House of the Dragon Post-Mortem of “King of the Narrow Sea”

Daemon (Matt Smith), Young Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock), Red Keep Godswood 1x04 (2)

House of the Dragon went full Targaryen last night, as Prince Daemon returned to King’s Landing and tried to seduce his niece. “King of the Narrow Sea” brought us scandal, secrets, spying, a betrothal, and another exile. Let’s get the (regular, not moon) tea on the episode with today’s interviews and videos!

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Speaking to Newsweek, Emily Carey explains how she overcame her reservations about filming her sex scene with Paddy Considine. “It scared me, because at that point I still hadn’t met Paddy, I didn’t know how much of a joy he was and how easy he was going to make [the scene], and all I saw was, you know, a 47-year-old man and me, I was a bit concerned. And having that outlet of the intimacy coordinator, to be able to talk everything through and not be shunned, or not feel awkward, or not feel like ‘Oh, this isn’t your job. I don’t want to make you feel uncomfortable but can I ask you…’ it was never any of that, it was just that open dialogue.”

Carey goes on to say that the open dialogue was key to making everyone comfortable on set, as they were told, “‘Look, this is how we’re approaching the show. This is how it’s going to be different from the original. This is what we want to talk about. This is what we want to put out. This is how we want the viewers to view the women in our show.'” Having women involved “behind the scenes” was important as well, as she adds, “We had an amazing team, we had, of course, female directors, I worked with the amazing Clare Kilner who was fierce, and lots of women producing this show as well, and Sarah, one of our writers, amongst many others in the writers room, I’m sure.”

It was an experience that Carey will never forget. “It was an amazing thing, and it was empowering being on that set as a young girl and being treated the same as all of these very established men. It was great, I think they approached this in the best way they could have done.”

Head to Newsweek for more, including Carey’s thoughts on Alicent’s relationships with her father and with Rhaenyra.

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Milly Alcock had an even more revealing sex scene, as well as incestuous kissing in a brothel. In an interview with The New York Post, she shares that while the make out session wasn’t awkward, walking through the brothel certainly was. “[Matt Smith and I] were just kind of mates. So, it was quite comfortable” but that they hadn’t seen any of the brothel scenes in rehearsal, only while filming. “That was quite shocking. You’re like, ‘This is kind of weird and silly.’ There were extras who we had just met who were like, 69-ing for 12 hours. It’s pretty gnarly. We felt pretty overdressed, because everyone else was nude.”

As to how she feels about Rhaenyra’s two love interests in this episode, Alcock says, “I think it’s complicated, I think Daemon is good for her … but whether or not he’s the right thing for her, time will tell.” She continues, “I think that she wants to be seen, and ultimately Daemon and Criston Cole are the only two people who really see her. Both of them see her for different reasons. Daemon kind of has the upper hand, and Rhaenyra has the upper hand with Cole, and that turns her on a bit. I think that she genuinely likes him. But I don’t think she would pick him over Daemon, ultimately.”

Read the rest here.

Viserys (Paddy Considine), Daemon (Matt Smith), Red Keep Throne Room 1x04 (2)

Another complicated relationship is that of Daemon and his brother, King Viserys. Matt Smith gives his thoughts on their brotherly dynamic to Entertainment Weekly. He believes “there are different power dynamics. One time one is in control, then the other is in control. Hopefully you’ll feel a sense of history and brotherhood when you watch it.” He adds, “[Daemon]’s always kind of flipping sides, I suppose, in many ways aligning himself with his brother or he’s not… I don’t think it’s about an ambition to throne and all that. I think a lot of it is about his brother.”

In the same interview, Paddy Considine speaks to the challenges Viserys faces trying to hold his kingdom together. “He understands the politics of what it means to be king. He understands what the throne does to people’s egos, particularly the people around him. He understands the game of thrones. When I played the character, I always had that in the back of my mind. There’s a possibility that people are conspiring around you at all times, and it’s absolutely so important that you find the anchors, the people that you can really, really trust. So it’s a difficult life being the king.” 

