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Anonymous writes...

From where did you get the idea for Electro's origin in The Spectacular Spider-Man? Was it the story team's original idea?

I ask because in The Amazing Spider-Man 2, Max Dillon turns into Electro almost the exact same way (gets electrocuted and falls into a vat of special electric eels). I'm interested if the movie blatantly ripped off from the show or if there is some comic book/other source material that you would have gotten this origin idea from.

Thanks - I'm a big fan of your shows, and Star Wars: Rebels seems like it will be pretty great.

Greg responds...

We came up with it - probably inspired to some degree from the origin of the mutates in Gargoyles - to fit our Biology 101 theme for that particular arc. But I don't consider what they did in the movie to be a rip-off. Marvel and Sony own everything that was done in The Spectacular Spider-Man, so they can't rip-off themselves. Frankly, I'm glad they liked it. Though I do wish that if they liked it that much, they would have hired me to write the movie. ;)

Response recorded on February 17, 2015

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JC writes...

Hello,

A few days ago I asked the question about Sevaris & his mutates, and I've been thinking about it, and why I like the idea of multi-animal-mutants as opposed to the single-animal variety.
And Ive decided the answer is this: because it just makes more sense.
I know the real-world reason you gave the Labryinth clan multi-animsl abilties is to make them equatable to Gargoyles...but it is the electric eel explaination that resonated w/me. Yes, a creature with that much going on WOULD need a massive energy source, and spending all day eating large farm animals wouldnt be condusive.
But this logic isnt applied to the latter mutates.
For instance:
1) an alliagator (or was Thug a crockodile? Im drawing a blank - but either way) already needs to eat a lot, and due to its bulk is verry slow on land. Wouldnt an even bigger alligator need even more food - especially to power a human-sized brain - and be even slower?
2) Its been said that an insect the size of a human would collapse under its own weight due to their bodies being composed of heavy exoskelitons, and having no muscle mass, only tendonds to move their joints. Why does this not apply to the woodlouse mutate?
It seems to me that combining these two at least would solve both of their problems. The alligator DNA would provide the strength the woodlouse would need to move, and since insects requre little energy and move exeptionally fast (compared to larger animals that is, not literally), the woodlouse DNA would compensate for the alligator's problems.

Also, ARE there any plans to give the turtle (technically a tortious, I
belive) ninja training...maby from a mutant rat? (im just pulling your leg hete...sorry...I cant help myself).

Greg responds...

1. Yes. Which is something Thug will have to deal with. Isn't that interesting?

2. "It's been said"? I'm not sure what that means. Obviously, Sevarius has made himself an expert in ways that I am not. I'm sure Benny will have what he needs for basic survival. But no one has said that these newly created mutates are going to be warriors. We'll just have to see. Hopefully. Someday.

Response recorded on May 12, 2014

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JC writes...

Hello, Mr. Wiesman,

I have a quick question about Dr. Sevaris and his mutate craetions. First, I'd like to say that even as a child I loved the idea of "mutants" that were composed of several animal species (human, bat, cat, & eel), rather than the simple one animal/human hybrid, like the TMNTs.
I was just wondering why you deviated from that approach with every mutate Sevaris made after the Labyrinth clan?
Now Wolf I can understsnd, seeing as how he was the only willing volunteer, and well, his name is simply "Wolf."
But why simply an alligator mutant, a turtle mutant, a woodlouse mutant, & an armadillo mutant, when a combo of all those animals would lead to mare of a varity in abilities (exept a woodlouse and armadillo wpuld be a bit redundant), and not seem like something that has, literally, been done a dozen times - especially the turtle and aligator mutant in particular. As soon as I saw those two, I thought to myself: "they might as well learn ninjitsu and get it over with."

On a related topic; it's been shown that Dr. Sevaris uses human test subjects to create his mutates. But does he need the actual animal(s) they are mutated into and combine them, or just use that/those animal's DNA?

Thank you.

JC

Greg responds...

1. I think during his Labyrinth experiments, he was testing features first. Mixing and matching might come later. Keep in mind, that his marching orders from Xanatos on the original mutates were specifically to create something as close to a Gargoyle as possible.

2. He just needs DNA samples.

Response recorded on May 08, 2014

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Rebecca writes...

Hi Greg,

Very recently discovered Gargoyles and it's FANTASTIC! I mainlined the entire thing in about a month and can't wait to rewatch it. What an amazing story you told.

I had a question about Talon and the other Mutates. I've searched the archives and haven't been able to find the answer to this specific question, so I hope this isn't a repeat:

When Derek was originally transformed it made sense that he didn't want to go to the police because he still thought Xanatos was working to cure him. But once he realised that Xanatos was behind it all, I'm confused about why he didn't go to the police at THAT point?

I understand that they had come to accept their forms by then, but as a former police officer (even if he had some issues with it as a career for himself), I'm trying to work out why Talon wouldn't want to make the police aware of what had happened. The Mutates themselves are physical evidence of Sevarius' illegal experiments. Even if Xanatos was able to hide the financial trail so it wouldn't be possible to prove he'd been funding Sevarius while he was on the run, then at least the authorities would be after Sevarius?

My assumption is that Xanatos made some sort of report about Sevarius when he originally "discovered" his illegal work (though hiding the existence of the Mutates), so the authorities are already after him, albeit with limited and incorrect information. Without any way to prove Xanatos' ongoing connection, the Mutates decided not to press the matter as they were afraid of being turned into lab rats again if they "went public"?

Would that be accurate? It just surprised me because the show often did talk about police procedure and WHY Xanatos couldn't be charged with things, etc., or characters' motivations that this one's been bugging me.

Thank you for your thoughts, and looking forward to Star Wars: Rebels!

Greg responds...

As you surmised...

1. The Mutates, collectively, don't want to become trapped in someone else's lab. Whether it's a government lab or that of another mad scientist.

2. Sevarius has already gone underground.

3. Xanatos covered his tracks.

Response recorded on April 11, 2014

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Dattaboy/JGL writes...

Hey Greg hope your novel is turning out well I look forward to reading it.Anyway, these questions are about the mutates, clones and Labyrinth Clan.

1). For the most part how do the majority of mutates and humans view the Gargoyle clones? Is it more of a blessing more bodies or a burden because of the lack development and free will?

2). By 2198 how do the mutate members and the gargoyle clone members view each other is it animosity different origins possibly beliefs, respectful because of shared location or have they established a unique culture that blends the various backgraounds of the groups making alot more differnt than your typical Garg clan?

3) You mention that by 2198 the two different clans in NY would have different priorties which is why they did not merge. Is there any animosity from the two clans because of different origins?

4). We know Talon and Maggie can have children but could different members of the mutate group have kids with another like Claw with Lisa despite being mixed with different species DNA?

5). How does the current Manhatten Clan view the Labyrinth "Clan"(not yet a Clan I know) Do they feel like they need to show the Clones and Mutates, Gargoyle customs or is it more like let them find their own way and we'll give advice as needed kind of deal?

Greg responds...

1. A mixed blessing, I guess.

2. SPOILER REQUEST.

3. I wouldn't say animosity. But they don't always see things eye to eye.

4. We don't know that. We know Maggie's pregnant. Anything beyond that is a SPOILER REQUEST. (Also, I'm not sure I understand your question... are you trying to mate off Claw with Elisa?)

5. More the latter.

And RAIN OF THE GHOSTS, BOOK TWO: SPIRITS OF ASH AND FOAM is going very well. In fact, I've finished writing it and sent it off to my editor at St. Martin's Press yesterday! Thanks for asking (and for giving me any excuse to pimp it!)

Response recorded on October 18, 2013

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Richard Jackson writes...

