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Emma D’Arcy and Matt Smith explain the necessity of Rhaenyra and Daemon’s incestuous relationship in House of the Dragon



Relationships are a hot mess in the Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon. As these suppressed emotions finally start to surface, Season 1 Episode 7 brought about a lot more challenges. In the same episode, Daemon and Rhaenyra wed in a lavish ceremony steeped in ancient Valyrian rites, demonstrating their final acceptance of each other’s love. Actors Matt Smith and Emma D’Arcy, who play the characters on the show, explained why their relationship is innate to the lore.

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The portrayal of Daemon and Rhaenyra’s relationship on-screen needs to be honest

In their recent chat with Deadline, Smith and D’Arcy opened up about the incestuous nature of Daemon and Rhaenyra’s relationship. D’Arcy said, “If we’re going to show this relationship and we’re going to do the whole thing justice, the ick factor has to be present because that’s honest. It can be sexy, and you’ve got to keep the ick in the room because that’s honest.”

Smith added, “Obviously we’re dealing with events that are hundreds of years old and the morality was different then. But ultimately, it’s important to the story. So, therefore, Daemon and Rhaenyra do their thing.”


House of the Dragon showrunner describes Viserys as a “modern politician”

Ryan Condal, House of the Dragon’s showrunner, called Viserys a modern politician in the same interview. “We started with the desire to portray this very complicated character who we always said was a really good man but was not a good king,” Condal said.

“The reason for that is because he’s actually quite a modern politician. He’s not quick to move. He takes consensus. He finds the middle often. Those aren’t qualities that work in a feudal medieval society. They are things we look for in our contemporary leaders. We were really excited to populate this world with a character like that. There’s a certain weakness seen in that.”

Read Next: House of the Dragon deleted scene explained why Daemon lashed out at Rhaenyra over Aegon’s dream


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