The Correct Order for a First Time Viewing of The Lord Of The Rings

After reading Scott Hanselman's post about introducing your younglings to Star Wars, I was intrigued by the suggested 'Machete order' (courtey of Rod Hilton)

  • 4 - Star Wars: A New Hope
  • 5 - Empire Strikes Back
  • 2 - Attack of The Clones
  • 3 - Revenge of the Sith
  • 6 - Return of the Jedi

Which lead to deep conversations with myself about which order I should use when introducing my daughers to 'The Lord of the Rings'.

The three films can be arranged into 6 possible non-repeating combinations:

  • Fellowship, Towers, King
  • Fellowship, King, Towers
  • Towers, Fellowship, King
  • Towers, King, Fellowship
  • King, Fellowship, Towers
  • King, Towers, Fellowship

All of which have their own pluses and minuses, but none of which would qualify as a true 'machete' reordering.

I finally settled on the following order, which you'll agree is the best possible version of events:

  • 1. The Two Towers -- A good story always starts in the midst of the action, and leaps past the boring parts.
  • 2. The Hobbit, An Unexpected Journey -- having established the story we now move learn the origin of the Ring and Gollum.
  • 3. How to Train your Dragon -- the loveable Toothless and Hiccup show us that not all dragons are nasty Smaugs.
  • 3a. Read all of the books -- that way you can complain bitterly about the missing 'Scourge of the Shire' segment during:
  • 4. Return of the King, Disc 2 -- 5 minutes of chucking a ring in a pit, a quick eagle ride, and two hours saying goodbye.
  • 5. Return of the King, Disc 1 -- Awesome battle scene. Best war ever.

I dub this the Chop-Suey Reordering, and in line with Oracle's copyright on the arrangement of the Java Api's, I claim ownership of this and all derivative reorderings of the LOTR franchise.


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