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A group of thirteen dwarves, one hobbit, and one wizard on their way to the lost dwarven kingdom of Erebor to slay the dragon Smaug and reclaim Thorin's birthright.
Adaptational Badass: Whereas in the books the dwarves are bumbling and accident-prone, ill-equipped for a dangerous adventure, the films make the majority into capable fighters carrying actual weapons- they go from a kind of Dad's Army type bunch to (in Graham McTavish's words) "Middle-earth's Dirty Baker's Dozen". That being said, the entire group prove to be badass at the end of the story, so the film just makes them badass earlier.
Adaptational Comic Relief: While the dwarves have funny moments in the book such as their "Blunt the Knives" song, the film also gives them individual quirks such as Ori being a Man Child and Bifur having an axe in his head. Averted with Thorin, who remains dignified (having not been present at the aforementioned song) and is made more upset at the loss of his home. Also averted with Balin, somewhat.
Adaptational Heroism: The dwarves are much braver and kinder than their counterparts in the original book. Most notably, they're much more protective of Bilbo and the younger dwarves, and their quest is motivated more by the need for a homeland than getting their treasure.
Badass Beard: All of the dwarves (they're all part of Durin's Folk, nicknamed "the Longbeards" among the Seven Dwarvish tribes), plus Gandalf, possess one of these. Except Kíli, whose Perma Stubble, while manly by human and elven standards, looks downright babyfaced compared to the other dwarves.
Badass Crew: More in the movie (where they are all armed, armored, and ready to fight) than in the book or animated movie (where they are repeatedly captured and have no weapons until they find them in the Trolls' hoard).
Badass in Distress: Happens to them about four times, in which they must rely on Bilbo and/or Gandalf to rescue them. Gandalf himself ends up captured in Dol Guldur in the end of the second film.
Band of Relatives: About half of the dwarves* Thorin, Fíli, Kíli, Balin, Dwalin, Óin, and Glóin are fairly close kinsmen. All of them play instruments.
Beware the Silly Ones: With the exception of Thorin, who's simply an all-around Badass, all of the dwarves in the Company range from mildly goofy to downright madcap, but they're all a force to be reckoned with in a fight (even Ori, who manages to land a few good hits with his slingshot).
Big Eater: All of them to some extent, but Bombur and Dwalin especially.
Cleopatra Nose: Most of the dwarves have typically large noses. Balin's nose in particular is enormous, though it suits him well.
Bilbo: I know you doubt me. I-I-I know you always have. And you're right, I often think of Bag End. I miss my books. And my armchair. And my garden. See, that's where I belong. That's home. And that's why I came back: because you don't have one. A home. It was taken from you. But I will help you take it back if I can.
Jumped at the Call: All of the Dwarves. Thorin prefers having them over an entire army from the Iron Hills, as they answered when he called, proving their loyalty and honor.
Maybe Magic, Maybe Mundane: The Arkenstone, the chiefest item amongst the regalia of the Kings under the Mountain, and the recovery of which is one of the Company's main goals. It's clearly more than just a precious stone, but it's not clear whether it's actually magical, magic being exceptionally rare in Middle-earth. Also, in the books, the Arkenstone was cut and shaped by the Dwarves to enhance its own "inner light," but the stone in the movie is clearly uncut, only polished, meaning that whatever illuminates from within is probably stronger in the movies than in the books.
Fans and Tolkien scholars have long theorized that it may be one of the Silmarils created by Fëanor, which captured the light of the Two Trees of Valinor. Specifically, it's theorized to be the Silmaril that an elf, who had come to a truly biblical amount of grief over it, threw into a "fiery chasm," entombing it in the "bosom of the earth." This is considerably unlikely, however, since the Silmarils are fated not to return until Middle-earth's Ragnarok, where they will play some vital and non-specific role.
Our Dwarves Are All the Same: Somehow played straight while simultaneously subverted. While the dwarves are all short, hairy, and crusty, they have great variety in their faces, beards, clothing, body types, personalities and weaponry. They also have accents that range throughout the British Isles — Yorkshire (Thorin, Fíli, Kíli, Dori), Estuary (Ori), SE London/Cockney (Nori), Scottish (Balin, Dwalin, Óin, Glóin), and Northern Irish (Bofur). The production team actually thought out how each set of dwarves should appear progressively less rich and refined the more distantly they are related to the royal line, ranging from Balin and Dwalin (Thorin's third cousins and close companions), to Dori and his brother in the middle (related, but distant cousins), to Bofur, Bombur, and Bifur (working class slobs not related to the royal line at all).
Thorin's response is a Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: he's a dignified warrior-prince and many of the Company are just merchants, toy-makers, miners, and goofballs - but he's glad to accept any one of them over an entire dwarf army. Why? Because when he called the armies to follow him, they didn't come, but these few misfits did. One willing toy-maker who chose to be by his side on this dangerous journey is worth more than an entire army who stayed safe at home in their beds.
Vitriolic Best Buds: Ready to go to each other's aid when needed, but you couldn't always tell it from just watching them.
Weapon of Choice: Each dwarf has his own set of weapons in the film but this trope becomes subverted during the Goblin Town scene where their weapons get tossed around and mixed up. For instance, Ori ends up with Dwalin's hammer and does alright with it.
"I can't just go running off into the blue! I am a Baggins, of Bag End!"
Bait and Switch: In The Desolation of Smaug, it seems like Bilbo's about to tell Gandalf about the Ring, but instead says he found his courage.
Blue Blood: Descended from the the greatest family of Shire-Hobbits (his Took side) and the patriarch of another wealthy and aristocratic family (the Bagginses, which also intermarried extensively with the other great Hobbit house, the Brandybucks), though he had no direct descendants himself.
Celibate Hero: Like the book, he never marries or has any romantic interest.
Changed My Mind, Kid: Bilbo attempts to leave the Company while in the goblin cave, feeling he doesn't belong among them on this adventure. After his adventures in the mountain, he forgoes the chance to escape with the Ring and returns to the Company.
Forced to Watch: When Smaug declares he's going to pay Laketown a "visit", Bilbo tries to stop him, revealing that he cares about the people of Laketown. Smaug is pleased, as he can make Bilbo watch as he burns the village. Sure enough, Bilbo is horrified as he watches the subsequent destruction.
Gentleman Adventurer: Very polite, which clashes with the more bombastic dwarves, though Balin and Dori are closest to being civil.
Good Is Not Soft: Bilbo is generally a friendly and polite fellow who prefers to use his wits to get out of a situation rather than use a sword. But when Thorin was about to be decapitated by an orc mook, Bilbo flung himself at said orc and killed him.
Go Through Me: Bilbo does this after tackling Azog's mook and standing between Azog and the semi-conscious Thorin.
Guile Hero: Unlike his dwarven companions, Bilbo prefers to use his words and brain to get him out of tight situations. His tiny size and dislike of battle also makes this trope necessary to his survival throughout the quest.
He spends much of the first film slowly turning into one, from distracting the trolls long enough to let Gandalf come in, to his "game of riddles" with Gollum.
The Heart: He's a Hobbit so he's been set up to be one, anyway. Gandalf even lampshades this—Bilbo represents a better world to strive for.
Bilbo: I...found something, in the goblin tunnels. Gandalf: What did you find? [long pause] Bilbo: ...my courage. Gandalf: Good. You'll need it.
Idle Rich: When Gandalf first finds him, in contrast to his younger self.
Non-Idle Rich: Soon after, he became a central part of a quest that would secure the Free Peoples' northern and eastern flank against the forces of evil, slay the last great dragon, restore two great kingdoms of Men and Dwarves, bring about peace among Elves, Men, and Dwarves, and, tangentially, thwart Sauron's first attempt at a comeback.
In the Blood: Adventure seems to run in the family, if Frodo and Old Took's great-grand-uncle Bullroarer are anything to go by in Bilbo's extended line.
My God, What Have I Done?: Though he never outright says it, you can tell from his facial expressions that Bilbo immediately regrets it when he tells Bofur that the dwarves should be used to living on the road and having "nowhere to belong", briefly forgetting that they lost their home to Smaug.
He does say it at the end of the second movie when he realizes they've pissed off Smaug to the point that the dragon decides to bring his wrath down on the nearby Laketown.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Probably the spiders would have found the Company in Mirkwood anyway, but Bilbo certainly didn't help by strumming the webs he found like a freaking guitar string, meaning the spiders could tell where they were. And he did it twice.
Oh, Crap: When he sees Sting is glowing blue and remembers what that means, and when he realizes that Gollum figured out where his 'precious' is.
As Smaug stirs, and he gets an idea of just how huge the dragon is.
Out of Focus: In Battle Of Five Armies, like in the book, the focus shifts away from him.
Parental Substitute: To Frodo in Lord of the Rings, whom he adopted and raised after the deaths of Drogo and Primula Baggins in the Brandywine River.
Sanity Slippage: He seems to show signs of this, considering his behavior begins to slowly but surely change under the influence of the One Ring. One notable example is during The Desolation of Smaug: when Bilbo briefly lost the ring and when a giant arthropod accidentally touched it, he went completely berserk and murdered it very violently. After his outburst of violence and when the realization of what he's done sinks in, he is utterly horrified, and nearly throws up.
Scheherezade Gambit: He keeps Gollum from eating him by proposing him a game of riddles. Tries the same thing on Smaug. That doesn't go as well.
The Smart Guy: Bilbo's a natural intellectual who absorbs new information like a sponge and uses his brain instead of his brawn to get out of tight situations.
The Sneaky Guy / Stealth Expert: The reason why Bilbo was chosen as the Company's burglar in the first place. Since the Company is only composed of thirteen dwarves of varying occupations, they were inevitably going to need a non-dwarf to sneak into Erebor's treasure chamber. So, even though Bilbo has never stolen anything in his life, he does turn out to be surprisingly good at sneaking and stealing, and manages to sneak behind three mountain trolls without them noticing him. And he only got caught because one of the trolls happened to have a itchy nose and grabbed him by accident to use as tissue paper.
Staring Down Cthulhu: Bilbo does this with Smaug because running would earn him instant death, so he uses flattery to stay alive.
Supporting Protagonist: Though he is the protagonist, in the series it's Thorin who's The Hero of the story in terms of traditional character dynamics.
The Magnificent: Never has "Barrel Rider" been a more badass nickname. Even Smaug seems impressed.
Timeshifted Actor: Ian Holm plays the older Bilbo in the prologue, as well as Lord of the Rings, where he's a venerable 111 years old. Martin Freeman plays the younger, 50 year-old Bilbo in the main story.
Took a Level in Badass: Bilbo goes from an ordinary hobbit, who as a responsible adult shows disdain for adventures, to killing a huge orc warrior, a warg, and fending off Azog to protect Thorin.
Unfazed Everyman: It takes a long time and even at the end there are many things he finds awkward and frightening, but he does get there.
Fittingly as he's played by the same actor as Arthur Dent, the original trope namer.
What You Are in the Dark: When he doesn't kill Gollum, and when he's listening to the dwarves talking about him deserting them, after they all escape the goblins in the mountains. He's wearing The Ring at the time, so he's free to let them believe he's gone for good and go back to Rivendell. Of course, he reveals himself and continues the journey. The latter's only a minor case, though.
