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Rings of Power: Three Threads for the Elven Lords (book spoilers)


Werthead
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Halbrand's origin is confusing. If he is the heir to a line of kings who had ruled the 'Southlands', why hasn't this been mentioned from the perspective of other characters? The Elves supposedly kept watch over the Southlands for centuries. Was there a war that saw the king deposed? All the Elves care about is that those people are the descendants of the Men who fought for Morgoth. The people there themselves talk about not having a king like Gondorians in the time of the Stewards. sigh

While the show gave us clues that Halbrand could be Sauron, I'm not sure it has enough subtlety.

People like to analogize Tolkien's works with the real history he experienced, i.e. the two world wars. The bonkers idea that the baddies had a master plan to rebuild in a pre-established place should Morgoth be defeated makes me think of the conspiracies about Nazis who escaped Germany with the intent to built the Fourth Reich. The show may not have the rights to The Silmarillion, but surely they're not going to sued if they use ideas that are in the same vein as what Tolkien wrote without actual names. Morgoth was the epitome of arrogance. He didn't have a backup plan, he was certain that once he finished off the Elves of Beleriand, he would rule Middle-earth forever. Sauron ran and hid. 

Edited by Corvinus85
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2 minutes ago, ASOIAFrelatedusername said:

It just struck me: Has anyone seen livestock among the Harfoots. One would think there at least would be some sheep for their clothing, but I do not think that I have seen anything of the sort. What do they eat?

They seem to be vegetarian.

It's funny because I was just thinking about what are their reasons for migration. They keep to themselves, therefore they are not big on trade. And they don't have herds of livestock that they need to drive to better pastures with the changing of seasons. Sadoc mentioned in his speech that their food stores are full so it's time to move on, but why exactly it's not clear. I suppose it may have to do with their secretive nature. They don't wish to settle down so they aren't eventually discovered by the big folk.

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First impressions on episode 3:

  • It suffers due to lack of Dwarves and Celebrimbor.
  • I really liked the Harfoots. Remember that they were foisted on the show by the Amazon Executives. Frankly, the writers are doing as well as they can with them. I liked the toetoe grass too (how very New Zealand).
  • If Meteor Dude is Sauron, I will scream. Blue Wizard is the best we can hope for.
  • I'm perfectly fine with Elendil's family, and loved the etymology. My biggest issue with Numenor is the notion that they haven't sailed to Middle-earth when they are established as sailors.
  • Merging Armenelos with Romenna is fine too. I'd note that they clearly haven't licensed the regional names, and are instead using westside and northside, et cetera.
  • Halbrand's smithing interest does point to Sauron, but I am increasingly thinking we haven't seen Sauron yet. I am however dreading Halbrand as Dark Aragorn.
  • The Southlands storyline suffers without Bronwyn and Theo. The fight against the Warg is another of those Silmarillion resonances, this time with Finrod.   
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29 minutes ago, Corvinus85 said:

Halbrand's origin is confusing. If he is the heir to a line of kings who had ruled the 'Southlands', why hasn't this been mentioned from the perspective of other characters? The Elves supposedly kept watch over the Southlands for centuries. Was there a war that saw the king deposed? All the Elves care about is that those people are the descendants of the Men who fought for Morgoth. The people there themselves talk about not having a king like Gondorians in the time of the Stewards. sigh

I think the Southlands timeline goes as follows:

  • Kings unite Southlands.
  • Kings side with Morgoth.
  • Morgoth defeated. Royal descendants driven into hiding.
  • Elves monitor Southlands since.

That would make Halbrand (if he is what he claims) an inverted Aragorn.

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11 hours ago, fionwe1987 said:

Hurin's feat is heroic, but it's no fighting five Balrogs. I'm just not able to find much support for the idea that any man matches the greatest of the Eldar when it comes to fears like this. I can't imagine Tolkien ever meant to imply that any of the Edain could fight Morgoth the way Fingolfin did, for instance.

And these are feats of endurance, speed, skill and strength, kind of exactly what we see Galadriel doing in the show. Maybe the House of Hador, and the Numenoreans, had as much strength, but it's hard to argue they'd match the speed, endurance and skill of the best of the elves.

No objections to that, really, but if the show wanted us to believe in this Galadriel, the uber-uber elf, they have made a mistake in the casting.

P.S. I don't blame the actress for her centuries-old character behaving like a snubbed teenager all the time; that must be on the showrunners.

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9 hours ago, Corvinus85 said:

OK, so we got Sauron and we can put the theorizing about other characters to rest a bit. Anyone know where the Adar name comes from?

Adar is just Sindarin for Father. He might conceivably be Sauron, but the leaks suggest he's a corrupted Elf. I'd love this to be one of the old captured Avari, and thus a literal father to the Orcs... but those leaks also suggest that he's Galadriel's brother. Not Finrod, another one. Which I am dreading.

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9 minutes ago, The Marquis de Leech said:

I think the Southlands timeline goes as follows:

  • Kings unite Southlands.
  • Kings side with Morgoth.
  • Morgoth defeated. Royal descendants driven into hiding.
  • Elves monitor Southlands since.

That would make Halbrand (if he is what he claims) an inverted Aragorn.

