Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category
Back at the start of the summer, staffer GreenDragon generously asked the publisher Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to send me a copy of Tolkien’s translation of Beowulf to review. While I started the book right away, this review has been delayed by producing Happy Hobbit and attending four conventions, along with writing two books and a script on top of daily life and work, which is a long-winded way to say that I apologize for my tardiness!
While still an undergrad, I took a course in Old English which was an introduction to the language, followed by a semester of translating Beowulf. A year isn’t enough time to master a dead language, and I was attempting to master two at once, for I was also taking Latin at the time (an alternate nickname for me could be Hermione), so I won’t be able to go into the nitty gritty mechanics of the language like Tolkien does in his notes, but I will offer what insight my education allows!
This is what studying two dead languages looks like.
To offer some context, I will say that Old English is the name we have given to the Anglo Saxon language, for after a strong French influence after the Norman Conquest of 1066, Old English morphed into Modern English. It is important to note, as well, that Anglo Saxon is the language of our (even if you aren’t of English descent, you’re reading this in English) conquerors, for the Nordic tribes of the Angles, Saxons, and Jutes invaded England after the withdrawal of the Roman Empire around 410 CE. They renamed the island Angle-Land. England. So while Beowulf is attributed as being the first great epic in English, it is significant that it is a story from the culture that conquered the island and that its setting is in the conquering nation’s homeland in the north, not England, even though the manuscript was recorded and found in an English monastery, hidden beneath pages of religious text. All of this would have been known to J.R.R. Tolkien at the time of his translation in the 1920s.
Firstly, I will say that my reason for taking Old English was driven by my obsession with Tolkien and The Lord of the Rings. I was first exposed to Beowulf in seventh grade when I read a version of the poem for one of my classes. Enamored with the culture and the exciting, heroic tale, it lingered in my mind in a way that few stories read for school had. In the Humanities Honors Program in college, we were exposed to the literature that laid the foundations for Western civilization and I once again read a translation of Beowulf (picturing Aragorn as Beowulf this time around, of course) and while in my proceeding English courses I avoided the works I had already read, Beowulf was the one text I would read every time I was asked. As such, I have been exposed to three or four translations, including my own.
Posted in J.R.R. Tolkien, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Uncategorized
The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Extended Edition is out today as a download from iTunes!
As we did last year with An Unexpected Journey EE, TOR.n has compiled detailed descriptions and screencaps from the 25 minutes of extended footage in The Desolation of Smaug.
SPOILERS AHEAD! (more…)
Posted in Hobbit Movie, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug, Uncategorized
Welcome to our collection of TORn’s hottest topics for the past week. If you’ve fallen behind on what’s happening on the Message Boards, here’s a great way to catch the highlights. Or if you’re new to TORn and want to enjoy some great conversations, just follow the links to some of our most active discussions. Watch this space as every weekend we will spotlight the most popular buzz on TORn’s Message Boards. Everyone is welcome, so come on in and join the fun!
Posted in Uncategorized
We tried to film an episode on how to survive in a city, but we kept getting interrupted by this strange man in a TORn shirt… As a result, here are our attempts at an urban episode, complete with a special guest, Thorongil! And where is he headed? To New York Comic Con, of course! Unfortunately, he’s starting his journey from California. Do you think he will make it to the other side of the country in time?
Note: if you haven’t guessed it yet, this skit was our fun way to get you the NYCC details! We hope all who go have a blast!
Posted in Fans, Happy Hobbit, NYCC, Uncategorized
Hobbits, and Rangers, and Elves! Not to mention Dwarves, and Easterlings, and Haradrim! All are welcome at Tolkien Forever‘s annual Hall of Fire event on Saturday, October 11. Every year this party seems to grow more elaborate as we take over a massive, multi-tiered yard at a private residence in Glendora, CA, and turn each nook and alcove into a different Middle-earth-themed experience. Share music and poetry in the Rivendell Pavilion, have dinner, supper, and tea in Hobbiton, peruse Smaug’s golden hoard, and raise a pint or three with the crowd in the Flaming Mûmak Tavern. Costumes are highly encouraged (although not required), and like the Hall of Fire in the House of Elrond, everyone is welcome to participate by bringing games, poems, stories, and music to share.
As the event is held at a private residence, the address will be sent to those who RSVP directly on our Facebook event page, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. All ages are welcome, but please be responsible for your children. The party is held in a big backyard with a pool in the middle of it. Some parts of the yard are dimly lit, so please be aware of your surroundings. All party attendees must respect the wishes of the home owners at all times.
