Session 6-03: Sauron and Thuringwethil

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
Session 3 of Season 6 will be held on Thursday January 13th at 10 PM EST. We are skipping the Dec. 30th session due to the holidays.


So, plenty of time to plan out the Thuringwethil and Sauron storylines, now that we've established the role of necromancy in this storyline!

One question we've been asked to consider is the extent of Sauron's involvement in the Dorthonion storyline. Sure, the shade-of-Eilinel-that-ensnares-Gorlim storyline seems Sauron-adjacent. But the campaign to end the outlaws in Dorthonion? Or the price on Beren's head? Need this be Sauron-directed? And if not Sauron...who?

We also need to consider what Sauron's goal is. We know his plan hinges on capturing Minas Tirith, and he does that quickly. But...what's the end goal? What is he trying to accomplish? And how does the 'Dark Lord' part fit into that?

And, of course, we have not yet developed the 'what comes next?' step of Sauron's storyline...where does he go from here?

What will Thuringwethil's storyarc be in Season 6?

We have discussed all of these things in the previous thread, but now we need to work in the necromancy angle, and see how that effects things.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
I do still strongly feel Sauron is a good motivating force for our protagonists and gives a personal reason for, certainly Beren, to end up on the road to Tol-In-Gharouth if Sauron is the source of his woes
 

Ilana Mushin

Active Member
I agree that the Gorlim story has Saurons fingerprints all over it. I’m wondering if this is a job for Thuringwethil as a solo caper. We had her deceiving Cirdan in season 4 so this is something I think she would do (on orders from others). I wonder if this is a way for Sauron to be still playing it safe by doing something that Morgoth (Gothmog?) wants (ie. Total emptying out of Dorthonion and those pesky Beornian holdouts) while at the same time going it alone on developing Necromancy as a weapon and taking Tol Sirion. Mind you, I would imagine that taking Tol Sirion would be presented by Sauron as a loyal thing to do for Morgoth - opening up Beleriand on that side and all. This gives Th. somthing to do before we kill her.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
I do think having her be his primary agent initially in this matter makes sense. If we follow the suggested route of putting a divide between her and Sauron as he grows in power then it makes sense why it’s Gorgol rather than she whom he has complete the task by going after Beren. Perhaps killing Beren, and finishing the job, in some way legitimises the pretence of his actions being SOLELY for Morgoth and will be a victory he can sight to divert from his own plans of expansion? When Gorgol fails, perhaps Sauron has become to self-assured to bother sending anyone else to finish the job, dangerously underestimating the danger a lone figure poses to his growing power
 

ouzaru

Well-Known Member
I think sub-contracting Thuringwethil with Dorthonion is a particularly good idea because it seems to me that Sauron wouldn’t want to be bothered with policing something that’s already been conquered. My feeling is very much that “of the dragon had done his job properly the first time around this wouldn’t be an issue, how did I get stuck with cleaning up his mess when I have all this necromancy to figure out!”

this could be, as Rob pointed out, kind of the crap job nobody wants to bother with and people keep feeling slighted for getting stuck with. There’s no glory here, it’s a ragtag band of “nobodies” causing inconvenience in a space that by rights they’ve no hope of controlling: “Fine, I’ll knock this out in a weekend and get back to my real job”, and failures and embarrassment make it chafe even harder.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
I kind of pictured it more as Sauron being told to take Tol-In-Ghauroth BUT after doing so he starts having his own ideas. This is now HIS seat of power. His own personal mini Angband. But it’s surrounded by potential enemies. If he clears up those threats, yes, it’ll look good, but it’ll also give him a huge region to start controlling. Barahair’s army is his first play. Small scale. Minimal threat. Drawing no attention. But it’ll begin the process. Thuringwethil finds Gorlim. But when the torturing starts she realises Sauron’s desire and thinks he’s moving too fast. She wants him to be his own master, but he’s forgotten than guile and cunning, not haste and force, got him this far. They argue. He mocks her cowardice. She leaves him, seeing herself getting caught in the danger he’s creating. His list for power grows. Instead he has Gorgol and his band follow through and slaughter the humans. But they must return with proof of a job well done so they take Barahir’s hand. Starting Beren’s quest. Thuringwethil later informs Sauron of Gorgol’s failure and Beren’s wandering, to caution him. Sauron thinks nothing of one lone man. He is riding in power, what does he fear from this wanderer. Thuringwethil tells him he will be a ripple in the pond. Sauron is distriburibg things too fast. They part on worse terms and she doesn’t come to him again until the climax when his sin of haste and pride brings about both their undoings.
 

