The Aragorn and the Ecstasy

When it comes to books, film and television shows, I've always had a strict No Pointy Ears policy. NPE was the umbrella term for all things remotely sci-fi or fantastical; including Star Trek, Buffy, Harry Potter or any thick novel with embossed lettering and a dragon on the cover.

To me, the word 'fantasy' meant a bathtub full of mangoes, or Dr Ross, Dr Greene and myself on ER circa 1997 ("Take this woman to Curtain 3! STAT!")…

"She's got a fever."

… I thought fantasy as a genre was the realm of strange souls who collected action figures or dreamed of riding a unicorn to work.

But recently I noticed that most of my friends were into the very stuff that I so relentlessly mocked. At the pub I could only sulk into my G&T as they discussed some book or film I hadn't seen. Was I missing out on something worthwhile? Now I don't pick no stupid friends, so surely there was some merit to it all? I had to investigate.

I went straight to the granddaddy of all fantasy, Lord of the Rings. Too lazy to read the book, I took a crash course in the films. Laughing in the face of deep vein thrombosis, the aim was to watch the extended version DVDs of both Fellowship of the Ring and The Two Towers in one sitting, armed only with comfortable pants and a lovely slave boy to refill my teacup at regular intervals.

It was all trundling along nicely – hobbits, rings and so forth. I wasn't entirely enthralled yet and wondered at what point in the 7.2 hours would my arse turn completely numb. But then there was a magical moment when the hobbits were drinking up at The Prancing Pony. A shadowy figure in the corner stole my attention. The camera swooped in and lo! A vision of manliness! It was Strider of the chiselled cheekbones, artful facial hair and piercing gaze!

"Oh YEAH baby!" I squawked. "Now I'm in!"

Viggo Mortensen. Viggo viggo viggo. The more you say it the foxier it gets. Viggggo. My knowledge of Danish was non-existent but it sounded so v-v-v-very good! Vital! Virile! Like a brand new box of shiny blue Viagra! Not that he'd ever need that stuff…

Seduced by an epic story, wonderful characters and an abundance of lust objects, I was hooked by the end of the first disc. I wanted to call my friends and apologise for years of dismissing their "pointy-eared weirdo shit". When the credits finally rolled for The Two Towers I sprang up from the couch and demanded we go to the cinema NOW to see Return of the King. After 430 minutes in Middle Earth my brain was begging for a break but I wanted to take it to the EXTREME!

Sadly it was 11PM and the cinema was closed, so I had to settle for the DVD extras. Therein lay a mighty disappointment – an interview with Viggo. How could this scruffy blonde dude in the polo shirt be the same guy who waved his mighty sword with such grace? I waited for the twinge of longing but felt nothing. The same thing happened when I saw him in a preview for his shite new movie Hidalgo (aka Look Out, Behind You, It's A Sand Dune!). Evidently his appeal for me was bound up in the character.

The sad thing about fantasy is that's just what it is – fantasy. Like when I fell for the bulging biceps of Marlon Brando in Streetcar Named Desire – oh the cruel reality of him abandoning the Kowalski buffness for the mutant blancmange look. And so, Mr Mortensen without his Aragorn costume just looks like some retiring Nordic tennis player about to move into the commentary box. Sigh.


About Shauna Reid

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49 thoughts on “The Aragorn and the Ecstasy

  1. Entertaining, but you seem to have made two mistakes….!

    Surely Dr. Kovac and Dr. Carter, both determined to be the one that gets to the bottom of your mysterious ailment would be better than Dr. Ross and Dr. Green!

    Also, surely the pointy ears of Legolas (sadly with not enough perv value in the last episode) beats Aragon! (Although in real life, Aragon is supposed to be a real SNAG man being artist poet linguist etc etc etc whereas Legolas blanked my cousins next door neighbour at a party a few months ago in very rude manner).

    Oh well, at least that rules out one fight to the death you may have with another chick over the man of your dreams, eh?

