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    Canonfire :: View topic - the Hobbit
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    GreySage

    Joined: Sep 09, 2009
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    Mon Nov 12, 2012 6:50 pm  
    the Hobbit

    Potential Spoiler Alert

    Read at your own risk if you want to be kept completely in the dark about this topic.

    I am choosing to place this thread on the General Forum b/c:

    1) I just cannot force myself to 'relegate' it to a lower forum like the Backalley. Confused

    2) I am under the (personal?) opinion that this book, now an impending MUCH awaited film, and all its accessory and subsequent books penned by JRR Tolkien, were most likely one of the MAIN reasons why any of us even play this enduring game. In fact, doesn't even Gygax credit Tolkien with (partly) inspiring him to create Dungeons and Dragons in the first place? Exclamation

    That said, I respectfully ask the Purple Lightning to keep this post in its current position for maximum traffic in the hopes of generating prospective replies.

    Now on to the point of this thread...

    I wonder what you all have heard about this much anticipated prequel to Peter Jackson's (in my opinion) amazingly well done, and 'honest', renditions of The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

    I've watched three trailers now and know that the film is cut into at least two separate movies, but someone told me (rumormill) that Jackson has made it into three (?) films!!! The downside to this, I heard, is that the lag time between all three films will be, like the other trilogy, a year for each one!!! UGH!!!! Evil Cry

    We will get at least to Rivendell, then the film potentially ends, awaiting its sequel...the following (?) December.

    We will see the trolls (and the discovery of Sting), meet the goblins and their foul king (a depiction I saw of him was that of an utterly disgusting, bloated, pustulent goblin), have "riddles in the dark" between Gollum (much younger than we have seen him) and Bilbo, and the whole warg and orc attack on the group before they reach Rivendell.

    That's pretty much all that I know, and that I am veritably dripping with anticipation. Oh, the soundtrack isn't even out yet, though Barnes & Noble bookstore has a veritable treasure trove of merchandise for this film. gggrrrrr Does anyone know when that is coming out?

    Ok, enough from this side. Your turn.

    -Lanthorn, AKA "My Precious" Wink
    GreySage

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    Mon Nov 12, 2012 9:15 pm  

    Guess my act of contrition was not enough. Embarassed

    Oh, well. Still hoping to hear what you all know or have heard.

    -Lanthorn, in the Backalley
    GreySage

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    Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:12 pm  

    I've heard:

    Three films, for sure.

    I've watched a few trailers and they seem every bit as good as the Lord of the Rings trilogy. I am guessing that they will end the first movie as the party makes its escape from the elves of the Myrkwood via barrels down the river.

    Definately looking forward to it! Will have to take my kids at the first opportunity. Happy

    SirXaris
    GreySage

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    Tue Nov 13, 2012 3:22 pm  

    I wish my son was old enough but at age 5, he will have to settle for the animated version. Happy

    I am actually considering taking a personal day to view the film during the afternoon before the insanity occurs later on when everyone gets off work... Cool

    -Lanthorn
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Nov 21, 2012 7:15 pm  

    I've heard that the gap between the 2nd and 3rd film will be just a few months, but that could all change. We just got a book at the library with profiles of the characters. Radagast the Brown is featured. I seem to remember him taking part in the White Council that formed to deal with the threat of the Necromancer (Sauron). I know they're fleshing out and including the background material where Sauron is driven from Dol Guldar. It's just a few lines from, and I think some stuff in one of the appendices of The Lord of the Rings. I wonder if they'll include anything about Gandalf infiltrating Dol Guldar and finding Thorin's father in the dungeons there. That's mentioned in The Hobbit. I'm guessing they're doing the first part of The Hobbit, getting over the Misty Mountains to Beorn's as the first movie. The second part will be the Dol Guldar bit, and part three will be Mirkwood, Smaug, and the Battle of Five Armies. Just my guess though.

    Lanthorn, I totally get what you said in your introductory post. I would probably not be the D&D player (or the person) I am today if, when I was 11, my buddy Ryan hadn't recommended The Hobbit to me as something I'd probably like to read. It's still my favorite of Tolkien's works.
    GreySage

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    Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:06 am  

    To honor the upcoming movie, I am rewatching all of my Director's Editions of Peter Jackson's trilogy. Happy I may even pop in my animated versions, including the Ralph Bakshi adaptation as well. That film is very interesting ('trippy') b/c of the way in which they animated actual actors to get realistic movements.

    VERY MUCH looking forward to the movie. If anybody else knows something, please add to this post.

    "Where there's a whip, there's a way..." Wink

    -Lanthorn
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    Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:15 am  
    Re: the Hobbit

    Lanthorn wrote:
    ...I just cannot force myself to 'relegate' it to a lower forum like the Backalley....That said, I respectfully ask the Purple Lightning to keep this post in its current position for maximum traffic in the hopes of generating prospective replies...


    -Found it anyway. Wink

    Lanthorn wrote:
    ...I am under the (personal?) opinion that this book, now an impending MUCH awaited film, and all its accessory and subsequent books penned by JRR Tolkien, were most likely one of the MAIN reasons why any of us even play this enduring game. In fact, doesn't even Gygax credit Tolkien with (partly) inspiring him to create Dungeons and Dragons in the first place? ...


    -Here, he admits to a strong JRRT link:

    http://archives.theonering.net/features/interviews/gary_gygax.html

    (I don't know when this interview was done) ...but he used to pooh-pooh the conection (probably in part because the Tolkein estate was suing TSR):

    http://grognardia.blogspot.com/2010/01/gygax-on-tolkien-again.html

    I do remember him claiming that Middle Earth couldn't be made into a campaign (ICE managed, somehow, which he briefly acknowledge's in Q11).
    GreySage

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    Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:28 pm  

    I just had breakfast with my kids at Denny's and they have a special "Hobbit Menu" - foods inspired by hobbits. Happy

    If you order something off that menu, you get a free pack of "The Hobbit" trading cards. One of the hobbit deserts is named for Radigast.

    SirXaris
    GreySage

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    Sun Nov 25, 2012 11:09 am  

    Sadly, all the Denny's in my area have fully closed! There are none in my city; I must traverse the Columbia River into the Portland metro area to find one. However, I will keep my eyes peeled so as to partake in the Shire folk bounty.

    -Lanthorn, Denny-less
    GreySage

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    Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:37 pm  

    Heard anything new, good people?

    Who's gonna see it opening night (midnight showing)?

    I am hoping to go Friday afternoon before the big 5 o'clock rush.

    eagerly awaiting,

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Mon Dec 10, 2012 6:38 pm  

    I have to work until 9:00pm Friday evening, so I'll probably wait to see it early Saturday.

    SirXaris
    GreySage

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    Sat Dec 15, 2012 8:06 pm  

    Well, saw the movie yesterday afternoon just after work at Cinetopia out here in the Pacific NW.

    Happy

    Loved it, but not happy that I have to wait to see the other two films!

    What did each of you think...and for future readers, keep in mind that there may be SPOILERS ahead!!! Read with care!

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Mon Dec 17, 2012 1:54 pm  

    I loved it! Jackson may have added and changed bits here and there (expanding on Radigast's part and adding the stone/mountain giants/elementals), but they were acceptable changes. The only bits that caused me to grimace a bit were the voices of the trolls and the goblin king. I was expecting low, gravelly voices, not high-pitched, cockney. Razz

    SirXaris
    GreySage

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    Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:43 am  

    SX, I gotta agree with you about the accents and higher pitch voices to the trolls, and even the Goblin King. I also am not too keen with making Thorin and one of the dwarves (was it Killi? the 'archer' dwarf, whoever that was) too 'humanlike' in appearance. All the other dwarves looked like dwarves to me, stocky and squat, bearded, bulbous nose, etc. Curious...they almost had a gnomelike quality about them in Bilbo's house, but I personally liked the merriment in their attitude, perhaps dispelling the notion that all dwarves are dour all the time.

    Other comments, good people?

    Am I the only one who has that tune (brass rendition of the Lonely Mtn theme) replaying in his mind like a broken record?

