King Viserys Targaryen (Paddy Considine) tries to forge a royal alliance with a royal wedding while his health continues to fail in Episode 5 of HBO’s House of the Dragon.
Viserys announces his plans to marry his daughter Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock) to Laenor Velaryon (Theo Nate), son of Corlys Verlaryon (Steve Toussaint) and Rhaenys Targaryen (Eve Best).
The trailer teased some tension and an all-out brawl at the wedding, while former Hand of the King, Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans), tells his daughter, Queen Alicent (Emily Carey), that there will be war when Rhaenyra takes the Iron Throne mounts .
The episode begins with two new characters meeting on horseback, Lady Rhea (Rachel Redford), with the lady saying she would rather ride alone.
She rides away on her white steed, leaving the man behind when she finds her husband, Daemon (Matt Smith).
She asks what he’s doing here and if he wants to consummate the marriage when she reveals she heard him call her uglier than a sheep.
He scares off her horse and throws his wife to the ground while standing over her, but walks away.
“I knew you couldn’t finish,” she yells, before Daemon picks up a large rock and walks back to her.
The episode cuts to the sea where the king is sailing with his new hand of the king, Lord Lyonel Stokes, while the king vomits over the side of the ship.
Back at King’s Landing, Otto confronts his daughter Alicent and says that she is sorry that Viserys removed him as a hand.
“The time has come, Alicent. Either you prepare Aegon to rule, or you cling to Rhaenyra and beg her mercy,” says Otto, before embracing his daughter and mounting his horse.
King Viserys and Rhaenyra are now going to Driftmark in a carriage as the new Hand is upset that Corlys didn’t personally greet the king, but Viserys wants to “just move on”.
Back at King’s Landing, Alicent strikes up a conversation with Larys Strong (Matthew Needham), the son of the King’s new Hand, Lyonel Strong.
Clutching a stick, he says she might need an ally when Alicent asks him to state his purpose.
He wonders if Rhaenyra can be trusted because she is unwell, although he says he could be wrong.
He tells her that the Grand Maester brought her some tea on the King’s orders, which clearly worries Alicent.
She tells him that Rhaenyra sailed to Driftmark with King Viserys, and he reveals that he’s glad he was wrong about Rhaenyra being sick… but Alicent is obviously still troubled by the news.
Back in Driftmark, Viserys and Corlys finally meet when Corlys bends the knee for him… and the king lets out a few coughs.
Rhaenys (Eve Best) arrives while Corlys congratulates Lyonel on his appointment to the new Hand of the King.
Corlys tells Viserys that Lady Rhea has died when they reveal it was a “hunting accident” and she was thrown from her horse.
Viserys changes the subject and proposes a marriage between his daughter Rhaenyra and his son Laenor.
Corlys wants to know how the succession will be handled and he insists that Rhaenyra will ascend the Iron Throne.
“She and Ser Laenor’s firstborn child, regardless of gender, will inherit the Iron Throne from her,” says Viserys.
“May I assume that, in keeping with Westerosi tradition… her children would take their father’s name? That they would be born velaryons?’ asks Corlys.