In the latest episode of The Rings of Power, titled ‘The Eye’, we see a small glimpse of a Balrog, beneath the large caverns of Mithril and the Dwarven city of Khazad-dum. The creature might play a bigger role in the next season.
A Balrog is a powerful demonic monster in The Lord of the Rings universe. The most popular Balrog in the franchise is Durin’s Bane, which appeared in J.R.R Tolkien’s first novel, The Fellowship of the Ring, and in the film by the same name. The Fellowship encountered this Balrog in the Mines of Moria, where it attacked them and eventually killed Gandalf.
Balrogs are tall, powerful and menacing beings who have the power to shroud themselves in fire, darkness and shadow. These creatures have appeared in Tolkien’s other novels set in Middle-Earth, including The Silmarillion.
During the First Age of Middle-Earth, Balrogs were the most feared of Morgoth’s forces. Their power came from their angelic nature and were called Maiar.
In the final moments of The Rings of Power episode 7, we see a small glimpse of a Balrog beneath the Dwarven city of Khazad-dum. This Balrog is most likely the same Balrog which will eventually be responsible for Gandalf’s death in Fellowship of the Ring.
In the books by Tolkien, this Balrog is the only one to have survived Morgoth’s defeat because it fled east and hid itself in the roots of the Misty Mountains, until it was discovered by the Dwarves of Khazad-dum years later.
This means that the Balrog we see in The Rings of Power is the same Balrog that survived Morgoth’s defeat and was eventually encountered by The Fellowship years later.
From the glimpse, we can expect to see the Balrog in action pretty soon. The Rings of Power is hinting towards it, with the younger Durin swearing that when he will be king, he will mine mithril and bring prosperity.
However, if the Balrog wakes up soon, it will be a diversion from Tolkien’s canon. The appendices of The Return of the King mention that the Balrog buried itself really well and was not discovered by the Dwarves until the Third Age, which is outside the timeframe covered by The Rings of Power.
But then again, the show is already including events that took place over thousands of years of history, merging them into one generation. This means Durin’s Bane could have an important role to play in the next season as a potential threat.
About The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is an American TV series, based on the novel by J.R.R. Tolkien, developed by J.D. Payne and Patrick McKay for streaming on Amazon Prime.
Set 3,000 years before the events of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, the show will be set in the Second Age of Middle-earth. Beginning with a time of peace, the series will follow the rise of the Dark Lord Sauron and the forging of the rings of power.
The cast includes Robert Aramayo, Owain Arthur, Nazanin Boniadi, Morfydd Clark, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Markella Kavenagh, Joseph Mawle, and Dylan Smith among many others.