Shocking moments from first episode of GoT prequel House of the Dragon

Back to the days of GORE: Game of Thrones fans are left shocked by the VERY graphic content in prequel House of the Dragon – from explicit nudity and incest to a brutal castration and fatal cesarean

  • SPOILER ALERT: This article contains details of the first episode of House of the Dragon 
  • After months of anticipation, the brand new Game of Thrones prequel series, House of the Dragon, is finally here – and it certainly did not disappoint 
  • The first episode premiered on HBO Max on Sunday, August 21, and in true GoT fashion, it was filled with explicit nudity, erotic sex scenes, bloody gore, undertones of incest, and a few brutal murders
  • GoT was known for being filled with blood, guts, and gore, depictions of graphic violence, intimate sex scenes, and naked bodies – and the spinoff seems like it will be filled with much of the same
  • The 10-episode series takes place nearly 200 years prior to the events of Game of Thrones, and is set to showcase the history of the iconic Targaryen House – as members of the family fight for the throne 
  • From people being beheaded and castrated to a woman getting a graphic C-section – FEMAIL recapped the most shocking and talked-about moments from the first episode of House of the Dragon

After months of anticipation, the brand new Game of Thrones prequel series, House of the Dragon, is finally here – and it certainly did not disappoint… however it did shock, horrify and stun some viewers with its incredibly explicit and violent content. 

After months of anticipation, the brand new Game of Thrones prequel series, House of the Dragon, is finally here – and it certainly did not disappoint 

The first episode premiered on HBO Max on Sunday, August 21, and in true GoT fashion, it was filled with explicit nudity, erotic sex scenes, bloody gore, undertones of incest, and a few brutal murders.

As fans of the original series know, Game of Thrones was known for being filled with blood, guts, and gore, depictions of graphic violence, intimate sex scenes, and naked bodies, which sometimes left viewers horrified but also often left them desperate to find out what would happen next – and the new spinoff seems like it will be filled with much of the same.

Created by Martin and Ryan Condal, the story is based off of a portion of George R. R. Martin’s 2018 novel Fire & Blood, and it takes place nearly 200 years prior to the events of Game of Thrones.

The 10-episode series, which will continue to air weekly until the finale on October 23, is set to showcase the history of the iconic Targaryen House – the former rulers of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros. 

As fans of the beloved show know, the Targaryen House played a major role in the original story, as its descendants included Queen Daenerys Targaryen (played by Emilia Clarke), and Aegon Targaryen, AKA Jon Snow (played by Kit Harrington). 

Viewers of the OG series got to watch the dynasty fall, after Robert Baratheon killed Daenerys’ brother Rhaegar Targaryen, and Jaime Lannister put his sword through her dad, Aerys II Targaryen, or better known as The Mad King’s back. 

The first episode premiered on HBO Max on Sunday, August 21, and in true GoT fashion, it was filled with explicit nudity, erotic sex scenes, bloody gore, undertones of incest, and a few brutal murders

The 10-episode series takes place nearly 200 years prior to the events of Game of Thrones, and is set to showcase the history of the iconic Targaryen House – as members of the family fight for the throne


Between it’s gruesome battle scenes and surprising character deaths, the episode certainly left viewers on the edge of their seats, and some even admitted that there were scenes so viscous, they had to look away or watch through their fingers

From people being beheaded and castrated to a woman getting a graphic cesarean-section right in front of our eyes – FEMAIL has recapped the most shocking and talked-about moments from the first episode of House of the Dragon

The new show will now dive into the murky past of the Targaryen’s, showcasing the bitter conflict over who will take over as heir to the throne as the current king prepares to end his rule, and the in-family fighting that tore them apart and ultimately lead to a civil war.

It stars Paddy Considine, Emma D’Arcy, Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, Rhys Ifans, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, Sonoya Mizuno, and Fabien Frankel.

The first episode introduced Viserys I Targaryen – the grandson of King Jaehaerys I Targaryen and the current ruler of the Iron Throne – as well as his daughter, Rhaenyra Targaryen – whom he has already chosen as the next heir to the throne, despite the fact that women weren’t allowed to lead during that time.

However, his hothead brother, Daemon Targaryen, is determined to become king – and he will do anything and everything in his power to do so.

Between it’s gruesome battle scenes and surprising character deaths, the episode – which was watched by millions across the globe and was so popular it caused HBO Max to suffer from outages – certainly left viewers on the edge of their seats, and some even admitted that there were scenes so viscous, they had to look away or watch through their fingers.

From people being beheaded and castrated to a woman getting a graphic cesarean-section right in front of our eyes – FEMAIL has recapped the most shocking and talked-about moments from the first episode of House of the Dragon.

