‘The Wheel of Time’: Who Is the Dragon Reborn in the TV Series, and Is It the Same Character in the Books?

Prime Video’s The Wheel of Time TV adaptation is working its way through the first few books in Robert Jordan’s best-selling fantasy series. And the most recent installment dropped a huge reveal, one that’s pivotal to the overarching plot. The Wheel of Time Episode 7 finally divulges which character is the Dragon Reborn. Is it the same person who claims the title in the source material?

[Warning: This article contains spoilers for The Wheel of Time Episode 7.]

‘The Wheel of Time’ TV series and books center on the Dragon Reborn

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The entire premise of The Wheel of Time — whether you’re discussing the TV series or the books — hinges on the Dragon Reborn.

Moiraine (Rosamund Pike) arrives in the Two Rivers searching for this reincarnation of the hero who can stop the Dark One from rising. However, she finds five children who could claim the title rather than just one.

Throughout season 1, viewers are left wondering which of the characters holds the fate of the world in their hands. Episode 7 gave them the answer. So, who is the Dragon Reborn in Amazon’s adaptation?

Who is the Dragon Reborn in the TV series?

L-R: Marcus Rutherford (Perrin Aybara), Madeleine Madden (Egwene al’Vere), Josha Stradowski (Rand al’Thor), Zoë Robins (Nynaeve al’Meara) in 'The Wheel of Time' Episode 7.
Marcus Rutherford, Madeleine Madden, Josha Stradowski, and Zoë Robins in ‘The Wheel of Time’ | Jan Thijs/Amazon Content Services LLC and Sony Pictures Television Inc.

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The Wheel of Time Episode 7 reveals that Rand al’Thor (Josha Stradowski) is the one Moiraine has been searching for. Although the TV series made it seem equally possible that any of the kids from the Two Rivers could be the new Dragon, Rand makes a lot of sense.

Not only does Rand sometimes showcase a darker side — a quality that left Moiraine wondering if Mat was the chosen one (Barney Harris) — but his backstory explains why Loial (Hammed Animashaun) called him an Aielman earlier in the series. As it turns out, Tam (Michael McElhatton) isn’t Rand’s real father. He found him following a battle at Dragonmount, where Rand’s mother survived just long enough to give birth to him.

Rand’s revelation answers one of the show’s biggest questions, but it also clears something up for fans: whether or not the series planned on sticking with the book’s Dragon Reborn.

Is Rand the Dragon Reborn in the ‘Wheel of Time’ books, too?

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Viewers wondering whether or not The Wheel of Time TV series would stick to the books now have an answer. Rand was also revealed to be the Dragon Reborn at the end of The Eye of the World, so it looks like the adaptation won’t diverge too far from the original story. That said, the show didn’t allude as heavily to Rand’s background as the novel.

Of course, with the series’ book accuracy, many fans won’t find episode 7’s twist surprising. However, actor Josha Stradowski is happy he won’t have to keep Rand’s true identity a secret from newcomers any longer. In an interview with Entertainment Weekly, he expressed his excitement about finally digging into the character’s big arc:

“We started shooting two-and-a-half years ago, so I’ve known it for a very, very long time. It’s a relief, I must say. Reading the books, I’m aware of his arc and I’m really excited that his real arc has finally started. Now he knows who he is, and that changes everything. If you are the one that has the ability to save or destroy the world, that’s huge.”

That certainly does put a lot of pressure on Rand. So far, he’s handling it pretty well. Whether that will last through The Wheel of Time finale remains to be seen — but if we had to guess, it’s likely something will shake things up ahead of season 2.

The first seven episodes of The Wheel of Time are currently streaming on Prime Video.