Who is your favorite character?

Discussion in '"The Hobbit"' started by yhwh1st, Jul 3, 2007.

  1. st0rmb0rn

    st0rmb0rn Drag0nL0rd

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2018
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    5
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Hermit
    Location:
    Untied States Of America
    Home Page:
    Bilbo. We're a lot alike. I don`t like going places like him, and I love food, and I'm very short (I`m 5'2). :D
     
  2. Thistle Bunce

    Thistle Bunce Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    46
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Gandalf, to me, was the most intriguing character. At first, he seems somewhat guileful and tricksy, gulling Bilbo into an invitation to tea, scratching a secret mark on Bilbo's door, then masterfully organizing the invasion of the dwarves a couple at a time. His first words to Bilbo are a rather complicated response to an offhand, standard greeting, making us think that here is someone inclined to wring all possible meanings from simple words, perhaps looking for an advantage by confusing Bilbo?

    "Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning;
    or that it is a morning to be good on?"

    Although Bilbo blithely dismisses all of Gandalf's queries, the seed has been planted that Gandalf, at least, thinks deeper about things than what appears on the surface. This trait follows him throughout the story, always shading him with that bit of doubt - Did he mean that, or is he just twisting things to suit him again?

    We know from Bilbo's gushing that Gandalf seems to possess magical qualities (those cuff links, for example), yet we are left unsure if these actually ARE magic, or just Bilbo's rather naive interpretation of things not usually found in the Shire. Is Gandalf truly endowed with powers beyond that of mortals, or does he rely on a bit of hucksterism and stage magic to enhance his reputation? After all, Bilbo recalls Gandalf telling stories that entice normal, sober hobbit lads and lasses to "[go] off into the Blue for mad adventures", and isn't that the hallmark of those that want to take advantage of those with limited exposure to things? Convince them that the grass is greener on the other side?

    It wasn't until Gandalf disappeared and left Bilbo and the dwarves to deal with the Trolls as best as they could, then reappeared in the nick of time, that I was able to sense his true purpose - the education of one Bilbo Baggins, from complacent hobbit to spider-stabbing hero. Gandalf's masterful manipulation of Bilbo's crash course in courage became delightful as it twisted and turned, from the rescue by the Eagles to the abandonment of the party at the eaves of Mirkwood. It was Gandalf's words and actions in the main, that guided Bilbo's growth and development into a wonderful quest tale for the ages.

    Also - I love a good fireworks show. :)
     

  3. Miguel

    Miguel Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Messages:
    264
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Under a blankie


    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019
    Thistle Bunce likes this.
  4. Thistle Bunce

    Thistle Bunce Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    46
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    Indeed...one of the more engaging elements of going from The Hobbit to the trilogy is seeing how Gandalf is portrayed in each. Naturally, as a 'fairy-tale for children', The Hobbit's Gandalf was much less complex, albeit Tolkien provided a few hints as to his actual capability, which we see displayed in far greater detail in the trilogy. As someone who read Hobbit AFTER the trilogy, I was fascinated with the Hobbit Gandalf seemingly being far less complex than I knew him to be - and probably read way too much into his character as a result.

    For example, when Gandalf leaves the party at the edge of Mirkwood, he says, "Now we had this all out before, when we landed on the Carrock," he said. "It is no use arguing. I have, as I told you, some pressing business away south; and I am already late through bothering with you people." I knew that business in the south was dealing with the 'Necromancer', and that there was a good deal of the (eventual) story that was not made available at that point, if one had not yet found the trilogy. I often regret the fact that I read the works "backwards", and so had to deal with the Hobbit characters with far more pre-knowledge than Tolkien intended. A case of knowing too much, methinks.

    (As a side note, I first found Fellowship in a used book store while on vacation, devoured it immediately, then had to wait over a year until I found Two Towers and another year till I stumbled over a copy of Return of the King. Seems impossible now, but back in the 60's, Tolkien works were as rare as adventure loving hobbits. I didn't find Hobbit until the mid-70's)
     
    CirdanLinweilin likes this.

  5. Squint-eyed Southerner

    Squint-eyed Southerner Skulking near Archet

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2018
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
    You must have missed the 60's, then! :)

    The paperbacks were everywhere by 66, and I picked up my first copies in 67, used (ten cents each).

    Wish I'd also grabbed the Ace editions that were sitting there -- I found them again years later, but try doing it now!
     
  6. Thistle Bunce

    Thistle Bunce Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2018
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    46
    Trophy Points:
    18
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest, USA
    No, it was more that the 60's missed my area. Not many bookstores, used or otherwise, in a sleepy, rural backwater. Not being old enough to drive, no Internet, and a town library that was only open on alternate Thursdays meant that getting new books was darn nigh impossible. Only real chance I got were those family vacations out in civilization, once a year. More than made up for having to share a back seat with my pesty little sister ;)
     
  7. CirdanLinweilin

    CirdanLinweilin The Wandering Wastrel

    Joined:
    May 13, 2016
    Messages:
    656
    Likes Received:
    292
    Trophy Points:
    63
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Writer
    Location:
    Mission Viejo, California
    Interesting, I first read Fellowship in 2016, then had to wait till Christmas for the rest of the trilogy in one book, and read that for the first part of the new year! It was the longest wait till Christmas EVER.


