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"Future Tense" Ramble
first things first, i gotta comment on the animation in this one. this is definitly one of those episodes where everything from the characters to the backdrops were just gorgeously drawn. truely a work of art.
now the "Previously..." segment really added to what i felt was Goliath and Co getting home. when the Gathering was first mentioned by Banshee and then later by Oberon himself, i had a strong feeling they would be getting home when this Gathering happened. with "Ill Met by Moonlight" finished i was convinced that they would get home in the next episode. so when the "Previously..." segment was airing i remember thinking, this is it... and even during the first scene Goliath's comments made assured me that this was it, they are coming home... it wasn't til i saw Puck's Statue of Liberty that i knew something was up. and by the time i saw the Eyrie Pyramid covering New York and Matt and Claw show up i was pretty sure this wasn't real. i could not believe that the writers would make this kind of massive change in the series and make it permenant. so naturally i thought this must be an alternate future or that sorta thing. looking back i should have known that the "time is like a river" speech forebid this kind of history. but i do remember thinking, "that bolt of lightening wasn't normal, something is going on. this isn't real, but i'm not sure what it is..." so i let the story play out, was quite a mystery in my mind.
BAM! the first big shock for me... Hudson is dead. its one thing to make the world in shambles, but to lose a main character. part of me was saying "NOOO!" and part of me was saying "theres no way this is true, no way they'd kill off a main character..." but the mystery lingered, what the hell is going on?
and, for the record, i remember thinking, is that Hudson's actual body? did they encase him in bronze? it wasn't til i found "Ask Greg" that i knew it was supposed to be a memorial only. call me silly, but i simply didn't know that much about gargoyle death at that point. *shrugs*
when Brooklyn appeared, now clad in armor, i thought he finally was acting very much in his leadership role, but something about his speech to Goliath (post-punch) was very familiar. it didn't hit me til recently that its very reminiscient of Una's speech to Goliath in "MIA". where have you been all these years? why did you vanish? both so angry that they had been left on their own with no answers. thats a tough feeling.
and Puck nailed Brook's sarcasm wonderfully "oh, that makes everything much better"...
i love Goliath's line to Demona, "hiding is never a solution". its interesting because you gotta think of how much he lives in hiding, and how much his life will be shaken when he is exposed to the world in "Hunters Moon".
boy does Broadway pull the heartstrings in this one... his death still gives me chills. and its not just Goliath's grief that is so hard to watch. Puck certaintly puts some anguish in Brook's face.
and Lex, that bastard. i mean, his treachery goes way past Demona's. i think that outside the grief of losing nearly all his loved ones, Lex's backstabbing has to be the worst thing for Goliath to take. another Clan member destroying us all, and once again blaming it on me, is it me? do i bring nothing but death and suffering to my Clan? doubt is a powerful weapon that Puck uses.
doubt, grief, pain, helplessness... i think Puck was going a little too far trying to get the Gate. wasn't there any other way to get Goliath to hand it over?
well, regardless, Goliath once again withholds a talisman for one of Oberon's Children, but this time he probably does the right thing. and we see the final one of the "big three" talismans thrown (literally in this case) outside of the reach of our characters (or so we think).
and one of the most interesting things to discuss with other garg fans is Puck's "dream or a prophecy" line. nothing like a good prophecy to shake things up. obviously, we know know its not a dead on prophecy, but only a few episodes later we start scratching our heads. the Clocktower is destroyed. what else in Puck's illusion will come true we wonder... will there one day be an Ultra-Pack? sounds like it. will Demona rejoin our heroes? looks that way. will Lexington turn out to be evil? well, maybe in the minds of the religious fundamentalists and ultra-conservatives... ; )
one thing i remember clearly saying to a friend of mine at school the day after i first saw this episode was, "i'll bet you anything that they get home in the next episode!"
turns out, i won that bet.
What made you think we were EVER bringing them home?
The basic plan for "Future Tense" was of course to just keep Goliath and the audience so off-balance and over-wrought that there wouldn't be time to consider what was behind it. To make a story powerful even though at the back of everyone's minds they had to know that it couldn't be true.
And yet, I take some pride in thinking that if we didn't -- in the first place -- have a series where CHANGE happens (where Fox leaves the Pack and marries Xanatos and gets pregnant... where the clan is banished from their own home atop the castle.... where Derek becomes Talon and doesn't get changed back...), then I don't think you would have been able to buy into this episode as much as you did. Somewhere in the back of your mind, didn't you have this little fear, this little "They wouldn't dare..." insecurity?
