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The Dragon Demands

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  1. ....nothing in House of the Dragon really merited a dedicated "Rant or Rave Thread Because We're So Angry About How This Went Off The Rails but We Can't Let Yelling Dominate the Entire Forum" ---- I mean there's highs and lows but overall it's been a very well received adaptation by most if not all of us. There's always a point or two to disagree with, as with anything, but nothing I need to...."veny my frustration" about to maintain my basic sanity in a world gone mad. No real need for that again.
  2. She can CHANGE him! All he needs is her love to break through his tough exterior!
  3. Oh yeah that was an official change. Which I disagree with. They said they wanted to contrast a "Warm" King's Landing with a colder Winterfell. Because apparently it's just those two extremes with no Temperate zone in between. SMH...
  4. I'm sarcastically setting up dialogue from a Simpsons joke. I couldn't find a clip but here it is in text: Bart: [about Jimbo Jones] What do you like about him? He's just a good-looking rebel who plays by his own rules. Lisa and Laura: [sigh wistfully] https://simpsonswiki.com/wiki/New_Kid_on_the_Block/Quotes I left out the "Good looking" part because that would have made the sarcasm too obvious. And m'lord, to quote Oscar Wilde, it would be hard to find someone who was not Lord Byron's lover at the time...
  5. I think Emily Carey mentioned rumblings about a cameo or something.
  6. How can they love the man?! He's nothing but a brooding rebel who plays by his own rules!
  7. @Ran I've been seeing some rumors lately...from sources who were reliable in the past and turned out to be correct on Season 1. These rumors were made DURING Season 1 so they may have CHANGED since then, of course. But I think they were at least being considered at the time: Rumor is that while Season 2 doesn't have time skips, it will have flashbacks. We'd already heard rumblings on that. Well there's some rumors that Michael Carter will return for flashbacks as King Jaehaerys. Or if not him, someone else to play Jaehaerys a decade or so younger. But the...extrapolation is that GRRM really wanted to show how Baelon got picked over Aemon's daughter Rhaenys, so Season 2 may have flashbacks actually showing Baelon, Aemon etc. - or at the least, have Jaehaerys return and reacting to their deaths. Perhaps even seeing him give Dark Sister to Daemon. Possibly an excuse to bring Paddy Considine back as Viserys for scenes with Jaehaerys, I'm not sure. But there was already speculation based on actor statements that young Rhaenyra and young Alicent might return for flashbacks. Heck, Game of Thrones Season 2 brought back Khal Drogo for a dream sequence just for fun, but flashbacks here would actually fill out the story more. Heck, maybe they'd actually show Queen Alysanne in flashbacks just to explain who the former rider of Silverwing was when that dragon is introduced. At any rate I trust the source, they were right before, but this is something they picked up *during the filming of Season 1*, and this plan may have been abandoned for all we know.
  8. How do we know that Sapochnik "wanted to appeal to the general audience"? I'm not disputing that, I'm asking you to explain - I'm not certain what instances you're referring to.
  9. Checked online, both Javi from Spanish fansite Los Seite Reinos and major French language YouTube channel Mestre Thibaut still consider this a fake rumor, and think Variety just mentioned it by accident or something: See thread here. We don't know. .
  10. For those interested in such things, this is the 40 minute guide I put together on "everything we know about the three draagon breeds, six months since we first found out about them": I just cobbled it together from what we've been able to find scattered about. Has a few interesting things the designer told me in Instagram comments, and some concept art he posted there too. This is all of course "provisional".
