Courtesy of HBO
The season finale of House of the Dragon is here and it did not disappoint. We did not see Rhaenyra and her family in episode 9, but in the season finale they're a focal point. This episode seemed like an answer to episode 9 where the focus was on Alicent's family after Viscerys' death. There's two sides to this war. You are either Team Alicent or Team Rhaenyra. So how does season 1 of House of the Dragon end? Let's break it down.
The episode starts with Rhaenyra and Luke having a conversation about being the heir to Driftmark. Luke constantly keeps stating that he does not want the role. Rhaenyra keeps telling him he is made to be the heir to Driftmark and he will do a great job in that position. The conversation is interrupted when Rhaenys comes in. Rhaenys tells Rhaenyra and Daemon that Viscerys is dead. She also tells him that Aegon is the new King. Rhaenyra and Daemon are shocked by these developments. Daemon thinks someone killed Viscerys. All of this new sudden stress causes Rhaenyra to go into labor prematurely.
Daemon starts talking with Rhaenyra's council about strategies for the upcoming war. As Daemon and Rhaenyra's council are talking, you can hear the screams coming from Rhaenyra's room. She is obviously in pain and doesn't want help from the Maesters. Jace and Luke walk in the room seeing their mother in pain. She tells them that Viscerys is dead and Aegon is the new King. She also tells them to not let Daemon do anything without her permission.
In one of the most disgusting and brutal scenes in any movie or television show, Rhaenyra gives birth to her dead baby by pulling the baby out of the womb by herself. When I saw this live, I was speechless. I couldn't process what I just saw. The baby is covered in blood and is motionless. I could see this being a scene that people had to look away from. With all the vile, disgusting, and brutal stuff that happens on a Thrones show, this had to be the worse.
While all of this is happening, Daemon teaches the boys what loyalty really is. He threatens the lives of the knights in Driftmark if they don't bend the knee for Queen Rhaenyra. Of course the knights show their allegiance to Queen Rhaenyra. Next, the funeral for the baby happens. The funeral is interrupted by Ser Erryk. He pledges his allegiance to Queen Rhaenyra and gives her Viscerys' old crown for her to wear. One person who does not bend the knee is Rhaenys which is interesting.
Rhaenyra, Daemon, and her council all talk about strategy for the upcoming war. Daemon is ready for the war and wants everyone's heads on a spike. Rhaenyra seems more calm and patient. She is worried about the dragons she has because none of them are war tested. Daemon states that there are still unclaimed dragons who are war tested. Otto and his men arrive at Dragonstone with Daemon and his men waiting. Otto asks where the princess is. Rhaenyra makes a badass entrance on a dragon. It reminded me of Daenerys making an entrance on a dragon in front of Cersi.
Otto tells Rharenyra to bend the knee to her new King. Rhaenyra questions the legitimacy of the new King. Otto explains that Rhaenyra will have high position on the council if she bends the knee. Her son Luke will also still be heir to Driftmark. Daemon makes a joke and says he rather have his sons eaten by dragons then have them serve Otto. Otto then hands Rhaenyra a picture that Alicent and her used to look at. Otto reminds Rhaenyra that her and Alicent were once friends and it can be like that again.
Rhaenyra shows restraint for the first time. This causes Daemon to be upset. Rhaenyra explains a Queen is supposed to unite people not divide them. Daemon gets upset and starts to choke her. He explains that this war needs to happen. Daemon walks away after a very intense scene. After that scene, we get some good news that Corlys is alive and well. Corlys doesn't want to declare for anyone. Corlys says that everything Rhaenyra touches turns to crap. Rhaenys states that Rhaenyra is the only one holding the realm together.
In a council meeting, Corlys makes his presence known. He tells Rhaenyra she has the full support from his house. Rhaenyra has the strategy of knowing who her allies are before sending them to war. Corlys reveals that he has control over the Stepstones. Jace and Luke volunteer to go to other houses to convince them to be allies in the war. Rhaenyra makes them promise to not get in any fights when they are there. Meanwhie, Daemon goes off to claim his own dragon and does it successfully.
Luke flies to House Baratheon to convince them to be on Queen Rhaenyra's side. He notices Vhagar outside which means Aemond is here. Luke delivers the message to Lord Borros but he won't accept unless one of his daughters is married by Luke. Luke says he already has a wife lined up to marry. This makes Borros reject the offer of being on Queen Rhaenyra's side. Aemond buds in and says he wants Luke's eye as a gift to his mother. Borros won't allow bloodshed to happen in his house so he asks Luke to leave.
Luke leaves on his dragon in stormy conditions. Aemond follows him and plays a game of cat and mouse. Vhagar fires at Luke and his dragon but Luke avoids it. Luke's dragon Arrax blows fire on Vhagar which sets Vhagar off. Luke escapes from the storm but is not out of the woods. Suddenly out of nowhere, Vhagar swoops in and eats both Luke and Arrax. Aemond has the "what have I just done?" look on his face. You can tell he never wanted to kill Luke and he knows now Rhaenyra will show no mercy to his family. Back at Dragonstone, Daemon delivers the message that Luke is dead. Rhaenyra gives a final look to the camera which signifies no mercy. The war is here.
This season ended on a high note with next season being the war. Next season promises bloodshed and a lot of death. Rhaenyra will now show no mercy to Alicent and her family. House of the Dragon season 1 showed how missed a Game of Thrones show was. I missed the politics, the backstabbing, the disturbing scenes, and the action. This exceeded my expectations and now I can't wait for season 2. Every Sunday night, it felt like a community watching this show especially with everyone tweeting about it. It's a feeling that hasn't been felt in a long time now that every show is on streaming. I know it will be even bigger for season 2 and I can't wait.
What did you think of the season finale of House of the Dragon? Leave it in the comments below.