What happened in House of the Dragon season 1? Let's recap

Sakshi Sharma
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House of the Dragon recap

House of the Dragon recap

Before entering the battle for the Iron Throne between the Hightowers, Targaryens, and dragons, let's rewind and remember what happened in season 1 with this House of the Dragon recap.

After almost a year and a half, House of the Dragon returns with its second installment. Riding high on their dragons, the Targaryens are back to battle the Hightowers for the seat at the Iron Throne. With his mother, Alicent Hightower staging a coup to make Aegon the king, it is time we see how the contender to Aegon and the worthy heir, Rhaenyra Targaryen, fights to bring back the peace and be the protector of the realm, especially after her child's death. The loyalty of kinship, friendship, and love all stand to test the time of conspiracies, deceit, betrayal, miscommunication, and politics. But while everyone is waiting to watch how the ultimate battle of revenge will unfold between the two houses, let's take some time to remember how we reached here in the first place. 

Based on George RR Martin's book, Fire and Blood, which is an extension branch of the series, The Song of Ice and Fire, HotD season 1 turns back the clock 172 years before the time of Daenerys Targaryen to chart the rise and downfall of the Targaryen dynasty. With ten enthralling episodes, the first season precedes the inevitable war that led to the doom of the Targaryens. Dividing the season into two parts, the first five episodes see the young Rhaenyra trying to prove her mettle as the worthy heir, with her best friend Alicent always at her side while her father, Viserys, deals with the usual politics of the realm with the conniving Otto Hightower as his 'Hand to the King'. 

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After naming Prince Viserys Targaryen, the younger cousin of Princess Rhaenys Targaryen, as the rightful successor of the throne, the fight to always find a male heir for the throne continues. With no male child born to King Viserys and the tragic death of his wife, the queen, during childbirth, he is left with no choice but to name Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen as the heir to the throne that is only up until Viserys himself remarries. Many prospects of marriage are kept forth for both Viserys and Rhaenyra! But Otto's vicious planning succeeds as he pushes his daughter Alicent to marry Viserys. Elsewhere, Daemon, Viserys brother, who is hated for his maniacal ways, ends up seducing Rhaenyra, his niece, after killing his wife and defeating the crabfeeder. While Rhaenyra is all swept with Daemon, she finds herself in a heated moment with Sir Criston Cole, the knight hired to protect her. But as Rhaenyra chooses to honor her duty to the throne and enter into a marriage of convenience with the gay Ser Laenor, Criston feels betrayed. This feeling of betrayal is shared by Alicent, who, despite producing a male heir, chooses to always stand with her best friend, Rhaenyra, who keeps secrets from her. 

Coming to the second part of the season which sees Rhaenyra and Alicent all grown up with their betrayal hanging in the air.Viserys grows into a frail old king. Criston and Alicent leave no chance to prove that Rhaenyra's children are all bastards, which leads Rhaenyra to move to Dragonstone, and just as their mothers, the kids on each side grow up hating each other as Aaegon and Aemond are always ready to be at loggerheads with Jacaerys, and Lucerys. As both their partners died, Daemon and Rhaenyra chose to marry to reunite the strength of the Targaryens and the bloodline. But King Viserys's last attempt at reuniting the family fails, and his deathbed confession leads to confusion, leading Alicent to stage a coup to push her reluctant elder son, Aaegon, to be the next king. This starts the beginning of the war, where Lucerys is killed in an accidental dragon battle with Aemond. 

A prequel of Game of Thrones, this series reignited the faith of GoT fans who were disappointed by the end of GoT. The Song of Ice and Fire (GoT's longest battle fought between Westores and the army of the dead) finds its prophecy and protection with the Targaryens who, because of their selfish ambitions and dragons, saw their own befall.

Will Rhaenyra choose to be the queen of ashes just like Daenerys or will she choose a different path? We'll find out in House of the Dragon season 2 on June 16! 

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