After HBO scrapped one Game of Thrones prequel, they appeared to go full steam ahead with a Targaryen-centered alternative, House of Dragon. We’ve already seen a trailer that promised fire and blood and wigs, but the change of plans is intriguing. One can imagine that the powers that be wanted to avoid a highly budgeted mess that, like the original GoT pilot, ended up being (in the words of Chernobyl showrunner Craig Mazin) a “piece of sh*t.” So, one can assume that the right call was made with the scrapped prequel, and guns are blazing full steam ahead for the Targaryen wigs.
For one thing, there’s finally a premiere date for this series, which will slide into the end of summer. That would be Sunday, August 21, to be more precise, and HBO has also revealed more stills, which can be seen at the bottom of this post. The show is, of course, based upon the works (specifically Fire & Blood) of George R.R. Martin. The story is set a few centuries ahead of the main GoT storyline, and we’ll obviously hear much more about the Targaryen family dynamics, long before the insufferable younger Viserys essentially sold his sister, Daenerys, off to be married, which eventually led to the golden crown that he never bargained for or expected.
Matt Smith (Doctor Who, The Crown) picks up the male lead role of Prince Daemon Targaryen, who’s the younger sibling of King Viserys (Paddy Considine of The Outsider). Daemon’s a dragonrider and an heir to his family’s throne, and the rest of the principal cast includes Olivia Cooke, Emma D’Arcy, Rhys Ifans, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, Fabien Frankel, and Sonoya Mizuno. Can dragon lightning strike twice? We’ll soon see.