Session 6-01: Big Picture Questions

Rob Harding

Active Member
I 'm okay with both as long as it doesn't feel forced. When Luthien is not Luthien anymore then we're not telling Beren and Luthien. I still think there is some room for interpretation, just take her serious as the literary figure she is.
That's exactly what I want to do. I don't want her to just be in service of Beren or the narrative. We need to give her weight and her own identity. It's not something Tolkien often prioritises but something we must do for an adaptation. She can't be constantly ethereal and utterly unknowable. We have to know her. I'm not saying we make her broken and flawed. I am saying she needs to be a character. So we have to nail down what for OUR interpretation of this story, her motivating factors are. As Corey always says, the priority is to tell a good story. We certainly have the material to draw from. We just need to flesh out who she is, enough to sustain a full season minimum.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
That's exactly what I want to do. I don't want her to just be in service of Beren or the narrative. We need to give her weight and her own identity. It's not something Tolkien often prioritises but something we must do for an adaptation. She can't be constantly ethereal and utterly unknowable. We have to know her. I'm not saying we make her broken and flawed. I am saying she needs to be a character. So we have to nail down what for OUR interpretation of this story, her motivating factors are. As Corey always says, the priority is to tell a good story. We certainly have the material to draw from. We just need to flesh out who she is, enough to sustain a full season minimum.
But the other (from her mythological signficance) aspect of her you a risking of losing in your approach is her being also the personification of a general male romantic fantasy. That fantasy is also an important part of the romance. She is a stand-in for the imagined female of a adolescent man - the object of longing - which as is does not exist it the real world. If you flesh her too much out, make her too much real, you loose the vague idealised imagined "woman of one's dreams" - as the German call it Traumfrau - which she for sure is. A space for man to project their teenage dreams and wishes onto. She is an archetype. If you rob her of that, you will diminish the romance sinificantly imho.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
I have literally zero interest in her being a male romantic fantasy. I have interest in her being a character. If she is going to be a male romantic fantasy, no thanks. Can she be this ethereal, sensual, powerful, mystical, alluring woman in her own right? With her own agency over that. Sure. You can be attractive and your own person. But purely to serve as a male romantic fantasy and a prop to serve Beren's desire? Nope. Just, no thanks. That's not a lead character and I'd be frankly amazed if the consensus is to have her being a prop to a man. If romance means one person desiring another and that person being merely a projected object of desire then there is nothing romantic about that but plenty that is deeply problematic at best. I had kind of hoped that as a society we'd moved away from female leads being merely objects of lust for male characters who have far more of their own narrative. I really doubt that is the desire most people would want to take Luthien. If I'm proved wrong, then so be it. We aren't telling a fairytale with two-dimensional archetypes. We are telling a story for television.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
I have literally zero interest in her being a male romantic fantasy. I have interest in her being a character. If she is going to be a male romantic fantasy, no thanks. Can she be this ethereal, sensual, powerful, mystical, alluring woman in her own right? With her own agency over that. Sure. You can be attractive and your own person. But purely to serve as a male romantic fantasy and a prop to serve Beren's desire? Nope. Just, no thanks. That's not a lead character and I'd be frankly amazed if the consensus is to have her being a prop to a man. If romance means one person desiring another and that person being merely a projected object of desire then there is nothing romantic about that but plenty that is deeply problematic at best. I had kind of hoped that as a society we'd moved away from female leads being merely objects of lust for male characters who have far more of their own narrative. I really doubt that is the desire most people would want to take Luthien. If I'm proved wrong, then so be it. We aren't telling a fairytale with two-dimensional archetypes. We are telling a story for television.
But that is how she was written. She is part of an acient fairy romance tradition - even if a quite emancipated one. Taking this completely out of her would be in accordance with the current days fashion but imho not true to her character. It would take the "magic" and the "fantasy" out of the story.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
But that is how she was written. She is part of an acient fairy romance tradition - even if a quite emancipated one. Taking this completely out of her would be in accordance with the current days fashion but imho not true to her character. It would take the "magic" and the "fantasy" out of the story.
Fundamentally disagree. On several levels
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
Fundamentally disagree. On several levels
Understand. But the issue is: Are we just telling a modern story in costumes? Tolkien was imho about reclaiming ancient traditions, not about "leaving them behind".
So again it comes down to priorities.
But imho a story catering to current modern tastes will paradoxically feel very soon outdated.
There is power in ancient archetypes - one might question them - but imho it is unwise to disregard them.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
As Corey says every episode, the priority is a good story

