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House of the Dragon Reveals Queer Character Laenor Velaryon's Fate

House of the Dragon Reveals Queer Character Laenor Velaryon's Fate

Laenor Velaryon
House of the Dragon/HBO

Did his story follow the book?

rachelkiley

SPOILERS for season one, episode seven of House of the Dragon below.



House of the Dragon took a hard departure from the source material in the most recent episode, opting to keep its gay character.. wait for it.. alive.

The Game of Thrones prequel recently ruffled feathers after killing off Ser Joffrey Lonmouth (Solly McLeod) in a brutal fashion, only shortly after introducing him and Laenor Velaryon (Theo Nate) as lovers. It’s possibly more of a testament to the breakneck speed of the show than an indicator of how it approaches its queer characters, but many worried about the latest foray into the “Bury Your Gays” trope all the same.

That Laenor’s eventual death was predicted by George R.R. Martin’s source material didn’t help, and fans braced for another brutal ending — one that never came.

In Martin’s world, after jumping forward in time, Laenor is betrayed and killed by his own lover, Ser Qarl Correy, for money. House of the Dragon played with viewers’ knowledge of this event, setting it up so that people believed Laenor (now played by John Macmillan) had been set up by his wife, Rhaenyra Targaryen (Emma D’Arcy), and her uncle/lover, Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith), and murdered.

However, it was then revealed that Rhaenyra and Daemon actually conspired to fake Laenor’s death — presumably sending someone else to die in his place — so that he and Qarl (Arty Froushan) could ride off into the sunset together, unburdened from their responsibilities and expectations.

It was a welcome departure from Martin’s text, both because it avoided yet another queer character dying unnecessarily and because it turned the expectations of devoted fans upside-down.

It also didn’t hurt that Rhaenyra and Laenor were given a heartwarming moment in their marriage beforehand, in which he proclaimed of his sexuality, “I hate the gods for making me as they did.”

“I do not,” she replied. “You are an honorable man with a good heart. It’s a rare thing.”


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Rachel Kiley

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.

Rachel Kiley is presumably a writer and definitely not a terminator. She can usually be found crying over queerbaiting in the Pitch Perfect franchise or on Twitter, if not both.