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RIPOSTES 2006-09 (Sep)

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Ryan writes...

In response to a question Todd Jensen asked in July of 2003 that you responded to December 14 of 2004, about the spell of the Magus being broken when the castle rose above the clouds... it seemed to me that the only way this would make sense is if it WAS in fact necessary for the gargoyles to be in the castle when it was above the clouds for the spell to break. Maybe the terms of the spell were something to this effect, implying that the gargoyles home had to rise above the clouds? and in order for it to be considered their home they've got to be there? I mean, otherwise, seems pretty arbitrary just to include a clause about some random castle in the Grimmorum.
If the spell would be broken when the castle rose above the clouds no matter where the gargoyles were in relation to it, this creates a number of problems. a) assuming that Xanatos did not somehow magically assemble the entire Caslte Wyvern atop the world's tallest building in a single afternoon, wouldn't they have woken up at some point during the construction? b) if you're going to say, "well no, the entire castle had to be assembled for the spell to be broken"... I say to that.. what constitutes the "entire" castle? It also seems entirely implausible that they would be able to assemble the whole thing exactly brick for brick... probably some got worn away, stolen or whatever over 1000 years or so. and the caslte isn't a perfect replica anyway unless of course Prince Malcolm installed the elevators and the secret motorized compartments for storing laser guns back in 994 AD.

At any rate, it only really makes sense if somehow there was in fact some truth to Xanatos' lie, and that the gargoyles DID in fact need to be sitting on top of Castle Wyvern for the spell to break. Maybe after being frozen for so long they're considered part of the arhitecture.

Greg responds...

I'm sorry, what's the bone of contention here?

Response recorded on September 28, 2006

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Jeffery writes...

I have, and love, the Gargoyles Season 1. I got it the day it came out! (Actually, 3 days before it came out, I snuck it out of the store where I work and paid for it on release day.) It's just glorious. The care was put into this that made the show so great in the first place. I love the commentary, I only wish there were 5 times more. This site provides the best commentary of all, but to have Greg's rants right over the scenes grounds the observations very well. I've been watching these with my wife and it's like torture. Even the smallest things have a deeper meaning and greater significance (see that boy Tom, he's not just a throwaway character, he'll be back later; that's not the last we'll see of Hakon; you'll never believe what becomes of Jackal; and Owen...my Lord!) and I want to connect all the dots, but it would be cruel to blow the surprise. What would be even crueler is if we never got a chance to share the surprises, so I'll get down on my knees now and beg Disney to put together Season 2. And don't worry, my money will be where my mouth is. Such beautiful storytelling shouldn't be buried in a vault. Such wonderful wisdom should be allowed to touch people. I had a woman today in the book store where I work ask for a copy of the Jeffrey Robbins quotation on books I have posted: "The written word is all that stands between memory and oblivion. Without books as our anchors, we are cast adrift, neither teaching nor learning. They are windows on the past, mirrors on the present, and prisms reflecting all possible futures. Books are lighthouses erected in the dark sea of time."


Greg responds...

It's cool you posted that. I can't remember if it was Lydia or Brynne who came up with that (or both). It's pretty keen, huh?

Response recorded on September 28, 2006

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Siren writes...

My DVD Review

First let me tell you of my "fun" search for the DVD. I had pre-ordered it through my local Blockbuster 2 weeks ahead of release date. All seemed well enough. I went there December 7th and they couldn't find my order, my form, nothing. And they weren't even selling it on the shelf. I'd have to wait for another 2 weeks to get it. So I rushed over to my Wal-Mart. They didn't have it either. It was 2 days later before I got a chance to go to Daytona. Circuit City didn't have it. But Best Buy did. One last copy. Then 2 days later, Wal-Mart in my town got about 20 copies. Frustration!

Anyways, onto the review...

