Should Golg be in the film?

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Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Skilletdude » Mar 22, 2018 1:17 pm

Golg is the Earthman Puddleglum captures after the queen is killed. In the book, he's the primary way we learn more about the Earthmen, their home in Bism, and how they thought of The Lady of the Green Kirtle. Golg is also the one who shows the group how to reach the surface and get out of Underland.

But is he necessary in The Silver Chair film? The challenge with Golg is where he appears in the story. I can't see the filmmakers wanting to take the time to establish a new character right after the main villain has been defeated and the film is trying to wrap up. This could be why the BBC version didn't include the character.

And we already have the warden Mullugutherum who leads Jill, Eustace and Puddleglum to Rilian's chambers. Wouldn't he be able to convey the same information Golg would have before they even meet the queen? Mullugutherum could reappear to help them escape too.

What do you think? Is Golg worth keeping?
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby narnia fan 7 » Mar 22, 2018 1:49 pm

I don't think Golg himself needs to be in the film, but his role probably does. I think you probably need some kind of gnome prospective on Queen and everything else going on, though the filmmakers could easily convey all that information visually by just showing how the gnomes react.

I kind of like the idea of combining Golg with Mullugutherum, I can definitely see them doing that. I do think it's possible they could keep Golg in the film but just reduce his role, like having him tell the travelers the gnomes mean no harm as runs past them, or something like that.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby coracle » Mar 22, 2018 3:06 pm

I wouldn't like to see Golg's role taken up by the grumpy earthman 'M'.
Golg shows the delight in being set free, and the joy of being able to go home. Keeping the contrast is important, although I hope 'M' also gets to feel joy at that time in the story (but he is a leader, an oppressive overlord of earthmen, not an underling like Golg)/
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby narnia fan 7 » Mar 22, 2018 4:44 pm

coracle wrote:I wouldn't like to see Golg's role taken up by the grumpy earthman 'M'.
Golg shows the delight in being set free, and the joy of being able to go home. Keeping the contrast is important, although I hope 'M' also gets to feel joy at that time in the story (but he is a leader, an oppressive overlord of earthmen, not an underling like Golg)/

Hmm, I don't know about that last part. I get the impression from the book that the gnomes were all equally being oppressed and used by the Queen and were all equally happy to see her gone so they could return home. None of them were serving her willingly or even want too be there. I don't really get the sense that Mullugutherum wanted to be a leader of the gnomes anymore then Golg wanted to be doing mindless labor.

Come to think of it, making the gnome who captures Jill, Eustace, and Piddleglum the same one who they meet later after the Queen is dead could potentially make the contrast of the gnomes before and after the Queens death stronger in the film. Though I'm not sure that's what I want them to do.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?k a

Postby waggawerewolf27 » Mar 23, 2018 1:27 am

And we already have the warden Mullugutherum who leads Jill, Eustace and Puddleglum to Rilian's chambers. Wouldn't he be able to convey the same information Golg would have before they even meet the queen? Mullugutherum could reappear to help them escape too.


Yes, there does need to be some explanation of the Earthmen. The explorers also need directing to the new diggings they have heard about. But Prince Rilian had been told about them, and when disenchanted he didn't have the memory blocks that he had whilst enchanted.

And yes, Mullugutherum or the Warden, if they are not the same Earthman, would be a good idea to combine with Golg. I agree that the change from an enchanted earthman to a disenchanted earthman might be considerably more dramatic if that enchanted earthman was a bossy type to begin, with rather than the innocent Golg. But would Mullugutherum, remembering what he did as an enchanted being, really want to stick around long enough to explain anything? And if the other Earthmen remembered Mullugutherum as a past leader, wouldn't he need to hide from them as well?

There was a pig-like gnome who might have been a disenchanted Mullugutherum, gobbling up left-overs but in the story, you couldn't see his heels for dust once the travellers went back to where they were dining to get some butter and a bandage for Puddleglum's injured foot. (We'd use icepacks these days). Also, I gather that the said Mullugutherum was one of the bigger gnomes. On the other hand, the pig-like gnome (Golg) would be the first port of call for info about the gnomes and would lead the travellers around on a merry dance before being captured. No horses then would be necessary.

It depends on what the characters need to get out of the castle and to the exit the gnomes were telling the Queen about. It also depends on how much about the gnomes we need to know. Is there a map somewhere around? And would Bism even be included? It depends on what the film is planning.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Anfinwen » Mar 23, 2018 10:47 am

Great topic!
narnia fan 7 wrote:I think you probably need some kind of gnome prospective on Queen and everything else going on, though the filmmakers could easily convey all that information visually by just showing how the gnomes react.

That's similar to what I was thinking. I don't think Golg is necessary, but I agree an explanation is needed, and more than that. The freeing of the earthmen isn't some minor point; it one of the strange, fanciful quirks Lewis throws in that makes Narnia so different. I see the point about it being odd right after the climax; so why not include it in the next climax? The road leads the travelers right past the mouth of Bism; they see the earthmen jumping in and others turning to fight. They halt and ask what's going on, and the truth comes out told by many earthmen in turn. It shortens the time by cutting out the capture of Golg but still sets up the invitation to Bism. It also would give the camera lots of chances to show Bism during the earthmen's story.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby The Rose-Tree Dryad » Mar 23, 2018 2:04 pm

Good idea for a discussion!

I can imagine the filmmakers going the "Mullugolgerum" route, but I rather hope they don't... there's a certain street urchin quality to Golg that I think would be lost if they combined his character with the Warden, and the joy of the gnomes' liberation seems a lot more fitting coming from a childlike, scampish person than an administrative figure.

