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"Gargoyles, Clan Building Chapter Nine: The Rock of Ages"
Okay, been sitting on this for over a year, especially after that Radio Play. My thoughts on this one are still kind of jumbled. But I enjoyed it. A lot.
Xanatos attempts another gambit, but, as we soon discovered, it is pointless to try to possess the Stone of Destiny. Although it was very cool to see him try to pull a fast one on the Illuminati. That man has guts.
Great to see Coldstone and Coldfire again. They've both been missed, and the way Coldstone destroyed Coyote was just brutal. Loved it.
And, here we go, the Illuminati. The biggest surprise had to be the identity of their leader. For years Greg kept telling us that Duval was their leader, and that he is Sir Percival. That is no longer accurate. Peredur fag Ragnal is the leader of the Illuminati, the keeper of the Holy Grail, and Peredur is the Welsh version of Percival. Not to mention the Spirit of Destiny referred to Arthur as Peredur's old master. So, if Duval is no longer Percival, then who is he? I have a very strong notion on that, but I'll keep that to myself for now.
As for Duval. I'm not quite sure what I was expecting, but it most certainly was not... that. Granted, this particular arc was full of things I was not expecting. But, Duval as a cyborg? Not at all. I mean, I'd read that he was paying a physical price for his use of the Grail and his... sins. But, this is really not at all what I was expecting. So, at least one of his hands is cybernetic, and his left eye is cybernetic. I already want to see this guy's origin story.
The Stone of Destiny itself... wow... that blows the whole thing wide open. Just one of several thousand vessels for the Spirit of Destiny. And what is the Spirit of Destiny? I think it's something far bigger than any gargoyle, human, or Child of Oberon could comprehend.
So, what was so special about Fox's shoes? Um... they're really nice shoes? But, gotta give Xanatos credit, a shoe box is useful for a bomb scare.
And, as in the Radio Play, my favorite part had to be when the Holy Grail and the Stone of Destiny (real, fake, makes no difference) said hello to each other.
Good story. The art, well, I am so glad that Robby was the colorist, he does good work. Unfortunately, I am still no fan of Hedgecock's pencils. Aw well, the next three issues were visually stunning.
The one question I do have, which sadly isn't answered in this volume is... just how are the Manhattan Clan going to be able to keep living in Xanatos's castle? While Hudson and Lexington weren't his targets, they were still placed in harm's way when Xanatos unleashed Coyote 5.0, Coldsteel, and the rest on them. This is not the sort of thing Goliath would or should take likely.
I think it's par for the course, but we'll all just have to see.
G2008 Radio Play
No, that's not a misprint. Before I post the G2009 Gargoyles/Spectacular Spider-Man crossover radio play, I'm going to post (over the next few days) the G2008 Radio Play. This was a CHRONOLOGICAL adaptation of issues 7-9 of the Gargoyles comic, i.e. the Stone of Destiny three-parter which makes up the first half of the recently released trade paperback, GARGOYLES: CLAN-BUILDING, VOLUME II. Now that the trade is out, I'm okay with posting this. But there are some caveats...
1. Reading this does NOT replace buying the trade. Because...
2. This version of the story doesn't really work, dramatically or otherwise. The story wasn't designed to be told chronologically. It gets somewhat tiresome told in chronological order and the final dramatic moment with the Stone talking to Macbeth, Xanatos, Arthur and Peredur across four time periods has none of it's power.
Nevertheless, here it is... or at any rate, here is the title page, cast list and teaser. I'll post the three chapters over the next three days...
Chapter VII: THE ROCK
Chapter VIII: ROCK & ROLL
Chapter IX: ROCK OF AGES
(Radio Play Edition)
A Chronological Adaptation
(from his SLG comic book scripts)
The Twelfth Annual
Gathering of the Gargoyles
Performed June 28, 2008.
