WIC and TORn fan sites party like it’s 1999
By Winter Is Coming on in Editorial.

TORN

(Note: This story appears on both: www.Winter-is-Coming.net and www.TheOneRing.net and was written by Mr. Cere of TORn [Larry D Curtis of WiC.net].)

Remember a decade ago when the world was going to end? Younger readers may not clearly recall, but a computer glitch dubbed “Y2K” (the date changing from 1999 to 2000 on January 1) was going to throw computers and thus the world into complete chaos. Planes were going to fall from the sky, bank accounts were going to reset while bankrupting corporations, energy sources were going to fail and missiles would launch and plunge the world into nuclear holocaust.

And worst of all, what if TheOneRing.net wasn’t available when I got to work and opened my browser? What if I couldn’t keep up with the latest news tidbit about the Peter Jackson team working on three “Lord of the Rings Films” by reading the fan site dubbed TORn (for brevity). I wasn’t obsessed, I was focused.

Winter-Is-Coming.net has taken me back to those days like a time capsule. That site, like TORn, is reporting daily on the minutia of a fantasy story told, in what I hope is grand fashion. Once again, like so many others, I have found myself checking in each day, following the tiniest details and I have been transported back to those days of eager anticipation when it seemed the world, as we know it, might end.

The newer site, dubbed WIC (for brevity) follows the in-progress work of an epic fantasy story written by author George R.R. Martin rather than TORn’s J.R.R. Tolkien. (All those “Rs” are enough to make me change my name to LaR.R.y Curtis in hope of being a grand writer.) HBO is taking a risk with a fantasy story and pushing boundaries with budget and cast and betting the farm that along with a fiercely loyal fan base of readers, the general public will take a chance on great storytelling rather than big-name Hollywood names and give the series a try. (The series does feature Sean Bean.)

Do I need to even point out the big, broad stroke similarities between “Lord of the Rings circa 1999 and 2000 and “A Game of Thrones” in 2010-11? Nah.

It has been an exciting time for WIC, with the production going before the cameras followed by an intense period of post-production with the powerful publicity machine churning and now having the air date only weeks, even days away.

How well I remember the media build-up to the debut of “Fellowship,” a decade ago and those memories have been inescapable as “A Game of Thrones,” gets unleashed on popular culture. Fans of both eras paid careful attention when national critics weighed in on the potential of the series, bring the geek-favorite material to a wider and more general audience. As insiders we feel we understand the greatness of the work and understand the potential of the adaptation so when those less versed but with a wider audience have opinions, fans almost feel like not only is the production being discussed but in some way its followers as well.

Responses to mainstream coverage of the pet projects are pretty easy to predict and classify.

Somebody on a message board or an article response will declare the writer an ignoramus while others will defend the writer and explain that it is fans that are clueless. Others will be level-headed and measured, some will bring up the show’s need for far-ranging exposure while some will even discuss the merits of the mainstream article in question. While these are broad generalizations, and they can’t cover all possible reactions, they ring true for both sites.

Some fans can’t be pleased unless they are personally consulted by the production and other fans’ approval can’t be turned away by even the worst news-nuggets imaginable.

It has been fascinating to see WIC and remember TORn as official channels have recognized and legitimized the efforts of the websites’ creators as well as the fans. Entertainment corporations are a lot more aware of how to handle fans these days but both entities have embraced the sites with information, official images, promotional materials and even visits to media and other events.

I will not forget TORn tagging along to the Cannes Film Festival in France for a 20-minute preview of FOTR and me sitting at a computer hanging on every word about it. Similarly, when WIC attended the television critic’s screenings and discussions and sat down with Martin and the runners of the series, it gave me a nostalgic smile as I again poured over the text, not wanting to miss a detail.

Casting news and speculation was similar for both sites and similarly fun. Some decisions made it seem as though the production was trolling the fans sites taking castings suggestions while other actors were chosen against fans’ most fervent wishes while others were complete unknowns. The previously mentioned Bean is the most obvious thread between the two talent pools.

Are there other similarities? Fan gatherings? Yes for both sites. Fans adopting cast actors and following their general work? Check. Production promotions concentrating on the behind-the-scenes aspect of the job? Check. A nation with a modest film industry being delighted to land the big-money job and delivering? Check. Who is in / out character speculation? Check. Scene discussion and speculation? Check. Site produced script speculation and structure? Check. Breaking down every known image for clues and signs? Check. A world-wide following? Check. Will strangers meet over the interwebs and then in person and will life-long and “real” friendships be made? I would bet on it.

