Session 4.17 - Creative Content Part 3: Swords, Hands and Eagles

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
The next Session (4.17) will be held on Friday June 7th - so, next week!

I would like to address the Casting for Season 4 at this time. At this point, we've discussed the episodes for the first half of the Season, so we should have a good feel for the characters we're developing by now.

So, we'll send the 'potential' cast list to the Exec Team for their review, and ask their input to develop the requirements of the casting call.

What else would you like to discuss next time? I can add additional topics after the casting discussion, and if we have time, we will talk about that as well.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
We missed a few topics last time, might have to jog my memory which ones like shields and what Maedhros should have at the end of his arm.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Yes, we only got partway through the magic swords/shields discussion, and did not touch upon Maedhros' missing hand nor the eagles. So, those topics can all go after Casting, time permitting.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Well, surprise, those topics came *before* casting, so we will now look at Casting during Session 4-19, which will be on Thursday July 11th.
 

amysrevenge

Well-Known Member
Thoughts as the come to me listening to the replay on Twitch.

"Do Dwarves and Noldor achieve magic swords differently" - yes of course.
"Could a Noldor even make a "non-magical" sword?" - no I don't think so. But Dwarves can.

This is a scene I'm imagining, where Caranthir first trades with a caravan of Dwarves. He shows them his sword - they go gaga. "Only Telchar can craft it's equal" one might say, which would get Caranthir pretty steamed at the notion of a Dwarf matching up with the house of Feanor. Then they'd show him one of their swords. Caranthir would scoff at it, as he finds it (correctly, objectively) of lesser quality. "This thing won't even keep itself sharp!"
The conversation gets frosty, but turns to production schedules. Caranthir makes a casual mention of the months/years of time that were spent on the crafting of his sword, and there is a moment of complete bewilderment where both sides think they have incorrectly translated measures of time. Once the distinction is made clear, Caranthir is stopped dead in his tracks when he is informed that the covered wagons in front of him are all filled with swords, all crafted in just a few months. Caranthir has got his one 97/100 sword, and the Dwarves have thousands of 70/100 swords.
(I think one of the things that will pay off from this meeting, eventually, is some sort of Maeglin-introduced technical breakthrough in Gondolin, where they will be assembly-line producing 85/100 quality swords.)

Elf Technology
One factor that seems like it limits Elf technology is personal responsibility. They don't make a lot of stuff that is outside the ability of one Elf to personally control and start/stop within the reach of their own arms. Something like even a simple waterwheel driving a belt system to transfer rotation to a textile mill - there's stuff happening there out of sight or reach from the operator. It's about the scope.

Maedhros' stump
I can also imagine a small part of a scene, where a meeting starts getting out of control, and Maedhros slams his stump down on the table to shut everyone up.

Girth of eagles
I think the most important thing we can do is NOT pay attention to wing span/lift/science questions. Something 55m across doesn't fly by flapping wings in science-land, only in magic-land. And if we're in magic-land anyway, we might as well have something that looks right. We need something that doesn't look goofy when it carries/is ridden by two human-sized figures.
 

Haakon

Administrator
Staff member
Yes the Eagles should be huge, and Thorondor has to be the biggest one, but let's not make this a big problem. As you point out, this is magic-land.
Here's an example where the size looks pretty good:
2100

And there are dozens of similar examples. I'm not going to get into the exact wingspan on that eagle, and the viewers will probably not either, but I guess there's a limit and at some point someone is going to say that "that eagle is so big it is ridiculous". Let's just not cross that line.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
So, I think that Prof. Olsen was on point with putting Thorondor at a wingspan of about 60 feet (18m) in wingspan, and I'd put the other Great Eagles in a range of 25-45 ft. (7.5-14m). I am less in agreement about his assessment of Morgoth's height when he fights Fingolfin. I think that having Thorondor merely scratch the face of a being standing 25 ft. high will look a bit odd. I'd be a lot more comfortable putting Morgoth's height at no less than half Thorondor's wingspan.
 

