Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power episode 3 ending explained — who is Adar?

Ismael Cruz Córdova (Arondir) with a torch in a dark area in Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
(Image credit: Ben Rothstein/Prime Video)

Well, there you have it. Kinda. As Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power episode 3 ended, we got a glimpse at Adar — as Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova) was dragged to him. But, as you might have noticed, we didn't see much.

For those who have been keeping track of all the rumors about TROP, Adar's arrival marks a pivotal moment for the series. We'll explain more below the spoiler warning below. 

But for now, get ready to learn everything already exposed about Adar, who seems to be a key figure in the first season of Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. If you're ready to, that is.

Who is Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power's Adar?

An image indicating spoilers are ahead.

Joseph Mawle will be in Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

(Image credit: Prime Video)

For a while, Lord of the Rings fans were wondering who the big bad of the season would be. And then Fellowship of Fans leaked word that Joseph Mawle (seen to the left here) is playing the primary antagonist for this season. In that thread, FoF stated that Adar is a "fallen Elf." That classification of fallen Elf makes sense, because of the questioning surrounding why Orcs would refer to their leader with an Elvish name.

There is no confirmation that Mawle is Adar, though, because — yes — we haven't seen him yet. At the end of The Rings of Power episode 3, we saw Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova) trying to escape, but held off. The orcs then brought Arondir to Adar, but we only saw a blurry face. 

Unfortunately, we can't give you a lot more than this. Why? Because Adar is one of The Rings of Power's new characters.

There is also a chance, of course, that Adar may be a form of Sauron. 

All that said, we bet we'll get confirmation of all of the above — minus any reveal of if Adar is in fact Sauron — next week. So, stay tuned to Tom's Guide as we continue to track The Rings of Power and see what's going on with Prime Video's Tolkien series.

Now that the whole season is aired, check out our guide to Rings of Power season 2 when you're ready.

Henry T. Casey
Managing Editor (Entertainment, Streaming)

Henry is a managing editor at Tom’s Guide covering streaming media, laptops and all things Apple, reviewing devices and services for the past seven years. Prior to joining Tom's Guide, he reviewed software and hardware for TechRadar Pro, and interviewed artists for Patek Philippe International Magazine. He's also covered the wild world of professional wrestling for Cageside Seats, interviewing athletes and other industry veterans.