"World of Cardboard" Speech: He gives one near the end when he explains why he wants to go on with Thorin and Company despite the danger:
Bilbo: I know you doubt me, I know you always have, and you're right. I often think of Bag End. I miss my books, and my arm chair, and my garden. See, that's where I belong; that's home, and that's why I came, 'cause you don't have one...a home. It was taken from you, but I will help you take it back if I can.
Gandalf the Grey
"I am looking for someone to share in an adventure."
The leader of the Company of Dwarves who have set out to reclaim the Lonely Mountain from the dragon Smaug. As King of Durin's Folk he is the rightful King under the Mountain and the uncle of Fíli and Kíli, who are the sons of his sister Dís.
A Father to His Men: He actively protects the Company and feels great responsibility for them. When they were escaping underground from the wargs, Thorin made sure he was last to jump.
Anti-Hero: Of the Good Is Not Nice's category. In Desolation Of Smaug, Thorin is firmly this trope as he becomes more and more obsessed with reaching Erebor and becomes even more willing to Kick the Dog when it suits his purposes.
Authority Equals Asskicking: Thorin's most definitely this for the dwarves, who all look up to him both because of his leadership and his prowess in combat.
Asskicking Equals Authority: At Azanulbizar. In the words of Balin: "And I thought to myself then, there is one who I could follow. There is one I could call King."
Celibate Hero: Never married or had kids. Richard Armitage imagines that he might have lost a loved one or a betrothed during Erebor's fall.
Character Development: It kicks in much earlier in the film than in the book. The Character Development in the first movie actually sets up more of Thorin's backstory than the book ever talks about (it's mostly in later Tolkien writings). We can still expect the same arc of development that Thorin undergoes at the end of the book to be portrayed in the third film, however.
Cool Sword: Orcrist, an elven sword of Gondolin, in addition to his dwarven blade, Deathless. He loses both when the Company is imprisoned by Thranduil and gets a new sword from the armory of Laketown.
Curb-Stomp Battle: He was on the receiving end of one when attempting to defend Erebor against Smaug. And Azog inflicts him one in the climax of An Unexpected Journey, attacking when on top his warg.
Dark and Troubled Past: Poor Thorin's had a pretty rough life. His kingdom was taken over by a dragon that either killed most of the Erebor dwarves in the initial attack or forced them to flee to distant lands; much of his life afterwards was spent working in menial, dead-end jobs that brought little respect from the humans around him; and then, when his people finally tried to retake Moria, Thorin not only witnessed the mass slaughter of his fellow dwarves in battle, but also the beheading of his grandfather at the hands of an orc, the death of his younger brother Frerin, and the disappearance of his father whom he never sees again. Very little seems to ever go right or come easy to the poor guy.
Elrond: You have your grandfather's bearing. I knew Thrór, when he ruled under the mountain.
Thorin: Indeed, he made no mention of you.
Determinator: Despite his many flaws, Thorin's unwavering determination to return his people to their homeland is nothing short of admirable.
Deuteragonist: Although Bilbo is the viewpoint character, within the scope of the movie itself, Thorin is the most important member of the party, because he's the reason they were gathered in the first place.
Did You Just Flip Off Cthulhu?: Thorin does this constantly to Smaug while being chased by him. He uses it to his advantage to keep Smaug off guard and make use of his fire breath in an Indy Ploy.
Disappeared Dad: His father, Thráin, disappeared shortly after the Battle of Azanulbizar, leaving Thorin to care for and guide the exiled dwarves of Erebor alone.
Doomed by Canon: He, Fíli, and Kíli will be killed in the Battle of the Five Armies.
Genre Savvy: Has so far showed himself to be more competent then in the book, such as learning to trust Bilbo enough to rescue the company from the elves while also managed to pull off a Batman Gambit on Smaug.
Gold Fever: Like his father and grandfather, Thorin develops this the closer he gets back to Erebor. Elrond even predicts this.
Good Is Not Nice: Thorin, while unmistakably one of the protagonists, can be incredibly stubborn, proud, and quick to criticize, as well as discriminating against all things elvish (this last the elves probably earned, for not honoring their alliance with the dwarves when Smaug attacked).
Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Dwalin. They are said to have an especially close relationship, growing up together and sharing the bitter air of exile while fighting their way through numerous hordes of goblins and orcs. See Dwalin for more details.
Honor Before Reason: Balin points out that Thorin doesn't need to put his life on the line to reclaim Erebor, since he's done well by his people, building them a new life in the Blue Mountains. Thorin replies that he has no choice in the matter because it is the will of his forefathers. He looks rather sad when he says this, showing what a burden carrying the honour of his line has become.
Thorin: If this is to end in fire, then we shall all burn together.
Bard, in particular, is very unhappy with this attitude, for fear of the life he's built with his family in Laketown:
Bard: You awaken that beast, and you'll destroy us all... You have no right. No right to enter that mountain.
Thorin: I have the only right.
Improvised Armour: How he got his name - by grabbing an oak branch as a replacement when his shield was lost.
I Was Quite a Looker: He doesn't look radically different from his days as Prince of Erebor, but tragedy and hardship have certainly taken their toll. The gorgeous, youthful, and smiling Thorin who appears in the prologue leaves no doubt where his nephews get their good looks from.
Impaled with Extreme Prejudice: By Azog's sword hand at the end of "Battle of Five Armies". Even though he returns the favor, the injury still kills him.
Jerkass Has a Point: It wasn't exactly smart of Thorin to turn down Thranduil's deal without a second thought, considering said deal was pretty much their only way out of the Wood Elf Kingdom, but he has a very valid reason not to trust the king. He rightly points out that Thranduil didn't aid them against Smaug when he attacked them - which is understandable, if cold — but he also turned his back on the refugees and refused to help them. Thranduil betrayed their trust; why should Thorin trust him now?
He refuses to honor his deal with people of Laketown while Thranduil's army is present, while Bilbo tries to get him to help out of compassion. Thorin points out that it wasn't compassion that motivated the people of Laketown to help the dwarves, it was a selfish desire for wealth.
The Leader: Of the dwarves; a Type IV, according to Balin, though with some shades of a Type I.
Lightning Bruiser: He's a lot faster, agile, and more durable than you'd expect a dwarf to be, and doesn't seem to have sacrificed any strength for it.
Man Hug: Gives one to Bilbo, after the latter rescues him from one of Azog's mooks.
Meaningful Name: Oakenshield, which is both a direct reference to the oak branch that Thorin used to defeat Azog at Azanulbizar and an indirect one to the acorn that Bilbo takes home and plants after Thorin's death in BOFA.
Mr. Fanservice: He was designed with a "heroic" figure in mind, which amongst other things means broad shoulders and lots of muscles. The prosthetics department also admittedly wanted him to be "sexy". In early drafts of An Unexpected Journey, he even got a Shirtless Scene.
Nice to the Waiter: At the beginning of The Desolation of Smaug, when the waitress at the Prancing Pony brings him his meal, he thanks her very politely, and with a kind smile. He probably made the girl's day...
Older Than He Looks: In terms of the timeline of events presented in the film, Thorin is a youthful 24 years old when Smaug attacks Erebor, 53 at the Battle of Azanulbizar, and an impressive 195 during the events of The Hobbit, but appears not to have aged much over the course of these events. Perhaps justified by the fact that Tolkien's dwarves live up to an average age of 250 years old, so he's late middle-age.
Parental Substitute: Tries to be a father to his nephews, Fíli and Kíli, with varying degrees of success.
The Patriarch: The dwarves are fiercely patriarchal, since they are all descended from the original Seven Fathers of the Dwarves. Thorin, as king of the eldest clan (the Longbeards or Durin's Folk) is the symbolic father of the entire race. In The Hobbit, he displays all the qualities of a more literal patriarch among his Company, including the tragically late expression of his respect for the black sheep, Bilbo.
Perpetual Frowner: Considering Thorin's life and the immense burdens he bears on a daily basis, it shouldn't be too surprising that his default expression is a frown.
Riches to Rags: Smaug's attack came without warning, so they didn't have the chance to evacuate and salvage any of the gold.
Rousing Speech: He gives a pretty good one in Laketown, exciting the crowd and convincing the Master and the town's citizens to support the dwarves over Bard's protests.
Royals Who Actually Do Something: Taking back Erebor is no easy task, but Thorin firmly believes that it is his responsibility as the dwarven king to reclaim his people's homeland. And despite his sometimes arrogant behavior, Thorin is also willing to do the same work and menial jobs as his fellow dwarves in exile.
Sanity Slippage: He becomes more callous, more obsessed with claiming Erebor, and more ruthless the closer they advance to their goal.
Not So Stoic: Thorin loses his cool a few times when people he cares about are in danger.
Tall, Dark and Snarky: Tall for a dwarf, that is. The Dark and Snarky parts are well in evidence throughout the films.
Took a Level in Kindness: Compared to the original incarnation in the book, at least. In the book, Thorin casually mentions that the younger dwarves, including his nephews, would probably not survive the quest. In the film, he's much more protective of the younger dwarves as well as Bilbo, even putting his life at risk to protect them.
What the Hell, Hero?: Thorin is known to be on the receiving end of this; first by Balin for planning to abandoning Bilbo to Smaug, by Bard for the fact that his actions caused the destruction of Laketown and the deaths of hundreds - or even thousands - of innocent people, by Bilbo for not keeping his word or being himself after the latter learns the former bargained the Arkenstone, by Dwalin for becoming ever more obsessed with reclaiming Erebor to the exclusion of everything else, including the well-being of everyone, and by Kíli for letting others fight their battles for them while they hide inside the safety of Erebor. Yikes.
You Are King of Durin's Folk Now: Whereas in the books, Thorin succeeded Thráin after a long rule; in the movie, Thorin is thrust into the kingship at the Battle of Azanulbizar when Thrór is killed and Thráin disappears. Fortunately, in the eyes of Balin and the others, he was not found wanting.
"We may be few in number, but we're fighters! All of us! To the last Dwarf!"
Played By: Dean O'Gorman
The elder of Thorin's nephews who sets out on the Quest of Erebor.
Modest Royalty: His official profile describes that "his nobility is portrayed in bearing rather than any proud raiment".
Mr. Fanservice: Albeit to a lesser degree than his brother (depending on your preference for facial hair).
Nephewism: His uncle Thorin has no children of his own, but took both nephews under his wing and named Fíli his heir.
Nice Guy: Compared to his surly and headstrong dwarven companions, Fíli comes across as pretty mellow and selfless. He's quick to befriend Bilbo, insists on staying with his injured brother in Laketown, and doesn't hesitate to protect Bard's children when their home is attacked by orcs.
Pretty in Mink: Similar to Thorin, his outfit in the film has a fur collar and cuffs.
Sacrificial Lion: He is captured during the assault on Azog's strategic encampment above the battlefield, and mercilessly stabbed and hurled from a ledge to land dead in front of both his uncle and brother. This inevitably triggers their Berserk Button, and spurs them on to one final charge.
Warrior Prince: As the eldest son of Thorin's sister, Fíli is his childless uncle's heir-apparent, and has obviously been trained in combat for the position.
The younger of Thorin's nephews who sets out on the Quest of Erebor.
Adaptational Attractiveness: He's conspicuous amongst the rest of the dwarves for his lack of facial prosthetics, which from a creative point of view enhances his comparative youthfulness. The film explanation is that this allows him to be more effective at archery.
Ascended Extra / OC Stand In: His most notable role in the book is dying in the Battle of the Five Armies, and is more of a Tagalong Kid with his brother. Even in the first film, he does little to stand out from the rest of the dwarves, but takes a central role in the second film.
