Supporting Characters

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
This grew from a series of posts on the Women Fighters thread about the significance of characters. Not every character is going to be a main character. How do we classify a character as “main” or supporting? Beren will be a main character for a season or so, but he’ll eventually shuffle off the mortal coil (twice), while Thingol is a mostly present character but is supporting for the Children of Hurin arc. Are there some characters we want to have appear that don’t play an extra large role but are still present in the legendarium (Rog and Edrahil come to mind)?

For example, I have a concept for Gorgol, who appears in the Lays of Beleriand. He’s an Orc Captain and henchman of Sauron who is sent to kill the Band of 12 that resists Morgoth in Dorthonion. He could only show up for an episode or two, but he plays a significant role; he kills the Band except for Beren, who hunts him down to reclaim the Ring of Barahir, and starts the chain of events that leads to Beren fleeing Dorthonion after four years and escaping into Doriath, where he meets Luthien. It’s a niche role and fits into the idea of Evil being in imitation or parody; Gorgol would be an analogue for an Uruk-hai leader in the Lord of the Rings (Ugluk in the books, Lurtz in the films) that serves under Saruman/Sauron as an Orc/Uruk captain rather than a general like Boldog or Gothmog the Orc; he commands a smaller group (but still larger than the heroes’ band) that attacks them, deals damage, and then gets killed.

There’s also Edrahil. Edrahil in the Silmarillion is a Noldo under Finrod who is the leader of the 10 Elves who accompany Finrod and Beren and dies in Minas Tirith (the first one). Should we have him show up?
 
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MithLuin

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Rog (well, Rhogrin) is certainly in. In the Silmarillion Film Project, he's going to be a Noldo in Fingolfin's Host (so, one of the elves that crossed the Helcaraxë) who then is captured around the time of the Dagor Aglareb and escapes captivity in Angband with Annael towards the end of Season 4. He'll remain in Fingolfin's following (and later Fingon's) in Hithlum/Mithrim. He'll go to Gondolin with Turgon's retreating Host after the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, where he'll found a house (Hammer of Wrath). He will eventually die in the sack of Gondolin, fighting outside the walls of the city.

So, he'll first appear as more of a supporting character, but as time goes on the audience will likely view him as a minor character, as he'll carry his own scenes. That transition should probably happen during his captivity in Angband. Currently, we've proposed introducing him in Episode 1 of Season 4 as a messenger between the estranged camps of the Noldor; in that scene, the audience is unlikely to learn his name.


When it comes time to choose Finrod's companions, we'll likely want to give the named/dialogue role to Inglor (father of Gildor Inglorion). Or at the very least, I would want to consider using Inglor for that role rather than Edrahil. We'll need to introduce Inglor at some point and have some explanation for his relationship to the 'House of Finrod'...but there's more than one way to do that.


I don't have a lot of interest in the orcish characters (to be fair), but I do agree that we'll want to show the raid on Barahir's camp, and show Beren killing the orc who took the ring off his father's hand.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Other characters I think we should introduce in some capacity are the heads of the 12 Houses of Gondolin. They’re at least spear carriers, and in some versions Egalmoth is the third of the three Lords to accompany Aredhel when she leaves Gondolin; he’s also distinctive for his curved sword, something usually associated with Morgoth’s forces.

I’ve expressed interest in Edrahil because he’s the one depicted in the published Silmarillion.

On Orcish characters: @Haerangil has also expressed interest in introducing some Orcish characters (not Boldog and Gorgol) because as the First Age wears on, the major villains will be whittled down one by one: Sauron is defeated by Huan and Luthien, Thuringwethil, Tevildo and Dragluin are also killed at Minas Tirith Glaurung is killed by Turin, and Gothmog is slain by Ecthelion in the Fall of Gondolin. By F.A. 511, Morgoth will be all alone. Unless that’s the point...
 
