House Of The Dragon: Daemon Has A Risky Dragon Moment In The Season 1 Finale Trailer, Here's Why That's A Big Deal

Matt Smith as Daemon Targaryen in the throne room in House of the Dragon
(Image credit: HBO)

The Season 1 finale of House of the Dragon is just days away, and all signs point toward the two factions of the Targaryen family passing a point of no return after the Greens crowned Aegon to become King Aegon II, Second of His Name. The trailer for the last episode of the season reveals what happens after Rhaenyra and her supporters find out about Viserys’ death (which was changed from the book) and Aegon’s ascent, and the footage includes a Daemon moment that is risky by even the Rogue Prince’s standards. He’s getting dangerously close to a very large dragon that is not his own, and there are some reasons why that’s a big deal. 

In the trailer for the Season 1 finale, Daemon is seen entering a cave, presumably on Dragonstone, with a torch. He’s quite literally reaching out to a massive dragon while singing, and while the dragon isn’t seen roasting him, it is blasting fire in the cave later on. Quite notably, the dragon isn’t one that House of the Dragon has featured before. It’s a risky move on Daemon’s part, so let’s get into why it matters, why he might be doing it, and what it could mean for the show moving forward. 

King Jaehaerys and court in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

The Dragon Has Probably Already Had A Targaryen Rider

While there may still be some wild dragons that have yet to come into play on House of the Dragon and even though this creature has evidently been living in a cave, it’s likely that it already had a Targaryen rider. Daemon is singing to it in High Valyrian and the words seem to be soothing it enough that it doesn’t immediately roast and eat him, which suggests that it has experience with humans and High Valyrian. An earlier episode proved that the Targaryens train their dragons with High Valyrian, so it seems safe to say that this is a creature that Daemon may have already encountered before with a Targaryen rider.

House of the Dragon Vermithor eye screenshot from Season 1 finale trailer

(Image credit: HBO)

The Dragon Is Probably Vermithor

Based on the color, this dragon is likely Vermithor, which the Targaryen family tree tells us was ridden by King Jaehaerys, who was briefly seen in the series premiere of House of the Dragon. In the Fire & Blood book, Vermithor was described as a “great bronze-and-tan beast” with “bronze scales” and “eyes like pools of molten bronze.” Even though the cave is dark in the trailer, the colors match the description of Vermithor, and the size certainly suggests a dragon that goes back far enough to have been ridden by The Old King in his youth. Depending on Daemon’s intent, a dragon as old and large as Vermithor could be a huge asset on their side against the Greens.

Screenshot of Daemon approaching Vermithor on House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Daemon May Believe He's Safe

If the dragon from the Season 1 finale trailer is indeed Vermithor (and I’ll just continue calling him by that name since it seems like a safe bet), then Daemon might believe that he’s as safe as anybody can be when approaching a dragon not their own. Vermithor was hatched and ridden by King Jaehaerys, who was Daemon’s grandfather. They were close enough that Jaehaerys gave Dark Sister – a.k.a. one of House Targaryen’s two Valyrian swords – to Daemon, and their dragons probably shared the dragonpit for some time. Vermithor might already know Daemon well enough that Daemon believes he’s not in as much danger as he would be approaching a wild dragon.

Vhagar in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Vhagar Isn't The Only Massive Dragon

If there is one thing that’s absolutely certain about the dragon in front of Daemon in the trailer, it’s that the dragon is absolutely massive. He’s clearly much bigger than Rhaenys’ Meleys and Daemon’s Caraxes, both of which are more than one generation old at this point, as they were claimed rather than hatched by their current riders. If anything, this dragon looks much closer to the size of Vhagar than any other on the show so far. If Daemon is somehow able to claim Vermithor for his and Rhaenyra’s side, they could have some firepower that could rival (even if not quite surpass) Aemond’s mount.

Caraxes in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Daemon Is Already Bonded To Caraxes

The problem with the idea of Daemon somehow being able to claim Vermithor? Daemon is already bonded to Caraxes, and there’s no sign that he has ever ridden another dragon. Caraxes is still alive, so can Daemon actually claim or tame another dragon? Neither Game of Thrones nor House of the Dragon has set any hard and fast rules for dragon bonds, and Dany technically had three bonded to her, but there seems to be an unspoken understanding that one rider takes one dragon. Sure, Caraxes tolerated Mysaria riding along with Daemon, but Vermithor might be a different situation since Daemon already has Caraxes. 

Meleys and Seasmoke in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Can Dragons Have More Than One Living Rider?

Aside from the question of whether Daemon can claim or tame a second dragon while Caraxes is still alive, the Rogue Prince approaching Vermithor raises the possibility of dragons bonding with more than one living rider at a time, since Daemon presumably wouldn’t keep two at once. If they can be ridden and controlled by more than one living person, it could be a game-changer when it comes to Seasmoke, the dragon formerly ridden by Laenor but that was left behind when he faked his death

How another character could claim Seasmoke while Laenor lives is a question that book readers may have been wondering ever since House of the Dragon didn’t kill him off, and a dragon having more than one living rider could be the answer. That would depend on whether Daemon is able to actually tame Vermithor (or if that’s even his goal), but Vermithor’s reaction to Daemon could be very telling. 

Daemon, Rhaenyra, Rhaenys, Jace, Luke, Rhaena as the Blacks in House of the Dragon

(Image credit: HBO)

Somebody Could Ride Vermithor

Whatever Daemon is trying to do with his risky move of invading Vermithor’s cave with a song, it seems safe to say that he’s not going to leave Caraxes. So, who could actually ride Vermithor? On Rhaenyra’s side, the only Targaryens who haven’t ridden or hatched dragons yet are some of the children. Young Aegon and Viserys certainly aren’t old enough for Vermithor, and Daemon strolling into the dragon’s cave doesn’t mean that he’d let Rhaena do the same. Still, Vermithor could be in play for a rider come Season 2.

Of course, book readers can make some very educated guesses about what all of these points mean and what kinds of questions they’ll answer, but the first nine episodes proved that House of the Dragon is not always 100% faithful to George R.R. Martin’s source material, even in the cases where there are multiple Fire & Blood narratives to choose from. Daemon killing his first wife was a change, for one! How many more changes from the book – perhaps involving dragons – are in store?

If you haven’t seen the trailer yet (or just want to take another look at Daemon and the bronze dragon), check it out:

Find out what this moment means with the Season 1 finale of House of the Dragon on Sunday, October 23 at 9 p.m. ET on HBO and streaming with an HBO Max subscription. Sadly, the series has no return date set for Season 2, so check out our 2022 TV premiere schedule for some viewing options to fill the dragon-shaped void in your life after Sunday night.

Laura Hurley
Senior Content Producer

Laura turned a lifelong love of television into a valid reason to write and think about TV on a daily basis. She's not a doctor, lawyer, or detective, but watches a lot of them in primetime. Resident of One Chicago, the galaxy far, far away, and Northeast Ohio. Will not time travel, but will sneak references to The X-Files into daily conversation.