Determinator: The guy gets shot with an arrow tipped by poison. He keeps going for days afterwards and literally had to be ordered to stay in Laketown to recover; otherwise, he would have followed them to Erebor.
Heroic Resolve: Despite being half-unconscious from pain during the raid on Laketown, he forces himself to his feet to fight and saves Tauriel from getting stabbed In the Back.
Distressed Dude: In The Desolation of Smaug, Tauriel shows up to save his ass. Thrice.
Doomed by Canon: He, Fíli, and Thorin will be killed in the Battle of the Five Armies.
Mr. Fanservice: So much so that even the other actors nickname him "sexy dwarf" and "the hot one".
Nephewism: Same as his bro, above. Richard Armitage claims Thorin has a soft spot for Kíli in particular.
No, You: He shows the emotional range of a seven-year-old when Bilbo claims the dwarves all have parasites (fittingly enough, he's the youngest of the dwarves):
Kíli: We don't have parasites! You have parasites!
Perma Stubble: He can't have a big, elaborately braided beard because he's an archer, so he has this instead.
Star-Crossed Lovers / Interspecies Romance: Regardless of how their relationship plays out, Kíli and Tauriel are already this, being a dwarf and an elf whose nations have hated each other for over a century, and whose races have been on bad terms since the First Age of Middle-Earth, thousands of years ago. Also, Kíli is going to die in the Battle of the Five Armies.
Kíli: She is far away. Sh...She is far away from me. She walks in starlight in another world. Do you think she could have loved me?
Talking in Your Sleep: After Kíli is cured of the poison arrow and falls into an exhausted slumber, this is how Tauriel (and the audience) learns that he's crushing hard for her.
Warrior Prince: Like his brother, Kíli has obviously been trained in combat and eagerly fights alongside the Company.
Of all the dwarves in the Company, Balin is the only one known (in the books) to have visited Bilbo at Bag End after their quest for the Lonely Mountain.
Blatant Lies: When asked about the Dwarves' purpose, Balin responds "We are simple dwarven merchants," while they're standing ten feet away from barrels splintered by a fight with elves and orcs and hauling around absolutely nothing in the way of merchandise. Bard doesn't buy it for a second.
Commander Contrarian: While his loyalty to Thorin has been unquestioned since Azanulbizar, during the Unexpected Party, Balin makes it clear he doesn't put much faith in the quest's success and tries to talk Thorin out of leading the Company to Erebor. When it's clear Thorin won't back down, he declares he's with him, and doesn't raise another question.
Literal-Minded: A bit. When Bilbo greeted him with "Good evening," Balin agreed, though he predicted it would rain later. Later, when Bilbo interrupts Balin and Dwalin going through his larder with an irritable "I'm sorry," Balin mildly accepts his apology.
Mix-and-Match Weapon: He appears to wield a weapon that has a blade like a sword but a heavy tri-pointed head like a mace. It has simply been described as a mace in promotional material.
What the Hell, Hero?: Balin calls out Thorin's decision to leave Bilbo at the mercy of the awakened Smaug (meaning almost certain death for him) on the grounds that he cannot risk his life and the quest for the sake of a burglar.
"Where's the meat?!"
Played By: Graham McTavish
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the younger brother of Balin.
Bald of Awesome: Aside from the beard. In the flashback scenes, he has a mohawk, though.
The Big Guy: Big for a dwarf, at least, and is the most battle-ready.
Character Tics: Folding his arms over his war-hammer, which he does literally every time he's resting.
Hates Being Touched: Shows shades of this in The Desolation of Smaug. On two separate occasions he threatens someone about to touch him. However, since the two potential offenders were Bard and Bard's son, one might surmise that Dwalin only objects to being touched by humans. Of course, in both situations he was in a rather embarrassing position (being in a fish barrel at one point, and a toilet the next), and was possibly trying to save face.
Headbutt of Love: He and his brother Balin affectionately smash heads when they meet up at Bag End.
Heterosexual Life-Partners: With Thorin. They are said to have an especially close relationship, growing up together and sharing the bitter air of exile while fighting their way through numerous hordes of goblins and orcs. He even remains "Thorin's staunchest supporter" with a fierce and unbending loyalty and has been more like a brother than a distant kin.
I Call It "Vera": According to Graham McTavish, Dwalin's the kind of guy who'd name his weapons.
Undying Loyalty: Out of all the dwarves, Dwalin is the most loyal to Thorin; he saves his life twice in An Unexpected Journey (once during the first Warg attack, once during the thunder battle), gets highly offended when the Master of Laketown fails to show Thorin the proper respect, and they are seen fighting or planning together multiple times throughout both movies.
Carry a Big Stick: After being stripped of his entire arsenal by the Wood Elves, Dwalin later receives a two handed mace from the armory of Laketown.
"My place is with the wounded."
Played By: John Callen
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the older brother of Glóin and the uncle of Gimli.
Astrologer: Glóin makes reference to Óin "reading portents" pertaining to their quest.
Combat Medic: He's a chemist, a DIY surgeon, and Word of God claims that he serves as a midwife during dwarven births. He even oversaw the birth of his own nephew, Gimli.
Óin is shown to take this role very seriously, and he willingly stays behind with an injured Kíli while the rest of the Company marches on the Lonely Mountain. He states that his place is always with his patient.
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the brother of Óin and the father of Gimli.
A Friend in Need: It's Glóin who represents the Erebor dwarves at the Council of Elrond, which revolves around the One Ring and the Baggins who have carried it. While Glóin himself was a companion and friend to Bilbo, Gimli also becomes the same to Bilbo's nephew, Frodo.
Ancestral Weapon: He wields the same axes as Gimli, apparently passing them down to his son. It's revealed that Glóin's father, Gróin, had these in his possession as well.
Call Forward: During the Battle of The Five Armies, he starts wearing an identical helmet to the one his son will wear.
Fiery Red Head: In The Hobbit films, much like his son, Gimli. However, Glóin's later portrayed as having gone completely white/grey at the Council of Elrond in The Fellowship of the Ring.
Morally Bankrupt Banker: Not quite so morally bankrupt as not willing to part with his money unless there's a very good reason. Glóin initially did not want to contribute his share to paying Bard for supplies and safe passage, but then he saw the Lonely Mountain...
Glóin: I have been bled DRY!
My Girl Back Home: He's one of the few married dwarves, and carries a miniature of his wife with him at all times.
Only in It for the Money: Ultimately subverted in the second movie. He grumbles at the thought of parting with more of his money to pay Bard for safe passage, complaining that the adventure has bled him dry already, but when he finally sees the mountain he does a complete 180 and all but throws all his remaining gold away to get there faster.
Our Dwarves Are All the Same: He's the most prototypical Dwarf in the Company: a stout, truculent, gold-loving guy with an axe and an impressive beard.
"Excuse me, Mister Gandalf, may I tempt you with a cup of camomile?"
Played By: Mark Hadlow
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the older brother of Ori and Nori.
Adaptation Personality Change: Dori in the book was one of the dwarves to have a distinct personality; being a Jerk with a Heart of Gold who grouched and complained a lot but was helpful and reliable in a pinch. In the movie, he's much more positive, a bit of a dandy and a tremendous mother hen, especially towards Ori.
Camp Straight/Real Dwarves Wear Pink: He and Ori have rather "effeminate" mannerisms. Of course, this is by dwarven standards, so it can be taken with a grain of salt. Also he's trying hard to come off as a Cultured Warrior (see below).
Cultured Warrior: He enjoys a pot of camomile tea, and is apparently something of a wine connoisseur, advising Gandalf of a "fruity bouquet" before passing him a glass of red. According to the costume team, he was deliberately given the most elaborately braided hair to reflect his rather more fastidious, cultured nature. The root cause of this is his Nouveau Riche status (see below).
Genius Bruiser: Word of God states that despite being a persnickety dandy by dwarven standards, Dori is actually the strongest in terms of strength in the Company.
Lethal Chef: The other dwarves apparently dread his cooking.
Nouveau Riche: The production team settled on this as one of the major characteristics of Dori and his brothers. The higher-ranking dwarves are close relatives of Thorin and the royal line of Durin (Balin, Dwalin, Glóin, and Óin are his third cousins). Dori and his brothers are of the line of Durin but from a minor branch only distantly related to Thorin (so distant that they do not appear on the short family tree that Tolkien provided). They are the proverbial poor country cousins compared to Thorin's close relatives who were princes, lords, and captains — though they are still prosperous merchants. So, as they explain in the behind-the-scenes videos, the idea they came up with is that Dori is overcompensating, trying to show off how cultured he is (displaying knowledge of wine and camomile tea) in an attempt to appear more equal to their more highly ranking relatives like Thorin and Balin.
Sibling Yin-Yang: He's much more responsible and law-abiding than his middle brother.
Team Mom: A male example, at least as far as Ori is concerned.
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the middle brother of Dori and Ori.
Artful Dodger: Many of the Erebor dwarves who were young at the time of Smaug's attack probably fell into this category, but Nori still lives up to it during the first film.
Casting Gag: Brophy and Jackson go way back, and he had played several orcs, an elf, and a man in The Lord of the Rings. His young son, Sadwyn Brophy, also played Eldarion, the yet-unborn son of Aragorn and Arwen.
Improbable Hairstyle: In the film, Nori sports a striking tri-lobed bouffant with his long eyebrows braided into it.
Sibling Yin-Yang: He's noted as being the polar opposite of Dori and Ori and rarely sees eye-to-eye with them.
Sticky Fingers: In keeping with his shady persona, Nori can be seen stealing silverware, candles, and various other fancy things while in Rivendell. He's later busted when the goblins rip apart their packs, both Dori and Dwalin giving him withering glares of disbelief.
Wild Card: He's the most elusive member of the Company, but he genuinely cares for his brothers and can generally be trusted to do the right thing in the end. What Nori does leading up to that, though, can be quite dodgy or outright illegal at times.
Ori (Adam Brown)
"I'm not afraid! I'm up for it! I'll give him the taste of the Dwarvish iron right up his jacksie!"
Played By: Adam Brown
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the younger brother of Dori and Nori.
Adorkable: Like Bilbo, he's well-mannered, nerdy, and prefers books over adventure in his daily life.
Doomed by Canon/Saved by Canon: He can't die in this trilogy... because he's killed by orcs during the attempt to retake Khazad-dûm in between The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. He and some of the other colonists live long enough to bury Balin properly, and his corpse is the one in Balin's tomb that Gandalf takes the book from.
Future Badass: Is one of the last surviving dwarves of Balin's expedition to Khazad-dûm, which automatically makes him a badass. In one of the flashback missions in The Lord of the Rings Online, you play as Ori, who wields a massive two-handed axe, is nearly unkillable, and can destroy hordes of orcs single-handed (literally, because he wields the two-hander in one hand).
The Smart Guy: Ori is a talented artist, and can often be found drawing and writing in his journal. It is Ori who chronicles much of the journey through The Wild to the shores of the Long Lake and the slopes of The Lonely Mountain.
Handicapped Badass: In spite of his brain damage, he is still an equally capable fighter, and is mentioned to face down charging boars.
Óin: He's got an injury. Bilbo: You mean the axe in his head? [Óin picks up ear-trumpet, mishearing Bilbo's last word] Óin: Dead? No, only between his ears. His legs work fine.
