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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: TV Discussion: The Rings of Power:
So it begins. First teaser is live and the official title of the series is "The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power"
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wmsd
The Shire

Jan 27, 6:48pm

Post #26 of 36 (449 views)
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“Before there was one, there were many” [In reply to] Can't Post

I wonder if the show runners remarks like that mean that the show will (at some point) depict 3 storylines: one following each race and how the ring recipients received their rings and got seduced or deceived.

As an example…

Storyline of the 7 rings
Develop storyline of Dwarf recipients getting the 7 rings.
In Khazad-Dum, depict 3 leaders getting a ring …the Longbeards (Durin character) and lords of the Firebeards and Broadbeam clans living in Khazad-Dum at this time . Mention the other 4 dwarf lords that got rings but don’t dwell on them since those get lost to dragon fire anyway. In the show , develop character arcs for their growing greed, finding wealth, but also eventual loss, and give them a reason to want to hate Sauron’s deception. Perhaps (speed up a timeline and) delicately convey that the Moria Balrog seen in LOTR was initially “disturbed” by this “delving deep greed” from these ring-bearers.

Storyline(s) of the 9 Rings
These will involve Numenor and Middle Earth men creating the Nazgûl of course- following 9 characters seems like a lot to me so maybe the show only develops 3-4 characters to follow - focusing on the Numenorean leaders of men that got rings of power. Maybe using that to explain the split of allegiance in the numenorean people, etc…we all know the trials of the faithful vs the king’s men.

Storyline of the 3 rings
Easy to write character arcs for the Elf characters we are familiar with here: Celebrimbor, Gil-galad, Galadriel, Elrond and Cirdan. Maybe show their thoughts for wanting to make middle-earth “timeless” like Valinor…

The show can run through the Second age timeline over 5 seasons following these 3 races and their struggles to avoid dominion by Sauron . The 3 storylines converge as we get closer toward the Last Alliance events. Every race will have a reason to fight Sauron and the audience will understand Sauron’s deception better and the motivation of the alliance members.

Just wondering…what do y’all think?


Chen G.
Gondor

Jan 27, 11:18pm

Post #27 of 36 (428 views)
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I don't think so [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't think the story will be oriented around the Rings in such a literal way. I think it will just be the story of the main events of the Second Age - in which the Rings are obviously very important - told through some narrative device of which we are as of yet unaware.

We know Isildur, Elendil and even Tar-Palantir are already present in season one. So its either flashbacks or time compression.


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 28, 4:31am

Post #28 of 36 (404 views)
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Rings and Things [In reply to] Can't Post

We don't know for certain that the kings of the Broadbeams and/or the Firebeards were in Khazad-dum for most of the Second Age (and well into the Third), though it does seem likely. Some Dwarves remained in the Blue Mountains, presumably mostly in the southern range. Of course the show can go in either direction as Tolkien left the question open to interpretation.

This does bring up a possibility that I have not before considered. Sauron distributed the Nine Rings long before he was taken to Numenor; however, he could have gifted a Ring to a Numenorean lord in Middle-earth who then returned to Numenor with it (at least for a time). It doesn't seem particularly likely as the Nazgul were never reported to appear in Numenor, but something might be done with the idea.

#FidelityToTolkien
#ChallengeExpectations

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 28, 4:32am)


Chen G.
Gondor

Jan 28, 4:31pm

Post #29 of 36 (360 views)
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I always thought [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It doesn't seem particularly likely as the Nazgul were never reported to appear in Numenor, but something might be done with the idea.


That the Numenorean Nazgul weren't from the island but rulers of Numenorean colonies in Middle Earth: they were styled Kings and nobody on the island was that other than the King of Numenore, but the tyrannical rulers of the Numenoran colonies of Middle Earth could have concievably styled themselves kings to the subjugated Middle Earth natives.

As for the Dwarves, it makes sense that the Rings Sauron will have managed to reclaim from them would have belonged to those Dwarf Lords that ruled in the East, where Sauron held sway.

