WARNING: This article contains major spoilers from House of the Dragon... Sunday night's new episode of House of the Dragon, "The Lord of the Tides," saw the series bid farewell to one of its biggest characters. King Viserys Targaryen has been slowly dying throughout the series to this point, and fans knew that he didn't have much longer to live. The character's end was beyond expected, but served as potentially the biggest event in House of the Dragon to-date, turning the world of Westeros upside down.
Viserys died at the very end of House of the Dragon's eighth episode, telling himself he was ready to go after accidentally making Alicent think he wanted their son to be king. Paddy Considine, who played Viserys throughout the first season, spoke with The Hollywood Reporter about the character's somber farewell this week.
"I think it's very noble and dignified how he goes," Considine said. "He's suffering terribly from an affliction. He basically gets a form of leprosy that creeps into body, his bones start to fail him. His lungs start to fail him. He's just dying a slow and horrible death. By the end of it, he looks like an old man. He's not! He's a young man. He's only so many years older than his brother, Daemon. But it's aged him. And it's a metaphor for what power does to people, even though he doesn't use it for his own personal gain. He doesn't get drunk on the power, he's responsible. But the demands of being a king take their toll on the physical body. So it was interesting playing that decline in him. He's just trying to do good. He gets to say a few words before he leaves, which I was grateful for."
Who Will Replace Viserys on the Iron Throne?
In those final moments of Viserys' life, Alicent thought he changed his mind and finally decided to put the fate of the Realm into the hands of their son, Aegon II. We know that's not the case, and Rhaenyra likely won't believe it either. She was his choice to rule the Seven Kingdoms. Unfortunately, she won't get that chance, at least not in the near future.
As explained in Fire & Blood, the book House of the Dragon is based on, Alicent uses Viserys' death as a way to crown Aegon the new King of Westeros. Putting Aegon in charge is what sparks the civil war with Rhaenyra known as the Dance of the Dragons, because the King's daughter knows she is supposed to be next in line.
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