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Redemption #4: Louse

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Todd Jensen writes...

I'd like to thank you for the birthday present. "Bad Guys" #4 came out on August 20, my birthday, so I consider it a birthday present from you (though purely thanks to the coincidence of timing).

I'd suspected that Sevarius's plan to mutate a lot of people at one go (mentioned in the teaser at the end of #3) would involve the New Year's Eve celebration in Times Square, after it was revealed in #3 that this adventure was taking place on New Year's Eve (the New Year's Eve Celebrity Hockey marathon) - but I was cautious at the same time, simply because such schemes have shown up so often in super-hero cartoons. (I've seen two Batman cartoons where the villain - in one case, the Joker himself - was attempting to gas Gotham City during its equivalent of the Times Square countdown, and it seemed too much of a cliche. But then I remembered that this *is* Sevarius we're talking about, and so the idea didn't seem so improbable. I was pleased that my suspicion was correct.

While Sevarius is his usual over-the-top self, his mutating got much darker than in "Metamorphosis". For one thing, he's now including children among his victims. And then there's Tasha's suicide, which took me by surprise. I wonder who employed him to produce so many Mutates, incidentally.

Fang was his usual loudmouth self (I particularly liked his grumbling over Sevarius having to be so over-the-top as to have the virus go off at precisely midnight). And he showed how insensitive he can be when he dared make a joke about Tasha's hanging herself (I can't say I blame Yama for responding as he did). I'm not surprised that nobody on the Redemption Squad (except for the still off-stage Director, and possibly Matrix - we didn't see his response) wants him on the team.

Was the DNA sample from Angela left over from "Monsters" (when Sevarius took samples from her and thereby learned of her parentage) or from the more recent Double Date Halloween battle?

Trust Brendan and Margot to be present at the countdown (and their usual selves, too).

More Dingo-and-Matrix interaction (I liked Dingo's protest when Matrix "abandoned" him to stop the virus from escaping, and Matrix's explanation). Those two make a fun team.

I'm looking forward to #5 (whether it comes out as a single issue or as part of the trade paperback collection), and the identity of the mystery figure from Dingo's past. (I have a suspicion as to who he might be, but because of the "no ideas" rule, all that I'll say is that it has to do with Dingo's real name - and where else I've come across it before).

Once again, thank you for the birthday present, Greg.

Greg responds...

Angela's sample was from "Monsters".

Response recorded on October 13, 2008

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Greg Bishansky writes...

*** BIG BAD SPOILERS ***

Another great issue of "Bad Guys," it ups the ante even more from the last issue. Action packed, and a villain you want to see get beaten up. And great to see Karine Charlebois return after her absence last issue.

Sevarius is, as he's always been, a hammy bastard. But, what a hammy bastard. He destroys peoples' lives, and he has fun while doing it.

The new mutates, I didn't think it was possible, but this is even worse than the first four Mutates. Two of them are just children. Now, they're almost literally insects. It is very strongly implied that this is all being done on Thailog's behalf, which probably makes the clone the perfect employer for Sevarius. Yes, you could really feel Hunter's rage here.

And, when Tasha hung herself... damn. This is an advantage to not having the series on television. Wow.

The scheme to mutate the people at Times Square was just, well, if this is indeed Thailog behind it, he's really stepping up his game. Those poor tourists, because only tourists go to New Year's Eve in Times Square, us natives are at private parties getting plastered (I guess no one invited Brendan and Margot to a party).

We also get more hints as to what Thailog is planning with the DNA he stole from the gargoyles in #5 of the main book. It's not exactly what we thought it was, and knowing Greg, should that surprise us? He keeps throwing us more and more curve balls.

The action was intense, the story was good. It was fun seeing Fang announced as their newest recruit... and everyone looks so happy about it. #3 of "Bad Guys" alluded to Hunter having a superior that she reports to. #4 finally confirmed it. If it was her call, I doubt Fang would be on board.

