House of the Dragon will tell the story of the infamous Targaryen civil war that nearly destroyed the legendary house: the Dance of the Dragons. However, that storyline alone won’t support a long-term series, which opens the door for an anthology focusing on different chapters of the Targaryen dynasty.
Game of Thrones followed a single storyline with numerous characters. However, House of the Dragon can instead devote itself to exploring the history of the Targaryens. As it turns out, the mighty house from Old Valyria has enough material to support multiple seasons.
10 Old Valyria
The fantastical and powerful nation of Valyria is long gone by the time Game of Thrones begins, but its legacy endures. Most people talk about it with genuine admiration, with many declaring no city or Kingdom will ever come close to Valyria’s grandeur.
A season focusing on Valyria could solve many lingering questions about the empire, including the reasons behind its eventual doom. It would also be unapologetically fantastical, featuring an endless parade of dragons and magic to spare. It would be among the most ambitious and expensive seasons in television history, but it would be worth every penny.
9 Aegon, The Conqueror
Arguably the most important Targaryen in history, Aegon the Conqueror’s shadow looms large in Westeros. Together with his sister-wives, Rhaenys and Visenya, Aegon united the Seven Kingdoms — six, actually — and ruled as their King for thirty-seven years.
House of the Dragon should’ve actually started with Aegon’s Conquest, and it’s bizarre it didn’t. His story is exciting, legendary, and compelling, considering the prophecy about the song of ice and fire. A season focusing on Aegon’s Conquest would allow fans to see the burning of Harrenhal and the Field of Fire and might even help solve some lingering mysteries, mainly Rhaenys’ actual fate.
8 Maegor, The Cruel
Maegor and Aerys II are the worst Kings the Seven Kingdoms ever had. They are among the most villainous Targaryen rulers, perpetrating acts so cruel and gruesome that they shocked the nobility and the smallfolk alike. However, while many attribute Aerys’ actions to his madness, Maegor was simply evil.
The second son of Aegon the Conqueror, Maegor was the third Targaryen King to sit on the Iron Throne. His tenure was bloody and violent; Maegor had six wives, two of whom he killed. Maegor completed the Red Keep, apparently ordering the construction of a dungeon specifically dedicated to torturing and killing every worker so that only he would know the Keep’s secrets.
7 The First Blackfyre Rebellion
The Iron Throne is the most coveted seat in A Song of Ice and Fire. Many claimants have declared open rebellion against the crown, including a series of pretenders under the banner of House Blackfyre. The conflict began when Aegon IV, the Unworthy, legitimized his bastard children, including Daemon I, the Black Dragon. Daemon was the first and most significant of the Blackfyre pretenders, funding House Blackfyre in honor of the legendary Targaryen sword he received upon his knighthood.
There were four Blackfyre rebellions, plus the War of the Ninepenny Kings. However, none was as significant as the first one. Daemon Blackfyre is among the most compelling characters in the series, and a season dedicated to his rise and fall would make for excellent television.
6 The War On Dorne
Game of Thrones did Dorne dirty with its divisive fifth season. However, Dorne is among the proudest and strongest kingdoms in Westeros, the only one that didn’t bend the knee to Aegon. Many Targaryen rulers tried to bring Dorne into the fold, but none succeeded.
The most notable conflict occurred under Daeron I’s short and bloody rule. The young King succeeded in subduing Dorne, taking fourteen Dornish noblemen as his prisoners. However, his conquest didn’t last, and Daeron died battling the Dornish while trying to recapture the Kingdom. The war was significant, with many sources claiming the conflict resulted in nearly sixty thousand men dying. A season focusing on this chapter would finally portray Dorne as the powerful nation it is.
5 The Unlikely Reign
Aegon V, known as Aegon the Unlikely, rose to the Iron Throne after a storm of accidents and coincidences that led to the deaths or abdications of everyone above him in the line of succession. Aegon spent most of his childhood squiring for Ser Duncan the Tall, and their journeys provide the basis for the Dunk and Egg stories.
His rule was long but trouble-filled. He faced the fourth Blackfyre rebellion and another rebellion caused by his eldest son’s marriage to the tragic Jenny of Oldstones. Aegon also dealt with one of the harshest winters in recent memory while trying to grant more rights to the smallfolk, an action that brought him open opposition from the nobility. Aegon V’s rule is as unlikely as his rise to power and would make for a politically-charged season.
4 The Tragedy At Summerhall
The Targaryens are possibly the most significant family in A Song of Ice and Fire. However, they had no shortage of tragedies throughout their history. The events at Summerhall, the Targaryen’s leisure residency, changed the family forever, arguably causing their collapse just as much as the Dance of the Dragons.
The tragedy occurred when King Aegon V reunited his entire family and most trusted advisors at Summerhall to witness what he believed would be the first hatching of dragons in a hundred years. The castle burned to the ground, killing everyone except a precious few. Those who survived refused to talk about the events, which supposedly involved sorcery and wildfire. The tragedy culminated with the birth of Rhaegar Targaryen, providing further proof that he was supposedly the Prince That Was Promised.
3 The Mad King
Aerys II, commonly known as the Mad King, is the last Targaryen ruler to sit on the Iron Throne. He was mercurial, cruel, and obsessed with fire; his turbulent life ended when Jaime Lannister killed him during the sack of King’s Landing.
Although Aerys’ rule is widely considered the main reason for the Targaryens’ loss of the Iron Throne, the truth dates back centuries. The dynasty had lost much of its power, although Aerys’ volatile rule accelerated the inevitable. An Aerys-centered season would inevitably devolve into Robert’s Rebellion, but it should also take time to explore the political issues that led to his downfall.
2 Rhaegar Targaryen
Prophecies are a crucial part of A Song of Ice and Fire, and few characters were as intrigued by them as Rhaegar Targaryen. Daenerys’ older brother became convinced he was The Prince That Was Promised during his childhood before changing his mind and deciding it was his first-born son, Aegon, who fulfilled the prophecy.
House of the Dragon could use Rhaegar to explore the many prophecies in Westeros, even if none were prominent in the fight against the White Walker. A season focused on Rhaegar would also clear the air about his relationship with Lyanna Stark and the events of the Tower of Joy, including Jon’s birth.
A Song of Ice and Fire has mysterious and duplicitous characters aplenty, but there’s arguably none as fascinating as Bloodraven. Born Brynden Rivers, he was the bastard son of King Aegon IV Targaryen and his mistress, Melissa Blackwood. Brynden served as Hand of the King for twenty-four years before being sent to the Wall by Aegon, the Unlikely. He then became Lord Commander of the Night’s Watch before disappearing beyond the Wall.
In the books, Brynden is the Three-Eyed Crow, living in a cave beyond the Wall and helping Brandon Stark in his greenseer training. Bloodraven is seemingly behind many of the saga’s major events, possibly engineering Jon’s birth via a series of machinations dating back to his time as Hand of the King. A season focusing on this elusive figure would go a long way in clarifying the lingering mysteries behind the song of ice and fire.