HOUSE OF THE DRAGON Season 2 Premiere Concludes With The Disturbing Death Of [SPOILER]

HOUSE OF THE DRAGON Season 2 Premiere Concludes With The Disturbing Death Of [SPOILER]

The first episode of House of the Dragon season 2 is now streaming, and the hour concludes with arguably one of the most unsettling deaths in Game of Thrones history...

By MarkCassidy - Jun 17, 2024 12:06 PM EST
Filed Under: Game of Thrones
Source: Via SFF Gazette

"I want Aemond Targaryen."

Consumed by grief after the death of her son Lucerys Velaryon (Elliot Grihault) in the season 1 finale, Rhaenyra Targaryen's (Emma D'Arcy) only line in the season 2 premiere of House of the Dragon is an admission of a desire for vengeance, which her husband and uncle, Prince Daemon (Matt Smith), is more than happy to deliver.

While most of the episode is spent in King's Landing with Queen Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke) attempting to keep her own family under control, the last ten minutes focus on two characters who should be very familiar to fans of George R.R. Martin's Fire and Blood.

Daemon enlists a member of the Gold Cloaks with a disdain for the Hightowers ("Blood") and a rat-catcher with gambling debts who knows his way around the Red Keep ("Cheese") to kill Aemond. When Cheese asks what they should do if they can't find the one-eyed warrior, Daemon only smiles.

Though it's not shown, it seems clear that he told the assassins that any "son for a son" would do. Unfortunately, that son turns out to be an innocent 6-year-old child.

After finding their way into the bed chambers of the royal twins, Jaehaerys and Jaehaera, Cheese holds their mother, Queen Helaena (Phia Saban), at knifepoint and forces her to point out the male heir. Warned that all present would die if she didn't comply, Helaena relents and the lad is brutally killed and beheaded.

We don't see the act (thankfully), but can hear what's happening, and it makes for one of the more disturbing deaths in the history of Game of Thrones (which really is saying something).

On the page, this event plays out quite a bit differently and is described in even more upsetting detail, with the threat of rape (of course), and the involvement of a younger child: 2-year-old Maelor.

Helaena is actually forced to choose which son will be killed, and when she names Maelor, Blood decapitates Jaehaerys instead, leaving Maelor with the knowledge that his mother "wanted" him to die.

"Maelor does not yet exist on this timeline because 30 years is compressed into 20 years," co-creator Ryan Condol tells EW, going on to explain why the scene was significantly altered for the show. "We knew that we would be challenged to get performances out of children that young — as a person who has kids around these ages, I'm intimately familiar with all of that. Then there are things that you can and cannot expose children to on a movie set. If you were to try to perform a faithful rendering of that story, you'd be challenged from all angles in terms of getting a performance out of a child. A lot of times it seems like the kid is going through that, but you're using clever cutaways and insert shots."

What did you make of the season 2 premiere of House of the Dragon? How do you feel about the changes to the infamous "Blood and Cheese" scene? Drop us a comment down below.

"The prequel series finds the Targaryen dynasty at the absolute apex of its power, with more than 15 dragons under their yoke. Most empires—real and imagined—crumble from such heights. In the case of the Targaryens, their slow fall begins almost 193 years before the events of Game of Thrones, when King Viserys Targaryen breaks with a century of tradition by naming his daughter Rhaenyra heir to the Iron Throne. But when Viserys later fathers a son, the court is shocked when Rhaenyra retains her status as his heir, and seeds of division sow friction across the realm."

House of the Dragon season 2 sees Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Emma D’Arcy, Eve Best, Steve Toussaint, Fabien Frankel, Ewan Mitchell, Tom Glynn-Carney, Sonoya Mizuno, and Rhys Ifans reprise their respective roles. Additional returning cast includes Harry Collett, Bethany Antonia, Phoebe Campbell, Phia Saban, Jefferson Hall, and Matthew Needham.

The directors for the new season are Alan Taylor (Episodes 1 & 4), Clare Kilner (Episodes 2 & 5), Geeta Patel (Episodes 3 & 8), Andrij Parekh (Episode 6), and Loni Peristere (Episode 7).

