why Mr?

A J   Sun Nov 27, 2005 8:08 am GMT
in the movie, the lord of the rings, why does Sam call Frodo(I'm not sure about the spelling) Mr. Frodo?

Aren't they friends ?
is there any other meaning in it?
Guest   Sun Nov 27, 2005 8:53 am GMT
I haven't seen that movie in a while, so I don't recall that happening. But, I will say using a title before a first name makes you sound like a little kid, because adults either use a plain first name or a last name with a title. For example, a preschool teacher named Sara Smith would be called Miss Sara and not Miss/Ms./Mrs. Smith, by her students.
Guest   Sun Nov 27, 2005 9:46 am GMT
To sound formal and maybe satirically so.
JJM   Sun Nov 27, 2005 10:49 am GMT
Sam means it as a mark of respect. Has no one here actually read Tolkien's work?
Guest   Sun Nov 27, 2005 10:51 am GMT
Nope. What for?
Felix the Cassowary   Sun Nov 27, 2005 11:11 am GMT
Yes, I think it's a sign of respect. Remember that Frodo has been put in charge of a rather important task, and Sam is helping him achieve that ends. I always got the impression that Sam therefore sees Frodo as an important person now, even though they're friends, and is offering him his respect.

However, I've never read the books so my interpretation could be wrong.
JJM   Sun Nov 27, 2005 2:01 pm GMT
Felix - you're spot on.

(I don't mean to belittle the films in any way; they're all superb and very faithful to the book[s]. All the more reason to read the book.)
Uriel   Sun Nov 27, 2005 6:19 pm GMT
They aren't really "friends" in terms of being equals. They are master and servant, although there are also strong bonds of affection and obligation between them. But the hierarchical nature of their relationship is why Sam refers to Frodo with an honorific (Mr Frodo) and Frodo only calls Sam by his first name.

I read 'em. Twice. Once as a kid, once when the movies came out.
A J   Sun Nov 27, 2005 10:41 pm GMT
Thank you all.

has they been in that hierarchical relationship in the first place, or the relationship formed when the journey started?
american nic   Sun Nov 27, 2005 11:41 pm GMT
Uriel's answer was a great way to state it. I believe that Frodo and Sam were friends who perhaps grew up together, but the hierarchy was created by the wizard Gandalf when he sent the two on their adventure.
Uriel   Mon Nov 28, 2005 2:57 am GMT
Nope, 'fraid not. The relationship existed in that form prior to the book's beginning -- Frodo was a sort of well-to-do gentry type, and Sam was his lower-class gardener. So there was a major class distinction between them as well.
Jim   Mon Nov 28, 2005 4:44 am GMT
I've only read the books once & seen the movies but I'd have to agree with Uriel. Also, it's not unusual in Japanese to put "san" (which is sort of equivalent to "Mr"/"Miss"/"Mrs") after a given name. Not that the hobbits spoke Japanese but nor did they speak English.
Uriel   Mon Nov 28, 2005 5:22 am GMT
Yeah, if I recall correctly, Tolkien even makes a point in the index that the hobbits' names aren't really things like "Pippin" or "Samwise" (or even sound like them); they are just English translations or approximations of their real names.
Uriel   Mon Nov 28, 2005 5:28 am GMT
The actors go to great lengths to explain in the commentaries that the relationship is similar to a British officer in the military and his "batman", which is essentially a glorified butler who follows the officer around everywhere, taking care of him. (Oh God, I'm revealing myself as the nerd that I am!)
van Oranje-Nassau   Mon Feb 05, 2007 4:28 am GMT
Don't bother with "mister"! "Mijnheer" rules!