Mark Reads ‘The Two Towers’: Book 2, Chapter 5

In the fifth chapter of the second book of The Two Towers, Faramir appears to have ulterior motives for Frodo and Sam. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to read The Lord of the Rings.


Look, we’ll get there, but I am still shaking from that moment of OH SHIT WHAT THE FUCK that happens later in the chapter. It’s such an interesting moment because it makes everything that happens before it so much more fascinating in hindsight. I must confess that until it happened, I actually thought that this chapter was a tad boring. Not all of it, mind you, but once Faramir started talking about the history of his people, I was really unsure where this was going, nor did I get why Tolkien needed to tell us this information.

It’s not that things started off this way. I, like Frodo and Sam, mistakenly believed that the mere appearance of Boromir’s men meant that everything was perfect and wonderful for them, that this was a good thing to happen to them. They have allies! These allies are clearly not on the side of the Enemy! There are probably Middle-earth puppy dogs in their camp! JOY! But Sam figures out quite quickly that things are not terribly good for Frodo when he wakes up to find out that his friend is being grilled by Faramir.

To be fair, I understand why Faramir did this. I understand him exercising doubt, I understand him being suspicious, and I understand that all these characters are in the midst of an awful, awful war that is probably going to get a lot worse in the coming weeks. I don’t blame Faramir for treating Frodo the way he does because, as of yet, there’s nothing to blame. Given that Faramir knows that Boromir has perished and Frodo does not, it’s a perfect explanation for why Faramir acts the way he does. Both Frodo and Sam proclaimed to be in company with Boromir, yet neither of them are expressing any sort of sadness or grief at this loss. Wouldn’t you think these two hobbits might have had something to do with it because of their behavior? Even more notable is the fact that when Faramir asks Frodo if Boromir was his friend, Frodo, thinking back to the warrior’s behavior just before they parted, is very reluctant to say anything too flowery about him.

Bless Sam, though. I love that he is so dedicated to his friend that he just can’t wait to jump to his aid. It reminded me of the way he burst out of the bushes during the council of Elrond, unable to stay quiet a second longer. He’s hasty in his willingness to defend Frodo, to prove to the others that Frodo is a hobbit of honor and goodness. It’s just so beautiful, okay? I am beginning to adore the pairings that Tolkien gives us in this book. I can’t decide which is best: Sam/Frodo, Merry/Pippin, Gimli/Legolas, or Gandalf/Endless Sass. They’re all so good!

Once it’s revealed that Boromir died and his horn was found slashed in two, Faramir’s behavior towards the hobbits changes. I think he realizes that their shock is genuine, that they didn’t really know what had happened to him, and that there’s something else to their journey that they’re not telling him. Frodo shares enough details with Faramir to gain his trust, but the man isn’t willing to give up the two hobbits just yet. And so, once again, characters in this book find that they are delayed from their ultimate destination. Faramir decides to take them to a ~secret place~ that could be a pillow fort, for all I know, and will determine what to do with them there. Seriously, what could the hobbits even do at this point? It’s not like they can just run away from these men. So, begrudgingly, they take off towards this secret place with Faramir and his men.

However, it actually proves beneficial to Frodo nearly immediately when Faramir admits that he has things he wants to talk about that he didn’t want his entire group knowing. I’m reminded of the way Bilbo’s change in The Hobbit crept up on me. It’s something that’s so gradual that when it does come, you forget that he used to be a different character when things started. While Frodo certainly wasn’t as stubborn and unwilling as Bilbo was at the beginning of his journey, he’s changed so much over the course of this book. Faramir notes how quick-witted and sharp he is, how much power he holds in his voice. I wouldn’t say that Frodo is really bitter or cynical, but he’s aware of his size and the serious nature of the journey he’s on. At this point, he has to act differently. Even his choice to abandon the Company and head to Mordor alone is indicative of this. I think that, at the very least, this might be part of the reason that Faramir is able to guess that Boromir and Frodo had a negative experience before they separated from one another.

The other explanation comes from Faramir himself, who elaborates on what it was like to grow up with Boromir. Even as a boy, he was impatient, proud, and desired power. Even if Faramir doesn’t know the details, he isn’t at all surprised that Boromir may have done something rash and impatient towards Frodo. It’s in his very nature and has been for a long time:

‘If it were a thing that gave advantage in battle, I can well believe that Boromir, the proud and fearless, often rash, ever anxious for the victory of Minas Tirith (and his own glory therein), might desire such a thing and be allured by it.’

Thankfully, Faramir doesn’t seem all that interested in the details of whatever journey Frodo is on, despite that he assumes it has something to do with whatever the hobbit is carrying. Frodo, though, isn’t quick to completely trust Faramir:

Better mistrust undeserved than rash words. And the memory of Boromir, of the dreadful change than the lure of the Ring had worked in him, was very present to his mind, when he looked at Faramir and listened to his voice: unlike they were, and yet also much akin.

It’s a haunting line of Tolkien’s, and it’s one that comes back later to scare the crap out of me. For now, though, the hobbits travel with the Men towards this secret location. At one point, they’re asked to wear blindfolds to protect the place from being discovered, and we’re treated to a long passage where the hobbits hobble along to their destination, sometimes single file, sometimes holding hands (!!!!!), and sometimes being carried. Ultimately, they are brought to the Window of the Sunset, and yet again, I am furious that Middle-earth is not real because it sounds so goddamn gorgeous. Seriously, it’s a door hidden behind a waterfall that looks like stained glass. HELP ME. HOW IS THIS REAL.

For the next few pages, I confess that the only thing I find interesting was the fact that one of Faramir’s men spotted Gollum, though they didn’t know who he was. GOLLLUUUMMMM. He’s totally going to hide until it’s safe for him to come back to Frodo and Sam. I imagine that won’t be until they part ways with Faramir. That doesn’t happen in this chapter, and I don’t think it’s going to be soon, either.

As I said, I wasn’t fully engaged by this chapter at this point. Frodo and Faramir trade stories about what they’ve been doing. We learn that the war hasn’t been going particularly well for Minas Tirith. (CHRIST THAT IS WHERE GANDALF AND PIPPIN ARE GOING GODDAMN IT.) Faramir speaks openly about the history of the Men of Númenor and how they split into three distinct groups over time, as well as why there’s such a distance between them and the Elves. I admit that the backstory is nice, especially how both the Rohirrim and those of Minas Tirith came to love and respect warfare more than anything else. It explains a lot about these cultures, and I love that sort of depth in the story. But for some reason, I wasn’t hooked by the words, and I felt my attention drifting a bit. Where was this going?

Sam Gamgee. BLESS YOUR HEART. His willingness to assure anyone that he is friends with is a good person is the cause of a crucial and horrifying mistake. When Faramir tries to speak ill of Galadriel, Sam is quick to rush to her defense, even bringing up Boromir in the process. And then OH LORD:

‘From the moment he first saw it he wanted the Enemy’s Ring!’

‘Sam!’ cried Frodo aghast. he had fallen deep into his own thoughts for a while, and came out of them suddenly and too late.’


Faramir’s reaction? Yeah, this freaked me out:

‘And here in the wild I have you: two halflings, and a host of men at my call, and the Ring of Rings. A pretty stroke of fortune! A chance for Faramir, Captain of Gondor, to show his quality! Ha!’ He stood up, very tall and stern, his grey eyes glinting.

Oh no. NO. IT’S A DISASTER. Was this all a trick? Did Faramir know the whole time? You can imagine my surprise when Faramir does not ask for the Ring. In fact, he doesn’t even want to see it or hear the name of it. He doesn’t want to be tempted by it in the slightest, and the crisis I expected doesn’t happen. Instead, Faramir proves his own quality by deferring to Frodo’s judgment. He takes Sam’s mistake and gives a gesture of trust: he believes Frodo truly wants to destroy it, and it seems he’s going to help him do that. Sam recognizes this behavior and says something to warm my heart forever:

‘Ah well, sir,’ said Sam, ‘you said my master had an Elvish air; and that was good and true. But I can say this: you have an air too, sir, that reminds me of, of – well, Gandalf, of wizards.’


And for the record: I don’t know that I trust Faramir yet. Yet. Please let this work out. PLEASE.

About Mark Oshiro

Perpetually unprepared since '09.
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351 Responses to Mark Reads ‘The Two Towers’: Book 2, Chapter 5

  1. Tauriel_ says:

    Tauriel's Linguistic Corner

    A few names in this chapter:

    Mardil – "One devoted to the house". Quenya origin: már – "house", "home", "dwelling"; -ndil – masculine name ending meaning "friend", "one devoted to" (shortened to -dil because the consonants "rnd" can't be grouped together like this in Quenya).
    Eärnur (short form of Eärendur) – "Sea-servant". Quenya origin: eär – "sea"; -ndur – masculine name ending meaning "servant of".
    Henneth Annûn – "Window of the Sunset". Sindarin origin: henneth – "window"; annûn – "west", "sunset".
    Cirion – "Sailor". Sindarin word, derived from the word for "ship" – cair, in compounds cír-.
    Calenardhon – "Green province". Sindarin origin: calen – "green"; ardhon – "province", "land".

  2. Tauriel_ says:

    Since there can never be enough Faramir love, here is some artwork by the very talented Karina Chmiel – mostly depicting the childhood and youth of Boromir and Faramir (nothing spoilery, though):

    Boromir and Faramir
    <img src=""&gt;

    Boromir and Faramir II
    <img src=""&gt;

    Boromir and Faramir III
    <img src=""&gt;

    Boromir and Faramir IV
    <img src=""&gt;

    A lesson of swordsmanship
    <img src="; width="600">

    The brothers – study
    <img src="; width="600">

    High Warden
    <img src="; width="600">

    "Seek for the sword that was broken"
    <img src="; width="600">

    • Saphling says:

      Those are beautiful! I especially love that last one, for the brothers' last parting.

      Though some of those b/w ones of them as children, though I know they're wearing leggings or something, really gave me a "Gondor arrqf ab cnagf!" moment. >_>

    • platoapproved says:

      All of that art is beautiful and sad and oh my heart. :c

      That second to last one is dying for a caption. I just can't decide which, there are so many possibilities.

    • flootzavut says:

      LOVE all this fan art, it's gorgeous <3 especially that last one :'( also really love the 'swordfighting' one <3

    • That one of Boromir carrying Faramir when they were children is so freaking cute. Oh my gosh, my heart is breaking for them both all over again now…

    • Dreamflower says:

      Those are all so wonderful. I love her art in general, but she definitely has a deft and special touch with the brothers 'mir.

      *grin* But oh, how much more I adore her comics of little!Boromir and wee!Faramir…those always make me smile SO MUCH!!!!

    • Tul says:

      Oh I love her art ! And I love the brothers ! 🙂

      Her comics are the best though, it's here.

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Gah, I knew I forgot something! 😀

        The comic is HILARIOUS and ADORABLE, but I must post a warning – there are a few mild Silmarillion spoilers.

        • Tul says:

          Sorry for the spoiler ! I was busy thinking if there was any spoiler about LotR and I totally forgot about the Silm.

          Thanks !

          • Tauriel_ says:

            It's not a big deal, just a few names and references – they're mostly the punchlines of the jokes.

            Obebzve: "Bxnl, V'yy or Ghbe… naq Snenzve jvyy or Znrtyva gur genvgbe!"
            Anaal: (cnhfr) "RRRRRXX!!"


    • Icarus says:

      I love these. My favorite is the lesson in swordsmanship. Looks exactly like something Boromir would do, hee.

    • AmandaNekesa says:

      So much beautiful artwork. It puts the sadness and grief of Boromir's death into a new perspective, since we are now getting to know his brother Faramir. It makes his confrontation with Frodo less about betrayal and more about having been a flawed person with a lot of weight placed on his shoulders, especially since he was the eldest son of the steward. 🙁

      • flootzavut says:

        Yeah… V'ir fnvq ryfrjurer, ohg Frna Orna'f cbegenlny bs Obebzve nyfb znqr zr svaq uvz zber flzcngurgvp – ur qvq n ernyyl snagnfgvp wbo.

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          Oh yeah, totally, rfcrpvnyyl jura jr trg n tyvzcfr bs Obebzve naq Snenzve gbtrgure, va gung rkgraqrq fprar va GG. Naq Qnivq Jraunz nf jryy, qrfcvgr pbzcynvagf nobhg gur punatr va cybg/punenpgre, V ybir uvf cbegenlny bs Snenzve'f eryngvbafuvc jvgu uvf oebgure naq uvf sngure – vg'f whfg urnegoernxvat.

    • ldwy says:

      My gosh, those are so beautiful. I love the subtle differences.

  3. Tauriel_ says:

    Ahhh, this chapter, this chapter… One of my top favourite chapters of all LOTR. <3 <3 🙂

    So many lovely things about it – but I'm afraid I don't have much time for elaborate reviews, so just a quick list:

    – Faramir's noble spirit and the courtesy with which he treats Frodo and Sam. And his insight and wisdom, and the fact that he's not rash or hasty to judge. ILU FARAMIR!!! <3 <3 <3

    – Sam standing up to Faramir when he felt Frodo needed to be defended. ADORABLE!

    – Gandalf's many names. He's catching up on Aragorn! :p

    – Sam's praise of Galadriel. Sweet and adorable, in Sam's own way. <3

    – More history of Gondor! <3

    – Sam forgetting himself and mentioning the Ring. Ooops! Sam, you ass! :p Thankfully, Faramir is a better man than Boromir and he's not taking any advantage to get the Ring.

    Some lovely passages:

    ‘I would see the White Tree in flower again in the courts of the kings, and the Silver Crown return, and Minas Tirith in peace: Minas Anor again as of old, full of light, high and fair, beautiful as a queen among other queens: not a mistress of many slaves, nay, not even a kind mistress of willing slaves.

    Beautiful imagery.

    ‘So we always do.’ he said, as they sat down: `we look towards Númenor that was, and beyond to Elvenhome that is, and to that which is beyond Elvenhome and will ever be.

    Bs pbhefr, "Ryiraubzr" vf Gby Rerffën, gur Ybaryl Vfyr; naq "gung juvpu vf orlbaq Ryiraubzr" vf Inyvabe, gur Haqlvat Ynaqf jurer gur Inyne qjryy. Vg'f ornhgvshy gung gur Zra bs Tbaqbe fgvyy erzrzore naq ubabhe gurz. <3

    • Eregyrn says:

      Thankfully, Faramir is a better man than Boromir and he's not taking any advantage to get the Ring.

      You know, it took me a long time to even think of this, but… I'm not sure that's true, given what we're shown. What I mean is — here, Faramir has only been in the presence of, and aware of, the Ring for a short time. Boromir travelled in the company of the Ring for months before it overcame him.

      Obviously, there are other things about the brothers' respective situations that makes it hard to make a comparison. And to be honest, I don't think we can necessarily leave the Ring itself out of the equation. (I've come around to the thought that the Ring has its own agency, and at key moments it may be trying harder to make it into other hands that it "thinks" might bring it closer to its goal, which is getting back to Sauron. That moment on Amon Hen represented a coming together of multiple threads of influence, and I wonder to what extent Boromir's breaking just then was due to the Ring's recognizing of an opportunity, if you will.)

      I don't disagree that Tolkien wanted to portray Faramir as a better man than Boromir, though.

      • stefb4 says:

        Now that you've pointed it out, and it's something I haven't thought of before, I really do agree with this. Who knows how Faramir would have behaved months after in the company of the Ring rather than a day? Perhaps it would have taken longer, but there is always the possibility if Faramir had been in Boromir's place.

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Yes, but Boromir was already tempted to use the Ring at the Council of Elrond, so it wasn't just the prolonged exposure to the Ring's presence that caused his confrontation with Frodo at Amon Hen… He was already susceptible to it.

      • notemily says:

        I agree with this. Faramir is AWESOME, no doubt, but I don't think he's incorruptible. He chooses the wisest option here by deciding not even to SEE the Ring, lest it tempt him, but the point is that it COULD tempt him under other circumstances.

      • Tul says:

        I don't know if temptation for the Ring works that way…
        1) I don't know if time really counts in that way. Most people who succumbed to the temptation did it right away, those who didn't were never tempted or had to pass one dangerous moment and then never seemed to be troubled by it anymore. It's like saying "NO" to the Ring once gives you protection.
        2) Boromir never had an occasion to take it before Parth Galen, he never was alone with Frodo before. If he had tried for the Ring, he would have had to face (Gandalf), Aragorn, Gimli, Legolas and the four hobbits…it's just like chocolate, if it is offered to you (Galadriel), if it is just there for you to take (Isildur), or if you can take it with no difficulty (Faramir: 500 men against 2 hobbits), it's harder to resist than if you have to fight for it (Smeagol), let alone fight your warriors friends (Boromir before Parth Galen).
        3) Ithilien was two steps away from Mordor. The Rings gets more powerful the nearer he is to Mount Doom. That's why there was no great danger showing it to everyone in Rivendell (nobody got tempted), that Bilbo was able to live with it all those years while it was eating at Frodo the farther away he went. Boromir himself knew no real temptation until Lorien.

