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Clan-Building #6: Reunion

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Clan-Building Review

There's a pretty comprehensive review of Clan-Building here:

http://www.examiner.com/review/celebrate-twenty-years-of-gargoyles-with-slave-labor-graphics-clan-building

This guy really knows the series.


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Antiyonder writes...

"I know where my copy of the Gargoyles Trade Paperback "Clan-Building" Volume One is. Do you?"

On the computer desk for the moment, as I'm staying at my dad's place tonight. Good job on your part of putting the TPB together. While I do have the individual issues, getting the trade wasn't really any problem as I've done the same for the Spider-Girl series from Marvel.

As for the next volume of Clan Building when it comes out (going for optimism here) have you considered putting in the scenes than didn't make it in the #6 flashback? You know, much like a Deleted Scene section on a DVD? Or did you you only script the scenes in question?

Greg responds...

I guess I have the old script, but I'm not sure I need or want to see the page or so that didn't make the cut into #6. They don't really fit anymore. And, of course, they were never drawn.

Response recorded on February 01, 2008

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The One Known As Mochi writes...

So... Last week, I finally managed to pick up #6 (the corrected version), #7 and Bad Guys #1. I knowingly overdrew my checking account getting these issues (don't worry, I won't do that again...$30 overdraft charges aren't always fun to deal with...) and I was eager to catch up with everyone else. I'll briefly share my thoughts on these issues.

Gargoyles #6
I almost laughed when Goliath, Elisa, Bronx and Angela ended up in a huge pot of...whatever was boiling in there... Bronx looks good in a sherpa (it is a sherpa, right?). It seems Avalon has sent them to find Coldstone and reunite the clan. They end up waking up upon a lake and whether or not they were successful has yet to be known. Coldsteel working for Xanatos... That's surprise for me. It made me wonder what Coldsteel had been doing since he disappeared after being seperated from Coldstone's body.

Gargoyles #7
Now I see why all those dates and times were withheld. Lots of skipping around in terms of time. Made for interesting reading I have to admit. I'm wondering if issue #8 will reveal what happened on the morning of November 15... Fox is shopping for shoes...and curiosity as to why is killing me a little. Shari is quite a story teller. Perhaps her knowledge is why she ranks high in the Illuminati? I'm wondering what Xanatos has planned, especially since the Stone of Destiny might be involved... The page with Macbeth waiting for Lexington and Hudson to wake up was funny. I know jetlag is not a fun thing to experience... I noticed Angela whispers something to Broadway... Perhaps it's alluding to something that will be revealed later? Wow...Macbeth tried to steal the stone back in 1950. Very interesting... Another Coyote and Coldsteel...helping Xanatos... Definitely lots of foreshadowing present in this issue. "...and normalcy is over-rated." So true... So very true... It's good to see Goliath and Elisa patching up things. Maggie is pregnant! Yay! Is she getting a baby shower? King Arthur! Good to see him make an appearance, although having him hold a sword to Macbeth's neck has me wanting to read #8 to see what happens. The London Clan makes an appearance too. Again, can't wait for #8 to be released...

Bad Guys #1
After reading through it the first time, I found myself having mixed reactions from the content (it's not that bad though). I liked seeing Matrix with a boombox. It seemed very apropos for him. Hmm...I'm curious as to who attacked the group... The Tazmanian Tiger was something I wasn't expecting. I'll admit, it's something new, but it didn't distract me too much. In a way, he looked like Batman in a tiger suit...at least that's what first came to mind when I first read through it. I'm glad there was a panel that shows where Dingo was being "inserted." Otherwise, I would've had to imagine where...and it would be very, VERY awry just to think about that... I liked Dingo's reaction to it though. The song lyrics... I'm wondering if that's alluding to some foreshadowing... Perhaps I'm reading too much into it? I won't know until the next issue... Nicely written lyrics, by the way... So far, I think it's off to a good start and I hope it gets better from here.

