In the “House of the Dragon” universe, the Iron Throne is said to have been made by Aegon I Targaryen by putting together the broken and twisted blades of all his enemies, symbolizing the price paid for the conquest of the Seven Kingdoms. The throne is obviously ugly and uncomfortable, signifying the burden a king must always carry. Which makes us think, why would anyone want to sit on it? The answer is quite simple: they see the power it bestows and ignore the baggage that comes with it.
What do they see when they look at the monstrosity that doesn’t even pretend to be beautiful or tender? There must be a sense of exhilaration knowing that the fallen swords that make up the throne give them power over seven kingdoms. You have to feel invincible to know that there is no one above them when they sit on this metal demon. Is this the reason why, for a family that believes in superstitions, they conveniently ignore the tradition that the throne has a habit of rejecting those it deems unworthy? Maegor Targaryen was found dead on the throne, and although there were differing accounts of who did it, it is strongly said that the throne killed him. Viserys Targaryen continued to suffer throughout his life. The throne spared no one, but that didn’t stop people from coveting it. It led to more bloodshed than peace from the time it was created to the time it was destroyed. Perhaps Danaerys Targaryen’s dragon, named Drogon, was right after all when he decided to burn him to ashes. But that wouldn’t happen for another 100 years, and in the current scenario, Rhaenyra, Aegonand Aemond fight for it.
After watching the 8th and 9th episode of “House of the Dragon” Season 1, it’s safe to say that Aegon is clearly unfit to sit on it. He was a coward and a rapist, and such people do not belong to power. Even if it wasn’t, he didn’t want to rule. All Aegon seemed to want was to spend his time partying. Of course, he felt all his life that he was not loved by his parents. We know that Viserys was a constantly sick old king. He may never have been able to give his son the guidance and love he needed. Not to mention that in an extremely patriarchal world, refusing to name him heir must have been interpreted as an acknowledgment of his lack of ability. It didn’t matter that he didn’t actually have them. Yes, Aegon acknowledges to his brother that he didn’t have the inclination or the ability to rule, but this was driven by his insecurity due to people’s lack of trust in him and not his own self-awareness. When Alice tells her that Viserys told her that he wanted his eldest son to be the heir, there is surprise and a look of determination on her face. When people cheer him after his coronation, he raises his sword in the air as if ready for the challenge. It was as if validation was all he needed to believe he could sit on the Iron Throne. And that’s exactly what we’re talking about. Aegon II never paid attention to his lessons; he never took anything seriously but was open to flaunting his privilege without any responsibility while using his parents’ lack of validation as an excuse for his sad life. He didn’t have an iota of self-awareness and just wanted to be pampered. Would the Iron Throne accept a king like him? We don’t think we need to answer that.
However, of the brothers, Aemond Targaryen was clearly the best choice simply because he cared. Aemond had confidence and courage, qualities a king should possess. This first manifested when he decided to claim Vhagar for himself as a 10-year-old boy. He was not afraid. Instead, he saw something he wanted and went for it, a quality that reminds us of Aegon I Targaryen, who conquered King’s Landing simply because he refused to be anything but royalty. Aemond was a deadly swordsman who had an oddly cold head on his shoulders. After all, what child tells their mother to let go of the person who stabbed them in the eye? He considered this a fair trade, having gotten a dragon in return. Even at a young age, he had a surprising ability to cut to the chase. The loss of an eye did not prevent him from becoming a skilled warrior. Imagine the courage and determination that must have taken. It certainly didn’t come from either of his parents, which means he was a person who could think for himself and think well.
People who have watched “House of the Dragon” know that he seems to have some respect for Demon Targaryen. He was the most skilled warrior of his time, and for someone like Aemond, who valued strength, that must have been impressive. At the table, he had no problem starting a fight, but when Daemon got in the way, Aemond backed down. Some might call it cowardice, but we would call it a calculated bet. A king knows when to step up and when to step back. At first glance, it’s easy to believe that Aemond would make a great king. But this is not the case. Because it lacks the defining quality of empathy. Aemond knows strength, not kindness. He recognizes the edge of a blade but not the softness of forgiveness. He desired the throne because claiming it would reaffirm, not just for himself but for the whole world, that he was better than everyone else. It’s one thing to think you deserve more than Aegon II, but to think you can do a better job than Rhaenyra? Where does this come from? There is a certain coldness to Aemond, which was always chilling, even as a child. And that’s something that can freeze a desperate kingdom. For that reason alone, he wouldn’t make a good king.
Finally, we have to talk about Rhaenyra Targaryen. We’ve said many times that we think she didn’t desire the Iron Throne as much as she desired independence and escape her mother’s fate. She had kindness in her and a way of defending herself. It was probably most obvious in “House of the Dragon” Episode 3 when she lets go of the prized stag, seeing no point in unnecessary bloodshed. Rhaenyra is also the only one who understands the weight of the Iron Throne, the knowledge essential for good governance. She seemed to inspire loyalty in those who did not question her position because she was a woman. Rhaenyra would have been the best ruler of the three, but that’s because one makes the most of what she has. She was a good woman, no doubt, but maybe not a good leader. She was unable to establish the alliance with the houses necessary for her succession, and she also lacked the foresight to estimate the ruse of Alicent and Otto, despite seeing the signs all around. she. Being the heiress meant she had some autonomy in life, an identity beyond being a wife and mother. If she could have gotten it any other way, she might have dropped the chair after all. It wasn’t power over the Seven Kingdoms she craved; it was power over herself, to live the life she wanted. But it had to remain a dream because losing to Alicent meant losing the life of her and her family. So she fought night and day.
Rhaenyra would have made the best ruler among Aegon, Aemond, and herself. But the best queen would have been Rhaenys Velaryon, who should have been replaced by Laena Velaryon. They had the wisdom and the courage needed, and the thousand swords of the high chair would have accepted them. Perhaps it was a kindness that they didn’t have to suffer the consequences of wielding that power. Or maybe the throne just needed its story to unfold before it disappeared into Drogon’s fire. Either way, we won’t know until future episodes of “House of the Dragon” what happens to the person who rules Westeros and what effect the chair has on them.