Dragon House is to come game of thrones prequel which is about House Targaryen. It takes place approximately two centuries before the events of the original HBO series, when the family was at the height of its power. And it focuses on the Dance of the Dragons – aka the brutal Targaryen civil war that tore the kingdom apart.
One of the most notable characters in George RR Martin’s novel Fire & Blood – the book Dragon House is based on – is Daemon Targaryen. He is a colorful member of the family who will be played in the HBO series by Doctor Who former Matt Smith. Here’s a full backstory of the character and how he fits into the story.
‘House of the Dragon’ is about a war of succession
The struggle for the Iron Throne will be just as central to Dragon House as it was for game of thrones. It begins when King Viserys I (Paddy Considine) raises his daughter Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) to be his heir.
But it’s a controversial choice of successor because King Viserys failed to live up to the male heir succession precedent set by his grandfather – Jaehaerys I (aka The Conciliator).
The eldest of Viserys’ children grows up assuming that she would eventually be crowned Queen of Westeros. But the king’s second wife, Queen Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke), thinks her son, Prince Aegon Targaryen (Tom Glynn-Carney), should be king.
Alicent works behind the scenes to try to help her son win the throne instead of Rhaenyra, and it is this conflict that starts the Civil War. When Viserys dies, Rhaenyra and Aegon are crowned. But only one can sit on the throne.
The Complete Story of Daemon Targaryen
Smith’s Daemon Prince is King Viserys’ brother and Princess Rhaenyra’s uncle. He’s the heir apparent before the king names his 8-year-old daughter, and he’s also one of Westeros’ greatest warriors. In addition to riding the dragon Caraxes, he wields the Dark Sister – the Valyrian steel sword of his ancestor Visenya.
Daemon’s desire to rule and be Viserys’ heir essentially defined his life. He’s an interesting and complex character who alternates between hero and villain, and his story leads to one of the most epic moments in Westeros history.
Daemon and his older brother didn’t hate each other, but the two were definitely different. Daemon was the more aggressive of the two and could go from charming to stealing in the blink of an eye. He was a hothead who loved fighting and sex, a personality that didn’t fit the jobs his brother had given him – Master of the Currency and Master of the Laws.
It wasn’t until he became Lord Commander of the City Watch that Daemon found happiness and inspired loyalty among his men. He even started the tradition of golden coats.
The “House of the Dragon” character had a reputation among brothel owners
Crime declined sharply under Daemon’s command, which was likely due to his fondness for meting out harsh punishments to thieves and cutting scholarships. At the same time, he forged ties with brothel owners and gained notoriety.
“Daemon developed a dark reputation in stews and brothels, he was well known in all the inns (where he drank for free) and brothels in town where Daemon never used to get rid of the goods on offer”, said the The Art of Ice and Fire The Instagram page explains.
“Daemon in one of these brothels became acquainted with a prostitute named Mysaria who would serve as his mistress of the whisperers on the streets of Flea Bottom. While Daemon called himself ‘the town prince’, he became known as “Lord Flea Bottom” among King’s Landing residents.
Prince Daemon has a long list of enemies
Another important part of Daemon’s story was when he conquered the Stepstones, a chain of islands off the southeast coast of Westeros. Accordingly, he had his friend Lord Corlys Velayron crowned king of the Stepstones and the Straits.
But just like many things Daemon did, it made him a lot of enemies. Especially among the Free Cities. He was also at odds with Otto Hightower, the Hand of the King under Viserys. Otto disliked the prince because he was becoming too powerful in King’s Landing.
House Royce wasn’t a fan either, because of the way he treated his first wife Rhea Royce, who died after falling from a horse. Daemon is actually married three times throughout Fire & Blood. His second wife Laena Valaryon dies in childbirth. And his third wife involves him heavily in the dance of the dragons – his niece, Princess Rhaenyra.
Daemon also made his brother an enemy before his death because of dating his niece, as well as mocking his nephew’s stillbirth. In the end, Daemon earned the title of Rogue Prince for continually breaking with House Targaryen.
He supports Princess Rhaenyra’s claim to the throne in ‘House of the Dragon
Daemon had given up hope of becoming king himself. But when his brother dies and his wife claims the throne, he is happy and ready to support her. He even crowns her on Dragonstone himself.
Daemon is an extremely skilled warrior. Her experience as a soldier – along with her dragon Caraxes and steel blade Valyrian Dark Sister – is a valuable asset to Rhaenyra in the Dance of the Dragons. Viewers will also see him use his Flea Bottom connections, resulting in a murder.
As for his marriage to Rhaenyra, they have three children together – Aegon “The Younger” Targaryen, Viserys Targaryen and Viserys I Targaryen. And it is Aegon the Younger who ends up ascending the Iron Throne after the Dance of the Dragons.
However, we won’t spoil the details about Daemon’s role in the Civil War, or his character’s fate. To find out, fans will have to watch Dragon House when it premieres Sunday, August 21 on HBO.
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