I guess I should mention now that I'll soon be a proud owner of the Season 1 DVD box set! I haven't ordered it just yet, but I will be after Christmas. In two weeks, Season 2 Volume 1... I can't wait!

Greg responds...

Cool.

Response recorded on January 23, 2008

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Vaevictis Asmadi writes...

Here's more scattered, random reactions to the comics, in lieu of actual reviews. So because I already posted a lot about it in the comment room, and I'm lazy, I'm skipping a review of 3-5 for now and going on to review the latest issues that I bought. Starting with #6, others coming later. How many times can I post in a row without being rude?

SPOILERS (if you haven't got #6 yet)
The art in this issue mostly looks really good, once I got used to the pencils, but Lexington and Brooklyn and some of the early frames of Angela looked wrong.

I noticed that the pictures of Gabriel and Iago were copied directly from specific shots in the animated series. That's interesting, they were immediately recognizable and I thought it was cool, it indicates that the artists are getting a hold of the episodes and paying attention to the art in them. I do wonder if they are supplied with the character model sheets, though.

I'm surprised that you changed the Avalon situation so that the magic does not translate. It is definitely cool to see the language issue addressed, but I thought that the magic translateion was more probable than that every single person they met on the other Tour stops spoke English, and well. Now I wonder how Angela, Tom, and King Arthur are able to communicate with English-speakers.

Lots of new mysteries. How do the Illuminati know about that World Tour stop? And what "seeds" were "sown" at that time? No doubt Xanatos is up to something...

Landing in a giant cooking/laundry pot is definitely a new way to travel.

Shari feeding Thailog grapes while he's dressed like a Roman emperor is... intereting. She should be careful about taunting him, though.

I'm a bit disappointed that we didn't see real yetis, but since All Things Are True, they are probably out there somewhere.

I enjoyed all the issues I've read so far and although this wasn't quite as fun as some of the others, it was still good.
SPOILERS (if you haven't got #6 yet)

Greg responds...

I'm not sure I DID change the rules here. They were sent to speak to Coldstone, not Master Dawa or Sangpo.

Response recorded on January 09, 2008

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Charisma82 writes...

Here's the 2nd half of my ramble on the 6th issue of the Gargoyles Comic Book series.

Gargoyles: Clan-Building
Part Five: Reunion

Part 2 Pages 13-24

Page 13: Goliath seems very happy on this page. He's reunited with his brother. Nothing is posing any threats to him or his friends. All's well with the big guy. This page is a nice and subtle way of introducing the idea of Avalon and the fact that there are other gargoyles around Angela's age to readers who haven't seen the shows yet. They are also told about how Avalon had once sent Goliath, Elisa, Angela, & Bronx to different places, before the present time in the comic books; not only did Avalon send them places, it sent them places where they were needed for some purpose. That's a lot to work into one page. And the two monks have some cute lines, now that I actually go back and re-read them (I kinda skimmed some of their parts the first time around, just to get to the Coldstone parts).

Page 14: Here we get cannon proof that Gabriel and Coldstone (Othello) are biologically related. Angela speaks more of biological parentage, and Goliath still seems uneasy about the subject, even if he has accepted Angela as his daughter (I'm assuming this episode was to be after "The Panther Queen" and not before; I hope I'm correct in assuming that). I'm not sure how Coldstone is taking the news of having a biological son, since we don't get to hear his tone of voice. I'm sure he's glad that he has many sons and daughters on Avalon, but I don't know what he's thinking about his own biological son at this moment. He might be considering not just his biological son in his statement, but might be thinking of all his sons and daughters, and that's what helps bring him to his decision. I'm just guessing though.

