The Fellowship of the Ring
$17.09
TolkienGuide is a Blackwell's affiliate
Tolkien Collector's Guide
12

Trouble harfoot? Amazon’s Lord of the Rings epic divides Tolkien fans

Sep 2
2022/9/2 21:31:43 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

https://www.theguardian.com/tv-and-rad ... lord-of-the-rings-tolkien
Sep 3
2022/9/3 17:53:44 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Predictably, if you don’t like this show it must be because racism. “In the farther reaches of the internet,” indeed.
Sep 4
2022/9/4 2:05:26 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Ulmo wrote:

Predictably, if you don’t like this show it must be because racism. “In the farther reaches of the internet,” indeed.

I mean, there’s a bunch in this article other than that, including the whole section beginning “Away from the so-called culture wars” immediately following the one you refer to.

Look, I refuse to watch this show for many reasons, and I kind of hate how it’s taken over Tolkien discourse everywhere on the internet, even here. But, for god’s sake, people have got to stop feeling threatened by discussions of race and racism in relation to this show and Tolkien’s work more generally. It’s creepy. And anyway it’s a real thing that there’s been a TON of backlash about. I for one find that embarrassing, and any self-proclaimed “real fans” should take every opportunity to counteract it, or at the very least not begrudge engagement with it. Being upset by the mere presence of racial discourse is not a good look.
Sep 4
2022/9/4 4:04:17 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
I assumed from the very start that the show would be diverse, and have been digging into Tolkien’s writings on mannish peoples with relish. Tolkien doesn’t shy from issues of race (in this sense), especially surrounding the Númenóreans and how they relate to the Dunlendings, the Northmen, the Haradrim, and Agar. You’re a well-read bunch, so I don’t need to recount Tolkien’s sophisticated and nuanced explorations of the issues of colonialism, racial purity, and genocide. I’m sorry if I come across as knee-jerk, but actually I don’t think we “real fans” are the ones shying away from racial discourse. From what I have seen in the trailers, the show’s approach to race is tokenism and call it a day. Yet anyone questions their particular approach and they’re written off as toxic. Aren’t we on the same page, here?
Sep 4
2022/9/4 13:20:48 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Philomythos wrote:



Look, I refuse to watch this show for many reasons, and I kind of hate how it’s taken over Tolkien discourse everywhere on the internet, even here.

The discourse about the show, on this site is contained solely in the "Adaptation thread" so I wouldn't go so far as to say it's taken over discourse here.

I want to take this opportunity remind all members that you have the ability to mute forums you don't want to see by clicking on discuss at the top of the site, then the forum you're not interested in, then clicking the mute button on the left hand side.
Sep 4
2022/9/4 15:39:35 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Ulmo wrote:

From what I have seen in the trailers, the show’s approach to race is tokenism and call it a day. Yet anyone questions their particular approach and they’re written off as toxic. Aren’t we on the same page, here?

Thanks, Ulmo. Yes, I think we probably are. My comment wasn't aimed at you in particular, more the general discourse around this that I want to speak against. I certainly agree that tokenism is bad (though representation is not), and I by no means trust Amazon to do much better than tokenism, though since I don't have any firsthand knowledge of the show I can't speak to it in this case. If the show does deal in tokenism, that's a highly conversation-worthy topic in itself. What I see mostly, though, are simplistic, non-nuanced reactions to casting choices etc., or (in some cases) people using the notion of tokenism as an excuse to discredit representation and diversity outright ("casting for the sake of tokenism is the real racism" (direct quote) is code for 'we're not racist, *they're* the racists!'), or using "woke" as a proxy for 'contains black people' (there's a whole article that does this). And in any case, the intense hostility isn't (to my knowledge) coming from people mad about tokenism; it's coming from racists mad that there are actors belonging to more than one race in a story based on a body of work that is fundamentally and structurally racial in nature (not only the "races" of Men, Elves, etc., but also the many subdivisions within those groups, including very detailed attention to notions of lineage, heritage, and inherited qualities and characteristics, whether good, bad, or neutral), as you alluded to in your reply.

If you've been (or seen others be) written off as toxic for criticizing the show's approach to race, there would seem to be basically two possible reasons for this: either (a) the discussion was not nuanced enough (nuance is difficult to achieve on the platforms where these discussions typically take place), or (b) the person/people were not being sympathetic enough to pick up on the nuances that were presented to them (also very common, where people just write others off without hearing them fully first). But in either case, I think the reaction to being accused of toxicity – assuming it is a false accusation – ought not to be disengagement. (At least, I don't believe it should be, as evidenced by the fact that this is the only topic I'm willing to speak about in regards to this show.) The reason is that, even if a whole bunch of people aren't receptive to nuanced discussion, they probably aren't representative of the whole; and many others are likely to be receptive to it, if the matter is approached with patience. More generally, I think when nuanced folks give up, then the loudest, most simplistic views win out by default.

Again, I don't know you or your views in detail; so my comments are not meant as an attack or accusation against you personally. They're just how I see things.
Sep 4
2022/9/4 15:50:21 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Mr. Underhill wrote:


The discourse about the show, on this site is contained solely in the "Adaptation thread" so I wouldn't go so far as to say it's taken over discourse here.

Thanks, Mr. Underhill. Unfortunately, the fact that the discussions about the Amazon show are compartmentalized on this site does not make me feel any better about their presence here, which has become substantial. As that's clearly an unpopular opinion, I'll say no more of it.

Mr. Underhill wrote:


I want to take this opportunity remind all members that you have the ability to mute forums you don't want to see by clicking on discuss at the top of the site, then the forum you're not interested in, then clicking the mute button on the left hand side.

I'm aware of this but actually have not been successful in getting either the "mute" or the "email me about this" toggles to do anything. I've tried a few times since they were added, but with no result. So, I generally just scroll past the "adaptations" discussions (or click through them to make the "unread" status go away) and keep a close eye on the topics of interest to me (i.e., the ones related to collection).
Sep 4
2022/9/4 16:00:24 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Philomythos wrote:

I'm aware of this but actually have not been successful in getting either the "mute" or the "email me about this" toggles to do anything. I've tried a few times since they were added, but with no result. So, I generally just scroll past the "adaptations" discussions (or click through them to make the "unread" status go away) and keep a close eye on the topics of interest to me (i.e., the ones related to collection).

Just tried the Mute function and it does seem to work, can you try it again, go to Manage Forum Preferences and make sure that Rings of Power is selected.

Should look like this, please let us know if it is not working so that we can look into why.

10_6314cb8f6e7e6.png 672X1010 px
Sep 4
2022/9/4 16:12:07 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia

Trotter wrote:


Just tried the Mute function and it does seem to work, can you try it again, go to Manage Forum Preferences and make sure that Rings of Power is selected.

Should look like this, please let us know if it is not working so that we can look into why.

Thanks, Trotter, that was helpful and it is working (i.e., the RoP threads disappear from my view when I do this). It wasn’t that the toggles weren’t toggling; it was just that I didn’t see any effect happen. But before now I had not done it in the way you (and Mr. Underhill) said to. I had just clicked the toggle at the bottom of whatever thread I was on, to apparently no effect. For example, I tried to turn on email notifications for “Interesting Listings” when this feature first appeared, and the toggle moved but I have never received an email notification. I’ll try again now from the “forums” list and hopefully that will work. I’ll let you know if not. Thanks again.
Sep 4
2022/9/4 17:14:53 (GMT) Greenwich Mean Time, London, Dublin, Lisbon, Casablanca, Monrovia
Great, though hopefully you won't see this reply
12
Jump to Last