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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: TV Discussion: The Rings of Power:
Numenor Impressions / Design choices

Arannir
Valinor


Aug 12, 5:51am

Post #1 of 9 (461 views)
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Numenor Impressions / Design choices Can't Post

https://www.aboutamazon.com/...rings-numenor-images

This is an article with some very beautiful shots of Numenor and explanation what Mediterranean cooling systems, Venice and the Crown of Gondor have to to with their design choices for the island.

It also mentions the inclusion of older Elvish structures now replaced by a new style created by Men.



"I am afraid it is only too likely to be true what you say about the critics and the public. I am dreading the publication for it will be impossible not to mind what is said. I have exposed my heart to be shot at." J.R.R. Tolkien

We all have our hearts and minds one way or another invested in these books and movies. So we all mind and should show the necessary respect.



(This post was edited by Arannir on Aug 12, 5:57am)


Arannir
Valinor


Aug 12, 8:38am

Post #2 of 9 (419 views)
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Purposeful detail [In reply to] Can't Post

One addition: purposeful detail is the key word here.

Cluttering the screen can look nice at first but hollow afterwards. Just pretense. This text sounds like there is a purpose to the details and clutter. There is a reason why that stuff is there, why the houses are build a certain way, there was some thought about why architecture might look a certain way, how heating might function etc.

Encouraging.



"I am afraid it is only too likely to be true what you say about the critics and the public. I am dreading the publication for it will be impossible not to mind what is said. I have exposed my heart to be shot at." J.R.R. Tolkien

We all have our hearts and minds one way or another invested in these books and movies. So we all mind and should show the necessary respect.



(This post was edited by Arannir on Aug 12, 8:39am)


Stranger Wings
Rivendell


Aug 12, 8:43am

Post #3 of 9 (417 views)
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ThisÖ [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
https://www.aboutamazon.com/...rings-numenor-images

This is an article with some very beautiful shots of Numenor and explanation what Mediterranean cooling systems, Venice and the Crown of Gondor have to to with their design choices for the island.

It also mentions the inclusion of older Elvish structures now replaced by a new style created by Men.


Öis some of the most detailed and impressive production design we have yet seen in interpretations of Tolkien. Armenelos rivals Edoras in its historical depth (which is my favorite of PJís creations), and looks very appropriately like the spiritual ancestor of Minas Tirith. My favorite is what looks like a mural depicting a procession of the Numenorean kings and queens, in the style of the Byzantine mosaics lining the upper walls of the Basilica di San Vitale in Ravenna (along the ship-prow battlements). Then I love the North African and southern Sicilian character of a lot of the Mannish structures, both the palaces and the humbler dwellings by the rivers. Some buildings even echo, in shape and color, some Mughal architecture Iíve seen in northern India. Not to mention the great detail of the elven architecture being slowly swallowed up. And it looks like a proper ancient city thatís been built up without a clear plan over centuries, like barnacles collecting on a rock. Organic. Styles on top of styles on top of styles. And the geography looks a lot like the southern Italian coast to me (there are even terraced hills in the background - an answer to the complaint that there was no farmland outside Minaís Tirith?) Wonder where the hills and such were shot. I assume they are composited in, but thereís definitely a strong southern Med vibe there. Love the colors too - white, blues, golds, and touches of other colors that donít neatly fit the color scheme, just like a proper ancient city. And the roof of the court building! Beautiful. Seems almost iridescent.

This is wonderful. Almost a shame that we have to eventually watch it all plunge into the sea!

ďHe went alone to look in Mirrormere.Ē - The Book of Mazarbul

(This post was edited by Stranger Wings on Aug 12, 8:47am)


Archestratie
Lorien


Aug 12, 11:38am

Post #4 of 9 (373 views)
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Well [In reply to] Can't Post

It looks very nice in stills. I hope it looks just as good in 4k. At the very least, it does seem like they are being more intentional with set design and set dressing than Wheel of Time (which set an all time low for me in that department).

My Low-Magic Fantasy Novel on eBook/hardback: The Huntsman and the She-Wolf

The Huntsman and the She-Wolf on audio Book.


Stranger Wings
Rivendell


Aug 12, 12:43pm

Post #5 of 9 (355 views)
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That's an understatement [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
It looks very nice in stills. I hope it looks just as good in 4k. At the very least, it does seem like they are being more intentional with set design and set dressing than Wheel of Time (which set an all time low for me in that department).


And it's not just intentionality. It's the sheer depth of design here, with layers of history clearly coming through. And as one who's obsessed with Byzantine history, I'm loving the clear reference to the Hagia Sophia, and the Byzantine mosaics of San Vitale in Ravenna. These historical flourishes are so much better than the fantasy-kitsch aesthetic of Wheel of Time.

ďHe went alone to look in Mirrormere.Ē - The Book of Mazarbul


Narvi
Lorien

Aug 12, 1:45pm

Post #6 of 9 (333 views)
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Absolutely love the designs [In reply to] Can't Post

Some thoughts:
Like StrangerWings, Iím glad to see the Byzantine design elements weíve seen elsewhere confirmed. The frieze of painted bas-reliefs (I donít think itís a mosaic or mural) reminds me of the grand procession depicted on the leading up to the Gate of All Nations at Persepolis and any number of Roman processional scenes.

