The tide has turned on The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power. In the season one finale, “Alloyed,” a powerful evil is revealed as new alliances are formed. 

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The Mystics are The Ascetic (Kali Kopae), The Nomad (Edith Poor) and The Dweller (Bridie Sisson). They find the Stranger (Daniel Weyman) in the Greenwood. They call him master and reveal … he is Lord Sauron. 

EREGION

Elrond (Robert Aramayo) and Celebrimbor (Charles Edwards) are on their way to report to High King Gil-galad (Benjamin Walker) about their failure to obtain the mithril when Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) and Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) arrive. While the healers tend to Halbrand, Elrond and Galadriel catch up on their journeys. They promise to support each other now that they’re both in low places. 

Halbrand isn’t down for long before Celebrimbor finds him in his workshop. He has heard of Celebrimbor and his amazing work. He is excited to be in his presence. Halbrand sees the mithril and asks what they are doing with it. Celebrimbor doesn’t tell him much, but says it’s not enough. Halbrand suggests that they combine the ore with a lesser alloy. Celebrimbor is afraid that will dilute the ore’s power. Halbrand suggest the right alloy would only amplify the qualities. He’s seen smiths combine metals to harness strength and hide flaws. Celebrimbor is intrigued. 

In Númenór, Pharazôn (Trystan Gravelle) gathers the building guild’s apprentices. He says the king will die one day and they will raise the black flags. He is letting the apprentices spend an hour with the King to sketch his likeness so that they can one day build a statue in his honor. 

The King wakes up while Eärien (Ema Horvath) draws the King’s face. He thinks Eärien is Míriel (Cynthia Addai-Robinson). He tells her that they must return to the old ways or their world will fall. Eärien runs to get help and the King disappears. He emerges from a secret room and tells Eärien to see for herself. Eärien walks into the secret room and finds the Palantír.

ALLOYED

Elrond and Gil-Galad examine the mithril on The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – 108 Richard Aramayo (Elrond), Benjamin Walker (High King Gil-Galad). Courtesy of Prime Video, Copyright: Amazon Studios

Celebrimbor and Elrond tell Gil-Galad and Galadriel about their plan to combine the mithril with an alloy that should enhance its power. They decided to make a crown because a circular item would allow the power of the mithril to feed into itself. Gil-Galad’s only concern is that they are out of time. The darkness is spreading throughout the leaves on their tree. Gil-Galad doesn’t think it will work. 

Celebrimbor protests and reveals that Halbrand’s suggestion helped him see that it will work. He gets passionate when talking about how this is a new power they are creating. It is the power of spirit, over the flesh. It is a power of the Unseen World. But it’s not enough. They are out of time. Gil-Galad orders everyone to return to Lindon.

Galadriel questions where Celebrimbor’s passionate words come from. He’s still a little flustered and says those were his words. She asks what happened to him. He says it doesn’t matter. It’s over. 

Elrond chases down Gil-Galad and asks him to give him three months to make the plan work. Gil-Galad has no confidence in the plan. Elrond reminds him that he said “hope is never mere. Note even when it is meager.” Gil-Galad gives in and Celebrimbor gets to work, with Halbrand assisting. 

Galadriel keeps a close eye on Halbrand. She asks one of the elves to find any information about the last kings of the Southlands, but to keep it quiet. She finds Halbrand nearby and he expresses his delight to be working with Celebrimbor. He thanks her for saving his life and will never forget how she supported him. And he won’t let anyone else forget it either. 

A POWERFUL FOE

The Ascetic and the Nomad tell the Stranger who he is and what he can do. They say his memories will return in time. They show him the Hermit’s Hat that has a constellation etched in it. It’s the same constellation that the Stranger is looking for. The Ascetic says they will find those stars in the East where the stars are strange. It’s in a place called Rhûn. And it’s there that the Stranger will become who he’s supposed to be. 

As the Mystics talk about Sauron’s strength, the wind picks up to speeds the Mystics can’t handle. The Dweller puts him to sleep to stop the winds. They decide to bind him until he can control his powers. 