        I think what is more significant in the difference between the brothers is that:
        1) Boromir didn't even understand why he had to resist the Ring. He just didn't believe the wises when they said it couldn't be used for good. He thought he could do it, he didn't realize he was under the Ring influence. Faramir was more versed in lore, and he had received teaching from Gandalf.
        2) Boromir is an "End justifies the means" type of person. Definitively not Faramir. In fact they fight different battles: Boromir fights for his country and people, the "good side" (he materialize "Good"), whereas Faramir fights for Good as an abstract idea (and the "Good in his contry" in particular). In Faramir's view (and many other lotr characters) it's an ideal we must always strive to reach for, in the world and within ourselves. In this battle of Good vs Evil as abstract entities, if we do evil we become evil and so evil wins. Faramir wanted to think of himself and Gondor as fighting on the "Good" side, but they were not "Good".
        3) Finally Boromir was full of pride and ambition. He loooved glory. It was his fatal flaw, and one that is pretty damning when facing the Ring. Faramir was humble.
        What's interesting is that nowadays, ambition and desire for glory aren't really seen as bad things. Everyone dreams of becoming a star, being loved by the mass and having many fans.

        Well that's my take on it anyway. Hope it makes sense, it's getting late and my brain's getting confused.

        • msw188 says:

          This seems like a pretty good summary of the brothers' differences, at least as far as we've seen up to this point.

  4. Becky_J_ says:

    Gah, I miss one day, and I feel like I’ve missed a week! I had a really crappy day Thursday in which my car broke down and I spent two hours in the dark and the snow fixing it, and then my best friend showed up at my house, took me down to Denver, and we had an adventure in which I forgot all about my car and we didn’t go to sleep at all… ah, this has nothing to do with anything, it’s just a long way to say that I missed this review and you guys (for all of a day)!!

    ANYWAYS. I missed Faramir!! Sad day! But it’s okay, because he is here now and I am so excited!!

    *A short list of things that…. well, things that happen in this chapter? LOOK I DON’T KNOW I’M RUSTY OKAY*
    1.Sam standing up for Frodo to Faramir…. SO ADORABLE.
    2. FARAMIR IS BOROMIR’S BROTHER. I am going to weep until the end of time
    3. FRODO DIDN’T KNOW BOROMIR WAS DEAD. Sucks. Royally sucks.
    4. Faramir finding his brother’s body in the boat….. SO FREAKING SAD. But it’s kind of amazing that the boat stayed intact all the way. I guess that’s the magic of the elves! BECKY THIS DOESN’T MATTER FARAMIR FOUND HIS DEAD BROTHER AT MIDNIGHT IN THE MIDDLE OF THE RIVER it doesn’t matter how okay it’s just the saddest thing ever
    5. ….Frodo ALSO doesn’t know Gandalf isn’t dead. IT HAS BEEN SO LONG SINCE THE FELLOWSHIP WAS TOGETHER. Great hobbit on Earth, he is going to lose it when he finds out!!!…. if he finds out?? GAH.
    6. “…. when He whom we do not name was overthrown.” Wow, JKR, you really did steal quite a few more tropes from this book than I initially thought…. but then again, who didn’t??
    7. I like Faramir like A MILLION TIMES MORE than I liked Boromir, because he seems reasonable and doesn’t want the Ring, even for the glory of Gondor, and just wishes for peaceful times. His speech about how he does not love the sword for its sharpness nor the arrow for its swiftness? SO BEAUTIFUL. He just seems like a nice guy, okay??
    8. Gollum… a squirrel? I don’t think you’re a very good guard, sir, if you think that Gollum is a LARGE SQUIRREL. There are very few things I would be LESS likely to compare him to.
    9. How does this book make food sound so damn DELICIOUS?? I don’t even LIKE meat, and bread and butter is fine but nothing special…. and yet this book makes me want ALL OF IT, makes it sound like the best food you could ever eat. HOW.
    10. Sam’s speech about Galadriel and Lorien…. I swear, HE IS THE CUTEST THING IN THE ENTIRE WORLD AND I JUST WANT TO CUDDLE WITH HIM FOREVER.
    11. The Honored Gardeners of the Shire…. LOVE IT.
    12. “You took the chance, sir… yes, sir, and showed your quality: the very highest.” This book… it seriously KILLS me. I cannot keep getting teary-eyed in public places, people are beginning to stare!

    The whole gardener thing reminded me of this scene (movie spoilers).

    • flootzavut says:


      Also, maybe Faramir is just noting gung Tbyyhz vf rivy, naq fdhveeryf ner rivy, gurersber Tbyyhz zhfg or n fdhveery…

    • I think everyone needs to cuddle with Sam at some point in their lives. And he'd be so good at cuddling- he's so sweet and ready to help out!

      And all the Faramir love is fully supported. He's a wonderful character (and apparently the one most based off of Tolkien himself, if TV Tropes is anything to go by. Not that that's the most accurate source, mind you…)

      • settledforhistory says:

        I think everyone needs to cuddle with Sam at some point in their lives.

        Yes and right now I would want this even more than a Hogwarts letter.
        sam is better than a room full of puppies, because whenever he says something he becomes even cuter. Sam could cure the world of sadness, just by giving out free hugs.

        • AmandaNekesa says:

          Sam could cure the world of sadness, just by giving out free hugs.

          This is the truth. Why don't we have a Samwise?

          • flootzavut says:

            We really need to get someone on that clone business…

            • AmandaNekesa says:

              Yeah, clearly there's such a market out there for a fictional characters cloning business, so obviously we're just doing something wrong, or just don't have the right connections or something… :p

      • stormwreath says:

        Tolkien said in one of his letters:

        "As far as any character is 'like me' it is Faramir – except that I lack what all my characters possess (let the psychoanalysts note!) Courage."

      • Tauriel_ says:

        I think everyone needs to cuddle with Sam at some point in their lives.

        So, you think there is a market for cuddly plush Sam Gamgee toys? Sounds like a good business opportunity! 😀

    • JustMalyn says:

      THIS 🙂
      All the more reason to love Sam SO MUCH.

    • stormwreath says:

      Vs Gbyxvra unq jevggra gur fperracynl sbe gur svyz, V'z cerggl fher Fnz jbhyq unir fnvq, "Uvf freinag". Ohg freinag vfa'g ernyyl n erfcrpgnoyr wbo gurfr qnlf, fb Wnpxfba punatrq vg gb 'tneqrare'. Juvpu vf zber shaal.

    • JustMalyn says:

      Naq lrg Qrargube'f rngvat va gur zbivr znqr zr ARIRE NTNVA jnag pureel gbzngbrf. Vagrerfgvat…Nygubhtu npghnyyl gung jnf n ornhgvshy fprar <3 Cvccva'f fbat.

  5. Alice says:

    So Faramir is Boromir's brother and Frodo finally finds out about his demise. :'( . Oh,brother…Faramir's vision of ghostly Boromir and his lament it's so heartbreaking…And Faramir is such a clever man 😉 to guess so many things.And whoa! Gandalf also has many names :D.And we also find out more about the history of Middle Earth.

    <img src="; width="600">
    Ted Nasmith – The Window on the West (like…I…what in the…I have no words)

    (…I will take advantage and have a "Remembering Boromir" party of my own 🙂 )

    <img src=""&gt;
    Donato Giancola
    I liked what he said about him :"It is easy to characterize Boromir as simple and headstrong, but here he is depicted as a proud man divided by his duties as son, royal protector and royal emissary. Possessing great courage, he lacked the inherent wisdom of Westernesse which ran truer in his brother Faramir. Boromir was never a villain, but was in some ways the most human of Tolkien's characters, constantly at battle between duty and morality, a figure of Shakespearean tragedy."

    <img src="; width="400">
    John Howe

    I liked so much what Sam had to say about Galadriel <3 <3!!Art by John Howe

    <img src=""&gt;

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      Hmmm that picture of Galadriel kind looks like Gillian Anderson. Or is that just my imagination?

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      Hmmm that picture of Galadriel kinda looks like Gillian Anderson. Or is that just my imagination?

    • Eregyrn says:

      Wow. That Giancola portrait of Boromir is amazing. I must look up more of the guy's work!

      To be honest, I now have trouble with dark-haired depictions of the Gondorian brothers; I fully blame the movies. >_< And I also have the overall problem that I find too many such depictions look a bit… well, "generic" to me, as if there is not enough distinguishing Boromir from Aragorn from Faramir. (Which I know makes sense in overall terms, for all of their relationship to the ruling houses of Gondor, but still.)

      What I really love about this portrait, then, is that it doesn't look ANYthing like the movie version, but at the same time, as soon as I saw it, I said, "Oh, that's Boromir!" Not Aragorn. Not Faramir. That is quite something.

      • Alice says:

        I agree with everything you said.
        Some characters I've imagined similar to the movies,others differently and just one (for me ) blends completely with how it was depicted in the movies,and I cannot see him otherwise: and the one is Frodo! 😛 Maybe it is so that I saw first the FOTR movie and then read the books,but in my defense, I only saw it once at the theater and I had money to buy the books one month later,so I did not quite remember all that well. And I think that only Frodo's image persisted enough in my memory to blend with the image of the bookFrodo because FOTR was so Frodo-centered.

    • notemily says:

      Wow, I love the Giancola of Boromir.

  6. flootzavut says:

    I have this irresistible urge to say "Dun dun dunnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn!" at this point… drama!

  7. Saphling says:


    That is all. ^_^

  8. Ryan Lohner says:

    Fb, urer jr trg bar bs gur zbfg pbagebirefvny punatrf va gur svyzf. V'yy qrsre gb Cuvyyvcn Oblraf urefrys urer:

    "Lbh pnaabg unir lbhe urebrf zrrg n thl jub fbeg bs guerngraf gurz ohg abg ernyyl, bssref gurz n phc bs grn, naq fnlf 'V'yy qb jungrire V pna gb uryc lbh.' Vg'f qrngu ba svyz."

    Naq bs pbhefr, gur ravtzngvp naq tbqyvxr Gbz Obzonqvy orvat noyr gb erfvfg gur Evat vf bar guvat, ohg Snenzve nyjnlf pnzr bss n ovg Znel Fhrvfu gb zr, rffragvnyyl jevggra nf fbzrbar sbe Rbjla gb raq hc jvgu, fb V jnf irel cyrnfrq gb frr uvz tvira n qrrcre punenpgre va gur svyzf.

    • TheFormerAstronomer says:

      More movie stuff:

      Yvxr nyy bs gur punatrf va gur svyzf, V pna haqrefgnaq jul gurl qvq vg, ohg V sryg ng gur gvzr gung Qnivq Jraunz (jub V trarenyyl yvxr nf na npgbe) jnf cerggl ubeevoyl zvfpnfg. Ur whfg arire unq gur tenivgnf gung Snenzve unq jura V vzntvarq uvz va zl urnq :-/

    • Aris Katsaris says:

      "Lbh pnaabg unir lbhe urebrf zrrg n thl jub fbeg bs guerngraf gurz ohg abg ernyyl, bssref gurz n phc bs grn, naq fnlf 'V'yy qb jungrire V pna gb uryc lbh.' Vg'f qrngu ba svyz."

      Ubarfgyl, jung gur uryy qbrf fur xabj? Qvq fur rire *gel* bgurejvfr? Gurl fperj jvgu Gbyxvra'f punenpgref, naq nf n erfhyg Snenzve orpbzrf guvf jubyyl *oynaq* punenpgre, fbzrbar jvgubhg npghny cevapvcyrf, jub zbirf sebz qrpvfvba gb qrpvfvba abg orpnhfr bs npghny crefbanyvgl genvgf ohg orpnhfr bs aneengvir pnhfnyvgl. Whfg orpnhfr Crgre Wnpxfba naq uvf ohapu bs vapbzcrgragf ner vapbzcrgrag gb npghnyyl cerfrag uvz nf Gbyxvra jebgr uvz, naq plavpny rabhtu gb guvax gung "qrcgu" zhfg bayl zrna synjf. Nf vs crbcyr pna'g npghnyyl unir qrcgu va *jvfqbz* be qrcgu va *rkcrevrapr* be qrcgu va *xvaqarff* be qrcgu va *uhzvyvgl*.

      Snenzve vf fhccbfrq gb ercerfragf Tbaqbe nf vg *fubhyq* or — fbzrbar jub svtugf, ohg qbrfa'g ybir jne — fbzrbar jub jvryqf cbjre ohg vf jvfr rabhtu abg gb rkprrq uvf nhgubevgl. Ur'f znqr qrrcre va gur svyzf? Ab, ur'f znqr *funyybjre*, zbirq ol zrer cnffvat zbbqf, jvgu ab qrcgu bs jvfqbz gb thvqr uvz.

      Lrf, ur'f frzv-fnvagyl va gur obbxf. Ohg va gur obbxf ur fgvyy unf terngre qrcguf guna nyy gur zbivr-punenpgref chg gbtrgure.

      • Tul says:

        I agree, simply.

      • wahlee says:

        This. THIS. SO MUCH THIS.

        Snenzve vf ol sne zl snibevgr punenpgre va gur obbxf, orpnhfr ur vf jvfr, naq aboyr, naq whfg nyy-nebhaq njrfbzr. Va gur RR rkgenf bar bs gur jevgref (naq V pna'g erzrzore jub) fnvq fbzrguvat gb gur rssrpg gung Snenzve unq gb or grzcgrq ol gur Evat orpnhfr rirelbar vf grzcgrq ol gur Evat– vg znxrf Snenzve gbb cresrpg gb abg or grzcgrq. Rkprcg, rira va gur zbivrf, gurer ner GBAF bs punenpgref jub nera'g grzcgrq ol gur Evat. Ryebaq fubjf ab qrfver gb unir vg. Nentbea qbrfa'g rira jnag gb ybbx ng vg, naq cbvag-oynax ershfrf vg jura Sebqb qrpynerf gung vg fubhyq orybat gb uvz. Fnz, Zreel, Cvccva, Yrtybnf, naq Tvzyv unir ab ceboyrz jvgu vg (jryy, Fnz qbrf n yvggyr, ohg bayl nsgre ur unf npghnyyl jbea vg; hc hagvy gur cbvag jurer ur qrpvqrf ur arrqf gb gnxr vg gb Zbhag Qbbz orpnhfr Sebqb nccrnef gb or qrnq ur qbrfa'g jnag vg ng nyy). Tnaqnys naq Tnynqevry ner obgu grzcgrq ohg ner jvfr rabhtu gb erfvfg gung grzcgngvba.

        V ybir gur zbivrf, naq zbfg bs gur punatrf CW & PB znqr qba'g obgure zr bireyl zhpu, ohg gur punenpgre nffnffvangvba bs Snenzve vf fbzrguvat V pna arire, rire, sbetvir. V xabj jul gurl qvq vg; V haqrefgnaq nyy gurve ernfbavat. Ohg V qb abg nterr jvgu vg, naq jvfu gung gurl pbhyq unir sbhaq n orggre jnl gb nppbzcyvfu gurve tbnyf.

    • blossomingpeach says:

      Obbx if Zbivr Snenzve unf nyernql orra qvfphffrq nyernql nq anhfrhz, naq V fhfcrpg jr jvyy or qvfphffvat vg guebhtu gur raq bs EBGX, ohg V'q whfg yvxr gb fgvpx hc sbe Obbx Snenzve n yvggyr urer. Ur'f abg Znel Fhr-vfu gb zr. 🙂 (V haqrefgnaq gur nethzragf bs nyy gubfr jub fnl vg jnf arprffnel sbe n svyz gb fubj Snenzve orvat zber grzcgrq ol gur evat, rgp rgp–guvf vf abg -gung- cnegvphyne qrongr; guvf vf whfg zr nethvat gung Gbyxvra'f bevtvany punenpgre vf vagrerfgvat rabhtu sbe zr!)

      Snenzve'f pubvpr gb ershfr gur evat vf abg bar bs n bar-qvzrafvbany cresrpg punenpgre, ohg zber yvxr gur pubvpr bs Tnaqnys jub ershfrf gb nyybj uvzfrys gb or grzcgrq ol vg. Snenzve qbrfa'g nfx gb frr gur evat, be xabj zber nobhg vg. Ur xabjf vg'f n onq vqrn naq va uvf jvfqbz, ur whfg fgnlf njnl. Va zl urnq pnaba, vg'f orpnhfr ur fcrag fb ybat ng Tnaqnys'f xarr, yrneavat gur uvfgbel bs Zvqqyr Rnegu. Obebzve jnf gur oenir, vzcrghbhf jneevbe, ernql gb ehfu vagb onggyr. Snenzve vf vagryyrpghny naq gubhtugshy.

      Zl oenva vfa'g shyyl njnxr lrg, fb gung'f abg dhvgr nf negvphyngr nf V'q yvxr gb or va Snenzve'f qrsrafr…znlor zber yngre jura V pna guvax fgenvtug.

      • Wheelrider says:

        Agree… tried to say the same thing in last chapter's discussion. Snenzve nyernql unq zber gung n yvggyr ovg bs na vqrn jung guvf Guvat vf naq jung vg pbhyq qb.

        V jvyy fnl gung gur zbzrag ur fbeg bs "guerngraf gurz n yvggyr" vf creuncf cynlrq hc sbe rkgen qenzn va gur obbx, ohg gura ntnva, vg'f gur zbzrag jurer gur ovggre vebal bs gur fvghngvba vf uvggvat uvz.

      • BetB says:

        " Snenzve'f pubvpr gb ershfr gur evat vf abg bar bs n bar-qvzrafvbany cresrpg punenpgre, ohg zber yvxr gur pubvpr bs Tnaqnys jub ershfrf gb nyybj uvzfrys gb or grzcgrq ol vg."