The citadel itself resembles that of Minas Tirith in more ways than just the ship-bastion: the orientation of the rotunda structure with the nearby tower to the right and colonnaded, structure to the right, and terraced stairs to the lower city all closely mirror the layout of the Gondorian citadel as depicted in PJís films (check out the shots of the city from the rear in the beacon and funeral pyre scenes from RotK).

Speaking of callbacks: anyone recognize the sword gripped by the statue to the left of the ship-bastion? Do we think it will wind up as a genuine prop in the show, or will remain an Easter-egg?

I think weíve only glimpsed one of Numenorís cities so far. Various architectural elements link all the stills and short clips from different perspectives together. I assume itís Armenelos, and it may well be that the capital will be combined with the harbor at Romenna. That said, I wouldnít be surprised if we learn that Armenelos is actually still quite far inland. The river that flows through it is equipped with locks (you can see one to the left of the waterfall) and suggests that it could be navigable far into the interior. Apparently Andunie is maintained as a separate location.

Note the horse being loaded into the ship in the harbor scene! So much detail. I love this shot. The ships are beautiful and the quays bustling with life. You can even see Elendilís men escorting Galadriel onto land at the end of the central dock.


Stranger Wings
Rivendell


Aug 12, 3:16pm

Post #7 of 9 (303 views)
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I don't believe all of Numenor will be compressed into one city, at least... [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
Some thoughts:
Like StrangerWings, Iím glad to see the Byzantine design elements weíve seen elsewhere confirmed. The frieze of painted bas-reliefs (I donít think itís a mosaic or mural) reminds me of the grand procession depicted on the leading up to the Gate of All Nations at Persepolis and any number of Roman processional scenes.

The citadel itself resembles that of Minas Tirith in more ways than just the ship-bastion: the orientation of the rotunda structure with the nearby tower to the right and colonnaded, structure to the right, and terraced stairs to the lower city all closely mirror the layout of the Gondorian citadel as depicted in PJís films (check out the shots of the city from the rear in the beacon and funeral pyre scenes from RotK).

Speaking of callbacks: anyone recognize the sword gripped by the statue to the left of the ship-bastion? Do we think it will wind up as a genuine prop in the show, or will remain an Easter-egg?

I think weíve only glimpsed one of Numenorís cities so far. Various architectural elements link all the stills and short clips from different perspectives together. I assume itís Armenelos, and it may well be that the capital will be combined with the harbor at Romenna. That said, I wouldnít be surprised if we learn that Armenelos is actually still quite far inland. The river that flows through it is equipped with locks (you can see one to the left of the waterfall) and suggests that it could be navigable far into the interior. Apparently Andunie is maintained as a separate location.

Note the horse being loaded into the ship in the harbor scene! So much detail. I love this shot. The ships are beautiful and the quays bustling with life. You can even see Elendilís men escorting Galadriel onto land at the end of the central dock.


...as Lloyd Owen mentioned that Elendil moves his family from the west, a bastion of the Faithful, to the capital city where they are a minor house. So I believe we will, at the very least, also see AndķniŽ.

ďHe went alone to look in Mirrormere.Ē - The Book of Mazarbul

(This post was edited by Stranger Wings on Aug 12, 3:16pm)


Narvi
Lorien

Aug 12, 4:26pm

Post #8 of 9 (286 views)
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Indeed [In reply to] Can't Post

I'm interested in seeing how they choose to visually distinguish between the two Numenorean cities that we know will feature in the show. I expect that Andunie will consist of more elven-based architecture, but that puts it at risk of resembling Ost-in-Edhil. Perhaps more of a Venice-like city in a lagoon as suggested by the production designer, who, though he was meant to be describing the designs for Armenelos, may have had concept art for the southern port in mind. Show-Armenelos just doesn't scream Venice to me.

As far as other locations on Numenor that may find a place in the narrative of the show, I'd place my bet on the summit of Meneltarma. I doubt very much that we'll see a third city.


Stranger Wings
Rivendell


Aug 13, 5:21pm

Post #9 of 9 (170 views)
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Good point [In reply to] Can't Post


In Reply To
I'm interested in seeing how they choose to visually distinguish between the two Numenorean cities that we know will feature in the show. I expect that Andunie will consist of more elven-based architecture, but that puts it at risk of resembling Ost-in-Edhil. Perhaps more of a Venice-like city in a lagoon as suggested by the production designer, who, though he was meant to be describing the designs for Armenelos, may have had concept art for the southern port in mind. Show-Armenelos just doesn't scream Venice to me.

As far as other locations on Numenor that may find a place in the narrative of the show, I'd place my bet on the summit of Meneltarma. I doubt very much that we'll see a third city.


As perhaps apart from elements that Venice borrowed from Constantinople, and the fact that thereís definitely some Byzantism in the Armenelos design, there really isnít much of a Venice vibe in what Iíve seen.

Would be neat if the Venice parallels were more for Andunie, as you say, and itís portrayed as a more humble city, with no gigantism in terms of statues and structures, that meanders along the water a bit, and with some elven touches here and there (perhaps on government buildings). That would be more satisfying in terms of showing a contrast between two Numenorean cities, and less confusing than having the elven elements be too overwhelming. No need to be too heavy-handed with that design language. Theyíre still human, after all.

ďHe went alone to look in Mirrormere.Ē - The Book of Mazarbul

(This post was edited by Stranger Wings on Aug 13, 5:23pm)

 
 

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