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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
Persisting concerns about possible severe under-representation of Gandalf in Dol Guldur. . . he should not seem less effective than Aragorn would be.
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AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 5:35am

Post #1 of 46 (1287 views)
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Persisting concerns about possible severe under-representation of Gandalf in Dol Guldur. . . he should not seem less effective than Aragorn would be. Can't Post

Most of us here love the sage aspects of Gandalf, his great Wisdom and guidance, and the tenacity and vigilance which he embodies.

Yet, let us be perfectly clear: He is a lot more than a wise old itenerant counsellor. He is one of the Powers in Middle-Earth in The Third Age, by his own reckoning and by the reckoning of The Wise amongst friends and foes. Anyone who suggests that Mithrandir wasn't capable of amazing displays of enchantment and power in a tight corner is ignoring the history, the novels and even the films.

Here then is the concern: I do not pretend to know what will play out in the upcoming film's representation of the foray into Dol Guldur, but I DO know that IF Gandalf is shown to be even nearly overwhelmed or to have "met his match" in the likes of Thrain, Bolg, or merely one or two Nazgul (in the Fellowship he holds all Nine at bay from dusk until dawn with enchantments of fire and lightning), it will both be a blatant misrepresentation of and contradiction to what we know of his abilities from the novels and even the films AND will also greatly detract from the character and his reputation.

No single orc or even small group thereof, not even an orc as menacing as an Azog or a Bolg, should be shown as on par or superior in force to one of The Five Wizards, unless said orc(s) is (are) the third wave following a second wave of Nazgul (or other powerful supernaturals) who have worn the Wizard down.

Aragorn is an uber-orc killing Machine in Fellowship, and he also drives off five of The Nine (Witch-King included), more dramatically than in the novels, and without the circumstances in the novel which account for The Nazgul being so fallible (i.e. Glorfindel The Elf Lord on their heels, and the fact that they had just spent an entire night locked in fierce battle with one of the mightier of The Five Wizards). Legolas isn't bad at it either. Whatever quibbles we may sometimes have here in comparisons between The Wizards and the mightiest of the High Elves, I don't think too many will stand up with a straight face and suggest that Aragorn or Legolas are as powerful as Gandalf The Gray. The Balrog situation is proof of that. "Swords are of no more use here. . . this is a foe beyond ANY of you, I must hold the narrow way." And Legolas and Gimli certainly agreed, dropping their weapons in terror at the sight of Durin's demonic bane.

I suspect some who have seemed to take my comments on this upcoming scene and its ramifications as no more than a plea from me for more explosive magic from Gandalf have not fully considered the larger implications and ramifications. It will be very strange (not to mention dissapointing and diminishing of the character) if the Gandalf who defeats ancient Demons from before the creation of the world, and who blasts dozens of goblins and their torture engines away in an instant, comes within inches of having his ass handed to him by a few beefed up orc captains.

If Gandalf just barely makes it out of a fix that we could just as easily expect Aragorn or Legolas to fight their way out of, something is very, very wrong. Gandalf posesses powers that Aragorn and Legolas simply do not. He will be "hard put to it indeed," in Dol Guldur, and it would be a travesty if his power is not on display in that peril, as their will be no accounting for why it isn't.

"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."

(This post was edited by AinurOlorin on Jun 25 2013, 5:35am)


The Mitch King
Rohan


Jun 25 2013, 6:29am

Post #2 of 46 (686 views)
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Some Gandalf love [In reply to] Can't Post

You have good points mostly. Some extreme situations needed Gandalf badly(goblins, Nazgul in FOTR novel, Balrog). We are so in the dark in regards to Dol Guldur that we have no idea if a threat like any of those will be in the Hobbit. I think he can get hurt pretty easily if he takes a physical blow(like Thrain jumping on him) and if he loses his staff I could see him having trouble. I doubt he will face any worse than 3 Nazgul or some orcs which may or may not require spectacular magic. In the movies Aragorn took on five Nazgul so magic isn't TOO necessary. Perhaps some fire conjuring but I'm not expecting a huge display of power. He will be caught off gaurd in his first visit and during the actual attack there will be more good guys that take the focus off Gandalf in a big way. Everyone will want to see what Galadriel, Radagast, and Saruman can do and I'm sure PJ will give it too us. Gandalf shouldn't come off as stronger than Saruman in that conflict and sadly I predict it will be Galadriel who gets the impressive display.

So I think he will do some magic but nothing spectacular will be necessary.