I had seen the coverart online and loved it from the moment I saw it. I was suprised Disney didn't print their name on the front cover though. I liked how the gold banners pointed out it's anniversary and it was 2-discs. Which is often an eye catcher. And the cover itself is beautifu;. The purple-gray Goliath was great. Unlike the VHS Heroes Awaken cover, this DVD cover did not soften the look of the show. The VHS cover could have been decieving to some who figured it for a light-hearted children's show. This cover respected the show. The back cover too was nice. I was expecting screenshots of the show, but it was respectful in a way. And it listed the bonus features, critic acclaim, and a little summary. Very nice.
I liked the insert, using the old pictures from The Hunted and Force of Goliath VHS. And it fit well with the cover art. The DVD discs themselves were all nice. And nice to have the episodes listed straight on the discs.
Pop in the DVDs, skip the previews, and go right to some great menus. Again, respectful of the series. They looked great. And the sound was perfect too. I was shocked frankly at the menus. Most menus don't jump out at me, I really don't care to look at them. But these were perfect and eye catching. I also like the moments when you choose and you get a little bit of different characters. The video itself for each episode was crisp and beautiful. Better then I ever saw on TV even. The sound was great as well. It was wonderful to have each episode uncut. Disney had originally cut the egg scenes out of the Heroes Awaken VHS, because they never planned to release season 2. Seeing the egg scenes again, gives me hope that they will. Even for those who never saw the series before have to wonder about the eggs. Even though Xanatos said they were gone. He lied a lot afterall, so it's only natural to think he lied about the eggs. It just gives me a lot of hope since they included stuff that would come out later in the series, perhaps they may just bring season 2 out.
I LOVED the Gathering feature. That was so well done. The interviews intercut with the show were excellent. And again, respectful of the series. They taped a lot of stuff. They included so much. It was great! I wasn't expecting them to go that far with it.
Greg's pitch was also fun. Nice to see the history some more. And be refreshed on stuff I had forgotten. I also never saw some of that concept art. Very interesting and neat!
Commentary was great! Most of the stuff I knew, but it was nice to hear them talk about it again.
All in all, one of the best, if not THE best DVDs I ever have owned. I plan to buy more copies for Christmas gifts and to donate to local organizations. :)

Greg responds...

Thanks, Siren. I'm glad you liked it and that you went to so much trouble to get it. It is frustrating how hard it can be to find the disks.

Response recorded on September 27, 2006

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Phoenician writes...

Glad to see that we can post again . . . I got the DVD on Tuesday Premire!!!!

I was so happy!

Went over to Best Buy to buy it. Turns out, my little brother, 10 years old, today, was the won to find it. They were in a box somewhere in the 'TV Shows on DVD' aisle.

We politely asked a worker there to properly display the boxed set in all it's glory. Unfortunatley, I don't know if they ever did. :I

I read the back cover for the first time. It said it all, surprisingly. "The victems of Human betrayal" Humans? Betraying Gargoyles? To the unwise ear, that sounds ridiculous, and that those who read it must surely see how could perfect humans do evil to 'monsters.'

Hey, that's just who I am.

I saw the commentary in the Pilot episodes. (Isn't cool that "Gargoyles" has more than one pilot episode?) I loved how you (as in Greg, Frank, and Keith) mentioned every little thin we loved about the show, and the quirks that cam ealong with it. "Bronx kicks A**, or tail, as the case is!"

Loved it.

I also never truly realized the TRUE signifigance of Goliath asking to join the others in stone sleep. I never knew that he meant to commit suicide, but now that makes it all the more meaningful. It also reminds me of the Demona's anguish when she sees Goliath that way in City of Stone Part I, where she cries and kisses Goliath, not even trying to find a way to wake him.

Sad indeed.

I also loved the dog joke. Once an actor, now on the streets . . . cliche', huh?

I am glad that Carl Johnson also got the recongition he deserves. I mean, hard not to, right? Everytime the comentary began, you gave praise to the man who came up with that "BUMMMMM!! BUMMMMM!! BA BU BU BUM BUMMM BA BA BUMMM!! Epic indeed.

But it was truly a rewarding thing to see the show on DVD at last.

"I always survive" -- Demona, "Temptation" That is how this fandom is. No matter how hard we hit the ground, we always come back alive!


Onward to Season II !!!!!!

Greg responds...

We do indeed live again!

And thanks for mentioning Carl and his amazing score!

Response recorded on September 27, 2006

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Arazia writes...

DVD Review

My first reaction to the little box from amazon.com arriving was a childish giddiness of having some great prize finally in my grabby little hands. My first disappointment was opening the container up and seeing that the first disk had come loose either in shipping or sometime prior and had been rattling around inside. On closer inspection of the case itself, I'm a bit disappointed in the construction of it, as it is very easy for the discs to slide loose and get damaged. Luckily for me, there wasn't any trouble with it, even if the first disc did get a few scratches.

The gathering footage was a great addition, and really interesting for someone like myself who has never gone. Of course, I went through the special features first, and then went back and re-watched the entire show. It probably would have been better to have some chapter breaks within the episodes, as I had to fast forward through the intro each time. I did encounter a technical glitch of some sort while playing the DVD on my laptop. There was quite a bit of jumpiness to the opening of the DVD, but a good cleaning of it seemed to fix it fine. Perhaps a balance issue?