        VZUB, V oryvrir gur svyzznxref znqr n zvfgnxr urer jvgu Snenzve'f punenpgre. Gur zvfgnxr vf vf fvzvyne gb Fnz zvfgnxvat Sebqb'f xvaqarff sbe oyvaqarff. Snenzve vf abg vauhzna be nobir grzcgngvba, nf oybffbzvatcrnpu fgngrf nobir.

        V srry yvxr gur svyz punatrq Snenzve orpnhfr vg'f qvssvphyg gb FUBJ n aboyr punenpgre'f zbgvirf naq inyhrf. Vg'f zhpu rnfvre gb fubj uvz/ure punatr n qrpvfvba onfrq hcba guvatf gung bpphe sbe nyy gb frr. V crefbanyyl qba'g yvxr vg nf zhpu. V thrff V jvfu gung gur tbbqarff va n crefba jvyy unir n punapr gb fubj vs lbh tvir gurz gung punapr.

      • woolandwater says:

        I totally agree with this.

        I totally agree with this.

        Gb zr, gur cbvag bs Snenzve'f punenpgre jnf gb or n fgevxvat pbagenfg gb Obzbzve'f enfu vzchyfvirarff. V guvax gur fprar va guvf puncgre vf zrnag gb fubj gung Qrargube vf n cbbe whqtr bs punenpgre naq gung uvf snibevgvfz jnf gur qbjasnyy bs obgu uvf fba naq gur sryybjfuvc. Snenzve fubhyq unir orra gur bar frag gb gur Pbhapvy bs Ryebaq. Vs ur unq, creuncf gur gentrql ol gur evire znl arire unir unccrarq. Qrargube jnf vapncnoyr bs frrvat guvf orpnhfr ur jnf oyvaqrq ol uvf snibevgvfz, naq fb ur znqr gur jebat pubvpr naq frag gur jebat fba.

        Punatvat Snenzve'f punenpgre sbe gur zbivr npghnyyl erzbirf guvf checbfr, naq znxrf uvf punenpgre zrnavatyrff naq sne ZBER funyybj, vzb.

        • Wheelrider says:

          But… BUT… Jung vs Sebqb naq Fnz unq fgvyy tbar bss nybar — nf frrzrq varivgnoyr? Gura jung vs gurl unq pbzr hcba Obebzve ng Uraargu Naaha vafgrnq bs Snenzve?

          • woolandwater says:

            Ugh, oh god, I never even thought about that! Yeah, then gur "jr'er fhqqrayl va Bftvyvngu" fprar va gur zbivrf jbhyq unir unccrarq rknpgyl gur jnl vg qbrf, ohg jvgu Obebzve vafgrnq bs Snenzve.

            Which would be terrible! But might still turn out okay, considering.

    • flootzavut says:

      Zl gjb pragf/gjb craabegu:

      V nz bar bs gubfr fgenatr crbcyr jub pna obgu frr jul fbzr crbcyr unq UHTR CEBOYRZF jvgu gur punatrf znqr gb Snenzve, ohg crefbanyyl V qba'g unir uhtr ceboyrzf naq pna nyfb pbzcyrgryl haqrefgnaq jul gur punatrf jrer znqr.

      Nyfb, naq V pnaabg rzcunfvfr guvf rabhtu, gurer ner gjb guvatf gung, sbe zr, uhtryl vasyhrapr gur jnl V frr gur zbivrf.

      Svefgyl, vg'f vzcbffvoyr gb jngpu gur rkgenf, yvfgra gb gur pbzzragnevrf, rgp, naq abg ernyvfr gung gur svyzznxref va trareny, naq Cuvyvccn Oblraf, Sena Jnyfu naq Crgre Wnpxfba va cnegvphyne, unir rabezbhf ybir, erfcrpg, nssrpgvba naq raguhfvnfz sbe naq vagrerfg va/xabjyrqtr bs gurfr obbxf. Sbyxf pna nethr gvyy gur fha tbrf qbja nobhg jurgure gurl qvq n tbbq wbo be abg, ohg gurer'f ab qbhog gung gurl qvq GUR ORFG wbo _gurl_ pbhyq. Ol nyy zrnaf, V nofbyhgryl qrsraq nalbar'f evtug gb srry gung gurl *qvqa'g* qb n tbbq wbo, ohg gurl jbexrq oybbql uneq naq qvq gurve orfg gb oevat gur jbeyq, gur punenpgref, gur fgbel gb yvsr, naq V guvax gung rira crbcyr jub ungr gur svyzf pna, vs gurl pna or bowrpgvir, erfcrpg gung.

      Naq frpbaqyl, gur Zvqqyr Rnegu fgbevrf jrer vagraqrq nf n zlgubybtl: zlgubybtvrf punatr va gur gryyvat, tnva arj punenpgref, zretr punenpgref, ybfr punenpgref, tnva riragf naq ybfr riragf… Gbyxvra jebgr n zlgubybtl, naq ertneqyrff bs zl srryvatf nobhg _cnegvphyne punatrf_, gb zr vg nofbyhgryl znxrf frafr gung n svyz irefvba bs YbgE jba'g or gur fnzr nf gur obbx irefvba. Gurer ner boivbhf guvatf gung ner rnfvre be zber qvssvphyg gb cbegenl va n zbivr, ohg sbe zr gurer vf n qrrcre zrnavat urer: Zlguf punatr. Zlguf tebj. Zlguf zhgngr. V'z fher gurer jbhyq or punatrf Gbyxvra uvzfrys jbhyq abg or gbb xrra ba – ohg cneg bs uvz, V nz fher, jbhyq trg fngvfsnpgvba sebz uvf zlgubybtl orunivat va n zlgu-yvxr znaare! Gb zr, gur zbivrf ner whfg n qvssrerag irefvba (orfvqrf orvat va n qvssrerag zrqvhz) bs gur zlgu. Naq xrrcvat gung gubhtug va zvaq urycf n terng qrny jura qrnyvat jvgu bar'f yrff snibhevgr punatrf 🙂

      • Wheelrider says:

        Very well said. Great way to think about it!

      • Jenny_M says:

        I love all of these thoughts that you have put down here. They sum up my feelings exactly!

      • stefb4 says:

        I love this comment! I have to agree about what you said about the movie extras too.

      • sirintegra42 says:

        I agree with all of this. Nf V'ir fnvq orsber V pna qrsvavgryl frr jul gurl punatrq vg ohg vg'f abg va n jnl gung pbzcyrgryl punatrf gur punenpgre, vg whfg syrfurf guvatf bhg n ovg va bar qverpgvba. Vg'f whfg bar vagrecergngvba bs gur punenpgre naq boivbhfyl jr'q nyy unir qvssrerag irefvbaf va bhe urnqf fb vg'f tbvat gb or uneq gb cyrnfr rirelbar. Gurl qvq jung gurl qvq gb gel naq znxr gur orfg svyz gung gurl pbhyq naq V erfcrpg gung. V xabj vg'f n ovg bs n pbc bhg ohg V guvax V yvxr obgu irefvbaf rdhnyyl.

        (This is Fiona by the way. I gave in and made an account.)

        • flootzavut says:

          I'm heartened others are able to look at it the same way!

          And hi Fiona – glad you've given in to the inevitable :p 😀

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Well said! Hear, hear! *applauds* 🙂

      • Alice says:

        I loooove your comment!

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        Exactly THIS. Lbh'ir cerggl zhpu rknpgyl fhzznevmrq zl gubhtugf naq srryvatf nobhg punatrf znqr genafyngvat gur obbxf vagb zbivrf.

        Gurer'f ab jnl rirelbar jvyy or unccl jvgu rirelguvat ng nyy gvzrf orpnhfr, jryy…vg'f vaperqvoyl sbbyvfu sbe zbivr znxref gb perngr zbivrf fprar-ol-fprar rknpgyl yvxr gur fbhepr zngrevny. Gurl ner qvssrerag zrqvhzf gung erdhver qvssrerag fgnaqneqf bs cnpvat naq fgbelgryyvat, naq V pna ubarfgyl haqrefgnaq gur punatrf gung gurl znqr va gur zbivrf.

        Univat jngpurq gur zbivrf svefg, V'yy nyjnlf unir n terng nzbhag bs nccerpvngvba sbe gung zrqvhz bs gur fgbel, ohg gung qbrfa'g zrna gung V pna'g haqrefgnaq jurer obbx snaf pbzr sebz jura gurl fnl gurl qvfyvxr pregnva guvatf. Bapr V ernq gur obbxf zlfrys, gurer jrer fbzr zbivr punatrf gung V qvqa'g yvxr nf zhpu, cersreevat gur obbx'f cbegenlny bs pregnva fprarf/punenpgref.

        Yvxr lbhe svefg cbvag: qrfcvgr nyy bcvavbaf be pbzcynvagf nobhg gur zbivrf, lbh pna'g qral gung rirelbar vaibyirq chg rirel ovg bs gurve rssbeg naq urneg vagb gur zbivrf, naq gung znxrf fhpu n qvssrerapr. Vg znxrf nyy gur qvssrerapr, ernyyl.

        • flootzavut says:

          "qrfcvgr nyy bcvavbaf be pbzcynvagf nobhg gur zbivrf, lbh pna'g qral gung rirelbar vaibyirq chg rirel ovg bs gurve rssbeg naq urneg vagb gur zbivrf, naq gung znxrf fhpu n qvssrerapr. Vg znxrf nyy gur qvssrerapr, ernyyl."

          Yes, yes, yes.

          • AmandaNekesa says:

            Gah, I love LotR! <3

            Totally OT: So…this past weekend I virtually had a weekend long marathon of Doctor Who (it was awesome) and now I'm nearly finished with Series 4… Yeah, I've not grown attached to this show at all, not at all. 🙂 I'm totally loving it, though I'm sad that it's apparently getting towards the end of David Tennant's time as the Doctor, since the last episode of the season is named "The Next Doctor." 🙁 Not that the next doctor isn't going to be good or anything, I honestly have no idea, but I really love DT as the Doctor… Doctor Who has become one of my favorite shows ever.

            Anyways, I wanted to mention it because you'd said last week I should let you know once I'm farther into S3 because of some particularly good gifs. I now know where a ton of DT Who gifs come from…particularly the incredibly sad ones. David Tennant's crying just gets to me so much.

            <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

            • flootzavut says:

              Gif that is just TOO APPROPRIATE NOT TO USE:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

              I'm literally just on my way to bed but had to quickly find and post one of the Ridiculously Cute Photographs (any excuse :p):

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">>

              It's David Tennant and a KITTEN. A KITTEN! *whimper* MY HEART!

              Also: David Tennant is one of the actors on my "can hardly bear to see them cry" list. It's just sooooooo heartbreaking when he cries, I can't take it! Heck, he doesn't even have to cry, the denouement of the Library episodes, there's that scene where he's just *looking* (rot13 for anyone who's not seen it) ng jurer Evire Fbat unf whfg onfvpnyyl qvrq va sebag bs uvz AND OH MY HEART. Is it weird that I have actualy *favourite* David Tennant crying scenes??! :-/ 😮

              And as for David as Doctor and his send off, all I can say is lrewjgh rjhg gns.nv jsDHDF KW;L ,.GF MS,hvc dkAF.s,AZMJJn!!!!!! SO UNPREPARED!

              Oh sod it, have a couple more cute pics… sweet dreams for me??! 😀

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

              And this one even moves:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

              <3 cuteness overload agggggggggggh *dies*

              • AmandaNekesa says:

                Awwwww…soooo sooo cute! <3 <3

                Also: OMG I just finished "Midnight" today, and holy crap I swear I nearly peed myself. Best. Episode. Ever. Tennant's performance was phenomenal, totally brilliant! 🙂

                I seriously can't even handle it right now, all I feel like doing is just keysmashing:

                Yep that pretty much sums up my thoughts. Four more episodes until I finish S4…my anxious excitement to learn what happens and the end of S4 is going to get me into trouble, cause I've been staying up waaay too late watching Doctor Who, and then I end up tired at work (during which I can't seem to help but contemplate previous episodes and WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN??!?!?!). It's totally been worth it thus far though. 😀

                Also: re your rot13 – OMG yes. That whole two-parter with River Song had me so engrossed the whole time. Gur vqrn gung fur xabjf gur Qbpgbe sebz uvf shgher whfg oyrj zl zvaq, naq gura jura vg gheaf bhg gung ur zrrgf ure ng ure qrngu. whfg…yfwrbnvewnj;brsvnujrn rs;nbrjvsxfunn Ubj pna gur Qbpgbe'f npgvbaf abg or nssrpgrq ol guvf xabjyrqtr bs jura naq jurer fur vf tbvat gb qvr? Jung na vaperqvoyl qrcerffvat gubhtug. Vg unq zr fb vaperqvoyl pncgvingrq ubj fubpxrq gur Qbpgbe jnf gb svaq bhg ubj zhpu Evire Fbat nccneragyl xabjf nobhg uvz, rfcrpvnyyl jung fur juvfcref gb uvz. This show, I tell you…

                • flootzavut says:

                  Those two library eps might also be the scariest ever… Moffat! 😮 I mean… onfvpnyyl qnexarff gung pna rng lbh. Thanks for that. Really. Cheers…

                  Midnight is scary – not least because that episode is ALL ABOUT HOW THE HUMANS TREAT EACH OTHER – the mysterious whatever-it-is outside is all by the by, it's all about people being trapped in an enclosed space and it bringing out all their worst attributes.

                  By the way, if memory serves, the extras from that ep = totally worth watching. Especially for the bit when they are syncing their speech LOL 🙂

                  • AmandaNekesa says:

                    Oh yeah, that's totally the scariest part about Midnight. It's not the monster itself, it's the horror of watching as the people on the shuttle slowly decide to murder the Doctor, due to their own fear (and the monster's prodding), and he's helpless to stop them. And David Tennant in that scene is so perfect – once his voice has been taken and he's frozen, you can just see and feel his fear in that situation.

                    I'm watching the series on Netflix, so I don't have the DVDs to watch the extras. Is a lot of that on Youtube? I don't want to search too much because of spoilers, but I'm such a sucker for extras.

            • flootzavut says:

              PS also meant to say: series 4 = my favourite series of NuWho, Donna Noble = favourite companion EVAH, David Tennant as Doctor Who = RULES.

              And I am still in mourning for Ten, I haven't been able to summon up the urge to watch Eleven yet :$

              • AmandaNekesa says:

                Oh yeah, I'm LOVING Series 4 with Catherine Tate as Donna Noble. Her pairing with David Tennant is just perfect; their chemistry together makes so many episodes just work, even if it's a terribly wild and ridiculous plot *cough*The Unicorn and the Wasp*cough*.

                uggh…I know I am so unprepared for the end of S4. I'm pretty sure at some point I'll just slip into incoherency or something at the last episode.

                • flootzavut says:

                  Honestly, there is NO WAY you can be prepared, so just resign yourself to keysmashes, really. The only thing that's guaranteed is that you are unprepared and nothing has prepared you or can prepare you.

                  <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                  *lip zipped*

                  They do have the most wonderful chemistry… when she was first announced as a regular companion, I was a bit :-/ because I had found her a bit shouty and annoying in the Christmas special, but she became my all time favourite (and actually I liked her better in Runaway Bride when I watched it again). I think, besides the obvious fantastic chemistry they have, one of my favourite things about Donna is that she is so ordinary. She's not a trainee doctor, she hasn't had lotsof weird experienced in her childhood, she isn't young and impulsive, she's this everywoman character who nevertheless is able to stand up and be brave even when actually she's terrified. She doesn't fancy the Doctor and is totally aware that he is not human, but she loves him anyway. And she chose the life – not in a sudden burst of inspiration, not to escape from her life, not on a whim. She really thought about it, and then she did something about it. I don't know, there's just something really inspiring and beautiful about her choice to go with him with her eyes open and despite knowing it will be dangerous, whereas Martha and Rose, for example, were much more impetuous about it, and partly jumped on board because they wanted to jump his bones. They didn't give it a second thought, whereas she had been thinking about it for months.

                  In that sense I can't think of a companion who really had the same role within the show as she did, and I really, really loved that about her character.

                  That Agatha Christie episode is sooooo random…

                  When you've run out of Tennant episodes (I'm erring on the side of caution because I can't remember what spoilers might be given out) look up "Never Mind The Buzzcocks" on youtube; there's an episode where David Tennant chaired, and Catherine Tate and Bernard Cribbins (Gramps) were guests, and it is just laugh out loud hilarious – I honestly would happily watch a TV show that consisted just of the three of them talking together, taking jabs at each other, teasing each other, etc. It was a beautiful thing!

                  • AmandaNekesa says:

                    Hahaha…love that gif!