ouzaru

Well-Known Member
I just kind of feel like our Sauron would consider a small ragtag band beneath him already, the play is too small to be of much interest or excitement, especially with such a big discovery as necromancy looming in front of him, it seems like the only thing that would make him really take notice would be if the group either hindered his progress or presented him with some exciting in development on his new project. Also I think it’s far too premature for Sauron to be losing his focus. The whole point is that he’s a beacon of constancy in juxtoposition to Morgoth, who has at the point gone completely off the rails. Having that manner of conflict with Thuringwethil seems like it’s jumping too far down the line of his development considering how long his fall needs to be over the course of the series.
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
I just kind of feel like our Sauron would consider a small ragtag band beneath him already, the play is too small to be of much interest or excitement, especially with such a big discovery as necromancy looming in front of him, it seems like the only thing that would make him really take notice would be if the group either hindered his progress or presented him with some exciting in development on his new project. Also I think it’s far too premature for Sauron to be losing his focus. The whole point is that he’s a beacon of constancy in juxtoposition to Morgoth, who has at the point gone completely off the rails. Having that manner of conflict with Thuringwethil seems like it’s jumping too far down the line of his development considering how long his fall needs to be over the course of the series.
I can certainly see that. It was something discussed at length on another thread which I tried to summarise here. But I can see those points. I was trying to give Sauron a bit of a journey and make this season a turning point for him and to give Thuringwethil an arc before her demise. And to give Sauron a reason to fall and regroup, learning a lesson from his failure here. We can try to do that in another way. Though, I will say, having him be an unwavering constant is hard if he is to be our main villain and then flee into hiding at the end. We want to build that story
 

Ilana Mushin

Active Member
I still want to explore the possibility of Beleg being the one to kill Thurnigwethil. I want Beleg to be flagged as an elf of some significance again before we get to the Turin story. He was incidentally involved in the death of Tevildo (and impressed by Haleth), so there is some symmetry there, and Thuringwethil needs to be killed by an arrow while in flight, I feel. We are turning back to Doriath in this series so it seems right to bring him back as a character. I can see him interacting with Daeron as well in this season.

I know this seems hard to orchestrate, given the geography, but this could be part of our connecting the story to Doriath. We’ve seen Beleg on the western side of Doriath interacting with the Haladim so that doesn’t seem wierd. He could be scouting to find out what happened with Tol Sirion or checking Brethil to see if folks are safe there. I know this will not be a popular idea but I kinda like the idea of Beleg shooting down Thuringwethil as a kind of side issue to his own story - like Legolas shooting down the Nazgul steed as a gut reaction. He wouldn’t know the significance of this kill . Then, having spied out Tol Sirion himself, Beleg can be the one with knowledge of what happens at Tol Sirion and thus a way for the elves of both Doriath and Nargothrond to find out more about what the baddies (Sauron) is up to - so Finrod will already know this stuff before setting out with Beren, for example. The fallout from the baddies (esp. Sauron) will be more palpable than the impact from Beleg and the elves perspective. This is not like Tevildo where the cats were harassing anyone passing through Brethil and people knew who that enemy was. Thuringwethil is unknown to the good guys - we’ve kept her secretive as befits a spy. So Sauron can be affected by the loss of his most trusted ally, but I can’t see anyone else being too bothered, or even noticing that she is no longer there. This could also be why Angband was not too suspicious when Luthien shows up disguised as Thuringwethil.
 

MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
One thing we will have to consider is how much Beren's choices are driving the story at various points. Because...he's a fairly passive character in a lot of ways. He could be viewed as someone who is content to tag along and wait for the more powerful characters to sort things out. Obviously, not entirely. He makes decisions and choices. He does some action hero-y things. But when it comes to some of the key hinge points...it's not Beren's choices or decisions that seem to matter.

