HBO Wraps Inflatable Dragon Around Empire State Building

Hypes House of the Dragon, natch

King Kong's got company.

HBO hyped House of the Dragon this week by wrapping a nearly 300-foot inflatable serpent around the tip of the Empire State Building.

HBO | House of the Dragon

It's a pretty impressive OOH effort generating lots of media buzz, part of a broader House of the Dragon activation at NYC's iconic midtown tower.

The series employed 3D billboard dragon tech a few years back. That effort was, perhaps, more mod and dynamic.

But the current critter's pretty darn scary-sharable:

Time to send in the biplanes. We still have some of those, right?

"One of the best ways to ignite fandom in entertainment is to bring the world of the show into the world we inhabit every day," Monica Herman VP, ECD at Giant Spoon, which developed the campaign, tells Muse. "That meant translating the deep-seated rivalry between our key characters into real-world rivalries in which fans already had some level of emotional investment."

To that end, the team targeted NYC, "inserting ourselves into existing cultural conversations around everything from sports teams to competing bars and bagel shops," Herman says. "We rewarded fans with limited-edition swag and incited them to 'Raise Your Banners' in support of the teams they love—and by extension, the rival factions from our show."

Because this formula was rooted in authentic human behavior, "'Raise Your Banners' became an infinitely scalable, global rallying cry that we could adapt in cities around the world," she says. "We tapped into regional rivalries in 20-plus countries, creating 'stunty' shows of allegiance that ranged from massive physical and CGI banners on famous monuments like the Eiffel Tower—to an inflatable dragon installed on the mast of the Empire State Building."

The 270-foot beast, Vhagar, clung to the structure via 153 rigging points. Giant Spoon worked with Bigger Than Life Advertising. That firm's president, Mark Bachman, engineered the 1983 Kong installation at the celebrated Art Deco skyscraper.

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