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Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey) sends an important message to the realm in House of the Dragon episode 5 “We Light the Way.” Find out what the green gown she wears to Rhaenyra Targaryen’s (Milly Alcock) wedding festivities traditionally symbolizes in the lore of Game of Thrones and how Alicent’s intent wearing the color might differ from the traditional meaning. 

SPOILER ALERT: Spoilers ahead for House of the Dragon Season 1 Episode 5, “We Light the Way.”] 

Alicent Hightower (Emily Carey) wearing a green gown in episode 5 of 'House of the Dragon' Season 1
Emily Carey as Alicent Hightower | Ollie Upton / HBO

Alicent’s dress color is the Hightower’s call for their bannermen to join them in battle 

After Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans) tells King Viserys (Paddy Considine) about Rhaenyra and Daemon Targaryen’s (Matt Smith) “coupling,” his source is presumed a liar. Later, King Viserys believes his marriage to Otto’s daughter was purely for Otto’s benefit, which further breaks his trust. Otto is stripped of his title as Hand of the King in episode 4. He leaves King’s Landing and his daughter Alicent behind in episode 5.

Meanwhile, Alicent’s trust in Rhaenyra is slowly starting to dwindle. After believing Rhaenyra’s lie about not “coupling” with Daemon, Alicent learns Rhaenyra slept with Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel). Armed with this knowledge, she arrives fashionably late to Rhaenyra and Laenor Velaryon’s (John MacMillan) wedding festivities wearing a vibrant green dress. 

“The beacon of Hightower — do you know what color it glows when Oldtown calls its banners to war?” asks Larys Strong (Matthew Needham). “Green,” his brother, Harwin (Ryan Corr), points out. 

Alicent Hightower’s green dress might be a call for help in the new episode of ‘House of the Dragon’ 

As co-host Jason Concepcion points out in The Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon episode discussing “We Light the Way,” viewers are supposed to perceive Alicent’s dress color as a call to war. “I think she’s doing something else,” he admits. 

“Again, she’s alone. Otto [is] no longer at the capitol. Her bodyguard service [is] filled with an unknown number of oath breakers and traitors loyal to Princess Rhaenyra. Her children could be killed who knows when. The king is going to die really soon as her dad told her. She needs to say, ‘I need help. I need help from my family.'”

Jason Concepcion, ‘The Official Game of Thrones Podcast: House of the Dragon’

Concepcion doesn’t think Alicent wants to incite a war. Instead, she’s asking for her bannermen to rise up and stand with her for whatever comes next. Before the violence ensues in “We Light the Way,” Alicen’t uncle reminds her: “Oldtown stands with you.” 

‘House of the Dragon’ Episode 5 features another violent wedding 

Amid the wedding festivities, Laenor’s secret boyfriend Joffrey Lonmouth (Solly McLeod) pulls Criston Cole aside. He tells he’s aware of his tryst with the princess. The two can protect each other’s secrets and keep the royal couple safe by proxy, but Cole doesn’t take too kindly to Joffrey’s words.

Joffrey Lonmouth (Solly McLeod) and Ser Criston Cole (Fabien Frankel) in 'House of the Dragon' Episode 5
Solly McLeod as Joffrey Lonmouth and Fabien Frankel as Ser Criston Cole | Ollie Upton / HBO

The 1 Souvenir Milly Alcock & Emily Carey Took From ‘House of the Dragon’

Shortly thereafter, he attacks Joffrey in a fit of rage and ultimately bashes his skull in. Still, by the end of the episode, Rhaenyra and Laenor are wed.

Watch new episodes of House of the Dragon on HBO and HBO Max Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET.