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Why Sauron Had To Take The Form He Did In The Rings Of Power According To J.D. Payne

Contains spoilers for "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" Season 1, Episode 8. Reader beware!

Long before names like Aragorn and Frodo Baggins would be hailed as heroes for overcoming unparalleled evil, the folks of Middle-earth's Second Age had to battle against a dangerous returning darkness. Once thought to be defeated for good, the Dark Lord Sauron reemerged with sinister plans to make the entirety of the world submit to his will. This is the plot of "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power," which just concluded its inaugural season on Amazon Prime Video.

For those who've followed along since the start of the eight-episode Season 1, the "Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" finale proved one of the most intriguing installments of the bunch. Not only did it inch us a bit closer to figuring out the identity of the mysterious Stranger (Daniel Weyman) and feature the source material-contradicting forging of three rings of power, but it finally revealed where Sauron has been this entire time. As it turns out, Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) was the Dark Lord all along.

Now that Sauron has revealed himself on "The Rings of Power," showrunner J.D. Payne has explained why he and his team took the Halbrand route.

Sauron's connection to Galadriel had to run deep

In an interview with Esquire following the "Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" Season 1 finale, J.D. Payne discussed the big twist that Sauron and Halbrand are one and the same. As he explained, this shocking reveal didn't come out of absolute obscurity. Rather, it actually stems from J.R.R. Tolkien's literary works. The quotes "I perceive the dark Lord and know his mind, or all his mind that concerns the elves. And he gropes ever to see me and my thought. But still the door is closed," and "Instead of a Dark Lord, you would have a queen," from Galadriel were all he and the team needed.

As Payne told the publication, "All of these things spoke to a long history with darkness and more specifically with Sauron. So we asked, 'Would we like to figure out some kind of relationship between them?'" With that concept in mind and the fact that Sauron can take many different forms, the "Rings of Power" crew ran with it. They filled out the details of how Sauron and Galadriel would meet, how the Dark Lord would act during his grand deception, and other key details. Thus, the version of him we see under his Halbrand alias (that's not canon to the Middle-earth books) was born.

"The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power" Season 2 is on the way, though it can't come soon enough. One can only hope it'll reveal more about Sauron and explore "Halbrand's" fractured relationship with Galadriel further.