It is customary for most Westerosi rulers to use their subjects as a means of entertainment, and that mostly involves visiting cruelties upon them. Imagine the audience’s surprise, then, when Paddy Considine’s King Viserys in House of the Dragon proved a wholesome exception to this rule when the spinoff’s first episode premiered last week.
Unlike most monarchs that came before and after him, Viserys doesn’t much care about the seat or the power that comes with it. The character’s thoughts seem to be occupied with the vision of doom Aegon the Conqueror saw about the White Walkers many years ago, and beyond that, Viserys has a keen mind for history. The king’s passion is currently centered around creating the scale model of old Valyria, the ancient and destroyed kingdom whence the Targaryens hail.
That adorable side project hasn’t gone unnoticed by fans. We all love a king with a hobby, right?
This might be the perfect example of “show don’t tell” because this hobby reveals more about Viserys’ character than House of the Dragon could hope to accomplish in several monotonous exposition-filled episodes.
At least, his hobby doesn’t involve getting drunk beyond perception and hunting boars in that state. We all know how that turned out for the realm the last time around.
Viserys is giving this his best, and I guess we can all relate to that, even if we’ve never had to lead an entire nation through a period of constant scheming and strife.
Fortunately, we’ll soon get to see more of Paddy Considine as Viserys I when House of the Dragon returns with its second episode this Sunday.