Nori (Markella Kavenagh), Sadoc (Lenny Henry), Poppy (Megan Richards) and Marigold (Sara Zwangobani) watch the Mystics tie up the Stranger, but there are only two of them in sight. Marigold distracts them with an owl whistle. When she leaves her spot, she finds a body. It’s the Stranger. At the same time, the Dweller reveals herself to Nori, stabbing Sadoc in the stomach.

The Mystics surround Nori and attempt to harm her. The wind picks up and the Stranger approaches them. They tell him to calm down as the Harfoots try to flee. Two of the Mystics fall, but the Dweller stands against the Stranger. She holds a staff and appears to be more powerful than he is. She throws him around while the other two go after Poppy and Marigold. Sadoc emerges and helps them get away.

The Dweller knocks out the Stranger and the Ascetic tells her to make him see. She approaches the Stranger when Poppy and Marigold start throwing rocks at her. The Dweller drops the staff and Nori picks it up. The Dweller is distracted by Poppy and Marigold and starts lighting things on fire.

THE OTHER

The Dweller raise her staff on The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – 108 Courtesy of Ben Rothstein/Prime Video, Copyright: Amazon Studios

The Stranger wakes up and sees Nori coming toward him. She hands him the staff, telling him to get up. Speaking perfect English, he tells her to get away from him. He doesn’t want to hurt her again. The Mystics showed him who he is. Nori says only he can show who he is. She knows he’s there to help. 

The Stranger takes the staff and puts out the fire. The winds pick up again as the Mystics approach him. He tells them to go back to the shadows. The Mystics realize that he is not Sauron. He is the other … the Istar. The Stranger says he is good. He uses the staff to illuminate the night sky. The Mystics’ true form shows as they disintegrate into the sky. The staff disappears as well.

Nori and the others are safe. Sadoc reveals that he is dying, but he’s okay with it. He will get to see his wife again. For now he wants to sit and watch the sun come up. The others sit with him and watch, including the Istar.

Far away, Elendil’s (Lloyd Owen) ship returns to Númenór. He checks on Míriel , who is adjusting to her blindness. She is worried about him and his grief for Isildur (Maxim Baldry). She would understand if he wanted to take leave. Elendil says he didn’t know the cost of saving Galadriel, but he will make sure it is worth it. The ship sails into the harbors of Númenór. Elendil and Míriel make their way to the deck but everyone is silent. Míriel demands to know what they see and Elendil has a hard time telling her. The ships in the harbor all have black flags raised. At the same time, Pharazôn is in the tower, standing over the King’s body. 

THE LAST KING OF THE SOUTHLAND

Celebrimbor has problems combining the mithril with different alloys. Galadriel tells him to stop for the night. They are pushing themselves too hard. Her words make Halbrand realize that they are forcing the metals to join. The metals have to be coaxed. Celebrimbor is excited and tells his team to reset everything. They also figure out they have to make two smaller items.

Galadriel gets the information she asks for about the Southland Kings. She leaves the workshop and Halbrand follows. She reveals that she knows the last king died without an heir. Galadriel demands to know who Halbrand really is.

Galadriel and Halbrand remember their journey differently. He says she saved him, but he actually saved her. He said he found the crest on a dead man and he did. She says he convinced the Queen Regents to go to war, but that was actually Galadriel. Halbrand wanted to stay in Númenór.Galadriel asks for his true name. He’s been awake since before the breaking of the first silence and has had many names. Galadriel attacks him and is transported back to Valinor

MISUNDERSTOOD

Halbrand from The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – 108 Charlie Vickers (Halbrand). Courtesy of Prime Video, Copyright: Amazon Studios

Galadriel hears her name and thinks Halbrand is talking to her until she sees Finrod’s (Will Fletcher)  face. Seeing him makes her smile. Finrod says he’s proud of her for taking up his task. She thought his task was to hunt down Sauron, but he says he was protecting peace, just like Sauron. Finrod says Sauron was seeking a power to save Middle Earth the same way Elrond and Celebrimbor are doing now. He also tells her to touch the darkness once more. Galadriel knows this is not her brother so she gets up and leaves. Finrod gets angry and yells at her to look at him.