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 7:07am

Post #3 of 46 (681 views)
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Galadriel out performing all three of the represented Wizards presents its own bag of problems, [In reply to] Can't Post

and will likely ever solidify in the minds of film only fans that Galadriel is the mighty boss over the Wizards. Crazy Congratulations Ms. Boyens.


As to the rest. . . he is fighting Thrain WITH the staff. Which raises all sorts of issues in and of itself. We have seen what both Gandalf and Saruman can do with their staves regarding enhanced telekenetic powers (i.e. flinging one another all about and over Isengard/Orthanc, despite whatever magical resistance they might have as powerful Wizards). We have seen Gandalf drive Bilbo back with shadow, force and wind even without his staff being near at hand. Yet, that is not even requisite to consider because, Gandalf HAS is staff in the scene where he is fighting Thrain. Why is he beating him instead of holding him to the ground? For a bit of added action, I expect, but I hope his power is not sacrificed for the sake of seeing him perform stunts.


I repeat the earlier commentary that Gandalf should NOT be seen to be constrained by the same limitations that Aragorn or Legolas would face. The audience should definitely come away with an understanding that as bad as this situation is for Gandalf, it would be completely hopeless for any one of the Elves, dwarves or men we have seen traveling as his companions in the existing films. Also, there is internal consistency to consider. Even aside from all the other significant concerns, it would make no sense for him to be in such dire peril and not use ANY of the powers we have already seen him utilize in the movies. In a situation this dire, with no one watching and everything at stake, and with no companions whom he might be steering or testing the mettle of, the expectation will be that he will put his all into getting out of this mess, and bringing this essential news back to the council. It would be one of the most serious head scratching moments in the entire series if he limits himself (the script limits him to) melee fighting.

"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


dubulous
Rohan

Jun 25 2013, 8:05am

Post #4 of 46 (672 views)
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Are these weekly rants really necessary? [In reply to] Can't Post

You seem to be upset about something that hasn't even happened yet. Besides, Gandalf's greatest deed are and need to be still ahead of him. It would not be the worst thing if he didn't come out as the "strongest" in the battle of Dol Guldur (and I use that term loosely because there is strength and power of so many different kinds than being able to blast things into oblivion).


Radagast-Aiwendil
Gondor


Jun 25 2013, 8:12am

Post #5 of 46 (618 views)
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If these are rants, they are the most intelligent and well-thought out rants I have ever seen [In reply to] Can't Post

I for one could not agree more with the points raised here.

And as for this:

Quote
will likely ever solidify in the minds of film only fans that Galadriel is the mighty boss over the Wizards. Congratulations Ms. Boyens.

I couldn't have put it better myself Wink

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


Nerwen
Bree


Jun 25 2013, 8:16am

Post #6 of 46 (605 views)
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I don't see the need to rank the great ones [In reply to] Can't Post

So many people seem really concerned about whether one of the Wise comes across as mightier than the others. In my view, they all had different strengths and different roles in opposing Sauron and understood that not only there is no need for a pecking order but also vying for power within their group would only be to their opponent's benefit. (That is, up until Saruman grew to be too proud and started to do just that.) Yes, arguments can be made to protest why Galadriel might be mightier than Gandalf (or the other way around) but that's like debating who is the oldest living being in ME. Tolkien uses a lot of superlatives in his texts so trying to figure out who's the biggest boss just doesn't lead anywhere (it's like trying to figure out which of the elven rings is the most powerful one - they were created equal in power but with different areas of strength).

Personally I'm really hoping to see Galadriel at Dol Guldur, because it's one of the few canonical chances of seeing a female character "in action" but so far there doesn't seem to be anything to support the notion that it's going to happen.

All that being said, I do understand your concern about the possibility of Gandalf appearing to struggle with these "minor" enemies but then he's not the only one who has had to go through that in these adaptations - for example Frodo's helplessness all through FOTR was difficult for me to accept as well. But I understand that it is very difficult to transfer some of Tolkien's complex ideas to a different medium.

"Eyes that fire and sword have seen
and horror in the halls of stone
look at last on meadows green
and trees and hills they long have known
."


Glorfindela
Valinor


Jun 25 2013, 9:58am

Post #7 of 46 (604 views)
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It's not actually a 'weekly rant' [In reply to] Can't Post

The OP always has interesting points to raise, based on a very good knowledge of Tolkien, and he is not 'ranting'. He also does not seem 'upset'. I, for one, value his insights, which are certainly more informed than those of many posters here – including myself.


In Reply To
You seem to be upset about something that hasn't even happened yet. Besides, Gandalf's greatest deed are and need to be still ahead of him. It would not be the worst thing if he didn't come out as the "strongest" in the battle of Dol Guldur (and I use that term loosely because there is strength and power of so many different kinds than being able to blast things into oblivion).