The similarities of the experiences of the sites and the circumstances around big fantasy go on and on but one of the most important similarities for me, making the sites feel like they are related at their core, deals with users.

Perhaps it’s the nature of the works on which all of the energy is based. Maybe it’s the conflicted character complexities, detailed world building, flawed heroes, subtle use of fantasy elements, potential loss, melancholy or tragic outcomes and references to larger mythologies and history that attract high-caliber readers to each site. But whatever the explanation, one of the most important features of each site, from my view, is the intelligence and general civility that prevails on each site among users.

News is always attractive, on either site, but it is the reader reaction to the news that makes a stay on either site a deeper experience and more worthwhile than reading the latest sensationalized report on better-known entertainment websites.

King's LandingAs a slew of new imagery arrives from HBO in the lead-up to the series premiere, I feel the same excitement and wonderment that LOTR fans had back in the day. And, almost humorously, the fan reactions run the gamut of responses. Some readers are irritated with interpretations that don’t match their own exactly while others are so pleased to have any television of Martin’s Westeros that nearly anything goes. Some criticize the critics while some criticize the devotees.

I confess to being a rabid fan of both authors and to being fascinated and thrilled by the process and results of adaptation. I am also a daily reader of WIC and used to be a daily reader of TORn but those days stopped when the owners gradually adopted me and I now have the privilege of helping the not-for-profit site as a senior staff member. And, do be honest, WIC publishing this essay, also lets me feel that I have contributed to the great good there as well.

The works of the “R.R.s” are drastically different and the two sites covering their adaptations each have a unique flavor as well. There are distinct differences but there are also remarkable similarities. If you know one site but haven’t visited the other, please accept my invitation to do so. If you haven’t read Tolkien or Martin, a great adventure awaits.

And finally, this year, only weeks ago in fact, after years of legal battles and studio finance details, Peter Jackson’s team returned to Middle-earth to begin filming a two-part film based on “The Hobbit.” All the comparisons about WIC by TORn now can be applied in the other direction. TORn now follows in the recent footsteps of WIC and if things go well for HBO (and fans) WIC will follow the second season of the production, revisiting the magic of the first. Hobbit news will flow through 2014 and Ice & Fire news may well go beyond that if HBO has a homerun on its hands.

Back in the day the non-specialized media wrote often and fervently about how New Line Cinema was risking its very studio life by making Jackson’s films and characterized the risk of making character driven fantasy as near folly.

Contemporary media wonders aloud if television viewers can possibly keep characters clear or can be bothered to tune in for an adult adaptation of a fantasy book (code for kid stuff). Often the undertone of derision or a bit of snootiness regarding the genre remains, making early 2011 feel a lot like 2000 in some respects.

Just as before “Fellowship”, I smell a big, obvious success.

Whatever the case, and whatever happens, its fun to be a fan.


59 Comments

  1. Niels
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:22 am | Permalink

    Ahhhh TORn, I had almost forgotten about that site.
    I remember hanging around there a lot, especially playing the games that were on there :D.

  2. Elaine
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:33 am | Permalink

    I don’t want to jinx it…but I smell the sweet fragrance of success myself!! :D I just know this is going to be magical!

    err…except mostly without the magic.

  3. Steve C
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    Now that was a beautifully written love letter to fandom. Amazing.

  4. Franny Bee
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:38 am | Permalink

    Will strangers meet over the interwebs and then in person and will life-long and “real” friendships be made? I would bet on it.

    That made me smile, esp since NYC is only a day away and I don’t know any of you fellow weirdos irl! :) But meeting people of rapt intelligence that are also unpretentious and embracing other of geeks is a rare opportunity.

    We are all in love with the plunge and tangle of the same written words. That makes us family, and WiC has given us a great rec room to chill in with no ‘rents nearby. Sometimes we behave, sometimes we ‘bicker’, and sometimes we sneak the key to the liquor cabinet and party!

    PS: If I had a kitchen nearby, I’d totally cater lemoncakes for everyone! Maybe I’ll sneak into Carlo’s Bakery for a couple of hours XD

  5. Fire And Blood
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:39 am | Permalink

    I give some major props to Mr. Cere and TheOneRing.net. Steve C was right; that was a beautifully written love letter to the fandoms.