This was my favorite episode for a long time (It's now "The Price"/"Long Way Till Morning"), but I still LOVE it.
Goliath killing Lexington> One thing I noticed the first time I saw the episode was that Goliath didn't know that everything happening to him was fake. A ruse. An illusion. He THOUGHT it was real. So when he killed Lexington, he BELIEVED that he had REALLY killed him. He didn't know the difference. This means that he would stop at nothing to save the world (or what ever matters to him) even if it means killing his own "family."
So what if Lex or Brooklyn or Broadway went "bad" in reality? I mean REALLY bad? He would probaly stop them anyway he could, even if it meant killing them. He did it thinking it was reall in Puck's illusion, so what would stop him if was actually happening?
Brooklyn's costume> LOVED that look. (It's my Staion 8 avitar.) Great designs on costumes and the whole city in genral.
X-men> That whole "Days of future past" story arc really creeped me out when I first read it around the time this episode was new. I drew paralells to it immediately.
I think one has to make the distinction between a hot-blooded and cold-blooded act -- and I think context also would always make a difference. Goliath had just been beaten down, exposed to one trauma after another. Last nerve, you know? Also, is it 100% clear that Goliath was trying to kill Lex or might he just have been trying to take him down -- but got carried away?
But is Goliath capable of tremendous sacrifice for the greater good? I think so.
And is Goliath capable of sacrificing the greater good for the sake of his clan? I think so.
Thanks for the "Future Tense" ramble, Greg!
The first time that I saw this episode, I thought that the lightning striking Goliath was some sort of time warp that had sent the skiff forty years into the future (I certainly didn't believe that "Avalon time" was responsible for what had happened to them; all of the previous World Tour adventures had been in the present day, after all). Of course, now it's clear that it was Puck who was responsible for it (and I'd picked up on Goliath's wish giving the little trickster his loophole).
I don't remember too much else of my initial response, but I know that, the moment the skiff got blown up, I was wondering how they were going to undo that. Of course, Bronx's death (followed by Angela's) raised that question even more, though I don't know if I was specifically wondering that any more by that point. (I find myself reminded of a similar response that I had when I first watched the episode of "Buffy" where Cordelia wished for a Sunnydale that Buffy never came to and Anyanka granted her her wish, when the vampires killed Cordelia; the moment that that happened, I began wondering in earnest how they'd undo the situation with Cordy dead. But that's another story.)
The Steel Clan robots being redesigned to bear Xanatos's goatee was a great touch. Another was when Xanatos's image appeared on the Eyrie Pyramid to deliver his Xanatopia broadcast; the way that it was set up made it look as if he had three heads.
I don't know if I picked up on it when I first watched the episode, but it's clear now that it wasn't the real Xanatos. I certainly can't imagine him now taking over New York in an open dictatorial style (as you pointed out yourself in the Gargoyles Season One Bible, he doesn't need to take over the world because he's able to get almost all of what he wants under the current system), forcing the remainder of the populace to huddle in the streets eating rats, etc. Much too cliched villain-style for him.
I liked the contrast between the trio: Brooklyn bitter, Lexington worse than bitter (gone evil), and the blinded Broadway (in contrast) being a gentle soul who never gave up hoping for Goliath to return and believes that what's important was that he did come back. (Not to mention getting such a touching death scene, and I'm glad that you convinced Adrienne to let you include it.)
The part about Brooklyn and Demona being a couple that really amused me was that not only was Goliath shocked by it, but so was Bronx!
Lexington strikes me as an example here of "You can become like what you hate". As you pointed out, his cybernetic nature echoes Jackal and Hyena - and I noticed that he also had lines around one eye that bore an eerie similarity to Fox's eye-tattoo in shape. A great touch.
Lexington observing the deaths of Matt, Claw, and Bronx struck me as a bit of a cheat in how it was handled, in that it was the one scene in Puck's nightmare that wasn't done from Goliath's point of view (since everybody in the "Future Tense" sequence other than Goliath is just an illusion of Puck's). Though I'm not certain as to how else it could have been handled. (I also noticed that the Xanatos Program's eyes had the same design to them as Lex's eyes in that scene - another hint as to Lexington being behind it?)
I'd picked up on the cybernetic implants of the Thailog Shock Troops, but hadn't realized that the helmets that the Mutates were wearing were also implants.
