The first trailer for the Game of Thrones prequel “House of the Dragon” has been unveiled, providing the best look yet at the tale and characters of the House Targaryen-centered prequel. The last season of Game of Thrones aired in 2019, and despite the controversy and criticism, it was far from the last time HBO will transport audiences to Westeros. Game of Thrones became one of the most popular television shows of all time during its nearly decade-long run, therefore there are a slew of spinoffs on the way, the first of which is
“House of the Dragon”.
The Targaryens are the subject of “House of the Dragon”, which is set two centuries before Game of Thrones. Whereas the Targaryens were a faded dynasty in Game of Thrones, with only a few remaining members scattered across the kingdom, this will depict the family in its peak. Westeros is controlled by a Targaryen King and will remain so for the foreseeable future, and “House of the Dragon” will have 17 dragons, compared to Daenerys Targaryen’s three.
Even so, something isn’t quite right in the realm. There is fire and blood where there are Targaryens, and in “House of the Dragon”, it is between the family members. The first “House of the Dragon” video teases that Westeros will be thrown into a civil war known as the Dance of the Dragon, as well as defining its location and plot.
17. Daemon Targaryen
The “House of the Dragon” trailer starts with possibly the most well-known member of the cast: Matt Smith. Daemon Targaryen, one of the important figures in the Dance of the Dragons, is played by Doctor Who alum. Daemon is King Viserys’ younger brother and the future husband of Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen (who just so happens to be his niece). Daemon is one of Westeros’ greatest and most experienced soldiers at this point in the timeline, but he also has a temper and a vicious tendency. Daemon has a tense relationship with his brother, and an even tenseer one with the King’s Hand, Otto Hightower, a rivalry that will last for years and play a role in the story.
16. Daemon & Rhaenyra Targaryen
Daemon appears again in the “House of the Dragon” teaser, this time accompanying Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy), his niece and future wife. It’s difficult to say where the two are, but considering that Rhaenyra is Princess of Dragonstone and the enormous expanse of water ahead of them is undoubtedly Blackwater Bay, it’s probable they’re on Dragonstone, which has been the seat of House Targaryen in Westeros since Aegon the Conqueror’s reign. Much of the Dance of the Dragons will revolve around Daemon and Rhaenyra’s relationship, not just romantically, but also in terms of politics and war, as the plot and scheme to combat those who oppose them, and this is most likely one of those scenes.
15. 200 Years Before Game Of Thrones
When the prequel to Game of Thrones was first revealed, the loglines suggested it would take place 300 years before the main series, which didn’t quite add up for the Dance of the Dragons. HBO has since clarified this, with the “House of the Dragon” trailer stating that movie takes place “200 years before the fall of the throne.” It’s uncertain if this refers to Aerys II Targaryen’s defeat, which resulted to the Targaryen dynasty’s demise (283 years after Aegon’s Conquest), or the collapse of the Iron Throne in Game of Thrones‘ season finale (305 AC). The Dance of the Dragons takes place between 129 and 131 A.D., or about 170-years before Game of Thrones, although with flashbacks and earlier stories in the narrative, it may easily be closer to 200.
14. A Targaryen Dragon
For a variety of reasons, the House of the Dragon teaser has very little actual dragon action. To begin with, it will necessitate substantial CGI, so there will most likely be no footage of House of the Dragon’s dragons to show off just yet. Second, assuming the first season is mostly set-up, the latter seasons will be more dragon-centric. Still, dragons will appear, and the trailer contains a hint of one – or at least its skull. While it’s impossible to be positive, this could be the head of Balerion the Black Dread, the greatest of all Targaryen dragons, as flown by Aegon the Conqueror. Balerion died in 94 A.D., well before the events of “House of the Dragon”, but he did have a link to King Viserys. He was the last of Balerion’s dragonriders as a prince, therefore it would be appropriate to show him. There was also a reference to Balerion’s skull in Game of Thrones, so there’s a connection there.
