The rivalry between Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos has just been fueled by a new episode.
The two richest men in the world compete mainly in the conquest of space. The two billionaires aspire through their respective companies, SpaceX for Musk and Blue Origin for Bezos, to soon make Mars and the Moon habitable for humans.
A few months ago, there was something of a rapprochement between the two tech tycoons, who are both critical of the Biden administration. But Musk’s latest statements will probably not delight Bezos.
These statements relate to the new blockbuster series “The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power”, based on the works of J.R.R. Tolkien, available for streaming on Amazon Prime Video since September 2.
The company had announced that the premiere of this mega-budget fantasy series has been seen by more than 25 million people around the world.
“‘The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’ attracted more than 25 million global viewers on its first day, breaking all previous records, marking the biggest premiere in the history of Prime Video,” Amazon (AMZN) said.
Musk Hated Amazon’s Adaptation of Tolkien
The series launched exclusively on Prime Video in more than 240 countries and territories worldwide, it added.
“It is somehow fitting that Tolkien’s stories – among the most popular of all time, and what many consider to be the true origin of the fantasy genre – have led us to this proud moment,” said Jennifer Salke, head of Amazon Studios. “And it is the tens of millions of fans watching – clearly as passionate about Middle-earth as we are – who are our true measure of success,” she added.
Musk, a huge science fiction fan, is one of the millions who have watched. And the least we can say is that the billionaire did not at all like the version brought to the screen by Amazon and he has just made it known.
“Tolkien is turning in his grave,” the CEO of Tesla (TSLA) posted on Twitter on September 5.
This incendiary review had already received more than 150,000 likes at the time of this writing. Musk doesn’t stop there. He also denounces the political correctness of adaptation and its upside-down feminism to make it modern.
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“Almost every male character so far is a coward, a jerk or both,” the tech mogul added. “Only Galadriel is brave, smart and nice.”
Galadriel is a female character in the series. And she’s one of the stars.
While TV critics have generally given the series positive reviews, many fans decry the liberties Amazon takes with a story that’s supposed to have taken place thousands of years ago. The show’s average audience score on Rotten Tomatoes is a “rotten” 39 percent at last check.
“Its not a adaptation, its a fan fiction made by someone that its not a fan!” read a post on Rotten Tomatoes.
“A disappointing attempt to continue the Lord of the Rings franchise. Flat, weak, and reverse stereotype characters, and a plodding story line drag this series down very quickly,” added another viewer. “The conversion of Galadriel from a mysterious feminine angelic type character into a hardened, all powerful military leader and ninja type warrior turned what could have been an engaging story into the standard, overdone, plot line focused on social messaging and cast equity.”
Amazon Delays User Reviews
Faced with the deluge of negative reviews Amazon has just decided to put a three-day delay on user reviews for all of its content on Prime Video, according to media reports. The 72 hours delay is supposed to ensure that each review is legitimate, Amazon told Variety.
“The Rings of Power” is set during Tolkien’s ‘Second Age’ in Middle-earth, thousands of years before the events of “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings”, Tolkien’s emblematic trilogy which has already been adapted for film.
Amazon paid $250 million to secure the rights, and some $465 million was spent on the first season alone. The company having committed to five seasons, the final sum should far exceed $1 billion.
If Musk is critical, it’s no surprise that Bezos is happy.
“Go Middle-earth!” the billionaire posted on Twitter on September 4.
“Your music is a huge part of what makes this show so amazing. Thank you!” he added while commenting on a message from one of the people working on the series.
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