House Of The Dragon Season 2 Makes Me Way More Upset About The Show’s Biggest Skipped Story


House of the Dragon season 2 is only making me more upset about the show skipping a massive storyline. Although House of the Dragon is based on Fire and Blood, the prequel to George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire book series, I am not blind to the fact that changes to the source material are necessary. Translating any book to TV or film is impossible to do with 100% fidelity, especially with a book as dense and narratively unreliable as Fire and Blood.

As such, I was not shocked to find that House of the Dragon’s book changes were plenty when watching season 1. Even House of the Dragon season 2 episode 2’s ending involving Otto Hightower is slightly altered, if only in terms of the order of events from Fire and Blood’s timeline. That said, this change is minor, yet House of the Dragon has made several in the major category. One instance of the latter involves an entirely skipped storyline that is crucial to fleshing out two characters, which House of the Dragon season 2 is making even more bitter.

Rhaenyra & Harwin’s Relationship Is House Of The Dragon’s Biggest Missing Story

Rhaenyra’s Connection To The Father Of Her Children Is Mostly Absent In House Of The Dragon

The skipped story in question surrounds Rhaenyra Targaryen and Harwin Strong. In the earlier episodes of House of the Dragon season 1, Rhaenyra and Harwin’s relationship was teased when the former was played by Milly Alcock, later replaced by Emma D’Arcy in House of the Dragon’s cast. Harwin, played by Ryan Corr, was a member of the City Watch and had several moments that hinted at his feelings for Rhaenyra. From allowing her to explore King’s Landing to dancing with her at a wedding and saving her from a hostile crowd, Harwin and Rhaenyra formed a close, albeit unspoken, bond.

These hints are a big reason as to why I was shocked at House of the Dragon season 1, episode 6’s 10-year time jump. Of course, I expected time jumps given that Fire and Blood’s story spans such a wide timeline. Nevertheless, those missing 10 years completely skipped over Harwin and Rhaenyra’s relationship. We were treated to the first teases of their romance before being thrown into the future where the duo has three kids, they care for each other, and Harwin is a good, if secret, father. Even more shockingly, the show killed Harwin Strong that very episode.


House Of The Dragon Season 2 Makes Harwin’s Missing Story Worse

The Hints Towards Harwin Would Be Better If His House Of The Dragon Story Was Shown

Harwin’s untimely death in House of the Dragon season 1 only made his lack of development even worse. I was upset that a character whose introduction was so compelling had so little story regarding his importance to Rhaenyra, the show’s main character. Now, this bitterness is only being made worse by House of the Dragon season 2. Not only are Harwin’s children playing major roles in the sophomore season, which alone makes his absence worse, but references to Harwin highlight his lack of story.

These references to Harwin only make his absence more difficult to take, as House of the Dragon did not show me any of these things about Harwin…

House of the Dragon season 2, episode 2 featured a scene between Jacaerys and Baela, the former Rhaenyra and Harwin’s oldest son. Jacaerys, or Jace, is shown reminiscing about his supposed father, Laenor Velaryon. Baela then asks about Harwin Strong leading Jace to say that Harwin was gentle and that he loved Jace, Lucerys, and Joffrey. These references to Harwin only make his absence more difficult to take, as House of the Dragon did not show me any of these things about Harwin, instead content only to tell me what such an important character was like.

These references to Harwin only highlight how little we saw of the character before his death. Similarly, they provide a stark contrast to Rhaenyra’s other relationships. Her connection to Daemon is strained at best, and Laenor’s sexual orientation saw his marriage to Rhaenyra be romantically lacking. As audience members, we are told that Harwin’s connection with Rhaenyra was genuine and full of love, a major difference from Daemon and Laenor. This is another reason why House of the Dragon skipping over Harwin Strong’s character arc pains me, despite the time jump’s necessity for the wider story.