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MithLuin

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Well, he'll have Ancalagon the Black and the surviving balrogs, so I wouldn't say 'alone' per se.... And while Sauron may go east, he might also be in Angband with Morgoth at that time. I don't think we've decided on a fate for Tevildo or Boldog yet, but I agree that they will die before the host of the Valar shows up. And...named orcs won't give Morgoth anyone to talk to or interact with. They're way too far down the food chain and not part of the 'court' of Angband in any way.

I have no problem with introducing minor orcish characters (in the model of Ugluk, Grishnakh, Shagrat, and Gorbag) for scenes that require speaking roles for orcs. I'm...maybe less concerned than Peter Jackson was to have a 'named' orcish character kill off the heroes. Lurtz exists because of Boromir's death scene. He wasn't going to have Boromir killed by anonymous orc arrows, and he wanted to show Aragorn duel and decapitate Boromir's killer. Which is fine and all, but less necessary from my viewpoint.

We're killing off practically all of our characters eventually. So, while some of them can have very significant death scenes or duels or whatnot, some are also going to have anonymous deaths where there's a battle or an accident and *boom* someone's dead. As a 'for instance', we'll likely be killing off three of the Sons of Fëanor in the sack of Doriath. I'd be okay with not even showing one of those death scenes, and just having the surviving Fëanoreans come across the dead body of one of their brothers in the aftermath. It will still be plenty jarring, and we'll know what happened, but it's not important to know which Sinda killed him. I wouldn't want all three of the deaths to go that way (Dior vs Celegorm seems a must to show on screen), but it's okay if one of them isn't even shown.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
On the deaths of the Sons of Feanor:

I'd be fine if Caranthir gets taken out with little proper send off, but I think that Celegorm and Curufin are significant enough characters to warrant a death scene, particularly Celegorm because he is the one who instigates the Second Kinslaying, and knowing him, he would probably have a vendetta against Beren's line because Beren got Luthien and "stole" Huan from him. I'd be surprised if he didn't take that personally; just look at what happens in pop culture when someone is jilted; Severus Snape bore a life-long grudge against James Potter which he took out on James's son Harry and Heathcliff ruined both the Earnshaw and Linton families when Catherine (I) seemingly rejected him, while Littlefinger instigated a continent-wide civil war because he nearly got hacked to death by the betrothed of the woman he cared about.

I also have a concept of Galathil (back when we were thinking of Celeborn having a brother and sister) fighting off Curufin to protect the survivors of the Second Kinslaying and earning a mutual kill there.

My point is that I wouldn’t mind if Caranthir got killed off with little fanfare, but Celegorm and Curufin I'd like to have a significant scene.
 
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Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
On Edrahil: I think we might have a niche role for someone like him. At Tol-en-Gaurhoth, there are a whole bunch of Elven captives who are freed by Luthien and Huan when Luthien brings down the tower. We’ll need someone to go back to Nargothrond to tell of their deeds and the death of Finrod Felagund, subsequently instigating the populace against Celegorm and Curufin.
 

MithLuin

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Yeah, I had Caranthir in mind for the 'dies off camera and we see his dead body after' brother. But the point is that there are three of them, and showing three death scenes is going to feel like over-much, so we will have to do something differently for one of them to keep the emphasis on the main conflict (Celegorm vs Dior). An alternative way of handling that would be to have Caranthir survive Doriath and not die until the Havens (with Amras).

I mostly brought this up because at this point, everyone knows of my deep and abiding interest in the Fëanorean plotlines (*cough*) so that if I'm willing to view one of their death scenes in this way, I'm really not committed to showing every death on this show in a pointed and melodramatic way. I'm okay with someone being struck down by anonymous orc arrows and not 'avenged' in any way afterwards, from time to time. Sure, there are death scenes that we have to show as a duel - Fingolfin vs Morgoth, Fingon vs Gothmog, Ecthelion vs Gothmog, Aegnor vs Balrog, etc. But there is nothing wrong with Boromir's death as written, as far as I'm concerned.

