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[Spoilers]Rings of Power 3: Tolkien’s actual writing… who needs that?


Ser Scot A Ellison
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I don't think it's the actor choice that's a mistake, if that was their goal. The main issue is that for Sauron to seduce the viewer, he must have a believable and consistent set of motivations. And we ended the season unsure if the was actually repentant or just a master schemer, with evidence for both, and no conclusive answer. So how is anyone to be seduced?

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16 hours ago, Spockydog said:

Film critics are not to be trusted.

Take, for instance, Peter Bradshaw in the Guardian. He hates everything. He must really hate his job. I honestly don't know why he keeps doing it, subjecting himself to movies that are patently awful.

Oh, except Spectre. The crooked cunt gave that pile of dundershite 5 stars.

I actually like Bradshaw. Although I'm always more intrigued by his reviews for smaller films. Anyways, he was wrong on Spectre and other films, but that is why you need to know the critics you follow. I have a couple of people/places that I go to and taking each of their strengths into account usually saves me from watching a lot of duds :) 

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So this show made me interested in finally reading the books!

I love the Peter Jackson movies very much. They're very special to me but I never felt the desire to read the books, especially after an unsuccesful attempt at reading Fellowship in English. But reading it in my own language might help a lot. I'm looking forward to it.

Though I think I'll start with the Silmarillion. Is the story this show is based on in that book or only in the LOTR appendices?

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1 hour ago, Lady Anna said:

Though I think I'll start with the Silmarillion. Is the story this show is based on in that book or only in the LOTR appendices?

The second age is summarized in the LOTR appendixes, and fleshed out (although not that much) in the Silmarilion. That said, if you are looking for the story this show is based on in Tolkien's works, you are up for a big disappointment.

Also, I don't think I'd recommend starting with the Silmarillion. Although it comes first chronologically, it's mostly a posthumously published lore book. It's a great read, but I'd say that most people will only enjoy it if they are already in love with the setting. The hobbit (child's book, but an enjoyable easy and quick read) and then LotR would be my suggestion.

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Did Galadriel ever specifically mention that she was hunting Sauron when she was around Halbrand? 
 

If I had to make a prediction, I’d guess that we’ll find out that Sauron wasn’t the one who killed Finrod, and that the mark had been used to frame him. The reason why I could see this happening is because it’ll make it easier for him to tempt Galadriel to his side, which I figure he’ll try to do again. Considering how quickly she was tempted by the ring in LOTR, her being so impervious to his offer in the finale was a little unsatisfying. There needs to be some real conflict.

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5 hours ago, The Bard of Banefort said:

Considering how quickly she was tempted by the ring in LOTR

That wouldn't be my take.

Galadriel says that she had pondered for many years what she would do if the ring ever came within her grasp. I think that she had known for a long time that she was very likely to be exposed to the (enormous) temptation of taking and using it. So it was not really quick at all. The only thing that seemed to surprise her in any way was Frodo's offer to give it to her freely.

Though she may have been taken aback at just how strong the temptation was when it came to the point. Certainly that seemed to be the take of the Peter Jackson films.

 

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12 hours ago, The hairy bear said:

The second age is summarized in the LOTR appendixes, and fleshed out (although not that much) in the Silmarilion. That said, if you are looking for the story this show is based on in Tolkien's works, you are up for a big disappointment.

Also, I don't think I'd recommend starting with the Silmarillion. Although it comes first chronologically, it's mostly a posthumously published lore book. It's a great read, but I'd say that most people will only enjoy it if they are already in love with the setting. The hobbit (child's book, but an enjoyable easy and quick read) and then LotR would be my suggestion.

Thank you for replying. Oh I already knew that the story in the appendixes is a few pages only and that the show is mostly original material. That doesn't bother me. I enjoyed it and I'd mostly like to read The Silmariliion precisely because it's a lore book. That's what I'm interested in. However, I will consider your suggestion and maybe start with one of the others. :cheers:

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4 hours ago, A wilding said:

That wouldn't be my take.

