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Old 08-31-2020, 03:26 PM   #201
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They got Tom Shippey working on this? There's still hope...
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Old 09-01-2020, 12:54 PM   #202
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They got Tom Shippey working on this? There's still hope...
Indeed. It appears hes representing the Tolkien Estate to make sure Amazon follows the copyright agreement, which is more strict than I realized.

They're limited to strictly Second Age material and if it's an event that Tolkien wrote about they can't alter the canon. They'll still have to invent a lot of characters and names to fill in gaps in the timeline. But I'm now expecting something closer to the LOTR movies adaptation and not The Hobbit.

The LOTR movies had a bunch of problems of course, but I've always felt on the surface, it was Lord of the Rings. There was little to no depth, scratch the surface and it wasn't Lord of the Rings anymore, it was PJ's "interpretation." The Hobbit movies were straight up fanfic that I didn't recognize any of them belonged in "Middle-earth."


So it appears they won't be able to do something like smush together several hundred years of history, like in The Hobbit where they have the Azog surviving the Battle of Azanulbizar and being at the Battle of Five Armies. Which thankfully means, I don't think there could be any Legolas appearances, or you know something like Haldir showing up in Numenor with a company of Elves (since Legolas and Haldir are Third Age material).
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Old 09-01-2020, 01:07 PM   #203
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So it appears they won't be able to do something like smush together several hundred years of history, like in The Hobbit where they have the Azog surviving the Battle of Azanulbizar and being at the Battle of Five Armies. Which thankfully means, I don't think there could be any Legolas appearances, or you know something like Haldir showing up in Numenor with a company of Elves (since Legolas and Haldir are Third Age material).
Excellent news about Shippey. I wonder if they are going to bring in Frank Herbert's son when they once again import sandworms from Arrakis into Middle-earth.
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Old 09-09-2020, 03:15 PM   #204
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Which thankfully means, I don't think there could be any Legolas appearances, or you know something like Haldir showing up in Numenor with a company of Elves (since Legolas and Haldir are Third Age material).
Since they are elves, it could be argued that they might have been alive in the Second Age...
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Old 09-09-2020, 06:23 PM   #205
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They got Tom Shippey working on this? There's still hope...

Not any more, apparently: REPORT: Amazon's Lord of the Rings Parts Ways With Tolkien Scholar Tom Shippey
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Old 09-10-2020, 04:12 PM   #206
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I'm so glad I didn't let news of his participation get my hopes up.

It can be assumed that he objected to the inclusion of all the bordellos.
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Old 09-10-2020, 04:57 PM   #207
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It can be assumed that he objected to the inclusion of all the bordellos.
Or the plan to invent an evil Elf queen and call her the Mother of Balrogs?
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Old 09-11-2020, 01:40 PM   #208
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The headline should read: Shippey Skips The Sinking Ship
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Old 09-11-2020, 03:34 PM   #209
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Well drat. (The news about Shippey leaving the project.)

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Since they are elves, it could be argued that they might have been alive in the Second Age...
Well, actually my reading of the copyright is it's much stricter than that.

Yes, they could make the argument, they're Elves and therefor 'could' be alive in the 2nd Age. But my understanding is since Legolas and Haldir don't appear in the canon of the 2nd Age material at all, so they can't be added in. Elrond and Galadriel do are specifically mentioned to be involved in the 2nd age events, but not Legolas.

Although, they can invent new characters. I don't think there would be any stopping to just cast Orlando Bloom as "Les-galad" the son of Gil-galad.
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Old 09-11-2020, 04:12 PM   #210
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Although, they can invent new characters. I don't think there would be any stopping to just cast Orlando Bloom as "Les-galad" the son of Gil-galad.
My understanding is that they can do pretty much anything that doesn't contradict the established canon. There's quite a bit of leeway there for GoT envy to play.
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Old 09-12-2020, 05:17 AM   #211
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My understanding is that they can do pretty much anything that doesn't contradict the established canon. There's quite a bit of leeway there for GoT envy to play.
Yes, I believe that's fairly explicitly specified.

I don't know about this next bit, but I would assume that "can do anything" is defined in such a way that "if we catch you doing anything like what happened with the Hobbit movies, even if it doesn't contradict canon, we're pulling the plug" is something that can be done.
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Old 12-31-2020, 09:31 AM   #212
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This is looking worse and worse and worse. Now we hear of JJ Abrams' (indirect) involvement, doubtless advising the completely inexperienced showrunners...

