Who is The Dweller in LOTR: Rings of Power? Could The Dweller be Sauron?

Is The Dweller Sauron
Bridie Sisson has caused a stir in Middle-Earth as The Dweller (Image credit: Amazon Prime)

The Dweller finally made her debut in the fifth episode of The Rings of Power and at last fans have a name to put with the mysterious face that has sparked huge amounts of online debate. 

And in this week's seventh - and penultimate - episode of the big-budget series, we got a dark and sinister glimpse of her true powers...

Ever since we caught a glimpse of her unsettling visage in the trailers, there has been much speculation as to whether the pale-faced woman played by Bridie Sisson (Netflix's Cowboy Bepop) could be Sauron, so we take a look at the evidence...

One thing we do know about 'The Dweller' is that she's tracking The Stranger - or 'Meteor Man' - as some have dubbed him, who crashed landed from the sky in the first episode of the series. 

This leads us to wonder whether The Dweller and The Stranger come from the same place and whether his 'starfall' was a result of him trying to escape her clutches. Just like Nori and her family, we've become fond of The Stranger over the weeks and it seems unlikely he's a villain. 

After witnessing the unbridled carnage she dished out to the harfoots, the same can't be said for The Dweller, although it seems the pair are definitely linked. Yet why is she hunting The Stranger so desperately? 

We think it's likely she's either the Dark Lord himself or one of his servants, but which is it? 

Tolkien experts know Sauron disguised himself as an elf called Annatar before tricking Celebrimbor into forging the rings of power — so is 'The Dweller' simply a pseudonym? 

Sauron began his life as a Maiar and this new character certainly has an otherworldly appearance. Could this be what Sauron looks like after being corrupted by Morgoth, but before taking on the terrifying form we saw in Peter Jackson's Lord of the Rings film trilogy? A female Sauron would certainly be an interesting twist for the series. 

The Rings of Power's executive producer Lindsey Weber also added fuel to the online rumor mill by refusing to deny The Dweller and the Dark Lord were one and the same when she spoke to TIME recently. 

“We are enjoying all the speculation online and can tell you Bridie Sisson is an incredible actor,” she said. “We also thought fans might like to know that her character is traveling from far to the east — from the lands of Rhûn…” 

Rhûn lies in the far eastern part of Middle-earth and is where Sauron spent some time consolidating power among the Easterlings who live there. Very little is known about the region and even Gandalf had never explored there, while Aragorn visited once, although his trip was not documented. 

What we do knows is that the Easterlings were a human race that followed Morgoth during his wars with elves and men. They were also loyal to Sauron during his rise to power...

As if getting a first glimpse of The Dweller wasn't exciting enough, viewers were also introduced to two other new characters, companions of the Dweller — The Ascetic and The Nomad, played by Kali Kopae and Edith Poor respectively. 

We're not sure if Sauron would travel with companions during this mission, so could this trio of pale-faced women be some of Sauron's lieutenants from Rhûn? Or is she the Dark Lord herself? We can't wait to find out next week...

New episodes of The Rings of Power arrive on Prime Video every Friday.

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Sean Marland

Sean is a Senior Feature writer for TV Times, What's On TV and TV & Satellite Week, who also writes for whattowatch.com. He's been covering the world of TV for over 15 years and in that time he's been lucky enough to interview stars like Ian McKellen, Tom Hardy and Kate Winslet. His favourite shows are I'm Alan Partridge, The Wire, People Just Do Nothing and Succession and in his spare time he enjoys drinking tea, doing crosswords and watching football.