Bill and Sam's Excellent Adventure


New Member
One of the greatest strengths of The Lord of the Rings, I have always thought, is in the way that it can represent the epic heroism found in the most ordinary and down-to-earth characters. The sort of legendary heroism in the characters of Aragorn, Theoden, and the like is also seen in the characters of the more humble and grounded nature, in their own way. It is only in the Lord of the Rings that a Victorian-era gardener/manservant can face off against a demonic spider-monster from the depths of the unknown past and the scene is never played to be satirical or ironic. There is true epic heroism in that Victorian gardener.

What struck me about the conversation in the most recent episode was exactly that thought, however. I wonder if the relationship between Sam and Bill is supposed to reflect in some way the classic heroic idea of the noble friendship between a warlord and his charger. It is something that we see with Theoden and Snowmane, and with Gandalf and Shadowfax, in a more classic instance of the theme, but the Sam/Bill story works perhaps just as well as a more humble but equally poignant example of that more classic theme, in the same sort of un-satirical way.