Did House of the Dragon Break a Big Spinoff Rule With Its Opening Theme?

House of the Dragon fans have been eagerly awaiting the arrival of the series’ title sequence and theme after the season premiered sans the epic opening that the show’s predecessor was known for. According to showrunners Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik, the goals for the opening moments of House of the Dragon’s first episode were to set up the time period and the era of Westeros we are diving into. 

The pair told CNET that after the Harrenhal sequence where we see Viserys Targaryen named the successor to King Jaehaerys, “[i]t seemed important that once the curtain went up, so to speak, having a title sequence felt like an indulgence. We wanted to get on and tell the story.”

This is why we only see a brief golden dragon symbol on a black background as the score transitions and the story moves forward nine years into Viserys’ reign. Episode 2 “The Rogue Prince,” however, returns to form with the debut of the opening title sequence for House of the Dragon.

The title sequence for House of the Dragon depicts the Targaryen family tree, starting with the doom of Valyria and Aegon the Conqueror. As the opening progresses, a deep red liquid flows between symbols that represent subsequent members of the Targaryen family. Since the Targaryen words are “Fire and Blood,” and so much of the series is focused on the importance of legacy, bloodlines, succession, and family ties, it’s not surprising that the opening shows literal blood flowing through its artwork. It also foreshadows the bloody civil war that will eventually lead to the downfall of the Targaryen dynasty.

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