Amazon’s The Rings of Power Finrod character reveal sets up a much darker The Lord of the Rings prequel storyline than many audiences may have expected. Scheduled to premiere on Prime Video on September 2, 2022, Amazon’s big-budget The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is set to chronicle the entire Second Age of Middle Earth, from Sauron’s rise to power to the fall of the Kingdom of Númenor. Yet these planned stories also intertwine with several First Age narratives, with the Elf Finrod’s inclusion in The Rings of Power’s Super Bowl trailer a glaring example here.
The aforementioned The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power teaser certainly does not lack for scope, with the Amazon original trailer introducing audiences to never-before-seen sections of Middle Earth from both the First and Second Ages. A young Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) is shown scaling the icy walls of Helcaraxë before charging into battle against Morgoth’s forces, while several sweeping shots depict the ancient kingdoms of Númenor, Rivendell, and Khazad-dûm, respectively. There are also quick cuts of the epic first age battle of Dagor Bragollach that hint at the unrest set to sweep across Middle Earth in the Amazon original series.
Yet Finrod’s inclusion in The Rings of Power‘s First Age narrative sets the series up to be a much darker The Lord of the Rings prequel than previously envisioned by many. As one of the highest Elven kings and adored brother of Galadriel, Finrod’s brutal death is one of the bleakest passages in J.R.R. Tolkien’s original works that has dire ramifications on Middle Earth in the years to follow. As a result, here’s how The Rings of Power‘s Finrod reveal sets up a darker The Lord of the Rings Amazon prequel, as well as who Finrod is and where he appears in the series’ first trailer.
Who Is The Rings Of Power’s Finrod?
Finrod, also known fully as Finrod Felagund, is a Ñoldorin Elf who becomes King of Nargothrond towards the end of Middle Earth’s First Age in The Lord of the Rings canon. Finrod’s lineage harks back to one of the first great Elven houses, Finarfin, and he is the brother of Galadriel, Angrod, and Aegnor – all mighty and respected Elves in their own right during the First Age. Finrod’s nobility, charity, and diplomacy mark him as one of the most respected and loved Elves in Tolkien’s Middle Earth during his lifetime, with Finrod possessing the increasingly rare ability to command the ears and hearts of Dwarves and Men alike.
During Morgoth’s rise to power and the subsequent War of the Jewels near the end of Middle Earth’s First Age, Finrod led allied armies of Elves and Men against the dark forces relentlessly. Finrod was present at the Siege of Angband and the bloody battle of Dagor Bragollach before setting off on the quest for the Silmaril to take back Morgoth’s source of power: his crown. During this covert mission, Finrod and twelve of his companions are captured by Morgoth’s right hand Sauron, who takes the Elves to Tol-in-Gaurhoth (later known as Minas Tirith) to torture them.
After failing to break Sauron’s spell over his compatriots and being hopelessly outclassed by Sauron’s dark magic, Finrod is forced to watch his friends get ripped apart by the Werewolves of Gaurhoth. Heartbroken by the horrors his kin are being subjected to, Finrod sacrifices himself to save his remaining two men before succumbing to his wounds a short time later. Although reborn in Valinor (a differing plane of existence) due to his heroism, his death on Middle Earth leaves many of his allies scarred and despairing at the height of Morgoth’s power in the First Age.
Where Finrod Appears In The Rings Of Power Trailer
Although Amazon is yet to disclose the entire cast of characters for The Rings of Power, eagle-eyed The Lord of the Rings fans have spotted Finrod in the series’ teaser trailer. Near the end of The Rings of Power teaser, the camera cuts to a very brief shot of armored Elven warriors (not aesthetically unlike Peter Jackson’s Last Alliance) fighting against an army of plated Orcs in the rain. At the center of the shot is one blond-haired elf who can be seen screaming in despair before beating back an onrushing Orc with his arm and sword. Given the armor of the Elven and Orc armies, this battle is likely the brutal conflict of Dagor Bragollach, which naturally makes the Elf at the epicenter of the fighting Finrod.
Why Finrod’s Reveal Makes For A Much Darker The Rings Of Power Narrative
Finrod’s history in Tolkien’s Middle Earth is one of the most heartbreaking and gruesome stories that unfold across the First Age, meaning its inclusion in Amazon’s The Rings of Power makes for a much darker narrative. While many of the shots in The Rings of Power teaser appear almost too clean and high fantasy, missing the grit of Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings trilogy aesthetic, the battle of Dagor Bragollach bucks this visual trend in the trailer. This, in turn, foreshadows a bleak storyline for Finrod that will be at odds with the beautiful locales of Men and Elves depicted in early shots of The Rings of Power as Finrod and his men get torn limb from limb by Sauron’s creatures in Tol-in-Gaurhoth.
Furthermore, Finrod’s brutal death sets up Galadriel’s character arc for The Rings of Power, with the Elven queen confirmed by the showrunners (per Vanity Fair) to be “hunting down the last remnants of [Sauron’s] collaborators, who claimed the life of her brother.” In this way, the Galadriel depicted in The Rings of Power is primed to be a vengeful character far removed from her eventual role as a sage shepherd for the forces of good in the original The Lord of the Rings trilogy. As a result, Finrod’s reveal in The Rings of Power trailer sets up a much darker The Lord of the Rings prequel story than many fans might have initially expected from the Amazon original LOTR series.
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