For more information and to RSVP, visit the Hall of Fire’s Facebook page. To see pictures from previous events, click here and here! Tolkien Forever is the local Los Angeles Lord of the Rings fan club group and the L.A. Smial of the Tolkien Society.
What: Tolkien Forever’s Annual Hall of Fire Party
Where: Glendora, CA (RSVP to receive address)
When: Saturday, October 11, 2014, 6:00 p.m.
Posted in Events, Fans, Meet Ups, Other Events, Uncategorized
Join Fili to learn how to make a sweet summer treat that even elves will devour… or will they? See recipe below!
STRAWBERRY SHORTBREAD PIE
For the crust:
Remember — this exact recipe may end up being a little more than enough for just one pie. If this happens, use the extra dough to form shapes to decorate your pie! This makes a great cookie, too!
1 cup (2 sticks) salted butter, softened
2 cups all-purpose flour
½ cup confectioner’s sugar
1. Preheat oven to 350º F.
2. Mix together the cold butter, flour, and confectioner’s sugar. Using a pastry cutter to mix it all together will help. Once it is mixed together into an even crust, take the amount you need to evenly cover the bottom of the tin. Make sure it is not too thin on the bottom or else it will burn, and not too thick on the edges.
3. Bake for about 10-15 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Always set the bake time lower in case your oven is acting up!
4. Remove from oven and let it cool completely before you dress it up with the berries!
For the filling:
1 quart fresh strawberries (or more!)
1 cup white sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3/4 cup water
1. After the crust has baked and cooled, arrange around half the whole strawberries until the crust is covered.
2. Mash the remaining berries in a bowl before adding the sugar. Once mixed, cook it together in a medium saucepan over medium heat until it boils. Be sure to stir it the entire time!
3. On the side, whisk together cornstarch and water. Once the berry mixture is boiling, stir the cornstarch mixture in and reduce heat to low. Stir constantly until it thickens into a gelatin-like substance. This could be 5 to 10 minutes depending on how your stove cooks, eyeball it!
4. Once it is ready, pour it over the strawberries that are already in the crust. Place any decorations such as the hearts we did above on the pie before it sets up too much. Then last, put it in the fridge for several hours before eating!
5. Eat it all! Whip cream or not, this pie will be gone in a night! Especially if you have Legolas around ;).
Posted in Fans, Happy Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Uncategorized
Join us in the mad journey of SDCC 2014, through the Exhibit Hall to TheOneRing.net panel, a life-sized Smaug, and a hula-dancing Kili!
Posted in Fans, Happy Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Uncategorized, WETA Digital, WETA Workshop
Peter Jackson just dropped a fireball from his Facebook page. A movie poster for “The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies.” Like it? He included a single line of text: “Anyone else excited about San Diego Comic Con?”
That is of course Bard staring down the killing machine of Smaug on the shores of Laketown. Editorializing just slightly: THAT IS AMAZING!
TheOneRing.net staff is in San Diego in force this year and will bring as much of the fun and excitement as possible via TORn, Twitter and Facebook. Enjoy!
Posted in ComicCon, Conventions, Director news, Events, Hobbit Movie, Peter Jackson, The Hobbit, Uncategorized
Our first glimpse of Colorado came with the Rockies where what appeared to be the Lonely Mountain peeked out of the cloud-cover. As the three of us travelling together (my sister, Fili, and our mother “Dis”) are known by Dwarven names, we took this as a good omen. After all, the people of Colorado are mountain folk.
Upon descending on our eagles, we took some time to adjust to the lay of the land before the start of the convention. Having only really experienced the 150k strong crowds at San Diego Comic Con, we didn’t know what to expect from DCC. As it was, the massive line waiting to get in on Friday morning was intimidating. However, upon seeing a Gandalf among the cosplayers, our nerves were set to rest. We were among our people. Our mom even made up her own Dwarven costume for Dis!
We joined up with Bofur (Justin!) and hosted our first panel of the day that discussed the history of TheOneRing.net. Given that this year is the site’s 15th anniversary, there was a lot to cover! Many of the folks who attended enjoyed reminiscing about the old days of anonymous set reports that often spurred fan rage online. With time comes perspective, and it was fascinating to look at the response Arwen’s intended presence at Helm’s Deep received vs. the introduction of Tauriel in the new Hobbit films.
Posted in Events, Fans, Happy Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, Sylvester McCoy, The Hobbit, The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, Tolkien, Uncategorized
“It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.”
Just that happened to my sister and me exactly a year ago, however we never even stepped out our door! One June 11th, 2013, the first The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug trailer hit the internet in the U.S. and since we didn’t have time to write up our responses for TheOneRing.net, we decided to film our reaction to the trailer (watch here).
