Kieran Brew as Hugh The Hammer in House of the Dragon season 2

This ‘House of the Dragon’ Character’s Reappearance Tells Us He’s Not Just Another Nameless Extra

Just look at his hair color!

The second episode of the second season of House of the Dragon dealt with the aftermath of the terrible events of Blood and Cheese, showing us the reaction to the death of little Prince Jaehaerys both in King’s Landing and on Dragonstone.

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It made for one of the best episodes the show has had so far, with all the characters we have come to know coming to terms with their grief, their rage, and the deep-seated knowledge that war is by now inevitable.

Spoilers ahead for both House of the Dragon and Fire and Blood, which also means possible future seasons of the show

And yet among the back and forth between the Greens and the Blacks, there were some scenes centering around ostensible background characters. But we know that in a show as tight and as packed as House of the Dragon, there’s no such thing as a throwaway scene. Everything has a meaning and is going to have some kind of payoff later in the story—or at least it should. But it definitely will when it comes to characters like brothers Alyn and Addam of Hull (played by Abubakar Salim and Clinton Liberty respectively) and also Hugh the blacksmith (played by Kieran Brew).

Addam of Hull in 'House of the Dragon'
Immediately the people’s favorite and to be honest? Deserved. (HBO)

We first saw Hugh in the first episode of season 2, where he’s among the petitioners waiting for a chance to speak to King Aegon II as he holds court. Hugh is there as a representative of the King’s Landing blacksmiths asking for advanced payments in anticipation of the great work they’ll be required to do in the war to come. And back then he could have looked like another nameless extra, whose purpose was to show Aegon’s difficulties in ruling and the budding contrast with his grandfather the Hand.

But Hugh also has a scene in the second episode, where we see that he has a daughter who suffers from some kind of sickness and a wife who is very worried about their future, especially when it comes to money and keeping the family fed and healthy—worries that are shared by Hugh who will definitely be looking for a solution to them.

And that’s when Fire and Blood steps into the scene because Hugh is definitely not just another face in the King’s Landing streets—his hair is already a big hint of that.

Hugh The Hammer played by Kieran Brew in the second episode of season 2 of House of the Dragon
Could the worry he feels for his family lead him to try a very dangerous venture concerning dragons? (HBO)

So who is Hugh in House of the Dragon?

As his blonde-white hair might suggest, Hugh has some Valyrian ancestry. It’s not clear how much or through which line, but it’s enough to make him a dragonseed—people who can trace some of their roots back to Old Valyria and who by virtue of those roots could potentially claim a dragon.

That’s exactly what will happen to Hugh, who has been known in Westeros history as “Hugh the Hammer”. Once the Blacks need more dragonriders, they will call out for dragonseeds who want to try and stake their claim to one of the riderless dragons who live on Dragonstone—a process that is definitely not light and breezy.

Many of the dragonseeds who try aren’t particularly lucky and end up burned to a crisp for their efforts, but Hugh the Hammer succeeds in claiming Vermithor, the Bronze Fury, the old mount of King Jaehaerys I—and the dragon we saw Daemon sing to in the closing scenes of the first season of House of the Dragon.

Vermithor from House of the Dragon
Look at that flying menace (HBO)

With Vermithor, Hugh the Hammer will join the war on the side of the Blacks and prove instrumental in the Battle of the Gullet. But when Rhaenyra sends Hugh and another dragonseed to fight the Green armies during the First Battle of Tumbleton, both riders turn their cloaks and switch sides, becoming forever known as the Two Betrayers.

A betrayal that was short-lived, however, since Hugh did not gain particular sympathy among his new fellow soldiers—claiming he wanted to be King and that he should be one to lead their armies to victory— and was then killed by one of them in the chaos of the beginning of the Second Battle of Tumbleton. During that same battle, now riderless Vermithor also died after clashing with two other dragons—one of them Prince Daeron Targaryen’s Tessarion, the Blue Queen.

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Benedetta Geddo
Benedetta (she/her) lives in Italy and has been writing about pop culture and entertainment since 2015. She has considered being in fandom a defining character trait since she was in middle school and wasn't old enough to read the fanfiction she was definitely reading and loves dragons, complex magic systems, unhinged female characters, tragic villains and good queer representation. You’ll find her covering everything genre fiction, especially if it’s fantasy-adjacent and even more especially if it’s about ASOIAF. In this Bangtan Sonyeondan sh*t for life.