Away from the more technical aspects, Gargoyles was very close to what I remembered of it. Seeing it again was very much like seeing it for the first time. With the DVD quality and my laptop, I was able to see a lot more details, especially differences between various animation companies that did different episodes. The sound was amazing, and I was able to pick up on a lot of little sounds that I missed as a child.

Overall, I'm very happy with the DVD, although not so happy with the quality of the discs or their packaging.

Greg responds...

Sorry about the technical problems. I haven't had any of those problems with my copy, but...

The sound work is great, isn't it? We used a number of different animation studios on the series, with differing levels of quality, but we always used Advantage Audio on the sound, and the folks there -- particularly Music Editor Marc Perlman, Sound Effects Editor Paca Thomas and mixers Bill, Jim, Melissa and Ray -- all did amazing work, which I'm glad the DVD brings out.

Response recorded on September 27, 2006

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Audra writes...

Gargoyles DVD Review

Hi there Greg,
I read that you wanted DVD reviews for the new Gargoyles DVD… So here goes…

I have been waiting a very long time for Gargoyles to be released on DVD. I am very excited and hope that this DVD will sell well. I wish Disney would of advertised this DVD more though… Maybe some TV commercials? I have met people who love Gargoyles, but don't keep up with the Gargoyles news on the internet, and they would of have had no idea it is on DVD now without me telling them.

This DVD is awesome though, thank you Disney for releasing it. The quality is great, and I love the digital surround sound. I never heard Gargoyles sound so well. And it's great to have some bonus features. I really like the audio commentary Greg. And the DVD is nicely made… I really like the animated menu, and when you go to certain things on the DVD how it shows the Gargoyles doing something cool, like growling, hissing, etc. All the episodes are unedited… What more could a fan ask for? I even got my friend to buy a copy, and he has never seen even one episode before! I told him about this show, why I loved it so much and what made it so great to me. I knew he would like it. And after watching the DVD, he loves the show. He asked me if I wanted to go to the Gathering with him, and I am so excited! I have been wanting to go to a Gargoyle Gathering for years, but no one ever wanted to go with me. There are so many fans out there that haven't been able to go to a Gathering. I have been spreading the word for the DVD… I at least got one friend to buy a copy who never saw the show before then, and I turned him into a fan. I hope Disney releases the second season on DVD, I really think the second season only gets better. Greg, I know you have heard this a thousand times, but there has never been another show like this to me… And I really do miss it. I miss seeing new episodes, new stories, to continue this wonderful series.

I am a 19 year old girl, I have been a fan since 1995 or 1996 I believe. (No unfortunately I didn't become a fan right at the beginning) This has been my favorite show since then, and I really don't think any show will replace it, ever. My friend that bought a DVD really wants to see the second season now… I hope that the second season will be released on DVD! Greg… You don't know me, I only posted a few times at "Ask Greg" over the years, but this upcoming summer you will probably get at least two more people coming to the Gathering. (My friend and I) What more can I say, this DVD is awesome and I am so happy it is finally here. I look forward to season two on DVD, and hopefully more! You have a great show here Disney, don't stop now!

Greg responds...

So Audra, did you make it to the Gathering?

Response recorded on September 26, 2006

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Jordan Cooper writes...

Greg asked to post DVD reviews here, so that's what this is --

I've never posted to Ask Greg before (any questions I might have had about the series were very much answered, and I couldn't think of any more), but I've been reading it consistently for maybe 2 years now!

I watched all the extra features. I spread out the 5 commentaries over 5 nights so that I could make it last. Sigh, now it's over.

I wish there were more commentaries. They get so addictive, and I didn't want them to end. They were VERY very good commentaries. Non stop talking, obviously you (Greg) has a LOT to say about the show (obviously), and there were no long dead spots like in so many other commentaries I own. It was inspiring for you to sound so excited talking about the show, none of the spark has gone down at all. It was also just very funny to hear Keith David on the commentaries. It wasn't interesting or informative, just kind of funny.

The pitch to Disney is an incredible thing to have on the DVD, and way more than I was expecting. It was adorable to hear you describing the show and the characters. I don't mean adorable in a bad way, it was just really sweet, like someone telling a children's story at bedtime or something. Except with more explosions and stuff.

