You probably won’t have missed it: in episode 5 of House of the Dragon, the Queen, Alicent Hightower, arrives in the middle of the wedding celebration between Rhaenyra and Laenor wearing a green dress. The moment is particularly intense and the room tense: we explain why.
WARNING: This article contains spoilers for Episode 5 of House of the Dragon.
The fact that Alicent cut King Viserys’ speech at the wedding of his heiress daughter is not the only problem of one of the most memorable scenes from episode 5 of House of the Dragon. After five relatively quiet episodes, Alicent Hightower is finally showing her true colors, metaphorically and literally. The young wife of King Viserys cleverly chooses sides, saying nothing, subtly sparking the infamous Targaryen War known as the Dance of the Dragons.
the green wedding, as fans now call him, saw the death of Joffrey Lonmouth at the hands of ‘The Honorable’ Ser Criston Cole. If Rhaenyra Targaryen and Laenor Velaryon did end up getting married anyway, there is one particularly important moment that changed everything, a subtle declaration of war to Rhaenyra’s succession as Queen of Westeros.
Alice’s dress choice was far from a detail
Since her marriage to Viserys, Alicent primarily wears the colors of House Targaryen., the Red and the Black. The exception that proves the rule is when she wears her mother’s dress after Viserys and Rhaenyra leave King’s Landing. It’s normal: her mother’s dress is blue and that does not indicate anything in particular.
In episode 4, in the middle of the speech of Viserys – who celebrated the marriage of his daughter and his future son-in-law -, Alicent interrupts her to make her grand entrance.. The one who once wanted to disappear into the background is no longer: here, it is Otto Hightower’s daughter who shows up at the reception, before the queen. Although she is legally Targaryen, she chose to wear a dress that was neither red nor black, but emerald green.
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Was it a detail? No: all the guests, and to a lesser extent all the inhabitants of Westeros, know perfectly well that it was with an intentional blow, a strike directly sent to Rhaenyra. Larys Strong tells his brother that Hightower’s lighthouse glows green when Oldtown calls its people to war, and there’s a reason for that. This decision is a frank political position who will profoundly affect the rest of the story of House of the Dragon.
In Fire and Bloodthe book of which House of the Dragon is adapted, the infamous Dance of the Dragons officially begins at a tournament where Alicent wears green and Rhaenyra wears red and black. The quarrel of the two women creates a civil war in Westeros: half of the lords take the side of the “Blacks” (Rhaenyra) and the other half takes the side of the “Greens” (Alicent). So now you know what to expect next.