Lord of the Rings and Dune

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Mr. Teg
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Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Mr. Teg » 30 Oct 2009 17:54

If you haven't guessed from the previous thread I have been rereading The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. I got the impression that perhaps Frank had read and extrapolated a few scenes and ideas from Tolkien's book. I discussed with Chigger over the phone last night and the dates would definitely match. Anyone, what say you all?


1) The Orcs tried to seal in with explosives the soldiers who had fled into the caves.

2) There is an entire chapter about Sauron and his use of voice.

3) An extensive appendix and discussion of various Houses.
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby lotek » 30 Oct 2009 18:31

1° in lotr the soldiers have fallen back to Helm's Deep way before the Orthanc Orcs attack, when Atreides forces go into the caves as a last stand fight(the Baron mentions using projectile bombs because he foresaw the Caladan forces would seek refuge there). Is the Orcs' intention to seal the Rohirhim or to breach the wall to get in for slaughter? Both scenes are similar, would you care to expand on the dates you mentionned? Having another link than coincidence would definitely make your case further ;)

2° same thing for those dates
Aren't they other stories where Frank could have found the inspiration for Voice?
Saruman also uses Voice btw, maybe in a more subtle fashion than Sauron, whose brute force is more similar to the override of the will in the person subjected to BG Voice.

3° now even if Tolkien Appendixes did not inspire Frank, both their seriousness in research(dare i say consistency or even concordance now?), attention to details... would necessarily mean that something both of them came up with is a neccesity to write big sagas.

it is one of the first times I try such analysis here so I hope you'll be indulgent, after a while of posting silly KJA pics and more Ghafla, I thought it was time for me to give serious debate a go
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Mr. Teg » 31 Oct 2009 09:39

p. 182 The Two Towers
"But the Orcs have brought a devilry from Orthanc," said Aragon. "They have a blasting fire, and with it they took the Wall. If they cannot come in the caves, they may seal up those that are inside...."

Chapter 10
The Voice of Saruman
p. 231-245
Asides from the content, the actual chapter title is "the voice of...."

(Both the main text and appendix contain references to words that change over time. Also, the discussion of various "houses" in the appendix. Familiar characteristics of Dune.)
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby lotek » 31 Oct 2009 10:12

Mr. Teg wrote:p. 182 The Two Towers
"But the Orcs have brought a devilry from Orthanc," said Aragon. "They have a blasting fire, and with it they took the Wall. If they cannot come in the caves, they may seal up those that are inside...."

right I was not sure about that, thanks

Chapter 10
The Voice of Saruman
p. 231-245
Asides from the content, the actual chapter title is "the voice of...."
it is the only real trick from his former self he saves when demoted by Gandalf who breaks his staff. Could it be that if he retained it after losing his magic the power of his voice came from his mind? He's an Istari not a human.
(Both the main text and appendix contain references to words that change over time.
Also, the discussion of various "houses" in the appendix. Familiar characteristics of Dune.)


So Lord of the Rings 1st print: 1950s
Dune 1st print: 1960s

10 years gap is more than enough to justify an influence from Tolkien in my book, wether it was acknowledged or not doesn't make much difference anyway as a master piece like LOTR would have influenced anyone who planned to write a massive sf/fantasy saga, just like Dune influenced those who came after.
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby DuneFishUK » 31 Oct 2009 10:30

I'd say he was influenced - probably directly.

This reminds me of an FH quote I saw on wikipedia when reading up on The Sword of Shannara (which I was listening to at the time... and struggling with)

(If you've not read it, Sword of Shannara is a lot like Lord of the Rings - not-Frodo sets out from the not-Shire, joins the not-Fellowship, etc, etc, and not-Gandalf falls to his "death" (spoiler: He doesn't die))

Frank Herbert wrote: Don't fault Brooks for entering the world of letters through the Tolkien door. Every writer owes a similar debt to those who have come before. Some will admit it. Tolkien's debt was equally obvious. The classical myth structure is deeply embedded in Western society.

That's why you should not be surprised at finding these elements in The Sword of Shannara. Yes, you will find here the young prince in search of his grail; the secret (and not always benign) powers of nature; the magician; the wise old man; the witch mother; the malignant threat from a sorcerer; the holy talisman; the virgin queen; the fool (in the ancient tarot sense of the one who asks the disturbing questions) and all of the other Arthurian trappings.

What Brooks has done is to present a marvelous exposition of why the idea is not the story. Because of the popular assumption (which assumes mythic proportions of its own) that ideas form 99 percent of a story, writers are plagued by that foolish question, “Where do you get your ideas?” Brooks demonstrates that it doesn't matter where you get the idea; what matters is that you tell a rousing story.[34]


From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Sword_ ... _the_Rings

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby lotek » 31 Oct 2009 10:51

I did read some of the Shannara series and I remember enjoying them, my main feel from the books was the heroes were not all powerful even if they had great potential, and they had to rely on luck and wits to succeed(always was fan of the underdogs)
(Shannara is the one with a Druid whose name finishes with -ON isn't it?)

I like the "Arthurian" reference as it puts a name on what I was clumsily trying to explain...
Those themes appear in great stories when there was no link between them because they tap into the same source. They are bound to meet in perfection(the better they get the closer they look)
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Schu » 01 Nov 2009 20:53

Not to mention the hereditary titles in both books, preoccupation with how tall people are, sprawling descriptions of people including what effect they have on others and minor identifying features, preoccupation with heredity, and a few other things I've forgotten.

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby trang » 01 Nov 2009 21:25

I never thought of the comparisons of LOTR to DUNE, mainly because, to me, they are separate Genre's. From the posts above it seems more than likely FH had some influence from it, and looks from the examples he used in an honorable way.

