A List of Reasons Why The Two Towers Is Splendiferous

Howdy, folks, ’tis I, returned from my latest unannounced hiatus, which shouldn’t really be called a hiatus because hiatuses are when you take a break and if you don’t say to yourself “I’m gonna take a break from blogging,” then it doesn’t really feel like a break. It just feels like you went an entire month and a half without posting, shame on you. But I guess it was sort of a break because I’ve barely thought about the Internet in a month and a half because…work. And friends. And summer. I like summer very much.

Anyway, hello, I hope y’all’s summer is going well, I totally missed two of the blog events I wanted to participate in, but I’m back now to bring you a completely random post about the middle of The Lord of the Rings.

I’m currently rereading that particular book, which is one of my favorite books, and do notice I said books, not trilogies. That’s my stand on this issue. 😛

I mean, I always have thought of it as one book, since the days when I first cracked open the library copy of Fellowship (with the other two volumes lined up on my desk), knowing nothing more than that it was one of my aunt’s favorite books and a sequel to that really cool book I’d read last Christmas, The Hobbit. And when personal inclination lines up with the stated intent and desire of the author…well. Why Not, Jeeves, is all I have to say, Why Bally Not.

Nonetheless, though it be but one book, it do be divided into three volumes, and I do have a favorite volume. That would be The Two Towers. Which is an unimportant fact, really, but I mention it as justification for this post, which is going to be a helter-skelter, gushy, incomplete ramble about things that I love that occur specifically in The Two Towers. Which is mainly just because doing it for the whole story would take too long.

And I guess I also mention it because a number of people seem to like The Two Towers the least, and while they are of course welcome to their opinions, it seems odd to me because I don’t think Towers suffers from middle-of-the-story slump at all. In fact, while picking a favorite volume should be hard because each one has things in it that I love to death (and Fellowship and Return of the King both have the Shire in them, I mean come on), it actually isn’t because Two Towers has SO MANY of my very favorite things in it.

So hey. I’m just gonna talk about them. Show the neglected middle child some love. (Spoilers, I need hardly say, abound.)

FARAMIR

Reason numero uno I love this volume: Faramir is so awesome.

I know how awesome he is, but every time I actually get to him in the book the awesomeness is not diluted by knowing it beforehand and, in fact, it’s almost like I’m surprised. Even though I’m not.

Because that’s how awesome Faramir is, you see.

I just read his chapters recently*, and I’m thinking I actually kind of see what the movies were going for when they changed his character. I’ve never agreed with the choice, but I’ve always held that the movies didn’t completely ruin Faramir or the integrity of his character. I still disagree with the choice (book Faramir is way more awesome than movie Faramir, so obviously it wasn’t a good choice), but I really do think I see what they were going for, even in terms of book accuracy.

See, I tend to focus on Faramir’s gentleness. How he does not love the bright sword for its sharpness nor the arrow for its swiftness but only that which they defend. How he has no jealousy for Aragorn. His quietness, his kindness, the way he speaks to Éowyn.

But…it’s not Return of the King where the roots of my love for him lie. It’s in that chapter, “The Window on the West.” Faramir is indeed gentle, kind, and quiet. But he’s also a warrior. His country is at war, his brother has died, and he sees no possible chance of victory. So he’s very serious. And he’s also very stern. “Kind” isn’t the first thing that comes to mind when I read his conversation with Frodo in Ithilien, questioning Frodo, plainly not believing him.

Gentleness is not synonymous with weakness, and I don’t think it is. Mercy is not synonymous with foolishness, and I don’t think it is. But Faramir is an example that it really, really isn’t.

Faramir questioning Frodo, and doubting Frodo, and pressing Frodo further, is not Southern hospitality at its finest. The way he deals with Frodo when Gollum has come fishing in the pool, and with Gollum through Frodo, is also not Southern hospitality at its finest. It’s shrewd and, frankly, a little ruthless. He basically forces Frodo to confide in him by acting as if he’s going to have Gollum shot (and maybe actually being about to do it, I’m not sure – what I am sure of, though, is that he knows very well what kind of person Frodo is and that he’s not going to let him shoot Gollum, and he trades on that).

