The Meteorite Man is one of the most mysterious characters in “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power”: Since his first appearance, various theories have grown up about the stranger (Daniel Weyman), as he is officially called, and his identity. But in episode 5 there was an important and fairly clear indication: The stranger may be one of the Maiar (divine beings subordinate to the Valar), a Maia named Tilion.
Tilion is responsible for the moon in the works of JRR Tolkien, more specifically for moving the moon across the sky of the world that contains Middle-earth and the other continents. And in episode 5 it is no coincidence that we see the stranger looking longingly into the night sky where the moon is currently shining. Then there is one Match Cut from the moon to the meteorite crater, first with the stranger in the midst of the fiery chunks, then in the cooled state – that can hardly be a coincidence.
The question remains why the stranger is in Middle-earth and at the same time the moon continues to move. How can that be? The answer to this may lie in the rights situation: Because Tilion is a character that only appears in Tolkien’s “Silmarillion”, but those responsible for “The Rings of Power” do not have the rights to it.
Maybe the version of Tilion that we see in the show is actually based on the song “Der alten Krug”which Frodo recites in The Lord of the Rings books. In it a “man in the moon” is mentioned. This song may have been inspired by the legend of Tilion, but Tilion is not explicitly mentioned.
In other variations of this song or poem in the works of Tolkien it is even mentioned that the man in the moon fell to earth like a meteorite – the creators of the series are probably not allowed to quote this due to the rights situation, but they could be inspired by it … And since this man in the moon is not explicitly identified as the Tilion of the First Age who moves the moon, he could very well land on a meteorite in Middle-earth without the moon suddenly standing still.
In addition, the Haruß elder Sadoc (Lenny Henry) mentions that the star constellations in the sky behave strangely. That could well be because Tilion or the man in the moon or whatever he is called in the series fell from the sky.
However, it is still unclear what the magic of the stranger is all about. Apparently he has supernatural powers, for which he has to pay a certain price: After he saved Nori (Markella Kavenagh) from the wolves, his arm discolored, finally he even put it in the water and ice crystals formed on it.
This is certainly somehow related to the fact that the meteorite with which he landed in Middle-earth and the fire around it were not hot either. But beyond that, the whole thing remains a mystery for the time being.
However, it appears not impossible that the ice will lead us back to Tilion and the legends that go with it. Tolkien portrays Tilion (= moon) and Maia Arias, responsible for the sun, as opposites to a certain extent. So if Arien is a being of fire, as stated in The Silmarillion, could Tilion (and thus the stranger) be an ice being?
We also learn from Tolkien that Tilion desperately seeks to be near Arias, even though he burns himself on her fire. The words that the stranger whispers in episode 2 fit in with this: “mana” and “úrë”. These can be translated in such a way that the stranger is looking for heat, i.e. possibly the sun/arias.
So while the moon is a clear clue, there are still a lot of unanswered questions about the stranger – and it probably won’t be for a while. The question of his true identity is supposed to run through the whole season and it has three more episodes. “The Rings of Power” Episode 6 will be released on September 30, 2022 on Amazon Prime Video.