Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

For discussion of Amazon's new television show "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power"
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Anduril
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Anduril »

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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by N.E. Brigand »

That article says that Tolkien "famously resisted all attempts to adapt any of his writing in his lifetime," which is untrue.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Nice article in the Sydney Morning Herald.

Is the new Lord of the Rings TV show really ‘too woke’?
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Stranger Wings »

Anduril wrote:Image
I’d be curious to get your response to my post above. Spent a lot of time on it, and all I get is a Christopher Lambert gif?! :)


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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Alatar »

Even though this is about Sandman, I'll share it here because I think the sentiments fit perfectly

https://theconversation.com/the-sandman ... ion-190110
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by kzer_za »

Practical considerations aside, however, Netflix’s adaptation of The Sandman is also making a statement – about how seasoned veterans like me don’t exercise some sort of imagined authority over culture just because we were there in 1989.

This need to resist cultural gatekeeping is something Gaiman has explicitly mentioned on Twitter, but it is also what the comics were always about.
Eh, I don't think the article is fair in implying critiques of an adaptation must be just out of a desire for elitist fans to protect the original as "theirs." The Sandman (which I'm not familiar with) is in a bit of a different situation in that the author is working in it...however, artists can change over time and/or be wrong about their own work (Tolkien almost ruined the sun and moon origin, Nick Cave thought Henry's Dream was a weak album, Gene Roddenberry and Star Trek is a whole can of worms in itself). So while Gaiman's involvement should give it a certain level of respect, I don't think it renders it beyond criticism as an adaptation. Whether the particular critiques people have are actually valid - again, I'm not familiar enough with Gaiman's writings to judge.

"Gatekeeping" has become an overused word with a very expansive meaning I think. Sometimes it refers to nasty fans who harass people or who view everything in terms of culture war grievance with clickbait "nerd rage" videos. I think this was the word's original meaning? That stuff is certainly bad and unfortunately the LotR fandom is not immune to it. However I also feel like sometimes "gatekeeping" is used as a way to just invalidate criticism of something as illegitimate.

Setting aside the fact that the arguments around them have died down, I wouldn't dismiss critics of the PJ movies as "gatekeepers" either (and I'm not saying you intend to do this with all critics of Amazon's LotR Alatar), except perhaps the minority who got especially nasty and personal about it. On the other hand, the internet was very different back then.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

Alatar wrote: Mon Sep 12, 2022 3:35 pm Even though this is about Sandman, I'll share it here because I think the sentiments fit perfectly

https://theconversation.com/the-sandman ... ion-190110
That article also repeats the favoured revisionist argument back on TORC, essentially films and books are different, so an adaptation of a book to film/TV will be different.

I readily concede that general point. However it cannot simply be deployed in favour of any particular change, without an explanation why. That was so often, IMO, absent on TORC.

That frustrates me almost as much as the other point sometimes used: it's got dragons in so we can do what we like.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Alatar »

I think its more about the general "Don't be a dick" approach
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

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"Spirits in the shape of hawks and eagles flew ever to and from his halls; and their eyes could see to the depths of the seas, and pierce the hidden caverns beneath the world."
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Eldy »

That was a good read. The brief discussion of Elves and Orcs reminded me of something I read last week, the recently published (but written in the 1990s) academic paper The Wretched of Middle-Earth: An Orkish Manifesto by Charles W. Mills. Some of it covers very well-trod ground, and there are points on which I differ or would have liked to see more—though in at least one case, that's not Mills' fault, since he was writing before the publication of The Peoples of Middle-earth—but as a strong advocate of Orkish personhood this was very relevant to my interest. I agree with the basic argument that the treatment of Orcs in LOTR* undercuts claims (such as in Michael Drout's recent New York Times op-ed) to the moral superiority of Tolkien compared to contemporary storytellers. The paper also discusses at length the parallels between Orcs and the racial and class anxieties of Tolkien's era and social background.


* Unfortunately, ROP has yet to do better. While its Orcs have garnered considerable praise so far, most of that centers around them being scarier or more dangerous movie monsters, which does nothing to acknowledge, much less grapple with, the moral problems of a race of sentient beings whom the protagonists consider inherently evil (i.e., one of the main problems Tolkien himself struggled with in Myths Transformed).
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

"Spirits in the shape of hawks and eagles flew ever to and from his halls; and their eyes could see to the depths of the seas, and pierce the hidden caverns beneath the world."
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

Given that I regard myself as a purist and did on TORC you might want to rethink that Voronwë.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Alatar »

I think he's referring the hordes now claiming to be "Tolkien Purists" who are really Trolls, Incels and Racists looking to drive traffic and an agenda. Its a large subset. Doesn't mean all are.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

That's not the way I took it.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

When wolves dress in sheep's clothing, it doesn't mean that all who appear to be sheep are actually wolves. But it does mean that some that appear to be sheep are actually wolves.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

Voronwë the Faithful wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 4:34 pm When wolves dress in sheep's clothing, it doesn't mean that all who appear to be sheep are actually wolves. But it does mean that some that appear to be sheep are actually wolves.
Voronwë, I accept that that is what you mean and intend.

But in my view that is not what the meme itself suggests. It does not make that distinction. It implies that all of the sheep, people who say they are Tolkien Purists, are wolves.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Voronwë the Faithful »

Only if you take it that way. And for the record, I took it from a post on Facebook by someone is a far more knowledgeable and accomplished Tolkien scholar and Tolkien purist than I ever could aspire to be.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by RoseMorninStar »

The meme shows someone who 'wears the cloak' of a Tolkien purist but underneath the veneer (hood) they are racists, incels, and trolls masquerading as true Tolkien purists/using Tolkien for their own purposes. The pulling off of the hood exposes who they really are, not just who they appear to be.

I read an article yesterday in the NYT: Hobbits and the Hard Right: How Fantasy Inspires Italy’s Potential New Leader. It's an issue.
Giorgia Meloni, the nationalist politician who is the front-runner to become prime minister, sees “The Lord of the Rings” as not just a series of novels, but also a sacred text.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

Voronwë the Faithful wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 5:16 pm Only if you take it that way. And for the record, I took it from a post on Facebook by someone is a far more knowledgeable and accomplished Tolkien scholar and Tolkien purist than I ever could aspire to be.
I'm afraid I do take it that way. As for the person being more purist than you, I don't mean this as a criticism, many, many people are more purist than you!

Remember, Amazon has $1 bn riding on this. It suits their purposes to shut down criticism and one way of doing this is to smear the critics. I would have hoped given your stance on Amazon's ethics that you might see this to be the case.
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Re: Discussion about the Discussion about RoP

Post by Aravar »

RoseMorninStar wrote: Thu Sep 22, 2022 7:48 pm

I read an article yesterday in the NYT: Hobbits and the Hard Right: How Fantasy Inspires Italy’s Potential New Leader. It's an issue.
Giorgia Meloni, the nationalist politician who is the front-runner to become prime minister, sees “The Lord of the Rings” as not just a series of novels, but also a sacred text.
I'm afraid, given the absurdities that the NYT has been writing about the Queen in the past few weeks I trust it about as much as you would trust an article in the Daily Mail.
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