When I think of mercy, I think of something a little softer. A little more “there, there, dear” and hesitant. A little more…well…nice.

But Faramir is very merciful. It’s perhaps his defining characteristic.

And I love that. I love the contradiction, in which there is no contradiction. Mercy isn’t soft – it can actually be rather hard – and Faramir isn’t soft either. But he still shows his quality, which is the very highest. And when he and Frodo exchange courtesies in one of my favorite lines, you know he MEANS it.

Frodo bowed low. “I am answered,” he said, “and I place myself at your service, if that is of any worth to one so high and honorable.”

“It is of great worth,” said Faramir.

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

*I had just read his chapters recently when I originally typed this, that is. Now I’m almost done with Return of the King, because pretty much all I’ve been doing with my spare time lately is inhaling Lord of the Rings. It’s been great, if you were wondering.

THE DEATH OF BOROMIR

It took me a bit to appreciate Boromir. I didn’t not like him the first time, but I like him so much now, where I used to overlook him a bit.

A well-done fall arc is one of the rarest things in the world. But also one of the coolest, because FEELINGS. So naturally I’m very fond of Boromir’s character in general. But I’m even fonder of it because of the epilogue.

First of all, he literally gives his life trying to protect Merry and Pippin. And second, he tells Aragorn everything. He’s so sorry. And so Aragorn says to him:

“No!” said Aragorn, taking his hand and kissing his brow. “You have conquered. Few have gained such a victory. Be at peace. Minas Tirith shall not fall!”

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

Which is just so gracious.

I greatly appreciate how much time the narrative spends mourning him, too. Three whole songs and an entire chapter named after him. Not to mention Faramir’s vision way later on. Like, thank you, Tolkien. Thank you for being perfect.

TEAM PIPPIN & MERRY

They turned and walked side by side slowly along the line of the river. Behind them the light grew in the east. As they walked they compared notes, talking lightly in hobbit-fashion of the things that had happened since their capture. No listener would have guessed from their words that they had suffered cruelly, and been in dire peril, going without hope towards torment and death; or that even now, as they knew well, they had little chance of ever finding friend or safety again.

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

I get weirdly emotional about that paragraph, which is probably because it follows a rather intense chapter and oh the relief now that Merry and Pippin are walking along tiredly through the woods, being their precious hobbit selves and not in imminent danger from Saruman or Sauron or the cruelty of Orcs or the hooves of battle horses or stray arrows.

But seriously. I love the way Pippin and Merry work together when they’re not even supposed to talk to each other and no one could blame them if they just sort of gave up on life. But of course they don’t. (That deeply buried tough streak in hobbits. Gotta love.)

Pippin is always thinking how useless he is, but he’s NOT. He’s tenacious, won’t let go of his hobbitish hopes even when grim circumstances make them seem absurd, and he is VERY, VERY clever. He gets his hands untied and keeps the Orcs from knowing it, he tricks Grishnákh…and Merry plays along with him and they’re both so LITTLE and BRAVE and I love their friendship so much.

Team Frodo & Sam is rightfully iconic, but The Two Towers highlights Team Pippin & Merry as well, which is so much more than just a mischief-making partnership.

I mean. Just LOOK at them. Escaped from deadly danger and an unthinkable future in Orthanc, teasing each other, lightly commending each other’s contributions, and enjoying each other’s company like two old gaffers taking an evening walk in a quiet country park. There’s something so dear and admirable about it. I love my precious hobbits. ❤

ÉOMER

Éomer is one of my favorite characters; I love him nearly as much as his sister. This line is actually from Return of the King, but it’s one of my favorites:

“As for myself,” said Éomer, “I have little knowledge of these deep matters; but I need it not. This I know, and it is enough, that as my friend Aragorn succoured me and my people, so I will aid him when he calls. I will go.”

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

And that’s how Éomer is.

Straightforward, just a simple guy who rides horses and swings swords, all this fancy elvish stuff is beyond him, but he loves his king and his country, protects his sister, cherishes beauty and hates evil, and stands by his friends.

He’s just smashing.

