GOT vs. LOTR? Here's What George R.R. Martin Has to Say About the Fantasy Rivalry 

It’s the year of fantasy prequels. In just a few weeks, the Game of Thrones prequel House of the Dragon will drop on HBO Go, and just a few weeks after that in September, Amazon is releasing its Lord of the Rings prequel The Rings of Power. 

HBO and Amazon collectively coughed up almost a billion dollars to produce the next great fantasy series, and they’ll put their shows to the test this fall. Despite all the buzz about the supposed high fantasy rivalry, the reality is not nearly as dramatic as it seems. 

"We’re not even on the same night!" GRRM said to The Hollywood Reporter. "It’s not a death match or anything. I wish them success. I hope they wish for our success. We don’t have to be bracketed together."

That doesn’t mean he isn’t hoping House of the Dragon does better than The Rings of Power. 

"I'm competitive enough. I hope we succeed more," said the author. "If they win six Emmys, and I hope they do, I hope we win seven."

Still, Martin is of the belief that there’s more than enough room for there to be more than one epic fantasy show on television. With all the sci-fi shows out there, it’s about time that more than one big-budget fantasy series shares some screen time. 

Meanwhile, House of the Dragon is also competing with another show: the legacy of Game of Thrones. GOT season eight ended with a bang with over 19 million overnight viewers across all platforms at the time of its finale. Of course, it only started off with 2.2 million viewers in the U.S. when the show’s first season premiered, but according to HBO EVP Francesa Orsi, “I don’t think anybody is thinking this show will pick up, from a ratings perspective, right where Thrones left off.” 


Still, House of the Dragon is contending with plenty of rivalries, wanted and unwanted. Aside from The Rings of Power and the ghost of GOT, it’s also dealing with pushback from fans who were more than a little disappointed by GOT’s finale. 

But there’s no denying that there are even more fans who are stoked for the new Targaryen-centric series. 

House of the Dragon drops on HBO Go on August 21. 

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Anri Ichimura
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