A Guide to THE WHEEL OF TIME’s Main Characters

The Wheel of Time arrives on Prime Video soon. An adaptation of Robert Jordan’s sprawling fantasy book series of the same name, The Wheel of Time comes with a stack of important characters, locations, and terms. If you’ve read the books, or even only the first book, The Eye of the World, you know what you’re in for. But if you don’t know the books and feel intrigued by The Wheel of Time trailers you’ve seen, you might want more information. Though we know you can figure out relationships and basics from context, we’re here with a spoiler-free guide to The Wheel of Time‘s main characters.

Rather than one or two main characters, The Wheel of Time has an ensemble cast. That core group waxes and wanes over the books, but for season one, nine characters are likely the most important.

Moiraine Damodred
Prime Video

Moiraine is to The Wheel of Time what Gandalf is to The Lord of the Rings. A powerful Aes Sedai of the Blue Ajah, Moiraine has been on a quest to find the Dragon Reborn. She follows a prophecy about this reincarnated figure from an Aes Sedai sister and wants to find him or her before the Dark One can. Moiraine is a reserved guide figure overflowing with quiet wisdom and strong talent for the One Power. She’s kind of intimidating to the youths she brings into her journey. But Moiraine always has the greater good at heart.

Played by: Rosamund Pike

Lan al’Mandragoran
Prime Video

A Warder to Moiraine, Lan is so much more than meets the eye. Stoic and often serious, Lan is bonded to Moiraine; he protects her and fights by her side. His skills with a sword help save the day more than once. Lan shows loyalty to his traveling companions and values anything and anyone Moiraine deems important. Their bond isn’t romantic, though that is the case with some Aes Sedai and their Warders, but it is far greater than friendship.

Lan’s past is mysterious… until it’s not. We’ll leave it at that.

Played by: Daniel Henney

Nynaeve al’Meara
Prime Video

Moiraine’s quest takes her to the Two Rivers, specifically the village of Emond’s Field. However, it seems like the TV series only references the Two Rivers. There she finds Nynaeve, Egwene, Perrin, Rand, and Mat. Moiraine thinks one of these youths could be the Dragon Reborn, though Nynaeve is a few years too old to fit the prophecy.

Nynaeve is the village’s Wisdom and a leader despite her young age. As such, she looks after her home and its citizens with ferocity. She can predict the weather, a valuable skill in a farming community, and heal sickness and injuries. Others look to Nynaeve for assistance and direction in times of need. Egwene in particular admires Nynaeve.

Played by: Zoë Robins

Egwene al’Vere
Prime Video

Seemingly a ta’veren (in the TV series) who shows promise as a potential apprentice to Nynaeve, Egwene is strong-willed and determined. We think she might be a ta’veren because Moiraine considers her a candidate to be the Dragon Reborn. She’s the innkeeper’s daughter too, so she knows all the comings and goings since The Winespring Inn is the village’s only such establishment. Of the group, Egwene may be the only one who’s okay with having to suddenly leave home with Moiraine. She wants to see more of the world, and while she won’t accept her fate if it doesn’t align with what she wants, she’s more… flexible than the others.

Oh and her and Rand have a whole thing, which trailers indicate the TV series is making more overt.

Played by: Madeleine Madden

Perrin Aybara
Prime Video

An apprentice to the village blacksmith, Perrin is constantly moving and thinking deliberately. He kind of has the temperament of an Ent, and that’s a compliment. Taller and burlier than his friends, Perrin is mindful of not abusing his strength. He constantly worries about accidentally hurting others. Averse to violence and conflict, Perrin’s gentle and honestly, just too pure to get swept up into Moiraine’s mess. But he’s also a ta’veren, someone who can affect the Wheel’s Pattern.

Played by: Marcus Rutherford

Rand al’Thor
Prime Video

Another ta’veren (yes, it is highly unusual to find more than a single ta’veren in the same out of the way village), Rand is the son of a farmer. He adores his father Tam, who seems to be a good single dad aside from keeping some important secrets from his son. When Rand’s not helping on the farm, which is a little outside of Emond’s Field, he spends time with Egwene. He likes his home and has a vision of staying in Two Rivers always and raising a family of his own.

Reader: as you might guess, that’s not in the cards anytime soon.

Played by: Josha Stradowski

Mat Cauthon
Prime Video

Part of the best bud trio with Rand and Perrin, Mat is more devil-may-care than either of his more responsible friends. Always ready to throw dice or pull a prank on some unsuspecting person, he gets himself into trouble all the time. Truly, all the time. Real Pippin from The Lord of the Rings vibes here. He’s curious and not at all worried about consequences. Also a ta’veren, Mat is not really about leaving home either. As you can imagine, Moiraine has a great time trying to keep Mat in one piece.

Played by: Barney Harris (for season one)

Thom Merrilin
Prime Video

A talented gleeman, essentially this world’s version of a fancy bard, Thom Merrilin is the living definition of someone who knows the ways of the world. He’s well-traveled, having performed as a gleeman in common rooms across the land, even playing in the odd royal court. Thom serves as a mentor to the Emond’s Field youths in the books, offering his guidance and his skill with throwing knives in moments of danger.

Played by: Alexandre Willaume

Prime Video

First of all, you need to know Loial is the best. A long-lived non-human being called an Ogier, Loial is a spritely young Ogier in his 80s-90s. He’s a scholar who constantly has his nose in a book. Even while he’s riding a horse. When Loial runs into Moiraine and her companions, he’s intrigued by their ta’veren status and knack for constantly finding adventure—usually dangerous adventure. Loial provides stalwart and true friendship and multiple books worth of knowledge to the group.

We don’t know what Loial will look in the TV series yet.

Played by: Hammed Animashaun

The Wheel of Time premieres on November 19 on Prime Video.

Featured Image: Prime Video

Amy Ratcliffe is the Managing Editor for Nerdist and the author of A Kid’s Guide to Fandom, available now. Follow her on Twitter and Instagram.

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