It took airing only one episode for HBO to announce it’s invested in House Of The Dragon for the long haul. And with that, Game Of Thrones is officially a TV franchise. Color us shocked (No, not really). The cable network has given a super early renewal to its GOT prequel, which is set almost two centuries before the original, and follows the rise and fall of the Targaryen dynasty. HOTD is based on George R.R. Martin’s “Fire And Blood” novel.
House Of The Dragon’s long-anticipated series premiere on Sunday, August 21, racked up the largest audience for any new original series in HBO history. So if you understandably thought audiences had checked out after GOT’s calamitous series finale in 2019, especially with how Daenerys Targaryen’s (Emilia Clarke) story ends, think again because HOTD drew nearly 10 million viewers for its pilot, “The Heirs Of The Dragon.”
The fantasy drama will cover the events leading up to the infamous Dance of the Dragons battle that was the beginning of the end for the Targaryens. The show begins with King Viserys Targaryen’s (Paddy Considine) struggle to choose a successor between his unpredictable younger brother, Daemon (Matt Smith), or capable daughter, Rhaenrya (Milly Alcock).
Co-created by Martin and Ryan Condal, HOTD boasts longtime award-winning GOT director Miguel Sapochnik as its showrunner. The cast also includes Olivia Cooke, Emma D’Arcy, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, Fabien Frankel, Sonoya Mizuno, Emily Carey, Graham McTavish, Bill Paterson, and Rhys Ifans, among others.
With only one episode in, House Of The Dragon continues its former show’s tradition of coming under fire for depictions of violence and nudity, especially with a graphic birthing scene in the premiere. But the show’s success proves viewers are, to quote The Office’s Michael Scott, “No question about it, ready to get hurt again.” It will also likely prompt HBO to move ahead with some of the other GOT spin-offs in the making, including a Jon Snow (Kit Harington) solo series and The Sea Snake, centering on HOTD’s Lord Corlys Velaryon (Toussaint).
Until we see any of those come to life, we’ll always have House Of The Dragon, and here’s a look at what to expect for the remainder of season one: