Friday, October 23, 2015
Millennials in a Post-Jackson World
Most young people today do not have the privilege of reading The Lord of the Rings before watching Peter Jackson’s film adaptations. While I don’t want to bash the films (they’re pretty good for what they are), they certainly seem to be the cause of a lot of issues. Jackson’s films were my first encounter with Tolkien in any form. As such, they have given me certain visions and expectations of his novels. I would even argue that it made it more difficult for me to read the books than if I hadn’t seen them. I had a lot of questions. Who the heck is Tom Bombadil? Why is Tolkien spending so much time just talking about Sam and Frodo? Shouldn’t we be seeing more of Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli by now? Why did the Ents let Saruman go? Shouldn’t he have fallen off of Orthanc? At times I got bogged down by the differences that it made reading more difficult than it would have been otherwise.
Even now after I have read them, I still feel that my understanding of the novels is somewhat tainted by the movies. This seemed very evident to me and some others in class yesterday during our discussion of Swann’s music versus Shore’s score. I can see this also in my concept of Frodo and Sam’s relationship. For me it has always been one of friendship, not master-servant. I don’t feel that I am fully able to appreciate to changing nature of their relationship. What other areas do think your perception of Tolkien’s work is affected by Jackson’s films?