Lex's capture by the Thailog Shock Troops didn't set off any warning bells; I'd just assumed that it was another "loss of a good guy" moment and was therefore genuinely surprised to see Lexington resurface as the villain.
Goliath and Xanatos definitely got a great fight to the death in cyberspace, which stands out all the more in contrast to how their feud would *really* end (as the next few episodes would show). And it struck me as just like Xanatos to quote from both "Hamlet" and "Monty Python and the Holy Grail".
I really thought that the Phoenix Gate was gone for good at the end and so your mention of the plans for "Timedancer", when I first read the MasterPlan document, definitely took me by surprise. (I'm glad that there was still a little time travel left - I like time travel stories, especially ones into the historical past, and when Goliath threw the Gate away, I had felt a little sad that it looked as if we wouldn't be getting any more of those in "Gargoyles".)
Thanks for a great ramble, Greg!
You too, Todd.
Hi I am from the west coast of Canada, and I have to say I am so happy to see the Gargoyles series has gone to dvd. Currently I am 19 and when I saw the first season on dvd I was overwhelmed with excitment. I always cherished the series and was deeply sad when it was taken off the air. But now with the first season on dvd I can rewatch all my favorite eposides. I know this isn't a question, but I wanted to show my support for Gargoyles, and the hopes that disney will allow season 2 to be put onto dvd. I can tell you right now if I see season 2 on dvd I would buy it in a second without thinking twice.
Lastly I would like to say thank you to Disney and Greg Weisman for bringing back the series that I most cherished when I was growing up. Thank you so very much.
from British Columbia, Canada
You're very welcome. 2nd Season Volume One is currently available. Go forth and SPREAD THE WORD!
Why does Brooklyn hate Demona so much?
For the answer to that, purchase the Season One DVD (there's a link on this page) and watch the episode "Temptation".
What is a chimeras
You mean in the Gargoyles Universe?
was it planned for elisa and goliath to fall in love
ILL MET BY MOONLIGHT
I never misunderstood the title, although it wasn't until I actually read "A Midsummer Night's Dream" years down the road that I got the reference.
Our travelers are finally back in Avalon again. Sure, they may have stopped off between trips, but this is the first time since AVALON part 3 that we actually meet the characters again. I sometimes think Angela's line ("I'm beginning to think this Manhattan is a myth.") and Elisa's homesickness are nods to the audience as well as character moments. By this point, I was quite ready for them to get home. And I had a suspicion that it was going to be soon--both because of the above referenced lines, and also because I knew we'd be getting the big card and seeing Oberon and Titania. The "Previously on..." segment hinted that this would be the episode in which they made their appearance.
In answer to your question, Greg, I can't remember if I thought we'd be seeing Titania as early as the appearance of Titania's Mirror. I think not, simply because I didn't expect the plethora of Children that the World Tour brought out. And, after THE MIRROR, it wasn't until AVALON part 1 that Oberon was at all mentioned again.
The Lord and Lady's entrance was indeed grand (make a platform for yourself and materialize in a bolt of lightning), and their designs were nice. I'd always wondered about the skin-color choice, and I can appreciate and support the decision to not specify any human skin color on their preferred forms. I do wonder about the choice of color though--blue for Oberon, green for Titania. Was the choice based on their distinctions of "King of the Night" and "Queen of the Day" (I'm not sure, but I thought I heard them referred to as such)?
The female gargoyle with the triceratops plate finally speaks! And later on we learn her name, Ophelia! I was very glad for this--by virtue of both design and exposure in the AVALON three-parter, Ophelia really stood out. I'd hoped she'd be given a bit more in the way of character and was pleased to see that happen.
The "conversation" with Oberon always struck me as an exercise in "leaping before looking." Here you have two beings making a flashy entrance, and one of them the Weird Sisters refer to as "my Lord." So what do you do? You *demand* them to declare themselves while partially drawing your sword. You threaten to throw them out. You leap at them. You basically do all you can to piss them off.
Goliath was the one to have the right idea. I like his line "These strangers may fail in courtesy, but we need not." He actually manages to respectfully phrase a request for identification that Oberon finally answers. Of course, by this time Elisa had already pulled her partially-iron gun on Oberon and definitely pissed him off, so Oberon starts to "quicksand" everyone.
"Once and Future Queen"...I'm sorry, but I couldn't help but flash back to King Arthur with that line.
It always struck me that Oberon spoke in the third-person plural ("the Royal 'We'"). Really makes him sound like royalty of old.
