Sunday, January 22, 2017

Fili and Kili

*This essay is a part of my 'Tolkien and Gender' series. You must read my Intro before reading this essay.*

I am writing this essay because I am just appalled by some of the things I have read about Fili and Kili's characterizations in the films. I am not usually a dwarf fan, and Kili is the only dwarf I'm a fan of (not that there is anything wrong with the others, it's just my personal taste).


Kili 'is reckless and stupid to try and fight the trolls alone'. Kili 'froze up and was unable to do anything' during the Stone Giants. This 'would be his usual reaction to a loved one in danger'. Kili 'doesn't check up on Fili or show any concern after the stone giants'. Kili 'doesn't care about his family at all'. Kili 'sexually harasses the female elf in Rivendell by suggestively winking' and 'the female elf is rightfully offended'. Kili 'is only interested in looks, not personality; both in Rivendell and with Tauriel'. Kili's 'flirting in Rivendell doesn't help Kiliel because he doesn't know Tauriel any better than he knew her, so he likely would have told the Rivendell elf he 'loved' her too'.

Kili 'is very sexist'. Kili 'is the most sexist character in all the films'. Kili 'is smooth and a player'. Kili 'doesn't hesitate to flirt, so he's a player'. 'Kiliel ruins Kili's character'. Kili acts 'desperate and obsessed' because of his feelings for Tauriel. 'Kili's character changes completely after meeting Tauriel'. Kili 'only likes elves because of their looks, and they look like humans, which makes no sense; he probably would have flirted with Sigrid too since he flirted in Rivendell'.

Kili 'doesn't care about Fili or Thorin' 'especially after his lust object appears'. Kili's 'first reaction to Tauriel is to objectify her, not thank her'. Kili's 'trousers comment is abusive'. Kili 'doesn't ask if his family is okay after being thrown in cells, he just talks to Tauriel'. Kili 'doesn't care about Fili, because he doesn't ask Tauriel if he's okay or try to talk to him'.

Kili 'isn't fascinated by elves or their culture, he just has a sexualized fetish'. Kili 'is rude and sounds pissed off that the elves are having a party'. Tauriel 'tells Kili her people's love of starlight and he tells her its crap'. Kili 'and Tauriel would have been overheard talking in the cells, yet it's never brought up'. 'The conversation between Kili and Tauriel in the cells was completely superficial'. Kili 'brainwashes Tauriel into liking him by using the rune stone to curse her into forced love'.

Kili 'ignored Fili all through DoS when Fili was devoted to him'. Fili 'defies Thorin but Kili gives up without a fight'. Kili 'never acknowledges Fili's sacrifice'. Fili 'gave up everything for Kili, and then Kili pulled away and hurt Fili'. Kili 'doesn't talk and is rude to Fili and pushes him away forcibly'.

Kili 'abandons his family' and 'objectifies Tauriel'. Kili 'gets lost in obsessed and unrealistic love at the expense of his people'. Fili 'cares about their people while Kili only simpers about Tauriel'. Kili 'doesn't care about Fili because he ignores Fili for Tauriel'. Kili 'doesn't care about his people, he only cares about what's in his pants, because he doesn't ask Tauriel to come with so she could heal the others if it was needed'. Kili 'tries to pressure and manipulate Tauriel on the lakeshore'. Kili 'never shows any consideration for Tauriel'. Kili 'only thinks about himself on the lakeshore' and 'doesn't thank Tauriel or think about her position'. Kili 'is selfish and sexist because he asks Tauriel to give up her entire life to come with him and be around people who would hate her'. Kili 'shows he has no consideration for Tauriel by speaking in a language he knows she doesn't know' and 'he only does so to manipulate her into putting out, because that's all he cares about'. Kili 'doesn't care at all about Tauriel's consent or reputation'.

Kili 'treats his mother horribly by giving Tauriel the runestone in an attempt to manipulate her'. Kili 'clearly doesn't care about his mother or family at all because he gives away the runestone'. The 'runestone's meaning makes no sense with Tauriel'.

Kili 'treats Fili like crap'. Fili 'finally realizes Kili is a horrible person' when they arrive at Erebor. Kili 'was warned about the gold sickness too, he just doesn't care, so he doesn't listen'. Kili 'needs to work to get Fili's forgiveness and trust for his horrible behavior'. Kili 'is toxic to Fili and their relationship'. Kili 'doesn't show any concern about Thorin or the others after Smaug'.

Kili's Laketown comment 'is not confronting Thorin, it doesn't show opposition or resistance'. Kili 'yells at Thorin that he will not do nothing when he has been doing nothing'. Kili 'hogs Thorin for himself, instead of bringing Thorin's attention to Fili'. Kili 'doesn't care about Fili because he leaves him in the tunnel and doesn't even say anything'. Kili 'doesn't react to Fili's death'. 'Take 3 is so much better than the final take (of Kili's reaction to Fili's death). The final take is horrible'.

Kili 'runs towards Tauriel instead of fighting with Thorin'. Kili 'should have died for Tauriel because he owes her a life debt and he sees she's failing in battle, not because he doesn't care about his family'. Kili 'dies saving Tauriel instead of defending Thorin, and that is inexcusable'.

Fili and Kili 'wouldn't be Thorin's best warriors, they are too young'. Kili 'has more screen time and overshadows Fili, which is unacceptable, because Fili is the heir and more important'.

Thorin 'treats Fili horribly and never shows him any affection'. Thorin 'doesn't react at all when Fili almost gets crushed by the stone giants'. Thorin 'only cares about Kili and is barely aware Fili exists'. Fili 'barely develops because he has almost no screen time'. It 'makes no narrative sense that Thorin does not interact with his heir'. Fili 'was a victim of Kiliel'.

Fili 'defies Thorin, which shows how great a king he would be, since he sticks up for the helpless'. Fili 'should have done something and the dwarves should have named him leader when it was clear Thorin had fallen to dragon sickness'. Fili 'should have been the one to confront Thorin because he is the heir'. Fili 'was shafted because he doesn't share Kili's emotional scene with Thorin'. Fili's death scene 'was a horrible injustice, he was dragged like a weakling, he should have gone down fighting'. It 'was completely useless' and 'not at all heroic'. It 'is boring'. He 'might as well have died off screen for all the impact his death had'.

PJ 'ignored the long tradition of sister-sons' and 'lost the theme of familial love by having them die separately and Tauriel be present'.


Honestly, the comments made by haters just make me feel deeply sad. Sad because these are beautiful characters and films, and the haters are too blinded by toxic power and hurt? prejudice? (I don't know) to see what is right in front of them.

It's perfectly alright to not feel a character or a pairing. That doesn't make them/it badly done, or wrong in any way. A personal example is that I just don't really like Gandalf. He's a crucial, very well-written character in Tolkien's legendarium. I have nothing against him. I just, for some reason, don't like him that much. And that's okay.

But that's completely different from accusing a character or relationship of being fundamentally unhealthy and wrong.

So here we go.

Bilbo opens the door. Fili has a slightly smug little smile, Kili looks serious and slightly nervous. Fili, “Fili.” Kili, “and Kili.” They both bow and say “At your service.” in unison. Fili still has that smug little smile; and Kili grins, “You must be Mister Boggins!” Bilbo protests and tries to close the door. Kili sticks his foot in, moving forward and asking with disbelief, “What? Has it been canceled?” Fili looks from Kili to Bilbo, suspicious, “No one told us.”

Bilbo speaks, Fili looks assessing. Kili grins, “That's a relief.” and pushes into the house. Fili follows with a slight swagger. “Careful with these. I just had them sharpened.” he says with a slight smirk, unloading his many weapons into Bilbo's arms. We then see Kili walking around curiously (weapon free, we see his quiver hanging off Bilbo), observing, “It’s nice, this place.” Fili is still unloading himself, pulling a knife out of his coat, breathing “Yeah.” when it slips free, and then pulling throwing axes out of his boots. Kili continues, “Did you do it yourself?” before wiping his boots on the wooden box in front of him.

Kili is the only one of the dwarves to use Bilbo's name, getting it mostly right. He is friendly, open-minded, and curious.

Bilbo scolds, and Dwalin comes out, “Fili, Kili. Come on. Give us a hand.” He grabs Kili; Kili grins at him, saying, “Mister Dwalin.” Passing Balin, he pats him on the arm in greeting. Balin starts talking. Fili follows and starts helping move things. Kili helps Dwalin move the table. The others arrive and start bringing out food; Fili and Kili go to move the keg of ale, but first Fili takes a long drink from the tap. They carry it into the dining room, glancing at Gandalf when he says their names. Kili walks back to the pantry and takes a plate filled with something small from someone, popping one in his mouth before going back to the dining room. Dinner starts, and Kili's practically jumping out of his seat, laughing and slapping the table.

Fili walks on top of the food and table (with dirty boots!), holding several mugs of ale. Dwalin groans, “Oh, you great galumphing git.” Fili says, “Who wants an ale? There you go,” handing it down to someone. When he passes Kili, Kili slaps his leg, “Over here, brother.” Fili sits, merriment continues; and Kili again slaps the table while laughing, this time knocking his ale into his lap. Everyone chugs their ale, Kili using both hands to hold the mug; he looks from Ori to Nori, burping and laughing.

Fili walks up and takes Ori's plate with one hand, “Here you go, Ori, give it to me.” He throws the plate to Kili, who catches it and throws it around the corner (also one-handed, his pipe is in his other hand). They continue, bouncing dishes off various body parts. Kili starts the singing. At one point, he's got himself wedged into the top of the door frame (no feet on the ground), throwing things down to Fili. Kili also throws a fork at Bifur's head, but Bifur turns around and catches it. Fili turns it into a dance. At the end, all the dwarves are laughing. Laughing, Kili points at Bilbo, pipe in hand, and says, “Look at his face!”

Thorin arrives, and enters Bag End. He stops in the hall, and smiles over his shoulder in greeting to Fili and Kili. Kili comes forward, near him. He watches Gandalf and then looks at Thorin when Gandalf introduces Thorin to Bilbo, and then takes Thorin's cloak, before moving back to where Fili is. He smiles at Fili when Bilbo makers his conkers comment, and grins when Thorin insults Bilbo (the others laugh). Everyone moves to the dining room. When Oin says ravens are coming back as foretold, Fili looks down with a small smile. He continues to listen, still with that small smile. Kili stays looking serious. Both Fili and Kili look serious when Bofur starts talking about Smaug.

Balin says, “The task would be difficult enough with an army behind us. But we number just thirteen, and not thirteen of the best, nor brightest.” Kili snarks, “Well, that sounds [something].” Fili slams his hand down on the table, stopping everyone's muttering, “We may be few in number, but we’re fighters.” Watching Fili, Kili nods seriously. “All of us. To the last dwarf!” Fili slams his hand down again. Kili excitedly speaks up, “And you forget, we have a wizard in our company.” Fili gives a small nod to Thorin, before finally looking at Kili. “Gandalf will have killed hundreds of dragons in his time.”

Kili makes an optimistic, excitable, and trusting comment about Gandalf; but Fili just gives a small nod to Thorin. He's played the role of heir by deftly changing the angry mutterings to united enthusiasm, and then gives his king as small nod of recognition and respect.

Fili and Kili cheer with the others, after Thorin's speech. When Gandalf pulls out the key, they both look at it seriously. Fili looks to Thorin, serious, “If there is a key, there must be a door.” Gandalf speaks. Kili nudges Fili, smiling at the others in anticipation and excitement, “There's another way in.” Fili smiles at Kili, leaning into him for a moment. When Oin mishears Bilbo, Fili gives him a perplexed look. Balin and Dwalin have their lines about Bilbo; but Kili protests, “He's just fine.” He likes Bilbo. The dwarves start humming for Misty Mountains; and we see Fili enter the room, with Kili right behind him. Both look serious throughout the song.

Fili and Kili are riding next to each other and behind Balin, when Bilbo catches up with the Company; they chuckle with the others when Balin welcomes Bilbo. They grab Bilbo and lift him onto his pony, and soon become somewhat separated. We find out that Kili bet on Bilbo coming; saying, “One more,” and getting a pouch of money thrown to him from Nori (Gandalf and Oin were the only others to vote on Bilbo).

It is nighttime, and Fili and Kili are on watch. They all hear a noise, Kili looks up from working on his pipe, and Bilbo fearfully asks what it was. Seriously, while glancing around, Kili replies, “Orcs.” Thorin wakes up at Bilbo's response. Fili says, “Throat-cutters. There’ll be dozens of them out there. The lowlands are crawling with them.” Kili continues, “They strike in the wee small hours, when everyone’s asleep. Quick and quiet; no screams, just lots of blood.”

After a moment, Fili and Kili look at each other and chuckle softly at Bilbo's obvious fear. Thorin interrupts them, severe, “You think that’s funny? You think a night raid by orcs is a joke?” Hurt, Kili responds, “We didn’t mean anything by it.” Stalking off, Thorin retorts, “No, you didn’t. You know nothing of the world.” Fili and Kili watch him go, before Kili bows his head. Balin walks over to them, “Don’t mind him, laddie. Thorin has more cause than most to hate orcs.” Fili is looking at Balin, serious, but Kili still hasn't looked up. Thorin's approval means the world to both of them. They then look at Thorin's back. Balin starts to speak, and Kili bows his head again. Fili continues to stare at Thorin's back. Balin, “beheading the King.” Kili looks back up at Thorin. Balin, “Azog the Defiler learned that day that the line of Durin would not be so easily broken.” Kili is already looking at Balin. Fili looks away from Thorin to look at Balin. Both look very serious. Balin finishes speaking. Thorin turns around, and all the other dwarves of the Company are standing and looking at him, Fili and Kili excluded. They have learned more details about Thorin and their family's history than they have ever known before.

Thorin orders Fili and Kili to look after the ponies, reminding them, “Make sure you stay with them.” Interesting, so Fili and Kili have a habit of wandering off? They watch Gandalf leave in anger. Later, when Bilbo brings them their supper, he finds them standing still and looking worried. They refuse to take the bowls of food, still staring ahead. Bilbo asks what's wrong. Kili responds, “We're supposed to be looking after the ponies.” Fili continues, “Only we’ve encountered a -” he turns slightly, looking at Bilbo, before glancing at Kili and turning back, “slight problem.” Kili, “We had sixteen.” Fili, “Now there's... fourteen.”

Fili and Kili did wander off, most likely exploring, and thus missed the troll taking two ponies. Fili is reluctant to tell Bilbo, because he's ashamed of losing the ponies.

Walking through the ponies, Kili says, “Daisy and Bungo are missing.” Fili is standing still and staring at an uprooted tree. Bilbo asks if they should tell Thorin. Kili stops and starts looking at their surroundings. Fili turns his head towards Bilbo, “Uh... no. Let's not worry him.” he looks back at the uprooted tree, “As our official burglar, we thought you might like to look into it.” Both brothers turn to Bilbo.

Getting punished is not the only reason Fili doesn't want to tell Thorin about the missing ponies. He's ashamed of failing his uncle, and doesn't want to create more stress and problems for Thorin.

Bilbo, “Well, uh... looks like something big uprooted these trees.” Kili responds, “That was our thinking.” Both brothers continue to scan their surroundings. Fili sees something, “Hey!” he starts to crouch, “There's a light.” He gestures to Kili, “Over here.” and starts creeping forward, “Stay down.” The three of them crouch behind a fallen tree. Bilbo asks what it is. Kili says, “Trolls,” before he and Fili run forward. Neither of them is afraid. They hide behind a tree as a troll walks by with two ponies.

Bilbo says they have to do something, and both boys look at him. Fili nods, and Kili says, “Yes, you should.” He pushes Bilbo forward. “Mountain trolls are slow and stupid, and you’re so small.” Bilbo starts protesting. “They’ll never see you.” Bilbo continues to protest. “It’s perfectly safe; we'll be right behind you.” Fili takes the bowls of food from Bilbo's hands, pushing him forward, “If you run into trouble, hoot twice like a barn owl, once like a brown owl.” He and Kili then disappear.

Fili lets Kili do most of the talking, but he is the one to push Bilbo forward and put the plan into motion.

Bilbo goes, scene happens, Bilbo gets captured. Kili bursts out of the trees, slicing William in the leg twice. “Drop him!” Kili shouts. Tom, “You what?” Kili spins his sword, grinning, “I said” he moves into a fighting position, “drop him.” Tom throws Bilbo at Kili. Kili drops his sword and grabs Bilbo, they both fall down. The other dwarves arrive and they start battling the trolls.

