During this wedding preamble, Joffrey makes the tragic decision to reveal his relationship with Laenor to Ser Criston Cole (Fabian Frankel), and Joffrey tells Cole that he is also aware of his interactions with Rhaenyra. Taking this as a threat, Cole punches Joffrey to death, absolutely devastating Laenor. According to the Ice and Fire wiki, Joffrey is known as the Knight of Kisses. In “Fire and Blood”, during a tournament set to celebrate the marriage between Rhaenyra and Laenor, he suffers a fatal wound from Cole when Cole hits him with a morning star. He dies a few days later, although Laenor never leaves his side and weeps over his death. This somewhat mirrors the scene in the show where Laenor is completely heartbroken.
Theo Nate told ET of Joffrey’s untimely death: “It’s the ring he sees first. And as soon as he sees that, it’s like, ‘No, that can’t be possible.’ It was something we talked about [director] Clare Kilner, which is amazing, by the way. That was something we talked about in rehearsals and really wanted to do a little right. If he didn’t have that reaction, I don’t think his journey would mean that much because he wouldn’t be as heartbroken as he should be.” How this will affect the story further will certainly have far-reaching implications, and it’s working certainly has implications for the burgeoning transactional relationship between Laenor and Rhaenyra. What the common folk will say is likely another growing theme in House of the Dragon.