Game of Thrones: See how much the cast has changed since the first season

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Game of Thrones fans first meet Drogon during the show’s first season finale, after Daenerys miraculously emerges from the flames of Khal Drogo’s funeral pyre. Drogon and his siblings are barely the size of full-grown lizards at this point in the series, and Drogon is hardly intimidating—apart from the fact that he’s one of the first dragons to grace the world for over 100 years.

Daenerys’ dragons remain small during the second season of the show, though they begin to develop fire-breathing abilities and understand commands. They also start to form a bond with their mother, Drogon especially. Fittingly, given his name, Drogon quickly becomes the ringleader of the three dragons.

The third season is when Drogon’s bond with Daenerys becomes noticeably stronger than her bond with the other two dragons. While Daenerys loves all of her children, Drogon is the first to defend her when she’s threatened, and he even aids her in freeing the people of Slaver’s Bay.

Episode 67 (season 7, episode 7), debut 8/27/17: Emilia Clarke.

photo courtesy of HBO

From there, Drogon’s relationship with his mother continues to develop. He’s the only one of the three dragons that allows Daenerys to ride on his back, something she starts doing when he rescues her from an encounter with the Sons of the Harpy during the fifth season. After that, Daenerys rides Drogon into battle multiple times—using him to ward off both Lannister forces and the Night King’s army.

But although Drogon is the strongest and most well-loved of Daenerys’ dragons going into the seventh season of the show, the same can’t necessarily be said coming out of it. Viserion’s power seems amplified after he’s resurrected by the Night King, even enabling him to take down the Wall. It’ll be interesting to see how Drogon reacts to his brother’s undead state—and whether he’ll be any match for him.