One of the trolls grabs Fili and hoists him into the air. Somehow he gets free and back on the ground. He slashes at a troll leg. Fili is running around, fighting near Kili. Kili runs and slides on the ground, lashing up at one of the trolls, before jumping up and attacking. A few moments later he gets thrown backwards, on to the ground; getting up instantly and attacking again. We see shots of both Fili and Kili slashing at the trolls. Fili rolls on the ground, before getting up and slashing at the wrist of the troll holding Ori. Ori goes flying. Dori and Kili run to him, Kili shouting, “Come on! Get up!” Kili glances at Thorin next to him, confused as to why he stopped; and then he sees Bilbo in the troll's grasp. He shouts, “Bilbo!” and starts running forward. Thorin grabs him, “Don't!” Tom, “Lay down your arms, or we’ll rip his off.”

Thorin stares at the troll, and Kili glances between him and it. Thorin sticks his sword into the ground, and Kili looks at him in disbelief, continuing to look between him and the troll. He then throws his sword down in anger.

Kili doesn't hesitate in rushing in to aid Bilbo. Fili, meanwhile, must have gone back to camp and told the others about the situation; confessing, taking responsibility, and getting the brunt of Thorin's anger.

Kili gets a lot of hate for this scene, and none of it is deserved. Both Fili and Kili come up with the idea to send Bilbo in first. Then, Kili doesn’t rush in when the trolls first notice Bilbo, or even when they first pick Bilbo up. It’s not until one of the trolls says “Hold his toes over the fire. Make him squeal.” that Kili charges out. And he succeeds - the troll throws Bilbo at Kili, and Kili catches him. At that moment the rest of the dwarves arrive. There are 15 seconds between Kili charging out and the others arriving. What must have happened is Fili went back to get help while Kili stayed as guard/scout/back-up for Bilbo.

Kili's immediate thought is to rush to help Bilbo, and he cannot believe it when Thorin lowers his sword. What happened to saving Bilbo and defeating the trolls?! Frustrated and angry, he throws down his sword.

The trolls have the Company stuffed in sacks, and all the dwarves are squirming and talking. Bilbo hears the trolls talking and comes up with a plan. All the dwarves scream traitor at him; then silently stare at him in fear. Bilbo says 'skin them', and the dwarves again start moving and shouting traitor; Fili tries to lunge and bite Bilbo's ankle but isn't able to move that far. Bilbo says 'infected', and William drops Bombur on top of Kili. All the dwarves start protesting. Kili shouts childishly, “We don’t have parasites! You have parasites!”

Thorin figures out what Bilbo is doing, and kicks Kili. Kili and the others look at Thorin, and catch on. Kili shouts, “Mine are the biggest parasites, I’ve got huge parasites!” A few moments later, “We're riddled!” Kili and the others look at Gandalf when he arrives. Gandalf and dawn happens; the dwarves start laughing in amazement and relief.

The all go off to the troll cave. Outside of it, we see Kili walk over to Bifur to see what he has; Bifur hands him a ram(?) skull. The dwarves hear a noise, and Kili joins the others in getting into position. Radagast bursts out, screaming, and Fili looks at him with worried confusion. He watches suspiciously with the others.

They hear a warg. Thorin kills the first one, shouting at Kili to shoot the second. He does, and Dwalin gives the killing blow. The orc chase starts. The hide under a rock outcropping, and an orc comes on top of it. Thorin looks at Kili, looks down meaningfully at Kili's bow, and then looks at Kili again; giving the silent order to shoot. Kili quickly steps out and shoots the orc and warg down; the others finish it off. The noise alerts the rest of the orcs and the Company starts running again.

They are surrounded on a plain. Kili shouts to Thorin, “There's more coming!” Thorin shouts back, “Kili! Shoot them!” Fili shouts at Thorin, “We're surrounded!” and gets into a fighting position. Kili starts shooting. Gandalf reappears, and the dwarves start jumping into the cave. Kili doesn't move, and continues shooting. He is the one who holds the orcs back, with his long range weapon. Thorin shouts, “Kili! Run!” Kili runs towards the cave. Fili only slides in when he knows Kili is right behind him; and Thorin follows them, the last one in. Both Fili and Kili put the others' safety first, fulfilling their roles as princes; just like Thorin. They listen in worry as battle noises reach them. They realize elves arrived, and Fili and Kili stare up at the cave's entrance, before following the others down the path.

They come out of the passage, and stop and stare at Rivendell. Fili and Kili are in the back, by Thorin. Kili turns his head towards Gandalf and Bilbo when they are speaking, and then turns towards Balin and asks something before looking back. Balin gestures across the valley with his weapon(?). Kili responds to Balin. Looking unhappy, Dori comes over and says something to Kili.

Kili and many of the others look around as they descend. They arrive in the courtyard, Fili and Kili walk around. Then Kili is standing by Thorin and Fili is talking to Gloin. Lindir arrives and they look at him. The horn blows and the elven patrol starts riding in. The dwarves huddle; Fili is next to Thorin and Kili is behind them, inside the circle with Bilbo. Kili looks angry, when the dwarves think Elrond is insulting them. Fili and Kili join the huddle, which decides on food.

Everyone is sitting down at dinner. Kili raises his head slightly and blinks, while staring at the female harp player. He looks quietly stunned. She is looking back at him. He then winks and smiles at her, lightheartedly raising his eyebrows slightly for a moment. Turning back to the table, Kili sees Dwalin watching him, unamused. Smile disappearing, Kili starts trying to bluff his way out. He casually picks up some food, shaking his head slightly, “I can’t say I fancy elf maids myself, too thin. They’re all high cheekbones and creamy skin.” Kili looks at Bofur, who is sitting next to him. Bofur nods with a smile (earlier, during Kili's staring, he had looked from the female elf, to Kili, and back to the elf in confusion). Kili looks up at the elf passing behind Bofur, before looking back at him, “Not enough facial hair for me.” He faces Dwalin again, “Although that one there's not bad.” He looks up at the elf that had just passed behind him and Bofur. While Kili stares at the elf, Dwalin leans forward, “That's not an elf maid.” What? Kili looks at Dwalin, confused and vulnerable. Dwalin just winks at Kili. All the other dwarves start laughing. Kili doesn't look away from Dwalin, his mouth falling open for a moment before thinning and his eyebrows furrowing; understanding and feeling hurt. The other dwarves continue to laugh. Kili nods his head rapidly while looking around at the others, saying, “Funny.” before looking down. He's hurt and humiliated.

Oh, this scene. It's so important in its show of dwarven culture. With Thorin and his peoples great hatred of elves, Kili has never seen one before; and in awe he finds he is aesthetically attracted to them. However, Kili knows this is not acceptable (nothing positive towards elves is), and so he starts trying to bluff his way out by comparing the two races and stating that he likes dwarven 'beauty' more. Still trying to play it cool, Kili says the one he just looked at 'isn't bad'. However, his tone is not at all his normal one, making it clear beyond a doubt that he is bluffing. Dwalin, who has probably met elves before, says that one isn't female, and publicly humiliates Kili for his interest in them. Kili doesn't lash out or get angry at being completely humiliated in front of everyone; instead he just says “funny” before looking down, clearly feeling hurt and vulnerable.

First, we're going to talk about dwarven beauty standards. Kili says that elves, according to said standards, are too thin and do
n't have facial hair. This matches Tolkien's writings:
They are in voice and appearance, and in garb if they must go on a journey, so like to the dwarf-men that the eyes and ears of other peoples cannot tell them apart. - Lord of the Rings, Appendix A 
The Naugrim were ever, as they still remain, short and squat in stature; they were deep-breasted, strong in the arm, and stout in the leg, and their beards were long. Indeed this strangeness they have that no Man nor Elf has ever seen a beardless Dwarf - unless he were shaven in mockery, and would then be more like to die of shame than of many other hurts that to us would seem more deadly. For the Naugrim have beards from the beginning of their lives, male and female alike; nor indeed can their womenkind be discerned by those of other race, be it in feature or in gait or in voice, nor in any wise save this: that they go not to war, and seldom save at direst need issue from their deep bowers and halls. - The War of the Jewels, Concerning the Dwarves
Short, squat, deep-breasted, strong, stout. Squat means “short and thick; low and broad” (source). Deep-chested means “having a broad, strong-looking upper body” (source). Stout means “strong in body; sturdy” (source). Basically, they are all synonyms for the same physical features.

Beards are very important to dwarves, and Kili only has stubble. Fili and Ori are both around Kili's age, but they have much fuller beards.

Here is a picture of the dwarves' muscle suits. Not only is Kili one of the taller dwarves, but he is the least deep-chested (even Ori has more of a barrel chest and waist) and is the second slimmest (only Ori is slimmer).

Therefore, we can conclude that, according to dwarven beauty standards, Kili is ugly. Not only is he ugly, he's also aesthetically attracted to the opposite of dwarven beauty standards.

We also have a lot of hate to get out of the way here. It honestly makes me so sad that some people cannot see beyond toxic power.

They also fundamentally misunderstand and damn attraction. Attraction is something internal and uncontrollable. To his surprise, Kili finds he is aesthetically attracted to elves. I say aesthetically attracted, because there is nothing in Kili's words or behavior that implies romantic or sexual attraction (see here to learn about attraction and its different types). Also, it is a common misunderstanding that this scene means Kili is bisexual. He's not. Aesthetic attraction and romantic or sexual attraction are not inherently correlated.

There is no hint of anything abusive in Kili's actions. They certainly aren't sexual harassment. Sexual harassment involves toxic power. As one article says, “We can immediately tell if someone is, in fact, being “nice,” or if their seemingly innocuous words or actions are laden with latent undertones of objectification and entitlement, as well as the threatening implications that go along with someone who holds that view – who views you as a less-than-human thing which they want and feel entitled to have – and has set their sights on you. [cut] It’s the tone, the setting, the look on his face that tells a woman that there’s a sexual power play at work, and she’s losing.” Context is everything.

What happens is that the female elf returns Kili's stare, so he playfully and lightheartedly winks and smiles in response to show that he doesn't mean anything negative. He then immediately looks back at the table, still smiling; proving that it's not even really about her. It's his fundamentally lighthearted and innocent personality (when my best friend saw this scene (she's not a Tolkien fan, but will watch the films for me), she said, “He's such a silly puppy, isn't he?” Yes. Yes he is).

Kili never looks away from the her face, much less do something toxic like leering or checking her out as she watches. Nor does the look on her face change – the screencap I have seen haters use comes from the middle of the food fight, and has nothing do with Kili.

Nor does Kili want things to progress further. He stares at her and the elf behind him because for the first time in his life he is aesthetically attracted to someone. His initial look at her is quietly stunned, and so is his look at the male elf. They are not looks of confidence. He never says or does anything to initiate interaction.

Some fans think that Dwalin is teasing Kili. He isn't. Teasing is benign. Dwalin publicly humiliates Kili by making a joke at Kili’s expense, and Kili looks extremely hurt. It’s a passive aggressive power play done to knock Kili back into place.

Bofur starts singing, and food starts getting thrown around; Kili eagerly participating (he's bounced back from being humiliated and isn't holding a grudge). He throws something that hits the elven statue next to Lindir. The dwarves are naked in the fountain, and Fili and Kili jump and slide from the top of it. It's nighttime, and Bombur breaks the table. Kili looks up from his little corner (where he's sitting, drawing, and smoking), and laughs loudly and falls backwards.

They are leaving Rivendell. Kili is in front of Bilbo, and Fili is behind him. Fili continues past Bilbo when he stops. The Company is in the Misty Mountains. A giant piece of rock breaks above them, Kili shouts, “Hold on!” He is worried about the others. They then see the stone giants. The rock starts breaking beneath Fili and Kili. Kili says, “What's happening?” Fili shouts, “Kili! Grab my hand!” in desperation. They reach for each other, but the distance is too wide. Kili gives Fili a look of fear, terrified of being separated from him during something they can do nothing about. What if something happened to Fili?

Contrary to what the haters say, we know that is what Kili is thinking, because we literally never once see him fear for himself. We always see him throw himself forward. Except he can't do that here, because he is suddenly on a stone knee, far away from Fili.

Thorin and Kili are on the same knee, and escape to a ledge with some of the others. They think the others were slammed into the side of the mountain, and Thorin screams, “No! No!” The stone giant falls down, without any dwarves. Thorin runs forward, screaming, “No! Fili!*” He slumps down in relief at seeing Fili alive (who is looking around dazedly), before moving forward with a smile. We saw Kili's fear at the beginning, and now Thorin's at the end.

(*He actually screams Kili, but it is Fili on the ledge, and we clearly see that it is Fili. This was a simple editing mistake, since everyone from Peter Jackson to Aidan Turner continually messed up their names.)

Fili and Kili help hold the other dwarves as they try to rescue Bilbo. Fili looks after Thorin (he has insulted Bilbo and started to walk away), before helping Bombur up. Fili and Kili are in the background of the cave, doing something with something. Fili watches Thorin with a small frown, when he says they will not wait for Gandalf.

Fili and Kili are sleeping next to each other (Kili's bedroll is an utter mess). They are on the first piece of cave floor to turn over. They all fall down the tunnel. They hit the wood groaning, and look around. The goblins come, and Thorin turns around and reaches out to grab Fili and Kili, so he can protect them. They are captured and separated, but still continue to fight as they are taken away. Fili is second in the line, followed by Kili, and then Thorin. Somehow Thorin gets in front of them, right before arriving before the Great Goblin.

They are all grouped together in front of the Great Goblin; Kili is in front of Thorin, and Fili is behind Thorin. Kili glares at the Great Goblin (who is still singing), before sharing a look with Thorin, who touches his shoulder briefly. Fili continues to look and push at the goblins behind them. They all duck when the Great Goblin spins. They all glare while he talks. Scene happens.

Gandalf arrives, and all the dwarves pick up weapons and start fighting. They start running, Fili is last in line. They keep fighting. Kili slides on his knees, killing a goblin, and then standing up. One of the coming goblins fires an arrow at him. Kili panics, instinctually raising his sword. The arrow bounces off his sword, and he looks at his sword in shock for a split second and the coming goblins, before continuing to use his sword to deflect arrows. He then grabs the ladder next to himself and uses it as a battering ram and then a bridge (some of the other dwarves help). Fili cries out “Bombur!” as they run across. They continue to fight their way out. Kili cuts the rope to a bridge and they start swinging. They start jumping off onto the other side. Orcs get on as they swing backwards. As they swing forwards, Fili is the last to jump, cutting the rope as he does so. Thorin grabs his hand to help pull him onto the other side. They keep running and fighting. Gandalf kills the Goblin King. They fall down, and we see Kili flinching and groaning. He looks up, his face transforming into alarm as he sees the many goblins coming towards them, crying out, “Gandalf!” The dwarves start running again.

They get outside and are running down the side of the mountain. Fili and Kili are both close to the back of the group. Kili is right behind Fili and both keep glancing behind themselves as they run. They come to a stop and Fili glances at Kili. Gandalf notices that Bilbo is missing. Fili and Kili look around. Thorin makes his speech, and Fili and Kili glance at each other, frowning. They look at Bilbo in surprise when he reveals himself. Amazed, Kili smiles, “Bilbo! We'd given you up.” He's just happy Bilbo is alright. Fili however, looks surprised and asks, “How on earth did you get past the goblins?” Dwalin agrees, “How indeed.”

The Company hears the wargs, and starts running again. They reach the edge of the cliff. Gandalf tells them to climb the trees. Kili jumps high, grabs a branch, and flips himself up. He then leans down and helps pull Fili up; who holds onto Kili, jumps, and grabs a branch. Not only is Kili the most agile one of the dwarves, he is the only one to get in the trees with skill.

The wargs start jumping at the branches. We see Kili trying to hold on. They start jumping to other trees as their's falls. Fili is hanging from a branch. They are all in the last tree. Kili looks at all of the wargs at the bottom of the tree. Gandalf throws his first fire-lit pinecone, before lighting two more. “Fili!” he calls, throwing one down. Fili, Kili, and the others start lighting and throwing pinecones down at the wargs.

Azog roars, and the dwarves cheer. Dori looks at Kili, and Kili friendly punches him on the arm, laughing. Dori starts to fall, and Kili grabs him, shocked and alarmed; the tree is starting to fall. They are hanging from the slowly falling tree. We see Kili tighten and adjust his grip. Bilbo goes to Thorin's defense. Fili and Kili are the first dwarves to reach them; attacking the orcs and wargs.

The eagles arrive and take away the orcs near Fili and Kili. We see Fili's look of wonderment. An eagle picks up Thorin. We see Kili's look of wonderment. An eagle picks up Fili and Kili. Fili and Kili look around, as they sit on the back of their eagle. Fili shouts, terrified, “Thorin!” seeing him unconscious in an eagle's grasp.

They arrive on the Carrock. Dwalin and Kili help Thorin up, but he shrugs them off. Kili stands next to Fili. Thorin starts speaking, and Kili looks from Bilbo to Thorin, his lips thinning in disapproval as Thorin scolds Bilbo. Thorin, “You nearly got yourself killed,” Frowning, Kili glances at Dwalin, who is looking at Thorin. It wasn't Bilbo's fault, Thorin had been the one to nearly get himself killed. Kili goes back to watching Thorin. Fili, serious, has been watching Bilbo the entire time. Thorin hugs Bilbo. Fili smiles, and Kili looks at Fili with a grin. He's relieved and happy that Thorin has finally accepted Bilbo.