  11. I'm confused...the Variety article mentions that Casey Bloys had to "mediate" between Condal and Sapochnik... "Falling out"? Some weeks ago an unsubstantiated rumor spread that Sapochnik got into a fight with HBO over giving his wife more money (she's part of his production company and credited as a producer). NO ONE was willing to report on this because it had no evidence - Los Seite Reinos, even the hype fansites, all said it seemed like a misogynistic dig at his wife, and it contradicted other things (Sapochnik was hesitant to even come back for one season due to the heavy workload, so they gave him the proverbial dump trunk of money and co-showrunner credit). All agreed it wasn't worth dignifying the rumor by reporting on it. Does Variety actually know about something behind the scenes? Or is Variety repeating that rumor?....I don't think they'd just repeat it, but this is strange. ....should...should we re-assess that rumor? Or was there indeed a falling out, but due to something else? I really don't want to breath life into a false rumor. We need confirmation. @Ran
  12. I'm often concerned that they'll condense Rhaena with someone else, to cut out Nettles or something. I wouldn't object to her new egg Morning hatching early in Season 2, BEFORE she goes to the Vale with this cat-sized dragon, I mean a big condensation. ****A thought which occurred to me is that Season 1 was written under the fear that it wouldn't be a hit, that they wouldn't get all the seasons they wanted. Not unlike early Game of Thrones. And LIKE early Game of Thrones, they might've...HALF set up optional paths to truncate certain storylines, but they didn't want to. You know, like how they carefully worded "Stannis has no sons", to self-consciously leave open the door to say he has a daughter. So while part of me suspects they half set up the option to combine Rhaena with Nettles (camera lingers on her when describing the wild ones)....maybe that was just a "worst case scenario" in case Season 1 wasn't a hit. I mean, they also avoided definitively saying how many children Alicent has in total, to leave open the door for Daeron. Plans change, after all.
  13. https://redanianintelligence.com/2023/02/14/watch-1899-star-audition-for-a-major-role-in-house-of-the-dragon-season-2/
  14. (shrug) I thought they'd assuredly cut Grey Ghost, only to then confirm that there are "three wild dragons". We'll see what happens.
  15. Thus POTENTIAL types of dragons we'd realistically see, working backwards from Function: Strength Combat (Destriers) = T-Rex Shaped heads (confirmed) (Strength, with enough speed to fight) Pure Strength (Drays) = we'd only see these in Valyria construction projects Speed & Endurance (Dornish Sand Steeds) = Horse-Shaped heads ("bred for speed") Pure Endurance (Palfrey) = ??? (I always thought Dreamfyre was one of these) Pure Speed (Race Horses) = we'd only see these in Valyria Trackers (Hunting Dogs) = ...the Wolf-Shaped skull head dragons? Wide-set heads for better Sensory scanning, with decent Endurance, better than Destrier-dragons. But maybe they don't draw a distinction between "Pure Endurance" (like a Palfrey) with "Speed & Endurance" (like a Sand Steed). The functional labels I'd use for these 3 categories are "War Dragons", "Travel Dragons", and "Tracker Dragons".
  16. I've been thinking on dragon breeds in comparison to horse and dog breeds. Page on Horse breeds in the books: https://awoiaf.westeros.org/index.php/Horse Wikipedia page on "Working Dog" breeds based on function: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Working_dog They wouldn't have "breeds" for aesthetic reasons but functional reasons, narrows down our definitions. The only solid info we have is "the T-Rex shaped skull ones are war dragons bred for raw Strength, while the narrow Horse-shaped skull ones are bred for Speed" With Horses, the broad categories are: Charger (War Horse) - bred for Strength and Sprinting for combat. Two sub-varieties: Destrier - largest, slightly slower. Incredibly expensive. Courser - slightly smaller but a little faster. Still a war-horse, and much more common. Palfrey - Bred for Endurance, long-distance travel Dornish Sand Steed - Bred for Endurance and Speed. I used to think of them as just "Super-Palfreys" but that's not the case: it's mentioned that they're also bred for Speed, because Dornish light cavalry rely on mobility in