Session 4.11 - Season 4 Episode Outlines (Revisited)

Discussion in 'Episode Questions' started by MithLuin, Feb 23, 2019.

  1. MithLuin

    MithLuin Well-Known Member

    It looks as though we will, really and truly, finish up our discussion of the 'Season-long Story Arcs' in the next Session on March 8th. Our final topics are Dragons and Lúthien, and I suggest we discuss those on the Session 4.09-4.10 thread.

    When we finish, the next task will be to sort out our timeline and plan out each episode for the Season. There's a lot of storylines to juggle, and some things *can't* happen before/after other things, so it's work that has to be done carefully. I know a lot of people have been putting thought into this for awhile now. We may begin discussing that as early as the end of next session (though I rather doubt it). Even so, best to get this thread open and ready now! Fortuitously, we already are fairly clear on Glaurung's timing (if not his motivation), and whatever is worked out for Lúthien can likely be added easily later.

    We've also done a lot of work and discussing since the 4.02 Session where we first discussed this, so many 'decisions' from that session are likely on the table for being revisited. I would prefer that we acknowledge when we are trying to change a decision made in that session versus working within the framework we started from, but by no means are alternative suggestions off the table. We have a lot of re-working to do here, and that tends to be hampered if you feel all decisions are fixed.

    Some issues are more contentious than others. I would ask all of us to please watch how repetitive we are being. By all means, come to this thread and make your points. And, if challenged, certainly defend and explain them. But if you find yourself typing the same idea over and over again, that's...not very productive and leads to frustration. I'll do my best to convey all suggestions and alternative versions of the timeline to the Execs, and let them decide how they want this to play out. We don't need to reach total consensus here.

    To that end, I have made a (primitive) Gantt Chart visual for us all to work from. The first goal is to make sure all 'events' we have discussed in the sessions or worked out on the boards (that didn't get vetoed) are listed somewhere on this chart. That way, they can all be placed in an episode and not overlooked. I know Faelivrin has been working on some ordered lists for the various storylines, so I'm hoping to integrate those. If you're not sure if an event should be listed, use a question mark or italics and we'll figure out later if it needs to be edited/deleted. Once items are on the list, we can then worry about episode placement. For events whose timing is contentious/up for debate, I suggest using a lime green marker. Everything else is blue for episodes 1-5, orange for episodes 6-9, and mustard for episodes 10-13. Hopefully, this will be a quick way to see progression of storylines through the season. If the Hosts requested a particular timing for an event during the discussions, we should do our best to place it there, but chances are some of their requests will turn out to be contradictory and need to be changed. For now, I'd ask that we leave the section for the Frame blank. We know our theme/basic storyline for the Frame; we'll suggest particular frame scenes later after the episodes themselves take shape. Likewise, we do not (yet!) need to worry about whether an event occurs in Act 1, 2, 3, or 4 of an episode; just block out the entire episode for that event (for now).

    Anyone may comment on or edit this file, and I do intend to share it with the Execs so that they may use it as a visual aid during discussions of the Season Outline.

    It would be a daunting task for one person to collate every suggestion made since October! So, any and all help with putting this together is MUCH appreciated!! Thank you all :)
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  2. amysrevenge

    amysrevenge Well-Known Member

    You know what's super frustrating? I have the tools and the skillset to handle this sort of planning (what's a project engineer if not a detailed planner haha), but I'm working 60h a week and quasi-single parenting and just can't afford to spend any time on it.
  3. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    On the Gantt Chart: are the Orcs attacking up the Coast and Dagor Aglareb the same events? Different events occurring simultaneously?
  4. MithLuin

    MithLuin Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I know most people would rather work on Silm Film than work on their actual jobs ;). At least....that's how I feel about it! (Looks at boxes to be unpacked yet....) I know it's frustrating to be relegated to the role of yelling at us for getting it wrong. But no worries - real life obligations being what they are, they come first.

    Ange1e4e5, the orc attack on Hithlum along the coast will be part of the Dagor Aglareb offensive, as per the discussion in Session 4.08 last week. Or at least, that's what they requested! I know we had talked about having that happen after the Kinslaying reveal, but apparently that's no longer a separate event. There was some concern that having too many battles during the Siege makes Glaurung's attack look less like a surprise and more like something to be expected.