13. The Hand Of The King
The Hand of the King, Otto Hightower, is the next character in the “House of the Dragon” trailer (played by Rhys Ifans). Otto was Jaehaerys I’s Hand of the King, and he continued in that post after Viserys took the Iron Throne. Otto, who is both arrogant and intellectual, wants to exploit his position to advance the status of House Hightower, particularly his daughter Alicent (who will become Viserys’ Queen). Otto’s actions will result in him developing a strong rivalry with Daemon, as well as butting heads with Viserys on occasion, making him one of the primary participants and schemers in the build-up to and events of the Dance of the Dragons.
12. A Valyrian Steel Sword
When Daemon’s narration in the “House of the Dragon” trailer reaches “Kings,” the film cuts to King Viserys I Targaryen, the ruler of Westeros himself. Viserys is portrayed by Paddy Considine as a good man whose reign is primarily successful and peaceful. The larger troubles originate from his decree of the line of succession, naming his daughter, Rhaenyra, as his heir and refusing to change it even after having a son with Queen Alicent, which leads to the Dance of the Dragons after his death.
The attention in this photo, though, is on Viserys’ blade, which appears to be Blackfyre, one of House Targaryen’s great Valyrian steel swords, wielded by Aegon the Conqueror himself. The sword eventually passes to Aegon II, thus while Viserys isn’t mentioned as having it, it’s reasonable to assume it’s in his possession.
11. Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen
The casting of females to play younger versions of both Rhaenyra and Alicent suggests that the timeframe of “House of the Dragon” will extend well over a decade. Milly Alcock, who plays little Rhaenyra with the Iron Throne behind her in the “House of the Dragon” teaser, is one of them. With a younger version of the character (Rhaenyra may be in her mid-teens here), the Game of Thrones prequel can portray significant events that occurred long before the civil war but are relevant to the building rivalry and tensions between Rhaenyra and Alicent.
10. Daemon and Rhaenyra
As this view in the video hints, a significant amount of “House of the Dragon” may be Daemon and Rhaenyra standing together, looking menacing. They appear to be on Dragonstone once more, though it’s unclear exactly what they’re looking at. At the very least, this appears to be later in the timeline, perhaps when Rhaenyra and Daemon are dating. As tensions rise in King’s Landing, the two will be watching, waiting for counter-moves while scheming their own.
9. A Targaryen Battle
One of the most exciting aspects of the House Targaryen story is seeing much more of them in action, including their armor and weapons, which look fantastic in the “House of the Dragon” teaser. The faces of the fighters aren’t visible in this photo, but it’s possible that the fight is between Daemon Targaryen and Criston Cole, one of Westeros’ best swordsmen who will become Lord Commander of Viserys’ Kingsguard. The weapons being handled provide clues: the figure in Targaryen armor appears to be wielding the Valyrian steel blade Dark Sister, which once belonged to Aegon’s sister-wife Visenya and has since passed to Daemon. Criston vanquished Daemon with a morningstar, with the latter wielding Dark Sister, at the tourney to honor Viserys’ ascension.
8. Corlys Velaryon
Corlys Velaryon, aka the Sea Snake, is an important character in “House of the Dragon” who isn’t a Targaryen (Steve Toussaint). The Velaryons, like the Targaryens, are a Valyrian family that has found its way to Westeros. Corlys is a renowned sailor whose epic adventures will live on in mythology for decades, and which may even spawn another Game of Thrones spinoff, with HBO reportedly developing one centered on his Great Voyages, during which he traveled around the world and returned with immense wealth. Corlys, a wealthy and powerful man, weds into the Targaryen line by marrying Rhaenys, Jaehaerys’ granddaughter, who many believed should have become Queen. One of his sons will marry Rhaenyra later, and he will collaborate with Daemon.
7. House Velaryon & A Targaryen Banquet
The remainder of House Velaryon arrives in King’s Landing, ostensibly to join King Viserys for a feast. Corlys’ children, including son Laenor (who marries Rhaenyra) and daughter Laena, are most likely with him (who marries Daemon). Rhaenys Targaryen (Eve Best), often known as the Queen Who Never Was, stands next to him. Corlys and Rhaenys will both play significant parts in the Dance of the Dragons, but their strength and allegiance will be felt long before the event.