combat. The trade-off is they can't carry large weights, sacrificing Strength, but armies shouldn't wear heavy steel armor in the deserts of Dorne, they'd bake in the sun. We see no mention of..."race horses" built only for short bursts of sprinting, pure Speed and nothing else. I don't think Dragons would either (unless we had a Valyria TV series showing them getting so decadent that they breed Racing Dragons just for fun...we wouldn't see that it in this). I tend to call them "War dragons" or "Destrier Dragons", because "Charger" confuses people that it's about Speed (it's about a strong horse quickly sprinting into the enemy). A Dray is a heavy work horse built for hauling weight, but slowly. You can use it as a war mount in a pinch but it has less stamina. In Dragon terms, compare an Olympic level weight lifter to a football linebacker: the linebacker is big and strong but he needs to be able to run in short bursts. For the sake of simplicity I don't think they'd show one of these, as it's basically a "Super-Destrier" (spectrum from Courser to Destrier to Dray: as Strength increases so much, even short Sprinting charges become difficult). The entire point of a Dray is that it's so strong it's better for HAULING, it's too slow to even fight well, and dragons wouldn't need to haul things (unless we got a Valyria prequel showing them making megastructures...) I doubt they'd ever need to make the dragon version of Garrons, extreme-weather horses bred with wide feet and shaggy coats, perfect for rough rocky terrain in snowy weather. Mostly seen in the North. Looking at DOGS, meanwhile, there's one FUNCTIONAL type of breed that they have that Horses would not: TRACKER. Hunting dogs. Sometimes purely for sense organs, but often senses mixed with endurance, meant to run down prey, to keep following it until the heavy hitters in the hunting party catch up. So... "Hunter/Tracker/Scout". Reinforcing this idea to me is of course that their skulls are specifically WOLF shaped, as said in earlier interviews. The new book just says "their skulls have Canine features". So it's a "Canine" skulls -- thus what functions do "canines" usually serve? Hunters/tracker/scout. I "showed my work" in this post, to make my Conclusion easier to quote I'll make it a separate post:
  17. I kind of hope that Season 2 really gives focus to the "dragons can switch genders" thing from the books, because it was NEVER mentioned at all in the original TV series. This fanon idea, or wishlist, that I have for Season 2, is actually... Sunfyre. Think about it: the idea is that taking inspiration from Jurassic Park, being in a single-sex environment will spur one of them to change into the other sex, to keep the species going. It's possible that they naturally switch back and forth all the time, with no external pressures, but it stands to reason that being in a single-sex environment would add greater pressure. The Blacks have Dragonstone, with a large number of dragons, mixed genders - it's where the breeding hatcheries are in the volcano. They have no driving need for one to switch genders. In contrast, the Greens only have the Dragonpit in King's Landing. They only have four grown dragons - and Tessarion is away in Oldtown, so that's 3 - Vhagar and Dreamfyre (both of which are stated to be female or egg-layers in Season 1)...and Sunfyre, whose gender was actually never specified. The Season 1 finale implied that the three "hatchling" dragons simply haven't been born yet in the TV continuity: rather than have Aegon III's Stormcloud hatch off-screen prior to the finale, it seems they want a bit of an arc, to show the full life cycle; so they stressed that Daemon is collecting eggs. Added a line where he says "and I have a score of eggs warming in the incubators" but no mention of hatchlings. Thus according to the principle of "Chekhov's Gun", we'll see one of those eggs that "Country Lord Daemon" collected at the beginning of episode 8 - hatch into Stormcloud, for his son Aegon III. That seems obvious. But...would they do the same for the Greens? HOW could they do that? How could the Greens produce eggs from Vhagar (female, old), Dreamfyre (female, egg-layer) and Sunfyre? Well the easy answer is "Sunfyre is considered male, sired eggs on Dreamfyre before, so it's no surprise when their eggs hatch into dragons for Aegon & Helaena's twin children" --- even possible that they could say "we had some dragon eggs left over that we store in the Dragonpit"....as shown in episode 6, they got an egg from the Dragonpit, not Dragonstone island (apparently, they sometimes just lay eggs in the dome?...the books don't say that....was it foreshadowing?)