Now that the team is together, I hope that in #5, ten years after seeing the "Bad Guys" leica reel for the first time, we finally find out what is on that island being protected by those giant robots.

A little comment, of course. I could easily hear Tim Curry and Jim Belushi's voices in my head as I read Fang and Sevarius. Those two are just so over the top, this dialogue is just natural for them. I loved it.

And, cameos, cameos, cameos.

Erin and Benny... Greg mutated his two kids. Cute. ;)

Quite a few at Times Square. Long time fans:
Jennifer L. Anderson... she's the one laughing, and the guy looking back with the "God woman, what is that noise" look amuses me. Funny if you've ever heard her laugh. ;)
Stephanie Lostimolo, the former cover colorist (and colorist for #5 of "Gargoyles") giving Eric "Gorebash" Tribou of Station Eight a noogie. Yup, witnessed that in person too.
Cindy Kinnard making her second cameo in the series, she briefly appeared in #5 at Xanatos's party.
Seth Jackson all the way on the right.

None of them native New Yorkers, because, as I said, only tourists go to Times Square for New Years. Come on people, why? You're not allowed to bring booze, and you'll be freezing your butts off for hours on end. Oh, and you never know when some creepy Rocky Horror Picture Show fan and his Furry thug of a buddy might decide to drop a virus on you!

Great issue, I loved it.

*** END SPOILERS ***

Greg responds...

I probably shouldn't say this, but all your Thailog assumptions are incorrect.

Response recorded on October 13, 2008

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Chip writes...

Wow...

This issue was really heavy. I knew Sevarius was slime...but now I believe that he is an evil man. I really kinda wish Yama could have shown him the business end of his Katana.

The man is twisted...really twisted. And I have to wonder...who is the client who asked about an army of mutates? Thailog? Demona? Xanatos? Taro? Or someone we haven't seen yet.

Robyn's prejudice (Which I've suspected/noted before) shows through when Sevarius threatens her with gargoyle mutation...and it hints at what Thailog has in store for those 8 DNA samples. Also, Yama notes her prejudice with an...unreadable expression.

God, I feel for those four mutates...especially Benny and Erin; I don't think the gravity of what has happened to them has hit them yet. (Of course Greg keeps it light-hearted by having his own kids be the mutates.)

Robyn is as infuriated with Anton as I was...and rightly so. Still, Dingo and Matrix show up before the worst happens...but were clearly to preoccupied to notice that Sevarius had goaded them into putting him in the cell.

That Terry...always noticing the flying anthropomorphic creatures...I do believe he may fall for one one day.

Fang's lightning attacks have a very...unusual effect on Dingo, due--I presume--to his linkage with Matrix. It was funny to see Dingo smack his face on the wall.

And then came the heavy part...poor Tasha...poor Benny and Erin. God...it's what Maggie would have done if Talon hadn't been there for her.

And Fang has no tact...what the hell was he thinking? Frankly...I'm with Yama...take his head off. But unlike when Titania whispered in Fox's ear, or when Angela whispered in Broadway's...I have a pretty good idea what Robyn said to Yama.

Something along the lines of "Everyone deserves to get a second chance...if you deprive him of that, how will you restore you honor?" only, put more eloquently.

Speaking of which, Dingo overhears Robyn's comminque to the Director...but doesn't really get time to chew on it before the newest member of the Squad joins them...and Yama looks absolutely thrilled.

Greg responds...

Yep. Thrilled.

Response recorded on October 09, 2008

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Gargoyles: Bad Guys #4

Gargoyles: Bad Guys #4 should be in stores this Wednesday, August 20th, 2008.


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THE BIG BAD NEWS (and a little bit of good news).

THE BIG BAD NEWS (and a little bit of good news).

As many of you have probably heard, we found out Saturday (7/26/08) at San Diego ComicCon that the GARGOYLES (including BAD GUYS) license will not be renewed after it expires on 8-31-08.

Just to be very, very clear... this is NOT the result of poor sales. GARGOYLES is still one of the best selling book SLG publishes (if not THE best). BAD GUYS doesn't do too badly either by SLG standards. Of course, delays didn't help sales... and there are probably other factors that reduced the upside -- including the writing -- but none of that is the point.

