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Gollum is a fictional character in the fantasy novels The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. The character is depicted as a deformed Hobbit corrupted by the One Ring, a powerful artifact created by the antagonist Sauron that grants the wearer invisibility.
On September 21st, 1937, the fantasy novel and children's book The Hobbit, or There and Back Again was released. In the book, the character Gollum is introduced as a disfigured creature who inhabits a small island in an underground lake. The character is obsessed with a magical ring he refers to as "my precious," which is discovered by the character Bilbo Baggins. In The Lord of the Rings, it is revealed that Gollum was previously a Hobbit named Sméagol, who had been twisted by the influence of the ring.
Depictions in Film
In 1977, Gollum was depicted as a amphibian-like creature with large, glowing eyes in the animated musical adaptation of The Hobbit (shown below, left). In 1978, the character was animated as a dark-skinned creature with pointed ears in the animated film adaptation of The Lord of the Rings (shown below, right).
In the The Lords of the Rings film trilogy by Peter Jackson, Gollum is depicted using CGI technology as a small, pale-skinned, Hobbit-like character with thin hair and large eyes (shown below).
Tayyip Erdoğan Gollum Meme
In early October 2015, Turkish doctor Bilgin Çiftçi was expelled from the Public Health Institution of Turkey for sharing a "totally looks like" image comparing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Gollum on Facebook (shown below). Additionally, Çiftçi was charged by authorities for violating a Turkish penal code stating that insults against the president are punishable by up to four years in prison.
During Çiftçi's trial, he argued that the image was not insulting since the character is often interpreted as a hero. The judge subsequently called for an expert panel to evauluate Çiftçi's defense made up of academics, psychologists and an expert on film and television, who would examine the case until the court reconvenes in February. On December 2nd, 2015, Redditor Karrakan posted an article about the court cast to /r/worldnews. Within 12 hours, the post gathered more than 6,600 votes (97% upvoted) and 1,300 comments. The same day, Redditor SmokeyBare posted the image to /r/pics, where it reached the front page with upwards of 8,900 votes (97% upvoted) and 2,400 comments within the first six hours. In the comments section, many Redditors noted the event was an example of the Streisand Effect.
Dec 03, 2015 at 04:41PM EST
Dec 03, 2015 at 04:46PM EST
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