Empire Magazine Releases Multiple Rings of Power Covers
The “Rings of Power” promotional campaign has been a slow burn, to say the least. We got a burst of exciting info in February with Vanity Fair’s first look, a slew of character posters, and the closely following Super Bowl trailer …and then silence. Dead air from the studio apart from a few leaks and minor reveals (Theo, anyone?)
As June kicks off, we’re finally starting to pick up some speed, and the conversation is heating up right along with the added velocity. On the 1st of the month, Empire magazine dropped images on social media for four exclusive upcoming “Rings of Power” themed covers.
Let’s break them down, shall we?
Warrior Galadriel strikes a pose
The first picture shows a moody Galadriel, played by Morfydd Clark, in armor. And when we say armor, we mean armor. The future Lady of Lorien is decked out from neck to toe in metal plating and chain mail.
She’s holding a dagger (likely her Two Trees blade) and has a monstrously long sword strapped to her back. She’s sitting down, glaring at the screen and has all of the aura of a she-Elf with a bone to pick. (We’re looking at you, Sauron.)
Prince Durin IV and Disa
The next cover transports us into what we can safely assume is Khazad-dûm. The shot shows Owain Arthur’s Prince Durin IV and Sophia Nomvete’s Princess Disa sitting in a pair of high-backed chairs.
The happy couple is holding hands and looks nothing short of blissful. Durin’s even sporting a raised eyebrow and a bit of a grin.
The overwhelming tone of the picture can be boiled down to one word: gold. The yellow glow is on everything in the scene, from clothing to furniture to the walls themselves. The aesthetic is nothing short of the opulence and serenity one would expect from the Dwarves at their height.
Next up, we’ve got the Harfoots — plural. The third cover shows a rustic, Hobbit-y background of moss, hills, and woods.
Standing in the foreground are three Harfoots: Markella Kavenagh’s “Nori” Brandifoot and the newly announced Megan Richards’ Poppy Proudfellow and Sir Lenny Henry’s Sadoc Burrows. While these are fun faces to see, members of the Fellowship of Fans staff have already pointed out that the Hobbit names themselves feel a bit like poor fan service pumped through a random name generator.
Cognomens aside, the image is very proto-Shire-esque. As an added bonus for the sharp-eyed, there are also a number of mushrooms growing on the ground around them — which any Tolkien aficionado knows is a Hobbit-favorite food staple.
John Howe’s Sketch
Last but not least, we have Empire’s exclusive subscriber cover — and it’s quite different from the visually finalized first three. The azure panel features a sketch of the infamous ice troll from the “Rings of Power” trailer. It also reveals that the concept art comes from none other than the venerable pencil of Tolkien artist and illustrator John Howe, himself.
Howe has an interview in the upcoming magazine, too. It’s nice to see the veteran still coming up with visuals for the upcoming Middle-earth adventure.
A Hint of More to Come
All four of these covers are sure to spark a lot of conversation in the Tolkien community. They continue the slow reveal of the different headless character posters from earlier in the year — something that was highlighted in the Fellowship of Fans live reaction breakdown on YouTube.
All that said, the reaction hasn’t been universally one of approval or rejection. Both extremes are showing up in full force — something that is becoming all too common in the lead-up to the show’s reveal.