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Tolkien/LOTR Tribe.... - Page 3

post #41 of 412
So that's why I'm just now finding this wonderful thread! I'm never in "Tribes" so I never would have seen it.

The Hobbit is definitly much more accessible/readable to the uninitiated. It has a lighter tone.

I loved the movies, but I was seriously hesitant to let dd see the first one, since she was only 7 y.o. I wanted her to read the books first and fall in love that way; imagine how the characters look in her own mind. And I thought she was too young for me to be reading the books to her. They have sophisticated language and didn't want her to get bored. I didn't read them till maybe 5th or 6th grade. Regardless, I let her watch the dvds and she of course loves them. I read her The Hobbit.

P. Jackson might film The Hobbit after he's finished with King Kong. I really hope so, that would be a blast! I just hope Ian McKellen is around that long.

I guess it shouldn't be a surprise, since Tolkein provides his own map of Middle Earth, but I was impressed with how much my own mental map matched the movie's. New Zealand really looked like my imagings of Middle Earth, and the the characters really seemed to be moving from place to place in order.

I totally understand leaving out Tom Bombadil. I even understand leaving out the Scouring of the Shire, though I was disappointed there. But I didn't think they needed to have Arwyn doing some of the things that Frodo was supposed to do, especially at the crossing of the river to Rivendel. In the book Frodo's fading fast but he rides across the river by himself (doesn't he??), not with Arwyn. I thought that was a significant, unnecessary change. Oh well.
post #42 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by journeymom
But I didn't think they needed to have Arwyn doing some of the things that Frodo was supposed to do, especially at the crossing of the river to Rivendel. In the book Frodo's fading fast but he rides across the river by himself (doesn't he??), not with Arwyn. I thought that was a significant, unnecessary change. Oh well.
I agree. It was Glorfindel who met them and sent Frodo away on his horse. I don't know why they changed it, except maybe to give a bigger role to Liv Tyler.
post #43 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by journeymom
. In the book Frodo's fading fast but he rides across the river by himself (doesn't he??), not with Arwyn. I thought that was a significant, unnecessary change. Oh well.
Yes, I imagine they did it to give Liv a bigger role. It's my least favorite change in the movies, I hate it so much I cringe everytime I see it.

Ask yourself, what is Frodo's strength? Aragorn is a born leader, Boromir is a soldier, Elrond is a healer and seer, what makes Frodo worthy of carrying the Ring? His is the gift of resistence to evil influence.

There are three examples of this in the book before they get to Rivendell. 1) In the old forest - Frodo awakens enough from the spell of Old Man Willow to run away and cry for help, thus grabbing the attention of Tom Bombadil. 2) In the barrow when the wight is about to get him, Frodo comes to his senses long enough to fight it off and call for Tom. 3) At the Ford of Bruinen - this little hobbit faces down the nine nazgul, one of whom is enough to put fear in the hearts of kings of men, ALONE. He tells them to go back to Mordor since they will get neither the ring nor him. Of course he promptly faints afterwards and is saved by Elrond - but that's not the point.

In every instance Frodo had the emotional strength and fortitude to resist evil in ever increasing intensity. Yes, he had to be rescued each time but that's because he's not Aragorn. Fighting ain't his strong suit. Resisting evil is, and that is why - as a reader - you don't think Elrond is completely crazy and you have faith that if Frodo can't carry the ring, no one can.

You'll notice EVERY one of the three shows of Frodo's strength were eliminated from the movie. The first two I can understand - no Tom. The third, I don't care how much it's rationalized I HATE it. I hate that change more than any other in the movie. When that moment came and was given to Arwen (with a far inferior line I might add) I said good bye to my Frodo and settled back to see who this Frodo is. The movie Frodo is a shadow of the book Frodo, imo. That moment at the Ford lets Frodo's very spirit shine right off the pages. It's shows what he's made of and why he's perfect to carry the ring. And the movie took that away with no replacement.

