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RETORTS 2004-04 (Apr)

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Petronius the Younger writes...

Hi, I have really enjoyed your ramblings, even though I haven't posted any of mine until now. Your "That's my ramble, where's yours?" line finally brought me to write one. :)


After City of Stone, I was really looking forward to another multi-parter. It's quite amazing to me that with all the expectations, they never fail to deliver, even now.

Seeing Tom as the Guardian was quite a surprise. You almost never see characters age in cartoons. Seeing Tom go from the chubby cheeked little kid to an old man is quite a shock.

The middle age parts were excellent, as always. The transition from Wyvern to Edinburgh was very natural. It must have been the 4th or 5th time that the scenes right after the massacre. It's interesting to see it from different character's perspective each time.

The ending though was kind of a downer. I didn't like the fight between the characters too much, too cliched I thought. It seems strange that so much focus was put on Arthur, and then when he is awaken, he is just another foot soldier who fights Macbeth. Obviously Macbeth is a formidable character, but I was expecting something a bit more out of King Arthur, like taking on the archmage. Then that leaves Goliath who has to pull the eye of odin out of the archmage, which was kind of a bummer from all the focus on Archmage's powers.

The magus's death scene was really touching, one of the top moments in the show. I too wondered if he was really dead, but I figured that it was a way to leave it up in the air so as to leave for some creative wiggle room. I was very happy to read what you wrote on that subject. It put that subject to rest and was how I thought should be. Thanks.

Greg responds...

I'm glad most of it worked for you. Sorry some of it didn't.

Response recorded on April 06, 2004

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Chris Velazquez writes...

I would like to know the exact height and weight of the following characters:


Greg responds...

So would I.

Actually, I'm lying. I don't really care.

Response recorded on April 06, 2004

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Lavon Toliver writes...

I have been a "Gargoyles" fan for a Long while!
Is there chance if the gargolyes are coming back?
Is there going to be a movie about the gargolyes?
Is Goliath is goin have his own show?
If so, when are they coming back? How soon?

Greg responds...

Always a chance.
Maybe, some day.
He's already the lead in his own show.
Don't know.

Response recorded on April 06, 2004

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Congratulations, Monique!

Went to a wedding today.

My good friend Monique Beatty married Tim Eldred.

Monique, as some of you may know, was my assistant and a script coordinator during the Gargoyles years. She was literally invaluable to me then, keeping my schedule (known then as "Greg's Nefarious Plan to Take Over the World") and keeping me on track. Among other things, she offered tremendous moral support. She's now a Line Producer at Nick. Tim is a story board and comic book artist.

They are both, great, great people. And I am so happy for them.

It was also nice to see Deirdra, Shan and Kevin at the wedding.

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Arystella writes...

Dear Greg,
I'm not sure how to word this question, but have you ever heard of wyrd? Its an Old word, {Yeah, like others aren't!
:-)} But anyways it is the original spelling/meaning of "weird" sisters. . .
Just wanted to let you know.

Greg responds...

I'm aware of it, but thanks.

Response recorded on April 02, 2004

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Anonymous writes...

the magus kinda looks like puck,is it weird?

Greg responds...

I can see why you say that, but I also don't think they look THAT much alike.

Is it weird? I dunno. I guess that's subjective.

Response recorded on April 02, 2004

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jamie dayment writes...

hi plese could you tell me all the characters in scene 1 act 3 in a midsummers nights dream wrote by william shakespeare

Greg responds...

I could. I've got the play over on my bookshelf. But I figure you're better off learning how to look that up for yourself.

Response recorded on April 02, 2004

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Jumping sharks...

My brother e-mailed me this link:


so I decided to check it out for myself. Might do a couple rambles on the commentary there, but today let's just look at the vote tally as to when people think the series "Jumped the Shark" (i.e. started to suck)...

Network Switch (SYN to ABC) - 8 votes
Never Jumped - 7
The third season - 3
The Goliath Chronicles - 2
They found the Island of Gargoyles - 1
Time Slot (They moved it to the morning) - 1
Xanatos repents - 1
Gargoyle of the Week - 1
Thailog - 1

Of course, four of those categories are really one and the same. The "Network Switch (SYN to ABC)" and "Time Slot (They moved it to the morning)" was for "The third season", which was subtitled "The Goliath Chronicles". So if you add up those votes, you get a whopping (if any number out of 25 can be called whopping) 14 out of 25 votes for TGC as our shark jumping moment. Since I have to agree and since another 7 voters (bringing the total up to 21 out of 25) think that the show didn't jump at all, I'm feeling pretty good right about now.

So let me obssess about the remaining four votes.

I'll try to take them in chronological order...

One person thought we jumped the shark by introducing Thailog. I don't know what to say, except that I disagree. I think Thailog was a pretty cool addition to the series. A great villain and a complex character. I'd tend to think that the fanbase would agree.

(I know that at this time the submit function here at ASK GREG has been suspended, but I invite folks at the Station 8 Gargoyles comment room at:


to entertain this topic.)

Another viewer thought we jumped the shark when "They found the Island of Gargoyles", (i.e. Avalon, I assume). Hard to figure exactly what the person didn't like about this. Don't know if it's Avalon itself that bothered the viewer or the addition of more gargs, or Angela or the World Tour that followed. Maybe it got too fantasy. But again, I have no regrets on this score.

