A Station Eight Fan Web Site

Gargoyles

The Phoenix Gate

Ask Greg Archives

Voice Talent

Archive Index


: « First : « 50 : Displaying #265 - #314 of 452 records. : 50 » : Last » :


Posts Per Page: 1 : 10 : 25 : 50 : 100 : All :


Bookmark Link

lonnie contreras writes...

JEFF BENNET and frank welker are profesional voice actors. what are they like?

Greg responds...

Like candy!

(i.e. they're both very sweet.)

Response recorded on June 28, 2007

Bookmark Link

Todd Jensen writes...

Just out of curiosity: if #3 and #4 had been done as a television episode of "Gargoyles", whom would you most liked to have cast in the roles of the two leading new characters introduced in those issues (the young woman in the Labyrinth and the White House steward who's a member of the Illuminati)?

Greg responds...

I have voices in my head, but for the time being I'm making a conscious choice to leave them to reader imagination.

Response recorded on June 13, 2007

Bookmark Link

Antiyonder writes...

1. While #1 and 2 gave us some new scenes and had some occuring in a different order than "The Journey", was there anything that just didn't make the cut in the episode or the comic?

2. Do any of the voice actors as well as others who worked on the show pick up the comic as well?

Greg responds...

1. Nope.

2. Don't know.

Response recorded on June 13, 2007

Bookmark Link

Shadow Wing writes...

(Lexington boots up his computer, signs onto the 'net, types in a web address, and there we see it)

ISSUE 2: THE JOURNEY

"Medieval scholar Lennox Macduff," eh? What research does he do? Read his old diaries?

On that note, the irony of A.D.A Yale's statements, nicely contrasted by the events happening in our story, have always amused me - especially "Our children are not safe!"

Xanatos, Mr. Duval, and the Illuminati - I have to admit, I don't think I ever really understood what was going on here from the TV version - I think I always assumed that Alex's piggyback ride was on the way to the phone, Xanatos following Owen's implied advice. But here, his smirk makes the point much clearer - it's not wise to ceep the Illuminati waiting, but Xanatos doesn't care. Baby Alex needs some daddy time!
But I can just see Owen back at the phone: "I'm sorry, Mr. Duval, I'm afraid that Mr. Xanatos is in the middle of something vitally important - it cannot wait, and requires his full attention. He hopes you understand."

Broadway and Angela - I don't recall the TV version calling it a reading lesson, so nice touch there. But I don't think that Shakespeare is the best material to learn to read (and frankly, I'm not that fond of reading Shakespeare at all - seeing it, however, is another story).
Angela's been off of Avalon for the better part of a year, but still, like Broadway with literacy, she has so much to learn.
Semi-random thought: How's Hudson's progress towards learning to read? I don't remember seeing anything of that since High Noon.
Brooklyn's line - "Parting is such sweet sorrow" - knowing what I do now, I wonder if this was a subtle foreshadowing of Timedancer - he parts with the Clan for forty years, but finds love.

After Vinnie leaves, Goliath's statement about life is very true - life is a journey, and the road is often hard. But we can't let that stop us, for each new day brings an exciting new adventure. Don't think about the journey's end, because as someone said, destination is a state of mind.

Not much else to say, now. Some people have commented that they miss the voices, but I can here them still, playing in my head with perfect clarity - right down to Margot Yale's voice not being Marina's.

So, to Greg Weisman, and everyone else at Creature Comics: keep up the good work.

(Lex logs off, and shuts down the computer.)

Greg responds...

In my mind, Margot is always played by Marina. Tress is a wonderful actress of course, but Margot is Marina.

Response recorded on April 17, 2007

Bookmark Link

Danny Dyche writes...

I just recently found this site, and am posting for the first time. I'd like to say that this provides a very nice opportunity to fans.

I also think that if you get to do the Halloween double date story, there would be an appropriate symmetry to Elisa's date being Morgan because between the four characters there are only two actors. Of course I realize that, the way things are, the most likely way for the story to appear would be in the new comic book, which doesn't have any actors.

Greg responds...

In my head, there are always actors. I try to hear the voices...

Of course, starting in issue #3 we introduce new characters, one of whom has a speaking part, so I cast the character in my head, so I could hear her voice as well.

More new characters speak in issue #4, and I cast them too.

Keeps me honest.

Response recorded on March 09, 2007

Bookmark Link

Todd Jensen writes...

Thanks for your "Possession" ramble, Greg. (Just think - all that you've got left is "Hunter's Moon" and you're done with Season Two!) A few comments.

That opening with Xanatos hunting Coldstone down in the Himalayas makes more sense to me now that I know about that Marvel Comic story that you were going to write but never got to do.

The first time that I saw the episode, I initially thought that what Xanatos and Owen were trying to do (and needed more than technology to do) was repairing Coldstone after the damage done in the recent battle, but afterwards I understood that their goal was transferring Desdemona and Iago to Coldfire and Coldsteel. (And I agree that it would be like Xanatos to say "Chin up" to Coldstone while his head is disconnected from the rest of him.)

I like Alex's winged teddy bear, too.

I agree that Coldfire is a much better name than Goldfire; it certainly fits the pattern with Coldstone and Coldsteel in the way that Goldfire wouldn't. (It even makes me wonder how "Goldfire" was even a candidate to begin with.)

Another thing that I picked up on in later viewings was the consequences of Brooklyn's "Me three - except that you don't need three" line.

One of the big elements for me in the episode is how the voice actors demonstrate their versatility (as you pointed out); instead of taking the customary approach in cartoons of "when people switch minds, they also switch voice actors", we here got to hear, say, Bill Faggerbakke and Brigitte Bako altering their delivery to sound more like Michael Dorn and C. C. Pounder. And it was a very admirable performance.

One of my favorite bits: Puck-as-Coldstone saying, "Naughty, naughty, sneaking up like that on Uncle Coldstone". (As much from how Dorn delivered it as from the actual words.)

And I think that we can all agree that this is just the way that Puck *would* educate Alex.

Again, thanks for the ramble.

Greg responds...

Thank you.

I can never praise our voice cast (and voice director) Jamie Thomason enough. We were constantly presenting them with new challenges, and they ALWAYS rose to the occassion.

Response recorded on February 08, 2007

Bookmark Link

Harvester of Eyes writes...

Hi, Greg.

I just read your ramble on "The Reckoning," which is one of my favorite episodes, and just wanted to contribute my two cents. Ever since "Sanctuary," I had been wondering what would happen when Demona and Angela met again, and I'm happy to say that this episode did not disappoint. For an episode with a very large supporting cast (that also introduced several new characters to boot), it carried itself amazingly well.

It flowed wonderfully, and as you pointed out, contained a lot of memorable lines. Jim Belushi is not my favorite actor, but I loved him as the voice of Fang. I think Fang just might be one of his best roles. His delivery of the one-liners was superb.

If I had to pick a favorite visual moment, it would have to be the shot of Demona, Thailog, and the clones right before the end of the second act. It was like looking at a negative photographic image of Goliath's clan. Very chilling.

A few things I found interesting: Thailog and Sevarius in the same room together. I suppose it's not too surprising, since mentally, Thailog was programmed with Xanatos's slant on life. Xanatos kept the gargoyles alive because he thought they'd be useful (or I'm just going by what he told Goliath at the end of "City of Stone"). Similarly, I'm wondering if that was Thailog's line of thinking when Sevarius was hired to engineer the clones: the doctor does come in handy.

Also, concerning the relationship between Demona and Angela: I think that Demona does love Angela. But I find it interesting that she told Goliath to save their daughter instead of doing it herself. The thing she seemed more solidly focused on was punishing Thailog, because Thailog had just delivered a double whammy by not only ending their relationship, but also splicing her DNA with the human she seems to hate most. It almost looks like Demona loves revenge more than Angela. I look forward to seeing what happens between them in the comic. Your comments on those three small words were very intriguing.

All in all, a very well-done episode that exceeded my expectations. I will be posting comments on the new comic at a later date, but for now, let me just say thanks, and best of luck with your future endeavors.

Greg responds...

Jim is also an extremely nice guy and really fun to work with. And I tend to agree with you. Fang may have been one of his best cast roles ever.

Response recorded on February 06, 2007

Bookmark Link

Charisma82 writes...

