The Rings of Power trailer breakdown: 9 things you may have missed
The Lord of The Rings: The Rings of Power’s official trailer has been released – and there’s plenty to take in and speculate on from the series’ latest batch of preview footage.
Released on July 14, the highly anticipated Prime Video show’s latest teaser gives us a much clearer look at The Rings of Power’s major players, the state of play in Middle-earth, and more. If you’re yet to watch the newest trailer, you’ll want to remedy that as soon as possible by reading our Rings of Power official trailer article.
But you’re here to learn more about what the series’ latest teaser tells us about Amazon’s Lord of The Rings prequel, aren’t you? Below, we’ve picked out nine things you may have missed from The Rings of Power’s trailer. Not only that, but we’ve speculated on what these moments might be hinting at for the Prime Video series’ plot, character arcs, and much more.
So throw on your beloved Lord of the Rings cosplay, grab some Lembas bread as a snack, and let’s dig in.
1. Trees that light the way
The first 15 seconds of the trailer mostly comprises footage we’ve seen before – for example, that stunning shot of the Trees of Valinor, which rise from behind a hill, is shown again.
However, it appears that the trailer’s opening gambit teases that The Rings of Power will begin with a prologue-style montage of events that precede the show’s Second Age setting. Peter Jackson’s legendary Lord of the Rings film trilogy opened with a similar segment in The Fellowship of the Rings, so there’s a precedence for live-action adaptations of J.R.R. Tolkien’s works doing just that.
It’s the trailer’s voiceover that gives that away. “There was a time when the world was so young,” the unknown narrator says. “There had not yet been a sunrise but, even then, there was light.”
It’s the second part of that sentence that makes us think we’re getting a prologue sequence. During Middle-earth’s First Age, it was the Trees of Valinor that spread light across Arda (Lord of the Rings’ version of Earth). That is, until the Dark Lord Melkor (also known as Morgoth) and his giant spider Ungoliant destroyed them in Year of the Trees (YT) 1495. Five years later (YT 1500), the Sun was created by Aulë, one of Middle-earth’s Valar – gods, to you and I – which brought light and heat to Middle-earth throughout the First Age Part 2, plus the Second, Third, and Fourth Ages.
The fact that the narrator says “there had not been a sunrise” suggests that we’ll get a flashback montage in The Rings of Power’s opening episode. That’ll get viewers up to speed on when the show is set, as well as the lay of the land and the relationships between Middle-earth’s various races, before the series really begins.
2. The mystery of Meteor Man continues
Despite its fairly lengthy runtime, the latest trailer doesn’t give us any extra clues about the true identity of Meteor Man.
The mysterious character, who is played by Daniel Weyman, was the topic of much conversation when the first teaser for Amazon’s Lord of the Rings was released in February. We covered Meteor Man as part of our trailer breakdown article for that teaser and, while Meteor Man’s, well, meteor appeared heavily in a recent Prime Video teaser (opens in new tab), he doesn’t appear much in the latest batch of footage.
We see Markella Kavenagh’s Harfoot – Nori – watch Meteor Man crash land in the trailer, plus we get a recycling of the footage from the first teaser (of Meteor Man reabsorbing his fire-based powers) later in this trailer. That, though, is all we see of this intriguing individual, aside from a momentary shot of him marveling at fireflies (or the embers of a torch’s fire) in the trailer’s second half.
Clearly, Meteor Man is one of the biggest secrets in The Rings of Power, so Amazon Studios is rightly keeping its cards close to its chest about his real identity. Still, it would have been cool to see more new footage of him, or at least a hint – even if it ends up being a misdirect – at who he actually is.
3. Elven barbs
Middle-earth may be in the middle (see what we did there?) of a relative time of peace as Amazon’s Lord of the Rings begins. However, there appears to be an internal war waging – albeit a verbal one – between its various factions of Elves.
We see Morfydd Clark’s Galadriel at odds with her second-in-command as she leads a scouting party across the Forodwaith to hunt the last remnants of Morgoth’s forces. Later on, Galadriel and Robert Aramayo’s Elrond come to verbal blows, with the latter also telling Galadriel to bring her obsessive crusade to an end.
Clearly, all isn’t well among Middle-earth’s Elven community. But, as Galadriel tells Elrond, nobody else has “seen what I’ve seen”, which leads us onto…
4. A brutal battle of the Elves
The brief clip that follows Galadriel’s spat with Elrond is the darkest and most foreboding part of the trailer. We see a dust-covered Galadriel kneeling on what appears to be a battlefield – she’s wearing her Elven armor, and the burnt nature of the scene around her suggests that a bloody and fiery fight just ended.
It’s the following five seconds of footage that’s truly spooky, though. We see a bunch of dead Elven bodies floating in a lake. You can tell it’s a large body of water based on the light rippling off its surface.
Above the lake, though, the sky is a sinister shade of red, presumably lit this way by the eerie tower that looms large over the lagoon. It’s hard to discern what tower this is but, initially, some viewers may believe it has something to do with Galadriel using her foresight abilities to see the Two Towers (yes, those ones from the Lord of the Rings trilogy), as well as Sauron’s war against Middle-earth’s multiple races. The Two Tower are built in Barad-dûr and Orthanc when Sauron rises to power during the Second Age, so this could be a way of foreshadowing his arrival in Middle-earth.
