House of the Dragon Season 1 Episode 9 Review: The Green CouncilPaul Dailly at .
House of the Dragon broke the Game of Thrones tradition in a big way, and I'm fine with it.
In the past, the penultimate episodes of the season were about some big battle that included almost every faction.
House of the Dragon Season 1 Episode 9 was all about The Green Council and its plan to usurp the power from Princess Rhaenyra following the passing of King Viserys I.
It was a surprisingly satisfying episode that flawlessly set us up for the conflict to come.
There was an air of uncertainty throughout King's Landing following the death of Viserys, and I have to say, Olivia Cooke gave a career-best performance as Alicent tried to get Aegon on the throne while ensuring Rhaenyra wouldn't be harmed in the process.
There will be many naysayers about Alicent picking and choosing what she heard from her husband in those final moments, but they were essentially ramblings that hinted that he had changed his mind about Rhaenyra being heir to the throne.
You could see the worry on Alicent's face at the end of House of the Dragon Season 1 Episode 8, and for the most part, she was struggling to come to terms with all of this knowledge on "The Green Council."
It didn't help that she learned her father had everyone conspiring against Rhaenyra and her claim to the throne.
Otto Hightower is a man of many talents, and he was seeing Aegon on the throne if it resulted in his death.
Ser Criston killing Lord Beesbury was a chilling visual that set the tone for the people against what the Green Council wanted.
Harrold not backing down against Criston was a pivotal moment, and I would have much preferred for Harrold to kill this imbecile of a character to avoid him taking up any more much-needed screen real estate.
This is treason. Treason at the least.Belon
Criston has this blind loyalty to anyone who opposes Rhaenyra because she blew him off and said there was no way they could run off together.
He's one of the most one-dimensional characters in franchise history, and frankly, the sooner he's killed off, the better.
Alicent taking items of clothing off as Larys fed her information while masturbating was one of the most unsettling scenes on TV, possibly ever.
Larys is scary because he can be smiling to your face and orchestrating your death behind the scenes, but I don't know if I buy his analogy that a bee without a Queen will fly without purpose.
He's such a tricky character to understand because he's always scheming, and the way Alicent took the clothing off and turned around as though she was ashamed certainly suggested that this information-for-pleasure deal had been going on a long time.
I have found out something you should know.Larys
Alicent's plea to Rhaenys about knowing what she's gone through was a great way to show viewers just how much Alicent has been watching everything that's happened in the Seven Kingdoms since she was a young child.
Rhaenys hasn't had the best relationship with Rhaenyra, but she knows what it's like to have something that was supposed to be for you ripped from under you.
There are many factors to consider here, including that anyone against the new way of life in King's Landing will be deemed an enemy.
Men have governed Rhaenys's life, so it makes sense she would be interested in taking back some form of power to solidify herself in history.
Her escape from the castle was intense because you really never know who is playing who when loyalties are shifting on an episodic basis.
Rhaenys is more of an enigma, but not agreeing to pledge allegiance to Aegon and then escaping on her dragon has got to be one of the most badass moves.
Watching her stare at the new King and everyone else in that family as they worried that she was about to burn them to ash was nailbiting, mainly because the wars to come could have been avoided if she had killed them.
The door remains shut until we finish our business.Otto
It also makes me pause to consider what she wants to become of the Seven Kingdoms.
Will she rush to tell Rhaenyra and Daemon at Dragonstone, or does she have something else planned?
Speaking of Aegon, I'm surprised he made it on the throne because he's been so against it.
He didn't have the best relationship with his father, and everyone looked at him like he's squandered his potential, but he looked oddly surprised when the people of King's Landing accepted him.
Helaena couldn't even look at him when he was crowned, and that's saying something.
Aemond has trained himself and ensured he was ready to rule if the opportunity ever presented itself. At the same time, his brother drank his way through life, assaulted women, and had illegitimate kids.
Aemond would be a predictable leader, but someone like Aegon, who didn't want it is far more exciting because it makes you ponder what they will be like as a leader.
I half-expected Aemond to kill his brother when he caught up with him, but for now, he'll have to accept the fact that he's not on the throne.
Then again, we don't know how long Alicent's children will get to sit on the throne. Rhaenyra and Daemon will not be impressed about not being told about the passing of the King, and of course, the coup.
It's hard to believe that the war to come could have been avoided by Rhaenys muttering "Dracarys."
The Green Council has taken its first shot against Team Black, and it's hard not to wonder about what comes next.
Hopefully, Rhaenys takes the message to Dragonstone, and things kick into high gear.
What are your thoughts on the way the Green Council handled everything?
Do you think Alicent genuinely does care about Rhaenyra or was her pledge to keep her safe just a way to be in control of the optics of her actions?
Did you expect Aegon to make it onto the throne?
Is Rhaenys the most badass character in Westeros?
Hit the comments.
House of the Dragon continues Sunday at 9 p.m. on HBO
Paul Dailly is the Associate Editor for TV Fanatic. Follow him on Twitter.