Hidden Depths: Kircher said that one of the things he's most interested in with playing Bifur is that his head injury has made him a bit erratic and at times he can have bursts of angry behavior, but he is also a toymaker, and hand-makes beautiful, delicate creations. Bifur is seen in one video with an intricate hand-carved bird whose wings actually flap when you pull on strings.
The Unintelligible: Possibly due to his head injury, Bifur only speaks in Ancient Khuzdul (Dwarvish). Only Gandalf can understand exactly what he says since the other dwarves only understand a more modern form of the language.
Bifur also appears to communicate through Iglishmêk, which is the dwarven version of sign language that all dwarves learn simultaneously with Khuzdul in early childhood.
Working Class Hero: Like his cousins, he's not descended from Durin or any other noble line. His actual occupation is a toy-maker.
"I wish you all the luck in the world."
Played By: James Nesbitt
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the brother of Bombur and the younger cousin of Bifur.
Adaptational Attractiveness: He is noticeably thin and has well-groomed facial hair for a dwarf, probably due to his larger role requiring more human facial expressions.
Ascended Extra: In the novel, most of the dwarves were pretty generic and Bofur was no exception. In the first movie, his actor is billed ahead of Ken Stott's Balin (the best characterized dwarf in the novel after Thorin).
Big Brother Instinct: He's very upset when Bilbo tries to leave the Company and can be seen pushing Bilbo towards the center of the group during dangerous situations.
Working Class Hero: Like his brother and cousin, he's not descended from Durin or any other noble line. Although originally a miner in Erebor, Bofur now works as a toy-maker alongside his older cousin.
"I'm always last and I don't like it. It's somebody else's turn today."
Played By: Stephen Hunter
One of the twelve companions of Thorin and Bilbo on the Quest of Erebor. He is the brother of Bofur and the younger cousin of Bifur.
Acrofatic: Bombur may be grossly overweight, but he uses it to good effect when fighting and can keep up with the other dwarves when it's time to run.
When chased by Beorn, he's shown to outrun most of the Dwarves despite starting at the rear.
Big Eater: When Bilbo sees him taking three cheeses from his pantry, we get this line from Bofur.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Despite his role as the comic relief, Bombur is seen to be an incredibly improvising fighter and frequently hurls himself into the fray with reckless abandon, using his weight to his advantage. See the Acrofatic and Stout Strength entries for more info.
During the escape from the goblins, Bombur can be seen barely slowing down as several goblins climb on him. He then power-bombs them all by using his weight to smash down to a lower gantry. He may not be very fast, but clearly it takes a lot to stop him once he gets moving.
In the second film, while escaping from the Wood Elves, Bombur's barrel gets knocked out of the river and bounces all the way down the bank before coming to a stop in the middle of an orc group. Bombur's response? Burst his arms and legs out of the barrel's sides, grab an orc weapon in each hand, and fight his way out like a tornado, all the while wearing the barrel as a makeshift suit of armor.
Team Chef: The studio released the following statement about him : "Brother to Bofur and cousin to Bifur, Bombur is the chief cook amongst The Company".
The Voiceless: He never speaks a word. The closest he gets is noises made while exerting himself (and some muffled screams when about to be eaten by spiders). This is apparently due to shyness and constantly having food in his mouth.
Beware the Silly Ones: He may seem silly, but he's still a Wizard, which puts him on equal footing with Gandalf and Saruman.
Bunnies for Cuteness: The movies invented the idea that he travels on a sled pulled by giant rabbits, who can outrun wargs and bats.
Animals Not to Scale: Actually an aversion. At first, Jackson and his production team thought they'd have to design larger than real life rabbits, designing them from scratch so they'd have to spend extra time figuring out their musculature and movement. There was also some slight worry that rabbits large enough to pull the sled would seem a bit too fantastic (granted, in a movie with a dragon in it). Then they did some research and found out that the largest rabbit breed, the Flemish Giant rabbit, actually does grow as big as sled-dogs. So Radagast's rabbits actually are based on real-life animals.
Character Exaggeration: He wasn't described much in Tolkien's writings other than being more interested in the forests than the people of Middle-earth. In the film, he's clearly more absent-minded and even rides a sled pulled by rabbits.
Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: People like Elrond and Saruman don't take him seriously at all, but he banishes a herd of marauding spiders from his home with arcane power-word incantations (and brings an adorable hedgehog named Sebastian back from the dead - well, mostly dead), faces off against an uncloaked Nazgûl without blinking and leads a warband of orcs on a merry chase with his rabbit sled without a care in the world.
And apparently, it wasn't just any old wraith in a dark cloak. Evidence points out it was the Witch-King himself.
Is the most powerful wizard in Middle-earth besides Saruman and Gandalf, and won't clean the bird poop from his hair.
His home Rhosgobel has a tree growing through it - it wasn't built around the tree, a sapling sprouted up in his house and over many years grew into a huge tree and deformed the walls of his home, which he just modified and repaired to fit around it. As Jackson explained in a behind-the-scenes video, it's not that Radagast didn't notice that the sapling was getting too big, but he is firmly against taking any life if he doesn't have to, he doesn't destroy, so he just adapted to make space and let nature be. A complete contrast with Saruman's future views about nature, that forests as just fuel to burn.
As McCoy explained in his behind-the-scenes video on Radagast, this is sort of in real life, too: McCoy already knew how to make very accurate bird-calls and has been doing so for years. So when Radagast whistles and chirps at birds, that isn't an added sound effect, that's the actor actually "speaking fluent Bird".
Stealth Hi/Bye: When Gandalf is investigating the tomb of the Nazgul Radagast suddenly appears behind him, startling him.
The Wonka: He certainly doesn't look like an angelic emissary of the gods, but...
Composite Character: Of two minor characters from The Fellowship of the Ring: Lindir (a young elf who heckles Bilbo) and Erestor (Elrond's chief counselor).
Thranduil the Elvenking
"In time all foul things come forth."
Played By: Lee Pace
"Where does your journey end? A quest to reclaim a homeland, and slay a dragon!... I suspect something more prosaic. Attempted burglary, or something of that kind."
King of the Woodland Realm in northern Mirkwood, and father of Legolas. Very skeptical of Thorin, his quest, and dwarves generally.
Adaptation Personality Change: Notably frostier than his novel counterpart. In particular, book-Thranduil was quite warm towards Bilbo, and named him 'elf-friend'. In the film, he pays very little attention to him.
The Anticipator: He plays with this trope: Bilbo uses the ring to disappear, and he stumbles onto the chambers of Legolas's father, Thranduil. He subverts this trope, asking why he is hiding in the shadows, and stating that he can come out now. However, Bilbo finds out that Thranduil is not speaking to him after all, but to Tauriel who had been lingering in the shadows as well.
Anti-Hero: The most charitable interpretation of him. He has nothing but neverending contempt for dwarves and humans alike, and though he helps the people of Laketown, it is simply to serve his own purposes. He nonetheless is a fierce opponent of the forces of darkness.
Badass: When he finally fights, in the Battle of the Five Armies.
Berserk Button: He only really loses his temper after Thorin accuses him of callously abandoning the dwarves of Erebor out of jealousy and spite. Most of the time he's rather smug or annoyed or irritated. When Thorin calls him a coward who abandoned the dwarves out of pettiness and tells him to "burn in fire", it's pretty much the only time he's genuinely enraged.
Camp Straight: Even for elf sensibilities, his fashion sense is rather flamboyant. Justified, given that he's Sindarin, the second 'highest' Elf kindred in Middle-earth, between the Noldor, the High or Deep Elves, but who tend more towards science and industry than the other tribes, and the Nandor, the Silvan or Wood Elves, who tend to be rather more rustic and unsophisticated (but comprise the majority of the Elves still living in Middle-earth). There's also the Avari, but they don't live (according to conjecture) in Middle-earth.
Cool Crown: Featuring autumn leaves made of reddish gold and silver spikes.
Defrosting Ice King: A little bit near the end, when he stares in horror at the bodies of the elven warriors killed during the Battle of Five Armies and again when he produces some very restrained Manly Tears after coming across Tauriel weeping over Kili's body. Finally, when Legolas tells him he's leaving and not coming back, he seems to realize he's been a shitty person and a shitty father and tells him, in what sounds like an apology, that Legolas' mother loved him. This is after Legolas mentioned to Tauriel that Thranduil never, ever mentioned her.
Exact Words: When he kills the orc his son had captured.
Legolas:[visibly disturbed] Why did you do that? You promised to set him free. Thranduil: And I did. I freed his wretched head from his miserable shoulders.
The Fair Folk: He probably fits this trope the most out of all the elf characters, being arrogant, greedy and caring very little about others aside from his people (at best).
False Friend: Thorin views him as this when he refused to help the dwarves when Smaug invades Erebor. Still, when Thorin accused him of abandoning the Dwarves out of spite he seems genuinely stung by the accusation.
Fantastic Racism: Against dwarves, and even against his own people, somewhat, who are mostly Silvan elves while he himself is of a 'higher' kindred, the Sindar or Grey Elves.
And as it turns out in The Battle of The Five Armies, he doesn't care much about humans either.
Freudian Excuse: Judging by the way he talks, his asshole-ish ways are rooted in his heavily scarring battles of the past. His severely isolationist policies came about after the death of his wife, who was killed by orcs.
Freudian Trio: With Legolas and Tauriel; is the Super Ego of the group.
Genre Savvy: He knows exactly what confronting a dragon entails.
Glamour: It seems he's using some sort of magic to keep himself looking normal and whole.
Glamour Failure: When he loses his cool and starts ranting at Thorin about dragon fire, the glamour slips for just a moment, and we see that underneath the illusion he's suffered severe burn damage to one side of his face, leaving a huge scar. If Tolkien's other writings are anything to go by, at that moment he might be physically manifesting soul pains. When Elves are angry or distressed, the scars on their souls can sometimes show up on their bodies.
Good Is Not Nice: To the point that he hardly comes off as good. In the second film, he's a type four Anti-Villain at best. Still a bit of a jerk, though.
Greed: For all his posturing to Thorin of how the Dwarves brought Smaug and their subsequent exile from Erebor upon themselves because of their greed, he himself refuses to grant aid to them (much less allow them to leave his kingdom) unless he received the gems in the hoard.
I Shall Taunt You: At the receiving end of this in the extended edition of the first movie, when Thrór denies him a chest full of gems by closing said chest just when Thranduil was about to reach it.
It's All About Me: He only seems to care for himself and, at most, his people. Though he has little enough respect for most of them, being a Sindarin elf himself, and most of his people being Silvan elves, who are the closest thing the elves have to a discriminated-against minority (though they're actually the majority, both in the Woodland Realm and in Lórien, which is itself ruled by the Noldorin Galadriel and the Sindarin Celeborn).
Jerkass: Let's face it, what with his stern demeanor, arrogance, greed, general disinterest in anything but his own kingdom and xenophobia, Thranduil's not the nicest of beings by a long shot. Even his own people seem aware of this: one of the Elves in charge of returning the barrels makes a note that their king is "ill-tempered".
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: He has a...sort-of good heart underneath it all. Deep down. Very deep down. (There's gotta be some reason he's in the 'friends' section, after all.) He's genuinely sorry for Tauriel after Kili dies, saying that it hurts so much because her love for him was real. And, though he might have had some ulterior motives, he gives the survivors of Laketown plenty of supplies to last through the winter.
Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk: He, however, pretty much only does the latter for his own benefit; he doesn't really care about anyone but himself and his son, and he manages to find contempt even for the people on his own side, like Gandalf and the humans.