  2. H, I am a huge fan of dark and swarthy Kovac and his exotic accent, but Carter doesn’t do it for me. I like the bald/bespectacled sweetness of Green combined with the bad boy cheekiness of Ross. What a package!

    And yes, Legolas is rather tasty, and would come in handy if you needed some cheekbones upon which to slice a loaf elvin bread.

  3. bwa ha ha ha ha ha haha….

    i actually had a conversation last night with someone that went along the lines of :
    “someone tried to get me to play dungeons & dragons once.”
    “no! sweet jesus no! did you?
    “hell no! want to go obsessively listen to the velvet underground until we get into an irreconcilable argument over whether nico was actually andy warhol in disguise and pass out?”
    “you’re on!”

    ah, geekery. where would the world be without you?

  4. Unfortunately, it’s the same with Legolas. Dreamy as an elf, but in anything else Orlando Bloom is just ordinary.

    I *heart* the LotR trilogy, and am embarassed to admit that after reading the books, I was very confused and thought that Sauron and Saruman were the same person/thing… only watching Fellowship cleared that up for me. Glad you enjoy the films!

  5. Geeeeeeee…
    Is that really what Viggo looks like in real life?
    I never knew…
    Why doesn’t HE realise the difference? Surely, if he had any sense he’d leave the wig on/hair long and dyed.

  6. hmmm I wonder if Viggo has similar thing going on to Ewan McGregor who with many a hairstyle change has many alternately booing and sighing. here’s to hoping that Viggo continues to pursue many more magical transormations!

  7. Aragorn certainly is better looking than Viggo, and because he’s only on film you don’t have to put up with his straggly unwashed hair and dirty fingernails and B.O.

    I don’t understand all this fascination with Leogolas though. He’s so feminine! Not a hunk-o burning testosterone like Aragorn.

  8. Oh you funny girl. Long-time reader, first-time poster, here.

    Since the only boys I ever loved were classically geek — Monty Python-quoting, D & D playing, Rush-listening, unbearably unaesthetic pre-geek chic geeks — I made myself like their geeky business, but without much passion. Then came Spike and his panty-cutting cheekbones, and suddenly I was On Board With The Fantasizing. But god, a minute of listening to James Marsters’ California-dude accent and the Fantasy Was Over.

    Same business as well with Viggo. He’s chiseled, he’s Dutch, he’s progressive, he’s arty and apparently quite nice, but without the dye job and the sword, nothing thumps, much less rocks. But nothing. Just like listening to “Tom Sawyer”. Blech.

  9. Li›in sem leika eru Örgryte, eitt ekktasta og besta knattspyrnuli›Viggo Mortensen og Keflavík. Knattspyrnudeild Keflavíkur sem stendur a› mótinu me› stu›ningi og Víkurfrétta.

  10. Oh baby, I hear ya, boy do I hear ya. Viggo is completely ick. Frighteningly so. And he’s WEIRD. Not ‘oh ha, that’s funny’ weird, but ‘dude, Holland is clearly a long way away from here, coz here? that ain’t right’ kind of weird.

    But Aragorn… Ooooh. Swoon.

    Lizz- the dirty fingernails and the BO would only add to the full Aragorn experience. mmm. Dirty.

  11. i think he’s a dane…

    and too true, monkey! nothing like the BO-ey smell of Man Flesh! Bwahaha.

    i wish i spoke icelandic, this icelandic commenter is driving me crazy. what do you think the comment says? that they saw Viggo at Keflavík Airport and shagged him in the loos? Ooh I hope that’s what it says. That would be very exciting.

  12. Actually, Viggo is far from a ‘virile’ name in danish – it’s more the kind of name your awfull, fat uncle has, you know, the one who always gets far too drunk at family gatherings and tries to feel you up, eventhough everybody knows he’s been impotent for years. I assure you, it’s far from charming. So don’t name your firstborn son Viggo, not if you want him to stand a chance with the danish girls!

