Dragons, blood and a lot of ambition: House of the Dragon starts on the right foot

Dragons, blood and a lot of ambition: House of the Dragon starts on the right foot

Dragons, blood and a lot of ambition

London - It could only begin with a gigantic dragon flying over King's Landing House of the Dragon, the highly anticipated Game of Thrones prequel series that arrives from August 22 exclusively in Italy on Sky and Now TV, absolutely simultaneously with Hbo . A return, the one in the lands of Westeros, that many were really waiting for with trepidation and a pinch of apprehension, after the final season of the mother series, Game of Thrones, had left with a lot of bitterness in the mouth. "I watched the original series all together and I really realized how difficult it is to close these stories," Paddy Considine, the actor who plays the crucial character of King Viserys, tells sportsgaming.win in London with the rest of the cast. for the European premiere: "Looking back it is true that something was done in a hurry, without the guidance of the books, but this new series everywhere the mold of George R.R. Martin, so I think the fans will be happy. "

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The facts about the Targaryen In fact, from the first episode House of The Dragon is imposed as the worthy heir of the mother series, at the same time trying to free itself from a too stringent confrontation. Obviously the atmospheres, the settings and the points of reference are those, but in a way that also manages to be unprecedented, perhaps more aware. The story itself speaks of inheritance, located 172 years before the birth of that Daenerys mother of dragons that we all know: King Viserys, at the height of the power of the House of Targaryen, sits on the Iron Throne but does not yet have a male heir. When an immense tragedy strikes him in this sense, his obsession with lineage leads him to an unspeakable decision - represented on the screen with particular monstrous suffering, in pure Westeros style - and he finds himself torn by doubt: to designate the sadist as his successor. and unpredictable brother Daemon or his own eldest daughter Rhaenyra, who is a young woman?

"Viserys is not ready for his task and somehow underestimates the situation, because he comes from such a long period of peace that does not expect the status quo to fail - continues Considine -. But right from the start he is forced to make a decision that will mark the rest of his life. "As is typical in Martin's stories, this king too is faced with choices that have to weigh on one side his obsessions and his fragility and on the other the moral weight of his role. The same can be said of Daemon, played by Matt Smith, now accustomed to the great fantasy sagas like Doctor Who but also to royal lineages as in The Crown (where he played the role of Prince Philip). "I believe that Daemon only do what he thinks is right in his opinion, according to his moral code which is particular, very personal - the actor tells sportsgaming.win -. Part of the frustration he has with his brother is that he is loyal to his family, to being a Targaryen, so he doesn't tolerate when Viserys treats him thinking like a king, he just wants to be treated like a brother ".

Daemon himself becomes the protagonist of some of the bloodiest and bloodiest scenes of the first episode I (including a perfectly “choreographed” tournament), who help to orient the spectator again: we are back in Westeros, where death, violence and sex are fundamental and daily ingredients. Another scene in particular - which we don't reveal so as not to spoil the (hard) surprise - will test even the strongest stomachs. The first episode is inevitably very introductory, having to field many characters, and is perhaps less incisive than what was the first of Game of Thrones. But to warm the minds of the beholder, lighting the flame of curiosity and expectation, the soundtrack by Ramin Djawadi (appropriately revised), the Game of Thrones even bigger and sharper and closer to the description of the books, the mention of a crucial prophecy and - obviously - the return of the dragons, even more imposing and if we want customary in this primeval age ("These people have lived with dragons all their lives, they are not afraid of them, for them it is normal that even attend funerals ", Considine notes).

The role of women Putting all the pieces in the right place House of The Drago n raises its own stakes, raising the bar to a level that must be kept very high Above all because this seems to be a further evolution of the story to which we have been accustomed so far and this is because there are new characters, especially female, highly significant. First of all Rhaenyra precisely, that she finds herself a pretender to the throne in a world where no one remotely imagines that a woman could be queen, as great-aunt Rhaenys well knows. But the young woman is determined and has a fire-breathing weapon on her side: "Rhaenyra has to face the challenges that face her as a woman, but having a dragon allows her to get closer to the kind of power and freedom of which men usually enjoy ", explains Milly Alcock, who plays the character as a young man before passing the ball to Emma D'Arcy:" It's a way to caress that freedom ".

Introducing this series he spends a lot of time pointing out that Westeros is a patriarchal world that thinks of self-preservation only through a male lineage. But how can you not consider that, in perspective, it will be a woman like Daenerys who will save and at the same time upset the balance of the entire continent? “I tried not to think too much about her because she is in fact a very different person - says Alcock -. For her, accession to the throne was a remote option, one that no one had ever considered. Instead Rhaenyra is there, she is the heir and she has to face the consequences of all this ”. Emily Carey, who plays the young Alicent Hightower, her best friend (for now) and future queen in turn, echoes her: "I think Martin here really did justice to the female characters: obviously there are tragic things and misogyny, but the History has never been very favorable with women. In this case, however, there is a certain redemption ".

House of the Dragon works right away to stage all the pieces of a conflict that is already appearing It does so with the raw, exasperated and even controversial style that Game of Thrones has always accustomed us to but with a narrative depth that is already palpably different. It helps that it all rotates to the Targaryens, a powerful and yet damned family. "The only thing that could put them in danger was themselves," says Rhaenyra's narrator in the first few minutes. We are faced with a kind of Succession with dragons and blood flowing in rivers. The danger, since the book Fire and blood of Martin from which the TV series is based and the dynastic history of the Targaryens are a matter known to all, is that the most passionate viewers know too much where everything will go. It will be up to showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik, experienced veterans of Westeros, to feed the novelty and the surprise. The premises are all there, up to the next one: “Dracarys! ".

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