Jared, Oriana and Ned discuss Oriana’s choice of topic: death. Not all of it, but a fair amount. Where exactly does free will come in for those in Middle-earth? What lies behind Tolkien's conception of death as ‘the Gift of Men’ which the Elves lack? What happens in the philosophical dialogue between Finrod and Andreth on death and fate? And just what is Tuor’s deal anyway? Plus, a mention of when a dragon and a farmer thought death was just a bother. Also we had some thoughts about the Tolkien biopic. It...could have been more memorable.
The official Tolkien site—the film, that is.
Stephen Colbert also talked with Nicholas Hoult and Lily Collins on The Late Show—because why wouldn’t he?
Caitlin PenzeyMoog’s piece on Tolkien for AV Club was one of the better ones -- and showcases the rather un-Tolkienian art the character produced in the film.
John Garth’s Tolkien and the Great War is the definitive study to date of the time Tolkien and his close friends from youth spent in the conflict, and his own profound losses he suffered, combined with detailing the initial emergence of the legendarium.
The Tolkien Calendar 2020 preorder page—because it’s never too early.
The Tolkien Trust, the charitable entity set up by the estate.
Some more information on Pawnee beliefs in general.
Grant C. Sterling’s “The Gift of Death,” published in a 1997 issue of Mythlore, is a good general summary of how death is treated in Middle-earth, with specific reference to passages from The Silmarillion and The Lord of the Rings as well as Tolkien’s letters.
While recording the episode, Jared drew an interpretation of Mandos.
If you want a reminder about how strongly Tolkien felt about the Beren and Luthien story, this is all you need.
Tuor remains something of a divisive character in various ways. Thus this discussion from a few years ago entitled “Why isn’t Tuor more popular?” where the first response concludes “he just comes off as kind of bland.”
Tolkien’s letter to Milton Waldman discussing The Silmarillion, published as a preface in later editions.
For a conservative Catholic take on “the gift,” Anna Mathie’s First Things piece from 2003 is of interest given Tolkien’s own similar theological beliefs.
The Book of Job, King James Version.
A note from Priscilla Tolkien about her father’s creation of “Leaf, By Niggle.”
As noted, “Athrabeth Finrod Ah Andreth” and various related notes and pieces are only found in Morgoth’s Ring. But this page provides a useful summary of the main points raised by Finrod and Andreth in the dialogue, along with other selections and brief discussion on Tolkien’s conception of death in Middle-earth in his later years.
Annatar—Sauron’s guise to deceive the Elves in the Second Age, and to ultimately forge the One Ring—is as mentioned in Episode 1 one of the most shadowy characters in a shadowy time for the legendarium, and will almost certainly be a main character in Amazon’s upcoming series.
Fleabag is fantastic, full stop.
“In the world but not of the world” is indeed part of the lingo, to put it mildly.
The question of foresight in Middle-earth is one of the most complicated ones in Tolkien, but also the source of some of his most literary and dramatic moments.
Ned got their name slightly wrong—it’s the American Bookbinders Museum, and it’s a very nice institution, worth a visit!