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Tupka writes...

Long time reader, first time asker. It's been a great week. I don't know which had me more thrilled, issue 9 or Humanity.

1) Probably asked before by now, but I couldn't find it in unanswered: Can you "translate" Zatanna's spells? I only got the second one, which appears to be "Time to try out a new look". Does Zatara speak backwards too?
2) I noticed the gender swap on Red Inferno and Red Torpedo in Homefront, though I gave it no second thought. However, now with the reveal of the "human" identities in Humanity, was the swap deliberate so you could use the golden age hero James Lockhart/Red Torpedo?
3) In issue #9, you used the name "Nathaniel Adams" as opposed to "Nathaniel Adam". I noticed you used the name before in the Batman: The Brave and the Bold episode "Powerless!"; the "Adams" version was, IIRC, introduced in Justice League Unlimited. Did DC ask you to use this name, or do you prefer it over "Adam"?

Greg responds...

1. ASKED AND ANSWERED.

1a. Yes.

2. ASKED AND ANSWERED, but yes. Except, I'm not the one who did the gender swap. When I wrote the original Red Tornado mini-series, Inferno was female and Torpedo was male because Torpedo has ALWAYS been male. Of course, they didn't publish my version. So whomever wrote the version they DID publish is the one who did the gender swap. I just went back to the original.

3. I actually do prefer "Adams" over "Adam". I'm sure in this great big world, there's someone out there with the last name "Adam," but even back in the 80s when I first started writing Captain Atom with Cary Bates, I always thought that the last name "Adam" felt artificial. "Adams" always felt more natural to me.

Response recorded on January 26, 2012

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Gothic-Cowboy writes...

Hello Mr. Weisman. Congratulations to you and the rest of the YJ crew on Home Front. I had a few questions I had hoped you'd be willing to answer.
1. In some versions, I know that Barbara Gordon has been presented as Jim Gordon's niece, whom he raised as his daughter. In other versions, she's his daughter biologically as well (In still others, she's Alfred's daughter, but it's best not to dwell there). Granted, she's Jim Gordon's daughter in every way that really counts in either version, but, for the record, could you clarify which is the case on Earth-16?
2. How would you characterize Dick and Barbara's interactions in general? Casual friendship? Surrogate siblings, to an extent?
3. Did Dick Grayson immediately debut as Robin, or did Batman make him undergo some sort of training program or evaluation before he'd take Dick with him?
4. I like Robin's gauntlet computer. Does Batman have something similar?
5. How old is Guardian?
6. How old is Alfred Pennyworth?
7. How old is Captain Atom (chronologically and biologically, if they're different)?
8. My apologies if this is asking too much, but can you confirm that the Earth-16 Captain Atom is not a sentient energy field in a containment suit? Bruce Timm and company seem unusually fond of presenting him as such, having done so in both JLU and the Superman/Batman: Public Enemies DTV. Don't get me wrong, I love every DC cartoon that's been produced (with the exception of Batman Beyond), but I've never understood why they did this. I mean, you've got a sentiest energy field that, since the word atom appears in his name, must, by Hollywood "logic," be just waiting to explode. What do we do? We send him into battle against people who are powerful enough to puncture that suit, and then act surprised when a city-sized area is suddenly in imminent danger. Sorry, I guess I've veered from my question somewhat (upon reflection, it's entirely possible that you didn't know about the whole sentient energy field thing).
Thank you for your time, Sir, and for everything else you do for the fans. Few writers make themselves available to the fandom as much as you do, and the vast majority of us greatly appreciate it, even if it sometimes probably feels like we're taking it for granted.

Greg responds...

1. She's his daughter.

2. Best friends... with potential.

3. I guess you'd have to define "immediately", but the short answer is both.

4. He has access to the technology.

5. Twenty-four.

6. Sixty-four.

7. He's seventy chronologically. About twenty-eight biologically.

8. Yes, I can confirm that he is NOT "a sentient energy field in a containment suit."

Response recorded on December 19, 2011

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Joanie writes...

I have been reading the Captain Atom series and have to say great job for both you and Cary. I absolutely love it. The character is amazing when it comes to Captain Atom's powers and how he handles situations. I do have a few questions though:

1. Why hasn't the series been picked back up?

2. Did you help create the superhero himself? If so, what exactly?

3. Why has Captain Atom been featured in crossovers even though his comic has been cancelled?

4. Do you think Captain Atom would become more known if his series came back?

Greg responds...

1. Ask DC. I've offered to do it.

2. Create him? No. Captain Atom was originally a Charlton character that DC purchased along with Blue Beetle, Peacemaker, Nightshade, Peter Cannon, Sarge Steel and the Question. But Cary, myself and artist Pat Broderick redeveloped the character for the DC Universe under the supervision of editor Denny O'Neil.

3. You'd have to ask DC.

4. Well... yeah, of course.

You can watch for a bit more Captain Atom in the new Young Justice companion comic, starting in issue #9.

Response recorded on May 25, 2011

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Dan writes...

Hi Greg!
If you saw it how did you feel about Captain Atom and Eiling's portrayals on JLU?

Greg responds...

I saw one episode with Captain Atom. His powers seemed slightly different from when I wrote the comic, but every series has to adapt. I haven't seen Eiling. At least, I don't think so.

Response recorded on May 05, 2011

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Jamie writes...

Hey greg,first of all, you're awesome, i remember when i was only 5 and i would re enact your gargoyles haha good times.

If you were to compare Young Justice and your other works, would young justice be in the top 5?

How many views are you having on Young justice ?

Greg responds...

Wow, did you just make me feel old...

