House of the Dragon season 2 premiere: 3 things that disappointed (and 3 that were worth the hype)

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

The long-awaited second season of House of the Dragon finally returned to screens on June 16, 2024. This season marks the beginning of another era in the world of Westeros, which will be the topic of discussion for the next seven weeks. The first episode, titled Son for a Son, opened a riveting portal to George R.R. Martin's world of politics and bloodshed.

Of course, coming nearly two years after the debut season, there were a lot of expectations for the first episode of House of the Dragon season 2. While the show did deliver as most would have hoped for, it also lagged in some elements that fans would have liked to see more.

So, while the House of the Dragon season 2 premiere is not disappointing in any possible way, there are aspects that could have made it even better. Here, we break down what went right and what did not in this episode.


3 things that could have been better in House of the Dragon season 2 premiere

1) A lot of teasing, little action

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

After the finale of the first season, which saw the dangerous debacle of Vhaegar, fans had sky-high expectations. But this episode started rather timidly and stayed that way until the final act. Much of the episode's energy was focused on teasing future events, including securing the loyalties of other houses for the war.

The episode teased several storylines but delved into only one, that too at the very end, making the rest of the runtime circle around political world-building. This is not a bad thing, but it may appear so to some fans, who prefer the fast-paced style of Game of Thrones.

Read more: How many episodes will there be in House of the Dragon season 2?


2) No Rhaenyra for most of the episode

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

One aspect where this episode could have significantly improved is in giving more presence to Rhaenyra (Emma D'Arcy). Though this is her war and arguably her story, the debut episode of House of the Dragon season 2 did not feature the rightful queen of the realms.

While her absence was explained with Lucerys' death. Still, fans would have loved to see more of her.


3) A severe lack of dragons

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

For a show that revolved so much around dragons, this episode featured very little screen time or mention of dragons. After the finale of the first season, few would have expected the dragon plot to take a second place, but it did for this episode.

Perhaps this was an artistic choice to make the season more dynamic and put much more dragon action in the latter part of the series.

Read more: Where was House of The Dragon season 2 filmed?


3 things that were perfect in House of the Dragon season 2 premiere

1) A return to the familiar North

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

You know we are back in Westeros when an episode opens with a snow-clad landscape and a certain bleakness that is almost home-like to Game of Thrones fans. Yes, the series took viewers right back to the Stark house, the wall, and whatever was beyond the wall at the very beginning of the episode.

Jace (Harry Collett) joining Lord Cregan Stark (Tom Taylor) in the tour of the wall was as iconic as things get for GoT fans, and this relationship may further be explored in the future.

Read more: How is Cregan Stark related to Game of Thrones’ Ned Stark?


2) A lot of strategic developments

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

While the physical developments may have been limited, this episode of House of the Dragon worked well to set the stage for the future. It delved into a lot of strategies, recruitments, and overall plans that will be impactful in the coming episodes.


3) The perfect ending

A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)
A still from HOTD (Image via HBO)

While the episode may have started off slower, the ending delivered everything that both Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon fans adore.

With a sudden twist, brutality, and a decision that makes fans question which side they would be on, this ending was as perfect as series premiere endings can get. It promises that much more is on the way.


House of the Dragon season 2 episode 1 is now streaming on Max.

Read more: 10 things to remember before watching House of the Dragon season 2

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Edited by Shubham Soni
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