(This post was edited by Glorfindela on Jun 25 2013, 10:00am)


Salmacis81
Tol Eressea


Jun 25 2013, 11:17am

Post #8 of 46 (553 views)
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By all indications, Gandalf and Radagast will be in DG together, at least at first... [In reply to] Can't Post

There is absolutely no reason that these two Ainur together should not be able to plow straight through the ranks of whatever Dol Guldur has to throw at them, unless Sauron himself should show up to fight (the two of them might even stand a chance against a Ring-less Sauron).

If by some chance Radagast gets put out of commission (where is Raddy during Thrain fight?), then that still applies to Gandalf - as one of the angelic beings that existed before the construction of the world itself, no man, orc, dwarf, elf, or Nazgul can in any possible way compare to his inherent power. The ONLY beings in ME who could compare to Gandalf in terms of inherent power would be, in no particular order, Sauron (the single most powerful being in ME, even without his Ring), Saruman, Durin's Bane, Radagast, and the Blue Wizards (and maybe Bombadil). Anyone else would not stand a chance against Gandalf.


Bumpypotato
Bree

Jun 25 2013, 11:46am

Post #9 of 46 (594 views)
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I don't mean to be rude... [In reply to] Can't Post

But you've made quite a lot of threads on this topic. Now, whilst I understand your concern, how much more could you hope to get out of it until the movie comes out? None of us know how it will play out, and your fears are more then likely not to be confirmed.


arithmancer
Grey Havens


Jun 25 2013, 12:14pm

Post #10 of 46 (522 views)
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On old page [In reply to] Can't Post

The (yes, several) threads on similar topics by the OP have all moved off the front page of this forum. It is thus both within the rules, and on the face of things reasonable,for him to post a version of the topic anew, in order to engage new and old posters to these discussions who share his concern or are otherwise interested in discussing how AUJ depicts Gandalf's power. If you find them repetitive (personally, I share Nerwen's feeling that emphasis on ranking the wisdom, power, and status of characters is not so important) they are clearly titled and easy to avoid.


Bumpypotato
Bree

Jun 25 2013, 12:41pm

Post #11 of 46 (494 views)
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. [In reply to] Can't Post

I wasn't questioning his right to post, more what he hopes to achieve by doing so. What more is there to say on this topic?


arithmancer
Grey Havens


Jun 25 2013, 12:44pm

Post #12 of 46 (478 views)
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There's only one way to find out! // [In reply to] Can't Post

 


Voronwë_the_Faithful
Valinor

Jun 25 2013, 1:27pm

Post #13 of 46 (485 views)
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Which Gandalf? [In reply to] Can't Post

If he is the Gandalf of LOTR, even the less "enhanced" Gandalf the Grey, who was Olorin "in the West that is forgotten," and who is described in the Valaquenta as the "wisest of the Maiar" (wisest, not the strongest or most powerful) than I would largely agree with you. But this is after all "The Hobbit" and in that book Gandalf was a traditional trickster wizard who had never heard of Valinor, was afraid of Wargs, and came out of the Battle of Five Armies with his arm in a sling. That Gandalf I could certainly see "just barely making it out of a fix" in Dol Guldur

'But very bright were the stars upon the margin of the world, when at times the clouds about the West were drawn aside.'

The Hall of Fire


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 2:27pm

Post #14 of 46 (457 views)
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Allow me to be clear, this is not so much about him not being the strongest in the assault on Dol Guldur. [In reply to] Can't Post

In that regard, I would frankly be fine with him being equal with Galadriel reasonably though not enormously less than Saruaman.

MY concern is with his lone foray into Dol Guldur, how he handles his defense, and who provides the greatest challenges for him. I am not upset, at this point, because it has not yet and may not happen, as you say. Yet I am CONCERNED. There are real problems, both in terms of character portrayl and continuity. My problem isn't even with him being defeated and making a narrow escape, it is with WHO defeats him and how it is done.

He has powers well beyond those of an Aragorn or a Legolas, and it would be a real travesty (and inconsistent) to show him fare no better than would one of those warrior-princes, relying entirely on Melee combat and being nearly overwhelmed by a mad (potentially reanimated) dwarf and a few especially vicious orcs. Aragorn could manage as much.

Ganalf could do better, and the audience A) already knows and will expect more due to the feats of magic already displayed by him in the films and B) deserves better than that possible outcome.

