Throughout its first season The Rings of Power proved its commitment to the world of LotR, including superb detail and some striking visuals throughout its episodes.
Many viewers have highly praised the show's re-creation of Middle-Earth. Showing parts of the world fans have never had the opportunity to see before on screen; including Númenor, Khazad-dûm and the formation of Mordor.
However, one scene particularly has especially caught the attention of the show's fans, earning the title of one of season one's most pause-worthy moments. And it's all to do with the Galadriel/Sauron reveal.
[Warning: Spoilers Ahead]
The scene in question is featured halfway through the season's last episode, titled 'Alloyed'.
The episode finally sees the start of the rings of power beginning to be forged; the three destined for the race of elves. However, as Halbrand assists Celebrimbor, Elrond, Galadriel and the rest of their elf kin in the forging of these rings, Galadriel grows suspicious of his true intentions.
Upon interrogating Halbrand directly, it is then that Galadriel learns of his true identity. The dark lord she has been searching for all along, Sauron himself.
Sauron attempts to invade her mind. Deceiving her with a vision of her dead brother Finrod but Galadriel is not fooled by it. He continues to persuade her with his words, bending the truth to his side, as the pair float in an illusion on the raft where they met, the camera pans to their reflection in the water, depicting them not as they are but as Sauron imagines them both, revealing his true form.
The shot is visually inventive, retrospective and memorable, giving the full effect of its intention, yet only lasting mere seconds.
Why this moment is so important in the series
The reason this visual has inspired so many of the show's fans is because of how exactly it captures the imagination of its audience. Not only making it clear of Halbrand's true nature, but visually echoing the long-awaited reveal the season had been keeping viewers guessing the whole way through.
What's more, the scene itself holds a deeper meaning within the story. Galadriel has wrestled with the darkness inside of her for so long, as is discussed from the moment we meet her in episode one. And in some ways, Sauron and Galadriel are very similar.
As one insightful fan states, after rewatching the scene several times, "they are both the same as they are opposite". Galadriel may have 'touched the darkness' (as she confesses on several occasions) but in some ways by helping her, Sauron has also touched the light. They are contrasting reflections of each other, depicted perfectly in this one shot, good next to evil.
Shipping Galadriel and Sauron
As well as the scene's visually inspiring imagery fans unusually found the creative symbolism as a reference to the pair's relationship. The two character's arc has gone almost full circle, as the stranger she initially did not trust, began to become a close ally throughout the season. Only for Galadriel again to lose faith in him after he fully revealed himself, becoming an enemy she did not recognize.
Galadriel and Sauron may have a complicated connection, but they are closely linked all the same. This has led to fans announcing their desire to see more of an affectionate relationship between the two characters.
Admitting as unexpected as it may be, it's a relationship they certainly ship. Or as one fan announced, "they're the power couple we didn't know we needed". Clearly, the scene has promoted more than just a deeper ideology of both characters for its fans.