Let’s Talk Dirt League

Anyone ever heard of Viva La Dirt League? It’s possible that you haven’t, but there’s a good chance you’ve seen their stuff without knowing who they were. Viva La Dirt League can be best described as a group of friends who create comedic videos based on various stereotypes of gaming. They touch on RPG games, PUBG, Red Dead, and even working at a gaming tech store.

At Of Blades and Kings, we didn’t discover them until the beginning of this year! And they’ve been around for a while. Needless to say, we are very disappointed in ourselves, but, we’re trying to make up for it. So, we decided to give them a shout out.

Do yourself a favor, if you’re a fan of video games, comedy, New Zealand accents, PUBG, Red Dead, and RPGs go check out their YouTube channel.

Their Epic NPC Man, Bored Series, and PUBG Logic videos are hilarious. I haven’t gotten around to their Red Dead videos yet, but I’m sure they’re equally amazing. The sketches are very short but incredibly well thought out, so go watch them. You won’t regret it, it’s all binge-able greatness.

Also, of you’re feeling particularly generous today, they’re starting a kickstarter campaign to create a short movie called Baelin’s Route. It features a fan favorite NPC fisherman who constantly walks around the village saying “G’morning, nice day for fishin ain’t it? Huh hu!” The question is, where does he go after he walks out of view? I mean has anyone actually followed an NPC go about their day? With this story we’re going to see Baelin the fisherman thrown into an unexpected journey. Before you pitch in watch their videos, get a good feel for the group, and if you feel so inclined go support them on this project. Here’s the link:


Let me know your thoughts, have you heard of this group before? If so, what’s your favorite series? If not, did you check them out, what did you think?

Thank you for your time and remember, not all those who wander are lost.

– The Wandering One

On This Day in Middle-earth

March 16th

Debate of the commanders.

Frodo from the Morgai looks out over the camp to Mount Doom.

The Battle of Pelennor Fields has ended and now the commanders are planning their next steps. It’s clear that they’ve won the battle and stuck a major blow to Sauron’s immediate plans, but the war isn’t over. If Frodo is ever to have a chance to destroy the Ring, they need to go on the offensive. Attack Sauron, draw out his hidden strength, and keep his attention away from Mordor.

“His doubt will be growing, even as we speak here. His Eye is now straining towards us, blind almost to all else that is moving. So we must keep it. Therein lies all our hope. This, then, is my counsel. We have not the Ring. In wisdom or great folly it has been sent away to be destroyed, lest it destroy us. Without it we cannot by force defeat his force. But we must at all costs keep his Eye from his true peril. We cannot achieve victory by arms, but by arms we can give the Ring-bearer his only chance, frail though it be.” – Gandalf

Frodo in this moment is looking at the long journey still ahead. Each step gets harder to take, but this hobbit strives to keep going.

A slow day after days of fighting and travel, but it’s a day of different strain. The planning and forboding of the next steps for these groups requires a strong will. That will must be able to understand what lies ahead and still move forward. This is a tough day, it’s a day where the doom before them look bleak and grim.

Thank you for your time and remember, a light from the shadows shall spring.

– The Wandering One

On This Day in Middle-earth

March 15th

In the early hours the Witch-king breaks the Gates of the City.

Denethor burns himself on a pyre.

The horns of the Rohirrim are heard at cockcrow.

Battle of the Pelennor.

Théoden is slain.

Aragorn raises the standard of Arwen.

Frodo and Samwise escape and begin their journey north along the Morgai.

Battle under the trees in Mirkwood; Thranduil repels the forces of Dol Guldur.

Second assault on Lórien.

We get insite to things happening beyond the main plot today.

We learn that Mirkwood faces it’s own battle during these trying times, and so does Lórien. Sauron’s forces have tried to break there way into the heart of Elvendom more than once now, I’m sure he’s not going to stop at two times. At Of Blades and Kings, we’re always excited to learn more about the happenings in Middle-earth. It’s proof that Tolkien had thought of a larger world than the one that involved his main characters. In the books and movies we only learn about what happens in the main story, but Sauron really put all his efforts in this assault. Gondor, Mirkwood, and Lórien are all under attack, and there’s not much around to help them.

Let’s take a moment to lament the fall of a great king. May you rest in peace Théoden King.

Théoden was always viewed as a just king, someone would the people loved and his soldiers would die for. Far too often kings wouldn’t get involved in their own wars, but Théoden was different. Pushed to the brink, Théoden fought alongside his soldiers and died beside them. Yes, Théoden was under Saruman’s spell, but when he saw the truth he immediately renounced him and began ruling as he always did. Sadly, today is the day we must say goodbye to this great king.