....or not even the Dragonpit, they could just say "when the twins were babies, we got eggs from Dragonstone to put in their cradles, they just happened to hatch right now" All of these are fine answers. But I think the CREATIVE choice, the one I would do, to emphasize that they can shift genders, is to reveal that Sunfyre has been female up to now but turned into a male. Given that 1 - of the three dragons in King's Landing, two have been stated to be female / egg layers, 2 - They never actually used gendered pronouns to refer to Sunfyre in dialogue.....I think it would be interesting if in Season 2 the Greens are shocked to discover that Dreamfyre laid a new clutch of eggs....or even have the guards at the dome outright state "we even saw Sunfyre and Dreamfyre coiling together, Sunfyre sired these eggs on Dreamfyre".....and have Aegon & Alicent baffled, and say "but Sunfyre is FEMALE, we've SEEN her laying eggs before, they just never hatched".....and then have one of the remaining Dragonkeepers at the dome explain that according to old dragon-lore, "in a single-sex environment one will switch genders to perpetuate the species - life finds a way". ( I also think it would be cool if the Dragonkeeper could then say something like "according to the stories, when Aenar Targaryen came to Westeros with five dragons, ALL FIVE were female - Balerion itself turned into a male to keep the species going") In turn this would set up or parallel that Vermax lays eggs in Winterfell, that they can randomly switch even in a mixed group of dragons and Vermax must have mated soon before leaving Dragonstone. That's how I'd do it at least. Doesn't contradict anything. Go all in on the revelation to a TV-only audience that "dragons can switch gender", the biggest point to emphasize this is "Sunfyre turns into a male so the Greens have a viable breeding pair"
  18. No no, I said that. Sorry. I meant he's one of the older dragons, but as I said, the more important factor is SIZE, it's size that weathers them not age as such, and Vermithor is the second biggest after Vhagar. So as you see in the shot with Daemon a few of his horns are starting to snap, his neck sags a little, etc. It's like how a huge dog breed can have health problems by 7 years old, but a smaller terrier dog could be 14 and you'd think they look 7 years old (I have cats but I've noticed similar; smaller cats I've had lived longer, and one was 16 but you'd think she was 8, held up better because she was smaller, no health problems from being big ) --- of course this excludes health problems from dog breeds bred so small it's unhealthy, pocketbook dogs (cruel to breed dogs that small).
  19. The new Making of House of the Dragon book didn't have that much new information on dragon breeds, in fact it basically just repeated information from prior interviews. It was quite disappointing - but it seems they rushed the book out only after they realized the show was a hit (it similarly glosses over stuff from the costume and set designers). To summarize everything in one place: There are 3 major "breeds" of dragons, based on skull-shape: T-Rex heads, Wolf-shaped heads, and narrow elongated Horse-shaped heads "between the two" (whatever that means) Caraxes IS NOT representative of his breed. He's repeatedly described as a random mutation, as happens sometimes in dog breeding or horse breeding. Vermax and Arrax are the template for what the "Wolf-shaped head" ones look like. I asked the concept artist via Instagram; he reiterated that Caraxes is a mutation/outlier (or recessive/atavism?) and noted that Caraxes' flames are unusually hot even for a dragon: they instantly vaporize people. Even Vhagar's flames, which by this point should be hot enough to melt stone, don't instantaneously just VAPORIZ people. Apparently the long neck means his fire-chemical producing glands are overdeveloped. All dragon designs were already developed in Season 1, even if they don't appear on screen yet. Condal said his favorites are the three "Wild" dragons: because they never had harnesses bolted to them there are little distinctions that make them look