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52282397 No.52282397 [Reply] [Original] [4plebs] [archived.moe]

Why is Tolkien so fucking genetic? Dude relies so heavily on common fantasy tropes that I'm convinced people only claim to have read him for literary cred.

>elves live in the forest, have an affinity with bows and nature and live long
>dwarves are gruff Scottish miners who wield axes
>"le ancient evul awakinz xD"
>literally a wizard with a pointy hat and robes and a beard
>Generic Mary Sue Male Human Fighter Aragorn who is le best at le everything xD
>dumb typical macguffin plot that is literally "take the thing to the place"

It's so shit and unimaginative. Take better settings like Dragon Age and the Witcher that turn common fantasy tropes on their fucking head and actually deal with real political and social issues and actually portray a gritty realistic fantasy world replete with mature themes instead of "le good guise save le day xD!!!"

>> No.52282419

>Why is Tolkien so fucking genetic?
This retarded OP is now about fantasy eugenics.

>> No.52282423

But where does this thread go once the joke wears off? Is this a Tolkien discussion thread?

>> No.52282470

>Why is Tolkien so fucking genetic?
We are born if the Tolkien
Made men by the Tolkien
Undone by the Tolkien

Our pages have yet to turn
Fear the Old Prose

>> No.52282507

I thought the dwarves were more like Jews mixed with vikings.

>> No.52282509

OP, all the points you made have only shown you have never read a single work by Tolkien, and that your entire premise is nothing but shitposting that shouldn't exist

Once again, as always, OP is a fag.

>> No.52282520
File: 8 KB, 300x168, tolkien.jpg [View same] [iqdb] [saucenao] [google] [report]

>Why is Tolkien so fucking genetic?
Because he's a GENETIC FREAK

>> No.52282532

They are, OP is shitposting and spouting memes he found on reddit

>> No.52282572

I'm all for them. Humans are going to need to step up they g_sh-d*rned game if they want to have any chance against the scaly motherfuckers flying around raping entire mountains to death.

>> No.52282621
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>> No.52282627

>Dragon Age


Much mature
Deep dialogue
Morrigan approves

>> No.52282658

That's got to be how elves do things, right? All that seclusion, ridiculous 'baseline perfection'... It's got to be over the top controlled breeding. The level of shunning any elf that's less than perfect must experience would be intense. Worse, only the best, brightest, most beautiful elves probably ever get to experience intimacy.

Also explains willingness to leave.

>All these non-elves think I'm cute?

>> No.52282673

Tolkien's dwarves are absolutely Norse Jews.

>> No.52282687

>turn common Fantasy tropes.
>literally just Polish mythology played mostly straight, much in the same way Tolkien did English/Northumbrian mythology
Sure thing retard. Maybe we'll see you actually post something intelligent after you've graduated middle school

>> No.52282708

Great is literally Polish Aragorn, except with drugs instead of being descended from a line of literal ubermensch

>> No.52282967

Okay; O.P. is either a honking retard or trying to be 'hilariously' sarcastic for teh epic lulz (ie. a honking retard).

This thread is now for discussion about how Tolkien actually goes against many of the most common clich├ęs perpetrated by generic, pseudo-medieval fantasy.

> The absent-minded / ivory-tower academic / book-smart but unworldly wizard.

Gandalf is almost the diametric opposite of this trope; he's not just knowledgeable; he's wise.

What's more; his wisdom comes from his worldlyness; he has travelled far and seen much of how the world works. Even his staff (which has gone on to become the quintessential wizard accessory) was used by Tolkien because it was the symbol of a traveller.

> Muscular hero Jawline McHugepecs saves the day; the little fella is just there for comic relief.

In almost any of the Tolkien-inspired fantasy stories which followed L.O.T.R. the Aragorn analogue would have been the main character. If the hobbits were there at all they would've been the bumbling side-kicks who maybe manage to accidentally kill an orc or two in the final battle, Jar-Jar Binks style. Instead, Aragorn & the other grand, heroic, types provide a distraction (an important distraction, but still just a distraction) for Sauron's forces while the little folk, Sam & Frodo, actually do the business of destroying the ring.

