Monday, November 4, 2013

LOTR Read-Along: Strider (FOTR ch. 10)

Oh, Strider, you are so lovely.  I like you ever so much more in the books than the movies.  You're grim and strong and wonderful.  And so intriguing, with your half-hinted backstory lingering in the shadows still here.  I remember some of your fellow Rangers showing up later in the books and being all cool and mysterious and just begging to have their own books.  Sigh.  Yum.

But anyway, I love how Frodo goes all suspicious in this chapter.  He thinks Strider is a rascal out to swindle or trap him, he thinks Butterbur forgot Gandalf's message on purpose -- Frodo just doesn't do things halfheartedly, does he?  First he's one hundred percent too careless in the previous chapter, and now he's one hundred percent too suspicious.  Makes me laugh.


Favorite Lines:

"Go on then!" said Frodo.  "What do you know?"
"Too much; too many dark things," said Strider grimly (p. 160).

"A hunted man sometimes wearies of distrust and longs for friendship" (p. 167).


Possible Discussion Questions:  

I like Strider/Aragorn better in the books than in the movies directed by Peter Jackson.  How about you?  Or do you not see them as being much different?

15 comments:

  1. Book vs. movie Aragorn... A very tough decision! I love the book version, of course, with all the lines that didn't make it to the movie, but Viggo Mortensen... I love Viggo too, ESPECIALLY as Aragorn. I think the casting was perfect and I'm not sure if I can now clearly distinguish between the two. Sooo.. no, I can't say whom I like best, and all this rambling was for nothing :))

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    1. I'm in a very tiny minority in that I don't love Viggo as Aragorn. I actually love him as Strider -- he does the scruffy, mysterious Ranger thing really well. But when he gets to Rivendell and cleans up, he just... looks uncomfortable, maybe? I don't know -- it doesn't sit right with me. Once he gets back out into the wilderness, I'm cool with him again. Very odd. So I really like him in the books, but in the movies I only like him sometimes.

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  2. Hello Hamlette, sorry for the silence. I'm planning on writing the Aragorn character profile tonight (European time mind!) and sending it to you.

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    1. Sounds good! I look forward to it.

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    2. He, I sent you the email with the character profile this morning (European morning...) Just giving you an extra heads-up in case I misspelled the emailadress or something else...

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    3. Got it, loved it, posted it!

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  3. Well, too early for me to really tell about book Aragorn! It's been too long since I last read this... however, just with this chapter, movie Aragorn all the way. Book Aragorn talks too much. LOL! Movie Aragorn cuts to the chase.

    But honestly, they're pretty indistinguishable in my head. Viggo IS Aragorn, so I'm reading it with him in mind at this point... :-D

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    1. Haha! He talks too much? So funny. Maybe that's why I like him better!

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  4. The moment when Strider comes to the story is always the bit I look forward to most in the Fellowship of the Ring, both in the book and in the film. I never use any kind of pencil on my books, but IF I did, then in my edition of FOTR the paragraph in the Prancing Pony chapter where Strider is seen the first time would be full of little hearts and exclamation marks. And I have to say I simply adore Viggo Mortensen's portrayal all the way through the movies :)

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    1. This reminds me that I was going to do a whole post about what my copy looks like. Because I do write in it, and I use a different color pen every read-through so I know when I marked what. I only write in books I really love and read over and over, which may seem counter-intuitive, except that those are the books I dig really deeply into and need to notate.

      When Boromir first appears, he gets a little smiley heart. He gets a lot of little smiley hearts, come to think of it.

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  5. Ooh, I love this chapter. It's my absolute favorite in Book 1. Strider is just so mysterious and awesome, with this sense of concealed power and backstory behind him that immediately gives him depth even before we know that much about him. And I love the way he hints about his knowledge of the Ring until Frodo finally accepts that he really does know about it. I also really like the way it is hinted that Aragorn has encountered the Black Riders before. (Seriously, I am curious about what happened back when he first learned fear of them.)

    And yes, Frodo certainly does not do things by halves. I rather like that about him, actually.

    This chapter has a lot of quotes that I really, really like. Your second one, "A hunted man sometimes wearies of distrust and longs for friendship," is so perfect. And I really like the poem, "All that is gold does not glitter." It sums up Aragorn so well.

    We just finished the books recently and started watching FotR last night, so I don't have much of a basis for comparing book and movie Aragorn yet. I've only seen him as a Ranger in the movie so far, and I quite like him but am not completely in love with him, if that makes sense. As a matter of fact, the only thing that's bothering me about the part of the movie we've watched so far is that they didn't include more of the dialogue in this chapter. I know a movie has to make changes, but still I love this conversation so much that I wish they'd put more of it in. :)
    ~Marcy

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    1. Okaay, now we got to the point (in FotR extended edition) where Aragorn refuses to take Narsil/Anduril and the responsibility that goes with it. WHAT?? Suddenly I'm starting to completely second-guess movie Aragorn. I'm completely agreeing with you -- I like book Aragorn a LOT, but I only like movie Aragorn sometimes.
      (And don't worry, I'm not going to give you an update on what I think every single time we watch further in the movies. This -- um, provoked a reaction. :))
      ~Marcy

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    2. As is probably clear from my posts here, I'm not a huge fan of Viggo Mortenson as Aragorn. Mostly it's his voice, which sometimes is fine and sometimes grates on me. He's really awesome when he's doing his Ranger thing, but when he gets all cleaned up, he loses his coolness. For me.

      I just rewatched FOTR over the past week because it was the 15th anniversary of its release, so how could I not? Hee :-)

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    3. Having watched the whole movie trilogy by now, I have decided that I don't mind Viggo Mortensen as Aragorn, but I do really mind a couple of the changes that they made to his character arc (his reluctance to take up the kingship, and his whole "relationship" with Eowyn). So book Aragorn will definitely be my favorite version of him.

      Yes, how could you not watch it? :)
      ~Marcy

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    4. Intriguing. I find the whole thing with Eowyn to be really well done -- it's more overt than in the story, true, but so sensitively and realistically handled. Aragorn in the movie never encourages Eowyn, he only treats her kindly and with honor and respect, and she lets her admiration of him grow and grow into something more. And yet it's clearly not really love, but more an infatuation, and when she meets Faramir and falls in love for real, she knows she was deluding herself earlier. It rings very true to the story and how real life goes, to me.

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What do you think?

(Rudeness and vulgar language will not be tolerated.)