Which is just to say...I don't think Beren wanted to go to Minas Tirith, and once he gets there, he's mostly a bystander in the Finrod vs Sauron showdown. His role is to...let Finrod save him, and then let Lúthien save him. At no point does he confront Sauron (at least, not with any efficacy; we can certainly have him say some things, but he's not part of any of the fights).

While Beren may have some feelings about what happened to Dorthonion in general and his kin in particular...he doesn't really have the opportunity to take any of that out on Sauron, even if he is motivated by revenge. So I'm not sure how much we want to play up the revenge angle. Beren is motivated to complete the quest, of course, but taking down Sauron feels very incidental/tangential when you consider Beren's actions alone.

As far as I can tell, the issue with the Dorthonion storyline is timing - we will need to have the attack on Barahir's band of outlaws happen in the first episode (most likely), and we will need to have Sauron taking over Minas Tirith...also in the first episode. So, if we can have one villain in charge of the 'Dorthonion theater' and another in charge of the 'assault on Tol Sirion', we can do both at once. But if they are both primarily Sauron...then his storyline is going to have to involve some multitasking that might make things a bit disjointed.

Thuringwethil is the most obvious candidate to stand in for Sauron, and she could certainly arrange the trap for Gorlim. But Boldog is also available to launch some orcs at Barahir's men, if we need him to, and Boldog takes his orders from Gothmog, not Sauron. So, there can be multiple villains at work in Dorthonion with competing agendas.

As for 'Why Tol-in-Gaurhoth'? It seems to me that Sauron's focus is on the incomplete nature of the conquest of Beleriand during the Dagor Bragollach. It was left unfinished, and the Elves can too easily bounce back, continuing to harry the forces of Angband that are sent out. So, solidifying control of Dorthonion is one important step, yes, but gaining control of the passes south is even more important. In Silm Film, the entire Dagor Aglareb was focused on attacking Tol Sirion (though unsuccessfully, obviously). By succeeding in gaining ground here, Sauron makes it clear that his victory is going further yet, and he's poised to launch further attacks on points south - Doriath, Nargothrond, Brethil.
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
After Tol in Gaurhoth is taken Morgoth basically owns northern Beleriand and his forces can roam freely almost everywhere but where there are still lasting fortresses.The orcs even start to build roads to the south if i remember correctly! So Tol in Gaurhoth is a major turning point after the last battle... it consolidates Morgoth rulinng now over wide stretches of Beleriand.Even Doriath is in peril now i mean he sends gothmog who of couse gets killed...
 

Rob Harding

Active Member
One thing we will have to consider is how much Beren's choices are driving the story at various points. Because...he's a fairly passive character in a lot of ways. He could be viewed as someone who is content to tag along and wait for the more powerful characters to sort things out. Obviously, not entirely. He makes decisions and choices. He does some action hero-y things. But when it comes to some of the key hinge points...it's not Beren's choices or decisions that seem to matter.

Which is just to say...I don't think Beren wanted to go to Minas Tirith, and once he gets there, he's mostly a bystander in the Finrod vs Sauron showdown. His role is to...let Finrod save him, and then let Lúthien save him. At no point does he confront Sauron (at least, not with any efficacy; we can certainly have him say some things, but he's not part of any of the fights).

While Beren may have some feelings about what happened to Dorthonion in general and his kin in particular...he doesn't really have the opportunity to take any of that out on Sauron, even if he is motivated by revenge. So I'm not sure how much we want to play up the revenge angle. Beren is motivated to complete the quest, of course, but taking down Sauron feels very incidental/tangential when you consider Beren's actions alone.

As far as I can tell, the issue with the Dorthonion storyline is timing - we will need to have the attack on Barahir's band of outlaws happen in the first episode (most likely), and we will need to have Sauron taking over Minas Tirith...also in the first episode. So, if we can have one villain in charge of the 'Dorthonion theater' and another in charge of the 'assault on Tol Sirion', we can do both at once. But if they are both primarily Sauron...then his storyline is going to have to involve some multitasking that might make things a bit disjointed.

Thuringwethil is the most obvious candidate to stand in for Sauron, and she could certainly arrange the trap for Gorlim. But Boldog is also available to launch some orcs at Barahir's men, if we need him to, and Boldog takes his orders from Gothmog, not Sauron. So, there can be multiple villains at work in Dorthonion with competing agendas.