                    So…I finished watching "Journey's End" and ;AOA;FK;ALSDJFA;;EIF;DVN;ROGHD;OFDH;AKUHV

                    Donna's story. It just. I can't. :'( :'( :'( :'(

                    rot13 just in case, for anyone that hasn't seen the show: V qba'g rira xabj jurer gb fgneg. Ure fgbel vf fb fb fb fnq. Nyy bs Frevrf 4 fur'f fgehttyrq jvgu srryvat yvxr fur qbrfa'g znggre, naq gung va gur raq fur'f ab terng vasyhrapr va gur jbeyq, yrg nybar gur havirefr. Va gur gjb-cnegre fur raqf hc jvgu gur xabjyrqtr bs n Gvzr Ybeq naq jvgu gung fur vf noyr gb fnir gur Qbpgbe naq rirelbar nobneq gur pehpvoyr, abg gb zragvba rirelbar va gur sernxvat havirefr. V unq n anttvat srryvat gubhtu gung vg jbhyq abg raq jryy, rfcrpvnyyl frrvat gur ybbx ba gur Qbpgbe'f snpr rneyvre, naq rfcrpvnyyl bapr gurl'er onpx va gur Gneqvf. Gura, jura fur fgnegf ercrngvat urefrys, fur ernyvmrf jung'f tbvat ba, naq jung'f nobhg gb unccra… Naq nf fur ortf gur Qbpgbe gb fgbc, xabjvat jung vg jvyy zrna, gur Qbpgbe jvcrf ure zrzbevrf. Fur jvyy arire xabj nobhg nyy gur guvatf fur qvq be ubj vzcbegnag fur jnf. Jr pna frr vg va "Ghea Yrsg" gung jvgubhg Qbaan'f qrpvfvbaf yrnqvat ure gb zrrg naq yngre geniry jvgu gur Qbpgbe, gur Qbpgbe jbhyq unir qvrq naq gur jubyr pbhefr bs gur shgher jbhyq unir orra qvssrerag. Vg'f jung znxrf ure arj yvsr fb vaperqvoyl fnq, jvgu ab zrzbel bs gur Qbpgbe be gur frys-jbegu fur tnvarq jvgu uvz. Gura gur Qbpgbe'f yvarf arne gur raq: "V whfg jnag lbh gb xabj gung gurer ner jbeyqf bhg gurer, fnsr va gur fxl, orpnhfr bs ure. Gung gurer ner crbcyr yvivat va gur yvtug, naq fvatvat fbatf bs Qbaan Aboyr n gubhfnaq, zvyyvba yvtug lrnef njnl. Gurl jvyy arire sbetrg ure, juvyr fur pna arire erzrzore. Ohg sbe gung zbzrag, bar fuvavat zbzrag, fur jnf gur zbfg vzcbegnag jbzna va gur jubyr jvqr havirefr."

                    Now I know the context of this gif…

                    <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                    Excuse me, I've got something in my eye… *weeps*

                    Donna is definitely now my favorite companion. Rose and Martha are great, but I love the story arc of Donna, even though it's nothing but tears and sadness at the end.

                    • flootzavut says:

                      Yes absolutely – I love that whole storyline. Naq vg znxrf fb zhpu frafr sbe ure, orpnhfr V gbgnyyl srry gung gurer vf ab jnl fur jbhyq unir pubfra gb yrnir gur Qbpgbe, hayrff fur jnf sbeprq gb. V nyfb NQBER Jvys gryyvat gur Qbpgbe gung UR jvyy erzrzore, nf Qbaan pna'g, naq UR JVYY xrrc gur Qbpgbe va zrzbel naq guvax bs uvz jura ur ybbxf hc vagb gur fxl… vg'f whfg n ornhgvshy zbzrag. Naq Pngurevar Gngr jnf nznnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnlmvat. V arire xarj ubj tbbq na npgerff fur vf.

                      And you can see why I didn't dare say ANYTHING about the ending of this storyline, you just can't say anything without risking spoilers and you really DON'T want to risk spoiling anyone because it is SOOOO FANTASTIC!

                      Donna Noble FOREVER.

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      re rot13 – Lbh unir n tbbq cbvag gurer, gurer ernyyl vfa'g nal bgure jnl gb raq ure fgbel (bgure guna jvgu qrngu) orpnhfr fur jbhyq unir jnagrq gb xrrc geniryvat jvgu gur Qbpgbe hagvy gur raq. Naq lrfff, gung cneg jurer Jvys gryyf gur Qbpgbe gung ur jvyy erzrzore vf whfg fb gbhpuvat (naq fnq gbb). Gur jnl gung Qbaan whfg tbrf fgenvtug onpx gb jub fur jnf orsber, naq qbrfa'g rira erpbtavmr gur Qbpgbe, htu, fb urnegoernxvat… 🙁

                      Donna Noble is amazing.

                    • flootzavut says:

                      YES to all your rot13. Zhpu nf V ungr ubj fur qbrfa'g erzrzore vg, vg'f nyfb GUR cresrpg raqvat sbe ure punenpgre.

                      <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      Yeah, without a doubt, my favorite doctor/companion pair is Tennant/Tate. I know you said you haven't watched much of Eleven, but I do like some of the dynamics between Eleven and his companion (not sure how much you know about S5 + S6). I was a bit hesitant at first toward Matt Smith's doctor but he's grown on me a lot, and I've enjoyed S5 & S6.

                      Also, since we're talking about Doctor Who nerdiness…I totally gave in to temptation and may have possibly bought some Doctor Who t-shirts on Amazon. (and by may, I mean definitely) I've never really expressed my nerdiness in my wardrobe selection before (mainly because I was always so self-conscious growing up, and wanted everyone to accept me) but I'm at a point where I'm finally letting my inner-nerd out, and when I saw a couple that I liked on Amazon, I totally gave in to it. 😀

                  • AmandaNekesa says:

                    Also, I should say ^THIS^ so much to everything you said about Donna.

                    And yeah, I'll have to check out that video on youtube. It won't be too long and I'll be done with S4, just 1 episode to go.

            • flootzavut says:

              OK I just found an EVEN CUTER moving one, which I shall save till last, and it has prompted this TOTALLY OFFTOPIC PICSPAM for which I do not apologise :p 😀 Enjoy!

              Oh the hilarity:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              And… with no context, this is just… fun 😀

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              Even more bizarre, possibly the most bizarre gif of DT that I have ever seen:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              This one is from Blackpool, in which he is just, like, CONSTANTLY eating:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

              This one combines humour with DT in eager puppy mode: I think you'll agree, that's good value!

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              This gif speaks truth:

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              OK, last one: this is adorable – I think he's actually having a conversation with the kitten, or that's what it looks like! <3

              <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

              <3 *le sigh* adorable!

              • AmandaNekesa says:

                Gahhhh…that was AMAZING! This seriously made me giggle so much, I don't even know how to reply other than with wonderful gifs of approval (I accumulated so many in from the comments, and I'm just looking for excuses to use them):

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                Random, but I love this moment of hilarity:
                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                I'm not ready for Ten to leave yet… :'(

                • flootzavut says:

                  Fantastic comment, fantastic gifs 😀

                  And John Simm as the Master is the only thing that could possibly rival David Tennant as the Doctor, he's so… evil and twisted and funny and it's just soooooo wrong!

                  *hugs* I don't think anyone was ready for Ten to leave :'(

                  • AmandaNekesa says:

                    Oh, YES, he plays the Master so well. I think it's the way he makes incredibly awful scenes funny – like the one at the door with his wife, as they open the door to hear the sounds of the woman *still* being killed, quickly shutting it again after several times. It's such a morbidly funny scene, and I can't help but laugh a little bit at the Master and his facial expressions during it.

                    So, yeah, I'm down to the last episode of S4 and I kind of don't want to let go of Ten…On one hand, I want to see the end of S4, but on the other I don't want David Tennant's time as the Doctor to come to an end. 🙁

                    • flootzavut says:

                      I know, he's so funny and it's SO WRONG. John Simm is one of those actors who has been in some good stuff and some terrible stuff, but he is ALWAYS good. Always. Wonderful actor <3

                      I still just daren't comment on the end of DT's time on DW – I just don't want to risk spoiling you at ALL.

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      So. I was totally fooled by "The Next Doctor" – it's totally not the end of David Tennant's time as the Doctor!!!! (though I assume it's close) I can't deny I grinned widely when I realized that it would not be his last episode of Doctor Who. I didn't realize there were episodes in-between S4 and S5, because I had to search for them separately on Netflix, they're not listed right after "The Last Doctor". Sneaky Doctor Who…

                      Anyways, this is kind of how I felt when I knew there was more DT to come:

                      <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                      I'm happy if, for nothing else, I can get a little more of this:

                      <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

                    • flootzavut says:

                      FANTASTIC GIFFAGE!

                      I mean to ask, did the (rot13 just in case) crahygvzngr rcvfbqr ertrarengvba snxr-bhg trg lbh ng nyy?

                      Cnegf bs Gur Arkg Qbpgbe jrer svyzrq arne jurer V yvir fb V jnf fbbbbb pbashfrq! Ohg V ernyyl qvq guvax Qnivq Zbeevffrl jnf tbaan or gur npghny arkg Qbpgbe. V jnf xvaq bs fnq gung ur jnfa'g orpnhfr V guvax ur jbhyq'ir orra terng.

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      YESSS! It totally got me! Jryy ernyyl gurer jrer gjb cbvagf gung V jnf sbbyrq nf gb gur gvzryvar bs QG'f ynfg rcvfbqr. Gurer'f gur gjb-cnegre "Gur Fgbyra Rnegu" naq "Wbhearl'f Raq" – jvgu gur snxr-bhg ng gur raq bs "Gur Fgbyra Rnegu" jura gur Qbpgbe trgf fubg ol n Qnyrx naq fgnegf ertrarengvat. V jnf nyy yvxr NBBBBBBBB VG PNA'G OR LRG, ABG LRRRG!!! VG'F GBB FBBA!!??!?!?!

                      Naq gura V ernyvmrq gung gur jevgref jrer whfg zrffvat jvgu zl oenva orpnhfr gurl ner rivy, pehry, fnqvfgvp crbcyr. Gura V gubhtug sbe fher gung "Gur Arkg Qbpgbe" jnf tbvat gb or gur ynfg rcvfbqr bs Qnivq Graanag, ohg abcr jebat ntnva! Jura gur frevrf nverq jnf vg cerggl pyrne jung gur ynfg rcvfbqr jnf tbvat gb or sbe Graanag, be qvq gurl (gel gb) xrrc gung sebz gur snaqbz? Pnhfr vs gurl jrer xrrcvat vg sebz snaf, gura gurl jrer frevbhfyl zrffvat jvgu rirelbar'f urnqf ng gur raq bs F4, naq V gbgnyyl sryy sbe vg nyy!!

                    • flootzavut says:

                      I am not sure about the feeling among the fandom in general, but I know at least a few people jub sryy sbe gur snxrbhgf ba, jryy, NYY bppnfvbaf. Zr vapyhqrq!

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      Hehehe…lrnu V guvax vg jnf rfcrpvnyyl rnfl sbe gubfr bs hf jub ybirq jngpuvat QG nf gur Qbpgbe, orpnhfr jr qvqa'g jnag gb frr uvz tb!

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      Also: That is so cool that the episode was filmed near where you live, and I can imagine how confusing that might have been. How much were you able to see while they were filming?

                    • flootzavut says:

                      It was pretty cool – it's not the first time, they've filmed in Clearwell Caves too which is also near me. The Last Doctor had several scenes filmed in Gloucester, about 8 miles from here and our local cathedral town. Sadly I didn't hear about it till later 🙁 but there were cool piccies in the paper! Mostly scenes of David Morrisey and David Tennant running round Cathedral Close and standing in doorways looking worried and getting snowed on and stuff!

                      It was confusing: jura V urneq nobhg gur "fubg ol qnyrx" snxrbhg, V jnf yvxr, BX, rvgure ur vfa'g npghnyyl ertrarengvat… ohg ubj qbrf gung jbex?… be vs ur vf ertrarengvat, guvf zhfg or GUR ORFG fzbxr fperra va gur uvfgbel bs gryrivfvba!

                      Jvgu ertneqf gb gur Ynfg Qbpgbe, V guvax V nffhzrq (orpnhfr V xarj gurer jrer tbaan or fcrpvnyf jvgu QG) gung QZ jnf tbvat gb or gnxvat bire, naq QG jnf whfg tbaan or zrrgvat uvz va fbzr xvaq bs pebffbire bs gurve gjb gvzryvarf.

                    • AmandaNekesa says:

                      Lrnu, gung'f jung V gubhtug vavgvnyyl – gung jr'q frr gur arkg qbpgbe qhr gb n gvzryvar bireync, naq gurl qrsvavgryl cynlrq vg gung jnl ng gur fgneg bs gur rcvfbqr, gb pbagvahr gur snxrbhg nf ybat nf cbffvoyr, bs pbhefr!

                      Frr, V qvqa'g unir nal pyhr nf gb jura Qnivq Graanag'f ynfg rcvfbqr jnf tbvat gb unccra – bayl gung V xarj vg unccrarq ng/arne gur raq bs F4, naq V unq ab pyhr nobhg gur fcrpvnyf rvgure, hagvy V svavfurq gur ynfg rcvfbqr bs F4 naq Graanag jnf fgvyy gurer – ab ertrarengvba lrg. V unq n zvk bs pbashfvba naq tyrr gung gurer jbhyq or zber bs Gra gb pbzr!

                      That's still neat though that they filmed some of Doctor Who near where you live – I can't really recall anything that's been filmed near where I live in Wisconsin. The most that we're known for is our American football team – the Green Bay Packers. 🙂

    • Atrus says:

      Jvgu nyy gur punatrf znqr gb obgu punenpgre naq fgbelyvar (Bftvyvngu? ernyyl?) V fvzcyl cergraq gung Snenzve vfa'g va gur zbivr, naq gurer'f whfg nabgure thl gung fbeg bs svyyf gur fnzr aneengvir fcbg. V zvtug haqrefgnaq nyy gur ernfbaf jul gurl qvq vg, ohg vg whfg vfa'g uvz.

    • Rheinman says:

      Wow, I can has Intense Debates?!?!

      Great comments, all.

    • Geolojazz says:

      V erzrzore frrvat guvf va gurngerf, naq gur punatr gb Snenzve jnf ernyyl ernyyl wneevat sbe n sna bs gur obbxf, naq gubebhtuyl qvfgenpgrq zr gb gur raq bs gur svyz, VZUB, gnxvat zr bhg bs gur svyz rkcrevrapr naq engure ehvavat vg sbe zr.

      Ba fhofrdhrag ivrjvatf, V haqrefgnaq abj jung gurl jrer gelvat gb qb, gb oevat gur fgbel gb zber bs n qenzngvp pbapyhfvba, gb fubj fbzr zber pbasyvpg sbe gur pyvznk bs GGG gung jbhyqa'g unir rkvfgrq.

      Ohg fgvyy…V jnf qvfnccbvagrq, naq whfg pna'g yvxr zbivr!Snenzve nf zhpu, naq fnqyl nf na rkgrafvba, qba'g yvxr zbivr!SnenzvekRbjla nf zhpu. Fvtu.

    • Alice says:

      Ng svefg,jura V fnj gur GGG zbivr ng gur pvarzn V jnf n yvggyr "jun…guvf vf abg va gur obbx!!" ohg jura gur zbivr raqrq,V pnzr gb haqrefgnaq jul vg jnf fubja.Naq abj V gbgnyyl nterr jvgu jung Cuvyyvcn Oblraf fnlf.V zrna,lbh ernyyl gnxr njnl nyy gur terng rivy cbjre bs gur Evat va whfg n pbhcyr bs fragraprf.Ubj pna n zna erfvfg guvf terng pbeehcgvoyr cbjre,gung grzcgf rira Tnynqevry naq rira Tnaqnys vf nsenvq bs vg?!Vg qbrf abg dhvgr znxr frafr.Naq V qba'g erzrzore rknpgyl jub fnvq vg,CW be Qnivq Jraunz,gung Snenzve fgnlf gur fnzr sbe gur ragver obbx.Vg qbrf abg punatr,vg qbrf abg "tebj".Fb V qba'g svaq guvf punatr njshy ng nyy.
      Naq ogj…jnf vg whfg zr gung jura V'ir frra 300 ng gur gurngre fnvq bhg ybhq "Snenzve!!!":$

    • Dreamflower says:

      "Naq bs pbhefr, gur ravtzngvp naq tbqyvxr Gbz Obzonqvy orvat noyr gb erfvfg gur Evat vf bar guvat, ohg Snenzve nyjnlf pnzr bss n ovg Znel Fhrvfu gb zr, rffragvnyyl jevggra nf fbzrbar sbe Rbjla gb raq hc jvgu, fb V jnf irel cyrnfrq gb frr uvz tvira n qrrcre punenpgre va gur svyzf."

      Bguref unir rybdhragyl qrnyg jvgu gur qrcgu bs obbx!irefr Snenzve'f punenpgre nf bccbfrq gb zbivr!irefr Snenzve.

      V'q whfg yvxr gb nqqerff guvf cnegvphyne cbegvba bs lbhe pbzzrag. Univat ernq obgu <v>Yrggref</v> naq gur eryrinag cbegvba bs <v>Uvfgbel bs Zvqqyr-rnegu</v>, V pna fnl obgu "lrf" naq "ab" gb lbhe npphfngvbaf bs Znel-Fhr-arff. WEEG nppbeqvat gb uvf bja nppbhag arire *cynaarq* Snenzve ng nyy, ohg nsgre ur fubjrq hc, ur dhvpxyl orpnzr obgu n snibevgr punenpgre naq bar jvgu jubz ur zbfg vqragvsvrq (fb V thrff va gung frafr ur jnf na nhgube-vafreg). Ubjrire bapr ur ragrerq gur fgbel ur freirq n ivgny checbfr va gur cybg; abg bayl qvq uvf yvsr-guerngravat vawhevrf chfu Qrargube bire gur rqtr vagb znqarff, ohg vg jnf *uvf* npprcgnapr bs Nentbea nf Xvat gung ranoyrq gur crnprshy erfgbengvba bs gur zbanepul. Jvgubhg Snenzve, EbgX jbhyq unir unq n tbbq znal zber cbfg-Evat-qrfgehpgvba puncgref, nf Nentbea jbhyq unir snprq bccbfvgvba va Zvanf Gvevgu gb uvf pynvz sbe gur guebar bs Tbaqbe.