Titania intervenes on behalf of our heroes (and just before Goliath's face was about to be covered with soil). "You are over-pert, my Queen." That's such a strange phrase, "over-pert." I'm not sure of its meaning (nor its proper spelling for that matter).
"Why bother with such foolish fairness." That has to be one of the most cliched-villain lines I've ever heard Oberon say. And his reaction when Titania offers herself as prize is just so great--he loses his dignity for a moment at his joy at the mere thought of remarrying Titania. Well, she is kinda hot.
Goliath, Angela and Gabriel are the chosen champions. Somehow, I just knew that was how things would turn out. I mean, they're the main gargoyles on this Island. It's kind of like Kirk, Spock and McCoy. You don't send out Kirk, Spock and Ensign Ricky unless Ensign Ricky's going to die horribly. Similarly, you don't send out Goliath, Angela and Job unless you want Oberon to make Job die horribly. It's all in good fun!
Now we have the "iron" discussion. This was a new aspect of the Oberati for me--they have a weakness! And I loved the "silver be for vampires and weres" line.
Sadly, this is one of the more foolish cuts I've seen Toon Disney make. They seem to want to cut out any close-ups of the gun or scenes where the ammo casing is shown being removed (they can't show how a gun can be loaded, Heaven forbid!). As a result, the whole conversation skips over this IMPORTANT bit of information. It goes from Elisa saying, "Oberon didn't seem too pleased when I pulled my piece on him," to the Guardian saying "Oberon's children have always been vulnerable to it..." It's like they're talking about the gun now! They can at least TRY to edit it in a way that doesn't screw up the information.
Sorry, my digression.
Gabriel complains about "running away from a fight" and Goliath says, "Consider it a strategic withdrawal." I kind of laugh at that simply because I just start thinking of other "pleasant euphemisms" for the same thing--kind of like, "I'm not going to the bathroom, I'm freshening up."
Angela says "Oberon's no stronger than a child now." Goliath corrects her, "As strong as any of Oberon's Children," but it's too late for me, my brother and some of my friends. I just get this vision of a mini-Oberon running up and kicking them in the shin or something.
Back at the ranch--er, palace--the forging has begun. I like Guardian's almost pleading line, "I still think a sword makes more sense." Here, Princess Katharine points out that Titania gave them a clue. Now I was quite interested to see what the weapon was going to be.
Oberon's "pillar of flame" bit is very nice. Even as a Child he has great power. But he still falls into the pit-trap. It's rather funny just how sure Angela and Gabriel are that it worked.
"Dare you try to make me look foolish, mortals?!" Every time Oberon says that, I just want to yell out, "Who needs to try?!" I don't know if I'd do that if I was actually in that situation, but it might almost be worth it to see Oberon's reaction. Is it possible for Oberati to have conniption fits?
Despite having his powers reduced, Oberon is able to pull rank over the terrain quite admirably.
I will confess, when Angela and Gabriel grasped hands in the air, and smiled at each other, I was one of those who misread that. Looking at it now, it seems more like a "coming up with an idea" expression. Immediately after this, they dive towards the volcano.
The flight over the lava is...problematic somewhat for me. Visually, it's gorgeous. This is the best lava in the series, period. And the hands are great (ironic that Oberon conjures up gargoyle hands to catch the gargoyles). And I love the way they turn Oberon's trick against him. However, once again, reality just wants to cut the suspension wires of disbelief. The fact that they fly so close to the lave without their skin searing off, the way they're able to maintain a steady altitude with all the hot air beneath them. Thankfully, the scene is still well done in the visual and staging department, so in the end, I'm all right with it.
I have to agree with you on the forging, Greg. I think I was okay with it until my brother pointed out that you're supposed to cool it AFTER it's been hammered into a proper shape. I never thought about the lack of a mold before, but pouring it on the ground never made much sense to me. Still, I love your little "forgotten scene," Greg.
Ophelia really did raise a good point here. And even though Elisa's argument seems to close the discussion, it really was kind of lame (at least my mother thought so we she saw this). I mean, how would Elisa feel if she came back from the World Tour and found a bunch of strangers squatting in her apartment? Oberon and his Children may have been gone for 1001 years, but as Luna said, "What is time to an immortal."
A better argument would have been that while Oberon can afford to be magnanimous and allow them to stay with no real problem, the Avalon clan couldn't so easily pull up stakes and leave to a world they are not really prepared for. Thus it becomes a question of necessity and survival. They HAVE to use the weapon, whether they like it or not.