According to SLG's President, Publisher and Owner Dan Vado, the Disney execs told him that the money they were taking in did not justify their administrative costs. So they raised the license renewal fee to a rate that put it beyond SLG's reach. (Dan had hoped to renew both Gargoyles and Haunted Mansion -- though not Tron or Wonderland -- but neither book will now be picked up.)

I don't know what effect recent announcements about Kingdom Comics and Boom! Comics had on this decision. Dan was told one thing had nothing to do with the other. No one at either company has approached me about doing Gargoyles, and I don't know that there will be any interest now that the license is coming to an end.

That's the bad news. But there is a bit of a silver lining.

There will be NO STORY INTERRUPTUS!!

We will finish both GARGOYLES: Clan-Building and BAD GUYS: Redemption. That's the equivalent of seven more issues of material.

BAD GUYS #4 should be out next week. The book is done and has been done for some time. It's been sent to the printers.

GARGOYLES #9 will hopefully be out next month. David is done with the art. All that remains is for Robby to color it and David to letter it -- tasks that both these gentlemen have proven able to do with great speed.

Whether or not the remaining issues (BAD GUYS #5-6 and GARGOYLES #10-12) are published as individual issues is a bit up in the air. BAD GUYS #5 and GARGOYLES #10 have decent (if long) shots at getting out in time. But whatever doesn't get out as individual issues will still be scripted, drawn, colored or toned, lettered and published as "BONUS MATERIAL" in individual trade paperbacks that will collect GARGOYLES: Clan-Building Volume II and BAD GUYS: Redemption. And these compilations WILL come out! There's still a lot of work to be done. (Personally, I still need to script Gargoyles #11-12.) So I WON'T take this moment to thank everyone and say au revoir. That'll come later. For now, we're still a going concern.

In addition, Dan hasn 't given up on us. He wants to put out these two new trades and keep all three trades available for sale (and btw we sold a bunch of the trades at ComicCon -- when I left Sunday at 1pm, hours before close of con, we only had a handful of Clan-Building Volume I left to sell). After a year, he hopes to go back to Disney with a different, perhaps more modest offer to do Gargoyles Graphic Novels. Might work out. Might not. But he's still game and just in case it isn't 100% clear...

GREG WEISMAN HAS NOT GIVEN UP!!!!!!!!!!

I'm as determined as ever -- if not moreso -- to continue bringing you canon Gargoyles stories. The eighteen issues we've done/are doing have only whetted my appetite! I'm still going to be out here swinging... for more comics or graphic novels, for the DVD releases, for a live action film, etc. But I can't do it alone! So please don't you guys give up on Gargoyles either!

Remember, a few years ago, we didn't even have this. In that time, we will have brought you two big arcs, six big stories, eighteen "episodes" and numerous sub-plots, plot-twists, new characters and old familiar favorites. Would we have Shari, Quincy, Coco, Amp, etc. if the fans haven't kept the faith?! No. Would we grok the Illuminati number system?! No. Would we have seen Goliath and Elisa declare their love?! NOPE!!! (Oh, and for those of you who wish Demona could have figured more prominently in the comic... well, guys do you really think I'd do a twelve issue re-introductory story arc in Gargoyles without prominently including the crazy red head? Please.)

So what can YOU do? Well, nothing's changed on that front, really. We still need people to buy comics, trades, DVDs, HOT TOPIC T-Shirts. We still need people to attend the GATHERING. (Check out www.gatheringofthegargoyles.com ) And whether or not you've spent all the disposable income you have to spend on the property, then help us SPREAD THE WORD!!!! Make sure every gargoyle fan knows about what's out there. Show friends the first 39 episodes on DVD. Lend them the comics or trades. Create converts.

And mostly... just keep the faith.


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Anthony Tini writes...