different from how bonded dragons were handled. But that waits for a later season... But like horses or dogs, different dragon breeds must be specialized around different functions: a "destrier" is a war-horse bred for strength, a "palfrey" is bred for endurance, etc. Based on comments by the showrunners and designers across several interviews, the breakdown is: "T-Rex shaped skulls" = "war dragons". Bred for strength in combat. Includes all of Daenerys's dragons (who were copying the Drogon design) - actually they started with Drogon as the base template for a "standard" dragon then worked from that to other ones, or even how to tweak that to differentiate other dragons of the same breed. I'm pretty sure that Vhagar is one of these, but she's grown very old and her horns snapped off. Balerion also one of these. Seasmoke is this breed. APPARENTLY so is Dreamfyre (hinting that she's the mother of Daenerys's dragons). Sunfyre...APPARENTLY? We don't get a good look at him (he has big, upswept horns like a devil, but he's very strong for his size, leaning to the idea that he's a "destrier-dragon" breed). Vermithor is also this breed, almost as old as Vhagar, only a few of his horns just beginning to snap off. "Horse-shaped skulls" = "bred for speed". Condal and the designers repeatedly say that Syrax was "bred for speed" and compare her design to a streamlined jet airplane. I used to think Meleys was a war-dragon, but on review, I actually think she's the same breed as Syrax: her large "crown" of horns makes her head look wider than it actually is. Plus one of the few details we have about Meleys from the book is "she was the fastest dragon of her generation", faster than Caraxes etc., so if you're going to make ONE the "fast" breed you'd make it Meleys. So these are..."racing dragons"? (what's the term for a horse bred for speed not endurance?) -- though it's possible they're ALSO bred for endurance, I'm not sure. They still haven't said what the "Wolf-shaped skull" type is bred for. Which is annoying. Other than to confirm that Caraxes isn't typical for this breed, Vermax and Arrax are the template. The book also confirmed that Tyraxes is this same breed (as it's hinted these three dragons were from the same clutch, brothers for Rhaenyra's sons). BASED ON HORSE AND DOG BREEDS, what are other functions you breed an animal for? Endurance? Tracking? Because they have wide-set heads, wide-set eyes, I wonder if they're bred for tracking. There are some dragons we still haven't seen yet. The three hatchlings aren't even mentioned in Season 1 and I suspect they want to SHOW them hatching on-screen in Season 2: Shrykos, Morghul, Stormcloud (when Daemon lists off all the dragons, rather than mention hatchlings, he includes "and I have a score of dragon eggs in the incubators waiting to hatch" - so I think his son Aegon III will get Stormcloud in Season 2). But they don't NEED to "differentiate" the hatchling dragons that much; just as Vhagar is differentiated by her old age (relative to the "Drogon, a war dragon in his prime" template) these will be differentiated by being hatchlings. That leaves: Moondancer (Baela) Tessarion (Daeron) Silverwing (riderless, mate of Vermithor) 3 wild dragons (Sheepstealer, Grey Ghost, and the Cannibal) As I said, the recent book confirmed that Tyraxes is the same breed as his brothers. Interestingly it did also mention that Silverwing is "slender" compared to Vermithor, so even though she's roughly the same age she doesn't look nearly as weathered by age but remains beautiful (the haggard look is due to size not age; Dreamfyre is actually a little older than both Vermithor and Silverwing, but also described as "slender" so she held up well). So there's basically six remaining dragons that they haven't established the "breed" for yet, nor have they explained exactly what the "wolf-shaped skull" breed is for. ***The book reveals that Moondancer was supposed to briefly appear on-screen late in Season 1, apparently cut at the last minute much as Baela's scene with Rhaenys got deleted, and as a result of this miscommunication the book let slip a description of Moondancer: described as an interesting design that DOES NOT match the standard Drogon template, but said to be "punk rock" with a big mohawk frill and intricate patterning in her green scales (could still be a variation on the "destrier-dragon"/T-Rex head template).
