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Amazon buys up Middle-earth, it searches the One Ring! (Rings of Power news thread)


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Still, @TheUlyssesian's point is well taken, I trust. This emphasis on secrecy and character identites being shrouded in mystery and plot twists, as well as (potentially) redeemable villains with a familial tie to the heroes - all of those elements smack of a Star Wars influence to me, and I don't like it.

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44 minutes ago, Jay said:

So yea The Stranger being Gandalf (or any wizard) would be a straight up contradiction of Tolkien's intentions.

Yes indeed and especially considering the source material the showrunners had access to (LotR), which gives no indication of such things anywhere. Even the Blue Wizards or other wizards beyond Gandalf, Saruman and Radagast are ever obliquely referred to in one line from Saruman: Later! Yes, when you [Gandalf] also have the Keys of Barad-dûr itself, I suppose; and the crowns of seven kings, and the rods of the Five Wizards.

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2 minutes ago, Incanus said:

Yes indeed and especially considering the source material the showrunners had access to (LotR), which gives no indication of such things anywhere.

 

I think the real issue with this being Gandalf isn't the contradiction of the source material, its that its cloying. Because its very much a "Gandalf is rescued and nurtured by this young Hobbit and so, millennia later, he sees something of her in Bilbo and Frodo. Ahw, isn't it just adorbs?" :pukeface:

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9 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

 

I think the real issue with this being Gandalf isn't the contradiction of the source material, its that its cloying. Because its very much a "Gandalf is rescued and nurtured by this young Hobbit and so, millennia later, he sees something of her in Bilbo and Frodo. Ahw, isn't it just adorbs?" :pukeface:

I think it is both. Disregarding Tolkien's writings and offering cloying pandering to the audience and in a way pointing "Hey look at these things that you know! Isn't it nice, comforting and sweet that they are in this series as well. Comforting and you can name them and know they are hobbits or that is Gandalf. Wohoo!".

 

If the showrunners had had guts they would have truly made this a Second Age story without the needless dangling of these identifiable LotR mascots in front of the audience. The world of Elves, Men and Dwarves of the Second Age would have been fascinating in itself and still identifiable as Middle-Earth without dragging hobbits into this tale.

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It certainly doesn't help that the Harfoots look cloying, have cloying Potter-ish names and, in this trailer, deliver cloying, saccharine lines TO THE BLOODY CAMERA: p3iwfVN.jpeg

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So when the chips are down and Sauron is knee-deep in rings-related business, is this Gandalf just going to be having too much fun hanging out with Hobbits to do anything?

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2 minutes ago, Barnald said:

So when the chips are down and Sauron is knee-deep in rings-related business, is this Gandalf just going to be having too much fun hanging out with Hobbits to do anything?

His love of the halfling leaf will slow his mind obviously. He is too tobacco addled to do anything.

 

I really wish this Stranger character won't be Gandalf but it doesn't look good.

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On 23/08/2022 at 7:30 PM, Barnald said:

So when the chips are down and Sauron is knee-deep in rings-related business, is this Gandalf just going to be having too much fun hanging out with Hobbits to do anything?

 

All I can speak to is for the context of this season:

 

Spoiler

the Harfoots seem to undertake a quest to bring him to Khazad Dum, probably to prequel the "You know what they awoke in the darkness of Khazad Dum."

 

Its..yeah...

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Just now, Chen G. said:

 

In the context of this season, the Harfoots will undertake a quest to bring him to Khazad Dum, probably to prequel the "You know what they awoke in the darkness of Khazad Dum."

 

Its..yeah...

 

An earlier Gandalf vs Balrog encounter is something I'm sure we've all craved. Anything Kenobi can do eh?

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15 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:

 

 

You are obfuscating the mode of story-telling Tolkein used. Any story has surprises, obviously, it is the degree to which your storytelling is beholden to them is whats at issue here.

 

For modern storytelling - that's all there is twist, shock, reversal, ZOOOMGGZZZ spoiler etc. 

 

For storytelling with a slighter loftier bent, the reliance on these tropes isn't nearly as fundamental. 

 

Again, "drama" fundamentally is about insight and understanding, not about shocks. 

Nothing about Tolkien is "lofty", unless you're counting the interjections of verse. Otherwise the storytelling is very modern and straightforward. Perhaps the problem is that you think you're reading intellectual literature rather than a children's story about small people with fuzzy feet. 