According to the timeline:

September 10th, 1995â€"Talon and the other Mutates flee [the Eyrie Building]. (“Metamorphosis”)

December 10th, 1995. Talon, Maggie the Cat, Fang and Claw return to David Xanatos and take up residence at the Eyrie Building. (more than a week before the events in the “The Cage”)

Where did they go in the interim two months?

Greg responds...

Fair question.

Response recorded on February 09, 2011

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conflicting looks writes...

Why was the appearance of the mutates changed between metamorphosis and the cage? And why were their tails removed?

Greg responds...

This has been answered before. Please check the archives under "Mutates, The".

Response recorded on May 19, 2010

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Derek writes...

Could humans be turned into Gargoyles by the same process that was used on the mutates? Sevarius didn't say he couldn't do it but that he had no Gargoyle DNA to play around with. Would Gargoyle DNA too complex to use in the same way as the jungle cats, eels etc?

Greg responds...

Clearly, you have not been reading the BAD GUYS comic book. So I'll refer you to the Bad Guys trade paperback, due out in August. Enjoy!!

Response recorded on June 09, 2009

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Litwolf writes...

Does Talon have a second-in-command down in the Labyrinth? I know that the Labyrinth members are not part of a true gargoyle Clan but Talon realized he needed to take a stand and be the leader. Is there someone he has chosen (or will chose down the line) to be his second and take over for him when he can no longer lead?

Greg responds...

Not yet.

Response recorded on April 01, 2009

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Chip writes...

Sorry, I meant Crocodile...not Crodile

Greg responds...

Yeah, I got that.

Response recorded on October 15, 2008

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Chip writes...

Did Sevarius Mutate Thug with Alligator or Crodile DNA?

Greg responds...

Crocodile.

Response recorded on October 15, 2008

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Kchishol1970 writes...

First I want to thank you, after getting upset at how DC is treating Captain Carrot at the end of their latest mini-series, it is a joy to see someone "mainstream" create some beautiful furry business in their own comic as issue #7 shows. Thank you for getting an artist who understands that beauty.

Case in point, Maggie has never been more beautiful then when she's snuggling with Derek upon learning she is pregnant. In fact, it looks like she's purring. Is that a correct assumption?

Greg responds...

Uh... sure.

Response recorded on January 10, 2008

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JANUARY 4

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

January 4th...

1066
Edward the Confessor dies of natural causes. His brother-in-law, Harold Godwinson, succeeds him.

1995
Goliath, Lexington, Bronx and Brooklyn return to Castle Wyvern atop the Eyrie Building but are intercepted by Elisa Maza, Hudson and Broadway, who finally manage to convince Goliath to follow Elisa to their new home at the Clock Tower above the 23rd Precinct -- but not before Goliath warns Owen Burnett that the clan will some day return. David Xanatos is finally released from jail that morning and returns to the castle. He starts serving his probation. Later that day, Xanatos goes to Gen-U-Tech Systems to observe Anton Sevarius' progress. Sevarius has successfully cloned Goliath and begins to accelerate the growth of "Thailog".

1996
Hudson and the Trio have been searching for Goliath and Bronx to no avail. Broadway, realizing that Elisa Maza is missing too, brings her cat Cagney back to the Clock Tower. Brooklyn resists taking the reins of leadership, but he does go to visit Talon and Maggie the Cat in the Labyrinth, where homeless humans like Al, Chaz and Lou have joined the Mutates in what is supposed to be a free society of outcasts. Broadway visits Matt Bluestone next, but Matt is equally in the dark over his partner's disappearance. Lex eavesdrops on Elisa's parents and learns they are also worried. Meanwhile on Queen Florence Island, Elisa and the gargoyles find each other again, and then find Grandmother as she transforms into the Thunderbird. Grandmother later admits that she was undergoing these transformations to convince Natsilane to take up arms against Raven to save the island. When Natsilane meets the gargoyles, he is convinced. The gargoyles and Natsilane battle Raven and drive him away. With Raven gone, Grandmother is able to heal the island. The travelers again return to Avalon, where it is six in the morning, causing Goliath, Angela and Bronx to turn to stone.


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DECEMBER 20

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 20th...

1995
Goliath kidnaps Anton Sevarius out from under the nose of Gen-U-Tech security guard Vinnie Grigori. Goliath takes Sevarius down to the abandoned Cyberbiotics underground lab and tries to force him to create a cure for the Mutates. Meanwhile, the Mutates attack the other gargoyles at the Clock Tower. The gargoyles ultimately win the battle, but Brooklyn lets them go in order to prove to Maggie the Cat that he can be trusted. Having discovered that Goliath was the kidnapper, Elisa Maza, Talon, the Mutates, David Xanatos and his Steel Clan robots all converge on the old lab. Xanatos rescues Sevarius, and Talon finally realizes his employer was responsible for his metamorphosis. Talon and the other Mutates take up residence in the abandoned Cyberbiotics underground base, which they redub "The Labyrinth". The next morning, Vinnie is fired from Gen-U-Tech. And that evening, Elisa brings her parents and sister to the Labyrinth for a reunion with Derek and an introduction to the other Mutates. In Scotland, Xanatos' security team successfully captures "Nessie", a Loch Ness Monster. Sevarius leaves for Scotland, to begin running tests on the creature.


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DECEMBER 19

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 19th...

1995
Goliath and Broadway, who aren't in on Elisa Maza's undercover charade, follow her and come close to blowing her cover. She covers, however, and manages to get a meeting with Tony Dracon, where the two of them agree to go into business together with the gargoyles. The gargoyles and cops wind up foiling Dracon's operation and getting him to confess his transgressions on videotape. He's arrested and sent away. Goliath tastes jalapeñas for the first time. Later that morning, Elisa's sister Beth Maza comes into town from Arizona. That evening, while the Trio attend a rock concert in the park, Beth spots Talon watching the Maza family from outside Elisa's window. Later, Goliath admits that he has seen the Mutates back with David Xanatos. Elisa and Goliath confront Talon. Elisa reveals to her brother that Anton Sevarius isn't dead. Talon's extreme stance convinces Goliath to take drastic action.


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DECEMBER 16

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 16th...

1995
On instructions from Captain Maria Chavez, Elisa Maza pretends to be a crooked cop trying to muscle in on Tony Dracon's protection racket. Meanwhile, Goliath spots the Mutates hanging around the Eyrie Building. He elects not to tell Elisa.


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DECEMBER 10

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 10th...

1995
Talon, Maggie the Cat, Fang and Claw return to David Xanatos and take up residence at the Eyrie Building.


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SEPTEMBER 10

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

September 10th...

1995
The gargoyles take Maggie back to the Clock Tower, but she flees to Xanatos after they turn to stone. Elisa and Matt discover that Xanatos owns Gen-U-Tech. After sundown, the gargoyles awaken and discover Maggie gone. The gargoyles and Elisa confront the Mutates and Xanatos at the Eyrie Building. Although Derek takes the name Talon, Elisa realizes that the Mutate is her brother. Talon and the other Mutates flee.


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AUGUST 18

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

August 15th...

1996
Sevarius completes his involvement with Thailog's project and is paid off. Thailog begins programming his new clones. Meanwhile, Angela and Demona are still debating the latter's behavior. Claw arrives to take over guarding the prisoners for the day shift. Angela elects to sleep as stone in front of her mother's cell.


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Reckoning writes...

I just saw the reckoning episode again, and a few questions come out.
Fang said to Demona that he "always respect her as a fellow inmate" Is that true? What were his true feelings for her. I imagine they had some fights...having in count the personallities of the two of them...
Did Demona know the mutates before she saw them in the laberynt?
What did she think about them? Would they talk when they were guarding her? Did she speak with anyone besides Angela?
Did she gain weight after so many days of not doing any exercise?? >:I
I have to stop drinking. Thks for your attention Greg :)

Greg responds...

1. I'll leave that to your imagination.
2. Not well.
3. I'll leave that to your imagination.
4. I refuse to comment (because I like my spleen).

