The Evening Post
August 14, 2000

Don't Tamper With Tolkien
Dave Verma, Highbury

The picture on your front page (The Post, Aug 9) depciting what appeared to be the character of Gandalf impaled on a spiked wheel for the film The Lord Of The Rings disturbed me greatly.

It disturbed me in much the same way that a recent episode of Dark Night on TV managed to (I'll get back to Gandalf in a minute). It wasn't the acting in Dark Knight, some of which was delightful, nor was it the excellent special effects.

It was the fact that the script writers appeared to have combined Ivanhoe, Robin Hood, Arthurian myth and the story of St George.

Ivanhoe even had a sword that bore a suspcisious resemblance to a certain mystical chopper supplied by one "Lady Of The Lake".

This tendency to mix up myth seemed to start with the TV series Hercules, whose storylines, from memory, seemed to be drawn from a collection of heroic myths, namely Jason, Perseus, Bellerophon, Samson and Odysseus.

Hopefully, the script for The Lord Of The Rings is not going to degenerate into Freddy Krueger meets the Feebles, nor is it going to depart too far from the books, from which I do not recollect wizards being impaled on anything.

To the producers of The Lord Of The Rings, I have no objection to poetic licence, but be careful -- fan's of Isildur's Bane may yet bring wrath on those who falsely tell its tale. [Abridged]