129 years ago today, in Bloemfontein Africa, a very special person came into the world: John Ronald Reuel Tolkien. Forty-five years later, in 1937, his book The Hobbit, was published which he had written for his children. Together with its sequel, The Lord of the Rings, it launched generations of readers on adventures through the invented world of Middle-earth; adventure that would impact many of us for the rest of our lives.

One of the greatest ways Tolkien has impacted many of our lives is through the friendships we’ve made from having read Tolkien’s books and/or watched Peter Jackson’s movies of the same. Tolkien himself made lifelong friendships as a result of his writing endeavors, sharing many a pint critiquing yet-unfinished works at the Eagle and Child pub in Oxford with friends C.S. Lewis, Charles Williams, and others. Today, countless discussion forums, websites, and clubs carry on the tradition of those discussions, sharing ideas about Tolkien and his writings with like-minded fans and, yes, dear friends.

Today, TORn celebrates life of J.R.R. Tolkien and the inspiration and friendships he has given us. To express our thanks, we’re continuing our theme of the day of Tolkien quotes, this time with quotes having to do with friendship from The Lord of the Rings:

“I name you Elf-friend, and may the stars shine upon the end of your road”

– Gildor to Frodo (The Fellowship of the Ring: Three is Company)

“You can trust us to stick to you, through thick and thin – to the bitter end. And you can trust us to keep any secret of yours – closer than you keep it yourself. But you cannot trust us to let you face trouble alone, and go off without a word. We are your friends, Frodo.”

 – Merry to Frodo (The Fellowship of the Ring: A Conspiracy Unmasked)

“Though all the mighty elf-friends of old, Hador and Hurin, and Turin, and Beren himself were assembled together your seat should be among them.”

– Elrond to Frodo (The Fellowship of the Ring: The Council of Elrond)

“You will meet many foes, some open, and some disguised; and you may find friends along your way when you least look for it.”

– Elrond to the Fellowship (The Fellowship of the Ring: The Ring Goes South)

“Twice blessed is help unlooked for, and never was a meeting of friends so joyful.

 – Eomer to Aragorn (The Return of the King: The Battle of the Pelennor Fields)

“I wish we could have a Stone that we could see all our friends in and that we could speak to them from far away.”

Pippin (The Return of the King: Many Partings)

Weta Workshop's Minas Morgul Environment collectible.

One of my absolute favorite lines that our friends from Weta Workshop put out within their The Lord of the Rings statue line is the environment sub-line. As I’ve said in this column before, it allows us to go to places we will never get actually to visit. So today we’re going to take a look at Minas Morgul, and the outstanding job Weta did on this piece. This one is sold out, but if you can track it down and afford it, I think this is absolutely worth it.

Continue reading “Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop’s Minas Morgul Environment Review”

If you haven’t already, make sure to mark your calendars for this Thursday, October 10th. That’s the day we can finally order the beautiful Minas Morgul environment we saw at Comic-Con this past July. Unlike previous items, this will have a unique way to determine the edition size. When orders open on Thursday they will begin calculating the edition size, and when orders close on the 23rd of this month they will finalize the number. So we, the fans, will determine just where this ends up; and it also allows us to show bad we want this piece. So mark your calendar now.

Here is what time Minas Morgul will go up based on your location:

·   12.30 p.m, October 10 – 12.30 p.m, October 23 (PDT)
·    9.30 p.m, October 10 – 9.30 p.m, October 23 (CET)
·    8.30 a.m, October 11 – 8.30 a.m, October 24 (NZT)

One of the new figures Asmus Toys had at Comic-Con this year was the solo version of the Mouth of Sauron. This piece allows fans who just want the Mouth of Sauron minus his horse a chance to get him into their collections. As you can see, this one turned out pretty solid with some incredible details on the different versions of his mouth piece. While this one is labeled as a ‘slim’ version, with all the stuff you get and how nice it looks there is nothing slim about him! You can get him right now for $145 and he is due to ship first part of next year.

Good news is never late. It arrives precisely when means to. If you’ve been following our friends from Weta then you know the last little bit has had some very cool news for collectors. One of the most popular statues from The Hobbit line came from the character of Tauriel. She sold out pretty quickly and on the secondary market can come at a pretty high price. Fans have been asking for a new statue of the character, and that wish has finally been granted. You can grab the new Tauriel for $349, which is a fair amount under the price on ebay. She comes with an edition size of only 800 pieces so she’s likely to not be around too long, and you can expect her to land in your collection in March of next year.

Continue reading “Collecting The Precious – Weta Workshop Tauriel Pre-Order, Mini Epic Witch-king, New Ringwraith,and 12 Days”