The Lord of the Rings

Hope you’ve had your elevenses because we are travelling through Middle Earth this month, with our friend Rebecca and the Fellowship of the Ring! …and The Two Towers, and The Return of the King… We look at how Tolkien was influenced by his experience in WWI, his Catholic Faith, and mythology, as well as the psychology of the characters and the series’ lasting influence, from the hippies of the 1960s and 1970s to the popular fantasy fiction of today.


Download the episode

Buy the books



Tolkien movie review

The Battle of the Somme

The Inklings

The Inklings by Humphrey Carpenter

Catholic and Christian themes in The Lord of the Rings

Tolkien’s essay “On Fairy Stories”

How mythology influenced Tolkien

The Prose Edda by Snorri Sturluson

Smeagol’s psychology

Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

Tolkien and Hippie Culture

Newsweek story on Tolkien’s influence on fantasy

Rolling Stone interview with George R. R. Martin




christ-on-the-cross-philippe-de-champaigne (2)

Top to bottom: Frodo being carried by an Eagle in The Return of the King (New Line Cinema); Katniss being lifted out of the Arena in Catching Fire (Lionsgate); detail from Christ on the Cross by Philippe de Champaigne (1602-1674)



(Erin, Rhonda, and Rebecca = Galadriel because there are only 3 women in the series!!! Then Erin and Rhonda took it again without specifying gender; Erin = Samwise; Rhonda = Boromir)

(Rebecca and Rhonda = Samwise)

(Erin = Legolas; Rhonda = Merry and Pippin [because apparently they’re one character])

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