Sunday, June 25, 2006: 3RD DAY OF THE GATHERING OF THE GARGOYLES

So how is everything going? Good I hope. Only one more day of Gathering of the Gargoyles. I'm sure everyone is having a great time out there at the gathering. Everyone must be really busy trying to get to everything there. Just curious, but how many sessions are going on out there? Do people have time inbetween sessions to do anything else? Did you do any sight seeing in L.A.? I hear that next year the gathering will be in Tenessee near the Smokey Mountains. That would be so cool to go to. There must be a lot of sight seeing to do for the next gathering, that is if you have time to get away from the convention. I've been to Tennessee once up in the Smokey Mountians. I barely remember it, but the few pictures I have in my mind are of very beautiful scenery. I can picture the mountains with dark clouds around the top of them. Maybe I can get a plane ticket and head out there next year not only for the gathering, but to recharge my memory of the scenery. I think that if there was another gargoyle clan out there in the U.S. (besides the Manhattan clan), they should be located in a place like that. The mountains would be great cover, and there are little towns all around in there that they could protect if they felt the need to. I'm really hoping that I can convince someone to go with me now that I'm getting myself psyched for the Smokey Mountains.

Since the gathering is almost over for 2006, I might as well get your opinion on it. Did you think that the turn out was better or worse this year than other gatherings? Did a lot of voice talents from the Gargoyles show come to the convention? By the way, how many of these gatherings have you attended? I know that this one in 2006 is the 10th annual one, but did you go to the first few, like the 1st or 2nd gathering? Who exactly started these gatherings (don't just say fans, please)? Do you think that more talents from the show will come to next years (2007) gathering?

Well, now that I've questioned you out, I might as well mention a few things that happened today since this is sort of a journal of what's going on during the gathering. Today is Sunday, so of course church. After that, we (my family) had tacos and I slept for a couple of hours. I woke up to find nothing great on TV or on TIVO. Later, my parents and I watched some murder mystery movie where some woman was being tricked into thinking she was crazy by her husband and best friend so they could get rid of her and get all her money that she'd made. It was interesting. Not as good as it would have been to be at the gathering (I had to throw that in there).

When I mentioned church, it got me thinking. I know religion is a touchy subject for a lot of people, but I was wondering if any gargoyles were religious in some way. If they are, do they practice human religions or do they have one of their own? I could see a clan living in a big church building with the stain glass windows and such, with them posing on top on the steeple or roof during the day and then protecting the town at night. I can just imagine the picture in my head. It would look rather gothiky though.

Now that's my ramble/journal for today. Just one more for tomorrow. I'm sure you'll miss my long talks about nothing (probably not). I hope all is well, and thank you for your time.

Charisma82

Greg responds...

Turn out for 2006 was high for a Gathering. Having the con in L.A. always helps, because we can get a TON of special guests (because they're all local) that we couldn't afford to bring to a more distant location. Someone from the Gathering would have to give you exact figures, but I believe the attendance was probably our second highest ever - second only to G2001, which was also in L.A.

We did have quite a few voice actors, including Keith "Goliath" David, Thom "Lexington" Adcox, Brigitte "Angela" Bako, Elisa "Obisiana" Gabriellie, Morgan "Petros" Sheppard, Jim "Dingo" Cummings and others. Plus quite a few voice actors from WITCH and other shows as well.

I've attended all TEN Gatherings. It might seem like quite an achievement, but really it's all thanks to the fans, who pay my way for every non-L.A. convention and put me up (and put up with me) at the L.A. cons. There are a handful of fans whom have also been to all ten conventions. They are my heroes.

"Who exactly started these gatherings (don't just say fans, please)?" - Okay, I won't say fans. I'll say FAN. May "Elisa Maza" Li (I hope I'm spelling that correctly) was THE fan that got the ball rolling by almost single-handedly organizing the first Gathering in NYC. Burned her out so much that she didn't attend again until this past year, when she was given the Fan Guest of Honor award. Of course since then there's been a long list of people who have contributed. I'd list 'em, but I'm sure I'd forget some people, and I don't want to offend.

For info on Gargoyles religion -- which is both Animistic and Monotheistic -- check the archives under GARGOYLE CUSTOMS.

Response recorded on January 23, 2007

Bookmark Link

E J writes...

In a word, the comic is phenomenal.

I should point out that I was in the show's target demographic during its first run (not so much anymore, just graduated college). I was skeptical about how it would work as a comic book, but that all melted away when I bought Gargoyles #1. It was pure joy.

First off, I think that translating "The Journey" as the first several issues works extremely well. For the first time, I feel like we're finally seeing what's going on in your head, without the watchful eye of S&P censoring what we see. We all knew that something like the "monster-loving whore" commen was missing in "The Journey;" you can't really show racism unless you can show the bigotry that goes with it. And Elisa's response is very Elisa-esque.

Finally seeing the Matt/Chavez scene was a treat for fans who could only read it here up until now. And for that matter, I think we all knew that Elisa wore something sexier to bed than that old-woman nightgown.

What looks good in comic form: The Gargoyles escaping from the clock tower. Castaway blowing up his statue (which thankfully doesn't look like Goliath anymore). Sunsets. The recap spread on page 12-13 is gorgeous, and makes me wonder if we'll see something analagous to Keith David's narrative intro in each issue.

I might (and I stress MIGHT) go so far as to suggest after just one issue that the comic format serves Gargoyles better than animation. Of course, there are drawbacks. We lose the magnificent voice work of some of these actors. We lose the Keith David-narrated show opening. We lose the ability to show some of the character's aerial moves in action. But the advantages are huge. Storylines aren't constricted to 22 minute, and S&P isn't compromising the story you're trying to tell. In fact, because it's completely common for a comic franchise to have more than one title in print at once, I feel like series like Timedancer and 2198 were made for this kind of thing.

Anyway, that's just my two cents as a fan. The comic format seems very natural for Gargoyles, which is a relief. Clearly, I'm looking forward to new stories in #3 more than anything else. All in all, thumbs up on the comic.

Greg responds...

I'm personally LOVING doing Gargoyles as a comic. I miss the voice work too, but I do feel that our series' voice work was so strong and distinctive, that if I do my job right (writing the dialogue) that you can almost HEAR the voices (and the music) in your head. That's my goal anyway. That and doing radio plays at the Gathering, (hopefully with some of the cast present).

Response recorded on January 19, 2007

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

VENDETTAS

When this ep first aired, I wasn't quite sure what to make of it.
We had Wolf going after Goliath and Hudson along with Hakon-in-an-axe, and some other guy along the fringes as just comedy relief (these are my initial impressions, mind you). Nothing much more than fighting goes on, along with the revelation that Wolf is Hakon's descendent (and I may be alone, but I rather like that connection).
Regardless, the end made me laugh out loud (and I loved the in-joke of Vinnie humming the theme song).
Over time, I've come to view this episode as being perhaps the most problematic of the series...but I enjoy watching it.

I agree with you on the inherent problems of the piece, Greg. The animation was disappointing--the fight scenes were serviceable but not really involving for the most part, and some comedy was nearly lost. It took a couple viewings before I noticed that Goliath elbowed Hudson in the face while preparing to hit Wolf--the hits occur too quickly for the joke to really pay off--and the second time Goliath nearly elbows Hudson doesn't read that way to me (it just seems awkward that second time).
Then there are the missed opportunities. The mace, of course, is the biggest. As nice as the "battle-axe night" line sounds, I'd rather have the mace. Actually, there could still be a fun line put in there, I think. Maybe not "mace night," Todd's right that doesn't have the same ring to it, but Wolf doesn't strike me as picky about specific terms for melee weapons. "Tonight is CLUB night" would have a nice double meaning to it, or "Tonight is WARHAMMER night" (probably please fans of that old pen-and-paper RPG of the same name). Sorry, I digress.
And yes, I would have liked more resonance to Hudson's battle with Hakon. You get a *little* of "Hudson taking revenge" when he gives a little chuckle as he leaves Hakon trapped in the crusher, but I would have liked more. Love the "clan-slaughterer" title, though.

These complaints aside, I rather enjoy the episode. Vinnie actually helps. It's nice to see what happened to a supposedly "random" person due to the gargoyles' actions. I raised an eyebrow at ret conning him into the role of "big nose" on Air Fortress 1, but I was willing to shrug my shoulders and go with it. I had not seen THE CAGE when I first saw VENDETTAS so the bit with Sevarius getting kidnapped left me mystified and frustrated (it did not stop me from thinking Talon was the kidnapper when I finally did see CAGE, he and Goliath have *very* similar silhouettes).
At any rate, I did like the idea of a "regular person" taking on the gargs. Losing his motorcycle and TWO jobs as well--heck, I'D demand satisfaction for that, too! And I believed Mr. Carter was a real gun (loved the Acme reference, BTW--didn't get the "Kotter" reference because that was before my time). Of course, neither Vinnie nor his gun is quite "regular." Vinnie explains himself (justifies himself, I guess) to Mr. Carter, earning stares from people passing him on the street. Vinnie doesn't seem to notice, though. Of course, not paying attention is what gives him such a difficult night to begin with. My favorite is where he tells "Mr. C" about the second job he lost and then turns around the corner and is surprised that the gargs are gone (as though the world stops when he reminisces). I guess this is part of your point on vengeance, Greg; Vinnie is so wrapped up in "creaming" Goliath--"the Big One"--that he doesn't notice imminent hurt/humiliation until it happens.
But he does not give up! When all other foes are defeated, Vinnie is still the last man standing! I'll come back to him before the end.