Response recorded on August 06, 2007

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Ernest writes...

Once Talon/Derek Maza discovered that Xanatos (and not Goliath) was Sevarius' partner in his transformation why didn't he try to kill him? I do not mean during the episode "The Cage" since he was clearly outgunned but in future episodes. He originally planned to kill Goliath and Sevarius so once he realized that Xanatos and Sevarius was behind it all why didn't he kill him? After all it was his original intention, he had nothing to lose from it, he knew he could not trust either Xanatos or Sevarius to him a cure for him assuming that he even wanted it and as indicated in "The Cage" he stopped caring for a cure.

Greg responds...

I think calmer heads (not necessarily Talon's) finally prevailed. Maggie has her influence.

Response recorded on July 19, 2007

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JULY 15

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

July 15th...

1996
The Manhattan Clan imprisons Demona in the Labyrinth and agrees to help Talon and the Mutates guard her and Fang. Angela takes the first watch. Elisa is bitten by a robotic mosquito that samples her DNA. Demona regains consciousness in her cell. Angela introduces herself.


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Grey Wolf writes...

First off, I'd like to thank you for including strong female characters in Gargoyles. To this day, there aren't enough out there in cartoons/anime or comics/manga. It's expecialy pleasing to me because, being female, I've had to fight off the 'weaker gender' stereotype all my life! In martial arts class, a boy refused to 'contact spar' with me when our master told us to. Why? Because he'd "Never hit a girl and wasn't going to start now." Him being my friend, that stung a bit; but him being my friend was also what kept me from kicking him through the wall. Characters like Elisa, Angela and Demona made Maggie the Cat tollerable. Which, by the way, is the subject of my post.

I neither love nor hate Maggie. I suppose I sort of like her though, at least she's not exactly a coward. But she irritates me a little, she refuses to fight even though she can, she's easily frightened, she didn't react well to the gargoyles after they saved her, ect. I don't really know what Talon sees in her. Maybe you could tell me? And I have a couple more questions.

1. Does Maggie accept her Mutate form by the time of 'Masque'? She seems okay, but I'm not sure.
2. Do the Mutates have tails or not? Comics #3 and #4 have conflicting art. Are their tails retractable?

Greg responds...

What does Talon see in her... perhaps a strength that she didn't at first realize she had, a strength that has nothing to do with COMBAT. And is this the Grey Wolf, who coincidentally PLAYED Maggie in the Radio Play last night? (If so, please know that I had not read this when we cast you.)

1. More or less.
2. <sigh> The tails are constantly mutating, I guess... <sigh>

Response recorded on June 24, 2007

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Caswin writes...

"Which members of the Pack?"

Okay, to elaborate slightly less than before on my Pack/Mutates question (as as far as I can tell, mentioning my rationale sounded too much like an idea, hence its deletion)...

Did The Pack - asking about every member here; I guess Fox would be a safe bet, all things considered, but other than her - know about the Mutates while they were together? Do any of them now?

Greg responds...

With the exception of Fox, and perhaps Coyote, I'd say no. Information is power. Why would Xanatos share power with Dingo, Jackal, Hyena or Wolf?

Response recorded on June 11, 2007

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Anybody writes...

Hi there! Im having these proyect in college, im studing programming computers and im planning to do some kind of video game (with no monetary gain of course, just for the proyect ;)) about the gargoyles and maybe you could give me your opinion in one of the things i have planned so far :)
Its going to be like a Mortal Combat video game, with fights between the character. Here are a few questions, (i really want to do it as much accuretly as possible)
So far the only gargoyle able to defeat Demona in a one by one fight is Bronx, so can i considered him physicaly stronger than the rest of the gargoyles (except Goliath, i guess)
Wich of the gargoyles have the best skills in gliding?
Who is faster when gliding?
Are the mutates better on the air than the gargoyles?
Well those are my little doubts, the rest i can take it from the show. Thanks again for your time, Greg, and gargoyles comic 4 was just AWESOME :D

Greg responds...

I'm not big on quantifying things, but the Mutates can fly and the gargoyles can only glide.

Response recorded on June 04, 2007

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dph writes...

Was either Fang, Claw, Maggie, or Talon in Manhattan during present-day events of City of Stone?

Greg responds...

I'm not saying.

Response recorded on May 18, 2007

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Caswin writes...

Hey there, fairly recent fan of the series, first-time asker. One question (so far) that I've been curious about - is The Pack aware of The Mutates' existence?

Greg responds...

Which members of the Pack?

Response recorded on April 19, 2007

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Raye writes...

I've been watching the DVDs and have recently been intrigued by the characters of Claw and Fang, mainly because we don't really know *who* these characters actually are! They are introduced to the series with their human identities hidden (both in physical terms and by giving them aliases). These guys could be anyone! (Claw especially is full of potential considering he can't speak).

I know that asking you who they were in their human forms would be pointless, so I'll try to dodge that question with some others:

1. Will their true identities be important or some sort of plot-twist? (Like the Owen/Puck connection)

2. Did you know who they really are when the show started, or is it an opening in the overall story that you included so you could work on it later? (again, I compare with Owen/Puck; you've said that you didn't know at first that the two were one and the same, but realised the connection soon afterwards).

3. If one, or both of their true identities are important, have there been any hints in the course of the series in character dialogue or situation?

4. Were they approached for the experiment in the same way that Maggie was, or was there something different in how Doctor Sevarius enlisted them?

5. Was there a reason why you decided that Claw would not be able to speak? (that is, to keep his identity secret? Or were you just trying to save money on a voice actor!)

Thank you very much for any answers you give (or decide *not* to give, I know I may be treading on thin ice asking these questions!)

Greg responds...

1. Important, yes. Plot-twist, not really.

2. No, I know who they are now. But I didn't when "Metamorphosis" was scripted. Though I knew what direction I wanted to head with each.

3. Not really, actually.

4. More or less the same.

5. Two reasons: 1. economic as you noted, and 2. I genuinely thought it would make him a more interesting character.

Response recorded on January 22, 2007

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Psycho girl writes...

THREE POSTS IN ONE DAY!!!! Im on a role (hopefully a cinnamon 'role' ;) ...haha a play on words!

Why am I posting soooooooo many...well, posts? Well, you said that you would close the question asking thingy for a while (probably a long while) after January and I just want to hurry and talk to you. (I LIKE YOU!!!).......(Not in THAT way....sickos.) When February comes around, you wont have to deal with my farce anymore, at least for a while.......(snickering).......I typed farce...(snickering)

I have some questions about Lexington.

1. Why dose Lexington walk on his heals sometimes? (He has VERY flexible hips to sit the way he sits)

2. Why did you (they) end his wing membranes at his knees instead at his ankles?

3. Who was Lex's favorite Pack member?

I don't know why, but I just thought about Fang and his voice actor......I really like Jim's performance as Fang! Also, I wonder how Fangs old co-workers thought of him?

I wonder why the animators couldn't get his height right, some times he's right other times, he's the size of a 10 year old....oh well, he still looks good.

Farce.......(hearty laugh)

well, thanks!

P.S. my next one will be rambles about episodes so.....it will be BIG....pre-warning you.....but not today!

Greg responds...

1. I'm not sure what you mean.

2. It looked right anatomically, I think.

3. Uh... to slaughter?

I don't remember Fang ever looking like a ten-year-old, but I agree that Jim was great in the role.

Response recorded on January 11, 2007

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Fllay Allster hater AND Kira Yamato hater writes...

1. After "Metamorphosis", where did the Mutates go before "The Cage"?

2. Did they had any adventures or was it just daily struggles to eat/sleep/shelter/hide?

3. Did they met aynone?

4. Did they contribute, intentionally or not, to the gargoyle urban legend?

5. Was there other reasons than the cure that made them return to Xanatos?

Greg responds...