I’m also everlastingly fond of the bit where he first meets Aragron, Legolas, and Gimli. Everyone’s highly suspicious of each other, even though they’re all the good guys actually, and it’s a tense conversation and at the end, though still a little doubtful, Éomer makes a wise and generous decision and just. Y’all. He’s great. The complete opposite of Faramir in a lot of ways, but equally good.

(Also the part where Treebeard and Merry and Pippin are kind of skeptical of each other at first, there’s no immediate relief where Merry and Pippin know they’re safe now the moment they meet him. Even though there is a very good feeling beginning to steal in. And where Gimli, Legolas, and Aragorn think Gandalf is Saruman. The good-guys-are-initially-skeptical-of-each-other trope is kind of the best.)

ALSO THE RIDERS OF ROHAN

On a similar note to Éomer, the Rohirrim in general are the BEST. I love their culture and everything – and how the Gondorians really respect them even though you’d think they’d look down on them because they’re uneducated or not Númenórean or whatever.

They’re warlike enough, so they’re not completely similar to the hobbits, but they give me a bit of the same vibe. They have their own unique, tight-knit culture, and they just want to be left in peace to live their lives and take care of their families and train their horses, but nope, nobody will leave them alone. Well, okay, maybe they’re ignorant, but they’re not stupid and they’re not cowards, and they’re not planning on knuckling under to evil wizards, and they have a resilience and a strength and a capacity for courageous deeds beyond what anyone might reasonably have expected. The evil creatures that attacked them didn’t know what they were getting themselves into. There’s that, kind of down-home resilience, that they share with the hobbits.

(But also, they’re just super cool.)

THE REUNION OF HOBBITS AND HUNTERS

I distinctly remember, my first time reading The Lord of the Rings, the moment I became a hopeless fan and there was no turning back. It was the chapter “Flotsam and Jetsam.” Where Gimli, Legolas, and Aragorn, after having pursued Merry and Pippin across the country, been mildly hopeful of their escape, got rid of a traitor in Meduseld, ridden to war, seen astonishing marvels, and won against all odds a desperate victory, get to sit down in the victorious ruin of Isengard and chit-chat with the hobbits who have given them such trouble. It’s just…….perfection?!??!!?

I mean. There’s the poetic profundity of “The Departure of Boromir.” There’s the ancient-epic-ish feeling of the meeting of the Three Hunters and Éomer. There’s the folkloric amazingness of the hobbits’ partnership with the Ents. Which is all grand and beautiful and I love it but THEN. Then, there is the reprieve, the comfort, the break, the hanging-out-mostly-quiet-with-your-friends-around-the-bonfire-at-the-end-of-a-long-day peace, of this reunion.

And Tolkien gives it to you. He doesn’t hurry through it, or mention it in passing, or cut it short so we can get to the more important, high-stakes matters. No. We want this. We have spent over a hundred pages wanting this, wanting to enjoy the reunion, the catching-each-other-up, the jokes, the camaraderie. And we get it.

And…I am happy. The dynamic of the Three Hunters is lovely, and that of Team Pippin & Merry is iconic, and together they are perfect and I would read about them for multiple chapters.

HELM’S DEEP

As truly great as the Battle of the Pelennor Fields is, I think Helm’s Deep is my favorite.

(I’m a fan of how Tolkien writes battles in general. They’re…not boring. And not only are they not boring, they make sense and are some of the most emotionally intense parts of the book. Which you would think battles naturally would be, but for some reason, to me, as a general rule they’re not.)

Helm’s Deep is just the first battle of the war, but it’s super important because if it had been lost Pelennor Fields wouldn’t have been won, and then there would have been no chance to march on the Morannon, and then Frodo and Sam wouldn’t have succeeded either. (I love how even though the Fellowship gets split apart their separate adventures continue to be related in really, really important ways. It’s so cool.)

And, plus, there’s this hopeful surge where the King of Rohan has recovered and is finally going to lead his people in battle again, and then it’s very grim but they keep holding off the Orcs and disasters happen but they still stave off defeat and then comes dawn and the White Rider with it, and there’s a sortie and the Trees are there and the eucatastrophic beauty of it takes one’s breath away.

