Durin family resemblance?

There’s a new image available from the Amazon Lord of the Rings series, called Rings of Power.


Durin IV, played by Owain Arthur. Photo courtesy of Vanity Fair.


This would be Thorin II Oakenshield’s 10th great grandfather (in direct male succession). He looks a bit like Balin to me (and Balin is equally Durin IV’s 10th great grandson, also in direct male succession, but from a cadet branch of the family). But the eyes and the lips could be Thorin. And gosh, that beard, I would just like to crawl right into it and cuddle!

Also among collateral attractions:

Ismael Cruz Córdova — Rafael Torres from Berlin Station — is playing an elf, Arondir (this is a character not in Tolkien).

Sir Lenny Henry — Dawn French’s ex-husband — is playing a Harfoot elder. (He also featured in Tiswas, one of Armitage’s childhood TV choices.) Apparently the Harfoots are a species or tribe of hobbit. There’s been quite a bit of a stink around this among those fans who believe that Tolkien intended all his characters unless otherwise specified to be white (although I guess the Harfoots were described as dark-skinned). Given what I understand Tolkien’s position on anti-Semitism to have been, I can only imagine he would have scorned these “fans.”

I don’t have a Prime subscription and don’t want one, so I imagine I won’t see this (or at least not legally). But it looks like they’ve put a lot of effort into it! First trailer is supposed to premier during the SuperBowl.

~ by Servetus on February 11, 2022.

9 Responses to “Durin family resemblance?”

  1. It’s The Wheel of Time all over again with racist and sexist “fans” who can’t stand diversity and feminism. At least on Twitter.


    • As long as it was “just” Twitter, it would bother me somewhat less — just because I guess at some point they did a study of this problem in the Star Wars fandom and they found some huge proportion of the racism / sexism came from bots. However, it’s showing on TORn to the point that they have had to close some comment sections. So it’s really part of the core fandom, or at least apparently.

      Liked by 1 person

      • That’s appalling! I have to admit I wasn’t particularly thrilled by the trailer (I’m too involved in WoT), but people’s reactions… There are definitely bots involved, one quote from the books that was used to express outrage was in numerous comments, in Russian.

        Liked by 1 person

  2. And TORn is annoyed enough about it to editorialize:


    Liked by 1 person

  3. I like the overall style of those pics, but was a bit surprised that the dwarven princess has no beard


    • That surprised a lot of people on TORn as well. Apparently the evidence for this in Tolkien himself is slim. It’s there, but it’s not a main theme, maybe because there are almost no female dwarrow in his works who are mentioned by name. It may be that Dís (Fili and Kili’s mother, Thorin’s sister) is the only one.


      • So the makers seem to have concentrated on Tolkien only and not on Jacksons interpretation. Interesting, thanks.


        • Keeping in mind that I don’t follow this hyper-closely, the initiative for the series came from the Tolkien estate after they settled their suit with Warner Bros. When Amazon bought the rights they did talk to Jackson but went elsewhere relatively quickly. Judging by who they hired, it’s easy to conclude that he maybe wanted too much money. They did film in NZ (although the second season is filming in the UK, apparently) and I’ve read that WETA Digital is involved, but in terms of creative impulses they seem to be going elsewhere. (And maybe the insertion of these non-canonical characters would have been a problem for Jackson’s team, who have really set themselves up as mostly literal Tolkien loyalists).

          I suspect part of the deal with the female dwarf is that it’s one thing if you see a female dwarf with a beard out of the corner of your eye (as in AUJ), it’s another thing if they’re a central character. Given the past concern that there are not enough female characters in Tolkien, maybe they didn’t want to start off with one that didn’t comply with our own gender assumptions?

          I don’t have a strong opinion but I do find it a bit sad. I liked the idea of women with beards and I like how it shows up in fanfic.


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