  20. I'm working on a summary video of everything in the making-of book that came out a few days ago, but my bad cough returned and I lost my voice again. So here's an ongoing list that will be updated with direct quotes. This is just going off my notes. Overview This isn't a very good behind the scenes book, even relative to other ones they put out for Game of Thrones. You can tell they padded out the length; needless full page high resolution promo screenshots from the episodes themselves, needlessly long summaries of episode plots (more than would be needed to give context). -->You get the feeling that they started out wanting to do a comprehensive "interview book", but then a directive got handed down to make it "accessible to a general audience" and more of a "coffee table book" so they gutted more of the detailed content. Keep in mind that they didn't know that HotD would be a hit, so it seems they rushed to get this book out at the last minute: it was only announced on October 12, for a digital release that actually came on December 13 (I was unaware of that) - and the physical hardcover came out January 31st. So it feels like a rush job. Nonetheless there is at least some useful information in it. Most frustrating is that the concept art is of very low quality: it only shows the FINAL versions of the concept art, when they entire point is to show the progression of ideas through stages to that final form. Case in point, the Vhagar concept art which spreads across two pages is just of the FINAL version - when this past week, the concept artist released over his own Instagram one of the EARLY designs when Vhagar still had horns (before they got the idea that they snapped off with old age). This is gravely disappointing. Design Information - from the set designers, costumers, etc. Almost no new dragon information is given that wasn't already released in other public interviews. It repeats stuff about Vhagar, Caraxes, and Syrax we already knew. NOTHING about the three dragon "breeds" they developed. HOWEVER, one interesting tidbit is that Moondancer was supposed to briefly appear on screen late in Season 1, but like Baela's deleted scene that was screened in December, it was cut for time; due to this miscommunication, it actually gives a paragraph long description of what Moondancer looks like: it's one of the more interesting designs, away from the "Drogon" template like Seasmoke; she's small but described as "punk rock", with a mohawk-like frill, and her green scales have a very intricate pattern to them. The book only gives very brief quotes from the costume designer, nothing we didn't know already, but somewhat better info from Jim Clay's set design team (much of which was already in other interviews, but still nice). Both sets of interviews didn't go into too much detail about historical styles that they drew influence from, but instead focused on the more easy to understand quickly *color schemes* and their progression across the season (something a coffee table book can easily and quickly convey). I.e. Alience starts in innocent teal, then after she marries Viserys switches to Targaryen red, then in episode 5 dramatically switches to Hightower green. Rhaenyra actually dresses in purples and burgundies a bit more than Targaryen red, to show how she's kind of an outsider in the family who doesn't fit her assigned role. More info about the ROOM color schemes, how Viserys's chambers are a bit more gold and black to make it more regal and set it apart. Architectural styles: they already said this in other interviews but restated a bit differently here - the main styles they came up with were Valyria (including Dragonstone, an old Valyrian fortress), the Red Keep, the Dragonpit, and High Tide. But also our first info on the design ideas that went into Storm's End (even though it was a purely digital set). Valyria had a "Brutalist" architectural style, as Jim Clay extrapolated from Dragonstone. That is, big monolithic structures with large blocky geometric shapes, not hiding that they're made of stone. You see this with Dragonstone, also in Viserys's model of what the larger capital city of Valyria looked like, and even the Dragonpit. The Red Keep has a more "Mediterranean" style, I guess to match the Dubrovnik sets of early seasons plus now Spain. Described it as bits of Spain and Morocco, etc., but Mediterranean with a dash of "India" here and there. This refers to the stone structure itself, though, a holdover from the Conquest era - during Viserys's time it got "decadent" and they have all the erotic tapestries. I wonder why they had the Dragonpit be Valyria-style when the Red Keep is not, even though they were both built around the same time (maybe because Aegon I started the Red Keep and they used local Westeros artisans, but after Maegor had them all killed he brought in masons from the Free Cities to finish the Dragonpit, and it was Maegor who ordered the Dragonpit). They vaguely imply that between the "Brutalist" style of Valyria and the more "decadent" but "Medieval" look of Viserys's reign, the first century of Targaryen rule from the Conquest through Jaehaerys's time looked "Byzantine". Rhaenyra's investiture gown in episode 1 is said to have been used for generations, and have a Byzantine look because it's an older style; the garden party scenes in episode 4 in the godwood have Byzantine style mosaics. High Tide looks very "Byzantine", possibly