I keep forgetting that they can't use Beleriand in the show. In my mind, every time they mention the war against Morgoth, I think of Beleriand, and in the case of his allies, the Easterlings that were there who fled afterwards and became kings among the many tribes of Men in Middle-earth. OTOH the show is telling us that the war against Morgoth encompassed much of Middle-earth, so I suppose in that context in does make sense for the timeline you gave and that there really was only one war.

Edited by Corvinus85
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6 minutes ago, Werthead said:

House of the Dragon is having moments of almost equally weird dumbness - Daemon Leeroy Jenkinsing his way into a battle, but wins, and Rhaenyra, Heir to the Realm, vanishing for a day and a half and everybody being really chill with it - but I think it is benefiting from a focus that RoP lacks, and the moment-to-moment scripting is far superior, although to be fair GRRM's writing style is far easier to ape than Tolkien's.

Agreed. Though to be fair, the source material RoP has to deal with is much more problematic than Hot D.

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I had a lot of fun watching the first two episodes the way I can watch Avatar every few years because it's so gorgeous on a huge screen. We laughed at the silliest scenes. I figured the major changes and outright fabrications to the Second Age timeline would be annoying but acceptable to appeal to a broad audience. 

Holy crap did I not have fun that third ep. I still enjoy the harfoots of all things, and Numenor is lovely. As discussed at length here, the Tolkien Estates stubbornness has resulted in a completely nonsensical adaptation. 

I sure hope Annatar has simply not been introduced, because if Halbrand smirking at the forge there is an attempt at cleverly foretelling he is Sauron, this show has already jumped the shark in stupidity.

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5 hours ago, Werthead said:

House of the Dragon is having moments of almost equally weird dumbness - Daemon Leeroy Jenkinsing his way into a battle, but wins, and Rhaenyra, Heir to the Realm, vanishing for a day and a half and everybody being really chill with it - but I think it is benefiting from a focus that RoP lacks, and the moment-to-moment scripting is far superior, although to be fair GRRM's writing style is far easier to ape than Tolkien's.

That's the difference between the shows, I think. Hot D had one moment of glaring stupidity, but for RoP that's essentially its standard. It's exceptional in RoP when you have any kind of passing writing such as Durin and Elrond - which is more the standard writing for Hot D.

The shows are aiming for two very different things. Hot D is attempting to be a good HBO drama; RoP is setting its sight a good bit lower. There's an audience for serious drama, and there's an audience for goofy absurdity; how well each show does in its particular area remains to be seen.

(I half wonder if Bezos, in his lavish wealth, made a drunken bet with some friends that he could get millions of people to watch the dumbest show he could conceive of. Sort of a Springtime for Hitler scenario. Put together the most absurd screenplays, slap on a familiar brand and a huge budget and watch as the audience stretches their minds trying to justify how this nonsense is actually good.

Professional critics would be the most gullible, of course, as long as one pays careful consideration to their ideologies. But we'll see if Amazon can properly beguile everyone else.)

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7 hours ago, Corvinus85 said:

I find some of the slow motion moments overly done and unnecessary. Galadriel riding on the beach with a big, stupid grin on her face was especially cringing.

It was a pretty beautiful montage till that point. The hooves on the beach, the white horse blinking in slow motion... and then her face melted for some reason. If she would have just been stoic and thoughtful it would have been soo good. Instead, they think the audience was too dumb to clock her excitement at riding when the location of the library was told to her. It is a bit insulting lol. 

 

Edited by slant
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God this show is dull. Can someone genuinely, without appeal to LotR or some appendices I haven’t read, tell me what the plot is so far? I swear it doesn’t have a plot. Something vaguely evil is afoot (but we know it’s Sauron). Characters have moved around, fallen off some boats, got on other boats. Trees have blocked passages, our characters wrestle with whether to go around or through. The wisest elvish scholars didn’t notice a map of Mordor. Meanwhile someone retrieved a page, tune in next week to see if they actually read it.

HotD is ten times better than this. 

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Don't know what to make of the round domed Ironkeep ediface of King's Landing, and the round domed ediface -- the palace? -- of Numenor, both looking like the Hagia Sophia, when all three are viewed from a distance.

Do a google and check it out!

I still like it and look forward to new episodes.  I love looking at it too (except for orcs and other monsters -- how we hates them).

Edited by Zorral
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6 hours ago, ASOIAFrelatedusername said:

Which does not make any sense. And even then there is still eggs and milk to be had as well as wool. The Shire hobbits did not have any compunctions about eating and neither did Smeagol's people.

I heard about this in a review as well. That idea was about why they are pulling their own carts (instead of having livestock pull it) when they are small and not exactly burly like dwarves.

I suppose the vegetarian idea hit the nail on the head. And I wonder if it was an explicit intention or they just didn’t want to bother to film with animals.

 

My tram stop is plastered with RoP now. 

Edited by RhaenysBee
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The show is not improving, and we've already seen more than a third of the season. It doesn't bode well.

The visuals are still incredible. I loved so much the depiction of Númenor that I actually got angry when the camera moved back to show us about the characters. The bit about Miriel asking Elendil about his name's etymology was amazing. And I liked the interactions of the Elendil family. I don't think I enjoyed anything else on that one.

 

Btw, I was thinking: is it possible that Halbrand is Bronwyn's ex-husband/Theo's absent father?

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