However, we think this is a trailer misdirect and the scene in question actually relates to something far more sinister: The First Kinslaying. Basically, this was a First Age event that saw a battle between two Elven armies – the Ñoldor and the Teleri – on the shores of the Aman; the latter refusing to hand over their ships to the Ñoldor, who wished to sail to Middle-earth. As tempers flared, the two armies clashed, leading to the massace of the Teleri and the Ñoldor stealing their seafaring vessels.
The brutal battle has grave consequences for the Ñoldor in the future, and one that Galadriel witnesses firsthand. If we had to guess, then, this is one of the things that Galadriel alludes to seeing. All things considered, it’s a harrowing event that leaves an indelible mark on Middle-earth’s history and one that, if it’s shown fully in a live-action capacity, will make for shocking viewing.
5. Foreshadowing Númenor’s fall
The Elves certainly dominate The Rings of Power’s latest trailer, and it’s Benjamin Walker’s Elven King of Lindon Gil-galad who foreshadows the fall of Númenor, the great island realm of Men, in the newest teaser.
Speaking to Elrond, Gil-galad says: “Darkness will march over the face of the Earth. It will be the end not just of our people, but all peoples”. Interestingly, as he speaks that line, the trailer cuts to footage of Cynthia Addai-Robinson’s Númenorian character, aka Queen Regent Miriel (as revealed by Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab)), indicating that the destruction of the iconic Kingdom of Men is coming. It’s a cool bit of editorial foreshadowing if nothing else.
6. Isildur rides (the waves) again
Before his name was etched in Middle-earth’s history for the wrong reasons – he failed to destroy the One Ring during the Last Alliance of Elves and Men – Isildur was a Númenorian sailor. And, based on the show’s latest trailer, we’ll see Maxim Baldry’s Isildur rides the waves before he becomes the warrior that the legions of Lord of the Rings fans know him to be.
We catch glimpses of Númenorian ships entering the kingdom’s harbor earlier in the teaser. Later, though, we see two vessels charting a course for an undisclosed location before Isildur, who is on board one of the ships, is briefly shown. It’s the first time we’ve seen Baldry’s Isildur in any footage, and it’ll be interesting to see how his story plays out in Amazon’s Lord of the Rings.
7. Galadriel visits Númenor
It’s difficult to work out, but there’s a very brief scene – one that was also shown in the series’ first trailer – that confirms Galadriel will travel to Númenor at some point in The Rings of Power.
At the 1:55 mark, we see two individuals riding horses on a unnamed beach. Given the coast-based horse ride, we suspect this scene takes place on Númenor, and involves Galadriel meeting with Númenorian nobles to curry favor/enlist their help with something, or simply a meeting between dignitaries of Middle-earth’s different races.
It’s impossible to tell who Galadriel is riding alongside. However, Entertainment Weekly (opens in new tab) comes to the rescue again, revealing that Lloyd Owen’s Elendil joins her for the ride. The same article also confirms that Trystan Gravelle will play none other than Ar-Pharazôn, the 25th and last King of Númenor, who can be seen taking the acclaim of his people at the 1:58 mark. He plays a huge role in Númenor’s fall, but we won’t ruin why that’s the case here. You’ll have to wait for the series to arrive (or read the books in the meantime).
8. Mining Mithril
Middle-earth’s dwarves don’t feature prominently in this new trailer, but there’s one moment that is a pretty big deal, if we’ve interpreted one scene correctly.
At the 2:00 minute mark, Owain Arthur’s Prince Durin IV holds a shiny object aloft, saying “This could be the beginning of a new era”. On first viewing, some may think he’s holding one of the titular Rings of Power, but that’s not the case. Instead, we believe he’s holding a valuable substance that only the dwarves have access to: Mithril.
All the evidence lines up. Mithril can only be found in the mines of Khazad-dûm, which is the dwarven city that Durin IV resides in. Additionally, Mithril is a shiny material that’s likened to silver, but one that’s far more durable, stronger, and lighter than steel. Basically, the material Durin IV is holding matches all of those descriptions, so we’re confident that The Rings of Power will show Khazad-dûm’s dwarves finding Mithril for the first time as one of its subplots.
9. Warg a way to go
The final moments of the trailer show Meteor Man reabsorbing his powers, Lenny Henry’s Sadoc Burrows leading three Harfoots down a hill, and Galadriel taking on the cave troll that we saw in the first trailer.
However, there’s a fleeting scene before that involving Ismael Cruz Córdova’s Arondir as he battles for his life in a fighting pit. Judging by how basic it is, and the barren land that surrounds it, this seems to be one of the arid locations that Morgoth’s orcs retreat to after their master’s defeat.
Either way, Arondir seems to be fighting a warg, one of the giant wolf creatures that orcs ride into battle. There’s nothing in Tolkien’s works that reveal where wargs originated from, so it’s possible that The Rings of Power’s showrunners may explain how they came to be, and how the orc/warg alliance began. The show’s chief creative team has already confirmed the series will fill in the gaps in some of Middle-earth’s mysterious history, so it wouldn’t be surprising if they detail the origins of the wargs, how their partnership began with the orcs, and their role in these fighting pit bouts.
For more Prime Video-based coverage, check out which four Prime Video originals you need to check out if you signed up for a free trial around Prime Day.
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