The Broadbeams and Firebeards will have settled at least in part in the Ered Luin: clearly Bombur (whom we know descends from natives of the Ered Luin) is descended from the former.


(This post was edited by Chen G. on Jan 28, 4:32pm)


Felagund
Rohan


Jan 28, 7:29pm

Post #30 of 36 (344 views)
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what's in a title... and what's not? [In reply to] Can't Post

I like the title, particularly the resonance with the title of the final chapter of The Silmarillion. Must admit, I was half-expecting something like 'The Downfall', given the scope for a vast morality play there, centred on Númenor and its ruin. I wonder if going for 'The Rings of Power' means that the main morality play will be the corrupting power of the Rings (and by extension, the corrupting power of... power). And I mean all of the Rings of Power, not just the One Ring and those that were perverted by Sauron. Tolkien does, after all, write of even the Three Rings being an act of hubris on the part of Celebrimbor & Co.

Not that there isn't plenty of room in the vastness of the Second Age (and Amazon's projected number of series) for multiple morality plays and story arcs. It has occurred to me though that something like 'The Downfall' would be a bit more all-encompassing, as in it would provide titular cover for lots of different downfalls: Númenor, Celebrimbor, the Nazgûl, Sauron, Gil-galad, Elendil and so on. Calling it 'The Rings of Power' defo achieves strong brand recognition but doesn't automatically or so easily 'cover' the loads of non-Rings of Power stuff going on in Númenor, for example.

Also, I lingered on the line from the showrunners, "before there was one there were many". True enough but as far as the source material goes, only 3 (4, if you buy into the legend of Durin III getting his Ring directly from Celebrimbor) were actually 'operational'. The Nine and the Seven (possibly minus one: see comment above!) appear only to be in use after Sauron's capture of Ost-in-Edhil, and that's nearly a century after the One Ring was forged. So, I get it: before there was one there were many. But most of them weren't being used until well after the One.

Semantics, on my part. I'm still very much looking forward to seeing what the showrunners do with this :)

Welcome to the Mordorfone network, where we put the 'hai' back into Uruk


Felagund
Rohan


Jan 28, 7:44pm

Post #31 of 36 (340 views)
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non-regnal Númenóreans [In reply to] Can't Post

The Nazgûl were comprised of men who were originally "kings, sorcerers, and warriors of old". However, Tolkien describes the three Númenóreans who succumbed to Sauron's temptations as "great lords" (The Silmarillion). Even Herumor and Fuinur, two Númenóreans who lived after the Akallabêth, ie. after the death of the last King of Númenor, don't appear to have used kingly titles in exile - they are described as lords who hold sway over the Haradrim.

But I agree with you, it's conceivable that they could have styled themselves as kings in later years. If the Lord of the Nazgûl was one of these Númenóreans, then one of them certainly gets a (Witch-)kingly moniker, in the Third Age if not earlier.

Welcome to the Mordorfone network, where we put the 'hai' back into Uruk


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 28, 7:44pm

Post #32 of 36 (340 views)
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Yes, Chen. [In reply to] Can't Post

My assumptions are generally about the same as your own here. The Nine were most likely distributed to kings, lords and heroes from various parts of Middle-earth including the Numenorean settlements.

Appendix A of The Lord of the Rings confirms that at least some of the Dwarves of the Blue Mountains remained following the War of Wrath, many of them continuing to operate mines in the southern range of the Ered Luin. The ruling houses of the Firebeards and Broadbeams might have continued to dwell in the Blue Mountains or they might have taken up residence in Khazad-dum for the next age and a half. They might even have returned to their old lands after the Balrog of Moria drove the dwarves out of Khazad-dum. However, if that was the case, I have to wonder how their Rings might have been reclaimed by Sauron? Or how dragons might have devoured them?

#FidelityToTolkien
#ChallengeExpectations


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 28, 7:55pm

Post #33 of 36 (337 views)
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Kings, Sorcerers, Warriors [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
The Nazgûl were comprised of men who were originally "kings, sorcerers, and warriors of old". However, Tolkien describes the three Númenóreans who succumbed to Sauron's temptations as "great lords" (The Silmarillion). Even Herumor and Fuinur, two Númenóreans who lived after the Akallabêth, ie. after the death of the last King of Númenor, don't appear to have used kingly titles in exile - they are described as lords who hold sway over the Haradrim.