    -Lanthorn
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Sat Dec 22, 2012 2:04 pm  

    I still haven't seen it. I believe I'll like it but I've heard enough spoilers about how the story was changed to be a little bit annoyed. I was okay with all the White Council stuff, but the bit with Azog put me off. The funny thing is the friend who was telling me the most about it then said that one of the dwarves was female just to screw with my head, and I believed her for a minute, having noticed the lightness of Kili's beard. I was running around, screaming, "Oh, Jackson! Curse you!" She got me good. It was pretty hilarious. Laughing
    GreySage

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    Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:47 pm  

    Actually, now that you mention it, Smillan, another thing that annoyed me was that the few female dwarves they showed in the film didn't possess beards of any kind. That just doesn't sit well with Gimli's comment from The Two Towers. Neutral

    SirXaris
    GreySage

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    Sun Dec 23, 2012 11:30 am  

    Saw it for a 3rd time yesterday with my friend whom I dub "Hobbit" or "Bilbo" (my son, Justin, has gotten into the habit at times of referring to him as "Uncle Bilbo" heheheheeh) for his diminutive stature (he'd disagree with my adjective, of course Wink ).

    We got into a discussion about Moria. If the dwarves went there, only to discover it overrun with orcs, which they subsequently failed to wrest from the enemy, why did Gimli want to go there in The Fellowship of the Ring? My only answer is that, somehow, the dwarves retook the old mine from the orcs between the time of The Hobbit and The Fellowship, only to have it switch hands once more with the arrival of the Balrog and the goblins.

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Mon Dec 24, 2012 1:09 pm  

    Yep, Lanthorn, I noticed that inconsistancy the third time I saw The Hobbit as well. Cool

    However, I stand corrected as I also watched for bearded female dwarves more carefully and noted a female dwarven merchant in Dale with impressive lambchops and a fully bearded female dwarf escaping from Erebor during Smaug's attack. Her beard wasn't long and thick, like the males', but it covered her chin, at least.

    I'm not sure what to make of Azog, the Defiler. He is an interesting character, but not in the book, as far as I can recall. I'm not sure why PJ felt it necessary to include him. Also, his scarring is much too symetrical to be a result of wounds or birth. It would have to be rituallistically applied, in my opinion. Thirdly, would you consider him a half-orc/half-ogre crossbreed, a case of giantism in an orc, or something else?

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Tue Jan 01, 2013 12:56 pm; edited 1 time in total
    GreySage

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    Mon Dec 24, 2012 1:30 pm  

    I think that Azog is more akin to something like an orog. I was also intrigued by his ritual scars. And as odd as this may sound, I really liked the fact that his eyes were a nice, even pretty, shade of blue!

    My friend bought the Silmarillion (sp?) and he and I are thinking that some of the passages from that book are crossing over into this movie.

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Jan 01, 2013 9:54 am  

    Re: Moria - indeed the dwarves do briefly establish themselves there post-Hobbit. In The Fellowship of the Ring (book, not movie) Gloin tells Bilbo of Balin's expedition to retake Moria (Ori and Oin went with him). The Book of Mazarbul reveals that they were successful for a time, but that eventually the orcs (and the balrog) were too much for them.

    They did weird things with the Dwarven timeline, though. In the books, the Battle of Azanulbizar (shown in flashback in The Hobbit) was in retaliation for Azog having _already_ killed Thror. Dain killed Azog, but refused to enter Moria, having seen the balrog within. Thrain later goes east with map and key but ends up captured by the Necromancer (Sauron), only to be discovered by Gandalf, who visited Dol Guldur in disguise (another change in the movie - in the books, it was well established by this time that the Necromancer was Sauron, and that he needed driving out). Sauron mostly wanted the dwarf-ring that Thrain still carried, and that Balin hoped to find in Moria.

    What the timeline should look like, roughly (books not handy):

    late 28th century: Smaug descends on Erebor. Thorin and Balin were already outside the mountain, and Thror and Thrain escape through the secret door.
    A few years later, Thror enters Moria alone and is killed by Azog, who sends back his head.
    2793-2799: War of the Dwarves and the Orcs, fought throughout Misty Mountains.
    2799: Battle of Azanulbizar; Dain slays Azog, and Thorin gains the name Oakenshield.
    2841: Thrain disappears.
    Some time after this: Thrain captured, found by Gandalf, dies.
    2941: Events of The Hobbit. Bolg, son of Azog, leads orc army at the end of the book. (Also Aragorn was living in Rivendell by this point; he was ten years old, being fostered by Elrond, thought his name was Estel, and didn't yet know he was the heir of Isildur). The White Council drives Sauron from Dol Guldur, though eventually he will send a nazgul to retake it.
    2991: Balin leads expedition to Moria.
    2994: Balin, other dwarves killed.
    3001: Bilbo's party; he visits Erebor.
    3018: Main events of FotR begin.

    I don't think anything here is from the Silmarillion - Jackson does not have rights to film any of that, for one thing. He is definitely using (and extrapolating from) lots of material from the appendices to Lord of the Rings, and making up some of his own.
    GreySage

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    Tue Jan 01, 2013 10:00 am  

    Chevalier,

    Thank you for all your informational input and for clarifying the inconsistencies. For not having the books in front of you, I think you get the 'sage proficiency: LotR.' Happy

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Tue Jan 01, 2013 1:02 pm  

    Nice, Chevalier. Thanks! Smile

    SirXaris
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    Thu Jan 10, 2013 1:18 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    ...The only bits that caused me to grimace a bit were the voices of the trolls and the goblin king. I was expecting low, gravelly voices, not high-pitched, cockney...


    -I haven't read The Hobbit in 20 (or more) years, but IIRC, the "trolls" do have cockney accents. I don't remember anything about pitch, although based on their size, I'd expect their voices to be lower.
    Apprentice Greytalker

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    Wed Jan 16, 2013 9:56 am  

    Thanks Lanthorn and SirXaris! Yeah, I used a lot of brain space on those books.

    As jamesdglick says, they do have cockney accents in the book, but it does seem like their voices ought to be lower, sounding like stone on stone...and the troll from the Fellowship movie, while it didn't exactly speak, made low, guttural noises. One of The Hobbit's trolls seemed to have a lower voice, at least. I'd guess the higher voices were to help us tell them apart.

    I definitely agree that Fili and Kili (and Thorin) looked way too human. I can see F&K having beards shorter than the others, but not as short as in the movie...and Thorin's almost 200 years old, older than Balin in fact, and should look much more like his father and grandfather, if perhaps leaner.

    I did like that Gloin strongly resembled Gimli; after all, he's Gimli's father.

    The challenge of filming The Hobbit is that the book has such a light tone for most of its length - unlike Lord of the Rings, it was expressly written for children, and that affects the way the story is told. Jackson, I think, tried to capture this lightness while trying to fit it in with the darker, grimmer, much more adult world of Lord of the Rings. In the books, Tolkien sought to explain this by having Bilbo as the "author" of The Hobbit (as well as the first few chapters of LotR); thus the first book reflects Bilbo's whimsical authorial voice, while The Lord of the Rings is mostly written by a sober, serious, post-Ring Frodo. This is probably one reason Jackson uses the frame of Bilbo writing the story: to help prepare us for a different movie experience this time around. Darkness creeps in, though, even more than in Tolkien's book, with Jackson's liberal usage of the dwarven histories and the business of the White Council. The result is a somewhat tonally uneven story, though I still loved watching it.
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 16, 2013 3:41 pm  

    I've seen it three times already, and plan to see it a fourth when it goes to the three dollar cinema.

    All in all, in spite of our criticisms, I think it's a fine film that stands up against Jackson's LoTR saga.

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Sat Jan 19, 2013 7:32 pm  

    Listening to the soundtrack and really like it. Great stuff to have playing in the background, whether you are reading and posting on Canonfire! or running a campaign. In fact, I think I need to add this soundtrack to that list we generated some time ago about "gaming music..."

    -Lanthorn
    GreySage

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    Sun Jan 20, 2013 2:23 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    We got into a discussion about Moria. If the dwarves went there, only to discover it overrun with orcs . . . somehow, the dwarves retook the old mine from the orcs . . . only to have it switch hands once more with the arrival of the Balrog and the goblins.


    I've "acquired" the movie and have watched it twice now.

    I'm not recalling the book very well -- I'll have to look through it again -- since I was never a "hobbit" fan, preferring the Lord of the Rings to it, with the Silmarillion being my favorite of Tolkein's works.

    As I recall, Gandalf once explained that the Balrog was the reason that the dwarves originally left Moria, saying that they had "dug too deep" and had, consequently, awakened the Balrog.

    Gandalf believed that it was/had been "foolish" of Balin to return there, implying that the dwarves had forgotten the reason that Moria had been abandoned in the first place and expressing his belief that Balin and his entourage never had a chance of reclaiming Moria.

