I found myself with the unexpected urge to watch The Hobbit this weekend after randomly hearing the incredible cover of Song of the Lonely Mountain that Neil Finn did for the soundtrack to the first film. I ended up making it through An Unexpected Journey just a little while ago this evening after watching the first half during naptime, and then as I tend to do after indulging on Tolkien, I spent the next couple of hours just randomly browsing wiki articles about the extended lore behind the stories that I’ve never had the discipline to read for myself via The Silmarillion, Unfinished Tales, etc…
It seems like without fail I always find some new detail that I never picked up on through the books or the movies, like tonight I came to realize that not only does Galadriel wield one of the Rings of Power that was gifted to the Elven Kings, but that in fact Elrond and Gandalf wear the other two.
Or that … and I really can’t believe I didn’t pick up on this because the reforging of Elendil’s sword is one of my favorite parts in Return of the King … Elendil and Isildur were actually two different people, with Elendil being the King of Gondor and Isildur being his son … both fought against Sauron together, with Isildur cutting the One Ring from Sauron’s hand with his father’s broken blade after Sauron killed Elendil himself.
It was also interesting to read about some of the mythical creatures of Middle Earth, like the dragons who were pretty rare and basically bred for evil, and the balrogs, which there were actually more than one of – another thing I didn’t know – and that a few made their battle entrance even more dramatic than the eagles by being carried by a fire drake onto the battlefield!
Yeah, I’m pretty sure when you look into the sky and not only do you see a fire-breathing dragon, but you see balrogs riding on the fire-breathing dragon’s back, YOU’RE PRETTY MUCH FUCKED. 😯
I’ve actually been kicking around the idea of writing some fiction and creating a little world of my own – not fantasy, mind you, but something equally compelling that I’m not quite ready to share yet. In a way it’s a little intimidating to look at some of these simply massive works and try to imagine how in the world authors like J.R.R. Tolkien ever came up with it all. I picture an entire library packed with notes and drawings and reference documents to keep track of timelines and ancestry and hobbit meal plans … where do you even start?!
Maybe … maybe it doesn’t so much matter where you start… 😉
“It’s the job that’s never started as takes longest to finish.”
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Lord of the Rings