  13. maybe if you checked out his older movies you might find a trace of aragorn? heh. maybe not. he looks more brutish in those films – virile certainly, but not as ‘nice’ as aragorn.

  14. Shauny! I’m surprised it took you so long to discover the carnal delight that is Aragorn, my sexy scruffy warrior man. Ditto Eomer in TTT, for the same reason. So much more manly than that poncy elf. Hehe. I’ve never seen Viggo looking as delectable, although, I will email you one semi-decent pic that you might enjoy. Hope you’re having a shagadelic time and making the most of that droolicious accent!

  15. I too found out the hard way about the true Viggo. In the film A Perfect Murder, our Viggo is a clean-shaven slime monster who shags Gwenyth. It’s quite enough to even put you off Aragorn. Almost.

    I am a Legolas lady myself. Elves beat humans any day. Though a friend brought it to my (unwilling) attention that Orlando Bloom bears a striking resemblance to Justin Timberlake. Choke.

  16. While I enjoy reading Sci Fi (but only limited Fantasy), watching TV Sci Fi (Star Trek, etc) is generally nausau inducing & I therefore tend to agree with The NPE policy though I have to add a very big BUT!!!!!
    Buffy is the greatest television ever (or so my wife contends). I bought her Series 1 to 6 on DVD for Xmas & as there was sweet FA on television during January have just watched them all & have appreciated the humour & the smart writing.
    PS Viggo was also in that 28 Days movie where Sandra Bullock is a drunk, goes to rehab & becomes a new woman generally without any suffering & her makeup intact.

  17. Shauny forget him – hes a total ponce. You’re only going there because you missed your annual Festival of the Honeys aka the Australian Open. Federer may have won the tournament but Safin definately came tops in the muffin buttering department. Unlike Viggo he
    *Does not need a wig and a few hobbits to look good
    * Does not (I’d bet my life on it) write poetry
    * Smashes rackets like a maniac
    * Lumbers around the court like a lost trucker
    * Speaks in hot hot rrrruuuusssian accent
    * Will not burst into Elvish when speaking (witness Viggo at LOTR premiere)

    I’m doing this for your own good, its a dangerous road to start fancying fanstasy characters. I work with a lot of men in IT , I’ve seen what can happen 🙂

  18. Shauny, my Icelandic is almost non-existant except what I’ve learnt through the Runes, but from what I can make out Tækifæri reckons Viggo once played soccor for a team called Örgryte? And that he’d be great to snuggle up with or something like that?

    (I only got a few words and made up the rest.)

  19. Dude, word on the Hidalgo tip. I saw a preview for it, and I was all, “Nooo, Aragorn, stop talking to your horse!”

    It’s the facial hair that makes the difference. Sexy bitch!

  20. hey, love your site, funny and good.
    aniway am icelandic and yes that comment says something about viggo and some soccer team and it really doesnt make sense.
    He came to iceland last summer and honestly he looked old, really old…..not sexy… all!!!!!

  21. Look I love the Blog. Frankly I come for the lightness of Shauny’s touch on the keyboard and her bent little view.
    And so that I can say – yeah I used to read the blog when the novel comes out. But I can’t work out whether this is a new high or low.
    Love of the pointy eared. Love of the filmstar. Lusting for the image.
    I like the idea of someone crossing into the sci-fi genre based on the lust for an elf or whatever he is. Though nothing curdles the milk in my brain like sci-fi or elf-fi or ghost fi.
    Lets face it there’s enough farking fi in this world and people are wierd (witness moi for example) without inventing other damn fi’s.
    Right now as I type there is a girl walking past my desk in a shirt which is too small over a bright red bra which is also clearly too small, she has a shaved head, a tatoo clearly visible across her lower back and apart from her bazonga’s a body like a whippet. She drives to my certain knowledge a bright green hotted up Holden Ute is called Millie and is a keen collector of film memoriablia. You cannot tell the world is nt wierd enough.
    Death to all fi’s. End the ring cycle now.

