“House of the Dragon:” The Closure “Game of Thrones” Fans Need



Rowan Edmonds, Arts & Entertainment Editor

“Game of Thrones” fans have been waiting for “House of the Dragon” since its announcement in October of 2019, and after the disaster known as season eight of “Game of Thrones” (we don’t talk about it), fans had mixed emotions. That said, “House of the Dragon” is every fan’s palate cleanser to get back into the universe we all know and love. 

Season one of the prequel premiered in August and spanned ten episodes over just as many weeks. It takes place 174 years before the events of “Game of Thrones” and follows House Targaryen, the bloodline that ruled over the seven kingdoms at the time. The Targaryens are “closer to gods than men” and are known for their long white hair and ownership of dragons. The show occurs during King Viserys Targaryen’s reign, who is played by Paddy Considine. He is put between a rock and a hard place when his wife can only produce one child – a female. After he loses his wife during childbirth, he names his only child, Rhaenyra, heir to the Iron throne. Season one follows Rhaenyra through the years as she begins her journey into adulthood and, after her father’s passing, takes the throne as the first Queen of the seven kingdoms. 

The casting of the show was incredible. Matt Smith portrays a perfect morally gray character, and his chemistry with the rest of the cast is unparallel to anything done in the past. Significant time jumps can be tricky, especially when bringing in new cast members for the main characters, but director Greg Yaitanes did an incredible job aging the characters. The acting was excellent, and the post-time jump characters looked almost identical to their younger versions. Milly Alcock and Emma D’Arcy played Rhaenyra, both young and old, and both did a fantastic job with the character.  

The show has everything an OG “Game of Thrones” fan needs – in-depth characters and plotlines, epic fight scenes, and, everyone’s favorite, dragons. In my opinion, it is the closure “Game of Thrones” fans get after the atrocity that was season 8 (again, we don’t talk about it). That said, audience members don’t need to watch “Game of Thrones” to watch “House of the Dragon.” It is a show that anyone with a thirst for fantasy can enjoy. However, I strongly recommend watching “Game of Thrones” before “House of the Dragon,” if only because it adds to the background of some of the original show’s characters we know and love (or hate). As a die-hard “Game of Thrones” fan, I was skeptical about “House of the Dragon,” but not only did it make up for everything fans felt like the loss at the end of “Game of Thrones,” but it reminded me of the love I had for the original show. I cannot wait to see what season two has to bring. 

Season two of “House of the Dragon” has already been green-lit, and after the gut-wrenching cliffhanger the season finale left us on, it could not come soon enough.