The Lord of the Rings: Are Harfoots in Rings of Power Actually Hobbits?

The new The Lord of the Rings TV series The Rings of Power is quick to throw out big concepts from J.R.R. Tolkien's vast mythology, ones that fans of the books and Peter Jackson's films will easily navigate. Elves, Sauron, Dwarves, and Middle-earth at large are quickly thrown back into the mix for viewers but the first episode also adds in another wrinkle that may leave some confused, the Harfoots. Though they're seen a short, stocky people who love to eat and also have hairy feet, some viewers weren't sure if these folks were Hobbits or not, and the short answer is, yes, they are.

In the same way that there are multiple variations of Elves in The Lord of the Rings, there are also variations of Hobbits. Tolkien's world includes three different species of Hobbits, The Stoors, The Fallohides, and The Harfoots. Throughout the ages of Middle-earth though the three different species would mostly meld together after The Shire and Hobbiton were founded, though what defines the Harfoots (living underground, big hair feet) would largely become the traits of Hobbits as a whole. One famous example of the other Hobbit species in Tolkien's work would be Smeagol (who would become Gollum) being one of The Stoors, part of the species of Hobbits that were more taken by water than their cousins.

In The Rings of Power the Harfoots are seen on screen living within Rhovanion, the plains/forest area of Middle-earth that sits east of the Misty Mountains and also includes Mirkwood. Though the Harfoots are present in Rhovanion, the first two episodes of the series make it clear that they're preparing to migrate. We can only assume, based on where The Shire and Hobbiton are located on the Middle-earth map by the time The Lord of the Rings takes place, that they'll be heading west and may very well plant their roots for good.

So yes, for those curious, Harfoots are Hobbits, and they're once again central to a story set in Middle-earth. It also sure seems like they've stumbled upon a wizard that will become a part of their journey. 

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How to Watch The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

The new series can only be streamed on Amazon Prime Video, be it directly through an internet browser or on a Prime Video app on a Smart TV or other device. The series is only available to watch for Amazon Prime subscribers, available on a monthly or annual subscription, but you can sign up for it here.