In “The Princess and the Queen” the rivalry between Alicent and Rhaenyra takes center stage. Before I say too much of anything else I want to go ahead and say that I have nothing but negative feelings toward both Alicent and Ser Criston. They’re both assholes in the episode with Alicent openly admitting that she wished her father was still Hand because he would take her side rather than being a mostly neutral party.
The episode starts with the birth of Rhaenyra’s third son and Alicent immediately wanting to see the child as a show of disrespect. As I previously mentioned a lot of the episode deals with the two former friends growing rivalry. Alicent is also tired of Viserys and his willful ignorance of Rhaenyra’s children true parentage, with their father not being Laenor but Ser Harwin Strong. Prince Daemon and Laena are in Essos with their daughters while Laena is pregnant and wishing to return to Driftmark. Their bit of the episode ends with Laena sacrificing herself after a failed and difficult birth by fire from her dragon Vhagar. Larys Strong kills his father and brother after a meeting with Alicent where she wished for more support in King’s Landing. The episode ends with Rhaenyra and Laenor going to Dragonstone ahead of Alicent’s scheming.
I feel like I might have let my annoyance at Alicent not only falling for the scheming of others but actively working towards what they want to have an effect on my thoughts on the episode as a whole. “The Princess and the Queen” is a good episode that has the time jump that I’ve been waiting for. I’m still waiting on Viserys to succumb to the Iron Throne and the sickness from the wounds that come from sitting on a chair made of swords. The effects for the aged and sickly Viserys are fantastic. I find myself being more frustrated by the political scheming in House of the Dragon than I thought I would be. I don’t think I can give it a fair score with how annoyed I got by the events in the episode.