because Corlys is older - the idea behind High Tide is that most castles were built incrementally, i.e. Winterfell, but Corlys was so wealthy he could design and build a new castle from scratch with money as no object, and so more elaborate things like a big spiral staircase in the main hall. Storm's End: this is new info from this book. The design influence is actually *ancient Persian temples*. The idea being that Storm's End is this ancient relic from the Age of Heroes, built by an ancient civilization possibly at the same time the Wall was built, and many openly question how the First Men could even have built it when they never built large castles like this (and what castles they did have were more primitive and squared, not rounded to deflect projectiles). So unlike other castles that might be in the contemporary Stormlands, Storm's End just looks....different. It's this mysterious holdover from whatever civilization built it. Production: They downplayed to us just how badly the pandemic affected production, but they rose to the occasion. And now they admit it. In contrast with Game of Thrones, where they insisted that D&D were intuitive geniuses who did the whole thing with no training, when they were A - largely figureheads and B - actually had a lot of basic behind the scenes problems due to their inexperience. The Red Keep set wasn't even finished until JULY of 2021! As Condal explains, the lockdowns didn't just affect construction, but the price of construction MATERIALS skyrocketed; things like timber. Supply chain problems. So the reason the first spy photos we got last week of April to May of 2021 were of the Driftmark scenes is because *it was a location shoot that didn't require the Red Keep*. The book has chapters on all 10 episodes - it actually puts the "episode 7 Driftmark" chapter FIRST, out of order, to emphasize that it was the first episode filmed and out of sequence. Then they just went on a three week break in June (which they'd always planned) while waiting for the Red Keep set to be finished in July. This probably also explains the switch between episodes 2 and 7; they TOLD us that originally Sapochnik was going to direct episode 2 and Yaitanes would do episode 7, but switched due to "location availability" in Cornwall. I suspect this was a half-truth: that they rushed Sapochnik to film episode 7 first out of order, which was originally Yaitanes', so then they had to trade Yaitanes episode 7. Not that this is a problem. This is the story of professional career filmmakers who worked around problems caused by a pandemic. Miguel Sapochnik actually gives a full explanation of how the Cinematography is officially different in House of the Dragon: in the Inside the Episode videos he briefly remarked that they wanted to "bridge" the audience from the old GoT look to the HotD look it will have for the rest of the show, thus "Season 1A" is closer to Game of Thrones, but then after the ten year time skip, "Season 1B" starts having very different cinematography. Unfortunately, the brief clip in that video didn't actually explain what that difference WAS, but here Sapochnik gives his full description. This alone makes the book worth the price of purchase, it's a major question I had for some time. They filmed in long takes more often than trying to micromanage the actors in short clips. Case in point, the entire "Green Council" scene in episode 9 was filmed as one take, 15 minutes long, like a stage play. They filmed it four times. The large wake scene in episode 7 was filmed the same way. Because SAPOCHNIK, a director, was co-showrunner now, he understood that the best way to do this was to set up a LOT of alternate cameras, with "coverage" on everyone, and then afterward, edit together the best shots. D&D had no idea how a filming set works, so we have these nightmare reports how they'd make actors re-do short takes from specific scenes over and over again, trying to get the PERFECT smile or the PERFECT brooding face, to the point the actors were complaining how exhausting and unusual it was. They did the exact opposite to Larry Strong that GoT did to Littlefinger. As you know, even *GRRM HIMSELF* pointed out that the whole point of book-Littlefinger is he has a magnetic personality - like a real life sociopath, many of whom have charming and magnetic personalities (having no sense of shame, they're very good actors). The TV show changed this to...."the Snidley Whiplash routine", the moustache-twirling villain. They just plain liked that Aiden Gillen, the actor, could play "creepy", so they rewrote to character to...in their minds..."show off the actor" (I don't think even Gillen liked this). In COMPLETE contrast, as originally written on the page, Larry Strong was actually CREEPY....BUT they worked out with the actor that it was far more unsettling when he's being entirely pleasant and nice, that "dissonant serenity" as he's describing to Alicent how he killed his own father and brother. Sounds friendly and reasonable. THIS is far more unsettling! They GET it! Quotes pointing out that they use prop horses and quick edits when people get thrown from horses, they didn't try to do stunts with actual horses (D&D foolishly assumed you can do dangerous stunts with live horses, even when the directors and horse wrangler bluntly and repeatedly told them this was impossible) Sara Hess had the final revision on all Rhaenyra & Alicent dialogue. As they