House of the Dragon ends with warring houses, violent deaths and ‘tragic gay tension’

Emma D'Arcy as Princess Rhaenyra in House of the Dragon (2)

HBO’s House of the Dragon came to a dramatic conclusion in the season finale on Sunday (23 October) with warring houses, violent deaths, tragic losses and yes, more gay tension.

The final episode saw the consequences of Alicent (Olivia Cooke) crowning her son Aemond (Ewan Mitchell) as King, against the late King Viserys’s (Paddy Constantine) wishes.

Meanwhile Princess Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy), seen at Dragonstone at the beginning of the episode, is finally informed that her throne has been stolen and in her shock goes into labour, suffering a miscarriage.

As the episode progresses and Alicent and Rhaenyra’s sides divide and plot strategy, Rhaenyra’s sons Jace and Lucerys are sent to discuss alliances with various Lords.

Although Rhaenyra makes them swear to not fight, only act as messengers, when Luke arrives at Storm’s End, all hell breaks loose.

Luke spots Vhagar, Aemond’s dragon, and when he goes to make his escape, Vhagar swoops down and eats Luke – instantly killing him.

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Aemond clearly realises the huge consequences this action has caused, and the scene switches to Rhaenyra being informed of her beloved son’s death.

As she processes the news and turns around in slow motion, it is clear as day – war has begun. And that’s where it ends!

After all the trauma and injustice Rhaenyra has gone through this season, people are fully supporting her season two revenge girlboss era.

This episode also showed how irreparably far childhood best friends (and probably lovers) Rhaenyra and Alicent have grown.

One poignant scene, which touched the hearts of Alicent and Rhaenyra shippers, came when Otto showed Rhaenyra the page of a story book.

The page was ripped from a book the two had bonded over 20 years prior – and left fans mourning their beautiful connection.

Fans will be waiting a while to see what Rhaenyra does next, since the next season isn’t due for another two years. But since these events seem to have put to rest any chance of her and Alicent finding their happy-ever-after together – here’s a look back at all the gayest moments of season one.

Torn apart by rivalry

Rhaenyra and Alicent’s early relationship was so endearing in their love for each other, with the actors who portrayed the pair – Emily Carey, Milly Alcock, Olivia Cooke and Emma D’Arcy – agreeing there were serious vibes between them.

And their bond didn’t seem to dim after they were pitted against one another. The two made heartfelt speeches of respect for one another, defending one another and keeping tokens from years gone by.

Princess Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock) and Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey) in House of the Dragon
Princess Rhaenyra (Milly Alcock) and Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey). (HBO/Sky)

Anything can happen in House of the Dragon with constantly shifting allegiances so who knows, we could see more from these two in the second season. Maybe.

Ser Laenor Valeryon and Ser Joffrey Lonmouth

The show also introduced its first truly canon gay character in the shape of Ser Laenor who, after entering on dragon back, soon starts a relationship with Ser Joffrey Lonmouth.

Despite some gorgeous scenes showing their love for one another, unfortunately it was not meant to be, with Ser Joffery being murdered by Rhaenyra’s lover – leaving a devastated  Laenor in its wake.

Their love transcends generations though, with Laenor deciding to call one of his “supposed” children with Rhaenyra after his dead ex-boyfriend. True love.

Rhaenyra being the ultimate ally in House of the Dragon

After Rhaenyra and Laenor get wed, things are looking pretty bleak for Laenor with his lover dead and finding himself trapped in marriage.

However, Rhaenyra steps up to the occasion and not only validates Laenor’s sexuality with a beautiful speech – but also figures out an escape plan for him.

Plotting with her soon to-be-husband Daemon, they decide to fake Laenor’s death so he can run away with his new partner Ser Qarl and – as everyone mourns – viewers got an iconic shot of Laenor and Qarl peacefully sailing away.

The House of the Dragon creators really redeemed themselves for killing of Ser Joffrey with this move.

House of the Dragon season one is now available for catch up on HBO in the US and Sky Atlantic in the UK.