Most of the Company watch the eagles fly off. Thorin however, sees Erebor (opposite direction). Fili and Kili turn around with the others, moving forwards towards the edge. They see a thrush fly past. Everyone continues to gaze at Erebor.

Bilbo returns from scouting. Fili and Kili look worried as Bilbo tries to speak, glancing at each other. They continue to look worried throughout the subsequent conversation. The Company is running from the orcs; Fili and Kili stop next to each other and turn their heads with the rest of the Company, when they hear a roar close behind. Fili is in the lead when running, right behind Gandalf. Fili looks behind, after passing Beorn's gate. He and Kili throw themselves against the locked door, trying to force it open. The other dwarves join in. Thorin pushes through and opens the latch.

The three of them are the first in. The others join them in trying to push the doors closed on Beorn. All are shouting; Kili, “Push!” They get the door latched and sigh in relief. Both stare at Gandalf when he says the bear is their host. Gandalf starts talking, and Fili and Kili follow Thorin into the kitchen area, looking around.

It is morning. Bilbo wakes up, and the dwarves are with Gandalf by the door, all looking serious. Fili and Kili are standing in the back, by Thorin. They move forward slightly, Fili after Thorin and Kili after Fili. We see Kili whisper something to Fili, who nods. Bilbo joins them, stopping between Kili and Thorin. Kili glances at him. Thorin looks at Kili over Bilbo's head, and a moment later Kili meets it with a serious look of his own, when Gandalf says “torn to shreds.” Gandalf calls for Bilbo, and Fili and then Thorin both gesture him forwards (Kili just looks at him). Kili looks at Thorin for a moment, before looking back at Gandalf.

Bofur tells Dwalin and Balin to go out; they have changed position slightly. Kili is by Bifur and looks towards the doorway with a serious expression; Fili is next to him. Fili gives a worried glance towards the doorway, before leaning forward to talk to Thorin. Oin and Gloin go out. Inside, they hear Beorn getting angry. All look worried. Fili glances at Bofur and then the doorway, while starting to prep for walking out. Kili looks between Bofur and the doorframe. Fili continues to prep as they watch Bofur give the signal and Dori and Ori go out. Then Fili comes out, with Kili behind him. They both look at Beorn, serious. They walk and stop in front of the other dwarves. The others fidget, but they stand still, acting like the princes they are. Thorin comes into view.

The scene changes. They are all at the table. Fili is sitting on the end, with Kili to his right (they are both on one of the short ends, with no one else). Thorin is to his left, sitting by the (close) pillar and facing Fili. Beorn is pouring something into Fili's large mug. Fili drinks, and Kili grabs some food. Fili and Kili watch and listen to Beorn with the others while eating, looking serious. Beorn starts warning about Mirkwood, and Fili looks at Thorin. He then takes another drink.

The scene changes. Bifur helps Fili onto his pony. He then makes sure the packs are tied securely on Fili's pony. The dwarves hear a sound and look around. They reach the edge of Mirkwood. Fili and Kili are with the other dwarves, rearranging supplies, when Gandalf says he is leaving. They both look at him in surprise. Gandalf leaves, and the company enters Mirkwood. Kili is in front of Fili, as they walk through the forest. Then, Fili in front of Kili. They stay near the front of the line. They look around, unsure of where the path went. Dwalin finds it. They continue through the forest.

Kili says, “We found the bridge.” Company talks, Thorin says they must find another way. Kili walks out onto a downed tree, tugging on the branches. He turns to Thorin, “These vines look strong enough.” Kili starts to go, but Thorin says, “Kili!” Kili and Fili (who is right behind him), turn around and look at Thorin. Thorin says Bilbo goes first. We see them struggling with the branches.

Bombur falls unconscious. Fili is carrying the front left side of the makeshift cot, Kili is helping hold the side. More horrible forest. Bilbo says they have to find the sun;the dwarves are all fighting and someone pushes Dori into a tree, right next to Kili. Kili pushes him away, and Dori pushes back. Fili arrives and pushes past Ori and Nori so he can get to Kili and stand in front of him. Ori is pushing at Fili. Kili points at Ori and then goes behind Fili and passes to his other side. Fili is now shoving at Dori and Nori. Nori tries to grab Kili and Kili points at Ori. Kili recoils as if he's heard something painful. Fili moves behind Kili, and Thorin orders all of them quiet. Fili stops at Kili's side.

All of the dwarves are throughly drugged by Mirkwood at this point. However, the enchantment of the forest can make Fili and Kili turn on the others, but not each other. In fact, even drugged!Fili has protecting Kili as his number one priority. Kili, on the other hand, gets very upset with Ori for pushing Fili.

They get captured by spiders. Bilbo cuts them all loose. They wake up and start running from the spiders. They are fighting the spiders. Fili and Kili help pull the legs off the spider trapping Bombur. A spider has Ori trapped on the ground. Kili gives Fili a hand up as Fili jumps on the spiders back. Kili shouts, “Come on!” turning around and hitting a different one in the mouth. Fili brings his sword down on the spiders head, and Kili cuts off one of its front legs. Enraged, the spider Kili hit in the mouth traps him standing up. Fili shouts, “Kili!” freeing Kili; Kili gives the final blow to the spider.

The elves arrive, and circle the dwarves. We hear Kili shout and scream, “Help!” Fili turns around and shouts, “Kili!” A spider has Kili by the foot, and is dragging him on the ground. Tauriel arrives and shoots the spider in an eye. Kili gets up. Another spider comes at him and he says, looking between the spider and Tauriel twice, “Throw me a dagger! Quick!” Without turning around, and killing her spider, Tauriel retorts, “If you think I am giving you a weapon, dwarf, you're mistaken!” She turns and throws her dagger, killing the spider headed towards Kili. Kili looks at the spider, and then turns and looks at her in amazement. She had just saved his life twice. (For Tauriel's side of their relationship, see my Tauriel essay)

Fili is scowling and glaring as the elves search him. He hands the elf a weapon, and sighs in annoyance when the elf immediately finds another one of his hidden weapons (he's like a weapon porcupine!). Fili pulls on his jacket, showing that the sides are empty. The elf merely reaches behind and pulls another one off Fili's back. Fili sighs.

The dwarves are getting shoved in cells. At the last moment, the elf with Fili stops him, pulling out another knife. Fili sighs, and gets pushed into a cell. Kili watches Fili lose his last knife and says, “Aren't you going to search me?” He then looks at Tauriel, and she him. He says innocently, “I could have anything down my trousers.” Tauriel raises her eyebrows and says, “Or nothing,” before closing the cell door. She holds his gaze until she turns around. Kili watches her walk off, before looking down and smiling softly.

Instead of feeling humiliated because he needed to be saved, Kili is taken with his beautiful and amazing savior. Never one to hold back, he takes his chance to flirt with Tauriel. She responds to him with a quip of her own, and keeps his gaze. Happy with their flirting, Kili watches her walk off, before looking down and smiling softly.

There is nothing wrong with Kili's comment. There is no hint of anything abusive in it. It certainly isn't sexual harassment. Sexual harassment involves toxic power. As one article says, “We can immediately tell if someone is, in fact, being “nice,” or if their seemingly innocuous words or actions are laden with latent undertones of objectification and entitlement, as well as the threatening implications that go along with someone who holds that view – who views you as a less-than-human thing which they want and feel entitled to have – and has set their sights on you. [cut] It’s the tone, the setting, the look on his face that tells a woman that there’s a sexual power play at work, and she’s losing.” Context is everything.

Tauriel is not a random stranger on the street that Kili is calling this out to. The elves have been searching the dwarves to find hidden weapons. Kili is not creating the scenario, but continuing it. His tone is light, and there is no toxic undertone to it. His smile proves there is no sexual harassment or toxic undertone – someone with toxic power/masculinity would see Tauriel's response as emasculating them and would react with anger and aggression, not a soft smile.

If you have a problem with the sexuality of it, first that does not make it unhealthy; and second, don't use Tolkien as your excuse. It's untrue. Go read Unfinished Tales, The History of Middle-earth series, and The Children of Hurin. Just because it isn't in LotR, doesn't mean it doesn't exist.

Nor is there any objectification. Objectification means “representing a human being as a physical thing deprived of personal qualities or individuality.” It includes toxic power. Attraction is not objectification. Kili does not say or do anything that implies objectification.

Kili is aesthetically, romantically, and sexually attracted to Tauriel. There is nothing wrong with that.

Tauriel walks off, interacts with Legolas, and leaves. Kili then sits down in his cell and glares at Legolas, angry and jealous by his closeness to Tauriel.

As for his family, Kili saw Fili sigh angrily at loosing his last knife and getting pushed into a cell. Fili is clearly fine. Thorin will also return to proudly tell the others that Thranduil offered him a deal, but he told Thranduil to get poo poured on himself. Clearly, everyone is fine and being their usual selves.

Fili is one of the dwarves trying to escape from his cell; first kicking and then shoving at his door. Balin tells them all to stop.

Scene switch to Kili in his cell. He turns his rune stone over in his hand (so the runes are facing up), looking at it thoughtfully for a few moments, before tossing it in the air. We see Tauriel doing a routine check of all the cell doors. It is the middle of the night. He glances at her and stops throwing his rune stone, right before she reaches him. Tauriel stops outside his cell. With a neutral tone and look, she says, “The stone in your hand, what is it?” Kili looks from her to his hand, grim, before saying, “It is a talisman.” He looks at her. Tauriel looks at him strangely, tilting her head to the side slightly. He looks back at his hand, “A powerful spell lies upon it. If any but a dwarf reads the runes on this stone, they will be forever cursed.” Kili thrusts the stone out at her. Tauriel's eyes widen, and she takes a small step back, giving him a disturbed look. Still looking grim, Kili holds her gaze as he moves the rune stone back to himself. With a look of slight alarm, Tauriel turns to leave.

Or not,” Kili says conversationally. Tauriel stops, looks back at him strangely, and starts moving back to where she was. “Depending on whether you believe in that kind of thing. It’s just a token.” Kili says conversationally, smiling at the end. He doesn't want her to leave, and he only teased her to get her attention. Tauriel is still staring at him strangely, but she slowly smiles. Her smile encourages him, and he continues, looking down at his hand, confiding softly, “A rune stone.He runs his finger over it for a moment, before continuing, “My mother gave it to me so I’d remember my promise.” He looks back at her, gauging her reaction.

Intrigued, Tauriel moves closer, “What promise?” Kili continues to look at her and confide, “That I will come back to her.” Kili keeps the rune stone as a keepsake, so that his mother is always close to him. Tauriel smiles and looks down. In a lighter tone Kili says, “She worries.” He tosses the stone and looks at Tauriel, smiling slightly, “She thinks I’m reckless.” Tauriel smiles back, looking at him, “Are you?” “Nah,” says Kili, smiling and waving it off; trying to act cool (his flirting is actually working!). However the rune stone slips from his grip, and almost falls off the edge (oh, the symbolism!). Tauriel stops the rune stone with her foot, and Kili gets up and comes to the cell door. She picks it up, and curiously inspects it. Kili, meanwhile, is distracted by the noise coming from above, “Sounds like quite a party you’re having up there.” While Tauriel is fascinated by an aspect of Kili's culture, he's distracted by an aspect of hers.

Smiling in happiness, Tauriel looks at Kili and says, “It is Mereth-en-Gilith,” before stepping away and looking up, “the Feast of Starlight. All light is sacred to the Eldar, but Wood Elves love best the light of the stars.” Kili says, “I always thought it is a cold light.” Tauriel turns and looks at him. Kili's voice becomes vulnerable and pained, and his expression shows that he's caught in a memory, “Remote and far away.” Tauriel moves closer, speaking earnestly, “It is memory. Precious and pure.” and smiles. Kili looks at her with wonder.

After holding Kili's gaze for a moment, Tauriel looks down at the rune stone in her hand, smiles, and offers it to him, “Like your promise.” She recognizes that Kili's promise holds the same sacred love and purity that the stars do. He looks at her, takes it back, and looks at her again, before looking down; considering her words. He had never thought of his promise, and his love for his family, that way. Tauriel turns around to look at the light shining down, before looking back at Kili, and confiding with a smile, “I have walked there sometimes.” Kili looks back up at her, and Tauriel looks up at the light again, entranced by her memory, “Beyond the forest and up into the night.She steps away, “I have seen the world fall away and the white light forever fill the air.”

Entranced by Tauriel, Kili had moved even closer, and now has his face pressed against the bars. He confides a similar experience, “I saw a fire moon once.” Tauriel turns to look at him, walking back over. “It rose over the pass near Dunland. Huge. Red and gold, it was. It filled the sky.” Tauriel sits down, entranced. Kili continues, “We were an escort for some merchants from Ered Luin, they were trading in silverwork for furs. We took the Greenway south, keeping the mountain to our left. And then it appeared. This huge fire moon lighting our path.” Tauriel smiles, still entranced. “I wish I could show you the caverns [something].” They are both entranced, connected, and joyful. There is nothing to ruin this precious and perfect moment for them.

Now, to rebuttal some more hater statements. Kili's voice is soft and he doesn't say anything negative about the party – in fact, he does the opposite, saying that it must be “quite a party.” Tauriel recognizes this as the complement it is, and happily tells Kili about the meaning behind it. Kili then softly shares his own point of view in a very open-minded and nonjudgemental way (“I always thought” is sharing an opinion, not making a statement). There is nothing rude about his comment, nor does he in any way imply that Tauriel's opinion is wrong. Tauriel responds by passionately stating her own view and smiling at him. If the haters were right, Tauriel would have had a drastically different reaction (in actuality, she is the one to make a statement).

There is nothing superficial about this conversation. It starts with Kili playing a joke that Tauriel finds funny, which shows us that they share the same sense of humor. Kili then opens up and confides something very personal, his bond with his mother. Recognizing that, Tauriel shows that she is moved by smiling and looking down. Kili decides to lighten the mood by sharing more personal information, and they banter about his personality. Then the party comes up, and Tauriel happily opens up and shares with Kili a fundamental part of who she is. She then goes even further and complements his promise to his mother, before continuing to open up about a part of her fundamental self. Kili responds by opening up even more, telling her about a similar experience he had and other details about his life.

This conversation also shows that Kili has thought about nature before, and the crucial word “always” makes it clear that he has been doing so for his entire life. He had pondered and formed an opinion about the stars, and reveled in the beauty of a fire moon. This is not natural for a dwarf, and it is one of the many things that show us how perfectly matched they are.

Just because Kili doesn't hesitate to flirt with Tauriel doesn't mean he is a player or that he flirts with everyone all the time. Not everyone is shy and awkward when it comes to flirting; there are plenty of people who aren't players and who don't flirt a lot that don't have any problems when they do. It's all about personality. Kili never holds back in anything, and is fundamentally lighthearted. That shows in all of his behavior, including flirting.

There is nothing smooth about Kili. At all. In any way. His way to get Tauriel's attention is to prank her by pretending he's cursing her. Tauriel, bless her heart, finds it funny because she is an equally big dork and shares his sense of humor.

Kili is also not attractive by dwarven beauty standards, he's not attracted to dwarven beauty, and he's very romantic, idealistic, and sentimental. Literally everything discredits the idea of Kili having 'experience'.

Just like there is absolutely nothing wrong with attraction, there is nothing wrong with romantic love. It is not bad in any way.

None of the other dwarves hear their conversation, because it is clearly the middle of the night. They are all asleep.

Also, I cannot believe I have to rebuttal the idea of Kili cursing Tauriel. Really people? Anyway, by the time Kili plays his prank with the rune stone, Tauriel has already showed us her feelings for Kili (see my Tauriel essay, link above). Also, even if there was a curse on the rune stone (which there clearly isn't), it wouldn't be a curse to make someone fall in love. And, since Tauriel is an elf, it would not even be able to effect her (again, see my Tauriel essay, for an explanation of elven nature).

The dwarves are in their cells. Bofur says it must almost be dawn. Ori says, “We're never gonna reach the mountain, are we?” Fili looks out his cell door, before looking down and giving a small sigh. He does not think they will. Bilbo appears with the keys. Fili stands up and looks at him in shock. Balin, “Bilbo!” Kili shouts, “What?” He cannot believe it. Bilbo goes around opening cell doors. Kili is standing with his hands on the bars, fidgeting. He gives a happy little jump before pushing his door open and walking quickly to the others free dwarves, who are talking about going up a staircase. Fili is right behind him. He turns around for a moment, giving Fili a small touch on the arm, before looking forward again and touching Dwalin's back.

