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Friday, November 19, 2010

Thorin Oakenshield and the Company of Dwarves

Just learned that it´s Dwarfleader Thorin and the 12 Dwarves. Found this little piece of information on a site, link here. This illustration by Allan Lee is remarkable, considering picturing a certain someone in that part. I think there must be a matching Gisborne picture somewhere, will have to check. :)


Thorin Oakenshield was the son of Thrain, who’s father Thror was King Under the Mountain. He had a sky blue hood, with a silver tassel to show authority. Thorin was the leader of the Company. Gandalf hired Bilbo to accompany them as a burglar. Thorin brought 12 dwarves, Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, Balin, Dwalin, Ori, Nori, Dori, Oin, Gloin, Fili, and Kili. They traveled to The Trollshaws, where they encountered three trolls, Bill, Burt, and Tom. Thorin jabbed a branch into Bert’s eye, but despite their efforts, they were taken prisoner. Gandalf appeared, and forced the trolls to argue until dawn, and they turned to stone. They found a cave, and inside was the trolls’ treasures. Thorin took up Orcrist, Goblin-cleaver as his sword. Later, when the party reached Rivendell, Elrond discovered was made by the elves of Gondolin.

From there they went to the Misty Mountains, were captured by goblins, when they escaped. They were again confronted by the goblins and their wargs, but were saved by the eagles.

Thorin and his company went to Beorn’s house, and then to Mirkwood. Gandalf left them, and the dwarves were captured by spiders. Thorin was captured by the elves. He was put in prison because he wouldn’t tell the king why the dwarves were in Mirkwood. Later, the other dwarves were captured by the elves, after becoming prisoners of the Spiders of Mirkwood. The only company member not captured was Bilbo, who came up with an idea to pack the dwarves in wine barrels and float them down the Forest River.

They arrived in Laketown, and Thorin pronounced himself King Under the Mountain. The Master gave them a house to stay in, and boats to aid them on their journey.

They came to the Lonely Mountain where they were trapped inside. Bilbo talked to the dragon, and used the Arkenstone in attempts to compromise with the Elven King and Bard, who killed Smaug.

A battle broke out, in which Fili and Kili were slain. Thorin was wounded, and later died with Bilbo by his side.


Had a red hood. After the adventure, he became Lord of Moria, but was killed by orcs. His tomb was found later by the Fellowship of the Ring.


Grey hood. Went with Thorin on the quest. Went to Moria with Balin, and was also killed by orcs.


Brown hood. Accompanied Thorin, and later went to Moria with Balin and Ori, also killed by orcs.


Went on quest with Thorin, date of death unknown


Yellow hood, see above


Pale green hood. In the quest, he fell asleep in Mirkwood, and when he awakened, he told of a dream with elves that were feasting. That got them captured by spiders. Remained at the Lonely Mountain. Gloin told in Rivendell that he became so fat, that he was unable to walk, and had to be lifted to the table by six dwarves.


Had a purple hood. Survived the Battle of Five Armies and remained at the mountain. Date of death unknown.


Described as having a blue beard, golden belt, and bright eyes with a dark green hood. Went with company to Lonely Mountain and joined Balin on an expedition to Moria.


Described as having a yellow beard, long nose, and a blue hood. Died at the Battle of Five Armies.


Blue hood. Died at Battle of Five Armies.


White hood. Father of Gimli, who went on the quest to destroy Sauron’s Ring of Power. Gloin survived battle, and met Frodo in Rivendell. Also attended the Council of Elrond.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Spooks Review 9.7: Spooned, Knifed And Forked

Harry lets Lucas meet old school Vaughn: usually good, but he recommends an extremely long spoon

In which Harry introduces Vaughn to Lucas, Ruth meets an unreliable source, Vaughn gets pressured, Lucas checks Malcolm´s mum medical history, Maya gets in Vaughn´s car, Vaughn gives Lucas/John some pictures, Lucas tells Harry his real name, Ruth is brave, Dimitri picks up a Frenchman, Maya can´t save Michael, Malcolm follows Harry´s protocols and Harry still believes in Lucas.