    Sometimes we focus on the negatives, forgetting the sheer joy of the thing we came to follow in the first place.

    Great stuff.

  6. youandwhosearmy
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    This post echoes my thoughts exactly. I followed TORn ravenously back in those days, and Winter Is Coming has reminded me strongly of that experience. Mostly because I’m not usually a superfan of anything, and it’s not like me to geek out to the extent that I have done over Game of Thrones. This is the first time since the TORn days that I’ve felt this way.

    Like you, I have a good feeling about this.

  7. Lina
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:54 am | Permalink

    I can relate to that article. When I turn my computer on in the morning to browse during breakfast, I try to be an upstanding citizen and check the news first. But over the last few months, I can’t deny it: WiC is my first click of the day.

    I’ve had a great time following the development of this production, and it’s been all the more special because I’ve been able to do it alongside a bunch of other ASOIAF nerds. :)

  8. sjwenings
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:57 am | Permalink

    I also followed TORn closely – with the build up to the first movie in particular. And though older memories are usually better due to more nostalgic factor, WiC has been an even more enjoyable experience.

  9. Swiss
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:00 am | Permalink

    Great article. I doubt there will be many people here who don’t have some kind of love for Tolkien’s works, me included. If I remember correctly GRRM himself lists Tolkien as a major influence (then again which fantasy author doesn’t).

  10. Hear Me Roar
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:04 am | Permalink

    Agreed. This is a lovely moment to take a short break from the madness and contemplate a bit on how cool it is to be a fan of a production like this.

  11. Erin
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    Great article! Unfortunately, I missed out on all the pre-LotR buzz and hadn’t even heard of the series until a friend took me to see Fellowship. I’m glad I found WiC and can participate this time around! It’s been a blast so far!

  12. Corli
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    I agree, what a beautiful letter. I, too, remember checking TORn every morning for some new tidbit, just as I do now with WiC. My visits to TORn has increased in recent times, to check on the progress of The Hobbit. A huge thank you for both sites for contributing so much to our enjoyment of Messrs. Tolkien and Martin’s works!

  13. Blackfish Blues
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:20 am | Permalink

    Thanks, TORN! Love the article, love the juxtaposition of the pics. :D I still follow TORN regularly for Hobbit news. When Richard Armitage was cast, I discovered I was justified for having always been in love with Thorin Oakenshield. :D

    This is indeed a unique moment for ASOIAF fans. Let’s enjoy it without getting unduly upset by gates, and let’s hope GOT will be a long-lasting saga like LOTR was.

  14. dizzy_34
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:23 am | Permalink

    sjwenings,

    Agreed.

  15. Hollyoak
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    I remember those days well…

    Trilogy Tuesday.
    The footage from Cannes in the Mines of Moria.
    The first real clip from the FotR after an episode of Angel on the WB Network
    Arwen-Gate (fans were enraged by the changes made to her character.)
    And so many more memories.

    I was an original TORN member back then, even rising through the ranks to become a Forum Admin! Wow. LOL.

    Those were the days. The writer Mr. Cere, may know me better as Corsair of Umbar, my screen name at TORN.

    Wonderful article.

  16. Fate's Bitch
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    Wow, I was just thinking about the similarities between the LoTR and GoT “experience” earlier today. Lovely article, makes me feel all warm and fuzzy :-)

    I didn’t follow the pre-Fellowship hype back then, but I remember the excited chills I felt when I saw that teaser trailer with the fellowship walking across the snowy mountains; that moment when I thought “They’ve done it, they get it, this is going to be epic.” And it was, of course. Now with GoT, when I watch the trailers and character vids, when I drool over the costume porn, and when I realise just how much love, and effin’ work they’ve put into making everything believable, I get that same feeling as I got a decade back. They get it, this is going to be epic.

  17. Mormegil
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    I was never an active member of the TORn discussion boards, The Council of Elrond (Imladris.net as it was known then) was (and still is) my Tolkien Internet home but I did check the front page daily for news (apart from the very rare times I managed to get hold of and post some news before they did).

    Good days.

    I’m not sure I’ll be following The Hobbit Production quite as closely but that may be because I’m so invested in GoT and when the Hobbit news starts appearing on a daily basis we’ll be (hopefully) gearing up for Season 2 here.

