Warning! Contains Spoilers for House of the Dragon season 1 episode 2House of The Dragon Emily Carey reveals that Alicent Hightower’s episode 2 storyline will have major implications for the remainder of the series. HBO’s House of The Dragon finally premiered on August 21 to record-breaking numbers, with over 10 million viewers tuning in for the Game of Thrones prequel, marking it as HBO’s most-watched series debut ever. After the conclusion of episode 1, and even in the middle of the show’s runtime, Game of Thrones fans reacted on social media, and the reception was overwhelmingly enthusiastic. This immense success led HBO to renew the series less than one week after airing episode 1, but with such massive viewership, the decision was not much of a shock.
House of The Dragon episode 1 quickly set the stage for the succession war to come with Queen Aemma’s death during childbirth, along with her and King Viserys’ infant son. When Rhaenrya is then named Viserys’ heir, there is visible apprehension to her inheriting the Iron Throne, and episode 2 reveals a major development regarding the future challenge to her succession. After spending the episode being pushed by his advisors to remarry and secure his royal line, the King announces his intent to marry Alicent, to the shock of his daughter and the Small Council.
During a podcast interview with Entertainment Weekly House of The Dragon‘s Carey, who plays Alicent Hightower, divulges she is so glad she can talk about episode 2’s shocking development. According to her, this one decision by Viserys changes a specific storylinem and deeply impacts her character. Check out Carey’s quote below:
I’m so glad I can talk about this now. This is a big one. It changes one of the branches of the show, if that makes sense. It pushes things in a different direction. And for my character it’s, of course, a massive turn.
Otto Hightower’s use of Alicent for political gain has landed his family one step closer to having a member of their house sit on the Iron Throne. For Alicent, however, the ramifications of this decision will continue to play out over the coming episodes, as it will likely damage the relationship between her and best friend Princess Rhaenyra, whose claim to the throne will be threatened if Alicent produces a male heir for the king. Their relationship is likely the branch that Carey refers to as changing due to the events of episode 2, and fans will witness how two childhood friends’ love will dissolve into hatred for one another, as hinted at by previous trailers.
The battle for succession is starting to heat up, and House of The Dragon is only two episodes in. Bargains, betrayals, and surely some beheadings are forthcoming. The storyline between Princess Rhaenrya and Queen Alicent may take center stage, but key players like Otto and Lord Corlys Velaryon are making their moves to ensure the prosperity of their houses. How these events will turn out remains to be seen, but it is apparent the seeds that are being sown are destructive and will only lead to fire and blood.