The story of the week is about a bombing on a British Ambassy in Dakar in 1995, 15 years ago. Harry and Lucas are in a car at the docklands where they meet someone for a rendezvous. The bombing was blamed on a nascent AQ-cell, but there was never any claim. Lucas shares that he was there a year before he signed up, to find himself, being a rally addict. At the rendezvous they meet Vaughn who has some intel about that bombing, for a price. Vaughn tells them it was done by British people. Harry tells Lucas he will have to go to the Home Secretary to beg for money. Lucas offers to dig for those files, but Harry wants him not to be involved and will task Beth.

Ruth talks to a, what Dimitri calls a, ´walk-in´ on the Grid, a council snooper who investigates illegal dog ownerships and has a interest in spying. When he followed a woman, she made a ´dead-drop´, which she left a little note in a newspaper, on it: two clues. Ruth has to send the man away. Dimitri finds out that the man applied for Spooks in three consecutive years, but was traumatised by his wife´s death, which labels him as ´an unreliable source´.

Vaughn gets inside his house and two Chinese men are there to threaten him to harm Maya, if he doesn´t give them the Albany file today.

Harry received a letter for Ruth in which the Greek family of her late husband George asks her permission to sell the house. Harry understands Ruth´s feelings for not wanting to marry him, because she might blame him for George, for not protecting the boy.

Ruth makes a call from a public cellphone in a park to a Greek woman.

Beth checks out the files what Lucas North was doing in Dakar 15 years ago, while Lucas checks Malcolm´s mum medical history.

Michael/Vaughn picks up reluctant Maya outside the hospital. Maya says she´s now with John. Once she is in the car, he aims a weapon at her.

Ruth is in the park and the council snooper encounters her. She has to be cross to get rid of him, which she feels bad about and tells Dimitri.

Vaughn calls Lucas/John at the Grid. Vaughn passes the cellphone to Maya who asks him to confirm that John is a spy. L/J doesn´t want her to get hurt. Vaughn says that if L/J hadn´t done what he was supposed to do, then he wouldn´t be in danger. Vaughn says he doesn´t want to hurt her, that it´s the Chinese he works for. Beth has a print-out of an old file of Lucas North, whose picture doesn´t resemble that of Lucas´s face. Beth follows Lucas outside who takes a cab.

Vaughn gets knifed by Lucas/John for lacking passion about their common past and Maya

Lucas/John finds Vaughn on a bench at a kindergarten playground. Vaughn says he´s been tracked and listened at by the Chinese. Vaughn shows L/J passionate pictures of Maya and John, while saying he still can´t get used to see these. L/J thinks Vaughn is good at manipulating people, but not at passion, and stabs Vaughn with a knife in the leg. Beth warns Harry through comms and gets in a face-to-face with L/J waving the weapons. Says that Harry wants to help Lucas like Harry helped her, that he saved others and that they believe in him. L/J wants Beth out of the way.

Ruth arrives at the home of the council snooper and finds a key behind the letterbox.

Maya is stuck with handcuffs at the floor in some industrial site as she sees Michael/Vaughn falling of the stairs, with a knife still in his leg. She, being a doctor, wants to help him, but he doesn´t trust her offer, as she may take advantage of the situation to escape.

Ruth finds no-one at the house, yet she gets sedated.

Beth and Lucas are in another safe house. Harry asks Beth to leave them alone. Harry confronts L/J that there were two Lucas North´s in Dakar, in 1995, and hands him a large picture of Lucas North. Harry mentions the bombing happened on his watch. L/J says his name isn´t Lucas North, but John Bateman. Harry thinks he thought he had his share of betrayal, but this does it all. Lucas tells about his morally fluid past and that he had to run well paid errands for Vaughn, who was a mercenary. So there was a package for the British Ambassy. Vaughn was being set up. Harry thinks it suited L/J to believe Vaughn. And there was Lucas North, wanting to get in the Service and had passed the first checks. L/J only needed to borrow his passport, but he refused. So Vaughn had to kill him. Harry gives Lucas his weapon back saying: betrayal is a cancer, let it eat your soul, not mine.

Dimitri picks up a French assassin, and calls Harry that he thinks Ruth is in danger, as she crashed the party. Ruth´s phone rings and that alerts the Frenchman in the room. She fights and manages to get his weapon. The council snooper shoots first, Ruth second. Harry and CO19 take over.