All hail King Théoden! May you join your fathers, your forefathers, and your son into the beyond.

Thank you for your time, and remember, the crownless again shall be king.

– The Wandering One

On This Day in Middle-earth

March 14th

Samwise finds Frodo in the Tower.

Minas Tirith is besieged.

The Rohirrim led by the Wild Men come to the Grey Wood.

I think this is the first mention of Sam, which makes sense because this moment was huge for him. When Frodo was stuck by Shelob, Sam thought he was dead. He had two options, to turn back or finish the quest. Sam choose the hardest task but in the end it was the right one.

While all this is going on Minas Tirith is getting overrun and everyone is trying to get there as soon as they can.

March is certainly roaring in like a lion.

Thank you for your time and remember, not all those who wander are lost.

– The Wandering One

Everything that Happened in Middle-earth Since I Last Posted

I knew that if I didn’t stay on top of these that I would fall behind quick. A lot of things went down in my personal life recently, and unfortunately that’s put up a barrier for me to keep up with, On This Day in Middle-earth.

But at Of Blades and Kings, we don’t give up, so I’m catching everyone up and continuing the day to day format.

Here’s everything that went down in Middle-earth since my last post

February 30th

Éomer returning to Edoras meets Aragorn.

March 1st

Frodo begins the passage of the Dead Marshes at dawn.

Entmoot continues.

Aragorn meets Gandalf the White. They set out for Edoras.

Faramir leaves Minas Tirith on an errand to Ithilien.

March 2nd

Frodo comes to the end of the marshes.

Gandalf comes to Edoras and heals Théoden.

The Rohirrim ride west against Saruman.

Second Battle of Fords of Isen. Erkenbrand defeated.

Entmoot ends in afternoon.

The Ents march on Isengard and reach it at night.

March 3rd

Théoden retreats to Helm’s Deep.

Battle of the Hornburg begins.

Ents complete the destruction of Isengard.

March 4th

Théoden and Gandalf set out from Helm’s Deep for Isengard.

Frodo reaches the slag-mounds on the edge of the Desolation of the Morannon.

March 5th

Théoden reaches Isengard at noon. Parley with Saruman in Orthanc.

Winged Nazgûl passes over the camp at Dol Baran.

Gandalf sets out with Peregrin for Minas Tirith.

Frodo hides in sight of the Morannon, and leaves at dusk.

March 6th

Aragorn overtaken by the Dúnedain in the early hours.

Théoden sets out from the Hornburg for Harrowdale.

Aragorn sets out later.

March 7th

Frodo taken by Faramir to Henneth Annûn.

Aragorn comes to Dunharrow at nightfall.

March 8th

Aragorn takes the ‘ Paths of the Dead’ at daybreak; he reaches Erech at midnight.

Frodo leaves Henneth Annûn.

March 9th

Gandalf reaches Minas Tirith.

Faramir leaves Henneth Annûn.

Aragorn sets out from Erech and comes to Calembel.

At dusk Frodo reaches the Morgul-road.

Théoden comes to Dunharrow.

Darkness begins to flow out of Mordor.

March 10th

The Dawnless Day.

The Muster of Rohan: the Rohirrim ride from Harrowdale.

Faramir rescued by Gandalf outside the gates of the City.

Aragorn crosses Ringló.

An army from the Morannon takes Cair Andros and passes into Anórien.

Frodo passes the Cross-roads, and sees the Morgul-host set forth.

March 11th

Gollum visits Shelob, but seeing Frodo asleep nearly repents.

Denethor sends Faramir to Osgiliath.

Aragorn reaches Linhir and crosses into Lebennin.

Eastern Rohan is invaded from the north.

First assault on Lórien.

March 12th

Gollum leads Frodo into Shelob’s lair.

Faramir retreats to the Causeway Forts.

Théoden camps under Min-Rimmon.

Aragorn drives the enemy towards Pelargir.

The Ents defeat the invaders of Rohan.

March 13th

Frodo captured by the Orcs of Cirith Ungol.

The Pelennor is overrun. Faramir is wounded.

Aragorn reaches Pelargir and captures the fleet.

Théoden in Drúadan Forest.

March is usually thought of as a Springtime happy month where the cold harsh winter gets washed away. In The Lord of the Rings, March couldn’t be more different. Wars are being waged, trusts are being broken, it truly is a dark time for the Fellowship.

Now before we leave there’s a couple of things I’d like to call out.