On to Hakon and Wolf. I didn't immediately cotton to Hakon being the axe. I noticed it laughed in the car and sounded similar to Wolf, but only when Hakon appeared as himself at the end of Act 1 did I realize who it was.
And Hakon has a LOT of powers. I guess it's a combination of being around for 1,000 years in a magical cave, being full of hate, and possessing a blood descendent that allows him to do what he does with Wolf's body. Flight telekinesis, disappearing, illusions (Hudson sees Goliath as Wolf), and the ability to become insubstantial…I wouldn't mind being able to do that! Hakon was right; Wolf was a fool to give up that power before the gargs were defeated. Of course, Wolf's always been a bit bull-headed about doing things his way and being in charge.
I had no problems with Wolf being descended from Hakon. Quite the contrary, I saw a wealth of opportunity in this development. Of course, Wolf and Hakon don't specifically tell anyone but the audience about this connection so I don't know how anything would develop. But the seed's there.

One interesting point that's made about vengeance in this episode: sometimes, the feelings of vengeance are not mutual. Hudson views Hakon as the ultimate evil, but Hudson barely matters to Hakon--the old gargoyle is just another obstacle to get to Goliath. To Wolf, Goliath, the "alpha male" gargoyle, is the ultimate target, but I somehow doubt if Goliath views Wolf that way. He views Wolf as a powerful and tenacious enemy, sure, but I don't think Goliath singles Wolf out from the rest of the Pack as a "prime" foe. As for Goliath and Hakon, yes there is resonance there, and in the past Hakon was definitely a focal point of Goliath's vengeance, but I think after SHADOWS OF THE PAST, Goliath's enmity for Hakon is no longer as strong. Hakon on the other hand, has lost no hatred for Goliath.
And none of them have any clue that Vinnie even exists until he walks right up to Goliath and shoots a pie in G's face.

That last part still puts a smile on my face. I had not expected the pie, but in a way it makes perfect sense. Why would Vinnie want to KILL Goliath? The gargoyles have humiliated Vinnie multiple times, cost him property and two jobs, but he's still alive, in good health, and not TOO badly off if he can afford Mr. Carter. Based on that, a pie in the face seems a reasonable retaliation.

One bit of dialogue I rather like in this episode is this one:
Wolf: "Come on, are you afraid to die like a man?"
Goliath: "What would a mutate werewolf know about being a man?"
That, coupled with the scene of Wolf scrounging for food in a dumpster, show just how far this former TV idol has fallen. And all just to get Goliath.

I find Hakon's "death" an interesting contrast to the Captain's back in SHADOWS OF THE PAST. With the Captain it was a feeling of peace and ascendancy. Hakon's seems more violent (I love the little electric bolt at the end). It makes sense to me.

I hadn't realized this epsiode had a different voice director until I saw the credits. Honestly, there was no decline in quality so far as I could tell. So take a bow, Greg. And if you see Clancy Brown, tell him to take one, too--he differentiated between Wolf and Hakon very well.

So VENDETTAS, while obviously problematic, is still fun for me.

Greg responds...

I'm fond of it. That was the first episode I ever voice directed in its entirety. Of course, I chose it on purpose because it had such a small cast of TOTAL PROS, who knew me and would forgive my ... uh... shortcomings. Ed Asner, Jeff Bennett, Clancy Brown, Jim Cummings, Keith David. Couldn't ask for a more solid, talented and UNDERSTANDING cast for my first effort.

Response recorded on January 15, 2007

Bookmark Link

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

Bookmark Link

Axem Gold writes...

A few months ago at the library, I checked out the VHS Macbeth (Orson Welles directed and played the lead role). According to the credits, Malcom was played by Roddy Mcdowall (Proteus). Did you know about that?

Greg responds...

Yep. I have my copy of that version of Macbeth sitting right over there on the shelf. No, the other shelf. Yeah. See?

Response recorded on December 22, 2006

Bookmark Link

Raptor writes...

I read on the Gargoyles News Central that Keith David is looking for a talking Goliath bank. Do you know how I would contact him if I have one?

raptordl8@netscape.net

Greg responds...

I've heard that he has one at this point. Maybe (a year and a half later) he got yours.

Response recorded on November 29, 2006

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

CLOUD FATHERS

When this episode first aired, I had missed both THE CAGE and KINGDOM--leaving me very out of the loop as far as what happened with Derek was concerned, and making this episode the first time I ever saw Beth Maza. As a result, my initial feeling was one of frustration at having lost part of the continuity. Thankfully, however, it was easy enough to figure out that the Maza family had found out about Derek's condition and Xanatos' part in it. I guess that made it *slightly* easier for them to accept living gargoyles.
In addition, since I had missed KINGDOM, this was the first time I had seen Xanatos since the World Tour started.

And Xanatos is just GREAT here. He has his moment of "cliched villainy" with the death trap (and even looks upon it as such), but he also seems much more intense this time around. He has that large "staple gun" thingy that he uses to restrain Angela and Goliath, but he also uses it on two seperate occasions as a weapon--and this thing could really kill someone! Even as a villain, Xanatos is likeable enough that you kind of forget he has the potential to be a killer. Even the death trap doesn't drive that home to me as much as his battle tactics here do.
However, before that, Xanatos' admission that he really has no interest in killing Goliath and Angela is quite refreshing--and further proof that he's not the typical animated nemesis. I even love the almost friendly look on his face as he admits neither gargoyle has done anything he'd hold a grudge against (does Xanatos even HAVE any grudges?).
Naturally, once I found out he was after Coyote the Trickster, I figured he was after immortality. His whole conversation with the Trickster is just perfectly written.
I also loved Xanatos "annoyance" at the end--FINALLY he got handed a real defeat that he could not look on the bright side of. Finally, Goliath (with a little help from his friends) was able to get under his skin, if just a smidge. I wondered, and I'm sure I wasn't alone, if this indicated a "final confrontation" was brewing. Of course, that's not what happened, but this works as a nice little misdirection.

The Robot, Coyote 4.0 was also nice, and a real treat for me to have him and Xanatos interacting. Nice design, although the "face" looked weird. More angular than usual, and sometimes the "skull" side looked like it had an eyebrow. Regardless, I love the two playing off each other, and am goofishly pleased when Xanatos, with his helmet on, is talking with Coyote 4.0, whose "face" is showing. I've always wondered what someone flipping channels would have made of this scene where there appear to be two robots talking--one with a half-human face.
Actually, that particular conversation does not speak very highly for Coyote 4.0's intelligence. He releases the Trickster ("I will check...") and then allows himself to be goaded into bringing a building down on top of him ("I should warn you, I'm programmed for vengence"). Yeah, you can definitely see the Wile E. Coyote resemblence. Now if you could have just had him hold up a little pink umbrella a split-second before the building came down on him.... ;-)

The Trickster himself was unique--the only wholly sympathetic Trickster we have met. Raven and Anansi were the antagonists of their respective episodes, and Puck...while he was enchained by Demona he didn't seem to mind giving our heroes a hard time. Coyote (the Trickster, not the Robot) not only willingly helped our heroes, but actually showed some real affection for one of them--that, of course, being Peter Maza.
Also, this Trickster was a lot more subtle--he rarely used any overt magic (a little hypnosis here, vanishing there, changing his clothes inside the Robot...). He mostly goaded others into acting (influencing luck from the sidelines, of course), and managed to take out the Robot by just dodging behind the support beams.

As for Peter Maza himself, it's nice to see more development in Elisa's dad, and showcasing where he came from. His story kind of parallels with Natsilane's, but Peter is older, more set in his beliefs--it takes more than gargoyles to convince him to believe in Coyote the Trickster. Peter also had a much more bitter break with his traditions, a good deal of which comes through with what was probably his last conversation with his father. When I first saw this ep, I had no idea that Carlos Maza had died. Having Elisa and Beth refer to "Grandpa" made me think he was still around for some reason. Of course, that made the final scene all the more poignant.

