Sign In

LOTR: The Rings of Power Spoiler Thread

Author
Time

Hi! The Rings of Power has finally aired! Does anyone have any thoughts? Rants? opinions? Share!

After being beaten and battered by prequel hate, I promise not to be that to the next generation.

Author
Time
 (Edited)

I was wondering when discussions would start here. I’m enjoying the series so far, though I’m already gathering edit ideas as I watch. (I expect that, by the time the series concludes in five years, there will be a great many edits floating around.)

One of my initial thoughts is to move the start of the Southlands plot into the second episode and more of the Harfoot story into the first. This would create a bit more unity within each episode.

I’m inclined to start recording a fiddling around, but for this material, I’d like to get a newer computer with a higher resolution screen.

FYI - I consider myself a Tolkien fan with above average knowledge, but I’m not a purist. I understand that adaptions will make changes, and some may even be changes for the better. In my mind, an adaption that stays true to Tolkien needs to include the core ideas of eucatastrophe, evil as corruption, all things eventually working together for good, and humble kindness being the truest foundation of heroism.

Author
Time

I’m enjoying this too. Some of the casting feels a bit strange, but in general it’s aesthetically quite high in quality.

Some of the scenes felt a bit slow, or melodramatic/cringey in places.

So I’d be keen to see if it’s possible for someone to turn this into a nicely paced movie!

Author
Time

I can tell this show is gonna be a rough one for me. Gonna try to enjoy it as something only loosely inspired by Tolkien and see how it sustains me. While I doubt I would’ve been interested were it not based on Tolkien, I’m gonna try! There’s gonna be things I’ll want to see as it unfolds.

I know I’ve made some very poor decisions recently.

Author
Time

I am way more optimistic than I was before while watching this.

The first episode was so slooow! It was beautiful to look at and I was happy for fantasy that wasn’t filled with sex and nudity, so any shortcomings in pacing and accuracy I can overlook. I understand the need for set up, but it was just a bit too much.

The second episode was great for me! The interpersonal dynamics between the characters was great! I’m really curious who Meteor Man is. The obvious choice is Gandalf, and I’m okay with that.

After being beaten and battered by prequel hate, I promise not to be that to the next generation.

Author
Time

With Rings of Power and House of the Dragon, I was hoping to dislike one or both or them for the sake of my free time/sleep. Unfortunately, my wife and I like both!

Very different styles obviously, but they feel connected to me.
Both first episodes felt a bit clunky, like they were rushing to capture their audience. And it feels like every fantasy piece since LOTR tries to match the brilliant prologue and it just never works for me. The Game of Thrones cold open worked so well in part because it didn’t do this and instead set the tone.

For Rings, I think it was a great idea to release two episodes up front. As dgraham414 wrote, the pacing and character interactions in episode 2 were much stronger and the show hit its stride. The design and feel or everything is excellent — it actually feels like a younger Middle-Earth in both the visuals and characterizations.

Author
Time

The inner editor in me can’t help but notice when scenes can be cut without impacting the plot, and there were a lot of those even in the first two episodes. Did we really need to meet a boatload of castaways just to see them die in the next scene, or a rock-breaking competition which the characters then ignore?

I liked a lot of scenes as well. The conversation on the lift right after the rock breaking was wonderful! There’s just so much filler already, I had trouble staying focused on what was going on and my girlfriend fell asleep in the middle of one episode.

The biggest issue however is the way this is plotted and edited. It feels very much like many other Big Dumb Shows. I’m talking Foundation, Westworld, His Dark Materials. They all seem to throw out a bunch of loosely connected characters and have them wander around until plot happens to them while the viewer flies from one meandering scene to the next, often by map. Maybe something will happen to these characters, maybe they meet. Will they? Who knows, apparently not the show.

Hopefully this show has a destination in mind. I’ll keep watching for now, but I’m not going to expect greatness.