For the death of Barahir and his men, we will likely be showing the attack. It happens at night, right? I imagine we'll show the desperate last stand, but I'm not sure we'll show the deaths of each of the men individually there, either. Perhaps Barahir will still be standing, or he'll be dying and watching the last of his companions dying when the camera cuts away? Who knows, at this point. But there's a good chance that we won't be calling attention to the individual orc who kills Barahir or leads the attack on the hiding place, because the villain who orchestrates that scene is Sauron via the trickery of Gorlim. Even if we do show the death stroke, we likely won't be giving that orc dialogue in that moment.

Afterwards, though, when Beren tracks them down? We'll want to show the orcs talking/boasting/bragging about what they've done as he sneaks up to get the ring back (I'm assuming). And at that point, we could preserve the lines from the Lay of Leithian, where the orc says he'll keep the ring for himself and claim the hand of Barahir was bare. We're doing an entire Beren and Lúthien season - we should have time and space to tell the story fully like that. So, yes, there is room for speaking roles for orcs involved in the death of Barahir in our story. I'm not sure we'll see those orcs outside of those one or two episodes, but they can talk. At this point, that's a Season 6 question, though.

For Edrahil - right, we'll need a messenger who will result in the banishment of Celegorm and Curufin. He can't be one of Finrod's companions, because those will all be killed (minus Beren), but he can be an earlier captive. We'd also talked about having Oropher be a captive in that tower and return to Doriath after this. Two named captives should be enough to be representative of the group rescued by Lúthien and Huan.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I could live with Angrod getting killed unceremoniously by a Balrog, perhaps early in the Dagor Bragollach. Aegnor’s gotta have a final scene with Andreth, it’s too much of a coincidence that she dies around the time of the Dagor Bragollach.
 

Ange1e4e5

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A supporting character that is probably there but probably need to establish a connection: who is Fingolfin’s besain?
 

MithLuin

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In Season 4, probably his daughter Aredhel. She's headed off to Nevrast and Gondolin though, so it now probably depends if Glorfindel is related to Irime. If so, his sister could be besan to Fingolfin.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
In Season 4, probably his daughter Aredhel. She's headed off to Nevrast and Gondolin though, so it now probably depends if Glorfindel is related to Irime. If so, his sister could be besan to Fingolfin.
Should we establish who Glorfindel is related to?
 

Haerangil

Well-Known Member
Well, the "Orc-thing" is kind of a personal thing to me, because i have always liked the orcs and was fascinated by the nasty guys... I am actually okay with them not having any dialogue or not even their names mentioned.So it is basically a big evil orc who kills Barahir and from whom Beren gets his fathers hand back and there are just a couple of big and nasty orc- captains around when they get killed in Gondolin.We don't have to enlarge their roles if there 's no need for it. I am just quite happy to have some outstanding boss-orcs lurking around somewhere.. just ay we may have some lesser demons around at melkor's court... we don't have to make them characters at all we don't even have to cast actors for them i guess.In a real series they would be just extras and more a topic for the design and masque dept than for the script-writers..
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
Well, the "Orc-thing" is kind of a personal thing to me, because i have always liked the orcs and was fascinated by the nasty guys... I am actually okay with them not having any dialogue or not even their names mentioned.So it is basically a big evil orc who kills Barahir and from whom Beren gets his fathers hand back and there are just a couple of big and nasty orc- captains around when they get killed in Gondolin.We don't have to enlarge their roles if there 's no need for it. I am just quite happy to have some outstanding boss-orcs lurking around somewhere.. just ay we may have some lesser demons around at melkor's court... we don't have to make them characters at all we don't even have to cast actors for them i guess.In a real series they would be just extras and more a topic for the design and masque dept than for the script-writers..
Not necessarily big, his characterization would mainly be “he leads the attack, he’s the best fighter” (my personal pick is someone like Ray Park, who’s not very tall at all).
 
