The end credits of Netflix’s The Dragon Prince are coupled with black and white illustrations of the characters and tableaus of the world. Some of them depict funny moments, like a guard eagerly eating his breakfast food, and a tadpole version of Bait the glow toad. Others tease a mysteries to be resolved in season two and beyond — we’re still thinking about that lingering shot of the magical mirror.
One of the illustrations depicted an elf who didn’t appear in the first nine episodes. Of course, fans very quick to imagine the elf’s place in the world, and the prevailing theory has him connected to Runaan in way that could be a major revelation if true. So we asked head writers Aaron Ehasz and Justin Richmond if there was any truth to the rumor.
[Ed. note: This post contains spoilers for the first season of The Dragon Prince.]
Viewers who went directly from The Dragon Prince to their blogs believe that this mystery elf (dubbed “Tinker” by the fan community) could very possibly be Runaan’s boyfriend. All-ages animation on Netflix has started to allow more representation, and with the reveal of canonical LGBTQ characters on other Netflix-animated-favorite Voltron, fans are eager for possibilities in other shows.
The first credits illustration depicts the nameless elf making two sets of necklaces, which match the pendant that Runaan has around his neck (none of the other elves are depicted with these pendants). In the penultimate episode, Runaan gets sucked into Viren’s coin, and during the credits we see an illustration of the same elf crying. While some fans have theorized that these necklaces are some form of Moonshadow elf romantic bonds, others think that this mystery elf is Runaan’s brother or other family member.
Head writers Aaron Ehasz and Justin Richmond wouldn’t confirm the identity of the mysterious credits elf, but Ehasz did say that the images all tease parts of The Dragon Prince’s greater story — and that they’re there for people to ponder over and figure out.
“We want people to see them, we want people to theorize and react. We want them to connect the dots,” he told Polygon. “I think there’s a lot already there.”
Ehasz added that one of the big things he learned as a writer on Avatar: The Last Airbender is how smart the audience is when it comes to picking up on details.
“That means that as a writer, it’s worth paying attention to those details and leaving them there for that amazing audience,” he said.
The team at Wonderstorm had previously released a statement regarding the diversity of the world, stating that the series would have characters of different races, characters from different family structures, characters with disabilities, and, yes, LGBTQ characters.
Some of these characters’ stories play out in ways that clearly demonstrate their difference or representation right away — as for other characters, it may be part of their identity, but not yet a part of their plot or storyline.
While there’s not yet confirmation of Runaan’s identity, it’s something that lots of fans are hopeful to see in upcoming seasons of the show.