Movies & Television

Does King Viserys Have Leprosy in House of the Dragon?

**Warning – Spoilers ahead for House of the Dragon**

The Episode 5 preview of House of the Dragon saw Otto Hightower confide in Alicent about King Viserys’ imminent death and we reveal if the Targaryen ruler has leprosy.

Episode 4 saw Daemon’s return after being crowned King of the Narrow Sea, which saw him lead Rhaenyra into debauchery. While Rhaenyra sought relief from her marriage obligation and became closer with Ser Criston, Viserys withdrew Otto Hightower as the Hand after realizing his cunning plan to get his kin on the throne.

Created by George R. R. Martin and Ryan J. Condal for HBO, House of the Dragon will serve as a prequel to Game of Thrones starring Paddy Considine, Emma D’Arcy, Matt Smith, Olivia Cooke, and more, following the beginning of the end for House Targaryen including the family’s war known as the Dance of Dragons.

House Of The Dragon | Weeks Ahead Trailer | Sky Atlantic

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House Of The Dragon | Weeks Ahead Trailer | Sky Atlantic
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Does King Viserys Have Leprosy and Is it Curable?

Yes, King Viserys does suffer from leprosy in House of the Dragon and the disease was recently confirmed by Paddy Considine.

The actor recently discussed the king’s deteriorating condition on EW’s West of Westeros podcast:

“He’s actually suffering from a form of leprosy. His body is deteriorating, his bones are deteriorating. He is not actually old. He’s still a young man in there. He’s just, unfortunately, got this thing that’s taken over his body. It becomes a metaphor for being king, and the stress and strain that it puts on you, and what it does to you physically, what it does to you mentally.”

Known today as Hansen’s disease, Leprosy can now be treated with medication, however, in medieval times comparable to House of the Dragon’s setting, there was no cure.

What Does Leprosy Look Like and Is it Contagious?

Common signs of leprosy include ulcers, skin lesions, discolored patches of skin, and eye and nerve damage and the infection eventually deteriorates the body. Leprosy was incredibly contagious at the time but less so in modern times, being passed through body fluids.

Viserys’ leprosy was first noticed during Episode 1 of the prequel series when he was being treated for a lesion on his back.

The king’s disease is being used as a metaphor to convey him as an unfit ruler of the Iron Throne, and since the disease is contagious, concerns for Alicent are now being aired.

House of the Dragon – Cr. Photograph by Ollie Upton / HBO, 2022. Warner Media, LLC

How Many Episodes are in House of the Dragon?

House of the Dragon has ten episodes to air within its first season and has settled into the release pattern of airing every Sunday until the end of October.

Going by the release schedule outlined below, the House of the Dragon finale will air on Sunday, October 23, 2022.

Below we have included the release dates of the show to mark in your calendar alongside the episode titles:

  • Episode 1: The Heirs of the Dragon – Sunday, August 21, 2022
  • Episode 2: The Rogue Prince – Sunday, August 28, 2022
  • Episode 3: Second of His Name – Sunday, September 4, 2022
  • Episode 4: King of the Narrow Sea – Sunday, September 11, 2022
  • Episode 5: We Light the Way – Sunday, September 18, 2022
  • Episode 6: The Princess and the Queen – Sunday, September 25, 2022
  • Episode 7: Driftmark – Sunday, October 2, 2022
  • Episode 8: The Lord of the Tides – Sunday, October 9, 2022
  • Episode 9: The Green Council – Sunday, October 16, 2022
  • Episode 10: The Black Queen – Sunday, October 23, 2022

By Jo Craig – [email protected]

House of the Dragon is now streaming on HBO Max.

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Jo Craig
@shingeekyjo

Being a pop culture writer and a proud geek of all trades, Jo loves to dissect fandoms and marvel at their insides. The entirety of The Lord of the Rings, superhero origins, the Ghost of Tsushima score, the Wings of Freedom, and the endless search for a sleepy Tyranitar are but a few of Jo's passions, with a penchant for contributing to the geek culture community.

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