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Ringers: Lord of the Fans

Posted on 2006.02.10 at 23:21
Current Mood: crappycrappy
I had the day from utter hell at work today.  Looking for total escapism, I rented "Ringers: Lord of the Fans," which is an attempt at a  LOTR version of Trekkies.

It had some moments. I liked the background on Tolkien and the history of attempts to make LOTR into a movie, but it spent too much time trying to connect Tolkien with the psychedelic 60s (with lots of pseudo- Laugh-in dancers which I could have done without).  It wasn't near as funny as Trekkies and I didn't think captured the essence of LOTR fans. And btw I'd never heard the term Ringers before to mean Lord of the Rings fans and I've been one for (lo) these many years. I was a member of the Tolkien Society in high school and we just referred to ourselves as Tolkien fans. Guess I wasn't in the right geeky crowd.  Anyway, it briefly mentioned fanfic and - amazingly enough - slash including a few fanpics of some of our boys kissing. It even quoted from Cassie Claire's Very Secret Diaries, which was kinda fun.  Also had some interviews with various members of LOTR cast and crew.  If you can get hold of it may be worth a look.  If any of you have seen it, curious what you thought.


Milady Hawke
miladyhawke at 2006-02-11 09:45 (UTC) (Link)
I haven't seen it yet, but I want to. I get the bad sense that there's not enough to relate to the fans of today (but oh, it would be more than worth the buy if it was thorough enough to mention the enormous wanks like that of Victoria Bitter and Turimel - I would love to see an interview by either of them!). I am still, however, very interested in how the fandom metamorphasized since the 60s; our roots are so very interesting, as long as their development is properly illustrated (I once took it upon myself to write the history of the A/L pairing, although that hasn't seen the light of day yet).

I have to say, though, that I have heard the term 'Ringers' before plenty of times, although I've always gotten the impression that that was an artifical term coined by the more popular fansites once the movies hit the scene. That's not a term I would expect everyone to be conversant with, although enough people have heard it simply because these website have pushed it. Who the hell actually calls his or herself a 'Ringer', though?


I'm almost 100% positive that TORN, theonering.net (the premiere LotR fansite since the movies debuted), coined the term 'Ringers'. If they didn't coin it themselves, they were certainly the ones to have made it known, although it never caught on in popular usage.

It's no coincidence either that "Ringers" was entirely a production of theonering.net. Just the fact that TORN = 'Ringers' should tell you something. ;)

I hope that was interesting for you; I just can't help rambling about fandom matters when I find these things interesting myself :)
ennorwen at 2006-02-11 11:04 (UTC) (Link)

Ringers...an "underground essay?"

I've posted my Ringers thoughts on elfscribe5's thread, but I am VERY INTERESTED in your "history of the A/L pairing." Might you consider throwing it out there for our persual? Even if unfinished? Call it a "lost tale" if you will. Regards, ennorwen
Milady Hawke
miladyhawke at 2006-02-12 00:00 (UTC) (Link)

Re: Ringers...an "underground essay?"

Ah, thanks, hon *g* It's not really quite as grand as it sounds though because it's only one section in a larger A/L ship manifesto that (*gulps*) I wrote last year and haven't been able to finish, and it's the briefest section at that. I really want to, though; it's just one of those things where the section that has me stumped is so intimidating that I'm blocked. When I do finish it, though, I will be posting links to the manifesto all over :p If you want, I can send you the section on the history, which has a lot to do with the early online slash fandom as well. It's still a work in progress, though; I want to do some more hunting around on FF.net and see just how many (if any A/L's) there were there before the earliest fic I could find on the Yahoo groups. I also want to pad it a bit more with info on early popular writers.

I have a feeling you'll be disappointed as is, but I can send it to you if you like. ~MH
ennorwen at 2006-02-12 23:25 (UTC) (Link)

Re: Ringers...an "underground essay?"

Of course we wants it, we do!!! No, seriously I would love to read what you have come up with if you feel comfortable posting it even in parts. And no disappointment at all - that you would even take it on it interesting and I just love reading "essays" on Tolkien or the fandom, etc. History and research are two of things I like best about writing. BTW, I keep copies of the fics that I love in my bedside table. Hence their designation as "Bedside Table Fics" - They are the ones I read over and over and no higher praise can come from me than to have one, or more of your "ouvre" included. A wordy way of saying that Into/Out Of The Wood are two of only about 20 that are "Bedside Table Fics". I have not had the opportunity before now to review or send you word that I love them, but I do. Regards, Ennorwen
elfscribe5 at 2006-02-11 22:48 (UTC) (Link)
I thought it did a better job with the history of the publication of LOTR and the Silm and with the movies than it did with the fandom history - curiously. I mean it had the interviews with the fans, kinda like Trekkies, but they weren't as fun as the Trekkie fans. Maybe we're not as weird as Trekkies - LOL - no, I don't believe that, they just interviewed normal people who have a hobby.

"Who calls themselves a ringer. Nobody."
Yep, dead on.

Always like your rambling.
ennorwen at 2006-02-11 11:02 (UTC) (Link)


I don't have too much to add, I think you and miladyhawke nailed some of my thoughts also. Bought it the first day it was out (had to go to FIVE places to find it - anything to feed my LOTR addiction), and actually I was a little disappointed. I too had heard it compared to Trekkies, which I thought boded well, but it didn't have the tongue-in-cheek humor of that one. I did think, like you it dwelt on the 60s-70s overmuch and the production values were the same. And to my eye, way too TORN intensive, though they did make it after all. I did think the reference to Library of Moria was kind of funny given the site's current, shall we say kindly, "downtime." - Thought it might inspire them to fix the server problem in that it was "publicity" for them. But alas, not true. And I would NEVER call myself or any other serious Tolkien geek a "Ringer." It is very much a TORN appilation (sic - is that a word?), and I think its advent is only since the movies. Too be honest, after the first viewing I did not feel compelled to watch again. So, that's my 2 cents! Cheers! Ennorwen
elfscribe5 at 2006-02-11 22:53 (UTC) (Link)

Re: Ringers....

"Actually I was a little disappointed"
Yeah, my feeling exactly. Re: LoM - well, it was The Site when movie-inspired LOTR slash first started and many folks, including moi, got their start there. But there are much better ones now and, you're right, LoM is rather sadly defunct in terms of posting new stuff. I haven't posted my last 3 fics there.
I didn't know where "Ringer" came from. So thanks to you and Milady.
A wild and untamed thing
rebeccasama at 2006-02-11 21:12 (UTC) (Link)
I'd like to see it, but I don't want to cough up the $17.95 that Wal-Mart wants for it. I really loved the Trekkies 1 & 2 films, though. I agree with you on the 'Ringers' term... I've never referred to myself (or wanted to refer to myself) as a Ringer LOL (I'll admit to being a Trekkie, though.) *geeks out*

I was wondering if it would mention slash or not. I'd be really interested to see what they have to say about that! LOL I remember they very, very briefly mentioned Kirk/Spock in one of the Trekkie volumes.
elfscribe5 at 2006-02-11 22:58 (UTC) (Link)
Oh yeah, don't pay for it - is interesting to see if you can rent it, which I did. Re: "ringer" Eeuwwww. It just seems too cutely coined for the purpose. I am a Tolkien or LOTR fan not a ringer. I will also admit to being a Trekkie (or Trekker, whichever floats your boat).

The mention of slash was fairly brief but definitely there and they quoted several sentences from "The Very Secret Diaries." I would think the author would be thrilled to be so prominently mentioned.

Good to see you in my neighborhood, btw.
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