    Perhaps I'm wrong, I'll have to look through the books again. Confused
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    Sun Jan 20, 2013 6:42 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar, I think you're quite right. I should have included the initial appearance of the Balrog in my timeline up the thread:

    1980 Balrog appears in Moria, slays the dwarven king (Durin VI)
    1981 Balrog slays Durin's son Nain I. Dwarves flee Moria.

    Gandalf more or less says that the Dwarves, in their desire for more mithril, delved too deep under Caradhras and uncovered the place where it had lain hidden or sleeping since the battle at the end of the First Age, five or six thousand years before.

    Nain's son Thrain I led the Dwarves of Moria to Erebor, where he discovered the Arkenstone (movie changes this to Thorin's grandfather Thror). About two hundred years later, the Dwarves left Erebor and went north to the Grey Mountains. Thror led them back to Erebor after his father was slain by a dragon. He rules under the Mountain for 180 years before Smaug comes calling.

    But the Balrog never left Moria. Dain, Thorin's cousin and hero of the battle of Azanulbizar outside Moria's gates, saw it lurking inside, and told Thorin's father Thrain II that there was no way the Dwarves were taking back Moria. True, Balin should have known better - although it had been 1000 years since the Balrog first appeared, it had been only 180 years since Azanulbizar. As it happened, it seems the Balrog was dormant or indifferent when Balin's expedition arrived: they succeeded at first, though ultimately they were overwhelmed. The chronicle they left didn't mention the Balrog, but the "drums in the deep" seem to have signaled its imminent appearance.

    And for the record, I'm a big fan of the film, despite my quibbles. I've seen it twice (including a midnight showing opening night, no mean feat at my age) and would have seen it more, but it's hard to get to movies with two small children at home.
    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 11:31 am  

    Chevalier wrote:
    Gandalf more or less says that the Dwarves, in their desire for more mithril, delved too deep under Caradhras and uncovered the place where it had lain hidden or sleeping since the battle at the end of the First Age, five or six thousand years before.


    This is no surprise. The Silmarillion (pages 25, 26) makes clear that the Balrogs -- there was more than one -- were members of the Maiar, the "little brothers" of the Valar, both being of the Ainur -- Tolkien's "angels."

    It seems that only their "class" is given, as opposed to "personal" names, since they were among the "unnamed spirits of fire" -- the Valaraukar. It seems they "were called Balrog" by the Elves. (Men had not yet appeared upon Ea -- the world)

    Another one of the Maiar is a "named" spirit called -- Sauron. The Elves also named him "Gorthaur the Cruel." But this is something I wish to discuss in another Thread -- look for it here in the Backalley; soon. Wink

    Chevalier wrote:
    But the Balrog never left Moria. Dain . . . saw it lurking inside . . . Balin should have known better - although it had been 1000 years since the Balrog first appeared, it had been only 180 years since Azanulbizar. As it happened, it seems the Balrog was dormant or indifferent when Balin's expedition arrived . . .


    Perhaps it would be more appropriate to say "since the Balrog first entered Moria" -- rather than "first appeared" -- given that the Maiar were created by Eru -- a.k.a Illuvatar -- before the world, itself, was created and do not age and die. (Though they can be destroyed)

    After Melkor's defeat at the hands of his brothers -- the Valar -- his servants, such as the Balrogs, went into hiding. It seems that they -- and the "others" -- are awaiting their Master's "return." This would probably explain the Balrog's dormancy in Moria: The dwarves awakened him, he chased them off, he returned to "waiting," as it were . . . 'nough said.

    Chevalier wrote:
    He rules under the Mountain for 180 years before Smaug comes calling.


    Interestingly, the dragons are "lesser" creatures, being created as they were by Melkor, a.k.a. Morgoth. Glaurung, "the Father of Dragons," was the first of the Uruloki, the "fire drakes." Ancalagon the Black was said to have been the mightiest of the dragons. Earendil, father of Elrond of Rivendell, slew him. Wink
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 12:17 pm  

    One balrog was named, at least - their captain, Gothmog, who was killed by Ecthelion during the sack of Gondolin.

    I didn't intend "appeared" to mean "came into being" - after all, the thing had fled to the roots of the mountains sometime during or after the War of Wrath at the end of the first age, as I noted earlier. It is curious, though, that when it did this, Khazad-dum was _already in existence_. I wonder if it intended the Dwarves to discover it someday? Or, if it simply misjudged how deeply it needed to hide. At any rate, Dain must surely have warned Balin of the Balrog's presence, which means Balin ignored the warning and walked in knowing that Durin's Bane was there. Perhaps its re-awakening at that time was partly due to Sauron, who towards the turn of the millennium was putting out his thought and calling to evil things in the world.

    While in the earliest version of "The Fall of Gondolin" Tolkien describes a horde of balrogs in Morgoth's army, he later revised that number to seven. They seem to have been reserved for special tasks - they were sent to kill Feanor, appropriate given the meaning of his name (spirit of fire) and Morgoth's hatred and fear of him, and remained present in all later accounts of the sack of Gondolin.

    It's notable that no one ever slew a balrog without himself perishing. Ecthelion died slaying Gothmog (in the early tale, he threw his enemy and himself off the Tower of the King, falling into the great fountain below); Glorfindel died dueling a balrog in the pass out of the mountains, leading the refugees of Gondolin; and of course Gandalf "died" after he killed his. That Glorfindel and Ecthelion each took out a balrog shows how bad-**** the Noldor of the first age could be! Like his enemy, Gandalf was an incarnated Maia himself, and so their fight was a little more even.

    Back to The Hobbit - while Azog was clearly the leader of the orcs, he surely deferred to the balrog. In the movie, while the demon isn't shown, there's a shot into the interior of Moria that shows a reddish glow similar to when the orcs run away from the Fellowship in the great hall - maybe Jackson's nod to its presence.
    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 1:54 pm  

    Chevalier wrote:
    One balrog was named, at least - their captain, Gothmog . . .


    Ah! Gothmog, "Lord of Balrogs," page 125. Interesting what continued research into the Simarillion reveals! Happy

    Chevalier wrote:
    I didn't intend "appeared" to mean "came into being" . . .


    Sorry, didn't mean to imply that! Embarassed

    Chevalier wrote:
    It is curious, though, that when it did this, Khazad-dum was already in existence.


    Recall that the Dwarves were actually created before the Elves. The Valar Aule created them, "unwilling to await the fulfillment of the designs of Illuvatar." No doubt Melkor -- who sought to corrupt everything -- played a part in this decision.

    The Dwarves were "bound" to Aule however, until Illuvatar showed Aule compassion and gave the Dwarves independent free-will. Still, Illuvatar decreed that the Dwarves must "sleep" and would not "come forth" until after the coming of the Firstborn, the "Children of Illuvatar" -- the Elves.

    So the Dwarves had existed long before the "War of Wrath."

    Interestingly, it was the Valar Yavanna who -- with her "thought" portion of "the Song" -- created the Treants to guard the forest against the wood chopping of the Dwarves. Evil Grin

    Chevalier wrote:
    I wonder if it intended the Dwarves to discover it someday? Or, if it simply misjudged how deeply it needed to hide . . . Perhaps its re-awakening at that time was partly due to Sauron, who towards the turn of the millennium was putting out his thought and calling to evil things in the world.


    I don't think it gave consideration to the Dwarves, not thinking/realizing they would ever dig that deep.

    I think you're more onto it with Sauron's call. As Melkor's chief lieutenant, the Balrogs and "others" were used to taking his orders.

    Chevalier wrote:
    While in the earliest version of "The Fall of Gondolin" Tolkien describes a horde of balrogs in Morgoth's army, he later revised that number to seven.


    Well, when speaking of the Maiar that went with Melkor, Tolkien mentions "others." So there could well have been only seven of the "unnamed spirits" called Balrogs.

    Chevalier wrote:
    Gandalf was an incarnated Maia himself, and so their fight was a little more even.


    And that's what we'll be discussing in that new Thread I spoke of! Happy

    Chevalier wrote:
    Back to The Hobbit - while Azog was clearly the leader of the orcs, he surely deferred to the balrog.


    Azog was by no means the equal of the Balrog and could never have usurped its authority in the mines of Moria. There's no disagreement there! Laughing
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    GreySage

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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 3:08 pm  

    You two definitely have the Sage proficiency: LoTR!!! Happy

    I thought that I heard that trolls were the perverted creations of Ents by Sauron.

