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JC writes...

Hello Mr. Wiesman,

I have been reading the archives and I have a couple of questions regarding the more obscure Gaegoyle clans:

1) Youve mentioned that the Xanadu clan exists to protect the Beast lineage. My question is, are their Beasts all from Chinese stock, or have they incorporated other "breeds" (so to speak) into that gene-pool? Basically, Im asking if they all have the same basic appearance, or reflect all types of Beasts.

2) You also once said that the Lach Ness clan were aquatic in nature. Does that mean that they are truly amphibious (like frogs), or can they just hold their breath for long lengths of time (like dolphins)?

Thanks.

Greg responds...

1. Leaning toward the latter, but haven't made a final decision yet.

2. Likewise, I haven't decided, though again I lean toward the latter.

These might both be good questions to bring up at the Gargoyles Biology and Culture panel this July at CONvergence. There are always some actual biologists in the room to advise me.

Response recorded on May 21, 2014

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Lunycrys writes...

Hi Greg!!! Sorry if this has been asked before but I had to know: since aquatic gargoyles exist i.e. the Loch Ness Clan does that mean there cannot be other aquatic clans out there? And since they are aquatic clans, does that mean they are amphibious(spelling?) or what?
Many thanks and it is such an honor to be hearing from you. :)
Lunycrys

Greg responds...

I have not admittedly given too much thought to the exact bio-nature of the Loch Ness Clan.

Response recorded on October 25, 2005

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Ewan writes...

dO WE EVER SEE ANY OF THE lOCH nESS cLAN?

Greg responds...

Do we or will we?

Response recorded on March 24, 2005

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Anonymous writes...

Were there more Scottish Gargoyles then Goliath's clan out there?,

Greg responds...

Yes.

Response recorded on November 22, 2004

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Todd Jensen writes...

My thoughts on "Monsters":

I agree with you on the animation issue (although I never noticed the parallels with "Heritage" prior to your mentioning of them), but I will admit that I thought the episode a rather fun one (if not one of the greats). Part of it, I suppose, is my fondness for British settings. (In fact, I visited Loch Ness with my parents briefly as a boy, back when we lived in Britain; didn't see anything unusual in its waters, though).

I did find it appropriate that the gargoyles would encounter the Loch Ness Monster at some point. After all, the gargoyles are Scottish "monsters" - and who's the most famous monster in all of Scotland? Made the same amount of sense as Macbeth getting in earlier, and for a similar reason.

Alas for Brendan and Margot! They run into the gargoyles even while they're on vacation! (Come to think of it, Margot also pops up briefly in Paris in "Sanctuary").

Got to agree with you over Sevarius's over-the-top performance; always a lot of fun to hear.

Count me as another one of the people who mistook Nessie for Big Daddy's daughter (partly because of the Goliath-Angela parallel).

I definitely recalled Matt's answering machine scene: either the guy doesn't clear out his phone very often, or he gets a lot of calls. At least Goliath and Elisa finally get a message home via Renard in the very next episode.

Sevarius's speculations over the Loch Ness clan (more accurate than he thought, after all) certainly become even more interesting in the aftermath of the Clans Contest (and like you, I can't help but wonder now where the local gargoyles were during this episode). We also definitely find out that Angela is Goliath's daughter (although I doubt that that surprised anybody in the audience).

I wonder if that ruined castle over Sevarius's headquarters was based on the real-life Castle Urquhart, at Loch Ness. (Probably is).

And, as you pointed out, that marked the end of the Xanatos Goon Squad, except for Bruno (and I don't recall ever seeing him again, either, after this episode); although I'll admit that I never realized that they were dead at the time. If I had, no doubt it would have impacted me much the way that the destruction of the Grimorum Arcanorum did in "Avalon" - the startlement at seeing another familiar element that had been in the series from the beginning suddenly gone. (Was the blonde female member among the casualties? She was the only member besides Bruno that really came out as much of an individual, to me).

At any rate, thanks for the latest ramble, Greg.

Greg responds...

The castle is definitely based on Urquhart. (That's assuming that it flat out isn't Urquhart.)

