By Soleil Cardenas
After an unprecedented end to “Game of Thrones” Two years ago, HBO produces a prequel set 200 years before the “Game of Thrones” events unfolded. The House of the Dragons prequel provides insight into the height of the reign of House Targaryen before its downfall.
“Game of Thrones” featured the Targaryen dynasty, often bringing up and reminiscing upon its powerfulness and glory at the height of their rule of the Seven Kingdoms of Westeros.
“House of the Dragons” allows viewers to see the early Targaryen’s rule in all its captivating glory for themselves. In this time frame the Targaryen dynasty was seen as the most powerful they had ever been.
The family trains and cares for approximately ten dragons which helped their seat on the throne stay firm.
The computer-generated imagery of the dragons is one of the best parts of the show. Viewers get to see characters ride dragons, train them and fight battles with dragons. Attention to detail allows for a closer experience of the dragons than in GOT.
Throughout the show characters teach their dragons how to breathe fire on command when ‘Dracarys,’ ,an ancient word, is told to them by their tamer. Dracarys roughly means dragonfire or destroy.
“House of the Dragons” main emphasis of this entire season is succession. The show features Rhaenyra Targaryen, Viserys eldest child and daughter, and focuses on the questionability of who King Viserys Targaryen’s heir will be.
King Viserys successor only becomes questionable after his first wife Aema Targaryen does not give birth to a son after several pregnancies.
King Viserys, not having fathered a son, leaves second in line for the throne to the king’s maniac brother, Daemon Targaryen.
Daemon is deemed unfit by many powerful lords apart of the king’s counsel. With many commoners questioning the line of succession, Rhaenyra is named heir despite a woman to have never been named heir previously or ruling Westeros.
A woman heir sets the plot line for many scandalous events to unfold to prevent Rhayerna from the opportunity to rule Westeros.
Being the king’s firstborn child means nothing if you are a woman like Rhaenyra, she is seen as weak and to be easily supplanted as heir.
“House of the Dragons” is filmed in two separate parts. The first part shows a young Rhaenyra as she is maturing into adulthood.
The second part fast forwards a few years when Rhaenyra has entered motherhood. HBO uses two different actors, one to play young Rhaenyra and the other for her older version.
HBO does the same with Rhaenyra’s childhood friend Alicent HighTower.
This first season of “House of the Dragons” is definitely captivating but a little disappointing. The season seems much like a setup for another season to come.
The entire season watchers wait to see who will succeed the king but never find out. The season ends on a major cliffhanger and leaves viewers wondering if there is a following season.
Many plotlines are left untied and it feels as if you are barely getting to the good part when the series ends.
“House of the Dragons” does an excellent job of giving viewers just enough information to figure out what direction the plotline is heading.
Unlike other fantasy shows “House of the Dragons” does not just tell viewers what is going on or give the answer to what every character is doing.
Dialogue between characters and carefully watching solo scenes let viewers predict and come up with their own ideas for what a character is doing and their intentions.
Even then certain plot lines don’t click immediately. Watching the show back viewers will catch on to several context clues that are hard to pick up on the first time around.
The entire season basically follows the king’s succession and almost all the parts make sense and follow the theme or dive deep into a character’s background.
There is one plot line that is never quite wrapped up and seems out of place at times.
An antagonist that is introduced in the early episodes is not properly introduced and not much explaining is done.
The capture of this land the antagonist occupied seems irrelevant and not discussed often.
Despite the antagonist being defeated his followers are again brought up in later episodes as they seem to begin to make a reappearance.
The antagonist and his followers may be a part of a bigger plot line to be introduced in a season yet to come. This would explain the brief introductions.
A second season is expected to be released in 2024.