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Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
Well, the "Orc-thing" is kind of a personal thing to me, because i have always liked the orcs and was fascinated by the nasty guys... I am actually okay with them not having any dialogue or not even their names mentioned.So it is basically a big evil orc who kills Barahir and from whom Beren gets his fathers hand back and there are just a couple of big and nasty orc- captains around when they get killed in Gondolin.We don't have to enlarge their roles if there 's no need for it. I am just quite happy to have some outstanding boss-orcs lurking around somewhere.. just ay we may have some lesser demons around at melkor's court... we don't have to make them characters at all we don't even have to cast actors for them i guess.In a real series they would be just extras and more a topic for the design and masque dept than for the script-writers..
Even if we never reveal the orcs captains’ names onscreen, it may be a good idea for us to name them in order to keep track of them. For example, it is easier to say “Gorgol appears in this scene” than “Orc-captain-who-kills-Barahir appears in this scene.”

Another possible character who could be part of Finrod’s band or a prisoner released from Tol-in-Gaurhoth is Guilin, the father of Gwindor and Gelmir.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
When it comes time for The Children of Hurin, should we have Androg’s son Andvir? He’ll be essential in the long run since he’s the only remaining source on Turin’s time with the outlaws by the time that Idril and Turin reach the Havens of Sirion.
 

Rhiannon

Well-Known Member
When it comes time for The Children of Hurin, should we have Androg’s son Andvir? He’ll be essential in the long run since he’s the only remaining source on Turin’s time with the outlaws by the time that Idril and Turin reach the Havens of Sirion.
I think the size of his role will depend on how much we want to focus on the stories of the Elder Days being recorded and passed down. Will we also want to include Dirhaval? I think we should, because it would give us a chance to show him reciting the Lay of the Children of Hurin that Tolkien wrote.

On a related note, will we want to have Pengolodh as a character? If so, we should probably introduce him this season before Turgon moves to Gondolin.
 

Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I think the size of his role will depend on how much we want to focus on the stories of the Elder Days being recorded and passed down. Will we also want to include Dirhaval? I think we should, because it would give us a chance to show him reciting the Lay of the Children of Hurin that Tolkien wrote.

On a related note, will we want to have Pengolodh as a character? If so, we should probably introduce him this season before Turgon moves to Gondolin.
Pengolodh is pretty young at this point; it’s mentioned he’s born in Nevrast. He was suggested, but rejected.
 
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Ange1e4e5

Well-Known Member
I think the size of his role will depend on how much we want to focus on the stories of the Elder Days being recorded and passed down. Will we also want to include Dirhaval? I think we should, because it would give us a chance to show him reciting the Lay of the Children of Hurin that Tolkien wrote.

On a related note, will we want to have Pengolodh as a character? If so, we should probably introduce him this season before Turgon moves to Gondolin.
I’ve thought about including Dirhaval when we reach the Havens of Sirion. Maybe Maglor kills him and bequeaths the manuscript to Elrond before he and Maedhros go to seize the Silmarils?

What extent do we want to include the Lords of Gondolin? We have Turgon, Glorfindel and Ecthelion, Maeglin will be born in Season 5 and arrive in Gondolin that same season, Rhogrin will join after the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, and Tuor will come in I anticipate Season 8 or 9 depending on the pacing. Should we include Egalmoth on Aredhel’s journey, since Glorfindel and Ecthelion are also there, and I’m sure Turgon would only want to have the best of his men guard his sister? (Mind you, he does go overkill when he has Eol executed for killing her, an act I want Turgon to perform personally).
 

Nicholas Palazzo

Well-Known Member
I’ve thought about including Dirhaval when we reach the Havens of Sirion. Maybe Maglor kills him and bequeaths the manuscript to Elrond before he and Maedhros go to seize the Silmarils?

What extent do we want to include the Lords of Gondolin? We have Turgon, Glorfindel and Ecthelion, Maeglin will be born in Season 5 and arrive in Gondolin that same season, Rhogrin will join after the Nirnaeth Arnoediad, and Tuor will come in I anticipate Season 8 or 9 depending on the pacing. Should we include Egalmoth on Aredhel’s journey, since Glorfindel and Ecthelion are also there, and I’m sure Turgon would only want to have the best of his men guard his sister? (Mind you, he does go overkill when he has Eol executed for killing her, an act I want Turgon to perform personally).
I think we'll have to see how things pan out when we get there.
 
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