Page 15: The readers are introduced to the concept of Coldstone being made of 3 gargoyles and not just one. It's another quick hint to those who didn't watch the TV show, to help them catch up on what they've missed. This is also when Coldstone starts to act differently…

Page 16: The first time I read this through I was confused as to why Coldstone suddenly wanted to go with Goliath after he'd just said he didn't want to leave. Then Goliath states that Coldstone must have switched personalities to the evil one (Iago). I didn't really buy that idea. I don't know why, it just seems out of place for that to happen. I can't really explain, but I just have a hard time wanting to believe that Coldstone switched personalities at that moment (not saying that he can't, 'cause Iago has taken over Coldstone plenty of times at the wrong times for Goliath). I like Master Dawa's line, "Friends sacrifice for each other," in response to Sangpo's comment.

Page 17: Even more fighting and no dialogue. Goliath gets a taste of some stone wall.

Page 18: Angela gets a good punch in before the scene cuts to Elisa trying to make the monks leave. Sangpo is probably still trying to listen with his heart, trying to figure out what Elisa is saying, if not still trying to figure out why Coldstone is attacking his friends.

Page 19: Never threaten Elisa unless you want Goliath to attempt to rip your head off. And what an interesting line for Coldstone to choose to get Goliath's goat. I doubt that would've been heard on TV. Another reason for the comics. Oh, and I love the shot of everyone trying to take Coldstone down and we see Bronx chewing on his kneecap. It kinda reminds me of Xanatos' line in "Future Tense" when he's talking to Goliath's stone head in his hand.

Page 20: This scene reminds me a lot of when Coldstone (as Iago) takes down Goliath and his clan in "High Noon".

Page 21: I like knowing now that the monks can sense when evil is present and when it is not, at least in Coldstone's situation. That would come in handy if Iago ever decided to show up and try to act like Othello. Now I'm curious, since Othello is in control, does that mean that Desdemona has to keep Iago at bay the entire time? Does Desdemona get any training from the monks to help keep Iago away like Othello does? The rest of this page explains why Coldstone (Othello) pretended to be evil, so he couldn't put his clan, his children, at risk. He figures the only way he could've done this was to take them out as "the evil one". I agree with his logic. Goliath was happy being reunited with his brother again, and he did believe that Avalon sent him to his brother so he could join them, so I think that Goliath would've gone to great lengths to have his brother at his side, even if Coldstone didn't believe he was ready to be with his clan yet.

Page 22: Shari finishes the story, talking about a place called Shambahla. I figured this was just another place in the world that I didn't know about, but then I read in a review that it was a mystical place, so I looked it up on GargWiki to find out that it is indeed a mystical place like Avalon. Hmm… interesting cliffhanger there. Next we find Thailog chortling at his own amusement of Goliath's past, so-called, failure. Then Shari gives him the idea that they didn't fail.

Page 23: Thailog seems a bit perturbed. Okay, I was a bit confused with Shari's lines when she says that "seeds were sown that night… seeds that have yet to bear fruit." Is she referencing to the episode "Possession", since Coldstone no longer has to worry about the "evil one", or is she referencing to something that is going to happen in the future? Thailog seems even more upset, and right before he goes to sleep too. Shari seems like a pretty good player thus far. Why was it such a big deal that the lettering was a bit different for the logo? It was the same word. And finally, we get to see Xanatos.

Page 24: And here's Coldsteel! Can't wait to find out what Xanatos has in mind for him, though I do have some theories of my own…

Once again, a good comic book, though it wasn't my favorite so far. I did think the story was a bit rushed, but it was also great to see a "lost" episode from season 2. Keep up the great work and I can't wait for the next comic (I've been craving it's plotline since I read a summary on it on GargWiki several months back…).

Thank you for your time and all that you do.

-Charisma82

Greg responds...

Page 23 - Everything's relative. The fact that we went to the trouble to create an actual logo, as opposed to scratchy lettering -- and we wound up printing the old version was frustrating. Obviously, that was not the most serious mistake in the book, and had it been the ONLY mistake, I would have just quietly had it corrected for the Trade Paperback, and seen whether or not ANYONE noticed.

Response recorded on November 16, 2007

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Charisma82 writes...

Hey! Okay, here it is, with no long rambles before hand, the first part of my review on the 6th comic book.

