In Review: House of the Dragon (S1 – EP5) We Light the Way

King Viserys visits Lord Corlys to ultimate the union between their daughter and son. The Queen keeps looking into Rhaenyra's secret.

Synopsis: In We Light The Way King Viserys visits Lord Corlys to ultimate the union between their daughter and son. The Queen keeps looking into Rhaenyra’s secret. Wedding bells ring in King’s Landing.


The Story

Picking up from last week’s episode. King Viserys has ejected Otto Hightower as his hand and pledged Rhaenyra’s hand in marriage to the son of Lord Corlys. This episode begins with Viserys and Rhaenyra visiting Corlys in order to make arrangements for Rhaenyra’s marriage to Laenor Velaryon. However, neither Rhaenyra nor Laenor are keen on the idea of marriage. Rhaenyra wishes to continue her relationship with Ser Criston Cole, which is already causing issues in the court. While Laenor is very openly Gay and not at all interested in any woman. Much less the princess. However, the two agree to do their duty, but beyond that, they can remain free to pursue their own interests outside of that. 

Viserys continues to insist that Rhaenyra remains his heir which means that she will be the first Queen, which is not without its controversy, and it seems Rhaemyra’s liaison with her protector Ser Criston Cole is already causing some difficulties. As Queen Alicent Hightower has learned of the affair and questions Ser Criston about it. And it’s fair to say that he is somewhat conflicted about what has happened and tells Alicent the truth when asked. 

All of this comes to a murderous conclusion when Criston kills Laenor’s boyfriend when he playfully confronts him about the nature of his relationship with Rhaenyra. To make matters worse, during the commotion King Viserys’s health is fast declining.


The Acting

Paddy Considine is solid in this episode as he shows us the declining health of Viserys as he pushes through all the necessary politics involved in marrying off Rhaenyra. Likewise, Milly Alcock continues to nail it as Rhaenyra who has a lot of interesting scenes in this. The first of which is with Fabien Frankel’s Ser Criston Cole in which they discuss their newfound relationship, which seems to be doomed given that they will never be equals and Cole will be nothing more than Rhaenyra’s whore or a bit on the side. As he rightly points out to her when she refuses to run away with him. The other scene is when Rhaenyra and Laenor Velaryon (Theo Nate) take their walk along the beach and discuss their forthcoming union. 

We also get a good performance from Emily Carey as Alicent Hightower, who is now very much isolated as Viserys’s Queen Consort as she no longer has her father Otto Hightower to guide or influence her. The scene in which she quizzes Criston Cole about his relations with Rhaenyra is particularly interesting and feels like it could be foreshadowing for things to come. The character of Alicent feels very much like this shows version of Sansa Stark in that it is going to take a little while for Alicent to find her power.



We Light The Way feels very much like it is beginning to set things up for a pretty epic final few episodes. As it is very obvious that the battle lines are being drawn. It’s just a matter of which character or group of characters are going to die first. The question is. How long after Viserys’s death will it wait for the fighting to begin? Who will make up the court of Queen Rhaenyra the 1st? I have no doubt that we’ll get to find out real soon.

House of the Dragon (S1 - EP5) We Light the Way
  • Story
  • Acting
  • CGI & Stunts
  • Incidental Music

Ian Cullen is the founder of and has been a fan of science fiction and fantasy from birth. In the past few years he has written for 'Star Trek' Magazine as well as interviewed numerous comics writers, television producers and actors for the SFP-NOW podcast at: When he is not writing for Ian enjoys playing his guitar, studying music, watching movies and reading his comics. Ian is both the founder and owner of You can contact ian at:
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