Daily Archives: February 24, 2015

Movies: A tribute to Gandalf’s Mothmail Delivery System.No…

Movies: A tribute to Gandalf’s Mothmail Delivery System.

No one can dispute the Moth’s singular importance as the saviour of the day, at least where Gandalf is concerned in the ME movies. Yes, the Eagles were the muscle, but how would they know where to bring the brawn if not for the stalwart Moth?

We’ve seen how in LotR, the Moth quietly saved Gandalf from his imprisonment atop Orthanc by literally bringing an Eagle in, and displaying great
sense of timing by telling Gandalf when to jump. No one else could lay claim to making a Maia jump where and when.

Then
the Moth goes on to save the host at the Morannon single-handedly
(antennaly?) by bringing a flock of Eagles, even considerately notifying
Gandalf in that signature discrete unassuming way. Who knows what dangers the
Moth risked to complete these insane lifer missions for Gandalf with such quiet
dignity?

The Hobbit movies, at least in AUJ, showed us the relationship between Gandalf and the
Moth went back a ways. In the time-honoured work ethnics of true unsung heroes, the Moth didn’t brag about saving the behinds of
Gandalf and the Company from Azog’s rampage.

With the importance of the Moth to Gandalf’s continued well-bring, I had thought there would be big scenes where the Moth would flap in to save Gandalf in BotFA. It’s all moot now, but I suspected the Moth
might answer two calls of deployment, one to line up the transport for
Gandalf from Dol Guldur, and then to call in the flight squadron at the
end of That Day. Twice, a good encore number for the unsung hero of PJ’s ME
films.

But nope, the Moth’s moment of glory was never meant to be. Still, how did the unassuming Moth take on all that dangerous work and still manage to deliver with such impeccably-timed spectacle?

Two words: aerodynamics, and gumption.

Moth gumption was on display every time Gandalf needed saving. But what about aerodynamics? Call upon science and the answer is there for the taking. Without further preamble, the secrets of mothmail success revealed:

An interesting new paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences by Jesse Barber and colleagues found that moth hindwing tails are an
effective defense against bat predation.  Pretty cool stuff!. (Continue reading)

Truly. Mothmail: Deus ex machina supremo.

Movies: A tribute to Gandalf’s Mothmail Delivery System.No…

morethanphotography: The first rays of the sun by toko_w The…

morethanphotography:

The first rays of the sun by toko_w


The elf-host was on the march; and if it was sadly lessened, yet many were glad, for now the northern world would be merrier for many a long day. The dragon was dead, and the goblins overthrown, and their hearts looked forward after winter to a spring of joy.

Gandalf and Bilbo rode behind the Elvenking, and beside them strode Beorn, once again in man’s shape, and he laughed and sang in a loud voice upon the road. So they went on until they drew near to the borders of Mirkwood, to the north of the place where the Forest River ran out. Then they halted, for the wizard and Bilbo would not enter the wood, even though the king bade them stay a while in his halls. They intended to go along the edge of the forest, and round its northern end in the waste that lay between it and the beginning of the Grey Mountains. It was a long and cheerless road, but now that the goblins were crushed, it seemed safer to them than the dreadful pathways under the trees. Moreover Beorn was going that way too.
– The Hobbit, Chapter 18: The Return Journey

While the mirk lingering in Mirkwood would only retreat a little and gradually strangle the Wood again, I’d like to think it was a lighter place, with that bit of cheer from the winter sun, that accompanied the Elvenking as he entered the Wood and made for the Halls of his realm.

morethanphotography:

The first rays of the sun by toko_w

The…

beautiful-wildlife:Arctic Wolf by Justin Lo Now the chief of…

beautiful-wildlife:

Arctic Wolf by Justin Lo

Now the chief of the wolf-hounds that followed Celegorm was named Huan. He was not born in Middle-earth, but came from the Blessed Realm; for Oromë had given him to Celegorm long ago in Valinor, and there he had followed the horn of his master, before evil came. Huan followed Celegorm into exile, and was faithful; and thus he too came under the doom of woe set upon the Noldor, and it was decreed that he should meet death, but not until he encountered the mightiest wolf that would ever walk the world.
– The Silmarillion, Quenta Silmarillion Chapter XIX Of Beren and Lúthien

Huan on the hunt.

beautiful-wildlife:Arctic Wolf by Justin Lo

Now the chief of…