Gargoyles: Clan-Building
Part Five: Reunion

Part 1 Pages 1-12

Page 1: Angela looks cute in this picture. I'm glad that it's not a full moon, 'cause the gargoyles have had enough things going on during full moons already. I do want to say that I am very thankful to you for putting up this page on GargWiki with the title and all that in the corner. This way I know how you wanted it to look, though it wasn't a big deal for me not to see it in the comic.

Page 2: Angela looks like she aged or something in the next shot of her with the trio. I think the drawings of them look a bit off, but I really liked the drawings in the rest of the comic. And again with poor Brooklyn. Timedancer can't come soon enough for him.

Page 3: Okay, what's with the swan ice sculpture? Any story behind that one? And it's shown dripping/melting, just to let us know that Thailog isn't freezing in his room. Shari didn't seem much the type to me to be feeding Thailog grapes like a servant. I suppose she's trying to lay low when she is really a crafty one herself. I also have to say that Thailog has some nice taste in decorating, or at least good taste in ordering around someone else to decorate for him.

Page 4: So does Shari only wear her Illuminate pen/necklace when she feels like it, 'cause it's not on her in this comic. I would assume so, since other Illuminate members don't wear theirs all the time either.

Page 5: This is my favorite scene in this comic, the skiff in the big boiling pot. It's funny 'cause you wouldn't expect it, but then how else would Avalon get Goliath & company up in those mountains? And then our heroes go from the heat to the cold…

Page 6: They all look so cute in their coats, especially Bronx. But why's Goliath looking so angry? They haven't been attacked yet. Sangpo needs his eyes checked. Yeti are supposed to be furry things. And they don't have wings. But he realizes this later. I really like how you have Sangpo speaking in a different language, though we read it as English (the first time I read it, I thought they were speaking to each other through their minds psychically). It's a nice touch to make it seem more believable that they're in a different part of the world.

Page 7: Now introducing Master Dawa. Not much here except Dawa stopping the shooting of arrows at the gargoyles, him getting after Sangpo for ordering the shooting, and then his line on how "their souls are fortunate that their bodies are such lousy shots."

Page 8: The gargoyles and Elisa find a cave on this page. That, and Bronx goes after something in the dark cave…

Page 9: You just had to stick a jalapena line in there, huh? (That wasn't a complaint; I like those lines; keep 'em coming!) I might as well mention here that I like the fact that you had Angela in her other outfit that she wore during the Avalon World Tour, and not her new outfit so that it all works out with continuity stuff. Bronx finds what he was looking for in the cave, and, of course, attacks it…

Page 10: Just a fighting page, no dialogue. We do get to see father daughter team work at play here. I like the one red eye, one glowing white eye for the hooded figure. It is a big clue for fans (who didn't already read about it on GargWiki) to know that Coldstone is back.

Page 11: A big picture of Goliath realizing that he is fighting Coldstone.

Page 12: All I have to say is that it happens to the best of us. I was confused a bit, but got the drift of what was going on on this page. Once again, thanks a bunch for putting what you had planned out for this page on GargWiki. It helped me out a lot to see it. It's a warm reunion between Goliath and his rookery brother. Angela gets to meet another rookery father, though I think she seems more interested in biological fathers. I like finding out that Coldstone didn't have to face his "inner demons" alone, and that he gets some help from, what seems to be, a good man named Master Dawa.

There's the first half. I'll get around to the 2nd some time in the near future (I hope).

Thank you for your time and all that you do.

-Charisma82

Greg responds...

Thank you too.

Response recorded on November 16, 2007

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#6 Reprint

FYI - I stopped by my local comic book store last night and the corrected reprint of Gargoyles #6 was there.


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Latest Update

Okay, here's what I know as of right now.