Sorry, had to comment on that. I'm a big Tolkien geek, if that's not already obvious - and I'll try to join in on this thread when I can.
post #44 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by owensmom
So, ok, enlighten me. The king of Gondor. Is he like the king of Middle Earth men, or just Gondor? Is he more kingly then the king of Rohan? What is the deal? And I was watching the cast commentary on ROTKEE and someone mentioned Osgiliath being the capital of Gondor.
Ok, I'm pulling this off the top of my head so forgive any inaccuracies. When the Numenorians who were still faithful to the Eldar came to middle earth to dwell they called the section they lived in Arnor. The first King of Arnor was Elendil. Now, I don't remember the exact details but eventually Arnor is divided into two kingdoms - Arnor and Gondor. Eventually Arnor was broken up even further.

The King of Gondor - had there been one at the time of LOTR - would have rule over Rohan, I believe. I THINK the K of G has rule over all men in middle earth - not completely sure about that. When Aragorn became king he did have ultimate rule over Rohan but local rule continued through Eomer. Not to mention that with the marriage of Faramir and Eowyn the two kingdoms basically united anyway.

BTW, the only way Elrond would agree to Arwen marrying Aragorn was if Aragorn reunited the Kingdoms of Arnor and Gondor - which he did.

Again, forgive any inaccuracies. I'll look it up if I have time and let you know if I'm wrong.
post #45 of 412
Kris, that's a great analysis of Frodo's strengths. And you're right, if Jackson was going to leave out Old Man Willow and the scene in the barrow downs, then it's even worse that he took away Frodo's scene at thr river's edge.

And with all the significance Tolkien put into the origin of a man's sword, that made it all the more disappointing when Aragorn simply tosses those swords to Sam, Merry and Pippin; "Oh, btw, you'll be needing these." In the book they got them from the barrows.
post #46 of 412
You guys are making me so eager to read the books for a second time! I read them after seeing all the movies in about a months time, so I read them basically to understand what I saw in the movies. I impatiently read through stuff like Tom Bombadil...
post #47 of 412
I totally concur with you, Kris on both points.

I was actually quite disapointed with the casting of Frodo, for much the same reason. I know they compressed time in the movie (needed to do so for cinematic reasons) but in my head, Frodo should be older. While I like Elijah Wood a lot as an actor, he's just so young!

(Hobbits age differently than humans -- in the book, Frodo also turns 33 at Bilbo's 111th birthday party. That's the hobbit "coming of age, so similar to turning 18 in human years. The problem, tho is that in the book, Frodo doesn't leave the shire for for 17 more years! )

I always imagined Frodo to be around 30-40ish throughout the book. Obviously, he ages as the book goes along (that's a HUGE amount of time) but I hate that in the movie he is 19-20 the entire time. I think if you're going to compress the time, you should at least make Frodo closer to the age he ends up in the book. Just my opinion, of course, but it's one of my biggest nit-pics of the movie.

Personally, I also think the movie also cheated Samwise's character, because his strength (in the book) is his absolute steadfastness. He never waivers for a moment... is not for one bit tempted by the ring (even when he needs to take it up) because he is forever subservient to Frodo. I use that term -- subservient -- even knowing it has a negative connotation in our culture.

Sam's pretty much a throwback (at least in US culture): he is a servant, through and through. It's paradoxically one of my favorite old-fashioned isms in Tolkien, and also the heart of my biggest theoretical conntention with him. (Should we be subservient? I have huge qualms about it. I understand the idea, religiously, spiritually, but I hate the way it has played out in the majority of human existance.)

Actually, now that I think about it, a lot of the characters did not get to reach their fullest potential in the movie. Which may just be a cinematic thing again, tho I'm not entirely convinced of that. I believe that Peter Jackson was just more interested in the larger picture -- the themes of good vs evil, right vs wrong, environment vs destruction, loyalty vs selfishness, need vs desire and above all else, duty vs failure to accept responsibility. I think Peter Jackson let a lot of the key character moments (and characters) go in striving to bring all those larger themes to life. Which is perfectly OK as a choice, I suppose.

Anyway, I still love the movies/ books, don't get me wrong. But I can go on and on in my critique of them.

One of my favorite moments in the movie, in fact, is not from the books: when Brad Dorff (LOVED him in Dune, too, btw) aka Wormtongue cries as he looks out upon the armies of the uruk hai. Oh, I know it doesn't make sense in the context of the books, but it is SUCH a powerful moment to me. (And one moment in which Peter Jackson perhaps steps a little bit away from the heavy dichotomy inherent in the books? Maybe. It's hard in this day and age to remain stuck in the -- as Cornel West puts it in the Matrix commentaries -- "Manichean duality" of Tolkien.)