say, if their leads are both female, they should have their highest ranking female writer have final revision on tweaking their dialogue in every script, even the ones she didn't primarily make herself (dear god, a collaborative "writers' room" where they trade scripts to do revisions on them? Women writing women?) - A real reversal from the days of "You want a good girl, but you need the bad..." ---- Also for those who complain about that Sara Hess had the idea for Rhaenys to have a shot at the Green leadership in episode 9 but refrain from killing them (as she says in episode 10 "because it's not my war to fight" yet)...if you like Rhaenyra and Alicent dialogue, she did most of that. She had final say. Yeah I don't think the Rhaenys/Meleys scene in episode 9 worked, not bad on paper, but it needed more setup scenes to explain its context (which episode 10 belatedly did), but as Condal himself pointed out, ALL the other writers including him agreed to it, he himself approved of it. All this backlash to Hess because she said "Daemon isn't really a heroic character" in an interview around the same time (he isn't, he's grey, that's the point). The original version of the Stepstones battle was slightly different. Just little things here and there. Originally the Crabfeeder was this flippant pirate who casually sliced and ate a mango while men were eaten by crabs in front of him, but Yaitanes came up with the idea that "he's this scary greyscale-affected guy who doesn't speak, a horror movie villain like Leatherface") - originally they wanted to film the battle itself on the beaches of Cornwall, but tides made this impossible to keep consistent; they then considered filming at the Derbyshire quarry in northern England where they filmed the Dragonpit; finally they just filmed it on the Leavesden backlot, BUT a benefit of doing it "in house" is they could use more practical fire effects; Rowley Irlam explains that when they shifted to Leavesden they added in that when Seasmoke takes out the Triarchy archers, they had actual stuntmen set on fire with practical effects and jumping off a cliff (they COULD NOT do that on-location, but in the controlled conditions of the studio they could). Caraxes was also more prominent in the final battle (riderless but knowing to attack Daemon's enemies). Different shots of Daemon charging back into battle. Odds & Ends: They confirm on the first page that Rhaenyra's mother dies in the year 112 AC. We already independently worked this out on fan wikis - the way they aged up the characters and numbers they mention are internally consistent, 9 years after Jaehaerys died in 103 AC is 112 AC. The question is...this book was written so late, was this info straight from the writers? OR, did the book author simply copy the wiki article I wrote the first week of September? (shrug) either way the numbers they gave are internally consistent. 20 years pass since Rhaenyra is made heir, so the Dance begins in the year 132 AC instead of 129 AC like the books (much like Daenerys in GoT, the calendar year basically got shifted a bit due to the need to age up the younger characters). Matt Smith was hand-picked to be Daemon, without audition, due to his role on The Crown. Always first choice. Then Paddy Considine was hand-picked to be Viserys, without audition. Everyone else auditioned. It mentions in passing that Alicent's mother died *of a long illness*, not childbirth as I assumed. Emily Carey said she worked out a background for her mother because there's nothing in the books. Unclear if this came from her or the book author is making this up. The grips on Blackfyre and Dark Sister are supposed to be made of *dragon leather* - that is, the skin between the thicker scales. To give this odd texture, the real props actually use ostrich leather. Repeatedly emphasize that they had a female director on set during the sex scenes in episode 4 and had a professional "intimacy coordinator" on set (unlike the problematic stuff in GoT, though intimacy coordinators weren't a common practice a decade ago when GoT was made) A lot of detail and research went into GRRM's much longed-for hunting scene in episode 3 - a nice detail is that because real hunting dogs were expensive to train, you wanted to keep them alive: they have spiked collars so a wolf can't bite their throat out. We've seen the trope of "dog with a spiked collar before" but I never knew why before. A few bits on deleted scenes and alternate shots, though we knew of most already. A nice two page spread with photo on Criston Cole's investiture into the Kingsguard scene (which we'd already heard of). I'm adding them to the list...
  21. Ah, good, they posted the whole thing to Twitter, at least. No edits:
  22. Strange... HBO made a new behind the scenes video with GRRM, going over a map of where the Stepstones are and their strategic importance...but only loaded it to Instagram, cut up into smaller videos to fit in the "stories" feed: https://www.instagram.com/stories/houseofthedragonhbo/2921614176173329419/?hl=en They're late loading it to Youtube.
  23. If there's one man who could take out a whole army like Lancelot at a wedding...or Richard the Lionheart at Acre...it's Daemon F-ing Targaryen, the Rogue Prince! Oh I'd follow him to hell and back, I would!
  24. @Ran Hey is "Ciera Lannister" supposed to be mother of Jason & Tyland, and wife of Tymond?
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