CHAPTER VII: THE ROCK
CHAPTER VIII: ROCK & ROLL
CHAPTER IX: ROCK OF AGESâ
(Radio Play Edition)
1. NARRATOR 86 lines.
2. MACBETH 34 lines.
3. SHARI 22 lines.
4. COLDSTEEL 22 lines.
5. LEXINGTON 21 lines.
6. STONE OF DESTINY 15 lines.
7. HUDSON 13 lines.
8. DAVID XANATOS 13 lines.
9. ARTHUR PENDRAGON 13 lines.
10. CONSTANCE/COCO 12 lines.
11. STAGHART/AMP 9 lines.
12. GRIFF 9 lines.
13. THAILOG 8 lines.
14. COLDSTONE 6 lines.
15. COLDFIRE 5 lines.
16. GOLIATH 5 lines.
17. COYOTE 5.0 5 lines.
18. PEREDUR 4 lines.
19. COLDSTREAM GUARD 4 lines.
20. ELISA MAZA 4 lines.
21. JAY SATO 4 lines.
22. BLANCHEFLEUR 3 lines.
23. CUSTOMS OFFICIAL 3 lines.
24. BROOKLYN 3 lines.
25. DUVAL 2 lines.
26. FOX 2 lines.
27. BROADWAY 2 lines.
28. HOLY GRAIL 1 line.
29. LUNETTE 1 line.
30. VINNIE 1 line.
31. AIRPORT INTERCOM 1 line.
32. OWEN BURNETT 1 line.
33. MAGGIE THE CAT 1 line.
34. TALON 1 line.
35. SCOTTISH PATRIOT 1 line.
CHAPTER VII: THE ROCK
CHAPTER VIII: ROCK & ROLL
CHAPTER IX: ROCK OF AGESâ
ARTHUR, MACBETH, PATRIOT & STONE STAND.
Gargoyles. Clan-Building. SEPTEMBER 29, 500. London.
And as High King, I, Arthur Pendragon, swear by the Stone of Destiny to protect Britain and to serve her people all my daysâ¦
SEPTEMBER 29, 1040. Scone.
And as High King, I swear by the Stone of Destiny to protect Scotland and to serve her people all my daysâ¦
DECEMBER 25, 1950. Westminster Abbey.
All right, lads. Now or--
APRIL 11, 1951, 1:06AM GMT. ARBROATH ABBEY. Macbeth has just finished repairing the Stone of Destiny with epoxy. Thereâs a visible crack, but itâs in one piece.
There. Good as new. You can barely see the--
The stone glows blue. The crack vanishes.
Thank you, Macbeth mac Findlaech, but the effort was pointlessâ¦
ARTHUR, MACBETH, PATRIOT & STONE sit.
Feeling too lazy for my usual 'what I like about this issue' review, and will instead make a page-by-page analysis of Bad Guys #4: Louse. Spoilers abound for whoever's seeing this and doen't have the comic yet.
Great cover. Doesn't really look too much like Fang, but I can let that go.
Page 1: Nice way to open, with Fang going electrical on a Gigantor Bot. Off to a good start.
Page 2: Liking Fang's expression when he says he was trying to run away gracefully, before he saves an annoyed-looking Yama.
Page 3: This is the sequence that I remember most from the BG panel at the Gatherings, when Fang delivers his lines on this page. Loved him blowing on his fists, it was cool. His expression at seeing Yama's lack of gratitude was priceless too.
"Hey, Yama... you're welcome!" Great line. Little non-comic related note: Jim Belushi, in the BG panel, delivered it so well.
Page 4: The transition from Fang's look of surprise to the ferocious snarl of 5 days prior was nicely done.
Page 5: "Doc doesn't care for tourists, sweet cheeks. So how 'bout I send you packing ...in pieces small enough to pack?" Great line. Very Fang-ish. I can actually hear Jim having fun with that bit of dialogue. A little surprised that Robyn is just sitting there, though. Wouldn't the Hunter be kicking his ass by now?
But, Yama steps in, smashing Fang's head into the wall. Nice.
Page 6: Robyn wonders if Fang is a Gargoyles, only to be assured otherwise. She doesn't seem to quite know to make of him here. And then Fang attacks.
Page 7: Poor Dingo, wandering around the sewers. Matrix cracked me up in the first panel.
Page 8: And the doctor is in. Hello again, Sevarius. He's actually one of my favorite villians. Not in the ranks of Thailog or Xanatos, but he is definitely up there. Robyn and Yama are in prison cells...
Page 9:... and, like any good evil doctor/villian/geneticist, he introduces them to their cellmates. Tasha, Erin, Benny, (I surmise those last two were named after your kids) and Thug, as the newest mutates.
