The first season of “The House of the Dragon” — HBO’s “Game of Thrones” prequel that takes place roughly 200 years before the events of the original series and centers around Westeros’ political machinations/family drama surrounding the dragon riders of House Targaryen — ended in homicidal fashion in October 2022.
The show became HBO’s most-watched season 1 finale of all time, and tees up a second season that showrunner Ryan Condal has promised will bring us the spectacle of war.
Here’s everything we know so far about the upcoming second season of “House of the Dragon,” including some new cast members and how many episodes we can expect in the series’ second outing.
What will House of the Dragon season 2 be about?
The end of the first season had two parties vying for the throne after King Viserys I died. Some gather around Viserys’ daughter, Rhaenyra, who Viserys declared was the one who should take the crown, with others circling around his second wife’s oldest son, Aegon, because of misogyny. The two sides had minor spars until a tragic and horrifying moment at the end of the season, where Rhaenyra Targaryen’s son, Lucerys, was (inadvertently?) killed by Alicent’s son Aemond in the dragon version of road rage gone too far.
The two factions vying for the throne were already on the brink of bloodshed, and this killing will tip them over into a full-out civil war in season 2, where many more will die, most likely including more royal children. Those who have read George R.R. Martin’s “Fire & Blood,” the book the show is based on, have a good idea how things will turn out, though anyone who watched “Game of Thrones” won’t be surprised to hear that things get grim, very grim, for almost all parties involved.
House of the Dragon season 2 Cast and Crew
In the second season of “The House of the Dragon,” we will see the return of several characters, including Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower (Queen Regent of Westeros for her son, proclaimed King Aegon II ), Emma D’Arcy as Rhaenyra Targaryen (proclaimed Queen of Westeros), Matt Smith as Rhaenyra’s uncle/husband, Daemon Targaryen, Fabien Frankel as Ser Criston Cole, Rhys Ifans as Otto Hightower, Eve Best as Rhaenys Targaryen, and Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys Velaryon (aka The Sea Snake). Additional returning cast members include Harry Collett, Bethany Antonia, Phoebe Campbell, Phia Saban, Jefferson Hall, and Matthew Needham.
At least four new cast members will also be joining season 2. Gayle Rankin will be playing Harrenhal resident and so-called witch, Alys Rivers, while Simon Russell Beale takes on the role of Ser Simon Strong, the Castellan of Harrenhal and great-uncle to the foot-loving Lord Larys Strong, played by Matthew Needham in the first season of the show. Freddie Fox has also joined the cast as Alicent’s brother/Otto’s son, Ser Gwayne Hightower, and Abubakar Salim will play Alyn of Hull, a seafaring sailor in the Velaryon fleet.
The series will also see Ryan Condal stay on as co-showrunner, though his partner, “Game of Thrones” vet Miguel Sapochnik left the show after the first season under what may have been contentious circumstances. Another “Game of Thrones” vet, Alan Taylor, joined the series in his stead.
House of the Dragon season 2 release date and where you can watch it
We don’t have an official release date yet for season 2 of “House of the Dragon,” though it will likely premiere on HBO sometime in 2024. We also know that there will be eight episodes total and that the show started production in April 2023 at Leavesden Studios in the U.K.
“‘House of the Dragon’ has returned,” Ryan Condal in a statement at the time. “We are thrilled to be shooting again with members of our original family as well as new talents on both sides of the camera. All your favorite characters will soon be conspiring at the council tables, marching with their armies, and riding their dragons into battle. We can’t wait to share what we have in store.”