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RJB writes...

Hi Greg,

1. Do you think that "quality of writing" is something that the average person might have a stronger opinion about compared to other subjective creative forms like art or music? Does that make it more likely that you'll get people complaining about the quality of the writing in a show rather than any other aspect of it?

2. Is it fair to say that a lot of complaints of this nature are ignorant of the many factors that go into making a show outside of purely creative decisions? Stuff like budget, scheduling or availability that might influence what's reasonably possible to do in a specific time frame?

3. Have you noticed these kinds of criticisms getting worse over time? I feel there wouldn't have been as many people complaining about "Hello, Megan" during the time of Gargoyles, or maybe even Spidey.

4. I get that armchair criticism has always been around and that social media has provided a bigger platform for it, but the recent negative reception to stuff like the ending of Game of Thrones or Star Wars The Last Jedi has made me curious about your perspective on this kind of thing.

Greg responds...

1. I do think that. My hypothesis - untested, unconfirmed - is that in a literal sense, nearly everyone knows how to "write". They know how to grab a pencil, pen or keyboard and put words on a page in an order that is at least comprehensible to another human being. So there is, perhaps, a subconscious assumption that if they just set their minds to it, that they could write stories, too - as good or better as most of the professional writers out there. On the other hand, to take your examples, not everybody believes they can draw or make music. Those talents seem esoteric, special, unique. I believe they strike a bit more awe - at least generally - than writing does. So the writing becomes the easy target. Or at least the easier target. But, of course, I'm a writer that can't draw or make music. So it makes sense that I should believe I'm under attack more. Human nature. So take it all with a grain of salt.

2. I think that's very fair to say. (And this is reading a bit like I posted these questions myself in order to defend myself with the answers. Not that I'm complaining.)

3. The internet is... well... awful... in so many ways. And its spread and influence has increased over the years, so, yes, it is definitely getting worse. But it hasn't really changed. Back in the pre-internet days, I'd still get nasty letters (sent via the post office) on Captain Atom. And the basic percentage of praise to criticism to abuse is really about the same. It just feels multiplied by the internet. The quantity of feedback is exponentially larger. And, again, human nature being what it is, I can get literally 50 tweets of praise, which are then wiped out of my mind by one mean tweet.

4. Well, I hated the ending of Game of Thrones, too... and I had mixed feelings about Last Jedi... but that wasn't the point of your question. It definitely FEELS worse. The main thing that people don't seem to get is that I LIKE MY SHOW. Brandon and I like what we've done. Not every frame, mind you, but overall, we LIKE OUR SHOW. And we are making the show WE WANT TO MAKE. I don't mind that people don't like it. (It'd be lovely, I suppose if we had 100% praise for the thing, but I honestly don't expect that. Ever.) What gets on my nerves is the assumption that many "fans" (or hate-watchers) have that we should be making the show that THEY WANT US TO MAKE, and that we're failing because we're not MAKING THEIR SHOW instead of MAKING OUR SHOW. That does grind on me. You want to shout out: "GO MAKE YOUR OWN DAMN SHOW!! No one's forcing you to watch ours!" But, of course, that's not a particularly politic statement to make. And more hate-watchers are still more watchers.

Response recorded on September 13, 2022

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Anonymous writes...

Which misconceptions about Captain Atom and his supporting cast annoy you the most?

Greg responds...


1. The conflation of Captain Atom with either (a) Doctor Manhattan or (b) Wildfire of the LSH. Cap is neither an empty shell full of energy as Wildfire is, nor does he have the godlike transformation/transmutation powers of Manhattan.

2. The idea that you can blow Cap up and his destruction releases the equivalent of an atom bomb. He's tapped into the quantum flow, but if he had built up enough power from the flow to be able to generate that kind of explosion, the excess energy would have instantly transported him into the future.

3. Anyone who divorces the Captain's story from the love of his children. That's his raison d'être. Period. That's not to say he can't participate in an adventure that has nothing to do with his kids. A League mission or what not. But if the story is about him, then everything with him is about his kids. He is a dad first. A super-hero and/or a soldier second/third.

4. Anyone who forgets that Cap is a man out of his time. It's not quite as big a deal as the kid thing. He has adapted. But it's important to remember that the 1960s was not that long ago to him.

5. General Wade Eiling is often mischaracterized from my point of view. This is a man with an agenda, but he's still (in his mind) a patriot. He's got a temper, but he's pragmatic not irrational. He'd never, for example, voluntarily place his brain inside the Shaggy Man. That's just silly to me. He's basically a proto-Xanatos. Wade's not as charming as David. But he's that smart and always armed with contingencies.

