Warning: This article contains spoilers for The Rings of Power season 1 finale.
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power concluded its eight-part first season in suitably epic fashion today with a villain reveal we were all expecting, but that still came as a huge surprise. While the emergence of Sauron was the prequel series’ worst-kept secret, it still came as a shock to many fans when Charlie Vickers’ Halbrand was outed as the legendary dark wizard in disguise.
Now that Sauron is on the scene we can expect things to heat up to Mount Doom levels when the show returns for its much-anticipated second season. That’s what executive producer Lindsey Weber is promising, anyway. While unpacking the explosive finale in an interview with Deadline, Weber had a brief tease to make about what fans can expect in Rings‘ sophomore run, including that it’s set to be “fundamentally different” and much darker and scarier. As she put it:
“Season 2 is fundamentally different in that our main villain is out and about, and doing his thing. I think in some ways, it’s going to grittier, more intense, maybe a little scarier.”
Episode 8 revealed that the new King of the Southlands was really Sauron all along, which is a huge betrayal to both Galadriel and the audience, who had already fallen for what they assumed was an original character created for the show. Although, even now they know he’s evil incarnate, some can’t seem to find in their hearts to hate him, instantly creating an army of Sauron stans in the process.
As for season 2, the good news is that filming has already begun on it this October. The bad news is that, despite this, additional episodes won’t be with us for a long while yet as the first batch took two whole years to produce. In the meantime, you can rewatch all of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 1 on Amazon Prime Video.