What you need to know about House of the Dragon season 2

Strap yourself in for more swords, scales and blood-thirsty betrayals

Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2
Matt Smith as Prince Daemon Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2. (Sky/HBO)

A lot happened in House of the Dragon season one but the war for the Iron Throne is far from over and season two is well and truly on the way.

After the storming success of this first Game of Thrones spin-off series, Warner Bros. Discovery was quick to give the green light to another adaptation of George R.R Martin’s works. However, before A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms: The Hedge Knight has time to arrive, audiences will be treated to another season of House of the Dragon, which is currently in production.

What else do we know about this return to Westeros? Here’s all the key information we currently have about House of the Dragon season two thus far — but reader beware: series one spoilers lurk from here on out.

You’ve been warned!

Emma D’Arcy as Princess / Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2
The first episode of the new season will be released on 16 June. (Sky/HBO)

Season two of House of the Dragon will debut on Sunday, 16 June. The show will air on Sky Atlantic and NOW in the UK, and on HBO and Max in the US.

The season will only consist of eight episodes, making it two episodes shorter than the first outing.

Show director Claire Kilner told The Hollywood Reporter: “There are eight wonderful episodes with so much happening in every episode, and we have trouble, at times, bringing them down to one hour.

“Ryan’s [Condall, showrunner] decision was to give it a good opening and a good ending, and they’re jam-packed with emotional and visually exciting events.”

After the first episode of the Game of Thrones spin-off proved to be a hit with audiences, a second slew of episodes was officially ordered just five days afterwards — but filming didn’t start until April 2023.

Filming took place Warner Bros. Leavesden Studios near London, and in Cáceres, Spain, and wrapped up in September 2023.

Rhys Ifans and Olivia Cooke in House of the Dragon season 2
Reviews have arrived for House of the Dragon season 2. (Sky/HBO)

With its return as imminent as a dragon attack, reviews for House of the Dragon season 2 have started to swoop in and so far, they’re all glowing in their appreciation for this Game of Thrones spin-off.

Our own write-up called the series a “fiery triumph,” adding that this is where “the real Dance of Dragons begins.” Over on The Telegraph, they suggested that the return of HBO’s hit series rivals anything you’re likely to find in cinemas, saying its “pace is relentless.”

The Evening Standard pointed out how season 2 contains much more fighting than its predecessor while The Wrap labelled it “utterly compelling and expertly crafted television.”

Read full reviews below:

Yahoo Entertainment: The Dance of Dragons truly begins in fiery triumph (5-min read)

The Telegraph: A soaring, roaring blockbuster to rival anything in the cinema (3-min read)

Evening Standard: A roaring, blazing return to the world of Game of Thrones (3-min read)

The Wrap: War Makes the ‘Game of Thrones’ Prequel Even Better (5-min read)

It’s time to choose sides.

Not one but two brand new House of the Dragon season 2 trailers dropped in March 2024, each detailing an upcoming war from opposing sides.

In the black trailer, we glimpsed Queen Rhaenyra Targaryenpreparing for battle...

Meanwhile, the green trailer brought us back together with Alicent Hightower as she prepares to walk a path of violence.

HBO and Sky released the first trailer for House of the Dragon season 2 in December 2023, and it seems all-out war is on the horizon.

Watch it below.

Another trailer for the series was revealed in May ahead of the show’s June premiere, which teased the battle between the Greens and the Blacks in even more detail.

Elliot Grihault and Emma D’Arcy in House of the Dragon season 1
The first season premiered in August 2022. (HBO/Sky)

House of the Dragon’s first season saw a slowly disintegrating King Viserys (Paddy Considine) try his best to keep his warring family together, all while his wayward daughter Rhaenyra (Emma D’Arcy) and brother Daemon (Matt Smith) conspired to split up his house with a sly and incestuous plan.

Meanwhile, tensions grew between Rhaenyra and her childhood friend and Queen to King Viserys, Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke) and with whispering parties each trying to sway the situation in their own favour, things quickly came to a head following Viserys' ultimate death.

The final moments of the show’s first series saw Rhaenyra’s son Lucerys and his young dragon chomped out of the sky by the sadistic Aemond Targaryen (Ewan Mitchell) and whether by intention or by accident, its repercussions are sure to be drastic.

Ewan Mitchell as Aemond Targaryen in House of the Dragon season 2
Ewan Mitchell plays the sadistic Aemond Targaryen. (Sky/HBO)

"I think the way that it's going, is it's leading to civil war," Graham McTavish aka Ser Harrold Westerling told Metro last year, teasing what the future of the show has in store.

"Civil war is that great thing that countries indulge in when they haven't got anybody else to go and fight, they seem to just like fighting amongst themselves just to keep their hand in, and this is no different.

“They've had peace for a long, long time, and suddenly they are quite literally destroying the kingdom from within and that's what makes it so interesting, so I would expect more of that – more division, more taking sides."

Time will tell just what chaos House of The Dragon season two has up its sleeve.

Olivia Cooke as Alicent Hightower in House of the Dragon season 2
British star Olivia Cooke is back as Alicent Hightower. (Sky/HBO)

Fans of the show’s first outing will be pleased to see many of their favourite characters returning for round two. This includes Smith’s Prince Daemon Targaryen and D’Arcy’s Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen, Cooke’s Queen Alicent Hightower, Eve Best’s Princess Rhaenys Targaryen and Rhys Iffans’ Ser Otto Hightower.

Steve Toussaint’s Lord Corlys Velaryon, Fabien Frankel’s Ser Criston Cole, Mitchell’s Prince Aemond Targaryen, Tom Glynn-Carney’s King Aegon II Targaryen and Sonoya Mizuno’s Mysaria will also return.

Plus, series one regulars Bethany Antonia, Harry Collett, Phia Saban, Jefferson Hall, Phoebe Campbell and Matthew Needham have also been confirmed to make an appearance.

Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys Velaryon in House of the Dragon season 2
Steve Toussaint reprises his role as Lord Corlys Velaryon. (Sky/HBO)

Meanwhile, the show welcomes newcomers Freddie Fox as Ser Gwayne Hightower, Gayle Rankin as Alys Rivers, Simon Russell Beale as Ser Simon Strong and Abubakar Salim as Alyn of Hull.

Due to the events of last season, Considine’s King Viserys is not expected to pop-up throughout the season's eight episodes unless creators have a sneaky flashback planned.

House of the Dragon season 2 will be released on Sunday, 16 June