It was also nice to see and learn more about Beth. I like how each of the Maza "kids" are distinctive in personality and looks as well.
It's also nice that when Elisa realizes where they are, her first thought has to do with her family ("Beth might be in danger"). And I love the surprise in her voice when she sees her father is there as well. She is really happy to see them.

Random thoughts:

It took me a couple viewings before I started to pick up on the skiff having arrived in a pool. I rather like that twist.

When Peter and Beth start to explain to Elisa about being arrested and she asks them to start from the beginning. I don't know why but I really find that scene interesting.

Beth and Peter's reactions to the gargs are nice. Peter shows that he's probably not 100% on the whole "gargoyle" thing when he refers to them as "strange company." Beth is obviously a bit more open to them, although even she admits they seem "alien" (and no, I did not take that to mean "extraterrestrial"). Elisa, however, is used to looking at them through her own eyes, and as she says, all she sees is the beauty.

Coyote the Trickster's reverse psycology was a rather nice touch. Even better was Elisa's later comment that it was "pretty blatant."

Xanatos tries to fire from his arm-cannon only to have it kind of blow up in his face since Bronx already chewed it up. Xanatos' line here ("Big mistake, people!") always struck me as odd for some strange reason. I guess I'm not used to hearing Xanatos say something like that.

"No way my luck's this bad." I just love that line.

Beth's little pause before clarifying "uh, The Trickster, not the Robot." A nice beat that also kind of winks at the audience.

"The last thing I remember was ordering a pizza." Another bit I just love for some reason.

Peter's change of heart and appearing in the kachina garment was something I had been expecting. However, Coyote the Trickster's little speech was a surprise. It added an extra level to what Coyote was doing and Peter's part in everything. I love that little "I had to get you back" moment.

I noticed that Beth Maza had a different voice actress here than she did in THE CAGE. I'm not offering this as a complaint or nitpick, I'm just curious if there's any particular reason why.

Xanatos and Coyote alone make this a worthwhile ep, but the other elements really help turn it into one of the best eps on the World Tour.

Greg responds...

It's been a long time. The casting change was the choice of our voice and casting director Jamie Thomason. But I can't now recall what the reason was. Perhaps the original actress was unavailable. And in any case Roxanne Beckford, who also played Tea in "Night of the Panther" is always great.

Response recorded on November 02, 2006

Bookmark Link

Mitch Mack writes...

I looked through the archives the best I could, but found nothing of this question. Basically I wanted to know "IF" and "WHEN" the second DVD is greenlit, would it be possible to get Jonathan Frakes and Marina Sirtis for the commentary or even an extras docomentary like the Gathering?

Greg responds...

It was not possible on Volume One. They were invited but unavailable. We can cross our fingers if and when Volume Two is prepared.

Response recorded on November 01, 2006

Bookmark Link

randcnick writes...

do u now a actor named sara burnheart?she lived in the lod days

Greg responds...

I assume you mean Sarah Bernhardt (1844-1923). We've never met personally, but I've heard good things. Didn't she do a voice on Thundercats?

Response recorded on October 20, 2006

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

THE GREEN

I mentioned back in MARK OF THE PANTHER that I feard that episode would be focused on the illegal poaching angle, and become less of a story, more of a "public service announcement" of sorts. I said back then that, in my experience, when a show is focused on (or does an episode focused on) certain issues (especially environmental ones for some reason) it seems to sacrifice plot, character, and even believability to force its moral across.
Thankfully, that does not happen in this episode, or in any episode of GARGOYLES that I can think of.
Granted there are *some* lines that come close to being preachy. I find myself laughing at the "Forget me, save the trees!" line. And Zaphiro's "There is no such thing as a few trees," while admittidly cool and well-delivered, initially struck me as so absolutist and dogmatic.
Now, in that last case, I would have felt better if the conversation between Zaphiro and Elisa continued after that (maybe with Zaphiro pointing out that rainforest soil is absolutely worthless for farming). This is another one of those times I really wish GARGOYLES had hour-long episodes.
Actually, I really do like that scene between Elisa and Zaphiro because Elisa plays devil's advocate--she actually tries to see things from the side of the "forest defilers." Going back to what I said about other "environmentally-minded" shows and episodes, things have a tendency to be drawn completely in black and white--anyone who chops down a tree is evil to the core, basically. Broad strokes and caricatures.
Let's look at "Captain Planet and the Planeteers," for example. From what I remember, they had a cadre of "Eco-villains" who largely seemed to be destroying the environment because they enjoyed doing so. And it was specifically the environment that they enjoyed destroying. In some cases, they had a motivation (oftimes greed, though one character needed radiation to survive), but mostly they seemed to do it because they enjoyed polluting. If a normal person was doing "bad things" it was because they were under the influence of one of the big bad-guys, and by the end said normal people saw the error of their ways and turned around. Thus, it doesn't seem terribly realistic to me.
Contrast this with MONONOKE HIME ("Princess Mononoke"), one of my favorite animated movies. The "forest defiler," Lady Eboshi, while she can be quite ruthless and capitalistic, has a heart. She frees women from prostitution and takes care of lepers. She has depth, and this makes her more realistic and identifiable. Thus I was able to take this movie seriously, and more fully appreciate humanity's impact on the natural world.

And thankfully, THE GREEN is much closer to MONONOKE HIME than "Captain Planet." Much of this comes from Elisa. In addition to the scene I already mentioned, I LOVE the scene between her and Goliath at the pyramid when he leaves to protect The Green. She argues from the human point of view, in essence still playing devil's advocate, but she can fully sympathize with the gargoyles. And while Goliath can understand Elisa's point of view, he can see little other choice for the gargoyles trying to save The Green than the guerilla attacks. Even the Mayan clan seems to understand (Turquesa is a bit snappish about the "misguided laws," but Jade seems downright cheerful towards Elisa).
And as for the "villains" themselves, Jackal and Hyena are the only real ones, and their primary interest is the money. They don't show any specific enjoyment out of destroying the rainforest (even Jackal's destruction of trees stems from his trying to keep the gargoyles from doing anymore damage and--heck--he just likes destroying stuff, period). Vogel, and through him Cyberbiotics, are the "big bad" employing Jackal and Hyena, but again it's about the money and not a gleeful hatred for the environment (Environmental Ethics for Businesses: "Care about the environment unless it costs you money."). Even the workers are just doing their jobs (and they're probably as unnerved by Jackal and Hyena as they are the gargoyles). The destruction of the rainforest is, as is often the case in real life, the direct side effect of pursuing other goals (as opposed to the ultimate goal of some malefactor).

Okay, NOW we can get down to smaller details.
I LOVED seeing the new gargoyles. Zaphiro's design was excellent! And Hector Elizondo's voice-work was wonderful. The whole cast did a great job, in fact (and was the Jesse Corti playing Jade the same fellow who played Le Fou in BEAUTY AND THE BEAST?).
The "flesh by day and night" thing was nice--we don't often get to see the gargs in sun-lit environments.
And it was great seeing Jackal and Hyena again, and they actually managaed to be more unnerving than ever. There are the scenes you and Erin mentioned (a headless Hyena is pretty intimidating), but the whole "retract eye/ear" thing creeps me out, too. Those long cords are rewinding into their SKULLS!! And the sound Hyena's earpiece makes when it goes back in her ear...[shudder].
Admittidly, Jackal did have a nice plan, and if it weren't for the amulet being in New York it might have worked. I find it strange that Hyena seems to think being in NY again is a good "omen." Then again, she likes fighting the gargs, so....

I was pleased to no end to see Broadway and Lexington show up again. And their fight with Hyena was well staged (though the destruction of the various exhibits sets my teeth on edge, as well). You brought up Broadway's clan mentality towards maternity (the plural "mothers"), but what I find interesting is Hyena's use of the singular ("mamma"), which almost seems to indicate that she already in her mind sees these guys as brothers.
RE: the head injury. Yeah, that's another one of those things Toon Disney cuts out. Hyena's holding her head in pain was actually a nice touch, though.

I like the look on Jackal's face when Vogel points out the little "contractual oddity." I almost wonder if Vogel enjoyed needling Jackal on some level.
Actually, I must say I was surprised to see Vogel here. I mean, if any corporation was supposed to be "behind it all" shouldn't it be Xanatos Enterprises--the "bad guy's" company? Instead, it's the company headed by a good man, but run (while said good man is ill) by a rather unemotional businessman. It actually helped with the message and increased the depth of both Vogel and Renard. You get the sense that while Vogel may not like Jackal and Hyena (or their actions) he puts it aside in favor of results.
Still, his deciding to pull Cyberbiotics out of the rainforest entirely seemed a bit too pat. Despite that, though, it's pretty well handled.

