This week we start at the very beginning, a very good place to start on Riddles in the Dark!
In Episode 9 of the Mythgard Institute’s Riddles in the Dark podcast, Prof. Corey Olsen and Dave Kale go all the way back to the very beginning, the beginning of the upcoming The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey film, that is. This week they take up a very intriguing issue, namely, what will the opening moment of the film be? This question is far more nuanced that it first appears, since each of Peter Jackson’s previous The Lord of the Rings films start quite differently. Each begins with a prologue of sorts, but the nature and timeframe of the events portrayed varies quite widely: epic historical battles, a death match at the top of the world, betrayal and murder by the banks of the Gladden. The question is further complicated by clear evidence that the films will be told by Bilbo to Frodo within a frame narrative, making an epic flashback intro (to, say, the Battle of Azanulbizar!) awkward.
Prediction: What will be the opening moment of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey?
A. Voice-over exposition (of background story elements?) – a la Galadriel’s voiceover in FOTR
B. Flashback to an epic action sequence, sans voice-over – a la Gandalf vs. Balrog in TTT
C. Flashback to an important event with no action sequence – a la Smeagol opening in ROTK
D. A frame story moment involving Bilbo and Frodo
Download: .mp3 (right click and choose “Save As…” to download)