Top 10 Brutal Moments from House of the Dragon
VOICE OVER: Rebecca Brayton
Can it really get any more brutal than "Game of Thrones"? For this list, we'll be looking at the first season of this “Game of Thrones” prequel series and picking out moments wherein characters received extreme punishment. If you haven't seen the show in its entirety yet, there will be spoilers. Our countdown includes moments from episodes "We Light the Way", "The Green Council", "Second of His Name" and more!
Welcome to WatchMojo, and today we’re counting down our picks for the Top 10 Brutal Moments from “House of the Dragon.” For this list, we’ll be looking at the first season of this “Game of Thrones” prequel series and picking out moments wherein characters received extreme punishment. If you haven’t seen the show in its entirety yet, there will be spoilers. Which moment made you wince in disbelief? Tell us in the comments below!
#10: Ser Criston Makes Lord Beesbury Sit
“The Green Council”
As the Dance of Dragons escalates, dissension proves to be a very deadly venture, something that Lord Lyman Beesbury learns the hard way. The Master of Coin on the small council, Lord Beesbury is one of the few who rejects the notion that King Viserys suddenly changed his succession plans on his deathbed. He’s right, of course, but that means little in the House of Green, and even less to Ser Criston Cole. Ser Criston incensed over Beesbury questioning Queen Alicent, he makes the old man take a seat and then some, slamming his head down on his personalized stone ball. Beesbury is killed instantly, and the rest of the council does nothing about it. Except promote Ser Criston to Lord Commander, of course.
#9: Blackwood-on-Bracken Violence
“King of the Narrow Sea”
With so many Houses in Westeros, it’s understandable that not all of them can get their time in the spotlight. So credit this scene for giving a glimpse of the rivalry between House Blackwood and House Bracken. As Rhaenyra receives suitors at Storm’s End, she’s greeted by the particularly young Willem Blackwood. Willem does his best under pressure, but even that isn’t good enough for the spectating Jerrel Bracken, who incessantly rags on him with insults. Even though Rhaenyra elects to end the procession, Willem’s indignance compels him to challenge Jerrel. We’re immediately fearful for the significantly smaller Blackwood, so color our surprise when he runs through his tormentor. Something tells us those Houses are still gonna be on bad terms.
#8: Nailed & Stomped
“Second of His Name”
The war in the Stepstones proves to be a grueling campaign for Daemon Targaryen, so imagine what it must be like for the men on the ground. Daemon and the Velaryons are going up against Craghas Drahar, aka the Crabfeeder, who’s earned his nickname by staking his enemies and leaving them for the crabs. That’s already a terrible way to go, but leave it to Daemon to add insult to injury. As Drahar marks an unnamed Velaryon soldier for death, the latter promises retribution is coming. Sure enough, Daemon swoops in with his dragon Caraxes, leading the soldier to cheer. Trouble is, Caraxes lands directly on him. Yeah, Top 10 “House of the Dragon” Characters Who Celebrated Too Early: this guy.
#7: Divorce Targaryen Style
“We Light the Way”
Granted, Daemon may not have even cared to notice he crushed our last entry; this one, he definitely knew what he was doing. After Daemon spends four episodes ragging on his wife, Rhea Royce, we finally get to meet her. Only, if this list is any indication, we wouldn’t know her for long. Ambushing her outside Runestone, Daemon doesn’t have to say a word before Rhea realizes he’s there to kill her so he can marry Rhaenyra. But before Rhea can do anything, Daemon gets her horse to upend and crush her. Knowing it’ll look like an accident, Daemon motions to leave, but Rhea’s goading compels him to finish her off. He grabs a nearby rock, and we’re left to imagine the grisly conclusion.
“The Black Queen”
#5: A Dragonrider’s Death
“The Princess and the Queen”
Like many characters in this world, Laena Velaryon was gone too soon, but at least she got to go out on her own terms. Sort of. Pregnant with Daemon’s third child, Laena remarks in this episode that half the dragon eggs never hatch. With Queen Aemma’s failed delivery burned in our minds, this bit of foreshadowing immediately made us worry for her. Sure enough, Laena’s birthing goes south. Rather than suffer another failed cesarean section, Laena slips away and finds Vhagar. In agonizing pain, she pleads with her dragon to end her suffering. Vhagar is noticeably hesitant, but fulfills her master’s request by roasting her alive. Laena probably didn’t feel the flames for long, but boy is this death brutal.
#4: Criston Kills Joffrey
“We Light the Way”
If you’re a character named Joffrey in this world, you probably shouldn’t go to wedding receptions. Granted, Rhaenyra and Laenor aren’t hitched just yet, but we had a feeling their pre-wedding feast wouldn’t end without a little bloodshed. At this point, the tension between Rhaenyra and Ser Criston Cole is evident, and Laenor’s lover Ser Joffrey Lonmouth tries to blackmail Criston into keeping their secrets. Criston, heartbroken over Rhaenyra spurning him, takes it out on the Lonmouth knight in front of everyone. Laenor tries to intervene, but to no avail, as Criston pummels Joffrey’s face into looking like Hamburger Helper. Seriously, no one mess with Ser Criston Cole.
#3: Aemond Loses an Eye
For a second there, it seemed like Aemond might be the one Targaryen boy of the next generation to not grow up with a mean streak. But it turns out the others’ tormenting of him would turn him into the worst of the bunch. After Laena’s death, Aemond seizes the opportunity to claim Vhagar for his own. This doesn’t sit well with the others, Vhagar being Rhaena’s by right. Aemond is unremorseful, leading to a scuffle that sees Aemond deliver brutal blows to his nephews and cousins. However, Aemond gets it the worst when Jace blinds him with sand, allowing Luke the opportunity to slash his face. Aemond loses an eye in the ordeal, but he regrets it none considering what he gained.
#2: Queen Aemma’s Death
“The Heirs of the Dragon”
We suspected “House of the Dragon” would come out the gates hard in the first episode, but even we didn’t expect this. Before Laena’s complications, Queen Aemma’s experience reminded us how terrible it is to be a woman in Westeros. Her labors too go sideways, but she’s without the benefit of a dragon to put her out of her misery. Instead, she’s subjected to the decisions of the men around her, particularly her husband Viserys, who elects to have a C-section performed out of desperation for a son. We watch in horror as Aemma’s cut open against her will. And to make matters worse, not only does she perish, but so too does the baby. This is dark stuff.
#1: Daemon Ends Vaemond
“The Lord of the Tides”
The Velaryons have it rough in Season 1, but no one arguably got it worse than Vaemond. By all accounts, Vaemond is technically right in his conviction that Driftmark should pass through him, seeing as Rhaenyra’s children aren’t actually of Velaryon blood. But as we learned from Ned Stark, being right doesn’t mean diddly squat if you make enemies of the wrong people. Vaemond makes a vehement case for himself in the Great Hall, compelling Viserys to make good on his promise of removing the tongue of whoever calls his grandchildren bastards. Daemon however has other ideas, slicing off the top half of Vaemond’s head with one swift blade. Sufficient to say, the Queen of Hearts would be proud.