I know doing something like this has become quite popular and we don't intend to plagiarise. This started many years ago as part of my brother's school project where he had to write a creative story. He opted for an abridged script-parody of the Two Towers (with some contribution by my sister and I). Now, reading over it again, it still cracks me up and after some prompting, have decided to write a similar script for The Fellowship of the Ring and The Return of the King and share it.
This script would not have been possible without many hilarious sources of inspiration (in no particular order):
– J.R.R Tolkien's 'The Lord of the Rings' and Peter Jackson's film adaptation
– Legendary Frog (check out his videos on Newgrounds .com)
– Morthoron (read his hilarious LOTR parody here on FanFiction .net)
– Diana Wynne Jones' 'A Tough Guide to Fantasyland' (mandatory reading for all fantasy readers and writers)
– Rod (check out his abridged scripts at the-editing-room .com)
– A little bit of Shakespeare
– Movies, YouTube videos, RPGs, songs and books too numerous to list
– The way too active combined imagination of my brother, sister and I
'Mandatory' disclaimer thingy: Obviously I do not own any of the LOTR characters or any of the works which have been references (both covertly and noticeably; knowingly and unknowingly). This has merely been written for non-profit fun, so enjoy and please comment!
Lord of the Rings:The Abridged Script
The Fellowship of the Ring
(Frodo is sitting idly in his the kitchen of Bag End, drinking tea. Outside, birds are chirping, the grass is green, and the sun is shining in tender reminiscence of ye olde idyllick English countryside)
Gandalf (appearing suddenly): You there! Midget–
Gandalf: Whatever. You short people look all the same to me. Anyway, you seem like conveniently un-heroic material to go on a quest filled with terror and death to defeat the Dark Lord against your will. Grab the Ring and let's go.
Frodo: What ring?
Gandalf: The One Ring to Rule Them All. Obviously. Or is there another ring of overpowering evil that I do not know about that your uncle has been stashing for the past 50 years? (Silence) No, did not think so. Now, quit wasting time! The fate of Middle Earth hangs on a shoe string!
Sam (barging in through the window): Now, Mr Frodo ain't goin' anywhere without me! I mean, every hero needs a convenient side-kick who will act as his literary foil and…
Gandalf: Yes, yes. You may come. Meet me at the sign of the Prancing Pony.
Frodo: Wait! Aren't you coming with us?
Gandalf: Heck no! I have important wizard business to attend to in the cliché wizard's tower of the soon-to-turn-traitor Saruman. Plus, the danger you will face on your way to the Prancing Pony does not even compare to the hazards thrown at you in Parts II and III. I'm sure you'll manage. (Disappears with a magical 'pop')
Sam: So what was that about your impending doom…?
(At the sign of the Prancing Pony. It's pouring rain.)
Sam: You know, Mr Frodo… I've been thinking…
Frodo (under his breath): Never a good sign…
Sam (continuing unabated): …that in fantasy stories, one never seems to be able to get from point A to point B without touching all the other letters of the alphabet, if you get my meanin'. I mean, so far we have met some elves, been accosted by a man who speaks only in rhyme, been nearly killed by wraiths, been stalked by suitably frightening minions of the Dark Lord and… Oh yeah! Picked up Merry and Pippin!
Frodo: Sam, you're thinking of the book. This is the movie script, and an abridged one at that. None of what you described has actually happened.
Sam: But that don't make no sense! Merry and Pippin are still here aren't they?
Merry: 'Course we're here! We're an integral part of the story!
Pippin: I mean, this dark and brooding tale needs a few snatches of ill-placed comic humour, don't it not?
Frodo (ignoring the bickering that is beginning to erupt between his relations, steps into the inn): I see no signs of Gandalf. But there is a dark and mysterious stranger watching us in a most disturbing manner.
Sam (whispering): Don't let appearances fool you, Mr Frodo. He might turn out to be a valuable ally or the long-lost heir of a kingdom. In any case, he looks to have seen his fair share of adventure. Maybe even knows Gandalf…
Frodo: Don't be ridiculous Sam! No one here knows that we're here to see…
Aragon (in a gruff voice to match his rugged appearance): Evening, Frodo Baggins. I assume you are here to see Gandalf.
Frodo: Argh! How do you know about that?
Aragon: Plot device. In any event, the wizard is not coming. You need to follow me. (Strides out the door)
(At the top of Weathertop. Weather is suitably ferocious to set the tone of the upcoming scene.)
Frodo: Wait! How did we get here so fast? And where's Aragon?
Sam: Like you said yourself, Mr Frodo – this is an abridged script.
Pippin: But that doesn't explain how we lost that Strider guy.
Sam: Maybe the 'time-warp' couldn't handle it. Since we picked up you two (inclining his head towards Merry and Pippin), we had to lose Strider. It is possible that the quantum mechanics that govern this form of travel have a weight limit and…
Merry (interrupting Sam's impendingly tedious physics lecture): Umm… Guys… You might want to turn around…
(Four Nazgûl advance upon them in slow motion, their robes and capes billowing in the wind. Menacing music rises in the background)
Sam: Ah…This appears to be the part where the hero gets tainted by the force of evil. Merry, Pippin, move out of the way… You don't want to interfere with the plot now, do you?
Merry and Pippin (in high-pitched unison): But what about Frodo? Wait. Where is he?
(The invisible Frodo is stabbed on cue by a Nazgûl sporting a wickedly evil-looking knife. Horrible screaming of unimaginable pain can be heard. Lighting crackles overheard.)
Sam (in response to Merry and Pippin's worried expressions): Don't worry about him; he'll survive. After all, this is a trilogy.
(Aragon appears out of nowhere with drawn sword and begins hacking away at the unfortunate Nazgûl who were only doing what their scripts had instructed them to do.)
Aragon (completely un-winded after the intense fight): The Nazgûl have been repelled. We must haste to Rivendell. Have wasted too much time already. And I am late for my date…
(Rivendell, the Council of Elrond)
Elrond (in a majestic baritone): Friends! You have been summoned to this here Secret Council to decide the fate of Middle-Earth!
Frodo: Huh? I'm alive?
Gandalf (in an annoyed whisper): Obviously. It would be bad form to kill the hero half-way through the first Booke. Now shut up and pay attention!
Elrond (finishing his grand oration): …one of you must do this.
Gandalf (jerking his thumb at a very confused Frodo): Since – in typical Gary Stu fashion – he has somehow managed to carry the Ring this far without becoming tainted by its malice, I nominate the midget.
Frodo: Hobbit! (Pauses, confused) Wait… Nominate me for what?
Rest of Council (intones dramatically): We concur.
Elrond: Very well. I need eight more volunteers.
Gimli: Wha' fer?
Legolas (long golden tresses swirling mystically in the breeze): To act as a poetic and metaphoric counter-balance to The Nine. Numbers have enormous power and great significant in the fantasy genre, all the more so when they are paralleled and reflected by…
Elrond (impatiently cutting off the sermon): So? Who will it be? (Silence accompanied by self-conscious fidgeting) Fine. Have it your way. The gnome–
Elrond (continuing, unabashed): …will be accompanied by his gardener, his miscreant relations, the clueless dwarf, the pretty elf-boy, the useless Gondorian and the heir-in-denial. And we'll add the wizard for good measure.
Gandalf (shocked): What? I have better things to do than shepherd these witless goons half-way across the land! I am a very powerful wizard, I'll have you know, and…
Elrond: Don't worry. You will soon drop out of the story – quite literally. You only have to put up with them until Moria.
Gandalf: Fine! But I demand a pay-rise!
Elrond (non-committed): I'll take it up with The Management. (Turning to the resentful group who are already bickering amongst themselves) Since every fantasy band needs a suitably fantasy-esque name, you shall be known as the Fellowship of the Ring! (Dramatic crescendo)
(The dark, dank and gloomy Mines of Moria)
Sam: Well, for once, I have to say that I am glad for the 'time warp'. We have managed to cut down the story by several pages and avoid the month-long trek ending in a howling blizzard at the top of that temperamental mountain.
Merry: Yes, but now we are in these depressing caves full of mummified corpses and noxious air. They are making me lose my appetite…
Pippin (disentangling himself from an enormously cliché spider web): Don't forget the cobwebs and the goblins!