Greg,

Based on the information you shared with us on Monday, February 11, 2008, I compiled the list below for my website. Would you say the list below is accurate on the potential release dates for the future comics of Gargoyles? If not, what dates should I change? Thank you.

March 2008
Gargoyles #8

April 2008
Bad Guys #2

May 2008
Gargoyles #9

June 2008
Bad Guys #3

July 2008
Gargoyles #10

August 2008
Bad Guys #4

September 2008
Gargoyles #11

October 2008
Bad Guys #5

November 2008
Gargoyles #12

December 2008
Bad Guys #6

Greg responds...

It's as accurate as anything I guess. We're still waiting on Disney to approve G#8 and BG#2. They're both done.

Bad Guys #3 is fully penciled and inked. It's being finished and lettered.

Gargoyles #9 and Bad Guys #4 are both being pencilled now.

Gargoyles #10 is being scripted.

That's where things currently stand.

Response recorded on March 10, 2008

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Where things stand...

Uh... they don't. Not for me. They run at break-neck speed, these days. Here's what I'm up to.

GARGOYLES
Issue #8 is complete. Late last week it was sent to Disney AND the printer, so that the moment the former approves it, the latter can send it to press.
Issue #9 is written. David Hedgecock is doing roughs and original designs now. The cover, already pencilled and inked by Greg Guler,is being colored by Robby Bevard.
Issue #10 needs to get written. I'll get to that as soon as I'm done writing Red Tornado #1 (see below). Dave will be pencilling that cover off his rough.

GARGOYLES: BAD GUYS
Issue #2 is currently being lettered. The art is complete: pencils and inks by Karine Charlebois, finishes by Karine and Robby. The cover, a Guler/Bevard job featuring Yama, is done.
Issue #3 is currently being roughed out by guest artist Christopher A. Jones. Chris is the regular penciller on The Batman Strikes, and he and I worked together on the Captain Atom/Gargoyles/Justice League Europe parody from a few years back. The cover, a Guler/Bevard job featuring Hunter, is done.
Issue #4 is currently being roughed by Karine. The cover, a Guler/Bevard job featuring Fang, is done.
Issue #5 will get scripted as soon as I'm done scripting Red Tornado #1, Gargoyles #10 and Red Tornado #2. Guler is currently working on the cover, which features Dingo.

RED TORNADO
DC Comics has hired me to write a six issue limited series featuring one of my favorite characters, i.e. Red Tornado. (Duh.) I'm currently scripting issue #1. I'm hoping that any attention I get on this book will help us over on the Gargoyles books.

THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN
And, oh yeah... there's my actual job... and the main reason why I'm completely exhausted these days.
Episode #1 - This week we have a music and fx preview. The episode will preview at WonderCon on 2/23 and premiere on KidsWB on 3/8.
Episode #2 - We had a music and fx spottting session last week. This episode will ALSO premiere on KidsWB on 3/8. Or so I've been told.
Episode #3 - I've seen the Teaser and Act One. Hopefully, I'll see the missing acts this week, so that we can do our first pass edit and call retakes. We also have a music spotting session late this week.
Episode #4 - We should get it back from Korea this week to edit and call retakes.
Episodes #5-12 - We're waiting to get these back from Korea.
Episode #13 - Reviewing final color models.
Episodes #14-15 - Seeing design work daily and waiting to see storyboards.
Episodes #16-17 - Seeing design work daily. We'll be recording some pick-ups this week with a couple of actors who missed the main recording sessions earlier this month.
Episode #18 - We're recording this one on Thursday of this week.
Episode #19 - I need to finish editing the script for this one tonight.
Episode #20 - I'll start editing this script tonight or tomorrow.
Episode #21 - The writer should deliver this script late this week.
Episode #22 - The writer's working on this script now.
Episode #23 - The writer's working on this outline now.
Episode #24 - The writer will start this outline when she finishes writing the script to #21.
Episode #25 - I have to write this outline... you know, on my free time.
Episode #26 - The writer will write this outline when he's done writing the script for #22.

And I think that's it. Whew!



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