Bilbo then starts leading them down, with Fili in front of Kili. Kili keeps a hand on Fili's back as they move. They get down, and Kili is in front, followed by Bofur and Fili. Kili looks around, before saying to the other dwarves, “I don't believe it. We're in the cellars!” Bilbo was supposed to be leading them out! Fili walks behind Kili as they look around. Bilbo tells everyone to get into the barrels. They all whisper before Thorin orders them in. They get in (Fili and Kili are once again right next to each other). They all stick their heads out and look at Bilbo. Bilbo opens the trap door and they all yell as they roll down.

They start going down the river, hitting a waterfall and then rapids. Fili shouts, “Bilbo!” scared for the hobbit barely hanging on to Nori's barrel. Fili and Kili hear the elven horn. They whip their heads around, looking from behind them to the gate they are quickly approaching. The elves shut the gate, and the dwarves are stuck. Orcs arrive. Kili looks at them in shock.

The orcs attack, fighting many of the dwarves, including Fili. Kili is in the inner circle. He looks up and sees the lever. Thinking quickly, he climbs out of his barrel, jumping from barrel to barrel to the ground. An orc swipes, Kili ducks. Dwalin shouts, “Kili!” throwing him a weapon. Kili kills the orc, kicking it into the water. He starts up the stairs, fighting an orc. Another one approaches him from behind, and he doesn't see it. Fili throws a weapon and kills it. Kili then kills the one he was fighting.

Angry with Kili, Bolg gets out his bow. Kili fights another orc and kills it. He is just in front of the lever when Bolg's arrow hits his calf. He pauses and gasps. Fili, who has been watching him, shouts in fear, “Kili!” Kili grabs the lever, but the pain is too much. He falls down, groaning in pain and touching his leg. Having heard Fili's terrified cry, Thorin fearfully whispers, “Kili.” An orc is coming towards Kili, and it is killed by an arrow. Kili whips his head around, and sees Tauriel running onto the scene. He watches her with shock and amazement, panting. She has saved his life for a third time. His head turns, following her arrow, as she kills the new orc trying to sneak up on him (fourth time!).

The other elves arrive. Kili cannot help but look from the lever to Tauriel once again. Then, using the stone steps to support himself, he pulls himself up and grabs the lever, with a grunt. The gate opens, and he falls down again, crying out in pain. Kili drags himself to the edge of the ledge. Watching him, Fili cries, “Kili!” Kili slides off the ledge and into his barrel. In doing so, the arrow brakes off, causing Kili to grunt in pain. He is gasping and leaning his head against the side of his barrel. Fili looks at him, worried.

Note that neither Tauriel nor Kili change their actions because of their feelings towards each other – both focus on helping their people.

They all continue down the rapids. Bilbo has grabbed onto Kili's barrel, and Kili scrunches his face, crying out in pain. Thorin kills an orc, and throws its weapon to Dwalin. The weapon gets thrown down the barrel line, Fili catches it and kills an orc. Everyone continues down the river.

The water is calm and there is a riverbank nearby. Looking pained, Kili is swimming with his arms, still in the barrel. They reach the shore. Kili is one of the first to climb the rocks. He falls to his knees, clutching his leg and groaning in pain. He touches the wound with a cloth, hissing in pain. He sees Bofur watching him worriedly, and says quietly, “I'm fine, it's nothing.” He looks back down. 

Kili doesn't want attention. He dismisses his injury because he doesn't want to be a burden and believes there are much more important things to focus on (like the orcs).

Thorin walks by, “On your feet.” Fili has gotten to Kili's side. He is wrapping cloth around Kili's wound, and responds, “Kili's wounded. His leg needs binding.” Thorin says they keep moving; Balin, Bilbo, and Dwalin talk. Looking worried, Fili glances up at them several times, while tending to Kili. Kili watches them also, worried and in pain. Thorin says, “Bind his leg, quickly. You have two minutes.”

Bard arrives and points an arrow at Ori. Sensing something behind them, they all turn and see Bard (Fili was still working on Kili's binding; Kili looks wide eyed with alarm as he whips his head around). Kili raises a rock, ready to throw it, but Bard shoots it out of his hand (they have all stood up by now, including Fili and Kili). Kili looks from his hand to Bard, completely shocked.

Balin is talking to Bard. Kili is leaning against the rock wall. Fili is crouching and looking at his leg. Fili looks up at Kili, before bending back down again. He looks up again and lets go of Kili's leg, clasping his hand on Kili's shoulder, in support. Kili hunches over, and Fili turns to look at Bard, his hand still on Kili's shoulder. Dwalin speaks. At some point Fili has let go of Kili's shoulder, and Kili has looked up at Bard. They both continue to watch Bard, their faces serious.

The dwarves are on Bard's boat. Fili and Kili rise with the others, looking at Erebor in amazement. Bard comes forward, Fili turns his head towards before Kili does. Fili and Kili look with the others to where the guards are becoming visible (Fili again a second before Kili). They have been side by side the entire time.

Barrels and fish happen. Fili is near the front of the line, while Kili is near the back. Guards see the dwarves, Fili and Kili trip one with a rope. The toilet happens. Everyone is in Bard's house.

Thorin is standing in a huddle with Balin, Fili, and Kili. Thorin, “Tomorrow begins the last days of autumn.” Balin, “Durin's Day falls the morn after next. We must reach the mountain before then.” Worried, Kili asks, “And if we do not?” he glances behind himself to make sure no one is listening in, before looking back, “If we fail to find the hidden door before that time?” Fili looks from Kili to Thorin, stating, “Then this quest has been for nothing.” Bard returns before Thorin can reply.

Bard unwraps the 'weapons'. Thorin, “What is this?” Fili looks from them to Bard, incredulous. Kili furrows his brow, looking at the weapons. They both pick up weapons, inspecting them. Always curious, Kili asks, “And this?” Bard, “A crowbill, we call it.” Protests from Gloin and Bofur. Everyone puts the weapons back on the table. They watch Bard as he talks. Balin says they should leave now, and Fili and Kili start to move with the others. They stop and watch Bard as he talks.

Kili starts to move before Bard finishes; leaning on a pole, his face showing his pain. He slowly slides down the pole to sit on the couch. He breathes heavily, looking down at his wound. He draws in a breath and touches it, glancing around to make sure no one is watching. The last thing he wants is to be a burden.

It is nighttime. They are in the armory. Nori piles more weapons into Kili's arms. Kili struggles. Thorin turns around and puts another weapon into his arms. Kili struggles a little more. Thorin faces him, asking, “You all right?” Kili gives him two tiny nods, responding, “Yeah, I can manage.” Thorin puts another weapon in Kili's arms, not looking away. Kili continues, “Let's just get out of here.” He doesn't want to disappoint Thorin, and the quest is far more important than his injury.

Kili starts walking sideways towards the stairs, glancing back at Thorin. Kili starts down the stairs, but his leg gives out and he falls with a cry of pain. The weapons make lots of noise as they and Kili fall down a flight of stairs. They hear the guards. Kili looks up in fear from his position on the tiny landing. Outside, the other dwarves (including Fili), start to run, but are stopped by guards immediately. One guard throws Kili against the wall, holding a dagger to his throat. Kili looks from him to Thorin. Thorin looks at Kili. Kili stares at Thorin with a look of pain and guilt.

They are marched to outside the Master's house. Kili's face contorts in pain, and he bends to touch his leg. Fili (who is in front of him) turns towards him, but Kili pulls himself together and stands up. He then bends over again, after a moment. Fili moves with him, giving support and helping Kili stand up again. Fili lets go, and they both stand and watch the Master as Dwalin speaks. They then look at Thorin, as he comes forward. They watch, serious and worried. Fili glances around. They look at Bard when he arrives. Kili hunches a little, in pain, and Fili puts a hand on his shoulder in support.They then continue to watch Thorin and the crowd. Alfrid asks who can vouch, and Fili glances with a frown at the guards and the people. He knows they won't. Kili puts his hand on Fili's shoulder, as they watch Thorin. Bilbo speaks up. Kili continues to look in pain.

It is morning. The dwarves are ready to leave and getting in the boat. Kili looks pale and sick. Thorin puts a hand on Kili's chest, holding him back, “Not you.” Kili looks at Thorin in confusion. Thorin is handing things down to the boat, “We must travel at speed. You will slow us down.” Kili smiles, disbelieving, “What are you talking about? I'm coming with you.” Thorin, “No you're not.” Fili turns around in the boat, moving closer and frowning. Kili stares at Thorin, realizing that he is serious; his smile fading, brow furrowing, and saying emotionally, “I'm going to be there when that door is opened. When we first look upon the Halls of our Fathers, Thorin.” eyebrows raising and dropping at 'Thorin'. He can't be left behind. He has to be there! He just has to!

Thorin touches Kili's shoulder, “Kili, stay here. Rest.” Kili looks hurt and betrayed. Thorin touches the back of his head, “Join us when you're healed.” giving a small smile. Kili just looks at him with shock and betrayal. He cannot believe that this is happening. Thorin lets go and turns back to the boat. Still stunned, Kili starts to move back, out of the way. Oin says, “I'll stay with the lad. My duty lies with the wounded.” he gets out of the boat and goes over to Kili.

Fili moves forward, closer to Thorin, “Uncle. We grew up on tales of the mountain. Tales you told us. You cannot take that away from him!” Thorin has to understand! Kili looks around Oin, who is trying to examine him. He warns, “Fili.” He wants Fili to drop it, and continue on the Quest. Fili ignores him, pleading, “I will carry him if I must!” Thorin responds seriously, “One day you will be king and you will understand.” Fili just looks at Thorin. “I cannot risk the fate of this quest for the sake of one dwarf. Not even my own kin.” Kili tries to pull away from Oin again, shaking his head, saying faintly, “I said it's fine.” Fili watches Kili for a moment, face serious, before getting out of the boat. Thorin stops him, grabbing his arm, “Fili, don't be a fool.” Fili spins around, their gazes meeting. Thorin continues, “You belong with the Company.” Fili responds, not looking away, “I belong with my brother.” He yanks his arm out of Thorin's grip and walks over to Kili.

This scene is always guaranteed to break me. Fili and Kili grew up hearing tale after tale about Erebor from Thorin, their beloved uncle and king. It's why they have come on the quest. Kili practically breaks down when learning he won't be there when the door opens. Then, selflessly, he doesn't want Fili to fight for him, but to go with the Company. But Fili won't. Because all of the tales and all of the gold are worth nothing to him without Kili. And so, he defies Thorin; probably for the first time in his life.

This scene has been talked about a lot in the fandom. Many Thorin fans say that he was not a jerk and doing the right thing for his people by leaving Kili behind; and that Fili is in the wrong, not morally superior.

I agree Thorin made the decision he had to as king. The problem, however, is how he did it. Thorin waits until Kili is about to step on the boat, before pulling the rug out from under him. Thorin does not arrange any treatment or housing for Kili, he does not even talk to Oin about it. Kili is just abandoned on the dock with no friends or support.

So why does Thorin set it up this way? Because he is already falling to dragon sickness. Thorin does not behave normally here. He doesn't even notice Bofur is missing, and then only says, “He's not here, we leave him behind.” It is Balin who anxiously says, “We'll have to. If we're to find the door before nightfall. We can risk no more delays.” Then, he is completely disconnected when talking to Kili. Kili looks heartbroken and betrayed. Thorin, on the other hand, smiles and is overtly physically affectionate (two things Thorin does not do often). Kili's feelings do not even register with him. Nor does Thorin say anything or respond in any way to Oin's statement and exit from the boat (he just watches Oin for a moment before turning back to the boat).

Also, Thorin is being a complete hypocrite. He has risked the Quest several times for his personal feelings – he refused to go to Rivendell even though Elrond was the only one who could read the map, he not only refused Thranduil's deal but cursed him out even though the dwarves were at Thranduil's mercy, and he refused to accept 'subpar' weapons from Bard.

Then Fili steps forward. I agree with Thorin fans when they say Thorin took time to explain his decision to Fili. I don't agree with Thorin fans when they say that him letting Fili go shows how he respects other people's agency; because he does not care about Bofur and Oin staying behind, and as Balin said, they couldn't risk any more delays. They leave immediately after Fili walks away. 

Thorin's explanation to Fili is norm
al Thorin, because he has not fallen completely yet. I also agree that Fili made the wrong decision a good Crown Prince would make. Fili puts his personal feelings before the sake of his people.

As for Kili, I think he was being both selfless and irresponsible.

He doesn't want to be a burden and knows the quest is far more important than his injury. He just wants to help. I agree completely with azaghin when they say,
don’t u dare call kíli a child around me kíli is constantly accepting the responsibility for his actions hell taking responsibility for things that aren’t his fault i mean he gets shot in the leg with a morgul blade and spends half of the film trying not to be a burden to anyone. kíli recognizes that he is a part of a bigger world and that his actions both as a prince and as a part of the company has an effect on the world around him and all he wants is to help his people and give them a home and make positive change and every time he makes a mistake you can just see the pain in his eyes because all he wants to help and he just feels like he’s a burden not to mention he’s constantly chastised by his uncle ‘you know nothing of this world’ well maybe not but he wants to learn he’s seen enough that he knows that there’s tragedy and people who are hurt and in need and he just wants to hELP them he just wants his mother and brother to have a home he wants to see his uncle happy he wants to fight for people who who have less than he does he’s such a brave little idealistic warrior part of a world that’s so big and so full of pain and he feels so guilty that he can’t heal all of it. friCK
So how is Kili being irresponsible? Because he doesn't realize the best way he can help is to remove himself from the Quest. His actions do get them caught in the armory. And it breaks his heart that he's failed when all he has been doing is trying to help (he also protests and tries to change Thorin's mind, unlike what the haters say).

The horns blow, the Master speaks, and the boat starts to leave. Kili watches it, looking miserable. Bofur shows up. Fili glances at the cheering humans next to him. Kili is hunched over in pain. He starts to fall sideways, and Fili catches him, crying out in shock and alarm, “Kili? Kili!” Oin touches Kili, who gives a pained gasp.

Oh Kili. Miserable and undoubtably feeling ashamed and guilty for letting everyone, especially Fili and Thorin, down, Kili's despair takes away what willpower he had left for fighting the poison.

The Master and Alfrid start climbing their steps. Fili calls out from behind them, “Please wait!” The Master and Alfrid turn around. Bofur and Fili are holding Kili up, with one of Kili's arms around each of their necks. Kili's head is dropped forward. Fili pleads, “Please. We need your help. My brother is sick.” Kili lifts his head. Bofur puts a hand on his chest in concern. The Master, “Sick? Is it infectious? Get back. Alfrid, Alfrid – don't let them come any closer.” Oin moves forward, pleading, “Please. We need medicine.” Alfrid, “Do I look like an apothecary? Haven't we given you enough? The master's a busy man. He hasn't got time to worry about sick dwarves. Be gone with you. Go on. Clear off.” Alfrid and the Master turn around and continue up the steps. The dwarves start turning around, and the guards push them further away.

Bard's door opens. Bofur is standing in front, behind him Oin and Fili are holding up Kili. Fili looks worried. Bard sees the dwarves, “No. I'm done with dwarves. Go away.” he starts to close the door. Bofur stops him, “No, no, no! Please! No one will help us. Kili's sick.” Bofur turns around, letting Bard see Kili. Kili lifts his head, gasping and looking sick. Bofur turns back to Bard, “He's very sick.” Bard stares at them.

Kili is lying on a bed, moaning and straining from the pain. Bofur fills a bowl of water and brings it over to the bed. Oin is inspecting Kili's leg, and Fili is by Kili's head, feeling his forehead and holding his shoulder. Fili takes his hand off Kili's forehead and turns to Oin, pleading, “Can you not do something?” Kili is still moaning and straining. Oin replies, “I need herbs. Something to bring down his fever.”

In the kitchen, Bard is searching, “I have nightshade. I have feverfew.” Oin turns around, saying, “They're no use to me. Do you have any kingsfoil?” Kili is still moaning in the background. Bard, “No, it's a weed. We feed it to the pigs.” Bofur is looking at Bard, “Pigs? Weed. Right.” He turns back around and points his finger at Kili, “Don't move.” and leaves. Fili, who is once again touching Kili's head and shoulder in support, stares after Bofur. He then shares a look with Oin, before both quickly turn back to the moaning and straining Kili.

Scene changes. Kili is still moaning and straining on the bed, Fili is still touching his shoulder, and Oin is still working on his leg. Reverberation reaches Laketown, shaking the house, and causing dust to fall from the ceiling. Everyone pauses, and Fili turns around, looking up, before turning back to Kili. Sigrid and Bain talk. Bard looks grim. Kili is still moaning and straining around in agony. Fili turns around and walks towards Bard, “You should leave us. Take your children. Get out of here.” He does not want them to be hurt because of the dwarves' actions. Bard replies, “And go where? There is no where to go.” Fili does not reply, but continues to look at Bard, realizing the truth in his words. Bard reveals the Black Arrow and leaves.

