Game of Thrones fans rejoice: the first official images from the prequel series House of the Dragon are here. HBO released the pictures on Wednesday, giving fans an up-close look at the Targaryens, Velaryons and other nobles that ruled Westeros with fire and blood 170 years ago. The new releases come after numerous leaks from the set of the new show.
HBO released three images from House of the Dragon on Wednesday — one of Emma D'Arcy and Matt Smith as Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen and Prince Daemon Targaryen, one of Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys "Sea Snake" Velaryon and one of Olivia Cooke and Rhys Ifans as Alicent Hightower and Otto Hightower. All three pictures were set by the ocean, with a sandy beach behind the Targaryens and a stony shore behind the others. The series is filming now in the U.K. and is currently slated for release sometime in 2022 on HBO.
The pictures seem to have been taken in the same scenes as some of the leaked photos circulating online so far. In their picture together, Rhaeynra and Daemon speak alone on an abandoned beach, both wearing finery that implies their court is not far away. Both sport the signature silver-blonde hair of their bloodline, though it is too hard to tell if either of them has the purple eyes that the books describe them as having. Rhaenyra's hair is piled in intricate braids much like the familiar look of Daenerys Targaryen (Emilia Clarke) in the main series, though without the meaningful connections to the Dothraki people.
Corlys is a bigger reveal for fans, depicted with long gray dreadlocks reaching almost to his navel. He was the crest of House Velaryon on his chest — a proud seahorse — and a long robe reaching past his knees. The famous sea captain looks right at home on the water here.
Finally, our first look at the Hightowers in this new series comes with all the pomp and regality we might expect. Otto wears the hand-shaped broach on his surcoat indicating that he is Hand of the King when the series begins. This also confirms that the new show will borrow some conventions from the main series — the broach was a concoction of the TV series, while in the books the Hand of the King typically wears a golden chain around his neck made to look like a string of interlocking hands.
These pictures come after a week of leaked photos taken by bystanders on the set, not the production crew itself. On social media, fans have seen distant views of some character and of set pieces, including a stone archway with the Velaryon crest carved into it. This implies that these scenes may take place on the isle of Driftmark, which is not far from Dragonstone.
House of the Dragon is filming now in the U.K. and is expected to premiere on HBO sometime in 2022. It is based on a portion of George R.R. Martin's fictional history book Fire and Blood, which is available here on Amazon in print, digital and audiobook formats.