Galadriel is transported back to the raft that she shared with Halbrand. She knows now that he is in fact Sauron. He says when Morgoth was defeated, he felt like a tight fist released his neck. He knew if he was going to be forgiven, he would have to help heal everything he ruined. Galadriel says nothing can make up for the evil things he’s done. According to Sauron, that’s not what she said before. She said he could be free of those things after their victory. He thought the past meant nothing weighed against their future. 

Sauron seeks a future with Galadriel as his Queen, fair as the sea and the sun; stronger than the foundations of the Earth. She told him that they were brought together for a purpose and this is it. She binds him to the light and he binds her to the power. Together they can save Middle Earth. She asks if they would save Middle Earth or rule it. Sauron doesn’t see a difference. 

Galadriel refuses his offer and this angers Sauron. He says without him, her people will fade.The shadow will spread and cover the world. She needs him.  He reminds her that the Elves sent her away for her insolence. What will they do when they find out she is an ally of Sauron? That he lives because of her.  Galadriel says he will die because of her and tries to stab him. He transports her into the water, tied to a pole from the raft. 

THREE BRINGS BALANCE

Galadriel thinks she is drowning until she hears Elrond call her name. She wakes up in the Gladuin River. He helps her out but she pulls her dagger on him, thinking it’s Sauron again. She asks how they first met. He says it was at Seaside when he was first orphaned. Galadriel gave him water. She starts to cry realizing the nightmare is over.

Elrod says Celebrimbor is nearly finished. Galadriel runs to the workshop and Elrond follows her. He asks her where Halbrand is. She says he’s gone and will not return. If he does, they need to stay away from. Elrond wants to know what happened. Galadriel says she made a mistake but can’t tell him. She asks him to trust her.

Celebrimbor asks if they should proceed. Galadriel says they need to make three items. One will corrupt, two will divide, but three brings balance. This power must be for the elves alone, untouched by other hands. Celebrimbor says the purity of the lesser metal is crucial. It must be silver and gold from Valinor. The only gold and silver they have from Valinor is Finrod’s dagger.

THE PATH AHEAD

Nori says goodbye to her family on The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power

The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power – 108 Sara Zwangobani (Marigold Brandyfoot), Dylan Smith (Largo Brandyfoot), Beau Cassidy (Dilly), Markella Kavanagh (Nori)
Courtesy of Ben Rothstein/Prime Video, Copyright: Amazon Studios

The Stranger doesn’t quite remember everything, but he knows he needs to go to Rhûn to discover who he is. Nori suggests that the Mystics are wrong but something about it feels true. She asks what Istar is. He says in her tongue, it means “wise one,” or 

“wizard.” Nori is sad that he isn’t traveling with them, but sometimes their path is laid out by powers greater than their own. The Stranger says it’s their task to make their feet go where their hearts wish not to tread. Nori says it sounds like an adventure. She’s had enough adventures for the time being.

The Harfoots are preparing to leave again, but this time, the Brandyfoots tell Nori to go with the Stranger.  She’s a part of something bigger now and the Stranger needs her. Nori says her goodbyes to everyone. Her parents say they are proud of her and they know she will be okay. Poppy has a hard time saying goodbye. She says everyone she loves leaves her. Nori says if they didn’t go, they would never learn anything new. 

The Stranger asks if she’s sure that she wants to go and she is. She doesn’t turn around because then she would never leave. So he tells her to lead them. She’s unsure of which way to go so the Stranger picks the way because the air is sweeter. When in doubt, follow your nose. (Ok Gandalf)

Galadriel reluctantly gives Finrod’s dagger to the smith. The metals are combined and the smiths begin weaving three rings. While they work, Elrond goes back to the Gladuin River and finds the scroll that Galadriel dropped. He reads it and returns to the workshop. When he gets there, Celebrimbor is setting the last of Fëanor’s jewels into the rings. Galadriel sees the scroll in Elrond’s hands, and doesn’t look at him anymore. He looks at her with disappointment and worry in his face. 

e is set. Galadriel sees the scroll in Elrond’s hands and a look passes between them. 

And far away in the southern lands, Sauron watches the lava continue to flow from the volcano. He’s in Mordor.

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You can watch the entire The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season one on Amazon Prime.

 

 

 

Noetta Harjo
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