Yes, YJ would be in my top five, along with Gargoyles (of course) and in no particular order, Spectacular Spider-Man, W.I.T.C.H. and Captain Atom.

Response recorded on April 21, 2011

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Clark Cradic writes...

What comic universe would you say you're more knowledgeable about: DC or Marvel?

Greg responds...

I'm pretty equal on both companies.

Fairly knowledgeable (all things considered) on pre-1970s stuff.

More knowledgeable on the 70s.

Extremely knowledgeable on the 80s.

Less knowledgeable on the early and mid 90s.

Almost completely ignorant of the mid 90s through 2006.

Somewhat knowledgeable but with huge gaps on 2006 through the present...

Of course, I worked at DC as a freelancer from 1983-1991, and on staff from 1985-1987, so I have more INSIDE knowledge of that company, but during that period I was reading ALL the Marvel books too, so if we're talking CONTINUITY and CHARACTERS, I know both companies pretty darn well. I certainly grew up reading both. And when I was a little kid, I didn't even get that there were different companies that made comics. I'd see Green Lantern team up with Superman in one book. And Spider-Man team up with the Fantastic Four in another. And I didn't know that next month I might not see Captain America team with Batman. It took me a while to get the whole competing companies idea.

Response recorded on September 21, 2010

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ComicCon 2009

Hey gang,

Had a fun convention. We had 100 copies of Clan-Building Volume Two on sale, and they went like hotcakes. David Hedgecock and I did multiple signings.

Also did a signing at the Ape booth for Mecha-Nation with Vic Cook.

And Vic, Sean "Cheeks" Galloway, Josh "Spider-Man" Keaton, Robert "Vulture" Englund, Kelly "Sha Shan" Hu and myself had a successful Spidey panel on Sunday.

Saw friends. Ate meals. Bought a Captain Atom action figure.

Good times.


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Greg Bishansky writes...

Just a comment on an archetype that seems to be a theme in your shows. I can't help but notice that the series you produce are populated by tricksters.

Puck is an obvious and classic example, the original trickster. Also, "Gargoyles" has Raven, Anansi, and Coyote who were also literal tricksters.

Beyond that, one of the lead villains, Xanatos, was a trickster... he even said so himself. That's an interesting choice of archetypes for the primary antagonist.

Thailog, while you've cited the bastard archetype often enough, outside of that, he seems like a trickster as well. Which makes sense since he was programmed by one. Granted, he's a more malevolent trickster than Xanatos, but he still displays those characteristics.

Meanwhile, over in in "Spectacular," you have Spider-Man as, perhaps, the most benevolent trickster you have yet to write. Fitting, he is the hero after all, and the people he acts like a trickster towards usually have it coming.

And, of course, you have a more sinister trickster in Green Goblin, hie arch-nemesis.

I know from personal experience how difficult tricksters can be to write, as I've often had to jump through hoops to do it right,

I haven't seen WITCH so I have no idea if this archetype shows up there or not. But it seems to me like the trickster archetype is a favorite of yours to write, and you do it so well.

So, does it just come naturally? Is Greg Weisman a trickster himself, or do you ever find yourself jumping through hoops as I sometimes do to create schemes worthy of the trickster you're writing?

Greg responds...

There's some definite hoop-jumping going on. Personally, I'm more of a bastard than a trickster. But I do enjoy both archetypes, so I do the work to make them worthy.

You'll notice, however, that each of the tricksters you named, with the exception of Xanatos, were based on existing sources, which helps. As for Xanatos, he was a variation on General Eiling (from Captain Atom), who was more of a bastard. And Eiling, in turn, was loosely based on Captain Kirk, or rather a dark mirror of Kirk (and, no, that's not a reference to the "Mirror, Mirror," as the Mirror Kirk in that episode couldn't fool anyone).

Thailog is more in the classic bastard mode than the trickster mode -- at least in my mind -- though I'll admit there's definite overlap between the two archetypes.

Response recorded on May 28, 2009

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Laura G writes...

I saw Watchmen recently (awesome, by the way), and I just had to ask...

Was David Xanatos in any way inspired by or modeled on Adrian Veidt?

Thanks!

Greg responds...

Not particularly, though of course I had read Watchmen -- in fact, I worked at DC Comics when it came out (and provided Rorshach's thumbprints) -- so it's possible that Veidt had a subconscious influence. But Xanatos has WAY less in common with Ozymandias, then he does with General Wade Eiling from Captain Atom.

Response recorded on April 28, 2009

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Nelio writes...

While this isn't Gargoyles related, I did have a question about one of your other works. Today when I was researching the episode of "The Batman" titled "Artifacts", I was surprised to find out that you were the story writer. I checked some more and found that you actually worked on 7 episodes of "The Batman"; The Big Chill, The Rubber Face of Comedy Part 1, The Clayface of Tragedy Part 2, Meltdown, Strange Minds, The Everywhere Man, and Artifacts.

Coincidently, I've noticed that the episodes you worked on happy to be the higher ranking episodes for me in this show. Besides that, my question to you is how deeply interested / have you been in the Batman world? Did you read it a lot when you were a kid? Are you a big fan of Batman? Were these seven episodes just offered to you, or did you strive to get them?

I'm mostly curious, and look forward to your response.

Greg responds...

I'm a huge Batman fan. As you may know, I also worked at DC Comics for years. And one of my personal favorite Captain Atom issues which I wrote for them, was a Batman-Captain Atom crossover.

I pursued writing work on The Batman, AND I was offered said work... first by story editor Duane Capizzi (for the first five episodes you list) and then by story editor Michael Jelenic (for the last two). All seven scripts were close collaborations.

I liked the show, and they seemed to like my work on it. Glad you liked it too.

Response recorded on August 19, 2008


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