      Ohg ur pregnvayl qbrf abg svg nal bs gur bgure pevgrevn sbe "Fhr-arff". Vs ur jnf n Znel Fhr (be n Znegl Fgh) ur'q unir bssrerq gb nppbzcnal Sebqb gb Zg. Qbbz, naq raqrq hc orvat gur bar jub puhpxrq gur Evat va.

      Nf gb gur "raqvat hc jvgu Rbjla", V oryvrir gung pnzr nobhg sbe gjb-sbyq ernfbaf– svefg, WEEG yvxrq Snenzve orfg, fb ur trgf gur tvey (naq gur bayl ebznagvp xvff va gur jubyr obbx). Ohg WEEG jnf nyfb sbaq bs flzzrgel. Naq gur flzzrgel orgjrra Tbaqbe naq Ebuna jnf vzcbegnag gb uvz va beqre gb fubj gur qvssreraprf orgjrra Gurbqra jub sbhaq ubcr ng gur raq, naq Qrargube jub arire qvq. Ybbxrq ng va gung jnl gur Snenzve/Rbjla cnvevat vf arneyl nf varivgnoyr va gur raq nf gur Nentbea/Nejra bar.

      • Tul says:

        Irel tbbq cbfg! V nterr jvgu nobhg nyy bs vg ^^

        V yvxrq lbhe cbvag nobhg Snenzve/Rbjla naq Gbyxvra yvxvat flzzrgel!
        V guvax creuncf gurl raqrq gbtrgure nyfb orpnhfr Gbyxvra jnf tbvat gb xvyy ure bss orsber Snenzve pnzr naq pynvzrq gur tvey, naq ur cersreerq n unccl raqvat sbe ure.

      • Wheelrider says:

        Gurer'f n ybg bs flzzrgel va gur fznyy qrgnvyf bs gung cneg bs gur cybg nf jryy nf gur ynetre pbagrkg. Nyy gur zber njrfbzr!

        • Dreamflower says:

          V xabj. V ybir gb ybbx ng gung:
          1.) Gurbqra naq Qrargube obgu ybfr gurve urvef va jne. Va Gurbqra'f pnfr, ur unf Rbzre nf uvf urve– fbzrbar jubz ur'q erwrpgrq (guebhtu Jbezgbathr) ohg abj npprcgf. Qrargube'f urve vf abj Snenzve, n snpg juvpu ur qbrf abg npprcg tenprshyyl.
          2.) Gurbqra naq Qrargube obgu unir Tnaqnys neevir gb uryc gurz. Gurbqra npprcgf; Qrargube erwrpgf.
          3.) Gurbqra naq Qrargube obgu unir uboovgf jub fjrne gb freir gurz. Arvgure dhvgr xabj jung gb znxr bs gurve arj yvrtr-uboovgf.
          4.) Zreel obaqf jvgu Rbjla. Cvccva obaqf jvgu Snenzve.
          5.) Zreel fnirf Rbjla sebz qrngu. Cvccva fnirf Snenzve sebz qrngu.
          6.) Obgu Rbjla naq Snenzve fhssre sebz gur Oynpx Oerngu naq ner fnirq ol gur unaqf bs gur Xvat.
          7.) Rbjla naq Snenzve jrq, havgvat Ebuna naq Tbaqbe; Rbzre naq Ybguvevry jrq, shegure havgvat Ebuna naq Tbqbe.

          Gurer'f ybgf zber, yvggyr guvatf sbe rknzcyr, yvxr obgu Unzn naq Unyonenq orvat ybfg va onggyr, naq gur gvrf orgjrra Jbezgbathr nf Gurbqra'f frqhpre naq gur cnynagve nf Qrargube'f, naq fb ba.

  9. flootzavut says:

    I LOVE all Tolkien's pairs of friends… it is a beautiful thing. From your list my favourite would have to be Gandalf/Endless Sass 😀

    Naq zber gb pbzr bs pbhefr:

    zber Cvccva/Tnaqnys
    Zreel/Rbjla (jvgu n ovg bs Gurbqra va gur zvk)

    V'z fher gurer zhfg or bguref V'ir sbetbggra, gbb. V ybir ubj zhpu Gbyxvra pyrneyl vagrafryl inyhrf sevraqfuvc <3

    I love that part of Frodo's not wanting to talk about the Ring, alongside the obvious "it may not be wise to let this guy get his hands on it" seems to be a kind of compassion – that he hates what the Ring did to Boromir, and he is reluctant to put Faramir in a position of temptation. That's how it seems to me anyway…

    Also: I love Sam <3

  10. enigmaticagentscully says:

    Oooh I'm actually here for Mark Reads for once!

    And now…I can't think of anything to say that isn't spoileriffic. Except maybe FARAMIR!

    Ur'f cerggl zhpu zl snibhevgr punenpgre va nyy gur obbxf. V ybir ubj gbea ur vf orgjrra uvf qhgl gb uvf crbcyr (naq uvf sngure) naq jung ur oryvrirf gb or gur evtug guvat. V ybir gur haqregbarf bs uvz orvat birefunqbjrq ol uvf byqre oebgure, ohg fgvyy univat n terng qrny bs ybir naq erfcrpg sbe uvz. V guvax ur'f bhgevtug bar bs gur zbfg *frafvoyr* crbcyr va gur fgbel – ur pbzrf npebff nf n ybg yvxr Nentbea, na vafcvengvbany yrnqre naq vagryyvtrag zna ohg jvgubhg gung rqtr bs rtb gung pbzrf sebz orvat qrfpraqrq sebz n yvar bs xvatf be jungabg.

  11. cait0716 says:

    Frodo has a line at the end of the chapter about how esteemed gardeners are in The Shire that just melts my heart. We've seen how much Sam cares about Frodo, but I think this is one of the first times that Frodo displays how much he cares about Sam.

    The door behind the waterfall is awesome. It reminds me of standing behind the waterfalls at Niagara. So pretty.

    Mark, you're not alone in having your attention drift a bit. All this history makes my eyes cross a bit. It probably doesn't help that I also decided to tackle A Dance With Dragons which has a similarly rich and intricate world with tons of info-dumping all over the place. My brain is being filled with fictional histories.

    • flootzavut says:

      Oh yes, I love that line <3

      And I keep making comments and forgetting to say I SO WANT TO VISIT MIDDLE EARTH AND IT IS SO UNFAIR THAT I CANNOT :'(

      • AmandaNekesa says:


        Thanks for reminding me… :'( Just add it to the list of things we want to do in Tolkien's mythology (but cannot):

        1. Visit Middle-earth
        2. Clone our favorite hobbits for the benefit of the world
        3. Hug said fictional characters when they're sad/afraid/crying

        I know there's more…

        • flootzavut says:

          I have the best cheering up gif ever. I shall be using this liberally from now on:

          <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket">

          • AmandaNekesa says:

            😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀 😀

            right-click *save* Yep, that's about the best cheering up gif I've seen in awhile! 😀

            Random note: I've been kinda bummed lately cause I haven't been able to read many comments, or comment myself on the site much the past couple weeks. Busyness at work, plus family drama always makes spare time a challenge to find. Well, not to mention the fact that I've been enamored with Doctor Who (I'm almost finished with Series 6 – eek!) And lately while I've been on my lunch I've had some coworkers sit down to chat, so I haven't been able to get on to comment during my lunch. Which, well, that sounds really selfish of me, but I really enjoy that down time to not talk about work or family drama for once, you know?

    • Becky_J_ says:

      I love that line too….. as if it is possible to make the Shire sound BETTER, Frodo's lines about how there are problems but the gardeners are highly valued makes my heart squeal in delight. I can just picture Sam getting all red in the face and scuffing his shoe on the ground in embarrassment.

  12. enigmaticagentscully says:

    Also, does anyone else find the idea of 'black squirrels' from Mirkwood really cute and hilarious?

    Mirkwood – where even the squirrels are evil. DUN DUN DUNNNNN…

    • Saphling says:

      Squirrels are, in fact, evil everywhere. The Mirkwood squirrels just feel no compulsion to hide it behind a cute exterior. >_>

    • glyneth says:

      I saw my first ever black squirrel when I visited friends in Toronto. I had never seen a black one before. So we definitely called them Squirrels of Mordor.

    • floppus says:

      Funny that gurl pbeerpgyl thrff gung gur zlfgrevbhf perngher vf na "rfpncr bs Zvexjbbq."

    • threerings13 says:

      I went to Sarah Lawrence College in New York for two years and we had black squirrels on campus. So there were lots of jokes about how the squirrels were goths, since there were so many goths on campus. (Including myself.) There was even a T-shirt that said: Sarah Lawrence College: Where even the squirrels wear black. I still have mine.

      There was also a vote while I was there to come up with a mascot for the school because the administrators wanted us to have actual sports teams. There was a write-in campaign for black squirrels. But gryphons won. Which was appropriate because they don't exist, just like the sports teams.

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        Yeah, not sure what it is about colleges but it seems that the squirrels like to congregate there or something.

        The park next to my university in Minneapolis housed some of the creepiest mutant squirrels I’ve ever come across. While I was walking through the park with someone from my floor, she saw a squirrel really close by, and decided to kneel down and see if she could get it to come a bit closer. Well…it did start heading closer, along with at least 4 or 5 of its friends. Soooo freaking creepy.

        Then, just to add to the variety of scary creatures in the park – in the winter, we had masses upon masses of crows that would gather in the park. There would be so many, that when you looked up at a tree all you could see was black. Looked like something out of a horror flick. One day they had shifted from the trees and decided to hover/circle around the parking garage I used. Oh, and the majority of the lights in the garage were out. I've never ran so fast in my life.

        • threerings13 says:

          You reminded me of my other squirrel story from college. I was sitting on the lawn eating lunch one day and I turned around to throw away a piece of trash and when I turned back there was a really fat squirrel running away with half my BLT, toothpick still in it, lettuce and tomatoes flying out behind him. I was totally saving that half for dinner, EVIL SQUIRREL!

          I think all campus squirrels are completely unafraid of people.

          • AmandaNekesa says:

            I know! Sneaky little things, they are. I'd never thought that squirrels were creepy until I went to college and moved to the city. It's something about city squirrels that just makes them seem more sinister. The squirrels that were in the park near my college seemed abnormally large, too, which definitely added to the creepiness.

    • Katie says:

      I had never heard of black squirrels before. And then we had this whole "squirrels are evil" thread here for some reason, can't even remember why. And someone mentioned black squirrels. And I and looked them up on google images. Five minutes later, went back to my copy of LOTR and on next page: "black squirrels of Mirkwood". Could not believe it….

  13. I love this chapter always. Faramir is an amazing character; he has such a fascinating outlook on the war and on his city as a whole. Where Boromir was very much the steadfast patriot, Faramir appears to be more willing to admit error, acknowledging that his city has declined while still loving it and giving it his service in war. This line of his is one of my favorites from any character in this series: "War must be, while we defend our lives against a destroyer who would devour all; but I do not love the bright sword for its sharpness, nor the arrow for its swiftness, nor the warrior for his glory. I love only that which they defend: the city of the men of Numenor; and I would have her loved for her memory, her ancientry, her beauty, and her present wisdom. Not feared, save as men may fear the dignity of a man, old and wise."

    On re-reading this chapter, I feel like the title actually has a bit of layering to it, whether Tolkien intended that to be the case or not. There's the obvious meaning, I think- the beauty of that waterfall, and the fact that that's there is definitely beauty enough for it to take precedence in this chapter. But this chapter is also a window into the history of the west, as Faramir's backstory highlights just some of what Gondor has seen in its rise to power and its struggle against Sauron. It's also a window on the West in its present condition, as Faramir and his men show that they have their own culture and histories, such as the tradition before food, and really in their characters as well. Though they are not perfect, they are doing their best and keeping themselves and their integrity intact as best they can, even though laws and the danger they live in might tell them to do otherwise. It's a fascinating side to the people of Gondor, as Boromir was the only example from that land that we'd seen yet. And the depth of this history and of all its implications is fascinating. Have I mentioned that I really love Middle Earth and want to live there? Because I really really do.

    • flootzavut says:

      I SOOOOOOOOOOO agree about Middle Earth. I want to go there and live there forever <3

    • Tul says:

      Agreed on the many meaning of the title!

      The "Windows on the West" is also Faramir himself I think. In fact the chapter was originally called "Faramir". Through him, we see Gondor for the first time, and Numenor that was. He gives us a glimpse of both this culture, and show us the nobility and greatness there was and still is in those people.

  14. knut_knut says:

    They have black squirrels in Mordor! See!! EVIL.

    I love Sam rambling on about Galadriel, accidentally letting everything slip, and then pinning the blame on Faramir. BLESS YOU, SAMWISE GAMGEE. You may have ruined everything, but you are so darn adorable- I can’t hate <3

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      The best thing is that Eomer said that Mordor always steals the black horses from Rohan. That never fails to crack me up.

      I just have this image of Sauron insisting that everything must be black. Yes, all the horses. And the architecture. EVEN THE SQUIRRELS.

      • Ryan Lohner says:

        Especially stink beetles!

      • blossomingpeach says:

        Ha ha. That's beautiful. Now I have an image of Sauron talking to his interior decorator and landscape designer. I want to see a picture.

      • settledforhistory says:

        So that's why the Orcs and all the dark-skinned Men are fighting on the Enemy's side; not because they are evil, but they fit into His color scheme so He had to add them to His collection. : )
        (I really love that the pronouns are capitalized so often when people are taking about Sauron, as if they had to speak with (even more) respect when mentioning him.)

      • knut_knut says:

        I imagine Mordor kind of like the Queen of Hearts’ palace in Disney’s Alice in Wonderland where the orcs are painting the roses black.

      • flootzavut says:

        Makes him sound like (Discworld spoilers) Qrngu sebz gur Qvfpjbeyq, jub unf oynpx sybjref, naq oynpx orrf, naq rirelguvat gung vfa'g fbzr funqr bs oynpx vf obar juvgr 😀

      • flootzavut says:

        … the more I think about this, the more amused I am imagining Sauron to be this Prima Donna type who must have everything in his favourite colour and probably sulks if someone brings him a horse with a white blaze…

    • castlewayjay says:

      there are black squirrels in Michigan and Wisconsin too.

      • LarrikJ says:

        And in Connecticut, though only in a certain places.

        They are largely identical to the gray ones. (Unlike red squirrels, which are smaller and will take your lunch off of your plate in front of you if you let them near)

        • Saphling says:

          It's strange to compare, because what we call red squirrels down here (actually fox squirrels) are huuuuuuuge and slooooooow.

          But likewise fearless. And evil.

        • Seumas the Red says:

          Here in Britain, the red squirrels are the nice and small ones that are now an endangered species thanks to the introduction of the Big Evil American Grey Squirrels. (Not that being American or Grey makes them evil, but the pushing out of the native species does.)

    • msw188 says:

      The black squirrels are from Mirkwood, my friend. Still EVIL, certainly. But I'm not sure that there are any animals at all in Mordor, based on the description of the lands near the Black Gate.

  15. TheFormerAstronomer says:

    I agree with all of this

  16. Peg says:

    One other detail to remember about Faramir: go back to the Council of Elrond and you'll find it: remember, he was the one who had the dream REPEATEDLY with the verse "Seek for the sword that was broken/In imladris it dwells…" Boromir had the dream, too, but only once. Both of the brothers volunteered to go to Rivendell to seek advice, but Denethor, their father, sent his favorite, Boromir.

    What would have happened if he had sent Faramir instead?

    And yes, there's been fanfiction written about that.

    • Dreamflower says:

      And some of it quite good.

      • Clamarnicale says:

        Anyone you can recommend? Preferably a really long one. 🙂

        (I did by the way stumble upon your links to your own fics rather a while back, and devoured pretty much all I could find on Many Paths to Tread – I especially loved the three "Uboovg rzonffl" stories, as well as Gur Cevfbare naq gur Uboovg. Thanks for sharing!)

    • Tul says:

      Jr qba'g xabj lrg Obebzve jnf Qrargube'f snibevgr…Whfg gb fnl…^^ (abg n irel frevbhf fcbvyre V nqzvg!)

  17. Dreamflower says:

    One of the things that has always struck me is in this chapter is how accepting of Faramir's vision of Boromir Frodo is. "Night oft brings news to near kindred." Frodo doesn't dispute it or seem in any way to doubt that it is valid evidence. In M-e, foresight, intuition and dreams are not something to be scoffed at, but are considered valid evidence. We've already seen intuition at work on several occasions before this. Aragorn's foresight regarding Gandalf is not dismissed; Gandalf disregards his advice because he feels it necessary to go through Moria in spite of possible danger, not because he doesn't believe it could be true. Of course Gandalf himself, Elrond and Galadriel display considerable foresight, ohg gung pbhyq or chg qbja gb gurve crphyvne cbfvgvbaf nf orneref bs gur Guerr. But it's not just the powerful or the Wise who have foresight. Both Merry and Pippin have significant dreams at Bombadil's house, and Pippin has flashes of clairvoyance while he's in captivity– they are just what he needs to take the chances that will free him and Merry.

