Commentary

House of the Dragon's Viserys Has a Cute Little Hobby, and We Have a Bunch of Post-Premiere Questions

Warning: This post contains spoilers from House of the Dragon‘s premiere. 

Gods be good, I missed Westeros.

The House of the Dragon premiere Sunday brought us right back into the realm, kicking off a prequel that focuses on House Targaryen just ahead of its historic decline. Prior to watching, I wasn’t sure how seamlessly Game of Thrones’ prequel spinoff would mesh with the original series, which I loved — yes, even the final season — and covered in full for TVLine. But the moment Rhaenyra’s dragon swooped over King’s Landing, I was as pleased as Tyrion in his own bed, with a belly full of wine and a… well, you get the gist.

All of the major action in the premiere is covered in our recap, which you can read here. But now that we’ve all had a few hours to digest this latest foray into Thrones-dom, I’d like to focus on one small, albeit unavoidably noticeable, detail from Episode 1:

What’s the deal with the giant sculpture-in-progress in King Viserys’ bedroom? You know, the one he’s working on when Alicent shows up to “comfort” the grieving monarch?

From what I remember of Fire & Blood, the book from which House of the Dragon draws heavily, there’s no mention of Rhaenyra’s dad having a hobby. I have questions:

* Is that King’s Landing he’s carving? Dragonstone? It’s got to be somewhere important to House Targaryen either in the present or the past, right? And if it is of King’s Landing, how accurate will it be? I don’t get the sense that Viserys spends a lot of time in the city’s streets.

* Is he actually good at carving? Or, once the king has dressed and left the room for the day, do a team of highly skilled artists sneak in, undo the subpar work he put in the night before, and leave the miniature landscape in better shape than they found it?

* Or maybe it’s the opposite: He’s a frustrated art student who wants nothing more than to spend the hours whittling and dreaming, but things like “familial duty,” “governing the kingdoms” and “naming a successor” got in the way?

* When did Viserys start carving it? When does he think he’ll finish? And, like all the crafters I know (including myself), does he have a highly delusional sense of the latter? (I’m a cross-stitcher who’s been working on an intricate advent calendar for MORE THAN TWO DECADES, so I know of what I speak.)

* How do the other characters unwind? Is Otto Hightower into puzzles? Is Rhaenys a knitter? Does Daemon do decoupage?

Anyone else intrigued by this impressive, if unwieldy, hobby of the king’s? Was there anything else small — or serious! — that stuck in your head after the premiere? Hit the comments and let me know!

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