I have more plans for Bruno.

Response recorded on July 14, 2004

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Anonymous writes...

Almost every gargoyle clan we've meet in the show or that you've us about protects something. The Guatemalan clan protects the rain forest. The Loch Ness clan protects the Loch Ness Monster, the Manhattan, London and Ishimura clan naturally protects New York City, London and Ishimura respectively. And the Avalon clan protects Avalon while the Labyrinth clan presently protect the homeless of New York.

1. So what does the New Olympus clan protect? Mount Thanatos? The whole of New Olympus? Or have they abandoned their duty much like the London clan when they lost Griff(since you did say they were isolationists)?

2.What does the Pukhan and Xanadu clans protect?

3.What exactly do New Camelot and New Wyvern clans protect?

4.What abou the Queen Florence Island Clan(after they've been freed from their stasis)?

5.What about the Notre Dame Clan?

Greg responds...

1. I think they have become too insular. It's something I would have made an issue of, given the chance.

2. Pukhan Clan is more interested in protecting their concept of justice. Xanadu Clan protects the endangered Gargoyle Beast species.

3. New Wyvern is very traditionalist. So they protect Wyvern and it's surroundings. By contrast, New Camelot is very internationalist.

4 & 5. Haven't gotten that far in my thinking yet, but at the least they'll protect the Island and Paris, respectively.

Response recorded on May 28, 2004

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matt writes...

how far is Wyvern, Scotland from Loch Ness, Scotland?
more like ten miles? twenty miles? fifty miles? or more?

Greg responds...

I can't answer this question easily. For starters, Wyvern is a fictional location on the West Coast of Scotland. So where exactly are we measuring from? Secondly, Loch Ness is about thirty miles long. So where exactly are we measuring to? And are we measuring as the crow flies or along practical routes that a car or horseman might have to take?

Nevertheless, I'll give it a shot. As long as you understand I'm not being held to this. In particular, I've done no research to back up this stab at Wyvern's location.

I'm taking out my map and I'm measuring (roughly) the distance as the Gargoyle glides between the Point of Ardnamurchan (at the western end of a western Scotish Peninsula) and Castle Urquhart (which I believe is the model for the fictional castle where Sevarius set up his operation) on Loch Ness.

I come up with approximately 83 miles.

Response recorded on May 26, 2004

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matt writes...

1. you've said that if Dark Ages is made the Wyvern Clan may have contact with the Loch Ness Clan and other clans (i'm guessing the Irish and English Clans are possible as well). my question is, does Goliath know that there was once a clan in Loch Ness (though he doesn't realize there still is)? do you think Hudson knows that there was once a gargoyle clan at Loch Ness?

2. you've said that the New Olympus was formed from gargoyle clans throughout the Mediterranean World. we can assume that gargoyles from Egypt and Greece colonized New Olympus in part, but what other clans have descendants in the New Olympus Clan?

3. care to reveal anywhere else in the world where there was at one time a gargoyle clan?

thanx alot Greg!

Greg responds...

1. It's a possibility, certainly.

2. I haven't done all the research necessary to answer this question, but Rome and Persia come to mind.

3. Everywhere or nearly.

Response recorded on September 08, 2003

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Adam Carlson writes...

How many gargoyle clans were there when the show was ended?
Do any of the other Avalon gargoyles join Angelia in the real world?

Greg responds...

1. In 1996, the following clans were extant (although some were far from healthy in numbers):

Avalon
Ishimura
Labyrinth
Loch Ness
London
Manhattan
Mayan
New Olympian
Pukhan
Xanadu

2. Eventually, others would visit. But I don't immediately see anyone else taking up permanent residence outside Avalon.

Response recorded on April 22, 2003

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Dragon7 writes...

Dear Mr. Weisman I find your posts on gargoyle physiology and culture very fascinating. Having recently read some of your earlier answers to the newly identified Loch Ness Clan a question came to my mind as to how this clan raised and cared for its offspring. It is widely known that gargoyles in the other clans in the gargoyles universe lay eggs is this also true of the Lochness Clan and if so do they put their eggs into caves until hatching as the Wyvern Clan did in generations past?