MERRY AS DOORWARDEN

The third volume is where Merry REALLY gets to shine, but he has his moments here too. Like when he greets Theoden and the Riders and doesn’t speak to his companions until Gimli explodes and promises to tell Theoden about the history of pipeweed someday at Theoden’s hall. (Which last is doubly poignant once you’re rereading and know that promise is never fulfilled.) Merry is this delightful, lowkey mixture of maturity, courtesy, and sly mischief, and I love him.

“I will come with you,” said Theoden. “Farewell, my hobbits! May we meet again in my house! There you shall sit beside me and tell me all that your hearts desire: the deeds of your grandsires, as far as you can reckon them; and we will speak also of Tobold the Old and his herb-lore. Farewell!”

The hobbits bowed low. “So that is the King of Rohan!” said Pippin in an undertone. “A fine old fellow. Very polite.”

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

BROMANCE: LEGOLAS & GIMLI EDITION

I suppose the very beginning of the legendary Legolas-Gimli friendship lies in Lothlorien, but it’s this book where you start to pick up on it and just…be amused and endeared. There’s the Helm’s Deep body count competition, there’s Gimli trying to get the beauty of the Caves of Aglarond through Legolas’s somewhere-off-in-the-treetops brain, and there’s also Gimli trying to stop Legolas from checking out the Huorns because hey, this Elf is crazy and he’s gonna get himself killed and he’s also gonna get ME killed, HEY LEGOLAS WHAT ARE YOU DOING LET ME GET OFF THE HORSE.

And just. Yeah. I don’t have much to say. I just love their friendship and wanted to mention it.

THE ENTS

Of all the reasons The Two Towers is my favorite, the Ents are I think the biggest. If they were the only reason, they might still be enough. You can’t overstate my love for the Ents. (…Am I weird? Does anyone else feel this way? I never hear people rave over the Ents. But I LOVE THEM.)

Middle-earth is alive. It’s not just the people, it’s the trees and the mountains. And if you have any particular love for forests or mountains, you probably understand the appeal of this. For the trees to walk and talk, to meet the shepherd of their shepherds, ancienter than even the hills he strides over with his rooty toes, is so…how can I express this?

My mom asked why I like Treebeard so much, and I tried to explain thusly: “He’s gentle and wise and slow and kind and unhasty and unbelievably ancient and none of that is actually why.” He’s so HIMSELF. He’s a shepherd of the trees, he’s Fangorn. He just…is.

He’s all the beauty, benevolence, stillness, age, neutrality, and danger of the woods. And now the woods have been tamed, in Tolkien’s England and in my Missouri, and there’s nothing of the wild left. And so Treebeard is, more even than the Elves, the remnant of a time doomed to fade and be forgotten. The story of the Entwives is…it’s sad, y’all.

“I remember it was long ago – in the time of the war between Sauron and the Men of the Sea – desire came over me to see Fimbrethil again. Very fair she was still in my eyes, when I had last seen her, though little like the Entmaiden of old. For the Entwives were bent and browned by their labour; their hair parched by the sun to the hue of ripe corn and their cheeks like red apples. Yet their eyes were still the eyes of our own people. We crossed over Anduin and came to their land; but we found a desert: it was all burned and uprooted, for war had passed over it. But the Entwives were not there. Long we called, and long we searched; and we asked all folk that we met which way the Entwives had gone. Some said they had never seen them; and some said that they had seen them walking away west, and some said east, and others south. But nowhere that we went could we find them. Our sorrow was very great. Yet the wild wood called, and we returned to it. For many years we used to go out every now and again and look for the Entwives, walking far and wide and calling them by their beautiful names. But as time passed we went more seldom and wandered less far. And now the Entwives are only a memory for us, and our beards are long and grey.”

-J. R. R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

And that brings this lengthy post to a close. If you finished it (or if you didn’t), tell me! What’s your favorite volume of Lord of the Rings? Is it one book or three? Do you love the Ents? Did the movies ruin Faramir? Are hobbits the best???? (You’d better say yes to that one.) and, hey. *waves awkwardly* Maybe I’m actually back for real this time.