  18. Mjgrass
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    Good stuff guys, I smell a hit also. I work at a trucking company and the other day by the water cooler I heard a few truck drivers talking about that new HBO show, with all the sword fighting, and how good it looked. Words defiantly gotten out and people are anticipation this.
    I cant wait.

  19. Tysnow
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    That was well said TORn, I too like others here followed TORn almost daily back from filming of LOTR in 1999 thru extending cut info of 2004. I have been browsing over 2-3x a week for Hobbit updates, can’t wait for more details as they come out.
    WiC reminds me so much of that expectation and anticipation I felt from a decade ago, and I believe it is one reason I come here almost daily to check up on the latest for GoT. It helps that HBO appears to be following Grand Maester Peter’s blueprint of success, concerning how best to produce fantasy. It must be epic, realistic, earthy, dramatic, visually and artistically crafted to minute detail, but foremost, grounding the show in its character relationships, for when the audience truely cares for the people, they become emotionally attached and follow the story of the inhabitants within till its conclusion. Peter, cast and crew did this and thats the main reason LOTR became the money making critical success it was, and so far everything I have seen indicates the same promising future for HBO’s GoT series.

    Love you TORn and thanks for the memories, and future ones to come.

  20. Eggplant
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    I was too young to participate in LotR fandom and the buildup to the movies, which makes me really sad, because I was obsessed with those books by the time RotK came out. Oh well, I get my chance with Game of Thrones.

  21. Mike Chair
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:10 am | Permalink

    But whatever the explanation, one of the most important features of each site, from my view, is the intelligence and general civility that prevails on each site among users.

    *bowing graciously and humbly*

  22. JJtheCROW
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    WiC was the first and only fansite I’ve ever visited. I’ve followed the production almost from day one and I have to say, it’s been a great experience. This is also my first click everyday I get into work and I check in frequently for any new tidbit of information throughout the day. I’ve never done that for anything!!!!! That to me is a true testiment to this entire community and they guys that put this whole thing together. You make me laugh, you piss me off, and you make me think. Thanks guys.

  23. Knurk
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:25 am | Permalink

    This article is so spot on it gave me goosebumps. Although I wasn’t a TORn member, I was heavily active on the website thefellowship.nl, a somewhat dutch sistersite or variant if you can call it. I still sleep in my thefellowship.nl:
    One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
    One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
    T-Shirt. That was a great community!

    Back then every picture, every casting, every trailer was scrutinized to the bone, it was friggin’ awesome and it stole away many hours I should have spent for school. I also remember that Cannes report, I stayed up late to read all the blogs about it and couldn’t sleep after because I was giddy with excitement because all the reports were so positive. I was 15 when me and a friend of mine won tickets for The Fellowship of the Ring two weeks before the premiere, probably the most awesome movie-experience ever: all that anticipation… and then it delivers.

    And now? Again the scrutinizing of all the casting, pictures, trailers and it’s stealing away all those hours I should be working on my thesis. You just got to love these geeky fandoms. And man, if it delivers it will be the most awesome tv-experience ever.

  24. purplejilly
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    what a beautiful essay, showing endless love for The Bottom! Always Support It!

  25. sjwenings
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    OT: Televisionary tweets about the first 6 episodes:

    “Very, very strong. The show is extremely well-written and beautiful to behold. Quality abounds.”

    “Fantastic! They cast the Stark kids really, really well. All of them deliver strong performances.”

    There were more, but these caught my eye in particular. Yeah, so this guy is a fan of the books, but it’s not like he’s praising the story here. I assume “well-written” is about the adaption, mostly.

  26. JKnaak
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:36 am | Permalink

    Great post!! A very well-thought out, nostalgic article…love it!

  27. Winter Is Coming
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:40 am | Permalink

    sjwenings, he only became a fan of the books after watching the original pilot, which he also enjoyed. I think his praise is a good sign for book-fans and non-book-fans alike.

  28. John Keady
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    I too was a regular lurker on TORn. The similarities between then and now are striking!

  29. Knurk
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:47 am | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming,

    especially Mrs. Televisonary who hasn’t read the books and is forbidding him to watch further episodes without her haha.

  30. Vanmaddle
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    Oh, man. I remember those days, i can say nothing to top this essay, this is exactly the feeling. Also, as a spanish fan, we check everyday elfomeno for LOTR and Asshai for GOT.