    True, or false? If false, how were trolls 'created?'

    -Lanthorn
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 4:38 pm  

    Sorry, but the Vala named Melkor -- called Morgoth by Elves -- created Trolls before the First Age. No one knows exactly how he did it.

    It was Treebeard who said that Melkor made them "in mockery of the Ents," as Orcs were of Elves. Given that Orcs are corrupted Elves, it's possible that Trolls were made from Ents, though that's never explicitly stated. However, it should be noted here that both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings mention that sunlight will turn them to stone . . . "from which they were made." Thus, two origins are suggested.

    The origin of Trolls is limited by the fact that Melkor, and his servant Sauron, could not create "life" forms of their own power, but were limited to corrupting the work of others. Bare in mind that -- in harmony with the previous discussions -- both Dwarves and Ents were given sentience and free-will by Illuvatar and not the Valar that created them. Naturally, Illuvatar would not offer such "gifts" to the "works" of Melkor, or Sauron, both of whom were opposed to the "Will of Illuvatar."

    Given that it is implied that Trolls are made of stone, it is also possible to expand the theory and say that they were corrupted from a form/version of the Stone Giants seen fighting in the movie. Shocked

    There is, therefore, room for "maneuver" here! Evil Grin

    Hope that helps! Laughing
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 5:14 pm  

    My ranks in Knowledge: Tolkien fall far short of those of the two major sages participating in this discussion, so I'll enjoy the opportunity to learn rather than try to offer information in this thread. Smile

    SirXaris


    Last edited by SirXaris on Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 7:32 pm  

    Sorry for being unclear - what surprises me about Khazad-dum existing when the balrog hid under Caradhras is not that it existed - it was the oldest dwarven city, and dwarves further west had participated in the earlier wars against Morgoth - but that, given that it already existed, the balrog chose to hide under that particular place, already inhabited, out of all the great length of the Misty Mountains. This is why I wondered if it had some long-range malicious intent...possibly his evil seeped into the mountains itself; Gimli notes that Caradhras had long been called "the Cruel," and had an evil reputation.

    Forgot to note that Gothmog also slew Fingon, a High King of the Noldor.

    Tolkien's numbering of the balrogs at seven comes from a late note (1958ish) eventually published in _Morgoth's Ring_ (1993). Three are definitely referred to in text (one in Moria, two in Gondolin) and others are implied in the attack on Feanor and the War of Wrath. The Balrog of Moria may well be the last one in existence.

    A letter from 1954 reveals Tolkien hadn't quite figured out the origin of trolls, and I think he never did fully resolve it to his satisfaction. For that matter, he never quite settled on the origin of the orcs either - other late writings in Morgoth's Ring show the Professor waffling between their being corrupted elves, corrupted men, or advanced beasts. Corrupted Elves seems the best solution to me - this at least explains the great age achieved by Azog's son Bolg (minimum age at the end of The Hobbit: 141).

    A further note on Dwarves reclaiming Moria - in a late draft of the Appendices to Return of the King, Tolkien mentions that the eventual Durin VII would reclaim Moria, which by then had no Balrog to guard it, only orcs. In the great rush to complete and publish RotK, that reference was omitted, though Durin VII remains on the published genealogy of the House of Durin.

    I love hashing all this out with you, M-S! And you too, Sir X and Lanthorn!
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 8:33 pm  

    Chevalier wrote:
    I love hashing all this out with you, M-S! And you too,
    Sir X and Lanthorn!


    I actually think this is more a two-sided dialogue, between you and Mystic, with SX (as he noted earlier) and I merely watching on the sidelines. But I greatly thank the mention all the same, Chevalier. Happy

    OK, if trolls turn to stone in the sunlight, explain to me why the trolls attacking Minas Tirith (with the battle armor and maces) did NOT turn to stone, as it was clearly daylight!!!

    Furthermore, there were some trolls in the Two Towers flick that helped to open the Great Gate that didn't turn to stone in daylight, either!

    -Lanthorn
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    Mon Jan 21, 2013 9:46 pm  

    Good stuff all around, Chevalier! Happy

    Chevalier wrote:
    . . . what surprises me about Khazad-dum existing when the balrog hid under Caradhras is not that it existed . . . but that, given that it already existed, the balrog chose to hide under that particular place, already inhabited, out of all the great length of the Misty Mountains.


    An excellent point. It could be that the Balrog had mischief planned all along. After all, the same question arises concerning the "Watcher in the Deep." Where did it come from? Given that the Dwarves were originally doing a "brisk business" with Men and Elves and using that entryway on a regular basis -- with Elves and Men undoubtedly knowing the secret of opening the door, once upon a time -- certainly the lake was once "safe?"

    I believe both creatures are explained by Gandalf's explanation that the Dwarves "delved too deep" in their quest for Mithril. But, as you point out, the Balrog could have done it deliberately.

    Chevalier wrote:
    Tolkien hadn't quite figured out the origin of trolls, and I think he never did fully resolve it to his satisfaction.


    Yes, that would explain why there are three possible origins for Trolls. Tolkien, himself, hadn't quite worked it out to his own satisfaction. Darn it! Mad

    Chevalier wrote:
    Tolkien . . . never quite settled on the origin of the orcs either - other late writings in Morgoth's Ring show the Professor waffling between their being corrupted elves, corrupted men, or advanced beasts. Corrupted Elves seems the best solution to me - this at least explains the great age achieved by Azog's son Bolg (minimum age at the end of The Hobbit: 141).


    I agree with your conclusion. In The Silmarillion, Orcs did fight in the early wars, before the advent of Men. So I would rule out Orcs being corrupted Men. This would agree with Saruman's claim that Orcs "were once elves."

    Still, The Silmarillion was edited and published posthumously by his son Christopher, so J.R.R. might have intended to change that, but I don't think so.

    Lanthorn wrote:
    OK, if trolls turn to stone in the sunlight, explain to me why the trolls attacking Minas Tirith (with the battle armor and maces) did NOT turn to stone, as it was clearly daylight!!!

    Furthermore, there were some trolls in the Two Towers flick that helped to open the Great Gate that didn't turn to stone in daylight, either!


    Ah ha! Shocked

    You forget the Uruk-hai my friend! Wink Evil Grin

    The Uruk-hai are described as very large, black Orcs with great strength. They were first seen coming from Mordor in the Third Age. They conquered Ithilien and the city of Osgiliath. These "first" Uruk-hai were of Sauron's breeding, an improvement over his Master's original creation. It is said that Sauron bred Orcs with Men to get this variant.

    But, you will recall from the Lord of the Rings trilogy, that Saruman made some improvements of his own to the Uruk-hai, such as giving them resistance to sunlight, the ability to run all day and a more upright stature. (You must remember that Melkor "ruled" during a time of twilight -- there was no sun)

    The explanation for those Trolls you mention is the same -- Sauron made improvements on the "original model." The three Trolls in The Hobbit are "originals," many of which still exist in Middle Earth. But Sauron went on to create the Olog-hai, which are described in The Return of the King, Appendix F, although the name Olog-hai is never used in any of the stories. These Trolls are said to be "strong, agile, fierce, and cunning" and created by Sauron, just like the Uruk-hai.

    Unlike other Trolls, they could withstand sunlight while under the sway of Sauron's will. They seldom speak since it's said that they know no language other than the "Black Speech." They did not appear until near the end of the Third Age and could be found near Dol Guldur and in the mountains around Mordor.

    Since the "hill-trolls" of Gorgoroth that fought in the Battle of the Morannon -- you'll recall the battle before the gate when one of them stepped on Aragorn -- could also withstand sunlight, these are no doubt the Olog-hai of The Return of the King, Appendix F.

    Hope that answers it for you! Happy

    (Did some editing here, spelling. Wink )
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    Last edited by Mystic-Scholar on Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:28 am; edited 3 times in total
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    Tue Jan 22, 2013 4:54 pm  

    Excellent, Mystic! Thank you for the clarification on the various sub-races of troll. I knew there had to be a reason!

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:28 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    Thank you for the clarification on the various sub-races of troll.


    You're quite welcome, although there were several "sub-races" that we never even mentioned. Wink

    You might also wish to consider this point:

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    . . . they could withstand sunlight while under the sway of Sauron's will.


