House of the Dragon's second season debuts to great fanfare ... Game of Thrones' prequel's sophomore slate includes eight episodes

WARNING: Spoilers for House of the Dragon ahead New episodes of the series air Sundays at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HBO READ MORE: Season two HOTD trailer depicts war over the Iron Throne 

House of the Dragon's second season debuted on HBO Sunday, as the first episode of the second season's eight-episode frame, titled A Son for a Son, hit the air.

The storyline of the second season starts at the end of the show's first season, in which Aemond (Ewan Mitchell) and his dragon Vhaegar slaughtered Lucerys (Elliot Grihault) - the son of Princess Rhaenyra (Eve Best) - and his dragon Arrax.

The deadly series of events ramp up the tension brewing between the Targaryens and Hightowers, eventually culminating in a civil war called The Dance of the Dragons.

The show's second season kicked off with a revised opening titles sequence that was noticeably different than the one broadcast in the show's first season.

The first season of House of the Dragon featured an animated opening that incorporated Old Valyria in a stone model, as it had been presided over by the late King Viserys Targaryen (Paddy Considine). It included red blood streaming through Valyria's streets, with symbolism alluding to the Targaryen leaders.

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Olivia Cooke, who plays Queen Alicent Hightower, was seen on House of the Dragon's second season, which debuted on HBO Sunday

Olivia Cooke, who plays Queen Alicent Hightower, was seen on House of the Dragon's second season, which debuted on HBO Sunday

Ewan Mitchell is pictured as Aemond Targaryen on House of the Dragon

Ewan Mitchell is pictured as Aemond Targaryen on House of the Dragon

House of the Dragon's second season debuted on HBO Sunday, as the first episode of the second season's eight-episode frame, titled A Son for a Son, hit the air.

House of the Dragon's second season debuted on HBO Sunday, as the first episode of the second season's eight-episode frame, titled A Son for a Son, hit the air.

Season two's opening focuses on a Bayeux Tapestry with references in the art to past events in the storyline.

The scene on the tapestry depicts bloodshed in Old Valyria, as well as Valyrians bonding to dragons. One sequence shows a man with a dagger in hand, as another man in knelt in front of a dragon while flanked in candles.

Viewers then saw an active volcano to signify the Doom of Valyria - an event in which the one-time Targaryen homeland saw people and dragons perish as every hill exploded in a fiery blaze.

Another sequence depicted Aegon the Conqueror on a quest to rule Westeros as he was flanked by sister-wives Visenya and Rhaenys as they rode dragons crossing the Narrow Sea.

Among the members of the ensemble cast slated to come back for the show's second season include Best, Matt Smith, who plays Prince Daemon Targaryen; Emma D'Arcy as Queen Rhaenyra Targaryen; Olivia Cooke, who plays Queen Alicent Hightower; Steve Toussaint as Lord Corlys 'The Sea Snake' Velaryon; and Rhys Ifans, who plays Ser Otto Hightower.

The latest in the franchise created by George R.R. Martin runs through August 4.

House of the Dragon begins airing new episodes Sunday at 9 p.m. ET/PT on HBO; the episodes can also be aired in 4K on Max.

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