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RETORTS 2004-02 (Feb)

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Anonymous writes...

1.Are Thor's sons alive? I mean they were said to survive ragnorak.
2.How about Vidar and Vali?
3.What about Odin's wife? Is she alive?

Greg responds...

I'm not going to start rattling off a laundry list of Norse Gods and figures.

I have basic ideas about how Norse mythology fits into the Gargoyles Universe, but I won't pretend I've yet had the opportunity (or need) to go through each and every "character" and figure out where he or she or it is currently hanging.

Response recorded on February 23, 2004

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Wanna hear about my day?

Keep in mind I usually go to bed at about 2am. Last night/this morning was no exception. I had to set the alarm for 4:30am in order to get to the airport and get through security (which is ever-mutating and unpredictable) in time to catch my flight outa this burg.

Did I mention that today is Friday the 13th?

I'm not usually superstitious about Friday the 13ths, because my wife was born on a Friday the 13th, so I kinda consider it a lucky day for me.

But my flight was cancelled. Not delayed. Cancelled. Some equipment malfunction and no back-up plane to take it's place. The current plan is to try again tomorrow. Wish me luck.

So anyway, came home and we decided to go to the movies: "MIRACLE".

Many of you are too young, but many of you are old enough to remember the 1980 Winter Olympics and the "Miracle on Ice" U.S. victory over the unbeatable Soviet Union team. I was 16 and saw the game on ABC. My father had also only recently bought our first VCR, and we actually have the game on tape.

This movie brought back SO many memories. It is incredibly well-made, and Kurt Russell is amazing in it. The truly phenomenal thing about the film is that I knew exactly how it was going to end, but I was nevertheless on the edge of my seat the entire time. Not as seat-edgy as I was 24 years ago, of course, when I DIDN'T know the outcome, but still...

I recommend this film to anyone, whether or not they are interested in hockey.

Meanwhile, I have a headache and am, for obvious reasons, quite tired. So if I start to ramble, well...

Last week I had three celebrity sightings over a three day period.

Saw what's-his-name (I'm blanking out) the Quantum Leap guy who plays Jonathan Archer on Star Trek Enterprise at the Yellow Balloon, which is a kid's haircutting place. I was there with my two kids. He was there with his two sons. (Or at least I assume they were his sons.)

Later that afternoon, I saw Nancy Travis from "Becker". I was at a bowling alley with my two kids. She was at the alley with her son. (At least I assume it was her son. Maybe she traded kids with Archer for the day.)

Two days later, I saw Melissa "Laura Ingalls" Gilbert at Jamba Juice. She's currently the president of the Screen Actors Guild. She's about my age. She ordered a smoothie. The Jamba guy asked her what size, and I wanted to say "Give her a half-pint." But I figured she didn't need that joke from me. And it wasn't that funny anyway. My kids weren't there. Neither were hers or Archer's.

Disney. I probably shouldn't comment on this AT ALL.

I'm afraid I'm not one of the big Eisner-bashers. I worked for him during the Eisner/Katzenberg team-up years. And I'm not saying it was a piece of cake, but I had to pitch to the man once every six months, and I have no complaints about that era. He bought Gargoyles afterall. Course, I had to pitch it to him three times, but he still let us make the show. And for me personally, things got worse when Eisner STOPPED making the final decisions about which shows Disney TV Animation should make. Back then, when he gave the green light, other divisions either got on board or got out of the way. Now, all decisions are made by committee. I don't envy TVA's current execs and creative types. It's much harder to get a green light. And much harder to get a show made. The buck of course ultimately stops with Eisner -- even for this new way of operating, but people bitch about his micro-managing. And he never did that to us. But his complete removal from our process created a system which I think is arguably much worse.

In a war between Eisner and Roy Disney, it's hard not to want to side with the guy who literally carries the Disney name. But I have to admit that my Disney concerns are more parochial. The division I'm still (after all these years) most interested in is the TV Animation Division that (I like to think) I helped build with guys like Gary Krisel, Bruce Cranston, Jymn Magon, Tad Stones, Karl Geurs, Alan Zaslove, Tom Ruzicka, Michael Webster, etc. And frankly, I just don't know what Roy thinks of our old stuff. I know that back in the day, he WOULDN'T let us use characters like Mickey, Donald, Goofy, etc. He didn't think we could do them justice, I guess. He didn't stand in the way of a show like Gargoyles, but I never once heard an attaboy from him. And I did from Eisner.

Does that mean anything ten years later. Probably not. But it makes the whole sitch kinda gray and murky for me loyalty -wise.

But in a war between Eisner and Comcast? Well, I have no idea what would truly be best for the company, but it would be hard for me to see Disney lose it's independence and become merely a subsidiary of a larger conglomerate... and frankly aren't these conglomerates LARGE A DAMN NUFF ALREADY?

I don't have the answers to any of this.

Disney vs. Pixar. Or more accurately Eisner vs. Jobs. Again, hard not to want to side with Jobs, but I've been reading the Business sections on this, and Jobs seems to have made the deal impossible to make financially. Now the reason he may have done this may be because Eisner pissed him off beyond the ken, I have no idea, but there was no way anyone acting in Disney's fiduciary interest would give up 50% share of two Pixar movies in exchange for an on-going relationship with Pixar that would only have amounted to fixed Distribution fees. That just doesn't make financial sense to me as a Disney *but not a Pixar* stock holder.