Greg responds...

Yep.

Response recorded on April 15, 2003

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Chapter XXXX: "Monsters"

Time to ramble...

I think this episode had a fun story written and edited by Cary Bates. And I know it had a great moody storyboard directed by Frank Paur. But it suffered from two major problems...

1. Repetitive elements. We had multiple story editors working on multiple episodes. I was overseeing all of them, but sometimes things did get away from me. "Monsters" has a number of elements in common with "Heritage" which had only just preceeded it in the line up. It makes "Monsters" seem a bit more tired than it really is, through no fault of Cary's. For example, we open with a Sea Monster. One of our female cast members is lost and nearly drowned. Goliath searches frantically. Etc. Even my five-year-old son Benny was convinced, "We just saw this one." It just felt very been there done that. My fault.

2. Very weak animation -- some of the weakest of the series -- removed much of the mystery and mood from the boards that Frank directed. I know we called tons of retakes on this ep, but there was a limit. Secrets were given away too early. What's a monster submarine and what's a monster is too easily discernable at the start. We were hoping for more silhouette's in that murky Loch. Throw in some really atrocious character moments (like when Angela wakes up in chains) and you've got an ep that's unimpressive at best.

And yet, there's much in this show that I really like.

It takes an important step toward evolving Angela's relationship with Goliath. Though G's not aware of it, Sevarius reveals to Angela that she is his biological daughter. Having grown up around her adoptive *HUMAN* parents, that notion of biological imperative must have seeped in. She already KNEW that Goliath was one of her ROOKERY parents. But this revelation ignites her curiousity and need. I find it interesting anyway. My eight-year-old daughter Erin was likewise fascinated with this aspect. She was anxious for Angela to tell Goliath about her discovery. Of course, Goliath knows in a 'shrug' sense. It's visually obvious to him. It just isn't programmed to be significant for him.

And if that weren't enough to make the ep worthwhile, we also get another wonderful over-the-top performance from Tim Curry as Dr. Anton Sevarius. He has a TON of great lines in this (all quotations approximate)...

"If it gets any more sacharine in there, I'll have to shove a finger down my throat."

"It must be awful to wake up in chains first thing in the morning."

"Thank heaven for little girls... and DNA markers."

"He's your very own flesh and stone."

"Enough to make my mind boggle..."

But there were other problems too. In my mind and Cary's Big Daddy and Nessie were mates (with little ones revealed at the end). But because of the name "Big Daddy" and because we were intentionally using the L.N.Monsters to parallel and comment on Goliath and Angela's father-daughter relationship, many people thought that Big Daddy was Nessie's dad. I'm not sure it matters too much. But (unintentional) confusion can't help.

ELISA

Elisa knows they haven't arrived in Manhattan because it's too quiet and because the water's too clean. Of course, Loch Ness is famous for having MURKY, MURKY water. Not that the water is "dirty" exactly, the way New York Harbor is. But it's hard to figure Elisa would think of the Loch as clean either. And I knew that. Don't know how that got by me.

But Elisa does have some fun lines here and there:

"I'm not really the adventuring type."
"It's a show... Themeparks do this five times a day."
(Yes, we weren't above giving a gentle knock to the parent company.)

(Of course, when Elisa said that last bit, Erin said, "I don't think so." Benny noticed the submarine was metal and thought it was a robot. It took him a while to get the notion that it was a ship or sub.)

LITTLE CONTINUITY TOUCHES

Elisa leaves a message on Matt's machine. But the tape is full. This was done for two reasons. Or three...
1. We felt that Elisa would and should attempt to contact someone.
2. We wanted to prolong the agony (at least in the audience's minds) as to what happened to our travelers from the point of view of those left behind.
3. We were in the middle of a tier, and couldn't guarantee (as we saw with "Kingdom" that the episode would air in order. We didn't want Elisa to successfully contact anyone, because it might screw up continuity.

Nice to see Brendan & Margot taking a little vacation on the Loch, huh?

