The Rings of Power

The Rings of Power Episode 5-8 Roundtable

After the success of the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Hobbit, it was only a matter of time until a TV show was produced. When it hit the streaming services, it was one of the most anticipated shows this fall. Welcome to our second round table with Paula, Alex and Maria! You can check the previous one here. Be aware there will be some spoilers.

How do you feel now that “The Rings of Power” is concluded? Did it live up to your expectations?

M: I liked the second half of the season way better. It had a clear storyline and the characters finally got to shine. But unlike most shows or movies it didn’t finish on a high note and it didn’t feel like a completed story arc, but that they simply just stopped. 

P: I have mixed feelings. On one hand, I’m glad it finished, I didn’t want it to be too long; but I definitely wanted to see more and continue seeing how these different stories would unfold. This show definitely surprised me and made me enjoy great times. I could say it lived to my expectations.

A: I didn’t have many expectations at first because I couldn’t distance myself from the movies and seeing new visuals felt so weird to me, but then I saw the first teaser and got very excited. I loved the first season (with a preference for episodes 3 to 8). It was visually stunning, the characters are great, I love how their storylines intertwine, and the plot is very interesting and engaging. I loved the underlying darkness and getting to see how the threat that only Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) could feel at first evolved. It did kind of feel like the season ended in the middle of a story arc though. Seeing as it’ll have at least 4 more seasons, it’s a slow show and the first season was mostly to set things up, I get it. I loved it overall.

Do you think the characters had a proper development through the show? What would you change?

M:  I like in particular the friendship between Elrond (Robert Aramayo) and Durin (Owain Arthur). It felt honest and wasn’t rushed. I have still not warmed to Galadriel, there is just something about her character that doesn’t work for me. She is obsessive and rather ruthless to get what she wants. I have a hard time seeing her as the hero of the story. Maybe I would give her more layers. She finally acknowledged being married. They could have shown us happy Galadriel at one point. I can’t wait how things continue with Nori (Markella Kavenagh). She is underrated so far and can’t wait to see how her story continues. 

P: I feel the characters were very well made and introduced to us, especially Galadriel. She’s very different from in the movies, and it makes complete sense because she goes through many events that shape her that way.

I’m not sure if I’d change anything…Maybe I’d give more time to other characters to develop their story more, like Elrond and Durin.

A: I love the characters, but since the story moved rather slowly, some of them didn’t get the chance to develop much. For some, it kind of felt like we were witnessing a very small period of their life (which might be true) and didn’t get to see them grow. Surely we’ll get to see them grow more in the next seasons, though. I think I would’ve loved to have more episodes in this season to develop the characters and their dynamics a little more.

Regarding the revelation of who Halbrand and the Stranger really are, did you expect it?

M: Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) caught me completely off guard. I didn’t suspect anything was wrong until Galadriel started to suspect it. The reveal was done in a great fashion and Charlie Vickers did a great job. He gave Sauron a human quality which made him even more terrifying. 

The reveal about the stranger (Daniel Weyman) is a little more intangible, because the character is more mysterious. Despite this, it was a little more obvious. 

P: Not at all! Oh my God, the scream that left my lungs when it was revealed…I really loved how they didn’t explicitly said who the Stranger is, but it’s pretty clear and I love the concept of Hallbrand and the Stranger being two sides of the same coin.

A: I had my suspicions about Halbrand because nobody ever checked the “heirloom” he had with him actually belonged to him. He could’ve stolen it or found it somewhere. Him having it didn’t automatically mean he was the heir to the Southlands’ throne. It seemed way too easy and convenient. And he seemed way too charming and good to be true (which didn’t stop me from loving him haha). 

As for the Stranger, it crossed my mind and I saw some theories on Twitter, but it seemed too obvious. I loved how it got revealed, and the way we were first led to believe he was someone else in the finale. I also love how they didn’t make the reveal obvious. Might have been too much for one episode.

We know this is a completely different product than the movie, but do you think it’s well bound to the movie franchise?

M: As mentioned in the last roundtable this wasn’t working for me. It is working now better and finally starting to feel like “Lord of the Rings” to me. But there are little things that bother me, for instance in the end when we see the elven rings being forged the design of Galadriel’s ring was changed. It would have been a great moment to see her ring and tie the show visually to the movies but for some reason they decided against this. This is obviously a minor issue but it is a missed opportunity. I firmly believe that if you do a movie or show for an existing franchise you must respect what came before. 

P: I believe they did a great job with this show. It’s different from the movies, but it also shows a very different time and different characters so it makes sense. I truly loved the dialogues and the photography. I think it’s a marvelous adaptation and a great “prologue” to the movies.

A: It feels different than the movies, but how could it not? So many years separate them & I’m so used to the movies. Some things have the same feeling to me, though. For example: the funny side to Durin and Elrond’s friendship, the dwarves in general, the friendships throughout the show, and the sense of wonder that runs through all the episodes. The discussion around hope reminds me of the movies as well. The show is obviously different from the movies but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This doesn’t make it or the movies less great as their own thing. Also: the show might feel closer and closer to the movies as it progresses?

And finally, do you expect a season 2? What would you like to see?

M: Now I am completely on board with the show and really want a second season. I want to see what happened to Isildur (Max Baldry) -after all, we know that he is alive-. Something that hasn’t been spoken of enough is that we know that Elendil (Lloyd Owen) ends up becoming king. We saw the tiniest hint of a budding romance with Queen Miriel (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) and I can’t wait to see how this continues, as I love both characters. 

P: I truly need a season 2! I expect to see the rise of Sauron, how the rest of the species get ready for war…and maybe the introduction of other well loved characters! There’s so much potential and I think it’s the best decision to have season 2.

A:  CANNOT wait for season 2. I was already sad watching episode 7, because I realized there was only one episode left, and I’d have to wait ages for season 2. There are so many questions about the rings and The One Ring. I can’t wait to see what happens next. I’m also very curious about what Sauron’s gonna do next, how Galadriel will handle what she discovered, and I need to see what happened to Isildur, how he survived & what’s next for him.

Do you agree with Paula, Alex and Maria? How would you rate “The Rings of Power” so far? Let us know in the comments. 

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Hello! I’m Paula, a Spanish deaf girl who absolutely enjoys and loves watching movies and shows, as well as traveling, reading and writing. I grew up reading adventure books and writing fictional stories, and continued watching cartoons, movies and shows. I soon found myself enjoying that SO much that it became my special place and a way to escape from reality and problems, while it helped me to learn a lot and grow. My friends call me Dori and/or minion, but it's only my distinctive aspects that make me unforgettable. Don’t believe me? Well, consider yourself challenged to prove me wrong.

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Maria is our resident nerd and passionate about all things fantasy and science fiction. She is Spanish and grew up in Germany, which is why she is a native speaker of both languages. Becoming a fantasy writer was only logical to combine her skills and passions. In addition, she is working on her English degree and loves to play tennis and dance Salsa. She is currently writing her first novel and will mainly be covering Star Wars, Star Trek and Shadow & Bone.

Paula Rodriguez and Maria Lorca
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