I'm tired and murky. And you know what, I didn't see Brother Bear, but my kids liked it. And I LIKED TREASURE PLANET!!! Quite a bit, actually. So I wish people would stop knocking the movie. I think Disney botched the marketing on it and then sabotaged the thing by writing it off after one weekend before word-of-mouth even had a chance to help them off.

I'm bummed that Disney dismantled it's Tokyo Animation division. For personal reasons, that bums me out more than what they did in Florida and even to their Burbank Features staff. But it's all a bad sign.

Just depressing.

I'm not even coherent now, am I ?

I'll stop rambling and try to answer a couple questions.

See you next week ... unless the plane doesn't take off again tomorrow.

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Anonymous writes...

Did Odin's two brothers Vili and Ve exist in the gargoyle universe? If so are they alive?

Greg responds...

I'm tired, so I'm going to fall back on...

"All things are true."

Response recorded on February 13, 2004

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Anonymous writes...

In norse mythology, the gods had to eat the apples of idun to retain their youth so mind explaining how it came about in context to the fact that the norse gods are beings of magic that can control their age.

Greg responds...

Yeah. I mind.

Response recorded on February 13, 2004

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Anonymous writes...

Do Titania and Oberon's two children in any of the traditional stories about the fay?

Greg responds...

It depends what you consider fay-canon, I guess.

Response recorded on February 13, 2004

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Heading out of town...

I'll be out of town tomorrow and all next week.

No internet access while I'm gone, so I'll be back here at ASK GREG on 2/23/04.

Have a great Valentine's Day,


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Todd Jensen writes...

I know that you don't like answering "Goliath Chronicles"-related questions, but this is something that's been puzzling me for some time, and I was hoping that you might be able to throw some light on the subject.

I was recalling your mention of how the production team for "The Goliath Chronicles" originally wanted to end the series with the clan and Elisa simply running away from New York and scattering, though you fortunately talked them out of it. I'm still grateful that you did so, but what really puzzles me is why they wanted to end it that way in the first place.

Now, a lot of the changes that the production team made do have a certain explicability about them, when you consider that the bulk of them were still new to "Gargoyles" and not very familiar with it (and didn't have enough time to become familiar with it). But that "original ending" didn't. Because, even if I wasn't familiar with the first two seasons, I'd still have considered a bad ending, simply because it had the protagonists just give up and run away instead of persevering. After spending the entire season attempting to make peace with the humans and solve the "racial hatred" problem, they just give up trying and run away in defeat. That would certainly be dramatically unsatisfying, even anticlimactic.

So what I'm wondering is: did the new production team ever tell you why they wanted to end "The Goliath Chronicles" that way, when you found out about their plan? Because that original ending certainly didn't make sense to me.

Greg responds...

I think they simply had a notion to bring the series to a definitive end (without literally killing everyone off). Why they would want to do that, I'm not sure. But that was the sense I had.

Response recorded on February 12, 2004

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Emma Rooney writes...

Where do you get all the information about Gargoyles from, without calling/visiting the sculptor?

Greg responds...

The sculptor?

Mostly, I make it up. Or rather, I made it up some time ago and I either type it up from memory or I refer to my old notes.

Or maybe, as I've suggested before, I'm just psychically tapping into the Gargoyles Universe -- if that doesn't sound TOO pretentious.

Response recorded on February 12, 2004

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jamie writes...

what are the roles of puck and oberon in a midsummers night dream

Greg responds...

In the Shakespeare play, Oberon is King of the Fairies and Puck is his servant.

Response recorded on February 12, 2004

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Mary Mack writes...

Completely out of left feild...

I've heard you worked on Darkwing Duck, and you've said many times that Thailog's coloring was in part based on Negaduck's costume. Now, I'm likely the only gargfan who has ever dressed up as Darkwing Duck for Halloween(in the eighth grade, btw, and I'm a girl), so I hope a few off topic (well, off gargoyle) questions won't bug you too much.

What did you do while working on Darkwing? Do you have any standout memories from that show? Or any favorite characters? I'm guessing you wrote-- which episodes did you work on?

Thanks for reading! I wish I were going to the Gathering this year, but I'm using my savings to start my own business instead-- that way I'll be able to make it to G2K3 in New York without emptying my penny jar. The L.A. con ROCKED, and I regret missing out this year. My siblings, however, are going, and have been instructed to videotape everything for me. (So if anyone sees Blondewookiee or The Souldier without a camera, remind them I'm pining away at home!)

And in the spirit of guessing when you'll read this... Happy New Year! (Am I right?)

Greg responds...

Nope. Again, closer to Valentine's day -- plus a year.

Hope to see you at the Montreal Gathering this summer ('04).

I helped Tad Stones develop Darkwing Duck, helped him staff up his writing staff and gave story notes on episodes. I was an executive at that time. I didn't write any episodes.

But did I really say that Thailog was based on Negaduck's coloring? Cuz I don't recall saying that or that being the case. Maybe someone else made the connection?

Thailog's coloring was actually more inspired by the Fantastic Four's costume change as perpetrated by John Byrne in the Eighties.

Response recorded on February 12, 2004

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