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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Roac, Carc, and the talking ravens
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Tol Eressea

May 13 2013, 11:58pm

Post #1 of 29 (1114 views)
Roac, Carc, and the talking ravens Can't Post

I know there was recently some speculation about whether the thrush would be included. The other birds that I am wondering about would be Roac and Carc or any talking ravens. I'm not a fan of the whole talking animal route when it comes to Beorn's animals but I think the talking ravens would be pretty cool to see. It would be something not too far fetched since many birds can mimic human speech and something they could use to remain closer to the book. I really don't want to see Radagast playing the role or some other means of getting word to Dain.

What's everyone else's view on the inclusion of Carc and Roac?


May 14 2013, 12:16am

Post #2 of 29 (640 views)
This is something that I just can't decide on. [In reply to] Can't Post

As you said, it would really be cool to see them utilized in order to alert Dain. I always thought the entire communication-by-raven part of the book was interesting as a kid, because I think that really made me realize how little technology there is in ME!Smile (Seven year old me just didn't consider things like whether or not there was electricity in Hobbiton, etc.)

I guess I'll just have to wait a few months until I'm certain. But, if forced to say yes or no, I say keep the ravens in.


May 14 2013, 12:49am

Post #3 of 29 (631 views)
Fascinating [In reply to] Can't Post

I had forgotten about the ravens. It would make sense for ravens to do this though, as they are
clever creatures. Just the thought of that ancient, bald raven swooping down to hail King Thorin
and bid him homage with news of the dragon is amusing, in a good way. Yet, this might
just be one of those things that works best in writing. Could a raven enunciate through that insuperable
beak? I do like the ravens fetching Dain from the Iron Hills.
Will Dain come? It rests on the wings of the raven!


May 14 2013, 1:20am

Post #4 of 29 (583 views)
Bomby hopes our Brilliant Dwarves Voice-Over/// [In reply to] Can't Post



May 14 2013, 5:41am

Post #5 of 29 (549 views)
Maybe [In reply to] Can't Post

... they will keep the ravens, but make them just 'messenger ravens' and not 'talking ravens'?


May 14 2013, 5:44am

Post #6 of 29 (545 views)
I was thinking that, too [In reply to] Can't Post

Sort of like carrier pigeons, I guess. Similar, but different.


May 14 2013, 7:31am

Post #7 of 29 (555 views)
The Spiders can speak [In reply to] Can't Post

And their voices are supposed to be spider like. Only Bilco can see them.

Maybe the birds will have Raven/Thrush like voices and only the Dwarves/Bard can hear them?


May 14 2013, 10:56am

Post #8 of 29 (530 views)
All we've heard about the Spiders speech is: [In reply to] Can't Post

from Dec 2012 Empire Hobbit special:


"The spiders will speak more as a psychic communication", adds Jackson of Mirkwood's nest of arachnids (now in film two). "Only Bilbo hears them."

The same issue said we would hear the Wolves speak in their own tongue.


May 14 2013, 12:17pm

Post #9 of 29 (507 views)
Jackson should definitely include Roc and his kin... [In reply to] Can't Post

In a time of magic, Elves, Wargs and Great Eagles there is nothing particularly odd about a race of ravens that can actually talk. I see no good reason to exclude Roc and his folk (Roc's father Carc is, of course, long dead). I don't accept that the ravens would destroy the audience's suspension of disbelief.

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring


May 14 2013, 12:54pm

Post #10 of 29 (487 views)
Completely Agree [In reply to] Can't Post

These films ARE called The Hobbit, so should primarily been in tune with the tone of the source material, I personally loved the talking animals idea in the book (Which I first read aged 15, after LOTR and UFT),
and think it would be a little weird to have a randomly talking Dragon-i.e 'How come its only the evil animals trolls, dragon spider who can talk?'-I mean people seem to accept a talking sword in COH, A talking Wolve in the tale of Beren and Luthien, and 'Talking' Trees/Rocks/Pretty much evreything in the enviroment in lotr, so why not a talking raven? (Ravens can mimic in real life afterall)

Even presuming the ravens are missed out...how would Thorin be able to send a message to Dain (Billy Connoly would be great as Roac...)in time?

As they came to the gates Cirdan the Shipwright came forth to greet them. Very tall he was, and his beard was long, and we was grey and old, save that his eyes were keen as stars; and he looked at them and bowed, and said All is now ready.

Perhaps the most fascinating Individual in Middle Earth

The Shire

May 14 2013, 2:05pm

Post #11 of 29 (470 views)
I really hope they do talk [In reply to] Can't Post

I was actually really disappointed that Jackson chose not to have the Eagles talk as they do in the book, maybe they will have some form of speech in the extended edition *fingers crossed* and the Raven scene was a particular favourite of mine in the book so yeah, really hoping he keeps the ravens as they are.


May 14 2013, 2:50pm

Post #12 of 29 (468 views)
I could do without the ravens' talking... [In reply to] Can't Post

... or with it; I don't have a preference. But as for their inclusion, that's a resounding 'yes' from me. One or more ravens flocking to Thorin through window holes as he approaches the broken throne in the great hall, sitting on his forearm like tame birds do - that would work wonderfully for me. (also, that could serve as a channel for the finally-restored-king to show genuine affection?) And then these flying away to Din with either a spoken or a penned message, and coming back like a black cloud before Din's army... Yes, that would look splendid in my mind's eye.
We will see, oh yes, we will see...