Jerkass Has a Point: He is perfectly correct; Gandalf's decision to encourage Thorin into taking back Erebor and trying to kill Smaug ended up with who knows how many people getting killed or injured. He calls the Wizard out on such, and plans to fix it by finishing what he started.
He derides Biblo's attempts at reason with Thorin to be a waste of time. He proves to be right (and Thorin seemed more out of his mind than he anticipated, given his shock at Thorin almost throwing Bilbo to his death), it takes an army of orcs and the near death of Thorin's cousin Dain for him to think about anything besides gold.
Kick the Dog: Not only refuses to help fight Smaug (though it's unlikely he and his kin would have been able kill the dragon), but also refuses to help the refugee dwarves. Years later, as the Company of dwarves reaches his kingdom, he imprisons them for an unlimited time after Thorin's refusal of his deal.
Knight Templar: Thranduil sees himself as always righteous, and won't change his mind no matter how seemingly heinous his actions become.
Laser-Guided Karma: His cold and unfeeling behavior eventually alienates even Legolas, to the point where his son actually refuses to return home after the battle, meaning Thranduil essentially loses the only remaining person he really loves. And he knows it.
Light Is Not Good: He is an elf, but in true Silmarillion style he is an arrogant, self-centered racist, dressed in fabulous silver robes.
The Oathbreaker: How the Dwarves see him. From their point of view, Thranduil was Thrór's vassal (he did, after all, pay tribute), regardless of how chilly their relationship seems to have been. Due to that relationship, Thranduil was obligated to defend Thrór from all his enemies, including Smaug, and regardless of whether victory was likely or even possible. Which is why Thorin repeatedly insists that Thranduil betrayed both his father and grandfather.
Playing Gertrude: A male example. Lee Pace is actually two years younger than Orlando Bloom. Although elves age differently to humans, Thranduil would still potentially be a few thousand years older than Legolas.
The Resenter: Implied in the prologue when he shows deference to Thrór, there's a subtle expression of displeasure on his face. Likewise, when he turns away from aiding the dwarves after Smaug invades, his face shows a hint of satisfaction.
Sadistic Choice: His actions in the first film can be seen as this, as he chooses to not lead his people into a hopeless battle against an enemy that they have no chance against rather than help the dwarves try and retake Erebor from Smaug.
Shell-Shocked Veteran: It turns out Thranduil had fought dragons from the north long before the fall of Erebor and has never really gotten over it, explaining his original reluctance to fight Smaug.
Shut Up, Hannibal!: He beheads an orc after the latter mocks him about the coming war and the return of Sauron.
Somebody Else's Problem: Aside from a (rejected) offer to help Thorin, Thranduil knows that dark forces are gathering, but doesn't do anything about it. When Tauriel questions him on not pursuing the source of the giant spiders outside their kingdom's boundaries, suggesting the spiders will attack other lands as well, he explicitly states that he doesn't care for anything but his own kingdom.
Crazy Survivalist: He'd rather seal-up his kingdom and try to wait out the war he knows is coming. The fact that he and his people live underground in a cave carved and designed so as to look like the vast forest outside speaks volumes, too. Compare this existence to the leafy, outdoorsy environs of Rivendell or the tree-top palace of Lothlórien, and Thranduil exhibits the mentality of a modern-day recluse.
The Stoic: His expression and air is always very aloof and if he shows any emotion, it's extremely subtle.
Not So Stoic: He clearly loses his cool when talking about the dragon fire with Thorin. He also looks genuinely horrified when Thorin accuses him of callousness in abandoning the Dwarves.
He loses his cool again when Thorin tries to kill Bilbo. While he was indifferent to the hobbit and he derided Thorin as a lunatic, he's genuinely shocked at the sight of Thorin trying to kill the person who, after all, rescued him from his dungeon.
Also at the very end he is visibly shaken when Legolas tells him he would not be coming home with him. At this point it finally sinks in just how much of an ass he's been.
Ascended Extra: She fills the role of captain of the elven guard, though their roles have nothing in common. In the film, the Keeper of the Keys is more representative of the book captain; both are unnamed characters whose only role was to get drunk and let the dwarves escape from captivity.
Badass: Captain of the Guard of the only official Elf kingdom, and makes her debut rescuing the party from spiders alongside Legolas. Likely an especially effective fighter, being an army captain at such a tender age and being female (who usually aren't front line troops due to their healing abilities).
Fiery Redhead: She's fearless, decisive, and most at home on the battlefield.
Adaptation Dye-Job: Her counterpart in the book is unlikely to have had red hair, going by Tolkien's lore.
Freudian Trio: With Legolas and Thranduil; is the Id of the group.
Gender Flip: Her counterpart in the book is almost certainly male.
Girls Need Role Models: Tauriel was created largely because in the original book, there were very few female characters. (Lobelia Sackville Baggins, pre Character Development makes a brief appearance in Chapter 18 of the Hobbit, titled "The Return Journey". She's disappointed to learn that Bilbo survived his adventure and she can't inherit Bag End as next of kin.)
Honest Advisor: She recognizes that the king's isolationist policies blind them to larger problems affecting the world at large, and doesn't hesitate to bring it up to Thranduil.
Improbable Age: Outside information gives her age as either 300 or 600, but with either number, she's the elven equivalent of a young adult, hardly the age you'd expect the captain of the king's military to be.
Star-Crossed Lovers/Interspecies Romance: Regardless of how their relationship plays out, Kíli and Tauriel are already this, being a dwarf and an elf whose nations have hated each other for over a century and who's races have been on bad terms since the First Age of Middle Earth, thousands of years ago. Also because Kíli is going to die in the Battle of the Five Armies.
Working Class Heroine: Unlike most of the other characters, she's a commoner, at least by elf standards. Thranduil doesn't hesitate to remind her of her status.
Played By: Michael Mizrahi
Father of Thorin and previous King of Durin's Folk. Died in the dungeons of Dol Guldur, but not before encountering Gandalf and giving him the map and key needed to get into Erebor. Also lost Durin's Ring of Power to Azog.
Father of Thráin and grandfather of Thorin. Previous king of Erebor, once the mightiest of the Dwarf Lords and the first owner of the Arkenstone. Unsuccessfully attempted to reclaim Moria, but was unable to do so in the face of heavy casualties and the presence of Durin's Bane, not to mention his own death in combat against Azog the Defiler.
Big "NO!": When he drops the Arkenstone into a huge pile of gold, which is then swept away by Smaug.
Cool Crown: He wears a thick, helmet-like crown as King under the Mountain.
Curb-Stomp Battle: Smaug's attack on Erebor. Then the Battle of Azanulbizar after his death until Thorin managed to chop off Azog's hand and rally his troops to victory.
Death by Materialism: Narrowly averted in his case; while Smaug's attacking, Thrór races to grab the Arkenstone, but conveniently loses it in the chaos and is dragged away by Thorin.
Frontline General: Leads the combined forces of the seven dwarven clans at Azanulbizar, which leads to his death.
Gold Fever: Described by Bilbo as a literal psychological sickness. Considering that Thrór was in possession of the greatest of the seven Rings of Power given to dwarves, which did indeed make their holders both extremely rich and extremely greedy, Bilbo's uninformed diagnosis isn't too far off.
Kick the Dog: Baiting Thranduil, then denying him the jewels that he clearly wants.
Riches to Rags: Smaug's attack came without warning, so he didn't have the chance to evacuate and salvage any of the gold.
Unwitting Instigator of Doom: If he hadn't been so greedy and gathered so much gold, Smaug might not have been drawn to the mountain in the first place. Then again, as stated above, he was quite likely under the influence of one of the Rings of Power, so how much control he had over himself is debateable.
"I don't like dwarves, they're greedy, and care nothing about the lives of creatures they deem lesser than themselves. But I hate Orcs more. What do you need?"
Played By: Mikael Persbrandt
Chieftain of the Beornings of Western Mirkwood. Also a shapeshifter with the ability to transform into a bear.
Adaptational Angst Upgrade: The scenes at Beorn's house are some of the funniest in the book with Gandalf's elaborate scheme to gain the cranky-but-decent Beorn's hospitality and he's quite cheerful. There's no Last of His Kind either—in fact, there may have been more like him, because his sons formed their own clan by the time of Lord of the Rings.
The elaborate scheme made it into the Extended Edition. Beorn, however, still acts quite hostile rather than the Boisterous Bruiser he is in the book.
Animorphism: Has the ability to transform into a giant, savage bear.
Anti-Hero: He may be a decent guy with an affinity to animals, but he doesn't like Dwarves and only agrees to help the Company having heard of Azog's pursuit.
Badass: He's the last living skinchanger in Middle-earth. He didn't get that way by being easy to kill.
Made a Slave: A former slave of Azog, like many others of his race. He still has cuffs on his wrists in human form.
Meaningful Name: "Beorn" is an Anglicisation of bjørn, Danish/Norwegian for "bear". It also means 'warrior' in Old English.
Morphic Resonance: The design team were keen that he didn't simply appear as a large, bearded man in his humanoid form. He was therefore given a mane-like hairstyle and facial prosthetics that suggested a bestial, Ambiguously Human quality to help distinguish him as a race apart.
Production Foreshadowing: Some promotional material prior to the release of An Unexpected Journey featured Gandalf talking to Beorn in his bear form. The character first appears in The Desolation of Smaug. See here◊.
Shape Shifter: Known as a "skin-changer" in-universe, Beorn can assume the form of a giant black bear.
Trauma Inn: His giant-sized home provides a much needed respite for the Company, following their escape from the Goblin King's brood and Azog's wargs at the close of An Unexpected Journey.
You Shall Not Pass: A variant, the orcs aren't foolhardy enough to tangle with him in bear form which allow the Company to reach the forest without resistance.
Bard the Bowman
"If you awaken that beast, you'll destroy us all!"
Played By: Luke Evans
Descendant of Girion, the last Lord of Dale before its destruction by Smaug. Extremely resentful of Thorin and the dwarves due to the threat they pose to his life and family in Laketown. One of the best archers in Middle-Earth and a captain of Laketown. Future King of Dale.
Action Dad: We have to remember that he's the one who'll kill Smaug.
Adaptational Attractiveness: He's often described in the book as somewhat scruffy and grim, but is played in the films by the dashing Luke Evans, though neither book quality is mutually exclusive of attractiveness.
Adaptation Expansion: Gets introduced to the plot much earlier on than he did in the book - where he only shows up just as Smaug's about to attack Laketown - and his character and motivations are well established in preparation for the third film.
Adult Fear: Bard fears for the safety of his three children and his town that something nearly unstoppable could come anytime and destroy them all.
Anti-Hero: He's a smuggler and very reluctant to help the Dwarves because of a prophecy that claims their arrival heralds Smaug burning the lake and everything on it.
Badass Normal: Manages to match (or nearly) Legolas and Tauriel for archery, despite being a regular human.
The Cassandra / Only Sane Man: He's this for the entire city of Laketown, reminding them what happened to Dale and that though the prophecy starts with promising wealth upon the return of Durin's heir, it ends with Laketown being destroyed - but he's ignored out of common greed.
Continues the Only Sane Man rule when handling negotiations with Thorin. Between Thorin and Thranduil he's the only one who wants to avoid bloodshed.
The Chains of Commanding: Clearly carries the weight of his lineage, but can't reclaim the Lordship of Dale and protect his family at the same time (Smaug also wouldn't stand for it).