I would have loved getting a chance to listen to Broadway and Lex's rationale for ultimately not destroying the amulet. I kind of figured they wouldn't, and having seen Obsidiana lose her pendant and Bronx find it I kind of figured out what the ruse would be.

Dang, but Morgan's casual with Hyena the killer cyborg. Unconcious or not, I'd wait until I was packing a nuclear weapon before I got near her.

Jackal doesn't kill Elisa. He tasers her unconcious, but doesn't kill her right off. Why? I just find myself wondering if he didn't have even WORSE things planned for her.

Elisa comes up with a sort of back-up solution that I had been wondering about for quite some time before this episode aired. It always struck me as being advisable to collect "genetic samples" of endangered plant and animal life "just in case." So I rather liked Elisa's contribution here.

A couple final thoughts: I liked that the gargs never referred to the rainforest as such. It was always "the forest" or, even better, "The Green." I love their using a title for this land they hold in reverence.
Also, the "Oxygen" line you mentioned. It is a valid point (one that I keep forgetting, I'll admit), but, yeah, it may have been a bit difficult to pull off without feeling preachy or forced (I could only see Elisa saying this line since the Mayan clan strike me as mostly knowing their own turf--they know the forest is important, but they may not know how globally necessary it is).

It's a good episode, and a well done "special message" ep. And hey, more gargoyles (and cool looking ones at that)!

Greg responds...

It's always a fine line, but we do try to avoid being preachy.

And yes, Jesse Corti is Jade and Le Fou.

In materials I've read since, I'm no longer certain that the rain forests are the lungs of the world. That's been called into question... to some extent by the DESTRUCTION of the rain forest. If so much is gone, why haven't oxygen levels dipped -- or something like that.

Response recorded on October 11, 2006

Bookmark Link

Harvester of Eyes writes...

Is there a reason Laura San Giacomo wasn't credited for her voice work as Fox at the end of "Thrill of the Hunt"? I recently watched that episode on my DVD, and there's no voice credit for Fox.

An Ask Greg Helper responds...

Greg Weisman says:

I have answered this before, many times, but what the heck...

It was her agent's decision. I doubt it's something he would still insist on today, but he was worried about a stigma.

Response recorded on October 03, 2006

Bookmark Link

Brandon writes...

Sorry. Just found tha tthe question had already been answered in the arcives. My Bad. Don't kknow how I missed it before I sent, but did. Sorry.

Greg responds...

Thanks for checking. Later's better than never.

Response recorded on October 01, 2006

Bookmark Link

Brandon writes...

I first heard about "Gargoyles" why back when in 1993, or ther abouts when I saw Marina Sirtus at a Star Trek Convention, and she was talking about. Needless to say, I feel in love with the show after three episodes. However, Ihave always wondered if it was just the luck of the casting that you got so many Next Generation and other Trek cast members to do voices. Did Marina Sirtua and Jonathen Frakes have anything to do with the casting of fellow Trek stars, or was it just one of those weird little things that happend?
Brandon (PS Loved the show and hope to see season 2 on DVD soon)

PSS - Just in case some people are not a double fas as I am, here is a list of the trek stars (that I can remember) the show and the character(s) they played on Gargoyles

Marina Sitrus (Troi - TNG) - "Demona"
Jonathan Frankes (Riker - TNG) - "Xanatos"
Michael Dorn (Worf - TNG & DS9) - "Coldstone/Othello", "Toras"
Brent Spiner (Data - TNG) - "Puck"
LeVar Burton (Gordi - TNG) - Giant Spider whose name escapes me
Avery Brooks (Sisko - DS9) - Alein who lived as Stone Hendge
Colm Meney (O'Brien - TNG & DS9) - Irsih Father, whose name again escapes me)
Kate Mulgrew (Janeway - Voyager) - "Tatana"
Nichelle Nicholes (Uhora - Star Trek) - Elisa's Mother.

Thanks, and sorry for taking up so much space.

Greg responds...

Check out the archives. I've answered this MANY times.

Response recorded on October 01, 2006

Bookmark Link

R.I.P. Edward Albert

R.I.P. Edward Albert.

Edward did a voice for us on a couple of episodes on Max Steel. I won't pretend I knew him well, but he was a good and talented guy on those two occasions. The son of Green Acres Eddie Albert, Edward was a talented actor and activist. He'll be missed.


Bookmark Link

Tony Jay, R.I.P.

I just read in today's paper that actor Tony Jay has passed away.

I won't pretend that I knew Tony well. We only worked together once, when he played Anubis for us in the GARGOYLES episode "Grief". But what a great guest spot, huh?

I just loved what he did as Anubis a.k.a. the Jackal-God a.k.a. Death a.k.a. the guy who refused to play favorites. And one of my favorite bits in all of Gargoyles was how we combined Tony's voice -- first with Matt Frewer's and then with Tony Shaloub's -- to create the two Avatars of Anubis. Three totally different personae, one great talented actor. As one might imagine, that could have been a frustrating day, struggling to match up Matt's work with Tony Jay's. (Tony Shaloub recorded at a different time.) But Tony Jay made it easy for us.

He'll be missed.


Bookmark Link

Liz writes...

In "Hunters Moon" who were the voice actors for the hunters Jason, Robyn,and Jon Canmore?
Thanks

Greg responds...

Jason - Deidrich Bader
Robyn - Sheena Easton
Jon - Scott Cleverdon

Response recorded on November 08, 2005

Bookmark Link

Arwen Black writes...

a)Do you know how all of the star trek- people got involved in the show, there's so many of them.

b) i just started watching Star treck; the next genoration a few months back, and when i first started watchin the show i had an ishue... every time riker talked, i pictured xanatos. dont think i'm weird or anyhting (tho i kinda am, but whatever) but i was wondering if you wathced ST:TNG, has this ever hapened to you??

Greg responds...

a) I've answered this MANY times before. Check out the Voice Talent section of the ASK GREG archives.

b) Well, I did watch TNG... and started watching it before we hired Jonathan to play Xanatos. But there was that one episode of DS9 with the Riker clone, where I really felt like Frakes was doing Xanatos doing Riker. (There was also an episode of WINGS like that.)

Response recorded on October 28, 2005

Bookmark Link

Emperor Auladarr I writes...

Mr. Weisman,

I was perusing the Hudson archives and read your ramble on "Long Way 'Til Morning," where you invited response to the episode. Of all the episodes of Gargoyles (the REAL episodes, not those GC episodes that made no sense), this is one I remember most vividly as one of my absolute favorites. Rarely do we get to see the elderly character in a series be the hero, or have the spotlight on him for almost every second of the show. It was refreshing to see Hudson as the hero and not some doddering old coot who needs to be saved by his fellows.

The things I remember most about the episode are the good lines the characters had. Some of my favorites from Demona are: "Ciao." (Ms. Sirtis's callous tone there just made it work), and "Your courage is admirable, but ultimately futile." Mr. Asner had the best one's, though: "Just dreaming old dreams, I guess." "I can face her. I just can't beat her." And, of course, his speech to Demona at the end about growing old and waiting.

The flashback scenes are great, too. The planting of the Archmage and that whole plotline was brilliant, as was the Prince's faux pas on "the gargoyles will get you," and the whole snowball effect that had on Katharine.

But, again, above all else, Hudson stands out in this episode. He's not sitting at the clocktower watching TV with Bronx--he's in his element, both in the past and in the present, as a warrior. "He favors speed over stealth, which could mean he has traps waiting for us." Brilliant. His heading underground where neither he or Demona could use their wings--clever.

The whole episode just struck me as excellent because it showed Hudson as a competent, wise, and experienced warrior. I don't know...maybe because my grandfather seems like he knows how to do anything under the sun I took more to Hudson craftiness.

Well...those are just my thoughts. Kudos on one of MANY great episodes.

Greg responds...

Thanks. Working with Hudson was always fun, and working with Ed Asner continues to be a joy. (He just did a voice for me on multiple episodes of WITCH.)

Of course, it was the Archmage's appearance in "Long Way To Morning" that inspired the plotlines to follow. At the time, we didn't know we were laying pipe for the future. Frankly, it was the amazing performance of David Warner that made us feel like we HAD to bring the character back.

Response recorded on October 27, 2005

Bookmark Link

Question writes...

Was it just a coincidence or was it intentional that Avery Brooks was casted for the voice of Nokkar, a soldier in a intergalactic war, when on Star Trek he was Captain Sisko, who spent a majority of the series fighting a war with the Dominion with the Klingons, Romulans and Cardassians thrown into the pot?

