True Identity Of Rings of Power’s Stranger Discussed By Showrunners

The Rings of Power showrunners have hinted that the Stranger may not be Gandalf.

By Joshua Jones | Published

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season one has wrapped, and it has left many fans wondering where the story will go next now that the mysterious stranger has seemingly been revealed. While Halbrand was shown to be the Dark Lord himself, Sauron, the stranger was revealed to be a “good wizard.” This has led many fans to speculate whether he is the future Gandalf. According to The Rings of Power showrunners, that may not be the case.

During an appearance on The Official The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power podcast(via Movie Web), showrunners JD Payne and Patrick McKay discussed the ending of Rings of Power season one and the stranger reveal. Payne teased that wizards in The Lord of the Rings world are known to “be good and bad” and that they are in “the same class as Sauron.” After McKay followed it up by stating that wizards and Sauron are both “Maiars,” Payne continued to suggest that wizards can exist on both sides of the moral spectrum and that there is a possibility that they could act as allies to Sauron.

Although many fans have theorized that Rings of Power season one hints at the stranger being everyone’s favorite gray wizard, the showrunners seem to suggest that the person at the end of season one may not be a “force for good.” Payne also stated that The Stranger’s journey will continue, and the reveal may be an “open question.” For fans who want a definitive answer, then this will undoubtedly frustrate them.

Regardless, it’s safe to say those who watched Rings of Power season one will probably come back to see what happens to The Stranger. They already had a terrific time speculating on whether Halbrand was indeed Sauron, a question that was asked after a cryptic exchange between Halbrand and Adar. The showrunners have teased that Sauron will have a significant presence in the story in the future, so at least fans don’t have to worry about not having a follow-up to what was the season’s greatest mystery.

As noted by MovieWeb, there is the possibility that Rings of Power season one has just set up Saruman the White as The Stranger. In Lord of the Rings, Saruman is already corrupted by the power of Sauron and seen as “the White.” Although The Stranger appeared to be a good wizard, future seasons may show his downfall and how he eventually became an agent of evil for the Dark Lord.

We’ll have to wait a while before Rings of Power definitively reveals who The Stranger turns out to be. The second season has just begun filming and is not expected to release on streaming until 2024. Of course, this gives fans enough time to speculate on where the story is heading and how Sauron’s presence will impact future seasons.

Season one of Rings of Power had the most viewers for a Prime Video premiere, according to Amazon. The show received mostly positive reviews from critics who were pleased with its cinematography, visuals, and musical score. Fan engagement for Rings of Power was mainly due to mysteries surrounding the identities of The Stranger and Halbrand.