Also, to address the controversy: don’t think I didn’t notice how wrong some of the characters look. I get that it’s an adaptation and not strictly adhering to Tolkien’s vision, but characters like Durin’s wife take me completely out of the world; JRR would be spinning in his grave if he knew that the world would one day be forced to behold a clean shaven Dwarf.

😉

You probably don’t recognize me because of the red arm.
Episode 9 Rewrite, The Starlight Project (Released!) and ANH Technicolor Project (Released!)

Author
Time

NeverarGreat said:

Also, to address the controversy: don’t think I didn’t notice how wrong some of the characters look. I get that it’s an adaptation and not strictly adhering to Tolkien’s vision, but characters like Durin’s wife take me completely out of the world; JRR would be spinning in his grave if he knew that the world would one day be forced to behold a clean shaven Dwarf.

😉

Alt text

After being beaten and battered by prequel hate, I promise not to be that to the next generation.

Author
Time
 (Edited)

Hehe Nev, you had me for a second too!

I didn’t really find those scenes to be filler, they gave me a chance to observe the characters.

The rock-breaking scene had me wondering if Elrond was letting him win, part of his political strategy to let Durin look tough for his people while showing patience for his moment to speak with Durin alone on the lift.

And the fact that Halbrand so willingly cut away the other castaways shows that he’s no hero, which Galadriel calls him on. I find his character very suspicious. His very first line is “Looks can be deceiving.”

I think there’s a lot here under the surface, it’s just been a long time since this kind of material has been packaged in a fun exterior. GoT/HotD is just so dour (Westworld too) and while I still enjoy it, it feels like it’s using gritty realism in place of meaning. I don’t think it has anything to say other than the brutality of humanity, which these days feels obvious.

That’s not to say Rings of Power is fully working yet, and parts in the beginning are a bit clunky. But I don’t think anything so far has been superfluous.

Author
Time

Good points. I see how those scenes have value, and they certainly do some lifting. But it does feel like a lot of them are doing the bare minimum for one small aspect of the story, whereas a strong scene can elevate the story in several ways at once. It’s the difference between meaty and fatty writing, for me, that is concerning. I’ve been burned too many times with shows that go totally to fat, but here’s to hoping that it isn’t the case this time.

You probably don’t recognize me because of the red arm.
Episode 9 Rewrite, The Starlight Project (Released!) and ANH Technicolor Project (Released!)

Author
Time

It feels like a “Gotham” prequel to LOTR, where we’ll often wonder whether this or that character could become a familiar character. They’ll play on our expectations about established lore and keep us guessing.

Is Halbrand the Witch-King of Angmar? Is that kid? Is Elrond?

I know I’ve made some very poor decisions recently.

Author
Time

It felt weird that they have Orcs attack the village and they decide to wait another day before leaving, when Orcs like to move and attack at night. I wonder if there’s enough to edit it so it feels like they leave faster.

Author
Time

Just so you guys know this story has almost nothing to do with Tolkien’s books. I’m very shocked to see any support for this show here. I mean the original teaser on YouTube currently has 131K thumbs up compared to 1.9MILLION thumbs down. That is 15:1 ratio!!!
This show is nothing but woke racial/gender propaganda trash. I’ll stick with my books on this… 2020’s woke culture can’t take those away.

Author
Time

alastair said:

It felt weird that they have Orcs attack the village and they decide to wait another day before leaving, when Orcs like to move and attack at night. I wonder if there’s enough to edit it so it feels like they leave faster.

I mean, Gandalf knew the Enemy was aware of the ring’s presence in the Shire and he told Frodo to leave within a few months… his birthday at the latest!
I think giving everyone a night to spread the word and gather their belongings seems most practical.

Author
Time

Oh so sorry guys, never mind. I didn’t realize this was woke trash. My bad. If I had know the teaser had a bad YouTube ratio I wouldn’t have watched.