"I'm a roly-poly bug." "You're a Pill bug."
Page 10: 'Doc isn't big on shifting into reverse!" Dunno why exactly, but I really liked that line. And Fang, with just a look from Sevarius, simply makes his exit? His relationship with the doc has come a long way since season 2's 'The Cage'. Nice touch having Matrix popping up in that bottom panel. Didn't notice it on my first reading.
Page 11: And Sevarius delivers the coup d'grace. He's made a new virus to make every infected human into a mutate. And guess where? The nicely-drawn crowd in Times Square would be a good target.
Page 12: Robyn actually seems frightened. That's a rarity.
Page 13: And Dingo makes a reapperence for the first time in 6 pages, Matrix armor and all.
Page 14: About time someone put Sevarius in his place. A prison cell. I'm wondering, why didn't they set the new Mutates free? Matrix can unlock cell doors...
Page 15: In regards to my earlier comment about the crowd, yep, they're gonna be mutated and Fang's involved. Loving the cameo by Margot and Brendan.
Page 16: Nice Tri Chang cameo. Dingo's constant reference to Fang as a 'misfit' was amusing.
Page 17: 'Doc and his damn drama.' Nice line, there. Sums up Sevarius perfectly. And here we have Yama attacking Fang. Loved Fang's eye when he tells Yama to 'Eat lightning, Schmuck-o!' And another great line, as well.
Page 18: "What keeps happening?!" Indeed, Dingo. He just can't seem to get his handle on the action. Nice touch having the Eyrie Building, and thus the castle, in the background.
Page 19. Nice touch, having the countdown on Sevarius' timer coinciding with the countdown for the New Year's balldrop. Poor Dingo, Matrix just leaves him like that? Geez. 'You just killed me, you flamin' gullah!' LOL.
Page 20: Matrix absorbing the mutagen at the very last possible second. Fun times. Hunter saves Dingo, but he smacks into the building fact-first. Ouch!
Page 21: Yama helps overpower Fang, and they take him back to the cells. Hunter had to think about saving Dingo? Nice. They get back, only to find...
Page 22: ...Tasha's apprent suicide, (didn't see that coming. It actually disturbed me.) and the mutate kids being comforted by Thug. Fang freezes up a second before he launches into inappropiate-joke-making mode. And of course Yama socks him for it, then tries to decapitate him.
Page 23: Fortunately, Dingo stops him, and I am liking Dingo more and more. He's come a long way from his days with The Pack, and he tells Yama that Fang is not worth it. Fortunately, Fang lightens the mood a bit. 'I'm not! I'm really not!' I liked the artistic work with Fang in that panel, too. And we get another 'whisper mystery'. What did Hunter say to Yama? Yama wouldn't reveal it. Would you, Greg?
Page 24: Robyn actually has someone she addresses as 'Sir'. Huh. Go figure. And Fang officially joins the team at this point. Liked Fang's get-up, (The gun holster was an especially nice touch) and Dingo's expression. And, of course, Yama is not pleased by this development.
End comic. What a great issue. A lot of Fang and Yama action, which is a big thumbs-up from me because I like those guys. Great art, a great story, some great twists, (Tasha's sucide in the cell) and great characterization just made this issue an all-around great comic.
Bring on Gargoyles #9 and BG #5.
Seems like a good time for an update on both trades. All the scripting is done.
Bad Guys Redemption Chapter #5 and Gargoyles Clan-Building Chapter #9 are both completely done.
Karine has completed the roughs for BG#6 and is working on finishes now.
Greg G. has one last page of art to finish on Garg#10. I believe Robby's already begun coloring the book.
New penciller, David Hutchison, has roughed out half of Garg#11 and is working on the second half.
The script for Garg#12 is just awaiting an available artist.
Dan Vado informs me he's planning to release both trades in January.
There seems to be some confusion about where things stand with the comic books, so I'm going to try again to clear things up. The SLG license expired on 8-31-08. That means there will be no more individual comic book issues on either Gargoyles or Bad Guys.
However, SLG does still have the right to put all existing material out in the Trade Paperback format. They are also allowed to include Bonus Material in these trades.
Gargoyles: Clan-Building, Volume One will remain available, and as soon as possible, we will be putting out Gargoyles: Clan-Building, Volume Two and Gargoyles: Bad Guys: Redemption out in trade.
