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“He’s entering Harrenhal with troubles”: Director Geeta Patel on Daemon’s mental state and visions

Daemon’s emotional turmoil in Harrenhal.



Alys Rivers might explain the curse of Harrehal to Daemon in House of the Dragon episode
Credits: Max

In the latest episode of the House of the Dragon podcast, Director Geeta Patel reveals how the eerie setting of Harrenhal mirrors Daemon’s troubled mind. Through creative filming techniques and meticulous set design, the haunting castle reflects Daemon’s inner chaos.

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Harrenhal and Daemon’s mental vulnerability

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Geeta Patel recently discussed Episode 3, “The Burning Mill’ on the official Game of Thrones: House of the Dragon podcast. Patel said when she first read about Harrenhal, she imagined a place reminiscent of the chilling atmosphere in Silence of the Lambs. She stated:

“I really wanted it to be pitch dark, to be honest. I wanted him to just be lost because I felt like it was a metaphor for what Daemon is going through right now. And so, that was the entry point into this, is trying to make Harrenhal exemplary of what Daemon is feeling throughout the season. And this is the beginning of that story. He comes into a place that puts him on his back foot and scares him, to be honest.

And Daemon doesn’t get scared easily. If we go to the very beginning of that scene, we knew that the last time we saw Daemon, he had been fighting with his wife, and she had pushed him away. When someone pushes you away and tells you you’re worthless, it hurts, and it drives you into a spin. And so the way that the dragon was entering that scene, I really wanted it to be a guy getting in his car, drinking and driving, and just feeling like, “My life sucks and fuck her,” you know? And so, that’s what we did. We kind of created this drunken dragon entry into the scene in this darkness.”

Read More: We’ll feel an embarrassing relatability to Criston Cole by end of Season 2, says director Geeta Patel

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07/14/2024 04:52 am GMT

Geeta Patel on crafting Harrenhal’s eerie atmosphere


Credits: Max

Patel went on to talk about creating Harrenhal’s spooky ambience. She mentioned the collaborative effort between her, production designer Jim Clay, and the rest of the creative team. She stated:

“When we first started creating Harrenhal, it was about a place that doesn’t make sense and a place that constantly surprises you and is mercurial. So, one of the big things, and we got this from the books as well, is that there’s big, epic, wide spaces, and all of a sudden it would go into a space that is tight and small, and then it would go back out to big, and the stairs would go down and the stairs would go up. It’s a confusing space. It is disorienting. That was one of the words we used the most. And so, when I came on, I think it was just trying to deliver that.

And I mean, it was a very, very long process of making sure that when Daemon enters Harrenhal, you feel how big it is. But we didn’t have the set that looked like that. So, everything you’re seeing on the screen is actually a very small, small set that we played games with. For example, he goes down one hall and turns the corner and goes down another hall. That was the same hall. We just lit it differently, dressed it differently. You see a hall, and it looks like it’s very long. It’s actually very short. Visual effects busted out the back of it. There’s so many things like that. I think the biggest thing for me was making sure that it was haunting.”

Read More: Ryan Condal talks about how Milly Alcock’s Season 2 Harrenhal cameo was kept a secret

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Ved Prabhudesai is an avid enthusiast of all things pop culture. He has a special interest in the field of animation and art, with a background in Fine Arts and Digital Media Arts. He has begun his first into the field of Entertainment Journalism with Wiki of Thrones, and has been writing for them since 2023. He also has experience working as a screenplay writer, animator and comic book artist. His hobbies include holding discussions and organising events focused around pop culture, dissecting the importance of media in today's world. He began reading A Song Of Ice And Fire shortly before Game of Thrones debuted on HBO. He has followed the series religiously and has spent hours reading Wikis learning about Targaryen history and possible plot points we will see in the Winds of Winter.


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