Daemon Targaryen castrating and beheading people

One of the early scenes of the episode showed King Viserys Targaryen’s brother, Daemon, watching as his soldiers castrated and beheaded people on the streets of King’s Landing

Daemon serves as the Commander of the City Watch – which is basically GoT’s version of the police – and he unleashed his troops – also known as the Gold Cloaks – on the city in attempt to make sure they ‘fear’ the City Watch

It showed them killing, beating, and torturing those they have deemed as criminals, which included cutting off their fingers and hands, and at one point, they even chopped off one man’s private parts

One of the early scenes of the episode showed the king’s brother, Daemon – who was described by Vulture as a ‘violent, womanizing rogue who doesn’t much care what anyone thinks of him’ – watching as his soldiers castrated and beheaded people on the streets of King’s Landing.

Daemon serves as the Commander of the City Watch – which is basically GoT’s version of the police – and he unleashed his troops – also known as the Gold Cloaks – on the city in attempt to make sure they ‘fear’ the City Watch.

It showed them killing, beating, and torturing those they have deemed as criminals, which included cutting off their fingers and hands, and at one point, they even chopped off one man’s private parts.

‘The scene from #HOTD where the Gold Cloaks were castrating rapists and severing hands of thieves was emmm… I dunno,’ one person wrote on Twitter after the premiere, while another called it ‘gruesome’

‘He considers the people he attacked criminals, but it seems like he just committed a massacre of innocents,’ Esquire stated of the barbaric attack. 

‘The scene from #HOTD where the Gold Cloaks were castrating rapists and severing hands of thieves was emmm… I dunno,’ one person wrote on Twitter after the premiere.

‘That City Watch scene in #HOTD was gruesome,’ another added, while someone else said, ‘Yes, I missed body parts being severed and people beheaded for no reason.’

‘In case we forgot how violent it could get in King’s Landing, let’s go ahead and castrate someone in episode one,’ another viewer sarcastically tweeted.

Otto Hightower, the Hand of the King, later scolded Daemon for his brutality, reminding him, ‘The City Watch is not a sword to be wielded at your whim. They’re an extension of the crown.’

Aemma Arryn’s deadly C-section  

Viewers got to watch King Viserys’ wife Aemma give birth via C-section, in a horrifying scene which showcased every bloody detail – cutting between her labor and a battle between Daemon and the Head of the Kingsguard, Ser Criston Cole

‘The gore is not inaccurate, but neither is it sparing,’ Elle warned of the scene. ‘Her shrieks for mercy are ignored as she’s dragged to the center of the bed and sliced open, the walls of her abdomen pulled apart with gloved fists’

While King Viserys later choses his daughter, Rhaenyra, to be the heir to the throne, the first episode saw him trying to produce a son with his wife, Aemma Arryn. 

She suffered from five lost pregnancies in the span of 10 years, stating in one scene to the king, ‘I’ve lost one baby in the cradle, had two stillbirths and two pregnancies ended well before their term. That’s five… in twice as many years.

‘I know it is my duty to provide you an heir, and I’m sorry if I have failed you in that. I am. But I’ve mourned all the dead children I can.’

When the show kicked off, Aemma is pregnant once again, and viewers got to watch her give birth via C-section, a horrifying scene which showcases every bloody detail – cutting between her labor and a battle between Daemon and the Head of the Kingsguard, Ser Criston Cole.

The whole thing left viewers disturbed, with one user writing on Twitter that it made their ‘anxiety go through the roof’ and another admitting it was ‘going to stay with them awhile’

‘The gore is not inaccurate, but neither is it sparing,’ Elle warned of the scene, adding that there was no anesthesia during that time.

‘As Aemma screams, the camera whizzes back and forth between her writhing body and the clashing spears of the tourney. The parallel is so obvious, so on-the-nose, it’s equally nauseating and exasperating.’

During the birth, the king is told that he had to choose between saving the life of the queen and that of his heir. He chose his son and against Aemma’s wishes, they delivered the baby boy.

‘Her shrieks for mercy are ignored as she’s dragged to the center of the bed and sliced open, the walls of her abdomen pulled apart with gloved fists,’ Elle continued. 


During the birth, the king is told that he had to choose between saving the life of the queen and that of his heir. He chose his son and Aemma ultimately died; however, in a tragic turn of events, the baby then passed away a few hours later

Aemma ultimately died, however, in a tragic turn of events, the baby then passed away a few hours later – and the whole thing left viewers disturbed.

‘I usually never turn away from stuff but that f**king C-section scene was too disturbing,’ said one person, while another wrote, ‘That C-section scene has my anxiety through the roof hours later.’

‘Aemma’s death scene hit me HARD, no way did I ever expect it to be so violent when it does not happen like that in the book at all,’ read another tweet. ‘So brutal for no reason.’

‘It’s gonna take me a second to get back accustomed to how violent, bloody and gory GOT was,’ a different user added. ‘#HOTD was ALOT tonight. That birthing scene will be with me for awhile.’

