Friday, July 01, 2005

Daffy Russian K-Niggets!!!

Now, this is interesting!

Apparently there are clubs of Tolkien fanatics in Russia that deck themselves out in homemade armor, get together in the woods, and have massive, mock battles. It's the ultimate in escapist entertainment, which is apparently the whole point.

“Tibalt,” known as Vladimir prior to his conversion to Tolkienism, sees his own fascination with the world of the Middle Earth as an escape from the frequently unpleasant reality. With a plethora of fantasy worlds to choose from, he went for the British author’s works. “The history and the mythology are so well thought-out, it’s more profound than other fantasy universes. This is a scientific work.”



Think SCA, but on a much grander and more violent scale. These guys really get into it!

Tolkienists, as they are known, put a lot of effort into researching character family trees and life stories, learning the languages in the books, writing their own spin-offs of traditional stories, writing music, organizing games and conventions, as well as learning crafts such as armor-making. The books that make up the bulk of the Tolkien canon — The Hobbit, Lord of the Rings, and The Silmarillion — provide plenty of material.


Apparently there are interesting, educational fringe benefits that have me wondering if I could start something like this here in Japan:

Although Tolkien is translated into Russian, the desire to better familiarize themselves with the original works of “The Professor,” as his fans lovingly call Tolkien, often inspires people to learn English, Irina says.

Tibalt also emphasizes the positive influence of the culture on his life — his Tolkien obsession has encouraged him to write poetry and songs. “My mother likes that this is what I’m doing, rather than drinking beer out in the street.”


Drat...the Russians just keep beating us to the punch...

9 comments:

Don Snabulus said...

That make this 1999 article almost prophetic!

Don Snabulus said...

Oops. I meant this 1999 article from The Onion...

Pandabonium said...

Cool. I'd be Dennis Moore: "Your life or your lupins, my lord!"

Oops, that's from Monty Python's Flying Circus.

Darn.

Seymour said...

Okay, I'm in. But I get to be Sauron.
"You're dead, you're dead, you're really dead, you're dead, you're dead, you're wounded, you're dead, you're my slave. Nope, you cut off the wrong hand, sorry, you're dead."

The Moody Minstrel said...

What did you think of Sauron in the opening sequence of LOTR: The Fellowship of the Ring?

Hewing down whole ranks of troops with each swipe of his mace? Now that's impressive!

Pa've said...

I have the whole LOTR series on DVD. Seen from end to end it would take nine hours. Still, they could go to the beginning and do "The Hobbit"

Pa've said...

Notice the swords they are using are not rattan wrapped up in foam and tape.

Don Snabulus said...

Ouch, those buckaroos look nasty.

Seymour said...

Its much more realistic when you use real swords. You don't waste money on fake blood, either.