As for 'Why Tol-in-Gaurhoth'? It seems to me that Sauron's focus is on the incomplete nature of the conquest of Beleriand during the Dagor Bragollach. It was left unfinished, and the Elves can too easily bounce back, continuing to harry the forces of Angband that are sent out. So, solidifying control of Dorthonion is one important step, yes, but gaining control of the passes south is even more important. In Silm Film, the entire Dagor Aglareb was focused on attacking Tol Sirion (though unsuccessfully, obviously). By succeeding in gaining ground here, Sauron makes it clear that his victory is going further yet, and he's poised to launch further attacks on points south - Doriath, Nargothrond, Brethil.
We obviously can’t have a passive Beren and so I still think revenge being a strong motivator for him makes the clearest sense. But it’s not a singular bloodthirsty drive. He’s still a hero when it comes to it. I would likely fudge the timing a little and have Sauron take over Tol Sirion in an opening sequence and set up his reign there as a new status quo. I know people will likely want a huge battle with lots of build up and for it to take a while but really, we need to our heroes quickly. You want to know Beren and/or Luthien and understand their goals within the first ten pages or so. Set up the story right away. So if we have a big dramatic opening with a battle then have (possibly Thuringwethil) hunting a fleeing Gorlim, Gorlim’s torture and then meet Beren coming back to a massacre (and seeing Gorgol in some capacity). You set up your villains and then you get straight into Beren wandering the wilds tracking orcs. I’d maybe even have him intimidating orcs about who killed his father (Gorgol should have some signifying item or mark so Beren knows who he is after). Then Beren gets his revenge. We have him kill Gorgol (or seem to, depends what route we go down). So you close that loop in the first chapter. Audience seems him get revenge. BUT Beren is still lost, physically and spiritually. He is unsatisfied and wandering. Hollow.

Then he meets Luthien. We see them grow together. He is her link to the world beyond, a world she knows needs help. Remember, she dedicated her life to Menegroth, but it was to bring healing and creation. Things she knows the rest of the world needs to. Maybe Beleg has brought word of happenings at Tol Sirion that only she heeds. Beren finds healing through her. Maybe she literally comes to him and heals his wounds. But also he finds a new purpose. She wants to heal the land. Maybe even talks of Tol Sirion. But Beren has no interest. He perhaps feels defeatist about any hope of takin on dark forces. It’s what his father and the other outlaws did after all. Look what happened. Better to stay in the magic forest and hide. But Luthien decided it’s time to act.

You can then perhaps have the world come to them and some battle with orcs and maybe Thuringwethil on the edge of the forest (I wonder how the girdle works. Could Thuringwethil fly over snd gather information?). Perhaps a small band of farmers fleeing orcs are driven to the borders and so Luthien and Beren fight off the orcs and maybe Luthien kills Thuringwethil. Beren sees her might but also sees she was right, it’s not about fighting for the sake of fighting, it’s fighting to protect others that she wants. So maybe they do need to go after Sauron.

Beren learns from the orcs/Thuringwethil that it was Sauron behind the attack, Gorgol was his weapon. So now Beren is torn, he thought vengeance was behind him. He has to act justly but now his own past threaten his clear headedness. He and Luthien have different personal motives.

Maybe Luthien’s own story is partly that Thingol has become more staunch in his isolationism and her voice isn’t heard. She can keep caring for her people but she knows there is a world that is in pain. So she must go as she knows to do nothing only creates more Berens. People scarred by war and death.

So when the quest is decreed, Beren has a very strong desire to go to Tol in Ghaurouth anyway. And his motivations might be blurred. Luthien can even say this to him. He needs to be smart, not rash (maybe his mortal haste is a thing she worries about generally). Luthien perhaps stays as some elves came to her aid in the fight at the borders and Thingol reminds her that care for her people is her primary oath. She is torn but wants to fulfill her personal duty to care for her people.

Then the story plays out. She rescues Beren. Which is really where the story of passivity becomes problematic again. Beren can’t just stand and watch. He and Luthien need to be there for a reason beyond escaping. I think killing/defeating Sauron is a bit direct. What if there are human prisoners elsewhere that Beren has learnt of? He now thinks it’s worth the risk again to save innocents. His heroic spirit has been renewed through his time with her so that, even when faced with freedom, he’ll risk that to save others. So he goes to do that but she needs evidence of Sauron’s plans (maybe for expansion) as proof to urge her father into action maybe?

