Meet the newcomers in House of the Dragon season 2, including Cregan Stark!

Cregan Stark, the dragon Sunfyre and maybe even the long-lost Daeron Targaryen are coming in House of the Dragon season 2!
Vanity Fair EE BAFTA Rising Star Party -Arrivals
Vanity Fair EE BAFTA Rising Star Party -Arrivals / Mike Marsland/GettyImages

Earlier today, HBO dropped a pair of trailers for the second season of House of the Dragon, its Game of Thrones prequel show. One trailer focused on the Greens — those who support the claim of King Aegon II Targaryen to the Iron Throne — and the other on the Blacks, those who support his older half-sister Rhaenyra. This will be a brutal internecine war from which neither side may ever recover, and showrunner Ryan Condal wants to approach it as fair-handedly as possible.

"This is not a story of goodies and baddies, black hats and white hats," Condal told Entertainment Weekly. "It's a story of this family that's been rent open by this dispute over who is meant to wear the crown after Viserys passes. Some people think it's Rhaenyra, some people think it's Aegon, and then there are other people within who think, 'Why should it be one of the two of them? Maybe it should be somebody else. Maybe it should be me!' The fun of this Greek tragedy is seeing, when you introduce a power vacuum to a world like this, how all of these individuals react." 

In addition to all the characters we met in season 1 fighting each other, the second season of House of the Dragon will introduce us to many new players, including a prominent member of a family Game of Thrones fans will remember well:

Tom Taylor will play Cregan Stark in House of the Dragon season 2

From Ned to Arya to Robb to Sansa, the Starks were the closest thing the original Game of Thrones series had to main characters. The family is still around during the time of House of the Dragon, which is set over 100 years before the original show. At the time, the familiy is ruled over by Cregan Stark, a young man whom both the Greens and the Blacks will try to court.

"He's very powerful," Condal said of Cregan Stark. "Everybody's vying for his army. He's quite a bit younger than Ned Stark was, so it's interesting to see the Young Wolf, the young Stark lord, and how he carries himself in the world, and the burden that's on his shoulders being the Warden of the North. I'm excited for the audience to see and experience that."

We get just the barest glimpse of Cregan onscreen in the latest trailers. Seems like they're saving a full reveal for the show itself. Interestingly (and beware of SPOILERS beyond this point), he's at the Wall with Jacaerys Velaryon, the eldest son of Rhaenyra Targaryen whom she dispatched to try and win Cregan's allegiance at the end of season 1. Perhaps Cergan is giving Jace a tour of the North? And you can't tour the North without visiting the Wall.

Sunfyre the dragon will appear in House of the Dragon season 2

A show called House of the Dragon needs dragons in it. We met plenty in season 1, but an important dragon from George R.R. Martin's book Fire & Blood was left out: Sunfyre, the mount of King Aegon II Targaryen, described in the book as the most beautiful dragon alive.

Well, we finally catch a glimpse of Sunfyre in the trailer. "That dragon was described so specifically in the book as the most beautiful dragon who ever lived," Condal said. "I think it was incumbent upon us to try to rise and meet that challenge, but doing so in a way that didn't seem like we were making a dragon from a different show — a 'fantasy dragon,' for lack of a better word. So Sunfyre had to exist as a cut above that would be recognized as distinctly beautiful within a world that has 17 other dragons running around."

Condal also confirmed that we'll see the dragon Seasmoke again in House of the Dragon season 2, last ridden by Laenor Velaryon. And these dragons won't just be sitting around or going on joyrides. This is war and the dragons will be a part of it. We've watched as the cast and crew filmed some epic battle scenes, which might be what Condal is alluding to when he says that, for season 2, they filmed "two of the largest sequences that certainly I've ever done as a maker of television, certainly that House of the Dragon has ever done."

"I don't know that they're bigger necessarily than anything Game of Thrones has done, because they got pretty big in the end. But certainly we're going to see new things that you have not seen before within this world. There's some pretty epic stuff to come. It's just a couple months away, guys."