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harryba11zack
harryba11zack - 6/17/2024, 12:32 PM
another "misunderstanding" is that how all the story beats are gonna play out for this show? not impressed with this episode, they even had the kick the dog trope. that scene at the begining with the young actors felt like I was watching the younger cast of Peaky Blinders. It just felt off.
Malatrova15
Malatrova15 - 6/17/2024, 2:25 PM
@harryba11zack - i just loved the dog kick
McMurdo
McMurdo - 6/17/2024, 2:30 PM
@harryba11zack - this was a good episode. This show is honestly gonna be better than Thrones. Glad it's not all action porn. Characterization and political intrigue left and right. I appreciate the slower burn. Shows fantastic.
Nomis929
Nomis929 - 6/17/2024, 12:32 PM
User Comment Image
McMurdo
McMurdo - 6/17/2024, 2:30 PM
@Nomis929 - lol yep
Nomis929
Nomis929 - 6/17/2024, 3:29 PM
@McMurdo - The book desrcibe what they do and the full choice that had the queen to make was a lot more horrible.
McMurdo
McMurdo - 6/18/2024, 3:43 PM
@Nomis929 - yes agreed. I've read Fire and Blood
CoHost
CoHost - 6/17/2024, 12:34 PM
"If you were to try to perform a faithful rendering of that story, you'd be challenged from all angles in terms of getting a performance out of a child."

Aka, PC culture made that impossible.
SATW42
SATW42 - 6/17/2024, 12:45 PM
@CoHost - seriously? You'd rather expose a child to threats of rape and violence and hold knives to their throats in the name of anti-wokeness?

Are you ok?
Malatrova15
Malatrova15 - 6/17/2024, 2:26 PM
@SATW42 - he is not only ok . he is amaxi g
MisterDoctor217
MisterDoctor217 - 6/17/2024, 12:40 PM
Dude that was so messed up , seriously this show , everytime I think I know where it’ll go next , it just surprises me.

I also think the mother choosing which child is just , gave me the wrong vibes , a mother would try to protect both but she just let one die ?

That’s why I’m Team Rhaenyra lol
even if those creeps are into ince*t lol at least they protect each other xD
MarkCassidy
MarkCassidy - 6/17/2024, 12:42 PM
@MisterDoctor217 - I mean, she didn't really have any choice unless she wanted herself and both kids to die.
MisterDoctor217
MisterDoctor217 - 6/17/2024, 12:44 PM
@MarkCassidy -

I mean idk
You usually see Mothers fighting tooth and nail to protect their children in other shows and in real life as well.
I would have done whatever to get help and keep those idiots away from my kids , but to just give up and let one die without much of a fight ?
Idk just seemed off to me
But I guess it runs in the family lol
Spidey91
Spidey91 - 6/17/2024, 12:55 PM
it's not like infanticide is a new concept for this franchise or anything :p

also, did anyone else got the sense that the queen wanted his child to die? I mean, Aegon is a prick and was already trying to indoctrinate his son into becoming someone like him so maybe the mother would rather spare him the burden of being a sh*tty king in the future by sacrificing him to the assassins.
Cobalt416
Cobalt416 - 6/17/2024, 1:11 PM
@Spidey91 - that’s my thought as well. It felt a little too….. Opportunistic. Like she seen a way to sever the bloodline.
Spidey91
Spidey91 - 6/17/2024, 1:26 PM
@Cobalt416 - yeah, exactly.
Order66
Order66 - 6/17/2024, 1:13 PM
I am deeply disturbed.
Doomsday8888
Doomsday8888 - 6/17/2024, 1:26 PM
Oh.
So that's why the ending f*cking sucked.
McMurdo
McMurdo - 6/17/2024, 2:32 PM
@Doomsday8888 - on opposite day
Doomsday8888
Doomsday8888 - 6/17/2024, 2:41 PM
@McMurdo
It was shit.
But i get it, it's hard to make kids act out certain scene so they wrote a shitty ass scene around it forcing (???) The mother to tell em who's the boy instead of looking for a cock (like they put it).

I don't like but i understand.

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