Tag Archives: LOTR

The Price of Evil

I watched the first Lord of the Rings this morning. Yes, again. Don’t ask me what got me started on that–though I mostly blame seeing the preview for The Hobbit when we went to see Brave over the weekend. I can’t get it out of my head.

A lot of stories show the price of evil in the smackdown of the bad guy at the end. Yay, we all like a good smackdown.

Lots of stories show a price for fighting evil. Superheroes pay this a lot in dead girlfriends and other loved ones who have to be avenged, loved ones who have to be left behind for their own protection, etc. Heroes pay a price for their decision to fight evil in loneliness, physical injury, and sometimes death.

What I saw in Fellowship of the Ring this morning was a price paid for…consorting with evil. For living with it. Frodo took up the burden of the ring, right? This, like, tangibly evil thing. And we get to see it work on him throughout the trilogy. Even his physical appearance is altered. We see the evil working on everyone, causing them to argue, to let fear and pride get in the way of things. We see it work especially on Boromir, who is supposed to be the weakest link, as far as character goes. By the end of the trilogy, Frodo’s so altered that he can’t do what he most wanted to do–get back to life in the shire. (That was a real bummer, wasn’t it?)

Well, anyway, it just struck me as I watched it and paid particular attention to that thread of the story, that it’s an interesting one. The idea that, even when your intentions are noble, there’s a price for consorting with evil, for carrying it, because it taints you.

The Buffy series seemed to play with these ideas, especially in the later seasons. They find out about how the Slayer line was created. Buffy dies and comes back. There’s a point where she faced, confronted, and consorted with so much darkness that she begins to see herself as one of the dark things.

Basic stuff we know… Interesting characters care about things. They want things. It’s like dukkha, the noble truths, that whole Zen thing where you suffer because you want, and if you’d just let go of the want you’d feel better. Their dissatisfaction creates personalities that make for interesting reading. Their motivations play into interesting dramas.

When I make characters, I do think about what they want and how that affects them. I do think about making things hard for them and their being a price to pay for doing the heroic thing. But this idea of paying a price for associating with evil isn’t something I’ve played with very much in my head.

It’s insidious.

I kinda like it.

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The Convergence of Jane Austen, Digital Awesome, Fiction and Fan Knitting

Cover image of Jane Austen Knits, 2011

Click to see the projects

There were interesting things to note beyond knitting in yesterday’s issue of Knitting Daily which was about Jane Austen Knits, 2011. To read all about it and see pics of all the projects, click here.

  1. There’s a whole special magazine issue devoted to knits inspired by the work of Jane Austen.
  2. Part of the title is 2011. This won’t be the only one! While I believe it is the first, a call for submissions is already out for the 2012 issue.
  3. Perhaps most awesome to me, personally, and my obsession with the digital age: the digital download is available NOW, while the paper version is available for preorder (and the digital iPhone/Android type version–what would you call that?–is coming soon to Zinio). For so long I’ve been whining about ebooks coming out AFTER the paper version, and here’s some true instant gratification, the download available when it’s ready and a wait on the printing. That is just AWESOME.
  4. Oh, and also I’m pretty sure I was briefly introduced to one of the designers from the issue while in the yarn shop some months ago. Of course I don’t remember her name, since I suck at that, and I don’t know what project. But still I it gives me a certain–ooh, I met a published designer!–sort of happy. I’ll find out, though.
Cover of Charmed Knits

Harry Potter inspired projects

I totally love how much fiction and knitting have come together. Part of what was fun as the Harry Potter movies came out was waiting to see what kinds of knits the costume designers would come up with, and watching those translated by knitting fans on the Internet. Harry Potter not only inspired a whole lot of kids to read, the series inspired a whole lot of people to learn to knit. I don’t know how many threads and blog posts I’ve read of people fearlessly going out and buying needles and yarn to embark on a Harry Potter scarf as their first project.

Jayne Hat

Jayne Hat from Firefly

And it’s not just Harry Potter, of course. Dr. Who scarves are popular with knitters, and, most importantly, the Jayne Hat.

There’s also Pippin’s scarf and other LOTR patterns, and check out this Google image search for Star Wars knitting.

Pippin's Scarf, LOTR

Click for Pippin Scarf

I’ve been thinking there should at least be a Talent Chronicles pattern for “Kat’s Girly Scarf.” Maybe I should work on that.

Meanwhile, who’s out there? Any fan knitters? Has anyone picked out a project from Jane Austen Knits, 2011 yet? I’m looking at those little slippers and also wanting those fingerless mitts at the bottom to be a whole awesome sweater.

My Jayne Hat and sweater set for Blythe

My Jayne Hat and sweater set for Blythe

Blythe Hatmione from POA

My Blythe Hatmione from POA

P.S. Reminder to check out yesterday’s post about my prom dress contest if you haven’t seen it. The winner gets to be a character in the next book.

P. P. S. I made a page with an offer for booksellers. If you know anyone who might be interested, would you please pass the link? Thanks!

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