Lucas frees Maya and tells her to wait outside. She is concerned about Michael/Vaughn´s health. Vaughn is onto L/J. Telling them it was Vaughn who killed Lucas, while it was John all along, knowing full well the implications! (see quote)

Ruth and council snooper are at the hospital. Ruth is released, but the man feels very emotional about killing someone. Ruth has some ethical words for Harry.

Malcolm visits Harry and said he had a visit by Lucas about a file, which Harry knows as the Albany file.

Harry gets a call from Lucas, pretends it´s all normal, but Lucas doesn´t trust Harry. Maya sits in the car. Harry insists that Lucas is foolish, but invaluable to him. Lucas states that Lucas North is dead!

You're a killer who fell asleep. Dreamed he was a hero.
Now it's time to wake up and discover the truth.
The dream is over. And the killer is awake.

Question of the week:
How long are you allowed to mourn about a dead person?
Michael just died. It´s got to be forever with John who just got forked not to be Lucas anymore...

Tease: Vaughn breaks out in a sweat, erm, no, finally, it´s the kitchentable teaser
Anti-climax: picture of kitchentable teaser
Remarkable: Vaughn shakes hands with John and with Lucas: twice in total
Crush/crasher: Vaughn is an ambiguous opportunist; IG in zombie slasher: pass!
Nice: Ruth has more screentime this episode
Flashbacks: croupier work, meeting Vaughn, the real Lucas North, a bomb, a bad memory
Interesting: the baddier L/J became, the more I buckled up for this rollercoaster! Lucas the hero was adoring, but now there is a bad past, yes! I expect this to be nicely reprised by his next role as an ´convincingly evil spy´ in the Captain America movie
Good: Lucas comes clean
Bad: John is bad, bad, bad!
Replay: long scene with Harry and Lucas/John, who´s explanations got me reminding Patrick Stewart´s passionate monologues in Star Trek: The Next Generation. As in: good!
Prop: pictures
Hope: Maya can forgive John
Verdict: no heroics

Screencaps: RAcentral

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Spooks Review 9.6: Now We´re Acquainted

Vaughn: Will you stop torturing yourself? There isn´t a real choice here. Stop pretending that there is.

In which Ruth distracts Harry, Lucas picks up a package or two, Malcolm lives with his mum, Tariq gets a fit, John gets overheard, Dimitri puzzles a bomb, Harry has a crick in the neck, Vaughn gets a fake file and John gets a glimpse of Maya. 

This week the Spooks are tapped by phone, e-mail etc. and locked inside the Grid. That´s because there was a simple discrepancy between the different battlefield networks for a military operation. The Americans are concerned, because the British portal was out of date. They now want to install a cybershell terminal for which their cryptographer will bring the access codes. If possible, they want to be on the Grid as well. Beecher warns Harry that the more allies we include, the more avenues for attack there are. Harry has to allow some men installing it.

Tariq throws a laptop on the ground. Ruth follows him into the toilets. Tariq claims the Grid has been compromised, bugged. Someone is watching the Spooks. Tariq thinks they´re after the archives. There´s no way to freely communicate through phones, security cameras, webcams, security coms or e-mail. Of course they´re being watched.

Harry sits with the Home Secretary and Beecher. Harry needs his core Grid team. Ruth enters the meeting room with news. Ruth has to talk to Harry about ´private matters´ and holds his hand.

Lucas calls Harry that he´s stuck in traffic. Meanwhile he has to chat with Vaughn about Maya and his past for which he loads a weapon. The Albany file turns out to be a painting which leads to a location of the actual file. Vaughn´s employers need that file by two today.

Harry calls everybody on the Grid for a Blue One Emergency. If hackers get in the system by stealing codes of the Americans and English before the cybershell is installed, they will be in there too by testing access codes. Harry doesn´t want the cryptographer or those codes on the Grid. Dimitri and Beth take care of a decoy in some safe house and Dimitri takes pictures of the men who follow them.

Lucas has to pick up that cybergrapher who tells him he breathes funny. Lucas/John receives a text message by Vaughn. Says they are followed by a blue van and switches cars. Lucas calls Harry that he has to find a new route home. Cryptographer girl thinks he should have hobbies, but she outsells him by her tattoos i.e. her reason why she went to prison. Genius Girl made a lucrative deal and did reduced time. You only get a second chance once.