    Jr nyfb frr Cvccva qbvat guvf ntnva jura jr yrnea gung ur "xarj" vg jnf Nentbea ba gur Pbefnve fuvcf. Naq Unyonenq xabjf uvf bja qrngu yvrf orlbaq gur Cnguf bs gur Qrnq, ohg (yvxr Tnaqnys) ershfrf gb yrg vg qrgre uvz sebz uvf qhgl.

    This is another example of how subtle "magic" is in M-e. Nothing flashy, no big deal, just people knowing things they shouldn't be able to know, and accepting it.

    Faramir is awesome. I love the way he is wise enough to understand Boromir's temptation, his dilemma, and his failure to resist the Ring without it diminishing his respect or love for his brother– he clearly loves Boromir dearly, and yet it's clear he also understands his brother's flaws as well. I also love that he takes to himself his words about "Not if I found it by the highway" would he want Isildur's Bane as being as binding as an oath, even though he didn't even *know* what Isildur's Bane was.

    And I have to say that the end of the chapter where he picks up poor weary Frodo and tucks him in makes me melt. And I love his comment to Sam about the "praise of the praiseworthy"! Here's a man who knows how to respond to a compliment!

    I thought some might find this interesting: From a letter written to his son Christopher ( who was at the time a fighter pilot in WWII, stationed in the Transvaal, South Africa).

    "6 May 1944

    …A new character has come on the scene (I am sure I did not invent him, I did not even want him, though I like him, but there he came walking into the woods of Ithilien); Faramir, the brother of Boromir– and he is holding up the 'catastrophe' by a lot of stuff about the history of Gondor and Rohan (with some very sound reflections on martial glory and true glory): but if he goes on much longer, a lot of him will have to be removed to the Appendices…"

    The following November, he sent Christopher the rough drafts of several chapters, including this one, and said:

    "I eagerly await your verdict. Very trying having your chief audience Ten Thousand Miles Away or off on the Walloping Window-blind. Even more trying for the audience, doubtless, but authors qua authors are a hopelessly egotist tribe."

    Still trying his stories out on his son…

    • flootzavut says:

      Awwwww I love those letter extracts <3

      • Dreamflower says:

        Thanks! I just love Letters. They show JRRT up as such a fascinating man, brilliant, devout, generous, both kind and yet brutally honest at times, occasionally prejudiced, hopelessly old-fashioned even for his own times, a good friend and a loving father, with a razor-sharp intellect and a wicked sense of humor.

        I also love how willing he was for years and years, until his health deteriorated, to answer fannish questions personally.

    • settledforhistory says:

      I love that Christopher was such an integral part of the writing for Tolkien that he even send drafts of it during the war. So Mark's bedtime story reviews are not that far off.
      Tolkien also seems to have written really nice letters, makes me think that even his grocery list would have been an awesome read.

      • Dreamflower says:

        No, not that far off!

        I love his Letters.

      • stormwreath says:

        Knowing Tolkien, he would probably have written his grocery list in Anglo-Saxon, using a runic alphabet. (And a different dialect of Anglo-Saxon each week… and some weeks he'd miss doing the shopping because he spent so long researching the vocabulary for the shopping list, the shops had already closed before he finished.) 🙂

        • Dreamflower says:

          LOL! You are probably right, and I'm quite sure Edith made sure to write the grocery lists herself or she'd never have gotten the shopping done!

          Have you ever seen The Father Christmas Letters? That series of annual Christmas letters he wrote for his kids certainly bears out what you say! He changed his handwriting, illustrated them, and at one point even "invented" an alphabet…all so they'd think the letters came from the real "Father Christmas".

        • flootzavut says:

          I can sooooo see that happening. I now really want to read a book of Tolkien's shopping lists…

    • rubyjoo says:

      That was really interesting information about the letters to his son and how LotR seems to be an "organic" story, developing as it goes along and not all planned out in advance. I think that this is why it feels so "right". Thank you, Dreamflower.

      I also love the portrayal of Faramir as a "proper" man and not one of the "death or glory boys."

      • Dreamflower says:

        If you ever get the chance to read the particular volumes of The History of Middle-earth that deal with LotR, you will find it was a very organic process indeed. They are volumes VI, VII, VIII and IX, as well as parts of volume XII. (Titles left out as some are vaguely spoilery).

    • castlewayjay says:

      thanks for those JRRT letter excerpts. so interesting. was nodding my headin agreement to your post, also

  18. Juliana Moreli says:

    Movie stuff:

    Qb lbh thlf guvax gung punatvat gur npgvbaf bs Snenzve va gur zbivr whfg gb cebir gung gur evat jnf ernyyl cbjreshyy naq rirelbar qrfverq vg jnf tbbq? V qvqa'g yvxrq vg…Snenzve jnf n gehr ubabherq punenpgre…rira jura ur yrgf Sebqb naq Fnz tb ol gur raq, uvf vzntr vf nyernql fgnvarq…gurl pbhyq unir hfrq nabgure fbyqvre bs Tbaqbe…

    Nyfb…Snenzve naq Rbjva…ybbbbbir….

    • enigmaticagentscully says:

      V yvxr obgu irefvbaf, gubhtu V qba'g zvaq gur zbivr punatr ng nyy. V guvax vg jnf qbar gb fgbc Snenzve sebz frrzvat gbb cresrpg – va gur obbx Sebqb guvaxf gung ur'f irel nyvxr gb Obebzve va fbzr jnlf, ohg nyfb qvssrerag. Fvapr jr pna'g urne Sebqb'f gubhtugf vg'f xvaq bs uneq gb znxr gung pbzr npebff ba fperra.

      V yvxr gur qrivngvba sebz gur cybg, orpnhfr vg fubjf gung Snenzve vf fgvyy uhzna, naq ur qbrf unir gur fnzr jrnxarffrf nf bguref, ohg gung ur vf noyr gb birepbzr gurz. Vs nalguvat, vg fcrnxf zber gb uvf punenpgre orpnhfr vg fubjf ur JNF grzcgrq ol jung gur evat pbhyq bssre, ohg fgvyy hygvzngryl ershfrq vg.

      I know it annoyed a lot of people though, so your mileage may vary, I guess.

    • Dreamflower says:

      V qrsvavgryl sryg gung Snenzve'f punenpgrevmngvba fhssrerq. Gurer pbhyq unir orra bgure jnlf gb fubj gur Evat nf cbjreshy jvgubhg gung jubyr "fvqr-gevc-gb-Bftvyvngu" ovg, juvpu gehgushyyl qvq abg znxr zhpu frafr ybtvfgvpnyyl rvgure. V zrna, CW unq ab ceboyrz fubjvat vg grzcg bgure crbcyr jub ershfrq vg,yvxr Tnynqevry naq Nentbea– znxr gur guvat juvfcre ng Snenzve, n yvggyr bzvabhf zhfvp, naq n pbasyvpgrq rkcerffvba ba uvf snpr jbhyq unir qbar gur gevpx.

      V qvq abg yvxr uvf zra orvat fb ebhtu jvgu gur uboovgf, be fb oehgny jvgu Tbyyhz rvgure. Abar bs gung jnf pbafvfgrag jvgu Snenzve'f cbfvgvba.

      Ohg gura, gur "erny" Bar Evat jnf arire nf cbjreshy nf gur zbivr-irefr irefvba bs vg. Ybgf bs crbcyr ershfrq gur Evat.

    • @aagblog says:

      Guvf vf zl svefg er-ernqvat bs gur obbx fvapr gur zbivrf pnzr bhg naq abj V nz rira *zber* naablrq ng ubj Crgre Wnpxfba rg ny cbegenlrq Obebzve. Gb zr, guvf puncgre vf gur bar oernx, gur bar zbzrag bs crnpr gung Fnz naq Sebqb trg orsber cyhatvat vagb Zbeqbe, naq vg obguref zr fb zhpu gung gur zbivrf gbbx gung njnl sebz gurz. Gurl arrqrq gung! Gurl arrqrq gb frr fbzrbar — nalbar! — jub jnf 100% ba gurve fvqr.

      Sbe jung vg'f jbegu, V gubhtug gur obbx znqr vg nohaqnagyl pyrne gung gung Snenzve jnf grzcgrq ol gur evat. Ur qvqa'g arrq gb gnxr gurz gb Bftvyvngu gb qrzbafgengr gung.

      Abg tbvat gb trg bire orvat natel nobhg guvf nal gvzr fbba! 🙂

      • blossomingpeach says:

        V erzrzore ba zl svefg ernqvat vg jnf fhpu na rzbgvbany eryvrs jura Sebqb naq Fnz tbg gb or jvgu Snenzve jub gurl pbhyq gehfg 100% (rira gubhtu vg gbbx gurz n ovg gb ernyvmr vg) naq jub tnir gurz sbbq naq erfg naq erfcvgr.

        Rfcrpvnyyl pbafvqrevat jung'f tbvat gb unccra gb gurz…

    • Geolojazz says:

      V nyjnlf yvxr gb vzntvar gung Fnz'f yvar va Bftvyvngu ("Ol evtugf jr'er abg fhccbfrq gb rira or urer!") vf n guebj-bhg gb snaf jub zvtug or vexrq ol gur jubyr enaqbz fvqrgevc. :Q

  19. Deimos says:

    Gandalf/Endless Sass forever yo <3

  20. Katarina_H says:

    Finally I can share my favourite Nemi comic! I couldn't find it in English, so I made a quick translation of a Norwegian original:

    <img src=""&gt;

    You and me both, Nemi!

    I've heard that Faramir wasn't intentional, that he just showed up. If that's true, it explains some things about his character – in a most awesome way.

    Also, behold movie "brothers" who actually look alike. Is there no limit to Jackson's attention to detail? *grin*

    <img src=""&gt;

  21. JustMalyn says:

    Poor Sam. He's so lovable and tries so hard. That accidental reveal scared me so much….But bless my beard, Faramir is quite fantastic 🙂 ALSO WHY IS THE WINDOW OF SUNSET NOT REAL. Add this to the list of fictional places I will pine forever for.

  22. LarrikJ says:

    Am I the only one who didn't get bored with the history of Gondor? I mean, after chapters full of walking, it's downright brisk

    • castlewayjay says:

      I needed that history lesson. also, it's true to Faramir's nature, isn't it? Can't picture Boromir with the same dialogue

    • divAndRule says:

      You mean downright hasty 🙂

    • Tul says:

      On first read, it was too much info-dumping for me, so I went through it all quickly because I wanted to know what happens next.
      On second read I was madly in-love with Gondor and everything that has anything to do with it, so I was totally hooked by the whole section. The whole part about the Kings doing alchemy and astrology, and caring more about tombs and the names of their ancestors than about their own sons, was especially fascinating to me. I also liked when he speaks of Rohan !

  23. stormwreath says:

    nor did I get why Tolkien needed to tell us this information.

    It's a two-for-one deal. See, Faramir is Boromir's brother, so background on his character is important for Frodo's story. But their father Denethor is Lord of Minas Tirith, which is the place that Gandalf and Pippin are on their way to right now. So by giving us this exposition dump here, Tolkien saves having to have Gandalf explain the same things again for Pippin's benefit…

    Abg gung gung fgbcf uvz. 🙂

    • flootzavut says:

      "Abg gung gung fgbcf uvz."

      LOL 😀

    • settledforhistory says:

      For me it was more: 'Yes Tolkien, show us what a great man Boromir was and how much Faramir loved him, I wasn't sad enough about his death when I had no idea how much he would be missed.'
      That image of Denethor with Boromir#s broken hor is so tragic.

    • castlewayjay says:

      good point re the 'info-dump'

    • Becky_J_ says:

      Zna. V ernyyl ernyyl ernyyl qba'g yvxr Qrargube. Vg znxrf zr fnq RIREL GVZR ubj ur inyhrf Obebzve zber guna Snenzve. Naq zbivr fghss: Cvccva'f Fbat vf cerggl zhpu ZL SNIBEVGR ZBZRAG ng Tbaqbe. Znlor bar bs zl gbc snibevgr zbzragf va gur ragver gevybtl. Rkprcg gung Qrargube'f rngvat FGVYY tebffrf zr bhg whfg guvaxvat nobhg vg.

      • stormwreath says:

        Yhpxvyl, jura zbfg bgure crbcyr rng gurl qba'g unir n zvpebcubar evtug arkg gb gurve zbhgu, gb cvpx hc gur fbhaq bs rirel pubzc naq fyhec jvgu ivivq pynevgl…

      • flootzavut says:

        GUNG FBAT! :'( rira guvaxvat nobhg vg… zna. Ovyyl Oblq whfg fryyf gung <3

      • Tauriel_ says:

        Gbgnyyl nterr jvgu lbhe ynfg fragrapr. Vg jbhyq frrz gung bar bs gur fvtaf bs gur qrpyvar bs Zra bs Tbaqbe vf NCCNYYVAT gnoyr znaaref.

      • AmandaNekesa says:

        YESSS!!! V ybir gung fprar fb zhpu! <3 <3 <3 Ovyyl'f ornhgvshy ibvpr, pbagenfgrq jvgu Snenzve, yrnqvat n pbzcyrgryl ubcryrff naq cbvagyrff punetr fgenvtug gbjneqf gur rarzl, nyy ba uvf sngure'f pbzznaq, perngrf fhpu n oyrnx zbzrag. Gur rqvgvat bs gung fprar, phggvat va orgjrra Snenzve, Cvccva, naq Qrargube nyjnlf tvirf zr tbbfrohzcf.

        • flootzavut says:

          V guvax gung fprar vf zl Ahzore 1 SNIBHEVGRFG punatr va gur zbivrf. Rirelguvat nobhg vg vf whfg fb cresrpg naq ornhgvshy naq JNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNUUUUUUUUUUUUU Ovyyl Oblq! Fb TBBQ! Bu Cvccva! Naq GENTVP SNENZVE, evqvat bss gb nyzbfg pregnva qrngu jvgu uvf sngure'f qrevfvba evatvat va uvf rnef, naq Qrargube… ntu! TQVNS (vebal shyyl vagraqrq).

          Uzzz, zl veengvbany nqbengvba bs gung fprar pbzovarq jvgu gur snpg vg'f 1:40nz tbg gur orggre bs zr gurer… avtug nyy… 😮

          • AmandaNekesa says:

            Completely agree with everything stated above. Fhpu na njrfbzr fprar, naq frevbhfyl bar bs zl snibevgr fprarf bs nal zbivr rire.

            Good night! 🙂

            • flootzavut says:

              Pretty much any time anyone mentiones this scene I'm like *flails* I just can't take how perfect it is!

  24. msw188 says:

    I love this chapter for forever and a week. Can I try a list of my own?

    -The growth of Frodo, and the respect he commands from people like Faramir, who has only known him for a few hours.
    -Sam's impatience. "After all you've gone through, as much for his good and all these great Men as anyone else." It's a quick exclamation, but it makes me think about just how much Frodo really has gone through to this point, and it's just awful. And it gets worse.
    -Frodo's doubts about the rest of his company. This is heartbreaking. From his point of view, if Boromir died on that day, then who's to say how many others did as well? Boromir was the warrior. If he was killed, is it really very likely that Merry or Pippin survived? "If he and Sam were indeed, as seemed likely, all that was now left of the Nine Walkers…" this is the heartbreaking line of the chapter for me.
    -Sam Sam Sam Sam… okay, Sam could have his own list. Forcing himself to stay awake while Frodo sleeps JUST IN CASE. Telling the servant to put the water on the ground so he can DUNK HIS HEAD IN IT. Quoting the Gaffer when he just accidentally let slip the ULTIMATE SECRET.
    -In fact, this one gets its own spot on the list. I really like Sam's discussion about Galadriel. "But perhaps you could call her perilous, because she's so strong in herself. You could dash yourself to pieces on her, like a ship on a rock; or DROWND YOURSELF, LIKE A HOBBIT IN A RIVER. But neither rock nor river would be to blame." Um yeah Sam would know all about that. But seriously, this is a pretty interesting bit on how one can honestly be afraid of a person he or she feels some kind of attraction to, an attraction that borders on reverence.

  25. rubyjoo says:

    When I first read this chapter, I found it a bit slow, but I think it was Tolkien's intention to make a whole bunch of chapters a bit more contemplative, in between scenes of action. I now enjoy the way he moves from one set of moments to a set of others. I think it far more effective than having non-stop action and the quieter chapters tend to increase the tension as you wait for something to happen.

    We know that Gandalf and Pippin are on their way to Minas Tirith and, if you want to appreciate what they find there, you will need some information. Either it gets dumped on you by Gandalf a bit later, or you give a new character the opportunity to explain a bit of the history of Gondor. I didn't find it overwhelming and, in fact, Faramir's description of a culture in decline and also one that has not always been good and noble, does, I think reflect upon his own nature and helps us to see the man that he is.

    I think you also tend to relax a bit, here in safety behind the waterfall, and then WHAM! Oh, Sam!!

    LotR is a book you need to read more than once, not the least because a second reading, when you are no longer desperate to get on with things, allows you to go at a leisurely pace and fully admire what Tolkien, as a writer, is doing. Thank you, Mark, for making me go at this leisurely pace. It may be a little frustrating for you at times, but I am getting SO much out of this re-reading.

