Galadriel actor Morfydd Clark talks Rings of Power episode 6: "I wasn't obsessed with people liking her"

Galadriel in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
(Image credit: Amazon)

Warning: the following contains spoilers for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power episode 6. Turn back now if you haven't seen Amazon's latest trip to Middle-earth!

An epic battle, characters uniting for the first time, and the eruption of Mount Doom; The Rings of Power's latest episode deliver thrills in droves. Much of the action was led by the Elven warrior Galadriel, who arrived back on Middle-earth after a long few weeks on the island of Númenor. She rode to the Southland's rescue alongside Halbrand, winning the battle and taking down the villainous Adar. And yet, despite her heroics, we saw a dark side to Galadriel as she confronted the twisted Uruk, and threatened to exterminate his so-called "children". 

Total Film caught up with Morfydd Clark, who plays Galadriel, to discuss the new episode. We primarily spoke about her scene with Joseph Mawle's Adar, as well as her character's growing relationship with would-be King of the Southlands, Halbrand, who fans suspect may be Sauron. Here's our Q&A, edited for length and clarity.

Total Film: A lot of things come together this episode, especially when Galadriel faces Adar. What's going through Galadriel's head at that moment?

Morfydd Clark: When I was cast as Galadriel, I was so excited about exploring this element of her – that she's not a saint, and she's from a family that has caused a huge amount of damage, and she realizes that she can only fully be in control of the side of her that could be twisted towards evil, as seen in the Third Age with Frodo. To show that side of her and for Adar to really... She's the closest to speechless she could ever be because he really truly sees her. It was really exciting to have what we were exploring with Galadriel, that she was not perfect, and she had this darkness inside of her and we have that come to a peak, which is what that scene felt like. 

I'm also just obsessed with knowing more about the orcs. I'm part of that part of the fandom. When I knew we were exploring them more deeply, I thought that was going to be fascinating because also the Elves are controlling, and at times, they don't see everyone as valuable as each other. I thought that was really cool. I like that she's not perfect – even though she's pretty close.

One of her first scenes in the season is her chasing after Sauron, willing to sacrifice the Elves she's with for the great good. In this scene with Adar, he confronts that, saying she's a "mirror to Morgoth". It feels like Galadriel's anger goes to another level.

I wasn't obsessed with people liking her. And this is what's so special about the character of Elrond. He's half Elven. He's kind of summer. He's different. The Elves don't make people comfortable. And they are weird. So it's been really nice to explore that side of it and particularly explore that likeability isn't necessarily part of her power. Her deepest fear is being evil. And that's because it's not unimaginable. And for her to be truly seen by the person that she sees as one of the most evil is so confronting.

Also in this episode, we have more overt sexual tension between Galadriel and Halbrand.

Cosmic tension.

He's like, "I enjoy riding with you," and she's all, "And I enjoy riding with you, too." How conflicted do you think Galadriel's in that scene? I mean, he might be Sauron, but also, he's a human man, and the Elves can't cross that barrier.

There was a lot of discussion between me and [Halbrand actor] Charlie [Vickers] about, "How would these two characters express, honestly, how they felt and be vulnerable?" We tried it a few times and, basically, we got to the point where we were like, "They can't really look at each other, that would be too much for them." It was really fun to film that. And I loved the way that [director] Charlotte [Brändström] did it. There was a real simplicity to it because what they were saying was so massive. I think for Galadriel, whenever she feels anything, that's frightening to her because she knows that, when she feels, she can do a lot. And she doesn't always know whether that will be for good or bad because she's made mistakes in the past. That's also something quite relatable. It's always terrifying to tell someone how you feel. And I felt I felt like we'd kind earnt that moment between them. And I'm really glad that we didn't push it too much.

Next week, we catch up with Morfydd Clark once more to talk about Galadriel's surprise revelation in the upcoming episode 7 (no spoilers here, but there's a lot in store for Galadriel). In the meantime, for more from the actor and the rest of the show's cast, check out our behind-the-scenes look at the making of The Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power.

Jack Shepherd
Freelance Journalist

Jack Shepherd is the former Senior Entertainment Editor of GamesRadar. Jack used to work at The Independent as a general culture writer before specializing in TV and film for the likes of GR+, Total Film, SFX, and others. You can now find Jack working as a freelance journalist and editor.