Our third rogue shark-sighter cites "Gargoyle of the Week" as our problem. I can only guess that this refers to the World Tour. Of course, we certainly never intro'd anything close to a gargoyle a week. We intro'd four new clans (Avalon, London, Ishimura & Mayan) over twenty-three episodes (which initially aired over something like a six month period). But maybe Gargoyle-A-Month is a more accurate criticism. Did we make a mistake saying that our sextet (plus Demona) weren't the only survivors of the gargoyle race? Maybe. It does remove some drama. But I liked adding hope into the equation for the gargoyle race. And I definitely liked how the World Tour (and not just the new clans, but especially the new clans) widened the scope of our tapestry/series. But many have disagreed.

Finally, our last shark-sighter cites "Xanatos repents". But I'm not sure that Xanatos ever really repented. He called a truce certainly, but not until the fourth to last scene of the last episode of the 2nd season. And I don't think anyone really thinks that we jumped the shark during "Hunter's Moon". So I'm going to be generous to myself and assume that it was how X was handled during TGC that this guy was voting for. (That may include my episode "The Journey", but I'll have to live with that and the notion that if people had been able to see where _I_ would have taken David in subsequent episodes, they might be less inclined to even think he repented, let alone that it caused the series to jump.)

Well, that was fun. I'll try to tackle the commentary tomorrow...

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Todd Jensen writes...

"Avalon Part Three" ramble.

I really liked this episode as well, especially with King Arthur being brought in. (And in my case, I was familiar with the "Pendragon" part of his name long before "Gargoyles" came out, and was both pleased and impressed that it was incorporated into the episode).

I may be biased (being a King Arthur fan), but I do look upon Elisa's awakening of King Arthur as one of the grand moments of her career; she actually restores to the world one of the most famous legendary heroes of all time. (One other note that occurs to me; Elisa isn't of British ancestry, which does fit in with your intention that Arthur's new destiny, after leaving Avalon, would ultimately lie outside Britain, and upon a larger stage).

The Magus might be old, but he was clearly still tough; Elisa had trouble keeping up with him all the way to the Hollow Hill.

I very much enjoyed the Magus's character development here, including his guilt over his hasty curse a thousand years before, his shouldering the responsibility for it without complaint or excuses, and his unrequited love for Princess Katharine. He really did become a sympathetic figure here.

(Incidentally, in light of your original idea of having him accompany Arthur - the Magus really does look much like the way that Merlin is often conventionally depicted in Arthurian art - except that his beard's shorter than Merlin's beard in the conventional representations of him. And, for that matter, although he doesn't leave with Arthur in the actual story, he's laid to rest on Arthur's sleeping place at the end).

I'm probably one of the extremely few "Gargoyles" fans who *didn't* think that that flashback scene with the hatchlings was taking place in the daytime. I always viewed it as being at night (it looked dark enough to me, in fact). I'd always assumed that the fans who thought that it was daytime were mentally merging it with the daytime flashback scenes where the hatchlings aren't present.

I liked the battle scene, including the choice of pairings, which struck me as appropriate ones (particularly Arthur versus Macbeth), and also the bit where the Archmage and Goliath are teleporting all about with the Phoenix Gate. (One possible nit here, though, is Princess Katharine being able to pick up so quickly on how to operate a laser cannon, given that back when she lived in the outside world, they were using bows and arrows and hadn't dreamed up even conventional fire-arms. But I think that the scene where she defeats Demona with it makes up for that nit).

The Magus's death: I agree that it's a tragic and moving moment. On the other hand, I've long felt that the fact that Goliath is able to forgive the Magus before he dies, and show him that what he'll be remembering him for is raising the hatchlings rather than cursing the clan, makes a good consolation for the old man.

I was excited to see Arthur also leaving Avalon, and hoped that we'd see more of his adventures in the series (and was right, even though it was just one episode and that spin-off never got made).

And I don't quite know what I was expecting when Tom called out at the end that "Avalon sends you where you need to me", but I enjoyed the Avalon World Tour when it came.

And thanks for the latest ramble, Greg.

Greg responds...

I kinda love going out of the three-parter on Tom's "warning". I did kind of wonder what you all made of it the first time you saw it. (Assuming you saw the eps in order and you saw Av3 before any of the world tour.)

Of course, not everyone was wild about the World Tour. I'm told that Jump the Shark lists it as a likely candidate for us, well, jumping the shark.

But I love the World Tour. And nearly ten years later, I'm even less inclined to apologize for it.

Not that you asked me too. You liked it. (Am I a little defensive on the topic?)

Response recorded on April 01, 2004

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Ancient Kaa The Souless writes...

My ramble of Avalon 2

Avalon 1-2-3 are among my best Gargoyles' episodes. However, 2 was always my favorite of the three, so I'll just talk about this one.

The exchanges between Archmage and Archmage+ were amazing. Funny too, specially:

- I could put you back where I found you. - No, no, no, no. (extra no added by me :-) )

- Are we going to take the grimoire from her now? - Weren't you listening?! (the background music really play well along with this line :-) )

- What am I supposed to do, eat it?! - You are learning.

- 900 and 75 years?! (it only takes a frown from Archmage+ to shut him up :-) )

- Then they must DIE!! - EXACLTY!! (OK I am saditic, so sue me)

David Warner stole the show. Love the new oufit of Archmage+. He also seem like he is having pointed ears.

In the early script, we now get to know the missing scenes from the Archamge flashbacks (FINALLY!). Wonder what our two Archmages would have worn in modern clothes :-)

The whole scene with the arifacts being given to Archmage was great. We also see that he isn't very polite and very rude: he just snatch the relic without saying "thanks".

My only complaint is that the assault on the castle didn't last long enough. But I still very love that episode. I'm just sorry Archamge+ be gone after ep 3. (Save for some flashbacks, Timedancer...)

Greg responds...

I'm glad you liked it. I got a lot of evil eyes over that ep.

Response recorded on April 01, 2004

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