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1 hour ago, JohnTheBaptist said:

Nothing about Tolkien is "lofty", unless you're counting the interjections of verse. Otherwise the storytelling is very modern and straightforward. Perhaps the problem is that you think you're reading intellectual literature rather than a children's story about small people with fuzzy feet. 

 

What a preposterously condescending response. Just take a look at my username and see my icon. 

 

I deliberately said storytelling with a "slightly loftier bent" (accounting for the typo) and that's a very fair characterization of Tolkein. There is a reach in Tolkein's tales and characters for a higher something, whether you think he is successful or not you are free to decide, but purely the attempt is plainly visible for all to see. 

 

Also regarding "modern", Tolkein has been repeatedly called out for old-fashioned language, being slightly musty etc. He most certainly does not read as excessively "modern". Tolkein storytelling his much more akin to the myths of legends of all - the ones he prized so much - which date back centuries.

 

You will find that not many here share either your assessment of Tolkein's merits/demerits or your contempt for his work.

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1 hour ago, Chen G. said:

It certainly doesn't help that the Harfoots look cloying, have cloying Potter-ish names and, in this trailer, deliver cloying, saccharine lines TO THE BLOODY CAMERA: p3iwfVN.jpeg

And here I thought the Irish accents in Far and Away would be the worst every committed to film…

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I don't think you have much exposure to classic literature if you think his language is "old-fashioned". It's very modern and easily understandable, he wasn't trying to emulate Chaucer by any stretch of the imagination.

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1 hour ago, Jay said:

I thought the showrunners only had rights to the LOTR appendices and nothing else?

 

I’m not clear if they have a right to all H+LR or all LR or just the LR appendices, but yes, as far as I know they do not have the rights to The Peoples of Middle-earth. What’s really not clear to me is how it might be “okay” to introduce Gandalf into Middle-earth in the Second Age — an idea not found in the LR and not found in Tolkien — but it might be “not okay” to introduce the Blue Wizards into Middle-earth in the Second Age — an idea not found in the LR but found in Tolkien. You might be right that the latter is specifically forbidden while the former isn’t. I don’t know. I DO know which idea fans would be more okay with, though.

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I mean it's gotta be someone in the cast so it shouldn't be a surprise to anyone considering the soundtrack release has a track called Sauron and the theme in it plays throughout the album

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Is there a reason we have never seen anything of the Blue Wizards?

 

I haven't read the books and all in quite some time. Do they ever interact with any of the other characters?

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3 hours ago, JohnTheBaptist said:

You're assuming that Amazon pays any attention to what creepy internet nerds have to say. This is for general audiences. The idea that multiple trailers being released is a sign that the previous ones "failed" is so absurd that I have to wonder if you've been in a coma for 30 years. Every major production has multiple trailers, especially ones that need to recoup a billion dollar investment. 

 

Well, last time I looked at Middle-Earth movies, they had only a few select teasers, and one final trailer, some of which people have memorized to this day because - get this - they appealed to the general audiences as well as "creepy internet nerds".

And that wasn't 30 years ago.

 

Excuse me for using such rude language, but as a marketing team, it takes a unique kind of stupid to make a Middle-Earth trailer with a quasi-pop song, and then wonder why many fans can't get into this kind of show.

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34 minutes ago, JNHFan2000 said:

Is there a reason we have never seen anything of the Blue Wizards?

 

I haven't read the books and all in quite some time. Do they ever interact with any of the other characters?

 

No, they went east to the Sea of Rhûn and maybe beyond, so they only exist in the lore and not in any tale. Because Tolkien threw in that “Five Wizards” mention in LotR, yet obviously only three of them were involved in the War, he had to justify why the other two were off-screen by putting them literally off-map. He mused that they either helped the Easterlings resist the Shadow (thus the Easterling invasion in the War could have been much worse) or else they went rogue decided to set themselves up as deities.

 

Saruman also went to the east, but he came back. I have a whole fan theory about what he was up to.

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1 hour ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

 

The films did have multiple trailers. And each one let us know pretty explicitly what the film was going to be about. In fact, the first FOTR teaser (not the LOTR Internet announcement), pretty much told us exactly the plot of the film. Something that none of Amazon's multiple trailers have managed to do.

 

And don't waste your time with trolls.