February 30th

The calendars the people use in Middle-earth are a little bit different than ours. A February 30th date changes things pretty significantly, but we’re going to keep the story connected to our calendar so we can avoid confusion.

March 10th

The Dawnless Day, for many who haven’t read the books you may not be familiar with this moment. Before Sauron begins his war on Minas Tirith he sends clouds ahead of his armies so they don’t have to fight in the sunlight. At this time Pippin is a soldier of Gondor and when be woke up he thought the time of day was wrong. Imagine being in a era where your reference for doing things throughout the day wasn’t your phone or watch but the sun. Now, all of the sudden, the sun is gone and you have no idea what time it is and what you’re supposed to be doing. Forget the fact that the clouds remove the sun for his Orcs, Sauron just threw a crazy wrench in the day to day lives of everyone at Minas Tirith.

March 11th

Gollum meets Shelob and almost changes his mind when he sees Frodo sleeping.

This is a beautiful scene in the books that’s almost impossible to recreate for screen.

“And so Gollum found them hours later, when he returned, crawling and creeping down the path out of the gloom ahead. Sam sat propped against the stone, his head dropping sideways and his breathing heavy. In his lap lay Frodo’s head, drowned deep in sleep; upon his white forehead lay one of Sam’s brown hands, and the other lay softly upon his master’s breast. Peace was in both their faces.

Gollum looked at them. A strange expression passed over his lean hungry face. The gleam faded from his eyes, and they went dim and grey, old and tired. A spasm of pain seemed to twist him, and he turned away, peering back up towards the pass, shaking his head, as if engaged in some interior debate. Then he came back, and slowly putting out a trembling hand, very cautiously he touched Frodo’s knee – but almost the touch was a caress. For a fleeting moment, could one of the sleepers have seen him, they would have thought that they beheld an old weary hobbit, shrunken by the years that had carried him far beyond his time, beyond friends and kin, and the fields and streams of youth, an old starved pitiable thing.”

Tolkien decided to give us a moment to show there was something still inside Gollum. Something was stirring, even after being chained, tortured, manipulated, and mind bent towards the Ring. Sadly, we never get to see the other side of Gollum, he’s too far gone to turn his back away from the Ring.

However, in this moment, we’re allowed to feel pity for this creature who’s life was unceremoniously ripped from his hands. Gollum will forever be tormented by the Ring, and unfortunately he doesn’t have much say in the matter. Regardless, let this moment fill you with remorse, and possibly even forgiveness. How many people in our lives have been tormented by something as tempting as the Ring? How often have we offered those friends or family members forgiveness? Maybe, like Gollum, they’re too far gone, and maybe in the end we can’t control how they act, but we can control how we act.

How strong of a moment this was that Gollum almost repented, could you imagine? The relief he would’ve felt when he left the Ring behind for good? But, Gollum has a part to play in this tale. He wasn’t meant to be rid of his lust for the Ring, just like Frodo was meant to have it.

Thank you so much for your time and patience, I’m incredibly sorry for the hiatus but I appreciate everyone taking the time to get caught up.

Thank you and remember, the crownless again shall be king.

– The Wandering One

Character of the Week

Julia Wicker

This week we’re celebrating an absolute boss of magic.

For those of you who are not familiar with The Magicians, it’s a book series that can be best described as the college/real world equivalent of Hogwarts.

Of course, the series is more complex than that, but it’s a good way to describe it very simply. At Of Blades and Kings, we wanted to take this moment to send a shout out to a main character, Julia Wicker.

Before we begin, it’s important to note that unfortunately, we haven’t read the books yet. We own them, they’re sitting on our shelf right now staring at us, but we’re reading through The Hobbit right now. Perhaps after that, we can do a read through together.

Back to Julia, our opinions of her are solely based on the Syfy TV show, which should be way more popular than it is. It’s an impressive show from production value, storylines, all the way to the acting, you can really enjoy sitting down delving deeper into this world of magic. Now, finally we’re on to Julia, she’s head strong, diligent, and incredibly gifted. She found her way to the magic academy all on her own. She battled monsters, demons, and other magic users to learn how to use her skills. Unfortunately for Julia, life was very twisted for her and she had to deal with terrible trauma. For most people her trauma would’ve been irreparable, but with time and care from her friends Julia was able to persevere. She truly is a boss and an amazing character, even without her magic.

I must confess, early on, I was tired of Julia and her choices/attitude, but as I’ve watched her grow and learn from her mistakes she’s quickly become a character that I root for. Without giving too much away she has an immensely strong connection to magic that can’t be broken. At least not in the episodes that I’ve watched. Julia can lead the group and fall in line where needed. I’m a huge fan of her character. Sadly, I think she can get lost in the shuffle of a great cast, but I’m happy we get to honor her this week on Of Blades and Kings.

If you have the time, go check out the show, it’s worth your while if you’re a fan of the fantasy genre. If tuning in every week isn’t your jam, all 4 seasons are now on Netflix.

Thank you so much for your time and remember, not all those who wander are lost.

– The Wandering One

Thoughts on Star Wars: The High Republic

Star Wars has been teasing Project Luminous for some time, and now we finally know what it is.

With the Skywalker Saga ending, Star Wars is heading into a new unexplored era of the universe, and it couldn’t have been a perfect time.

Star Wars: The High Republic will feature a new set of novels and comic books for all ages of readers. The story will be carved out in an era 200 years before The Phantom Menace, during a time when the Jedi were the prime keepers of the peace. We should expect to see the height of the Jedi Order as they send their warriors across the far reaches of the galaxy to be peacekeepers and protectors.

Obviously, this has been their plan longer than they’ve led on, but this new direction is exactly where Star Wars needs to go.

In short, at Of Blades and Kings, we’re excited for the possibilities these storylines will bring to the universe. This direction, is possibly, one they should have gone into starting out, there’s mixed feelings about the new trilogy around here, but one thing is certain, a new direction was needed.

A new era provides plenty of opportunities for Star Wars to create new characters and delve deeper into the galaxy than we’ve seen before. This is the right decision, Star Wars needs a break from the Skywalker saga. They needed a new direction and a fresh perspective. We’re all excited about what’s to come with the High Republic. In my opinion the storylines that introduced a new perspective have been their most successful. The Clone Wars, Rebels, Rogue One, The Mandalorian, even Solo. All have created a fresh take on the Universe that has only made it better.

We have high hopes for the High Republic and we’re looking forward to the future of Star Wars. With a Cassian Andor series coming soon, the final season of Clone Wars out now, the High Republic announcement, and an Obi-Wan series in the works (check out the recent news for this series and our idea on how it could play out right HERE), Star Wars seems like it’s geared to take the new generation by storm. The definitive moment, for me, will come down to whether or not the High Republic is successful enough that we get movie adaptations, besides, if it’s not recognized in a movie is it even really cannon?

What’d you think about this new direction, which path do you think they should’ve gone in? Let us know!

Thank you so much for your time and remember, from the ashes a fire shall spring.

– The Wandering One

Character of the Week

Bilbo Baggins

He that walks unseen, the clue-finder, the web-cutter, the stinging fly, the friend of bears, the guest of eagles, Ringwinner, Luckwearer, and barrel-rider.

Elaborate titles for a Hobbit so proper. Bilbo, of course, never wanted to go on any adventures. He was happy living off his wealth, and content with leaving the world around him alone. Bilbo literally was the “King of the Hill,” every day he would go out on his porch, smoke his pipe, and watch the world turn around him.

Enter, Gandalf the Grey, who knew this Hobbit was more than he appeared to be. Gandalf had a gift for seeing greatness inside those who couldn’t see it themselves, and in his eyes Bilbo was destined for great things. With a little push he sent Bilbo outside his door and onto a journey of a lifetime. Bilbo fought trolls, ran from goblins, bested Gollum, slayed spiders, tricked the mighty Elves of Mirkwood, stole treasure from a dragon, and led a band of Dwarves to reclaim their home.

During this unexpected journey, Bilbo wished for his warm bed and a nice fire the entire time. However, that never stopped him from keeping his head on straight, and when the moment called for it, he rose to the occasion. He was a fighter for the good and true. As Thorin Oakenshiel said,

“There is more in you of good than you know, child of the kindly West. Some courage and some wisdom, blended in measure. If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. But sad or merry, I must leave it now. Farewell!”

The great King Under the Mountain gave all his strength to remain alive and ask for Bilbo’s forgiveness. Thorin knew how important Bilbo was to their group and needed to thank him for his service. When an individual gets recognized by kings, you know they did something great.

Join us in celebrating Bilbo Baggins with the Character of the Week title.

Thank you for your time, and remember, the old that is strong does not wither.

– The Wandering One

Here’s an Idea for the Obi-Wan Kenobi TV Show

If you’re like us at Of Blades and Kings, you’re sitting on the edge of your seat (speaking if Edge did anyone see his return in the Royal Rumble? Dope) just waiting for any news about the Obi-Wan Kenobi TV show.