  31. Danny
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 10:54 am | Permalink

    Knurk Although I wasn’t a TORn member, I was heavily active on the website thefellowship.nl, a somewhat dutch sistersite or variant if you can call it. I still sleep in my thefellowship.nl:
    One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
    One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them T-Shirt. That was a great community!

    Interesting, I frequently visited (for quite some years actually) the boards @ fellowship.nl as well, during the development of the LotR movies. Shame the website got pulled, as it was a great community.

  32. Rydo72
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:06 am | Permalink

    Agreed, a fantastic article that perfectly captures the sentiments of all the geeks who can’t live 10 minutes without checking WIC for the latest tidbit of news. Strangely, I think this is my first comment on this site, despite checking it numerous times daily since the show was first announced. I’m more of a lurker!

    Starting reading AGOT about 8 years ago now. From several chapters in, I was convinced: “This would make a fantastic TV series!” I said to nobody in particular. So in essence, this HBO series has been almost a decade in the making for me…TORn, you have wonderfully portrayed what myself and I’m sure many other fans have been feeling every day.

  33. Vic Sage
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:12 am | Permalink

    Ah,I too remember those heady days at Torn…Wonderful post.

  34. DrBug
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    Hey everyone

    Was browsing Facebook when I saw that the official Game of Thrones profile posted about the suduvu cage match between Jon Snow and Vin (from the Mistborn series), saying the Jon is lagging behind and that we should “rally to the wall”.

    I just think its so cool that HBO marketing is getting behind all things ASOIAF. Lets show them how the community can get together when it comes to the series, book or TV. Click on the suvudu link and vote for Jon. We are only a few hundred votes behind, and voting ends today 5pm ET.

    http://sf-fantasy.suvudu.com/2011/03/cage-match-2011-jon-snow-versus-vin.html

    http://www.facebook.com/GameOfThrones

    Comon’, just for a bit of fun! ;)

  35. sjwenings
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:19 am | Permalink

    Winter Is Coming,

    Cool. A nice start for the many reviews i will be reading of GOT.

  36. Julian
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:34 am | Permalink

    In 1999 I was a bit too young to get into Lotr, in fact I had just started the first three Harry Potter books…but it wasn’t until the summer of 2001 that I saw a trailer for Lotr movie one and I was taken back. My grandmother convinced me to read the books and I fell in love with all of them and re read them each before the release of the movie trilogy.

    Now with GOT coming to the small screen, I can see why people compare their Lotr experience to that of GOT, We’re constantly lurking about for more news, anxiously awaiting the series. The anticipation is in the air and the FIRST website of the day for me is Winter is Coming.net. I love this website and I am sure I will love the series as well….sniff

    Winter is Coming!

  37. OldGran
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:47 am | Permalink

    Lina,

    You make me laugh, WIC is desert after eating our “veggies” of news, e-mail, Facebook. (I can relate, and yes I do go right for desert sometimes)

    OT- A month or so ago I gave my daughter a copy of AGOT. I’ve only been talking up GOT for over a year now, so she took it to humor me. She is busy so did not get right to it. My cell phone rang when I was about 85 miles away from home shopping happily in Trader Joe’s in Tucson. She screamed OK , I’m hooked!!! She had just read “the things I do for love” part.
    We then spent some time talking about the book. I noticed folks in TJ smiling knowingly in my direction. Funny.

  38. MetalgoddessAMB
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

    I agree with a lot of the sentiment already expressed here.

    I remember the day in 1999 when I searched “Lord of the Rings casting” and found TORn. From that day on, I checked that site daily, six, seven, ten times a day. Even after 2004 when I started going there less and less, I never fully abandoned it, it had made such a mark and was such a routine to me. Since The Hobbit announcement a couple years ago, I’ve been back to checking it everyday for news.

    As a community of superfans, I trusted TORn so much. Here was a place where you could gather and share and and finally be understood. and oh, the scoops they would get over the larger entertainment news magazines are the stuff of legend. How fitting, on that night in February 2004, When Peter Jackson and crew gathered up all their Oscars and instead of heading straight to the Governer’s Ball, they went to the TORn party and shared their triumph with the fans first. I remember weeping tears of joys for people whom I only knew by their online handles, but who I had spent 4 years hanging on their every word. Even though I wasn’t there, I still felt apart of it.

    From the moment I discovered WIC, I said to myself, “this is like TORn.”

    Now I come here six, seven, ten times a day. And I come here FIRST, because I know if there is new news, this is where it will be.

