Where No One Goes - A better HTTYD 3 song

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DrakeTheDragon5567's picture
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Joined: 07/17/2019

IMPORTANT NOTE: This is my OPINION, and NOT A SUGGESTION to change anything. I have nothing against 'Once There Were Dragons'. After all, it's an interesting piece, and I enjoy that it combined popular HTTYD songs such as 'Test Drive' and 'Forbidden Friendship'. I'm not saying that it should be replaced, I'm just saying that it was a little-bit of a letdown compared to 'Where No One Goes', and why.



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DrakeTheDragon5567's picture
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Joined: 07/17/2019

Hello there, fellow Forum-ers!

Today, I'm going to explain why (in my opinion), Where No One Goes is a better song to sum-up HTTYD 3. It is perfectly fine if you have your own opinions/think that 'Once There Were Dragons' is fine just the way it is. If you will be offended by reading a list of why it's inferior to 'Where No One Goes', then I'd recommend leaving now.


Alright. Now that I got that over with, let's begin!


1. It's in the name. The whole premise of the Hidden World is that no Viking has ever gone there before, and having the main song being called 'Where No One Goes'? It's self-explanatory. I understand that 'Once There Were Dragons' was more of a 'look back on what this series has become' kind-of feel, but if it focused more on the present instead of the past, then I'd probably like it more.


2. It's focusing on the good times. 'Once There Were Dragons' was an interesting song overall, but it had a solemn feel to it. Like, you know- 'this-series-is-over-and-everything-just-feels-bleak' thing. It k.ills the mood, that's for sure. However, 'Where No One Goes' is more optimistic and content, compared to 'Once There Were Dragons'.


3. It sounds like a DreamWorks song, not a Disney one. When I was listening to 'Once There Were Dragons', the first thing I thought was 'this reminds me of the beginning of Frozen'. And I know that the particular-singing-style that was in 'Once There Were Dragons' is featured in Dragons: Rise of Berk, but I never really liked that part of the song. If it makes the listener feel like their watching a Disney movie instead of a HTTYD one, then you might need to re-think your song choices.


4. It's more adventurous. I know that the series had to end, so they had to make all of the dragons on Berk leave to the Hidden World, but isn't discovering and admiring the Hidden World a big point in HTTYD 3's plot? I mean- it's literally an entire world that has not seen humans at all before then, and it reflects that. 'Where No One Goes' is a very playful/explorative song, and it reflects that nicely.


5. It only reflected the final-parts of the movie. As I mentioned before in point #2, 'Once There Were Dragons' should of focused a teensey-bit more on the 'remember-this-lasting-friendship-and-how-one-boy-changed-the-lives-of-Vikings-and-dragons?' Instead of 'say-bye-bye-to-the-dragons-forever-ok-Alexa-play-one-hour-sad-music-:c' and BEFORE SOMEONE RANTS THAT 'hTtYd3 WaS tHe LaSt MoViE oF cOuRsE iT hAd To Be SaD!!1!!1" JUST LISTEN! I get that the movie had a sadder tone, but that's pretty-much ALL it focused on. It should of focused at least a LITTLE bit more on the more positive parts of HTTYD 3.


6. Pure Test Drive is better than Test Drive/This Is Berk/Forbidden Friendship. I did enjoy the combination of those three HTTYD songs, but (in my opinion), 'Where No One Goes'' pure 'Test Drive' focus made it more enjoyable to listen to. Test Drive simbolises that spark in Hiccup's friendship with Toothless that really helped it 'take off' (get it?) But, it IS a tiny-bit understandable that they also focused on 'This Is Berk' because they had to leave Old Berk behind, and 'Forbidden Friendship' because y-know, leaving your best friend for the sake of all Berk dragons.


There! Those were the reasons why I personally believe that 'Where No One Goes' is just a better fit to HTTYD 3. Have your own opinions/points to add? Feel free to add them, but don't reply directly to this post please, in-case a have go edit it.

chameishida's picture
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Joined: 08/01/2014
I debate whether or not I

I debate whether or not I should reply to this post since you did mention leaving this thread if I do not agree with what you said and I hard do not agree with what you said but perhaps this can be taken as a friendly discussion regarding the song? especially since there's no one comment on this thread yet? I'm easily geek out and this might be a chance to take more in depth about leitmotif and musical theme in httyd since you open this topic and to me, making the my own thread to talk about"Once there were dragons is a good ending music and here is why' right after your post seemed more rude so please bear with me. 



