March 22, 2023
What House of the Dragon's Dance of the Dragons Means for Season 2

What House of the Dragon’s Dance of the Dragons Means for Season 2

You’ve probably noticed a drastic increase in the kind of fantasy jargon that Dragon House fans like to throw over the past two weeks. From Greens to Blacks, to the Dance of the Dragons itself, it can be quite easy to lose track. Fortunately, all you really need to know at this point is who is fighting for which team.

Now that the Dance of the Dragons has really begun, we are about to see several seasons of fire and blood. But what is actually in store for Dragon House season 2 and beyond? Here’s what we know (with minimal spoilers) between what was said about Dance of the Dragons by the show’s creators and George RR Martin Fire & Bloodwhich, in a fun twist, proved only somewhat reliable in anticipating the historical plot of the adaptation.

What is the Dance of the Dragons?

In Episode 10, Ser Otto Hightower (Rhys Ifans) successfully launched a coup to install Aegon II (Tom Glynn-Carney) as Lord of the Seven Kingdoms ahead of his half-sister, Rhaenyra (Emma D’ Arcy). Naturally, that’s not going to sit well with the Realm’s Delight (Rhaenyra’s nickname) or the many nobles who swore fealty to her over a decade ago. There will be consequences.

Photo: Ollie Upton/HBO

For the uninitiated, the Dance of the Dragons is the civil war between warring factions of Targaryen vying for control of the Realm, resulting in the death, betrayal, and near extinction of the dragons themselves. As Archmaester Gyldayn writes in Fire & Bloodit probably would have been more accurate to call it “The Dying of Dragons”.

It is important to note that there are several different accounts of the dance in George RR Martin’s fiction. For example, Orwyle (Kurt Egyiawan), the Grand Maester currently serving under Aegon, wrote his version of the story, while other tales come from Grand Maester Munkun, Septon Eustace, and the madman Mushroom, including “the story” stinks of embellishment but wins. the award for “most entertaining”. All of these chronicles have their own unique biases, which means that none of them – not even the aforementioned ones Fire & Bloodwho is the official source for Dragon House – can be completely reliable.

(This is even referenced in-universe in A dance with dragons, the fifth novel in GRRM’s A Song of Ice and Fire series. Here, Tyrion explicitly states that one of the chroniclers, Munkun – who claimed to write the “true narrative” of the Dance – was wrong in that he confused Urrax with Rhaeynra’s dragon, Syrax. As we all remember, he drinks and he knows things.)

Curiously, the discrepancies between these accounts are what ultimately allow Dragon House a valid premise, in that they allow HBO to carve out its own true version of what really happened by taking inspiration from each of them. And now, after nine episodes of buildup, we’re finally at the point where the dancing begins.

If you want a clear indication of what exactly started the dance, most people would agree that the first victim was Lyman Beesbury, the master mint who vouched for Rhaenyra when Otto announced his plan for Aegon to usurp him. This is a rare case in which all of the conflicting accounts agree with each other, despite offering different perspectives on how he died in the book. Somehow, Ser Criston Cole makes even the version of Mushroom, in which Lord Beesbury is thrown out of a window, seem tame compared to his second skull smash in a season. Remember how you all loved him?

Anyway, that’s how the dance started. Once Aegon was crowned king (with a new crown no less, as King Viserys’s was stolen to bring to Rhaenyra in Dragonstone), there was no turning back. And now the Greens and the Blacks are at war.

But who is on which side?

Who is the green team?

Alicent seated at the Small Council table, her hands clasped on the table in front of her.  To her right, her father stands with his hands lightly clasped;  to his left, Ser Criston stands ready

Photo: Ollie Upton/HBO

The term “green” is derived from the color of a dress Queen Alicent Hightower wore at a tournament in 111 AC (Rhaenyra wore black at this event, where “black” also comes from). Dragon House has been referring to this conflict for several weeks, with Larys drawing attention to Alicent’s attire as early as episode 5: “Green is the color the Hightower burns when they call their banners to war.” The show has relied on visual cues like this ever since, in that you can usually tell who’s fighting for whom by looking at the color of their clothes (obviously black is a pretty standard color for noble clothes , but it’s definitely a reliable color say for green).