    I have been thinking a bit about how to handle the opening episodes of the Season. A few people have expressed the concern that too much is slated to happen in Episode 1. I think it's a valid point, and 'rushing' to get to Year 5 events is not necessarily the wisest course of action. The Hosts did really like the idea of having Episode 1 end with Fingon's rescue of Maedhros, though, and seemed unwilling to let go of that unless it were replaced with a suitably memorable ending.

    I think one way to resolve these would be to have Episodes 1 and 2 overlap in time, but be divided in content. So, Episode 1 could be focused on the north and be Mithrim-centric, while Episode 2 could be focused on the south and be Doriath-centric. Thematically, this might work nicely for focusing on the differences between the Sindar and the Noldor, giving them each an episode on 'their' turf from their own perspectives. But the one main advantage of this would be that we could 'accelerate' Galadriel's storyline and introduce it like this:

    In Episode 1, Galadriel does her organizing of the Noldor, setting herself up as the next Fëanor to emerge in this group. She would even set off for Doriath in this first episode. We could show her returning from Doriath, still in Episode 1, and the audience would be shocked by the changed demeanor and mystified as to what had happened to her while she's gone. Then, in Episode 2, we show her time in Doriath, up until her departure.

    This allows us to do 'Galadriel visits Doriath' before FA 5, while not *showing* Galadriel in Doriath (or Doriath at all) in the first episode. And because we show her departure/arrival from her journey, we know that the events of Episode 2 happen during Episode 1.

    It doesn't gain us a lot of breathing space (there's still a lot of events to work into Episode 1!), but it does let the timeline relax a little tiny bit. We can still be on 'Year 5' at the opening of Episode 3 without feeling like we stalled to get there. And, if we have to, we can show Círdan in Mithrim during Episode 2 as part of our 'Sindar-centric' storytelling. So, some content that doesn't fit in Episode 1 could be allowed to spill over into Episode 2, while still keeping Episode 1 ending with our cliffhanger resolution.

    Also, all of our talk of Sauron (and Tevildo) capturing elves has made me think that the Noldor (and the Sindar) would become very paranoid about travelling in small numbers. We will want to show them early in the Season maybe a little cautious about exploring new lands they don't know, but overall confident in their ability to get back 'home' safely. As Sauron's efforts to capture elves continues, and more and more elves don't reach their destinations, the elves will have to become much more cautious travellers, and we should show that. The Mereth Aderthad should be the end of the 'casual' traversing of Beleriand. They'll still travel, just with a lot more caution. This will come up in several different places - meeting the dwarves in East Beleriand, and Aegnor visiting Himring, any travelling to and from Doriath, etc.
  5. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    Perhaps Eldalote does not return until after the construction of Gondolin starts? Later in the First Age, Aredhel is perfectly fine with traveling with a mere 2-3 companions.
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2019
  6. MithLuin

    MithLuin Well-Known Member

    It will depend when we want to show Eldalotë's treachery of opening the gates from the inside (or whatever we have her do under the Spell of Bottomless Dread). Currently, that is meant to happen during the Dagor Aglareb, and so she would have to return before FA 60. It seems unlikely that Gondolin would be completed so early.

    One thing that might help would be to spread out the captures a bit more in this season. I'm not sure there's any need for Annael to be 'discovered' as a spy immediately. Perhaps that part of his story takes a little longer to play out.

    So, Eldalotë is captured first (on her way home from the Mereth Aderthad in FA 20?) We show her being captured, resisting Sauron's questioning, being brought before Morgoth...and then being found as a gibbering mess by the Noldor later. This all happens in Episode 5-7.

    Rog and Annael are made captive during the Dagor Aglareb (Episode 8). Perhaps one of them (Rog?) was too rash/bold and got overwhelmed. It's only orcs in this battle, so we have to be careful how we do that. Perhaps the other one is a casualty of Eldalotë's treachery (not intentional on her part, of course, but still treachery). Rog (and Annael?) heroically escape just before the event where Glaurung is released on the north (so, end of the Season). Whatever spying Annael does would then be a Season 5 issue, which gets resolved by the time of the Dagor Bragollach. So, he's outed as a spy by the end of Season 5, which, combined with Eldalotë's behavior, gives the elves reason to be wary of returning captives. That might make that story feel less rushed and give us time to build up the expectations of what Sauron's spy is going to do before he is caught.