 

Are we talking about teasers or trailers? To me, those are not the same.

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38 minutes ago, Chen G. said:

Yeah, I always thought that a premise is not a spoiler.

 

But in our modern “spoiler” culture…

 

I agree that the spoiler mania is maybe a tad too much these days but I generally like to know as little as possible about shows and movies that I'm interested in. As an example, for shows like GOT, HOTD and Westworld I have not watched a single trailer (except the first 20 seconds of the HOTD teaser), and I try to avoid a lot of the coverage before I watch as well because I like to experience the story and the visuals and music when I see the show and not in some trailer on a mobile screen.

 

I recently watched both trailers for Westworld S4 after having seen the finale and I they showed way too much, including from the later episodes in the season and I'm happy very happy I didn't watch those. I just don't see the point of knowing plot points before I see the episodes.

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5 hours ago, JohnTheBaptist said:

LOTR was doing that well before Star Wars. Remember when a scrappy ranger named Strider turned out to be the heir of Isildur and king of Gondor?

 

That's not shocking storytelling, that's the natural flow of storytelling. That's not shock, that's slowly unraveling a mystery.

Everybody knows Strider is more than a ragged ranger as soon as he comes into the picture, he knows Gandalf, Elrond etc. 

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18 minutes ago, Nick1Ø66 said:

Well, for the LOTR films, the "teasers" were for all intents and purposes full trailers. I think the idea of a "teaser" has changed. Back then I think a teaser just meant the first trailer.

 

Not including TV spots, international trailers, etc. I believe FOTR had two main trailers, which as I recall was the pattern for all the films. And all of them pretty much laid out the plot. There were other random spots that were also more or less trailers...the Internet Preview, the Lord of the Rings "Trilogy" teaser, (which was probably the only true teaser) the special Two Towers preview that aired at the end of the FOTR re-release, etc.

 

Damn, some of those trailers still give me chills. The first Internet Preview and first ROTK trailer in particular.

 

But now, yeah, I mean now we have trailers for trailers and "title announcements". ROTFLMAO


Because those movies were more than their plots. 
 

modern storytelling is all about plot, so they hide it at all costs.

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3 minutes ago, blondheim said:

I think we can all agree the pop song was a bad idea and that there is more basic premise information they could give us at this point that would not spoil anything.


i think they cannot because that is how the show is constructed. The show is constructed so that the premise is a spoiler. Hence their marketing paralysis and contortion.

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4 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:

The show is constructed so that the premise is a spoiler

 

How so?

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6 minutes ago, Jay said:

 

How so?


They are not able to set up the actual stakes of the narrative because they aren’t able to define the antagonist. The antagonist is a mystery - so instead in marketing you have all these characters trying desperately - to do what exactly?

 

 They can’t even focus on what’s promised in the title - the rings - because it looks like they won’t be part of the first season because that is tied to the antagonist too.

 

so in place you have all this hand waving.

 

 It might work in the show - it doesn’t work in the marketing. I might know - marketing is my day job. 🙂

 

 

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20 minutes ago, TheUlyssesian said:


They are not able to set up the actual stakes of the narrative because they aren’t able to define the antagonist. The antagonist is a mystery - so instead in marketing you have all these characters trying desperately - to do what exactly?

 

 They can’t even focus on what’s promised in the title - the rings - because it looks like they won’t be part of the first season because that is tied to the antagonist too.

 

so in place you have all this hand waving.

 

 It might work in the show - it doesn’t work in the marketing. I might know - marketing is my day job. 🙂

 

 

 

To stay in Marketing lingo, this show amplifies the audience's pain while lacking a severe amount of fascinations.

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I think if you add up all the footage that’s been shown so far it amounts to like 13 minutes. 13 minutes out of 8 hours seems like a lot to see and not have any clue of the premise. 
 

That’s about 3% of the run time. 4 minutes of footage from a 3 hour movie is about 2% of its runtime. I dunno, they’re showing a lot without telling us anything but it all looks plasticky and shite to me. 

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59 minutes ago, TolkienSS said:

 

That's not shocking storytelling, that's the natural flow of storytelling. That's not shock, that's slowly unraveling a mystery.

Everybody knows Strider is more than a ragged ranger as soon as he comes into the picture, he knows Gandalf, Elrond etc. 

It's a distinction without a difference. Surprises are a natural part of storytelling, always has been. 

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