    With the fall of Sauron . . . they all -- most likely -- turn to stone in the sunlight. Men have regained the upper hand! Shocked Laughing

    However, this is contingent upon one important thing: With the destruction of the One Ring, Sauron was broken, not killed. In order to gain power over the three Elven rings -- which he had no hand in making -- he had to pour much of his personal power into the Ring. With the destruction of the Ring, he returned to being a "shadow" of his former self, as in the war he fought against Isildur. So, if his "shadow" is "nearby," it's likely that these Trolls will still withstand sunlight. Evil Grin

    So, if your PCs meet one and it doesn't turn to stone in the sunlight . . . Beware! Shocked

    Also, with all this crossbreeding, don't go thinking that Sauron or Saruman did something that Melkor could not do. No, Sauron, Saruman, Aragorn, Gandalf, Smaug and all the Orcs of Mordor and Moria wouldn't have lasted 5 minutes against Melkor . . . the Mightiest of the Valar.

    Melkor -- a.k.a. Morgoth -- rampaged/ruled in the First Age . . . when there was no sun. So making Orcs and Trolls resistant to the sun never entered his thinking. Wink Evil Grin
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    Last edited by Mystic-Scholar on Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:31 am; edited 4 times in total
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    Tue Jan 22, 2013 8:08 pm  

    This just goes back to how much research and depth that Tolkein went into creating his Middle-Earth mythology. No wonder some colleges offer class credit in the humanities JUST on his literature. It is my understanding that he cobbled together bits and pieces of mythology and folklore from a VAST host of different cultures to create the creatures, characters, and lore of Middle Earth. VERY IMPRESSIVE.

    Curious how many of you readers have actually delved into playing the Middle-Earth RPG, and your thoughts on that gaming system. I have never tried, but am interested to hear what others have to say.

    -Ever Inquisitive, Lanthorn
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:25 am  

    "Aragorn" Mystic, "Aragorn". Wink

    Lanthorn wrote:
    Curious how many of you readers have actually delved into playing the Middle-Earth RPG, and your thoughts on that gaming system. I have never tried, but am interested to hear what others have to say.


    I played a couple of times. The critical hit system was incredibly extensive. My friends told me that the difference between MERP and D&D was that in D&D you remembered the heroic actions of your PCs, while in MERP you remembered the unique deaths of each PC. They were right. Evil

    I don't mind PC death, but the rules in MERP made survival almost impossible.

    The other thing I don't like about playing in a game like MERP is that the story has already been told. For the same reason, I dislike role-playing a PC named Conan, Legolas, The Grey Mouser, Balian, Roland, Arthur, etc. Those hero's stories have already been told, so I feel like I'm doing something that just doesn't make a difference. I'd rather play in a world (ie. Greyhawk) where the future isn't pre-determined, and my PC is unique - their story has never been told and no one knows how it will turn out.

    SirXaris
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:15 am  

    *** Duplicate due to edit I think***

    Last edited by Dark_Lord_Galen on Wed Jan 23, 2013 10:02 am; edited 1 time in total
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:16 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    My ranks in Knowledge: Tolkien fall far short of those of the two major sages participating in this discussion, so I'll enjoy the opportunity to learn rather than try to offer information in this thread. Smile
    SirXaris

    I stand with you Sir X Smile
    Though would toss this personage from my youth into the fold..
    A professor from my university days that was quite the fan of Tolkien.. and published several books of her own on the topic.
    http://greenbooks.theonering.net/turgon/files/071503.html
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 9:37 am  

    SirXaris wrote:
    "Aragorn" Mystic, "Aragorn". Wink


    What? You couldn't go in and correct the spelling for me? What the hell kind of Editor are you!? Razz rolleyes

    Laughing Laughing Laughing

    Actually, you'll see each of those posts have been edited a couple of times for spelling. In my "ute," in high school, I took typing and maxed out at 90 words a minute, without error. But that was sometime back and I occasionally get carried away -- posting before proof-reading. Embarassed

    Sorry gang! Cool
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:26 am  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    http://greenbooks.theonering.net/turgon/files/071503.html


    That's an interesting interview, DLG. Thanks for offering it. I find it quite refreshing to hear her explain the importance of female characters in Tolkien's works when I usually hear complaints that there aren't many female roles - PJ even having to expand upon the role of Arwen just to provide more opportunity for a female character to shine.

    @ Mystic-Scholar

    Alas, they don't allow me such access to other people's posts on this website. Imagine the good I could accomplish in the name of grammar and spelling if they did. Razz

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:18 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    PJ even having to expand upon the role of Arwen just to provide more opportunity for a female character to shine.


    Which I disagree with. Peter Jackson tried to make a "chick flick" in the name of money.

    Arwen -- for the most part -- appears in the last chapter of the last book. She didn't do any of the things in the books that she's depicted as doing in the movies. Everything she does is actually done by Glorfindel, an elf-lord from Rivendell.

    I've had people ask: "What difference does it make?"

    The Lord of the Rings is not a DAMN love story. That's all the "difference" there needs to be.

    I hate it when Hollywood screws with my favorite books. If there's something you don't like about a book, then don't make it into a movie!

    Butt holes. Mad

    Everyone has an opinion and an orifice . . . I'm entitled to mine. Razz
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 12:31 pm  

    Well, you certainly added specific examples to my short, "...expand upon the role of Arwen..." comment. Razz

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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 1:30 pm  

    Laughing Laughing Laughing

    I disagreed with Peter Jackson's actions, not your comment. Razz

    Laughing Laughing Laughing
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 5:59 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:

    Which I disagree with. Peter Jackson tried to make a "chick flick" in the name of money.
    ......I've had people ask: "What difference does it make?"

    The Lord of the Rings is not a DAMN love story. That's all the "difference" there needs to be.

    I hate it when Hollywood screws with my favorite books. If there's something you don't like about a book, then don't make it into a movie!

    Butt holes. Mad

    Everyone has an opinion and an orifice . . . I'm entitled to mine. Razz

    HEHE HERE HERE AND HOOOZAAAAHHHH
    don't feel bad about that "orifice" MS... mine was ranting in another part of the forum on a similar related topic.... Laughing
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    Wed Jan 23, 2013 8:05 pm  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    HEHE HERE HERE AND HOOOZAAAAHHHH
    don't feel bad about that "orifice" MS... mine was ranting in another part of the forum on a similar related topic.... Laughing


    I returned the favor too! Wink Laughing
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:13 pm  

    M-S has the skinny on the trolls. Also I think that the great darkness Sauron sent out from Mordor via Orodruin (Dawnless Day through the Pelennor) would help his minions - with the sun blotted out by the volcanic clouds, even those creatures who disliked and feared the sun would be OK during the day.

    Never played MERP, though I have a couple sourcebooks for fun. I want them all, however, for the Tolkien collector nerd quotient.

    I admit I liked the expansion of Arwen's role, though I totally understand why Mystic Scholar and others do not! Film adaptations often conflate characters (Shawshank Redemption combined three wardens into one, for instance), and while I really like Glorfindel as a character, I can see where he wouldn't add a whole lot to the movie. Also, some of the Arwen scenes are derived from the "Tale of Aragorn and Arwen" in the appendix, a love story that Tolkien couldn't, to his satisfaction, fit into the main narrative (at least partially because, as M-S notes, the main narrative is [largely, at least] not a love story - the Aragorn/Eowyn/Faramir triangle notwithstanding. And while Jackson expanded Aragorn/Arwen, and even magnified Aragorn/Eowyn, Eowyn/Faramir is all but excised from the theatrical release and is only marginally present even in the extended version). I don't know that it becomes a chick flick as a result, but I certainly see how such a change is jarring, especially to purists.

    I would love it if someone (maybe at HBO) were to produce miniseries of the major Silmarillion storylines - the Turin saga, Beren and Luthien - though I don't see the Tolkien estate letting this happen soon. These come with love stories built in, so no changes necessary!
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:47 pm  

    Chevalier wrote:
    Never played MERP . . .


    I've never played MERP either.

    Chevalier wrote:
    I liked the expansion of Arwen's role . . . and while I really like Glorfindel as a character, I can see where he wouldn't add a whole lot to the movie.


    That's not really the point. It changes the story premise. Arwen's mother was captured, raped and tortured by Orcs of Sauron. Her father -- Elrond -- and her brothers allowed her to go no where without a substantial guard, knowing she was a target -- but not in Jackson's movies.

    Her brothers, along with Aragorn, spent much of their time hunting Orcs because of this part of the story. It also diminishes the seriousness of their Quest and negates the reason that two "nobodies," like Merry and Pippin, were even included. To quote Gandalf, speaking to Elrond:

    "I think in this instance we should trust to friendship, rather than great power . . . Even if you were to chose an Elf Lord such as Glorfindel, he could not single handily storm the Gates of Mordor."