    Everyday, I get those same giddy feelings I had over 10 years ago.

    It feels good. :)

  39. Jenny
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    There was very little internet in 2001 though… :D

  40. Larry D Curtis
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 1:47 pm | Permalink

    Hollyoak: Those were the days. The writer Mr. Cere, may know me better as Corsair of Umbar, my screen name at TORN.

    Hello C of U! Nice to see and recognize you. Thanks for the kind words and that goes for everybody else too.

  41. Luke likely
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 1:56 pm | Permalink

    I, like some others, have never followed a production as closely as this. Not really knowing there were sites like this. I have become addicted to the feeling of connection you get with all the people who post here. I always read all the posts and it feels like I’m having a conversation with you all in my head, even if I don’t always post a comment. It’s good to know that LotR had a similar site for the fans, because I think it really deserved that kind of devotion. I had only read the hobbit when I went to see FotR. Being a big fantasy fan I was exited by the movies but I wasn’t really prepared for how much I would fall in love with them. There really is something truly special about the LotR movies and can only hope that GoT captures that kind of cuality. At this point it would be very surprising if GoT wasn’t the amazing thing I think it will be.

  42. Kanga
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

    What an absolutely lovely article, I’m getting warm fuzzy feelings just reading it.
    I’ve never followed a production like this before, or taken part in forums, or much of anything internet really. But in a weird way you guys all feel sort of like family. I’m thrilled to be able to come here and debate about eyebrows and trout, it makes my day that much better. I hope one day I’ll get to meet some of you lovely people in person and be proud nerds together. :)

  43. obsidian
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 2:23 pm | Permalink

    OldGran,

    Yup! Another one guilty of dessert for brekkie , here.:) Not every day, but at least a third of them. I find I need comfort food with an incresing regularity as the countdown progresses.

    And what a great letter…Ah, nostalgia .

  44. Lex
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 2:34 pm | Permalink

    I read this last night on TORn first. This article really resonates with me. My two favourite authors, my two favourite fantasy series, my two favourite fan sites. Awesome!

    I discovered TORn back around 1999, when I was a college freshman and had somehow stumbled upon news of the making of the LOTR trilogy online (this was before I’d ever even heard of Google, I discovered the news by randomly searching about Tolkien on some antiquated search engine). I remember my jaw literally dropped, and I ran back to class to tell my friend “They’re making The Lord of the Rings into a movie!!!” I spent the next 2 or 3 years following the developments on TheOneRing. I still remember the final three months before the movie was released, and how slowly they seemed to pass by.

    WiC is a little bit of deja vu for me, in that regard. So the connection and similarity between the two sites was always obvious to me, but the acknowledgment of that is awesome. I’m so glad they put this up over at TORn too; hopefully we’ll get some more traffic, and some new fans!

  45. Lina
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 2:38 pm | Permalink

    OldGran:
    Lina,

    You make me laugh, WIC is desert after eating our “veggies” of news, e-mail, Facebook. (I can relate, and yes I do go right for desert sometimes)

    OT- A month or so ago I gave my daughter a copy ofAGOT.I’ve only been talking up GOT for over a year now, so she took it to humor me.She is busy so did not get right to it. My cell phone rang when I was about 85 miles away from home shopping happily in Trader Joe’s in Tucson.She screamed OK , I’m hooked!!!She had just read“the things I do for love” part.We then spent some time talking about the book. I noticed folks in TJ smilingknowingly in my direction.Funny.

    Dessert is Coming!

    That’s awesome about your daughter. I wish I would get calls like that when I went to the supermarket! I talk my whole family’s ears off about the series, but no one wants to commit to trying it out. They’re lazy! :(

  46. Langkard
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    Ah, this takes me back. I used TORn almost exclusively for my news fix about the films. Now I use WiC exclusively for my news about A Game of Thrones on HBO. And it’ll be back to TORn for news of The Hobbit now.

  47. Arithine
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

    News is always attractive, on either site, but it is the reader reaction to the news that makes a stay on either site a deeper experience and more worthwhile than reading the latest sensationalized report on better-known entertainment websites.

    Couldn’t agree more, it’s why I come to the site, to read the comments and occasionally put in my two cents. If I just wanted the news I could just go by the twitter and the making of site, but I don’t I am subscribed to the twitter, but when any news pops up on it I go strait here to get the fans reaction.