  22. I’m sure you’re not the only one who’s been fooled… I still remember MY extreme disappointment after seeing Viggo sans costume. But hell, it made me want to watch him in LOTR all the more because that was the only place my fantasy of him (hence the name of the genre) could be sustained reasonable well. 😉 Cheers.

  23. graham raises a good point though, shauny.

    can you hurry up and write a fucking book already? and when you do, i damn well want a fucking mention. also, do you think i swear too much?

  24. Hmm. Maybe the mentioning of the book decreases the attractiveness of writing it? Much like Nick Cave’s “don’t spook the muses” awards turndown letter?

    Just a thought.

  25. Huh? I have to agree with the novel sentiment, though I believe bjb’s referring to Andrew. I did just mention it in passing at missjenjen’s, though.

    There’s no rush, mind…

  26. no, graham, i’m working on the premise that everyone who’s blog i read on a regular basis somehow has a shared comment system on which all comments live. Therefore, things you say on missjenjen’s blog may be mentioned here without attribution because everyone should know what i’m talking about already.

    Add this to my habit of starting sentences in the middle (a practice my wife refers to as ‘speaking in shorthand’) and you have a fun filled frolic through my cerebral cortex.

    rock on

  27. Opps. Obviously screwed that one up. Didn’t mean to be condescending. Sorry. Have re-read and apologise. Does sound like a smart arse.
    Good point someone made about spooking muses.
    Will now shut up. Have hangover Evil Knievel couldn’t jump over anyway. ouch.

  28. eek, don’t shut up! looks like there’s been a wee misunderstanding.

    bill – just don’t have a novel in me at the moment. too busy trying to get the most out of my time over here and just livin’. but taking notes along the way 🙂

  29. Hmmmn. I haven’t reached the higher plain yet, I’m afraid. I saw the first Lord of the Rings, almost fell aslep. And still think fantasy sucks arse. I wish I could join the clan, I really really do. I mean, I can appreciate that other people like the storytelling, the wonderful sets and costumes. But alas …

  30. Okay, kids, please give Shauny a break.
    What is it with the book requests? What is going on? What will you say once she has that book out? “Shauny, why dontya have a TV show?” “Shauny, why aren’t you on Larry King?”, “Shauny, why isn’t Justin Timberlake pulling your…”
    Seriously, blokes, dudes, whatever you call yerselves… can’t you just be happy that all you need is to type in the URL into your bl**dy browsers and there she is, the girl of yer dreams, writing up a storm, for free, with her comments wide open, so you can leave your little happy mark… and what do you guys do?… seriously… look at yerselves…
    can we take this one outside?…
    Show me yer blogs, I want to see where your books are… comoooon, don’t be so shy…

  31. Isn’t it the FANTASY that we pay for? I mean, jeez, actors are just people with all the stoopid, unsexy flaws that people have… It’s the charactors that take us above all that, thrill us and chill us and get our muffins all buttery…

    I must admit(one would think it was a crime or something) I love well-written fantasy, elves, dragons and all that and truth be told, I lusted after Strider way before the movies ever came out. Tolkiens writing and my own imagination got me all hot over Aragorn before Viggo came along and, amazingly enough, did the role justice-sexy, sexy justice at that.

    I think it’s a tribute to his talent as an actor that he could rise above his mere mortal-and disappointingly blond-drabness to become a hero so glorious, brave, noble, tough, scruffy, faithful, kingly and totally(drool) foxy!

  32. Fecks sake, you’ve hit comments gold here Shauny! Told you Lord of the Rings was groovy (a term used by thirty-somethings I believe).

    Sorry about the feck, I watched Father Ted last night.

  33. With respect, Graham, how many more years would you like to yell at Shauny to realize that yelling at a writer will not make them
    a) want to write more,
    b) write a book,
    c) find a publisher,
    d) what else have I missed?…

  34. look at all these comments indeed. it’s just like the old days before i left australia… ‘grooooovy’ 🙂

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