6. Daemon’s Mistress Of Whisperers
Lady Mysaria (Sonoya Mizuno), a girlfriend of Daemon Targaryen from Lys who is also his mistress of whisperers, is next in the “House of the Dragon” trailer. As a result, Mysaria has the potential to be one of the most intriguing characters in “House of the Dragon”. After all, planning and intrigues were a primary feature of Game of Thrones, and characters like Varys – the Master of Whisperers – were important to it. Because of her ties to Daemon, Mysaria can serve a similar purpose to the plot above, but with a greater personal engagement.
5. Queen Alicent Hightower
Queen Alicent Hightower, played by Olivia Cooke, bursts into the chamber, panicked about something, but it’s unclear what. However, based on the fact that she is holding a weapon, it appears as a crime has just been committed with it, possibly against one of her sons. Her son Aemond loses an eye due to a dagger stab during the rivalry between her children and Rhaenyra’s, and this could be placed immediately after those events. Even more intriguing is the fact that the dagger resembles the catspaw dagger from Game of Thrones, with its jewel-encrusted hilt. This is the weapon used in the attempted assassination of Bran Stark, as well as by Arya when she kills the Night King. The dagger, which has a Valyrian steel blade and a dragonbone hilt, was linked to the Valyrians thanks to its appearance in a book Sam Tarly read at the Citadel, so viewers may get to learn more about it here.
4. A Tournament Held By House Tarly
In Westeros, a large tournament is organized, with many houses participating. Though tournaments aren’t uncommon, Queen Alicent and Princess Rhaenyra appear in the “House of the Dragon” video. This could be the 111 AC Tourney, held to commemorate Alicent and Viserys’ fifth wedding anniversary. This is the incident that sowed the seeds of suspicion and even hatred, and where the Dance of the Dragons’ warring factions – the greens and the blacks – earned their names. Rhaenyra wore the red and black of House Targaryen, while Alicent wore green. The House Tarly banner is the most conspicuous, implying that this takes place at Horn Hill, which would be a departure from the Tourney, which is situated in King’s Landing. Alicent’s outfit is also more blue than green, indicating that this is a separate tournament. The trailer’s earlier sight of Criston Cole and Daemon Targaryen hinted at the 104 AC Tourney, which was conducted to commemorate Viserys’ succession. Later pictures show members of House Cole and House Tarly participating in the joust, implying that Criston is at least a spectator.
3. House Stark Appears On House of the Dragon Trailer
While House Stark was a major character in Game of Thrones, it will play a minor role in “House of the Dragon”. Because the Starks are so far away from King’s Landing, they don’t play a significant role in the plot until the Dance of the Dragons, when the Ice and Fire Pact brings them together with the Targaryens. Despite this, the Starks will appear in “House of the Dragon”, as evidenced by a glimpse of the famed direwolf symbol during the tournament.
2. A Fight Between Rhaenyra & Alicent’s Children?
In the “House of the Dragon” teaser, a battle breaks out in King’s Landing, though it’s not immediately clear who the fighters are. Based on age and look, this is most likely a conflict between Rhaenyra and Alicent’s children. Alicent’s children all have conventional Targaryen traits, including the blonde hair of the person on the right. The other does not resemble a Targaryen, but that is precisely the point: it is widely assumed, if not verified, that Rhaenyra’s children were fathered by Harwin Strong rather than Laenor Velaryon. He was a close friend of Rhaenyra’s, and his strong features and dark hair are a better fit for her children.
1. The Iron Throne
Despite the fact that “House of the Dragon” is not a Game of Thrones spin-off, the eventual aim is the same: the Iron Throne. As seen in the “House of the Dragon” teaser, the sovereign seat of Westeros is once again a trophy to be wanted and battled for, as Rhaenyra, who feels she is the true successor to it, points out. The Iron Throne itself appears to be more faithful to George R.R. Martin’s novels here; it’s still not the monstrosity of George R.R. Martin’s novels, but it’s bigger, spikier, and more terrifying and imposing than it was in Game of Thrones, implying a more faithful take on it.