1. Off stage.

2. All of the above.

3. Unavoidably.

4. Possibly.

5. Nothing is without its complexities.

Response recorded on September 07, 2006

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Michael McCarthy writes...

Have you ever done any research into the physics oh how the Mutates can "shoot" those electric "blasts" from their hands? As in, to see if it's even possible for electricity to behave in such a way?

Greg responds...

No, I have not. Have you?

Response recorded on August 30, 2006

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Jacob writes...

Will Talon/Derek ever turn bacdk to human? If so what will his response be to Elisa about choosing to work for Xanatos in the first place?

Greg responds...

I'm not sure why his response would be any different before or after he might or might not turn back?

Response recorded on October 20, 2005

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Chaos9001 writes...

Hey greg

love the show(obviously) but i have a question, if Fang was cooped up with demona for at least five weeks by the day that it showed on screen demona changing form, why did he looked so shocked when she turned human?

Greg responds...

I don't think he looked shocked. It may have taken him five weeks to come up with a funny line.

Response recorded on April 06, 2005

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ANONYMOUS writes...

Not sure if you have answered this but if you have I am sorry to have repeated it. In TGC and by the end of the original show that you worked on it is shows that Xanatos has reformed now that he has Alexander.

1) Is he really reformed or is it just another ploy of his?

2) Why didn't he have the mutates turned back into humans if he was?

3) Would the mutates want to be turned back into humans? Being mutates let's them to help others better than when they were human.

4) Why did Xanatos's go after Derek to make him into Talon? I know that it was not some vindictive plan of his against Elisa since you have mentioned before that he isn't the sort to seek vengeance on someone.

Greg responds...

1. He hasn't reformed, but his priorities have shifted somewhat. He certainly feels kindly toward the Gargoyles, though that would never stop him from using them -- just from harming them.

2. I don't think he can.

3. Fang does not want to turn back. I think Talon, and maybe even Maggie and Claw have accustomed themselves as well. Though if presented with an actual bona fide opportunity to change back, it would be interesting to see if they took it.

4. Control. And means of control.

Response recorded on October 11, 2004

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Phil writes...

Here's hoping you've got your timeline with you.

In honor of the birth of my first son, could you please share some of the events that have happened in the gargoyles universe on September 10?

Greg responds...

Sure. Hold on. I'll be right back.

I literally have just flipped through every page of the timeline. This is the ONLY entry I found for that specific date:

Sunday, September 10th, 1995
The Gargoyles take Maggie back to the Clock Tower, but she flees to Xanatos' Castle after they turn to stone. Elisa and Matt discover that Xanatos owns Gen-U-Tech. After sundown, the Gargoyles awaken and discover Maggie gone. The Gargoyles and Elisa confront the Mutates and Xanatos at the Castle. Although Derek takes the name Talon, Elisa realizes that the Mutate is her brother. Talon and the other Mutates flee.

Congratulations (two years late) on the birth of your son, by the way!

Response recorded on September 03, 2004

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Talon writes...

Could Elisa have told the chief of police about her brother's condition after Metamorphosis or The Cage?

Greg responds...

Obviously, she could have. But she didn't.

Response recorded on April 29, 2004

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MANDO writes...

HELLO THERE I JUST WANT TO ASK YOU WHAT THE NAME OF THE CHARACTER( THE GARGOYLE THAT LOOKS LIKE A PANTHER'S)NAME IS?AND IF YOU HAVE ANY PICTURES OF HIM. I WOULD REALLY APPRICIATE IT I'VE BEEN WATCHING THE CARTOON BUT I STILL HAV'NT SEEN HIM. I ONLY SAW IT ONCE AND I LIKED THAT CHARACTER. THANKS

Greg responds...

I assume you're talking about Talon, who wasn't a gargoyle at all, but a mutate, i.e. a human being (Derek Maza) who was transformed into a creature by mad science.

I don't have access to pictures, but I know they're available on the web. Ask around at the Station 8 Gargoyles Comment room.

Response recorded on April 13, 2004

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Aaron writes...

Hi Greg. Long-winded question, so bear with me.

One of the recurring themes of Western story-telling is that those who "tamper in God's domain", to borrow a phrase, will be struck down for their hubris. After the enterance of Frankenstein into our collective consciousness, one of the "rules" for Western literature is that Frankenstein must always be destroyed by his monster, for his arrogance in playing god.

The reason I bring this up, is that Xanatos is a man who seems to like playing god. And he has left a trail of monsters in his wake.

I'll ignore Jackal, Hyena, and Wolf for the purposes of this question, since it could be argued that they were already monsters who merely allowed their exteriors to be altered to match their true natures. (Although, it could also be argued that those three were tempted by David and his offers of power and vengeance, but at the end of the day, I still think they all damned themselves willingly)

I'd go so far as to even ignore the mutates, because even though they become monsterous looking, they really don't fit the bill as "monsters". They're just ordinary people who, by virtue of making some bad character judgements, find themselves with fur and wings. (Although it probably doesn't help Xanatos' karma any)

But even ignoring those two examples, you still have...

1. Coldstone. Such an obvious Frankenstein archtype that you joked about it. (The "It's alive! ALLLLLLLIVE!" sequence remains one of my favorites from the whole show) Of course, you could lay Coldstone at least partially at Demona's feet as well, so we'll move on.

2. Thailog. Grown in a lab, created with a mixture of different people, (Goliath's body and temper, Xanatos' mind and ethics, Sevarius'... libedo? Whatever accounts for Delilah) he turns almost immediately on his "fathers" You could call Thailog Sevarius' creature rather then Xanatos' except that David is the force behind his creation, and that Anton, for all his mad scientist posturing, could be seen as no more then a lab assistant, an Igor to David's Dr. Frankenstein.

3. The Coyote robot series. Xanatos' most personal "creature", the one to whom he gave his face (well, half of it) and voice. Loyal (?) to David for now, but unless forming the Ultrapack is David's idea, he presumably goes indepentant eventually. That, and we know he sets his sights on galactic domination in 2198, presumably not with his creator's blessing. (Then again, I could be wrong)

4. The Matrix. Created so that David and Fox could reshape the entire planet at their whim. If that's not arrogance, I don't know what is. Admittedly, I don't think it's becoming sentient along the way was part of the plan, and it's inclusion here might be a bit of a stretch, but I thought it was an example of Xanatos' hubris, if nothing else.

So, I guess, after all that lead up, my question is this: Would the pattern hold true? Would one (or all) of Xanatos' "creatures" come back to bite him in the ass later? As Elisa said "I wouldn't want Xanatos' karma."

There is a second part to this question, but I'll submit it separately, in case it's viewed as an idea.

Greg responds...

Well, for starters, I'd argue your premise. Victor Frankenstein's life was certainly decimated by the monster he created and abandoned -- but he survived the experience, sadder and hopefully wiser.

Moreover, it was the abandonment that was his true sin in Mary Shelley's original work. The creation was certainly hybris. But Shelley is pretty darn clear that she viewed the abandonment as worse. And I tend to agree. It's nature vs. nurture. The creature wasn't created evil. He was driven to it.

As to X's karma and whether it will all come back to bite him in the ass, I think the answer is clearly yes. But I really see it as a separate question. That is, it is a karma question more than simply a playing god question. That's one element. But only one. After all, one might argue that David and Fox were playing god by bringing Alexander into the world. But I wouldn't argue that. And I'm sure that's not what you had in mind.

So let's go through the numbers.

I tend to agree that Wolf, Hyena and Jackal built their own cages. And for the record, seem quite happy to live in them.

The Mutates seem to be following the same path as the gargoyles themselves. That is to say, that Xanatos woke the gargoyles, and has often suffered for it since. He then turned these four humans into mutates, and has had to suffer a bit (though admittedly not much) for that. It will be interesting to see Talon's post-Hunter's Moon reaction to Goliath and Co. moving back into the Castle. But the larger truth is that Talon, Maggie and Claw are making lives for themselves.