Galadriel says that she had pondered for many years what she would do if the ring ever came within her grasp. I think that she had known for a long time that she was very likely to be exposed to the (enormous) temptation of taking and using it. So it was not really quick at all. The only thing that seemed to surprise her in any way was Frodo's offer to give it to her freely.

Though she may have been taken aback at just how strong the temptation was when it came to the point. Certainly that seemed to be the take of the Peter Jackson films.

 

Either way, there needs to be greater temptation. Even Luke Skywalker was tempted, albeit for a moment.

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There's a big difference between the temptation of the Ring and the temptation of Sauron.

In the Third Age, Galadriel was one of maybe 4 people in Middle Earth (aside from Gandalf, Saruman and maybe Elrond, and maybe Glorfindel)who could wrest control of the One Ring from Sauron. That is, the Ring wouldn't just nominally serve her while trying to reunite with it's Master. Instead, had Galadriel taken the Ring, she would have been able to bend it to her purpose completely. It still contains Sauron's power and his corruption, so it would tempt her and darken her, but not to be Sauron's mind controlled slave. She would be a different kind of evil, but she'd be her own thing, not beholden to whatever was left of Sauron once she wrested the Ring's Power to her purposes.

That is a great temptation to Galadriel, because she does want some part of what Sauron wants: the freedom to rule her own realm and order it based on her designs and preferences. But unlike Sauron, she has limits to what she will accept to gain that power.

I think it's entirely alright for Sauron the dude to leave her totally cold, while the thought of taking away his Power and using it for her own designs would be sorely tempting. 

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16 minutes ago, fionwe1987 said:

In the Third Age, Galadriel was one of maybe 4 people in Middle Earth (aside from Gandalf, Saruman and maybe Elrond, and maybe Glorfindel)who could wrest control of the One Ring from Sauron.

Poor Cirdan gets no respect.

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Sauron as Walter White seems like a mistep.  This is fantasy.  A  level of realism is great, like GOT, but its still in the realm of mythic/magical and should seem more ethereal than real life for the viewer.  Sauron is evil and gets his kicks out of creating and turning individuals to evil, he is the prototype of the EVIL SUPER VILLAIN.  He is not Tony Soprano or Walter White whose lives and trajectories and even sometimes their 'evil' actions are more relatable.  Sauron could be given more dimensions and fleshing out, but this seems like a fundamental misunderstanding of the story.

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2 hours ago, DMC said:

Poor Cirdan gets no respect.

I don't think he'd fit in that list. He's very old, very wise, but I never got the impression he was particularly "mighty", as elves go. Even Elrond is doubtful for me, in that list. I haven't read all of HoME, so Tolkien may have answered this in detail.

Oh, and I guess there's Bombadil, though I don't think Tolkien thought of him as someone having designs and plans, so what he'd use the Ring for is open to question, but he may well have been able to use it to his will.

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5 hours ago, Cas Stark said:

Sauron as Walter White seems like a mistep.  This is fantasy.  A  level of realism is great, like GOT, but its still in the realm of mythic/magical and should seem more ethereal than real life for the viewer.  Sauron is evil and gets his kicks out of creating and turning individuals to evil, he is the prototype of the EVIL SUPER VILLAIN.  He is not Tony Soprano or Walter White whose lives and trajectories and even sometimes their 'evil' actions are more relatable.  Sauron could be given more dimensions and fleshing out, but this seems like a fundamental misunderstanding of the story.

I think Walter White is just modern screenwriters’ shorthand for “compelling villain.” 

The problem with Sauron being super ultra evil (which I agree he was in the movies) is that the show portrayed Halbrand not as a disguise for scheming but as someone who was genuinely repentant, which is something malignant psychopaths aren’t really capable of.

Even though I don’t think they’ll go this route, I find the idea of  power/evil/whatever in this universe being something that’s addictive (which is more tangible with the ring) making more sense, and that Sauron has now relapsed.

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On 10/27/2022 at 12:32 AM, The hairy bear said:

The second age is summarized in the LOTR appendixes, and fleshed out (although not that much) in the Silmarilion. That said, if you are looking for the story this show is based on in Tolkien's works, you are up for a big disappointment.

