Synopsis: The Rings of Power is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth.
These opening two episodes set up the characters and the various storylines, which build up to the events that we’ll eventually see get played out in both The Hobbit and Lord of The Rings. The opening episode sees Galadriel recount the events of a great war between light and dark as the Elves get drawn into a war on Middle Earth, which is so big that it removes them from their ancestral home.
Galadriel recounts how the death of her brother drew her into the quest of hunting down and finding Sauron. Even when the Elves and other races on middle earth have had many years of relative peace. In the first episode Galadriel finds out that Sauron is preparing to return to Middle Earth, but when she reports back to the Elf King her warnings are pretty much ignored as the races of Middle Earth have grown complacent. Hailed as a hero. Galadriel and her soldiers are sent to the undying lands, but she chooses not to go at the last minute.
Elsewhere in the southern part of Middle Earth a village of humans is wiped out by Orcs, and the elf Arondir and his human healer friend Bronwyn journey to the town to investigate.
Meanwhile, a Hobbit or Halfling called Nori’ Brandyfoot finds a mysterious man who seems to have landed in a crater of fire. Much against her friend’s wishes she chooses to take in this mysterious stranger and try and help him.
Back in the Elf Kingdom. Elrond is tasked with helping the king build a special forge with which they can create truly magical things. Elrond suggests the King seek help from outside and pays a visit to his dwarf friend Durin IV. However, Elrond must get through a challenge before Durin will even consider speaking with him.
Morfydd Clark makes a strong impression as Galadriel who narrates the first ten minutes of the series, which recounts events that build up to the first war on Middle Earth and how the Elves got drawn into it. Likewise, Robert Aramayo is equally strong as the young Elrond, which is a good thing given that Galadriel and Elrond are the two main characters that fans of the two movie trilogies and the book series will be familiar with.
As far as the newer characters go. Markella Kavenagh is charming as Nori Brandyfoot who is the key character we meet within the Hobbit Camp and has a fairly interesting adventure. She is very much in the same ilk of character as Bilbo and Frodo insofar as she wants to investigate things beyond the relatively small community of Hobbits that she lives in. But she also cares deeply for her clan as is proved by her reaction when her father gets hurt.
As far as the human camp goes. Our main character is a healer called Bronwyn who is played by Nazanin Boniadi and has some really strong scenes in the second episode.
These first two episodes of The Rings of Power do a really good job of setting the world and the story up. As we see the start of the resurgence of Sauran and his Orks who return at a time when all the races on middle earth have grown complacent. I particularly liked the storyline in which Elrond seeks help to build a huge forge for his kind. Of course, this will be the same forge that creates the magic rings.
The visuals and the soundtrack for this show are awesome and every bit on par with the films.
I’m invested now and look forward to seeing where the story goes in next week’s episode of The Rings of Power.
- CGI & Stunts9.8
- Incidental Music10