Bofur finds some kingsfoil, and the orcs see him hurrying through Laketown. Sigrid is outside. An orc drops down behind her and she screams, trying to close the door. Fili looks up from Kili's side, and more orcs break in. Fili charges, weaponless, the orc that just took a swing at Sigrid. Fili grapples with it, but the orc pushes him and he falls back, onto the ground. More orcs arrive. Kili is looking around in shock, having lifted himself onto his elbows. Tauriel and Legolas arrive. Fili has gotten a hold of some sort of pole weapon, and is fighting.

An orc goes after Kili, grabbing the bottom of his wounded leg. Kili screams in pain and struggles in the orc's grip. Tauriel throws a knife and kills the orc (saving Kili's life for the fifth time). Kili tries to steady himself, but he falls over the side of the bed. More orc fighting. Fili grabs Bain, ordering, “Get down!” and pushing him. Tauriel turns and catches an orc by the wrist. At the same time, Kili moves behind it and kills it (with Tauriel's knife), before falling to the floor, screaming in agony. Tauriel looks at him in shock and horror. The orcs retreat. Fili stands up slowly, breathing heavily. He moves to Kili's side and Tauriel follows him. Legolas orders her to follow. She looks up from Kili's side, wide eyed and hesitating. Her mouth tightens, and she turns back towards Kili. We see Kili lying on the ground, Oin bent over him, and Fili looking over Oin's shoulder (with Tauriel over his). Oin says to Fili, “We're losing him.” Tauriel grimly looks back at Legolas, catching his eyes. Legolas leaves, and Tauriel starts to, but Kili moans in agony, and Bofur shows up with the athelas.

Tauriel is preparing the athelas. Fili, Bofur, and Oin lift Kili onto the table, while he writhes and screams in agony. Fili pushes the chair out of the way and climbs over the table to the other side, trying to grab Kili's head and shoulder. Tauriel, “Hold him down.” Fili is by Kili's head, holding down his shoulder. Tauriel grabs Kili's leg, forces it down, and looks at the wound. She looks at Kili in worry, and we see that Fili has been watching her. He continues to do so while she chants. Kili continues to thrash and scream, and Tauriel continues to chant. Fili looks back up at Tauriel, having looked away to hold Kili better. Kili starts to calm down, and Fili looks at him. Kili looks up and vaguely sees Tauriel, his brow furrowing. We see Tauriel through his eyes; her voice echoing, her gaze meeting his, and her body shining with light (Kili sees her as she is on the Unseen Plane, like Frodo saw Arwen). Kili stares at her in complete wonderment.

Scene switch, Tauriel is binding Kili's leg with a cloth. Fili is watching them from the kitchen, looking concerned and unsure. He is worried about Kili, and doesn't know what to think about Tauriel. Oin comes over to him and says, “I've heard tell of the wonders of elvish medicine. That was a privilege to witness.”

Kili says softly and dazedly, eyes barely open, “Tauriel.” She replies, “Lie still.” After a pause, Kili continues, still clearly dazed, “You cannot be her. She is far away.” He opens his eyes fully, looking upwards, “Sh- She is far, far away from me. She walks in starlight in another world.” Kili breathes heavily for a moment, before continuing, “It was just a dream.” Another pause, and Kili, in his daze, looks over and entwines their fingers. He looks back up, eyes barely open, “Do you think she could've loved me?”

Still dazed, Kili speaks from the heart. He cannot believe that it is really her. She is a breathtaking and awe-inspiring elf-maiden who walks in divine light, far above a lowly dwarf-prince. He just dreamed that she saved him, because he wishes that it was true. But it can't be. He can't help but ask – do you think she could have found me good enough to love?

The key words here are cannot, far away from me, and could've. Kili rejects even the possibility of Tauriel being his savior. Why? Not because of physical distance (she's in the forest a few hours from here) but because of emotional distance (you can say someone is far away from you when they are physically sitting right next to you). Kili makes this explicit by saying she walks in divine (“sacred” “precious” “pure”) light in “another world.” Then, he doesn't ask if Tauriel does love him ('do you think she loved me?'), but if it's even possible that she might have loved him.

Smaug emerges from Erebor and heads towards Laketown. The house shakes, and they look around in fear (we don't see Fili or Kili).

Smaug is approaching Laketown. Tauriel comes back inside, saying they must leave. Kili is sitting in a chair, and Fili is standing next to him. Bofur says, “Get him up.” Fili starts pulling Kili up, “Come on brother.” Bofur, “Come on, come on! Let's go.” Fili glances at Bofur as he continues pulling Kili up. Kili jerks himself out of Fili's grip, irritatedly saying, “I'm fine. I can walk.” Bofur gives Fili his coat, and then Kili his.

Kili is irritated at getting hassled by both Bofur and Fili. Fili does not give Kili a chance to move, he just starts moving him. Kili's reaction is perfectly understandable, and Fili is not hurt by it (he does not hesitate before turning to Bofur, and yes he looks serious, but a dragon is about to attack! He does not look hurt – his facial expression doesn't even change!). He knows he was going a little overboard.

Fili is the first in the boat. He turns around to help the others, telling Sigrid, “Give me your hand.” He continues to help the others, calling out, “Kili, come on!” Limping, Kili is the last one in. They set out, Fili and Bofur are rowing the boat. Smaug flies overhead, Fili and Kili watch him, grim. The Master's boat knocks into theirs, nearly tipping them over, and making Fili lose his oar. He quickly grabs it out of the water, and continues to row as they try to escape Laketown.

Bain sees Bard. Kili shouts, looking between Tauriel and Bard, “He hit it! He hit the dragon!” Tauriel looks at where Bard is, and gravely responds, “No.” Kili protests, looking at her, “He did! He hit his mark! I saw!” Tauriel says, “His arrows cannot pierce it's hide. I fear nothing will.” Bain remembers the black arrow, and leaves. Everyone tries to grab him, Fili shouting, “Come back! Bain! Bain!”

Fili, Bofur, and Oin are trying to push a boat into the water. Kili turns to Tauriel, who is standing on the shore (she has come back to the dwarves after having helped Sigrid and Tilda find Bard). She turns to look at him as he approaches. Serious and pained, he says, “Tauriel.” Fili calls, “Kili! Come on. We're leaving!” as he, Bofur, and Oin continue to push the boat. Kili does not look away from Tauriel. Leaving her is the last thing he wants to do. She looks down, before glancing at him and starting to walk away, “They are your people. You must go.” Kili hesitates for a moment, before moving after her, “Come with me.” He 'woke up', and she was there. She had saved him. It's all the confirmation he needs. Tauriel stops and faces him. He continues, “I know how I feel. I'm not afraid. You make me feel alive.” He's not ashamed, he's not scared. He knows that they love each other, and that together, they can get through whatever obstacles are in front of them. She's worth it. They're worth it.

Tauriel looks away, “I can't,” she starts to turn. “Tauriel,” Kili grabs her arm. She turns towards him slightly, eyes down, with a small smile. Kili says lovingly, “my love” in Khuzdul. Tauriel looks at Kili sharply, and stares. After a few moments and still meeting his gaze, she draws back slightly, scared, “I don't know what that means.” Kili doesn't say anything, not breaking their gaze, for a few moments as he reads her love and fear. He then smiles, saying, “I think you do.” He's not going to let her deny it. They still have not broken eye contact. Fili turns around from pushing the boat, and stares at them, again looking concerned and unsure. His love and loyalty to his brother is at war with everything he knows.

Tauriel moves closer to Kili, but stops, stiffening, and anxiously says, “[something] Legolas,” in elvish. He has appeared behind her (behind Kili, we see Fili and the others pushing the boat again). Tauriel turns her head towards Legolas slightly. Kili gives Legolas a dirty look. He had to interrupt! Legolas says something serious in elvish.

Tauriel looks at Kili, her expression saying, 'I have to go.' She takes a step back, turning away slightly. Kili looks at her for a moment, his face grim, before turning and walking towards his kin, who are still pushing the boat. He does not like it, but he respects her choice. Tauriel watches him. He stops suddenly, thinking, and turns back (Fili glances at him as the boat finally enters the water), taking her hand. They may have to part, but he will do so only after giving his all. Tauriel gasps, looking down as Kili closes her fingers around the rune stone, and brings their hands to his heart, “Keep it. As a promise.”

Standing close, Tauriel smiles. Kili reluctantly pulls away, giving her a slight nod in respect, and goes to his kin, who are now in the boat. He is walking with a slight limp. They are all in the boat. Tauriel looks down at the rune stone, gasps, and starts sniffling. Kili stops paddling and turns around in the boat to look back at Tauriel (Fili glances at him before continuing paddling), who is still standing on the shore, before continuing to paddle.

I did not go over this before, because I wanted you to see that the haters are completely disproven by the films without it, but it's important to understand dwarven sexuality. Over two-thirds of dwarves are aromantic, and the rest will only fall in love once. Marriage only happens once, and only between two dwarves in love (“some desire one that they cannot get, and so will have no other”). Unlike with humans, it is impossible to force a dwarven woman to marry against her will. Both male and female dwarves are “jealous” of their spouses and spousal rights.

The rune stone itself symbolizes a promise to return. Kili is promising himself to Tauriel, starting an informal betrothal. There will never be anyone else for him. He is also giving her the freedom to choose otherwise, not expecting a reciprocal gesture (though he knows she returns his love).

This scene really highlights Kili's character.

marillaraina said:
Kili looked like someone who had the found meaning in his life. There was this underlying peacefulness even with the uncertainty. It was obvious this was no passing crush. It was very real and deep.
I guess you could say he is promising himself to her when he commits to calling her his love and then giving her the stone, and then allowing her to decide whether she will do the same but I think he has some faith that she will. So I do agree it's a commitment on his part - the promise is that if she returns to him, he will be there for her - like if you come to me, my heart will still be yours. I don't think it was something he did lightly at all - it may have happened quickly but it didn't happen with no thought on his part. 
That's one of Kili's strengths I think - he mostly knows himself. A lot of people (and dwarves I imagine) have filters even in their own minds. Tauriel did I think to a certain extent, she had to work through that before she could go to him even though she felt much the same as he did. Kili didn't make it more complicated than it was. Certainly there would have been plenty of external complications - but he didn't give himself a lot of hoops to jump through within himself. He felt what he felt, he considered it and he decided he was willing to face the difficulties ahead rather than trying to fight it to avoid the trouble (“I know how I feel and I'm not afraid”). He has emotional courage and that's one of the strengths of his character.
And Cormelas added:
Every choice is a gift. Choosing Tauriel is a precious privilege, not done lightly and knowing he has to live with the consequences. He is ready to do so, and allows her to decide if she could do so herself. He is so strong to give her the time she needs to work out her feelings. Sadly, time was running out without him realizing it. As Gandalf said: “All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us.” Kíli chose to live and love and laugh and stand for what he believes in. Purely. And with no fear or shame or regret. Tauriel would need to live hundreds of years more to even begin to fulfill the “promise” (meaning “potential” and not solemn vow) that Kíli's death cut short.
I agree completely with both of them, and I could not say it better.

Again, we have a lot on nonsensical hate to get rid of here. Of course, much of it is just more damnation of romantic love and attraction.

Kili is not harming Fili or their people. Fili, Kili, Bofur, and Oin think the rest of the Company is almost certainly dead; as shown by their behavior when they arrive at Erebor. Similarly, Bard will say, “So. The Company of Thorin Oakenshield survived.” and “We are glad to find you alive beyond hope.” No one thinks the others survived.

Tauriel separated from the dwarves to help Sigrid and Tilda find Bard. She then returns to the dwarves, and this scene happens. Kili did not go with her, he stayed with his kin. It is only now that they talk.

There is not even the slightest hint of anything manipulative, controlling, or abusive in Kili's actions or words. Again, context (which includes body language) is everything.

Khuzdul is not nearly as secret as fandom likes to think it is. Both Finrod and Gandalf have Khuzdul names, and in both The Silmarillion and LotR Khuzdul location names are freely given. Gimli also gives a Khuzdul war cry, and sings a song in Khuzdul.

Over half of the conversation between Kili and Tauriel is happening nonverbally. That is why they both reply the way they do. Kili is incredibly considerate and respectful of Tauriel. Not once does he try to change her mind. He accepts her decisions without question.

Tauriel coming with them doesn't mean denying her fundamental self or leaving her people for good! Kili's not trying to control her! He just wants to be together and fight for their love. The Company is almost certainly dead, and Fili is the probable king. Tauriel would be coming with the favor of the king and crown prince.

The haters also have a fundamental misunderstanding about elven culture. Elves have an egalitarian culture. Tauriel's reputation is never in danger, because rape culture and sexism don't exist for elves.

Love is not a zero-sum game. Kili does not love his family or people less because he also loves Tauriel. He is not disrespecting Dis, because his love for Tauriel is equally deep and pure, just in a different form. It is perfectly natural and healthy for Kili to pass on a meaningful keepsake. Giving Tauriel the rune stone makes perfect sense, because the rune stone symbolizes Kili's promise to return. All it does is declare where Kili stands. He does not ask for or expect anything in return.

This does make Kili a cultural anomaly, but the haters are not critiquing dwarven culture.

They are walking up the hills towards Erebor. Fili is leading the way. He turns around and stops for a moment, waiting for the others to crest the hill. Kili is behind Fili, then Bofur and Oin. Kili is the only one without bags on his back, and we see him limping still. They arrive and walk up the steps, apprehensively looking up at the hole Smaug made when leaving Erebor. They all look at each other, and then start running inside; Fili in the lead. They pause inside the doorway for a moment, looking at the destruction. Bofur shouts, “Hello! Bombur? Bifur? Anybody?” No one answers. We see them walking through Erebor, Fili still leading. Bilbo calls to them, they stop and look at where his voice is coming from.

Oin says, “It's Bilbo!” and Bofur, “He's alive!” Bilbo catches up and starts speaking. Fili looks over Bilbo's shoulder, seeing something. He looks worried. He starts moving, never looking away from what he has seen. Meanwhile, Kili asks Bilbo, worried and confused, “Sickness? What kind of sickness?” He glances between Fili (who is passing him), Bilbo, and back to Fili. Fili starts running down the steps. Bilbo follows, calling, “Fili. Fili! Fili!” Kili follows Bilbo, still limping a little. Fili pauses for a moment, looking apprehensive, when the gold comes into sight. He then continues down to the ledge. Kili hurries past Bilbo to follow him.

They all stop on the ledge, looking down at all the gold. Fili and Kili are next to each other. Thorin appears and starts speaking, “Gold. Gold beyond measure. Beyond sorrow and grief. Behold the great treasure hoard of Thror.” Fili looks pained and fearful. Not for himself, but for Thorin. Thorin throws a red jewel to Fili, who catches it. “Welcome my sister-sons to the Kingdom of Erebor.” Kili is also looking pained. He has realized Thorin is not himself.

Fili has been in the lead since Laketown, showing his status as the heir. Fili and Kili's opposite reactions to Bilbo's words show us that at some point, Fili found out about the dragon sickness, and Kili didn't. Thorin throws the jewel to Fili, singling out his heir.

Once again, there is nothing in reality to support the haters' claims, and I am extremely tired of all the nonsensical Kili hate. Fili and Kili's reactions are both fearful and equal when searching and finding Bilbo alive – it is all group shots, and Bofur and Oin have the few lines. Kili clearly has no knowledge about the dragon sickness, and Fili only walks past him because he is deeply afraid for Thorin. There is no greater meaning in Fili's actions, and we never see him and Kili at odds with each other at any point in the trilogy. Kili is as equally fearful as Fili in his reaction.

Fili, Kili, Bofur, and Oin enter the room where the other dwarves are (Fili and Kili are behind Bofur and Oin). They start reuniting. Nori shouts, “Kili!” They give each other a big hug. Fili is behind Kili, with his hands on Bofur and Kili's upper backs as he shares in the joy, before jumping around to the others and back again. They are all laughing and greeting each other with big hugs. Ori exclaims, “You're alive!” before hugging Kili (who actually picks him up and spins him 90 degrees). Fili is hugging Nori. It's basically one big dwarf love fest.

The scene changes to Thorin yelling at all of them. They are all looking for the Arkenstone. Neither Fili nor Kili are shown during this scene.

It is night time. The humans are in Dale, and the dwarves are building a barricade. We see Fili and Kili working with the others. Kili is pulling the front of a cart filled with stone, and Bilbo pushing the back of it. Thorin, “I want this fortress made safe by sunup. This mountain was hard won. I will not see it taken again.” Kili stops moving forward, emotionally saying, “The people of Lake-town have nothing.” He drops the cart, continuing, “They came to us in need. They have lost everything.” This is wrong, and Kili cannot keep silent. Thorin, “Do not tell me what they have lost.” We see Fili glancing at Thorin as he continues to help build the wall. Thorin continues, “I know well enough their hardship. Those who have lived through dragon fire should rejoice. They have much to be grateful for. More stone!” Kili moves forward, defeated.

