Barliman's Chat This weekend the Hall of Fire will be taking a detour into the Hobbit movie minefield as we tackle possibly the topic of the moment — the appearance and character of the shapeshifter Beorn.

Standing near was a huge man with a thick black beard and hair, and great bare arms and legs with knotted muscles. He was clothed in a tunic of wool down to his knees, and was leaning on a large axe. Queer Lodgings, The Hobbit.

Can we bear Beorn?

Tolkien’s Beorn is a gruff, semi-reclusive being who takes a bit of convincing to help out the Company. His assistance is half-reluctant, prompted more by his detestation of the depredations of the Misty Mountains than any love of dwarves, wizards — or hobbits!

Yet, nearing the conclusion of the novel, he re-appears to play a key role.

The question is, what can we expect from Peter Jackson’s Beorn? What conclusions do you feel can legitimately be drawn about the spy image we saw leaked via the SD Toys calendar last week?

And what do you feel about the general fan response so far? Too negative? Too positive? Just right? Our poll so far reveals that 58.4% are taking a wait and see attitude, 17.4% are against the look, while 12.5% are in favour. Which camp are you in, and why? And what could sway your attitude?

Join us this Saturday at 6pm EST (New York time) in #thehalloffire on the TORn chat server for what’s sure to be a lively and spoiler-filled discussion!

Some suggested reading:

The Hobbit: Queer Lodgings
The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies

Time zone conversions

Not sure what time the chat will be where you are? Check this little conversion table out for some help. Alternatively, check our handy Event Announcer over on Time and Date for the correct time in your area.

6.00pm EDT (New York)
5.00pm CDT (Chicago)
4.00pm MDT (Denver)
3.00pm PDT (Los Angeles)

11.00pm BST (London)
11.00pm CST (Paris)
1.00am EEST (Helsinki)

8.00am AEST (Sunday) Brisbane
8.00am AEST (Sunday) Sydney, Melbourne
10.00am NZST (Sunday) Wellington

How long do your topic chats go for?

Our chats usually last from an hour to ninety minutes, and are very newbie friendly. Simply drop in and join the conversation! However, our main room, is open 24 hours a day. We don’t always talk Tolkien there, but if you have a burning question, you’ll usually find one or two of “the regulars” up for a chat!

Where — connection details

Chat happens on #thehalloffire on — the TORn IRC server. You can connect instantly via our embedded Mibbit client that works inside your web browser.

Alternatively, you can install a dedicated chat program such as mIRC on your computer and just plug in the following connection details.

Port: 6667
Channel: #thehalloffire