Author
Time

TheHutt70 said:

Just so you guys know this story has almost nothing to do with Tolkien’s books. I’m very shocked to see any support for this show here. I mean the original teaser on YouTube currently has 131K thumbs up compared to 1.9MILLION thumbs down. That is 15:1 ratio!!!
This show is nothing but woke racial/gender propaganda trash. I’ll stick with my books on this… 2020’s woke culture can’t take those away.

As someone who has read the Lord of the Rings many times and the Silmarillion thrice, I enjoy watching this show partly because I don’t know what will happen. Maybe it will be good, maybe it will be bad. I sure don’t know, and I’m pretty sure two million people who just watched a trailer don’t know either. However, I do know that anyone complaining about this show without first watching it should perhaps be reacquainted with the word prejudice : an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.

You probably don’t recognize me because of the red arm.
Episode 9 Rewrite, The Starlight Project (Released!) and ANH Technicolor Project (Released!)

Author
Time
 (Edited)

NeverarGreat said:

TheHutt70 said:

Just so you guys know this story has almost nothing to do with Tolkien’s books. I’m very shocked to see any support for this show here. I mean the original teaser on YouTube currently has 131K thumbs up compared to 1.9MILLION thumbs down. That is 15:1 ratio!!!
This show is nothing but woke racial/gender propaganda trash. I’ll stick with my books on this… 2020’s woke culture can’t take those away.

As someone who has read the Lord of the Rings many times and the Silmarillion thrice, I enjoy watching this show partly because I don’t know what will happen. Maybe it will be good, maybe it will be bad. I sure don’t know, and I’m pretty sure two million people who just watched a trailer don’t know either. However, I do know that anyone complaining about this show without first watching it should perhaps be reacquainted with the word prejudice : an unfavorable opinion or feeling formed beforehand or without knowledge, thought, or reason.

As an obvious fan you should want Tolkien’s actual story.
If they wanted to something like this who cares… that is their prerogative… but don’t call it Lord of the Rings. Using that name is the only reason anyone is watching this. I wanted a good epic story actually based on the writings of Tolkien. Not their stupid agenda rammed down my throat.
If you watch it I hope you enjoy it!

poppasketti said:

Oh so sorry guys, never mind. I didn’t realize this was woke trash. My bad. If I had know the teaser had a bad YouTube ratio I wouldn’t have watched.

Now your getting it. Good for you.

Author
Time

TheHutt70 said:

stupid agenda rammed down my throat

To be honest, when this series was first announced and details started to surface, I was expecting exactly that. But so far, this series is a pleasant surprise. The only “woke agenda” elements I can really see and acknowledge are these two:

  1. Having a somewhat greater number of lead female characters than most Tolkien works.
  2. Casting minority actors into roles that would traditionally be portrayed by white actors.

Either of these two don’t offend me in any way, on the contrary.

I have no problem believing that Middle Earth thousands of years into the past would have been a different place in many ways. I think this show gets it right where it counts.

It’s pretty clear that it is created by people who know and greatly respect the source material, even if they are only allowed to use its basic outline. The characters, both old and new, are likeable and well portrayed, the cinematography is amazing and the storytelling actually manages to feel very “Tolkienesque”. If keep this up, at worst this could turn out to be one of the greatest fan-fictions of all time. I say bring it on.

And I think there’s really no need to try to get people not to enjoy The Rings of Power – or any other show, I guess – for what it is.

Author
Time

I understand that elements have been changed. What changes in particular do you think make this adaption “no longer Tolkien?”

What specific changes to characters and events do you think make them no longer recognizable?

What changes to themes and values do you see violating Tolkien’s vision?

Also, even if elements have been changed that are problematic, isn’t this precisely the place where we go to work that out? This forum exists to take messes like Rise of Skywalker, dissect it, and remake it into something greater. If we love Tolkien films, shouldn’t we appreciate that Rings of Power is giving us roughly 50 hours of new raw material that we can use for edits, even new edits of the Jackson films?

Author
Time

I fail to see the argument that this “isn’t Tolkien.”

