The first season of House of the Dragon has stuck fairly close to the roadmap laid out in George R.R. Martin's Fire & Blood, but the series has also taken a few opportunities to make changes for itself. The situation with Laenor remains the biggest change from the text, as the show opted to keep him alive in a plot to fake his death, rather than kill him. That said, there have been a lot of small changes throughout the season, especially when it pertains to the various feelings and motivations of characters.
Aemond didn't mean for things to play out the way they did at Storm's End, even though the book told a different story. The version of Alicent on House of the Dragon put her son on the Iron Throne because she truly thought it was the wish of her dying husband. These small changes are numerous, and they will continue into the second season and beyond.
According to showrunner Ryan Condal, this all has to do with the nature of Fire & Blood itself. The book is presented as a historical text, written by a Maester who gathered information on these events from different sources. So nothing presented in the book is a complete fact, as much as it is reports from people who may have witnessed the events and have their own agendas.
"What we're fascinated with, on a meta narrative level with this story, is showing how messy and unreliable history is," Condal told Variety. "I mean, this is a book written by one author with an agenda trying to filter through the accounts of three other authors, all with their own agendas. And were expected to take the one true history out of this book? No. The thing that George is laughing at on the side is how anybody can read Fire & Blood and think that this is the one true official account of anything. It's an expression of this story. There are things that happen in it that are very well documented and are real, and there are other things where there are huge gaps and we don't know quite why this happened or who quite who this character was."
"Our story is trying to apply the whys, and the nuances to it," he continued. "So I think there are things that are can be perceived as accidental are not quite as intended in real history, and that will happen in the show. But there's plenty of instances through Season 1 where that thing happened exactly as was intended, and then you see the results."
House of the Dragon is telling its own story, while using what we think we know about history against us. This means that we're likely in for an exciting and unpredictable series ahead.0comments