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‘The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’ Episode 4 End Explained: What Are the Tears of the Valar? Does Theo have Sauron’s sword?


The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 4 “The Great Wave” on Prime Video finally revealed that, yes, the dwarves are mining Mithril and Adar is a former elf who now leads the orcs in Sauron’s plan to conquer the Southlands. However, the episode also left us with a slew of questions that still officially remain unanswered, such as who is whispering to Isildur (Maxim Baldry) and, again, is Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) secretly Sauron?? The episode is also full of details that you may have been confused about, such as what are the Tears of the Valar? And what exactly is the hilt that Theo (Tyroe Muhafidin) discovered? Is it Sauron’s sword or a gift to his lieutenants?

This week’s episode Under the spell of the Ring actually opened with a nightmare. Queen Regent Míriel (Cynthia Addai-Robinson) dreams that a great tsunami will engulf Númenor and destroy everything her people love. As we learn later, this is not just a recurring dream for the ruler. It’s a vision she shares with Galadriel (Morfydd Clark) through a Palantir, the big scary circular seeing stones that got little Pippin (Billy Boyd) into trouble in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King. It is this vision of an approaching apocalypse that drives Míriel to first keep Galadriel at bay and later join her cause against Sauron in Middle-earth.

But what exactly made Míriel change his mind? The “Tears of the Valar”, that’s what. And what are the tears of the Valar in Prime Videos The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power? What’s up with Theo’s connection to Sauron through the hilt? Who whispers Isildur to go west? And have we found any other clues to our Halbrand is Sauron tin hat theory?!? Here is The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 4 ending explained…

Miriel and Galadriel in Lord of the Rings Episode 4
Photo: Prime Video


We first heard about the “Tears of the Valar” on last week’s episode of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power “Adar.” Queen Regent Míriel looks at the tree as she talks to Elendil (Lloyd Owen) and mentions that “the faithful believe that when the petals fall from the White Tree, it is no vain thing, but the tears of the Valar itself.” As you saw, the petals of the White Tree not only fell in Númenor at the end of “Episode 4”, but they fell off. Míriel sees this as a sign that the Valar are angry with her for not helping Galadriel, so she changes her mind and joins the fight.

But who are the Valar? And what’s so bad about the White Tree?

The Valar are in fact the gods of Middle-earth, and they awarded Númenor to the men who fought with the elves against Morgoth and Sauron in the First Age. The White Tree, known as Nimloth, was part of their gift. The idea is that the tree is happy and healthy as long as the people of Númenor make choices that please the Valar. When Míriel rejects Galadriel’s pleas, the Valar are dismayed. Hence Míriel changes his mind.

You may also remember from Under the spell of the Ring trilogy that Gondor also has a sacred White Tree whose sustenance reflects the health of the Kingdom of Man. We’re not sure how the show will explain this, but according to Tolkien lore, our boy Isildur sneaks a seedling from Nimloth’s fruit to Middle-earth. See how it’s all connected!!!

Theo holds the evil sword in The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Photo: Prime Video


We find out in this week’s episode of The rings of power that the orcs invading the Southlands are indeed looking for something and that it is the magical sword hilt that Theo stole from a neighbor’s basement. Near the end of the episode, after Arondir (Ismael Cruz Córdova) rescues Theo and Bronwyn (Nazanin Boniadi) from orcs, they all return to the Elf Tower, one of Theo’s Southlanders corners. It turns out that the boy stole the hilt from him. He asks Theo if he’s ever heard of Sauron and adds that the recent “starfall” means his time is near. (An obvious one loves the Stranger = Sauron theory!) The older dude also adds that the hilt was a gift Sauron gave the men loyal to Morgoth and that Theo had to save his strength for whatever is going to come.

So we now know a few things about the handle that we didn’t know before. It is not necessarily a weapon that belonged to Sauron, but a weapon that he gave to men in his slave trade. (A bit like the Morgul swords the Nazgul wields in the original) LotR trilogy?? Is it a Morgul sword?!?) We also know that Adar wants this weapon for himself.

It’s all setting up a battle that will lead Adar and his orcs to the Elf Tower where Arondir is locked up along with the Southlanders. Expect a Helm’s Deep-esque battle in the coming weeks…

Isildur in Lord of the Rings Episode 4
Photo: Prime Video


We do not know! But it’s worth noting that Isildur feels the call to head to the western side of Númenor, which would be the Andustar region. Andúnië is the main port there, and Isildur’s father Elendil should technically be known as the Lord of Andúnië. The lords of Andúnië remain loyal to the elves, even though Númenor grows further away from them. So it’s like Isildur is recalled to one of the believers.

While we don’t yet know who’s talking to Isildur, it seems they distract him long enough to have themselves and his friends kicked out of the naval force. What do these kids end up doing? Volunteer as first to travel back to Middle-earth with Galadriel.

Charlie Vickers as Halbrand in Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power
Photo: Prime Video


Oh boy, does he! As Galadriel keeps telling people that he is the heir to the royal line of the Southlands – something he has not confirmed! — Halbrand continues to use his time in prison to manipulate the people around him. Mainly Galadriel! He even gives her some advice on her strategy in dealing with Míriel which works. That advice is to find out what your opponent is afraid of, and instead of exploiting it, trick the person into thinking they’ve mastered it.

Later we see that Halbrand advises: another character, Pharazôn (Trystan Gravelle.) After Galadriel escapes captivity, he tells Pharazôn that you don’t have to chase someone if you know where they are going. This is interesting, if only because Tolkien’s The Silmarillion says that Halbrand voluntarily crosses the sea to Númenor, where Pharazôn is holding him hostage. During this time, Halbrand is impressed with Númenor and filled with jealousy for his progress. He also meets Pharazôn and becomes his closest advisor. I’m just saying it’s interesting to see Halbrand being held hostage in Númenor, a place that clearly stuns him, and giving free advice to Pharazôn.

What is going on here? Why does Halbrand give this advice alone? What’s his game? Well, eventually he can walk Númenor free. What to do? Who knows.

(Yes, yes, he could still become a hero or a future witch king of Angmar, but let me have my fun.)

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