“As much as dragons or incest or power struggles or even more generalized violence, [season one] has been defined by traumatic birth scenes.” — Kathryn VanArendonk, Vulture

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Princess Rhaenyra screams for ten uninterrupted minutes. The Maester rushes in.

MAESTER: Princess Rhaenyra, forgive me for interrupting your painful childbirth, but your dragon has gone into labor!

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: I didn’t even know she was pregnant! I mean, she put on a few pounds, but I sure as hell wasn’t going to say anything…

Princess goes back to screaming. A raven arrives through the open window with a message.

MAESTER: A note from the dragon pit, Your Highness. The delivery is—how to say this?— NOT GOING WELL.

Cut to ten minutes of dragon-screaming. Dragon doulas run around in a frenzy.

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: I must go to her! But only after I scream this child out of me…

Ten more minutes of princess-screaming. A baby is born; the Maester hands her to the princess.

MAESTER: A healthy girl, your highness! But somehow…pregnant?

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: What sorcery is this? Is she…in labor already?

Ten minutes of baby-screaming. A raven arrives through the open window.

MAESTER: A message from King’s Landing. Your father, King Viserys, is dead. From childbirth.

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: Noooooo! Wait. How?

Flashback to ten minutes of king-screaming.

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: Quick, send a raven to the Kingsguard. We must prevent the Hightowers from seizing the Iron Throne!

Flashback to the Iron Throne’s mother giving excruciating birth to a pointy chair. Ten minutes of throne-screaming.

MAESTER: I’m afraid I cannot send the ravens, Your Highness.

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: I am queen now that my father has died from childbirth, and you will do as I say!

MAESTER: No, it’s just that the ravens are giving birth.

PRINCESS RHAENYRA: Do you mean…laying eggs?

MAESTER: Well, whatever it is, it’s not going well.

Cut to ten minutes of raven-screaming. Blackout.

Behind the Scenes:

MIGUEL SAPOCHNIK, CO-SHOWRUNNER: We thought it was important to linger on Rhaenyra’s screaming face until we literally ran out of film. When watching escapist dragon fare, women must never forget the dangers of childbirth, even for a moment.

RYAN CONDAL, CO-SHOWRUNNER: Ravens are always screaming about something, but you haven’t heard a raven scream until you’ve seen a close-up of its screaming raven face as it endures a prolonged, torturous egg-laying.

SAPOCHNIK: We caught flak for violence with Game of Thrones, so we wanted a more progressive form of torture porn. And lots of it.

CONDAL: Season 2 will focus on hot flashes, and not just the ones that come from dragons. Also, menstrual cramps.