Anyone have other examples?

>> No.52283781

Uruk-Hai were an astounding sucess in this regard.

>> No.52284065


>Magic is commonplace, bombastic, and functions like STEM

Magic in Middle-earth is omnipresent, but mysterious and difficult to understand. It's more like what you find in ancient mythologies than a CRB.

>Two dimensional tough, sarcastic Acshun Gurl supporting character who shacks up with the hero

Eowyn shows up halfway through and while she does fight she never feels like it's forced. Aragorn also rejects her.

>> No.52284106

That and Elric.

>> No.52284128

Good God, go to bed, Michael Moorcock. We already story timed Elric for you, you don't have to rewrite Epic Pooh.

>> No.52284214

>The hero wins through sheer wits against a stronger opponent
Let's not mince words, Bilbo fucking cheated in his riddle-game with Gollum, and Tolkien even pointed out in the narration that he fucking cheated. He also accidentally screwed over the River-men because Smaug (wrongly) guessed Bilbo's affiliation.

>> No.52284308
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I'll take the bait. Tolkein seems boring and generic to you because AFTER him, the fantasy market became saturated with tropes he created/popularized. DnD as you know it, every fantasy book published since him, and every fantasy game from rogue to skyrim all reflect tolkein's worldbuilding with few exceptions (I dunno, maybe Avatar has nothing borrowed from Tolkein or something?)

The fact that everything since Tolkein imitates him shows how influential and groundbreaking he was, not the opposite. But you wouldn't know that being a millenial with no historical context (or spouting opinions you don't believe in to get a reaction)

>> No.52284414


>the fantasy market became saturated with tropes he created/popularized

I never quite understood this argument. Half this thread is people pointing out your average fantasy story/RGP is so far removed from what you actually read in LotR any comparison is disingenuous. Your typical D&D game has more in common with Conan than it ever will with what we see in Middle-earth.

I get the sense he came up with things like orcs and Elven archers. But overall a more accurate description is one or two authors poorly aped his stuff, and then all successive fantasy works aped them.

>> No.52284472

>Half this thread is people pointing out your average fantasy story/RGP is so far removed from what you actually read in LotR any comparison is disingenuous

That's because they're all two or three steps removed now. Read Sword of Shannara sometime to see the first wave of this bullshit. Actually don't, because it sucks ass It was ridiculously profitable and everyone jumped on the bandwagon.
After that, publishers were scrambling for "Like Shannara, but different," where different was usually superficial twists and things. Wash, rinse and repeat for 40 years, and you have the current state of fantasy literature and such, where everything is built on a framework set up by Tolkien, but all the details keep changing, like someone was playing mad libs with Fellowship of the Ring.
Fantasy literature has been terribly samey ever since Terry Brooks rode the money train to the top of shit hill.

>> No.52284602

I admit it's some well made bait. They deliberately mention the stereotypical elves instead of how the average Tolkein Elf doesn't use bows & only a small minority like Legolas do. It's also well crafted the part about Dwarves being Scottish instead of Jews.

>> No.52284646

And suddenly the reason elves are such sluts is explained

>> No.52284666

In addition to what >>52284472
said; people imitating something famous & profitable tend to copy only the most superficial elements because those are the easiest to imitate.

>> No.52284671

>Elves are noble, wise, and ultimately superior to humans
They're snobby, jealous, and petty.

>> No.52284727


>They're snobby, jealous, and petty.

Some are, some aren't. Tolkien occasionally describes races in broad terms: Hobbits are easygoing and lazy, Men are ambitious but easily-corrupted, and Elves are ancient but often haughty.

But individual Elves come in a variety of personalities. The only races he consistently writes with any kind of homogeneous personality are dwarves and orcs.

>> No.52284799

>Why is Tolkien so fucking genetic
Fuck off Liquid.

>> No.52284837

I feel like Geralt is more Anglo than Polish. Iirc his mother is a red headed Druid. I know the author was British but the whole setting feels more like it's set in Western Europe rather than Eastern Europe.

