Movies & TV Shows

The Rings Of Power Showrunner Addresses Pacing Criticisms

The Rings of Power showrunner J. D. Payne hopes that, despite Season 1’s slow burn pacing, viewers will stick around for the adventures ahead.


Warning: SPOILERS ahead for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 1, episode 7.The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power showrunner J. D. Payne has acknowledged audience criticisms of the show’s slow pacing. The Prime Video title is a sprawling series that explores the rise of Sauron in the Second Age of J. R. R. Tolkien’s Middle-earth, the same setting as The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. While the series began by focusing on Galadriel’s hunt for Sauron and her eventual involvement in fighting Orc armies in the Southlands, it quickly branched out into other stories transpiring at the same time. These tales include a group of Harfoots discovering a man that fell out of the sky, Dwarves discovering mithril that Elves wish to use, and a multitude of arcs featuring characters from the island nation Númenor.

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The ensemble series has faced criticism throughout its run from audiences for numerous reasons. At the start of the season, Amazon halted The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power reviews on their platform for the first three days, citing racially-charged trolling due to the diverse makeup of the show’s cast. Dedicated Tolkien fans have also critiqued the show for what they believe are inaccurate character designs, such as having beardless dwarf women or Elves with long hair. Among this sea of condemnation is the notion that The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is too slow-paced and isn’t covering enough ground in its first season.

Related: The Rings Of Power’s Balrog Tease (& Canon Problems) Explained

In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power showrunner J. D. Payne addressed criticisms that the show’s pacing was too slow. Payne believes the pacing chosen for the series is accurate to Tolkien’s world, and that viewers should continue to stick around for what’s to come. Check out what Payne said below:

I hope that people can key in for the journey. A lot of blockbusters have a breakneck pace where you’re wheeled from one set piece to the next until it all collapses under its own weight. Tolkien will take his time and let you sink into characters, to a journey, and journeys can be hard in Tolkien. I hope people will have the patience to settle in for a Tolkien epic.

What To Expect In The Rings Of Power Finale

With The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power‘s season finale airing next Friday, it appears as though the buildup of the last seven episodes will be worth the wait. Payne invokes Tolkien directly in what he says, setting the stage for a final episode that will justify the season’s pacing. Episode 7 ended with the revelation that the Southlands are truly Mordor, alongside declarations from such heroes as Númenor’s Queen Míriel and Galadriel that Adar’s Orc armies have not seen the last of them. The episode also left audiences with a mystery, as Isildur, the boy who is destined to act as a catalyst for the events of Middle-earth’s Third Age, is nowhere to be found after Mount Doom’s eruption.

While The Rings of Power‘s slow pacing may be frustrating for some audiences who want to know where the story is headed sooner, Payne’s response is reassurance that there is a method to the methodical. Payne confirmed in June that The Rings of Power is planned all the way through season 5, which will likely be its final, with his most recent statement clarifying the commitment behind everything in the series. With Season 2 of the show now in production, worries about the show’s pacing could be addressed in the new season’s structure. Or perhaps Payne and co-showrunner Patrick McKay won’t let critics influence their vision for The Rings of Power‘s presentation.

Next: The Rings Of Power Reveals Who REALLY Named MordorSource: THR

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