The feature about The Gathering was fun and interesting, though I felt weird watching it. Maybe cause I'm not ULTRA-Obsessed with the show (just normal obsessed) enough to wear costumes and stuff (I wanted to go to the Gathering in NYC but did not have the money). It was nice to see. I would have preferred to see more stuff with you/Greg at the Gathering and I was also hoping to catch some of those inside things that are Gathering-only, oh well. BUT all in all it was a good way to let people (and Disney!) know how much the show means to a lot of people.

I'm so glad to have all these episodes on DVD. And I WANT MORE!!! MOOOORE!!! Season 2 will be like a million discs but I WANT IT! And more commentaries!

Jordan Cooper

Greg responds...

Hope you found Season Two, Volume One, Jordan.

Response recorded on September 26, 2006

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Ryan writes...

My DVD Review.

I've already posted several thoughts I had on the DVD so I'll be brief here. Decent transfer. Picture not perfect but it looks good enough even blown up on my 103" screen so that's good news. Sounds much, much better than my copy-of-a-copy-from-cable VHS versions, another plus. Commentary was cool but it sounded like you still had stuff left to say even after five episodes.. so why not extend it out to cover the whole series, maybe even bring in some other people on the creative team or some other voice talent on different episodes and have them guest comment like Keith did. A lot of commentary tracks on movies or TV series run out of steam after the first 45 minutes or so and then listening to the rest becomes repetitive and boring but it sounded like you could have kept going so why stop? Extras were alright, I already mentioned the bad flashbacks the Gathering footage gave me, the original show pitch was interesting to see, wish that there was more stuff like that but I realize there may not be more stuff like that. If Disney gets you more involved on the next DVD maybe you can put in some more extras like the Bad Guys thing that you did at the Gathering or whatever else you can come up with to help expand and flesh out either the genesis of the show or the unrealized portion of your Master Plan. Chapter breaks would have been really nice. More extras would have been nice. Better packaging would be nice. "SEASON 2 COMING SOON!" in big bold letters on the back of the box would have been nice. But ultimately I'm just happy that it is out and I own a copy... Season 3 was terrible, season 2 had some great shows but was at times hit-and-miss and the world tour was boring.... but season 1 is solid gold and I loved every minute of this DVD.

Greg responds...

I would have loved to have done more commentaries and brought in more of the cast and crew to do it. But BVHE only budgeted (originally) for two episodes worth of commentary. (And that's just the production cost -- all of commenTATORS were commenTATING for free.) I convinced them to do five episodes worth to cover the entire pilot, but I could not convince them to do even one more ep, let alone all thirteen.

Response recorded on September 25, 2006

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Luke Perry writes...

what is with people that like Buffy so much? Is the show really that great if you watch it all the way through? Every individual episode that I've seen has been, on its own, just plain terrible. Cheesiness abounds, bad jokes, very poorly coregraphed action sequences with a very unconvincing lead- both in action sequences and regular acting but especially in action sequences, vampires that aren't scary or cool or intimidating or in any way interesting who die in seconds to some waifish looking little high school brat (c'mon guys... Paul "Pee Wee Herman" Reubens in the original more-appropriately-titled-because-it-was-a-comedy movie was more threatening than some of these throw-aways), corny special effects, oh, and John Ritter as an evil robot. What is there to like here, seriously? You're obviously a huge fan, Greg, as your geekily obsessive Buffy character lists prove. Maybe you can shed some light.

To Buffy's credit, I haven't seen any episodes that were as bad as some from The Goliath Chronicles (A Bronx Tale, the one with the cloned clan and little Anton- stupid idea to begin with made worse in the hands of and inept creative team, the EGON PAX!!! episode, et cetera)... and a few of the Buffy episodes I've seen, though not many, have been better than some of the bad episodes of Gargoyles season 2 (most of the later Dracon episodes (Turf, Protection/Jalapena!), anything with Anton Sevarius in it (Monsters, Metamorphosis), and the weaker eps on the world tour (Easter Island, New Olympians, some of the ones already mentioned) If you're still not familiar at all with the Goliath Chronicles as I know you've previously claimed in Ask Greg you out to at least check out A Bronx Tale and the Egon Pax one... I forget what that episode was called... it had the Illuminati in it. They are just really, really, really hilariously bad. Mind-bogglingly bad. Funny, funny stuff... but sad at the same time. If it makes you laugh and cry that's supposed to be a good thing though, right?

Greg responds...