Greg responds...

Coincidence is the wrong word, but we weren't trying to be ironic and/or cutesie. We were trying to get a voice with the chops to go toe-to-toe with the chops of our own Keith David. The fact that Mr. Brooks was a Trek actor, when we already had so many Trek actors on the show just made him come to mind quicker.

Response recorded on October 21, 2005

Bookmark Link

The Question writes...

Hey Greg seeing how you guys had Captain Janeway and Captain Sisko do the voices of Titania and Nokkar respectively did you guys ever plan to cast the actors for Captain Kirk, Mr. Spock, Scotty, Quark, Dax, Odo, Dukat, Bashir or Kira. If you did then for what characters in Gargoyles?

PS I think your show stands out as one of the finest hours of television animated or otherwise.

Greg responds...

Nana Visitor (Major Kira) did voice the part of Fox briefly, but my fellow producer Frank Paur had the roll recast with Laura San Giacomo.

Otherwise, I would have been glad to use all the actors you named, but we had no specific plans for any of them.

Response recorded on October 19, 2005

Bookmark Link

Hamilton Camp, R.I.P.

I read today that Hamilton Camp passed away.

I first met Mr. Camp, when I story edited the last five episodes of DuckTales. Hamilton was the voice of GizmoDuck.

We worked together again on Starship Troopers, where he played the "Old Ranger".

More recently, I'd seen him live on stage in a number of productions with Glendale's "A NOISE WITHIN" Theater company. He played Sir Andrew Aguecheek in Shakespeare's Twelfth Night, and he was hilarious.

And it doesn't seem that long ago, that I ran into him in Larchmont Village and introduced him to my two kids. We didn't know each other well, but he was always gracious, professional... and FUNNY as hell.

Godspeed, Hamilton.


Bookmark Link

Anti-Fllay Allster writes...

Hi Greg.

OK, by the time you read this post it's probably going to be yesterday's news. In fact, it's going to be mention so many times, you wouldn't care anymore...but I'll say it anyway!

Keith David guest-star on Justice League Animated. I let you find out which episode and which character; I wouldn't want to spoil everything!

Hopefully by the time you read this post, you would have watch the episode! Drop a few comments on his performance and the episode in general! As always, Keith David is simply amazing!

Be seeing you!

Greg responds...

I don't think I saw that episode. Sorry.

Response recorded on September 28, 2005

Bookmark Link

Don Ferguson (rodimus@mindspring.com) writes...

Mr.Weisman-

My name is Don and I wanted to ask if you could share some of your memories of working with the cast and crew on Talespin. Up until Gargoyles came along, Talespin was one of the most in-depth shows Disney had done to date, and had a noticably darker tone (such as Kit Cloudkicker episodes) compared to their earlier shows like Rescue Rangers. Any thoughts or comments from your time -and about Ed Gilbert who brought Baloo the bear to life-would be greatly appreciated!

Thank you in advance!

Greg responds...

Let me start with Ed, who was great as Baloo. I never met him. Not back in the Talespin days. I only went to some Talespin pick-up sessions, and we had no lines for Ed to pick up.

Of course, I later met Ed working on Gargoyles, where he played the Captain of the Guard at Castle Wyvern. He was terrific. I can't say I got to know him as a person, but I was very impressed with his abilities as an actor.

Anyway, the Talespin days...

When I started at Disney in 1989, production on Talespin was already underway. The big mucky-mucks on that show were Jymn Magon & Mark Zaslove. And I'm afraid I didn't really get to know either of them all that well. I later worked a bit more with both of them, but my job at the time was to give notes (both creative notes and S&P) directly to the individual story editors. I do recall having great sit-down conversations with Story Editor Karl Geurs. Karl really welcomed me to Disney... and we'd sit in his office and talk about the scripts, about animation, about storytelling for ... well... for longer than we probably needed to.

I thought/think that Talespin was a great fun idea. I think some of the episodes are just amazing. There's some really gorgeous stuff there. And I loved Shere Khan. I suppose to Jungle Book purists, it might have been problematic, but if you see the Disney characters evolving into actors, for me it was fun to see them playing different roles.

Response recorded on September 19, 2005

Bookmark Link

Todd Jensen writes...

Thanks for the ramble on "Grief", Greg.

I was amused by your remark about Michael Reaves and a Batman episode that he'd written involving Egyptian elements that had gotten changed. As I'd commented in an earlier question (which you should have gotten to long before you read this response to your ramble, since it's that much before me in the queue), I'd seen an episode of "Batman: TAS" once named "Avatar" with some moments strongly evocative of "Grief", and I suspect that that was the episode that you alluded to.

I hadn't picked up the double meaning of the title (though I did recall Wolf's use of the word). Thanks for pointing it out.

I certainly wasn't surprised that Dingo was absent, after "Upgrade". I *was* surprised to see the Emir actually becoming an on-stage character, and agree with you that his role was an effective one. (Another bit that I hadn't picked up on was your remark about Jackal's semi-promise to reunite the Emir with his son was what kept him from acting earlier, and was deliberately uttered by Jackal to keep him from interfering.)

I might add that I was certainly not surprised to see your remark about "I should have had the Pack kill Goliath and Co. only to discover that they couldn't die while Anubis was trapped." (Incidentally, the situation of "While Anubis is imprisoned, nobody can die" reminds me of the Greek myth about how Sisyphus put either Hades or the death-god Thanatos - which one he imprisoned varies from which version of the story you read - in handcuffs to wriggle out of being taken away to the underworld, with the result that nobody was able to die - until Ares, fed up with the fact that the "nobody could die" business was taking all the "fun" out of war, freed his prisoner.)

Jackal becoming Anubis's avatar and causing all that devastation was one of the creepiest moments in all of "Gargoyles" for me - especially when he aged Goliath and Co. (The fate of the crocodiles was certainly chilling). I think that the fates of Hyena and Wolf served as a good "comic relief" counterbalance to it to keep it from getting too dark. (Wolf being turned into a puppy was great!)

(I can see one flaw in Jackal's plan, though; if you wipe out all other life on Earth, what do you do after that, with nobody else to torment?)

I can agree with you about the "cringe" moments over the gargoyles and the Pack destroying ancient Egyptian antiquities, and the relief that they didn't destroy the Sphinx. (It's odd, since a couple of days ago I saw an episode of "X-Men: Evolution" where there was a battle between Apocalypse and some Sentinels at the Sphinx, and I had a shuddering moment when one of the Sentinels blasted a hole in the Sphinx's back.)

And the end with Goliath hoping that the Emir was reunited with his son in the afterlife was a touching moment.

Greg responds...

I thought so too. I think Tony Shaloub is brilliant. Monk is both hilarious and heart-breaking.

Response recorded on July 25, 2005

Bookmark Link

IKKI TOUSEN

For those of you who have worn out your GARGOYLES first season DVD playing the words "Nice Mask" over and over and over again...

For those of you who have waited and watched for that Panda-La episode of Talespin, just so that you can hear: "Father, the rockets aren't working!"...

For those of you who just can't get enough of the homeless guy in 3x3 Eyes humming the Gargoyles' theme...

I'd recommend you rush out and purchase the four volume DVD set of IKKI TOUSEN (Strength of a Thousand).

Heck, I'd recommend it anyway. I've watched the first three volumes and plan to watch the fourth volume tonight. They're all a lot of fun. The interview with the director is worth the price of admission alone. Loads of action and sexy stuff. (NOT FOR KIDS, BTW! ADULTS ONLY!)

Ikki Tousen.


Bookmark Link

Frank Gorshin, RIP

I just read that Frank Gorshin passed away. I'm kinda bummed about it.

I didn't know him well, but I did meet him a couple of times. He played Professor Hugo Strange in "The Batman" episodes that I wrote. He was terrific.

I've seen him do George Burns (briefly) live, and he was amazing.

And of course, as a kid, I just loved him as the Riddler. And there was that strange-o Star Trek episode too.

Like I said, didn't know him all that well, but he was a very talented guy. He'll be missed.


Bookmark Link

Kassey writes...

Hi!
I really like you're style of writing for the show of Max Steel did you ever meet Christian Campbell? Does the letter 'S' stand for something? Because I think that it's cool the way you put those titles together so "those are my two questions"
you're biggest Max Steel fan Kassey Demers Chapleau Ont,Can
THANK YOU!!!

Greg responds...

Hey Kassey,

Don't know if you're still reading ASK GREG, but yes, I knew Christian quite well, though I haven't seen him in a couple years.

S stands for Steel.

