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How Daemon’s Dragon on “HOD” reflects his nature

by John Paul
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Mike Bell, the visual effects supervisor of “House of the Dragon,” elaborates on what the dragon symbolizes in terms of Daemon’s character. Rogue Prince, played by Doctor Who’s Matt Smith, has swiftly become one of the most beloved characters featured in the Game of Thrones prequel despite being exceptionally arrogant, heartless, and capable of cold-blooded murder. But that’s why George R.R. Martin loves Daemon so much. He’s layered and complicated, just like the rest of House of the Dragon. Daemon may be a charismatic, devoted, and courageous dragonrider on Caraxes, but he also has a nasty habit of acting out.

In an interview with Screen Rant, Mike Bell, responsible for animating the show’s bizarre monsters, explains how they were created and provides some new information about Daemon. Bell says Daemon’s dragon Caraxes stands out from the crowd due to his “serpent-like” neck. In addition, he draws attention to a shared trait between Daemon and Caraxes from the pilot episode. Have a look at what Bell wrote down below:

Our animation supervisor, Ross Burgess, was really keen on developing the flight cycles of these dragons, as well as the walk cycles and their attitudes, way before we even started working on the shots. The animation team started thinking about even the way they shake their head. Meleys does it the way a lioness would do it, while Caraxes is unique and different from the others. He’s much more serpent-like and slightly twitchy, a bit on edge. We take our cues from what came before, and both reptiles and birds always look at the horizon for threats. Lots of thought went into the way they move and the way they walked.

Miguel was always saying that Caraxes should not really look like he belongs on the ground, because of the shape. I’ve got a couple of racing dogs, like lurchers and greyhounds, and he sort of linked them to that. They’re amazing when they’re at full speed, but when they lie down, they look a bit awkward. They’re almost built for a specific thing. In episode one, there’s a moment where Daemon’s calming Caraxes in the cave, and it’s twisted and trying to fit into the cave, but he’s feeling like he doesn’t like to be confined. He wants to be out there flying, like Daemon.

It is fascinating to hear what the visual effects supervisor of House of the Dragon says about the show’s namesake dragons being modeled after their human riders. The show benefits greatly from the care that creator George R.R. Martin and the VFX crew put into the dragons. In the first place, the dragons in the fantasy world of Game of Thrones and its predecessor are represented with only two legs and wings, which is more anatomically realistic than depicting them with four legs.

In addition, each of the show’s 16 dragons has its own unique appearance and personality. Bell notes that they even start to take on characteristics of their riders. Caraxes, like his rider Dameon, longs for freedom, and he shares with his master a certain degree of erratic behavior and a propensity toward violence. Meleys, the dragon ridden by Rhaenys Targaryen (also known as the Queen Who Never Was), has horns that look like a crown and exudes a matriarchal air.

House of the Dragon season 1 introduced and developed the characteristics of almost a dozen dragons, in addition to its many human characters. The season finale even depicted Arrax, the dragon, and his rider, Lucerys, getting killed by Aemond Targaryen and the hideous Vhagar. As the war of succession heats up for season 2, more dragon battles are on the way for the audience to enjoy. Heavyweight fights are always fascinating to watch, but the Dance of the Dragons will ultimately lead to the extinction of dragons in Westeros for the next 200 years, so that the spectacle will be bittersweet at best.



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