Is that too much of a philosophical can of worms? Sorry... we just watched the entire Matrix series with the Philosophic comments on and it really made me think about the LotR in conjunction with the Matrix. The Matrix is so uber Post-Modern (beyond duality), whereas the LotR is so Modern (duality-based).

(Tho the films are somewhat Post-Modern in structure and filmaking style -- notice all the pastiche/ film quotes used throughout.)

:LOL I guess I just wish I was back in grad school sometimes :LOL
post #48 of 412
MommytoMJM: I read Meditations on Middle Earth last summer...there's some really great essays in that book. I also spent some time this fall in the Unfinished Tales, and fell in love with the story of Beren and Luthien all over again...dh and I argue all the time about the changes to the script in re the Arwen character. Some of them do wrench with the characters. DH HATES the scene at the ford with Arwen, and rereading the book recently, I did feel like it cheats Frodo of his inner strength. But I feel like Jackson felt by building up the story of Aragorn and Arwen, he is giving the filmgoer a stronger sense of the Culture of the place, which from my watching of the DVDs, seems like an important theme with him. By telling their story, he is also telling the story of Beren and Luthien, a founding myth of these people.

That said, I'm still unhappy with the shrinking of Frodo that occurs in the first film. Thanks so much for articulating it, Lovemyboo. I think that despite his age, Elijah Wood is wonderful as Frodo in the later films. The sense of personal sacrifice and suffering he embodies is right out of the Passion of the Christ, not by accident, I don't think.

Joe (my dh) wants a whole film about Tom Bombadil, but that's another whole story!!

Here's an interesting question, the answer to which in my own experience tells a lot about you: Who do you prefer, Strider or Lord Aragorn, King Elleassar (sp)? DH loves Strider, I find him taking up his kingship moving. What do you think?
post #49 of 412
Kris, that was great, and I agree that Frodo in the movies is a pale shadow of Frodo in the book. Perhaps it didn't bother me too much because I had no expectations that the movies would be able to reflect the depth and complexity present in Tolkein's writing. Most of the characters in the movies, actually, I found to be shallow representations of the book versions, but I completely understand why it had to be that way in order to put it on screen, and I think they did a fantastic job of translating something so huge into a screenplay that still manages to convey the grand themes, the spirit of Tolkein's world. I take the movies for what they are, recognize the accomplishment, and embrace their wonderfulness. I still have the book in a separate compartment in my brain and heart. It would be a shame if anyone didn't read the book because they'd seen the movies and thought they knew the story.

I do think Viggo was able to tap into the depths of Aragorn's character quite successfully, IMO he seemed to get across the mysteries of this singular man, his history, his heritage, his ambivalence (although I think the movie Aragorn came across as more ambivalent than the book Aragorn). But then, Viggo himself seems different than the Hollywood types.

Quote:
Originally Posted by alexisyael
Personally, I also think the movie also cheated Samwise's character, because his strength (in the book) is his absolute steadfastness. He never waivers for a moment... is not for one bit tempted by the ring (even when he needs to take it up) because he is forever subservient to Frodo. I use that term -- subservient -- even knowing it has a negative connotation in our culture.
I agree that Sam's character was another that didn't have the full range of the book character (although I think Sean Astin did a great job with the essence of Sam), but as for Tolkein's depiction of the virtues of the servant, I've actually always seen the Sam/Frodo dynamic as an example of someone who was born into what amounts to servitude turning out to be the one who ultimately enables the triumph of good, and ends up gaining stature equivalent to or greater than the "master". The respect Sam gained was based upon merit, which I see as a subtle rebuke of the social structure in which Tolkein grew up, where merit would rarely factor into allowing a "servant" to achieve a status in life where they were keepers of their own personal dignity. Sam becomes Mayor, and his family among the most respected in the Shire.
post #50 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by darlindeliasmom
Here's an interesting question, the answer to which in my own experience tells a lot about you: Who do you prefer, Strider or Lord Aragorn, King Elleassar (sp)? DH loves Strider, I find him taking up his kingship moving. What do you think?
I think Strider not stepping up to be king would have been failure to acknowledge his responsibility to all Middle Earth. There was no one else. So I guess I'd have to say I prefer King Elessar, but Strider was a necessary step along the way (as was his stint as Thorongil). I like to think he would have done it even without the motivation of marrying Arwen when he succeeded (according to Elrond's condition). "Prefer" isn't quite the right word, though. Strider's character is wonderful, but would have been incomplete without the ultimate achievement of fulfilling his destiny.
post #51 of 412
Quote:
And with all the significance Tolkien put into the origin of a man's sword, that made it all the more disappointing when Aragorn simply tosses those swords to Sam, Merry and Pippin; "Oh, btw, you'll be needing these." In the book they got them from the barrows.
Yup, while I do understand why Tom was left out, the writers did punch themselves a few gapping holes in the story when they did so. Sometimes I wish I could watch the movies with the eyes of someone who has never read the books. I might enjoy them more.

