You know, that crazy dwarf – king-to-be character – who was supposed to make an appearance in The Desolation of Smaug – but clearly didn’t. Upon seeing the first two films in The Hobbit trilogy, Thráin II (son of Thrór, father of Thorin Oakenshield) appears to be a rather key ingredient in the whole narrative – despite his lack of participation in the story.

After all, he’s the one who gave the key and map of Erebor to Gandalf prior to the Quest. Without which, let’s face it, the adventure would not have been the same.

Thrain attacks Gandalf at Dol Guldur
Thrain attacks Gandalf at Dol Guldur

In the cinematic adaptations, our glimpses of Thráin’s character come in the first hour or so of An Unexpected Journey. We meet him in the prologue as the son of King Thrór and the bold defence he mounts alongside his heir, as the dragon attacks Erebor. Next, we see him in a flashback to the battle of Azanulbizar and after the death of Thrór, he “was driven mad by grief. He went missing, taken prisoner or killed.”

The uncertainty of whether he’s dead or alive, proves to be a point of speculation in the development of the story.

Those who’ve read the book learn that the acquisition of the key and map of Erebor occur whilst Gandalf investigates and discovers Thráin lying in a pit in Dol Guldur – close to death.

Originally, a scene showing Gandalf and Thráin’s meeting appeared in the trailers forAn Unexpected Journey, but after the decision to split the film from two to three, that scene was moved to the second installment.

However, once again, the missing dwarf seems to have remained just that: missing.

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