    This omission also fails to bring home a necessary distinction. Unlike Legolas, Glorfindel was not an "elf" . . . he was an Elf Lord. Yes, the Noldor were alive and well in Middle Earth.

    The reason some of "our" readers don't know that, is because Peter Jackson saw fit to change it.

    Chevalier wrote:
    . . . the Aragorn/Eowyn/Faramir triangle notwithstanding. And while Jackson expanded Aragorn/Arwen, and even magnified Aragorn/Eowyn, Eowyn/Faramir is all but excised from the theatrical release . . .


    Aragorn/Eowyn was very much one sided and you know that. Aragorn never once "abandoned" Arwen in his heart. He never "considered" Eowyn.

    Yes, many changes were made to the trilogy. Didn't care for the changes, but . . . to each his own. Wink
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 2:10 pm  

    As I said, I understand why people wouldn't like these changes. Though a movie without change wasn't feasible.

    I know Aragorn/Eowyn is one-sided, yes; hence "magnified" as my description. Not that I ever got the feeling from the movie that Aragorn was at all swayed, just that it depicted Eowyn as more hopeful. But even a one-sided relationship can form part of a love triangle.

    I was bothered most by the omission of Faramir and Eowyn's relationship, though the end of the movie is already crowded as it is. While its location works in the book's narrative structure, I think it likely would be a pace-killer for the movie.
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    Thu Jan 24, 2013 2:47 pm  

    Chevalier wrote:
    I was bothered most by the omission of Faramir and Eowyn's relationship, though the end of the movie is already crowded as it is. While its location works in the book's narrative structure, I think it likely would be a pace-killer for the movie.


    I don't know. I think it's omission also over looks an important "message." The story shows how, in-spite of Eowyn's unrequited love for Aragon, the alliance between Rohan and Gondor was once again renewed, refreshed and strengthened by her marriage to Faramir, who the King, himself, declared a "Prince of Gondor."

    And I'm not criticizing your preference for the changes, my friend and fellow Tolkien fan, merely giving my reasons for not caring for them. Wink
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    Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:09 pm  

    Chevalier wrote:
    I know Aragorn/Eowyn is one-sided, yes; hence "magnified" as my description. Not that I ever got the feeling from the movie that Aragorn was at all swayed, just that it depicted Eowyn as more hopeful. But even a one-sided relationship can form part of a love triangle. .

    Treading lightly here ... hehe but I'd take Miranda Otto (Eowyn) over Liv Tyler (Arwen) anyday.. but that's just me....

    Chevalier wrote:

    I was bothered most by the omission of Faramir and Eowyn's relationship, though the end of the movie is already crowded as it is. While its location works in the book's narrative structure, I think it likely would be a pace-killer for the movie.

    Treading lightly again...... in defense,,, they did make the attempt at this in the extended version on the blue ray...
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    Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:37 pm  

    M-S my friend, I completely agree about what's lost when leaving out Faramir/Eowyn. On the whole, the treatment of Faramir was probably my least favorite part of the movies. Not only is the sense of renewed alliance lost, as you rightly point out, but his whole character feels cheapened - falling to the lure of the ring and taking Frodo to Osgiliath; the extended scenes where he comes off as the ne'er-do-well younger brother, as opposed to a captain so loved that Beregond would commit murder to save his life; etc. We totally miss that Faramir was just as bad-**** a warrior as Boromir, and wise and kind to boot. Maybe Jackson et al. thought he was too perfect, and needed more flaws...

    Dark Lord Galen, I recall they addressed the Eowyn/Faramir romance in the extended scenes, you're quite right. I wish that had been in the theatrical cut if only so we could see that magnificent mantle the costumers made for Miranda Otto to wear.

    I actually love these movies and watch them all the time - the whole Battle of the Pelennor is brilliant, I think. I get chills when the Rohirrim line up for the charge and Theoden delivers his speech, and tear up when Eowyn kills the witch-king...I just wish, in my hubris, they'd hired me as a screenplay consultant. Happy
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    Fri Jan 25, 2013 1:45 pm  

    Dark_Lord_Galen wrote:
    I'd take Miranda Otto (Eowyn) over Liv Tyler (Arwen) anyday . . .



    Hallelujah!


    Singing to the Choir! I "tread" with a heavy step! Wink Evil Grin


    Chevalier wrote:
    On the whole, the treatment of Faramir was probably my least favorite part of the movies . . . his whole character feels cheapened . . .


    There's that "singing to the choir" thing again. Wink

    Chevalier wrote:
    . . . he comes off as the ne'er-do-well younger brother, as opposed to a captain so loved that Beregond would commit murder to save his life . . . We totally miss that Faramir was just as bad-**** a warrior as Boromir, and wise and kind to boot.


    Yes, Beregond's character and role are sorely missed in the movies. A real disappointment. Cry

    Faramir was every bit the warrior that Boromir was, but he was also a much greater thinker than his brother, a greater intellect. That portrayal is what's really missing here.

    Chevalier wrote:
    Maybe Jackson thought . . . he was too perfect, and needed more flaws . . .


    Jackson is an . . . ****! Razz

    There's that 'treading with a heavy step' again too. Wink Evil Grin

    Chevalier wrote:
    I actually love these movies and watch them all the time - the whole Battle of the Pelennor is brilliant, I think. I get chills when the Rohirrim line up for the charge and Theoden delivers his speech, and tear up when Eowyn kills the witch-king...I just wish, in my hubris, they'd hired me as a screenplay consultant.


    "We" are the . . . Choir!
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    Sat Jan 26, 2013 9:58 pm  

    One other option for trolls in armor during daylight could be the half-trolls.

    In the MERP rules it mentions them and they would often wear armor that their full blooded counterparts would disdain.

    As part of their mixed blood line the sunlight does not effect them.

    Later

    Argon
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    Tue Mar 12, 2013 4:38 pm  

    Found out this weekend that "The Hobbit" is coming out on March 19th (!) on Blu-ray and DVD. Happy

    YEAH!

    I also intend to catch it one last time (3 dollar movies?) on the big screen before it completely leaves theaters.

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Mar 12, 2013 6:53 pm  

    I'm looking forward to watching it on DVD as well. I'll have it running in the background while I'm editing and while I sleep so that I'll have all the lines memorized and can quote from it reflexively whenever an opportunity presents itself to do so in real life. Razz

    SirXaris
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    Tue Mar 12, 2013 9:49 pm  

    SirXaris wrote:
    I'm looking forward to watching it on DVD as well. I'll have it running in the background while I'm editing and while I sleep so that I'll have all the lines memorized and can quote from it reflexively whenever an opportunity presents itself to do so in real life. Razz

    SirXaris


    Laughing SX, you crack me up, man! Happy

    I oftentimes joke that I suffer from Star Wars Tourette's Syndrome (quoting lines at random moments), but this... Razz

    -Lanthorn
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    Sun Mar 17, 2013 7:57 am  

    Plan to see this movie today at the 3 dollar theater while wife and kids are away...Happy St Paddy's Day to me! Happy

    Only a few more til it comes out in stores for purchase, too.

    -Lanthorn
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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 6:25 pm  

    Its available for purchase now. How is it 3 dollars in your area. I can't even get the soda at the theater by me for $3 dollars.

    I need that kind of discount.

    Later

    Argon
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    Mon Mar 18, 2013 6:50 pm  

    It helps if you live in a smallish town in the Pacific NW. Happy I don't know the population offhand, but pretty sure we're around 160,000 people or so.

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:49 pm  

    Got my copy...about ready to sit down and watch (with a favorite libation, of course: "What do ya mean it comes in pints?!") Happy

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Mar 19, 2013 5:19 pm  

    So, did you catch anything interesting this time that you missed in the three theater showings you saw? Smile

    SirXaris
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    Thu Mar 21, 2013 4:52 pm  

    Well, given the fact that he can now "pause" and "rewind" . . . he ought to! Laughing
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    Sat Mar 30, 2013 4:59 pm  

    Argon wrote:
    Its available for purchase now. How is it 3 dollars in your area. I can't even get the soda at the theater by me for $3 dollars.