Fits the tone

 I'm not sure if you also want to change the ending scene to go along with "Where no one goes" but if the scene remaining the same then "Where no one goes" replacing 'One there were dragons' would give the scene major emotional whiplash and tone problem consider the context of the scene happens after toothless and hiccup depart and the dragon leaving. You mentioned prefer 'Where no one goes' cheerful optimistic tone over Once there where dragon sad one but---the scene was suppose to be sad? no i read your explaination to that about not wanting it to focus on just the sadder tone and on the positive one but 1. Once there were dragons is not even that sad of a song, I like the word you use 'Solem' that perfectly describe the song as it perfectly describe the ending, Dean did say it was suppose to be their last flight so it's reasonable that there should be something bittersweet about it but as a whole,  It is not a sad song, only at the first half then shift into more triumph finale tone 2. the song should be fit to what happen on screen and what happen on the screen is suppose to be sad. Imagine right after dragon leaving and them they played where no one goes I wouldn't know what I would suppose to feel at the scene, it would be too off-putting. but this is assuming you mean to put it over Once there were dragons right at the start. The more fitting entrance of Where no one goes if you really are to put it is over the main theme part of the Once there were dragons; the part where Hiccup and his son fly on toothless again. That would be the part that fit but I would argue against this in the later part too by talking about why I think Once there were dragon would be more fitting as the last movie ending score


Thematic musical in Once there were dragons

I have a lot of problem with HTTYD 3 too and all those criticism thread popping up are understandable so I tend to agree but One thing I absolutely love about the third movie is Once there were dragon...the song not the scene (though I dont hate the scene I just dont have strong emotion on it) and here is why

The first part is actually the part I like the least. It's probably the one you called Alexa's sad music but like I mentioned it fits the scene, and the emotion the previous scene left the viewer, you got to work your way from sadness to something happier first otherwise it will give anyone a whiplash which is why the song has to take it slow, anyway the reason why I like this part least is not because I dont enjoy the music or because it is sad, it a pretty song but I like it the least because it isn't really a tie to any of the previous musical theme ( or maybe it is? but I barely listen to the third movie soundstrack so I couldn't tell if it's a leitmotif of something. I don't really like httyd 3 ost compare to the first two safe to the first few I really like like Once there were dragons (Blah it starts to sound too mouthful, I'm just gonna call it OTWD from now) Third date and Furies in love) The choir make me associted it with The hidden world theme though even if the melody is different, if it is indeed meant to represent Hidden world then that would be fitting because the dragons just left the chat :/


Two thing you point out is that it sounds more like Disney than dreamworks and that it sound like something from Rise of berk? Ok first thing first, the Choir plays in Rise of Berk is actually from the HTTYD 2 soundtrack called "Flying with mother' The choir and overdramaticness of the soundtrack starts to happen in the second movie which I admit kinda jaring  at first and not sure how to feel about it but these changes caring on to the third movie so I dont think these type of music stand out too much with the second movie being the one starting this trend. The disney remark just make me scrath at my head though I'm not sure what you think is Disney and what is Dreamworks


anyway ywah that's the first part--but it is only the first part and did not make up the whole of the song! it's not even play during the real epilouge, it plays during Hiccup and Astrid wedding so usually when I said I love OTWD It usually meant the point after this After the first part the song pick up in mood to be in the more epic one, this happens when the viking is cheering then as the scene end and enter the real epilouge, the song start to transit to the more solem and familiar tone


now it's time to geek out about recurring theme or Leitmotif!!!!


Ok, How to train your dragon soundtrack coperate a lot of leitmotif/musical theme. Even the one you listed like Test drive or This is berk or even Where no one goes is made up of a smaller theme to tell the story in the song. Test drive has 'Toothless theme AKA Forbidden friendship follow by the How to train your dragon main theme (what people would call Test drive) This is berk has ALL the themes from the first movie combine together and for OTDW it goes like this:

-Viking theme (In my opinion this is not Berk or 'This is berk', this melody found in the most standalone song call the vikings having their tea' while Berk theme is the bombastic one played at the start of this is Berk) Plays during the haddock family on the boat make sense, it's a viking family the only one know about dragons and currently looking for them

-Hidden world theme, Plays when they found the hidden world, self explainary

-Main theme a little hint of it plays when Toothless make his way to Hiccup

-Toothless theme (I debate wheter ot not this is Toothless theme or Hiccup and toothless friendship theme but yeah it's the one people call forbidden friendship) play almost exactly the same way as Forbidden friendship because yay Toothless and Hiccup is reunite again!

