LOTR: The Rings Of Power Makes One Return Of The King Scene Even Better - Bliteoc

LOTR: The Rings Of Power Makes One Return Of The King Scene Even Better

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Amazon’s The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is set to make one Return of the King scene even better. Scheduled to premiere on Prime Video on September 2, 2022, Amazon’s big-budget The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power chronicles the entire Second Age of Middle Earth, from Sauron’s rise to power to the fall of the Kingdom of Númenor. Among these planned stories is the journey of Isildur (Maxim Baldry), whose growth from a displaced nobleman to a leader of the Last Alliance before being corrupted by the One Ring appears a particularly tantalizing proposition.

Based on The Rings of Power’s timeline of events, the Last Alliance of Elves and Men will likely play a big role in the climax of the Amazon original’s story. Isildur is certainly a key player in these events, using tactical acumen to cut off Sauron’s retreat from Barad-dûr and rallying swathes of men from across Middle Earth to the Alliance’s cause. Among those called forth by Gondor in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Second Age stories are the men of the White Mountains, who swear to stand alongside Isildur against the forces of Mordor. However, when the time comes, the men of the White Mountains’ cowardice prevails, refusing their oath to the prince of Gondor.

With this in mind, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power can make The Return of the King’s Army of the Dead scene even better. With The Rings of Power confirmed to focus on Isildur’s tragic downfall, seeing the White Mountain’s betrayal of Isildur firsthand will enrich their salvation in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King almost 3,000 years later when the Dead King is summoned by Aragorn in the Paths of the Dead. Here’s how The Rings of Power will enhance Aragorn’s journey through the Paths of the Dead, as well as the lore surrounding the men of the White Mountains and the Army of the Dead itself.

Who Are The Army Of The Dead In The Return Of The King & What Happens To Them?

the lord of the rings the return of the king the army of the dead
As described in Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, the Army of the Dead are Men of the White Mountains who are cursed to linger as specters in Middle Earth by Isildur after they abandoned their oath to aid him in the war of the Last Alliance. As such, the dead men of Dunharrow haunt the caverns beneath the Dwimorberg in a vast, ghostly city presided over by the King of the Dead, with mortal armies ordinarily giving the Dwimorberg a wide berth. While the armies of Rohan are camped outside of the Dwimorbeg entrance mid-way through The Return of the King, Gandalf (Ian McKellen) alludes to the Army of the Dead’s oath that remains unfulfilled, tasking Aragorn to find them as they will only answer to an heir of Isildur.

After Aragorn summons the Dead King to fulfill his oath with the reforged blade of Narsil, the Army of the Dead aids the forces of Rohan and Gondor at the decisive battle of Pelennor fields. The King of the Dead’s spectral forces slice through Sauron’s Orc army, ending the siege of Gondor in short order. Despite their clear prowess in battle, Aragorn releases the Army of the Dead from his service and grants their oath to Isildur fulfilled, allowing the army’s bound spirits to move on from Middle Earth as the King of the Dead breathes a sigh of relief.

How The Rings Of Power Makes One Return Of The King Scene Even Better


the lord of the rings the return of the king the army of the dead the king of the dead
In this way, The Rings of Power is set to make The Return of the King’s oath fulfillment scene even better by adding additional narrative weight and context to the Army of the Dead. Amazon’s The Rings of Power showrunners have already stated (via Vanity Fair) that Isildur will be a much more tragic character than the foolhardy and brash man briefly depicted at the beginning of The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring, with the series taking a deeper dive into the events that made him a worthy king of Gondor before his downfall through the One Ring’s corruption. As a result, The Rings of Power will grant a first-hand look into Isildur’s actions that led to Sauron’s first defeat at the end of the Second Age, with his conscription of the men of LOTR’s Middle Earth a key factor here. This, in turn, adds far greater context to the men of the White Mountains’ betrayal of Isildur and the breaking of their oath – making Aragorn recruiting the Army of the Dead thousands of years after his predecessor a far more epic moment in The Lord of the Rings canon.

How The Rings Of Power Improves Jackson’s Army Of The Dead (& Why They Were Criticized)

Despite playing a critical role in the forces of good’s triumph over Sauron in The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King, Peter Jackson’s portrayal of the Army of the Dead was one of the movie’s few commonly criticized elements upon release in 2003. Much of the disappointment surrounding the Army of the Dead’s portrayal arrives during their contribution to the battle of Pelennor fields, with the ghostly army gliding through their enemies at super speed and seemingly ending the battle in a few short minutes. While Aragorn recruiting and releasing the army itself delivered suitably epic moments worthy of The Lord of the Rings trilogy finale, the Army of the Dead in battle almost appears as a cheat code and a Deus ex Machina style moment that stretches the credibility of the movie’s narrative. Even Peter Jackson himself alluded to as much, with The Lord of the Rings’ director stating the Army of the Dead was “too unbelievable” following the film’s release.

Yet The Rings of Power has a golden opportunity to improve Peter Jackson’s Army of the Dead by virtue of its narrative, adding more context to the cowardice and subsequent suffering of this race of men. While The Rings of Power is unable to fix the CG style that the Army of the Dead fight with in The Return of the King, the Amazon series can add narrative weight to the scene in which Aragon releases the army from service by highlighting their thousand-year curse and more detailed pledge to Isildur. In this way, The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power is well set up to make The Return of the King’s Army of the Dead even better by expanding on their backstory and betrayal of Isildur in the second age.

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