During Disney’s D23 Expo in August 2019, Ewan McGregor came on stage with Kathleen Kennedy and announced he would be returning as Obi-Wan Kenobi. Que the thunderous applause! This was a Star Wars fan’s dream, Ewan played Obi-Wan so well in the Prequel trilogy, he quickly became a consistent favorite across all three films.

Sadly, it was announced in January that this project was put on hold and was decreased from 6 episodes to 4 episodes. The reason why? Kathleen Kennedy didn’t like any of the stories put in front of her. They were too much like The Mandalorian and she felt they needed a fresher perspective. I agree with her mindset on this, Obi-Wan deserves his own story that is unique to his character. However, this was the same woman who signed off on the new trilogy’s story and I’m not all too confident in her Star Wars decision-making. Rogue One, Solo, and The Mandalorian? All great, so for me, she’s 50-50. Which isn’t too bad, when you put it in that perspective.

What worries me, more than anything else, is the 4 episode count. At that point, I’m wondering why even make a TV show? If it’s only going to be 4 episodes just make it into a really long movie. Or add on another hour and some change and make 3 movies. Its Obi-Wan Kenobi, I don’t care how long it is, I just don’t want it to be too short. And I want it to be good.

Now, on to one of my ideas for the Obi-Wan Kenobi TV show.

I just thought of this so, be gentle. It features a character that is not, to my knowledge, apart of the cannon, but it’s someone who I feel deserves to be. Before I reveal who, let’s set the scene.

Tattoine, sometime after Obi-Wan has returned Luke to his aunt and uncle. Possibly 15-20 years. During that time Obi-Wan has been receiving teachings from Qui-Gon Jinn (enter Liam Neeson) and helping protect villagers from particularly bad bands of Tuskian Raiders, bounty hunters, and other scum and villainy that prospers there. You can pull alot from the Kenobi book and the comics (From the Journals of Old Ben Kenobi).

We know that Obi-Wan would help those around him, but something had to happen to make him go so far into hiding that he’s an afterthought by the time A New Hope takes place. Perhaps the Empire learns about a mysterious savior on Tattoine, after all, this is Vader’s home planet. Vader would want to investigate, but The Emperor has bigger plans. Vader can only send an operative that’s been training for moments like these.

Enter Starkiller.

Many of you remember Starkiller from The Force Unleashed video games, he was a secret apprentice of Vader’s who would be sent on missions to hunt down and kill the last Jedi survivors. All this was taking place before the Rebellion began, in fact, Vader tasked Starkiller to create an organized Rebellion with the promise to use the Rebels as a distraction and overthrow The Emperor. It all turned out to be rouse, no matter how many times Starkiller put his faith in Vader he was always betrayed. Throughout his journey Starkiller wrestled with the light and dark sides of the force. Ultimately, he choose the light side and sacrificed himself for the Rebellion.

How does this all fit into Obi-Wan’s timeline? It might take some reworking, but if we agree the news of a “savior” on Tattoine would attract Vader’s attention, the growing Empire might not allow him to act on his own. Therefore, he must send someone else, which would introduce Starkiller. This would be a huge reveal for the fans and give Obi-Wan a high profile opponent. This storyline could replace The Force Unleashed story or take place before Starkiller begins training as a Jedi. For Starkiller, the most important part of battling Obi-Wan would be the beginning of his journey to the light side. For Obi-Wan, who must be struggling with the failure to save his own apprentice from the dark side, the most important part of battling Starkiller would be the opportunity to right his past wrongs.

It’s a long shot, one that probably will never come to fruition due to age of the actors and the projected timeline of Obi-Wan’s show. Regardless, as someone who’s poured hours into those games it’d be great to see Starkiller become cannon, even if it alters the video game stories a little bit. No matter what you change, Juno Eclipse can still be his pilot, Proxy can still be his training buddy, and General Rahm Kota could still be his fulltime master down the road.

We dream big here at Of Blades and Kings, but anything is possible. Let us know what you think, is this idea even worth entertaining or do you have a better one?

As always, thank you for your time, I hope you enjoyed reading.

Remember, not all those who wander are lost.

– The Wandering One

Aragorn’s Birthday

Let’s take a second or perhaps 4 hours today to celebrate Aragorn son of Arathorn, Chieftain of the Dúnedain, and King of Arnor and Gondor.

Today is Aragorn’s birthday and we can’t think of a better way to celebrate, than to sit back and watch The Return of the King (Extended Edition, hence the 4 hours).

I hope you’ll join us in the celebration!

Thank you for your time and remember, the crownless again shall be king.

– The Wandering One