Aemond Targaryen’s new artificial sapphire eyes was one of the most important plot points of the “House of the Dragon” season one finale. At first glance, his new eye seems to evoke some of the most famous and terrifying “Game of Thrones” baddies — but is that intentional, or just pure coincidence?
What happened to Aemond’s Eyes?
A quick recap is necessary about the reasons Aemond has an artificial ocular. Vhagar, the dragon of Laena Velaryon was once Laena Velaryon’s second wife. To prove himself, young Aemond claims Vhagar after Laena’s demise. It’s risky, but he manages to bond with Vhagar and ride him.
But when he returns, he is confronted by Jacaerys Velaryon and Lucerys Velaryon, Laena’s nephews, and Laena’s daughters, Rhaena, and Baela. Rhaena is furious and tells Aemond she should be the rightful rider at Vhagar since her mother’s dragon was hers. However, Aemond tells Rhaena that she would be better suited to claim an animal, and then threatens Baela to kill him. Jace and Luke become involved. Aemond threatens Luke with death and taunts her about being the illegitimate daughter of Harwin Strength (not a legitimate child of Laenor Velaryon). Aemond hits Jace with a piece of rock on his head. Luke grabs Jace’s dropped knife and cuts him across the eye and face.
Aemond tells Alicent that he lost his eye but has gained a dragon. This is a deal he can accept.
Is Aemond a white Walker?
Aemond, as a grown man, wears an optical mask to conceal his missing eye. Luke confronts him at Borros Baratheon’s castle. He takes off the eyepatch and shows Luke that he has an artificial eye. The uncanny, unnatural blue eye bears more than a little resemblance to the iconic eyes of the Night King and the White Walkers, but of course, Aemond is not a White Walker — just a guy with a gemstone for a false eye.
It is the symbolism that matters here. Aemond’s first glimpse of Aemond’s blue eyes is followed almost immediately by a scene in which he chases after Luke, trying to make “an eyefor an eye” literal. He loses control over his dragon and kills Luke while pursuing him. This choice must have been intentional. It connects Aemond’s tipping point, from a standard-issue bully to kinslayer, with the first appearances of the icyblue eye that evokes Westeros’s most terrifying (literally), irredeemable and murderous villains. This is not a signal that Aemond has become a White Walker or is on his way to becoming one. It seems more like it’s a sign of his growing corruption and the dark path he is on.