Also, I don't think I'd recommend starting with the Silmarillion. Although it comes first chronologically, it's mostly a posthumously published lore book. It's a great read, but I'd say that most people will only enjoy it if they are already in love with the setting. The hobbit (child's book, but an enjoyable easy and quick read) and then LotR would be my suggestion.

I'd also add The Children of Húrin novelization. That's always been my favourite work set in Tolkien's world, even though Christopher Tolkien has almost as much to do with that one as his father with all the compilation that happened. @Lady Anna this is also set during the First Age, so it has a rather distinct flavour compared to the Third Age stories like LOTR and The Hobbit.

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9 hours ago, Veltigar said:

I'd also add The Children of Húrin novelization. That's always been my favourite work set in Tolkien's world, even though Christopher Tolkien has almost as much to do with that one as his father with all the compilation that happened. @Lady Anna this is also set during the First Age, so it has a rather distinct flavour compared to the Third Age stories like LOTR and The Hobbit.

Yes!  I really liked the Húrin novelization -- it was so different from LotR; It was dark, o so dark, and even the heroes and warriors were also dark, including elves.  That was another reason RoP felt right to me -- it has this first age sensibility.

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On 10/27/2022 at 7:20 AM, Lady Anna said:

Thank you for replying. Oh I already knew that the story in the appendixes is a few pages only and that the show is mostly original material. That doesn't bother me. I enjoyed it and I'd mostly like to read The Silmariliion precisely because it's a lore book. That's what I'm interested in. However, I will consider your suggestion and maybe start with one of the others. :cheers:

I think The Hobbit then LOTR would be good. You've seen the movies so this is not spoilery.

You really do get a good story of the rings through reading LOTR, even apart from the appendices. Bilbo gets the ring in The Hobbit, then the chapters in LOTR follow many of the main points of the story from the movies.

The first book, The Fellowship of the Ring, the rings come up a lot, in particular Book One: The Shadow of the Past, and Book Two, The Council of Elrond and The Mirror of Galadriel where they recount the story of the rings.

Through Aragorn you get to know about Elendil and Isildur and Numenor, through Gimli, Durin and dwarf culture and history, through Legolas, elf culture and history, and of course, Gandalf talks about all of it, all along.

So there really is a lot about the world of the show, or a least the canon world, in LOTR. You could also skip The Hobbit and do it later, it's recounted in LOTR, too. (I'm doing a re-read, so it's fresh in my mind!)

Edited by Le Cygne
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I don't think she was quickly tempted by the ring in LOTR.

In the books (and I think she's trying to show this in the movie, too), she laughs when Frodo offers her the ring, and seems to be trying to show him it would be wrong for her, or anyone, to take the ring:

"You are wise and fearless and fair, Lady Galadriel. I will give you the One Ring, if you ask for it. It is too great a matter for me."

Galadriel laughed with a sudden clear laugh... "For many long years I had pondered what I might do, should the Great Ring come into my hands, and behold! it was brought within my grasp..."

"And now at last it comes. You will give me the Ring freely! In the place of the Dark Lord you will set up a Queen..."

She stood before Frodo, seeming now tall beyond measurement, and beautiful beyond enduring, terrible and worshipful. Then she let her hand fall, and the light faded, and she laughed again, and lo! she was shrunken: a slender elf-woman, clad in simple white, whose gentle voice was soft and sad.

"I pass the test," she said. "I will diminish, and go into the West, and remain Galadriel."

It's a story of good and evil, and this choice is at the heart of the story. Frodo tries to give the ring away twice, to Gandalf and Galadriel, who he knows are wise and have good intentions, and both resist temptation (evil).

Here's the scene that plays out the same way with Gandalf:

"You are wise and powerful. Will you not take the Ring?"

"No!" cried Gandalf, springing to his feet. "With that power I should have power too great and terrible... Do not tempt me, for I do not wish to become like the Dark Lord himself. Yet the way of the Ring to my heart is by pity, pity for weakness and the desire of strength to do good.

"And now," said the wizard, turning back to Frodo, 'the decision lies with you. But I will always help you." He laid his hand on Frodo's shoulder. "I will help you bear this burden, as long as it is yours to bear."

Edited by Le Cygne
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