The Lord Of The Rings: The Rings Of Power (Season 1), Episode 4, Recap & Ending, Explained: Episode 4 marks the beginning of the impending war awaiting middle earth. Key events like Adar’s introduction, the Queen Regent’s explosive decision, and Durin the III’s decision on the Elves have suddenly galvanized the narrative. There was no mention of the Harfoots in this episode. They have gotten the majority of the focus in the first few episodes, but something shows that they’ll be back in the next one.
This episode also marks the conclusion of the first half of this season. It has been underwhelming thus far, but if this episode is to be taken at face value for the second half, there is enough time for the show to redeem itself. Here is our recap and explanation of the ending of Episode 4 of Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power season 1.
The Rings Of Power (Season 1), Episode 4
“The Great Wave” Recap
Queen Regent has a terrible nightmare of Numenor becoming prey to violent floods. In her vision, as she is blessing the newborns in her kingdom, the entire sea wall is broken and water gushes in, submerging them. Tamar is holding a protest of sorts, trying to muster discontent against the Queen. Kemel, Pharazon’s son, warns him of this growing voice and he promptly responds. He reaches the spot at once and rouses the men and women by his guile and words. Pharazon speaks of Numenor’s great heritage and how it came to be. He quells any fears around the Elf taking the helm once again of their great kingdom. It is here that Kemel and Earien meet as well.
Regent summons Galadriel to the court, where the Elf reveals that Halbrand is the king in exile of the Southlands. He mocks her, calling her a wanderer and not a presentative of the Elvish people. Regent rejects her proposal of an alliance between Men and Elves to fight a resurgent Sauron. Galadriel riles up Regent by asking to meet the true ruler of the island, Regent’s father. The Queen sends her to jail on charges of sedition. Isildur makes another mistake while on the boat, forcing the sea guardsman to dismiss him and his friends, despite Isildur owning up to the mistake. A fight breaks out between him and one of his friends, as they will not get another chance to go back on the boat.
We finally get back to the big moment in Season 1 of the series – the introduction of Adar. The last episode finished with the cliffhanger of the dark lord walking up to Arondir. Next, we see his face. It seems he was an Elf too, once. He kneels down to comfort the struggling Orc and as an act of benevolence, takes his life. In Quenya, Adar asks Arondir where is he from. It seems Adar knows about Beleriandir and remembers its undying beauty. Adar speaks of the creation of a new world to clear the air of lies told to the generations of men and Elves.
The Orc lord releases Aranidr with a message for the men in the Old Watchtower. But before he can tell it, we cut to hordes of Men garrisoning the watchtower from the Southlands. With the people flowing to take refuge from many villages, food becomes a problem. Bronwyn suggests rationing, inspiring protest from Waldreg. Her son suggests a small party go back into town during the day and take whatever they can. He volunteers, along with a friend.
The plan works and they are able to gather some food. As they’re about to go back, Theo goes to the Tavern alone to get more. Suddenly, the sky turns dark, signaling the Orcs are coming, and Rowan, Theo’s friend, rushes off without him. An Orc ambushes Theo but the Hilt he carries, which actually belongs to Sauron unbeknownst to him, turns into a sword. He cuts the Orc and hides in a well. Vrath, the Orc, summons his men and says that the Hilt has been found.
The Orcs will look for the boy all night if they have to get the Hilt back. Elrond admires the sight of Dwarves and Elves working together. Celebrimbor remarks on something Elrodn’s father said to him: “One day, your future will lie in my son’s hands”. Quite the visionary he was! Elrond speaks to Disa the Dwarves not letting him meet the Dwarf King. Disa tries to distract Elrond by lying to him about Durin. She says he has gone to mine Quartz down the chasms. But the Elvish Lord has keen eyes. He notices Durin’s chiseling axe lying nearby and that Disa is making his favorite meal. The Dwarf Lady responds with a reasonable explanation, which seems to be the truth. Elrond doesn’t say anymore.