Out of sight of the hackers, Beth checks the names on a mugshot player which Tariq had uploaded before. Sees that Russian and Chinese hackers are working together. The system is shut down, so the Spooks gain two minutes time. But Lucas has to be contacted.

Lucas has to check something at a safe house and leaves the worried cryptographer in the car. She sneaks out and overhears the talk between Malcolm and Lucas/John. L/J thinks Harry was involved in a 1979 East German operation. Malcolm asks who was framing Harry, but L/J won´t answer that question. What can I do to help?, asks Malcolm. He digs a box out of the garden and gives it´s content to  L/J. Back to the car, L/J finds the cryptographer gone, but through her necklace he finds her not far away and brings her to the car. L/J is called by Harry that he can´t go back to the Grid. Genius Girl gets scared and doesn´t want to be brought to the new rendezvous. L/J calls Harry who gives a kill order, but L/J doesn´t quite trust this and asks for more codes, however he throws Genius Girl in the boot of the car. L/J drives to a desolate construction site where they´re shot at and she is still in the boot! L/J calls Harry again to test him. L/J drags her out while she has a neckwound! Let´s say she didn´t make it to hospital alive.

The Spooks find a way to get out of the Grid and fetch the hackers.

L/J returns to Maya´s home and gets a call from Vaughn that the Albany file is a fake. Vaughn threats John to tell Maya who John really is.

Ruth has put a bug on Lucas´s keyboard and tells Harry she thinks Lucas cannot be trusted.

At night, L/J gets back to Malcolm´s house and kicks the door in. All furniture has been removed!

CIA Beecher: You have an officer stand-by to escort it?
Harry: My best.

American security guy: Your British Security Grid escort is here!
Daniella Ortiz: Hey James Bond!

Question of the week.
What´s your favorite opera?

Genius Girl can joke about his enigmatic looks, but her swansong opens Bluebeard´s eighth chamber.

There IS an opera by Béla Bartók, called Bluebeard's Castle.

Too bad L/J goes off music, he just stopped hearing it.

Tease: desperate Lucas/John
Nice: Genius Girl is funny by her appearance and upfront language; good to see Malcolm again!
Good: Lucas/John didn´t want to follow a kill order from ´Harry´
Bad: Lucas/John is lacking to take care of the cryptographer
Scary: Lucas/John is a bit too violent for my taste
Replay: who´s James Bond, Malcolm? John!
Remarkable: ´Hobbit country´ as in ´Dickens country´ in 8.4
Don´t get: all of Vaughn´s logic, Tariq´s geek speak
Lesson: don´t call him Lucas or don´t mention the Albany file or he treats you badly
Health: don´t get tossed around if you have a neckwound
Location: desolate building site reminds me of Greek tragedy with all these columns, and the facades of those building are held up by frail frames just as the last virtues of Lucas´s mask are done as such
Prop: cellphones
Gadget: trickery of voice responses
Hope: Lucas/John is too good or too paranoid
Verdict: spy paranoia

Screencaps: RAcentral

Friday, November 5, 2010

Spooks Review 9.5: Earning Stripes In The Trenches

Section Chief Lucas/John finds hardworking Tariq too nosy

In which Beth and Dimitri have to babysit, Lucas sweeps a flat, Beth speaks Spanish, Lucas receives red stripes, Tariq gets a jumb down his throat from itchy Lucas, Harry quotes Kierkegaard, Beth gets tight up, Dimitri loses his cheer and Lucas shakes hands with Maya´s friend Michael.
This week no picture of Harry and Lucas/John, as my supervisor didn´t approve that picture. Besides Tariq deserves a picture, as Lucas is a tad harsh on him. In other words, what is the use of this blog if I post the same pics as anyone else?

Yesterday I had 170 pageviews! That is huge, considering the fact I still think I have a humble blog. On normal days it´s about up to 20-50. If someone could tell me what the occasion was? It wasn´t about The Hobbit-post. It must be my best read post this week and all times: ´Lucas North, pretending to be dating´. Do you love it that much?, asks this bad girl with a smirk.
The story of the week is about off-the-record peacetalks between representatives of two Middle East countries and the USA. The President of the USA, ´Lighthouse´, will arrive in 18 hours and is, according tot the Home Secretary, desperate to make these talks happen. Operation Horizon is a go. Two of the representatives are related, as in: father and daughter. Due to a traumatic experience in the past, the Spooks find out she has some issues with her dad.