    • Dreamflower says:

      Thank you, Mark, for making me go at this leisurely pace. It may be a little frustrating for you at times, but I am getting SO much out of this re-reading.


    • castlewayjay says:

      I agree with your assesment. though everyone doesn't have to like every chapter, of course.

    • xpanasonicyouthx says:

      Thank you!!! <3

      • Wheelrider says:

        Mark, I gotta ask: how, how, HOW do you not just keep turning pages?!? Do you give your copy to a trusted friend to hold for you until the next day and the next chapter? Do you have some sort of safe with a timed locking mechanism? A Kindle copy that only works for one hour each day?

    • Erik says:

      “Thank you, Mark, for making me go at this leisurely pace. It may be a little frustrating for you at times, but I am getting SO much out of this re-reading.”

      Yes, yes, a thousand times yes! I’ve read this story so many times since I was 12 that I’ve worn the corners off it, but I always read it in great consuming gulps of story, as the tension of the plot dragged me unstoppably through. I’ve never nibbled one chapter at a time, savoring all the floral language notes and pondering the shift of mood with each new chapter. It’s made a dearly loved old friend new and vibrant again, and that’s a gift beyond price.

      Thanks so much for what you do!

  26. Tul says:

    I posted something about Sam’s mistake on a French forum some time ago. Traduced it quickly. I believe it wasn’t really an accident. Faramir got them drunk (I love him anyway!).

    Look, this is Sam before eating, on the road:
    "Sam had taken no part in the conversation, though he had listened; and at the same time he had attended with his keen hobbit ears to all the soft woodland noises about them. […] He soon became aware also that though they walked alone, there were many men close at hand: not only Damrod and Mablung flitting in and out of the shadows ahead, but others on either side, all making their swift secret way to some appointed place.
    Once, looking back, as if some prickle of the skin told him that he was watched from behind, he though he caught a brief glimpse of a small dark shape slipping behind a tree-trunk.
    He is very much alert, prudent and able to locate even Gollum (him alone in a company of rangers).

    In the refuge, the hobbits are given low beds to rest a little, and Frodo eventually falls asleep. But not Sam. Sam stays awake, watches Faramir as he talks to his men, listen attentively when it seems some ranger has seen Gollum (and catch Faramir’s glance toward them). Well, he’s being Sam as we know him, the suspicious hobbit to whom it took the entire road from Bree to Rivendell to trust Aragorn. Difficult to imagine this same hobbit in few moments will be so relaxed and forgetful that he will just let slip their secret (such an important secret!).

    Now, this is Sam after eating:
    "Sam was beaming and humming to himself"
    Not the same! But what happened? Flashback:
    "The evening meal seemed a feast to the hobbits: to drink pale yellow wine, cool and fragrant, and eat [lots of food]. Neither Frodo nor Sam refused anything that was offered, nor a second, nor indeed a third helping. The wine coursed in their veins and tired limbs, and they felt glad and easy of heart as they had not done since they left the land of Lórien."
    I’ve never drank wine in my life, but they do seem less than totally sober here don’t they? For them to feel the wine coursing in their veins, and to suddenly feel so light-hearted?
    They had been on short rations for an awful long time; they would have lost a lot of weigh. And when was last time they had some alcohol? They wouldn’t be aware of their limits any longer, they were famished. Of course they would refuse nothing of what was offered!
    And Faramir must have realized this. We had a pretty description last chapter of how Frodo looked, drawn and tired (vulnerable to wine), and Sam thinks he must be the same. Getting your prisoners drunk to loosen their tongue is a very common method of interrogation, and he has been interrogating them since the start of this chapter, directly at first, and then using far more subtle methods (so subtle it’s hard to notice what he is doing, even for the reader). And looks at his excuse for not letting them go to sleep just yet!

    In all their talk, he noticed Frodo was “the clever one”, the master and the one who knows best how to play these games. Sam comes from a lower social environments, is less accustomed to these sorts of things. He still question a little Frodo at first, then when he realize he is going nowhere this way, he goes on talking himself, waiting patiently. He waits Frodo to be half asleep to start speaking with Sam.
    Sam wants to talk about elves, and Faramir obliges. Well, why not? Let’s talk about elves! We know from book 1 that Sam goes gaga as soon as elves are mentioned! Faramir talks of elves, and then mentions Galadriel, subtly drawing once again the subject of conversation to their quest. Sam falls for it magnificently. And Faramir now introduce the idea of danger…and Sam hurry to defend her: no, Galadriel isn’t perilous, it’s other people who bring their danger here…and now Boro-
    ’Yes? Now Boromir you would say?’ said Faramir. What would you say? He took his peril with him?’” (Can you smell the eagerness in Faramir’s words? Victory’s near!)
    Sam keeps explaining. “A fine man your brother was, if I may say so. But you’ve been warm on the scent all along”. Sam had been watching Boromir, and he knows it’s in Lórien that Boromir realized he wanted…what? Well, the Enemy’s Ring of course!

    OOOUPS ‼ What an unfortunate accident ‼ ^^

    Faramir is a nice good guy, but good is not dumb. He’s a captain in time of war. He must think of his country first, and he simply cannot let the hobbits go after having caught them in Enemy territory. Ithilien is stuck between Mordor, Gondor, and Harad: it’s not for nothing he says there are no travelers here. The land is a battle ground.
    He must know what they were doing there and where they are going, particularly as they seem to be on some mission of great importance, involving the legendary Elrond and Galadriel, let alone Gandalf and Boromir. And it’s been a whole year he’s been wondering about Isildur’s bane. There is also an emotional reason: he wants to know what was going on with his brother and why he’s dead.

    • Wheelrider says:

      Excellent point! I admit I hadn't really seen it like that until this (nice and slow) re-read. You are so right.

      • Tul says:

        It took me…a unknown numbers of re-read to see it !
        I wasn't really looking before, in fact, expecting everything to be spelled out for me I suppose. It's just amazing the numbers of subtle things Tolkien put in his book, when you look for them!

        • Wheelrider says:

          It's probably a diplomatic / wartime skill he'd need to cultivate – the fine art of interrogation.

          I had thought Faramir was just a history buff who enjoyed the chance to ramble on about some of his favorite subjects. But now it does seem like a clear strategy, that totally worked. There was a lot of wine being slung around! I'd have been shitfaced after once glass in that situation.

          • flootzavut says:

            It's so interesting seeing these subtle things that it's so easy to miss.

          • Tul says:

            Definitively !

            I do think he's a history buff, totally geeky in fact ! He speaks with too much passion and knowledge for it to be just faked. It was a strategy but then you can totally enjoy yourself while being sneaky !

            I just love how much skills he demonstrates here. Looks how he poses when he knows Frodo isn't listening, ending his monologue on a note about his brother. Nothing like silence to make your interlocutor speak ! Sam doesn't talk about Boromir first but elves, but Faramir finds the way to bring the subject of conversation back where he wants it quickly enough!
            (I bet if Sam hadn't spoken up, Faramir would have addressed him himself, but it's less subtle that way)

            • Wheelrider says:

              Something else picked up on this re-read… besides the strategy stuff, Faramir simply wants to know about his brother's last moments and how he died. He can't help asking, even if the answers are painful. It's very poignant. Thus you can see even more that he shows a lot of restraint in this gentle interrogation strategy.

              • Tul says:

                Faramir just breaks my heart here ! I liked Boromir well enough, but it didn't hurt until I came to this chapters naq yngre va EbgX, jura jr zrrg uvf snzvyl naq frr ubj zhpu gurl zvff uvz naq ubj uneq uvf qrngu uvg gurz.

                Faramir has this little laugh after resisting the Ring, and immediately after he speaks of his brother, and how the hobbits really didn't help his grief. The first thing he thinks of after rejecting the Ring is his brother! That's so sad to me…
                And he is so persuaded Boromir died well!

    • castlewayjay says:

      very interesting. Faramir sure is a brilliant character.

      • Tul says:

        He is ! I love him !

        Ciphered to be sure…gung'f jul vg nyjnlf obguref zr jura crbcyr fnlf ur jnf gbb bar-qvzrafvbany naq cresrpg gb or vagrerfgvat, naq gur svyzznxref unq gb punatr uvz gb tvir uvz zber qrcgu. Ur ernyyl vf n irel pbzcyrk punenpgre jvgu n terng znal qvssrerag fvqrf gb uvz, jura lbh gnxr gur gvzr gb ybbx.

    • JustMalyn says:

      I didn't even think about it like this. So interesting!

    • Dreamflower says:

      *nods* I think you must be quite right! It's a much more effective and subtle form of interrogation than just shouting questions at someone.

    • Seumas the Red says:

      Sméagol isn't the only Sneaker in this chapter… I approve of sneakiness.

    • GamgeeFest says:

      I never thought of it that way, but I believe you're quite right!

      "Faramir is a nice good guy, but good is not dumb."

      As we see with Frodo earlier in Book IV, being kind is not the same as being gullible. Frodo and Faramir are quite similar in that respect.

      • Tul says:

        I think Frodo is the hobbit most like Faramir. They both liked books and were the pensive sort of person, courteous, generally likable, clever, with an "air" about them (as Sam says it). They both are kind and are easily taken by pity, but hide under the soft exterior a toughness and extraordinary resilience.

        I think these "being kind is not the same as being gullible" is an important point made by Tolkien.

    • Wheelrider says:

      Posting again because I've been thinking about this bit of brilliance since yesterday… Not only did Faramir subtly interrogate the hobbits, but Tolkien subtly tricked us readers! I can remember reacting much like Mark on first read, kind of feeling a bit blindsided by all this history recitation — yes, it was interesting, but a definite lull in the action. I remember thinking on later reads that it seemed a tad bit shoehorned-in, maybe it was there to set up for later chapters. But ah, this is a nice respite for the hobbits, wine and food. A little vacation, if you will. And sure, let's hear more about Elves! And then — OH SHIT!

      • Tul says:

        This! I was exactly the same. Sam's reveal seemed to just come from nowhere 🙂 Another similarity between Tolkien and Faramir – both can be horribly sneaky!

        I actually used to think Sam was a little thick in this moment. Now I really think he had no chance whatsoever! I don't think any other character has been playing that way with the hobbits since Gandalf…

  27. floppus says:

    The Spoiler-Free Map of Middle-Earth

    Normal / blurred

    Faramir brings Frodo and Sam to his secret hideout at Henneth Annûn (which, as secret hideouts go, is one of the best.) This isn't marked on the map (which makes sense, I guess) so I'm guessing at its location.

    We don't know what the other characters are doing at the moment; we've passed the end of Book III in the timeline.

    This chapter had me thinking about the compass rose on this map: the north point is at the top, and marked as the "most important" one (as is typical of modern maps.) But we see in this chapter that the west holds a special significance for the Gondorians, and perhaps west would be the "most important" direction marked on a Gondorian map.

    • flootzavut says:

      If memory serves, Dwarves have a different point of the compass at the top – I can't remember which, though…

    • HieronymusGrbrd says:

      My edition of RotK has a more detailed map of Gondor and Mordor (the maps for FotR and TTT seem to be the same you use), and in the upper right corner are the initials C.J.R.T (so this is also by Christopher Tolkien?).

      According to this map Henneth Annûn is just a little bit more down this little river, but your starting position and general direction for today's walk is correct.

      • @RadagastWiz says:

        Indeed, I was looking at the same map and thinking it might be handy if floppus could do the same treatment on that one. Jvgu gur vagrafvgl bs npgvba va gur pbzvat puncgref, vg'f cebonoyl orfg gb unir n pybfre senzr bs ivrj sbe jung'f gb pbzr.

  28. Wheelrider says:

    Can I just say how nice it is to no longer have to refer to Faramir as "Snenzve"? I was starting to think of him as "Sneezy."

    • Geolojazz says:


    • xpanasonicyouthx says:


      I don't use rot13 enough to start recognizing its patterns. Others have told me that this happens to them often, though.

      • flootzavut says:

        There was a recent chapter we were worried that you'd start noticing the repetition of certain names in ROT13 – it might have been concerning Gandalf's return – it's actually kinda reassuring to know that we won't be likely to spoil you that way!

  29. Becky_J_ says:

    That one's my favorite too! The smile on Boromir's face…. <3

  30. Becky_J_ says:

    By the by, this doesn't have to do with LOTR…. but it DOES have to do with Hunger Games, and I know some people expressed interest in seeing my finished book sculpture!

    The Hunger Games:
    <img src="; width="700">

    Here's the link to my Etsy if anyone wants to see more pictures!

    • xpanasonicyouthx says:


    • monkeybutter says:

      That looks awesome! I especially like the second picture. You're amazing.

    • knut_knut says:

      that's amazing!!! O_O

    • flootzavut says:

      That's AWESOME Becky!

      I'm also impressed and a little jealous that you sell your drawings: I draw too (some of them are on my facebook face, if you're interested :)) but I don't have the skill, confidence or consistency to offer them for sale!

      The book sculptures are fantastic: how did you get into that??

      • flootzavut says:

        PS this is my favourite:

        <img src="; border="0" alt="Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos" />

        • Becky_J_ says:

          Man, you could totally sell your work! Honestly, I haven't sold any of my drawings because they are so overshadowed by the book sculptures, but why not have them out there, you know?? The skill and confidence thing…. it's kind of amazing, actually, if you project yourself as being important and confident people all of a sudden believe you! That drawing is beautiful, I would totally buy it 🙂

          And thank you so much! I got into book sculptures by accident, actually…. we had to do a project for one of my art classes, and I just started tearing paper up and putting it back together and BAM. Book sculpture! I swear it's easier than it looks. 😀

          • flootzavut says:

            Awww that means a lot coming from someone who's clearly talented!

            I think at the moment it's just the scariness of selling something to order – I am so out of practice at the moment, and it's not like you can do a portrait and then find someone to buy it, unless it's of a famous person or something!

            That said, I've recently had some small bits of craftwork placed in a local shop, and it occurred to me that drawings of the locality (we basically live in the Shire!) might sell… I'll think about it.

            The sculptures are fantastic 😀

    • Tul says:

      You are some sort of genius ! I love it !

    • JustMalyn says:

      THESE ARE SO AWESOME. I just wish I wasn't a broke college student 🙂 <3 Hunger Games.

      • Becky_J_ says:

        Thank you so much! I know, the reason I'm selling them is BECAUSE I'm a broke college student haha. Someday we'll be real people with real money! If we weren't so broke, you could buy all the sculptures you liked and I could give them away to you all (which, honestly, I would totally do because YOU ALL ARE AWESOME)

  31. anobium says:

    Ur’f gbgnyyl tbvat gb uvqr hagvy vg’f fnsr sbe uvz gb pbzr onpx gb Sebqb naq Fnz. V vzntvar gung jba’g or hagvy gurl cneg jnlf jvgu Snenzve. Gung qbrfa’g unccra va guvf puncgre, naq V qba’g guvax vg’f tbvat gb or fbba, rvgure.

    Mark's so cute when he thinks he knows what to expect, isn't he?

  32. bugeye says:

    Through the point of view of the hobbits we’ve been with the Dwarves to the Lonely Mountain and through the tragic Mines of Moria. We have crossed into the homelands of the immortal Elves. Now we are finally entering the world of Men. There is as much history, grandeur, strength in the world of Men as there is in the worlds of Dwarves and Elves. We are not just scatterbrained Butterbur, or even seeminly power-hungry Boromir. The mortal men of Middle Earth are worth saving,

    This chapter has so many perfect paragraphs. Read it out loud, listen to it, take the time to comprehend all the facets. This part always makes we weep.

  33. Wheelrider says:

    I'd just like to point out something that occurred to me on first read and stands out even more now… also to defend Faramir's character a bit more. As if he needed it. Anyway:

    I don't think Faramir is trying to speak "ill" of Galadriel or of the Elves in general.
    – Faramir knows the "old" name of Lorien – Laurelindorenan. This is significant in that it shows he's studied up about it. (Possibly with the help of Gandalf?)
    – He echoes Aragorn's saying that anyone who goes there does not come away "unchanged" – note he uses that word and not the word that Boromir had used, "unscathed" (which is what prompted Aragorn to correct him).

    It seems to me that Faramir has thought long and hard about this "distance" between Men and Elves and what causes it — cyphering now for spoilerish stuff — naq fcrpvsvpnyyl nobhg gur qnatref bs Zra orvat raivbhf bs gur Ryirf' vzzbegnyvgl. Guhf nyy gubfr qernzf nobhg gur qnex jnir bire Ahzrabe. Ur erpbtavmrf gur Ryirf' terngarff naq tbbq vasyhrapr, ohg guvaxf vg'f cebonoyl orfg vs Zra qba'g tb gelvat gb nffbpvngr jvgu gurz gbb zhpu va gurfr ynggre qnlf. Fb ba gur fhesnpr ur xvaq bs fbhaqf yvxr Obebzve, ohg vg'f n zber qrrc naq ahnaprq bcvavba. Vg nyfb frrzf yvxr ur'f nybar va guvf.

    Can you tell I've thought way too long and hard about this already? Yep.

    • Tul says:

      Faramir certainly speaks of the elves with reverence, which was one of the thing that made Sam like him. So it had always surprised me a bit when he says he thinks it's dangerous for men to seek them out. Many thanks for explaining that!