Angela says to Nessie: "I bet you've never been this close to a real live gargoyle either." But of course Angela's wrong. One of the reasons that Nessie gets so friendly so fast with Angela is BECAUSE she recognizes her as a gargoyle and knows that gargoyles are friendly to the Monsters of the Loch.

Of course, this begs the question as to what the Loch Ness clan was doing throughout this little adventure. I don't have a grea answer -- YET -- but for now, I'm just going to fall back on the notion that they were aware that Nessie was missing, but didn't know the cause. (It is a big murky loch, after all.) And yes, I know that's a feeble explanation, but it will have to do until I figure out a better one.

The title "Monsters" is another one of my thematic one word titles. Angela hits the nail on the head when she calls Sevarius the only monster around here. It's central to the series theme. But again, maybe too obvious, contributing to the weakness of the episode.

We had some trouble with the animation of the scene where Bruno confronts Goliath and Elisa right after they escape the dungeon. It forced us to reuse Jeff Bennett's "All right." line twice in a row.

Speaking of Jeff, my wife Beth thought Bruno sounded very Jack Nicolson. I pointed out that when Bruno was created, way back in "Awakening" we asked Jeff to make him a young George C. Scott. Beth couldn't hear that at all.

Benny used to love Bruno. Not only does Bruno barely register with him now. He doesn't remember ever liking the character. Erin asked him if he remembered the Xanatos Goon Squad. He didn't respond.

Another weakness... Angela just holds her breath forever down there at the end.

And when Goliath does get there, her chains pop off too easily, begging the question why she couldn't free herself.

I know I keep talking about the ep's flaws. But like all the 66 chapters, I really am more fond of it than critical. I do love seeing Goliath launched as a living torpedo, for example. There are a bunch of little things that I like.

And heck, we killed off four more characters. Sevarius and Bruno survived. But I think we have to assume that the other four members of the Goon Squad are gone for good.

But it wasn't one of our best efforts, I'll have to admit.

Sorry 'bout that...

Anyway, that's my ramble. Where's yours?


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Anonymous writes...

Were you ever going to explore the other legends involved with Loch Ness?

Greg responds...

Eventually, and with enough time, money and episodes, we'd have covered EVERYTHING. That was the goal, anyway.

Response recorded on July 22, 2002

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Anonymous writes...

How do the Loch Ness and Pukhan gargoyles absorb sunlight when they live in caves?

Greg responds...

Perhaps they absorb thermal energy. Perhaps they don't sleep in the caves. Perhaps I should stop answering questions tonight, cuz I'm clearly in a bad mood.

Response recorded on September 11, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Why does the Loch Ness clan protect the Loch Ness monster?

Greg responds...

Wouldn't you?

Response recorded on September 11, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Care to explain why the gargoyles in the British isles are so different since in London we have animal headed ways, in Loch Ness aquatic gargoyles and in wyvern the generic ishimura/guatemala kind?

Greg responds...

'Generic ishimura/guatemala kind', huh? Don't agree with that.

But no, I don't currently care to explain it.

Response recorded on September 11, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

When did you decide there were gargoyles living in New Olympus and Loch Ness?
When did you decide there were gargoyles in Xanadu and Pukhan?
When did you decide that there was going to be a gargoyle clan in New Camelot?
When did you decide that Paris, Queen Florence Island and Wyvern were the sites of future clans?

Greg responds...

Years ago. By 1996 at the latest.

Years ago. By 1995 at the latest.

Years ago. By 1996 at the latest.

Years ago. By 1996 at the latest.

Response recorded on September 11, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

We now know what the gargoyles in the the Loch Ness and Chinese clans look like care to tell us what the gargoyles in the Korean and New Olympus clans look like?

Greg responds...

Large chipmunks.

And by the way, you don't know what you think you know. You just have a better idea.

Response recorded on September 06, 2001

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matt writes...

before he caught Angela, had Sevarius found any proof to support his theory of a garg clan living in Loch Ness?
if yes, what did he find?

Greg responds...

No. Her presence generated that theory, as I recall.

Response recorded on September 06, 2001

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matt writes...

1. in 1996, does the Loch Ness clan use names?

2. does the New Olympus clan?

3. does the Pukhan clan?