First off, the reprint of Gargoyles #6 should be in stores tomorrow (11/14/07). You SHOULD be able to exchange first printing copies for the reprint if you'd like. Notice the emphasis on SHOULD. Let me quote a recent e-mail from SLG publisher Dan Vado in answer to my question as to whether local stores know about this:

"The store issue is a tough one. They have been as informed as they possibly can be, that is we paid to have notices sent to them, there will be an item on their invoice and there was a mention in the weekly newsletter from Diamond Comics as well as from me personally in my retailer newsletter and on a retailer message board. That being said, I was on a conference call with two retailers yesterday, two who buy direct form me regualrly and are among those stores I would count as hard core supporters, and they had no clue they were getting new copies this week or about the replacement issue. So, as I have been mentioning to fans, the best thing to do if the retailer looks at them like they were crazy is to not bother them or get angry with them, just tear off the cover [of their old printing copy] and send it to us [at SLG] and we will replace the book directly. This is why we have not sent copies to Amazon yet and why it has not been on our website yet."

So, not a perfect world, but I really do think it's as good as it gets given the situation.

Next up, Bad Guys #1. This SHOULD be out by the end of this month. Unfortunately, because of Thanksgiving, that's not a lock. But if it's not out the last week of November, it will be out the first week of December. (In any case, it's ALL finished -- and approved.)

After that, expect Gargoyles #7 approximately three weeks after Bad Guys #1 hits the stores -- which SHOULD still put it in December -- unless Christmas messes that up, in which case it should be out the first week in January. The book is also ALL finished, but has not yet been approved.

After that, the Gargoyles Clan-Building Volume #1 Trade Paperback. Galleys are being reviewed now, but it should be out in late December or early January. We may delay it a week or two so that it isn't coming out the EXACT same week as BG1 or G7. Then again we may not.

After that, um, I guess Bad Guys #2, which is currently being finished by Karine.

After that Gargoyles #8, which is being pencilled by David.

After that Bad Guys #3, which is being scripted now by me.

After that Gargoyles #9, which has ALREADY been scripted by me. Uh... how did that happen?

Anyway, that's all I know at this time.

gdw


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Matt writes...

My Review For Gargoyles #6, "Reunion"...

- My friend Ryan and I went to pick up our copies of Reunion the day it came out. The store we went to told me they had received 12 copies and when we left only one copy was remaining, which is good. The cover is awesome, one of my favorites so far. I like the dynamic nature of it. All the covers have been gorgeous so far, but this one really pulls you into the action and the story.

- There are a lot of neat little details that I loved in this issue. The fact that it was snowing in New York, Lex's continuing preoccupation with Brentwood's choice, Brook's face when Angela puts her hand on his shoulder (another poor Brooklyn moment), the arrival of the travelers in the laundry pot, Elisa's line about Hawaii, the way Coldstone picks up Bronx, and others.

- The art in this issue was... alright. I think Mr. Purcell did an excellant job on all the human characters (Elisa, Shari, Xanatos, Dawa and Sangpo), but I wasn't impressed by his depiction of the gargoyle characters. The sketches look too rough, like they were unfinished. Some of the faces and poses seemed way off. My friend Ryan said that in the top panel of page 2, Angela looks like a velociraptor. I think Coldstone and Coldsteel were well drawn, but it irked me that some drawings (particularly Gabriel and Iago) were traced right off the GargWiki pictures. Out of the four artists we've seen in the books so far, I'd have to rank Purcell my least favorite. It isn't terrible, it's just I like the style of the others so much more. Charlebois and Hedgecock are my favorites, so I look forward to them taking on the bulk of Gargoyles and Bad Guys issues from here on out.

- Greg, I know you are tired of hearing about the errors, but I wanted to mention my own impressions of them briefly. Ryan and I read the comic together and we both sat there scratching our heads trying to figure out the 12th page. It's funny that the first couple frames seem perfectly fine. Anyway, it's a shame, but with the reprint and trade paperback coming out, it isn't a big deal. I'm more annoyed by the wrong "Vows" ending being on the DVD. As for the title page and Scarab logo errors, I didn't notice that until it was pointed out to me, I feel those are very minor, frustrating for the staff, I'm sure, but minor.