Adherence to the source material is incredibly important. But it’s not the most important. Creating a good television series is. If you have to tweak the source material to do that, it’s important you do. And we have. Several times. In this instance I suggest we need to and working out how is a current issue. I was just saying my big fear is we leave Luthien undeveloped and uninteresting
 
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Odola

Well-Known Member
As Corey says every episode, the priority is a good story

Adherence to the source material is incredibly important. But it’s not the most important. Creating a good television series is. If you have to tweak the source material to do that, it’s important you do. And we have. Several times. In this instance I suggest we need to and working out how is a current issue. I was just saying my big fear is we leave Luthien undeveloped and uninteresting
And mine is we modernise her beyond recognition.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
There’s definitely a middle ground though. I don’t want her to be unrecognisable. I don’t want her to be utterly a device.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
There’s definitely a middle ground though. I don’t want her to be unrecognisable. I don’t want her to be utterly a device.
I hope so but the "middle ground" is imho very tricky. Can such a hybrid be achieved without being "too forced" as Haerangil said? Can it be done gracefully?
 
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Rob Harding

Active Member
I certainly think so. You just need to approach it asking the right questions. And willing to accept we will need to expand on the text. Characterisation is not something entirely prioritised in The Silmarillion. It's why I think most people struggle to get into it. There's not a single story. There's lore and history and themes but it doesn't have a Frodo or a Bilbo. It's hard to find your footing. We have repeatedly helped the audience do that by making our characters very rounded. We can do that with Luthien. We just need to make sure she is distinct from Beren. Otherwise this season is just Beren's story.
 

Odola

Well-Known Member
I certainly think so. You just need to approach it asking the right questions. And willing to accept we will need to expand on the text. Characterisation is not something entirely prioritised in The Silmarillion. It's why I think most people struggle to get into it. There's not a single story. There's lore and history and themes but it doesn't have a Frodo or a Bilbo. It's hard to find your footing. We have repeatedly helped the audience do that by making our characters very rounded. We can do that with Luthien. We just need to make sure she is distinct from Beren. Otherwise this season is just Beren's story.
O.k. So present some character sketches of her you have in mind and let us tear them apart. ;)
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
O.k. So present some character sketches of her you have in mind and let us tear them apart. ;)
I mean, I have done lol

I can requote some stuff if that is what people want. But I'll wait for others to wade in on this as it's been a bit of a dialogue for about a page lol
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
I liked Alicja Bachleda in Ondine very much , i have to think of other examples... they have to exist! But seemingly are quite rare...

Nip Siu Sin in a chinese ghost story!
 
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Odola

Well-Known Member
I liked Alicja Bachleda in Ondine very much , i have to think of other examples... they have to exist! But seemingly are quite rare...

Nip Siu Sin in a chinese ghost story!
I would agreed that nowadays we are already oversaturated with "relatability" and a little "less" might "be more" and sometimes actually quite refeshing.
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
Okay maybe it’s not gonna end being a project I’m not really able to invest in then
You guys do whatever YOU want! I am NOT a writer.I haven't written a single sentence for the entire project so far, no dialogue, no script, no outline. I am a superfan, i read and follow and discuss and sometimes i am a critic too.But not to discourage anybody or impose my will on anything... that is Corey's job.

I'll be happy to see how it turns out, one way or the other.Often i happened to like it, even if it turned out to be completely different from how i imagined it or had done it if i WAS a more creative mind.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
You guys do whatever YOU want! I am NOT a writer.I haven't written a single sentence for the entire project so far, no dialogue, no script, no outline. I am a superfan, i read and follow and discuss and sometimes i am a critic too.But not to discourage anybody or impose my will on anything... that is Corey's job.

I'll be happy to see how it turns out, one way or the other.
What I meant was, if that’s the route we go down. If Corey shares that attitude that be my stance. Didn’t mean to sound defeatist. Just reserving judgement till we’ve really waded into the core issues of the season. Came across badly. Was thinking aloud about a hypothetical.
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
That would be sad.I always believed we can be of different taste , views and opinion and it'd be still interesting.I thought discussing things from many different perspectives can bring forth new and unexpected ideas and angles how to take on a story or character.I never intend to talk down anyone..
 
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