House of the Dragon

House of the Dragon Episode 7 “Driftmark” trailer review Part 1


With several new Targaryen family members making their debuts, elder actors taking over for significant characters like Rhaenyra Targaryen and Alicent Hightower, and a swarm of new dragons taking flight, the sixth episode of House of the Dragon exposed us to a completely new status quo. It was a lot, but it appears to be just the beginning.

The trailer for next week’s episode from HBO is out, and wow, does it look crazy. The tension that has been building since Episode 6 will explode, and as Princess Rhaenys has already predicted, knives will be drawn.

Driftmark” will adapt one of the key scenes leading up to the Dance of the Dragons and make some adjustments to George R.R. Martin’s book Fire & Blood. Let’s get started.

******************************************SPOILER ALERT!******************************************

Death at Driftmark

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On the island of Driftmark, where House Velaryon is based, we start with Laena Velaryon’s burial. When Laena’s birthing went wrong in episode 6, she decided to have her dragon Vhagar burn her alive rather than let herself pass away in bed. It was the episode’s high point, and it appears that “Driftmark” will have to deal with the aftermath for some time. Take note of the ropes that are fastened to Laena’s exquisitely carved coffin; we’ll talk more about them later.

Rhaenyra, Laenor Velaryon, Aegon Targaryen, Alicent Hightower, King Viserys, and Helaena Targaryen are pictured from left to right, together with her children Lucerys and Jacaerys. There are a few more significant people in the background, including Otto Hightower off to the very left of the frame and some additional Velaryon family members behind Laenor, who are probably Vaemond Velaryon, Corlys’ brother. It may be the first time all these different characters have been together since Rhaenyra and Laenor’s wedding ten years ago, so this will be a significant occasion.

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The funerals of the Velaryon family maintain the notion that they are a mariner family. A lavish dais is used to launch Laena’s coffin into the water. In a scene that has been in various series previews, we see it enter the water from above. The dais has ridges; it wasn’t built especially for Laena’s burial.

It seems that funerals for notable family members are only held in this particular area of Driftmark. Corlys Velaryon asks in the opening line of the trailer, “What is this brief mortal life, if not the quest of legacy?” We can just make out other Velaryon ancestors’ coffins as Laena’s casket descends to the depths of the ocean.

The distraught mother, Rhaenys Velaryon, is then seen dumping a ring onto a table. Rhaenys’ suffering is obvious, but we didn’t see enough of Laena’s hands in earlier episodes to know for sure if it was hers.

In the upcoming episode, Laena’s death will be mourned by more people than just Rhaenys and Corlys. Vhagar, Laena’s dragon, may be seen rising into the air. This must occur within that same sequence, in my opinion. Funerals are occasions for mourning. But when you put all these people together in one place, you can know that things are going to become nasty.

Driftmark is in the midst of trouble

In our next image, Alicent Hightower is briefly seen travelling in a Targaryen ship toward Driftmark for the burial. Since House of the Dragon began, this is the first time we’ve seen Alicent leave King’s Landing. Rhaenyra will be present as well, of course.

A terrifying image of what appears to be a dragon’s mouth with flames raging down its gullet follows. It opens greatly. We can’t tell what kind of dragon this is only by looking inside its mouth. However, given that the she-dragon will play a significant role in this episode, I’m going to speculate that this is Vhagar. I’m guessing that this will be a crucial component of the scenario where Aemond Targaryen and Vhagar interact.

Aegon the Conqueror’s sword, which occasionally appears, is also shown to us. Next, we see Rhaenyra, Corlys Velaryon, and several guards while Daemon holds young Lucerys close to him.

We need to explore one of the major Fire & Blood events before we can fully examine this shot. Aemond Targaryen mounts Laena’s dragon Vhagar when everyone is gathered for the funeral (keep in mind that he didn’t have a dragon of his own in Episode 6). Vhagar permits this to occur, but it results in a deadly brawl between Aemond and Rhaenyra’s sons that permanently harms Aemond.

Take note of the blood on Lucerys’ face. It very probably occurs shortly after that fight. This is probably what Alicent means when she demands “eye for an eye” justice. The trailer will feature a lot more of this scene.

Although we cannot be positive about which dragon this eye belongs to, Vhagar is a good assumption.

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Then, we see Baela and Rhaena, Laena’s twin daughters, watching from a window as their mother’s gigantic dragon takes flight. They rush to wake up their cousin Jacaerys and say “Vhagar was stolen.” This is a little departure from Fire & Blood, where Joffrey, Jacaerys’ younger brother, calls for help after being pushed into a pile of dragon poop by Aemond. The adjustment makes logical given that Joffrey’s birth was just depicted in the previous episode. Given that they considered waking up Jace before their father or anybody else, it also demonstrates the closeness of Rhaenyra and Daemon’s children.

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The next image shows Vhagar’s foot stomping onto the beach in a very low light. One of the key scenes in “Driftmark” will involve Vhagar and the altercation between Aemond and Rhaenyra’s kids, but it won’t be the only thing that goes wrong. There could be another passing soon.

Catch the second part of the trailer breakdown here.