- The story of this issue is one I've been looking forward to for years. I always loved the various Coldstone episodes, and it intrigued me that this story had been written to be in comic form many years ago. That said, it felt very rushed. I'm sure that was somewhat unavoidable, but in a way I feel leaving some things out would've resulted in a more natural pacing. Angela going on about Gabriel seemed jarring. I like that anyone could look and see that Gabriel was Coldstone's son, but having Angela spell it out bothered me a lot. If anyone would talk about biological parentage, it would be her, but still she really seems to not care about the Gargoyle Way here at all. At first, I thought Coldstone was acknowledging Gabriel as his son, and then I caught the quotes around biological. I was thrilled that Coldstone didn't care much about Angela's revelation. It's almost like he didn't understand what she was talking about, which was awesome, probably my favorite part of the story. He sees Gabriel and Angela and the others as his rookery children. All of them.

- Now, obviously Goliath and the others want Coldstone to return to the clan, but Coldstone points out what Goliath should already know. Coldstone is dangerous and unpredictable. And all of a sudden, out of nowhere, in the middle of this explanation, Coldstone pretends the "evil one" takes control to illustrate the point. This seemed extremely rushed and odd. Coldstone didn't even wait for Goliath to try to understand before just assuming he has to take matters into his own hands. He attacks the travelers, throwing them around, shooting at them, and, most alarmingly lifting Elisa off the ground by her neck! This really makes Coldstone look really bad, worse then the so called "evil one". Hes a good guy who is attacking his family to prove a point before trying to show his point with simple conversation. And on top of that, it would be one thing to simply stun them all and send them on their way, but what he did to Elisa could've seriously injured her. I'm not sure whether to blame all this on the rushing of the story or on Coldstone's character or maybe something else was going on, I dunno. It just seemed outrageous. Coldstone tells Dawa that "They would never have left [him] behind." and "[He] had to make them believe the evil one had taken control..." but honestly, he hardly even tried to convince them. I know I'm rambling now, so suffice to say, I hope there was more going on here that we don't know yet. Shari's lines concerning the adventure hints that more was going on before, during or because of this event, so who knows.

- I liked that Coldstone went to Dawa for help in his internal battle. I like that Sangpo correctly sensed that the evil one had not taken control. These were great characters and it'll be fascinating to learn more about them in the future.

- Finally, as for the bookends of this story we have Thailog and Shari and Xanatos and Coldsteel. Suffice to say I'm on the edge of my seat waiting to see how their stories will play out. A story for another night indeed...

- All in all, I have to say that though I liked this story, the art was not my favorite and the story seemed too condensed. The ending leaves us all wanting more though, so I guess thats a good thing. And since Greg claims this story "will have major ramifications in the issues to come", I'll be interested in looking back at this one in a year or two with the advantage of hindsight.

Looking forward to Issue #7 and Bad Guys #1!!! Thanks again to the staff!

Greg responds...

Not sure what to make of the fact that your "favorite part of the story" comes directly out of something you're suggesting I should have trimmed out...

Response recorded on November 13, 2007

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Jurgan writes...

Been working non-stop lately, but I did get a chance to read issue 6, and now that I've got a little time off, I'm going to try to drop a review.

Good news, first: when I went to my usual comics store, which has always stocked several of each issue, on the afternoon of release day, they were sold out. I know your question is always "will you order more?" so you'll be happy to know that I heard the employee say, "we need to up our orders for Gargoyles." At least, I'm pretty sure he said that, though I don't know if they ordered any more of issue 6 than the two copies I ordered (I keep one in plastic, mainly so that if I'm reading one on the bus or I loan it to a friend and lose it, I'll always have a complete set that never leaves my house). The upshot for me was that, by the time I got to reading it a week later, I already knew about the production errors and wasn't as confused by them. It did throw me a bit when I saw Coldstone and Goliath fighting and talking, but then I remembered talk about errors and figured it out. And I've seen similar errors before- my Death of Jean DeWolff paperback had two pages in reverse order, so it jumps from Daredevil fighting a mob, to Spider-man (with a hyphen!) and Daredevil talking on a roof, to Spider-man swinging into the mob to save Daredevil. Anyway, the point is that I thought the errors were a bit confusing, but nothing so bad that I couldn't figure them out. So, 'nuff said on that issue.

