House of the Dragon stars promise higher stakes, bigger sets and 'loads more dragons'

Matt Smith, Emma D'Arcy, Olivia Cooke, Ewan Mitchell and more tease a huge expansion coming in House of the Dragon season 2:
Emma D'Arcy as Rhaenyra Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2
Emma D'Arcy as Rhaenyra Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2 /

HBO continues to get the word out about House of the Dragon season 2, which premieres in just over a month! A new video goes behind the scenes of the new season and interviews the cast members on the set. Take a look:

At the end of season 1, two rival factions of the Targaryen dynasty — the Blacks and the Greens — were on the precipice of war. In season 2, they step off. "We're excited to get into it, because this is the juicy part of the drama," says showrunner Ryan Condal. "Both sides have dragons. The stakes keep going up and up and up."

That sentiment is echoed by Steve Toussaint, who plays Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen's counseler (and the richest man in the Seven Kingdoms at this time) Corlys Velaryon. "Both are convinced of how right their claim is," he says. "It is a very emotional and very intense ride." Tom Glynn-Carney, who plays Queen Rhaenyra's half-brother and main rival for the Iron Throne, Aegon, describes the conflict to come in one word: "Nuclear."

Atomic weapons aren't invented in this medieval-inspired milieu, but dragons will do in a pinch. "Loads more dragons," promises Glynn-Carney. In fact, it sounds like there's loads more of everything, which makes sense now that both sides are fighting and trying to form partnerships with potential allies. "There's more of a sense of the world. More of a sense of the kingdoms," says Olivia Cooke, who plays King Aegon's mother Alicent Hightower. Bethany Antonia, who plays Rhaenyra's dragon-riding stepdaughter Baela Targaryen, puts it like this: "It's so much bigger this year. It's times 10."

Behind the scenes of House of the Dragon season 2

We also gets lots of great images during that video. Some highlights include:

  • Soldiers with the falcon sigil of House Arryn on their armor. In season 1, Rhaenyra sent her son Jace to enlist the help of Jeyne Arryn in the Vale. It looks like he'll make it.
  • Obviously, we see some guy at a flame-throwing rig. Cue the dragonbreath!
  • Rhaenyra (Emma D'Arcy) points a sword at the 1:08 mark. Rhaenyra doesn't do much fighting herself, but hoisting a weapon during a counsel meeting is probably pretty persuasive.
  • We see a giant dragon-killing ballista at 1:23.
  • At 1:42, Baela Targaryen hefts a crossbow at something offscreen.

The second season of House of the Dragon premieres on HBO and Max on Sunday, June 16! As Matt Smith (Daemon Targaryen) says in the video, "We've really tried to push it up a notch." Consider our intetest piqued.

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