House of the Dragon has been roaring with success ever since the series debuted three weeks back. The audience is loving the Game of Thrones prequel for its gripping storyline, visual spectacles, politics, and the ever-changing relationship dynamics between the characters.
One such relationship, which has been making headlines ever since the show’s inception, is the ‘friendship’ between Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen and Lady Alicent Hightower. In the initial episode, the two seemed inseparable, with Alicent acting as Rhaenyra’s only confidant and support as the latter struggled with her mother’s death and the strained relationship with her father.
Rhaenyra and Alicent: Were the Two Ladies in Love?
On more than one occasion, the makers dropped hints that the two ladies could be more than friends, with an undertone of a queer romance brewing between them. There was no explicit mention of love, but the subtle hints were enough to leave viewers speculating.
Whether it was Rhaenyra telling Alicent that all she wanted to do was fly around the world with her on her dragon, or the two holding hands as Rhaenyra poured her heart out about her relationship with her father, the ladies looked definitely in love.
Of course, the relationship took a different turn altogether as Alicent has married Rhaenyra’s father, becoming her stepmother, but the care she has for her former ‘best friend’ was still very much visible in her expressions in the latest episode.
Rhaenyra and Alicent’s Relationship in the Books
The girls’ binding in the books was quite different from the one showcased in the show. In The Princess and the Queen, the novella that leads to the Dance of Dragons, the girls have a wider age gap, with Alicent being 9 years older than Rheanyra.
There is no mention of any romantic exchange between the two in the books, so the plotline is something that HBO has decided to incorporate themselves. Probably, that is why the age gap between the ladies was also narrowed down in the series.
Actor Playing Alicent Spills the Beans
In a recent interview, Emily Carey, who plays young Alicent in the series, also talked about the romantic vibes her character shares with Rhaenyra. Carey, who is queer herself, said, “As a queer woman, I read certain queer undertones in the scripts.”
She, however, added that at such a young age, friendships could “toe the line between platonic and romantic,” adding, “But I also think, at 14, you don’t know what those words mean. You don’t know what the feelings mean. It’s just love. That’s all it is. Whether it’s friendship or more than that, I think it’s up to how you want to see it, but it was talked about for sure.”
“As a viewer, I like to read into it because I also think that it makes the demise of the friendship more heartbreaking to watch… I would love if they were a little bit fruity, but it’s up to you how you want to read it. It’s just a beautiful bond between two young girls, let’s put it that way,” Carey concluded saying.
Now the two ex-best friends and speculated ‘lovers’ are bound to their duties to the throne, with Alicent trying to get her own son declared as the heir to the throne, a title that Rhaenyra currently holds and wishes to protect. Let’s see how their relationship dynamics further change during the course of the show.