The bloody battle between Daemon Targaryen and Ser Criston Cole 

As Aemma gave birth, Daemon and Criston engaged in a bloodthirsty jousting competition; it was so violent that a kid watching the tournament became sick to his stomach, which Deadline called ‘the most relatable moment of the episode’

A reviewer for the New York Times admitted they had to close their eyes during the scene, writing that it ‘threw him back in his seat’

As Aemma gave birth, Daemon and Criston engaged in a bloodthirsty jousting competition; it was so violent that a kid watching the tournament became sick to his stomach, which Deadline called ‘the most relatable moment of the episode.’ 

A reviewer for the New York Times admitted they had to close their eyes during the scene, writing that it ‘threw him back in his seat.’ 

Others expressed their dismay over the violence on Twitter, with one person writing, ‘You know it’s a good episode when you have to look away cause it’s too violent.’

Others expressed their dismay over the violence on Twitter, with one person saying, ‘You know it’s a good episode when you have to look away cause it’s too violent’ and another adding, ‘This how about to make me throw up’

After participating in the gruesome, hand-to-hand battle – which saw a slew of blood, gore, and carnage – Criston eventually beat Daemon, which actor Frankel (pictured in the show) said he ‘felt pretty good about’

‘This show about to make me throw up,’ said someone else after watching the first episode. 

After participating in the gruesome, hand-to-hand battle – which saw a slew of blood, gore, and carnage – Criston eventually beat Daemon, which actor Frankel said he ‘felt pretty good about.’

‘I think [Criston] feels pretty good about it. I felt pretty good about it, beating Matt Smith up. I felt good about it,’ he told Digital Spy.

The sex scene and explicit nudity

Throughout the first episode, there was a lot of nudity, a well as a sex scene between Daemon and his mistress Mysaria – a prostitute who migrated to the Seven Kingdoms from the Free Cities, where she was a former slave

The scene, which showed Daemon struggling to get an erection, left many viewers feeling awkward and uncomfortable – especially because the actor, Matt Smith, previously admitted that he was not in favor of it

Throughout the first episode, there was, of course, a lot of nudity – which GoT was known for including – and a sex scene between Daemon and his mistress Mysaria, a prostitute who migrated to the Seven Kingdoms from the Free Cities, where she was a former slave.

The scene, which showed Daemon struggling to get an erection, left many viewers feeling awkward and uncomfortable – especially because the actor, Smith, previously admitted that he was not in favor of it.

‘You do find yourself asking, “Do we need another sex scene?” And they’re like, “Yeah, we do,”‘ he told Rolling Stone UK.

When asked if he felt like the show contained too many sex scenes, he told Rolling Stone UK, ‘Yeah, slightly too much, if you ask me. Are you representing the books or diluting the books to represent the time [we’re living in]?’

‘I guess you have to ask yourself: “What are you doing? Are you representing the books, or are you diluting the books to represent the time [we’re living in]?” And I actually think it’s your job to represent the books truthfully and honestly, as they were written.’

When asked if he felt like the show contained too many sex scenes he added, ‘Yeah, slightly too much, if you ask me.’

‘There was no shortage of sex scenes and nudity,’ one Twitter user wrote while discussing the first episode. Another said, ’15 minutes in and there’s a sex scene full of exposition? Game of Thrones is back baby.’

Incest undertones between Daemon and Rhaenyra Targaryen

During one scene of the show, Viserys’ daughter Rhaenyra was gifted a necklace from her uncle Daemon. However, some people felt the moment shared between the family members was a little too sexual, as he caressed her neck and shoulders

‘Let’s just say his intentions did not come with the kind of vibe that an uncle is supposed to have with his niece,’ Esquire wrote of the scene

During one scene of the show, Rhaenyra was gifted a necklace from her uncle Daemon.

‘It’s Valyrian steel. Like Dark Sister,’ Daemon said at he placed it onto her neck. ‘Now you and I both have a small piece of our ancestry.’

However, some people felt that the moment shared between the family members was a little too sexual, as he caressed her neck and shoulders.

‘Let’s just say his intentions did not come with the kind of vibe that an uncle is supposed to have with his niece,’ Esquire wrote. 

‘I pray they keep the incest to a minimum,’ one person wrote on Twitter after watching the premiere

‘You can feel the incest vibe between Rhaenyra and Daemon,’ one viewer shared on Twitter.

‘I pray they keep the incest to a minimum,’ another said, while a third wrote, ‘Um it’s uncomfortable watching chemistry between a child and an adult… 

‘I don’t care about the “tradition or time,” nah son. These #Targaryens so d**n crazy because they kept practicing incest.’

‘We had incest undertones, unnecessary violence, boobs, and bad wigs. We back, baby!’ someone else joked. 

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