Response recorded on December 10, 2004

Bookmark Link

Corrine Blaquen writes...

Recently I rewatched my tape of one of my favorite World Tour episodes, "Grief". While there are so many things I enjoy in that episode, the thing that never fails to blow me away is when Jackal becomes the avatar for Anubis. Oh, the merging of the Packster and the Death God's voice is just... W-O-W, wow! I absolutely love Tony Jay's voice, it's so powerful and majestic with just the right amount of creepiness, great as Anubis just perfect for any role of quiet menance and dignified sophistication. The technique of mingling the two speakers was brilliant-- it was so powerful, and expertly done. Just wanted to tell you I loved it!

Greg responds...

Thanks! I will take credit for the IDEA of merging the two voices. But of course credit for the execution of that idea goes to actors Tony Jay & Matt Frewer (and later Tony and Tony Shaloub) under the direction of Jamie Thomason. Plus the excellent soundwork of the gangs at the now defunct Screen Music Studios and at Advantage Audio.

Response recorded on November 30, 2004

Bookmark Link

Chapter L: "The New Olympians"

Time to ramble...

Chapter L: "The New Olympians"
Story Editor: Gary Sperling
Writer: Adam Gilad
Director: Bob Kline

ORIGINS
Well, the Greek Myths of course. But that's not really what I'm talking about. As many of you know, The New Olympians was a concept -- originally created by Bob Kline -- that we began developing at Disney TV Animation even BEFORE Gargoyles. It was definitely a concept that evolved, but it was also a concept that we felt fit nicely into the Gargoyles Universe. So this episode was created as a backdoor pilot. At the time we had big plans for the Gargoyles Universe. Hopes that it would eventually evolve into Disney's equivalent of the Marvel or DC Universe. The World Tour expanded our Universe in many ways -- mostly for the sake of the Gargoyles series itself. But also to demonstrate that our universe had the "chops" to go the distance.

So the New Olympians were imported whole, like Athena from Zeus' head -- into the gargverse. The development for "The New Olympians" series focused on four major characters: Terry, Sphinx, Talos and Taurus. Terry and Sphinx were kept out of this episode on purpose -- so that we'd have fresh faces for the series if it went. Talos has a very minor role. But Taurus took a lead here. Other characters, such as Kiron, Ekidna, Helios, Boreas and, of course, Proteus were also part of the N.O. development. Though again, we left out a bunch of other characters: Xetes, Kalais, Medusa, Jove and Xanatos (yes, Xanatos) so that the whole series didn't become old news, should it get going.

The basic concept of the series, familiar to anyone who's attended a Gathering and seen the original pitch, was Romeo & Juliet. Terry is a human. Sphinx is a New Olympian. They are in love. But their "families" aren't making that love easy. This episode, would in essence be a PREQUEL to that series. Terry hasn't arrived yet. Elisa will help pave the way for Boreas' decision to finally reveal the New Olympians to the human world.

But another important inspiration was the work of Jack Kirby. In my recent ramble on "Eye of the Storm", I commented on how we strove to avoid a Kirbyesque Odin -- and didn't entirely succeed. Here, Kirby was a clear influence. I hope The New Olympians weren't a rip-off, but I can't deny that his Inhumans, his Eternals and his New Gods influenced us -- or me, at least -- when we were creating both New Olympus and our cast of characters.

Creating the cast was also interesting. We basically compiled a list of Greek & Roman myth-figures. Gods. Monsters. Titans. Etc. Then we tried to think about their descendants... Tried to think about which would be the most visually interesting. (A lot of the gods, for example, just look like glorified humans, so we tended to ignore them.) Originally, Kiron had the Taurus role and Medusa had the Sphinx role. But after talking with the artists, we made the double switch, because it was felt that having to animate a centaur and a woman with snaky hair on a regular basis was just inviting difficulties. As with many of these pragmatic decisions, I eventually fell in love with the new version -- and wouldn't want to go back, even if I could be assured of the highest possible animation quality.

In order to import this diverse group into the Gargverse, I posited that these were the descendents of mortals who mated with the Children of Oberon (or Mab). They therefore have incredible abilities and amazing appearances, but they are mortal. Some may have extremely long lives, but they do age. Still, before they left the human world behind, many of the original Olympians were treated as Gods. But some were treated as Monsters. As in Gargoyles, PREJUDICE would be a major theme of the series. In fact, if you look at the PREVIOUSLY of this episode, you'll see that it's fully thematic. All stuff about humans being prejudiced about Gargoyles. That's because we had nothing content-wise that we needed to set up. But if we set-up human prejudice, than it helped forge the twist of prejudice against humans, which Elisa would face in the episode. (I do wish we had thought to include Goliath's line: "Humans fear what they do not understand...")

So the New Olympians fled the Human World. They established a secret island and developed astounding technology... including a cloaking device. (I was always a touch disappointed with all the fog and mist in the opening scene. I wanted the skiff to suddenly be on the open sea, with nothing around for miles. The fog allowed for the notion that something might be hiding BEHIND it. I didn't want that. Still, I think the idea gets across. And the shimmer effect is nice. Plus, I like how Goliath abruptly spreads his wings when he enters it. When my daughter Erin saw the city finally materialize, she said: "Wow!")

OLD LINES IN NEW CONTEXT
Were we just out of dialogue ideas, or were we trying to make a point or an inside joke or something. I'll let you decide...
Goliath: "We cannot wage war against an entire city."
Elisa: "You'll have to do better than that."

VOICE WORK
Michael Dorn wound up playing Taurus and the late Roddy McDowell as Proteus. Dorian Harewood, who was originally cast as Boreas, also wound up playing Talos. But none of these three were our original choices for those rolls. Instead we cast three people who I thought would be perfect for their parts. But none hit it. It was one of our rare recordings that DIDN'T work. So we fell back on Michael to play the very Worf-like Taurus. (This sometimes bothers me as the voice is exactly the same as Coldstone's. But ultimately you go with the best hand you have at the time.) Dorian ended up doing double duty as Talos and was terrific. And of course, Roddy was just brilliant as Proteus.

What's interesting is that Proteus himself is not the greatest actor. Erin noticed... "There's something different in his voice." Of course, it's Keith David PLAYING Proteus playing Goliath. (Which is always fun.) And Keith hits the mark with precision. As does Salli & Michael when they're playing Proteus playing Elisa & Taurus. Sure Proteus always LOOKS the part -- thanks to his shape-shifting abilities. And I suppose he's less of a ham than Sevarius. But he never quite takes the time to truly "inhabit" his roles. Certainly, while playing Elisa and then Goliath, there are a number of small tip-offs in his choice of words that are just wrong. Like can you really imagine Goliath saying: "Who's that guy?" One assumes that his performance as Taurus' dad is equally off the mark.

The walla in the Senate House when Elisa is on trial isn't my favorite. We just didn't get enough coverage, so it repeats and repeats.

PREJUDICE
All of the New Olympians we see are prejudiced. Every one. Some are worse than others. Boreas is well-meaning, but wrong. Taurus is narrow-minded. Talos is, at best, only pragmatic -- not morally outraged by Elisa's treatment. Most of the others are just flat out racists. "New Olympians fear what they don't understand." I'm sure somewhere on the island there were some more enlightened individuals, but we made a point of NOT showing them.

I wanted to do a few things with that theme. (1) Show that prejudice breeds prejudice. The New Olympians have some legitimate grievances against the human race, but they've learned the wrong lessons from their ancient persecution. (2) Of course, we wanted to play the irony of the monsters being afraid of the "Humans of Legend". Elisa tells the Gargoyles to hide when they first land on the island. And she's the one that the New Olympians fear. They have "no quarrel" with the Gargoyles. And the best solution that even Boreas and Taurus can come up with is to "Quarantine" our girl. (3) There was a three. I had it in my head a minute ago. Now, for the life of me, I can't remember what it was.

Maybe it had something to do with Prejudice only truly being able to be attacked one person at a time. I went to an all boys high school. We were all so deathly afraid of being called homosexuals that a culture of homophobia was ingrained into all of us. It wasn't like I was going around gay-bashing. I like to think that even then, I had the sense and the control to stifle my prejudices. But I can't deny I had them -- probably still have them to some extent, unfortunately. Anyway, then I went to college. Acted in a couple plays with a guy I really admired -- both as an actor and as a human being. Became good friends with this guy (who had the amazing name Steve Wraith). THEN I discovered he was gay. By that time, I didn't care. He had personally won me over -- in a slightly less dramatic fashion then how Homer Simpson learned to accept gays after John Waters saved his life. Steve never saved my life, but I'm afraid the metaphor is VERY apt. I haven't seen Steve in twenty years, but I owe him a lot. A few years later my cousin came out. After that, many if not most of my friends came out. My sister. Etc. Steve paved the way to make me a better person. Conceptually, we can all talk about dismissing prejudice, but I have this sneaking suspicion that the only way we really learn is one human being at a time. That's why Goliath vouching for Elisa was ineffective. People are doomed to HAVE to figure things out for themselves. And unfortunately, some never do.