Haakon

Administrator
Staff member
Morgoth's size is a really tricky question. He puts his foot on Fingolfin's neck, so his feet can't be too big. He makes holes in the ground with Grond that are large enough for Fingolfin to fall into, so Grond has to be huge, making it necessary for Morgoth to be huge. But I think you're right, around (or at least) 30 feet sounds good. That makes him about four times the size of Fingolfin. He should not be smaller, or one would have to wonder what Grond looks like.
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
Morgoth's size is a really tricky question. He puts his foot on Fingolfin's neck, so his feet can't be too big. He makes holes in the ground with Grond that are large enough for Fingolfin to fall into, so Grond has to be huge, making it necessary for Morgoth to be huge. But I think you're right, around (or at least) 30 feet sounds good. That makes him about four times the size of Fingolfin. He should not be smaller, or one would have to wonder what Grond looks like.
To be fair, Grond's cratering of the ground could be due to a property other than size, but I know what you mean.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
When Corey Olsen mentioned that Fingolfin has to be tall enough so that his sword could reach something vital, I think that put a cap on Morgoth's potential height. The lowest part of the body that looks vulnerable to a mortal wound would be the femoral artery, right?

There's nothing impossible about a 30 ft tall Morgoth, of course. But that might be a bit too much of a giant to get the fight to look like a fight. Sure, it's one sided. But....how impossible do we want Fingolfin's task to be?


Also, a 30' tall Morgoth would have a foot, what, 4'-5' long?
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
When Corey Olsen mentioned that Fingolfin has to be tall enough so that his sword could reach something vital, I think that put a cap on Morgoth's potential height. The lowest part of the body that looks vulnerable to a mortal wound would be the femoral artery, right?

There's nothing impossible about a 30 ft tall Morgoth, of course. But that might be a bit too much of a giant to get the fight to look like a fight. Sure, it's one sided. But....how impossible do we want Fingolfin's task to be?


Also, a 30' tall Morgoth would have a foot, what, 4'-5' long?
Plus, Fingolfin gives Morgoth several other wounds in that fight that are not exclusively at the feet, so he has to reach other parts of his body not limited to his lower limbs.
 

Haakon

Administrator
Staff member
Yes so he can’t be too big. But four times Fingolfin, is that too much you think?
 

amysrevenge

Well-Known Member
4 times. Smaller than a 2 year old toddler, relative to a normal person.
Too short to accidentally head-butt in a... sensitive area #voiceofexperience
Tall enough to reach the sensitive area with a deliberate punch.
A sword stroke on tippy-toes would still be below the throat.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Yes so he can’t be too big. But four times Fingolfin, is that too much you think?
How tall is Fingolfin supposed to be? Tom Hiddleston is 6’2”, but that’s immaterial. Four times that would be a little under 25 feet.
 

Haakon

Administrator
Staff member
I think Fingolfin could be taller but again, let’s avoid getting too specific. People aren’t going to be walking around with signs displaying their height. It’s the feel that’s important. To me, four times a tall elf sounds good.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I think Fingolfin could be taller but again, let’s avoid getting too specific. People aren’t going to be walking around with signs displaying their height. It’s the feel that’s important. To me, four times a tall elf sounds good.
True. When we have Fingolfin duel Morgoth, on what parts of his body do we want him to be able to hit? I ask this because this will affect how tall Morgoth is.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Corey mentioned the ability to stab in the gut. I was wondering if the ability to slice the femoral artery (inner thigh/groin) would be enough. Fingolfin isn't going to land an attack on either target...he doesn't mortally wound Morgoth in this fight. But...we want the audience to have reason to hope he could.

Mostly, Fingolfin dodges Grond until he doesn't. I'm not sure what blows we'll want to show him making or attempting before he's on the ground hacking at the foot.
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
How uch taller than Sauron is morgoth? Because we know that" The form that he (Sauron) took was that of a man of more than
human stature, but not gigantic."

Now the tallest man ever was 2.72 m (8 ft 11.1 in), so i guess 3 -4 metres could be a good suggestion
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
I think we are fine with the Valar (in general) being taller than the Maiar (in general), and also with Morgoth taking on a 'giant' form for his 'tyrant of Angband' look (which he assumed at the Darkening of Valinor and keeps ever after).

