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Posts Tagged ‘Gollum’

Ah, they’re tracking the hobbits! Yeah, we have one orc who’s skilled in tracking, and another who’s more of a soldier. Of course, they don’t get along. That’s how orcs work. They’re grumbling about whether Frodo and Sam went up into the ridges or stayed in the ravine. (They did both, naturally.)

This is a common theme for hobbits.

This is a common theme for hobbits.

Interestingly, there’s something about a run-in with Gollum, who grabbed the mail that Frodo cast off. The orcs thought to kill him, but he’s wanted alive. Then there’s some more arguing, and the big orc threatens to report the tracker to the Nazgûl. Friendly relations.

Once again, proof that being evil means that you can’t work well with others. Orcs never made their way through kindergarten, clearly.

They would also never understand the intricacies of Homeward Bound.

They would also never understand the intricacies of Homeward Bound.

Meanwhile, GOLLUM’S BACK.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 5 – “Creepy creeper McCreepertons.”

No one should be surprised, first of all, that Gollum is still around. Second, no one should be surprised that he’s doing a better job of tracking Frodo and Sam than the orcs. Remember, he managed to track Bilbo’s way all the way to the Lonely Mountain and back before getting captured by Mordor. Then he tracked his way to Frodo and the Fellowship Company. Dude knows what he’s doing, even though he’s just the creepiest at it.

Words My Computer Didn’t Like:

-sneakthief

I’m not surprised that’s not a “real” word, but just surprised that we haven’t seen it once yet. That seems like a totally common phrase to see in Middle-earth.

No one dies today.

“‘Go to your filthy Shriekers,…'”

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Conjecture! If there’s one character I can trust to make semi-informed predictions on events, it’s Gandalf. Once he and Pippin are back in their room, he explains to Pippin his concerns about Frodo’s chosen path, and why it might be that Sauron is launching his assault now. Gandalf doesn’t like Cirith Ungol (no one does), though he believes that there might be a small window where Frodo can slip into Mordor while Sauron is focused on his army.

Pippin wonders about everyone’s least favorite tour guide: Gollum.

Let's simply walk into Mordor, brah!

Let’s simply walk into Mordor, brah!

How in the world could Frodo trust Gollum? Gandalf admits that something within him thought that Frodo and Gollum would meet up before too long, but still he can’t trust that the creature won’t try and pull something to betray Frodo. Hint: he already has.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 18 – “Welcome back to your ratings. But don’t think that Gandalf’s hope for your help will earn any trust.”

It’s nice to see the stories coming together, since that way we don’t have to completely pause one line to go hear about the other. Now, I don’t think, time-wise, that Pippin and Gandalf’s story has caught up to where we left Frodo and Sam, but it’s very close, perhaps within a day or two. Synchronicity is nice, but it’s too much to ask for perfection when there’s so much going on at once. What are we up to now, like four separate narratives?

That's the reason I've never really liked Empire.

That’s the reason I’ve never really liked Empire.

Long story short, it’s hard to manage. Lord of the Rings still has its issues with all the separations, even though it does a really good job with them.

No one dies today.

“The next day came with a morning like a brown dusk, and the hearts of men, lifted for a while by the return of Faramir, sank low…”

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Happy 4th of July, America! Happy 4th of July, everyone else, because it’s still a normal day!

My hero.

My hero.

Shagrat and Gorbag continue talking, this time about Gollum. Yes, he’s still relevant, and Shagrat has seen him many times. Many years ago, the orcs of Cirith Ungol were ordered to let the “escaping” Gollum pass. He’s been up that way other times since, and they’ve noticed that he has some sort of agreement with Shelob. They even saw him just the day before all this craziness began. However, something very strange is going on.

Who could outsmart Shelob? Who could cut her web? Who could fight her mightily enough to actually cause her pain? No one has ever done this before. Though Shagrat missed the signs, there was clearly some person other than this small thing (Frodo) that they’ve found. He must be a great warrior, far stronger than any who has entered Mordor before.

Sam laughs.

In case you were wondering, this is what he is basically described as:

AMERICAN HOBBIT HERO.

AMERICAN HOBBIT HERO.

Hint: Sam doesn’t look like that.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 1 – “Hate. Always and forever.”

Well, they’re right about the second person, at least, even though it’s not some amazingly strong and destructive elven warrior. Sam’s probably very proud that those words are even in the same sentence to describe him. I guess it goes to show the power of Sam’s anger, when roused. He was very upset about Gollum’s betrayal and Frodo’ s supposed demise. There’s a lot of power in emotions in this world.

How do you feel about that?

No one dies today.

“‘He may have had nothing to do with the real mischief. The…'”

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And that’s probably the coolest first line of a page we’ve had.

Mhm.

Mhm.