>> No.52284866

Fuck I meant the author was Polish

>> No.52285112

ok I'm going to make 2 lists to reinforce my point (which is not exactly negated by the independent points made by other posters, they are complementary and show that the imitation of Tolkein borrows some details but not essence)

DnD: Elves have their own language, live much longer than humans, have better senses including more sensitive vision, are xenophobic and racist, and dislike/rival dwarves. Dwarves adopt the particular Tolkein size of a short human (in older fantasy, they were often much smaller or varied in size), halflings which are loosely based on hobbits didn't exist at all before Tolkein, and Orcs are large grubby assholes who are warlike and often low intelligence (this adaptation is not necessarily Tolkein-esque, Uruk-Hai leaders were cunning but not all orcs).

These similarities all show that the demographic information from Tolkein is heavily borrowed in DnD (and other fantasy settings, but this post is already going to be long as fuck)

However at it's core LOTR and The Hobbit is about how very average normal (and even small, below average strength) people can, through heroic effort, accomplish epic feats that shape the fate of nations and the world.
This spirit of overcoming the impossible, of boring homebody people going on a magical hero's journey against all odds, is less often imitated and even fewer effectively so.

I'd say some good examples are A Wrinkle In Time, Chronicles of Narnia, and the Xanth series of books.

A story like Harry Potter, where everyone already knows the main character is magical and instantly amazing at everything they do, is both more worthy of criticism for being mary-sue and less Tolkein-y in spirit. Same for the story of the heavily muscled badass that noone is surprised when they beat the pulp out of their enemies (Battlefield: Earth, Conan the Barbarian, Drizzt from the Forgotten Realms setting).

tl;dr most Tolkein imitators copy the minutiae of Tokein's world, and miss the essence of the story

>> No.52285173

>tolkien created most of the "most common fantasy settings"
>therefore he is a filthy unimaginative fucker
im gonna drink from your skull

>> No.52285177

>from Tolkien is heavily borrowed in DnD
That was some grammar-naziesque portrayal of what you were saying. Almost had to correct you til I saw what you did there.

>> No.52285189
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>> No.52285277

How can none of you have mentioned Der Ring Des Nibelungen.
Lord of the Rings is at its core a criticism/reimagining/rip off of Wagner's famous Opera, which is why it all seems so generic; it's a denatured second generation knock off of Norse mythology with a little bit of Kalevala and Beowulf to spice things up.

>> No.52285360

>Elves are vegetarian hippies who live in trees

The Kingdom of Mirkwood is literally a cave, and Elrond has a nice little estate that doubles as a library. Only Lorien comes anywhere close to the archetype, and that's more due to the specific properties of the Mallorn rather than vegetation in general.

They're also noted to hunt, and have a love of architecture and metallurgy, which these days are more of a dwarf thing.

>orcs are dumb brutish warriors
Tolkien orcs are actually one of the most intelligent races in Middle-Earth, with a skill for craftsmanship rivalling that of the dwarves. They also have quite a complex social hierarchy, with serveral scenes featuring orcs bickering between tribal lines, and most really hate Sauron. Hardly a monolithic evil army.

>> No.52285608

The fire nation seems pretty Sauronic with their spiny black metal industry

>> No.52285692

boy all their shit is japanese

>> No.52285719

My understanding is that dwarves are Scottish now because the movie actor was.

>> No.52285767

>What was intended to clarify the whole piece as a gag; the purposeful misswording of genetic instead of generic, ended up being the greater gag itself.

>> No.52285779
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>Take better settings like Dragon Age and the Witcher that turn common fantasy tropes on their fucking head and actually deal with real political and social issues and actually portray a gritty realistic fantasy world replete with mature themes instead of "le good guise save le day xD!!!"

>> No.52285952

Scottish dwarves had been a thing since long before. If anything, they choose a scottish actor because of people's expecting dwarves to be scottish than the other way around.

Worth noting, however, is that american media often portrays anything north of England as having a scottish accent, so it might just be because of ordinary american unwillingness to learn about other cultures.

>> No.52286000

Is there any specific reason you used all those semicolons or do you honestly think commas are overrated?

>> No.52286208

To be honest, I don't think GRRM actually understands what Tolkien was doing. He doesn't exactly strike me as the most intellectual fatman around.