So who is in Team Green, aka Team Alicent? Here are his main allies at the moment:

  • King Aegon II Targaryen, his son and Lord of the Seven Kingdoms
  • Queen Helaena Targaryen, Aegon’s sister-wife
  • Ser Otto Hightower, his father and Hand of the King
  • Ser Criston Cole, Lord Commander of the Royal Guard
  • Prince Aemond Targaryen, his son
  • Prince Daeron Targaryen, his son
  • Ser Tyland Lannister, Master of Ships (this will become Master of Mint)
  • Lord Larys Strong, Lord of Harrenhal and unofficial Master of the Whisperers
  • Grand Maester Orwyle
  • Lord Jasper Wylde, Master of Laws

We’ll also see her receive support from the Baratheons, Hightowers, Strongs, and Lannisters. And the most recent episode pointed out that Ser Arryk – one of two Cargyll twins – is also Team Green.

To be fair to Alicent, she’s a lot more complex in the show than she is in the book. In the latter, she has been aware of Otto’s scheming all along and was not childhood friends with Rhaenyra. Here, however, we see that she is motivated by her misinterpretation of Viserys’ last words. There was even a moment in Episode 9 where it seemed like reconciliation was possible! That is, until you remember it’s a story written by George RR Martin.

Who is the black team?

Daemon (Matt Smith) and Rhaenyra (Emma D'Arcy) standing and shocked by someone out of frame

Photo: Ollie Upton/HBO

We already explained where the term “Black” comes from, but who are the main characters of Team Rhaenyra?

  • Prince Daemon Targaryen, her uncle-husband
  • Prince Jacaerys Velaryon, his son
  • Prince Lucerys Velaryon, his son
  • Prince Joffrey Velaryon, his son
  • Prince Aegon Targaryen, his son
  • Prince Viserys Targaryen, his son
  • Lord Corlys Velaryon, Master of Driftmark and Lord of the Tides
  • Princess Rhaenys Targaryen, her aunt and Lady of Driftmark
  • Lady Baela Targaryen, his daughter-in-law
  • Lady Rhaena Targaryen, his daughter-in-law

Rhaenyra will receive much more support from Houses that game of thrones fans will be familiar with the Arryns, the Freys, the Greyjoys, the Tarlys, and even the Starks pledging allegiance to him. She also has Erryk, the other Cargyll twin. It should be pretty obvious that they are gearing up for Dragon Houseit is Cleganebowl.

Who is in the best shape to win the Dance of the Dragons?

To answer this, several variables must be taken into account.

The Greens obviously have the advantage in terms of positioning. They’re in King’s Landing, can easily visit the Great Houses for support, and have access to essentially infinite money. But black people have something no amount of money can buy: dragons.

Episode 9’s closing scene, in which Rhaenys storms the Dragonpit with Meleys, was there for more than just shock value. The reason Alicent previously imprisoned Rhaenys was because her dragon is priceless bargaining chip – either Aegon has an extra cannon with wings, or Rhaenyra.

When it comes to pure (and literal) firepower, the Blacks are in a much better position. As it stands, the Greens have three dragons: Sunfyre, Dreamfyre, and Vhagar. (Slight spoiler: Prince Daeron will also get one later.)

But the scales still tip heavily in favor of Rhaenyra, who have Syrax, Caraxes, Vermax, Arrax, Tyraxes, Moondancer, and Meleys, as well as Seasmoke, now riderless thanks to Laenor’s departure. There are also three wild dragons on Dragonstone that could be tamed by dragon seeds: the cannibal, the gray ghost, and the sheep thief. Not to mention all the eggs lying around.

Unfortunately, the Blacks currently only have five true Dragon Riders. So, although they have more dragons, they lack the people to tame them (although that can be arranged). When you consider the size of Aemond’s Vhagar, a five-on-four scenario becomes much more seamless.

Another detail we would be remiss to omit is Daemon’s influence, the value of which cannot be overstated. From his previous allegiance to the Goldcloaks, to his relationship with Mysaria, to all of his various relationships across Westeros and beyond, his charm is good for more than just flattery. He is basically an army unto himself. And he craves a fight: In “The Black Queen”, Rhaenyra refers to the coming battle as the Daemon War.

What will happen in Season 2 of House of the Dragon?

So what happens after the coup?

Without going too deep into spoiler territory, we will obviously see a counter-coronation for Rhaenyra, who will then form her own Dark Council. Once the war begins, it will last about three years, which means we’re almost definitely done with the cast overhaul. It suits this Dragon House will have four seasons. One for each year, perhaps?

There are also fascinating changes that show how Dragon House might even subvert the expectations of book readers, such as Laenor and Ser Harrold Westerling alive. It’s an exciting time for game of thrones fans – if only we didn’t have to wait an entire year after the finale aired this Sunday.

Well. At least we can go back to thronesthe world famous fantasy series which also has exactly four seasons and no more than that.

#House #Dragons #Dance #Dragons #Means #Season

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *