10 Unpopular Opinions About Gandalf, According To Reddit

In the new series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, one of the most enduring mysteries is the identity of the alien who fell to earth in a meteor. To many, it

In the new series The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power, one of the most enduring mysteries is the identity of the alien who fell to earth in a meteor. To many, it seems likely that he is Gandalf, one of the most beloved and recognizable characters from the various films directed by Peter Jackson.


Although Ian McKellen has been widely praised for his portrayal of the character, and although Gandalf remains beloved, certain aspects of him have been criticized. Reddit users, in particular, have voiced a number of unpopular opinions about him.

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10/10 Gandalf’s name should be pronounced differently

As with so many other fantastical works, one of the most important elements of Tolkien’s mythology is language. As a result, there are very specific ways things were meant to be spoken.

Although this includes Gandalf’s name, some Reddit users protest, such as LopsideWafer3269, who argues, “Gandalf should be pronounced like the word ‘half’. There is NO English word that sounds like Gandalf is pronounced in the movies. As others have pointed out, however, the word is not Modern English and therefore does not have to follow its special rules of pronunciation.

9/10 John Huston’s vocal performance is underrated

There’s no doubt that Peter Jackson’s adaptations of Tolkien’s work are some of the best fantasy films ever made. However, as some Reddit users point out, there’s also something to be said for the Rankin-Bass versions of the story, which feature the incredible vocal talents of, among others, John Huston as Gandalf.

Herequeerandgreat puts it this way: “His voice was absolutely perfect for gandalf. His voice sounds like someone who’s been around for a long time and really knows his way around, which is the kind of person Gandalf is. However, whatever Huston’s merits as Gandalf are, they aren’t enough to make up for some of the films’ other notable shortcomings.

8/10 Gandalf did not defeat the Balrog

Gandalf is one of the most powerful beings in Middle-earth. He shows this many times throughout the trilogy, but especially when fighting with the Balrog. For some, however, this is not enough. Benedictjbreen says, for example, “Gandalf did not ‘defeat’ the Balrog known as Durin’s Bane. Defeat implies there was a winner, when in reality they both lost. They are both dead, Gandalf has just been brought back.

As others in the thread point out, however, Gandalf threw down the Balrog before perishing himself. Plus, he kept it from the rest of the community, which is a win in itself.

7/10 Ian McKellen doesn’t capture Gandalf’s hulking nature

Ian McKellen is one of the most respected actors of his generation, and he brings a powerful charisma to Gandalf. For some Reddit users, however, there is still something missing. Wild-Attention2932 states: “Ian McKellen did the grandfather role very well (and only maybe one or two other actors come to mind as being better for it) but on the other points I always felt like he was doing his best, but he doesn’t. doesn’t ask for power like Gandalf sometimes did.

This argument, however, overlooks McKellen’s commanding presence in so many scenes, not the least of which is the confrontation with the Balrog. Additionally, the viewer also sees him hunting the Ringwraiths in order to save the men of Gondor.

6/10 Gandalf has no heat in Bakshi’s version

by Ralph Bakshi the Lord of the Rings film in many ways paved the way for Jackson’s trilogy. It is therefore rightly considered an animated classic in its own right. Many Redditors, however, were left cold by that film’s Gandalf. One user says, “Gandalf has little to no ‘warmth’ going for him.”

While it’s true that he may not quite have Ian McKellen’s grandfather portrayal, this Gandalf is, as some other users point out, closer to how he appears in the book. . Plus, he’s clearly a high-powered figure, as he shows many times throughout the film.

5/10 Gandalf never seems to watch the Hobbits

Bakshi took major risks in his animated version of Tolkien’s story. Sometimes these are chargeable, while in others its particular approach causes problems. Sisterstigmatic points out, “Gandalf always looks about two feet above one of the hobbits when he talks to them.”

Rather than seeing this as a fundamental flaw in the film, however, it’s more useful to see it as a visual representation of their differences in stature. What’s more, Baskhi has so many other goodies that it’s pretty easy to forgive him some hiccups in the fluidity of his animation.

4/10 Gandalf’s ignorance of the Necromancer rubs some the wrong way

Sauron is, of course, one of the most powerful fantasy villains. He even manages to become the centerpiece of The Hobbit, though at that time he was in a different guise, this time as a Necromancer. Gandalf’s ignorance of his presence in Mirkwood is something several Reddit users have found a maddening plot point.

6chan scathingly refers to the fact that “Gandalf has no idea about the Necromancer until Radagast mentions him”. In terms of the film’s story, however, this bit makes sense. It provides the viewer with a way to understand the growing threat, rather than making it exist before the story actually begins.

3/10 Dumbledore is a better wizard than Gandalf

Fantasy is obviously full of many great wizards. Few, however, are as prominent as Gandalf and Dumbledore, so it makes sense for Reddit users to compare them. One Reddit user simply states, “Dumbledore is a better wizard than Gandalf.”

There are, however, a number of problems with this comparison. For starters, there are two very different systems of magic at work in these respective fantasy worlds. Specifically, Dumbledore may have faced many threats during his time, but none of them are up to the fateful conflict between Gandalf and the Balrog, which is a feat that few other wizards could hope to match.

2/10 The Witch-king doing a big chunk of Gandalf is wrong

Peter Jackson made many notable changes to Tolkien’s work. One of the most egregious cases is when the Witch-King breaks Gandalf’s staff outside the gates of Minas Tirith. This understandably rubbed many Redditors the wrong way. RiverMund refers to the incident as “the Witch-king fooling around Gandalf”.

This is, to begin with, overstating the case a bit. Equally important, however, this incident makes sense in terms of the story, as it allows the viewer to grasp just how powerful the Witch-king is, which, in turn, renders his defeat at the hands of Éowyn d all the more meaningful and impactful.

1/10 Gandalf’s subplot in The Hobbit is redundant

Many notable events occur during The Hobbit. While some of them veer from the book, others are significant deviations, and this is especially true of Gandalf’s subplot (which takes place off-stage in the novel). BreakfastforDinnerr has this to say: “I don’t like the Gandalf subplot, and I don’t think ‘it makes sense’ is a good excuse to have 30 minutes of fanservicy scenes, which don’t connect in any way case to plot manner (except for the orc army, but they had a different motivation in the book, so use that.)”

However, this argument ignores the fact that it wouldn’t have made sense to have Gandalf disappear for about half the movie. Instead, this plot actually gives him something to do and sets the stage for the ultimate showdown with Sauron.

NEXT: The 15 Most Powerful Elves In The Lord Of The Rings, Ranked