THE RINGS OF POWER And The Strategy Of Calculated Tension

For the most part, the success of a television show is linked to the degree of involvement it is able to generate in the audience, in its ability to hold their attention for thirty, forty, fifty minutes or even more, arousing in them the most diverse feelings: fear, amusement, anguish, emotion. In some cases, the success of certain shows has been apparent from the very beginning, even from the pilot episode of the series: just think of the case of Lost, the highly successful television series that kept millions of viewers around the world glued to their television screens between 2004 and 2010. 

The pilot episode – for which an astronomical amount of money was shelled out – and the subsequent ones aroused so much admiration that the series, barely a few months after its launch, had already taken on the appearance of a cult product, generally enjoying great success with audiences. The quality of a show, in most cases, can be sensed quite easily from the very first episodes, especially if one takes a critical look at the level of cinematography, dialogue and overall enjoyability. 

A divisive show 

Such a strategy seems to have been used-successfully-by the producers of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, the new Amazon series that began in September and is now in the final episodes of its first season. For the first five episodes, the series had aroused mixed impressions, divided between warm appreciation and ill-concealed skepticism, between those who called it slow, boring, and those who immediately admired its high cinematic level, especially in terms of effects, but also in terms of the excitement of seeing stories projected on the screen that until then had long remained buried among Tolkien’s dusty writings.

With the sixth episode, launched a few days ago, everything changed. A part of the skeptics suddenly changed their minds, expressing all their appreciation for a scintillating episode that fully met their initial expectations (which had perhaps, up to that point, been partially disappointed), while everyone else was simply left speechless, not knowing exactly how to react or how to shape their thoughts.

In this episode, in fact, the producers drew on the vast Tolkenian repertoire – in which Peter Jackson’s films must necessarily be included – to give life to an extremely lively and emotionally charged content, capable of provoking genuine accelerated palpitations in all the most passionate fans, those who had read the books and all those who had loved “The Lord of The Rings” trilogy, released in theaters many years ago now. The strategy of calculated risk-or rather, of calculated and well-calibrated tension-has thus enabled this series to gain the sympathies of skeptics, or at least of that segment of the audience that until the sixth episode had not yet managed to form a clear opinion. 

Tension on the web 

Among these constant swings of tension, a crucial role was played by social media, and the world of the web in general. Indeed, for about a year prior to the launch of the pilot episode, the web was inundated with previews, teasers, and content of various kinds intended to raise the general level of tension among the public, which then found a natural outlet with the release of the first episodes. And by the time of the release of the sixth, when the audience’s spirits seemed to have quieted down (perhaps even too much), the episode “Udun” was launched, which once again changed the game cards and irresistibly raised the level of tension. 

Such strategies to increase people’s involvement are certainly not uncommon, particularly online: one industry that owes a good part of its success to the intensity of emotional tension levels is certainly that of gambling, which for some time now has managed to offer even online the same patterns of entertainment that have distinguished land-based casinos for decades, while maintaining unchanged all the incredible fascination aroused by the game. 

Through the best casino bonuses, in particular, the world of online gaming always manages to generate extremely intense and unexpected emotions, particularly because of the possibility (always electrifying) of redeeming rich and exclusive bonuses and employing them immediately to try one of the many online games offered by the site, all of which are extremely safe and carefully selected by a team of experts. 

The enjoyability of a form of entertainment, regardless of its different characterizations, always depends on the level of tension it is able to generate in the hearts of the audience.