Living It! Stories: House of the Dragon Characters You Need to Know Before Binge-Watching
Meet the cast of your new guilty pleasure on HBO
Game of Thrones took the world on a fantastic ride between the years 2011 and 2019. Winter, however, had come and gone; thankfully, this doesn’t mean the saga is over, as HBO opts to look back in order to move forward with a new, exciting serving of entertainment. The highly anticipated GoT prequel House of the Dragon just aired its first episode, giving fans of the franchise something fresh to sink their teeth into.
Before you head down the HotD rabbit hole, check out the guide ahead featuring the new characters you’ll encounter in the HBO series.
Knowing the Politics: The House of the Dragon Cast
The plot of the prequel centers on the Targaryen bloodline, almost 200 years before Game of Thrones’ “A Song of Ice and Fire.” The period in focus is tumultuous, but the conflict is internal this time: a family feud is exacerbated over whose right it is to sit on the Iron Throne. The show, it should be noted, marks the beginning of the end for House Targaryen.
As far as things typically go for this family, the Targaryens are known in Westeros for their (previous) prosperity, the ability to control dragons, and, unfortunately, their unpredictability. Before Daenerys Targaryen and the Mad King (AKA King Aerys II Targaryen), the house’s success already had its looming misfortune.
King Viserys Targaryen (played by Paddy Considine)
Viserys was chosen by the lords of Westeros to succeed the Old King, Jaehaerys Targaryen, at the Great Council at Harrenhal. A warm, kind, and decent man, Viserys only wishes to carry forward his grandfather’s legacy. As we’ve learned from Game of Thrones, however, good men do not necessarily make for great kings.
Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen (played by Milly Alcock, Emma D’Arcy)
Meet the king’s firstborn child. She is of pure Valyrian blood and a skilled dragonrider. Many would say that Rhaenyra was born with everything, a serious contender as ruler. How does this play out for a woman, though, in this kind of kingdom?
Prince Daemon Targaryen (played by Matt Smith)
The younger brother to King Viserys, a fierce warrior and dragonrider: Daemon possesses the true blood of the dragon. But it is said that whenever a Targaryen is born, the gods toss a coin in the air. What can be expected of this impulsive heir to the Iron Throne?
Lord Corlys Velaryon (played by Steve Toussaint)
He is the lord of House Velaryon, a Valyrian bloodline as old as House Targaryen. As “The Sea Snake,” the most famed nautical adventurer in the history of Westeros, Lord Corlys built his house into a powerful seat that is even richer than the Lannisters, claiming the largest navy in the world.
Otto Hightower (played by Rhys Ifans)
As the Hand of the King, Ser Otto loyally and faithfully serves both the ruler and his realm. As the Hand sees it, the greatest threat to the realm is the king’s brother, Daemon, and his position as heir to the throne.
House of the Dragon may feature new characters, but it certainly won’t shy away from the explicit content characteristic of Game of Thrones. Consider this a trigger warning. Don’t be surprised either if you encounter multiple intermarriages in the plot. (We did say the Targaryens are unpredictable and a tad unhinged.)
The 10-episode HBO series will release new episodes weekly, so brace yourselves for a fire-breathing, action-filled performance with twists and turns.