1. Coldstone. Well, yeah, duh. This is our Frankenstein's monster. But as with most things, Xanatos is too smart to truly follow in Victor's footsteps. He helps create the creature -- and certainly uses it -- but he never simply abandons it. And he also tries to balance (or bury) the Karmic scales, by helping out with Coldstone's Multiple Personality Disorder and by building Coldsteel and Coldfire.

2. Thailog. Here's the big threat, frankly. A guy with something to prove and three fathers to prove it all to. I think Xanatos hasn't seen the last of Thailog. One could argue that Thailog is the only guy to ever beat Xanatos at his own game (in Double Jeopardy). So the hybris of creating him has already bitten X's ass. But I doubt Thailog is through.

3. Coyote... I just don't want to reveal too much on this right now. Sorry.

4. I really think you have to chalk Matrix up to Fox's hybris (and competitive spirit) rather than to David's. She was certainly having the Matrix engineered for her and her man, but that doesn't mean that Xanatos was behind it. That would assume that she cannot operate independently. And I sure as heck wouldn't assume that about her.

So the short answer: yes. But it's all very nuanced.

Response recorded on January 07, 2004

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Quasi writes...

I don't know if you've answered this cuz I can't seem to find it, but what are Fang's and Claw's real names?

Greg responds...

I haven't revealed Fang's real name yet. And in fact, I don't know Claw's real name. I've got it in my head that that is something we never learn.

Response recorded on October 30, 2003

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Chris Velazquez writes...

If given the chance to revive the Gargoyles series, what role would you personally give to these mostly underused and/or underrated characters:

1. Fang- My favorite character, I wonder if he would be given the chance to become one of the typical " one-liner spitting good guy with bad attitude" character (something I would like) or become a mayor villain.

2. Maria Chavez- Would she ever meet the gargoyles?

3. Claw

4. Wolf

5. Delilah

Also, I would like to know how old Talon, Maggie, Claw and Fang are.

Greg responds...

What follows is not meant to be all-inclusive, but just a sampling of my plans...

1. Fang was destined to join "BAD GUYS". That is he was forced to either join Bad Guys or serve a life sentence in prison. He chose the former. For more info on BAD GUYS see the Bad Guys Archive here at ASK GREG, or come to next year's GATHERING in Montreal to see the Bad Guys' story reel for yourself.

2. Ever's a long time. But I had no immediate plans to change either her position or her role within the show. We would have learned more about her home life though, including her daughter.

3. Claw would have remained a mainstay in the Labyrinth, though he also would likely have guest-starred in BAD GUYS.

4. Wolf would have joined the Ultra-Pack.

5. Delilah would also have remained in the Labyrinth. She and Goliath would attempt to "date", but it wouldn't work out.

Finally, my timeline shows the following birth years:

Claw - 1954
Fang - 1968
Talon - 1970
Maggie - 1975

Response recorded on August 25, 2003

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jjwspider writes...

>> Hey Greg,

Just out of curiousity(I hope to what ever god/dess that I spelled that right.) I was wondering why Sevarius did gene splicing to make the Mutates? I watched this thing on one of the educational channels and it said that humans have little bits of DNA from every animal in their DNA codes. So, why didn't Sevarius just activate the exsting genes in them? Or, did he by that gene splicing?

Well off to homework, "yeah".

Greg responds...

Sigh.

Anyone with a scientific background want to field this? Come up with an explanation that justifies what we put into the show?

Be my guest. <<

I believe that the reasoning here would be that as humans we contain DNA that is very similar to the DNA found in amimals (like proteins that have the same structure) but we don't contain the DNA of every animal per se. It may look like we do but that is just because of similarity of structure or similar proteins in our bodies. Sevarius spliced animal DNA to the mutates based upon which section of the animals DNA controlled a certain trait. But putting these DNA samples into their systems they eventually became grafted onto their own DNA structures, mutating the DNA, and causing their appearances to change in order to resemble their now changed genetic code.

I hope that helps Greg!

-Joe Wagner

Greg responds...

It does. Thanks, Joe. See, gang, the fans are always your first and best resource.

Response recorded on August 22, 2003

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matt writes...

i have a suspicion that you'll prefer to keep the answers to these questions in mystery, but i'll ask anyway:

1. was the "cure" that Sevarius created in "Metamorphosis" an actual cure for the mutation?

2. was the "cure" that Sevarius created in "The Cage" an actual cure for the mutation?

3. will an actual "cure" for the mutation ever be created?

Greg responds...

1. No.
2. Not saying.
3. See above.

Response recorded on June 20, 2003

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matt writes...

i recently saw on the Discovery Channel a show about the Electric Eel. it said that a healthy adult Electric Eel can deliver shocks of 700 volts, and i was wondering if the Mutates were capable of shocking with more or less than 700 volts? how many volts do you think?

Greg responds...

Matt, matt, you're not really asking me a numbers question, are you?

Dude, you should no better.

Response recorded on June 20, 2003

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Vanity writes...

This is about the Light bulb contest, well more correctly the incident itself.
Fang was cracking at gargoyles right, I suppose thier intelligence or whatever. Why was Demona seemingly unoffended by that? While Goliath was atleast perhaps annoyed.

Greg responds...

It's possible that Demona had other things on her mind at that moment and wasn't paying attention.

It's possible, as Demona had been caged up beside Fang for weeks and weeks that she was long past the point of reacting to every damn thing he said. (Since any adult knows that reacting to an immature person saying stupid stuff is the best way to encourage that immature person to continue.)

Response recorded on June 18, 2003

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King Cobra3 writes...

The Mutates.

1. Why is Claw always mute? Who would be hired to do his voice if it was ever decided he would talk?
2. Did Elisa ever meet Delilah?
3. What are Fang and Claw's real names?

Greg responds...

1. Trauma. Claw's never going to talk as far as I'm concerned. His muteness is fundamental to his character.
2. Eventually.
3. I honestly haven't given them real names yet, because it hasn't been necessary. But they do have real names.

Response recorded on May 29, 2003

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adam writes...

in the labyrinth clan, who would be considered second after Talon?

Greg responds...

I don't think they are currently organized that way at this time. Ironically, by default, the answer might be Maggie. But I don't think it's formalized.

Response recorded on May 20, 2003

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Chapter XXXIX: "Kingdom"

Time to get back to rambling...

Well, we've had our adventure in Avalon and made a couple stops on what I knew was going to be a long trip. Time to check in on the home front.

Only trouble is, as these things originally aired, this one actually didn't manage to get broadcast right here. It just wasn't ready in time, and we had enough trouble airing reruns without holding up episodes that were ready to go just because this one wasn't. And besides it was all part of Tier Four. So we couldn't justify waiting for it.

Still. Out of the 66 eps I was involved in, only two aired out of order. "The Price" aired too soon. "Kingdom" aired too late.

Hope it didn't screw too much with your sense of continuity.

Oh, by the way, Kingdom was

Directed by Bob Kline
Story Edited by Gary Sperling
Written By Marty Isenberg & Robert Skir

KINGDOM (BROOKLYN & TALON)

The title, I believe, was another one of my one word 'theme' titles. It refers, of course, to the newly established kingdom of the Labyrinth and who and how it will be ruled. Can any organization exist without leadership? Or will a power vacuum by nature be filled by something, positive or negative?

We have in this show two reluctant leaders. Brooklyn and Talon. Ironically, Talon seems to have no problem asserting himself to lead -- especially among the Gargoyles in the void of Brooklyn's unleadership. He wants the authoritiy of leadership without the responsiblilty that comes with actually having the title.