Reunion was a rather down issue in a number of ways. Since it was a flashback, we already knew how things would ultimately turn out, so it didn't advance the plot much (although there were some hints about future developments). It felt more like a highlights reel than an actual complete story- the travelers had barely arrived when they were on their way out again. Still, there were certainly some good things in it:

I was a bit confused right at the beginning why Angela said Goliath was "healing." Wouldn't stone sleep cure him instantly? Was Thailog's wound that bad that it took days to recover?

I'm very amused by Thailog's emperor get-up. He's barely touched the wine, though. But I also like how Shari is pretending to be subject to him. She seems to enjoy the game of being his servant, knowing that at any moment she can switch to her master role. Also, artwise (I rarely have much to say about art), I like the very dark eyeliner Shari wears. Some people thought that was another mistake, but I have no problem with her looking different from day to day. One of the advantages of comics over cartoons- methinks Elisa's buying a whole new wardrobe.

Shari starts telling the story, but opens with the line "who can say if it be true." This raises an interesting question- how reliable is Shari as a narrator? I enjoy the device of the unreliable narrator, but I can't tell if it's being employed here. So, can you tell us: is what we see in the flashback literally what happened to the travelers, or is it a distorted version of the story told by Shari?

The laundry room arrival was rather silly, but clever at the same time. I can't decide whether I like it or not.

I love Bronx's vest.

Master Dawa's kind of fun. Far too many sage characters only speak in vague, portentous platitudes. It's nice when they know how to crack a joke or two, as in "their bodies are such lousy shots."

The action sequence in the cave is excellent, with a great sense of motion. And I can hear Frank Welker's barks in my head. And then, jalapena. This word should stay around forever, and now you don't have to worry about the art crew's objections (I've never understood what it was about that word that was so objectionable, anyway).

Goliath and Angela may not look very Yetiish, but in his white fur get-up, Coldstone actually does. The next action scene is also pretty good, though not quite up to the first.

The conversation scenes are nice, and Goliath gets his first chance to tell someone about the eggs surviving. I love his little grin. I also like Bronx asleep by the fire.

Angela's talk about Gabriel being his "biological" son was a little odd to me. I thought that once Goliath acknowledged her as his daughter, her talk of biology had ended. I assumed Gabriel's heritage would be an issue obvious to us, the viewers, but never made explicit to the characters, just like Hudson/Broadway.

So, you managed to slip a quick recap of Coldstone's situation in. Probably for the best, as Coldstone's story was always one of the more confusing elements of the series for me. I didn't figure it out until my second run with the series in college, five years after it went off the air. I also like that Coldstone is learning monastic meditation techniques, or something, to control Iago. I'm not sure how that will matter in the long run.

And then there's another great fight. Tell Purcell that he does some of the best action sequences in the book so far. I know Hedgecock's working hard, but Purcell should be on your short list of fill-ins. So far, 5 and 6 definitely have the best artwork. Unlike some, I've enjoyed almost all of the art we've seen so far, even if there've been a few problems (I didn't care for some of the goofy extras in #4, and there were a few Hedgecock panels that were ridiculously out-of-proportion). However, Karine and Purcell are the ones whose art really looks like the Gargoyles we grew up with. Anyway.

Coldstone's "neck-snapping" comment was downright disturbing. There's something you never would have pulled off on television. The funny thing is, while it does seem a bit over-the-top, it works when we realize who's really in control. Othello's trying to impersonate his evil brother, but he's a hammy actor and plays it too broadly. Maybe I'm reading too much into his few lines as "Iago," but that's what it seems to me. If only I could hear Michael Dorn do this one.