4. does the Xanadu clan?

Greg responds...

I have intentionally not made decisions about this at this time.

Response recorded on August 30, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

What legends have the Loch Ness clan inspired since I don't recall any creatures from legends and myths that have manta ray fins?

Greg responds...

not going into that now

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Are there aquatic gargoyle beasts?

Greg responds...

define aquatic...

Response recorded on August 15, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Did the gargoyles contributed to the mermaid legends considering that there are actually amphibious gargoyles?

Greg responds...

There are no literally amphibious gargoyles. But in answer to your question, maybe.

Response recorded on August 14, 2001

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matt writes...

in the prize you sent to me you said that the "nearly amphibious clan" has lower bodies that "are positively dolphin-esque." i'm not revealing what clan that is cuz i don't want to reveal all the information in the prize too fast (if at all) but i'm sure you know what clan i'm talking about. anyway, are these lower bodies like one appendage like Zafiro's snake-like lower body or are they two appendages ending in dolphin-like fins, more like finned legs? if it is just one appendage how do they walk?

can they still glide even though their wings "have adapted into large manta-like fins" or are they strictly land and water gargs?

Greg responds...

I never said they could walk. Never said they couldn't either. Still not.

And I'm not simply being cagey to amuse myself this time. The truth is that I'm not an artist and I wouldn't want to bind whatever artist ultimately has to design these things in advance. Like to see what he or she comes up with before I make up my mind.

Response recorded on August 14, 2001

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zakhur writes...

Hi Greg, If Dark Ages ever goes through, would there be any type of relationship between different clans, for example would the Wyvern Clan know the existence or be in contact with the Loch Ness clan?

Greg responds...

Yes, eventually. And other clans too. Clans that didn't survive into our century.

Response recorded on July 11, 2001

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matt writes...

ok, obviously Goliath and company don't yet know about the Loch Ness clan (or do they?) but, does the Loch Ness clan know about Goliath and co. and their visit to Loch Ness?

Greg responds...

I don't think so. They weren't there very long.

Response recorded on July 09, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

3.How are they connected to the monster? Is it symbiotic relationship?

Greg responds...

They are protectors. (We're still talking about the Loch Ness clan, right?)

Response recorded on June 29, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

1.Do the gargoyles in Loch Ness look scottish like our protagonists?
2.Where do they live in Loch Ness?

Greg responds...

1. When?
2. Largely in caves.

Response recorded on June 29, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

1.What peculiar features do the gargoyles in New Olympus have? By peculiar I mean by such features as the London clan with its animal heads and feathery wings and the Guatemalan clan with Zafiro and his more serpentine features.
2.What peculiar features do the gargoyles in Pukhan have?
3.What peculiar features do hte gargoyles in Xanadu have?
4.Do the gargoyles in Loch Ness have any peculiar features?

Greg responds...

1. I'm not going to character design them here in writing.

2. Ditto.

3. Ditto.

4. I suppose.

Response recorded on June 29, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Did gargoyles originate from Asia? Afterall half of the eight clans originated there and in east Asia there is about three clans presently living there meaning that there might have been a large abundance of gargoyles clans living there and also the people in Ishimura don't fear the gargoyles meaning that gargoyles must have lived there quite along time for the humans to get use to them.

Greg responds...

I'm not saying at this time. But in any case, you're logic above doesn't wash.

The survival of three clans in Asia hardly proves anything, as each clan survived for very specific reasons. And every one of the seven old clans have been in place for centuries. And at one point or another, all got along with humans. The Ishimurans managed to maintain the relationship, but it hardly suggests or guarantees a geographic origin in Japan.

After all, two clans also survived in Great Britain -- a much smaller area than all of Asia -- so by your logic, we might assume that Gargoyles originated there.

But I'm not confirming any of it. Asia, Britain or somewhere else? I'm not saying now.

Response recorded on June 10, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Where in Loch Ness does the Loch Ness Clan live?
Did the Loch Ness monster have any involvement in the survival of the clan?

Greg responds...

The fate of the clan and the monster are intertwined.

Response recorded on April 09, 2001