House of the Dragon showrunner confirms that "Daeron [Targaryen] is a character in the show"

In season 2 of House of the Dragon, we met the children of King Viserys II Targaryen and his queen Alicent Hightower: King Aegon, his sister-wife Helaena, and their mercurial brother Aemond. In the book, these three have a younger brother named Daeron Targaryen, who is off living as a squire in Oldtown, far away in the Reach. The first season didn't mention Daeron at all, but fans hoped he might show up in season 2. Ryan Condal played it coy but did toss fans a bone.

"That remains to be seen. We will see," Condal teased. "Daeron is a fixture and a character in the show," he adds. "Do not fret, anybody. All in due time."

It's hard to know what exactly that means, but we'll hope for the best. We demand Daeron!

Freddie Fox
The Old Vic Bicentenary Ball 2018 / Dave Benett/GettyImages

We do know that we'll meet Alicent Hightower's older brother in House of the Dragon season 2: Gwayne Hightower will be played by Freddie Fox.

"Freddie brought so much character and humor to Gwayne, who until this season was warded away at Oldtown," Condal said. "[He] grew up at Oldtown in his home base, but now that the Hightowers have been put out on the march, he's come to King's Landing to support his family's stake in the war...We thought it was very interesting to bring forward this character who was maybe mentioned in the first season, but not really seen or experienced in any way; how that would impact Alicent and Otto; and what he would have to say coming in from the outside, not having been raised at court in King's Landing."

In general, the new generation of Targaryens will get more focus in season 2 of House of the Dragon, on both the Green and the Black side of things. For instance, expect to spend more time with Baela and Rhaena Targaryen, Daemon Targaryen's daughters from his marriage before Rhaenyra. "The characters that I immediately wanted to get into are the characters that we didn't get to spend a ton of time with at the end of the season because of the needing to move through 20 years of narrative," Condal said. "We did not get to spend a lot of time with Aemond, Helaena, Jace, Baela, or Rhaena. Those characters are so immediately connected to Rhaenyra, Alicent, Daemon, Viserys, and Otto that we wanted to immediately shine the spotlight on them and get into their internal lives and what they make of all of this."

Gayle Rankin
EE British Academy Film Awards 2023 Vanity Fair Rising Star - BAFTAs Pre-Party / Gareth Cattermole/GettyImages

Gayle Rankin will play Alys Rivers in House of the Dragon season 2

It's not all about the white-blonde dragon-riders. In season 2, we'll meet members of the lower houses as the war spills to every corner of the Seven Kingdoms. That'll include members of Houses Blackwood and Bracken, which use the war as an excuse to take their long-simmering feud to the battlefield.

We'll also meet commoners like Alys Rivers, who lives at the seemingly cursed castle of Harrenhal, a key strategic fortification. "Harrenhal definitely is its own character in the show," Condal says. "It had its own character in the original books, in the original series when Arya was playing cup bearer for Tywin there. Other than the Red Keep, it's probably the most talked-about, storied castle in Westeros, and we really wanted to pay service to it."

Alys is a mysterious character who very much fits the haunted vibe of Harrenhal. If the show stays true to the book, she'll have interactions with both Daemon Targaryen and his nephew Aemond, although maybe not both in the same season. "Whether it's real or rumored, [Harrenhal] does have this supernatural aura around it that does put people off," Condal said. "We were excited to play that out as storytellers."

And there are many other new characters we'll meet after House of the Dragon returns for its second season on June 16:

House of the Dragon. Every new actor joining House of the Dragon in season 2 (and who they're playing). dark. Next

To stay up to date on everything fantasy, science fiction, and WiC, follow our all-encompassing Facebook page and sign up for our exclusive newsletter.

Get HBO, Starz, Showtime and MORE for FREE with a no-risk, 7-day free trial of Amazon Channels