By now, Sam has realized that he has to continue the quest. As the last member of the Fellowship Company, he alone is tasked with destroying the ring now. There’s a lot of fear in his heart, and he wishes that it weren’t up to him, but he knows that great heroes don’t ask for their adventures, they just find themselves in them. Gently, he slips the chain off Frodo’s neck, and with it, the One Ring.

Of course, Sam also thinks that he’s bound to fail. His confidence still isn’t there yet, even though he just backed down the biggest, baddest spider this side of Middle-earth. If there is one thing he has the gall to do, though, it’s to hunt down and slaughter Gollum. That’s all he wants to do, though he does realize that he has more important things on his plate.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 1 – “This will stay here for a while, I’d say.”

Sam also actually contemplates suicide, though he also knows that that would be in vain. He shows good smarts here, strangely, in knowing that that outcome, or any where he takes too much time to get himself in gear, would end up with the ring in Sauron’s hands. That, ultimately, is what he must avoid at all costs.

However, even taking too much time will result in the war ending in Sauron’s favor regardless of the destruction of the ring. A world in chaos wouldn’t care one way or the other if it was ruled by the ring.

I might be okay with being ruled by this fuchsia snake ring, though.

I might be okay with being ruled by this fuchsia snake ring, though.

Ah, it feels good to be back in some sort of rhythm at home. However, only a matter of a little over a month before AUSTGUST.

That would be in August when I move to Austin. AUSTGUST is a thing, and it will happen.

No one dies today.

“No change came over the still face, and by that more than by all other tokens Sam was convinced at last that Frodo had died and laid aside the Quest.”

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What is today? Nothing, really. Gollum runs off. Sam starts to chase him, then remembers that Frodo is in a much worse predicament. Looking over that way, he sees that things are going poorly.

Yes, we knew that. Frodo has no idea that he’s being chased by an enormous spider. He’s in a bad place.

And…it’s the end of the chapter!

Oh. Nothing more?

Oh. Nothing more?

Today’s Gollum Meter: 1 – “Still nope. Always nope. Nope.”

Yeah, that’s it. Everything is bad. There’s a cliffhanger, I guess, in a bad way. Everything’s in a bad way. Bad. At least Sam is alive.

With that, I believe we’re headed to the last chapter of The Two Towers. Can you believe that? Home stretch! Kind of…

Really, kind of. A third left. Although, it is the shortest third.

No one dies today.

“So far Gollum’s plot had succeeded.”

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I wish I truly had the energy level to match the excitement of this page, but I’ll have to give it a try anyway.

Big day for me, and for Sam. Gollum’s surprise attack nearly leaves him helpless, if not for a surge of adrenaline and strength. Gollum is caught off guard when Sam jumps backward into him, slamming him to the ground. Sam has a moment to grab his staff, and takes a few cracks at Gollum’s arms and head. Gollum isn’t for this, not one bit. Profoundly experienced in subduing his enemies before they know what hit them, he doesn’t know what to do against an attacker.

I see that the tables have turned.

I see that the tables have turned.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 1 – “No love here. Thanks for fighting back, Sam.”

Suffice it to say that Gollum has spent years jumping out at orcs under the mountains. He’s fast and sneaky. No orc would have the chance to fight back. Here though, with a bit of a grudge against Sam, he gets caught monologuing. Yes, monologuing, the age-old tradition where the villains have to spend time talking to the trapped heroes. In the meantime, the heroes always have the time to think up, or wait for, some opportunity for escape to present itself. It works here again.

Syndrome famously references this in The Incredibles.

Syndrome famously references this in The Incredibles.

Great then. No sleeper hold for Gollum on Sam. Perhaps someone will put one on me.

No, I won’t need it.

No one dies today.

“Gollum squealed, and springing aside on to all fours, he jumped away in one big bound like a frog. Before…”

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To be fair, many things increase Sam’s level of dismay, but there’s no sense in going into specifics now. When there’s a massive spider chasing your friend, there isn’t time for questions.

First of all, Frodo’s sword is glowing blue. Sting does that when orcs are near. It isn’t even subtle anymore. Shelob is no longer their only enemy in the area. Second, and most of all, Sam sees Shelob squeeze out of a hole. She’s on her way directly to Frodo, who has no idea.

Danger? Naw!

Danger? Naw!

Sam shouts out, but is caught and stopped. There’s a little somebody who doesn’t want this terror stopped.

Hi, Gollum.

Today’s Gollum Meter: 1 – “AGH! Somebody end him.”

And there’s a detailed description of Shelob here. I won’t go too far into it, because it’s disgusting. Every bit of her has to be the most grotesque of any character we’ve seen so far. This is evil and hate in pure form, without much of a brain, but with all the horror.

Oh, the huge spider-ty!

These last few pages have really been over the span of a few moments in Sam’s mind. In all this time, Frodo is just running ahead of him. In good writing, you can pull such a short time out over this length. I don’t think I can do that…yet. I’d like to. Life goal.

No one dies today.

“Taken off his guard he toppled backwards into the arms of his attacker.”

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