atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#4288: Did it again

All three Lord of the Rings movies at one sitting, back to back to back.

That was one thing Mrs. Fungus and I intended to do with our time off, and we did it yesterday. We started at 2:30 PM with Fellowship of the Ring. After that we ordered Chinese (delivery) and continued. Halfway through The Two Towers we stopped watching long enough to hit Culver's for concretes. We finished watching Return of the King at 3 AM Wednesday morning.

She wanted to keep going and watch both Hobbit movies on-demand, but I nixed that for a few reasons. First, I was tired of sitting in front of the TV. Second, the Hobbit trilogy isn't complete. Third, we can't see the extended versions that way. Fourth, it was already three AM and if we had, we would have been up until 9 AM.

I still have a bunch of chores nagging at me, and I'm not going to get them done if I spend all my time watching hobbitses.

...not that I've managed to do anything constructive other than cutting the grass, around all the panic attacks and gut malf and everything else that's been going on. *sigh*

Thanks to his role in Lost it is now impossible for Mrs. Fungus and I to see Dominic Monaghan in anything without singing, "You are everybody". Last night it happened half a dozen times at least, whenever Merry popped up and neither of us had said anything for a while. I did it first, when they were stealing fireworks from Gandalf's wagon.

The scenes where Aragorn, Legolas, and Gimli are pursuing the uruk-hai in order to rescue Merry and Pippin--moving at a trot for three days, pausing only to drink water, that requires superhuman endurance and I didn't see how they could possibly manage that. Then I thought about it: we're talking about an elf, a dwarf, and one of the Numenor; Aragorn is eighty-seven years old and probably not more than a third of the way through his lifespan.

As an elf, Legolas is immortal, and the drinking game scene demonstrates his endurance. Dwarves are tough bastards, too, though less magical than elves, and while he was keeping up with the elf and the human Gimli had the most trouble with the trek. Aragorn has been surviving on his own in the wild for a very, very long time, and on top of that he's of a race of men that features a spectacularly good constitution.

These are not, in other words, ordinary people.

The hobbits could not have maintained that pace; in the company of supermen they are the "ordinary folks". They had to stop and rest and eat, and couldn't fight mobs of orcs and uruk-hai single-handed. If any hobbit showed that kind of endurance it was Frodo, and he probably got that from carrying the Ring. (Possession of which, it must be said, allowed Smeagol/Gollum to live for five hundred years.)

My wife observed that Sam is probably the real hero of the story, since Frodo would have been unable to complete his quest without his support. I can't argue the point; I think she's right.

All this supports my opinion, vis-a-vis role playing games, that the only people who become successful adventurers (that is, the ones who survive) are the ones who are special: who have unusual strength, intelligence, dexterity, or constitution, and who put it to use as a warrior, mage, rogue, or what-have-you. An RPG character won't survive very long against supernatural foes (for example) if he is made of ordinary stuff. Even in computer games like World of Warcraft it's difficult to defeat level-appropriate foes solely by hitting them with your weapon; you can do it, but it takes a long time and you take an excess of damage in the process. To drop a foe with a minimu of damage taken to self, you must rely on special attacks, class abilities and the like which do much more damage than the weapon itself. And it's demonstrated time and again that "ordinary" folks (non-player characters) who have only "normal" attacks will be flattened by their foes unless you save them.

I think about all this because if it weren't for Tolkien's works it's unlikely that the entire fantasy RPG genre would even exist. Since I played FRPGs first and read Tolkien second I cannot help but view Middle Earth through the lens of the FRPG; but since the latter derived from the former, that's perfectly fine.

Irrespective of all that, though, my wife and I had a grand old time watching those movies.

* * *

Thursday evening there's another trustee meeting at church, and hopefully I'll remember this one before it takes place. I forgot all about the last one, remembering it 24 hours late. Argh etc. Still, I put it on my calendar this time, so hopefully I won't forget again.

* * *

All that hacking and slashing I saw yesterday has put me in the mood for some WoW. Further, deponent sayeth not.

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