Paddy Considine has been incredible to watch as King Viserys I Targaryen on HBO’s House of the Dragon these past few weeks. For a character that was mostly one–dimensional and largely unlovable in the books, author George R.R. Martins, his army of screenwriters, and actor Paddy Considine have done a tremendous job bringing him to life the way they’ve done. Although King Viserys is somewhat to blame for the many woes about to befall House Targaryen in the coming episodes, you can’t help but root for and sympathize with him; that’s how much deeper they’ve made him come across in the TV show.
House of the Dragon s01e08, titled Lord of the Tides, saw Paddy Considine appear in his worst form onscreen as King Viserys’ health has deteriorated so much one might be forgiven for describing him as a walking dead.
War is coming and everyone, including Viserys now, can smell it. In his last move to “set things right,” King Viserys orders his Hand, Otto Hightower, to do away with giving him more Milk of the Poppy for his pain and put together a supper for every member of his family to dine and reconcile. Consideine’s’ performance at the dinner table is as chilling and emotion-provoking as in all the scenes leading up to that point in the episode. It’s visceral and sad, especially if you’ve ever watched a loved one struggle against a terminal disease.
I strongly believe Paddy Considine deserves an Emmy nomination for his role as Viserys Targaryen and a possible win for his memorable performance. A father’s love is undying and even though his character is now dead, I doubt he’d be forgotten for as long as the series airs and beyond.
House of the Dragon airs every Sunday on HBO.