We never expected more than our 15 “hardcore” fans to watch our reaction video at the time, much less ever thought that PJ and the cast and crew would not only see it, but film their own response (watch Happy Elves)! For two young women who didn’t even know that posting trailer reactions was a “thing,” getting launched into the international news was even more unexpected, but it has been such an amazing unexpected journey. To be rewarded for being our unrestrained, embarrassing selves (see just how so in our reaction to the cast’s reaction here) is a boon to not only our little show, but to our souls.
We are forever grateful to Jackson and his team. As a result, we celebrate the support our Facebook page has received (3k likes!) and that of our YouTube channel (5.5k!) by sharing this video that is a compilation of the “deleted scenes” from our reaction videos that we had cut out at the time. Enjoy!
A year after that fateful night, we are now packing and preparing to leave for Denver Comic Con, not as attendees, but as panel participants. We will have our own Happy Hobbit panel and fan table and are so excited to meet as many of our viewers as possible. This path has led to San Diego Comic Con 2013 where we got to meet Evangeline Lilly and Manu Bennett and to the DOS World Premiere in Hollywood in December where we had a blast chatting with the cast and crew.
People always ask us what it feels like to live a Middle-earth fan’s dream, and the answer is simple: It hasn’t sunk in yet. One year later, it all still feels so blissfully surreal.
We wouldn’t have had this adventure of a lifetime without TheOneRing.net, our viewers, and of course, Peter Jackson, Weta and their team. As Gandalf says in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey, “I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love.” What was a small act of kindness from Peter Jackson’s team and the cast sent ripples of joy through our lives and by extension, through the lives of the thousands experiencing the adventure alongside us through our videos.
Happy Hobbit is still going strong and we have many episodes planned for this summer, including our first ever Happy Hobbit movie! While fandom has given us uncountable joys, one of the greatest is building a community with our fellow Tolkien fans and knowing that, even if only for a moment, we have made you smile. I’ve lost track of how many messages we’ve received from people saying that the best cure for a bad mood is to watch Happy Hobbit! Perhaps our fan Ian McDermott summarizes it best:
‘Happy Hobbit’ has become a haven for me, a gentle and caring respite for the jaded, world-weary traveller; a place where good cheer and whimsy rule for no better reason than to bring happiness to others. Hannon le, ladies.
Please note we will also be participating in TORn’s panels at Denver Comic Con throughout the weekend, including the big party Friday night at the Dino hotel (the Best Western Southwest), so keep your eyes peeled for our coverage on Facebook and Twitter! I will also be participating in several writing panels, including one about the making of my book Darkling.
Posted in Events, Fans, Happy Hobbit, Hobbit: Desolation of Smaug, Lord of the Rings, Uncategorized
Posted in Fans, Happy Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, The Hobbit, Tolkien, Uncategorized
Summer means strawberries, and strawberries are one of Samwise’s favorite foods! Join Kili to learn how to make one of Mr. Gamgee’s specialties! Recipe below.
SAMWISE’S STRAWBERRY CREAM PUFFS
For the Puff:
1 stick (1/2 cup) unsalted butter
1 cup water
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
In a medium saucepan, combine the water, butter, sugar, and salt.
Bring to a boil over medium heat. Remove the pan from the heat and sift the flour directly into the pan. Stir the mixture into a paste with a wooden spoon. Return the pan to a medium heat. Stir the mixture until it pulls away from the sides of the pan and is slightly shiny, about 3 minutes.
Transfer the paste to a medium bowl, and beat with a wooden spoon until slightly cooled, about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the eggs, one at a time, incorporating each one thoroughly before adding the next just until the batter is smooth and tight. If the batter starts to get loose, don’t add all of the last egg.
Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, until golden brown. Centers should be dry. Place on a rack to cool.
While the puffs cool, slice one pound of fresh strawberries lengthwise.
For the Cream:
2 cups (1 pint) of heavy cream
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1+ teaspoon vanilla
Begin to whip the cream and vanilla. Gradually add the sugar. Whip until smooth and stiff but be careful not to over-whip (it may become butter!)
Once the puffs are cool, slice them in half and fill with the cream. Place the strawberries on the cream (and top with strawberry sauce/glaze if you so wish). Return the top of the pastry to make a sandwich then sprinkle with powdered sugar.
These don’t keep long, so be sure to eat them all soon like Sam would!
Happy Hobbit is going to Denver Comic Con (Jun 13-15th). For the first time, we’ll have our very own panel. Hope to see you there!