The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 4 Review: Sluggish Progress

Warning: The following review contains full spoilers for The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 4. If you’re not caught up yet, check out our spoiler-free review of the two-episode premiere here.

When I said the third episode of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is taking its sweet time to build its world in my review of the show’s third episode, I didn’t expect the series to take this long. Even after sitting through an hourlong episode, I have learnt nothing new and interesting about the characters, the setting, and what’s going on in the show.

We are introduced to Isildur’s sister, Eärien, and how Isildur is scrapped from the naval training along with his friends because he’s too preoccupied with the west. Also, we learn nothing interesting about his sister and I don’t see any reason to care for her yet.

The show then takes us back to Khazad-dûm, where Elrond discovers that Prince Durin and Princess Disa are hiding some secrets from him. He quickly figures out the whole thing using his elven powers, which leads him to the metal called mithril. This metal plays significance in the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Probably the only interesting part of the episode was Galadriel and Tar-Míriel seeing what is in store for the isle in the future, and even then getting there was still frustratingly slow. After being imprisoned next to Halbrand for dismissing the queen’s authority, Galadriel fends off the guards and reaches the king’s bedchamber. There, she meets the queen regent, who tells her about the Palantir. After placing her hand on it, Galadriel sees the same thing as Míriel did, a giant wave of water sweeping everything away. Galadriel pleads the queen regent to choose a path of faith.

In the Southlands, Adar, who is revealed to be an elf in a surprise, frees Arondir. He then stabs an injured orc, and speaks in Elvish, telling Arondir that he has been told many lies and then goes on to talk about creating a new world and his plans to become a god, which do not come across as threatening. He then sends Adar to the watchtower where the Southlanders are. There, we see Bronwyn and Theo, the latter of which goes on a trip to a village for food. On the way, he meets an orc, and he pulls out the hilt bursts into flames. It appears that the orcs have been after that after all.

An episode where seemingly a lot takes place but it seems like nothing has happened. The slow pacing of the episode made it hard to get into the characters and their motivations, and looking pretty is just not enough anymore.

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