House of the Dragon: Olivia Cooke Explains Why She Disagreed with Alicent's Initial Characterization

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There is little doubt that people are beginning to see Alicent Hightower as antagonistic now that she had made that grand entrance in her green dress at Rhaenyra Targaryen's wedding. However, it looks like the Queen of Westeros was expected to be played as even more of a villain in House of the Dragon. Interestingly, Olivia Cooke herself had pushed back at the characterization and attempted to "find a different route into her."

Olivia Cooke recently spoke to Entertainment Weekly where she revealed that co-showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik originally intended for Alicent Hightower to be portrayed as "a woman for Trump" but she completely disagreed with the plan.

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"I just didn't want to give them any more mental real estate than they already had," Cooke said in reference to the former US president and his family. "So I tried to find a different route into her. I could see what they were saying with this complete indoctrination and denial of her own autonomy and rights. I just couldn't be asked to go down that road."

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Cooke, who will take over as the adult Alicent in House of the Dragon Episode 6, also stated that her character will be "bittered and twisted over time" due to her father Otto Hightower's absence.

"Alicent has been completely bred to breed, and to breed powerful men. That's her only function in this life," she said. "She can tell herself that she's going to sway and nurture and persuade in a very womanly, feminine way, but it's all f-cking bullshit. Unless you're fighting the men, you'll never be heard. It's learning to live within this straightjacket of oppression. How do I move inch by inch every single day to loosen the straps?"

It's interesting to know that Cooke was involved in how Alicent will be portrayed in the series. Needless to say, we're looking forward to seeing the grown Alicent this Sunday.

House of the Dragon Episode 5 is now streaming on HBO Max. House of the Dragon Episode 6 is titled The Princess and The Queen and will premiere on Sunday, September 25, 2022, at 9:00 PM EST.

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Related: House of the Dragon Episode 6 Stills Introduce Emma D'Arcy, Olivia Cooke and More