I think I would prefer for them to introduce an enchanted Golg earlier during the Underland adventures. There's a line shortly after the questers meet the gnomes that says Jill felt like she would rather like to cheer them up, but in the movie, the filmmakers will have to figure out a way to show this. You could have some sort of interaction between Jill and doleful little Golg to show her compassion and illustrate what he was like before the enchantment was broken. His appearance after the Queen's death won't seem as random after that.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Glumpuddle » May 04, 2018 6:53 pm

This is definitely one of those tangential things that would be the easiest thing in the world to cut. But they shouldn't.

Maybe they don't have to include Golg. But they have to keep Bism in there in some form.

The reason in a nutshell: If you remove all the wonderful atmospheric stuff that isn't essential to the narrative, all you are left with is a generic fantasy quest movie. We're talking about the stuff that defines The Chronicles of Narnia and sets it apart. Which is the stuff that the Walden movies mostly left out (statues being restored, Aslan playing with the girls, Bacchus and Silenus, most of the final few chapters of VDT, etc). Filtering all that out might not necessarily produce a bad movie... It just probably won't be anything memorable, and it won't be Narnia.

I believe the lasting appeal of Narnia has more to do with the world and atmosphere than it does with the narrative. Don't skim over the awe and wonder of the world having an actual bottom where you can go and see pure gold created.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Lilygloves » May 15, 2018 12:52 pm

I think they could cut the character out since he's mostly used as exposition to explain the earthmen's perspective. However, they would need to address why these creatures are no longer threats to the main characters after the witch dies.
I wouldn't be surprised if they just visually showed the earthmen "waking up" and seeing the crack in the earth and all that instead of having a specific character to explain it. I could also see the earthmen trying to attack the group and to raise the tension and then when the witch is destroyed then they stop.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Cleander » May 07, 2019 3:31 pm

One word: YES.
Ok, apparently one word breaks some rules we have about posting with substance, so I'll just add that I strongly support a faithful adaptation that doesn't mess with characters. Golg (whose real name appears to be Golf according to autocorrect :D ) never felt like a problem as a later-introduced character to me.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby JFG II » May 10, 2019 12:21 pm

Yes, Golg should be in The Silver Chair, now that Netflix is taking a crack at the Narnia books. The question for me is: Should Netflix expand his role?

My answer: Yes and No. Keep his scenes from the book, and don’t change his diminutive stature or funny personality. But his scenes could be used differently than the book.

Also I think the land of Bism should be seen in the film. Like, the main characters should experience it.

What if: The flight from Underland is changed? The four travelers are fleeing the dark castle, and the underworld men, and the rising water, when they encounter the chasm.

Eustace loses his balance during the earthquake, and Jill refuses to let go of him this time, and they both tumble into the chasm.

Puddleglum and Rilian refuse the leave them, so they wait for Golg to pass by, jump him, and make him explain everything. While he’s describing Bism, Jill and Eustace float to the bottom like astronauts on the moon.

They talk to a witty salamander who advises them about how to leave (The same way the gnomes did all those years ago). When they reach the top of the chasm again to be reunited with the others, Golg takes his leave, asking them all if they want to come with him back to Bism. Rilian is tempted. Jill flat out refuses.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby Cleander » May 10, 2019 2:12 pm

JFG II wrote:
Eustace loses his balance during the earthquake, and Jill refuses to let go of him this time, and they both tumble into the chasm.

Puddleglum and Rilian refuse to leave them, so they wait for Golg to pass by, jump him, and make him explain everything. While he’s describing Bism, Jill and Eustace float to the bottom like astronauts on the moon.

They talk to a witty salamander who advises them about how to leave (The same way the gnomes did all those years ago). When they reach the top of the chasm again to be reunited with the others, Golg takes his leave, asking them all if they want to come with him back to Bism. Rilian is tempted. Jill flat out refuses.


As long as it's compellingly explained why the humans don't get scorched or melted in a world of lava, I could go with that idea. (I'm assuming gnomes just have tougher skin.) But then again, the intense heat would give Jill even more grounds to not want to go back to Bism. :D :D
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby fantasia » May 11, 2019 5:35 am

Well, I think yes Golg should be in the movie, but I'm going to go slightly off-topic here....

I always had this image in my head that when Golg and the rest of the Underworld men returned home, we'd see them "melt" or turn into magma/liquid rock, free from the hardend rock that bound them by being too close to the surface. And they'd be beautiful! It'd be quite a picture I think. :)

I'm adamantly against the party of humans and marshwiggle going down there. The purpose in the book as far as I can tell, it is that it's another temptation, but not by the Green Lady. It is far more important for Rilian to return home to his father than to indulge in an adventure. Had he gone, Caspian would have died before he returned.
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Re: Should Golg be in the film?

Postby waggawerewolf27 » May 11, 2019 7:13 pm

fantasia wrote:I always had this image in my head that when Golg and the rest of the Underworld men returned home, we'd see them "melt" or turn into magma/liquid rock, free from the hardend rock that bound them by being too close to the surface. And they'd be beautiful! It'd be quite a picture I think. :)


That would be such a beautiful, imaginative & colourful way of doing that scene. Just the sort of thing that was so great in The life of Pi film. It would show that for the marshwiggle & human team, horses as well, that reaching the chasm was the end of the line for them, add urgency to Puddleglum's warning about actually seeing his Dad in time, & force Rilian to forgo any temptations. Yes Golg may well tempt Rilian with his invitation to go further, but your description would be as great a "You shall not PASS" moment as we saw in the first Lord of the Rings movie. (I've seen such a lot of adaptations of that sort of thing, from cheating in schools? YOU SHALL NOT PASS, getting licences etc etc. :D)
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