052 – Exploring The Hobbit and More: An Interview with Corey Olsen

In honor of the 80th anniversary of the publication of The Hobbit, Alan and Shawn are excited to welcome Corey Olsen, the Tolkien Professor himself, to The Prancing Pony Podcast! We talk about Corey’s work as a Tolkien podcaster — and get the latest news about Signum University, Mythgard Institute, and more — before jumping into a discussion of his book Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit. Plus, sage advice for parents seeking to raise the next generation of Tolkien-loving fantasy geeks.

Follow Corey Olsen online at his website, http://tolkienprofessor.com, on Facebook (facebook.com/TheTolkienProfessor) or on Twitter @tolkienprof)

For the latest news and events from Signum University, see https://signumuniversity.org.

For the latest news and events from Mythgard Institute, see https://mythgard.org, or follow the Mythgard Academy on iTunes or on YouTube.

We’d love it if you would spend 30 seconds filling out this survey for our podcast host, Libsyn. No one will get your personalized data; only Alan and Shawn will get your email addresses, and if we get 250 responses, we will enter all email addresses into a drawing. Click here to complete the survey, and thank you!

Listen to the episode here or on YouTube

Subscribe to the podcast via:

Comments or questions for Barliman’s Bag:

  • Visit us at Facebook or Twitter
  • Comment on this blog post
  • Email theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.

Recommended Reading:

Olsen, Corey. Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit (Mariner Books, paperback)

Tolkien, J. R. R. The Hobbit (Mariner Books, paperback)

Down the Hobbit Hole

“In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit.”

It’s incredible how much ten short words can do, isn’t it? These were the first ten words I ever read by J.R.R. Tolkien, and they changed my life in several ways: by introducing me to my favorite author, by rekindling a dormant love for linguistics, and by starting me on a road that would eventually lead me (many years down the road) to a makeshift recording booth in my closet, where I have the pleasure of co-hosting a podcast that has brought me in touch with similarly minded Tolkien lovers all over the world.

I suspect many of you reading this had your first entry into Tolkien’s world through these ten words as well.  Continue reading

051 – Why Does It Hurt So Much?: The Hobbit Film Trilogy

It’s there and back again at the movies with the Prancing Pony Podcast! After talking about The Lord of the Rings films in our last episode, Alan and Shawn dive into Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit film trilogy. Once again, we watch clips of the changes we liked (and just a few of the ones we didn’t) and discuss them, returning to Tolkien’s own observations about film adaptation to assess the films fairly. Luck lost, love found, dragon-sickness… and how will we ever know if four-legs got some? Video version available on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter.

For streaming audio and a transcript of the Tom Shippey lecture “Tolkien Book to Jackson Script: The Medium and the Message”, see the Swarthmore College website at http://www.swarthmore.edu/news-events/tolkien-book-to-jackson-script-medium-and-message. (Audio highly recommended!)

The essay “Another Road to Middle-earth: Jackson’s Movie Trilogy”, is published as Appendix C in the 2005 edition of Shippey’s The Road to Middle-earth, and is also available in other collections.

We’d love it if you would spend 30 seconds filling out this survey for our podcast host, Libsyn. No one will get your personalized data; only Alan and Shawn will get your email addresses, and if we get 250 responses, we will enter all email addresses into a drawing. Click here to complete the survey, and thank you!

Listen to the episode here or on YouTube

Subscribe to the podcast via:

Comments or questions for Barliman’s Bag:

  • Visit us at Facebook or Twitter
  • Comment on this blog post
  • Email theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.

Recommended Reading:

The Hobbit Trilogy (Extended Editions) [Blu-ray]

Shippey, Tom. The Road to Middle-Earth: How J.R.R. Tolkien Created a New Mythology (Mariner Books, paperback)

Shippey, Tom. J.R.R. Tolkien: Author of the Century (Mariner Books, paperback)

Olsen, Corey. Exploring J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit (Mariner Books, paperback)

The State of the Podcast

Shawn says it’s my turn to write a Prancing Pony Pondering this week, but instead of giving you 20 pages of my ramblings, I’m actually going to take this opportunity to update all of you on what’s been happening here at The Prancing Pony Podcast and — more exciting, I’m sure — what will be happening over the coming months. Please be sure to comment, or ask questions that you may have, in the comments below.

Where We’ve Been

Just a bit over six months ago, I wrote our ‘birthday’ post, celebrating the one-year anniversary of The Prancing Pony Podcast. At that time, we talked about a few of the plans we had for the PPP in its second year. Specifically, we had five exciting things to share, so it’s time for a report card!