  48. stevelabny
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 3:14 pm | Permalink

    do we think its safe to order HBO now, or should i wait one more day till april, or 17 more days to ensure they mentally tie my subscription to Game of Thrones?

  49. GaR
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 3:37 pm | Permalink

    Great article. I loved the LotR films.

    That said, I’m pretty sure Tyrion could beat the shit out of Frodo :B

  50. Lex
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

    Love reading about everyone’s experiences back when LOTR came out.

    Like Knurk said, it was the best movie experience ever. It was like the anticipation for the Star Wars prequels, except it actually delivered. I had read the books three times, my anticipation was at maximum, and seeing it unfold on the screen was beyond surreal. I have never had a cinematic experience to equal the first time I watched Fellowship. I remember realizing, about 10-15 minutes in, “Holy crap, they got it right!” (the exact moment was when Gandalf and Bilbo were sitting outside at dusk, blowing smoke rings). Then I relaxed, and was taken on the best movie adventure I’m ever likely to have. I don’t even think The Hobbit will be able to match that, for me.

  51. loco73
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 4:01 pm | Permalink

    Amen! Great entry! Yes, I feel the same palpable excitement as when the LOTR trilogy was to be unleashed upon the world, pretty much for all the reasons you enumerated above!

    I know I have repeated this ad nauseaum, but I wish only the best for all the fans, George and co. as well as all the folks over at HBO and “Game Of Thrones”. I hope the series has a full run and that all of us fans get to enjoy the ride to the utmost!

    It has been always a pleasure to come to this site, see what the other fans thought, or said, and the info, news etc. This alone makes it all worth it.

  52. Bronn
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 4:22 pm | Permalink

    One similarity more was missed….

    …Danish blood for a warrior-prince..

    Viggo Mortensen —– Nicolai Coster Waldau… check

  53. GaR
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    Lex: It (LotR) was like the anticipation for the Star Wars prequels, except it actually delivered.

    QFT

  54. Alcibiades
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

    GaR:
    … I’m pretty sure Tyrion could beat the shit out of Frodo :B

    Mr. Samwise Gamgee might have something to say about that! ;)

    Thanks for the lovely read OP, thanks for this awesome site WiC dudes, thanks for the amazing story RR and thanks HBO for the A+ devoted adaptation.

    and so you don’t feel left out Mr and Ms Lurker, thanks for making this awesome site more awesome just by being here ;)

  55. Howland Reed
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

    A wonderful write up, Mr. Cere. Thank you!

  56. GaR
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 9:55 pm | Permalink

    Alcibiades,

    Ah, but Tyrion’s sidekick is Bronn :P

  57. Regina Thorne
    Posted March 31, 2011 at 11:00 pm | Permalink

    I never posted at TORn, but I certainly followed it religiously. And one of my fondest memories of any fandom is going to the huge “Trilogy Tuesday” event with a couple of my dear friends – seven hours of extended editions leading up to “Return of the King” was so fantastic, even though there was a certain sadness in knowing that this was the last film. (Long may “Game of Thrones” continue!!!)

    Thank you, Mr. Cere, for the memories and for a lovely piece about the joys of being in fandom.

  58. Liesie
    Posted April 1, 2011 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    Great article I’v been a LOTR fan since I was 12, and it was my first window to fantasy and these books will therefore always have a special place in my heart. Unfortunately I was 12 in 2002 so I never had the chance to follow the production live.

    But therefore following GoT is also very special for me since this is the first time that I can experience this really awesome something and I have to admit that my live sort of resolves around it right now. (well not completely but visiting this site is just something I can look forward to everyday again and it never fails to cheer me up!)

  59. marberi
    Posted April 1, 2011 at 11:05 pm | Permalink

    Absolutely true.

    First time I experienced this feeling was way back in the mid-90′s, after I discovered sites such as TheForce.net, Jedi.net and T-Bone’s Star Wars universe. I just couldn’t get enough on the SW prequel trilogy and those guys really delivered.

    TORn did exactly the same back in ’99-2000 and WiC has certainly been doing a great job following up on that tradition. Best news site for HBO’s adaptation of AGoT out there by far and wide.


  • Recent Comments

  • Archives

    • 2014 (959)
    • 2013 (679)
    • 2012 (550)
    • 2011 (512)
    • 2010 (309)
    • 2009 (174)
    • 2008 (47)
  •