    I need that kind of discount.
    Later
    Argon

    Ole Timers Teacher's Discount... hehe
    Wink

    Seriously,, Finally broke down and watched this.. seems my memory must be slipping or was there ALOT of The Silmarillion sprinkled throughout??? I've been reviewing some of the Tolkien works for a less than fully accurate Rasgon comment elsewhere (so want my ducks in a row) Wink
    But dont recall ALOT of the hollywood rendition of hobit "lore" as put forth in this telling... though not surprised the WHOLE Liv Tyler role was practically "fiction" as well.
    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 31, 2013 6:59 am  

    Go ahead, force me to re-read the entire thread! Razz Laughing

    Yes, there were changes throughout the production. Chevalier and I mention several of them. Roles were changed most often, but so were the time-lines.

    As has been said before . . . it's "Bollywood." Evil Grin

    (Hollywood, Bollywood . . . what's the difference?) Wink rolleyes Evil Grin
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    GreySage

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    Sun Mar 31, 2013 7:51 am  

    Yes, my understanding is that Peter Jackson infused lots of the Silmarillion into his rendition of The Hobbit.

    Nevertheless, I still think it's a great film (listening to the soundtrack right now, in fact), and I eagerly await the next one! Curious to see what he does with Smaug...

    -Lanthorn
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    Sun Mar 31, 2013 6:55 pm  

    Strictly speaking, there's none of The Silmarillion in The Hobbit movie. The film rights to The Silmarillion are separate, and have not been sold to anyone. Most of the extra stuff comes from the appendices to Lord of the Rings (such as the Battle of Azanulbizar before the gates of Moria), or is entirely new content (Azog surviving the Battle of Azanulbizar, for instance).

    Got my DVD on Friday, but between basketball and family stuff haven't been able to watch it yet. I'd have watched it tonight, but Game of Thrones season 3 kicked off (see other thread).
    Paladin

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    Tue Jun 11, 2013 11:46 am  

    In case any have not seen

    http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/hobbit-desolation-smaug-first-trailer-566207
    GreySage

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    Tue Jun 11, 2013 12:37 pm  

    Thanks, DLG. Happy

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    Tue Jun 11, 2013 1:50 pm  

    Hallelujah!!!

    Still pissed we have to wait til the END of the year! Confused

    -Lanthorn
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    Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:01 pm  

    I have enjoyed the films and was ecstatic that Hobbit was being created. I have enjoyed the movies more by overlooking the fact that it didn't exactly follow the books. The movies were enjoyable and likely bring continued interest to the realm of fantasy we all obviously enjoy. For me, that is enough.

    That being said, it is too bad the films were not more true to the book. Oh well.

    At least this year come snow, come Hobbit part 2.
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    Thu Jun 13, 2013 6:56 pm  

    I feel I need to state I am impressed with Chevalier and MS knowledge on the subject. I hope my previous comments were not taken as belittling to this discussion. This was a great forum and I was glad to read material from a couple that were so well versed. Thank you.
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    Sat Dec 07, 2013 7:00 pm  

    Raising (or perhaps is it Resurrecting?) this thread from torpor, given that the next installment of The Hobbit reaches theaters THIS coming Friday. Happy

    I, for one, am DEFINITELY going to see it. I've been salivating ever since I saw the first trailer, and with the second one it's only gotten worse.

    No doubt the movie will infuse material from other sources, as did the first one. Curious what you all have read or heard. I personally don't mind spoilers, but others do, so make sure you announce that before replying, if you know anything.

    thanks!

    Lanthorn
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    Sun Dec 08, 2013 8:38 am  

    They keep mis-pronouncing 'Smaug'. I have always pronounced it 'smog', like the factory pollutants from the days Tolkien grew up in. He considered it a great evil, so I wasn't surprised to see he named the dragon after it. Razz

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    Sun Dec 08, 2013 9:04 am  

    I've been told that the voice for Smaug (I pronounce it the same as you do, SX) is Benedict Cumberbatch, the actor who played Khan in the most recent Star Trek film.

    -Lanthorn
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    Sun Dec 08, 2013 4:19 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    I've been told that the voice for Smaug (I pronounce it the same as you do, SX) is Benedict Cumberbatch, the actor who played Khan in the most recent Star Trek film.

    -Lanthorn


    Yes, I'm sure that is correct as I've seen several official posts on FB stating as much.

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    Mon Dec 09, 2013 1:03 pm  

    I've always pronounced it "smog" in my head, but I'm pretty sure the "correct" pronunciation (as JRRT intended) was indeed "smowg" (rhymes with cowg). I'm at work right now, but tonight I'll try to look up a reference in the Letters or Annotated Hobbit - I think he clarified this at some point. He derived it from Old English of course - same root as Smeagol, I think.

    Very excited about the movie! I'm not sure if I'll see it on the first day this year, but will see it as soon as possible.
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    Mon Dec 09, 2013 8:30 pm  

    I'll be taking my kids to see it Saturday night. :)

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    Tue Dec 10, 2013 3:10 pm  

    The soundtrack just hit stores (out here in the Pacific NW, anyway) today. I just purchased mine!

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Dec 10, 2013 5:09 pm  

    A friend of mine who is a movie critic just posted his review of The Hobbit: Smaug today. He admitted it was a fun adventure, but was highly critical of the lack of character depth.

    I understand his point that a movie should stand on its own apart from the book, but since I know the characters well from the book, I'm looking forward to the great action adventure he claims the show is.

    SirXaris
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    Sat Dec 14, 2013 8:50 am  

    LOVED IT!!!!!

    Happy

    Smaug got great screen time and he was thoroughly well-done, I thought. Lots of action, and even though it doesn't follow the book (neither did the first film), still a wonderful film.

    MUST see it again...and again, at the very least...and perhaps a fourth time at the 2-3 dollar movies before it's gone...

    -Lanthorn

    p.s. yes, it seems we gotta wait ANOTHER full year for the final installment; damn that Peter Jackson! Evil
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    Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:01 pm  

    Yes, I agree - Smaug was great. I didn't really like his head in the trailers, but it was all good when seen as a whole.

    I really liked the movie as an action adventure. I did not appreciate all the changes P.J. made from the book, as they seemed completely unnecessary. On its own, there was nothing wrong with the story as presented in the movie. However, since it was based on such a good book, I don't see the benefit of all the stuff he added at the expense of stuff he left out. Confused

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    Last edited by SirXaris on Sun Dec 15, 2013 9:53 am; edited 1 time in total
    GreySage

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    Sun Dec 15, 2013 8:39 am  

    SX, completely agree that the trailers did NOT do that dragon justice. I especially liked how he moved in the film, and how his head spikes raised up and down (esp. when he was agitated or prior to breathing).

    Wondering what age category, based on a rough estimate of Smaug's approximate size, he would have. Any ideas???

    -Lanthorn
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    Thu Dec 19, 2013 1:48 pm  

    I have to say, I hated the latest installment of the Hobbit movies. Oh I loved Smaug! He was, imho, the epitome of a dragon; large, cruel, utterly contemptuous of any life beneath him and that breathe weapon of his was awesome. Seriously, seeing him come crawling down the mountains of gold or that "falling gold piece" scene....yeah those were pucker factors! Laughing But so much was unnecessarily added that I was just bored. And while I understand he wanted to make it child friendly, I think he did a disservice to the dwarves. I will now await my punishment for stepping against the party lines. Wink
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    Thu Dec 19, 2013 7:33 pm  

    Uptognomegood, you echoed my own irritation, but with more specific detail is all. Confused

    Oh, and you voiced my own thrill at the rendition of Smaug exceptionally, too. Happy

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    Sat Dec 21, 2013 10:09 am  

    Uptognomegood, I am sure you aren't the only person who has these opinions (it seems SX agrees, for instance), and I would hope nobody would fault you for expressing those views, even if they, in turn, disagree. Debate and discussion are the cornerstone of Canonfire! after all.

    Thanks for adding to the thread,

    -Lanthorn
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    Wed Dec 25, 2013 6:55 pm  

    Haven't had a chance to see the movie yet, but I can tell you that I don't like the fact that they saw fit to add another . . . damn girl hero!

    Getting aggravating, really.

    But I intend on seeing and will be happy to tell you what all they added from the Silmarillon, or taken away from the Hobbit.

    If you really want to know, that is (mheaton118). Wink Laughing
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    Sat Dec 28, 2013 8:22 pm  

    I watched it again today.

    Jackson did a really good job matching Orlando Bloom and the man playing Thranduil as son and father. Thranduil reminds me of the typical Celenian elf with his isolationist views.