Lucas has to climb through a window to sweep a flat for a laptop. Outside, he meets a suspect who forces him to kiss the ground. At the Grid, Tariq informs after Lucas´s stripes, which has itchy Lucas jumping down Tariq´s throat. Tariq doesn´t trust the weight of the laptop. Lucas does some mechanical trickery to find out what´s inside.

The peacetalks tend to be interrupted by someone who says he is not the one the Spooks look for. The quest for this other person is not that easy, as Beth finds out. Dimitri proves his knowledge of armor, but can´t prevent events from happening. Lucas has to climb the roof again. Harry aks if Lucas still has a peptalk in him.

Lucas/John meets Maya´s friend, as Lucas/John speaks Maya at the door of her house, unannounced.

Harry: The greatest hazard of all - losing one´s self can occur very quietly in the world.
Almost as if it were nothing at all.
Kierkegaard wrote that in The Sickness Unto Death.
Lucas/John: I´ve never read it.

Question of the week:
Do you want some psychological advice of incredible debth and subtlety?

Lucas/John, for all your break-ins and break-ups

Tease: grumpy Lucas/John
Scary: throat-gripping moment in the trenches
Nice: panorama of London, Vaughn´s smile
Replay: checking if no actors were hurt during belt-acrobatics
Prop: cupboard
Gadget: something Dimitri can explain
Hope: Michael doesn´t take it too hard on Maya
Verdict: a skin-full of red stripes

Screencaps: RACentral

Monday, November 1, 2010

Spooks Review 9.4: No Batteries Included

Ruth is sitting closer to Harry than Lucas, or am I seeing ghosts erm, spooks?

In which Lucas receives a photo, Beth calls herself Clare and has to follow her instincts, Lucas get frustrated after a call and needs an identity, a triple spy wants to go back to his country, Lucas spends a night in a cell, Vaughn gets a file, Harry gets a trade, Dimitri has to diffuse a bomb and some Chinese want Lucas/John toasted.
Uploading pictures on this blog is an extremely frustrating task at the moment. Besides that, there is a delay and I better post the reviews and add pictures later.

This week the story is about technical spionage by the Chinese. Harry notifies everyone at the Grid of a code red Border Agency report. A mouthfull of saying that three Chinese, belonging to an underground agressive unit, entered the UK. Their cover identities are due in 3 days, so whatever they want, they want it fast. Now there is this man at the Chinese Ambassy who the Spooks could use to mingle with. A task Beth takes on her, using her female charm again. The Home Secretary urges Harry to be cautious, the relationship with the Chinese remains delicate.

While the team, Beth, Dimitri and Lucas are trying to get some information from the asset, Lucas receives a frustrating call from Vaughn who asks for the Albany file. Lucas has to ask for an identity code and aims for drastic actions. Eventually he meets Vaughn who awaits him at some pub to receive an usb-stick.

At some point all that massaging of the asset doesn´t really help. Lucas and Dimitri opt for the burglar act and break in the Chinese Ambassy. Lucas has himself caught by the police to spend a night in a cell, so that Dimitri can escape. The asset has a flaw which is used and that and a rescue of Amphitrite causes some friction for Harry with the Chinese Section Chief. That was worth it for Harry, who had to battle with the Home Secretary about a trade between energy and protecting knowledgeworkers who turned British. The asset turns surprisingly, which causes confusion for Beth.

Meanwhile, some minor trust issues between Maya and John emerge.

As Lucas´s cellphone is traced by the Grid, Ruth suspects something, but disgards it for now as a glitch.

Harry: So we should simply roll over for the bigger dog?
Home Secretary: If you roll over, you sometimes get your tummy tickled.
Question of the week:
Will you please drop the innocent act now?
The validation date of his MI5-pass maybe at stake

Tease: something muscular with tats
Scary: Lucas turning bad; a bomb, a shoot
Nice: Vaughn is still fragile, good or bad, hard to tell
Replay: something about ´a little friend´ (there´s the Gisborne quote , scroll to People of Locksley or that fanfiction on my blog)
Prop: white mug! LOL! (again see my fanfiction)
Surprise: some Chinese are in the country for Lucas/John
Hope: Maya puts her steady relationship on hold
Verdict: don´t write the prospects

Screencaps: RichardArmitageCentral