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The Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power - Partings - Review

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  Lord of the Rings: Rings of Power “Partings” was written by Justin Doble and was directed by Wayne Che Yip. My apologies for the lateness of this review, but I have to admit I didn’t enjoy this episode – or appreciate it – on first viewing. Look for a review of episodes 6 and 7 next week… On first viewing, I felt this episode was quite disjointed, but it does seem to start moving the story along.

The episode begins with Nori (Markella Kavenagh) and the Stranger (Daniel Weyman) sitting on the beach eating snails. She tells him about the where they are headed and that they will meet “perils” along the way. The Stranger is clearly starting to become a bit more engaged and he worries that HE is a peril because of killing the fireflies. Nori assures him that he is good – he’s helping them and the fireflies were just an accident… 

We get a musical interlude as the Harfoots continue cross country. Meanwhile the scary elves have found where the stranger landed…

The other Harfoots are not warming to the Stranger. Malva (Thusitha Jayasundera) wants Sadoc Burrows (Lenny Henry) to take of the Brandyfoots’ wheels and leave them behind to get away from the Stranger! She quickly changes her tune, however, when she, Poppy (Megan Richards), Nori and the Stranger are set upon by wargs and the Stranger saves her – by mysteriously thumping the earth with his arm, apparently creating a shock wave, sending the wargs flying and damaging his own arm in the process. 

Nori returns to him from the others with beeswax to soothe his arm. She tells him the others are finally accepting him. He’s got his arm in a pool of water. When Nori sees him start to freeze the water around his hand – and the ice continue to creep up his arm, she grabs his arm and gets caught in the ice. He suddenly explodes the ice and Nori is flung from him. And then SHE ends up afraid of him. However, it’s clear that the Stranger is starting to come back to himself – whoever he is….

Adar (Joseph Mawle) continues to be creepy, telling one of his soldiers that the sun will soon be gone – and he will miss it and its warmth – but it’s time.

At the Tower, Arondir (Ismael Cruz Cordova) has delivered his message and Bronwyn (Nazanin Boniadi) tells the others that Adar wants them to surrender. Waldreg (Geoff Morrell) wants to join Adar and takes many of the others with him. Theo (Tyroe Muhafidin) refuses to go with him, but surprisingly Rowan (Ian Blackburn) goes with him. At first I wondered if he thought Adar was his long lost King, but then it occurred to me that maybe Rowan thought he could be a spy or kill Adar… what do you think?

Meanwhile in Numenor, preparations for war are in full swing. Isildur (Maxim Baldry) is now desperate to join up, but Elendil (Lloyd Owen) is having none of it and won’t give him a position. Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) is busying himself in the forge creating weapons but has no plans to go with the ships. Galadriel (Morfydd Clark), of course, has other plans for him, and by the end of the episode, after confessing her own obsession and remorse over the death of her brother – and the betrayal of her best friend – convinces Halbrand to take up his mantle of King. Is anybody else seeing him as just an Aragorn substitute?

One of the best scenes in the episode is Galadriel sparring with Elendil’s recruits. Though she mostly embarrasses him, in the end Valandil (Alex Tarrant) manages to cut her, thus winning a promotion from Elendil. Isildur tries to get Valandil with his new position to get him a place, but Valandil and Ontamo (Anthony Crum) are still angry about Isildur getting them in trouble – and besides, Valandil doesn’t have any real power. 

Isildur decides to stowaway on one of the ships, but he’s discovered by Kemen (Leon Wadham) who’s there to burn the ships to prevent them from leaving. Kemen has already gone to his father to find out why Pharazôn (Trystan Gravelle) is suddenly supporting helping the elves. Pharazôn tells Kemen that he’s supporting war for Numenor and that by the time they are finished the Elves will be following their orders and paying them tribute… So is he considering joining with the Southland who followed Sauron????? Or does he just think that they will that grateful for the help?

Kemen manages to blow up one ship, but by luck rather than good planning and Isildur manages to save them both. Apparently this was good enough to get Isildur into the cavalry – but as a stable sweep, NOT a rider. Still, he’s going, so he’s thrilled.

Meanwhile, in Lindon, High King Gil-galad (Benjamin Walker) hosts a dinner for Prince Durin IV (Owain Arthur). There’s clearly a whole LOT of subtext going on here – and neither Gil-galad or Durin seem particularly happy. Durin is distracted by the table. It appears to be made out of sacred rock, and Gil-galad gives it back to Durin so as to avoid further insult.

Elrond (Robert Aramayo) is clearly confused about what is really going on, but he confronts Gil-galad, who tells him to recite the legend of a tree. Elrond says the tree contained the last of the Silmarril – I guess that’s our link to the Silmarrilion? An elf and a balrog fought over the tree that was then struck by lightening, sending roots into the earth – presumably creating Mithril. Gil-galad then tells Elrond that the light is going out in the Elves and they need all the Mithril to irradiate themselves with the light. Gil-galad also says that he sent Galadriel away to try to stop the blight on their tree – just one outward sign of the decay – by stopping the war. Gil-galad also tells Elrond that they can’t simply leave Middle Earth because then evil will triumph over everything. He suggests that this is more than enough reason for Elrond to break his oath. 

Celebrimbor (Charles Edwards) admits to Elrond that he lied to him. He’s tested the sample of Mithril and it can save them. He also tells Elrond that he wanted to take him into their confidence. Celebrimbor uses the story of Elrond’s father to try to convince him to break his oath. 

Theo gives the hilt of the evil sword to Arondir. Bronwyn is losing hope and wonders if her people are just getting what they deserve and whether they should just join the other side. When she says that the tower will fall when their enemies get there – the penny drops for both of them…

Elrond confesses to Durin that he hasn’t been honest. He didn’t come for friendship but for ambition when he showed up at Moiria. He didn’t realize it, but he was there for Mithril. He tells Durin that if they don’t get the Mithril, the Elves’ souls will wither and die by spring. Durin agrees essentially immediately, but cautions that they have to convince his father… It also turns out that the story about the stone of the table was made up… Durin just wanted a table for Disa!

I could have done with a few fewer “hero shots” complete with overblown musical accompaniment. In the end, this wasn’t a bad episode. Things are starting to get interesting as more is revealed… and it sets us up for the big battle in the next episode… What did you think of the episode? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!

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