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Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power stays true to Tolkien’s environmental message says Elrond actor Rob Aramayo

“If a character tries to supersede the natural process, Tolkien usually punishes them” the actor who plays esteemed elf Elrond explains

In our world today there is no bigger issue than the climate crisis. And so it’s only right that the biggest TV show of all time addresses the problem.

According to Rob Aramayo, who plays the elf Elrond – a younger version than that seen in the existing Lord of the Rings film trilogy – the environmental message was deeply rooted in Tolkien’s writing.

“One of the things I really love about what Tolkien tries to teach us is about respecting and honouring the natural world, and the natural process of things,” Aramayo tells The Big Issue.

“In the legendarium [Tolkien’s collected mythology] if a character or a group of characters try and supersede the natural process, Tolkien usually punishes them. So I feel like we could all learn something about respecting the natural world, and that’s something that’s really important.”

Aramayo is no stranger to ginormous fantasy shows – or playing younger versions of notable characters. In the final season of Game of Thrones he played Ned Stark in a series of flashback scenes. For Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, he certainly did his research and speaks like a Tolkien scholar.

He explains why setting the story in the Second Age of Middle-earth is such an interesting time: “because it’s a time when we don’t have much information, which is something really fun to play with in terms of the story perspective.”

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Relations between elves and dwarves were, Aramayo says, as good as they ever get – though constantly fluctuating, naturally. But there is another powerful message about the importance of different people coming together.

Aramayo explains: “It speaks to an interesting time in Tolkien’s history. For example, in the First Age, most of the stories involve some elven elements. Elves are everywhere, the great kingdoms at the First Age are all elven. Then in the Second Age, elves are not as prominent, but they’re more prominent than they are in the Third Age.

“It’s a time where the other races really come into their own and are going to, essentially, inherit the earth.

“So it’s the beginning of that acknowledgement that the world is a different place now. And we’re right at the beginning there.

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“Ultimately, the strength of Tolkien and why eventually they manage to overcome enormous troubles with dark lords and things like that, is because they realise that together, with a mix of immortality, mortality, men, dwarves, elves and halflings, you can achieve strength as opposed to being fractured.

“That is the journey of the Second Age.”

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is available to watch on Prime now with a new episode weekly

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