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Time to ramble...
Xanatos again does equally well as hero and villain, as he opens the episode saving his and Fox's lives.
He's got some nice lines here too:
Another reprise of Launchpad McQuack's old: "Any landing you can walk away from..."
"At least she's not chipped."
"Demona and I need to have a little talk."
"No sense hailing a cab." Or stealing one. I'm not sure if it's clear, but we wanted to give the impression that traffic was hopelessly stalled by all the stone people behind the wheels of their cars. And that Xanatos would have to hoof it.
And then it's back to the clock tower where my favorite line is Brooklyn's as he's looking at what he thinks is a statue of Elisa:
"The nose is all wrong." Gotta love a critic.
Goliath doesn't objectively know that the statue is really Elisa, but his instincts are clearly firing up early warning signs.
Meanwhile, my daughter Erin is busy advising all of us: "They should make sure... cuz that's really her!" and "I bet they're going to Elisa's house." Which they weren't.
Originally, we had planned to (as usual) leave Hudson behind with Bronx. But we switched it to Broadway, so that Hudson could come with and reestablish his fine relationship with Robbins. I should point out that we BEGAN work on City of Stone before Lighthouse. We knew we needed a blind man for City. That blind man was then developed for Lighthouse, making for a great scene in City. Sometimes, things just seemed to work.
Brooklyn still hates Demona intensely. Forcing Goliath to compensate.
My son Ben was all nervous that "They're gonna turn to stone again." He was vague on who the "THEY" were.
Demona's reign of terror on the statues presented us with interesting S&P problems -- and some bizarre but VERY FUN solutions. Adrienne understood the necessity of having Demona blow up and/or smash a few of the stone humans. Even though the implication was death for those people. She was okay with it on the condition that we didn't spell it out, because, at worst, the death's were so fanciful, they certainly weren't imitatible. But she did want us to limit the number of deaths. So at one point she nixed the idea of blowing up yet another statue, but allowed us to blow up the shopping bags (and hand and arm) of one. This seemed less harsh to her. Of course, bloodthirsty lot that we were, we loved it. Because if you think about it, it was certainly more horrific come sunrise.
I finally saw the two statues that people thought were Brendan & Margot. Certainly, they looks like them a bit. But trust me. Two different people got destroyed. That woman was a brunette. And the guy was wearing a toupee.
At this point, Benny became as concerned as Goliath that Demona would shoot Elisa.
Then we segued into our flashback and Benny was still trying to figure out why Demona scratched Gillecomgain in the previous episode. Erin, meanwhile, wanted to know why Gille was wearing a mask.
Me, I'm still fascinated with Bodhe for some reason. I love how he talks big at first, until Mac makes it clear that he's not going to obey. Then he goes into pleading mode.
I also love the scene with Gruoch on Lunfanan Hill. Very heartbreaking and romantic. Did kinda make me wonder what would have happened if Macbeth had just said "Screw it!" and spirited Gruoch away with him. What would there lives have been like then?
The Weird Sisters are fun at the wedding. I like the line: "Certainly not our hero." It's one of those self-aware-tv-moments-that-ride-the-edge of which I'm so fond.
I also really like Duncan's scene with Macbeth after the wedding. He's such a manipulative bastard.
And now we begin to parallel similar scenes in City One. The Weird Sisters again go to Demona to get her to ally with Mac.
Demona: "Ally with a human. Never Again." Well, obviously Demona should never say never again, but in this context she's thinking about her alliance with the Captain and the tragedy that led to.
There's a nice little beat with Gruoch's rose. Gruoch seems cold to her new husband Gillecomgain. We wonder if we should feel some sympathy for a man who has married a woman who loves another. We wonder if he has feelings for her as he gently takes up the rose she was sniffing. But then he crushes it underfoot, so basically we feel okay about hating him again.
Erin asked: "Why'd he step on it?"
And I didn't want to answer, because the writers are trying to manipulate you.
Ben answererd for me: "Because he's a bad hunter." A much cleaner explanation, don't you agree?
Notice here that Mac is not yet the fighter that he someday will be.
Notice also if you watch all four parts of City of Stone together that Emma Samms who voiced Gruoch -- but had never done voice work before -- gets progressively better with every episode. She's somewhat stiff in City One. As with many live-action actors, she's unused to using her voice alone to project subtleties. She's a bit better here. But by City Four, she's rockin' the joint with some really powerful work. I can't remember when I've ever seen any performer push the learning curve that quickly. Most either get it or don't. A few of those who don't, slowly improve with practice. Emma just revved UP.
Did anyone else feel that we went to the well with that long drop from the Terrace at Castle Moray once or twice too often? Again, we were trying for parallelism, but I hope it didn't get boring.
Erin: "I like Macbeth when he was a little boy. I don't like him when he's a grown up." (I think she meant she liked the younger red-headed heroic Macbeth in general in these City flashbacks. Didn't like him as a present day villain in Enter Macbeth, etc. This actually pleases me a great deal. It's the ability to create sympathy in villains that separates Gargoyles from many of its rivals.)
I love that moment when Demona rips the mask off. Gille indicates his scars, "'Tis you're handiwork, remember?" And Demona honestly and simply answers "No." And he goes BERSERK! Bad enough she scratched him and altered the entire course of his life. But that the event was so insignificant to her that she doesn't even remember it...! Now THAT pisses him off.
Gillecomgain should have known: "Live by the drop, die by the drop." As he follows Findlaech's course to doom.
I also like the little moment o' connection between Mac, Gruoch and Demona. Demona actually says Thank You to a human.
And another wedding. Two in one episode. Bodhe introduces: "Lord and Lady Macbeth!" I wanted to get the designation 'Lady Macbeth' in here somewhere. Just to provide more obvious contrast between our version of Gruoch and Shakespeare's.
I also get a kick out of the chilling little scene back in the present with Brooklyn & Goliath. Brooklyn bringing up the "Massacre at Castle Wyvern". Fearing that Elisa could wind up a victim too. This sets Goliath off to the point where he is CLEARLY thinking that he needs to KILL Demona now. "Once and for all." And then those creepy little stone Weird Sisters. Yikes.
Then Xanatos has finally made it across town and is back in hero mode. He saves Owen. And shuts off the broadcast, clearly thinking that that will break the spell. At least, I hope that was clear. Honestly, I'm not sure if it was. I wanted the audience to think that would work. Then be surprised when it doesn't. Did that work for anyone?
The "Hunter" shows up. Demona at first recognizes only the mask. How many times must I destroy you?! she says. A hint to events in the past of both City and Hunter's Moon. But than when she sees him feeling her pain, she knows exactly who's behind that mask. I'm curious how many people picked up on that. This was the first time we showed them feeling each other's pain. The first time we had them in real proximity to each other.
Their fight is kinda cool. There's a neat moment when Macbeth is flying Demona like a kite. And he's very gutsy throughout, leaping after her. Of course, he's semi-suicidal, so it's no surprise he's fearless. But we don't know that yet.
And finally, our cliffhanger. X is so sanguine. "You want vengeance or a solution?" And we end on a surprising image: Goliath and Xanatos shaking hands. Now, it's like no big deal. They ended up teaming upfrequently. But I thought that then, it would be startling.
WHAT DID YOU ALL THINK?