House of the Dragon Episode 8 Review-Recap: First Blood

House of the Dragon Episode 8 review

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Our House of the Dragon Episode 8 review Starts with Vaemond Velaryon revealing his intent to install himself as the Lord of Driftimark and the Tides, which would place him in charge of the most powerful navy in Westeros. This is in response to news that Corlys Velarion, the current Lord of Driftmark, is gravely ill.

However, the queen who never was, Rhaenys Targaryen, warns him the king might have his tongue for bringing life to questions about the legitimacy of the heir, princess Rhaenyra’s children.

Vaemond’s ambition isn’t just self-serving. He’s clearly bothered by the fact a boy who doesn’t have a single drop blood of Velaryon blood might end up taking the title his family spent centuries building.

House of the Dragon Episode 8 review

While Vaemond makes his plans in Driftmark, a letter warns Daemon of his intent to make a claim for Driftmark. He takes the letter to Rhaeynra, who’s watching her son Jace take high-valerian lessons. We also find out Daemon and Rhaeynra now have twin sons – Aegon and Viserys – with the trademark Targeyran white hair. Wonder which kids Daemon wants to get the throne? We already know what happened to his last wife.

Daemon and the rest of the gang make plans to head to King’s Landing to confront Vaemond as he makes his petition to the crown.

House of the Dragon Episode 8 review

The original Joffrey

If you were hoping prince Aegon finally grew out of his jerkoff stage, you didn’t get your wish. Our princeling is fully grown now, and he’s almost as unlikeable as Joffrey Lannister, I mean Baratheon. He’s a rapey little fellow who seems to dedicate most of his time to degeneracy.

We get to watch queen Alicent warmly listening to a servant girl who’s Aegon’s latest victim, then turn ice cold as she warns the girl about the consequences of telling her story, pays her off with gold and forces her to drink moon tea, plan B for Westorosi people.

Our queen then takes out her anger on Aegon, who she tells, “You’re no son of mine.”

Zombie king

The f—king guy just won’t die. Queen Alicent and her father now run most of the show in King’s Landing, but the king still clings to life. He’s in pretty bad shape at this point, spending most of his days high off his mind on milk of the poppy to dull his agony. His face and the rest of his body are starting to look more like a wight’s. The Night King would approve of his new looks.

King Viserys still has some fight left in him, though, and he shocks us all after Rhaeynra breaks down in front of him, tells him the burden of the throne, and asks him to stand by her.

Aemond one eye

Our second princeling is now grown, and boy, can he fight. The first time we see him sparring with Ser Criston while the bastards of house strong roam the castle yard. Aemond proved to be too much for even a member of the king’s guard, showing us he’s now one of the best fighters in the land.

The shortest alliance in Westerosi history

As Aemond wins his sparring match in the castle yard, Vaemond Velaryon and some of his swords arrive in King’s Landing. He gives the Strong boys a dirty look before proceeding to his meeting the queen and the hand.

It’s a natural alliance. The crown needs a powerful navy, and Vaemond can give that to the Hightowers. He gets to continue the Velaryon bloodline while Alicent’s son’s claim to the throne becomes stronger. With Otto Hightower and the queen handling most royal matters at this point, it appears Vaemond will get his wish to be named the lord of Driftmark.

A bloody petition

Vaemond Velaryon makes his petition as Otto Hightower sits on the Iron Throne, and things seem to be going his way until a barely alive king Viserys shows up in court. His steps are labored, but he refuses his guards’ help as he struggles to make his way to the iron throne.

Otto Hightower steps down from the throne, and the king takes over the petition. Rhaeynra reveals are plan to wed her sons to Daemon’s daughters, which restores the Velaryon bloodline to the pleasure of the queen, who never was. Coryls would certainly agree with her decision.

Vaemond’s petition is dismissed, but things don’t end there. Angered by the king’s ruling, Vaemond goes on a tirade, calling Jace and Lucerious Valeryon bastards in front of the entire court and princess Rhaenyra a whore. At this point, it’s clear Vaemond is ready to die, and he’s going to speak the truth until his final words.

The king draws his dagger, cat’s paw, and vows to have Vaemond’s tongue for his words, but Daemon cuts Vaemond’s head in half from behind before the king could even take a step.

The last supper

Our House of the Dragon Episode 8 review closes with a solemn supper. The king makes the most of the little time he has left by getting his entire family for dinner. He makes a heartfelt speech and pleads with them to love each other and forget the past. The adults seem to be moved and make efforts to be nice to each other. However, the kids refuse to let go of their grudges.

Seconds after the king leaves the dinner, Aemond makes a toast to his nephews, reminding everyone of how “strong” they are. Jace punches him in the face, Aemond laughs it off as if he was hit by a child, and the guards separate them.

These boys will not be getting along anytime soon.

House of the Dragon Episode 8 review verdict: It’s on

The stage is now set. It’s taken eight episodes for us to learn about the characters that will bring Fire and Blood to the land of Westeros. Lines have been drawn on the sand, and the stage has been set for a war like no other we have seen in the Song of Ice and Fire series. Dragon will fight Dragon to determine who sits on the Iron throne.

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