Spoiler Alert: Spoilers for House of the Dragon Episode 8: Lord of the Tides AheadHouse of the Dragon follows in Game of Thrones’ footsteps, delivering heartbreaking episodes with Emmy-winning performances throughout the cast. The eighth episode of the season, titled Lord of the Tides, focused on Paddy Considine’s character, King Viserys Targaryen, as his body deteriorated beyond recognition.
Unfortunately, the episode concludes with the passing of the King as he explains the Song of Ice and Fire prophecy to his wife, Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke), who he believes is his daughter Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy). This slip-up will have monumental consequences in future episodes as the war between House Targaryen begins.
Following his role in the series, Considine spoke with GQ and reflected on his time with House of the Dragon. Many fans believed the King was too weak to rule over Westeros in the show; however, the actor sees things quite differently. “There’s this perception that he’s weak, which I think is absolute nonsense. He’s just too compassionate for the job. I think the sense of duty is what got to him.” Viserys was someone who could relate to all his family members, despite the ever-growing tension between the Hightower side and the Targaryens.
“He was the only person in the kingdom who had any f*****g morals whatsoever,” Considine says. “He holds everything together as long as he absolutely can. I thought he was a joy to play. He believed in duty above everything. I don’t know if people understood that correctly.”
Considine Says Power Didn’t Corrupt Viserys
Power is a central theme throughout House of the Dragon and Game of Thrones, as characters often seek the Iron Throne and control over the seven kingdoms of Westeros. Of course, most of the series cast, such as Alicent Hightower, Rhaenyra Targaryen, Daemon, Otto, Corlys, Aemond, and the rest of the characters, will seek their right as King or Queen. However, one thing that made Considine’s Viserys unique was his lack of corruption.
“What I found really interesting about him was that he wasn’t corrupted by power. He just wanted peace,” Considine explains. “He wanted people to be happy at the end of the day, but that makes him weak. So what would have made him more relatable, if he was a dictator? If he was a tyrant? Would that be more satisfying? It’s not who he is.”
Considine’s performance will be a fan favorite, and the actor will be considered for Emmy nominations when awards season rolls around next year. However, the actor got a seal of approval from someone, which meant more than any trophy. “I got a text message that simply said: ‘Your Viserys is better than my Viserys.’ It was from George R.R. Martin. And I thought: that’ll do it. Thanks for trusting me.”
Fans can watch as the war for the throne begins when House of the Dragon debuts its final two episodes of the first season, premiering on HBO and HBO Max Sundays at 9 pm E.T.