Quote:
Most of the characters in the movies, actually, I found to be shallow representations of the book versions, but I completely understand why it had to be that way in order to put it on screen, and I think they did a fantastic job of translating something so huge into a screenplay that still manages to convey the grand themes, the spirit of Tolkein's world.
I totally agree that, overall, the movies are outstanding. I really appreciate all the attention to detail that went into the costumes, sets, props, etc.

As far as translation from book to screen, IMO Gimli lost the most. He's not one of my favorite characters so it didn't bother me. Frodo comes next and he's my second fave character, so that did bug me. Luckily Aragorn came across fairly well. He's my favorite and I'm so glad PJ ditched Stuart Townsend and got Viggo. While Viggo's Aragorn is not a perfect book Aragorn, he's wonderful nonetheless. He's a perfect movie Aragorn. I think Boromir came across the best. He's a walking dichotomy of the best and worst of humanity in both versions.

Quote:
Personally, I also think the movie also cheated Samwise's character, because his strength (in the book) is his absolute steadfastness. He never waivers for a moment... is not for one bit tempted by the ring (even when he needs to take it up) because he is forever subservient to Frodo. I use that term -- subservient -- even knowing it has a negative connotation in our culture.
I agree with this as well, except for the subservient part. I think Sam was able to turn away from the lure of the Ring not so much because of his dedication to Frodo (though that is certainly part) but because of his "simple-mindedness". And I mean that in the best possible way. Sam sees things at their simplest level - to much detail really confuses him. While this seems like it should make him stupid, it actually does the opposite. Sam can cut right through all the bs that bogs down the intelligensia, aka: Gandalf, Aragorn, Elrond, etc. When he has the ring and gets visions of Sam the Great, Sam the Powerful, he almost immediately dismisses them b/c he KNOWS that it's pure bull. Not because he's stupid, but because in his mind he's just a simple hobbit - a creature far too simple for something so complex as the Ring. He feels this to be true and because of his simple-mindedness he is able to keep that thought strong in his head and ignore the false grandiosity (is that a word?) that the rings offers.

I, also, agree that Sam really came into himself and earned his way up the hobbit social structure. He's Tolkien's ideal politician. No delusions of grandeur and no tolerance of bs.

Quote:
I was actually quite disapointed with the casting of Frodo, for much the same reason. I know they compressed time in the movie (needed to do so for cinematic reasons) but in my head, Frodo should be older. While I like Elijah Wood a lot as an actor, he's just so young!
:LOL I thought it was pretty ironic that the youngest actor (Elijah) played the oldest hobbit and the oldest actor (Billy) played the youngest hobbit. Frodo's age did not come across at all. Neither did Pippen's, which is unfortunate because it explains some of his behavior. He's not even of age. He's a teenager, not a buffoon.

Quote:
DH HATES the scene at the ford with Arwen, and rereading the book recently, I did feel like it cheats Frodo of his inner strength. But I feel like Jackson felt by building up the story of Aragorn and Arwen, he is giving the filmgoer a stronger sense of the Culture of the place, which from my watching of the DVDs, seems like an important theme with him.
I do get the need for the romance in the movie, and reading about in the appendices (sp?) puts so much more context into the book. I have no objections about Arwen being in the scene and replacing Glorfindel. But I strongly feel there was no reason to for her to be the hero. Let Frodo come back to life for a moment and give him his line back. Arwen's presence doesn't diminish the character of Frodo. Having him lay there, like a pale-green, wheezing sack of potatoes while the action goes on around him, does.

