"KING OF THE NARROW SEA"
Written by Elliot Lines / September 15, 2022
Ending on a rather spectacular note, Daemon Targaryens victory over "the crab feeder", King of the Narrow Sea pulls us right back down into the politics of the Targaryen family, and what we've come to expect from them in Westeros. For Game of Thrones fans it's well known how the family operates with regards to its incestual relations. But after the uncomfortable viewing of Viserys potentially being partnered with a 12 year old, the viewing gets even more uncomfortable throughout this episode, with Uncle (Daemon) and Niece (Rhaenyra) seemingly becoming acquainted in the middle of a pleasure house. Not only this, but we also see the role Alicent Hightower has now taken up as a bed occupier as and when the king demands her to be there, with the discontent clear for all to see.
However uncomfortable, the episode sets up these characters on paths using these moments as a guide. Rhaenyra clearly wants freedom, as shown in previous episodes, but more so here where Daemon shows her a taste of what freedom feels like, which she takes full advantage of after the shocking events. Daemon on the other hand seemingly had other agendas from the start, giving up his "crown" was all part of a plan to show the weakness of his brother Viserys and seduce him into giving him more power by allowing him to marry Rhaenyra, who we'll reinstate, is his niece. Viserys even shows more weakness throughout the episode with his drunken states, reminding us of the Baratheon king, and the almost bowing down to Rhaenyra's request to relieve Otto Hightower of his duties (Which in our opinion is probably a good move). But as the series goes on, Viserys seems to become more and more soft with those around him, which will most probably see his downfall.
Coming off an big action scene episode puts King of the Narrow Sea in a different light. Almost like the aftermath of the favourite episodes of Game of Thrones, the hangover from the event is evident here. Putting us back in the walls of Kings Landing gives you more exposition to chew on, while they dangle uneasy story arcs in front of the camera, it makes for an interesting set up going forward but through its runtime leaves you wanting more, but all the while will leave many viewers feeling uncomfortable with the scenes that are being displayed.