‘House Of The Dragon’ Star Milly Alcock Calls Daemon And Rhaenyra Incest Scene ‘Gnarly’

Things got a little hot and heavy in last night’s episode of House Of The Dragon. Spoilers ahead.

Sexual depravity is nothing new for the Game Of Thrones universe, of course; there was certainly plenty to choose from in the original series, and even more graphic and at times disturbing content in the books by George R.R. Martin.

But the scene in last night’s episode, The King Of The Narrow Sea, was shocking and unsettling to say the least.

I won’t go into a ton of details here. You can read my recap/review of the show if you want more spoilers. Suffice to say, Targaryens are even more incestuous than the Lannisters, and in this case, two of the show’s best characters—Daemon and Rhaenyra—have taken up the banner, rather than two (initially) deplorable characters like Cersei and Jaime.

Speaking to The New York Post, Milly Alcock (young Rhaenyra) said that while the scene may have been shocking, it wasn’t very awkward to film—at least not between her and co-star Matt Smith (Daemon).

“No, strangely enough. [Matt Smith and I] were just kind of mates. So, it was quite comfortable,” Alcock told the post. “We had an intimacy coordinator, and we worked with her through the rehearsal process and blocked it out months before.”

Alcock is 22 and Smith 39, though the scene was shocking at least in part because of how young Rhaenyra looks and seems (she’s closer to 18 or 19 at this point in the show’s somewhat confusing timeline).

Apparently neither of the actors had been on the set for the pleasure house where this scene took place until they were shooting the scene.

“Clare Kilner, our director, made sure that we hadn’t seen any of the brothel stuff until we were shooting,” said Alcock. “So, that was our first time walking through the brothel, and he’s guiding her through the room with all of these other bodies. So, that was quite shocking. You’re like, ‘This is kind of weird and silly.’”

Naturally, watching the episode the word “silly” doesn’t really come to mind, but it’s a funny glimpse into life on set for the actors. Whatever editing and cinematography wizardry goes into a scene like this, it must be very strange to film around a bunch of naked extras.

“There were extras who we had just met who were like, 69-ing for 12 hours,” Alcock told the post. “It’s pretty gnarly. We felt pretty overdressed, because everyone else was nude.”

Alcock says that she thinks overall, Daemon is good for Rhaenyra, but that it’s “complicated.” That may be true but it sure feels like an understatement!

As for her illicit rendezvous with handsome Kingsguard knight Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel), Alcock adds: “I wrestled with [her feelings for Criston] the whole time, in the show. I think that she wants to be seen, and ultimately Daemon and Criston Cole are the only two people who really see her. Both of them see her for different reasons. Daemon kind of has the upper hand, and Rhaenyra has the upper hand with Cole, and that turns her on a bit.”

“I think that she genuinely likes him. But I don’t think she would pick him over Daemon, ultimately.”

You can read the rest of the interview here.

Personally, I thought the scene was shocking but not gratuitous, except for maybe the litany of nude bodies around them. I’m more curious about Daemon’s motivations at this point. Why do this in public view? What’s his game? Surely he knows this will come back to his brother, King Viserys (Paddy Considine) so why not meet in private if this is what he wants?

It’s very similar to my puzzlement over Daemon’s party following the death of the queen and her infant son in the series premiere. Does Daemon want to be punished and exiled? Is he sabotaging himself for some reason? It’s interesting also that he stopped before going further with his niece, leaving her alone in the brothel in a fit of pique. Why? Love for Rhaenyra, perhaps outweighing whatever motivations he’s consumed by?

It’s all very curious. What do you think? Let me know on Twitter or Facebook.

Past House Of The Dragon Reviews from yours truly:

Here’s my video review of the most recent episode:

Source: https://www.forbes.com/sites/erikkain/2022/09/12/house-of-the-dragon-star-milly-alcock-has-thoughts-about-that-daemon-and-rhaenyra-scene/