>> No.52286209
File: 33 KB, 212x346, redwall.jpg [View same] [iqdb] [saucenao] [google] [report]


In Redwall, there are something like two rats in the entire series that aren't evil.

Given that basically 100% of rats, stoats, weasels, etc. are objectively evil and do nothing but hurt people, would it be morally justifiable to exterminate them?

How many examples of good rats would we need before we can no longer justify it?

>> No.52286247

In the rambling, self indulgent Drizzt narrations, he references a goblin repeatedly of good weal, and yet the settings authorities, specifically his own god, says they should all die.

>> No.52286250

There were characters that more or less endorsed genocide of those races. Ultimately the peaceful races simply don't have the stomach for that sort of thing so they never do it.

>> No.52286266


But they have the stomach to get brutally invaded every two or three hours?

One of the only things I distinctly remember from Redwall was the rats pulling the spikes off the church fences and using them as flechettes to lob over the walls and kill people with shrapnel.

>> No.52286282

It's because Irish accents are fucking incomprehensible.

Secondly, US and Scotland doesn't have the history that Irish have, so it's bit more "exotic "

>> No.52286293

The "Dwarven Brogue" started with Poul Anderson's 'Three Hearts and Three Lions,' which was one of the stronger inspirations for D&D.

>> No.52286298

Well your understanding is retarded, because he's Welsh.

>> No.52286310

But dude! Geralt literally said "fucking degenerates" which caters to my /pol/ beliefs so Witcher is literally god tier.

>> No.52286340

>Polish mythology played mostly straight
>instead of magical humanoids, giant insects
>elves, djinns
Please don't call people retards, because you're the king of all retards. Regards, a Pole.

>> No.52286388

In Halruaa, the entire country is a mageocracy with a eugenics program to breed powerful magical lineages, and like a third of the population can cast at least first level arcane spells.

>> No.52286405


>> No.52286505

Something something jewish dwarves, something something degenerate mongolian orcs, something something elves

>> No.52286604

>american media often portrays anything north of England as having a scottish accent


>> No.52286883

Scandinavia is also north of England, and American regularly portray Vikings as having Scottish accents.

>> No.52286925

Ah ok, I stupidly took that to mean "in the UK".

>> No.52286945

I actually did have to explain to my last housemate why this opinion is fucking wrong. He was butt hurt about me saying that Firefly was a bad show so he tried to hurt my feelings by saying that the dwarves and elves were "cookie cutter". I don't even really like Tolkien, but I couldn't let that slander stand

>> No.52287190


>> No.52289960


People take a lot of Gurm's remarks about Tolkien out of context. When GRRM says things like "yeah but what was Aragorn's tax policy?" he's not taking some pot shot at Tolkien's writing. He's stating he was always the kind of person who wondered things like that, so he includes stuff like that in his own writing. This meme where George is some smug contrarian who thinks he's better than Tolkien is a combination of him not conveying his points very well and grognards having a serious knee-jerk reaction whenever they think someone is criticizing the most-holy Hobbit Father.

>inb4 Gurm apologist

>> No.52290012


>boy all their shit is japanese

Half-true. None of the inspirations in the Avatarverse are that cut and dry. Many of their names sound Nippon, but that's basically it. Aesthetically and politically they're more Imperial China.

If they were completely Japanese, Sokka would've trained with a katana instead of a Chinese straight sword.

>> No.52290440

I first heard about the 'tax policy' line on /tg/, and I was hoping the reason for it was this.
Even though I don't read his books, I honestly think it's a good idea in principle that he decided to take a different direction because he was interested in a particular aspect of fantasy. Whether he can deliver on it or not isn't really as much important to me because I'm not interested in that kind of writing.

>> No.52290527

I think it is a world based off europe as an entirety. Cintra is entirely Denmark to the sigil. Northern kangdoms are eastern europe; fractured, easily conquered but not easily held, lots of rivers and forests.

>> No.52290558

Thats a nice head you have on your shoulders.

>> No.52290707

>He was butt hurt about me saying that Firefly was a bad show

Your opinions are bad and you should feel bad! But yeah, he shouldn't have said that stuff about Tolkien, either.