But they both face obstacles to these goals (drama). Luthien is met by Sauron. But what for Beren? It’s why I suggested having Gorgol not be dead. If Gorgol is there in the final battle, Beren might find that blind vengeance returns. If his fight leads him toward Luthien, we could have a moment where she faces some kind of danger. Perhaps she hasn’t even spotted a werewolf behind her. Or a tattered Thuringwethil coming to Sauron’s aid. Gorgol defeated and Beren stood over him, Beren could finally have revenge. But instead he chooses Luthien and love and goes to her aid. He helps fight off the werewolf or alert her to Thuringwethil or whatever. And Gorgol escapes. Beren could even see him flee and chooses not to go after him (to literally not pursue revenge) and instead chooses to work WITH Luthien. And of course you have Gorgol crushed by rubble. You could instead of Gorgol make the enemy Beren faces be Thuringwethil. Maybe he learnt that she was the one who captured Gorlim and was the instigator of his pain. So he STILL has a personal motivation for that fight. Fights should always be personally motivated and tell us something about those fighting. In this scenario, Beren has to help Luthien for another reason and let’s Thuringwethil fly free. Maybe whatever Luthien had to obtain is about to be lost due to her confronting Sauron? Perhaps something will give her away or prevent her song? Who knows. We can work that out. The point is still that he chooses love over revenge. Relationship over self. And then Thuringwethil could come to strike down Beren after Luthien has reduced the place to rubble and Luthien can in turn save Beren by taking out the vampire. That sort of dynamic and those kinds of choices…
1/2
 
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Rob Harding

Active Member
You can have revenge be it’s own adversary in the series. Not the primary motivator, but a stumbling block to overcome. Tolkien obviously doesn’t give much weight to the revenge aspect but equally there are many events in the Silmarillion that are emotionally glossed over due to the style of the storytelling. I feel that if we just have Beren kill Gorgol and that be the end of his emotionally response to the massacre of his father and friends da, to his rage and guilt, then we make it seem as if killing Gorgol was supremely cathartic and that revenge was all he needed. If Luthien does all the work to heal him then she actually takes away some of his agency to work through his own emotions and overcome his misplaced desire from revenge. He should learn new ways to live from her but then the choice should be his (preferably at a big dramatic moment with lots hanging in the balance).

I feel like from Beren, Luthien sees the world is broken NOW. Waiting for better days, hoping the influence of Menegroth will ultimately better the world, leaves a lot of death and wounds unhealed. He teaches her to look at here and now, to see mortal pain and act in loving haste.

In terms of Beren being passive, yes, Tolkien doesn’t really give Beren much motive beyond ‘do the right thing/do the next plot point needing to be told’. But that is very Tolkien and very Silmarillion in particular. We don’t necessarily need to hold to some of the flatter characterisations and have freedom to give people believable drives. We need the audience to watch. I don’t think Beren should be a Forrest Gump with a Sword type who wanders into to situations without much personal agency

I still want to explore the possibility of Beleg being the one to kill Thurnigwethil. I want Beleg to be flagged as an elf of some significance again before we get to the Turin story. He was incidentally involved in the death of Tevildo (and impressed by Haleth), so there is some symmetry there, and Thuringwethil needs to be killed by an arrow while in flight, I feel. We are turning back to Doriath in this series so it seems right to bring him back as a character. I can see him interacting with Daeron as well in this season.

