The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power proves that not all those who wander are lost


Amazon Studios

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power premiered September 1, 2022 on Amazon Prime Video

As the scenes pan over the elvish grace of Lindon, the mighty underground dwarf mines of Khazad-dûm, and the masterful construction of the Island Kingdom of Númenor, I couldn’t help but gasp in awe. 

If nothing else, the cinematography in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power took my breath away. My nerdy obsession with everything Tolkien only intensified with this series as New Zealand’s landscapes once again immersed the audience in my favorite fictional world, transporting me back to my fourth-grade days when I discovered Middle Earth for the first time. 

When one scene transitions from Eregion to the Misty Mountains, my dad remarked, “Why would anyone want to live underground when the land above is so gorgeous?” It wasn’t long before his question was answered when a breathtaking underground kingdom was revealed. The half-elf and future Lord of Rivendell Elrond, portrayed by Robert Aramayo, reflected my expression of astonishment at the sight. 

Those who are fans of the lore will especially love this series as it dives into backstories, ancestors, and of course, the making of the rings. The timeline is of the Second Age after the downfall of Morgoth where all races enjoy peace and harmony; however, as one may predict, this only foreshadows darkness. 

Sometimes to find the light, we must first touch the darkness.”

— Galadriel

While the rings of power span across many realms, Galadriel—played by actress Morfydd Clark—is the main focus as she hunts for Sauron: an evil lord that many assume dead. Meanwhile, the elves are hoping to forge an alliance with the dwarves, the harfoots encounter a strange being fans refer to as “meteor man,” and the men of the Southlands must move to escape a growing threat. 

In regards to this plot, I’ll admit that some storylines dragged on for longer than I felt necessary; however, the plot twist in the season one finale made the slow buildup completely worthwhile. Fans can expect more action and excitement in the planned four seasons to come, and a promising second season is already underway. 

While I felt that the harfoot journey was dull in comparison to the halfling adventures in The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, I was impressed with the abilities of actresses Markella Kavenagh and Megan Richards and their creation of a realistic childhood connection between the characters Nori and Poppy. They exemplify the themes of loyalty and friendship.

Aramayo also deserves a shoutout for his ability to portray Elrond through a younger personality in comparison to the original trilogy, yet convince me to love the character all the same. Due to Aramayo’s performance, I couldn’t help but smile with relief every time Elrond entered a scene. 

Where there is love, it is never truly dark.”

— Elrond

Overall, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power reignited my passion for the universe and the unattainable dream of living as an elf in times of peace. My friend Emma Raisch and I have greatly enjoyed discussing the meticulously placed unanswered questions and the character development throughout the episodes. 

It’s no surprise that the series is the most expensive TV show ever produced, totaling $58 million per episode and nearly doubling the cost of the second most costly production of Stranger Things. The attention to detail in every aspect—the characters, costume design, and scenery—left me in amazement, and I’m beyond thrilled to see what awaits in the coming seasons.