Game of Thrones already spoilt the fate of a major House of the Dragon character

House of the Dragon episode 3
(Image credit: HBO)

House of the Dragon has already had one of its major twists spoiled… by none other than Game of Thrones

Be warned, we're about to delve into major book spoilers which might not play out on-screen for many seasons yet, but involve a key character from the new show. So, go no further if you want your House of the Dragon viewing experience to remain unspoiled. 

Matt Smith and Milly Alcock in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Still with us? Then you're ready for the spoilers. As it turns out, none other than King Joffrey revealed the grisly fate of House of the Dragon's most beloved character, Rhaenyra Targaryen, way back in Game of Thrones season 3 episode 4.  

At one point in the episode, the malevolent king is walking the Sept with his betrothed, Margaery Tyrell. He stops to point out the final resting place of the Targaryen princess and explains her horrific death in classic Joffrey style. "Rhaenyra Targaryen was murdered by her brother, or rather his dragon," he says with a disturbing amount of glee. "It ate her while her son watched. What's left of her is buried in the crypts right down there."

Yep, Joffrey isn't lying: that really is the unfortunate fate of the princess we know and love from House of the Dragon. In fact, her murderer is introduced in House of the Dragon episode 3 – Alicent Hightower's son, young Aegon Targaryen (yes, another one, this one Aegon the Second), will eventually grow up and order his older half-sister's death at Dragonstone. Rhaenyra's son, who has yet to be born in the show, does indeed watch his mother's murder by Sunfyre, Aegon's dragon. (To make things more complicated, Rhaenyra's son is also called Aegon…) 

Of course, there's still a long way to go until the show reaches this point. Aegon the Second is just two years old at the moment. But, eventually, a Targaryen civil war will break out, known as the Dance of Dragons. Rhaenyra will indeed take the Iron Throne, but, for a number of reasons, King's Landing will turn against her. She'll flee to Dragonstone, where she'll be betrayed and meet her gruesome end. 

In an ironic twist of fate, that dragon egg that Rhaenyra rescues in House of the Dragon episode 2 could turn out to be none other than Sunfyre's. The egg was taken from Dreamfyre, and that similarity in names is surely no coincidence, though we'll have to wait and see to find out for certain (shout out to Reddit for this theory). 

For now, though, make sure you keep up to date with the goings-on of Westeros with our guide to the House of the Dragon release schedule – and see our roundup of the greatest TV shows of all time to fill out your watchlist. 

Molly Edwards
Entertainment Writer

I'm an Entertainment Writer here at GamesRadar+, covering all things film and TV for the site's Total Film and SFX sections. I previously worked on the Disney magazines team at Immediate Media, and also wrote on the CBeebies, MEGA!, and Star Wars Galaxy titles after graduating with a BA in English.