Arts & Entertainment

Tragedy Strikes In House Of The Dragon Episode 4 Tagged The Red Dragon And The Gold

As Episode 3 of House of the Dragon Season 2 ended, viewers were left anticipating the next episode from the bold stealth mission in which Rhaenyra sneaks back into King’s Landing (with Mysaria’s help) for a one-on-one meeting with her estranged frenemy, Alicent Hightower over the throne with her efforts to end the war ending in futility.

This gripping cliffhanger set a high bar for Episode 4, and The Red Dragon and the Gold does not disappoint. The latest instalment of the HBO epic series which is available for streaming in Nigeria on Showmax plunges deeper into the political intricacies and personal vendettas that threaten to tear the realm apart.

Episode 4: The Red Dragon and the Gold

Daemon’s Visions and Machinations

Episode 4, opens with a haunting vision experienced by Daemon, where he sees himself beheading a young Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock). This chilling dream is interrupted by Simon Strong (Simon Russell Beale), who informs Daemon about the escalating conflict between the Brackens and the Blackwoods. Daemon’s manipulation continues as he meets Oscar Tully, the young grandson of Grover Tully, and suggests a treacherous plan to kill his grandfather and seize control of the army.

Political manoeuvring in Driftmark and King’s Landing

On Driftmark, Rhaenys (Eve Best) engages in a conversation with Alyn (Abubakar Salim), the saviour of Lord Corlys (Steve Toussaint), before revealing to her husband that Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) has summoned her back to Dragonstone. In King’s Landing, Grand Maester Orwyle (Kurt Egyiawan) delivers an abortion potion to Queen Alicent (Olivia Cooke), who then questions him about King Viserys’ (Paddy Considine) true wishes regarding their son Aegon’s (Tom Glynn-Carney) claim to the throne.

Tensions on Dragonstone

Back on Dragonstone, tensions run high as the council scrutinises Baela (Bethany Antonia), only for Jace (Harry Collett) to defend her honour. The arrival of Lord Corlys brings a sense of order and authority, setting the stage for strategic discussions. Meanwhile, Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel) enforces loyalty among the Brackens and Blackwoods before heading to Harrenhal with Ser Gwayne Hightower (Freddie Fox). Concurrently, Aegon learns that his small council has been making decisions without his input, highlighting his diminishing influence.

Aegon’s frustration and Alicent’s counsel

During a small council meeting, Aemond (Ewan Mitchell) confronts his brother Aegon in High Valyrian, showcasing the rising tensions within the royal family. Larys (Matthew Needham) informs Alicent about the council’s machinations, and they discuss the inevitable war, despite Alicent’s hopes for peace. At Harrenhal, Daemon experiences another vision, this time of his late wife Laena (Nanna Blondell), further complicating his psyche.

Preparing for battle

Aegon’s frustration with his small council leads him to seek his mother’s counsel. Alicent advises him to rely on her and Otto’s (Rhys Ifans) guidance, emphasising caution. Meanwhile, Criston Cole and his knights prepare to seize Rook’s Rest, and Rhaenyra returns to Dragonstone, expressing her futile attempts at negotiating peace with Alicent. The council agrees to send a dragon to Rook’s Rest, with Rhaenys asserting that her dragon, Meleys, is the only one ready for combat.

The Battle of Rook’s Rest

Rhaenys departs Dragonstone on Meleys, while Aegon takes flight from King’s Landing on Sunfyre. The ensuing battle at Rook’s Rest is a spectacular display of dragon fire and devastation. Meleys incinerates the troops of Team Green, but the tide turns when Aemond, hiding with Vhagar, joins the fray. Vhagar’s immense power overwhelms Meleys, resulting in a catastrophic clash that leaves both dragons and their riders dead. The visual spectacle of this battle, combined with the emotional weight of Rhaenys’ demise, marks one of the most harrowing scenes in the series.

Aftermath and Devastation

Criston Cole awakens amidst the scorched battlefield, searching for King Aegon. He finds Aemond standing over the lifeless Sunfyre, and together they discover Aegon’s body, lying dead alongside his dragon. This sombre conclusion underscores the devastating cost of the Targaryen civil war.

House of the Dragon Season 2, Episode 4, stands out as one of the best episodes yet[a][b], having broken a series record with a 9.7 out of 10 on IMDb from 26,000 reviews. This positions the episode on par with previous Game of Thrones’ episodes like Blackwater which shows the potential of the second season of House of the Dragon.

The episode features the first Targaryen battle in the Dance of the Dragons, marking a proper start to the civil war between the Greens and the Blacks. with an intricate blend of political intrigue, personal drama, and breathtaking action sets a high standard for the series. The performances, particularly by Matt Smith, Emma D’Arcy, and Olivia Cooke, are exceptional, bringing depth and nuance to their complex characters. The Red Dragon and the Gold not only advances the plot but also deepens our understanding of the stakes involved, leaving viewers eagerly anticipating the next chapter in this epic saga.

Stream all four episodes of House of the Dragon season 2 on Showmax. New episodes on Monday, express from the US.

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