I know this seems hard to orchestrate, given the geography, but this could be part of our connecting the story to Doriath. We’ve seen Beleg on the western side of Doriath interacting with the Haladim so that doesn’t seem wierd. He could be scouting to find out what happened with Tol Sirion or checking Brethil to see if folks are safe there. I know this will not be a popular idea but I kinda like the idea of Beleg shooting down Thuringwethil as a kind of side issue to his own story - like Legolas shooting down the Nazgul steed as a gut reaction. He wouldn’t know the significance of this kill . Then, having spied out Tol Sirion himself, Beleg can be the one with knowledge of what happens at Tol Sirion and thus a way for the elves of both Doriath and Nargothrond to find out more about what the baddies (Sauron) is up to - so Finrod will already know this stuff before setting out with Beren, for example. The fallout from the baddies (esp. Sauron) will be more palpable than the impact from Beleg and the elves perspective. This is not like Tevildo where the cats were harassing anyone passing through Brethil and people knew who that enemy was. Thuringwethil is unknown to the good guys - we’ve kept her secretive as befits a spy. So Sauron can be affected by the loss of his most trusted ally, but I can’t see anyone else being too bothered, or even noticing that she is no longer there. This could also be why Angband was not too suspicious when Luthien shows up disguised as Thuringwethil.
I also don’t love Beleg killing Thuringwethil as it feels like we want to build her up before her demise and this death from a tertiary character to our narrative this season feels like a dismissal. You want villains who are clearly in opposition to our heroes. I’ve mentioned in another thread I like the idea of pulling apart the old allies that our Sauron and Thuringwethil, in contrast to bringing together Luthien and Beren. Having her death be a sidebar detracts from those parallels. I just think it should be part of this main story is all. Plus, Luthien needs to get the pelt and being handed it or just finding it doesn’t feel as interesting. I mean, you could have it as an incidental closing scene with her fleeing through the air only to be shot down in a very sort of ‘evil can’t escape what’s ultimately coming’ kind of way. But think the timing is just more confusing that way. Do agree that her death should be of personal loss to Sauron though.

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Mithrim

New Member
Wait a second.
Sauron and Thuringwethil don't know about Nargothrond. Right?
Thuringwethil is all about secrets. She loves finding out information. What if S or T start to hear rumors of something secret down south(Nargothrond). Maybe from a ghost, maybe from a hapless Minas tirith guard. No concrete information but intriguing nonetheless. Maybe Thuringwethil starts poking her nose down there and then that gets her killed somehow. Curiosity killed the bat.

Sauron vows revenge or something but doesn't tell Angband for any number of reasons.

This heightens the drama for the viewers when Sauron captures Finrod. They'll be worried that either Finrod or his companions will break down and tell him about Nargothrond.

Would that work for Thuringwethil's death?
 
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Rob Harding

Active Member
Wait a second.
Sauron and Thuringwethil don't know about Nargothrond. Right?
Thuringwethil is all about secrets. She loves finding out information. What if S or T start to hear rumors of something secret down south(Nargothrond). Maybe from a ghost, maybe from a hapless Minas tirith guard. No concrete information but intriguing nonetheless. Maybe Thuringwethil starts poking her nose down there and then that gets her killed somehow. Curiosity killed the bat.

Sauron vows revenge or something but doesn't tell Angband for any number of reasons.

This heightens the drama for the viewers when Sauron captures Finrod. They'll be worried that either Finrod or his companions will break down and tell him about Nargothrond.

Would that work for Thuringwethil's death?
Depends how much of a role Nargathrond plays. I still feel her death has to be relevant to the core actors of this story, namely Beren and Luthien. Now, if Sauron’s response is to go nuclear and start sending out forces. If orc attacks in Beleriand spike, and Luthien has just decided she needs to act in the world sooner rather than later, AND an emissary brings news to Thingol that Finrod is captured which he ignores well, Luthien would see NOW as time to act and Beren can overcome any grievance with the fact Finrod didn’t save his family by choosing to be like Luthien and going to save Finrod. Adds that personal drive to seek Sauron, rather than merely reacting to Thingol’s demand. I still think killing Thuringwethil that early is a bit of a waste but you can always have her presence felt through Sauron’s response. Though I do worry about essentially fridging an interesting potentially complex female character
 
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MithLuin

Administrator
Staff member
I do not think we need worry about the death of Thuringwethil being a case of fridging in our telling of the story. Certainly, Thuringwethil only exists at all so that Lúthien can wear her bat-cloak once she's dead. But...we've had her existing and taking part in the story since Season 2. We're now in Season 6. We've kept a strict 'no romantic overtones' policy on her relationship with Sauron. They're partners, and he relies on her and trusts her, but there's no indication that she's the scantily-clad femme fatale type, despite being a villainous female vampire. She's a spy. She's a bit of a fighter. And she understands Sauron's plans in a way that some of his other subordinates did not. (Tevildo and Draugluin were loyal to Sauron, but didn't necessarily share his outlook on things - they weren't his confidantes.)