Quote:
Who do you prefer, Strider or Lord Aragorn, King Elleassar (sp)?
You can't really pick one without the other. Though I'd rather have a roll in the hay with mussed-up Strider/Viggo than cleaned up Elessar/Viggo.
post #52 of 412
I am really loving reading this thread!! I am sitting here nodding along, wondering why I never really analyzed the books before. I'm getting a whole 'nother depth to the books and movies now that I didn't really pick up on in any of my umpteen-bazillion reads.

I never really expected the movies to be a perfect redition of the books. It LOOKED just right. From scenery to costumes to (for the most part) the people picked for the charactars.

I agree that a lot was lost when the Tom Bombadil and the Barrows were skipped. The story still made sense, as my sister, who has never read the books, liked it a lot. But I think, like pp's have said, it doesn't MEAN as much. Seems like (and I haven't watched them in a while) there wasn't as big an ephasis put on the reforging of the sword either.

Off to watch one of the dvd's now..... LOL
post #53 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovemyBoo
I agree with this as well, except for the subservient part. I think Sam was able to turn away from the lure of the Ring not so much because of his dedication to Frodo (though that is certainly part) but because of his "simple-mindedness". And I mean that in the best possible way. Sam sees things at their simplest level - to much detail really confuses him. While this seems like it should make him stupid, it actually does the opposite. Sam can cut right through all the bs that bogs down the intelligensia, aka: Gandalf, Aragorn, Elrond, etc. When he has the ring and gets visions of Sam the Great, Sam the Powerful, he almost immediately dismisses them b/c he KNOWS that it's pure bull. Not because he's stupid, but because in his mind he's just a simple hobbit - a creature far too simple for something so complex as the Ring. He feels this to be true and because of his simple-mindedness he is able to keep that thought strong in his head and ignore the false grandiosity (is that a word?) that the rings offers.
I personally see this simplicity as part and parcel of being the servant -- there's a long standing British (Shakespearian, really) tradition of the Fool who is ultimately the Wise One. (Wiser than the master, in fact). But I still have real misgivings about the Fool needing always to be a servant (as in King Lear). Even a mayor is in reality just another form of a servant.

My self-centered Americanized brain sometimes can't beyond the idea of complete servitude! I suspect that if I were of a different cultural background, I'd have a lot less difficulty with it.


Quote:
Originally Posted by LovemyBoo
:LOL I thought it was pretty ironic that the youngest actor (Elijah) played the oldest hobbit and the oldest actor (Billy) played the youngest hobbit. Frodo's age did not come across at all. Neither did Pippen's, which is unfortunate because it explains some of his behavior. He's not even of age. He's a teenager, not a buffoon.
Exactly!

Quote:
Originally Posted by LovemyBoo
...I'd rather have a roll in the hay with mussed-up Strider/Viggo than cleaned up Elessar/Viggo.
And once more, with great feeling: EXACTLY! :
post #54 of 412
Now, see, here's where I differ from most mommas here. :LOL

I'd never seen Viggo Mortensen prior to FOTR and was disappointed with the choice. In my mind's eye, Strider looked more Sean Bean/Boromir. And while I understand Strider is a ranger and is supposed to be scruffy ("Who you calling 'scruffy'?!"), honestly I was kind of grossed out by his greasy hair. I mean, wash your hair, man!

So when we finally see a cleaned up King Ellessar I was sooo relieved and thought, whoa! He is kinda hot!

Still, I'll take a perpetually clean Legolas any day!

Who thought the really tall emissary of Sauron outside the gates of Mordor in ROTK EE was cool in a scary/creepy way? Well done, I thought. And so glad to see that scene was included.
post #55 of 412
Oh, the mouth of Sauron was awesome!!! One of my favorite ee scenes He was definitely cool -- if I saw him at a club, I'd be... well. I'd just nod and go "yo dude, what's up?"
post #56 of 412
Quote:
I'd never seen Viggo Mortensen prior to FOTR and was disappointed with the choice. In my mind's eye, Strider looked more Sean Bean/Boromir. And while I understand Strider is a ranger and is supposed to be scruffy ("Who you calling 'scruffy'?!"), honestly I was kind of grossed out by his greasy hair. I mean, wash your hair, man!
I must admit that while I thought Aragorn was well done in FOTR, I did not get the Viggo-Love until TTT. I mean, that scene near Lothlorien where Aragorn and Boromir are arguing over the failings of men, did Viggo's hair not look like the love child of Edward Furlong and Carol Brady? It was truly awful. Of course this whole movie is a veritable parade of one heinous 'do after another - between Boromir's pageboy, the hobbit mops, and Eomer's goldilocks, with the exception of the very pretty elf. And I don't mean Arwen or Galadriel. Then the TTT came along and HELLO BABY!!! And bye-bye Carol Brady flip-do.