And then there's the casting call for extras "comfortable with nudity," together with the hiring of an "intimacy coordinator."

This will be to Jackson's movies what Caligula was to I, Claudius.

https://www.theonering.net/torwp/202...ke-on-tolkien/



[media]https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WM4x__ZzeOg[/media]
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Old 12-31-2020, 10:19 AM   #213
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In his own words to his publisher he expressed the desire for his overall Legendarium to be presented as “‘high’, purged of the gross.” That’s from his famous Letter 131.
As suspected, this is probably going to be more of "gross, purged of the high."
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Old 12-31-2020, 06:30 PM   #214
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As suspected, this is probably going to be more of "gross, purged of the high."
GoT laid down the tracks already. Why bother doing something that doesn't play to the baser instincts?
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Old 01-01-2021, 12:27 AM   #215
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No money in it.
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Old 01-01-2021, 06:38 PM   #216
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What's sad is really not so much that Amazon could feel the need to sexualize something Tolkien-based, but that they're likely right that a large portion of potential viewers may both expect and desire that.

I've so often felt I was born in the wrong time....
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Old 01-01-2021, 09:50 PM   #217
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I've so often felt I was born in the wrong time....
Isn't that at least a little bit of a requirement for being a Tolkien fan?

You know...one might have hoped that the ignominious and universally reviled way in which Game of Thrones ended might have put the kibosh on further larks of this nature.

Yes, I realize too much money had already been sunk into the venture.
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Old 01-02-2021, 06:36 AM   #218
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Maybe it's only going to be used in some way evocative of the decadence of Númenor in the days of its fall?

No, I guess the producers (perhaps accurately) believe that, these days, because of GoT, in the minds of the general public, fantasy fiction = nudity. Regardless of any other content.

This is going to make Peter Jackson's often broad approach look restrained I suspect.
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Old 01-02-2021, 04:00 PM   #219
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as suspected, this is probably going to be more of "gross, purged of the high."

rotflmao!
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Old 01-03-2021, 09:58 AM   #220
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Maybe it's only going to be used in some way evocative of the decadence of Númenor in the days of its fall?
That will probably be their excuse.

Of course, they probably feel they can also run wild with the other Men in Middle-earth who had more of Sauron's influence.
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Old 01-03-2021, 12:20 PM   #221
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Maybe it's only going to be used in some way evocative of the decadence of Númenor in the days of its fall?

If this series ever gets to the last days of Númenor and the end of the Second Age, it certainly won't be in Season 1, which is what they're filming now.
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Old 01-06-2021, 10:20 PM   #222
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...Season 1, which is what they're filming now.
The Merry Wives of Gil-Galad..?
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Old 01-13-2021, 03:01 AM   #223
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TORn has provided what they describe as the official synopsis, though it doesn't really meet that definition to my mind:

Quote:
Amazon Studios’ forthcoming series brings to screens for the very first time the heroic legends of the fabled Second Age of Middle-earth’s history. This epic drama is set thousands of years before the events of J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings, and will take viewers back to an era in which great powers were forged, kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin, unlikely heroes were tested, hope hung by the finest of threads, and the greatest villain that ever flowed from Tolkien’s pen threatened to cover all the world in darkness. Beginning in a time of relative peace, the series follows an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new, as they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth. From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains, to the majestic forests of the elf-capital of Lindon, to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor, to the furthest reaches of the map, these kingdoms and characters will carve out legacies that live on long after they are gone.
The things that jump out at me:

-"they confront the long-feared re-emergence of evil to Middle-earth." I take this to mean that the show definitely starts before the forging of the Rings, with everyone's pal Annatar.

-"Kingdoms rose to glory and fell to ruin." Which kingdoms are we going to see rise and fall? Not Lindon and Numenor - they were already risen very early in the Second Age. I would laugh if it's referring to Sauron's kingdom - hey, it's accurate! - but my guess is they're planning to show the founding of Ost-in-Edhil.

-"Unlikely heroes were tested". Um... who? The only possibility I can come up with is Isildur (based on his early characterisation as a doubter), but he can't be Season One, surely? Another option could be Elrond... I guess... if you re-characterised him a lot.