Brooklyn feels a burden of leadership that's two-fold. On the one hand, he feels like acknowledging his role as leader is a betrayal of Goliath. Like he's giving up on finding his older brother. On the other hand, he feels intimidated by trying to fill Goliath's shoes (assuming Goliath wore shoes).

He's specializing in 'avoidance' or as Kent Brockman would say, "Avoision".

"Why are you looking at me?"
"Perfect."
"Stop asking me that. I don't know."

Everyone else is actually working on the missing Goliath/Bronx/Elisa problem. Brooklyn isn't even doing that, because any action risks being misinterpreted as leadership.

HUDSON

So throughout, Hudson uses psychology to gently nudge Brooklyn into the right mental space.

Guess he'll go to the Labyrinth to ask Elisa's brother if he's seen her. Might see Maggie there....

Suddenly Brooklyn is volunteering. For the wrong reasons, of course, but Hudson has at least gotten him started. Moved him from active to passive.

CAGNEY

Is fun in this. Didn't want to leave the poor cat alone for months now, did we? I like how Broadway and Hudson care for him. How the cat reacts, sleeping on Hudson's head, when Hudson wakes up. How he reacts to Maggie the (other) Cat. How Hudson, quietly admits just how much he loves Bronx in Cagney's presence.

AL, CHAS and ?

I like these guys. They're well characterized in just a few little bits.

Al's the homeless guy that Fang harrasses. Chas and his buddy (who's name I didn't catch this time through -- though I know I have it written down at the office) are Fang's cronies.

Jeff Bennett (as Chas' buddy) is very funny describing their discovery to Fang.

There's a brief moment at the end, where it looks like Lex and BW might be smashing these two guys heads in with rocks. But we pull back and see they're really smashing the guns. I don't think we'd get away with even the tease of that in the current S&P atmosphere.

I wonder where they went after Talon chased them out. Can't help thinking they were naturals to join the Quarrymen.

And how's Al doing?

FANG & CLAW

I love Belushi as Fang. (He's got a great growl that's a sound effect, but it works great with Belushi's stuff.) My wife Beth thought Jim was too over the top. But I think he's hilarious.

He's got a bunch of great lines:

"...Flying bug zappers."
"Now wouldn't that be a crying shame."
"Open the door, Fang. Protect the weak, Fang."
"There's a new Sheriff in town."
"Ahhh, mannn...."
"Mutate humor."

Talon: "You and what army?"

Fang: "This army, pal. And you're our first prisoner of war." (Though technically Talon is the second, since Maggie's already trapped in the gun chamber.)

My nearly eight-year-old-daughter Erin asked, "Is he greedy or jealous?" Both, probably.

And he is bright enought to trick Talon.

And Claw is just a love. Charming in his silence. He really comes into his own in this ep, you know?

Incidentally, this year "Kingdom" made the fan's top ten favorite episodes, alongside such others as: "Hunter's Moon, Parts One, Two and Three," "The Mirror," "Future Tense," and others.

I was a bit surprised. Most of the other ten look a hell of a lot better than this one. It's a tribute to Brooklyn's popularity probably, but also, I think to Claw.

There's great fun throughout with that darn key card. Fang trying to bust into the gun chamber initially. Being so frustrated, and Claw just lowering the card in front of him.

"Give me that!" Fang says and grabs it.

Later, after Maggie's escaped, and Fang regains consciousness to find out what happened, Claw does his intentionally indecipherable pantomime schtick. And Fang simply repeats: "Give me that!"

MATT

The scene with Broadway and Matt is oddly animated. Looks briefly like it's from some other show. But there's something strangely cool about the animation, even though it's off.

MAGGIE

Erin said, "I like Maggie. She's very..." But she didn't complete the sentence. Even with prompting from both Beth and myself. She just liked her, I guess.

Maggie begs Claw to let her out. So that she can join the fight? No. So that she can get help. That's Maggie's version of bravery. And I'm not knocking it. Frankly, it's what we teach our kids. You don't teach them to enter dangerous situations. You teach them to go get help. Dial 911. Maggie will never be a warrior, though she has the power for it. It's just not who she is. Normally, that might bug me. But this was a show with so many strong warrior female types, that I liked having the variety.

But this episode doesn't happen to have any of those strong female types like Elisa or Angela or Fox or even Demona. Did it bother anyone that Maggie was the only woman depicted and that she never participated in battle?

Maggie does get to shine in an area that comes more natural to her. Acting. She figures out at the end what Brooklyn is up to, and then performs her heart out to keep Fang in the dark, as she releases Derek. Well, I've always said she came from Ohio to make it in NYC as an actress...

She and Talon are now even more firmly established as a couple. Even in Brooklyn's mind. Finally, he adjusts and moves on.

XANATOS & OWEN

Hey, how about that new security system, installed as a result of Thailog's 'kidnapping' in Double Jep. Doesn't it... SUCK??!!!!!

The cannons do WAY more damage to X's castle than to anyone or anything else. And I also felt like we had done this before at Mac's place in Lighthouse and the Price.

So this is just weak. A failure on our part to come up with something stronger, more original, etc. We needed some action around now. But I still wish we had cracked this better.

There are some fun moments, if not always for the right reasons...

There's a comedy WAY off-model Broadway riding the exploding cannon.

There's a couple gargs falling through X's ceiling.

And it leads into a fun scene...

Owen's stone fist use (though a great idea) is actually a touch feeble, but X is in rare form...

Xanatos: "Do I really need an excuse to have a good time in my own home?"

And Xanatos: "A man has to make a living."

And Xanatos again: "I wasn't aware I needed permission."

Of course, on my tape that effect is spoiled when he suddenly goes cross-eyed. I'm hoping that's a retake that got corrected after the first airing.

BROOKLYN

Finally, after the debacle at X's place (which winds up being less of a debacle since we never figured out an episode that would show how X would take advantage of the info he learned) and after Maggie's plea for help (Brook could never resist a damsel in distress), Brooklyn finally takes up the role of Leader. Reluctantly.

Brooklyn: "This has nothing to do with what I want."

Hud: "Is that an order then."
Brook: "Yeah, I guess it is." Then look at him right there. That's a hero, am I right?

And Erin says, "Funny. All the leaders have long hair."

Hmmmm....

And so Brooklyn can't avoid leadership...

"Yeah, try as I might."

And he and Talon shake hands, as both accept the roles destiny has thrusted upon them. It looks good on them.

And that's my ramble. Where's yours?


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Silverbolt writes...

Hey there.

I saw an episode of Batman: the animated Series (not the future one) and saw a rather intresting episode which involved Catwoman being turned into a cat-woman and it also involved a genetically enginnered cat which looked like Talon oh and the worst thing was that the guy who did all this looked exactly Sevarius. Hmmm... i don't know when it was made but i wonder if they nicked the look of the guy from gargoyles. or perhaps everyone thinks made doctors look like red headed lab guys?

oh-well

Greg responds...

I think great minds think alike. But I think they were our way before we were. So although I don't think we copied them, they certainly didn't copy us.

Response recorded on June 10, 2002

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Chapter XXXII: "The Cage"

For ASK GREG and the DCV, here's my ramble on "The Cage"...

Director: Dennis J. Woodyard
Story Editor: Brynne Chandler Reaves
Writer: Lydia C. Marano

SEMI-NEW CHARACTERS:

We'd seen a photo of Beth Maza before, but this was the first time we actually met her.

This is also, arguably, Vinnie's first real appearance. We'd heard his voice before, and we later decided that he had appeared two or three times before. But here was the inspirational moment. The character that we fell in love with, that went on to STAR in "Vendettas" and "The Journey". Throughout our viewing of the episode, my wife kept asking who did this voice, who did that voice? Every single time, I answered "Jeff Bennett." Then at the end, she asked: "Who's voicing Maggie? Don't tell me it's Jeff." For the record, it's Kath Soucie.