Can confirm, I've read what GRRM wrote about the first time he read Tolkien. He had been a Conan guy, and at first he didn't get it and didn't like it. Like, "what the fuck is up with these hobbit guys? Conan would cut a bloody swath through these bumbling idiots!" and he was kind of rushing through the book.
Then suddenly he saw what Tolkien was doing, and he slowed down and felt bad about rushing through the early parts, because now he didn't want it to end, because he realized he'd never get to read this story for the first time ever again.

He also wrote he that when he first set out to write, he hoped to one day be a good writer, but knew in his heart that he'd never be to write like Tolkien.

>> No.52290726

>at first he didn't get it

Something you can say about even Tolkien's most vicious defenders.

LotR is not a fantasy adventure. It's a modern attempt at an epic poem written in the style of a novel. Tolkien intended it for mythology scholars. This is why I never sincerely recommend it for people who are looking to get into fantasy--unless you're someone who likes breaking books down paragraph by paragraph and analyzing each one, there isn't much you can "get" from the books you can't find in the movies.

>> No.52290742

I just meant the Fire Nation.

>> No.52290754

>Something you can say about even Tolkien's most vicious defenders.

I'm sorry, I'm afraid I miss your point here. Care to elucidate?

>> No.52290759

golly do i love tolkien threads

>> No.52290807

When compared with the baseline ork, the Uruk-hai is indeed a great leap forwards.
However, I do not know how well would one hold against a baseline human, which is a well trained and equipped threat by itself.
Would the Uruk-hai's only true advantage be quantity and ease of production?

>> No.52290843


>I just meant the Fire Nation.

Yeah, so did I. The Fire Nation actually has relatively little in common with Japan beyond geography and some superficial elements. The most Japanese thing I ever recall seeing in it was the classroom scene where it's revealed it has an ultra-nationalist education system taken straight from the country's World War II days.

>Political scene is completely different from basically any point in Japanese history. No warrior-noble class undermining the Emperor/Fire Lord
>Chinese weaponry
>Firebending is Chinese Kung Fu
>Architecture is a blend of medieval Chinese and Japanese influences with no strong direction way or another.

I'm not saying there's zero Japan in their culture but it's not wholly inspired by just one country.

>> No.52290910


>> No.52290979

>Dwarves are viking geniuses, they are warm and friendly, and are quite a rowdy bunch
Dwarves, while they do like alcohol and fun, are a practical people. One of their biggest concerns in any venture is what they will gain from it, and while they won't stab you in the back, they aren't going to do you any favors either.
>A dragon is a beast, lacking of intellect, and can be slain by a single man of decent talent
A dragon is massive, dangerous, and above all, smart. It would take an army to even threaten one, and even then it would probably turn into a matter of luck.
>The common peasant can do just as much as a king
Royalty have actual set in stone advantages over common men, they are stronger, smarter, and much, much more long lived. The common man could never hope to out match a king.

>> No.52290984
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There are breeds of uruk-hai, the first ones made by Sauron and the Saruman's white hand variant later.

They have greater strentgh than the usual orc, I would say as strong as a human, perhaps stronger. But I believe their better qualities are discipline, great endurance, sun tolerance and higher moral. They will follow orders better and fight harder. They are an actual army instead of what are effectively warbands the Dark Lord had to make to with, or professionals X levies.

I think that the better equipment was a consequence of them being troops worth the expense. And while the movie's depiction is great, the Howe's drawings really show this.

>> No.52291001

To be fair, the vermin shown were all parts of invading armies or brigands, we didn't really see civilian vermin.

>> No.52291018

For the sake of 50 good rats, they shall be spared.

>> No.52291025

That reference might go over some people's heads.

>> No.52291054

Yeah, I felt the same way when I read that Shakespeare hack. It was just page after page of famous quotes.

>> No.52291107

>tl;dr most Tolkein imitators copy the minutiae of Tokein's world, and miss the essence of the story

Can you even be called a Tolkien imitator if you just go with the classical fantasy tropes, while not giving a shit about the actual LotR books? Personally, I found them incredibly dull, and nothing I enjoy about fantasy has anything to do with Tolkien.

