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“This is a labor of love”: The Rings Of Power Showrunners Address Criticisms Toward Season 1

Lord of the rings: The rings of Power

Prime Video’s The Rings of Power showrunners, Patrick McKay and J. D. Payne, respond to criticisms against the first season. Serving as a prequel to the events in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings, The Rings of Power is a five-season installment from Amazon.

Lord of the Rings - Rings of Power Galadriel
Morfydd Clark as Galadriel, The Rings of Power

The series is set in the Second Age of Middle-earth, thousands of years before the original trilogy. The show has already earned a lot of negative reviews despite only airing six episodes. Fans criticized even the minutest details from the Elves’ hairstyle to aesthetic choices. It also does not help that it received low scores on Rotten Tomatoes.

RELATED: Fans Call The Rings of Power ‘Woke’ for Not Following the Source, Slam House of the Dragon as Woke for Following the Source – What Do You Want?

The Rings Of Power Showrunners Respond To Show’s Negative Reception

Lord of the Rings teaser
The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

Showrunners McKay and Payne spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about these criticisms and what they have learned while filming the first season. The duo is still hopeful that the series will meet the viewers’ expectations.

McKay: Some of what’s been hardest to hear is the cynical point of view that this is a cash grab. It’s like, oh my God, the opposite. This is the most earnest production. This is not a paycheck job for anybody. This is a labor of love. Some people had nice things to say about the pilot and second episode, or they didn’t have nice things to say, but I hope they stay for more episodes. The bar has to keep going up.

Payne: One of the big things we learned was even when it’s a small scene, it always has to tie back into the larger stakes. Some things get an immense amount of critical acclaim, and win tons of awards, and are forgotten the next year. Conversely, some things don’t get a lot of love yet become classics being watched 60 years later. I think it’ll take a while for the dust to settle.

Establishing a story usually takes a couple of episodes before things fall into place, and this is the same situation for The Rings of Power. So far, Episode 6 has been well-received, as compared to the previous ones, which indicates that the series is finally setting the tone and laying the groundwork for the next episodes.

RELATED: Is Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings Racist? Backlash to POC Characters in The Rings of Power Proves Tolkien Fanatics Adhere to an Outdated Fantasy That Needs to Change

The Stakes Are High, The Competition Gets Tight

Lord of the Rings Rings of Power
Prime Video’s The Rings of Power

Rumors of a more action-packed season two might keep audiences invested in the series but an epic episode of battles and swords clashing does not guarantee anything, especially after the backlash about diversity and casting.

Note that Prime Video’s The Rings of Power is one of the most expensive series ever created for television, with a whopping $1 billion budget. The pressure to gain and retain high viewership is Amazon’s main priority, especially now that HBO’s House of the Dragon viewership skyrockets every episode.

RELATED: House Of The Dragon Showrunners Comment On LOTR: The Rings Of Power Competition

Written by Ariane Cruz

Content writer at FandomWire.