Writer Explains the House of the Dragon’s Game of Thrones Targaryen Sigil Change

Ryan Condal, a co-showrunner on “House of the Dragon”, explains the Targaryen Sigil’s evolution in the show. “House of the Dragon”, the eagerly awaited prequel to Game of Thrones, will transport viewers two centuries in the past. The show depicts the events leading up to the fall of House Targaryen, showcasing the tragic civil war known as the Dance of the Dragons. The 10-episode first season of House of the Dragon was filmed between April 2021 and February 2022, and will air on HBO on August 21, 2022.

It is true that “House of the Dragon” is faithful to the original series and books by George R. R. Martin, but some changes have been made in the prequel show. Corlys’ (Steve Toussaint) relationship with Vaemond Velaryon (Wil Johnson) is also different in the show, which has a predominantly black cast. There have been changes to the stories of King Viserys I Targaryen (Paddy Considine) and Ser Harrold Westerling (Graham McTavish). A larger Iron Throne can be found in “House of the Dragon”, but this was explained in Season 2 of Game of Thrones. The Targaryen sigil, on the other hand, remains a source of confusion for Game of Thrones fans, even though it appears to have been resolved.

During a conversation with Entertainment Weekly, Condal explained the Targaryen alternate sigil. However, while in Game of Thrones, this design was three-headed and had two legs, it has been changed to a four-legged dragon in “House of the Dragon“. In his explanation, Condal points out that this change isn’t exactly a new one. In addition, die-hard Game of Thrones viewers may recall that the four-legged dragon symbol appeared in seasons 6 and 7. After reclaiming Westeros in the season 6 finale, Daenerys (Emilia Clarke) brought the original sigil back to prepare for the show’s grand finale. As a tribute to Daenerys and as a reminder of where she left off, Condal decided to use the same design for “House of the Dragon”.

Condal had to say, that sigil was just one of many choices they made on this show that had a purpose. He asked to stay tuned for updates and added that the sigil you’re seeing in this episode is one that you saw in the original as well. He also had to say:

“The truth of the matter is you think you’ve seen the Targaryen sigil a lot in the original Game of Thrones, but actually it’s not in Game of Thrones that much. You’ve seen it on books and Funko Pops and things like that. That was how far and high the Targaryen dynasty had fallen, that the sigil did not exist really anymore until Daenerys brought it back about. So we chose to go down a road that I think honored where Daenerys left us off versus where people think it all started. But I will say, stay tuned. Hopefully it will all make sense in due time.”

It was a declaration of strength for the House Targaryen that Daenerys chose to return to its original sigil. The decision to use the same design for the “House of the Dragon” is understandable. All of the different sigils have a deeper significance. Condal, on the other hand, teases that the switch will make sense once the show airs. Clearly, the creative team has been paying close attention to the symbolism in Game of Thrones, as evidenced by the abundance of Easter eggs hidden among the sigils and mottos that serve to enhance the plot and hint at forthcoming events.

As far as the Targaryen sigil is concerned, there is an established interpretation of its three heads in the franchise, where it represents Aegon the Conqueror and his sisters Visenya Targaryen and Rhaenys Targaryen. As for the dragon’s legs, there is no comparable explanation. However, in the context of House Targaryen’s power, it appears that they represent the noble family’s far-ranging influence. Given that House Targaryen was the most powerful of the Seven Kingdoms at the time, it’s reasonable to assume that adding legs to the sigil represented a greater hold over Westeros. But after the fall of the House, Targaryen power subsided, so it may be then that the 2-legged version of the sigil was introduced, reflecting a loss of authority. Although the argument seems logical, it is still speculation, and the full details will become clear once “House of the Dragon” is released.