House of the Dragon, a Game of Thrones prequel that HBO's new series House of the Dragon is based on, is positioned as an in-universe history book. Just like our own histories, multiple sources are critical. Fire & Blood includes many different accounts of the Dance of the Dragons' events. But House of the Dragon combines these accounts into one timeline, revealing the true history of events.
The first half of the book is quite straightforward, and the second half is about the Targaryen family's civil conflict, called the Dance of the Dragons. Septon Eustace, Grand Maester Munkun, and Mushroom the fool are three accounts.
In Fire & Blood, Mushroom is described as a three-foot-tall dwarf with an enormous head. According to himself and others, he was well liked by both sides and considered it too simple to repeat the sensitive information he heard a clear error by all involved. These facts provided him an interesting perspective on the war's events, which he recorded firsthand.
While Eustace and Munkuns' histories are often more accurate, they often err on the side of decency and present a clean and chaste version of history, two things that history is often incapable of. Mushroom, on the other hand, prefers the most salacious version of all events, even if he has to invent the more sordid details himself. According to Archmaester Gyldayn, Mushroom's debaucherous tales are often
House of the Dragon has a significant part of the fire & bloods history that flows between the three accounts and the often ridiculous Mushroom stories, which is also one of the best parts of the book. After all, the series is already pretty complicated, and introducing three different (unreliable) narrators would only compound the problem.
Ryan Condal and Miguel Sapochnik, along with series author George R.R. Martin, have created a unique timeline for the show that depicts the events of the Dance of the Dragons as they actually took place, in order to keep things simple. Which means that the Mushrooms account continues to play a vital role.
In an interview with Polygon, we decided to leave that aspect of the Rashomon style of storytelling to the reader, and instead, try to define what we thought the objective truth of this actual history was, as we saw it. Sometimes they all get it right. Sometimes Mushrooms even get it right by chance. And I think that's the joy of the adaptation.
Condal believes that the book and the series will complement each other, each adding deeper and more interesting details to the other. We witness a critical conversation between Rhaenyra and King Viserys that we couldnt see in the book because the two were alone in the Red Keep. Also, having a true version represented in the show gives both the book and the show a new perspective on how history can change depending on who is recording it.
Fire & Blood readers can be certain that House of the Dragon will include bits and pieces of Mushrooms testimony into its timeline, even if Grand Maester Gyldayn does not approve.