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George R.R. Martin’s original House of the Dragon pilot was called ‘The Heir and The Spare”




The prequel to Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon, had a fantastic first season, with some even saying it was better than the original show’s first season. Fans and reviewers alike have complimented the costumes, scenery, settings, plot, and cinematography, although the show initially followed a different timeline, beginning with King Jaehaerys’ children.

George R. R. Martin’s initial plan for House of the Dragon

HBO had been working on Game of Thrones spinoffs for quite some time now, and House of the Dragon was the first. Martin initially had a different timeline in mind. He said in an interview with Penguin Random House:

A Conversation with George R R  Martin | A Celebration of the Targaryen Dynasty

“The other possibility we discussed — which was actually my favorite, but nobody liked it but me — had the series opening like 40 years earlier with the episode I would have called ‘The Heir and the Spare,’ in which Jaehaerys’s two sons, Aemon and Baelon, are alive. And we see the friendship, but also the rivalry, between the two sides of the great house.”

Another House of the Dragon pitch began after Aemma’s death

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Martin revealed that the writers had several “spirited discussions” regarding where to begin House of the Dragon. While one writer desired that the plot begin even later than the HBO drama did, with the death of King Viserys’ wife Aemma, another “wanted it to be even later than that, with Viserys dying,” an occurrence that does not occur until Season 1, Episode 8. After that, the program would fill in the spaces with “flashbacks or dialogue.”

Read Next: A deleted House of the Dragon scene had Rhaenyra bonding with baby Aegon


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Sayantan is a keen follower of everything pop culture; from films, shows, anime to video games and latest memes. He started writing professionally for Wiki of Thrones during the 2021 lockdown, and has been developing his writing and editing skills ever since. With a growing repertoire amassing renowned websites, Sayantan is your go to guy for all things Game of Thrones and House of the Dragon.

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