I laughed and laughed.
It also made me think I should offer my 2 cents on LOTR. Perhaps tomorrow. There’s a lot to say about it – more than a single essay, certainly.
One essay I will probably NOT write about here is my boundless admiration for the efficacy and beauty of the film trilogy’s astonishing marketing campaign. The sales drones over there are more than sales drones – it’s the most carefully thought-out entertainment marketing campagin I have ever heard of, let alone seen.
Every detail seems not only to be noted and accounted for but meticulously planned with an overriding strategy that, frankly, reminds me of a military campaign. Maybe the Bushies should hire Jackson’s wizards of marketing and actually listen to them.
That’s kind of an amusing contrast – one of the reasons the LOTR marketing is so effective, even globally, is that the films, Tolkien, and Peter Jackson strongly appear to have our best interests in mind as well as theirs. Think of the discomfort one experienced under that most recent Star Wars assault, for example. What’s different? We (and by we I mean I) think that Jackson and his team are doing something so special and amazing, something that transforms a cherised reading experience, often a childhood one, into a new form. It’s magic. It’s akin to faith, to religious experience, which is also why LOTR lovers (I’m one) are prone to lampoonable cultish behaviors.
Really though, it’s almost too easy to argue that Tolkein’s beautiful vision represents a myth that extols a colonial past that had failed when the book was published, among other things. I recall having my first lit-crit discussion ever with my dad on the books, having noted that they were written in the shadow of World War II and can easily be understood as an allegory of that war, (and of course more than that, but! As I said, too many essays here to write them all).
And also: goody! I can’t wait.
(Hey look! I’m back on schedule!)