Published by sarahseele

A Christian, cat owner, college kid, and writer. Fond of stories. Fond of rain.

15 thoughts on “A List of Reasons Why The Two Towers Is Splendiferous

  1. AGH SARAH YOU ARE BACK. I know I do this every time you come back but there’s no fault in repetition so long as it’s sincere, so. *tackles you in an internet hug*

    (Incidentally, my sister the Wit walked by while I was reading this, caught sight of the screen, gave a happy gasp, and said, “PIPPIN AND MERRY?!?” And I had to explain to her that this was the same blogger who wrote the lovely story about the guy getting interrogated by his brother. And she immediately wanted to read the post, but then she realized it was on The Two Towers, and she’s still working through Fellowship for the first time, so. You have endeared yourself to her on several levels.)

    “Why Not, Jeeves.” << This.

    I get exactly what you're saying about Faramir: you're not expecting him to disappoint, but he does more than not disappoint…he exceeds expectations.

    And Boromir's death. *happy tears* "Gracious" is such a good word for Aragorn there. He's just…Aragorn is the best, too, y'know? I didn't appreciate him properly until recently, I don't think. (Same with Boromir, really. The sister between Wit and I has taken an especial shine to Boromir this go-round, and her appreciating him has helped US appreciate him. He's just…such a flawed, full-of-himself, not-badly-intentioned guy, and he's simultaneously so much fun and so, so sad.)

    The hobbits are MOST DEFINITELY the best. You cannot beat hobbits.

    Although the men of Rohan are also pretty epic, and now that you mention it, they DO have a lot in common with hobbits. I think I've always leaned a little more towards Rohan than Gondor myself, and your observation that they're more hobbity than the men of Gondor makes a lot of sense.

    And you know what? I've never been big on Ents, really, but….I think I get it a little better now. The loss of the Entwives and the death of the woods. I just read Joseph Pearce's study of The Hobbit, and he talks in there about how Tolkien saw history as a "long defeat," where we're just….losing a little bit all the time, and even though we know it'll all come right in the end, that's at the END and right now the loss of good and beautiful things is legitimately sad. And the loss of the woods fits with that. Aw. Tolkien. Treebeard. Honeys. Let me give you hugs.

    Okay. I need to reread LotR. I just. Need to reread LotR. Sporadically listening in on the family read-aloud is great, but I need to supplement that with inhaling the book. This post has hardened my resolve.

    Like

    1. Despite being tackled and hugged, two indignities to my person I do not normally appreciate, I am grinning rather a lot right now.

      (That’s lovely! Especially that your younger siblings are getting into the story. Pippin and Merry are the BEST, so your sister the Wit has excellent taste. Which I knew already.)
      (Oh but ALSO. Did I tell you about the sequel to the interrogation brother story that I thought up??!? It would simultaneously be a sequel to that and to Jennifer&Fred, and OH I want so badly to write it now. Though I’m not even close to finished with J&F yet, unfortunately.)

      A friend and I discussed it once, and we think Aragorn is okay but Strider is awesome. Which has something to do with it, I think. It reminds me of how my sister LOVES skinny little Steve Rogers but alleges that he’s “lame” once he’s Captain America. Her friend and I were arguing with her about it, because he’s the exact same! and that’s the point! He jumps on the grenade when he’s little and he crashes the plane when he’s big! But she still insists she doesn’t like him when he’s big. Which her (short, male) friend says is because now she can’t push him around anymore, but regardless, I think it’s a bit the same for me with Aragorn. He’s still Strider, so deep down and objectively he’s still awesome, but he’s this noble king instead of this scruffy, mysterious, slightly rude Ranger and it doesn’t feel the same. He doesn’t have the same /obvious/ loveability. At least that’s my explanation, idk how you feel about it. 🙂
      Boromir reminds me of Charlie from Rose in Bloom, but like, I love him even more.

      Indeed you cannot, as multiple wizards and Dark Lords have found to their cost. ❤

      I’m glad you see that! I wasn’t sure, but it seemed right to me? The Shire and Rohan are the two Middle-earth places I REALLY want to live, so yeah.

