Olivia Cooke: 'Alicent Hightower' Is A Child Raising Children

By John Popham

October 3, 2022

Alternative View -  62nd BFI London Film Festival
Photo: Getty Images

Spoiler Warning: This article and the podcast episode it covers contain spoilers for the latest episode of HBO’s House of the Dragon.

Blades were drawn and blood was spilled as tensions in Westeros reached fever pitch Sunday night as House of the Dragon heads into its final act.

The episode gave hosts Jason Concepcion and Greta Johnsen plenty of content for the latest episode of The Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon. However, the biggest insights came from their guest Olivia Cooke who portrays “Queen Alicent Hightower.”

“ 'Rhaenyra’s' rule will be really, really progressive, but 'Alicent' firmly sits in the patriarchy where she feels like that is the order of things and that’s how to rule a kingdom,” said Cooke. “Don’t fix what’s not broken. She’s been so indoctrinated by her father.”

The emotional trauma given to “Alicent” by her father is seen passed down to her own children in the past two episodes. As both the hosts and guests point out, the queen got married and had kids at a very young age. This seems to have stripped the character of any parental empathy and replaced them with a survival instinct.

“It’s children bearing children,” Cooke said. “I just think that as her children grow up, and as she grows up with them, that relationship has been severed from the beginning. She’s got no control over it, and everything else in her life has to follow this strict regiment, because that’s the only way she can get order.”

The fictional queen’s firm belief that her way is the only way is splitting the "Targaryen" family apart and forming rivaling factions. The first mention of “the greens” came towards the end of the episode and refers to the allies “Queen Alicent" is gathering around her, which currently include a few lords of the realm as well as a knight of the Kingsguard.

“It’s quite bracing to see the relationship that ‘Alicent’ and ‘Criston Cole’ have now and the anger clearly that is curdled within ‘Criston,' ” Concepcion said to Cooke. “How did that relationship develop in the intervening 10-years?”

“So, it's like when you are on set, or at work and there is someone that over time really gets your goat or does all these horrible things to you and then you find out another co-worker also feels the same way about (that) person,” said Cooke. “Then you are like bonded for life in this mutual hatred for this person. That person for them is 'Rhaenyra.' ”

Listen to “House of the Dragon: Ep. 7 ‘Driftmark,' ” to catch the full interview and episode breakdown. The Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon releases new episodes on the same night the show airs, be sure to subscribe on the iHeartRadio app or any podcast platform to receive notifications.

If you want to be sure you’re listening to the podcasts everyone else is checking out, iHeartRadio has you covered.  

Every Monday, iHeartRadio releases a chart showing the most popular podcasts of the week. Stay up to date on what’s trending by checking out the chart here. There’s even a chart just for radio podcasts featuring all your favorite iHeartRadio personalities like Bobby Bones, Elvis Duran, Steve Harvey, and dozens of others.

Advertise With Us

For You

    Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.

    Connect

    © 2022 iHeartMedia, Inc.