightowers are certain of dealing a heavy blow to Rhaenyra, as the scales of power tilt in their favor — the Hand of the King speaks on the King’s behalf when he is ill.
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It would make them formidable if Alicent’s thirdborn Prince Aemond (Ewan Mitchell) won Vhagar for them. Holding Driftmark will give you control over the Seven Kingdoms’ biggest fleet. After hearing about King’s Landing, Rhaenyra heads there immediately.
As a result of her grandmother’s caretaking over her, Lady Baela (Bethany Antonia) has become a ward of her grandmother since episode 7.
When Sea Snake’s younger brother, Ser Vaemond Velaryon (Wil Johnson), is unable to make it to Driftmark, House of the Dragon episode 8 opens there, with Ser Vaemond Velaryon arguing for his right to be the new lord of Driftmark should Corlys not be able to. I have to admit it.
Despite barely appearing on the show – part of that is due to the jumping years, when characters don’t get enough screen time – Vaemond suddenly finds himself at the center of the show, competing for a powerful position. Like, who are you? Princess Rhaenys Targaryen warns him that Vaemond’s words are treason, but Vaemond knows it’s the Queen who rules these days.
The ruling is taking up all of Alicent’s time, and she isn’t even able to greet her guests, Rhaenyra and Daemon, as they arrive. It’s a more charitable version. Things ended badly last time between the two childhood best friends.
When Alicent and Rhaenyra were reunited, Alicent’s gaze traveled to Rhaenyra’s left arm, where the scar would have healed but still be visible. Instead of being a moment of concession, the reunion ends up being a heated exchange of accusations.
Rhaenyra feels the Hightowers are illegally occupying the Iron Throne given the state of her king father. It’s her heirship. Viserys guides them from bed, Alicent protests. Whom do you trust?
In House of the Dragon episode 8, Daemon’s chuckle says it all. There’s no doubt about who’s making the decisions. Ultimately, Alicent’s decision is a reflection of the bigger picture, guided by her father, Otto. Because you wanted an in-your-favor candidate (Vaemond, the guy barely on the show), Prince Lucerys was overlooked. In the long run, it’s good for your cause – Rhaenyra and Alicent’s firstborn Aegon – but it openly exposes you to suspicion.