I do know that giant humans tend to look ridiculous, but that's also possibly because of comedic associations, rather than it being impossible to make a scary (and not simply silly) 30 ft tall person (9.144 m). Does anyone recall any scenes on film with very large human-ish creatures that worked really well? By comedic, I mean the taller-than-buildings Stay-Puft marshmallow man in Ghostbusters and the 50 ft tall Calypso in Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End. Clearly we don't want that! But just being big wouldn't make something automatically a joke. Game of Thrones had giants north of the Wall, and there were several fights with giants in that show.

I suppose the GoT giants are all different heights, but this particular one is about twice as tall as the humans, maybe a little taller. They don't come up to his hip. So, a 12'-15' foot giant looks something like this:


That's roughly the same scale as Last Alliance Sauron in Peter Jackson's films:



So, Season 8 Game of Thrones spoiler, but there is this fight scene between a much larger (very stupid) undead giant and a (very fearless) young girl. It's a bit one-sided, yes, but....
For reference, the two actors didn't interact with one another to shoot this scene. So, despite looking massive, the giant is played by a 7'1" actor named Ian Whyte, and the young girl is played by a 5' tall 15 year old actress named Bella Ramsay. The giant is likely meant to be...what...25-30 ft tall? I'm not quite sure.

I don't think I see the need for Morgoth to be that tall. He needs to be significantly taller than Fingolfin, clearly, but 15 ft (4.572 m) is already more than twice as tall. 24 ft (7.32 m) is 4 times as tall. So....30 ft...5x as tall is....really tall! The silmarils will look small in his crown if his head is that big. It's just...really big!
 
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Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I think we are fine with the Valar (in general) being taller than the Maiar (in general), and also with Morgoth taking on a 'giant' form for his 'tyrant of Angband' look (which he assumed at the Darkening of Valinor and keeps ever after).

I do know that giant humans tend to look ridiculous, but that's also possibly because of comedic associations, rather than it being impossible to make a scary (and not simply silly) 30 ft tall person (9.144 m). Does anyone recall any scenes on film with very large human-ish creatures that worked really well? By comedic, I mean the taller-than-buildings Stay-Puft marshmallow man in Ghostbusters and the 50 ft tall Calypso in Pirates of the Caribbean: At Worlds End. Clearly we don't want that! But just being big wouldn't make something automatically a joke. Game of Thrones had giants north of the Wall, and there were several fights with giants in that show.

I suppose the GoT giants are all different heights, but this particular one is about twice as tall as the humans, maybe a little taller. They don't come up to his hip. So, a 12'-15' foot giant looks something like this:


That's roughly the same scale as Last Alliance Sauron in Peter Jackson's films:



So, Season 8 Game of Thrones spoiler, but there is this fight scene between a much larger (very stupid) undead giant and a (very fearless) young girl. It's a bit one-sided, yes, but....
For reference, the two actors didn't interact with one another to shoot this scene. So, despite looking massive, the giant is played by a 7'1" actor named Ian Whyte, and the young girl is played by a 5' tall 15 year old actress named Bella Ramsay. The giant is likely meant to be...what...25-30 ft tall? I'm not quite sure.

I don't think I see the need for Morgoth to be that tall. He needs to be significantly taller than Fingolfin, clearly, but 15 ft (4.572 m) is already more than twice as tall. 24 ft (7.32 m) is 4 times as tall. So....30 ft...5x as tall is....really tall! The silmarils will look small in his crown if his head is that big. It's just...really big!

So, there are a few things to think about here. Quickly, on the note of the Silmarils, we have established that their visible size is mutable. Obviously, the one Earendil wears appears to be larger to those on the ground than something one could actually wear.

The most important question is: What makes the Calaquendi so unstoppable in battle? Is it just their armor and weapons? Are they stronger than humans? More agile?

Human basketball players routinely "dunk" a basketball in a hoop 10 feet (3.05m) in the air. Do we think Fingolfin capable of this feat? Would he be capable of a superhuman "dunk"?

I know how folks feel about some of Legolas' feats in the Jackson films, but barring the infamous "running on falling debris" scene, do we really think the depicted feats would actually be impossible for an elf?
 
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