Under the Ring
Nominator: Pearl Took
2007 Award Category: Races: Hobbits: Vignette
Story Type: Story ✧ Length: Short Story
Rating: General ✧ Reason for Rating: N/A
Summary: Merry overreacts when Pippin accidentally injures Boromir.
Reviewed by: Pearl Took ✧ Score: 10
This is a wonderfully unique story, to me at least. I don't know that I've seen many stories where Frodo gets so beautifully angry. It is something that doesn't happen much in the books, some in the movies, but that makes an interesting study. Also, Merry's anger is out of character. Intentionally out of character. We are getting to see the Ring affecting more than just Boromir and Frodo, which is all the books show. It is logical that it would have affected the others as well. It was getting stronger and stronger - why should it only affect the one wearing it and the one who so strongly desired it? The best way for it to divide the Fellowship would have been to get them bickering. This seemed to be the preferred method of Its maker as the Orcs were constantly arguing amongst themselves. Quite appropriately, near the very beginning of the story, Frodo feels that Merry's cruelty towards Pippin feels familiar, that it is like the weight he bears around his neck. Later, Merry thinks he sees a golden glint in Frodo's eyes and at the same moment, thinks he hears a hissing laugh. These are wonderful allusions to what is really causing the caustic behavior of the hobbits. Both hobbits push the clues aside. The characters in this are well written and believable. A wonderful look at what might have happened.
Reviewed by: Larner ✧ Score: 3
Pippin has accidently hurt Boromir while practicing, and Merry overreacts, only to find Frodo overreacting to him. The Ring rejoices momentarily to have overwhelmed the Ringbearer, and Merry is left to contemplate the effects of discipline and disappointment. Very effectively done.
Reviewed by: Nancy Brooke ✧ Score: 2
Very interesting characterizations here, and interesting to examine the more subtle effects of the Ring on Frodo and the general stress and mourning for Gandalf, on all of them.