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The One Ring Forums: Tolkien Topics: Movie Discussion: The Hobbit:
thorin and gandalfs relationship


Apr 26 2014, 11:09am

Post #1 of 5 (610 views)
thorin and gandalfs relationship Can't Post

To me it seems like there is a lot of competition between the two, particularly on thorins behalf. Gandalf obviously cares and wants the best for thorin, nut thorin seems to be blind to that. A lot of the time it seems to me that thorin doesn't really care for Gandalf. Especially when he departs them. Thorin doesnt even say anything, nor acknowledge Gandalfs advice that he was giving. This got me thinking.

How would thorin react if Gandalf was in trouble? Say he was with him in dol guldur, would he stand by Gandalfs side against azog, or will he just go insane. Obviously he can do little against sauron. But what if he witnessed Gandalfs fall in kazad dum? Would he be as emotional as everyone else, or will his pride take over him?

Thoughts? I find this relationship in the film to be quite interesting.

I believe that Azog and Bolg are possibly the only two orcs who may be an exception to the typical evil nature of an orc. Azog had brought up his son, well enough that he actually acknowledges him as his own son. That is a first for any orc. And Bolg sets out to march upon Erebor in vengeance of his fathers death. How many orcs will Try and avenge another dead orc? Most will just forget about the dead one. This gives me hope that Orcs, have some traits of good in them, even if it is small aspects.

Grey Havens

Apr 26 2014, 12:31pm

Post #2 of 5 (324 views)
Agreed, there is a lot of tension between these two characters [In reply to] Can't Post

for a couple of reasons - Gandalf insisted on bringing Bilbo, which Thorin disagreed with at first; Gandalf is friendly with the elves, who Thorin hates; and Gandalf and Thorin are both used to being in charge, so there's some competition about who is leading the quest.

If Gandalf was in trouble though, I think Thorin wouldn't hesitate to jump in and fight by his side. They have common enemies and Thorin has already shown that he's willing to risk his life for an "outsider" (Bilbo on the cliff) because of his sense of honor and because he's a decent person. In DOS he's even shown killing an orc to save Legolas by the river, because, as Tolkien says, the orcs are the enemies of all.

As for whether Thorin would mourn for Gandalf - interesting question! I think he would want to part from Gandalf on good terms, but compared to the other losses Thorin has experienced in his life, I don't think Gandalf's death would have a huge emotional impact.

Hop to it, Radagast, we've got dark powers to sleigh.

Tol Eressea

Apr 26 2014, 1:36pm

Post #3 of 5 (294 views)
Yes. I like the way they've done this. [In reply to] Can't Post

It's a bit of a nod to the 'grumpy Book-Thorin' without making him seem ignorant, churlish, cowardly, or incapable. (All thoughts I've had or heard about the book character.) They can't have all the dwarves, virtually chicken-out at Erebor by sending Bilbo ahead. It really read a bit strangely to me that they push Bilbo into a lot danger, then take ALL the credit with no thanks to that poor Hobbit. I find it humourous, but as an action movie, it wouldn't work!

Call me Rem, and remember, not all who ramble are lost...Uh...where was I?


Apr 26 2014, 3:09pm

Post #4 of 5 (272 views)
Nice the ambivalent strain? between the two comes across [In reply to] Can't Post

It sounds as though what RA has described on screen as mixed feelings about Gandalf are coming across - on the one hand Thorin knows who Gandalf is and his power (re the Bree scene when Gandalf talks about being mistaken for a vagabond) LOL "I imagine they regretted that". (I have fun picturing the unpleasant surprise the unsavory characters received, but little bits of smoking charred cloth factor into it.) And I think Thorin respects Gandalf.

On the other hand, when Gandalf is around, as RA describes it, Thorin is suddenly "not the leader". One thing that does impress me about Thorin's portrayal is that he may justifiably have something of a shell emotionally after everything he has been through, but he is intelligent and does listen - for instance when Gandalf is nagging him about the elves in AUJ he is listening to Gandalf, even if angry. He listens to Gandalf about Orcrist, about needing Elrond to read the map.
Thorin is full of anger, but he is neither mindlessly angry *yet - sigh* nor unintelligent or insensitive.
He also listens to his men, and develops enough trust in Bilbo to listen to him as well.

Yes, I think Thorin would come to Gandalf's aid, partly being a bull-headed honorable dwarf, partly because Gandalf is a known relationship of sorts (if Thorin knew his father went to see Gandalf, to me that implies Gandalf had been connected w. the dwarves for a while in his wanderings). As far as emotionalism in a dangerous situation, thanks to RA's portrayal I think this multi-dimensional Thorin is not only capable of enormous feeling, one of the things I admire about the character is I don't think he ever stops bleeding inside (as portrayed in AUJ and DOS).

But like all leaders have to, he sucks it up. It's pride, but it's GOOD pride. Because you can't function and win a battle, save your people, rebuild if you are the leader and break down. Think of the way Aragorn acted when Gandalf fell. And Thorin is a dwarf, by nature I don't think these are a people who give in easily (look at Kili who must have been in increasing pain and hid the fact as long as he could). I've often imagined the last time Thorin really allowed himself to break down is after the Moria battle, collecting his grandfather's body and finding out his father was missing as well. But by morning no matter his grief he had to arrange for all the burials, rally the remnants of the dwarves, accept a "win" that was a defeat, lead the dwarves away. Thorin has been through a lot when you think about it.

And Thorin looks over the last of his people in Erebor and swallows hard. I think that affected him deeply but he was able to re-channel into something fiery that MIGHT get them out of there. As far as what we don't see in the film re Gandalf leaving - well, here's hoping for the EE. I don't think Thorin would grieve at Gandalf leaving at Mirkwood, as evidently he had been in the forest before as there had been a trading relationship between the dwarves and elves - but it never made any sense to me that Thorin would say NOTHING. Some of what we see, or don't see, I think especially in DOS is a result of the *sigh* tight editing in some places.

Finally, I think it's important to remember that while Gandalf is helping the dwarves, it's not like he threw in with them because he is just on their side. And while the audience may find the idea of the "greater good" appealing, in real life it's not so easy (like when your house gets taken because the government decides a road is for the greater good). If I were Thorin I would be uneasy about this ally as well - and IMO Gandalf leaving the dwarves is a sore spot with me anyway for a lot of reasons. And after all, look what happens tho I suppose it wouldn't make for much of a story otherwise.

"Richard Armitages performance has been one of the best things about the new trilogy, making you believe that a hairy dwarf, so often the comedy element of the LOTR films, can be a heroic, tortured, and dangerous badass." - Den of Geek, The Hobbit: There & Back Again, 7 Apr 2014 - 07:07

Tol Eressea

Apr 26 2014, 7:55pm

Post #5 of 5 (231 views)
It's strictly platonic [In reply to] Can't Post


The flames of war are upon you..


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