I've said many times that I've seen every Goliath Chronicles episode (with the exception of "The Journey," which I've seen many times) exactly once. Those last twelve didn't make me laugh or cry. Just cringe.

As for the Garg Season Two episodes you don't like... well, we just disagree. They're not all perfect, of course. But I like them all.

But as for Buffy -- Dude, I don't know what to tell you. The series kicks ass. Everything that you criticize, is actually brilliant. The acting, the concept, the themes, the effects (most of them anyway), the vampires (most of them anyway), the fight choreography, etc. ROCKS! Is it all perfect? No, but what is?

Watching all the Buffy and Angel episodes on DVD has been great. The arcs are amazing, generally. And as for individual episodes, it could be argued -- particularly in later seasons -- that they hold up even better in a vaccuum, than they do as part of the arc.

But look, you don't have to agree. I mean, obviously, you don't agree. People have different tastes. But personally, Joss' TV work on Buffy, Angel and Firefly is, I think, some of the best in the business. And I like to think I have fairly high standards.

Response recorded on September 25, 2006

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Chad writes...

My DVD Review

Someone must have taken your advice, Greg, because a friend of mine found out the DVD was being released 2 weeks ago and told me, remembering that I was a fan of the show 10 years ago. Of course, I was thrilled. I remember it so fondly, I was excited to know there would be a DVD released.

I've got to say, I love this thing like the child I never had. After watching, now with the seasoned eyes of an adult, I can say it is easily the finest animated series ever aired on American Television. I'm now doing my diligence and spreading the word. And now that I've found this site, I'll be spending some terribly valubale time reacquainting myself with this series I've fallen in love with...all over again.

The DVD is beautiful, a vibrant transfer with crystal clear sound and fantastic menus. My only complaint is the lack of chapter breaks within the episodes, which does become a bit of an annoyance. I hope they fix that on Season 2. Which, of course, reminds me. I hope we SEE Season 2. I'm trying to spread the word on this DVD set, which brings me to my second complaint.

Why are WE the only ones spreading the word? I see absolutely NO marketing support for this DVD. Family Guy and 24 didn't become instant successes because Fox didn't support them!! Gargoyles isn't even LISTED as a new release on the front page of Disney's DVD section. What's THAT about? Eclipsed by "It's So Raven"? (I mean no disrespect to the fine individuals responsible for the creative and physical production of the previously mentioned project--or otherwise put, "No offence Tracey, but have you seen this DVD?") I'm just angry that Disney isn't giving people a chance to embrace this project, which plays just as well for an older audience as it did when I was a kid. Better, even. And new audiences like it to. I've already shared my disc with coworkers who are suddenly going ape-giggles--and have sent them to buy their own. Honestly, if the sales on this disc are lackluster, Disney can only blame itself. The distribution is even shotty. I TOO went to Target, Best Buy, Borders, Toys R Us, and Circuit City--none of which had the disc. I had to get it at Wal-Mart where I yelled at employees for shoving it behind copies of Spider-Man 2 (so if you read this before the turn of the new Millennium, Greg, try the one on Crenshaw :) That said, if the sales on this are at all impressive, it is truly a testament to the high quality of the show.

In the meantime, while we all wait for the verdict, I'll be scouring this website for more tidbits and memory jogging elements. And ordering TOON DISNEY. Because I've got to get my fix SOMEWHERE! I'm HOOKED!! AGAIN!!!

Greg responds...

That's great Chad. I hope you stuck around long enough to learn of and grab ahold of the Season Two, Volume One DVD set as well.

Now... once again... hard truth time...

You and the rest of the fandom can complain all you like about Disney's near invisible marketing strategy for the two DVD releases, but to some extent you are missing the point...

Disney never planned to spend dime one on the marketing. If they thought they had to budget for marketing on this product, they wouldn't have produced it at all.

We -- the fandom and ME, really -- convinced them that these disks would sell without Disney's help. We -- the fandom, the conventions and ME -- led them to believe that we had so many hungry accolytes of the property that they could make money on the DVDs while spending next-to-nothing (on production, manufacture and distribution).

And this worked well enough to get us two releases. But not to get us three. Yelling at Disney may seem therapeutic, but it's completely counterproductive. So what do you want, therapy or DVDs? If the answer is the latter, than it's incumbant on us -- the fandom and ME -- to SPREAD THE WORD, and not wait on Disney to do something that they NEVER intended to do and most likely NEVER will do.

It just wasn't the implicit deal they made with us.

Response recorded on September 25, 2006

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