Warning: This article contains spoilers for House of the Dragon.
HBO’s latest hit series House of the Dragon has had a TON of time jumps in its inaugural season. Unlike its predecessor, Game of Thrones, House of the Dragon tells a story that needs over 30 years of context to fully understand. While both shows tell their story in primarily chronological order, Game of Thrones goes at a much slower, more traditional pace compared to House of the Dragon, which skips large swathes of uneventful time periods multiple times in the season.
The show has already become synonymous with time jumps, but is this reputation unearned? As the show’s season finale just aired, viewers want to know if the upcoming second season will use the time jumps the show has become famous for in its first season.
How many time jumps were in House of the Dragon?
The show’s first episode ends with King Viserys’ younger brother Daemon losing his status as heir to the throne after his comments on the King’s late son, who tragically dies just hours after a difficult birth that leaves the King a widower. King Viserys then names his daughter Rhaenyra heir and the King temporarily banishes his brother. The second episode skips ahead about six months, where a relationship between Rhaenyra’s childhood friend, and daughter of the Hand of the King, Alicent Hightower and King Viserys has formed mostly off-screen. The two eventually marry before another time skip in episode 3.
Episode 3 starts about three years after the marriage, and Alicent and the King have a toddler and another baby on the way. We don’t see another notable time skip until Rhaenyra marries Laenor Valeryon, and in episode 6, we see our largest time jump: a whole ten years has passed. The giant time jump sees some new faces as a lot of the characters are portrayed by new actors since their characters have aged significantly in the time between episodes.
Our final time jump in the season happens in episode 8. The episode happens about six years after the events in the previous episode and the children from just a couple episodes prior have all become young adults during the jump. The season finale takes place in the same time period as these events so this was the last time jump in season one.
Will season two have more time jumps?
While season one’s time jumps were necessary, as the show needed to give us decades of context for the upcoming Dance of Dragons, many viewers criticized the time jumps and found the frequent actor changes confusing. The second season of House of the Dragon will likely take place over a period of three years, as the Targaryen Civil War lasts from 129 to 131 AC. As this is the big event the show has been leading up to over the first season, we’re thinking that the show will want to take its time telling the story of the Dance of Dragons so viewers can enjoy the payoff of the time jumps. Only time will tell, but it’s unlikely season two will have as many critical time jumps, if any at all.