I do not know what films the haters saw, but this is confrontation, it is opposition, and it is resistance. Confront means “to come face to face with, especially with defiance or hostility”. Oppose means “to be hostile or resistant to; try to prevent”. Resist means “to take action in opposition to; try to eliminate, reduce, or stop”.

It is morning. Thorin strides to the wall. Kili stops working and follows, picking up a weapon. Thorin passes Dwalin and Fili, saying, “Come on.” Fili watches Thorin for a moment, as Kili and Dwalin move past him, before picking up a weapon and following. They all climb up to the top and see Bard riding towards them. Looking serious, Fili and Kili stand next to each other. Bard and Thorin speak. Thorin turns around and see the Company watching him, serious (Fili and Kili are again standing next to each other). They all go back up to the top of the wall and watch Bard ride away. Fili is standing next to Thorin, on his right. Bilbo speaks. Fili looks from him to Thorin. Bilbo continues to speak. Fili and Kili watch him. Bilbo, “outnumbered.” Fili looks down with a sigh. He knows Bilbo is right, and he does not see a solution. Thorin, “Not for much longer.” They all look at him.

They are all in the armory, preparing for battle. Kili tries on a breastplate. Fili throws him a shield, watching him for a moment, before looking back at the armor. Thorin and Bilbo start their scene, Bilbo puts on the mithril. We see Fili and Kili in the background, standing close to each other as they watch Bilbo and Thorin. More scene between Bilbo and Thorin. Serious, the dwarves walk fully armored in the hallway, between Thorin and Bilbo. Kili is behind Fili.

It is morning. Thranduil and Bard are approaching through the elven army. The dwarves are on the wall, looking serious. Kili is right behind Thorin's left, and Fili is on Thorin's right. Thorin shoots an arrow at Thranduil, saying, “I will put the next one between your eyes.” The dwarves all cheer. Thranduil signals, the dwarves all duck. Scene continues, the Arkenstone is revealed. In disbelief, Kili faintly says, “They have the Arkenstone.” before yelling in anger, “Thieves! How came you by the heirloom of our house?! That stone belongs to the king!” More scene. Thorin, “They are taking us for fools.” Fili and Kili look at Thorin, confused and disturbed.

More scene. Bilbo steps out. Everyone stares at him. He and Thorin talk. Thorin, “Throw him from the rampart!” Everyone is shocked and no one moves. Fili looks away in disbelief. Thorin grabs him, yanking him forward, “Did you not hear me?!” Fili pulls himself free. Everyone is staring at Thorin in disbelief. Thorin speaks and grabs Bilbo. The other dwarves (including Fili and Kili) try to pull Thorin off; Fili saying, “No!” Gandalf arrives. Thorin lets go of Bilbo. Fili is next to Bilbo, and helps him up.

Thorin paces and rants. All of the Company stares at him, serious and disturbed. Dain arrives with his army. The Company cheers. They all cheer again when Dain rides back to his army after 'talking'. The elves' arrows are destroyed and the Company cheers. The Company watches in horror as Dain's army and the elves kill each other. The orcs arrive. Fili takes the lead, saying, “I'm going over the wall. Who's coming with me?” echoing his words in Bag End: We may be few in number, but we’re fighters. All of us. To the last dwarf! The Company cheers; Thorin orders them to stand down. They all protest and look at him in shock.

The Company is sitting and standing on their side of the wall, desolately listening to the battle. Fili is looking up at the wall. Kili is hunched over, looking at his lap. He looks up and sees Thorin's silhouette coming towards them. They all stand and watch Thorin approach. Serious, Kili starts moving forward, emotionally shouting, “I will not hide behind a wall of stone while others fight our battles for us!” Thorin just keeps walking closer. Kili continues, “It is not in my blood, Thorin.” They stop right in front of each other and look at each other for a moment. Thorin replies, “No. It is not. We are sons of Durin.” Thorin puts his hand on Kili's shoulder. Kili gives a little nod, obviously fighting hard not to cry (his chin is even quivering a little). “And Durin's Folk do not flee from a fight.” Thorin smiles. Kili gives a teary smile back, still trying not to cry. They look at each other for another moment. Thorin then presses their foreheads together, an emotionally intimate gesture. Kili smiles and closes his eyes before visibly pulling himself together.

Thorin then pulls away, patting Kili's shoulder as he moves towards the others (Kili turns his head to watch Thorin as he starts to walk away). Fili is standing in the front and middle, the position of leadership. Dwalin follows Thorin, briefly touching Kili's arm as he passes by. Kili gives a jubilant fist pump (with complementary leg movement) before turning around and also following. Thorin says to the others, “I have no right to ask this of any of you. But will you follow me, one last time?” Fili nods, and the others raise their weapons in loyalty.

Kili does not do anything because he cannot disobey Thorin. In every realm of Middle-earth, the ruler has the final say, no matter what. That is how the cultures work (it is also how our western european cultures worked in the medieval times). If you want to blame Kili for doing nothing, then you have to blame all of the others too. This is the second time Kili confronts Thorin about his actions, and neither time does he have the power to overrule Thorin. The difference is that this time Thorin is free from dragon sickness.

Thorin singles out Fili multiple times while under dragon sickness, showing how much he does care and depend on Fili. Fili is his heir, and that means a lot to Thorin. During the rampart scene, Fili's moral goodness is highlighted by the camera's focus on him. Other than Thorin, he is the only dwarf the camera singles out during that scene. In Thorin's return scene, the positioning clearly shows Fili's status and importance.

It would be out-of-character for Fili to yell at Thranduil and Bard, or at Thorin. He is much more reserved than Kili, for reasons we will go over in the conclusion.

They break down the barrier and the Company runs out of Erebor. Thorin is in the lead, with Fili and Kili behind on his sides. The rest of the Company is behind them. They all start fighting. We see Fili, Kili, and Thorin fighting together. More battle. Thorin and Dain talk. Thorin gets on a battle ram. More talking. Fili, Kili, Balin, and Dwalin show up in a chariot. Fili and Kili are on the sides. Thorin leads the way. Fili raises his weapon in preparation and Kili sharpens his blade on one of the wheels. They make contact with the orc army and start fighting. Giant trolls come towards them. Kili shouts, “Watch out!” The chariot beheads them. Kili stares backwards with Dwalin (who shouts in triumph); we see Fili looking forwards and ready to fight. Balin shouts, “Eyes front lads!” Both Kili and Dwalin spin back around. More battle. Dwalin shouts, “I'm out!” and Kili hands him a set of bolts/darts.

A giant troll jumps into the ice, behind them. Dwalin shouts, “Bring it down! Shoot it!” Kili aims but doesn't shoot, shouting back, “Where?!” Dwalin, “In his jambags!” Kili lowers his bow, screaming in panic, “It doesn't have any jambags!”, and looking at Dwalin. Fili, who has been watching the troll, shouts, “Duck!” Dwalin, “Kili!” Kili shoots the troll in the hand that was about to grab him/them. The troll falls back a little, Kili continues to try and shoot it in various places. Bofur interferes, still on his own troll. Dwalin and Kili cheer, and Fili gleefully shouts, “Bofur, you beauty!” The chariot continues, and Fili raises a bow. He and Kili both shoot at the upcoming troll. The troll falls, Fili shouts in happiness, “Yeah! Yeah!” Kili smiles and exchanges a happy glance with Dwalin. Wargs appear in front, and Kili shouts, “Wargs!” before looking behind again. The wargs take out some of the rams pulling the chariot. Fili and Kili use their swords and fight the orcs on wargs that have come up behind them. Kili shouts, “There's more coming!” He continues to look at the wargs coming up behind them.

Balin and Dwalin talk. Fili jumps onto the metal track the rams are attached to, moving impressively and taking out an orc and warg before jumping onto a ram and cutting it loose. Kili jumps from the chariot onto a ram, cutting it loose. Fili looks behind to make sure Kili is following; Dwalin jumps and cuts a ram loose. They leave Balin behind, shooting at wargs and complaining, “I am too old for this.”

They see Thorin on a bridge before them. They follow Thorin. Fili is behind Thorin, with Kili behind him, and Dwalin behind him, as they fight their way up the mountain. Bilbo and Gandalf see them from Dale. Gandalf says, “He's taking his best warriors.” referring to Fili, Kili, and Dwalin.

They arrive on Ravenhill, fighting (Fili has an impressive jump and roll). They finish off the orcs there and glance around. Fili and Kili have stopped next to each other, and look at Thorin. Kili asks, “Where is he?” Thorin does not reply, looking up at where Azog was. Kili continues, “It looks empty. I think Azog has fled.” Without moving, Thorin responds, “I don't think so.” He turns around and walks towards Fili (who has moved closer to him), “Fili. Take your brother.” All three look at where Azog was. Thorin continues, “Scout out the towers.” Thorin turns back to Fili (both he and Kili are looking seriously at Thorin), “Keep low and out of sight.” (Thorin looks at Kili for “out of sight”, before looking back at Fili) “If you see something, report back. Do not engage. Do you understand?” Dwalin comes up and speaks. They all turn around. Thorin walks in front of them, telling them, “We'll take care of them. Go! Go!” Thorin and Dwalin give them a swift pat on the back as they leave. Thorin and Dwalin fight the goblin mercenaries.

We see Fili and Kili sneaking on the ice, under the ledge. Fili is in the lead. He glances at Kili, before leaving shelter and starting to cross the ice. Kili is right behind him.

Once again, Fili is singled out by Thorin as the heir, as he is given leadership of the scouting mission.

Fili and Kili are in a tunnel. Fili is leading, and they are both turning their heads to look around corners and down tunnels. They hear a noise in one. Kili bares his teeth and tries to charge forward. Fili stops him, putting a hand on Kili's chest. Kili stops and looks at him. Fili says, “Hey. Stay here.” Kili's brow furrows in worried confusion. Fili continues, “Search the lower levels.” Fili turns and looks back up the tunnel. Kili's eyes narrow for a moment. Fili says, not looking back at Kili, “I've got this.” Kili hesitates before nodding slightly a few times, never taking his eyes off Fili. He brow is still furrowed and he still looks worried. He backs up a step, before finally taking his eyes off Fili, taking a deep breath and looking down the tunnel Fili is looking into. Kili then turns around, peers down the other tunnel, and runs off into it. Fili starts slowing inching down the other tunnel (having never looked away from the tunnel to look back at Kili).

Once again, body language and context is everything. Kili never holds back in anything, and while that is one of his greatest strengths, it is also one of his greatest weaknesses. Fili knows that. He knows Kili. Thorin specifically ordered them not to engage, and Kili's instinctive response is to engage. This is why Dis thinks he's reckless.

Two of Fili's most defining traits are his selflessness and his need to protect Kili. Getting Kili out of harms way is far more important to him than having backup. Kili's body language makes it clear that he's worried about Fili. He doesn't say anything because Fili's body language is closed off – Fili never looks back at Kili, therefore Kili does not have an opening for discussion. Also, Thorin made Fili the leader, and the leader is giving an order. Kili must trust his brother, and he does.

We see Thorin say, “This is a trap.” We then shift to Fili, who is peering around. He sees a light, and stops, looking alarmed. He looks down another tunnel, and a light is there too. He turns around and starts back tracking, but a light appears there. He looks around, trapped. We go to Thorin, who urgently says to Dwalin, “Find Fili and Kili. Call them back.” More scene between Thorin and Dwalin. We then see Kili peer out a tunnel into the open.

It goes back to Thorin, who starts to leave with Bilbo. They hear a drum and stop, turning around. Azog appears at the top of the tower, dragging Fili, who is grunting and struggling. His face is all bruised and bloodied, showing that he gave the orcs a good fight. Thorin makes an involuntary “huh”, his facing widening in shock. He rushes forward. Azog holds Fili up and talks in Black speech. Disturbed and confused, not knowing what Azog is saying, Kili looks up from the bottom of the tower. His face then transforms in horror and disbelief at the sight of Azog holding Fili.

Thorin stops, and Azog continues to talk. Fili is still struggling in Azog's grasp. He stops and shouts to Thorin, “Go.” Never looking away from Fili, Thorin's mouth closes and he shakes his head slightly. Not giving up, Fili shouts, “Run!” Azog then runs him through. Thorin gasps. Fili's head falls forward. He is dead.

Oh, this scene. I am guaranteed to break down every time I see it.

A lot of haters have had much to say on Fili's death, and almost all of it comes from toxic power. Fili has the most moral and heroic death in all six films. It is a death of pure selflessness.

Why? Why is fighting and killing seen as heroic and strong? I don't know how many times I have to stress this, before people believe it. It is a very unhealthy world where killing and violence are praised and seen as strength; and vulnerability and any other emotion (especially love) are seen as weakness. This is, in fact, Tolkien's (and my) entire point.

Fili has so much inner strength here it's mind blowing. There is nothing weak about him; thinking him weak because he lost a fight where he was greatly outnumbered is pure toxic power. We could not see the fight because it would have ruined the suspense, but Fili's bruising and struggling tells us all we need to know about it.

I have five wonderful quotes to share with you now.

ledamemangociana says:
Game over for Fili. 
But just for Fili. He’s not going to let them get Thorin or Kili, or Bilbo or Dwalin. They’re fighters. All of them. 
Thorin is a far enough distance away to grab everyone else and get away in time. Kili, he thinks, is probably hiding in the lower levels, otherwise he’d be here too, dangling over a cliff. 
He doesn’t cry out for help. He’s done what he can for himself. Now he protects his family. 
“Go. RUN!” 
Coz in the end it’s always been his MO. Family first, even at his own expense. 
And thus ends Fili, heir to the Throne Under the Mountain, going out the same way he came in: a strong Dwarf of noble stock, a fighter to his last stolen breath. He dies thinking his brother is safe, hoping his Uncle forgives him for not having been stronger or skilled enough to keep Azog at bay. And in a somewhat sick sense of inheritance, he dies on the same blade that will later kill the King he was heir to. says:
And what does he do? He tries to protect them, one last time. He tells them to run away, to leave him alone and save themselves. He knows he will die a lonely death, but as long as he can save his family, he accepts his fate. He doesn’t even put up a fight, he just accepts his fate. Let this f*****g sink in, he’s about to be killed, he literally knows that he’s on the brink of death, but even in that moment, he doesn’t care about his own life.
He’s afraid, yes, but not for himself. He never is. He’s afraid for his brother, for Thorin, for Bilbo and Dwalin. And he tells them to leave him. He doesn’t even want them to try and avenge or even save him. He doesn’t want others to put themselves in danger for him, yet that’s exactly what he does all the time. And this is why Fíli’s death is perfect. Fíli is brave, selfless and quiet; and so is his death. It’s not a super big and epic moment, because that’s not what Fíli’s character is about. Fíli’s character is mostly defined by his selflessness and undying loyalty and love for his family, so his death makes perfect sense.
Fíli has always lived for his family, so him dying for them too is actually the most beautiful and tragic thing I have ever seen in my life.
aoncetoldstory says:
Fíli had his family present at the moment of death. He got to see them one last time. He got to say his last words (“Go! Run!”) in one last attempt at protecting his uncle. The last time he ever saw Kíli was when he told him to go the other way, which ended up saving Kíli’s life. He died knowing he saved his brother’s life.
Fíli is protective. His last action was to send his little brother away from danger. He might have lived if Kíli had fought with him, but he would not take that risk and it cost him his life. And if he knew it would save his brother’s life, he would do it all over again.
And, of course, his death on display by Azog’s hand. Fíli is EXECUTED because he matters. You don’t kill kings quietly. You let the whole world know so that they can drown in the grief and agony of it. In this case, Fíli is the king and his brother and uncle are the world. And what are Fíli’s last words? 
“Go! Run!” 
In his very final moments, Fíli is still trying to protect his family. HE died protecting Thorin with shield and body, like he was supposed to. He died in one last attempt at saving his little brother. His death was honorable and beautiful, like someone like Fíli deserves. His foremost character trait throughout this trilogy has been his loyalty to his family and his love for them. He died proving that!
Azog speaks and drops Fili. Fili falls in front of Kili, who instinctively backs up, shocked and staring at Fili. We see Fili clearly dead. Then Thorin, whose lets another involuntary “guh” out. Azog stares at Thorin for a few moments. We shift to Kili, who looks away from Fili, takes a deep breath, his face contorting with rage, and throws himself forward with an involuntary “h-gnah”. He rushes up the steps, determined to avenge Fili, still “gah”-ing.

Fili's death has a huge effect our four remaining heroes. It is crucial to the plot. I did not script Bilbo or Dwalin, but their expressions and actions are heartbreaking. Bilbo even forgets how to wield his sword.

We see Thorin's agonized reactions to Fili's death. We see the pain and love and fear of all the characters in this scene. Not having them all fighting actually lets us focus on those extremely important relationships. The haters are thinking with toxic power.