Speaking of Othello, I was impressed by his character in this issue. I've never been too fond of the guy. He strikes me as a moral coward who's willing to compromise his integrity and take the easy way out until cajoled into doing the right thing, in both "High Noon" and "Posession," and perhaps other places as well (a big part of his relationship with Desdemona seems to be that she acts as his conscience). So it was nice to see him take action immediately to protect his family, even though he surely would have preferred to return with them. Of course, it's a very status quo choice- Coldstone had already left the clan, and nothing seems to have changed in this issue. Or has it? There are some hints.

I've never heard of Shambahla. I ran across suggestion that it's another name for Shangri-La- is that right? The travelers left with apparently nothing accomplished, but Avalon did not send them back. Having them leave unconscious was probably the only solution, since they would not have gone voluntarily without him (well, Elisa might have, but Goliath can be pretty stubborn).

"A story for another night." Sounds very similar to the Weird Sisters' pronouncement. In their case, though, they were talking about themselves. Shari's story is certainly one we'd like to hear sooner or later. The comment room denizens have a great theory about her which I wish I'd thought of myself (then again, I came up with the reigning theory on Number 1's identity, so I shouldn't be too jealous). A little bit I liked was Thailog referring to Iago as his "uncle." It shows how un-gargoyle he is mentally, since any gargoyle would refer to Othello as one of his rookery fathers. And then Shari suggests that Goliath may not have failed- and Thailog freaks out. We've seen Thailog angry before, but I don't think we've ever seen him completely lose his composure like this. He seems genuinely afraid at this point. Shari's an incredibly captivating character, and I can't wait to see more of her. Her talk about "fruit" suggests something big is brewing, and the possibility that there's more going on here than meets the eye saves this issue from the doldrums of mediocrity.

Scarab returns, and Xanatos meets with Coldsteel. Wonder what that's about...

All in all, this wasn't a bad issue, but it strikes me as a bit of a dud. It was nice to fill in some gaps, but there was nothing really surprising or significant about the Himalayas adventure. However, if this pays off in the next story arc, and the pay off is good enough, I may change my tune. I wonder how this would have worked as an episode of the TV show. It would have to be framed quite a bit differently. Here, we're willing to see a sort of mundane story because we sense that it's still significant. As part of the World Tour, though, it wouldn't be very satisfying to see an episode in which nothing significant appears to take place- the gang show up, get chased away, and leave. I assume the plot would have been expanded quite a bit- maybe adding in an external threat so that there could be a sense of closure to the episode.

This issue also brings to mind two of the bigger disappointments in Gargoyles. One was the other untold World Tour story, showing how Xanatos took advantage of Goliath's absence. The other is the end of Legion. While a decent episode on the whole, Legion always feels weak to me because of its ending. The Xanatos tag was that he stole a computer virus, but compared to the stunners immediately preceding in Leader of the Pack and Metamorphosis, it's not that impressive. Even worse, though, was that there was never any follow-up to this virus that Xanatos thought was so valuable- you'd think he would have found some use for it eventually. A rare moment of waste in the Gargoyles universe. So I'm making a formal request that we find out what Xanatos used that virus for. I can think of possible uses in the next story arc, but those are ideas, so I'll keep them to myself (of course, you've already written the next story arc, but something down the road might be similar to what I'm thinking, so...). If you've already got plans, I don't want to know specifics (not that you'd give them anyway). I'm happy hanging on for the ride. Just letting you know that that's something I've always been curious about.

All in all, a decent issue, but nothing too spectacular. The weakest issue of the book so far, due to the fact that it currently seems like mostly filler. 2.5/4 stars (note that this is by Gargoyles standards- compared to other comics, it'd probably get 3 or 3.5). If it's redeemed by future issues and takes on greater significance, as I suspect it will, my opinion may improve a good bit. Thanks for listening.

Greg responds...

The M in Spider-Man is capitalized after the hyphen.

Response recorded on November 12, 2007


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