Ever had a billion dollars, a love of The Lord of the Rings, and a need to make a TV collection? That is what Amazon is doing with The Rings of Power. It is a super endeavor at a time when the fantasy style is having an actual second. 

And whereas Amazon has spared no expense promoting this collection to this point, there are a ton of inquiries to be answered about what this present is and whether or not it is one thing you need to sit down and watch when it hits Prime Video on Sept. 2.

Here is what it is advisable to know.

Is The Rings of Energy a prequel?

In some ways, sure. The Rings of Energy takes place earlier than the occasions of The Lord of the Rings, so for the sake of simplicity this collection is a prequel to the movies.

The Rings of Energy takes place hundreds of years earlier than The Lord of the Rings. It is a time interval in Center-earth known as the Second Age, as a result of time on this world is split throughout globally impactful occasions. The Third Age, the place Sauron is an enormous glowy eye and is looking for his ring, may be very distant from the occasions of this collection. Sauron may be very a lot person-shaped on this collection. 

Moreover, the place the movies had been tailored from the three books written by J.R.R. Tolkien, the TV collection isn’t so totally sourced. Amazon was unable to safe the movie rights to The Silmarillion, Tolkien’s assortment of tales from earlier than The Lord of the Rings. As a substitute, this collection shall be based on the appendices in The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien left a ton of notes concerning the history of Center-earth in his highly regarded trilogy, together with an abridged historical past of most of the occasions inside The Silmarillion. 

In case you’re confused about what precisely this implies for this collection, you are not alone. Even in The Silmarillion, there aren’t the identical sort of wealthy particulars relating to the occasions of the Second Age you get in The Lord of the Rings. Which means Amazon’s writing crew has a whole lot of house to fill with issues Tolkien did not explicitly define. It is made some Tolkien followers nervous concerning the present being respectful of the supply materials.

Do I would like to look at or learn something earlier than beginning it? 

You needn’t have seen The Lord of the Rings or The Hobbit to get pleasure from The Rings of Energy. Equally, in case you have seen these movies, but it surely’s been awhile, you are advantageous. It isn’t essential to have not too long ago consumed the prolonged editions of each movie, and the identical goes for all the books. 

It is actually not going to harm for those who’ve seen them not too long ago, or for those who’ve learn The Silmarillion sooner or later. And do not fret for those who’re ever misplaced about one thing in an episode. We’ll be posting recaps and explainers as early as attainable, and we have a terminology guide for the present too. 

What’s it about?

A young Galadriel standing in silver armour with a fiery explosion behind her in a village

Ben Rothstein/Prime Video

In case you’ve watched or learn The Lord of the Rings, it focuses on Sauron’s Management Ring. This golden ring was created as a option to manipulate the leaders of the races of Dwarves, Elves and Males who acquired highly effective magic rings as items. Sauron’s ring, usually known as The One Ring, corrupted an effort to convey the folks of Center-earth collectively after an ideal battle towards Sauron’s previous boss, Morgoth. 

The Rings of Energy, because the identify suggests, is the story main as much as the creation of Sauron’s ring. It is the historical past and politics of Center-earth after a brutal battle and the efforts to develop and thrive after. We’ll see Dwarven kingdoms at their most wonderful as an alternative of the ruins we see in Lord of the Rings. We’ll observe a youthful, impulsive and battle-hardened Galadriel lengthy earlier than she turns into the highly effective, ethereal being we meet within the movies. We’ll see how the good Kings of Males went from being an ideal and highly effective empire to the shattered, scattered stays haunted by the Ringwraiths they created by means of their very own greed and malice. 

As a substitute of a single quest, like The Lord of the Rings, you possibly can count on to see many stunning and twisting paths main the viewers to what is going to in the end be a reasonably darkish conclusion. 

Will acquainted characters present up?

There are two fashionable characters from The Lord of the Rings with rather more vital roles in The Rings of Energy — Galadriel and Elrond. In Lord of the Rings we see these two as rulers of their very own realms, largely unable to go away these realms as a result of their energy retains these locations alive and guarded. In The Rings of Energy, every of those characters is youthful and with far much less standing. Galadriel is a younger warrior commander on a quest to avenge the demise of her brother, whereas Elrond seeks to realize standing by means of political means. 

The remainder of the characters you will have seen earlier than are both not even near being born but, or they have not but arrived in Center-earth. That is to this point again previously that Hobbits as we all know them do not exist and their ancestors haven’t but discovered The Shire. Hobbits come from three totally different sorts of halfling, one in all that are Harfoots. These Harfoots are nomadic, and transfer round lots to remain protected. We’ll get to know not less than one tribe throughout Rings of Energy, however not a lot else is understood. 

In case you’re questioning about Gandalf, he is in all probability not going to indicate up. Gandalf, and the opposite 4 Wizards of Center-earth, aren’t despatched to combat Sauron till the Third Age. It is attainable that the writers may fudge the timeline somewhat and present us a wizard earlier than the tip of the collection, but it surely’s extraordinarily unlikely we’ll see one as a significant character. 

Is Amazon ruining The Lord of the Rings by making stuff up?

Rings of Power

The Dwarven Princess Disa, a brand new character for the Amazon collection The Rings of Energy.


Amazon

Nope, these are nonsense phrases from folks on Twitter who wish to be mad at issues. I will let J.R.R. Tolkien himself reply this, with a quote from a letter he wrote in 1951.

I might draw among the nice tales in fullness, and go away many others solely positioned within the scheme, and sketched. The cycles must be linked to an imposing complete, and but go away scope for different minds and fingers, wielding paint and music and drama.

Since Amazon does not have entry to a concrete, beat-for-beat story that tells you what each character was doing within the Second Age, there’s a whole lot of house to be crammed in. What you are going to see in The Rings of Energy is strictly what Tolkien describes above, new minds telling a brand new set of tales throughout the bigger beats created by the grand storyteller for the universe. There are particular strains Amazon should not cross, particularly on the subject of outright rewriting a narrative level Tolkien has established, however exterior of these bigger plot factors there’s a whole lot of room for different tales to be informed respectfully. 

Within the previews for the collection we have already seen items of this. Tolkien solely ever mentions a single feminine dwarf in all of his storytelling, and it is roughly accomplished to additional develop a distinguished male character. We all know Dwarven ladies exist, they usually should have accomplished issues of their mountain halls, so having a personality like Disa to observe in Rings of Energy is a superb, pretty low-stakes option to respectfully increase Tolkien’s universe. The identical may be stated of the Harfoots, nomadic ancestors to the Hobbits everyone knows and love. Tolkien created Harfoots, however they had been by no means part of any bigger story he informed. This can be a nice alternative to have some enjoyable with a gaggle most individuals already know they love. 

Nothing is being ruined, not less than based mostly on what we all know to this point. 

What number of episodes are there?

This primary season goes to be eight episodes, however Amazon has already introduced it is going to be making not less than 5 seasons. Except the primary season or two are catastrophically unhealthy when it comes to viewership, you possibly can count on this present to be a subject of dialog for the foreseeable future. 



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