Goliath typically tries to send Angela and Gabriel away, and typically they remain. "Gargoyles stand together. That is our way." So things have come to where Angela is reminding Goliath of the Gargoyle Way.
I love the way Oberon's hand looks when he calls up the ground to attack the gargoyles. I also enjoy Goliath's little dig, "But did Titania want the Island to defeat us, or you?"
Goliath has a real "Hulk" moment here. His eyes glow brighter then I've ever seen them, his roar manages to sound fiercer, and he breaks the rocks in front of him with a two fisted smash as he lunges at Oberon.
Then Oberon turns into a diamond. Jerk. I did love the "Now you're just quibbling" bit. And it's a wonder Angela and Gabriel didn't cut their knuckles on Oberon's cheeks and chin (those edges could probably cut glass). Even though his power is reduced, Oberon uses it more effectively than most of the Children we've found in this series.
But even after taking out Angela and Gabriel, Oberon gets caught off guard by one last attack from Goliath. His "Good, very good," actually sounds impressed.
A tangent here, I wonder if maybe Goliath really did impress Oberon--more then anyone else even. I mean, Goliath was the first one to speak to him with some amount of respect and decorum, and has displayed great strength and at the end a bit of wit and cunning. Of course, Oberon still knows that Goliath could never beat him, but maybe he gained a little respect for the gargoyle.
Oberon returns home to what was supposed to be victory and winds up facing defeat. I had not expected a bell--having not been as familiar with the old legends as Todd--but when Elisa gave a little re-statement of Titania's lines, it started to make perfect sense.
I don't know for certain if the Guardian was going to kill Oberon and only let up at the last minute. I kind of hope not, I hope it was more of a show for Oberon, but I admit it would be more interesting if that was the case. At any rate, Ophelia seems pleased that they weren't going to kill the proper Lord of the place. And heck, Goliath helps Oberon to stand.
Oberon says he will reward the "strange behavior" of mercy by allowing the clan to stay with his blessing and bestowing upon Goliath's clan the Honor Guard position as well as immunity to the arts of the Oberati. Still, the cynic in me wonders if maybe Oberon's just trying to save face with that "reward" bit. ;-D
When Titania calls Oberon "husband"...he smiles. He has a very quiet, but at the same time a very strong joy. I guess he really did miss her.
While Titania is speaking with Goliath, Oberon is in the background talking rather animatedly with...I think it was Angela and Gabriel. Complimenting them on their performance in the chase? I guess he can be a rather nice guy to speak with when he's not pulling rank.
And then Titania says she helped "To repay a favor rendered." I had not picked up that both she and Anastasia were voiced by Kate Mulgrew, and didn't until Anastasia spoke in THE GATHERING. As a result, this left me racking my brain trying to figure out when they came across Titania and whether or not it was in one of the two episodes I missed.
I figured, with all the talk from our travelers about going home, and with finally seeing the Lord and Lady of the Third Race, we'd finally get home in the next episode.
I wasn't quite right. :-))
A nice payoff to nearly a season's worth of pipe-laying.
Hey, I'm nothing if not a good pipe-layer.
I was justwondering what are some of gargoyles sex moves?
You'll have to come to a Blue Mug-a-Guest at a Gathering to ask about that. (This is a PG rated site.)
To find out more about the Blue Mugs or the Gathering, check out
After reading your old outline of "Future Tense", I had a couple of comments on it.
1. I honestly hadn't realized the irony involved there in having Demona reform - only now Goliath still can't be reunited with her since now she's Brooklyn's mate! That certainly gives a whole new dimension to her role in "Future Tense". (Maybe I hadn't picked up on it since by now Goliath was moving towards Elisa anyway, in such a way that would make Demona's reform too late in another manner.)
2. I also noticed that, at this stage in the development, Talon had the role which would later be occupied by Alex in fighting Xanatos in cyberspace in Act II. I can't help but think that the later decision to make it Alex instead actually made the scene better, because it added a new and chilling element to it: Xanatos is killing his own son. That made the scene even darker than just killing Talon (who wouldn't have as much significance to him) - not to mention making possible the line "Since I'm immortal, I have no need for an heir."
Yeah, being chilling was the whole point. So we tried to constantly up the stakes in that episode. Nowadays, you could never do half what we did in "Future Tense". Frankly, I'm amazed it still airs.
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