    :D

    CL
     
    Thistle Bunce likes this.
  8. Squint-eyed Southerner

    Squint-eyed Southerner Skulking near Archet

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2018
    Messages:
    784
    Likes Received:
    795
    Trophy Points:
    93
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Virginia, USA
  9. Starbrow

    Starbrow Tolkien Fan

    Joined:
    Aug 14, 2003
    Messages:
    1,279
    Likes Received:
    95
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Occupation:
    teacher
    Location:
    Wootton Major
    Home Page:
    After I got hooked by reading The Hobbit, the only Tolkien book I could find was Return of the King. So I read the last book first, and then The Fellowship and finally The Two Towers.
     
  10. Balin Fundinul

    Balin Fundinul New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2019
    Messages:
    9
    Likes Received:
    17
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Khazad-dûm
    My favorite character is Balin as you see! I don't know why, but he seems symphatetic to me.
     
    Valandil, Erestor Arcamen and Miguel like this.
  11. BountyHunter

    BountyHunter Member

    Joined:
    Nov 5, 2018
    Messages:
    45
    Likes Received:
    3
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Kenora, Ontario, Canada
    Bilbo for me. Although Gandalf runs a close second.
     
    Miguel likes this.
  12. Miguel

    Miguel Active Member

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2018
    Messages:
    264
    Likes Received:
    123
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Under a blankie
    This is my favorite character, yeah the moth. I'm unaware if this was in the book or not. I truly love this scene.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
    BountyHunter likes this.
  13. Arthfael

    Arthfael The Ranger

    Joined:
    Dec 3, 2018
    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    7
    Trophy Points:
    3
    Occupation:
    Author
    Location:
    Rhovanion
    Seeing as I cannot choose between the two, I will have two answers. :D

    My first favorite is Thorin Oakenshield.
    Thorin was smart, proud, brave, intelligent, vengeful and a bit stubborn. He was infamous for a high sense of importance and rank, but valued very nearly every individual of any status. He was extremely noble and highly respectable with a flair of vanity about him. He was respected by many throughout Middle Earth.

    He shared the greed of his family and had an extensive love for gold, though he valued the welfare of others as well. He was immensely brave and was willing to give himself up for any just cause, though this may be to a limit since the upcoming of the Battle of the Five Armies might have come as an exception.

    Until the time of his death, he seemed to be cruel, stubborn and vain, and had a very high opinion of value. He was obsessed with possession of the Arkenstone, since it was the heirloom of his family and part of the Mountain itself.

    In the films, he is portrayed rather friendly, but hostile to the Elves and suspicious of Bilbo. However in film two, he becomes more determined to gain the Arkenstone and the treasure. This led to him becoming increasingly determined to have it, even willing to let Bilbo die rather than risk the quest fail. When Balin realized that Thorin was not himself, he believed that the sickness had fallen onto his companion and convinced him to enter. When he learned that Bilbo didn't have the Arkenstone, he menacingly walked towards him and put the sword out towards him, as if he intended to kill him, only to be stopped when he noticed Smaug.

    In the final film, Balin recognises that Thorin has utterly succumbed to dragon sickness, and confides this tearfully to Bilbo. Thorin even begins to talk like Smaug, slowly, stressing sibilant syllables. He repeatedly berates and shouts at his followers, almost strangling Bilbo to death on the revelation that he gave the Arkenstone to Bard and Thranduil and later banishes and threatens to kill Dwalin. When the battle breaks out, he refuses to help the elves, men of Dale, or even his cousin Dain against the Orcs, and he barricades himself in the mountain, along with his company, who by now clearly follow his orders out of loyalty alone rather than love.

    However, he eventually comes to his senses after experiencing a hallucination of Smaug underneath a solid gold floor created from their attempt to kill him, casting off his grandfather's crown and robes, he leads his relieved company to reinforce Dain's forces who rally around their rightful King and push back against the Orcs.

    My second answer is Smaug. Yes, the evil dragon. That one. I find him intriguing and interesting, and if he were on the side of good, rather than his own side, he could have been a powerful ally.
    Smaug is portrayed as being psychopathic, extremely sadistic, confident, violent, cruel, arrogant, intelligent and greedy, possessing an unquenchable desire for gold. His most distinguishing characteristic (aside from his greed) is his arrogance, as Smaug proudly boasts of his superiority and impregnability to Bilbo during their encounter. However, this proves to be his downfall, as he unwittingly reveals the weak spot in his chest to Bilbo when showing the Hobbit how he had willfully coated his underbelly in treasure to protect it.

    Smaug seems primarily motivated by personal greed rather than a desire to do evil, and does not seem to serve any allegiance other than his own. While he does ruthlessly destroy Dale and lays waste to the Dwarves of the Lonely Mountain during his attack on the Lonely Mountain, once he has assumed dominion of the region he seems content to allow the rest of Middle Earth to go about its business, so long as he or his treasure remains undisturbed; although this could be because he feels that the people living in the region have nothing he wants. Highly intelligent, Smaug appears to possess a rather sardonic sense of humor, darkly mocking Bilbo while they converse within the Lonely Mountain's treasure chamber. Smaug seems to dislike Dwarves, considering them to be weak and pathetic creatures far beneath him, making unfavorable comments about Thror and showing no remorse over his slaughter of their kind and claiming of their kingdom. While conversing with Bilbo, Smaug is also able to quickly surmise the reason for Bilbo's presence in Erebor, and also correctly deduces that the Dwarves received aid from the men of Esgaroth in reaching the mountain.
     
  14. Marina Melinda Heacock

    Marina Melinda Heacock PaigeSinclaire88

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2016
    Messages:
    76
    Likes Received:
    18
    Trophy Points:
    8
    Gender:
    Female
    Occupation:
    Princess of Rivendell ^.^
    Location:
    Wheaton
    Bilbo hands down