Rings of Power episode 7 just ruined the show for me – here’s why

We come to the season finale of power rings and sadly, the series’ story problem didn’t get any better. In fact, after watching episode 7, I think there’s a chance he intentionally ripped the existing story (which he doesn’t have the rights to).

As I explained in my last article, The Rings of Power has a major problem that could alienate fans, which is that it doesn’t actually have the rights to much of the story that should form the foundation of this show. This has caused Amazon to make it all up, borrowing only the names of major characters and events it can pull from the Peter Jackson movies, The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings trilogy of books, and its appendixes.

In fact, according to a recent article by The Hollywood Reporter (opens in a new tab), the pitch was to create five television seasons based on the prologue narrated by Galadriel (voiced by Cate Blanchett) from Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Rings. ‘ring. If you think that sounds like a difficult task, you’re right, and it’s one that showrunners Patrick McCay and JD Payne are currently failing.

Real quick, if you haven’t seen the show yet, come back now. We’re getting into spoilers fast, so this is your final warning. All of Tolkien’s lore is on the table, and we don’t just dive into the depths of this article.

(Image credit: future)

Across two episodes, this was largely a problem for fans of Tolkien’s books, especially those who had read additional texts such as The Silmarillion. Since then, however, the story problem has grown to the point where major aspects of Tolkien’s canon are being thrown out the window. Episode 7 even seems to kill off several characters that we know have been very much alive for the past few years, which is the final straw for me.

I now believe the series has devolved into what is essentially fan fiction and is beyond repair for anyone even remotely a Tolkien fan. Sadly, the series’ mediocre pacing and mind-boggling obsession with the Harfoots are probably also ruin it for everyoneeven after a surprisingly good episode 6.

The Rings of Power Galadriel Problem

As bad as The Rings of Power may have been in the beginning, a recent reveal in Episode 7 just ruined the whole story. Galadriel, it turns out, has been hiding a canon-breaking secret this whole time.

(Image credit: Ben Rothstein/Prime Video)

Let’s be clear, the problem with this show isn’t that Galadriel (played by Morfydd Clark) is the lead. I was thrilled to see that Galadriel was introduced as the lead on this show.

As one of the three bearers of the Elvish rings of power (Elrond and Gandalf are the others, though Gandalf receives his from Círdan the shipbuilder), she is part of Tolkien’s pantheon of the most important elves in the world.

But, would one of the most powerful elves that ever lived, who in this very show is on an all-consuming mission to destroy Sauron because he killed his brother Finrod, just say “Well, I guess my husband died” and move on?

But this version of Galadriel seems completely at odds with that idea. In the first episode, she’s basically driven away by her great-nephew Gil-Galad, who inexplicably looks several decades older than her despite both being thousands of years old at this point. It seemed odd at the time, since she was notably married to Celeborn at the time, and it was shocking that she abandoned him without a thought.

Turns out she didn’t give up on him, because as she tells young Theo in Episode 7, Celeborn has been dead for quite some time. It was a step too far for me because it was a groundbreaking moment that doesn’t fit the character that Prime Video built.

Could Galadriel, who canonically has no major issues with Gil-Galad, be at odds with her parent due to the natural tensions that exist between powerful entities? Sure. This breaks the canon but does not necessarily violate the spirit of the character. But, would one of the most powerful elves that ever lived, who in this very show is on an all-consuming mission to destroy Sauron because he killed his brother Finrod, just say “Well, I guess my husband died” and move on? No. It makes no logical sense for her to have this attitude.

(Image credit: Prime Video)

This means we have to completely forget about her husband’s existence for the show to work. After all, why else would she agree to go to the Undying Lands? If Celeborn is still here, then she has no reason to leave Middle-earth, meet Halbrand, take Halbrand to Numenor, and now take him to the elves in Lindon so he can be cured.

This all happens because Halbrand is likely Sauron, which is also a break from canon but less consequential depending on how the plot is executed. Either way, Celeborn’s existence would throw a wrench in The Rings of Power’s plot, so they discarded him because it serves their purposes.

(Image credit: Matt Grace/Prime Video)

Celeborn will almost certainly return, given that we literally saw him played by Marton Csokas in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. Movies are one of the few things Amazon has the rights to, so it doesn’t make sense for them to kill it forever and damage the Lord of the Rings cinematic script. But I guess we don’t see him coming back until Sauron is revealed; in fact, he might even be the one to point out who the Dark Lord in disguise is.

The Rings of Power timeline doesn’t make sense

Along with Galadriel, the other thing McCay and Payne destroy is the timeline of events. Seems a little odd, considering the appendices give them the right to use any characters they need to make this show work. However, I think they do it for two reasons.

(Image credit: Matt Grace/Prime Video)

First, there is the question of what makes good television. This story focuses on the forging of the Rings of Power, and (presumably) the fall of Numenor and the defeat of Sauron by the Last Alliance of Elves and Men. It’s a story that takes place over thousands of years, which means that your favorite human and Harfoot characters, even the dwarfs Durin III and IV, could potentially die over the course of the series. Only the elves would be guaranteed to survive.

This probably posed a problem for the showrunners because they may have felt – with some justification – that people need to connect with characters to enjoy a show and can’t if characters are constantly dying. Not everyone has the courage to kill their darlings. Given that McCay and Payne are such fans, one would hope that they’ll stay true to the source material, but given that this whole story seems set to unfold just a few years from now, that’s clearly not the case.

(Image credit: Ben Rothstein/Prime Video)

But the other reason the show may mess up the timeline could be because of what it has the rights to. Specifically, he has no rights to the Akallabeth of the Silmarillion, although he did show a great wave crushing the island nation in one of this season’s episodes, which they may have only had the rights because Faramir dreams of the wave in The Lord of the Rings books.

Because Amazon doesn’t have those rights, I think the series will eventually do something different. Numenor will still fall, but maybe we don’t see the actual wave. Perhaps Elendil will already be in Middle-earth when this happens rather than frantically escaping on ships with his sons Isildur (who is currently presumed dead) and Anarion (whom we haven’t met). Sauron will certainly be involved in the creation of the Rings and the fall of Numenor in a way that differs from the established canon of The Silmarillion and Unfinished Tales, as that is something the show has already changed. There’s no reason to assume they’re going to stop now.

The Rings of Power destroys canon to make a TV show, and I don’t want to be part of it

The reality of The Rings of Power is that other than names and locations, nothing is accurate. Yes, Sauron will eventually forge the One Ring (centuries later), but this story is, in essence, completely made up, and we just have to accept it.

What we don’t need to do is look at it. If you’re a Tolkien fan, this story isn’t for you and we should have guessed once we figured out what Amazon actually has the rights to.

(Image credit: Ben Rothstein/Prime Video)

If you’re someone who just wants to watch a good TV show, you don’t have to put up with the wrong beat. It’s truly shocking that a show that’s condensed millennia into hours sometimes feels so slow. Nor do you need to accept your intelligence being insulted by the inclusion of Harfoots (because why would you watch without Hobbits?) or the series’ reluctance to tell a full story in an effort to ensure that you connect with the characters.

Finally, none of us need to accept how certain characters are treated by The Rings of Power. It should have been the story of Galadriel, a mighty elven ruler who commands a ring of power. Instead, it’s the story of an immature, underdeveloped leader who simultaneously killed many people in an effort to get revenge while forgetting his partner’s existence short of a throwaway comment. It’s not fair to us, or to Galadriel, and I don’t want to be a part of it anymore.

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