Sure, the story is based on appendices because that’s all they could license, but the tone and mythology feel spot on.
After two episodes, we’ve already gotten to see things I never thought we would, such as the path Frodo and co. took to cross over to Valinor at the end of LOTR. Or Khazad Dum before it was a ruin, when the world was so much younger.

And there’s so much potential yet to come (I haven’t watched the trailers so this me based on 2 eps):

  1. the re-emergence of Sauron in his “fair” form
  2. the dwarves discovery of mithril that leads to the destruction of Moria (ie the waking of a balrog)
  3. potentially the creation of a wizard
  4. of course, the creation of the rings of power, and them backfiring in the same way as the silmarils.
  5. Sauron and perhaps other balrogs in fair form tempting and corrupting the kings of men.

And the opening title sequence is an incredible metaphorical representation of the music of the Maiar, showing how Melkor corrupted it with his dissonance.

This thing is just dripping with the Tolkien lore and I don’t get what the issue is.

Author
Time

You guys can watch whatever you want of course… but over the course of this year I’ve watched 100 videos like these which all have about 95% positive ratings. This show hasn’t looked promising for the last 2 years.
And like I said the teasers/trailers have thumbs down on a scale of 15:1… And yes while I’m capable of liking something without the approval of others these ratings mean something to me… I pretty much never watch a movie without checking the IMDB rating… If it has less than 5 stars I generally won’t waste my time with it… most times/not all. And to see what may be the most popular fantasy story in history get so ratioed (sp.?) means a lot.
The 2020’s diversity push is enough to push most away unless you have pronouns in your social media profile.
For me this show is even a bigger disappointment than the phantom menace.

If you guys enjoy the show then great for you… I’m gonna walk away from this thread now since this isn’t what this forum is for.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eFhHN5QIPFQ

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ESw8WmftzLY

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y7bjp3xFaA0

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilA_stGNCng

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2TQB-7ddAJk

Author
Time
 (Edited)

Maybe if every basement dweller in the world didn’t feel the need to create butthurt videos about supposed “woke agenda” in a series some of them didn’t even watch, this strategy wouldn’t work. Hollywood knows well enough that by taking certain creative decisions – ones that are provocative, but hardly shocking in this day and age – they can easily get so much free publicity. If you don’t want them to succeed, you might just listen to your previous impulse and leave “The Rings of Power Spoiler Thread” to go get offended at a trailer somewhere. There is really no need to push your agenda down anybody’s throat 😉

Author
Time

Wexter said:

Maybe if every basement dweller in the world didn’t feel the need to create butthurt videos about supposed “woke agenda” in a series some of them didn’t even watch, this strategy wouldn’t work. Hollywood knows well enough that by taking certain creative decisions – ones that are provocative, but hardly shocking in this day and age – they can easily get so much free publicity. If you don’t want them to succeed, you might just listen to your previous impulse and leave “The Rings of Power Spoiler Thread” to go get offended at a trailer somewhere. There is really no need to push your agenda down anybody’s throat 😉

Haha… I see what you did with that last sentence 😃
But you have to admit that video was funny, LOL

Author
Time

Not to add fuel to the fire and run away, but the LOTR trilogy ain’t 100% Tolkien faithful either. Faramir’s character was completely changed, entire chunks of the book were removed, and rolls were completely swapped out.

I wouldn’t be surprised that if those movies came out today the outcry would be massive. I can almost see the YouTube thumbnails photoshopping Greta Thunberg’s face over Arwen and Eowyen.

Conversely, if this show came out in 2008, I challenge the notion that the backlash would be the same.

The cry for Tolkien purism may be true to some, the PJ movies had that cry (although so quiet in the discourse) but it just seems like a shield to criticize diverse casting and female main characters.

If your claim is that it’s “not Tolkien’s story,” then you probably shouldn’t be watching any LOTR adaptation.

After being beaten and battered by prequel hate, I promise not to be that to the next generation.