And here's the first real characterization for Fang & Claw as well. Fang was voiced by Jonathan Frakes for his one line in "Metamorphosis". But we cast Jim Belushi to play Mr. Obnoxious from this point out. I fell in love with Jim's take on Fang. His performance alone was one of the big inspirations for BAD GUYS. He's got some great lines:
--"Cat got your tongue... don't you get it?"
--"Like you're some kind of expert on evil monsters!"
--"I'll have to clear my social calendar."

Note also, to save money, Diane Maza never speaks. This episode had a huge cast. Making Claw a mute was a fun way to save money.

LITTLE THINGS I LIKE:

--Elisa refers to her brother as Derek. Goliath uses the word Talon.

--I love how Xanatos says: "Goliath and Elisa are always welcome here." He's so slick. He's far from in control in this episode. But he never stops playing the various characters against each other. He's constantly adjusting to new information. Never flustered.

--I like how Sev is basically talking to himself in his cage. With only the growling monster for feedback. Amazing how much one can gleen from a growl.

--Broadway praises the concert music simply by virtue of it's volume.

--Brooklyn's line: "I'm not a man. I'm a gargoyle." And don't you forget it.

Goliath kidnapping Sev and withholding info from Elisa to 'spare her pain', presiges his behavior in "Eye of the Storm".

Maggie is interesting to me in this. Though she's never going to be an action hero -- we intentionally didn't want to make her a strong female, because it seemed like every other female in the show was strong -- she seems to come into her own a bit here. She speaks her mind. She wields some power over Derek, even if she doesn't realize it. She's still stronger than she gives herself credit for. (Geez, I must suck at weak women characters.)

Although it's not used in the body of this episode, in the credits we refer to Maggie as "Maggie the Cat" for the first time. A Tennessee Williams "Cat on a Hot Tin Roof" reference.

FLASHBACKS

Lots of 'em. The recap. And TWO separate internal flashbacks in the show. I'm trying to remember if the board was short or if we just really felt like this was a tough story to get if you didn't have a TON of back-info.

Elisa even has a line, that I think works pretty well, where she's imagining telling her family about Derek -- and in one quick speech, she spews out all the pertinent details. We were clearly nervous about this episode being able to stand alone. Did anyone else have problems with this? Particularly anyone who saw this one without having seen "Metamorphosis" already?

When you see Maggie in flashback, book-ended by her current appearance, you can really see how different the designs were between "Metamorphosis" and "The Cage". I greatly prefer the later designs. Though I think I miss the tails.

FLAWS:

--Throughout the episode, I have numerous problems where identities seem to me to be given away before I want them to be given away.

In the opening scene, we want the audience to think that the snooping winged creature is Goliath. But there are two problems. One is all the Talon scenes in the "Previously on Gargoyles..." recap. The second is that we get too clear a glimpse of Talon.

Later, Goliath kidnaps Sevarius and holds him captive. But we wanted the audience to think it's Talon. But again, I think we get glimpses of Goliath that are just too clearly Goliath.

The concept of seeing a character "in shadows" or in partial "silhouette" just seemed tough to get across the ocean and back with our production team on this ep.

Did anyone think that Talon had kidnapped Sev? Was anyone shocked when it was revealed that Goliath was the kidnapper?

--On my tape, Anton's briefcase mispells his name: SERVARIUS. I hope that was corrected for later airings. I hope.

--The scene between Talon and X in the latter's office is clunky. The cityscape visible through X's window looks to be painted onto the window. And Talon's footsteps are very labored and clunky.

Xanatos admits that Sev's original "Metamorphosis" cure was just a placebo. If we stop here, then Talon should stop being angry at Goliath. Goliath neither killed Sev nor did he destroy a viable cure, nor did he have any impact on Talon's chance at a cure. But at this point, Talon's blinded by rage.

There's some really nice animation of Brooklyn and Fang climbing through the air.

KID RESPONSE:

My daughter Erin thought that Fang looked more wolf-like than cat-like.

She also figured out pretty fast that Goliath was the kidnapper. And when it was revealed she said, "I knew it all along."

CONTINUITY

Brooklyn acts as leader in Goliath's absense. But we don't have anyone comment on it. That was just in case this episode wound up airing before "Upgrade". I think Brook makes some wise moves here though. I also like his emotional resonance with Maggie: "You know I wanted to be your... friend."

I also like when he refers to her "persecution complex". Is he projecting?

We re-intro Cyberbiotics Underground Lab from the pilot, in preparation to turning it into the Labyrinth.

I like Goliath and Elisa's exchange in the lab. Lines like:

G: "You were in so much pain."
E: "Who would we test it on?"
E: "The ends can't justify the means. That's Xanatos' way. Not yours."

Other cool lines:

Fang: "I like this body."

Maggie: "Is your vengeance more important than our humanity?" The ultimate question to put to anyone pursuing vengeance.

Xanatos: "You always over-play your hand, Anton." Anton's just a ham to the core.

Xanatos: "He's the scientist. You're just the experiment."

Xanatos: "Hello, Goliath. Didn't even notice you there."

(X is so cool.)

Talon finally, finally figures out what Elisa has been trying to tell him since "Her Brother's Keeper". Took long enough. This arc for Talon was something we had been planning out as far back as our original unsold first dramatic over-pitch to Eisner. Back when Talon was both Scientist and experiment, and the character (created by Fred Schaefer) was known as Catscan.

I like Talon & Maggie's relationship. Don't know if they ever would have gotten together as humans. But they are so natural with each other as Mutates.

Talon: "We're not strong alone. We're strong together."

Goliath verbalizes here that Elisa is part of the clan.

Talon has his own clan (the Mutates) and his own family (the Mazas). The Mazas learn about the Mutates and are reunited with their son. But Goliath is hiding behind the curtain. Elisa's still not ready to share that secret.

Ending: Contrast this (relatively) upbeat ending with the endings from "Metamorphosis" where Elisa is left in tears and "Her Brother's Keeper" where she is left alone in the snow and wind. Things are looking up.

And, of course, we end on the image of the open cage door. That was important to me, because the cage was never more than a metaphor. We didn't really need it for Sevarius. We needed to see that Maggie and Talon were in cages of their own making. (Sev too, really. And Goliath. And maybe Elisa, although now I'm stretching it.)

Anyway, that's my ramble. Where's yours?


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"THE CAGE" Memo...

In prep for a ramble on "The Cage", here is the memo that I wrote to Brynne Chandler Reaves on Lydia Marano's 1st draft outline...

WEISMAN 12-13-94

Notes on "The Cage" Outline...

Brynne, call me when you get these.

GENERAL
I hate to sound like a broken record but this begins too slow. I've tried not to write a whole new story. But I have condensed things -- moving the kidnapping up into the first act, etc.

A secondary problem that only occurred to me Sunday is that we have to re-introduce Talon to our audience before we begin to misdirect them into thinking that Talon is the kidnapper. Otherwise, they'll see the silhouette of a big guy with wings and correctly guess that the kidnapper is Goliath. (When the story begins, Talon will have only appeared in one other episode; Goliath will have been in at least 25.) Talon won't even enter their minds until he is re-introduced later in the first act. By that time, we'll need to change their mind regarding the kidnapper's identity. A difficult task, considering that the audience already would have assumed the truth.

MUTATE rather than MUTANT.

At start of story... Goliath is to Talon what Xanatos is to Elisa.

THEME: Cages of all kinds. Use every opportunity to reinforce it.

Need to make sure that in the first two acts, we've set up Maggie's desperate need for a cure. But more importantly, we must set up the warm interdependent relationship between Maggie and Talon. Need to believe their feelings for each other are real before we get to Act Three.

BEAT SHEET
ACT ONE
I. Maza Family Dinner. Beth spots winged creature at window.