Gargoyles: Clan-Building, Volume Two will include (obviously) Gargoyles issues #7-8, but it will ALSO include what would have been issues #9-12, including the covers, as QUOTE-UNQUOTE Bonus Material. You WILL get to see the end of the Clan-Building arc. Currently, issue #9 is done except for a few minor lettering corrections. Issue #10 is being pencilled as we speak. Issue #11 has been scripted, and we are looking for the right artist to pencil it. Issue #12 is being scripted now. The trade will come out when ALL this material is complete and approved.
The Gargoyles: Bad Guys: Redemption trade will include (obviously) Bad Guys issues #1-4, but it will ALSO include what would have been issues #5-6, including the covers, as QUOTE-UNQUOTE Bonus Material. You will get to see the end of the Redemption limited series. Currently, issue #5 is done except for a few minor art corrections and the lettering. Issue #6 is scripted, and Karine will begin roughing it out shortly. The trade will come out when ALL this material is complete and approved.
Hope that clears things up.
When does issue #9 come out? I can't wait!
It's being colored and lettered now. Should be completely finished by early next week. Then it has to go to Disney for approvals. But I'm still hopeful -- believe it or not -- that it'll be out by the end of the month or early September.
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.
"I have waited three months for this moment...And it was worth the wait." Gargoyles #8 "Rock and Roll" really does just that. ROCKS AND ROLLS! We learn so much about the London Clan, which was always my favorite clan, (and Knight's Spur, their estate, this clan has really strong ties to Arthur) Whoa! 196 members strong (or not so strong considering their form of Birth Control) with 25 to hatch in 2 years. I can't say for sure, but I believe that that is more than we saw in Japan, which makes the London Clan the strongest known clan. I wonder if other clans (Like Ishimura and Loch Ness) have similar breeding policies...hmmm No beasts though, that surprised me, as I figured Barghests, Grims, and other spectors were London beasts run amuk. Old Pog (Who looks cool as a Hypogriff type gargoyle) is prolly Griff's Biological father, (sorry, it's the human in me) and his staff having turned to stone with him was a nice touch, and cute little Lunette was obviously Leo and Una's Daughter. Cool.
Then there's Shari, who contradicts what she said last time (and nullifies my last review with my comments on Egypt, oh well now I feel "electric" sheepish.) "All things are true, few things are accurate." So which story is accurate? The first,second, both, or neither? And of course we've also got Cu Cullain, Carbonek, Moses, Jeremiah, Pelles, and not to mention Merlin. Major props for Merlin's design, very different from his stereotypical look, and very cool. (Ironicly Disney is primarily responsible for his look and Disney's Gargoyles is a sharp contrast I like it!) Plus the whole St. Columba story is just plain cool.
Let's give it up for Constance and Staghart, two very cool new gargs, I shall call them Coco and Amp. :) Do I sense something between Lex and Amp?
Arthur and Macbeth become better acquainted, and begin a friendship, and cement an alliance too. Nightstone? Thailog owns Starbucks?
And the meat of this story...tasty meat too. A battle with Lex, Hudson, Griff, Amp, Coco, Mac, and Arthur Vs. Coldsteel, Coyote 5.0, a Steel Clan Robot, and an Iron Clan robot. (Yes I caught that!!! You don't waste anything!) Naturally the Steel and Iron Clan robots are the first to go, and I'm sure Coyote is next. It remains to be seen weather Coldsteel will "live" or not. Coco's mid-air summersault was very cool as well. Dare I say it, but David Hedgecock's art has improved to the point where I actually love it! He has done a fantastic job, and Bevard's coloring is Phenominal.
And just when the chips are down and it looks as though Hudson is going to be dismembered, who should arrive but Coldstone and Coldfire. Time to Really Rock and Roll. I absolutely cannot wait for Gargoyles #9 there's just so much good stuff packed in here. Let's Rock and Roll. "Anyone order up the kitchen sink?"
Wow. NOW THAT'S THE KIND OF ENTHUSIASM I LIKE TO SEE!!!
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.
Bad Guys #2
Bad Guys #3
Bad Guys #4
Bad Guys #5
Bad Guys #6
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.
Uh... they don't. Not for me. They run at break-neck speed, these days. Here's what I'm up to.
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.
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!