Yes, we will want to either show Sauron's reaction to Thuringwethil's death, or Thuringwethil's reaction to Sauron's defeat by Huan. Depending on which comes first. But even if we do show Sauron making a decision in reaction to her death (ie, if news of her death is why he sends the werewolf into the dungeon to finish off Beren, for instance), that doesn't mean that we would simply be using her death to motivate another character - she would die in the course of her mission, or in the process of ferreting out secrets, or as a result of her dabbling in necromancy. So, as long as her death makes sense for her character arc, then I think we needn't worry about whether or not the effect it has on Sauron would be considered fridging. Because it's not.
 

Mithrim

New Member
Thanks, Rob Harding
I do think we will be spending a lot of time in Nargothrond. But you are right, my idea is unconnected to Beren and Luthien.
 
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Ilana Mushin

Active Member
You can have revenge be it’s own adversary in the series. Not the primary motivator, but a stumbling block to overcome. Tolkien obviously doesn’t give much weight to the revenge aspect but equally there are many events in the Silmarillion that are emotionally glossed over due to the style of the storytelling. I feel that if we just have Beren kill Gorgol and that be the end of his emotionally response to the massacre of his father and friends da, to his rage and guilt, then we make it seem as if killing Gorgol was supremely cathartic and that revenge was all he needed. If Luthien does all the work to heal him then she actually takes away some of his agency to work through his own emotions and overcome his misplaced desire from revenge. He should learn new ways to live from her but then the choice should be his (preferably at a big dramatic moment with lots hanging in the balance).

I feel like from Beren, Luthien sees the world is broken NOW. Waiting for better days, hoping the influence of Menegroth will ultimately better the world, leaves a lot of death and wounds unhealed. He teaches her to look at here and now, to see mortal pain and act in loving haste.

In terms of Beren being passive, yes, Tolkien doesn’t really give Beren much motive beyond ‘do the right thing/do the next plot point needing to be told’. But that is very Tolkien and very Silmarillion in particular. We don’t necessarily need to hold to some of the flatter characterisations and have freedom to give people believable drives. We need the audience to watch. I don’t think Beren should be a Forrest Gump with a Sword type who wanders into to situations without much personal agency



I also don’t love Beleg killing Thuringwethil as it feels like we want to build her up before her demise and this death from a tertiary character to our narrative this season feels like a dismissal. You want villains who are clearly in opposition to our heroes. I’ve mentioned in another thread I like the idea of pulling apart the old allies that our Sauron and Thuringwethil, in contrast to bringing together Luthien and Beren. Having her death be a sidebar detracts from those parallels. I just think it should be part of this main story is all. Plus, Luthien needs to get the pelt and being handed it or just finding it doesn’t feel as interesting. I mean, you could have it as an incidental closing scene with her fleeing through the air only to be shot down in a very sort of ‘evil can’t escape what’s ultimately coming’ kind of way. But think the timing is just more confusing that way. Do agree that her death should be of personal loss to Sauron though.

2/2
I get where you all are coming from. My problem with Thuringwethil is that while she has been an important character for Sauron‘s story, and has achieved mischief at the Mereth Adrethad, Spying around Beleriand and fooling Cirdan, she is not a known antagonist to the Elves or Men of Beleriand. So if she is to be killed as some momentous action by, say, Beren or Luthien, then she needs to be brought into the story at the beginning of this season in a way that brings her out into the open. This has not been her MO or in her story arc. Tolkien himself had Thuringwethil’s death happen offstage and as a side issue so my suggestion was a bit of a nod to that. I think if she is going to die as part of Luthien and HUan’s rescue of Beren then that could work, but I wouldn’t want her to be establishing herself as a known antagonist. I don’t think that is her story. That said, if she is another incidental death (along with Draugluin And other weewolves) on the way to rescue Beren, then that doesn’t cut it either. That’s why I was trying to think of a way for her to die while doing her job (spying). I guess she could potentially be killed in the taking of Tol Sirion (perhaps keepign an eye on Annael). That would keep her ‘bat hame’ where it needs to be.
 
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