On Waiting for Frodo

Yesterday’s encounter in Barnes & Noble brings to mind a website I recommend checking out: waitingforfrodo.com. The site features an online comic strip entitled, as you might guess, Waiting for Frodo, written by Debbie Ridpath Ohi, about a young man named Sam who waited in line for 200-odd days for the release of the first Lord of the Rings film. I’ve recently finished reading the complete run of strips–there’s about eighty strips, spread across the last year and a half–and Sam is currently in line awaiting The Two Towers. And he’s just met someone who wants to wait for Return of the King. It’s a fun little story, with Sam’s relationship problems counterpointing thematic elements of the Lord of the Rings trilogy. And the strip pokes gentle fun at some of the other fandoms of our time, like Harry Potter and Star Wars. Interestingly, Star Trek fandom makes only a single appearance to the best of my recollection, but given the winter release of Nemesis I imagine there’s some comic fodder to be had with Star Trek fans.

Waiting for Frodo’s story reminds me of the film, Starwoids, Dennis Przywara’s documentary about hardcore Star Wars fans who waited for six weeks in line outside two Hollywood theatres for the premiere of The Phantom Menace. If there’s a difference, beyond the films the characters are awaiting, it’s that Waiting for Frodo’s characters are fiction, and Starwoids are so strange that you want them to be fictional. The people in the documentary, though, aren’t fictional, and my reaction to their story is one of sadness that they’re so wrapped up in their world that they would want to give up weeks of their lives to wait for a film that really wasn’t that good to begin with.

Anyway, Waiting For Frodo. Check it out. I think you might just like it.

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