I have mentioned my nuclear bomb level disdain for Terry Brooks. I don't think Shannara is the same kind of thing as what your comparing LOTR to DUNE. Terry Brooks read LOTR in college, he then immediately set to writing the Sword of Shannara. It isn't a homage to LOTR using elements of the story, it is a complete and utter ripoff. Barely changed the names and places. Anyway, would skip using this one as an example.

The LOTR/DUNE thing happens a lot in my favorite sub genre, military sci-fi. STT by Heinlein is used as benchmark and most things written since pay homage to it, an honorable way.
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby SandChigger » 01 Nov 2009 22:43

Schu wrote:...and a few other things I've forgotten.

Sex outside your species! :P

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Schu » 02 Nov 2009 06:59

SandChigger wrote:
Schu wrote:...and a few other things I've forgotten.

Sex outside your species! :P


Or, as Herbert more tactfully put it, hybrid vigour :P

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby SandChigger » 02 Nov 2009 09:38

Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Freakzilla » 02 Nov 2009 11:54

SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Raveem » 02 Nov 2009 15:44

Even if they aren't similar in content, they're both genre-transcending giants. I've written elsewhere on the forum how speculative fiction is otherwise littered with bad writing and immature authors.

Raveem.

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Apjak » 02 Nov 2009 15:55

Raveem wrote:Even if they aren't similar in content, they're both genre-transcending giants. I've written elsewhere on the forum how speculative fiction is otherwise littered with bad writing and immature authors.

Raveem.


Hear! Hear!
I'd like to also point out behind the writing standards and the immaturity the third, the extreme niche pieces of work. A lot of what I like about speculative fiction is that it gives a voice to those stories and ideas that may or may not have an audience, but sometimes it backfires. I personally like the very philosophical and psychological.

Regardless, Dune and LotR rule.
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Omphalos » 02 Nov 2009 16:18

Freakzilla wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P


I think that is why he lives in Japan. :P

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Freakzilla » 02 Nov 2009 16:49

Omphalos wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P


I think that is why he lives in Japan. :P


One of my lifelong guidlines has always been: never date a woman bigger than you or that can kick your ass.

I swear, my wife wasn't either when I first met her. :wink:

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Spicelon » 02 Nov 2009 18:08

I think Herbert's work distances itself from LotR better than other epic works, Like Goodkind's Sword of Truth (ugh!) and Jordan's Wheel of Time (ugh!), which are much more clearly concrete derivations from LotR and perhaps to a greater degree, Dune. That said, as Herbert said in his comments regarding Sword of Shanara, any speculative fiction author will be hard pressed to not have been influenced by Tolkien. However, in Herbert's case, I doubt the similarities are intentional, as opposed to other aforementioned works. Tolkien was a lover of languages and the role of mythology in those languages. I believe he sought to bring to life his own world mirroring those passions. Thematically I believe that differs quite a bit from Herbert's Dune. While heroes and the fate of the world were elements in both works, Herbert chose more specific topics for exploration (ecology, religion, corruption) than Tolkien did. Also, in my opinion intent matters. Many novelists clearly sought to channel LotR, where with Herbert I don't think he intended to at all.

Just my disjointed $0.02.
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Omphalos » 02 Nov 2009 19:46

Freakzilla wrote:
Omphalos wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P


I think that is why he lives in Japan. :P


One of my lifelong guidlines has always been: never date a woman bigger than you or that can kick your ass.

I swear, my wife wasn't either when I first met her. :wink:

Those Japanese girls may be little but they know Kung Fu. He'd better be carefull.


I believe the proper discipline is ka-ra-te.

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby SandChigger » 02 Nov 2009 22:06

Freakzilla wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P

No, only taller.

I don't need anything to make me feel big. ;)


(AND I'm like an Ent. Gots a permanent woody.)

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby lotek » 03 Nov 2009 03:56

watch out for those splinters :)
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Omphalos » 03 Nov 2009 12:33

SandChigger wrote:
Freakzilla wrote:
SandChigger wrote:Screw tact, I want a three-way with an Elf bint.

And a Dwarf. :P


Would that make you feel big? :P

No, only taller.

I don't need anything to make me feel big. ;)


(AND I'm like an Ent. Gots a permanent woody.)


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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby othaderak » 03 Nov 2009 15:05

Omphalos wrote:Didn't you read the fine print? If you have an erection lasting longer than 4 hours, see your doctor immediately!


That, or just look at this:

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby Mr. Teg » 06 Nov 2009 21:45

I would add to the list the chapter when Sam and Frodo hook up with Faramir and stay at his "hideout."
I haven't cross checked for any specific passages but the whole scenes with Faramir parallel;

1) Paul and Jessica run into Stilgar's troop for the first time (Faramir's men are even stealthy as well).
2) The scene between Gurney and Tuek in the smuggler's "hideout."

Finally, if you accept what I have listed from the beginning of the thread, I would even go so far to add that a "rhyming dwarf" (lots of rhyming poems and songs in LoTR) was a tongue-n-cheek joke by Frank (ala C3PO).
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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby HarryCanyon » 04 May 2010 20:15

I've always thought of that always, Dune is like LOTR since both are complex fantasies with creative imagination.

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Re: Lord of the Rings and Dune

Postby SandChigger » 04 May 2010 22:15

While there are definitely fantastical elements in Dune, labeling it a fantasy, even in conjunction with one of the finest/classic examples of the genre like LotR, makes it seem somewhat less egregious an abuse to insert into the franchise outrageous bullshit elements like magically invisible Bene Gesserit, super-psychic bimbomb Sorceresses and Guilt-casters, and rainbow coalition telekinetic tornadoes. Dune is, if anything, a science fantasy.
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