Frank Frazetta’s ‘Lord of the Rings’ Illustrations Make Middle Earth Metal
In the world of comics, the legendary Frank Frazetta is probably most closely associated with Conan the Barbarian and the occasional Molly Hatchet album cover, but it’s his incredible work in fantasy illustration that catapulted him to fame. Case in point, his illustrations for The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, originallly published as a limited (to 1,000) signed and numbered portfolio in 1975, which capture key moments of J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic in Frazetta’s absolutely beautiful style.
There’s a Hobbit movie on the horizon, but it’s not like we ever need an excuse to check out some art from Frazetta, so check them out after the cut!First up, the title page, in which Frazetta gives us Gandalf leading a group of Dwarves that look quite a bit like hobos, what with the fact that they’re trucking along with bindles:
The shot of the Hobbits moving through the undergrowth is one of the perfect examples of how lush Frazetta could get with his backgrounds (and with giant hairy hobbit feet):
Bilbo Baggins (he’s only three feet tall) faces off against a wolf that looks surprisingly friendly:
Here’s Gollum, who, for those of you who haven’t read The Hobbit, is essentially Middle Earth’s version of the Riddler, but with a magic ring and raw fish instead of fiendish deathtraps:
One of the climactic moments of Lord of the Rings is when Eowyn reveals that she’s a woman, and can therefore get around the fact that “no man” can defeat the Nazgûl. This is meant to be a surprise to the bad guys, which seems pretty unlikely in Frazetta’s version of events:
Yeah. Definitely pretty unlikely. The lack of pants is kind of a giveaway, but the witch-king may have been too busy being awesome to notice details:
Then again, once you see his take on the army of orcs, it looks like Eowyn’s armor might just fit right in:
Either way, Frazetta’s Lord of the Rings illustrations are great.