-"hope hung by the finest of threads". Not... in the mid-Second Age it didn't. Hope for the Eldar, maybe, but even if Sauron had taken Lindon and claimed the Three, Numenor and Mirkwood wouldn't have seen any change.

-"an ensemble cast of characters, both familiar and new". Does this mean 'original and canon characters' (we knew that), or does it mean 'Third Age characters and purely Second Age ones'? If the latter, it implies that Galadriel and Elrond will be playing substantial roles, since they're the only characters familiar to movie fans who are really around in the 2A.

-"From the darkest depths of the Misty Mountains..." Khazad-Dum confirmed!

-"...to the majestic forests of the elf-capital of Lindon..." Now that's a weird artistic choice. If you're trying to highlight that this isn't the Third Age, why would you set Lindon in a forest, like Lorien? Oh... unless you just think 'elves = trees'.

-"...to the breathtaking island kingdom of Númenor..." We knew that.

-"...to the furthest reaches of the map." That's got to be Umbar, right? The only other option is those mountains in the east (Tolkien's mountains which shouldn't exist), which would imply... evil dwarves, maybe?

Overall, this is basically what you'd write if you were told nothing but "It's the Second Age". Still no actual information.

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Old 02-26-2021, 05:41 AM   #224
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I'm not sure what we're all worried about, it's not like the AUJ didn't have nudity. At least if you count the Extended Edition of it. You can catch a long distance shot of some CGI dwarf butts for about 5 seconds as they publicly bathe in Rivendell, in front of the disapproving Lindir. Can you believe that prude?

Anyway, it's a low standard to pass, any nudity that's not CGI naked dwarves bathing will be a positive for the series.
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Old 02-26-2021, 07:02 AM   #225
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Anyway, it's a low standard to pass, any nudity that's not CGI naked dwarves bathing will be a positive for the series.
If the Hobbit films plus GoT are the examples they're looking at, this is going to be a large pile of worm-filth worthy of Glaurung himself.
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Old Yesterday, 04:45 AM   #226
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Liberal European at loose here but... I wouldn't worry about nudity per se. Maybe we're in Númenor and we see Uinen (or Ossë) and they are depicted in the classical tradition of naked merfolk. Yes, I'm sure we'd all like something more imaginative, but it could be something as simple as that. Or maybe they're going to show some ghastly rite in Sauron's temple with a human sacrifice who happenes to be... naked. There are plenty of reasons to show unclothed bodies and not all of them are gratuitous.

That being said, it is of course entirely possible and maybe even probable we will have "unnecessary" sex scenes. Personally I don't mind those if there is a reason from the storytelling point of view. If we're going to delve deeper into the lives and relationships of Second Age characters, sex would likely be an important part of some people's relationships with each other. Just saying. (Not to mention that there's a big difference between "implied sex scene with brief nudity" and a long and explicit scene that would likely feel very un-Tolkieny...)

But I agree that I would loathe to see the Game of Thrones style sex scenes just for the sake of sex scenes, like that godwaful scene with Petyr Baelish monologuing about his past while two prostitutes have sex in the background. Possibly worst writing/ direction ever. Not to mention that I certainly do not want to see any depictions of sexual violence, especially not ones framed in a titillating way. That's just repulsive, and should not be put in a Tolkien adaptation.

That being said, I'm very curious about the show, and while I don't really want it, I'm looking forward to coming the 'Downs to dissect it every week with my fellow wights when it starts airing.
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Old Yesterday, 05:24 AM   #227
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I'm very curious about the show, and while I don't really want it, I'm looking forward to coming the 'Downs to dissect it every week with my fellow wights when it starts airing.
Lommy! Mae govannen!

I really don't have much interest in the show, myself. I have serious doubts that watching it would do anything to enrich my appreciation of the books, and to me, that's what it's all about.

They certainly are going all-out with spending money on it, but bitter experience tells me that's by no means a marker of a good product.
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Old Yesterday, 05:31 PM   #228
Kuruharan
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like that godwaful scene with Petyr Baelish monologuing about his past while two prostitutes have sex in the background. Possibly worst writing/ direction ever.
That was in the golden days of season one.

In my opinion it got substantially worse from there.