Considine also clarifies what’s happening to Viserys physically and how it’s symbolic of the toll that “difficult life” is taking. “He’s actually suffering from a form of leprosy. His body is deteriorating, his bones are deteriorating. He is not actually old. He’s still a young man in there. He’s just, unfortunately, got this thing that’s taken over his body. It becomes a metaphor for being king, and the stress and strain that it puts on you, and what it does to you physically, what it does to you mentally.”

Check out the entire article at EW.


In this week’s “Inside the Episode,” showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik, director Clare Kilner, and cast members Milly Alcock, Rhys Ifans, Paddy Considine, and Emily Carey discuss Daemon and Rhaenyra’s motivations, and how their scandalous night out affects the royal family.

In case you missed it, here is the preview for episode five:

Vanessa Kennedy

16 Comments

  1. Seeing Viserys weaken is a hard thing. Leprosy is a good way of viewing it, he’s essentially going necrotic. At the same time, seeing him be more sure of himself and his decisions in E4 was reassuring. I may have cheered when he booted Daemon. 😄

    I’m glad to hear Emily talking about how they approach these kind of scenes, and how safe she felt with it. This is the way it needs to be, in every show and film, period.

    I feel as though Daemon cares about Rhaenyra but was trying to shock her a bit, and when she responded to him in a way he didn’t quite anticipate, it threw him for a loop. The chemistry is there in spades. Still annoyed at him for ditching her, not a good place to be alone.

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  2. Holy crap. They shot the scene without previously being familiar with the amount of 69s in the room! I can imagine the shock. Honestly it’s probably why the surprised/ off guard reaction the camera catches on Rhaenyra’s face is pretty genuine. Kind of like only half of it is acting.

    I feel bad for all the extras. I always imagine the porn filming scene from Love Actually when I read these things. The one where Martin Freeman’s character meets his girlfriend.

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  3. I like when Princess Rhaenyra and Prince Daemon talk in Old Valyrian… the dialog is good and it gives them unique Targaryen character traits.

    Hopefully Princess Rhaenyra will start dressing more in Red and Black like Queen Daenerys when she arrived on Dragonstone S7 E1….”Shall We Begin”

    Have House of the Dragon had any quotable dialog lines yet?

    Princess Rhaenyra should say “Fire will Reign”

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  4. Knowledge is Power:

    Have House of the Dragon had any quotable dialog lines yet?

    Some of my favourites have been:

    “The Gods have yet to create a man who lacks the patience for absolute power, your grace.” – Otto Hightower

    “To evade a storm, you can either sail into it or around it, but you must never await its coming.” – Corlys Velaryon

    “I will speak of my brother as I wish. You will not.” – Daemon Targaryen

    “We are the realm’s second sons, Daemon. Our worth is not given. It must be made.” – Corlys Velaryon

    “I am forever doomed to anger one person in the pleasing of another.” – Viserys Targaryen

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  5. Knowledge is Power:

    Have House of the Dragon had any quotable dialog lines yet?

    Not compared to Game of Thrones.

    Maybe on the level of lower tier GoT memorable quotes like “Freedom to make my own mistakes is what I always wanted” from Mance.

    The show in general explains too much. Every motivation is said and explained by characters. Cinematic parallels are very obvious. Nothing is really left for interpretation.

    Like it took me seasons to realize parallels between Jon and Daenerys and here they are beating you over your head with parallel sex scenes between Alicent and Rhaenyra. Or tourney and childbirth.

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  6. Rhaenyra is a spoiled brat. She is so clearly horrible option for the queen and fandom is again making the same mistakes as they did with Daenerys.

    So far Alicent feels like much better option for Westeros

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  7. mau,

    That’s not the same. Alicent is Queen Consort, wife to the ruling king. She has no direct power though she can obviously be influential if she plays it smart. Rhaenyra would be Queen Regnant, with powers of a true monarch at her disposal.