If things resolve with Thrain and Gandalf sends and overconfidant Bolg and his henchmen hurtling down the corridors of Dol Guldur, is confronted by The Nazgul and wards them away with his enchantments of light and flame, only to have his staff shattered by The Necromancer himself and have to sprint to the get away sled of Radagast, there will be no complaints from me and I will cheer a scene well handled.

But if he suddenly is made to seemingly "forget" that he can dislodge boulders, conjure raging flames, cause force explosions and hurl his foes around like kicked footballs, even when doing battle with foes those powers would be very effective in use against, THAT would be a problem on a very basic, common sense level.


No, it wouldn't be the worst thing if he is not the absolute strongest in Dol Guldur, but it would be HORRIBLE if he is portrayed as no better at handling the likes of Bolg or even The Nazgul than Aragorn or Arwen or Haldir would be in the same situation.

In Reply To
You seem to be upset about something that hasn't even happened yet. Besides, Gandalf's greatest deed are and need to be still ahead of him. It would not be the worst thing if he didn't come out as the "strongest" in the battle of Dol Guldur (and I use that term loosely because there is strength and power of so many different kinds than being able to blast things into oblivion).


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 2:29pm

Post #15 of 46 (444 views)
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My thanks to you, my friend. [In reply to] Can't Post

Blushblushing. You know I am a fan of many of your posts as well.

In Reply To
I for one could not agree more with the points raised here.

And as for this:

Quote
will likely ever solidify in the minds of film only fans that Galadriel is the mighty boss over the Wizards. Congratulations Ms. Boyens.

I couldn't have put it better myself Wink


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 2:30pm

Post #16 of 46 (429 views)
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Honoured by your appreciation [In reply to] Can't Post

SmileSmile

In Reply To
The OP always has interesting points to raise, based on a very good knowledge of Tolkien, and he is not 'ranting'. He also does not seem 'upset'. I, for one, value his insights, which are certainly more informed than those of many posters here – including myself.


In Reply To
You seem to be upset about something that hasn't even happened yet. Besides, Gandalf's greatest deed are and need to be still ahead of him. It would not be the worst thing if he didn't come out as the "strongest" in the battle of Dol Guldur (and I use that term loosely because there is strength and power of so many different kinds than being able to blast things into oblivion).



"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jun 25 2013, 2:31pm

Post #17 of 46 (442 views)
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You don't have to read something if you're not interested. [In reply to] Can't Post

Reading through this thread, there is no violation of our Terms of Service in the original post, however, questioning someone's right to make a post IS a violation.

3. Posts containing racial, ethnic, religious, political, sexual or other slurs, personal attacks (on a TORn user or other person) intentional attempts to drive posters away or make them feel unwelcome, or posts made with the purpose of criticizing or insulting another poster will be edited or removed.

Just skip something if you think it's repetitive. If you do think someone is spamming, contact an admin and we'll take care of it.


entmaiden
Forum Admin / Moderator


Jun 25 2013, 2:33pm

Post #18 of 46 (461 views)
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These type of comments will stop now [In reply to] Can't Post

Further posts that question someone's right to post will be removed. If you think our Terms of Service have been violated, contact an admin. In the meantime, you might want to read the following:

3. Posts containing racial, ethnic, religious, political, sexual or other slurs, personal attacks (on a TORn user or other person) intentional attempts to drive posters away or make them feel unwelcome, or posts made with the purpose of criticizing or insulting another poster will be edited or removed.


AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 2:38pm

Post #19 of 46 (447 views)
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I understand. I would say though, The "Pure" Hobbit Gandalf would not have been [In reply to] Can't Post

described as a Guardian of Middle Earth, nor been shown meeting with Galadriel, Saruman and Elrond hounding them about the dangers of an alliance betwixt Smaug and Sauron. He is, to a large extent, the Gandalf of LOTR featuring heavily in The Hobbit.

Though, even in the Hobbit book pure and proper, he was no slouch. He was a traditional wizard primarily in that text, but he was NOT a charlatan. He had real power and he displayed it. If he works magic at Dol Guldur straight out of his Hobbit repatoire and kills some of Bolg's comrades in a flash like lightning and treats the fire fearing Nazgul to a pillar of blue smoke and flame that burns holes in his foes and does not snuff out like ordinary flame, you won't hear any more complaints from me about him not having been Gandalf enough.

