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Gandalf

Gandalf is an Isatari wizard, a spirit Maiar who has been sent in the guise of an old man by the Valar to fight the growing evil of Sauron. Gandalf is known in the order as Gandalf the Grey and is second only to Saruman in supposed power. He has long fought for the people of Middle Earth and bears an elven ring of power. In the Shire he is known as "A disturber of peace" but is well loved for his spectacular firework displays. When discovering the One Ring he goes to seek the council of Saruman but is captured when he learns of Saruman's treachery but later is rescued by Gwaihir, the King of the birds and most likely had another smaller bird to grab Gandalf's staff out of the tower. Gandalf travels with Frodo and the ring but falls to shadow when battling the Balrog in Moria. Gandalf is played by Sir Ian McKellen, "I really have to look like everyone's idea of a wizard."

Gandalf returns in the Two Towers as Gandalf the White, "I come back to you now, at the turn of the tide." The prologue shows Gandalf battling the Balrog as they fell down into the deep of Moria - we watch as he uses his sword Glamdring to stab  and hack at the giant flaming beast. On and on through the tunnels they battled and up to the Endless Stair the highest peak where Glamdring was hit by lightening and Gandalf finally vanquished the demon. There he lay as darkness took him - he traveled the stars and was returned to Middle Earth to complete his task - Gandalf the Grey no more - but Gandalf the White - full of power and might.

Gandalf encounters the two Captive hobbits and entrusts them to Treebeard's care as he meets up with the Companions and leads them to Edoras. On the steps of Edoras he refuses to give up his staff "You wouldn't part an old man from his walking stick would you?" In the halls of Edoras he sees the ailing King and uses his power to drain the influence of Saruman from the King - knocking Saruman off his feet back in Isengard and releasing the King from his stupor.

As the people of Edoras leave the city for the fortress of Helm's Deep, Gandalf takes Shadowfax to find the banished men under Éomer's command and tells Aragorn "Look to the East on the dawn of the fifth day." True to his word, on the dawn of the fifth day after the strenuous fighting of the night before Gandalf attacks the hoards of Orcs driving them into a retreat and hence rescuing the people of Rohan. 

Now the White wizard he instructs Treebeard to leave Saruman in his tower, “He has no power any more.” When Pippin picks up the palantir Gandalf quickly claims it, but it had already taken a hold of the Hobbit and it is up to Gandalf to see what Pippin has told Sauron. Knowing that Pippin is in great danger he rides in hast to Minas Tirith and proceeds to inform Denethor of the might that is about to bare down on his city, but Denethor will hear none of it, “Have you come to tell me why my son is dead?” “Mithrandir, you are neither wise nor welcome.” But that doesn’t stop Gandalf and he instructs Pippin to light the beacon, calling Rohan to come to Gondor’s aid.

When Faramir rides across the plain, Gandalf rides out to meet them bearing the light from his staff to drive the Nazgul away, he also tires to convince Faramir not to leave, “Your father loves you, he will see it before the end.” The WitchKing and the Orc commanders know that Gandalf is one of the ‘real’ enemy, “What about the wizard?” “I will break him.”

When Denethor retreats into his hall, it is left to Gandalf to defend the city (notably after Gandalf beats the crap out of him), he calls the men back to the wall and instructs them on how to hamper the siege, “Take down the trolls… Retreat to the second level.” Along with the rest of the company he travels to the Black Gates, “I have sent Frodo to his death.

Sir Ian McKellen IS Gandalf and there is no doubt about that, he is grumpy in the right places, strong and compassionate and he even “pinched the keys to Bag End.”

Shadowfax

Shadowfax is the "lord of all horses", Chief of the Mearas, the fastest horse in all of Middle Earth, he can even outrun the horses of the Black Riders. He is wild and untamable but aids Gandalf in his quest to find the banished riders of Rohan.

 

Any of the thumbnails

Gandalf 

Moria

Leaving the Shire In Bag End RotK1 RotK2 Moria again Balrog Battle by John Howe
Banner  Posing Smoking Waiting Happy Hooded
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