But as it turns out, he was right. Durin praises Disa and says they’re making doo progress in the old mine. The camera zooms out to show Elrond standing at a distance. He is able to hear what Durin says and whispers, “The old mine below the Mirrormere”. That is where he goes next. He remembers the passcode to enter the secret door.
Durin angrily pushes him when he sees Elrond looking at a specific chamber. Elrond reiterates that he respects his friendship with Durin and does not desire whatever is behind the chamber for himself. Durin demands an oath from Elrond who obliges. Durin reveals the previous ore they have found as a new metal. It is like anything the two have ever seen. The stone catches the light and glows from within. This might just be the turning point for his people. But Elrond asks why isn’t Durin celebrating this with the kingdom. The Dwarf reveals his father has forbidden them from mining in this area. “Mithril”, it is called.
Harkening back to the LOTR, it was a mithril sheath that saved Frodo’s life in the Mines of Moria. The sheath was gifted to him by his uncle Bilbo, who in turn had received it from Thorin Oakenshield, son of Thrain, son of Thror, the erstwhile King of Erebor. Halbrand reasons with Galadriel that she has already found the Queen’s weakness – her father. The moment she mentioned him, she threw him in a cell and not when she insulted her people and defied her orders.
Pharazon walks in with guards as Regent has ordered the Elf of the island and back to her people. Galadriel refuses to wear the chains, listens to Halbrand’s advice, fights off the guards, and heads to the tower. Tar-Palantir lies in bed. Regent was expecting Galadriel to come. The Queen is a doting daughter and Galadriel apologizes for intruding. But she also beckons Regent to reforge the alliance with Elves.
Regent explains to Galadriel her reluctance. When the people rebelled against her father, he brought her to the dungeons, where she takes Galadriel. She shows her a Palantir, one of the Seven Seeing Stones, just like one Saruman had. When Galadriel places her hand on the Palantir at Regent’s insistence, she has the same vision as Regent in the beginning. Numenor can be its own downfall if Galadriel doesn’t leave. She cannot make the same mistakes as her father. Hence, she says she will announce the next day that Galadriel is gone. The Elf once again brings up the evil rising in middle earth but Regent is defiant.
The Rings Of Power (Season 1), Episode 4 Ending, Explained
Does Regent listen to Galadriel’s cries for war?
As the Orcs pillage the town, Theo makes a run for it. He almost gets away but Vrath catches him. As he is about to cut off his arm, Arondir kills Vrath from behind and escapes with him. A sea of Orcs chases them. Bronwyn comes running, looking for her son, and shepherds him toward the clearing. Arondir puts up an alone, but brave fight. The sun comes out and the trio is finally safe. Orcs retreat back into the woods. Disa sings a plea to the rocks to release the alive miners. She thinks Elrond saved Durin inadvertently by going into the mine.
Durin announces all of them are alive but the entire vein is shut off by his father. He is livid but Elrond reminds him of his significance in his life. Durin asks for forgiveness from his father, who says he is always with him. Although Elrond has been forthcoming about him coming to the Dwarves, the King asks Durin to go to Lindon to find out if something more is at work.
Arondir reveals the message Adar gave him to Bronwyn; that her people shall live if they forsake their lands and swear fealty to him. Waldreg knows Theo took the Hilt from his barn and shows a vigil burnt on his forearm. He warns Theo that it is not a sword but a power fashioned by the beautiful Master, Sauron. Waldreg is indeed one of those still on Morgoth’s side. The Starfall is a sign he is close to being back, Waldreg says. Adar is informed the Hilt has been found. Galadriel returns to the ship, as promised. As Regent goes back to the palace, leaves from the White Tree start falling, shocking her as she stares into Elendil’s eyes.
She recounts one of her own quotes, “When the petals of the White Tree fall, it is no ideal thing; they are Valar’s tears and an hour of judgment for the Men”. It transitions into the speech she gives in her court and it is revealed that Regent actually decided to listen to Galadriel and go with her to the Southlands to help her mortal brethren. The ships will depart in ten days. When Elendil asks for volunteers, a slew of men and women stand up.