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House of the Dragon’s Season 2 Premiere is Slow-Moving, But Series Promises to Pick Up Speed

Review House of the Dragon s Season 2 Premiere is Slow Moving
Matt Smith. Theo Whitman/HBO

The season 2 premiere of House of the Dragon earns 2.5 stars (out of 4) from Us

War is imminent — and emotions are at an all-time high — as the Game of Thrones prequel’s return kicks off at the Wall, where Prince Jacaerys Velaryon (Harry Collett) receives word from Dragonstone that his brother Lucerys has died.

Back in King’s Landing, Prince Aemond Targaryen (Ewan Mitchell) remains in a precarious position and is faced with a difficult choice after watching on helplessly as Vhagar killed the young prince in the season 1 finale.

During the series’ June 3 premiere party at NYC’s Hammerstein Ballroom, Mitchell, 27, looked back on that shocking scene with Us. “At the end of season 1, you see that moment of regret on his face,” he shared. “What I love is that it’s just a moment that the audience and him share — no one else witnessed that. It’s interesting.”

Review House of the Dragon s Season 2 Premiere is Slow Moving
Olivia Cooke. Theo Whitman/HBO

Now, “[Aemond] can either admit it was a moment of weakness that was unintentional and be at the mercy of Rhaenyra,” he continued, “or he can claim the kill and become the most wanted man in the realm.”

Meanwhile, it’s business as usual for Dowager Queen Alicent Hightower (Olivia Cooke) and an ill-suited King Aegon II Targaryen (Tom Glynn-Carney), who’s proud to sit on the Iron Throne but still has a lot to learn when it comes to making important decisions — much to Ser Otto Hightower’s (Rhys Ifans) chagrin.

Related: Wigs Off! What the 'House of the Dragon' Cast Looks Like Off Screen

After disappearing to grieve, Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen (Emma D’Arcy) returns and demands justice for the loss of Lucerys. Out of loyalty and love, Prince Daemon Targaryen (Matt Smith) takes matters into his own hands to find Aemond — but things go terribly awry, setting off a chain of events that will have a ripple effect for years to come.

 

Whether you pledged your allegiance to Team Black or Team Green in 2022, it’s worth reacquainting yourself with the characters and their complex storylines before diving into season 2. The premiere may be slow-moving, but the action eventually ramps up — and there will be blood.

Review House of the Dragon s Season 2 Premiere is Slow Moving
Harry Collett, Emma D’Arcy, Oscar Eskinazi. Theo Whitman/HBO

Season 2 of House of the Dragon premieres Sunday, June 16 at 9 P.M. ET on HBO

With reporting by Andrew Nodell

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