      *hugs everyone with you*
      Not sure I’ve heard that phrase before, “the death of the woods,” but it’s an excellent one. My interest is piqued in this book, although I don’t…really like literary criticism. I have definitely heard the phrase “long defeat” before, I think from Tolkien himself, and man that view of history makes SO MUCH SENSE. It’s why there’s always this sense of beauty lost, goodness dying; heck, it’s why the laws of physics are the way they are. Everything decays and we can’t stop it, but only fight tooth and nail to slow it and to prevent its acceleration. Human history is the story of a doomed last stand – which is redeemed in the end with glorious and final victory but only after final defeat. That’s just…very true. The more and more I think about it, the more I think sorrow is very, very important. Which sounds weird but…I think it is.

      I hope you will! It’s so very worth it. And if you write a post about it, I will DEFINITELY write you an enormously long comment because I’m dying to talk more LOTR. There is so much to talk ABOUT, you know?

      Like

  2. SARAH!!! *tackles you in a slightly awkward internet hug, because slightly awkward is how my hugs tend to be*
    (Please ignore the fact that *I* am on a hiatus, but I am commenting because IT’S YOU and YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT LOTR AND I JUST REREAD IT. And also I have no self-control. XD)

    So, I was rereading this month, and until I finished my complete reread, I would’ve said that Two Towers was my favorite–for many of the same reasons as you.
    But now I know for sure and certain that The Return of the King is my favorite, and I do not apologize for that. Two Towers is great, but Return of the King is High and Bright and Strong and Mighty and Clear and Mystic and Eucatastrophic and Beautiful and Full and *there are no words*. And I love it very much.
    (I honestly like Fellowship least, though I still love it, which is probably an unpopular opinion. XD)

    (THANK YOU for saying that it’s one book, not a trilogy. This is a hill that I will die on.)

    Yes, Faramir’s gentleness and mercy, and the way that it’s not weakness (“mercy is not being a pansy”, as one of our priest friends would probably say). And–exactly. It’s not “being nice”, either. (This same priest talks about the “heresy of ‘nice'”. XD)

    “Like, thank you, Tolkien. Thank you for being perfect.” << Exactly. This is how I feel all the time. XD

    TEAM MERRY AND PIPPIN FOREVER! (Team Frodo and Sam forever, too. But we're talking about Merry and Pippin right now.) Their ability to enjoy simple pleasures in the middle of a war is unparalleled.

    Eomer is cool! He's someone who truly knows what is right and wrong without overcomplicating it, and I like that very much. And the Rohirrim, too. They're just…very tenacious and wild, while also being cultivated. Barely. They're not tame lions.

    I love the way Tolkien writes battles, too!! And ahhhh that moment at Helm's Deep–I love it so much!

    The Ents are awesome!! I don't know that they're my favorite race in Middle-Earth, but I like them a lot…and you may have put your finger on it when you said, "if you have any particular love for forests or mountains, you probably understand the appeal of this." Because I DO love the forests and mountains (which I'm going to miss when I go to Illinois), and to have them come to life…
    The part with the Entwives…<3 ❤ <3. And just…the way the Ents talk. That's another part of why I love them. 🙂 (I also love the fact that Tolkien partially based the Ents on Lewis. And also how he compares himself to a tree at times, notably at Lewis's death.)

    Like

    1. *is exceedingly awkward about receiving the hug but nevertheless pleased to receive it*
      Hey! I did /not/ expect this comment, since you were still on hiatus and all, so seeing it made my day. And I’m glad you’re back now! 😀

      I do not expect you to apologize. All those things are true and RotK is incredible and I really shouldn’t be picking favorites but here I am. XD
      (I think so! I mean, I can never decide, because Fellowship has the most Shire and the most Strider (as opposed to Aragorn) and the most Boromir and the most UNCERTAINTY, and the journey through Moria is incredibly well written, and it’s the scariest book to me because of the Black Riders, and idk if you’ve ever started LOTR over directly after finishing? But all the FORESHADOWING. All the things Gandalf says, right there at the beginning. It’s so good. And so heartbreaking. Like truly. Anyway.)

