Watch Episode 1 Of ‘House of the Dragon’ FREE On YouTube Now

The first episode of House of the Dragon is now free to watch on YouTube. The watch link is, unfortunately, region locked and therefore unavailable outside of the US. But it’s nothing a VPN service can’t resolve.

The Game of Thrones prequel series premiered on HBO Max on 21 August and drew in 10 million viewers from Westeros, and all over the world. And viewers surely liked what they saw because the second episode, released a week ago, pulled in 10.2 million viewers.

House of the Dragon has been well-received so far, earning an 85% critic and audience score on Rotten Tomatoes. Thanks to the successful series premiere and positive reviews, HBO has also renewed the show for a second season.

So why drop an episode for free? Well, simply because it’s a numbers game, and just like the Targaryens, HBO Max only has eyes on the Iron Throne.

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Fans of Game of Thrones know that the last season was an absolute flop so when House of the Dragon came about, the apprehension to catch the new show or subscribe to HBO Max once again is valid and understandable. Allowing fans to see the first episode for free is a smart way to entice fans back to the franchise and to the streamer. It’s kind of like showing people what they’re missing out on and trapping them with a sneak peek before they delve in and commit.

It’s likely no coincidence that the first episode was available on YouTube for free on the same day as Amazon Prime Video’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power series premiere. The Rings of Power saw twice the number of viewers, with nearly 25 million viewers globally tuning in to step into Tolkien’s Middle-earth once more. Showing an episode for free could be HBO Max’s ploy to attract viewers to its series instead of Amazon’s.

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Whatever HBO Max’s main reason may be, with both House of the Dragon and The Rings of Power now out after months, and even years of anticipation, fans of fantasy can finally say goodbye to the real world and immerse themselves in these fantasies even if it’s just for an hour – or even two if they follow both series – each week.

House of the Dragon is set almost 200 years prior to the events of the Game of Thrones series, detailing the downfall of House Targaryen and their rule over the Iron Throne. As expected, there’s an abundance of dragons, family squabbles, and long, flowing wigs.