I loved loved loved the Mouth of Sauron. He really creeped me out. Too bad he got cut from the theatrical version.

Quote:
I personally see this simplicity as part and parcel of being the servant
This is true. I guess after seeing Gosford Park I'll never see the British servant the same way again.
post #57 of 412
Quote:
Originally Posted by LovemyBoo
I mean, that scene near Lothlorien where Aragorn and Boromir are arguing over the failings of men, did Viggo's hair not look like the love child of Edward Furlong and Carol Brady? .
: : : : : :
Too funny!! Now I must rewatch it just to check out his hair in that scene!

I got ROTKEE for Christmas but haven't watched it yet since I was disappointed with the movie I saw in the theatre, but I am intrigued by the mouth of Sauron scene and may have to watch it this weekend.

I am absorbing all of this wonderful LOTR knowledge. I definitely have to re-read the books with all these points of view running through my head.
post #58 of 412
Faramir...

I always like the secondary guys, too. He's sweetly cute.

Basically, there is just a lot of hunkiness in those movies! :LOL


Edited because I pictured Faramir when Kris mentioned Eomer above.
post #59 of 412
Thread Starter 
I am so glad that this thread is taking off!!!! I am gonna go back and address some things in the thread later, but wanted to chime in with some things....

Love Eowyn and Faramir!!! Like Sam better than Frodo (I always like the second guys too)

I am in the minority here, but I thought the Mouth of Sauron was kinda cheesy, not nearly as scary as I thought it should be....

Feeling like it is time for a big marathon......

BTW, I am rereading LOTR right now and am finding that since I have gotten to know more stuff and researched Tolkien more, it has gotten harder to read. I have to actually be able to concentrate in order to pick it up because I don't want to miss anything.....
post #60 of 412
Quote:
I have no objections about Arwen being in the scene and replacing Glorfindel. But I strongly feel there was no reason to for her to be the hero. Let Frodo come back to life for a moment and give him his line back. Arwen's presence doesn't diminish the character of Frodo. Having him lay there, like a pale-green, wheezing sack of potatoes while the action goes on around him, does.
Oh, I totally agree with your take on this scene...personally I would have preferred Glorfindel...I would have preferred the meeting with the elves by Sam and Frodo before the journey to the mushrooms...I kind of have a thing for elves...

For dh, I thjink he objects more because of his whole take on Aragorn, whereas I don't like it because I find Frodo's character in the book so much deeper.

Quote:
I think Strider not stepping up to be king would have been failure to acknowledge his responsibility to all Middle Earth. There was no one else. So I guess I'd have to say I prefer King Elessar, but Strider was a necessary step along the way (as was his stint as Thorongil). I like to think he would have done it even without the motivation of marrying Arwen when he succeeded (according to Elrond's condition). "Prefer" isn't quite the right word, though. Strider's character is wonderful, but would have been incomplete without the ultimate achievement of fulfilling his destiny.
This is my argument with DH, and why I say that one's take on this says something about you. DH absolutely prefers the rough loner Strider, an existential hero facing nothingness, more than Aragon accepting the responsibility of his fate. Responsibility does not rest easy on DH's shoulders; he does what he has to do, but ultimately sees the world as absurd and sees Strider's wandering in the wilderness doing the catcher in the rye bit as more virtuous than his leadership of men. I see both as heroic in their fashion, but go with Tolkein here. (And take on more than my share of responsibility in life, if I don't say so myself).

Um, but since Viggo so closely physically resembles dh when he was young as Strider, I'd take that look anyday.

And the Sam stuff; reading the book this time, I'm so struck by all the "Mister Frodo, Sir" stuff. But my take on the servanthood thing comes more out of my understanding of Tolkein as a Christian writer...the last shall be first and all that.
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