"A journalist once asked me what I would like my epitaph to be and I said I think I would like it to be 'He did very little harm'. And that's not easy. Most people seem to me to do a great deal of harm. If I could be remembered as having done very little, that would suit me." ~ Paul Eddington


May 14 2013, 4:04pm

Post #13 of 29 (445 views)
Also, parrots [In reply to] Can't Post

I think the African Grey, in particular, have been shown to actually talk - in the sense of using language to convey meaning, rather than just mimicking. Tolkien's use of talking ravens is almost realistic, much more than the way many of the other animals behave in the books.


May 14 2013, 4:15pm

Post #14 of 29 (441 views)
I meant to say only Bilbo can hear them, rather than see them :D [In reply to] Can't Post



May 14 2013, 4:50pm

Post #15 of 29 (442 views)
I think that [In reply to] Can't Post

They really should talk. I felt that it was a missed opportunity with the Eagles (I would have loved to hear them speak in upper class English accents like Beleram did in 'War in the North').

On a side note, I wonder if Oin could do a bit of animal communication? He does seem to be the most wizard-like of the group (minus Gandalf, obviously). Laugh

I very much doubt we'll have speaking birds though: the chance of them keeping to the book as far as this one is concerned is very small.

"A single dream is more powerful than a thousand realities."-J.R.R.Tolkien

"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us."-Gandalf


May 14 2013, 7:31pm

Post #16 of 29 (422 views)
This seems likely [In reply to] Can't Post

They have incorporated the ravens into the art design for Erebor and the armor, etc. I think we'll see some ravens that carry messages, but not necessarily talk. They have a Twitter account, so they don't have to talk. :)


May 14 2013, 9:52pm

Post #17 of 29 (397 views)
Ha Ha! LOL [In reply to] Can't Post

In Reply To
They have a Twitter account, so they don't have to talk. :)

Very good. Though maybe they're part of a current David Attenborough series in the UK. Every morning there is a five minute interlude just before 6 am on the radio called "Tweet of the Day", which is basically a different bird song each morning, introduced by DA, with descriptions etcWink

"Beneath the roof of sleeping leaves the dreams of trees unfold"

Tol Eressea

May 14 2013, 11:27pm

Post #18 of 29 (403 views)
Terry could do it. [In reply to] Can't Post

Terry the talking raven:

I think he's hoping for a role in "Pirates of the Caribbean 5".


May 15 2013, 2:26am

Post #19 of 29 (397 views)
For the love of God, no talking animals, PLEASE! [In reply to] Can't Post

First, they would look absolutely ridiculous.
Second, in PJ's Middle Earth they already can talk with animals, but in their "animal" language (Gandalf talking to the moth) or off screen.
There are tons of clever way to get rid of the revolting talking animals plague, and I'm sure we want be affected by it.



May 15 2013, 1:35pm

Post #20 of 29 (374 views)
It would NOT have to look ridiculous... [In reply to] Can't Post

First off, the filmmakers can study how real ravens look and sound when they mimic human speech and extrapolate from there.

Second, Roc serves an important function in the story and letting the audience understand him and his kin is much simpler than having him understood through an interpreter.

There is nothing revolting about the talking ravens unless they are done poorly. They are in the book. They serve a purpose. And there is precedent for them in the real world.

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring

Oin's parasite

May 15 2013, 2:34pm

Post #21 of 29 (362 views)
Agreed! [In reply to] Can't Post

Have Oin or something chirp to the ol' bird in khzdul! A talking bird of that scale is just to...eh...Narnia.

"I've got parasites as big as my arm!"

Tol Eressea

May 15 2013, 3:15pm

Post #22 of 29 (354 views)
Completely Agree [In reply to] Can't Post

since Birds can mimic in real life there is no reason not to have them talking in the film. Its something that birds can learn to do so I see no problem with that. This just takes it to the next level in that they would be conversing with humans instead of just copying them. Plus it something that's actually in Tolkien's story.

Talking birds wouldn't be similar to Narnia because it can really happen (well birds mimicking human speech is anyways) Now the idea of serving animals walking on hind legs and that type of stuff. That stuff is Narnia-esque to me.


May 15 2013, 3:17pm

Post #23 of 29 (358 views)
Granted, I can do without Beorn's animal friends serving dinner. [In reply to] Can't Post

Now that might be fairly judged to be too whimsical. But that is only my opinion.

'There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.' - Gandalf the Grey, The Fellowship of the Ring


May 15 2013, 3:40pm

Post #24 of 29 (351 views)
I thought it was always better when they stick to the book... ;-) [In reply to] Can't Post

Seriously, in answer to your original question, I hope the ravens will speak to the dwarves and will miss them if they don't. And as birds do talk, I can't see any reason to leave them out.

But since Tolkien described Beorn's very special (and non-speaking) animals, I'd be happy to see them too. I don't expect to, but I'd love it if the film makers didn't let themselves be put off by fan cries of 'too much like Narnia', or their own feelings in that direction if they have them. Far more creative to find a way of visualising Tolkien's description which does work, and doesn't look silly.... But I know I'm only day-dreaming here.

Tol Eressea

May 15 2013, 4:04pm

Post #25 of 29 (349 views)
Yeah I too can do without the walking serving animals // [In reply to] Can't Post


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