House of the Dragon Season 1, Episode 6 review: A question of loyalty

Important people question Rhaenyra’s loyalty to her husband in House of the Dragon Season 1, Episode 6. Meanwhile Daemon remains in Pentos.

The cast has changed. Emma D’Arcy and Olivia Cooke certainly have their work cut out for them after such amazing performances by their younger counterparts. However, they both lived up to expectations and that pressure.

It helps that there is now a lot of tension between the two former best friends. Alicent knows that she needs to protect her sons, and she will do everything in her power to put doubt in the minds of the people. However, Viserys is not willing to listen. He doesn’t want to believe that Rhaenyra’s children are not Ser Laenor’s sons.

It’s clear from the hair color that Rhaenyra has not been all that faithful. Even Laenor doesn’t believe it, but he does make it clear that the youngest son, born at the start of the episode, will be named by him. He names the boy Joffrey after his late lover. A very interesting name.

When Viserys’s Hand of the King is heard berating Harwin Strong, Rhaenyra realizes that she needs to do something to protect her family and their position on the Iron Throne. She suggests a marriage between her eldest son and Alicent’s daughter, Haelena. Of course, Alicent is not interested in that, but will she get a choice?

Daemon remains in Pentos in House of the Dragon Season 1, Episode 6

While all that goes on, Daemon is remaining away from Westeros. He’s in Essos with his own family. Yes, he did marry Laena, Laenor’s sister and Corlys’s daughter. The two even have two daughters and another child on the way.

The Prince of Pentos wants to keep Daemon and Laena around. He needs support to protect himself against outside threats. Daemon even considers the proposal, even though Laena isn’t happy about that. She wants to go back to Driftmark. How long will it be until she gets that opportunity? Can Daemon really stay in Pentos? What would pull him back to Westeros?

We get a sense of that. Laena goes into the labor, but the baby is stuck. Knowing the only option is to cut the child out of her, Laenor goes to her dragon to get him to burn her alive. He doesn’t want to at first, knowing that this will kill the woman he has bonded to, but eventually he does. I’d hazard a guess that this is going to connect to a storyline involving Laenor’s daughter, Rhaena. Rhaena’s dragon didn’t hatch, and Laena says that Rhaena can claim a dragon. Will Rhaena claim her mother’s dragon?

A question of loyalty and trust

Back in Westeros, we get to see the way the children are around each other. Prince Aegon isn’t the kindest to his younger brother, Aemon. It turns out that Aemon doesn’t have a dragon yet, and I’m intrigued by Haelena’s abilities. She says that Aemon needs to lose an eye to get a dragon, and there are photos of the boy all grown up with a patch over an eye. What is going to happen, and what are Haelena’s abilities? Will these grow as the season continues?

The Strong family isn’t all that strong it seems. With the rumors about Harwin fathering Rhaenyra’s children, his father suggests stepping down as Hand of the King. Viserys doesn’t accept that since he won’t speak out about the rumors against his son. Alicent isn’t happy, and it’s clear that the she’s conspiring with Harwin’s brother.

Considering the Strongs aren’t around in Game of Thrones, is this the start of the downfall of House Strong? It certainly seems it with the fiery end Harwin gets thanks to his brother’s actions.

Overall, we get a chance to see the tension between the two families. It’s clear to see why the Targaryen civil war starts. However, at the end, Rhaenyra decides it’s time for her and Laenor to leave King’s Landing. They go to Dragonstone, and it won’t take long for Daemon to join them.

Things have really stepped up with this episode. Trust nobody when it comes to House of the Dragon. Watch out for who you conspire with. Alicent is certainly learning that in a devastating way.

What did you think of House of the Dragon Season 1, Episode 6? What do you hope to see in the new episode? Share your thoughts in the comments below.

House of the Dragon airs Sundays on HBO and HBO Max.