There’s a strong contingent of folks that have been waiting to hear what kind of dulcet tones Cumberbatch has cooked up for this version of the most famous dragon in fiction. The tumblr crowd has certainly been on pins and needles. And now we have it, growled out at the end of the trailer as one would expect.

hobbit desolation of smaug bilbo martin freemanThe verdict? It sounds like Benedict Cumberbatch!

There’s some weird mixing on his last “step into the light” line, so I’m really hoping the whole performance isn’t going to be so warbly and distorted. A trailer mix isn’t worth fretting over, however. That said, I broke out the studio headphones and yeah, there’s a whooooole lot of low-end in that dialogue, a little forced though it may sound. Theater subwoofers are going to rumble… The incredible Gravity illuminated for me just how amazing the Dolby Atmos format can be, and I look forward to hearing this second Hobbit as much or more as actually seeing it.

Oh, and I guess there was some story stuff in there too. Lots of Legolas again, some more explicit nods to the original LOTR trilogy, and lots more digitally painted beauty.┬áThe first film was a pile, but with Jackson pulling in other material (and making shit up wholesale) to widen out the trilogy, I’m hopeful there will be a bit more density going forward. It will be December before we know it and then we’ll see!