      (You will not die alone. XD)

      I wish I was friends with this priest of yours, he sounds awesome. (Although I like pansies and it seems kind of unfair to me that their name has been put to so unflattering a use. But anyway. XD)

      I love that description of the Rohirrim! They are not tame lions, indeed.

      ❤ Are there no forests in Illinois? I seem to recall plenty of trees when driving through, but young forests maybe. And maybe not very many big ones?
      I KNOW, I love how the Ents talk!!
      And I don’t think I knew Lewis was an inspiration for them, that…is awesome. And makes me laugh for some reason.
      The quote about himself as a tree at Lewis’s death is so sad.

      Like

  3. Hello again!
    I think it’s been– maybe– a decade since I’ve read The Two Towers, but you’ve reminded me of how and why I enjoyed it. Specially anything with Merry, Pippin, and the Rohirrim.
    I remember being sad about the lost Entwives. It’s such a sad story that reminds me of the old myths. But I never made the connection with the loss of ancient forests in real life. The region I live in reminds me of Treebeard’s woods, and I can’t imagine all the trees and moss disappearing.

    Like

    1. Hey! 😀
      The three best parts!
      Yes, it is VERY reminiscent of old myths. Much more than the other elements of the story, somehow, though those have definite similarities as well.
      The region you live in sounds BEAUTIFUL. I’d love to see a really old forest someday, like that. I hope it never does get cut down!

      Like

  4. This post was an absolute joy to read. Every word of it. I was thoroughly engrossed, and everything you had to say made me so happy. The Lord of the Rings is brilliant and you are making me want to reread it so badly. Just…everything. Faramir. Hobbits (hobbits are indeed the BEST). The Ents. All of the reunions and friendships and just all of Tolkien’s perfect world.How did he do it? I LOVE IT SO MUCH I TELL YOU.
    Faramir. He is wonderful. I get why a lot of people are mad about the changes in the movie, but personally I don’t think that the movie ruined his character. I think they were just trying to make some of his desires and doubts more visible, if that make sense? Even if they went a little far, I get what they were trying to do and ultimately I don’t think it comprises the character to the point of changing who he is. But that’s just my opinion. Book Faramir is still the best though. I love the point you made about mercy not being soft!
    Boromir. Yes. Yes. Yes.
    MERRY AND PIPPIN. I LOVE THEM DEARLY. Their relationship is so sweet, and they are COUSINS, which makes it even better. That paragraph about Merry and Pippin makes me very emotional. I love Merry and Pippin.
    Eomer and the Riders of Rohan are fantastic. The distinctions between the cultures of Gondor and Rohan is just amazing.
    And the REUNION. Really the whole capture/hunt section, though intense, is one of my favorites and the reunion is just the PERFECT way to top it off. Holy moly, I just adore all of these characters so much.
    Tolkien’s battles are great. I love how it gives you the feeling of the weight of what’s happening but at the same time there is a certain levity that the characters bring to it, like Legolas and Gimli’s competition, that really captures real life.
    I love Merry. When he gets separated from Pippin my heart hurts for him. But his relationship with Theodon is so endearing.
    ENTS. The ents are awesome. I was always kind of disappointed in the depiction of them in the movies. Not that they are bad or anything, but they’re just not…quite as awe-inspiring as I picture them. It’s hard to explain.
    I generally think of The Lord of the Rings as one book. It’s so much one story, and I don’t think I could pick a favorite. There are so many beautiful moments in them all. I definitely agree with you that The Two Towers does not suffer from the mid-story slump tendency! Not at all. So many of my favorite parts are in The Two Towers.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you for gushing about The Two Towers! It deserves it, and I love seeing that other people adore The Lord of the Rings as much as I do. 🙂

    Like

    1. “They were just trying to make some of his desires and doubts more visible” – okay, that explains it PERFECTLY. Yes. The changes to his character do really, really bug me on one level, but on another level they don’t, because I’d agree completely with what you said. It’s not as if book Faramir DOESN’T struggle with this desire to please a father who seemingly can’t be pleased, DOESN’T feel inferior (in one way at least) to his brother, DOESN’T struggle with giving in to despair and maybe making some decisions based on that. He does. It just plays out differently in the book vs the movie. And I like the way it plays out in the book way better, but the movie doesn’t change the core of his character. Which I’m glad of.