>> No.52291182
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>> No.52291237

I want a shiba inu named Morrigan now.

>> No.52291286

Blame RA Salvatore.
Bruenor Battlehammer seems to be Patient Zero for the dwarf with a Scottish accent.
Flint Fireforge from the War of the Lance, which is only a few years ahead of Crystal Shard, had no such accent.

>> No.52291358
File: 44 KB, 380x353, Ch9X38cWsAEaWn2.jpg [View same] [iqdb] [saucenao] [google] [report]

This is now canon in my ERPs.

>> No.52291397


Poul Anderson did it in Three Hearts and Three Lions, which was a big influence on D&D originally, but yeah, Salvatore's probably the one who spawned the endless imitations. And I don't see much of Anderson's influence in what Salvatore is cranking out.

>> No.52291477


I dunno, I liked LotR fine when I got it as a present at eleven years old. Even if you don't dissect it bit by bit, it's enjoyable literature.

>> No.52291606

Yeah, don't get me wrong. I loved the books. There's a dark beauty in their imagery, and I can't think of anything quite like them. If you have the patience for them, you absolutely should read them.

But I feel building them up as fantasy literature's Bible is something of a disservice. Qualifying a work solely by what imitators did feels shallow, especially considering you don't actually need to read LotR at all to appreciate Tolkien's imitators.

>> No.52291720

Tolkein fucking made those tropes

>> No.52291895

nah, its mostly fairy tales from most parts of Europe. The polish ones are just the most obvious

>> No.52291896

Tolkien, like Aliens, has become retroactively generic. This is like saying Conan is generic sword and sorcery or Flash Gordan is generic space opera or DOOM is a generic fps. They're old archetypes.

You remind me of the anon who bitched about Art of War.

>> No.52291936

Not him, but I think what he's going for is that most people who read Tolkien at first don't actually get it, and it's only on a (usually much later) re-read, away from the sort of mindset of fantasy adventure and more aligned with reading of scholarly literature or mythology that you really start to 'get' it. I know I completely missed the point for years after reading LoTR for the first time.

>> No.52291971

Not him, but people really do read the Bible here.

>> No.52291978

Is /tg/ the most easily baited board? I swear half the threads i see are obvious trolls fishing for (yous) and they never fail to get a response

>> No.52291999


>> No.52292021

Woah, seriously? Did not expect that. Good to know.

>> No.52292073

>common fantasy tropes

That's because he created them, dumbass. As I am sure 100 other anons have told you already.

> Take better settings like Dragon Age and the Witcher that turn common fantasy tropes on their fucking head and actually deal with real political and social issues and actually portray a gritty realistic fantasy world replete with mature themes instead of "le good guise save le day xD!!!"

I like stories about real political and social issues. But not in a setting about elves and dwarves and other shit.'

Can't believe I am responding to bait.

>> No.52292109

I've never understood this "Is X the most easily baited board?" complaint. Have you ever been to any other board? They're almost all like that.

>> No.52292122

>Can't believe I am responding to bait.
Seriously, why are you?

>> No.52292227

>feels more like it's set in Western Europe rather than Eastern Europe.
Medieval Poland was generic as fuck country. Most of Catholic world was generic copy-paste of other Catholic countries at that time.
From France to Poland you had that Catholic universality.
Only east of Kingdom of Poland there was change as people were Orthodox Ruthenians that have different worship culture and building style.
Poland, Bohemia, Prussia, East Germany, maybe Hungary in high medieval were generic places with same feudalism, same knights, same church, same learning systems, similar law, same academics and same arcane language, only names changed but were often still local translation of the same names from bible.

>> No.52292302

You mae me giggle and I needed this so bad. Ty.

>> No.52293628

Him, and you are correct.

Many die-hard Tolkien fans are spergy high schoolers who read the books once and defend it as the Greatest Fantasy Work Of All Time(tm) without understanding it's not an epic fantasy adventure at all. It's definitely got the makings of one, which is why it translated to a film so well. But ultimately it's much more than that.

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