House of the Dragon: why did Aemond fail to control Vhagar?

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for the House of the Dragon season 1 finale. At the very end of the series, Aemond, who is chasing his nephew in an attempt to gouge out his eye, can no longer control Vhagar, his dragon. But why?

Vhagar and Arrax, out of control © HBO

WARNING: This article contains spoilers for the House of the Dragon season 1 finale.

The first season of House of the Dragon ended in tragedy. On the back of his dragon Vhagar, Aemond slays his nephew, Lucerys Targaryen, above Storm’s End. A tragic event that will lead to war and to the events of season 2 of the series.

If Aemond has long had a vendetta against Lucerys, all the elements of this scene demonstrate that he is only pursuing him with the goal of taking his eye, just as Lucerys unwittingly did to him so many years ago. Given their history, it would make sense that Aemond would want to kill Lucerys (which is the case in the book Fire and Blood). But the series makes it clear that Aemond had no intention of doing this and Vhagar spirals out of control. So why did he act like that that night?

Vhagar, the oldest dragon in Westeros, had nothing to do with Aemond’s wishes

If Aemond is infatuated with a desire for revenge and a thirst for power riding the greatest dragon in all of Westeros, he only sought to intimidate his nephew and seek revenge, with no murderous ulterior motives. ” It’s a complex scene. Aemond isn’t blameless, but he’s not a psychopath either. said Ryan Condal, the showrunner of the series, in a interview.

This scene is revealing as far as Aemond is concerned. If he provokes this pursuit, it is worth remembering that Aemond was first and foremost a bullied child, made fun of all his childhood because he didn’t have a dragon. In the end, his look says it all: he didn’t want to kill his nephew, he didn’t intend to.

To read : House of the Dragon season 2: release date, cast, story, what to expect?

Aemond comes to realize that his dragon Vhagar has just killed his nephew, Lucerys, and nothing will be the same © HBO
Aemond comes to realize that his dragon Vhagar has just killed his nephew, Lucerys, and nothing will be the same © HBO

But then, why can’t Aemond reason with Vhagar? However, he had no no problem obeying the orders of his former rider, Laena, especially when she ordered him to end his life. Vhagar was even reluctant to do so, not wanting to hurt his partner, even though he eventually obeyed. But Vhagar and Laena had built a real connection over many years and Laena knew how to control it. Aemond, on the other hand, simply sees Vhagar as a weapon to wield.

The scene says a lot about the character that dragons can have, since Arrax, Lucerys’ little dragon, is also out of control. The problem is that dragons cannot be fully tamed. No dragon can be fully controlled, especially when a largely inexperienced rider like Aemond is dealing with a dragon as old and mighty as Vhagar, who has already seen a hundred battles.

At this point in the series, Vhagar is the largest and oldest dragon in all of Westeros; he was even one of the three dragons to help Aegon the Conqueror take over Westeros. Vhagar had several dragon riders and Aemond is, at this moment, the least experienced of all. He may yell at her “ serve me “, Vhagar will have done as he pleases.

House of the Dragon: why did Aemond fail to control Vhagar?