Charles Atlas Superpower: Is portrayed as being almost as good an archer as Tauriel or Legolas, despite them having hundreds or thousands of years to hone their craft, and he only thirty or so.
Crazy-Prepared: Is revealed to have the last black arrow hidden in the ceiling of his home without telling anyone - including his own family - about it.
Establishing Character Moment: His introduction establishes his knack for assessing a situation, and his both highly accurate and steady aim with a bow. The first trait makes him realise Smaug will most likely attack Laketown if the dwarves get into the mountain, the second lets us know that if any human can kill Smaug, it's this guy.
Expy: Of Robin Hood.
Genre Savvy: He suspects that to go traipsing about in a treasure room where a dragon lies sleeping might not be the brightest of ideas.
Good Parents: Bard's foremost concern is his three children and he couldn't care less about his claim to Dale, just so long as Sigrid, Bain, and Tilda are safe and provided for.
Identical Grandson: Evans also plays Girion in a flashback, as the king tries - and fails - to kill Smaug while he's destroying Dale. (They're not that identical, though, since Evans was aged up and wore prosthetics for the role.)
Impoverished Patrician: Bard is descended from the last Lord of Dale, ruler of one of the richest kingdoms in Middle-Earth. Bard, meanwhile, makes much of his living from smuggling - quite a step down in the world.
Improbable Aiming Skills: Shown to be as quick and accurate with a bow as the best of Elves (managing to hit arrows out of the air mid-flight), despite being only a short-lived human.
Jerk with a Heart of Gold: Despite his rogue status, he does care for his children and helps the people of Esgaroth in the face of the Master's neglect.
King of the Homeless: Alfrid calls him 'the people's champion,' which makes him a threat to The Master, though he's fairly middle-class himself.
Noble Fugitive: Whose home city was destroyed by Smaug 170 years prior.
Papa Wolf: Has little interest in claiming his birthright as Lord of Dale compared to his overwhelming need to protect Bain, Sigrid, and Tilda (especially after his wife's death).
Properly Paranoid: Bard harshly warns Thorin he'll bring death upon the land; Smaug flies off to destroy Laketown at the end of the film.
He also tries to stick the Black Arrow on a large crossbow in case Smaug comes a-calling, but the Master stops him.
Protector Behind Bars: He begs the guards to release him when he realizes that Smaug is approaching Laketown (and therefore, his children).
Rebel Leader: The Master of Laketown and Alfrid suspect him to be one.
Royals Who Actually Do Something: It is Bard who ultimately kills Smaug. And just like the also-exiled Thorin, Bard is willing to do the same menial jobs as his fellow northmen, mostly working as a smuggler and bargeman to help feed the people of Laketown.
Tap on the Head: He gets one from the Master of Laketown, via a wooden beam, and wakes up with no visible injury.
Played By: John Bell
Bard's son and second King of Dale.
Big Brother Instinct: He valiantly tries to protect his sisters when their home is attacked by Bolg and his orcs.
The Dutiful Son: Bain obeys his father's orders without question, even when it's obvious that he doesn't agree with them. He also stays behind to watch over Sigrid and Tilda in Bard's absence.
Impoverished Patrician: Like his father, Bain is a direct descendent of the last King of Dale and heir to one of the wealthiest kingdoms in Middle-Earth. However, along with Sigrid and Tilda, he spent most of his childhood in poverty and only started living well several years after Thorin's Company reclaimed the Lonely Mountain.
Missing Mom: Bain's mother died sometime prior to The Desolation of Smaug, leaving Bard to raise Bain and his sisters by himself.
Nice Guy: Much more mellow than his father. And like his sisters, Bain is also much more welcoming to the dwarves and does everything he can to help an injured Kíli recover in their home. It's noted in the books that Bain sent many grand gifts from Dale to Bilbo's Farewell Birthday Party in the Shire. He also maintained peaceful ties with Erebor and Dáin Ironfoot, who died in the War of the Ring defending Bain's son, King Brand.
Royals Who Actually Do Something: Despite being a young teenager, Bain helps his father whenever or however he can, including hiding the Black Arrow from the Master's mooks. He will also rebuild the Kingdom of Dale alongside his father and then rule the prosperous and peaceful city after Bard's passing.
Girion, Lord of Dale
Played By: Luke Evans
The last Lord of Dale prior to its destruction by Smaug. Led a last-ditch defense of the city that claimed his life and those of most of his soldiers and citizens.
Action Dad: His only appearance consists entirely of him being a Badass, and he's the progenitor of the future King of Dale, Bard.
Adaptational Badass: Oh yeah. Girion gets a brief mention in the book as being Bard's ancestor, but he never fights Smaug.
Anti-Air: The dwarven windlance he uses to fight Smaug seems to have been designed to have a high enough arc to fire on airborne targets. Justified in that Erebor and Dale had come under threat from other, lesser dragons periodically before Smaug arrived (though most were wingless wyrm-types).
Badass: Showcases supreme badassitude during the Battle of the Five Armies, headbutting a helmeted orc to unconsciousness with his bare forehead, smacking dozens of orcs with his enormous hammer, managing to ride a giant pig to war and not lose a single bit of his awesomeness and generally being
Boisterous Bruiser: He goes into battle practically roaring with glee. When the action focuses on him, he can always be heard bellowing.
Chekhov's Gunman: Mentioned only in passing in the first movie, when Thorin says Dáin will not send him aid. He does make an apperance in the third film, however.
Demoted to Extra: In the "Appendices," Dáin played a major role in the Battle of Azanulbizar; the Iron Hills Dwarves turned the tide of the battle, and Dáin himself killed Azog to avenge his father. Presumably Dáin's role was scaled back after the decision was made to keep Azog alive.
Determinator: Gandalf notes that Dain is even more stubborn than Thorin when he's set on something.
"My teeth are swords! My claws are spears! My wings are a HURRICANE!"
A massive, ancient, and powerful fire drake from the far north of Middle-earth, with ego and greed to match. Destroyed the city of Dale and conquered the kingdom of Erebor for its massive hoard of gold, in which Smaug slept for some sixty years.
Achilles' Heel: Mentioned but not exploited in the second movie. There's a gap in Smaug's scales, made when Bard's ancestor tried to shoot him down when he first attacked Erebor. He missed his target but broke off one of the scales, exposing the flesh underneath.
Advertised Extra: A downplayed example for both films he appears in. For Desolation, while he was purposely mostly kept out of the advertising to save his full appearance for the film's release itself, he's nevertheless one of the two eponymous characters but doesn't even appear until relatively late into the film. And for Battle of the Five Armies, he's once again for the most part kept out of the advertising, but his appearance on the film's theatrical poster counts, considering he only has a handful of scenes before dying.
And Your Little Dog Too: Smaug takes some pleasure in barbecuing literally everything that opposes him. Or vaguely related to those who oppose him.
Attention Whore: Quite a few shades of this, which makes him easy to stall. Bilbo exploits this by heaping him with flattery and overblown titles (and makes up some for himself, to satisfy Smaug's curiosity), which both saves his life and gives Thorin and the rest of the company time to get over their fear of the dragon and come up with a plan to kill Smaug.
Badass: Described as "the chiefest and greatest calamity of the age", Smaug proves he's a monster and a badass in one stroke, by wiping out a prosperous human town and its armed forces and then destroying Erebor, in spite of the hundreds of dwarven warriors that opposed him.
Badass Baritone: Terrible enough to make your hair stand on end and briefly paralyse Bilbo with fear.
Badass Boast: About 80% of his dialogue. This one probably stands out:
Card-Carrying Villain: Completely immoral, incredibly greedy (he literally has mountains worth of coins in his lair, and he will not part with even one of them) utterly malicious and has an ego bigger than his stature, such so that he seems to enjoy being called "Greatest of all Calamities" or "The Tyrannical", amongst other evil nicknames. Justified because Smaug happens to be an Attention Whore of the highest calibre, so being reminded of his power is delicious to him.
And there's his boast "I am fire. I am death."
Can't Take Criticism: Virtually the mirror image of his Attention Whoring, and overlaps with his biggest Berserk Button. In short, he simply won't tolerate any disrespect, no matter how slight. Thorin exploits this to maneuver Smaug into position for the dwarves' plan to kill him, quite easily manipulating him with some rather feeble taunts.
His declaration that he's going to destroy Laketown actually gets Bilbo to come out of hiding, and Bilbo's vain attempt to talk him out of it actually prompts Smaug to not kill him so he can watch the town burn.
He also contemplates allowing Bilbo to take the Arkenstone, just so he can watch it destroy Thorin as it did Thrór. He ultimately decides against it, though.
For the Evulz: His initial motive for attacking Laketown, compared to the book, is less about revenge for being robbed and more so because he likes killing, given that trying to talk him out of it actually makes him MORE eager to do it.
Genius Bruiser: A unstoppable machine of war, but also cunning enough to deduce pretty much everything about Bilbo on the spot.
Glowing Eyes of Doom: The Desolation of Smaug shows that not only do his eyes glow, they also seem to emit beams of light, much like in the Rankin-Bass animation, albeit with a more subtle effect.
Greed: The reason he drove the dwarves out of their home.
Hannibal Lecture: Gives a good one about Thorin's motivations, with the added bonus of being right about a lot of it.
Hypocrite: A lot of the things he says about Thorin and the dwarves could easily be used to describe him. Such as them being drawn to treasure like flies or calling Thorin an usurper with a foul purpose. Naturally, he seems oblivious to this.
It's All About Me: When pretty much your entire personality falls under the heading of Pride and Greed, this is a given. He makes it very clear that he considers the Mountain and its treasure to be his property, and doesn't even bother justifying his actions or cruelty.
It Amused Me: A combination of enjoying flattery and this trope makes him talk with Bilbo rather than killing him immediately. As soon as he gets bored with the "little game", however...
Jerkass: Aside from the obvious with his murdering hundreds of innocent lives if they stand between him and treasure, or to make somebody else watch, give the chance he take time to rub in his victims' helplessness. This highlighted when he sees Bard's son with him the tower he's trying to shoot him from and taunts Bard about how he won't be able to save his son and he burn with the rest of the town.
The Juggernaut: The most that Thorin's Company manage to do to Smaug is slow him down and severely piss him off.
Lightning Bruiser: He's huge, and not only can he fly fast, but he can move fast on foot and can easily smash rock pillars as big as he is.
Light Is Not Good: Less so than in the book (largely due to the dim lighting of his cave in the movie), but he still radiates a fiery glow and is eyes are subtle searchlights, as a refference to the animated movie.
Logical Weakness: During the climax of the movie in the giant gold-smelting furnace room, when he's about to roast Thorn, Bilbo unleashes a reservoir worth of water on him, temporarily neutralizing his fire-breath... though this only works for a short time.
The Magnificent: "The Golden", "The Chiefest and Greatest of Calamities", "Chiefest and greatest calamity of our age"...
Manipulative Bastard: Excels at this. He's perfectly happy to talk to Bilbo for a while and turn all his fears and doubts against him. He refrains from killing Bilbo because he wants him to watch Laketown burn. He even briefly considers letting Bilbo take the Arkenstone to Thorin, just for the pleasure of watching it drive Thorin mad with greed. He ultimately decides that doing so isn't worth the risk.
Narcissist: He clearly enjoys Bilbo's feigned flattery, despite being well-aware of who sent him and why. He doesn't think for a second it's true, but gives Bilbo an indefinite stay of incineration as long as he keeps it up.
