House of the Dragon Kicks Off With Cunning Betrayal

In the very first episode of House of the Dragon, King Viserys Targaryen announces his plans to break from tradition and allow a female successor. He wanted his daughter, Rhaenyra Targaryen, to occupy the Iron Throne after his death. The King's opinion on the matter never changed, even after he had sons with his second wife, Alicent Hightower. At the end of last week's episode, King Viserys died, and Sunday's penultimate edition of Season 1 showed that no one had planned to honor the former ruler's wishes.

WARNING: This article contains major spoilers from the latest episode of House of the Dragon! Continue reading at your own risk...

Alicent, Otto, and many in the realm had spent a lot of time hoping Viserys would change his mind about his successor before he died. In their final conversation, Alicent believed Viserys did just that, though viewers know it was a miscommunication. As it turns out, Otto and several others in the Small Council had been planning on getting Aegon on the Iron Throne, regardless of what Viserys mandated.

Early in Sunday night's new episode, "The Green Council," we learn that there was a plan to usurp the throne and crown Aegon as the new King. That plan was in place long before Alicent's conversation with Viserys. Unfortunately, that plan also includes killing Rhaenyra, Daemon, and their entire family. Otto believes that the only way for Aegon to have a reign that is seen as legitimate, is to eliminate any competition. Rhaenyra is that competition.

Where Is Rhaenyra?

Part of why Otto and the other members of the Small Council are able to put their plans into motion is that Rhaenyra is no longer in King's Landing. 

At the end of last week's episode, Rhaenyra explains that she's going to go back to Dragonstone with the rest of her family before hopping on her dragon and flying back to King's Landing. Otto still plans to have Rhaenyra killed, but her death is no longer necessary to start making moves toward crowning Aegon II. 

What have you thought about House of the Dragon throughout its first season? Let us know in the comments!