January 3, 2004
Re: Different Types of Tolkien Fans
I agree with the four types of Tolkien fans. I do however feel that it would be more accurate if your 4th category was actually divided into two categories.
4. There are those who devour it, swallow, digest and are hungry for more, like a hobbit with a hankering for mushrooms. But they enjoy other kinds of mushrooms or mushrooms with some differences in presentation and preperation.
5. Then there are those who devour it, swallow it and hunger for just that exact blend of seasons and flavors with litle tolerance for a change. Those who must see the mushrooms placed on the plate with the exact same presentation and will not accept a recipe that calls for a different presentation and some different seasoning.
I say that because I beleive that both 4 and 5 fit in your description "people to whom the stories of Tolkien are so dear. They are the people who's hearts are touched by the magnitude and beauty of the books. They are the people who identify with the characters, and recognize the emphasis placed on the situations, they are able to compare the opinions, morels, and ideas expressed by Tolkien, to everyday life. "
However there is a fundamental difference that seems to exist between 4 and 5. I would definately consider myself of type 4. I have enjoyed debates with people who tend to be much more of the type 5. You are free to choose and form your own opinions. I personally feel that it does nothing to diminish the greatness of Tolkien's works by acknowledging that the movie (with its changes and alterations,) is also a great acheivement. If anything it further enhances my appreciation for the original recipe while giving me another flavor to enjoy. I guess that the big difference is that type 5 watches the movies expecting dissapointment at some level of their mind, and type 4 watches and notes the changes but with a resolve to try and understand the reasons behind it, and at some level evaluate the films on their own. Granted there were many changes that I didn't think tasted as good as the original version, but that was because the presentation was different. When all is said and done Tolkien's original recipe is better, but it is also a recipe that takes far longer to present and savor. When I don't have the time for the harder longer recipe, I can enjoy and savor the different presentation with its different tastes and seasonings in some places.