REVIEW: House of the Dragon – Episode 7 ‘Driftmark’

Last Updated on October 5, 2022

This show just gets better and better. House of the Dragon E7 continues the near perfect first season as the prequel to Game of Thrones goes from strength to strength. The big players are pulled together for a funeral and the decision between the greens and blacks grow, much to the dismay of the ill King Viserys I. Old dragons and young children are drawn into the fight and sides are made clear by the end of the episode.

House of the Dragon E7 is what you want from a grimdark fantasy series. Moments of brief joy are dampened by despair as the Targaryen rule appears to crumble with two women who were once best friends, firmly standing opposite one another with a clear eye on ruling Westeros. A great dragon chooses a new rider, children fight and spill blood like the adults, and Prince Daemon watches it all with the smirk of a man who lives for chaos and thrives on seeing the growing madness around him. The Rogue Prince grows close once more to his niece, sharing a night with her on the coast as rumours of Rhaenyra’s bastard children grow louder and threaten to tear the King’s court apart. Alicent’s desperation for her children to take the throne is heightened with her father now once again the hand to the king and each side seems to be pulling people to their cause to prepare for what they know is a deadly war to come. The sick Viserys is the only thing holding it all apart and everyone can see that he is not long for this world.

House of the Dragon E7 has great characters, a great story, and is a near perfect episode. Sadly, it has one major flaw. The lighting. Too much of the episode was too dark for the audience to see what exactly was going on and the fact that the episode was directed by the same guy who directed the infamously dark The Long Night episode makes me feel as though this was a choice more than an error. Well, it was a poor one. In a world as beautiful as Westeros, its audience wants to see the detail that is evidence of the hard work so many people put into creating the sets and costumes. The darkness of the episode (literally, we’re grimdark fans, dark content is our thing) is the only thing that pulls this episode away from being one of the very best based on George RR Martin’s world. It’s a minor grumble, but as it is not the first time this has happened, it has to be mentioned.

House of the Dragon E7 is grimdark at its finest. The grudges and rivalries of the adults are passed onto their children and the cold war becomes hot and bloodier for it. The lines have been drawn and even the dragons are picking sides. The dance is about to begin and its time to see if this great series can stick the landing. I just hope we’ll be able to see it clearly.

 

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Aaron Jones

Aaron Jones

Aaron S. Jones is the author of Memories of Blood and Shadow, and The Broken Gods trilogy. He is Head of School at a school in Kent, UK and when he is not tearing his hair out at students struggling with their, they're and there, he is tearing his hair out as he dies for the thousandth time on Elden Ring. You can find him on Twitter @HereticASjones where he is most likely procrastinating for hours at a time instead of focusing on his Orc murder mystery.