      Snenzve'f qernz nyjnlf snfpvangrf zr. Jnf vg fbzrguvat vaurerag gb uvz, be jnf vg frag ol fbzrbar ryfr, yvxr gur qernz nobhg Vfvyqhe'f onar frrzf gb ?
      Vs gur frpbaq bcgvba, V hfvat gb guvax creuncf vg jnf gb cercner uvz sbe gung zbzrag jvgu gur Evat – ur xabjf, unf orra unhagrq nyy uvf yvsr ol, jung unccrarq gb uvf naprfgbef orpnhfr bs gurve cevqr. Vg znl rkcynva uvf bja uhzvyvgl naq uryc uvf erwrpgvba bs gur Evat. Ohg abj V yvxr lbhe vqrn gbb!

  34. elyce says:

    This is why I love Faramir. He's so noble and genuine. He wouldn't even take the ring if it were lying by the roadside and he happened upon him. He's stronger than Boromir in that way, though Boromir may have been considered the better warrior.

    In conclusion, we have met all my favorite characters now. Faramir was the last (and in my opinion, the best) <3

  35. Wheelrider says:

    Lbh oevat hc nabgure vzcbegnag qvssrerapr – obbx Snenzve xabjf uvf qnq vf tbvat gb or … re… eblnyyl cvffrq ng jung ur'f qbar va yrggvat Fnz naq Sebqb tb, ohg ur qbrf vg naljnl. Gb zr gung oevatf va zber pbzcyrkvgl — ur'f grpuavpnyyl oernxvat n ynj, n irel vzcbegnag bar ng gung, naq vs guvatf qba'g tb jryy ur pbhyq orpbzr gur fpncrtbng bs n svany qrsrng.

    • Tul says:

      Npghnyyl, V qba'g xabj vs Snenzve *xabjf* uvf sngure jba'g nterr jvgu uvf npgvba. V guvax ur engure frrzrq gb ubcr Qrargube jbhyq nccebir va gurve fprar gbtrgure va EbgX. Ohg ur vf oernxvat n irel vzcbegnag ynj, lrf.

      Nf Qrargube uvzfrys fnvq ubjrire, Snenzve jbhyq unir qbar gur fnzr guvat jurgure ur xarj bs uvf sngure'f ernpgvba be abg. Orpnhfr ur vf ubabenoyr naq jvyy qb jung ur guvaxf vf evtug ab znggre jung, naq vs ur zhfg sbesrvg uvf yvsr be uvf sngure'f ybir sbe gung, gura "fb or vg!" (sebz gur obbx)
      Gung'f gur cneg gung natref zr zbfg va gur zbivr. Snenzve'f sberzbfg tbny va yvsr frrzf gb cyrnfr uvf qnqql! Ur qbrfa'g gel gb xabj zber nobhg gur Evat be Sebqb naq uvf zvffvba, ur whfg jnagf gb fraq qnq n cerfrag – naq gung vf jebat ba fb znal yriryf ! V zrna, fvapr jura ybir vf jba jvgu zngrevny guvatf ?
      Naq va gur zbivr uvf sngure vfa'g rira jbegu vg. Va snpg, ur'f jbegu abguvat. Ur'f znq, ehqr, hfryrff, fghcvq, naq ur qbrf rirelguvat ur pna gb fnobgntr uvf pbhagel'f qrsrafrf. Ur unf abguvat bs erny Qrargube'f vagryyvtrapr, qvtavgl, angheny nhgubevgl, phaavat, aboyrarff naq trareny njrfbzrarff.

      Fb, gur snpg ur qbrfa'g ernyyl xabj vs uvf sngure jvyy nccebir be abg qbrfa'g qvzvavfu gur cerffher VZB. Orpnhfr gur cerffher arire jnf nobhg gung. Ur ubcrf jung ur pubbfrf jba'g or qrgevzragny sbe gur Pbhagel naq Crbcyr ur ybirf naq zhfg cebgrpg. Ur ubcrf ur'f qbvat evtug ol gurz. Naq gur erfg bs ZR gbb – jura lbh guvax nobhg vg, ur unq gur sngr bs gur jbeyq ba uvf fubhyqre sbe n fubeg juvyr.
      Bs pbhefr vs Qrargube unq fnvq "Qba'g jbeel fba, lbh qvq gur orfg lbh pbhyq naq pbzr jung znl" be "V jbhyq unir qbar gur fnzr guvat", vg jbhyq unir purrerq uvz hc n yvggyr vafgrnq bs qrcerffvat uvz, juvpu vf vzcbegnag rabhtu pbafvqrevat ur unq na vzzrafr nzbhag bs cerffher naq jnf nyjnlf ba gur sebag tvivat beqref va yvsr-be-qrngu fvghngvbaf.

      • Wheelrider says:

        Lrf, znlor gung'f gehr, nygubhtu V qba'g guvax vg'f fb pyrne ubj zhpu vf ynvq bhg va gur pbairefngvba jvgu Qrargube yngre… "fnvq naq yrsg hafnvq"… ohg ng nal engr, lrf, gurer'f fgvyy vzzrafr cerffher ba uvz.

        Gurfr pbairefngvbaf nebhaq guvf puncgre ner znxvat zr zber svez va zl erfbyhgvba gb abg jngpu gur zbivrf guna rire!

        • Tul says:

          V'z gbgnyyl wrnybhf lbh jba'g unir gb guebhtu guvf punenpgref' nffnffvangvba. Guvf vf fb HASNVE!

          (ohg vg'f nyfb tbbq fbzrubj gb xabj gurl ner crbcyr jub jba'g rire or vasyhraprq ol gur zbivrf va nal jnl…)
          (fgvyy hasnve gubhtu…)

      • arctic_hare says:

        Qba'g hfr gur jbeq "znq" ba guvf fvgr va gung jnl, cyrnfr.

        • Tul says:

          Fbeel! Vg vf na bssrafvir jbeq? Vg fbhaqrq orggre guna "penml" gb zl rnef, ohg gura Ratyvfu vfa'g zl ynathntr…

          Jbhyq "vafnar" or orggre? Be "abg fnar"? "zragnyyl hafgnoyr"?
          Vg'f abg gb or guvpx (fbeel) ohg fb nf gb abg gb qb gur fnzr zvfgnxr arkg…

          • arctic_hare says:

            Fnlvat gung ur vf "zragnyyl vyy" be "hafgnoyr" vf npprcgnoyr. V jbhyqa'g, ubjrire, hfr gung nf n jnl gb qvfcnentr uvz be fhttrfg gung Snenzve be nalbar ryfr fubhyqa'g jnag gur ybir bs n crefba jvgu zragny vyyarff.

            • Tul says:

              Gunax lbh!

              V arire zrnag gb fhttrfg zragnyyl vyy crbcyr nera'g jbegul bs ybir ng nyy! Fbeel vs vg pnzr bhg gung jnl! Ernyyl!
              V qb guvax gung va gur zbivrf uvf sngure jnfa'g va uvf evtug zvaq fb ur fubhyqa'g gel naq borl nyy gur veengvbany beqref ur tvirf uvz. Naq V qb guvax ur vf n pehry zna, ehqr, frysvfu, rgp…

  36. blossomingpeach says:

    Really nicely expressed. These are some of the thoughts I couldn't articulate this morning because my brain was dead. 🙂

  37. arctic_hare says:

    Ultimately, they are brought to the Window of the Sunset, and yet again, I am furious that Middle-earth is not real because it sounds so goddamn gorgeous. Seriously, it’s a door hidden behind a waterfall that looks like stained glass. HELP ME. HOW IS THIS REAL.

    RIGHT??? I've always thought that caves behind waterfalls were one of the coolest things ever, it's something that's been embedded in my brain for ages, maybe I got it from LOTR, or LOTR came later. I don't know. But it's always been one of those things I desperately wish to find and go in, and this one is particularly amazing. WHY can't it be real? 🙁

    Sil stuff: Guvf puncgre jnf terngyl raunaprq sbe zr ol univat ernq gung obbx. V xarj nyy nobhg gur fnq uvfgbel bs Ahzrabe gung Snenzve vafgehpgrq gurz va, gur cynprf gurl genqvgvbanyyl ybbxf gbjneqf, naq V unq fbzrguvat bs n ynhtu bs Snenzve'f yvar nobhg ubj zvtugl urveybbzf qb abg oerrq crnpr nzbat pbasrqrengrf, naq Sebqb'f nobhg gur crevy bs enfu jbeqf pbapreavat gurz. Gurl'ir obgu yrnearq nobhg gur Fvyznevyf, zrguvaxf! Bu, ubj zhpu tevrs naq zvfrel naq ehva jrer jebhtug va gur byqra qnlf bs Zvqqyr Rnegu ol gur qrfver bs gurz, ol gur bnguf bs Srnabe naq uvf fbaf!

    Movie stuff: Arhgeny cbfvgvba, urer. V haqrefgnaq jul gurl qvq vg, naq V unir yvggyr ceboyrz jvgu vg, orpnhfr gurl qvq arrq fbzrguvat gb svyy hc gung gvzr, naq nyy guvf vasb-qhzcvat naq gnyxvat jvgubhg *nal* fbeg bs pbasyvpg be qbhog jbhyqa'g jbex nf jryy bafperra nf vg qbrf ba gur cntr, jurer jr pna frr Fnz naq Sebqb'f gubhtugf. Cyhf, abg rirelbar vf shyyl ratntrq rira ol jung unccraf va gur obbx, nf Znex ncgyl qrzbafgengrq. V guvax gur svyzznxref qvq jung gurl gubhtug jnf orfg, naq V unir ab ceboyrz npprcgvat gur zbivrf nf nqncgngvbaf, nf na nygrerq sbez bs gur zlgu, nf jnf chg ryfrjurer va gur pbzzragf. Gurer ner cebonoyl bgure ebhgrf gurl pbhyq unir gnxra gung jbhyqa'g unir naablrq crbcyr fb zhpu, ohg gura, V guvax gurer jbhyq'ir orra naablnapr ab znggre jung. V ybir obgu obbx naq zbivr, naq nz abg vagrerfgrq va univat crbcyr gel gb gryy zr V'z jebat sbe qbvat fb.

    In other news, Sam continues to be the best, even with his flub. <3 And how sad is it that Frodo now thinks that everyone else in the Fellowship died? 🙁 He has no way of knowing that Boromir was the only person who perished. Even considering what Faramir says about "who put him in the boat, then?" can't be complete comfort because it doesn't guarantee how many survived. I just want to give him a hug and tell him it's okay, they're all fine right now. But, I suppose that would be spoilers for Frodo. :p Plus I have no guarantees beyond right now.

  38. Wheelrider says:

    Oh oh, one more note… I love this bit: "But this much I learned, or guessed, and I have kept it ever secret in my heart since: that Isildur took somewhat from the hand of the Unnamed, ere he went away from Gondor, never to be seen among mortal men again."

    Somewhat. SOMEWHAT.
    Understatement of the Age!

  39. flootzavut says:


  40. rubyjoo says:

    I love your: "he let his own mind surprise him", notemily, LOL! As far as I can make out, Rowling had all her HP books carefully mapped out from the beginning (correct me if I'm wrong) and people seem to admire her for this. But I'm more in awe of Tolkien who just let the story happen to him. It's so natural and so real. He's not in a strait-jacket of his own making and seems to let the Muse guide him in an almost mystical way.

    • notemily says:

      Yeah, it also feeds into my head-canon that everything in the books actually happened and Tolkien was actually receiving psychic messages from the past. He couldn't write further until he had the next vision! 😀

    • flootzavut says:

      And yet he manages to weave the whole thing together in this beautifully complex way. I'm a seat-of-the-pants writer, terrible at planning, but it doesn't lead to the kind of complex layering and mythology that Tolkien created… :-/ the man WAS a genius though, I'm long since convinced of that.

  41. flootzavut says:

    I've just been browsing the piccies and I'm with mb, they're all brilliant but that 2nd photo really shows it off fantastically well.

  42. AmandaNekesa says:

    Squirrels are some seriously evil creatures!!! It's even worse because they appear harmless, but look at them the wrong way and you'd better watch it! :p

  43. Wheelrider says:

    Oh I think he did have an idea, but was just being cautious about saying too much.
    Faramir the history nerd, pestering Gandalf with questions!

  44. Appachu says:

    Ur’f gbgnyyl tbvat gb uvqr hagvy vg’f fnsr sbe uvz gb pbzr onpx gb Sebqb naq Fnz. V vzntvar gung jba’g or hagvy gurl cneg jnlf jvgu Snenzve. Gung qbrfa’g unccra va guvf puncgre, naq V qba’g guvax vg’f tbvat gb or fbba, rvgure.


    Frevbhfyl. Qlvat urer.

  45. Alice says:

    YES !! to your rot13 comment. 🙂

  46. Janna says:

    First off: this has nothing whatsoever to do with LOTR; it’s actually about Twilight. And I know this was a really long time ago, but I really feel the need to call you put on this: you said retarded. And for someone who intensely dislikes the word ‘lame’, I think that’s incredibly hypocritical to use the top ableist slur after spending ages ranting about others using it.

    Just sayin’.

    And, rereading that, it sounds way too critical. Sorry. I did really love your Twilight, HP, Hunger Games, and His Dark Materials reviews, I just thought you might want to know. It’s in chapter 13, and here’s the sentence: Bella hops on Edward’s back, like a retarded Yoda, and Edward runs five to eight miles in two minutes.

    • xpanasonicyouthx says:

      I know it's there. It was two and a half years ago. I apologized for it already, and it was edited out of the Mark Reads Twilight book.

      There are plenty or words, phrases, and slurs I did not know were problematic in my old writing. I do my best not to include them anymore, and to support a community that actively tries not to use them as well.

    • notemily says:

      I think that's incredibly hypocritical to use the top ableist slur after spending ages ranting about others using it.

      The incorrect word here is "after."

    • arctic_hare says:

      I'm pretty sure everyone's used some kind of problematic word or phrase at least once in their lives. The important thing is to STOP using them once one learns that said word/phrase/idea/etc. is problematic. Mark, and a lot of other people here, are no different. And the key here is that he used those words quite a while ago: Twilight was the first thing he ever Read for this site, and what started everything. So no, it's not hypocritical, because he's learned since then to NOT use those words and is, like he said, doing his best to support a community that tries not to use them either.

  47. GamgeeFest says:

    Gandalf/Endless Sass – I would read that fanfic. lol!

    Sam's big "D'oh!" moment was quite a doozy! I'm worrit.

    "I don’t blame Faramir for treating Frodo the way he does because, as of yet, there’s nothing to blame."

    Faramir is fair but he's also not a fool. He won't be rushed into a decision and he'll look at all sides before coming to one. He's very much the opposite of his brother. Juvpu vf jul Snenzve jnf cvpxrq (guebhtu uvf qernzf) gb frrx bhg Ryebaq. Obebzve jnf frag vafgrnq orpnhfr Qrargube qvqa'g gehfg Snenzve gb pneel guebhtu jvgu fhpu na vzcbegnag zvffvba. V unir gb jbaqre, tvira gung jr xabj Snenzve vf vaqrrq gur jvmneq'f chcvy, va n frafr, naq pregnvayl zber uhzoyr guna uvf oebgure, ubj vg jbhyq unir orra qvssrerag vs Snenzve unq orra nyybjrq gb tb? Unq Sebqb abg orra cebibxrq ol Obebzve, ur zvtug abg unir yrsg gur pbzcnal jura ur qvq naq ur naq Fnz jbhyq unir orra pncgherq nybat jvgu Zreel naq Cvccva. Naq gung'f whfg sbe fgnegref. Be, vzntvar vs Sebqb unq znantrq gb trg npebff gur evire bayl gb trg gb Vguvyvra naq pbzr npebff Obebzve vafgrnq? Rrfu! V nqber Obebzve, ohg gung jbhyq unir whfg orra nobhg gur jbefg guvat gung pbhyq unccra. Fb rira gubhtu gur qernz pnzr gb Snenzve bevtvanyyl naq zbfg bsgra, vg nyzbfg unq gb or Obebzve jub jrag. V guvax npghnyyl, ernqvat guvf, gung gur qernz pnzr gb Snenzve bayl nf n jnl gb trg Obebzve gb cnl nggragvba gb vg.

    Naq bu, zl urneg vf nyernql oernxvat sbe Znex jura ur trgf gb EBGX naq nyy gubfr Snenzve naq Qrargube fprarf. 🙁

  48. eulaliavox says:

    I love Faramir. He's genuinely one of my favorite characters in the series. <3

  49. rlanto says:

    ILU Faramir! Faramir is my favorite human in LotR. Nothing beats Quickbeam and Merry for me, but Faramir comes very, very close.

  50. Tul says:

    One last (late) comment : "You will not have us slay wild beast for no purpose, and it seemed no more, so I tried no arrow" (Anborn to Faramir)
    Faramir respects animals' rights! *proud*

  51. Ashley says:

    Sbe gur erpbeq, V fnj gur zbivrf orsber V ernq gur obbxf naq rira gura Snenzve jnf zl snibevgr punenpgre. Ernqvat gur obbxf jnf fvzcyl n pbasvezngvba bs gur guvatf V ernq vagb Zbivrzve'f punenpgre–gur abovyvgl naq tbbqarff V fgvyy fnj gurer, whfg znavsrfgrq va nygreangr jnlf. Whfg…NYY GUR SNENZVE YBIR!

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