Frodo: And we're being stalked by Gollum who has somehow managed to find us despite the huge size of Middle-Earth.
Gimli (in the faux-Scottish accent delegated to dwarves): Och! Don't ye go insultin' these here mines, laddies! They'ere unce grand halls o' dwarven lairds fulla the musical sound o' a thousand score picks clanggin' 'gainst stone accompanied by merry laughter!
Gandalf (stopping suddenly in uncharacteristic, brooding confusion): I have no memory of this place…
Boromir: Wait. So you're saying you're not omniscient? (Yelps as Aragorn elbows him painfully.)
Frodo: So… What do we do now?
(On the far side of the Bridge of Khazad-Dûm)
Frodo: Oh, for crying out loud! That was the worst cut-scene in the history of script writing!
Gimli: Och! We missed out the dungeon brawl w' the troll? That were me fav'rit scene! (Emits a small sob.)
Pippin: We appear to be missing Gandalf…
Legolas: My elven heritage grants me a +2 bonus in low-light conditions. So despite the fact that there is no source of light in the vicinity, I believe our mislaid wizard is to be found in the middle of yonder bridge.
Merry: What is he waiting for?
(On cue, the towering Balrog steps onto the bridge. Its enormous weight immediately causes the bridge to collapse, causing both it and Gandalf to plummet into the yawning abyss below. Gandalf's faint cry of 'So long, suckers!' can just be discerned.)
Sam: Well, that was anticlimactic…
(Forests of Lothlorien)
Galadriel (exuding a glowing silvery-aura and speaking in an ethereal voice): Welcome, travellers. We known that you have been through much toil and sorrow. Unfortunately, you have no time to rest and gather your strength, for you must haste to the Falls of Rauros and to the end of this parodique instalment.
Sam: What? No lament for Gandalf? And Frodo does not get the chance to see the future in the Mirror that then plays a tantamount part in his decision to complete the quest alone?
Galadriel: I am afraid not, dear Samwise. Farewell.
(Ruins of Amon Hen)
Frodo (testily): This is getting ridiculous. The author is sacrificing all semblance of narrative flow and character development for the sake of brevity. I've had it! I'm leaving! (Marches off into the forest)
Sam (rushing after him): Mr Frodo! Wait!
Legolas (whispering to Aragon): Do our hasty comrades know that the lands of Mordor are in yonder direction? (Points across the river.)
Aragorn: They'll figure it out eventually.
Merry and Pippin: Argh! Orcs!
Legolas: And if my keen elven eyes are correct, they are hybrid-mutant Uruk-hai from Isengard!
Gimli (grabbing his axe): T' battle!
(Dramatique battle scene where Aragorn, Legolas and Gimli somehow manage to slay 80% of the Uruk cadre without sustaining any injuries themselves.)
Legolas: Hark! The wind carryeth the sorrowful note of a lone Gondorian horn!
Aragorn (jabbing his sword into the air): To Boromir!
(As the three fighters rush to the aid of their fellow human, Merry and Pippin are snatched up and carried away by those orcs who had been smart enough to stay out of the fight. Arriving at the source of the horn-blowing, the scant remains of the Fellowship find Boromir skewered by three arrows, but still alive. A particularly hunky-looking Uruk is about to plant a fourth into his skull.)
Aragorn (flying through the air in slow-motion): Noooooooooo…! (He lands bodily on his target, literally squashing the life out of him.)
Gimli: Och! That be a useful wee trick, that! Must try it meself sometime!
Aragorn (rushing up to the prone body of Boromir): Stay with me! I never truly liked you, but now that you are about to die, I realise that I cannot let you go. Oh, my brother! I do not want to be king! The line of Stewards must not be broken! I– (Boromir expires his last breath) Great…
Gimli (first to recover from the shock of witnessing Aragorn's sudden verbosity): So, err… What do we do now?
Legolas: My keen elven eyes can discern no sign of our fellow halflings. They must have been abducted by the traitorous Saruman who is seeking the Ring for his own. We must hasten to their aid!
Aragorn (sighs): If we must…