It’s the end of another year, and it’s also the end of some pretty big pop culture phenomenons. We here at the Collective have rounded up a few of our favorite things from 2019, just because we’re a little nostalgic and maybe not quite ready to move into 2020.

Most of the Collective crew and I consider ourselves devout Tolkienites, and when a panel and a screening of the Tolkien film was announced at WonderCon, we made sure to wear our finest Elf attire to the event. We were fortunate enough to speak with director Dome Karukoski after the screening (during which he complimented our cosplays, but that’s neither nor there). Shortly after WonderCon, we were invited via a friend to attend the Los Angeles premiere on May 8.

Seeing the film for a second time proved that it is just as heartwarming and tender as it was when we first saw it last month. Tolkien is a film meant for his fans: it paints a picture of a young man whose imagination was strengthened and nurtured by the fellowship and love of the people surrounding him in his youth.

By the Collectress

Perhaps it’s because I just booked my trip to New Zealand, or because the soundtrack is on repeat all day while I work, or maybe because my friend Lacey was part of the most epic LotR cosplay group ever, but Samwise Gamgee has been on my mind lately. In particular, Sam’s earnest goodness and unrelenting sense of hope has been a beacon in my life, and pretty much the reason I finally caved and decided to go to Middle-earth with the option of never returning. 

Samwise Gamgee has always been my most favoritest of hobbits, and I think it’s about time I did a shout out to all the wonderful things he accomplished in the story that maybe don’t get as much appreciation as he deserves. So, without ado, here are three things we should all love Sam for doing.

I don't own this edit.

Mae govannen, Collectors.

Although a majority of our writing focuses on comics, television, and film, the fandom that is nearest and dearest to my heart is Middle-earth. Today, we celebrate what is widely known as Hobbit Day, called such because it is the birthday for Tolkien’s two most famous protagonists: Bilbo and Frodo Baggins. If you’re secretly a Hobbit, or just really really really wish that Middle-earth was real, here’s a few ways to celebrate your favorite Bagginses in style. 

Happy Thanksgiving!

Or, if you’re not American, happy Thor’s day!

giphyThis year, I’m still thankful that Peter Jackson cast Martin Freeman as the hobbit, Bilbo Baggins, and with the new retrospective trailer for The Hobbit: The Battle of the Five Armies, I’m just really filled with Middle-earth feels.

I recently rewatch the two Hobbit films and The Fellowship of the Ring while on a Air New Zealand flight to Los Angeles for BurCon, and, well, I’ve put a lot of thought into what my favourite moments from the Middle-earth films might be. So without any ado, here are my top 5 moments.

Riddles in the Dark

This is the most important moment in the Third Age of Middle-earth. Who knows long Gollum would have kept the One Ring hidden in his cave if Bilbo hadn’t been shoved out the door on an adventure and ended up lost in the Misty Mountains. Everything that follows from this point is because Bilbo has the One Ring. This is my favourite scene in book and it translated perfectly to film. Also, Andy Serkis’ Gollum is creepily perfect.