The LOTR Movie Site
November 16, 2000

Skeptic No More
John K.

I have participated in many debates about the upcoming LOTR films over the last year, and from what I have seen so far and read, I am confident that Peter Jackson was the person for this undertaking.

I would consider myself one of the "Tolkien Purists", I do not want to see too many changes, like Arwen becoming a warrior and the removal of Bombadil and so forth. But I really take comfort in some of the statements that has come from Jackson and the some of the cast lately. Such as Mckellan stating that Arwen will probably indeed not wield a sword, and especially Peter Jackson in this VERY reassuring statement:

"Way back at the beginning we thought there is quite a bit of this we are going to have to alter or change, do things to turn the book into a film but the more we got into it and the more we really started to know the books in great detail, it would be fair to say we've gone further and further back to the books again.

So a lot of our so called clever ideas at the beginning we've long since abandoned and Tolkien hopefully has a fairly clear voice in the film."

Music to the ears, no? Especially now seeing more and more of the set pictures as well, Jackson and his crew look to be getting the job done big time. Just take a look at the Bywater Mill photo in the gallery, that IS Hobbiton!

It is indeed to soon to say that the story will be wonderfully captured and represent Tolkien's trilogy very very well, but I am convinced that Peter Jackson was the guy to do these films and not as skeptical as I used to be about changes to the story.

One last thing too, in regards to Bombadil, Tolkien himself stated in a recent book of his letters, that Bombadil was not the incredibly powerful spirit people think him to be, and shot down the idea of him being likened to Illuvatar himself.

He basically said that Bombadil served merely an example of the peace and pacifism that would be ultimately lost if the One Ring was reclaimed by Sauron. The One Ring it seems has a power to especially corrupt "The Wise" (Maiars, Elves, people of power and influence)and those who seek some kind of control, whether it be over good or evil. For instance, Hobbits are simple country folk for the most part, and we see that the Ring takes much longer to corrupt them. Hobbits seem have more of a resistance to the Ring, because they are generally care free when it comes to matters outside the Shire and do not seek to have power over anything, just leading their non conflicting and simple farm lifestyles.

In turn Bombadil doesn't really have power over the Ring, it has no power over him, as Gandalf also states at Rivendell. Bombadil has no real cares about much of what goes on outside his country, and Tolkien even points out that Bombadil doesn't even try to "save" or tame Old Man Willow. It seems to really just be Bombadil's completely care free attitude and total lack of want for any power or mastery over any thing except his "country" that makes him resist any and all temptations and effects of the One Ring upon him.

Not that I would say Bombadil is totally unimportant, however. But he is truly not meant to be such a "powerful" figure as we think jim to be it seems. Tolkien also said that Bombadil was written in because his daughter had a doll named Tom Bombadil, and to give the Hobbits a little adventure on their way to Rivendell.

 I do also hope Jackson makes a little compromise for the fans in regards to Bombadil though. Maybe they will mention him at Rivendell without the actual film showing the Bombadil sequence to create some controversy/mystery. Then add the Bombadil sequence in a special VHS or DVD release, I think I'd buy that :)