Nigh-Invulnerability: Dwarven black arrows are said to be able to kill a dragon. It took three just to knock off one of his scales. During the battle within Erebor, he's bathed in molten gold and just shakes it off like it's merely really hot water.
Oh, Crap: He has one once he realizes the giant golden statue he has been staring slack jawed at is still molten.
Our Dragons Are Different: In bodyshape, at least, he's a wyvern (four limbs - a pair of bat like wings and hind legs). This is probably due to the design team's desire to present an anatomically "correct" (albeit fantastic) creature — no reptilian species has 6 limbs. This attention to detail was present during the creation of Smaug's precursors, the Fell Beasts, and the WETA team were keen to present a creature that could believably become airborne. Concept artist John Howe was even asked to remove the "elbow spikes" he had drawn in as these don't appear in nature. Smaug's body proportion and quadrupedal walking gait seem to have been designed with the giant ornithocheiroid pterosaurs of the late Cretaceous period in mind, with disproportionately gigantic, winged forelimbs coupled with a relatively small body and hind-legs. His head resembles that of a monitor lizard.
Since he doesn't actually do anything with his unimaginable wealth, this seems as likely a motivation for his hoarding as pure Greed, and his reaction to theft is that of one who's been insulted rather than inconvenienced in any way.
Psychological Combat: As is typical for Middle-Earth dragons, Smaug loves this as much as causing physical destruction.
Required Secondary Powers: As a fire-breathing dragon that can generate heat comparable to that of Mount Doom, by necessity Smaug must have a hide that is extremely heat resistant. When the Dwarves try to kill him with molten gold, he of course is only mildly inconvenienced by it.
The Scrooge: Taken Up to Eleven; he literally hoards mountains of coins in his lair, and he makes it very clear that he won't part with even one of them.
Serkis Folk: In the movie, to match his and Benedict's facial expressions. The motion capture was actually revealed to cover far more than just Benedict's face: he wore a full-body suit, having studied the movements of reptiles in zoos to move in a more reptilian way.
Sloth: If left alone, he doesn't seem to do much beyond sleep. Not that anyone's complaining; most people are very glad that he lacks the motivation to do more than sleep on his treasure, and the thought of him joining with Sauron unsurprisingly has everyone worried.
Smug Smiler / Slasher Smile: The shape of his mouth gives him a permanent example of the former, though when he bares his teeth it looks like the latter.
Smug Snake: Pardon the pun. Powerful and unstoppable as he might be, it's very clear his ego is way too big for his own good.
Smug Super: But with his size and power, he has a lot to back up his claim.
Snake Talk: Briefly, as he assures Bilbo that "I will not part with a sssingle coin".
Even before that: "Hmmm...there is ssssomething about you."
Strong as They Need to Be: His Breath Weapon is shown to be strong enough blast apart stone towers in flashbacks, but in all present-day scenes acts as pure flame with no concussive force. Justified since he's fighting inside Erebor; as much as he wants the dwarves dead, he doesn't want to destroy his treasure doing it.
Villainous Breakdown: He's a calm, confident, arrogant bastard, up until he's actually injured by the dwarves. Then he goes berserk.
Villain Has a Point: His comments about Thorin's greed and that he judged Bilbo's life "worth nothing" prove right on the money given that not only did it take a What the Hell, Hero? for Thorin to even enter the mountain, but when he entered he actually held a sword to him when he didn't have the Arkenstone.
Volcanic Veins: The gaps between the scales on his throat and belly glow red when he's about to breathe flame.
Yank the Dog's Chain: Does this to Bilbo when he noticing him going after the Arkenstone by keeping it out of his reach.
You Are Too Late: Gandalf organized the dwarves in the hopes of stopping Smaug from joining Sauron's forces. Smaug's dialogue to Bilbo reveals that he's well aware that Sauron has returned and that if he does come, he would gladly join the dark lord just For the Evulz.
The three Trolls
The Trolls: Bert, Tom, and William
"Nothing wrong with a bit of raw Dwarf! Nice and crunchy!"
Played By: Mark Hadlow, William Kircher, Peter Hambleton
Three trolls from the Ettenmoors the Company encounters in the Trollshaws west of Rivendell. Extremely stupid, they attempted to eat the Company, but failed due to Bilbo's stalling, a smidge of Gandalf's magic, and sunlight.
Aerith and Bob: They're the only characters in the story with modern English names.
All Trolls Are Different: They have a pale, fleshy skin-tone, and are more humanoid-looking and intelligent than the trolls of the Lord of the Rings trilogy, speaking in perfect English (albeit in suitably thuggish tones).
Roar Before Beating: However, a vestige of their more primitive troll nature is seen when Dwalin smashes Bert on the foot, and he lets out an outraged, bestial roar.
Exact Words: Kíli demands the trolls drop Bilbo. They oblige and toss Bilbo right on top of him.
Genre Savvy: William reminds the others to hurry up because dawn is approaching and he doesn't fancy being turned to stone. Also Bert figures out what Bilbo is up to, when Bilbo is trying to stall for time by Talking the Monster to Death. He rhetorically asks if Bilbo thought that he didn't know what he was up to? And bluntly states that Bilbo was playing them for fools. Unfortunately for him and the other two, by then it is too late, dawn had arrived, and Gandalf appears to proclaim that "The Dawn shall take you all!"
Wacky Wayside Tribe: They are the first villains the company encounter, but they are quickly defeated and their scene could easily be removed from the plot. However, that way we would miss one of the most iconic scenes of the story.
Azog the Defiler
Azog the Defiler
(Black Speech)"I don't want excuses. I want the head of the Dwarf-king!"
A powerful Gundabad Orc chieftain and Arch-Enemy of dwarves in general, and Durin's line in particular, which he has sworn to exterminate. Goblin King of Moria.
Adaptational Badass: Azog's more of a hands-on villain in the films, surviving the battle where he originally died and chasing after Thorin for revenge. In the lore of the books he's a lesser example of Orcus on His Throne (after Sauron), as he moved into Moria after the Dwarves abandoned it and triggered war with the dwarves after he beheaded a wandering Thrór for "trespassing."
Big Bad: In Battle of Five Armies Smaug dies early in the movie and Sauron retreats to Mordor, he's the highest ranking villain left and is the main threat for the rest of the movie.
Black Speech: In contrast to the usage of Common Tongue by the other Orcs and Goblins featured in Jackson's films, Azog and his band of hunters instead speak a variation of Orkish that's modeled after the Trope Namer.
Body Horror: The orc version of a prosthetic limb is apparently shoving a clawed spike through the stump of the severed arm.
If you look carefully, you can see that his loincloth is made out of skinned dwarf faces.
Carry a Big Stick: Wields a mace not unlike Sauron's at the beginning of The Fellowship of the Ring.
Combat Pragmatist: Since Thorin managed to cut off his arm in their first encounter, he doesn't hesitate to use every advantage he has the second time they meet, rather than just rush head on like an average orc.
Hides in wait for the perfect chance to sneak attack Gandalf as he searches Dol Guldur.
Commuting on a Bus: Is largely absent in the second film due to being called back to Dol Goldur by Sauron in order to lead the Orc army.
Dangerously Genre Savvy: Rather than face Thorin in single combat a second time, he simply sets his Warg loose on him, and it almost worked too.
Attempts to kill Gandalf with a surprise attack from behind an illusion as opposed to facing a wizard directly. Also knows better than to attack the dwarves with Beorn present.
In the third film, he averts Hollywood Tactics and uses an effective divide and conquer strategy, an elaborate signal system to direct his troops, specialized siege trolls and plenty of auxillaries including goblin mercenaries. And despite his violent nature he stays away back and directs it from afar rather than fighting on the front lines like the rest of the leaders are, so he doesn't risk getting killed like they do.
Justified, in that Word of God states that Manu Bennett's portrayal of Azog in the film was partially modeled after the Trope Namer himself, more specifically his role in The Empire Strikes Back. Even the quote under his picture right now is paraphrasing one of Vader's lines.
The Dragon: To the Necromancer, evidently. One of many to hold this position.
Evil Albino: Nicknamed the "Pale Orc". For bonus points, his warg is an albino as well.
Not Quite Dead: Believed to have died from his injuries during a failed attempt by the Dwarves to retake Moria. Turns out he didn't.
And also in the third film when he is dragged under the ice while fighting Thorin.
Our Orcs Are Different: He's notably the first orc character in the Jackson films to act on his own initiative instead of taking orders from Sauron or Saruman. In the second film it's revealed that he does in fact serve Sauron, but his pursuit of Thorin and his Company is a purely personal vendetta that Sauron considers completely irrelevant.
Plot Irrelevant Villain: He has pretty much nothing to do with the dwarves' quest for Erebor, and even his personal connection to Thorin comes from an entirely separate incident. On the other hand, he's closely connected to the larger plot concerning the fate of Middle-Earth that the dwarves' quest only plays a small part in.
Averted in "Battle of Five Armies" where he plays a direct role
Psycho Prototype: Ever wonder why he looks so radically different from the other orcs? According to supplementary material Azog's look is supposed to Call Back to the orc origin given by Saruman: that of tortured elves corrupted into shoddy imitations. Thus his look holds more of an animalistic elvish look than his brethren, and his competence gains some explanation as well.
Relative Button: Hits Thorin's when he taunts the dwarf about his grandfather's death.
Walking Shirtless Scene: Azog is notably bare-chested in the films, in contrast with his novel counterpart, who wore a full set of iron armor. As is explained in the documentary, the final design of Azog was subject to constant changes until one or two weeks prior to the deadline. Some of which ended up being used for his lieutenants, e.g. Yazneg and his son, Bolg. This gets subverted in the third movie, where he wears a cuirass and greaves, though still doesn't wear a helm or any other type of headgear.
You Have Failed Me: When one of his minions comes back empty handed and says he barely escaped with his life, Azog says it would have been better if he had paid with it, then throws him to the Wargs.
Played By: Conan Stevens, Lawrence Makoare
Son of Azog and another powerful Orc chieftain.
Ascended Extra: Although he was a major antagonist in the novel, he didn't actually enter the story until the final chapter, and he dies right after he's introduced. Here, we can expect him to appear more frequently.
Early on into the second part, he takes over hunting the dwarves from Azog, who has other business.
Although his book role seems to have been usurped by his father. But this is Subverted in the third movie, when he arrives leading a second army of Orcs from Gundabad.
Badass: Fights Legolas evenly, even blocking off a stab from Orcrist, then actually manages to make him to bleed. The elf's reaction is priceless. In the "Battle of Five Armies", he fights Fili and Taruiel and kills the former, and despite the injuries he sustained, in his rematch with Legalos he nearly kills before a lucky intervention on Thorin's part saves him.
Badass Family: With his father, Azog the Defiler. Even acknowledged in the third movie, when Legolas recognizes him by name, and refers to him as "the spawn of Azog the Defiler". Considering that Azog actually entrusts him with a decades-old grudge against Thorin, he's probably the only one he respects.
Bald of Evil: Much like his father, though unlike Azog, Bolg has at least a few strands of hair on his head.
Tin Tyrant: Wears a set of iron armor, and even has pieces of metal strapped to his head.
Unflinching Walk: One of his noticeable traits is a steady, powerful stroll, most prominently in his introduction and after his fight with Legolas. Especially noticeable since most other Orcs limp, hop, waddle, slink, etc.