6. There are probably a lot of other things, too, if I thought about it too much. But the BIG ONE is...

7. The pronunciation of "Eiling." It's EE-ling, like an electric eel. All those people who pronounce it EYE-ling are just objectively wrong.

Response recorded on March 08, 2022

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Phoenician writes...

I was swimming through the S8 archives and noticed a Gargoyles question that's been asked before but never really had a chance to be answered (at least online).

From 2001: http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?qid=2177

From 2013: http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?qid=19262

Naturally, I'm curious myself now (and curious that I've never really wondered about it before tonight). So how many seasons and/or episodes was The Pack on the air?

Just to be thorough, I double checked the ol' This Day in Gargoyles' Universe History rambles from 2007-2008 and the posts relative to the on-air Pack program only refer to the day the television at the castle began airing episodes of The Pack on all stations all day and night long (http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?rid=644), the day of the live-performance engagement (http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?rid=645), and the aftermath of Wolf & Fox's arrest, leading to the show's cancellation (http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?rid=647) . . . all in the span of four days from November 3rd to November 6th, 1994.

Finally, I've been reading Cary Bates's and your work on The Fall and Rise of Captain Atom and I just finished World of Warcraft: Traveler! I thorougly enjoyed both and I (like so many others) cannot wait for Young Justice season three :D

Greg responds...

Thanks for the kind words!

The Pack had at least one season and had begun (at least) its second when the $#!^ hit the fan. I don't have Gargoyles materials here at my WB office, and I just can't remember if they had more than one full season. But I don't think so.

Response recorded on August 03, 2017

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Simon DelMonte writes...

Greetings, Greg! I suppose that probably expected someone from the old days of Captain Atom fandom to pop up upon the arrival of The Rise and Fall of CA. Really enjoyed the first issue.

Anyway, someone pointed out that Gen. Eiling bears a starling resemblance to Keith David. Would I be correct in guessing this was on purpose? Was it your idea? Or did Will Conrad surprise you and Cary?

Also, the final page, and its use of a newspaper from Kansas City, evoked a scene in the Dark Tower books. That is not on purpose, right?

All the best, Greg! Looking forward to seeing what you did with Nate.

Greg responds...


Despite my personal friendship with Keith, it was actually Cary who casually suggested that Will model Eiling on Mr. David. Will did surprise us a little by taking that suggestion and running with it. Keith is tickled by it, by the way.

I'm not familar with the Dark Tower books. So it didn't come from me. But I only co-plotted The Fall and Rise of Captain Atom (not Rise and Fall, btw). Cary wrote it. Still, I'm not sure if that reference is really there, or if it was necessitated by the previously established location of the Continuum.

Response recorded on March 28, 2017

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Andres Escobar writes...

Simple question what are you currently working on as it is hard to follow sometimes and if you can talk or more specifically write about it what will you be working on that you know? Ohh and where can we watch it , or if read it when is it coming out or where can we find it I know you were writing a comic for Marvel I could never find it in several comic book stores.

Greg responds...

Right now, I am working on two things. The third season of YOUNG JUSTICE and the second novel in the WORLD OF WARCRAFT: TRAVELER series.

We don't yet know where Season Three of YJ will air, but you can view Seasons One and Two on Netflix, on iTunes or on DVD or BluRay.

The second WARCRAFT book should come out in bookstores (including online bookstores) next November.

Prior to that, I was working on the second and third seasons of SHIMMER AND SHINE. Season Two is currently airing on Nick Jr.

I also wrote the first book in the WORLD OF WARCRAFT: TRAVELER series, which is currently available at bookstores (and online bookstores).

There's also my two novels RAIN OF THE GHOSTS and SPIRITS OF ASH AND FOAM, both of which are currently available at bookstores and online bookstores.

Then there's the AudioPlay version of RAIN OF THE GHOSTS, which is currently available for download at Gumroad.com/RainoftheGhosts.

I recently co-plotted a CAPTAIN ATOM miniseries with Cary Bates, illustrated by Will Conrad. It will be available this January, 2017 from anyplace that sells comic books, including the DC Comics App, Comixology and iTunes.

Last year, I wrote the twelve issue STAR WARS KANAN series for Lucasfilm and Marvel. Those are available either as single issues, as two trades (STAR WARS KANAN: THE LAST PADAWAN and STAR WARS KANAN: FIRST BLOOD) or as an omnibus, again at Bookstores, online Bookstores, comic book stores and from the Marvel Comics App, Comixology or iTunes.