In Reply To
If he is the Gandalf of LOTR, even the less "enhanced" Gandalf the Grey, who was Olorin "in the West that is forgotten," and who is described in the Valaquenta as the "wisest of the Maiar" (wisest, not the strongest or most powerful) than I would largely agree with you. But this is after all "The Hobbit" and in that book Gandalf was a traditional trickster wizard who had never heard of Valinor, was afraid of Wargs, and came out of the Battle of Five Armies with his arm in a sling. That Gandalf I could certainly see "just barely making it out of a fix" in Dol Guldur


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


Bumpypotato
Bree

Jun 25 2013, 2:42pm

Post #20 of 46 (426 views)
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Noted, [In reply to] Can't Post

but I'd like to point out that at no stage was I intentionally antagonistic. I was not condemning this thread, nor was I criticising it or the OP. I was not attempting to drive said user away, make them feel unwelcome or intend to insult them. Rather, I was simply asking what more can be gained from this discussion. Now if that breaks any rules, I apologise.


Glorfindela
Valinor


Jun 25 2013, 2:44pm

Post #21 of 46 (413 views)
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I meant it – I always find your posts interesting, and inevitably put in a polite way [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
SmileSmile

In Reply To
The OP always has interesting points to raise, based on a very good knowledge of Tolkien, and he is not 'ranting'. He also does not seem 'upset'. I, for one, value his insights, which are certainly more informed than those of many posters here – including myself.


In Reply To
You seem to be upset about something that hasn't even happened yet. Besides, Gandalf's greatest deed are and need to be still ahead of him. It would not be the worst thing if he didn't come out as the "strongest" in the battle of Dol Guldur (and I use that term loosely because there is strength and power of so many different kinds than being able to blast things into oblivion).





AinurOlorin
Half-elven


Jun 25 2013, 2:51pm

Post #22 of 46 (431 views)
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Meant to add this but time expired. [In reply to] Can't Post

   

Again, I don't have a problem with him just escaping a dire fix. That is what is supposed to have happened. But Dire for Gandalf has to mean more than what would be dire for Thorin, Legolas, Aragorn or Dwalin. It cannot be merely a handful of really badass bouncer type orcs on the heels of a crazed dwarf. And, in light of how Aragorn drove back five of The Nine without the novels easily applied rationale that they were kinda in a hurry because of having Glorfindel on their tails and also diminished from having spent an entire evening locked in battle with Gandalf, and in light of how well the lower ranking Radagast acquitted himself against The Witch King in An Unexpected, even a smattering of Nazgul cannot be shown to have it all their way without him giving them a healthy allotment of the old Rolling Thunder Voiced, Lightning and Flame flaring "Gandalf Is here!" for their troubles.

In Reply To
If he is the Gandalf of LOTR, even the less "enhanced" Gandalf the Grey, who was Olorin "in the West that is forgotten," and who is described in the Valaquenta as the "wisest of the Maiar" (wisest, not the strongest or most powerful) than I would largely agree with you. But this is after all "The Hobbit" and in that book Gandalf was a traditional trickster wizard who had never heard of Valinor, was afraid of Wargs, and came out of the Battle of Five Armies with his arm in a sling. That Gandalf I could certainly see "just barely making it out of a fix" in Dol Guldur


"Hear me, hounds of Sauron, Gandalf is here! Fly if you value your foul skins, I will shrivel you from tail to snout if you step within this circle!"

"Do not be to eager to deal out death in judgement. Even the very wise cannot see all ends."


Elessar
Valinor


Jun 25 2013, 3:22pm

Post #23 of 46 (394 views)
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Ditto [In reply to] Can't Post

I love reading AinurOlorin's posts. Very insightful and improves my knowledge of Middle-earth.



Eleniel
Tol Eressea


Jun 25 2013, 3:35pm

Post #24 of 46 (404 views)
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Well, another thing to consider... [In reply to] Can't Post

is whether Gandalf should be attempting to conceal his powers when checking out Dol Guldur. It's quite possible that, even not knowing the true identity of the Necromancer at this stage in the movie, he would wish to slip in and out of DG unnoticed. Certainly, once Gandalf realizes exactly who is residing in the abandoned fortress, he would wish to escape before any confrontation could take place - because, after all, the Istari were banned from confronting Sauron directly, and he would wish to take the news back to the WC asap. The actual assault on DG is a different matter, and that is perhaps when we will see Galadriel doing her "fireman's lift" stunt. There is still the reference from Sir Ian McKellen regarding Gandalf being rescued by Radagast, and unless that is to happen at the High Fells, it seems more likely to me that it might take place in DG on this first recce,..


"Choosing Trust over Doubt gets me burned once in a while, but I'd rather be singed than hardened."
¯ Victoria Monfort


Imladris18
Lorien

Jun 25 2013, 6:19pm

Post #25 of 46 (346 views)
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How I would like to see it. [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm willing to bet Gandy will handle himself quite well with everything up until Sauron/Necromancer gets directly involved which is where he will be helped.

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