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Geek Wish List: What the Fantasy Genre Lacks

“There’s no time to kill them properly.” Uruk-Hai by John Howe.
Minas Tirith, Tower of The Morning by John Howe. The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien's World (MJF Books, 1992)
Minas Tirith, Tower of The Morning by John Howe. The Lord of the Rings. Tolkien’s World (MJF Books, 1992)

This is Lee Neuschwander on The Geekwave. Here, we only talk nerdgasmic stuff. Sadly, however, some things we simply can’t talk about because of time restrains. When people talk about (G)eek stuff, the longest conversations are best, where people talk about what kind of stuff we hope will happen in our favorite shows, books and video games.

To clarify, I’m talking about the moment you and your friend are debating what epic or dramatic moment will be in the next episode of Walking Dead, or contesting probable time periods in the upcoming Assassin’s Creed.

We all have these wants, maybe even needs, in some cases, for things we think should happen in the (G)eek universe. This blog serves as my “Geek Wish List” if you will, and I hope it inspires one of you to make those ideas a reality. My fingers are seriously crossed.

To start us off, I’m going to talk a bit about one of the better known universes, Peter Jackson’s rendition of J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. In the first three movies we see the Fellowship travel from the quiet Shire to the high elves of Rivendell, and finally, to the Orc-infested pits of  Mordor.

Along the way we meet humans, elves, dwarves, trolls, orcs, goblins, a Balrog, a Smeagal, spiders, ents, assorted wizards (the Istari), and of course, hobbits young and old. During such films we often learn about cities built and populated by races of legend. In this epic, however, we only see the last of the great eleven strongholds, in its decline. Never do we see a dwarven-city not long past its glory. This is my biggest wish for the Lord of the Rings.

To see a functioning or prosperous redoubt in Lord of the Rings that ISN’T human or hobbit. Something dwarven would be nice because no one has shown dwarfs in their prime. This could possibly be due to a racial predujice against dwarves or perhaps because everyone was so enthralled about the actions of humans and elves that they just forgot about the dwarves living underground. Books and video games shout War of the North and Shadows of Mordor, yet we only see glimpses from of old. Most of the time it’s a flashback.

The Haven of Morionde by Roger Garland. The Lost Road.
The Haven of Morionde by Roger Garland.The Lost Road. Tolkien’s World (MJF Books, 1992)
Turambar and Glorund, The Book of Lost Tales, Volume 2 By John Howe
Turambar and Glorund By John Howe. The Book of Lost Tales, Volume 2. Tolkien’s World. (MJF Books, 1992)
Throal, the Dwarf Kingdom by John Howe
Throal, the Dwarf Kingdom by John Howe. (Throwl – The Dwarf Kingdom An Earthdawn Sourcebook byFasa Corporation).

The best flashbacks show fabled cities with Celebrimbor, the elven-smith who forged the 13 rings of power, in Shadows of Mordor.  We catch glimpses of the great cities, but never for long enough.  I really want to see a game or movie that takes place during or before Sauron plunged Middle-earth into this long dark we hear so much about.

A story about the events leading up to the Great War of the Ring where man and elf fought together would be mind-blowingly epic! Maybe a chapter from The Book of Lost Tales or Tolkien’s Silmarillion. Imagine seeing the most ancient tales rise from legend to HD screen. Imagine. Back when the Great Mines of Moria didn’t reek of goblin, and Lord Elrond still had faith in the hearts of Man. A time when humans were united under a single great King. An Elessar.

I admit the battle shown in Fellowship of the Ring was awesome, but it was just a fight scene as prolog to set-up and explain events in the first film. I also concede that a lot of what happened before the War of the Ring can be found on the Internet. Even there, I still don’t see what the old cities looked like, or elaboration of the small dramas that led to the end.

John How's, The Fall of Gondolin
The Fall of Gondolin by John Howe

Bottom line, I want something that shows us what happened in the glory days of Middle-earth up to the present point in the story. Maybe that’s where I’ll find the awe, majesty, and sheer nerdgasm I experience watching the Lord of the Rings trilogy.

Attack on Weathertop by Carol Emry Phenix
Attack on Weathertop by Carol Emry Phenix. Tolkien’s World (MJF Books, 1992). Weathertop is strategically important to Middle-earth. Elendil the Dúnedain of Arnor, built this watchtower where he installed the most powerful of Arnor’s three Palantíri. (Wikia)

Next week, I jump straight to the good stuff. The other high-budget geek-listed, involving the creative mess that is Star Wars the Old Republic. I delve into lore not covered in the games, like the Battle of Bothawui. And more discussion on choice events that deserve some limelight.

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