Of course, I could be justly accused of not knowing what I'm talking about since I gave up on that show in Season Two...but I've heard.
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Old Yesterday, 06:01 PM   #229
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Of course, I could be justly accused of not knowing what I'm talking about since I gave up on that show in Season Two...but I've heard.
I think it actually got better, in that sense. I feel like in the latter seasons the sex scenes were more, um, significant to the storyline? I suppose the consequence of having too much story for your time and budget is that you cut out the unnecessary porn. While waiting for the final season, I rewatched some of season 1 and was surprised at how much sex there was that served no purpose other than to make you uncomfortable. They definitely weaned the sex scenes towards the end.

And actually, I think I mainly won't mind giving this show a try at least. What would bug me most is if people will insist that it's "based on Tolkien", when it can't even be said to be Tolkien-inspired without a stretch. The favourite argument, it's all in the "appendices". The unfinished part of Unfinished Tales, you know.
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Old Yesterday, 06:04 PM   #230
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You know...one might have hoped that the ignominious and universally reviled way in which Game of Thrones ended might have put the kibosh on further larks of this nature.
Speaking as someone who watched all of GoT, most of it sympathetically, and was very much disappointed by the ending, nudity had nothing to do with said disappointment.

We all come into the world naked and leave it naked, so what's the fuss? As long as it's well written anything goes. (Not that I'm getting my hopes up too high on that account.) Maybe we'll even get treated to some Annatar/Celebrimbor slash? [/channeling Ivriniel]

Or maybe the series is just going to delve into the married lives of Aldarion & Erendis, or Pharazon & Miriel, which may well involve some casual nudity, nothing worth getting our knickers in a twist.
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Old Yesterday, 06:15 PM   #231
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And actually, I think I mainly won't mind giving this show a try at least. What would bug me most is if people will insist that it's "based on Tolkien", when it can't even be said to be Tolkien-inspired without a stretch. The favourite argument, it's all in the "appendices". The unfinished part of Unfinished Tales, you know.
Oh I can't wait for all the self-titled "experts" (on both sides) to come out of the woodwork either for or against the series.

Of course, as has been mentioned by several others, I was expecting a temporary surge in activity from The Hobbit films and that just never happened. In my opinion, it never happened because The Hobbit films just weren't that entertaining. The Lord of the Rings films you got a marmite reaction to that a lot of people either really loved or really hated them. And I will defend the LOTR movies from the naysayers to this day.

The amount of money going into the series doesn't indicate to me if it will be good or not, but I do feel like the creators are taking their time with it, which is a bigger indicator. The Hobbit had a director change part way through and then the studio wouldn't give an extension on the release date, which made definitely Desolation of Smaug and The Battle of Five Armies rushed. You can just tell even in the editing process, they rushed it and didn't take the same time and care as they did with the LOTR trilogy.
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Old Yesterday, 10:38 PM   #232
Kuruharan
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I think it actually got better, in that sense. I feel like in the latter seasons the sex scenes were more, um, significant to the storyline? I suppose the consequence of having too much story for your time and budget is that you cut out the unnecessary porn. While waiting for the final season, I rewatched some of season 1 and was surprised at how much sex there was that served no purpose other than to make you uncomfortable. They definitely weaned the sex scenes towards the end.
I think there are two points to be made about this.

The first is that there seems to have been an expectation that, it being HBO, they had to have nudity and casual sex in the show to establish the audience.

The second is that I fear that same expectation will be in place for the Amazon show (even though that is not HBO) because the trope now seems to have been codified, and reinforced by The Witcher that fantasy TV shows must come with nudity and casual sex as a de rigueur part of the offering.

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Speaking as someone who watched all of GoT, most of it sympathetically, and was very much disappointed by the ending, nudity had nothing to do with said disappointment.
Well, I have to admit, one of the things that kind of turned me off from wanting to watch the show into Season Three was I did not want to watch the Theon torture porn that I knew was coming. After that, as it became more and more obvious reading the various online analysis, that the show writers were drifting further and further from the source material I had very little motivation to go back. I also became steadily more irritated as the show staggered toward its end at the level of ineptitude and military incompetence they put into the show that in a way I was delighted it collapsed into such a widely ridiculed dumpster fire in the end.

Although, I also feel quite vindicated because I called Dany's ultimate storyline trajectory years ago.

EDIT: Also there was the factor of the show ultimately running out of source material, and there seems wide consensus that the show got worse after that point.

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Maybe we'll even get treated to some Annatar/Celebrimbor slash? [/channeling Ivriniel]
At the very least, I would assume.

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And I will defend the LOTR movies from the naysayers to this day.
Once more into the breach!!
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