Continue reading

The Summer of the Prancing Pony

Alan and Shawn went live on Facebook Friday to talk about all the exciting things we have coming up this summer! Watch the video below, and subscribe now to catch all the good stuff as soon as it comes out!

Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Twitter to get the latest news, and send us your questions or comments to theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com!

The Road

I’ve probably admitted to this on the podcast at some point; if not, let this serve as my confession. Way back when I first started reading Tolkien as a teenager, I… uh… I often used to skip—or, at best, merely skim—the passages of verse.

Maybe this was my instinctual reaction to poetry as an uneducated youth; perhaps it was just my impatient teenage self anxious to just get on with the story. I don’t know; I can hardly remember those years anymore! In point of fact, it probably has something to do with my more prosy nature — though, like Mr. Baggins, I’m not quite as prosy as I like to believe.

As you’ll soon hear in our special Tolkien Reading Day episode next week, I’ve come a long way since then. And so, as we look forward to this year’s Reading Day theme of “Poetry and Songs in Tolkien’s Fiction,” I thought it would be a good opportunity to take an extended look at one of the repeating verses found in both The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Continue reading

I Don’t Know Half Of You Half As Well As I Should Like…

I shall not keep you long — I have called you all together for a Purpose. Indeed, for Three Purposes!  First of all, to tell you that I am immensely fond of you all, and that one year is too short a time to podcast among such excellent and admirable listeners!

Secondly, to celebrate OUR birthday.

That’s right, I’m taking a break from my usual in-depth analysis of various themes and topics in Tolkien’s works today because…  well, because we’ve a birthday to celebrate! On February 21, 2016, the first episode of The Prancing Pony Podcast was released and I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has been a part of making the PPP what is is! Continue reading

029 – Tolkien’s 125th Birthday Special

We celebrate the twelfty-fifth birthday of John Ronald Reuel Tolkien with tributes from our listeners and our own thoughts on what Tolkien has meant to us. We also give the traditional birthday toast to the Professor, and we announce the winners of our giveaway drawings for The Art of the Lord of the Rings and the Facsimile First Edition of The Hobbit.

Listen to the episode here or on YouTube

Subscribe to the podcast via:

Comments or questions for Barliman’s Bag:

  • Visit us at Facebook or Twitter
  • Comment on this blog post
  • Email theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com.

Recommended Reading:

Tolkien, J. R. R. The Hobbit Facsimile First Edition (HarperCollins, hardcover)

Scull, Christina, and Wayne G. Hammond. The Art of the Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, hardcover)

Deadline Extended! – Tolkien’s 125th Birthday Giveaway

A very special thank you to those who have taken the time to submit their thoughts about Tolkien for our 125th birthday tribute to the Professor on January 3! We love the submissions we’ve received so far, and we want to make sure we have a chance to hear from more of you! So we are extending the deadline by one week.

That’s right, you now have seven more days to send in your thoughts about Tolkien for our 125th birthday tribute! The new deadline is December 4 at 11:59 p.m. PST – that’s 7:59 a.m. UTC on December 5!

The request is still the same: send us your thoughts by email in 125 words or less, or email us an audio file of 45 seconds or less to theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com. We’ll read (or play) as many submissions as we can on our January 3 episode … but whether we read/play yours or not, you’ll be eligible for our drawing for a copy of the newly-released Facsimile First Edition of The Hobbit!

We are also extending the deadline for our other giveaway. Just send a question to Barliman’s Bag before December 4 at 11:59 p.m. PST and you’ll be eligible for a drawing to win a copy of The Art of the Lord of the Rings, by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull.

See details and limitations here. And don’t forget to tune in to our January 3 episode to find out who wins!

Last Chance! – Tolkien’s 125th Birthday Giveaway

There are only five days left to enter our two Tolkien’s 125th Birthday Giveaways!

Send in a question to Barliman’s Bag before November 27 to enter for a chance to win a copy of The Art of the Lord of the Rings, a beautifully-curated collection of Tolkien’s own artwork edited by Wayne G. Hammond and Christina Scull.

Even better, send in your thoughts in 125 words or less on what Tolkien means to you by November 27 for a chance to win a copy of the newly-released Facsimile First Edition of The Hobbit! Send us an email to read, or send us audio to play, and we’ll include your tributes in our January 3 special!

Details and limitations on both drawings, and instructions for audio submissions, are on our website here. There are only five days left, so email theprancingponypodcast (at) gmail (dot) com to enter today!