House of the Dragon: Episode 4-Recap

House of the Dragon: Episode 4-Recap
Recap: In 'House of the Dragon' episode 4, a lost crown & a night on the  town : NPR

credit: House of the Dragon

It kind of needs to be said right away: Viserys is not a great king. He was a good placeholder up to this point, but with the loss of his wife and the fact that he’s been exposed as a less than sturdy character, it’s not hard at all to think that he’s not the right person for the job. That’s not to say that Daemon is any better, as he’s a psychopath that has the hots for his niece, even if he can’t appear to come to grips with those feelings entirely. There are plenty of spoilers coming if you didn’t realize that much already since the fourth episode of this show continues the cringe that’s already been building thanks to the Targaryen clan and their many strange practices. Thanks to GoT it’s fair to say that fans already know a number of the reasons why many aren’t sad to have seen the downfall of the Targaryen line, even if they had plenty to offer Westeros at times. Their rule was odd, to be certain, as this episode continues to make that clear.  

House of the Dragon episode 4 review: Oh no, incest - Polygon

credit: House of the Dragon

It’s very easy to feel sorry for Rhaenyra at this time. 

She’s already about to be passed up by her younger brother at one point or another when it comes to the crown, no matter what her father says. Even the public appears to think this would be best as Rhaenyra finds when she and her uncle Daemon, who returns unexpectedly, decide to hit the streets dressed as commoners for a night. However it happens, Rhaenyra’s name is bound to her clan, but her rule is considered to be a strangeness that many people can’t abide in this male-centric society where men are the only ones who are seen fit to rule, while women are often told that it is their place to serve. Those claiming that HotD and GoT are sexist aren’t wrong, but the truth is that the women wield far more power than is revealed at times since they tend to work behind the scenes. 

Daemon’s relationship with his niece is disturbing, without a doubt. 

The fact that Daemon takes Rhaenyra to a brothel and then attempts to couple with her is disturbing enough, but the fact that Rhaenyra welcomes it and is confused when her uncle runs off is enough to make a lot of people shiver and shudder in distaste. The realization that they were seen only makes things worse since the word was bound to get to the King’s Hand and then to the king since Otto Hightower isn’t going to waste any time stirring the pot when it will work to his own advantage. Discrediting Rhaenyra and Daemon would certainly work for Hightower, or so one would think. The fact is that something about the scenario woke the king up in a big way and made it possible for him to not only confront his brother, who was hungover and beaten, before making it clear that he wanted Daemon out of his sight for good. That doesn’t bode well for a few reasons. 

House of the Dragon preview: Episode 4, "King of the Narrow Sea"

credit: House of the Dragon

It did appear that Daemon and Viserys might have mended their bond, but that’s not happening. 

There’s too much between these two men, and there’s not enough of a bond to avoid the two going to war over the crown, and the Iron Throne, especially not since Daemon waded into the Crabkeeper’s domain and did his own dirty work. The fact that the Targaryen clan is not solidified behind one idea is enough to think that the coming battle will be extremely personal and extremely vicious. The downside of this is that it does appear that Viserys is on a very narrow precipice when he could actually become a strong and decent king or become the foolish and insane despot that Targaryen’s has been known as in the GoT tales. Right now, it feels as though he could be teetering between the two, especially given that his displays of strength are often undermined by his laziness and inability to keep his house in order. When things finally happen, and the house splits, it feels as though it will happen quickly. 

The repercussions of what happened to Otto might be long-reaching. 

It’s not the first time that a King’s Hand has been dismissed from his duties, but how it happened is enough to think that Otto might not take his demotion lying down. It’s easy to admit that his demotion was interesting to see and well deserved, but at the same time, one has to remember that those who covet power will do anything to keep it or regain it when they’ve been stripped of their title or authority, or both. It doesn’t feel like Hightower is going to fade off that easily. 

The situation is bound to explode at some point. 

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