Kili does react to Fili's death. Take 3 is equal to the first part of Kili's reaction. Switching away from Kili is needed because we need to see the others' reactions as well. It does not make sense for Kili to become shocked and horrified after staring at Fili's body for several seconds.

Kili then reacts by attacking. He throws himself forward, like always; only this time, in a state of rage and grief. He will avenge his brother, no matter what.

aoncetoldstory says it perfectly (this was written just after the theatre release, so the sequence is slightly incorrect. However, the analysis is 100% accurate):
He does not scream his brother’s name and he does not move. Why again? Because he can’t see what is going on. He can only see his uncle and Dwalin stare upward and hear Azog’s bellowing. It could mean anything. His first thought would not go to Fíli, because he would not think his brother could get captured like that. Obviously, to him, Fíli is safe and somewhere else. Until he hears his brother’s voice: “Go. Run!” And when he hears this, I think that he reacts and steps out to look, but it’s too late. Azog kills Fíli and drops him off the cliff. Kíli barely has enough time to move out of the way before his brother’s body comes crashing down in front of him. 
Let’s look at the Kíli-never-mourned-his-brother part of it all. What do you think goes on in Kíli’s head at this moment. He is in battle, has been fighting up until this point and the winds were in their favor. Then this sudden change takes Fíli from him. He’s reckless and impulsive, as proven in the two earlier movies more than twice. He would not think over the consequences or over his feelings or rationality. He wouldn’t think at all, and that’s exactly what happens. He acts on the first feeling that hits him, which is anger. Rage. A need for vengeance and repayment. He would not let his brother down by letting Fíli’s killer get away with what he did. So Kíli runs off as fast as he can to find Azog and Bolg. And from that point until he is killed, Kíli is fighting. Adrenalin drives him, fueled by anger.
marary says:
I totally buy (and adore) that he straight away charges into battle to avenge his brother. If that's not a well-played, Kili-consistent, dramatic testament to their bond as brothers, I don't know what is. And Fili's death is what spurs the Ravenhill battle to its dramatic conclusion, propelling both Kili and Thorin into battle.
We have one last thing to talk about, before we continue with the scenes. It was leaked that the original script had Fili and Kili fighting together, Azog kills Kili, and Fili cries and screams before charging forward to avenge Kili and kill Azog. Now, if you personally prefer this, that's fine. However, the filmmakers are not evil for changing this because it doesn't fit with Fili and Kili's characterizations. Fili is the quiet protector, not the one who leaps ahead. Instead, the heartbreaking scene we got does fit them perfectly (as we just went over).

Azog turns away. Thorin shouts, “Kili!” and starts running to the tower. Dwalin, “Thorin! Thorin. No.” Thorin leaves the ice and starts up steps. Kili exits a tunnel into the open. He rushes up more stairs, killing an orc. We go to Thorin climbing stairs, getting waylaid and attacked by Azog. Bolg and the second army arrive. Tauriel sees Kili fighting and killing orcs on a ledge.

aoncetoldstory also analyzes Thorin's reaction perfectly:
He feels the impact of Fíli’s body landing like it was him taking the fall. And furthermore, Thorin sees Kíli standing there. He sees his youngest nephew get his older brother’s body thrown before his feet, and Thorin can do nothing. 
Thorin never mourned Fíli. And when was he given the chance? Fíli’s body is far away on a ledge he cannot reach. Kíli is running off to Mahal knows where, and Thorin knows that his youngest nephew is not thinking clearly. He’s seen enough death to know, deep within, that nothing can bring Fíli back. But he will fight for Kíli, who still lives. But he never gets the chance to do anything, for he is attacked by orcs and is soon fighting with Azog. Azog wounds him mortally. I am 100% convinced that while lying on the ice dying, Thorin’s thoughts are in two places — with Fíli who is lying alone on the ledge, and with Kíli, who Thorin can only hope survived the battle or died quick and easy and is with his brother now.
Kili goes up some more steps, killing an orc and starting to fight another one. He hears Tauriel scream his name and turns his head in that direction for a split second, before going back to fighting two orcs. Tauriel screams, “Kili!” again. Killing the orc, Kili turns his head and screams back urgently, “Tauriel!” He continues to fight through orcs, trying to get to where Tauriel's voice came from.

Kili doesn't respond to Tauriel at first, he immediately goes back to fighting. Why? Because his mind is overwhelmed with Fili's death. But then, the second time he hears Tauriel anxiously scream his name, he realizes that she's really there and he must get to her.

Bolg holds Tauriel up into the air by her neck, choking her. She cries out in pain, and Kili hears it. He pauses (having just killed another orc), his eyes widen in shock, and he runs forward; towards her voice. Kili arrives, jumping on Bolg with a shout from the ledge above. He tries to choke Bolg and stab him with his sword. Tauriel sits up, with a long gasp. Bolg throws Kili off, onto the staircase. Kili gets up and charges, Bolg knocks his arm away, Kili ducks and then swipes at Bolg's middle. Kili swings again, and Bolg grabs his upper arm, punching him in the face. Bolg holds Kili by the front of his clothing. Tauriel jumps on him from behind, screaming “No-aah!”, trying to grab his weapon. Bolg throws her off, and she roles to the edge of the ledge, crying out in pain.

Tauriel looks up and Bolg spears Kili before she can do anything. She cries out, “No-aah” in agony. Kili looks at her, mouthing Amrâlimê. Tauriel is gasping and crying, her eyes never leaving his. Kili gasps his last breaths, tears falling from one of his eyes, as they close. He is dead.

Oh, Kili. He is attacking in rage and grief, trying to get to Azog. But then, hearing Tauriel's voice, he tries to get to her. Kili lets go of his need to avenge his brother so he can aid another loved one. That is a selfless act. He doesn't rush in to take what he knows will be a killing blow, to save Tauriel. He saves her life - but that specific act does not kill him. He goes down, fighting beside one of his loved ones. Kili gasps his last breaths, tears falling from one of his eyes, as they close. His brother is dead, and he failed to save his loved ones.

potato-frenzy says:

The moment I realized that Kili mouthed “Amralime” to Tauriel as he was dying even though his breath had gone and he couldn’t say it out loud but he wanted to make sure she knew he loved her I died a little inside.
Cirashala says Kili “made the selfless decision to stay his revenge for the fallen and aid the living, and it cost him his life. After his uncle spent most of his life hating the elves for being unwilling to aid his people, the fact that Kili died defending an elf shows how Kili was unwilling to let revenge and hate rule him.”

aoncetoldstory again gives a perfect analysis:
Now, let’s have a look at Kíli. He has his brother’s body thrown in front of his feet like a rag doll. He goes mad with grief and runs off to kill Fíli’s murderer. But what happens? He fails, that’s what! He’s held down and killed by Bolg without having been able to avenge his brother. Even worse, Tauriel is there. Kíli dies knowing that she might still die, and that he failed to protect her too — two of the people in the world that he loved unconditionally, and he failed them. Even EVEN worse is that Kíli dies without his family. Without Fíli and without Thorin. Yes, Tauriel is there, but it’s no happy good-bye.
Kíli is reckless and loyal. His rage will not allow him to see clearly. He rushes after his brother’s murderer without thinking. He cannot win that battle. The final thing comes with Tauriel — one of the last people there that he cares about. He MUST protect her, because he could not protect Fíli. It cost him his life.
I am sobbing. I will never be able to think about or watch these heart wrenching scenes without breaking down.

Also, seriously haters, stop with the toxic power. Kili should die for Tauriel because of honor and duty, but not selflessness and love? Romantic love is not in any way bad!

It is not 'bad' that Kili gave up hate and vengeance to help someone else. It is moral. Who the person is doesn't matter, because it's a question of morality. It is not a 'slight' to Fili. To think either of those two thoughts is to think with toxic power.

As we will soon go over, Tolkien states that the “sentiment of affection for sister's children” is the least strong amongst dwarves, out of all of the Free Peoples. There is no 'long tradition of sister-sons' in their culture, and it was used in the book as an excuse for the lack of character development – Thorin mentions once in Laketown that Fili and Kili are his nephews, and that's it. We don't need Kili to die for Thorin to show their bond; the rest of the films do that.

Both Fili and Kili's death scenes are heartbreaking, and both show a loved one in agony because of said death. Fili and Kili die selfless deaths that are true to their fundamental selves. There is no morally greater way than that.


We have scripted and analyzed a lot, but we still have much to go over and put together. We have to understand dwarven culture to understand Fili and Kili.

Dwarven culture has a correlation to some of our world's most sexist cultures. Dwarf women are not named on family trees. They join their husband's family. They do not go outside, “save at direst need”; and dress like men when they have do so. They do not go to war, or partake in dwarven crafts. They live in “deep bowers and halls.”

A bower is a lady's private apartment in a medieval hall or castle” (source). However, she does not live in it alone; she is merely constrained within it:
The idea of a more private refuge that we expect from the home was in many ways gendered female, not just ideologically but also architecturally (see Wood, Medieval House, and Lámperez y Romea, Arquitectura Civil). It was most associated in the Middle Ages with the residential upper-story solar block, the part of the home most associated with with women and such female domestic activities as sewing, reading, birthing, tending the sick, childcare, sexual activities, and laying out the dead (solars, chambers, and bowers were all names for women's rooms). Women were as closely associated with the chamber as men with the hall: “knights sat in the hall/Ladies in the chamber all” (Zupitza, quoted in Girouard, English Country House, 46). [cut] Modern architectural history, though generally treating the chamber as peripheral to the main interests of the family, offers structural evidence of its centrality: halls were not always defended, but the solar wing – often in the form of a residential tower – was (Faulkner, “Manor House Plans”; Wood, Medieval House, chap. 12). The separate spaces of women, however, were shared rather than truly private, refuges from external rather than internal threats. - Violence Against Women in Medieval Texts, by Anna Roberts
One young Chinese woman explains the mentality behind not being on the family tree:
In China, only the males are recorded in family trees. When my brother was born, a huge fuss was made because he was the son of an only son, and therefore, he was the one who would continue this branch of the family. Never mind that he had an older sister. His name will go in the family tree. My name will not. [cut] One’s paternal relatives are considered to be more closely related and more important. [cut] This shows a blatant preference for the paternal side of the family, once again stressing the masculine link as the more important familial link. Genetically speaking, one receives equal amounts of DNA from both parents, and yet the mother’s bloodline is considered to be of secondary importance. (source)
Likewise, Tolkien states that Fili and Kili were never Thorin's heirs (the filmmakers changed this), and Dain always was. He also states that the “sentiment of affection for sister's children” is the least strong amongst dwarves, out of all of the Free Peoples.

In Yemen, women cannot leave their house without their husband's permission. Dwarven women are not allowed outside of the Mountain unless something like Smaug happens, and then they must disguise themselves as men (the binary clothing structure is explicit).

Dwarven culture also continues the glorification of masculinity and the damnation of femininity into their jobs. The beloved dwarven crafts are stonework, mining and crafting, and weaponry. In their cultural relationship with humans and hobbits, the dwarves exchange their work for food.

We see clearly that this dependency on them for food does not equate to perceived worthiness. In The Quest for Erebor, Unfinished Tales, we get a good look at dwarven prejudice against hobbits. Thorin has “haughty disregard” for them, thinking “they were just food-growers who happened to work the fields on either side of the Dwarves' ancestral road to the Mountains.” He also refers to Bilbo as “one of those villagers” and says to Gandalf, “This is not advice, it is foolery! I fail to see what any Hobbit, good or bad, could do that would repay me for a day's keep, even if he could be persuaded to start.”

Likewise, Gloin says, “One of those simpletons down in the Shire? What use on earth, or under it, could he possibly be?” Gandalf scolds him for thinking hobbits are “simple” “because they are generous and do not haggle” and “timid” “because you never sell them any weapons.”

This is reflected in the films. At Bag End:
Thorin: “So, this is the Hobbit.” [he crosses his arms before starting to circle around Bilbo] “Tell me, Mr. Baggins, have you done much fighting?” 
Bilbo: “Pardon me?” 
Thorin: “Axe or sword? What’s your weapon of choice?” 
Bilbo: “Well, I have some skill at Conkers, if you must know,” [Thorin stops in front of Bilbo] “but I fail to see why that’s relevant.” 
Thorin: “Thought as much.” [he looks at the others] “He looks more like a grocer than a burglar.” [he smirks at Bilbo; the other dwarves laugh]
Balin: “I’m afraid I have to agree with Mr. Baggins. He’s hardly burglar material.” 
Dwalin: “Aye, the wild is no place for gentlefolk who can neither fight nor fend for themselves.”
And when leaving the Shire:
Dori: “I said it. Didn't I say it? Coming here was a waste of time.” 
Gloin: “That's true enough.” 
Dori: “Ridiculous notion. Use a hobbit? A halfling? Whose idea was it anyway?”
Tolkien tells us that Dwarves are a tough, thrawn race for the most part, secretive, laborious, retentive of the memory of injuries (and of benefits), lovers of stone, of gems, of things that take shape under the hands of the craftsmen rather than things that live by their own life.” (Lord of the Rings, Appendix F), “they are stone-hard, stubborn, fast in friendship and in enmity,” (The Silmarillion, Of Aulë and Yavanna), and the most redoubtable warriors of all the Speaking Peoples” (The Peoples of Middle-earth, Of Dwarves and Men).

Thus, Bilbo is correct in his summary of dwarves: “I know that dwarves can be obstinate and pigheaded and difficult. And suspicious and secretive, with the worst manners you can possibly imagine. But they are also brave and kind, and loyal to a fault.”

Balin, while being one of the most reasonable, is also very traditional and shows us dwarven culture in action. He does not hesitate to insult Sting:
Balin: “I wouldn’t bother, laddie. Swords are named for the great deeds they do in war.” 
Bilbo: “What are you saying, my sword hasn’t seen battle?” 
Balin: “I’m not actually sure it is a sword. More of a letter opener, really.”
He also protests when Thorin allows Elrond to see the map; and says to Bard, “And your wife, I imagine she's a beauty.” instead saying 'lovely' or 'a wonder'.

So, we have an exceptionally hypermasculine culture that exalts fighting, vengeance, and crafts of stonework, mining and crafting, and weaponry; and also derides femininity. They are also the only culture that exalts secrecy and prejudice in it’s theory (reality is a whole different matter, because there are prejudiced people of all races).

Now that we have summarized dwarven culture, we are moving on to the second part of what we need to understand to understand Fili and Kili. Their childhood. And to do that, we need to understand Thorin's position.

It is made clear throughout the films that Thorin is not a king.
Bilbo: “Robbed of their homeland, the dwarves of Erebor wandered the wilderness, a once mighty people brought low. The young dwarf prince took work where he could find it, laboring in the villages of men, but always he remembered the mountain smoke beneath the moon, the trees like torches blazing bright, for he had seen dragon fire in the sky, and his city turned to ash, and never forgave, and he never forgot.” ~
Balin: “After the dragon took the Lonely Mountain, King Thror tried to reclaim the ancient dwarf kingdom of Moria. But our enemy had got there first. Moria had been taken by legions of Orcs lead by the most vile of all their race: Azog, the Defiler. The giant Gundabad Orc had sworn to wipe out the line of Durin. He began by beheading the King. Thrain, Thorin’s father, was driven mad by grief. He went missing, taken prisoner or killed, we did not know. We were leaderless. Defeat and death were upon us. That is when I saw him: a young dwarf prince facing down the Pale Orc. He stood alone against this terrible foe, his armor rent...wielding nothing but an oaken branch as a shield. Azog, the Defiler, learned that day that the line of Durin would not be so easily broken. Our forces rallied and drove the orcs back. Our enemy had been defeated. But there was no feast, no song, that night, for our dead were beyond the count of grief. We few had survived. And I thought to myself then, there is one who I could follow. There is one I could call King.”
(Thorin is one Balin could call King, he is not automatically king.)
Great Goblin: “Well, well, well, look who it is. Thorin son of Thrain, son of Thror, King under the Mountain. Oh, but I’m forgetting, you don’t have a mountain. And you’re not a king. Which makes you nobody, really.” ~
Gandalf: “Thorin, it’s been a long time since anything but rumor was heard of Thrain.” 
Thorin: “He still lives, I am sure of it.” 
Thorin: “My father came to see you before he went missing. What did you say to him?” 
Gandalf: “I urged him to march upon Erebor; to rally the seven armies of the dwarves, to destroy the dragon and take back the Lonely Mountain. And I would say the same to you. Take back your homeland. [cut] Thorin, you can wait no longer. You are the heir to the throne of Durin. Unite the armies of the dwarves. Together you have the might and power to retake Erebor. Summon a meeting of the seven dwarf families. Demand they stand by their oaths.” 
Thorin: “The seven armies swore that oath to the one who wields the King's Jewel, the Arkenstone! It is the only thing that will unite them, and in case you have forgotten, that jewel was stolen by Smaug.” ~
Thorin: “Do not speak to me as if I was some lowly dwarf lord. As if I were still Thorin Oakenshield. I AM YOUR KING!” 
Dwalin: “You were always my king. You used to know that once.”
If Thorin is not a king, what position does he hold? Three quotes from AUJ help us understand.
Dwalin: “He is late, is all. He travelled North to a meeting of our kin. He will come.” 
Balin: “What news from the meeting in Ered Luin? Did they all come?” 
Thorin: “Aye. Envoys from all seven kingdoms.” 
Dwalin: “What do the dwarves of the Iron Hills say? Is Dain with us?”  
Thorin: “They will not come. They say this quest is ours, and ours alone.” ~
Thorin: “I will take each and every one of these dwarves over an army from the Iron Hills. For when I called upon them, they answered. Loyalty. Honor. A willing heart. I can ask no more than that.”  ~
Balin: “You don’t have to do this. You have a choice. You’ve done honorably by our people. You have built a new life for us in the Blue Mountains, a life of peace and plenty. A life that is worth more than all the gold in Erebor.”
There are seven dwarf clans: The Longbeards, the Firebeards, the Broadbeams, the Ironfists, the Stiffbeards, the Stonefoots, and the Blacklocks. The seven clans roughly translate to the seven kingdoms. Durin's Folk are the Longbeards, and Thorin should be King of the Longbeards. However, both Erebor and Khazad-dûm (Moria) are lost to them. Dain, as Thorin's cousin, rules over a subgroup of Longbeards in the Iron Hills. However, Dain's people are not refugees from Erebor (Dain's grandfather was Thror's youngest brother, and he created the realm).

