Spoilers for House of the Dragon will be found below.
This week’s episode of the Game of Thrones prequel, House of the Dragon, was a whopper. Not only did King Viserys I continue to decline, but the show bid farewell to two lead actors with a time jump coming before next week. This means that Rhaenyra will no longer be portrayed by Milly Alcock but by Emma D’Arcy, and Allicent’s baton will pass from Emily Carey to Olivia Cooke. Will the younger versions ever return in flashback mode? One can only hope, but for the moment, we’re here to talk about Episode 5, “We Light The Way,” and how the episode ended in a way that’s being compared to a key Game of Thrones episode. That would be Season 3, Episode 9, “The Rains of Castamere,” which is the famed “Red Wedding” episode, where Robb Stark lost his life and that of his unborn child, his betrothed, his mother, and much of his army.
Alright, so are the comparisons fair? By the scale of total carnage, not so much (and this isn’t even the first Red Wedding comparison that has been made about this spinoff), but in terms of vibes and political ramifications, the two events are comparable, and the tension was everything here because people expected a Red Wedding-esque event. In the end, Ser Criston ended up going ballistic upon Rhaenyra’s announced marriage to Laenor Velaryon. She rejected Criston’s proposal and suggested that they continue their carnal affairs, since she and Laenor had an agreement, but Criston wasn’t having it. During the lead-up to Rhaenyra’s wedding, Criston snapped and ended up beating the living hell (and life) out of Laenor’s gay lover (who was named Joffrey!). And this led to Rhaenyra and a shocked Laenor skipping past the planned week of feasting and taking their vows straight away.
Our own Jessica Toomer has much more to say (including how wedding feasts are a bad idea in this universe) about the possible fallout of this devastating turn of events. Also, will Ser Criston’s actions jeopardize Rhaenyra’s ascent to the throne, and how will Allicent’s statement-green dress and her recruitment of Ser Criston influence the rest of the season? And is it odd that Daemon’s murder of his wife is somehow not the most dynasty-devastating event of the week? Let’s get down to the “Red Wedding” comparisons on social media, where nervous anticipation ruled.
Some called it early from the promotional stills.
🎬 Game Of Thrones ( 2011-2019)
Nine Years Ago, Red Wedding Happened.
The Greatest Tragedy In TV history. pic.twitter.com/15YblfWPPz
— The Cinéprism (@TheCineprism) September 13, 2022
— Air-Rum (@__aarum) September 19, 2022
Yet when events began to play out (with heavy vibes), people couldn’t handle the stress.
— 𝘀𝘂𝗽𝗲𝗿𝗻𝗼𝘃𝘃𝗮 👾 (@noahrioz) September 19, 2022
Is this wedding worse than the Red Wedding????
— Reagan Gomez (@ReaganGomez) September 19, 2022
— Bitch with wifi 🦄 (@candykizzes24) September 19, 2022
NOT THE GAY RED WEDDING
— pepe ᗢ cw tvd s1 (@rhaenyrasith) September 19, 2022
This feels like a Red Wedding situation
— 🇳🇬 (@YoShowtime) September 19, 2022
Was that the Red Wedding Part 2?
— Kneghar Targaryen (@The_Statement) September 19, 2022
— ebonymadame (@ebonymadame) September 19, 2022
if the red wedding was some slaughter this is the messy bitch who lives for drama wedding
— in my rupert giles era✨ (@maryswraith) September 19, 2022
Red wedding ass shit omg #HouseOfTheDragon
— ♱ katana the villain ♱ (@aspenkatana) September 19, 2022
It’s not exactly a promising start to a marriage, but that’s Westeros for you.
HBO’s House of the Dragon airs on Sundays at 9:00pm EST.