    Or to put it differently, Rhaenyra would sit on the Iron Throne, Alicent doesn’t.

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  8. mau,

    I agree, it is way too obvious Otto Hightower is playing the game 24/7 and I am glad he is not Hand of the King anymore. And the spying is too obvious too. Littlefinger and Varys are both so much better and experienced at playing the game. And those small council meetings with Tywin and Tyrion are so much better too. I like Young Princess Rhaenyra but young Alicent seems too timid and weak. I think they threw in a couple King Visearys/King Robert drunk easter eggs… “Wine!!!” E3… “more Wine” E4

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  9. mau,

    Yup, gotta say with this last episode, I kinda ran out of characters to really cheer for. Rhaenyra is getting to close to Arya and/or Daenerys to like.
    Daemon is a bit too conflicted to really cheer for (he himself has no clue what he’s doing).
    Viserys would be a good fit, if he wasn’t making so many mistakes all of the time.

    Alicent is the only “good” character here, but she suffers already and (please no spoilers) I do not feel like she can end well. It’s probably only more suffering and misery for her.

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  10. Aegon’s Dream of The Great Doom Darkness coming from the North is on King Viserys mind a lot… The writers should add the Men of the Night’s Watch and the Wall into the story somehow.

    Maybe have a Night’s Watch recruiter like Yoren show up seeking the criminals that Prince Daemon threw in the dungeons after cleaning the city of Murders, Rapers and Thieves with Gold Cloaks in E1

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  11. Knowledge is Power:
    Aegon’s Dream of The Great Doom Darkness coming from the North is on King Viserys mind a lot… The writers should add the Men of the Night’s Watch and the Wall into the story somehow…

    I like this idea! As long as the allusion is subtle, and the Bad Dream of a future Zombie Apocalypse from the North doesn’t become a major theme of HotD.

    A brief visit by a Yoren-type recruiter, or a short scene showing a convicted criminal exiled to the Wall might work.

    While I know it would be distracting or slammed as a cheap stunt for shock value, I wouldn’t mind a few seconds-long final scene of an episode like GoT S1e1 (WW tossing a severed head like a bowling ball) or S7e7 (dredged-up corpse of Viserion reanimated as his blue eye snaps open). On HotD, maybe something like a callback to Aegon’s Bad Dream followed by a visual of a hibernating White Walker in suspended animation under the ice.

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  12. I already provided my comments on the last episode – in short I thought it was the best since the premiere and benefitted hugely from the ability to get to know our characters more.

    What has me both excited and concerned is the preview for next weeks episode. It looks really good however it feels like another rushed episode whereby we are seeing the royal wedding of Rhaenyera and it looks like the death of Viserys in the same episode.

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  13. Pigeon:
    Seeing Viserys weaken is a hard thing. Leprosy is a good way of viewing it, he’s essentially going necrotic. At the same time, seeing him be more sure of himself and his decisions in E4 was reassuring. I may have cheered when he booted Daemon. 😄

    I’m glad to hear Emily talking about how they approach these kind of scenes, and how safe she felt with it. This is the way it needs to be, in every show and film, period.

    I feel as though Daemon cares about Rhaenyra but was trying to shock her a bit, and when she responded to him in a way he didn’t quite anticipate, it threw him for a loop. The chemistry is there in spades. Still annoyed at him for ditching her, not a good place to be alone.

    Looking at the episode preview I assumed Viserys is going to have an accident falling off his horse in the courtyard. Presumably he will be gravely injured at the very least.

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  14. Jon Snowed: Looking at the episode preview I assumed Viserys is going to have an accident falling off his horse in the courtyard. Presumably he will be gravely injured at the very least.

    It looks like the horse scene is in the Vale with Daemon, and the rider is dark haired, probably his wife. But it does look like Viserys takes a dive coming out of the carriage.

      Quote  Reply

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