Ered Luin is the Blue Mountains and it is a mountain range. Both the Firebeards and the Broadbeams have lived there since the creation of the dwarves. It is clear that Thorin cannot command anyone to follow him, he does not have that power. He can only ask for help, and only the Company answered.

So how did Thorin build a new life for his people? He somehow got them sanctuary and acceptance in Ered Luin. He remained a dwarf lord in title, because he is still technically the heir to the most powerful dwarven line. However, he had no actual standing in Ered Luin.

There is one aspect of dwarven culture I purposely did not go over above, the treatment of children:
To these they are devoted, often rather fiercely: that is, they may treat them with apparent harshness (especially in the desire to ensure that they shall grow up tough, hardy, unyielding), but they defend them with all their power, and resent injuries to them even more than to themselves. - The Peoples of Middle-earth, The Making of Appendix A: Durin's Folk 
Thorin, to Gandalf about Bilbo: “He is soft,” he snorted. “Soft as the mud of his Shire, and silly. His mother died too soon.” - Unfinished Tales, The Quest for Erebor
Thorin implies that it is mainly the mother's job to raise the children. This makes sense, since dwarven culture is extremely sexist and dwarven women are constrained within the home.

Born and raised in Ered Luin, Fili and Kili were royalty in title but not in action. However, Thorin raised them as if they were royalty in action. We see several examples of this paradox. There are several similarities and signs of status in their clothing, and all three have their own personal emblem

Fili and Kili would have spent their early years with Dis in the isolated living quarters and domestic halls. They are innocent. Thorin raised them on stories of Erebor's glory while keeping from them the painful and horrific details (as we see, they don't know the details of the Battle of Azanulbizar – they would have only known that Thror, Frerin, and many of their people died; and that Thrain disappeared). They do, of course, know Misty Mountains – neither sing in Bag End, but they are present and serious. Richard Armitage said, “It was a cradle song that Thorin may have sung to his young nephews to say, look, we must never forget what happened.” This makes perfect sense.

Fili and Kili had lessons and were raised to be warriors, like any good dwarven prince. According to dwarven culture, since Fili is the heir, it is Thorin's job to harden him up and prepare him for Kingship. Fili would have had more lessons and training than Kili, and we see that he knows about the dragon sickness, while Kili doesn't. He is greatly constrained by being the heir, and he certainly cannot be the rebel. He is reserved because he has been trained to watch his words and actions, to not show his hand or let anyone gain advantage over him. He is singled out by Thorin and put in charge of Kili. Aidan Turner once said Fili was the William to his Harry. He's right.

Then there's Kili. Something I find very telling is that Kili moves forward to take Thorin's cloak in Bag End, helps Thorin stand up on the Carrock, carries the weapons in Laketown, and hands Dwalin more bolts/darts when he runs out. He's the spare, the assistant. It's his job to support the leader and be helpful in whatever way he can.

One thing I found very interesting is that before Bag End, it is implied that Balin and Dwalin had not seen each other for a while (“By my beard, you are shorter and wider than last we met.”). Kili also addresses Dwalin with a title (“Mister Dwalin”), and we know that Balin is a politician and Dwalin a warrior. Putting all of this together, I believe that Fili and Kili don't know Dwalin incredibly well because he travels a lot as a warrior.

Fili and Kili are skilled and lethal fighters, and have traveled as guards for merchant caravans (though it is highly unlikely they were the only guards, two isn't really an escort), but they have never been in a battle or war. They do not remember losing anyone close to them to orcs – they find Bilbo's fear funny, as only lethal innocents would; not understanding the severity and pain of an orc attack. Nor have they had much interaction with people of other races. While they have traveled as guards, we know that Kili (and thus likely Fili) has never seen an elf before; and before Bilbo, the only place they could have met any hobbits is in Bree. Their interactions with humans (and hobbits, if they had any) would have been very limited and strictly related to business.

Haters say it is unrealistic for Fili and Kili to be two of Thorin's best fighters. On the contrary, it makes perfect cultural sense. Warriors and fighting are exalted in dwarven culture, and as royalty it is their birthright. Thorin and Balin's conversation in Bag End exemplifies this:
Balin: “The odds were always against us. After all, what are we? Merchants, miners, tinkers, toy-makers. Hardly the stuff of legend.” 
Thorin: “There are a few warriors amongst us.” 
Balin: “Old warriors.”
However, even though both are extremely talented, Fili and Kili have two very different attitudes towards fighting. Fili has loads of weapons; lovingly pulling them out at Bilbo's house, and hating the elves for taking them (this essay covers his basic weapons, but we know from DoS that he has several others hidden in his clothing). Kili has far less, as well as different, weapons than Fili (this essay covers his weapons; while we see Thorin and Fili each briefly use a bow once, it is one of Kili's two main weapons), and he never appears emotionally invested in fighting – he explores and complements Bilbo's house while Fili is lovingly taking out his weapons. In Mirkwood, Kili doesn't just ignore the disappearance of his weapons; he starts fancying Tauriel because of her impressive skill when she saved his life, and smiles softly after her retort. According to his culture, she has just emasculated him at least twice; and his reaction is not to get angry, but to fall in love with her. He is perfectly comfortable with being the more feminine one in their relationship.

Contrary to what haters' think, the two parenting quotes explain why Thorin, Fili, and Kili behave the way they do. The combination of dwarven culture and Thorin's personal issues mean that he does not yell, he just reprimands them and shows little physical affection (Thorin only shows Kili great affection twice: when falling into sickness (which doesn't really count because he completely disregards Kili's feelings) and right after coming out of it. It is not a common occurrence). But it is also clear that he loves them more than life, and he shows it in the little moments.

Dean O'Gorman once joked in an interview:
Valdis: If he had one, what do you think it would say on it? 
Dean: Oh man! It would probably say, “Look after your brother, please, and make sure he doesn’t lose the runestone.” (laughing) 
Valdis: (laughing) I could completely see that! 
Dean: (laughing) Yeah, “be the dad he never had.”
Fili is actually very parental with Kili. As I go over in detail above, one of his two core traits is protecting Kili. Thorin and Dis have to treat them with “apparent harshness,” Kili himself tells us that Dis worries about him and thinks he's reckless, and we see Dwalin passive aggressively publicly humiliate Kili for culturally unacceptable behavior. Thus, Fili is clearly both Kili's support system and companion.

Dean had a great insight during that interview:
Valdis: So, if the story had ended differently, and Fili had eventually become King Under the Mountain, what would his priorities as ruler be? What laws would he pass? What sort of ruler do you think he would have been? 
Dean: Oh my god, well, I think he would have taken a fair amount of leaves out of Thorin’s book. I think Fili would be a pretty fair ruler, to be honest! I think that because of the journey he went through, he has a more balanced perspective on what the dwarves wanted. [cut] So I think that Fili would do a good job. I don’t think he’s ambitious, though. I think he feels responsible, and I think he feels aware of his potential responsibilities, but I don’t think he’s as ambitious as Thorin.
Dean's right. Fili is not at all ambitious. He's deeply aware of his status as heir and his responsibilities, and he's been trained all his life for them. He spends the majority of the Quest just silently watching Thorin. However, naturally, Fili's personality is more suited to that of a follower and supporter. That's not to say he wouldn't be a great King – he would. He would just never be a trailblazing, revolutionary King.

Kili has a self-esteem problem. It’s not obvious to most people, but since he is the character I fundamentally relate to, it is obvious to me. We have the same little tells, because our brains' function the same way. Also, Kili has a lot of reasons to have low self-esteem.

Most dwarves (like others in all races) have an inherent sense of pride at being a dwarf, and their culture exalts secrecy and prejudice. Their culture is the polar opposite of elven culture; elves have a fundamentally feminine and egalitarian culture. They are naturally peaceful, only going to war “at need” (or Morgoth induced corruption); there is very little, if any, difference in physical strength between males and females; and they are in all things equal.

I can just hear dwarves mocking the fact that elven women fight – 'elf-men are so weak even their women have to fight!'

We see from the very beginning that Kili is odd for a dwarf. He is very different from any other dwarf we ever meet. He doesn't have that internal sense of dwarven pride. He is very open-minded, and exemplifies the saying, “A stranger is just a friend you haven't met yet.” He is genuinely curious and admiring of Bilbo and his house. Kili also defends him and shows faith in him by betting on him. Though raised on the evilness of elves, Kili doesn't have any prejudice or dislike for them. He sees Tauriel as a breathtaking and awe-inspiring being far above him while never showing the slightest hint of jealousy or possessiveness towards her, and has thought about the nature of nature; thus contradicting everything dwarven culture believes in. He follows his heart and morals no matter what. He is resilient and light-hearted, even though he is a cultural anomaly.

At the beginning of the Quest, Kili doesn’t understand the prejudices of his culture, but he lacks the personal experiences needed to challenge them. By the time Kili gets to Erebor, he has the personal experiences needed to speak up. He cannot stand silent in the face of injustices.

Because this is the thing about me and Kili – we don’t consciously choose to be open-minded or strong willed. I promise that we’re not trying to be defiant or disrespectful. Our brains are just cognitively wired to never accept anything at face value and see a multitude of alternatives. That insatiable curiosity drives us to ask endless questions and seek out new experiences. It’s (usually) not recklessness, because we do think and care. We’re just wired to engage. We have very strong internal senses of self and morality, and we dance to the beat of our own drum. We have never been able to wrap our minds around statements like ‘because I said so’ or 'because it is’. This is especially true when it comes to prejudices, like the dwarves’ against hobbits and elves. Why are we good and they bad? Kili genuinely can’t comprehend it.

Also, not only is Kili's personality more elven than dwarven (he isn’t emotionally invested in fighting, one of his two main weapons is a bow, and he ponders the nature of nature), he is also seen as ugly and very 'elf-like’ physically - he only has stubble, is the least deep-chested, is the second slimmest, and is on the taller side. As the icing on this cake, he’s not even attracted to dwarven beauty standards.

Then, of course, there is his status as the spare and assistant. It is almost certain that in every aspect of his life, and in the eyes of all the other dwarves, he has always been overshadowed by Fili.

Kili and I both seemingly wear our hearts on our sleeves; being outgoing, lighthearted, fun-loving, romantic dreamers. But the low self-esteem is there. We will happily gush for hours, but if you ask us to share our pain, we will immediately clam up. Red alert, deny! deny! deny! Also, we may get angry for a moment, but we have a very hard time holding grudges (which dwarven culture exalts).

Kili shows this several times – after Thorin’s rebuke about the orc joke Kili bows his head and doesn’t look up when Balin starts speaking; after being completely humiliated in front of the entire Company he just says “funny” and looks down (being hurt and vulnerable instead of getting angry and lashing out), and immediately joins in the food fight; he immediately lightens the conversation after telling Tauriel about his promise to his mother; he has his vulnerable and pained “remote and far away” line; he continues to deny and play down his injury even after Thorin tells him he doesn’t get to continue on the quest; he doesn’t want Fili to defend him to Thorin but drop it and go with the others; and he makes his dazed speech about Tauriel, wondering if it’s even possible that she might have loved his lowly self.

Trust me, while Kili and I know we are loved, we also know that we are odd. We are both surrounded by people who love us but do not fully understand us. We can't help our oddness and we can't make people accept us. That incredibly strong since of self and morality means that, for better or worse, we will be who we truly are and will always fight for what we believe in.

But believing in our morals or personality traits as abstract concepts doesn't mean that's reflected in our self worth – a deep hope and belief in the spiritual goodness of the universe has no connection to how we view ourselves, and we will see and value the same traits in others far more than we will in ourselves. A lifetime of feeling misunderstood and abnormal colors all our personal thoughts and reflections – 'yes I'm an artist, but I'm not that good', 'I guess I'm kind, but there are others who are far kinder', 'just because the world is fundamentally good doesn't mean I'm good', etc. Also, that constant questioning? Our annoying brains question and challenge ourselves just as much, or even more, than they do others.

One of the most important things to remember is that one of the central themes of Tolkien's legendarium is isolationism is bad and good comes from seeing the good in others and banding together. Only then can evil be defeated. Haldir summarizes it perfectly: “Indeed in nothing is the power of the D
ark Lord more clearly shown than in the estrangement that divides all those who still oppose him.” Tauriel and Kili are the two most open minded characters in the films.

As saelyg eloquently explains:
This is something I’ve discussed frequently. There is this assumption that because Fili is older and the heir he should be more important as a character (in the movie, in The Hobbit book Fili is actually the YOUNGER brother, in the LOTR appendices frankly Tolkien appears to simply mix them up by making Fili older - even he couldn’t keep them straight lol). To me this shows perhaps an unintentional elitism or hierarchy people may have - the fact is simply being born first doesn’t make someone more important as a fictional character, it doesn’t give their story a greater right to be told. Any sort of character can be important for narrative purposes. 
As I’ve said before, these stories are filled with heirs and oldest sons and kings and king’s to be. Why would PJ NOT choose to focus on someone who is NOT, why not tell someone else’s story. Kili is in the line of succession but, like Faramir before Boromir died, he isn’t the oldest son or the heir or a king or someone trying to be or who doesn’t want to be but needs to be. It doesn’t mean Kili’s less significant or his story less profound or less worthy of being told. 
It’s also important to remember that as the spare so to speak, Kili really has to create his own role, there is nothing to give meaning to his life except what he can make of it. Sure there are expectations on an heir and that can be difficult, but it also gives them an automatic acceptance to others that they are important and have meaning, it’s more a matter of whether or not they are able take advantage of their privilege or to squander it. Kili would always have to work harder to “make a mark” and not just be a footnote, if even that. 
So in that way, PJ is sort of doing that narratively what Kili would have had to do in life. He’s highlighting his quality, his uniqueness. He has him make his mark. He’s saying “it isn’t just kings and first borns who have a story to tell and a mark to make so here is the story of another one who isn’t”. Sure Kili is brave and a great fighter but it’s not just in martial pursuits - Kili is curious for a dwarf, he’s more open-minded than most, he’s open hearted and he’s has the courage of his convictions. He won’t live long enough to do anything but it highlights why his death is a loss of more than just Durin’s direct line of descent - he could have been an influence on making dwarf culture a little bit more open and accepting. 
Kili and Tauriel’s stories (and they both have one, she isn’t just an addendum to his) intertwine and highlight each others as well as other important themes such as acceptance, standing up for what is right, leaving old prejudices in the past. As part of Tauriel’s story, he influences Thranduil and Legolas as it’s clearly suggested that because of what they feel for her, the thoughts and opinions she expresses to them, and what they see her go through affects the decisions they make for the future - it very likely helped influence Thranduil to stop being such an isolationist which in turns leads to, among other things, Legolas at Elrond’s Council decades in the future. As well as giving sprinkling in some “fairy tale” side of Tolkien - where kindred spirits may meet and are almost immediately bonded to one another. Only they are unexpected kindreds, because Kili’s a dwarf, even if he is somewhat tall for a dwarf.
I'm not mentioning any of this to put down Fili, or to imply that Kili is a better character than Fili. They are both wonderful characters, and the films would not be nearly as wonderful if either of them was missing. I hope this essay has helped you see how wonderful they both are.

No comments:

Post a Comment