Finally, I also wrote the six issue STARBRAND AND NIGHTMASK for Marvel Comics, available as single issues or as one trade (STARBRAND AND NIGHTMASK: ETERNITY'S CHILDREN [Attend University]), which AGAIN is available at bookstores, online bookstores, comic book stores, the Marvel Comics App, Comixology or iTunes.

Whew! I think that's it! Thanks for asking!

Response recorded on December 21, 2016

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Zergrinch writes...

Hypothetical question.

ALL of your past and present projects have been renewed, and you have been asked to help them all. Which one would you prioritize, and why?

Greg responds...

Well, as many regular readers of this site know, I'm not big on hypotheticals. Reality is so much more complicated, but I'll give it a shot:

GARGOYLES first, always. We're trying to get another comic book version now. Tweet the hashtag #WeLiveAgain!

YOUNG JUSTICE, second. Season Three is real. It's here. I'm working on it.

I'm also working on the second book in the WORLD OF WARCRAFT: TRAVELER series, THE SPIRAL PATH, and recently completed co-plotting work on THE FALL AND RISE OF CAPTAIN ATOM, w/my old Captain Atom partner Cary Bates.

The third book in the RAIN OF THE GHOSTS series, MASQUE OF BONES, which I still plan to get back to as soon as I possibly can.

Everything else falls into the category of it's just too hypothetical to differentiate. But I'm very fond of THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN, W.I.T.C.H., ROUGHNECKS: THE STARSHIP TROOPER CHRONICLES, STARBRAND & NIGHTMASK, anything with the STAR WARS REBELS characters [especially STAR WARS KANAN], 3X3 EYES, DISNEY'S VILLAINS and many others.

And I'm sure Edmund Tsabard would love to finish Last Tengu in Paris.

Response recorded on December 05, 2016

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Zion1244 writes...

In regards to strength, how does Icon compare to the other league heavy hitters, such as Superman, Captain Marvel, Cpt Atom & Green Lantern?

Greg responds...

Green Lantern's not particularly strong. Not physically. As for Captain Marvel, it depends whether we're talking season one or season two.

I'm not too interested in ranking generally, so I won't be held to this, but I guess I'd rank it Superman, Icon, Captain Atom. The latter's strength is augmented by energy from the quantum field reinforced by his alien metal exo-shell. The energy is virtually unlimited, but there's only so much augmentation his muscles - even with his exo-shell - can manage.

But they're all very strong. And often, strength is situational. No one's interested in how much they can bench press in a gym under controlled conditions. (Or at any rate, I'M not interested in that.) So in one situation, I could see Superman being stronger; in another, Icon, etc.

Response recorded on April 20, 2016

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Tupka writes...

No question, just something I observed.

The very first time I asked a question here, one of mine was about the change from Nathaniel Adam to Adams. You explained in always felt more natural to you, even in the 80s.

Did you know that, during the Silver Age, Captain Allen Adam was frequently, erroneously, identified as Allen Adams? In early appearances in Space Adventures, he would often be called Adams instead. See this one:


Like I said, no question, but vindication, perhaps?

Greg responds...

I did know... as I read all that stuff in the eighties when Cary Bates and I did Captain Atom. The Adam/Atom pun was always more annoying than fun for me. And at least Adams felt like a real surname. So real, that letterers of the day naturally made the mistake.

Response recorded on April 20, 2016

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Anonymous writes...

Does Batman keep trophies inside the Batcave?

Greg responds...

Which series we talking about? I've done at least five with Batman in it.

Response recorded on July 30, 2015

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TIMEBRO writes...

Hey Greg a timeline question or threerather.

1. You have detailed timelines for Young Justice and Gargoyls, do you do this for everything you do even when you havent built the universe from scratch like in your Captain Atom comics or WITCH?
2. When did you start this trait?
3. You have time and time again noted that YJ has no "canon year" and that 2010 worked for Year Zero as a math thing. So does that mean season two being in 2016 by that reckoning was a coincidence?

Greg responds...

1. Not everything, no. I have a Captain Atom timeline from way back, but I'm sure it has no relevance to current DC continuity anymore. I don't think I ever did a WITCH timeline in the strictest sense, but I did make an effort to keep track of the backstories, etc.

2. In elementary school.

3. Heh heh heh.

Response recorded on May 15, 2013

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