You can see two orcs who are ordered to follow him imitating the same stride.
Villain Exit Stage Left: Attempted at the end of Desolation of Smaug with Legolas in pursuit. "Battle of Five Armies" reveals he got away when he got up to his warg pack, which forced Legalos to break off.
The combined group of Orcs, Goblins, and Wargs that assist Azog in his hunt for Thorin and Company. See also the descriptions of the general species in the character pages of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. Here are tropes that represent notable individuals in the group, and the group in general.
Composite Character: The Warg Matriarch appears to be a gender-swapped version of the wolf-chieftain mentioned in the original novel, but her role also fulfills a unique one created for the films.
Likewise, the group in general combines the elite guard of Azog from the Appendices of The Lord of the Rings with the Goblins and Wargs present in the "Out of the Frying Pan" chapter of The Hobbit.
Also in a more literal sense, as is explained in the commentary. The designs for Yazneg and Narzug were early versions of Azog that the crew didn't feel would make the character justice, but also appararently were too good to be forsaken entirely.
Defiant to the End: When captured by the Silvan elves during the attack on their realm, Narzug mocks the Elves in the clear knowledge he'll never escape their halls alive.
Elite Mooks: Are notably much more competent than the Goblins residing in Goblin-town.
Evil Albino: The Warg Matriarch, mirroring the appearance of her rider, Azog.
Would Hurt a Child: Being Orcs, they had no issue attacking Bard's children during their assault upon Bard's home.
You Have Failed Me: Yazneg is subjected to this by Azog himself for failing to hunt down Thorin and Company, and getting most of his hunting party killed by the Elves of Rivendell.
The Great Goblin
The Great Goblin
"Bones will be shattered, necks will be wrung! You'll be beaten and battered, from racks you'll be hung! You will die down here and never be found! Down in the deep of Goblin-Tooooown!"
Played By: Barry Humphries
A powerful Goblin chieftain of Goblin-town. Surprisingly personable and snarky for a goblin.
Acrofatic: Despite being about twenty times their size, he doesn't seem to be any less agile than his smaller kin.
Adaptational Villainy: Although his book counterpart was also a villain, the first film makes him willing to answer Azog's bounty on Thorin's head. In the book, the goblins wanted them destroyed simply because they considered them spies and a threat (even though the dwarves never wanted any trouble with the goblins).
Adipose Rex: Big and fat and the king. Self explanatory really.
Bad Boss: While this is essentially the norm for orcs and goblins, he's shown sitting on some and crushing others with his feet. In the extended edition, he kills one of his own minions during his Villain Songjust for kicks.
Berserk Button: The sight of Orcrist causes him to lose his cool completely, making him opt to forgo torture in favor of killing the dwarves immediately:
"I know that sword! It is the Goblin Cleaver! The Biter, the blade that sliced a thousand necks! Slash them! Beat them! Kill them, kill them all! Cut off his head!"
Faux Affably Evil: He acts very jolly and cordial for a sadist. The extended edition takes this further, having him lead his goblins in a merry Villain Song about how he plans on torturing and killing the dwarves for trespassing into his kingdom.
Freak Out: When he sees the dwarves' elven swords.
Genius Bruiser: Enormously strong (he effortlessly smashes his way through a bridge) and he comes across as pretty knowledgeble, knowing Thorin's history and being able to correctly identify magic swords on sight.
Genre Savvy: When he sees the elven swords, he orders the dwarves killed pretty much immediately. Unfortunately, he's not quite quick enough.
Lord of Dol Guldur and the source of the evil infecting Mirkwood. Becomes the primary target of the White Council's efforts.Also see Sauron's character sheet in The Lord of the Rings.
Ascended Extra: He's never actually seen in the book and prior to the added relevance he's given in The Lord Of The Rings, he's more of a plot device to keep Gandalf out of the story than an actual character, given how little his revealed about him. Here, he plays a much bigger role.
Asskicking Equals Authority: Azog working for him comes off more as a case of fear than loyalty especially given his fight with Gandalf,
Bigger Bad: Azog and Smaug are the major antagonists in An Unexpected Journey and The Desolation of Smaug, but Azog works for the Necromancer, and Gandalf's reason for helping Thorin is to prevent Smaug from allying with him.
The Corruption: Spreads one over Mirkwood. Radagast is the first to notice its nasty effects on the wildlife.
Curb-Stomp Battle: Dishes one out to Gandalf in The Desolation of Smaug, overwhelming his light with waves of darkness before incinerating the wizard's staff and telekinetically slamming him into a wall.
Dark Is Evil: He manifests as a giant shadow and makes card carrying statements like "There is no light that can defeat the darkness" and so forth.
The Dreaded: Azog breaks off his pursuit of Thorin because his fear of the Necromancer outweighs his hate of Thorin.
Knight of Cerebus: His mere presence results in Foreshadowing to darker events on the horizon and 'Desolation of Smaug is much darker because there's more emphasis on his presence, and his reappearance towards the climax of the film marks the Darkest Hour with Gandalf being capture, him sending out his army, and Smaug appearing than going to destroy Laketown.
Living Shadow: Since he doesn't have a physical body, he manifests as a shadowy figure.
The Necromancer's greatest servant and holder of one of the greatest of the nine rings of power given to Men. Formerly king of the evil realm of Angmar in northern Eriador, which was destroyed by a combined force of Elves and Men of Gondor and Arnor, but not before his forces destroyed Fornost, the last stronghold of Arnor.Also see his character sheet in The Lord of the Rings.
Cobweb Jungle: They're transforming Mirkwood into this and set web traps everywhere. Bilbo inadvertently informs them of the presence of the Company when he plays with a web filament, not knowing what it really is.
Giant Spiders: Not as big as Shelob in The Return of the King but still very dangerous.
The elected leader of Laketown, a large town built entirely on the Long Lake, and an all-around Slimeball. He's not a foe to the Company in The Desolation of Smaug since he provides genuine help to them before they reach the Lonely Mountain, but he holds a serious grudge against Bard, whom he considers a threat to his authority on the town.
Adaptational Villainy: While he is a greedy bastard, he doesn't directly oppose Bard in the book, in which him being the bad guy was mostly an Informed Attribute since he didn't actually do any evil.
Adipose Rex: Notably not the 'Rex' part officially, but as ruler of Laketown, he's still the head honcho, and grossly overweight (to the point of gout).
The Alcoholic: The Master gets several brandies down before breakfast.
Dirty Coward: Flees Laketown during Smaug's attack with a barge filled with gold and leaving his citizens to die.
The Dung Ages: Laketown is living in one. Since the destruction of Erebor and Dale, the trade they depend on has diminished substantially, with the Woodland Realm as sole source of trade. As the Company enters Laketown, they pass stone ruins in the lake, indicating that Laketown was once much larger, wealthier, and cleaner. Thorin apparently remembers that Laketown.
Pet the Dog: Provides clothes, armor and viable weapons to Thorin and the Company, and offers them a feast the night before they reach the Lonely Mountain. Although he only does so because he thinks it will benefit him later.
Slave to PR: It's made clear early on that the only reason he's able to maintain his power is by keeping his people happy. Bard is allowed to smuggle 14 barrels of fish into the city because of this. Later on, he allows the dwarves to continue their mission after they make it known that there will be money in it for the village.
Number Two: For the Master. Later tries to be this for Bard with varying success.
Dirty Coward: Is this especially in Battle of the Five Armies, down to disguising himself as an old woman. And then having to run for it when the real old women join the battle.
Expy: Basically a combination of Edmund Blackadder and Gríma Wormtongue, with the redeeming qualities of each scrubbed out.
Jerkass: He wheedles Bard just to be a jerk. In Battle of the Five Armies he's especially this to everyone, from upset survivors to Bilbo and Gandalf.
Jerk With A Heart Of Jerk: Every time he's given an opportunity to redeem himself, Bard ordering him to lead the women and children to safety during a battle, he manages to be an even bigger jerk by pushing them out of his way and refuse to partake in the battle after the womenfolk decide to take matters in their own hands.
Karma Houdini: He survives Smaug's attack on Laketown after the Master pushes him out of the boat to lose weight, and despite a near-attempted hanging by the angry survivors and being in the middle of the battle he still avoids any karma.
Kick the Dog: When Fili asks for help for his sick brother Kili, after the Master refuses Alfrid acts more rudely towards the Dwarves, saying "Do I look like an apothecary?"
Obstructive Bureaucrat: He goes out of his way to make life harder for Bard, who threatens the Master's hegemony over Laketown.
Smug Snake: He's a lot like Wormtongue from The Lord of the Rings, but less creepy and more sleazy.
Spotlight-Stealing Squad: Despite his non-canonical status, in Battle of the Five Armies Alfrid's Aesop Amnesia comedy shtick is afforded the same if not more screen-time than Beorn, many of the thirteen dwarves and even Bilbo.
Preppy Name: The name Sackville was a familiar "aristocratic" name in Tolkien's day, especially in double-barrelled names such as Sackville-West, and he presumably used it (and the contrast with the more mundane Baggins) to imply the somewhat snobbish nature of the Sackville-Bagginses.
Rich Bitch: In An Unexpected Journey, she appears in a neat cameo, prissily tottering over Hobbiton Bridge in a Pimped-Out Dress, whilst making sure she shoots her cousin-in-law Bilbo a decidedly shitty look.
Sticky Fingers: She's not above pinching silverware from relatives, as Bilbo explains, but probably justifies it as karmic theft, given that she also sees Bag-End as her rightful inheritance...
In Battle of the Five Armiesshe tries to steal Bilbo's silverware with him presumed dead.
Timeshifted Actor: In Fellowship, her older self (aged around 83) is played by Peter Jackson regular Elizabeth Moody, AKA Lionel's mother from Braindead. In An Unexpected Journey, she's around 23.
Characters from deleted scenes.
Gerontius "The Old" Took
Gerontius "The Old" Took
Played By: Dan Hennah
Patriarch of one of the two greatest Hobbit families and Thain of the Shire, the last (ceremonial) representative of the fallen Kings of Arnor. Grandfather of Bilbo and great-grandfather of Frodo.
Badass Family: Clan-leader of an uncharacteristically adventurous hobbit family, he's Bilbo's grandfather.
One of the Old Took's four daughters and Bilbo's mother.
Floral Theme Naming: Like most female hobbits, she's named after a flower. Despite the negative connotations of "deadly nightshade", the name is derived from the Italian for "beautiful woman".
Happy Flashback: Appears in the above mentioned flashback, where we see her gently admonish a very young Bilbo after he whacks Gandalf with his wooden sword. It's a sweet cameo, and nice to see she and Bilbo together in less troubled times.
Posthumous Character: Whilst she appears in the flashback, mentioned above, by the time of the events depicted in the main story, she has been dead for around ten years.
Played By: Brian Hotter
Another wealthy but rather unpleasant hobbit; husband of Lobelia Sackville-Baggins.
Feuding Families: He's Bilbo's first-cousin and closest living heir, and therefore, his ambition was to succeed Bilbo as head of the Baggins family and be head of two families at once. Bilbo thwarts this by officially naming Frodo as the heir to Bag End.
Preppy Name: Though his father was a Baggins, he inherited headship of the Sackville family through his mother, Camellia. Thus, Otho effectively founded a new family.
Timeshifted Actor: He appears in Fellowship at the venerable age of 91, but in An Unexpected Journey, he's around 30.