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‘House of the Dragon’ Season 2: How to watch tonight, what to know, Season 1 recap and more

No war so bloody as a war between dragons…

Matt Smith and Emma D'arcy return in Season 2 of 'House of the Dragon.' (Ollie Upton/HBO)
Matt Smith and Emma D'arcy return in Season 2 of 'House of the Dragon.' (Ollie Upton/HBO)

House of the Dragon fans, it’s time to prepare for war as Season 2 of the Game of thrones prequel series finally premieres. Starring Emma D’arcy as Rhaenyra Targaryen, Matt Smith as her husband/uncle and Olivia Cooke as her ex-best friend and current rival matriarch, House of the Dragon last left us on the precipice of war. You’ve had two years to decide who you will bend the knee to, so what will it be, Team Black or Team Green? Who is the Rightful Heir who shall sit the Iron Throne? Whichever side you’ve pledged your allegiance to, it’s nearly time to tune into the House of the Dragon Season 2 premiere. Are you ready? Here’s everything you need to know about how to watch the series, including where to stream for free, a recap of Season 1 and more.

The second season of House of the Dragon premieres this Sunday, July 16.

House of the Dragon airs on HBO and streams on HBO’s Max.

House of the Dragon episodes will air and stream simultaneously on HBO and Max Sundays at 9 p.m. ET starting this Sunday, July 16.

Max will be the streaming home of House of the Dragon. You can also catch Oscar-winning movies, buzzy TV series like The White Lotus, true crime docs like The Jinx and Quiet on Set, and even some sports, like select NBA games on the platform. A Max subscription starts at $10/month for ad-supported access.

$9.99/month at Max

Looking for a free trial of HBO’s Max so you can watch House of the Dragon free? While the HBO streaming platform does not offer a free trial period, you can still try the platform out for free by signing up for it through another streaming service, like with a live TV streaming package such as DirecTV Stream. Right now, when you sign up for DirecTV Stream, you can get 3 months free of HBO’s Max (plus Paramount+, Starz, and Cinemax) — and that’s after the free trial period is over.

Try free

That being said, a DirecTV subscription is a lot pricier than a basic Max subscription, so unless you’re just in the market for a free trial, we recommend signing up for Max directly.

The House of the Dragon cast includes Matt Smith, Emma D’Arcy, Olivia Cooke, Rhys Ifans, Steve Toussaint, Eve Best, Fabien Frankel, Matthew Needham, Sonoya Mizuno, Tom Glynn-Carney, Ewan Mitchell, Harry Collett, Bethany Antonia, Phoebe Campbell, Phia Saban Jefferson Hall, Abubakar Salim, Gayle Rankin, Freddie Fox, Simon Russell Beale, Clinton Liberty, Jamie Kenna, Kieran Bew, Tom Bennett, Tom Taylor and Vincent Regan.

House of the Dragon Season 2 will be shorter than Season 1, unfortunately, with only eight episodes — while Season 1 had ten. The premiere airs this Sunday, June 16. The Season 2 finale will air on August 4, 2024.

HOTD fans, rejoice! House of the Dragon Season 3 has already been announced. So while we may be losing two episodes this season, we’ve gained the promise of more action to come.

In addition to House of the Dragon Season 3, HBO is working on a second Game of Thrones prequel series based on George R.R. Martin’s books, Tales of Dunk and Egg. There is also a pilot script in the works for a third Game of Thrones spinoff called Ten Thousand Ships.

It’s certainly been a minute since House of the Dragon conquered our screens, so in case you need a refresher: House of the Dragon Season 1 starts 200 years before the events of Game of Thrones. The show follows Princess Rhaenyra Targaryen, daughter of the ailing King Viserys and the first female heir to the Iron Throne. While we don’t want to get too far into spoiler territory here, let’s just say there are a few bumps on the road to the Throne’s succession.

Headed into Season 2, Rhaenyra’s family is divided into Team Black vs. Team Green. And both sides seem ready to spill Targaryen blood. In case you need more, here’s a spoiler-ridden House of the Dragon recap for you, or you can check out HBO's official recap below:

You can catch up on House of the Dragon Season 1 on Max.