    Curufin's wife is made captive...when? While travelling? As part of a battle/attack? We probably need to figure out what her story is, but that should happen sometime this Season (maybe after Episode 8?). I just think it might be a mistake to have all 4 of these elves made captive in 4 episodes right in a row. Not that splitting it up 6-8-10 is necessarily any better, doesn't make it seem that every elf who steps foot outside their doorway is being snatched up. We will show Turgon and Finrod wandering around, and visits between East and West Beleriand. So....we do need to show peaceful unmolested travels as well. Just...enough capturing is happening that the elves would have to be at least somewhat wary.
  7. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    For how Rog gets captured: I think that the suggestion that he gets overwhelmed is a pretty good one, since only Orcs are present (I’ve also suggested Gothmog be present to prevent the Orcs from fleeing) and it isn’t unheard of to have a lone warrior surrounded and captured in Tolkien’s works; Hurin was captured in the Nirnaeth Arnoediad when he was weighed down by the numerous limbs of Orcs grabbing him.
  8. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    So if Elves aren’t going to be comfortable in small groups, why would Aredhel be comfortable with only 2-3 bodyguards?
  9. Nicholas Palazzo

    Nicholas Palazzo Well-Known Member

    Because she is being reckless.
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  10. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

  11. MithLuin

    MithLuin Well-Known Member

    Maybe elves *are* comfortable in small groups, but at some point, it's going to look reckless. How many stagecoaches have to get robbed before someone decides to add security to the stagecoaches?

    Also keep in mind that Aredhel takes her trip after being out of the loop for a couple hundred years with limited news of the world outside Gondolin. She may think things are safer than they are.
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  12. Haerangil

    Haerangil Well-Known Member

    It is easy to get captured... for example when youre wounded or unconscious...
    or if the others ride wolves and you are on foot!
  13. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    I think Sauron should lead some of the raids. You don’t get names like Gorthaur the Cruel by sitting around all day. Perhaps the moniker is added after Annael’s capture, since Gorthaur is his name amongst the Sindar?
    Last edited: Mar 1, 2019
  14. Haerangil

    Haerangil Well-Known Member

    I do not get the i pression that he ever stands in the first row. In my eyes he is that dark ebil general black magician mastermind with a werewolf wand who stands innthe back and sends out his minions and only gets involved by himself if he sees that his men are too weak or too incompetent and so he has to to the job by himself.
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  15. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    Which has never sat well with me. Sitting in the back like that can give one the impression that he's weak/cowardly and needs his minions to do his fighting for him, like Joffrey.
    Last edited: Mar 3, 2019
  16. Nicholas Palazzo

    Nicholas Palazzo Well-Known Member

    Except unlike Joffrey, we have, and will continue to demonstrate Sauron's power. Just because he isn't wasting his time stabbing people doesn't mean he isn't doing anything.
  17. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    That’s why I was suggesting that he lead raids since it isn’t a pitched battle, and tactics like using Tevildo and his cats to ambush Elves and herd them towards Thuringwethil or Sauron, depending on who we put in charge.
  18. Nicholas Palazzo

    Nicholas Palazzo Well-Known Member

    And I said at the time that I thought it likely that the capture of Elves would be opportunistic, rather than systematic.
  19. Faelivrin

    Faelivrin Well-Known Member

    I've been too busy to read this thread or keep up with the forums, I just wanted to comment that I'd rather avoid overlapping the episodes in time, if possible. That seems like it would cause confusion.

    Also I don't know how to add events to your Gantt chart, Marie, because I have no idea what episode to put them in. I have all my event lists but don't know how to add them.

    What is the expected date of the podcast session? I don't feel like we're even close to ready and the deadline is worrying me.
    Last edited: Mar 5, 2019
  20. Ange1e4e5

    Ange1e4e5 Well-Known Member

    The date for the next podcast is at the end of this week.

    For order of events: what do the Hosts want vs what we want?

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