“House of the Dragon” takes different path as a fantasy series

“Game of Thrones” Prequel is the show to watch and here’s why.

“Game of Thrones” is back with arguably the biggest show on streaming right now, next to the new “Lord of The Rings” show. This new show, titled “House of The Dragon,” is a prequel to the original series, taking place 172 years before the birth of Daenerys Targaryen, whom we all know as having been played by Emilia Clark in the original series. The series is based on the novel “Fire & Blood” by George R.R. Martin, so fans need not worry about it taking as many liberties as the later season of GoT did. It covers the beginning of the downfall of house Targaryen and has a large and well-rounded cast of characters. The two principal characters are King Viserys I Targaryen, played by Paddy Considine, his brother and initial heir Daemon Targaryen, played by Matt Smith, and the King’s Daughter Rhaenyra, played by Emma D’Arcy. All of the actors play their part well, but there is one character, a prostitute to whom Daemon takes a liking, who is played with this weird pseudo-French accent even though the actress is British in real life. It’s off-putting and very hard to understand, but luckily she does not have more than a few scenes of speaking parts. I did have to rewind her scenes and turn on captions to really understand what she was saying.

What separates a fantasy series like “House of The Dragon” from something like “Lord of The Rings” is that it concerns itself much less with adventures and much more with intrigue and political conflict. And these themes are present from the very opening scene of the show, with the heir of the previous king being chosen by votes from the lords. No one in this show feels like a good person, yet they’re all still likable enough for one to remain interested and invested, which is usually a hard balance to strike in a show like this. Even though there are dragons and mysterious monsters to the north (as we learned in the original series and that this series references early), it’s a very grounded fantasy setting, one that could be comparable to places like feudal England with the brutality of its kings supposedly anointed by God. They are not afraid to get what they want and are willing to spill blood for it.

The landscapes and scenery are not as nice as other shows right now, but the costumes look great and the fight scenes are very fun and well choreographed. This show being the “House of the Dragon,” there are plenty of dragons who feature in the early episodes, and they look awesome. They feature as the grand imposing figures they should be, and when they show up in tense scenes, you can see everyone get even more tense or nervous, knowing the power that these dragons are capable of. The intrigue and looming threat of war by the end of episode 2 has me very excited for the rest of the season, which is something I can’t say for a lot of TV recently. I look forward to the rest of the season and hopefully as good as season 2 that has already been announced and is in the works.

Post Author: Zach Sabel