      I didn’t even think about Merry and Pippin being cousins. I love it so much!!!! Cousin books make me SO HAPPY. And so do Merry and Pippin. And ugh I am emotional again.
      The capture/chase section is one of my favorites too. Which is funny because I feel like those sorts of sequences usually bore me a bit in most books? Tolkien is just a master, I guess.

      MMM-HMMM. The battle scenes achieve this deep gravity but yet there’s levity too (which there always is with people) and it captures real life SO WELL.

      MINE TOO. One of my favorite bits is in Return of the King when Pippin finds Merry again in Minas Tirith after the battle. ❤

      I agree. Movie Ents aren’t bad, they’re just not quite…Ents. Quite.

      Thank you for this delightful comment! And for gushing with me! I do not think I can get tired of LOTR gushing, honestly. It’s so BREATHTAKINGLY GOOD. And long.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Yay, I’m so glad you’re back! Now I just have to come back from MY blogging hiatus…*shifts uncomfortably*

    I AGREE WITH EVERYTHING IN THIS POST, btw. Especially on Faramir and the hobbits. Pippin is pretty much my favorite character ever. And Eomer is such an underrated fave! He’s a pretty minor character, but he’s interesting enough where I could potentially see myself obsessively looking up fanfic about him one day when the mood strikes me.

    Tolkien’s battle scenes are pretty amazing! Especially for how long I remember them being? It’s hard enough to write an interesting battle scene that’s short, lmao.

    The ents somehow manage to combine pathos and dignity and comic relief all in one and I love them so much. BTW, I can’t remember if I’ve talked about this before, but was there a hint that the entwives had moved to the Shire? Because if I remember correctly, the hobbits fell victim to some suspiciously sentient trees before Tom Bombadil saved them, and the Shire WAS the kind of place the entwives would have liked, lol.

    Like

    1. I’ve always loved Pippin, but I loved him especially this time around. He doesn’t realize how lovely he is. Or how brave and good. Or what a valuable friend. I just…love him.

      For real. 😂😂 I can’t write two sentences of a battle without a reader’s eyes glazing over, I feel like, lol. Maybe I should study Tolkien’s and see WHY they’re not boring, technically, because I don’t really know.

      “The Ents somehow manage to combine pathos and dignity and comic relief all in one and I love them so much” This is exactly it.
      I don’t know! It really was the kind of place they’d have liked. I think I always assumed the willow tree that tried to kill them was like, one of the trees Treebeard talked about waking up and growing entish?? And Tom Bombadil refers to it as “Old Man Willow” not “Old Lady Willow” so…I don’t know? I don’t remember the beginning well enough to say if there was a hint/possibility. That would be interesting to find out.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. What a fabulous post! I want to reread the Lord of the Rings, I was taking the Fellowship off the shelf, and then I realized some of the pages of our copy were missing! So now I have to get a new copy and wait 😦 But seriously, this was an absolutely splendiferous summary of the Two Towers! The lost Entwives always made me sad. I love Eomer, and yes, the first meeting of him with the Three Hunters is brilliant. “I would cut off your head, beard and all, master dwarf, if it stood but a little higher from the ground.” LOL By the way, I nominated you for the Sunshine Blogger Award on my blog, so feel free to do the tag 😀

    – Irene

    Like

    1. That is dreadful! I wonder what happened to the missing pages though? lol
      I hope you’re able to get the copy soon and read it though, cuz there is nothing better in this life than a Lord of the Rings reread.
      XD YES that quote! I love Gimli and Eomer’s whole relationship honestly, from the very beginning. And Eomer is so fantastic, I’m so glad you appreciate him!
      Thank you again for tagging me! I had so much fun with it!

      Like

      1. Well, the books have been well-loved, so they kind of fell (are falling) to pieces. But my sister Anna just got the trilogy for her birthday so all is well ^-^ I’m almost finished with The Fellowship.

        Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Create your website with WordPress.com
Get started
%d bloggers like this: