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[SPOILERS] Rings of Power: Ah, Mithril, that's the good stuff!


Corvinus85
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I loved this episode. Considering how much I've been down on the Southlands this season, I was surprised how invested I was in the battle. I was also surprised by how gritty and brutal the battle got.

But things really picked up once the Numenorians arrived and especially in that Adar/Galadriel scene. Adar is such a great villain and I love what they've done with the Orcs so far.

I'm still on board the Halbrand is Sauron train. It provides another explanation for why he wants to kill Adar so badly, and it explains Adar's ominous "who are you?" I expect Halbrand simply looks different than Sauron used to. But who knows? If he is Sauron, it will be great that they set up this romance with Galadriel.

9/10. Best episode so far. And it didn't even have the dwarves!

Edited by Caligula_K3
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24 minutes ago, Heartofice said:

Oh I posted in the wrong thread. 
 

Long story short, I thought this episode was embarrassing, absolute amateur action directing. I think maybe this show is actually bad.

I think you may be onto something.

They got a volcano to erupt by pouring water into it.

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If you go on the Reddit page, every topic is about figuring out who Sauron is haha.

The most interesting theory I’ve seen is that when Adar “split” Sauron, his spirit manifested in several different people. I think that would be a cool twist, but—and I say that as someone who likes the show—I don’t think the writing is that complex.

For all the criticism of ROP, if there’s one thing you have to give it credit for, it’s that it found a way to make you sympathize with the orcs. That’s one hell of an accomplishment.

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I'm no volcanologist but can volcanic eruptions be triggered by pouring a small river into the chamber? :P 

Edit: I suppose the water turning into steam would raise the pressure inside the chamber, but would that result in the lava the river just came down violently bursting outward?

Obviously Sauron had used his magic to plan all this, but it would be nice to see some actual magic. The Stranger is the only character so far who has done magic feats.

Edited by Corvinus85
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I just realized that the Numenoreans came at the village from the east. The sun was behind them, they came with the dawn. In fact, it was still dark in the village when the orcs burst into the tavern. So the Numenoreans circled around the mountains and came from the east, and got there right in the nick of time. The Eagles are amateurs when it comes to showing up in the nick of time.

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When the episode started with Arondir triggering the tower that is kept standing by a rope and that collapses on demand onto the invading army, I thought that it couldn't get more stupid than that. But then the episode ends with the sword that  opens the dam than activates the volcano. Just wow.

Btw, why did the orcs wanted the broken blade so badly if all they needed is to deviate the river? And how did the Numenóreans know which town in the Southlands they needed to ride to? This show really requires to turn your brain off.

I'd really like to know what Tolkien would say of this Galadriel that promotes genocide and threats to murder prisoners in order to obtain confessions. Such a nice lady.

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17 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

I thought EP6 was the best so far.

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So if Halbrand is Sauron, why didn’t Adar recognize him?

Despite being a villainous orc-man, there’s something I like about Adar. He has depth.

If the story is correct, then Sauron created a new body for his return.

One imagines that for this silly thing to work they would go somewhat along those lines:

- Sauron does a lot ring-forging nonsense in the north and fail all the time. He gets angry and desperates and starts sacrificing Orcs by the scores until Adar has had enough and crushes his head while Sauron is distracted.

- Sauron had a plan in place to take on a fair human guise to set himself up as the King of Men after he had forged his powerful ring thing. To the end, the nonsense about 'the Return of the Rightful King' was spread in the Southlands and elsewhere.

- Sauron is ... stricken or pissed or disappointed about the fact that his supposedly loyal followers betrayed him. Even more so over his failure to forge his super powerful ring thing. He returns in the guise of the guy he planned to be, weirdo insignia and all ... but he doesn't know whether he wants or can enact his plan of world domination now.

- When Galadriel encounters him he is truly on the way to nowhere, possibly even into the West to finally get even with Manwe.

The show will now tell the story how Sauron slowly realizes he can make his ring thing, after all. His positive attitude towards Galadriel would then not be fake but rather genuine interest. She is going to help him find himself again, to relearn how to be Sauron the Dark Lord again.

Adar's plan to create Mordor would have been part of Sauron's original plan ... but is now usurped by Adar who simply wants to create a home for the Orcs while Sauron intended the land to become the stronghold of his empire.

Episode as such was pretty boring. I think I really have moved beyond cliché battles taking place in small villages and towers. That kind of thing no longer captures me at all.

Also - Númenóreans weren't that great riders, more like Roman legions.

Also didn't like Galadriel's irrational and fan fiction-like Orc hatred. No sane person would argue against the Orcs right to exist if put forward in this manner. A more grown-up way to write something along those line would have to point out how fundamentally corrupt and twisted the Orcs are - Adar showed it himself in his treatment of the people at the tavern. There is no mercy there, no compassion, nor restraint.

Whether that's enough to argue or genocide is difficult to say ... but it would have been a lot better than the hateful rant we got. Even more so since the Orcs as such didn't do all that much to Galadriel and her family.

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Just now, The hairy bear said:

When the episode started with Arondir triggering the tower that is kept standing by a rope and that collapses on demand onto the invading army, I thought that it couldn't get more stupid than that. But then the episode ends with the sword that  opens the dam than activates the volcano. Just wow.

It is almost as this thing was a videogame turned into a movie. Get the magical weirdo thing before the evil ones get it and USE IT TO ACTIVATE THE VOLCANO. I'm sure it is not really Sauron, it is GANON!

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8 minutes ago, Lord Varys said:

If the story is correct, then Sauron created a new body for his return.

One imagines that for this silly thing to work they would go somewhat along those lines:

- Sauron does a lot ring-forging nonsense in the north and fail all the time. He gets angry and desperates and starts sacrificing Orcs by the scores until Adar has had enough and crushes his head while Sauron is distracted.

- Sauron had a plan in place to take on a fair human guise to set himself up as the King of Men after he had forged his powerful ring thing. To the end, the nonsense about 'the Return of the Rightful King' was spread in the Southlands and elsewhere.

- Sauron is ... stricken or pissed or disappointed about the fact that his supposedly loyal followers betrayed him. Even more so over his failure to forge his super powerful ring thing. He returns in the guise of the guy he planned to be, weirdo insignia and all ... but he doesn't know whether he wants or can enact his plan of world domination now.

- When Galadriel encounters him he is truly on the way to nowhere, possibly even into the West to finally get even with Manwe.

The show will now tell the story how Sauron slowly realizes he can make his ring thing, after all. His positive attitude towards Galadriel would then not be fake but rather genuine interest. She is going to help him find himself again, to relearn how to be Sauron the Dark Lord again.

Adar's plan to create Mordor would have been part of Sauron's original plan ... but is now usurped by Adar who simply wants to create a home for the Orcs while Sauron intended the land to become the stronghold of his empire.

Episode as such was pretty boring. I think I really have moved beyond cliché battles taking place in small villages and towers. That kind of thing no longer captures me at all.

Also - Númenóreans weren't that great riders, more like Roman legions.

Also didn't like Galadriel's irrational and fan fiction-like Orc hatred. No sane person would argue against the Orcs right to exist if put forward in this manner. A more grown-up way to write something along those line would have to point out how fundamentally corrupt and twisted the Orcs are - Adar showed it himself in his treatment of the people at the tavern. There is no mercy there, no compassion, nor restraint.

Whether that's enough to argue or genocide is difficult to say ... but it would have been a lot better than the hateful rant we got. Even more so since the Orcs as such didn't do all that much to Galadriel and her family.

My hope is that if Halbrand is Sauron, there’s some kind of twist that makes it more complex than just “Mwahahaha I was evil all along!”

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4 minutes ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

My hope is that if Halbrand is Sauron, there’s some kind of twist that makes it more complex than just “Mwahahaha I was evil all along!”

Something like that must be coming there. Or at least one hopes. The Annatar character also has such vagueness to a point. In different texts Tolkien is not really clear whether Sauron was evil the entire time - then he would have taken on the Annatar persona only to seduce and corrupt - or whether he was even deceiving himself to a point, thinking he was doing everything not so much for himself but for the benefit of all.

There is something of that there in Adar's story about Sauron, when he mentions that he wanted to rebuild the world, bring perfect order, etc.

The problem with this thing is that Sauron-Annatar always worked two fronts at the same time. He was the Lord of Gifts sucking up to people, working with the Elven-smiths in Eregion ... while at the time he was also building Barad-dûr in Mordor. He was always both a tempter and helper and a Dark Lord - although the good guys didn't realize that until it was too late.

But the interesting thing there is that one could write Annatar-Sauron as a guy who also doesn't present himself as a Dark Lord-like monstrous ruler to the Orcs but more like a guy who even wants the best for them. Building a better world for all with him in his wisdom helping everybody to reach his or her full potential.

The show has resolved this so far by using Adar as a stand-in for the Orc-ruler, but one wonders how this is going to go as the story progresses. They could keep Adar around until after Sauron has forged the One Ring or at least until he and Celebrimbor have figured things out and Sauron leaves for Mordor to forge the One while Celebrimbor starts and finishes the Three in his absence.

But they could also have Sauron become the ruler of the Orcs in a nice guy shape. Difficult to say.

Although I imagine Halbrand-Sauron must either reveal he is more than he appears - or create a completely new persona - to be taken seriously by Celebrimbor. Galadriel could bring him back to Lindon, of course, but would Celebrimbor and the other smiths truly want to work with some human. What could he possibly teach them? And if he could teach them stuff would they still believe him to be a mere human?

Not very likely.

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17 hours ago, Scott_N said:

. Quite where all the money has gone I don't understand either.

I mean, it's all on screen - The CG and VFX stuff

18 hours ago, Scott_N said:

It's funny how we watch the very same things yet see them so differently.

That's all art, isn't it? And no, I think it's reasonable to assume the folk from numenor would arrive, but I thought Arondir's fate could have gone either way, and same with Brownwyn & Theo, which is why it had stakes to me.

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9 hours ago, karaddin said:

The Elvish watch tower having a mechanism in it to demolish the dam attached to it that used Sauron's sword as it's key felt more than a little contrived - why would that be there?

I thought it was pretty obvious that wasn't original or intended. Arondir and the villagers set the trap before they left. Take out some stones, replace them with wood that only has to hold temporarily until it's triggered, and you can take out a chunk of the orcs and retreat.

9 hours ago, karaddin said:

Unless the dam part was meant to already be there and the Elves just built their watch tower on top of it.

I assume so. The other advantage of Arondir's plan is, it takes the key away from the lock.

 

9 hours ago, karaddin said:

The evil villagers dressed as orcs also worked for giving the good villagers their moment of triumph but having it be a false triumph in multiple ways. I think my biggest issue here runs into a problem I've had at other times in depictions, the size of these Southland villages are just so small. Nowhere feels like it's even close to large enough to support the populations that should be living there.

The number of villagers is somewhat inconsistent, as is the number of orcs in Adar's army: there are too many of the former after the battle, too many of the latter after the fortress falls. But sweating the details is missing the point, for me. The issue is, does it tell a fun story? Sometimes this series does that, sometimes it doesn't. This episode wasn't bad in that respect. Do the battle tactics all make sense? No, of course not. It's a fantasy series. Spectacle and heroic feats are and should be preferred over realism. And it works better as a story for the villagers to die defending their home, rather than a fortress that's largely been a symbol of their oppression until now.

I also love the villagers dressed as orcs, but 'evil' is the wrong word for them: they were scared and manipulated into what they did. The point is to illustrate the futility of war, that the enemy are people too: Adar alludes to this with the orcs but the disguised villagers literalise the point. Like most fantasy, the series wants to have its cake and eat it too - spectacular battles for the viewers to enjoy but also War Is Hell messaging. I'm OK with that.

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15 minutes ago, mormont said:

I also love the villagers dressed as orcs, but 'evil' is the wrong word for them: they were scared and manipulated into what they did.

They were clearly taken in by Adar's promise of 350,000,000 extra turnips per week.

 

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The end of this episode didn't make sense to me, perhaps somebody can explain to me what it is I'm missing?

Sauron's plan is to turn the Southlands into Mordor, starting with re-activating the now dormant Mount Doom. But to activate the volcano, he needed the water from the damn at the watchtower, which would travel through some tunnels built by his orcs. But the tunnels were built under Adar's leadership and the show has repeatedly made it clear that Adar hates Sauron and wants to forge his own path. So why would Adar continue going along with Sauron's plan by constructing the tunnels?

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I'm not going to be as hard on this episode, as others have been. I liked the events of the episode in the moment, but after the fact logically things began making less and less sense. This episode has characters teleporting and showing up in places they should have no idea is in danger, not to mention the villagers randomly knowing how to fight so well against orcs.

I wasn't too upset about the creation of Mt. Doom, because................magic, lol

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2 hours ago, mormont said:

I thought it was pretty obvious that wasn't original or intended. Arondir and the villagers set the trap before they left. Take out some stones, replace them with wood that only has to hold temporarily until it's triggered, and you can take out a chunk of the orcs and retreat.

Just to be clear, I didn't mean the tower itself falling in Arondir's trap - the entirety of what I was discussing there was the dam and the rest of the complex collapsing when the key is turned. I did leave off part of why that felt contrived to me though which is that I have to assume taking the water to Mt Doom is Adar's plan as the construction of the channels and drainage canals wasn't part of the original dam construction, so I'm just left feeling this whole self destruct mechanism keyed to Sauron's sword is a bit much. It probably wouldn't have bothered me if I was otherwise enjoying the episode, but

2 hours ago, mormont said:

This episode wasn't bad in that respect. Do the battle tactics all make sense? No, of course not. It's a fantasy series. Spectacle and heroic feats are and should be preferred over realism. And it works better as a story for the villagers to die defending their home, rather than a fortress that's largely been a symbol of their oppression until now.

Yeah, this is right where I've been the rest of the season so I think it probably is as simple as being more critical and in a bad mood due to the bad migraine and once I'm watching with that mind set these other things stuck out. It also didn't help that there was no Durin/Elrond this episode either as I've been enjoying that dynamic the most.

2 hours ago, mormont said:

I also love the villagers dressed as orcs, but 'evil' is the wrong word for them: they were scared and manipulated into what they did.

Yeah that's fair, was a lazy shorthand. I'd stand by evil for Walgren but not the rest.

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12 hours ago, karaddin said:

The Elvish watch tower having a mechanism in it to demolish the dam attached to it that used Sauron's sword as it's key felt more than a little contrived - why would that be there? Unless the dam part was meant to already be there and the Elves just built their watch tower on top of it.

Oh, the orcs built the tower when Morgoth was in power, the elves just use it now to make sure the men do not go back to the dark ways of their ancestors. The shrine and the key were all in the tower because of that reason. It is an orc tower, not an elf tower. 

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2 hours ago, Cashless Society said:

The end of this episode didn't make sense to me, perhaps somebody can explain to me what it is I'm missing?

Sauron's plan is to turn the Southlands into Mordor, starting with re-activating the now dormant Mount Doom. But to activate the volcano, he needed the water from the damn at the watchtower, which would travel through some tunnels built by his orcs. But the tunnels were built under Adar's leadership and the show has repeatedly made it clear that Adar hates Sauron and wants to forge his own path. So why would Adar continue going along with Sauron's plan by constructing the tunnels?

Adar's goal is to create a homeland for his orcs- a place of desolation without sunlight. He thinks he's killed Sauron. But I have no doubt that we'll either discover he's been manipulated, or that he simply took Sauron's plan for himself, not realizing Sauron was still around.

As for the volcano... damn, some of you will suck the fun out of everything. That was a great sequence. Everyone I know in real life who watches this show (including some natural scientists!) thought that was an incredible ending and twist. When you demand that your fantasy show, which is based on a book/movie trilogy that features a volcano that acts like no real volcano ever has, prioritize volcano realism... maybe you're just looking for reasons to dislike the show.

Not to mention that there is a basic geological principle that a flow of water will cause volcanic eruptions. Is what happens in this episode still "realistic?" No, probably not, just like Sauron building a central chamber inside a volcano isn't realistic, and it's not realistic for people to enter it and  have conversations inside it while the volcano is active. But who cares?

https://www.google.com/amp/s/www.hollywoodreporter.com/tv/tv-news/rings-of-power-mt-doom-volcano-water-real-1235230089/amp/

Edited by Caligula_K3
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