But I agree with you, it's conceivable that they could have styled themselves as kings in later years. If the Lord of the Nazgûl was one of these Númenóreans, then one of them certainly gets a (Witch-)kingly moniker, in the Third Age if not earlier.


Tolkien's exact phrasing might matter here: "Men proved easier to ensnare. Those who used the Nine Rings became mighty in their day, kings, sorcerers, and warriors of old. They obtained glory and great wealth, yet it turned to their undoing."

To me, that indicates that at least some of these Men (such as the future Witch-king) did not take such titles as "king" until after they made use of the power of the Rings. And it was with the Rings that some became powerful sorcerers, doubtless under the tutelage of Sauron. Of course, some or all of them had probably achieved some measure of greatness before they ever came under the thumb of Sauron. We do know of Khamul who was apparently a king of an Easterling people either before of after he was gifted with one of the Nine Rings.

#FidelityToTolkien
#ChallengeExpectations

(This post was edited by Otaku-sempai on Jan 28, 8:06pm)


Felagund
Rohan


Jan 28, 10:11pm

Post #34 of 36 (322 views)
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some digging [In reply to] Can't Post

I don't reckon I'd appreciated the nuance in that passage before, regarding what these Men "became", as opposed to what they may have been originally - many thanks for pointing it out!

I had a look at the pre-Silmarillion version of it (as published The Return of the Shadow) and did some cross-referencing with some of Tolkien's letters and, naturally, contradictions abound. The original version reverses the order, so to speak, so that it's the "kings, warriors and wizards" [not sorcerers, first time round] who 'become' the Ringwraiths. And then we get this from Letter 156 (November 1954):


Quote
There were evil Númenóreans: Sauronians, but they do not come into this story, except remotely; as the wicked Kings who had become Nazgûl or Ringwraiths.


On the subject of Khamûl, I've always assumed too that he was an Easterling king, back in the day. But I can't find a reference of that nature in the usual 'go-to' source, 'The Hunt for the Ring' / Unfinished Tales. 'Shadow of the East' and 'the Black Easterling', yes, but not a king, at least prior to his descent into darkness, now that I question my own assumption!

Even with all of these various inconsistencies, I agree with you that these humans had to be worth the effort, for Sauron to justify dealing out such a very limited and precious resource as a Ring of Power. So, as well as the three Númenórean "great lords", you'd reckon some of the other six could have been kings, lords or accomplished warriors of some description, prior to their recruitment by the Lord of the Rings.

Welcome to the Mordorfone network, where we put the 'hai' back into Uruk


Otaku-sempai
Immortal


Jan 29, 8:37pm

Post #35 of 36 (231 views)
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Khamul the Easterling [In reply to] Can't Post

You're right, I might be making a reckless assumption concerning Khamûl, the Black Easterling. He might not have originally been an Easterling king but could have been a warrior of renown, perhaps a war-leader of some kind. He might never have been a king, though I suspect otherwise.

I'm sure that Sauron drew from numerous cultures in Middle-earth for his Nazgûl. In the South we had the various peoples of Harad, Umbar and Khand. To the East there were the many, diverse tribes of Easterlings. Then there were the Gwathuirim. There might have even been Northmen or Forodwaith among the ranks of the Nine.

#FidelityToTolkien
#ChallengeExpectations


cats16
Valinor


Feb 11, 1:44am

Post #36 of 36 (94 views)
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One sad postscript here....the passing of Douglas Trumbull [In reply to] Can't Post

Whose involvement in the making of this teaser trailer might be one of his last creative works, pending any others he had in some degree of production/post-production.

Quite the legend, though his work has been a bit overlooked as time has gone by.

Join us every weekend in the Hobbit movie forum for this week's CHOW (Chapter of the Week) discussion!




(This post was edited by cats16 on Feb 11, 1:44am)

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