Why the Song of Ice and Fire Prophesy Is a Big Part of ‘House of the Dragon’

Why the Song of Ice and Fire Prophesy Is a Big Part of ‘House of the Dragon’

Last night, I had a dream… and I foresaw you having questions about the A Song of Ice and Fire prophecy on House of the Dragon. See what I did there? Also known as the Prince That Was Promised prophecy, it was a big part of Game of Thrones as well… and I’m kind of struggling to see why it’s such a BFD for these characters. Doesn’t really feel like their monkey and circus, if you ask me. That’s a problem for future Targaryens.

In tonight’s House of the Dragon, Old Man Viserys accidentally tells Queen Alicent about the prophecy on the Catspaw dagger that was supposed to be For Heir Eyes Only. To make matters worse, Viserys thought he was talking to his daughter, so he basically says “I think it’s you,” meaning Rhaenyra, and Alicent now believes that the prophecy is referring to herself and/or her son Aegon. DUN DUN DUNNNN!!!!! …or is it?

A quick refresher:

Here’s the wording of the prophecy as written on the dagger:

“From my blood come the prince that was promised and his will be the song of ice and fire.”

We learned in House of the Dragon that this prophecy is the divine right of the Targaryen dynasty. It has been passed on from heir to heir along with the belief that a Targaryen must sit on the Iron Throne if they are to survive the prophesied Long Night (the arrival of the White Walkers). That’s why Viserys told the Sea Snake that Laenor and Rhaenyra’s kids could only have the surname Velaryon until one of them was crowned king or queen, at which point they’d have to be renamed Targaryen. It has also, we can only presume, strengthened the belief within House Targaryen over the years that they need to do as much incest as humanly possible.

Eventually, people in Essos and Westeros start referring to the “Prince That Was Promised” as the reincarnation of a legendary hero named Azor Azai. On Game of Thrones, there were many candidates for Azor Azai reborn, depending on who you talked to, including Stannis Baratheon, Daenerys Targaryen (many thought her older brother/Jon’s father Rhaegar was the prince that was promised before his death), and Jon Snow.

Why is this important?

Why is it a big deal that Alicent A) knows about the prophecy and B) thinks that it’s about her? The best answer I can come up with is that it lets Alicent enjoy the entitlement if she thinks that she herself is the princess who was promised. It gives her a personal reason to fight for herself and her children in King’s Landing and get them on the Iron Throne no matter what cost. If she thinks that Viserys was talking about her son Aegon, that makes a little more sense. She may have thought he was telling her to put her son on the Iron Throne at all costs, but the king’s fragmented sentences make it difficult to know for sure.

This content is imported from {embed-name}. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

But there’s some dramatic irony to the situation.

We’ve all, I presume, seen the final season of Game of Thrones, right? We know that it’s technically not a Targaryen who was on the pointy chair when the White Walkers were defeated. Daenerys and Jon Snow, neé Aegon Targaryen, were leading the charge against them in the North and their union could be considered a song of ice (Jon) and fire (Dany). So it could be either or both of them—but only if some elements of the prophecy as Viserys understands it are incorrect. So how are we supposed to take the wording of the prophecy as seriously as the characters on House of the Dragon do when we know it’s not really that important?

Are we going to learn that the Stark family, since Arya killed the Night King with the very dagger the prophecy is written on, or the Lannister family, since Cersei was on the Iron Throne at the time, has secret Targaryen blood? I’m fine with that—the That’s So Raven effect happens all the time in stories like this—just as long as we eventually learn what the prophecy actually means.

There’s also the issue of timing.

We know that it’s not relevant for over a century even with all the time jumps. Winter is literally not coming for Rhaenyra or Alicent or any of their children. At least, not like that. The stakes seem pretty low IMHO. If the succession fight becomes about keeping a Targaryen on the Throne, it literally does not matter. Alicent and Viserys’s kids have exactly as much Targaryen blood as Rhaenyra and Laenor Harwin’s. The “purest” Targ kids, gross, at the moment are the ones that Rhaenyra has with Daemon. You can’t make me believe that the conflict about who should rule Westeros after King Vis has to do with anything other than patriarchy.

Personally, I would pay more attention to Helaena Targaryen, who has been mumbling little prophecies left and right while playing with bugs. That seems more relevant to the events of House of the Dragon. Hate to be that guy, but, news flash (and spoiler warning): Daenerys and Jon are the descendants of Rhaenyra Targaryen, not Alicent Highwater. Pack it up, Miss Thing! You’ve already lost the war!

      Source link