outdid George RR Martin source material even as increasingly expensive dragons filled our story, narrative Also how wobbly. Screen.
Nonetheless – with goodwill. And Martin, who denied GoT
later episodes, actively participated in House of the Dragon – adapted from his prequel novel Fire and Blood.
A group of talented British actors (the business cards for both series) including Paddy Considine, Matt Smith and Rhys Ifans, all three of whom made a name for themselves in the first episode of the show deep impression. (The series premiered Sunday night.) New millions have been spent (according to Variety
, some $ million episodes) with animated tang The history of the Lean family, the weak and decadent leaders of a clan who would fly dragons, dye their hair icy blond, and bicker over succession plans for the Iron Throne.
The shadow of the successor? I hope.
House of the Dragon
is totally watchable, but at least in early episodes (critics get to see six episodes; I watched four episodes) and it struck me as being very tentative and frustratingly narrow in scope. The first episode was especially disappointing – the one-hour CGI spectacle makes money even with hedged bets. The audience’s expectations were met — especially when it came to extreme violence — but the time was rather uninteresting. We are introduced to Viserys Targaryen (Considine), a beta king who is convinced that his queen (Sian Brook) has a long-awaited male heir. We also meet his daughter Rhaenyra Targaryen, played in her younger days by newcomer Milly Alcock, who pouted and doesn’t talk much and usually reminds you of How strong is Emilia Clarke’s first impression as Daenerys Targaryen (Alcock just keeps getting better as the show progresses). Landscapes are clearly rendered and brightly lit. The first season of Game of Thrones
looked filthy – dark inside, dark everywhere.
Dragon House looks flawless by comparison, a spec house in a fantasy world.
Thank God for Matt Smith. As the rude Daemon Targaryen, Viserys’ brother, he has rock star swagger, really scary blonde hair, and kicks his life to the first episode whenever he shows up. As he and Hand of the King Otto Hightower (Evans) exchanged glaring barbs at the royal council table, I felt ancient dark magic stirring. A jousting match is also fun, until the knights swap head shots and the skulls pop like pumpkins.
It’s a shame to see this series work so hard meet expectations. There’s a performance anxiety about the show — the intention to be all it takes to justify the money spent. The results feel carefully calculated. But in the second episode, the sequence involving Alcock and Smith — and a stolen dragon egg — had a grandiose feel to it, and I became more and more interested in the series. Dragon House needs patience, but the dog days of summer are slow and I’m in it. Kindness runs deep.