One of the knocks leveled at HBO’s Game of Thrones is that it hurried through its final season, when there was so much story still to explore. A driving storyline in the last season of Game of Thrones was the fall of Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke), as she finally succumbs to the lure of the throne that once belonged to her family. Daenerys’ decline easily could have filled two seasons, especially if the showrunners used that time to connect dots from her quest back to the history of the House Targaryen. Instead, that thread looks to be picked up and carried by House of the Dragon, a prequel series coming to HBO that just dropped its first trailer.
Seeing as how Game of Thrones ended (no spoilers, in case for some odd reason you landed in this story and haven’t yet seen the final season of the outstanding show), but it would be complicated trying to tell the story from the place where the showrunners left it. There’s real closure for the key characters. No need to stir up their pots. But a prequel story set 200 years prior to the war for the Throne makes a lot of sense, because history is referenced often throughout the story of Game of Thrones, but there’s ample ground there still to till.
This teaser trailer is very much that, a snippet of glances of some of the characters we expect to play a major role in House of the Dragon, a name that directly references the Targaryen clan. For years, they ruled the Iron Throne, using their unique kinship with dragons to maintain their hold on the central kingdom of Westeros. Through one of the key figures in the Targaryen bloodline was Aegon, the story of House of the Dragon appears to be picking up years after his reign, exploring relationships forged by King Viserys I Targaryen and his familial court.
Though we won’t see any familiar faces from Game of Thrones in the new prequel story House of the Dragon, the series can easily tap into the tone and structure that helped audiences embrace the sprawling and epic saga of GOT by introducing multi-faceted characters caught up in political palace manipulations and bloodthirsty battles waged between warriors and beasts. Tons of people tuned in to Games of Thrones each week to track the lunacy of the Lannister family, who always appeared in danger of losing their grip on the Iron Throne. It didn’t help that they had so many opponents seeking a way to get the Lannisters out of King’s Landing (a name given to the kingdom by Aegon when he landed).
For now, we’ll have to take this trailer as confirmation that more Game of Thrones type content is coming. Because lord knows we can’t bank on George R.R. Martin turning a new book in to his publishers any time soon. We’ll have to see what happens first… House of the Dragon wraps its series run, or Martin delivers the last two remaining books in his series.
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Sean O’Connell is a journalist and CinemaBlend’s Managing Editor. Having been with the site since 2011, Sean interviewed myriad directors, actors and producers, and created ReelBlend, which he proudly cohosts with Jake Hamilton and Kevin McCarthy. And he's the author of RELEASE THE SNYDER CUT, the Spider-Man history book WITH GREAT POWER, and an upcoming book about Bruce Willis.