Yessss you explain so well something I’ve been trying to sort out. It seems to me that there is no true hunger for power without the rest of life behind it, or at least adjacent to it. It reminds me of bad Shakespeare productions – where the folks making it have clearly forgotten that it’s not a tragedy if there’s no possible comedic ending to hope for. The Macbeths can’t just be evil nutjobs. They need to be fighting for a better day-to-day family life. In other words, there is no meaningful trip to Mordor without a Shire to save.