Earlier today, Amazon Prime revealed yet another map of Middle-earth, along with text completing the Ring Verse, then the words: Welcome to the Second Age. True to those words, the new map reveals Numenor, which sunk beneath the ocean near the end of the Second Age. This confirms one thing at least, that Amazon’s film right extend beyond what’s between the covers of ‘The Lord of the Rings,’ as the only map of Numenor in Tolkien’s works appears in ‘Unfinished Tales.’ Other than that, the possibilities for the direction(s) the story will take us are almost endless both with respect to Numenor, and what was happening in Middle-earth at the time. Take a good look at the map and read on!
As a bit of background, Numenor was founded when Elros, brother of Elrond, chose to be counted among men and became the first king of Numenor. The Numenoreans minded their own business for the next 600 years or so. Then Eldarion, heir to the 5th king Tar-Meneldur, and lover of everything related to the sea, began sailing back and forth to Middle-earth. This served as the basis of relationships between the men of Numenor, and the Elves who remained in Middle-earth, culminating in the Great Alliance of Elves and Men that defeated Sauron at the end of the Second Age.
While the Numenoreans were exploring the seas, and longing more and more dangerously for the forbidden lands to the west, a host of things were going on in Middle-earth. Early on in the Second Age, the Dwarves moved into Moria and the Elves established several settlements including that of Eregion, which finally appeared on this most recent version of Amazon’s map. Sauron, still in his fair form of Annatar, caused mischief throughout the Second Age, tricking the Elves into teaching him how to make rings of power, and being a bad boy influence on the Numenoreans which eventually caused the destruction of Numenor itself. Indeed, the Second Age presents more than enough material for several seasons of prime (pun intended) Middle-earth viewing!
What are your theories about where and when in the Second Age the series will take us? Will the long-rumored role of Aragorn still be cast leaving the story open for flash-backs? Is that even necessary given the abundance of material in the Second Age alone? Let us know your theories! Also, if you haven’t read it already, do yourself a favor and get yourself a copy of Unfinished Tales, edited by Christopher Tolkien. It’s a wonderful compilation of stories that occurred during both the Second and Third Ages of Middle-earth.