    For some odd reason, Smaug reminds me of Shere Khan the Tiger from Kipling's "The Jungle Book" in his attitudes towards Mowgli, and basically the rest of the animal kingdom (haughty, egocentric, ruthless, malevolent, etc).

    -Lanthorn
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    Mon Dec 30, 2013 8:19 pm  

    Okay, I've finally seen the movie . . . but just once. So, here are four quick things:

    1. The "she-elf" -- Tauriel -- is no where in the book . . . but you already knew that.

    2. Legolas is "alive" at the time of The Hobbit, but he doesn't figure into the story.

    3 & 4. Gandalf does get captured in Dol Guldur, but that happens in the Silmarillion. He is captured, learns that the Necromancer is really Sauron, escapes, discovers Thrain -- Thorin's father -- in the dungeons of Dol Guldur, obtains the map and key from Thrain, then gives them to Thorin, setting Thorin upon his quest.

    The problem is that's exactly how they started the first Hobbit movie. So the scene with Gandalf facing the Necromancer/Sauron shouldn't even be in the movie.

    I can tell you more after I see the movie again.

    But I did Google the movie for information. It seems that Jackson and del Toro freely admit that they're mixing all of the books together and adding their own "personal" touches . . . like the "she-elf, Tauriel.

    Oh! And Thranduil and the Elves of Mirkwood do throw a completely different light on the supposed "goodness and generosity" of Elves, don't they? Evil Grin
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    Tue Dec 31, 2013 8:04 am  

    Looking forward to more of your commentary, M-S. I wonder why Sauron kept Gandalf prisoner instead of merely destroying him. Sounds like a 'bad move' to me. Why leave any enemy behind to foil your plans later? A typical blunder normally seen in comic books...

    -Lanthorn
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    Tue Dec 31, 2013 11:40 am  

    Perhaps Sauron was incapable of destroying Gandalf at that time. (?)

    There were different levels of "power" amongst the Maiar. Before ever coming to Middle Earth, Gandalf admitted that he did not have the personal power to face Sauron one on one. (Gandalf was known as Olórin, in Valinor, where he was, in particular, a servant of Manwe).

    But at the "moment of time" in which this scene occurs, Sauron didn't have his ring. He had poured much of his personal power into the ring to give it the power over the other rings.

    Perhaps, without the ring, he didn't have the "strength" to kill Gandalf.

    In addition, as a Maiar, only Gandalf's manifested body could be destroyed, not Gandalf himself, which is one of the reasons he came back as Gandalf the White. (It's a little complicated, but I can elaborate if you'd like).

    I'm "weak" on The Hobbit and "descent" on The Lord of the Rings. The Silmarillion is my book. It's my favorite of Tolkien's works.

    Much of what I know of the movies is based upon the fact that Jackson and del Toro are mixing the books up. So I readily recognize the parts that come from The Silmarillion.
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    Tue Dec 31, 2013 1:59 pm  

    Mystic-Scholar wrote:
    Perhaps Sauron was incapable of destroying Gandalf at that time. (?)

    There were different levels of "power" amongst the Maiar. Before ever coming to Middle Earth, Gandalf admitted that he did not have the personal power to face Sauron one on one. (Gandalf was known as Olórin, in Valinor, where he was, in particular, a servant of Manwe).

    But at the "moment of time" in which this scene occurs, Sauron didn't have his ring. He had poured much of his personal power into the ring to give it the power over the other rings.

    Perhaps, without the ring, he didn't have the "strength" to kill Gandalf.


    That thought occurred to me, but wasn't sure if Sauron was THAT weak, or Gandalf THAT powerful...


    Quote:
    In addition, as a Maiar, only Gandalf's manifested body could be destroyed, not Gandalf himself, which is one of the reasons he came back as Gandalf the White. (It's a little complicated, but I can elaborate if you'd like).


    Nope, I get it. He 'leveled' and achieved more power after his battle against the Balrog.

    Quote:
    I'm "weak" on The Hobbit and "descent" on The Lord of the Rings. The Silmarillion is my book. It's my favorite of Tolkien's works.

    Much of what I know of the movies is based upon the fact that Jackson and del Toro are mixing the books up. So I readily recognize the parts that come from The Silmarillion.


    Methinks some day I may have to read The Silmarillion.

    Any other musings you'd wish to share? I'm 'listening.'

    -Lanthorn
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    Wed Jan 01, 2014 10:06 am  

    Mystic, it occurred to me last night that if Gandalf cannot be killed (only his corporeal form, to use gaming terms, like a Planar creature on the Prime Material), how was it that Saruman was killed in "The Return of the King?" Both wizards were White wizards, after all, and Gandalf always acknowledged the power of 'The White Wizard' and most powerful member of his Order (at least, until Gandalf achieved that same ranking).

    This doesn't make sense to me unless I overlooked something...

    -Lanthorn
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    Wed Jan 01, 2014 10:45 am  

    It doesn't specifically say that Gandalf was captured; it's a matter of semantics, which I'll get to below. He went to Dol Guldar twice, well, three times if you count when the White Council drove Sauron out. The first time he drove the Sorceror out, at that point suspecting, but wasn't sure that the Sorceror was Sauron. Given that Gandalf drove him out, Sauron must have been in a much weaker state, although he had already cast his shadow over the Greenwood and it had become known as Mirkwood. Then, when the Sorceror returned, the White Council was constituted and after some time Gandalf went to Dol Guldar a second time. This time it appears he went to infiltrate and confirm his suspicion that the Sorceror was Sauron, since he went "...at great peril." Like MS says, that was when he found Thrain and got the map and key to the Lonely Mountain. It does say that Gandalf "...discovered the truth of his fears, and escaped." You could read that either way, as in he was captured and escaped, or put himself in great peril by infiltrating the dungeons of Dol Guldar and managed to escape, unless maybe there's something more specific in the Unifinished Tales?

    Lanthorn, to answer your question, Saruman, like Gandalf and Sauron, couldn't really die, but he became non-corporeal, a spirit was doomed to wander without form, unless he could somehow gain the power to do so, like Sauron did after he was killed in the destruction of Numenor, and after Elendil cut the One Ring from his finger at the Siege of Barad-dur, but the story kind of assumes he didn't, especially considering how it stated how much his power was diminished before he was killed.
    GreySage

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    Wed Jan 01, 2014 11:07 am  

    Smillan, thank you for the clarification and answering my question!

    Next one: why was Thrain kept alive? I thought that Azog wanted to destroy the entire line of Durin? Why keep the map and key, unless the orcs (and thus Sauron) meant to use it? I gather that Smaug had already allied himself with Sauron at this point, but don't remember that in the book. This must have been creative license on part of Jackson.

    SPOILER ALERT if you have NOT read 'The Hobbit.'

    I am assuming that the 3rd installment of "The Hobbit" will include Smaug's death at the hands of Bard with the black arrow, followed by the war over the riches between the elves, men, and dwarves, and, finally, whatever else Jackson has in mind that he plucked from 'the Silmarillion.' I imagine that involves the full manifestation of Sauron...

    -Lanthorn
    Grandmaster Greytalker

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    Wed Jan 01, 2014 12:34 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:
    Smillan, thank you for the clarification and answering my question!

    Next one: why was Thrain kept alive? I thought that Azog wanted to destroy the entire line of Durin? Why keep the map and key, unless the orcs (and thus Sauron) meant to use it? I gather that Smaug had already allied himself with Sauron at this point, but don't remember that in the book. This must have been creative license on part of Jackson.


    Actually, no, the idea of Smaug allying with Sauron comes from Tolkien. It's actually a bit of retconning by Tolkien. I think it appears in one of the appedices to the LotR, although I can't be sure of that. In that, it becomes the whole reason for why Gandalf backed Thorin's quest to get rid of Smaug, because he didn't want Smaug and Sauron to team up. So, in Tolkien's version that never happened, although who knows what the Jackson version may be.
    In Tolkien I don't think destroying the line of Durin was on Azog's plate. I'm sure it would have been fine with him, but he just more wanted to hang onto Moria and do whatever orc chieftains do. Also, in the books, by the time of the events of the Hobbit, Azog is long dead.
    Sauron captured Thrain to get the most powerful of the seven rings of the dwarves from him, but as far as why Sauron kept him alive, probably due to the reasons you guessed, although why Thrain would still have been in possession of the map and key in the prison of Dol Guldur is kind of beyond me, but there's a lot that Tolkien doesn't explain. Maybe he knew where they were, and he told Gandalf, who then retrieved them before making his escape.
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