II. Clock Tower. Elisa talks to Goliath.
A. She hates to lie to her family about Derek.
1. Even if it's just a lie by omission.
B. By the way, G has to be more careful. Beth spotted him.
1. Wasn't me, Goliath says.
2. One of the other gargs? G doesn't think so.
3. Elisa's very excited. Could it be Derek?
4. Goliath is quiet. Deciding what to do.
C. G reveals to E that Talon and Mutates are back w/Xanatos.
1. Last few weeks, he's seen them near Eyrie Building.
2. Didn't tell her because he knew it would hurt her.
3. He feels powerless to help her.
D. Elisa insists that Goliath take her there.

III. Eyrie Building.
A. Action. Goliath vs. Talon, Fang & Claw.
1. Elisa tries to stop fight. Talon is torn.
2. Maggie stops fight.
a. She hates the fighting.
b. We see that Talon listens to her.
3. Magnanimous Xanatos seconds the motion.
a. He's pleased that the Mutates defend his castle.
b. But Goliath and Elisa are not the enemy.
B. Elisa confronts Talon: X is the enemy.
1. Maggie defends X as their only chance for a cure.
2. Elisa says X is the cause not the cure.
3. Talon: No -- Sevarius and Goliath caused this.
4. Reveal that Talon believes Sev. to be dead.
a. Either show flashback to "Metamorphosis"
b. Or be very clear for our audience:
i. Why he thinks Sev is dead.
ii. And why he blames Goliath.
5. Elisa hasn't seen Sev, so she can't be sure.
a. But she expresses some doubt that he's dead.
b. Talon: if Sev is alive now, he won't be for long.
6. Elisa and Goliath leave.
C. X secretly tells Owen to warn Sev to disappear for awhile.

IV. Gen-U-Tech.
A. Sev is kidnapped. Nobody sees. Very Quick.
B. Elisa arrives seconds later in her car.
1. Confirms w/security guard that Sev is alive.
a. She just missed him.
2. Another winged figure listens from above.
a. It's actually Talon.
b. But audience, and even Elisa, will assume it's G.
i. Elisa's touched G's so concerned about her.

V. Sev caged by unseen captor in underground Cyberbiotics Lab.

VI. Eyrie Building.
A. Owen has not been able to reach Sev.
1. Talon probably got to him first.
B. On battlements, Talon returns. Mutates confab.
1. Talon now knows Sev didn't die in "Metamorphosis".
2. But "dealing" with Sev is only half the job.
3. Sev couldn't have faked his death without help.
4. Goliath is Talon's #1 suspect.
5. Maggie doesn't agree but...
a. She let's slip about the Clock Tower.

VII. Fang, Claw and Maggie attack Clock Tower.
A. Maggie is present but is terrified by fighting.
B. Hudson and Bronx are the only Gargoyles there.
1. They put up a valiant fight but are defeated.

ACT TWO
VIII. Underground Lab. Sev agrees to work on cure for unseen captor.

IX. Clock Tower. Hudson regains consciousness.
A. Fang & Claw await Goliath's return.
1. So they can bring him back to Talon, as ordered.
2. Hudson warns them it'll be a long wait.
a. Goliath said he'd be gone for a few nights.
i. It's actually the truth.
ii. But the mutates don't buy it.
iii. Neither will the audience.

X. Eyrie Building.
A. Owen checks all locations where Talon might hold Sev.
B. Talon confronts X.
1. Until recently, Sev was alive & working at G-U-Tech.
2. X admits that he was fooled by Sev's "death".
a. Goliath and Sev must've been working together.
b. G wants Sev to create more monsters like him.
c. This confirms Talon's suspicions.
3. X has known for some time that Sev was alive.
a. He's had Sev working on a cure at Gen-U-Tech.
b. Didn't want to get Talon's hopes up.
4. But Sev was close to a cure.
a. If it's not too late...
b. Talon should release him to X's custody....

XI. Clock Tower. Trio return home.
A. Hudson manages to warn them.
B. Battle.
1. Fang & Claw are more powerful...
2. But Gargoyles are more experienced fighters.
3. Gargoyles win.
C. Brooklyn talks to Maggie.
1. He's over his crush on her.
2. But he still tries to get her to see reason.
a. G was there that night to save her from Sev.
b. G & Sev aren't partners.
c. Xanatos must be culprit.
3. Maggie doesn't want to hear it.
a. Xanatos is their only chance for a cure.
b. Gargoyles must be at fault.
4. To prove her wrong, Brooklyn lets the Mutates go.

XII. Gen-U-Tech. Elisa's back, still looking for missing Sev.
A. She's very worried that Derek has done something stupid.
B. Checking security-camera footage for when Sev left earlier.
1. Does enhancing tricks to confirm Sev was snatched.
2. Enhances more to get a look at kidnapper.
a. Off her reaction...

XIII. Cyberbiotics. Reveal Goliath as kidnapper of Sev.

ACT THREE
XIV. Eyrie Building. Talon tells Xanatos that he doesn't have Sev.
A. Owen enters w/news from Gen-U-Tech.
1. Looks like Sev. "left with" Goliath.
a. Comes across as proof that Sev & G are partners.
2. Doesn't take long for Owen to deduce where G is.
a. Only one abandoned lab that G knows about.
i. CyberBiotics Underground Research Lab.
B. Talon takes off.
C. Other Mutates are just getting back from Clock Tower.
2. They go after him.

XV. CyberBiotics. Goliath is watching Sev work on serum.
A. Elisa enters. (Calm before the storm.)
1. She deduced his location (same as Owen did).
2. Why did Goliath do it?
a. He could see how Derek's condition hurt Elisa.
b. He was afraid that if Talon got to Sev first...
i. then Sev wouldn't survive to cure Derek.
c. Seemed like only way to get cure from Sev.
3. Elisa: Ends don't justify the means.
a. Besides, wouldn't work anyhow.
b. They can't trust Sev.
i. How do they know "the cure" is safe?
4. Goliath agrees to release Sev.
B. Too late. Talon arrives, with Mutates on his heals.
1. Positive that G and Sev are in cahoots.
2. Talon attacks G.
a. This time E. can't stop them.
C. Mutates join in.
1. It's curtains for Goliath and Sev.
D. Sev tries to save his skin with the cure.
1. There's enough here for one.
b. But he can make enough for all four.
2. Talon and Fang don't care.
a. Claw and especially Maggie care a great deal.
b. Maggie reaches out to Talon.
i. What's more important?
ii. Vengeance or Humanity?
3. For her sake, he relents, and gives her the serum.
a. Maggie clutches the serum like it was a diamond.
4. Sev tries to get Talon to take it instead of Maggie.
a. Which makes everyone suspicious.
b. Situation on verge of heating up again.
E. Armored Xanatos steps out of shadows.
1. Rescues Sev.
2. Things seemed under control.
a. But Sev overplayed his hand, as usual.
3. Talon finally gets message about X.
4. X: "So sue me." or some such.
5. He takes off with Sev.
a. Parting shot from Sev: "Serum's poison."
F. Maggie still wants to take it.
1. She thinks Sev lied to preserve his "creations".
a. It's a risk she's willing to take.
b. Because it's better to die than to live a monster.
2. Talon disagrees strongly.
a. Life is more important than normalcy.
b. Besides, he's a monster too.
3. She thinks he's stronger than she is.
4. But Talon couldn't have made it without her.
a. Neither are strong alone.
b. They are strong together.
5. She puts the serum aside.
G. Goliath offers Mutates a home with his gargoyle clan.
1. Thanks, but no.
2. Talon has his own clan (i.e. Mutates).
3. And his own family...

XVI. CYBERBIOTICS UNDERGROUND LAB - A few NIGHTS later.
A. Elisa brings Peter, Diane and Beth.
1. They are reunited with Talon.
a. Hint Maggie.
b. Fang and Claw in b.g.
B. Goliath watches, pleased.
C. Sevarius' cage sits empty. The door wide open.



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