The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 6 “UdÃ»n” on Prime Video literally blew the lid off of one of the show’s most beautiful locations and gave us the show’s most thrilling battle sequences yet.
After seemingly saving the Southlands from the orc armies â oops, I mean “uruk” armies; they prefer the term “uruk” â Galdriel (Morfydd Clark) and her allies realize they have been hoodwinked by the villainous Adar (Joseph Mawle). The father of the uruks gave the magical “key” Theo (Tyroe Muhafidin) had been harboring to the ultimate Sauron fanboy Waldreg (Geoff Morrell) and offered himself up as a distraction. It worked, Halbrand (Charlie Vickers) and Galadriel cornered Adar in the woods and captured him, only to discover at the end of the episode Sauron’s plan to create a homeland for all that is evil succeeded. Waldreg uses the key to set off a chain reaction that transforms one of the landscape’s towering mountains into the volcanic Mount Doom.
The final shot of The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power Episode 6 “UdÃ»n” is of Galadriel staring at the oncoming wave of ash and destruction. She does not move, but lets the horror engulf her.
Decider caught up with Rings of Power star Morfydd Clark to find out what was going through the elf’s mind when she saw Mount Doom erupt, what it is about Adar that left Galadriel so shook, and whether or not Galadriel is catching feelings for Halbrand…
DECIDER: So Episode 6 ends with the incredible eruption of Mt. Doom. Galadriel just stands dumbstruck watching everything come towards her. What is going through her mind at that moment?
MORFYDD CLARK: “Well, it couldnât have gone worse, really.” But yes, itâs gone badly and I think it is a combination of the exhaustion of thousands of years of fighting, devastation and guilt, but also rage. I think once again weâre seeing Galadriel at a point where kind of â I always thought when she jumped off the boat, there was a thought of like, “Am I going to cease existing now? Maybe.” And I feel sheâs having another one with this. But I just, I think despair and guilt and exhaustion.
And what was it like shooting that on location?
I love when youâre doing â itâs why I loved the NÃºmenor scenes, some of the Lindon ones as well, and then this Southlander stuff â when there are so many actors, loads of supporting actors, loads of stuntees… Thereâs like such excitement and almost kind of hysteria when weâre doing stuff like that because everyone’s so excited to be there. It was so exciting to meet the Southlanders because weâve been living in the same city this whole time and itâs just like, “What do you get up to?” And itâs just like, “Well, just look at us. Weâre all together.â
Fortuitously, New Zealand just gives you what you need. There happened to be a lovely mountain in the far distance when we were filming that I could imagine was Mount Doom.
The scene with Halbrand and Galadriel in the forest made me wonder for a moment if Galadrielâs developing romantic feelings for Halbrand. How does she feel about him at this point and what did you want to convey in that scene on the log?
I feel that almost romance is like too human a word for what she could feel. She’s been so self-isolated that there’s kind of something so huge happening to her by being able to tell someone that she felt happy and at peace in their company. And I really kind of liked the quietness of that scene.
We spoke a lot about that how it should be staged. And me and Charlie kind of decided that they probably couldnât even look at each other because it would be too much. These are two characters who have so many loads of walls up and they just crumbled in this battle. So I felt really glad to be exploring that part of her.
Also in this episode the scene with Adar is so fascinating. He tells that Galadriel heâs not the only elf who has been transformed by darkness and that line seems to really hit Galadriel hard. Why? Can you talk about that scene, that line in particular and what it means for her?
I think itâs because itâs true. And this person thatÂ â this creature â that she despises, sees her more clearly than everybody else and that is devastating and deeply uncomfortable for her. We know where Galadriel ends up. She ends up living a very elf-y existence, but in a kind of quiet, isolated way. I really was looking forward to exploring why she felt that was necessary and I think being aware of kind of the damage and the extremes and the darkness that she could go to is kind of really painted clearly in that scene with Adar.
Galadriel finally meets Isildur in this episode and they have this nice moment. She seems to like the kid right off the bat, what about Isildur does Galadriel sort of shine to?
I think she sees that there is something, something different about him and thereâs something more. Whether that something is a little tingling of foresight that she will develop… Thereâs a light that she sees in him that I donât think she knows exactly what it is, but heâs compelling.
I know that you really liked the horseback riding stuff and there is a lot of that this episode. Galadriel pulls off some amazing moves on the back of the village. Iâm curious, how much is you, how much is it the stunt work and what was the most fun part?
I do not hang off a horse in that incredible way. The horse stunt team were incredible, but also the horses were incredible. And actually seeing them say goodbye to each other was really emotional because they were like really saying thank you to their horses for keeping them safe while they were doing crazy, crazy things. And honestly watching that being filmed, Iâve never been so tense. Because it just doesnât look like that should be possible and [it’s] absolutely incredible.
A bit I was able to do was some of that kind of galloping through the forest after Adar and that was just a joy of joys. Iâd never ridden before this and the connection you feel to humanity of days gone by when youâre riding a horse is quite amazing. Again this ended up being something that was kind of helpful in playing Galadriel.
Before I go, what can you tease for fans in the last 2 episodes? Is it going to be even more epic? Are there any huge reveals? Anything you can kind of just tease us with, a little bit?
Well, thereâs been a terrible disaster and terrible devastation and so thereâs got to be a reckoning.
This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.