-Toothless theme again then Main theme This is what people called 'Test drive' which is essentially the main theme play rightfully at the ending of the franchise

-Light fury theme because of course light fury is on scene, also off topic but say what you will about the light fury but her theme and especially how her theme transiting in this test drive is *chef kiss8

-Main theme then Toothless theme the later half of test drive which again essentially the main theme play rightfully at the ending of the franchise

(also can I say the test drive rendition in OTWD is so triumph and finale?)

Simpler break down would be Viking theme > Hidden world theme > Main theme >Forbidden friendship > Main theme > Light fury theme > Main theme

Ok why am I talking about Leitmotif, well like I mention earlier, the music are construct this way to tell the story, on the surface level being what is actually happening on screen and on a deeper level, on the story as a whole. A good example of this technic would be On 'This is berk' from the first movie which I suggest you give this video a watch >  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4UUJQH7GLms It is an opening song describe the franchise as a whole introducing the characters, as oppose to the opening song we have the ending song which wrap up the stories like a conclusion and a curtain call, having it refelxes all the theme plays in the story. In the first movie we have "Coming back around" (Astrid theme > Main theme) which actually work very similary to OTWD because the at first httyd is a standalone movie with no plan sequel so it makes sense the firt movie would end with some sort of finality. The second movie also end with the song that open its movie (Not counting dragon race as that's more of a homage to the first movie, Where no one goes IS the httyd 2 song); Where no one goes. The fits the second movie into end own little package and not a end of the series because they already know httyd is going to be a franchise at this point so they dont need that much finality as that of a whole franchise but just the one for the second movie. Where no one goes starts the movie>Where no one goes ends the movie.

The third movie did not end with the song that start the third movie (gratefully because it's pretty not memorable in my opinion) but instead a curtain call of a whole franchise and a stuff that happens in the third movie (Hidden world theme and light fury theme) ending the franchise on the main theme givres it that sense of triumph  finality.


But hey techinally Where no one goes IS the main theme with pop song (or whatever Jonsi song genre is) playing over so if the problem being that they should play the main theme to end the series in a high note why shouldn't it be Where no one goes!?


Ok i like Where no one goes I really do but admitally the first time I heard it in the second movie it's pretty jaring and take me out of the movie temporaly because Jonsi vocal isn't really organic to the movie, what I meant by that is for a movie that plays most of the run time mainly on score, suddenly having a modern vocal song plays on top of it like a music video(and not vocal sung by character like Stoic or Valka song or Choir like Flying with Mother or Hidden world theme which still fits the overall genre of the scores)  took me out of the scene. I said you prefer the purer version of test drive and I do prefer that to end the movie to but between Where no one goes and OTWD I found OTWD's test drive to be purer of the two,--I hate using the wold pure let say closer to the original test drive of the two. People already recognize test drive as the main theme of the franchise while where no one goes is more of its own song for the second movie.

Also Where no one goes is not as dynamic to what happned on the scene compare to OTWD although There is a movie version of Where no one goes which is Dynamic to what's happening on screen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x1l3WUC8lRY


maybe 'Where no one goes' is a better standalone song to listen to over this long suite/medley style OTWD that you have to go through from one part to one part to one part but as a companion to what playing at the scene and a thematic ending of the whole franchise. I'd definitely say that OTWD fit as the ending song more


Again please dont take this as a attack or me seeing your post as a personal attack, I just simple see a chance to discusswhere our opinion differ and well floatgate happends, I might overkil,l this a little for the length there, sorry. Anyway Music is subjective! so we can interpret and have different opinion on them. and I'm not saying that you can't thing Where no one goes would fit more! You can keep thinging that way. Maybe I'm just prefer dynamic suite medley over standalone songs.


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I completely agree. Where no one goes is a great song but it just wouldn't fit or make sense for the ending in HTTYD3. I'm glad John went with the same tune (some editing here and there) from the first movie because it brings back SO many memories! ....it made me tear up a little... Someone posted a video the meaning of Test Drive and I love both scenes more than ever. You first hear Toothless scene because he has flown before then it fades out and you hear Hiccup song when he crashes in the stones lol and right at the part when Hiccup lets go of his cheat sheet both his and Toothless theme were in tune together! And you have both of their themes together again in the last film is wonderful.