WHO KNEW THESEUS WAS SUCH A BASTARD?
And so we put Taurus through that process. He meets a human. His distaste is palpable. He knows the story of the Minotaur, his ancestor. [Now Theseus is one of my all time favorite characters from Myth. But I couldn't resist flipping the tale of the Labyrinth and telling it, if just for a few seconds, from the Minotaur's point of view.] But Taurus will learn to respect humans - one human at at time. Elisa and Taurus actually have a lot in common. Both are cops. Both have/had fathers who are/were cops. But as Elisa says, he's "got some funny ideas about justice."

Elisa is clearly more enlightened. In part, that may come from her own history. She grew up as a person of color in a largely white society. She's no stranger to prejudice. Being both African-American and Native American, it's possible that she has even faced some rejection from African-Americans and Native Americans as well. Clearly, based on her openness with regards to Goliath and the Gargoyles, she learned her lessons long before we met her. Pretty much from the moment she realized that Goliath could talk -- and was therefore sentient by human standards, she treated him as an equal. I always admired her for that. Unlike the New Olympians, she didn't let the prejudice she faced turn her into a bigot.

Taurus will eventually get the message. His prejudices don't just vanish. But he's learned something.

SOME NEAT MOVES
I like the sequence where Goliath comes to break Elisa out, and Proteus takes advantage of the situation by first turning into Elisa and then Goliath. (When Erin first saw him as Elisa, she said, "Uh oh." which is pretty much exactly what he was going for.

I like how Taurus threatens to fire Helios.

I like how Goliath turns to stone in Proteus' cell.

I like how Elisa takes charge -- and basically FORCES Taurus to partner up with her. She has two tip offs that Proteus is posing as Goliath. First the fact that he didn't turn to stone and blames it on the cloaking device affecting the sun's rays. Of course, Elisa knows that it's not literally the sun that turns a gargoyle to stone. It's his or her biological clock, which is often triggered by sunrise. But the real clincher is Proteus' plan to blow up the Collonadium. Elisa knows Goliath would NEVER do that.

I like when Taurus tries to express his admiration -- and still can't do it without insulting her species. Elisa takes it in stride: "I'll choose to take that as a compliment." Progress is slow.

THE NEW OLYMPIANS
We end the episode with a pretty blatant pitch for giving the New Olympians their own show. It's certainly shameless. But I make no apologies. I still contend that THE NEW OLYMPIANS would make a GREAT t.v. series.

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


Bookmark Link

Chapter XLIX: "Eye of the Storm"

Time to ramble...

Chapter XLIX: "Eye of the Storm"
Story Editor: Cary Bates
Writer: Cary Bates
Director: Bob Kline

FAMOUS LAST WORDS (PART TWO)
Goliath at the end of "Avalon, Part Three" (and in the PREVIOUSLY of this episode): "I am personally going to make sure that the Eye of Odin and the Phoenix Gate are never used again." Of course, he's thinking he won't let anyone else use them. But he neglects to protect them against himself. We've already seen him use the Phoenix Gate -- mostly to positive effect -- in M.I.A. Now, we'll see him don the Eye of Odin...

ENVIRONMENTS
Elisa's cold. Cold enough to put her life in danger. Cold enough to force us to add a sweater and parka to her ensemble as the episode progresses. As Angela says, "It's enough to take your breath away." To which Elisa responds: "I can vouch for that."

(I do wonder what sport it was that Gunther was playing in the middle of winter that he did so well at.)

VOICE ACTORS RETURN
J.D. Daniels -- formerly Tom and Young Luach and Young Canmore -- is here playing Gunther Sturlusson. As I write this in 2004, J.D. would have to be in his late teens or early twenties. He was a great child actor -- which is rarer than you might think. I hope he's doing well.

Morgan Sheppard -- formerly Petros Xanatos -- also returns, as Odin. I would later cast Morgan in "Atlantis: Milo's Return" as a crazy guy who THOUGHT he was Odin. I love working with Morgan.

ODIN & THE STURLUSSONS
The name Sturlusson is a direct steal from Snorri Sturlusson (I hope I'm spelling this right), the author of the Eddas -- the more-or-less original source materials that we have as reference to the Norse Myths.

We tried to paint an Odin that would make Snorri proud, one "well-versed in myths and legends". Having him pose as an old man with a cloak of stars. That's out of the myths. Making him a storm god. That's right out of the myths. Giving him the ability to transform into animals (in this case a VERY cool one-eyed polar bear). Right out of the myths. The rainbow bridge at the end. Right out of the myths. Giving him a flying battle steed named Sleipnir is right out of the myths too, if you forgive the fact that Sleipner is supposed to have eight legs, but Bob and Frank balked at our ability to animate that decently. [Note: I do worry whether or not the final GOD-ODIN design was a bit too Marvel/Kirby influenced. Jack Kirby's seminal work is so all-pervasive in American visual vernacular, it's hard to avoid, even when you're consciously attempting to avoid it.]

And of course, there's the Eye itself. Traditionally, Odin traded his eye to the wise Jotun Mimir for wisdom and insight. Obviously, Mimir lost it at some point, perhaps after losing his own head (another story) and the Eye floated around for centuries before David found it and gave it to Fox who lost it to Goliath who had it stolen by the Weird Sisters who gave it the Archmage who lost it to Goliath again. Now Odin's claiming that HE directed Goliath's skiff to Norway. This time it isn't Avalon that's sent them here, but Odin who has waylaid them so that he can FINALLY get his darn eye back in its socket. I do regret that our "Eye-as-a-piece-of-Jewelry" design always looked more Egyptian than Nordic to me. The gang over at Disney Interactive who created the concept of the Eye for their game, had a much more runic/nordic/ravenesque design.

But I am curious -- how many of you were surprised to discover that the Eye of Odin was actually Odin's eye?

Odin also refers to Elisa as a Maiden. I wonder if he felt that she would have made a good Valkyrie?

{My ten-year-old daughter Erin asked: "Why doesn't [Goliath] give it to Odin. It's his eye. Of course, she's seen the episode before and knows what's coming vis-a-vis Goliath's behavior, but it's still interesting to me that she placed the burden for the misunderstanding on Goliath and not on Odin.}

Odin -- as Odin sees it -- is playing by the rules. He tries barter and then fair combat and then takes a hostage, which in ancient times did not have the same cowardly (if not downright terrorist) connotation that it carries today. All of which might have been avoided, if at the beginning he had just -- i don't know -- offered Elisa the cloak with no strings attached and sat down with Goliath to discuss the whole eye thing. Odds are, when he was not being confrontational, Bronx would have slid up to get his chin scratched. Angela would have said something like, "Well, Bronx likes him." And Goliath might have realized that giving the darn thing back to Odin was the safest possible outcome. BUT NO! Odin, as he admits, is not the most patient of gods and a bit rusty when it comes to the whole dealing directly with mortals thing.

AVATAR
So, instead, Odin comes on strong (rules or no rules) and Goliath is pushed into thinking that he has no choice but to use the Eye's power himself. (I think that was adequately motivated.) And thus Goliath and NOT Odin quickly becomes the VILLAIN of our piece. Which was interesting for us. We'd seen Zombie-Goliath in "Temptations". We'd seen Goliath's "evil twin" in "Double Jeopardy" and "Sanctuary". But we'd never seen Goliath himself go bad until now. He becomes more of who he is. A protector -- a tyrant -- a fascist. Someone who cannot brook disobedience. Someone unaccustomed to dealing with gods or being one. (A good line, I thought.)

His new attitude is, I think, embodied by the casualness and callousness of him saying: "We will pack them too." This in regards to moving Bronx and his DAUGHTER, currently frozen in stone.

At first, everything he says is pretty darn rational-sounding. But Elisa and Angela and Erik quickly develop their suspicions. They are just naturally slow to believe that their Goliath -- OUR Goliath -- could be the bad guy. Eye or no eye.

Goliath also succeeds in becoming an Avatar for Odin, much like Jackal and the Emir each became Avatars for Anubis. It's not quite as literal, but his wings take on Odin's starry pattern. His helmet is similar (although on my tape his horns are doing some FUNKY animation things). And everytime Odin uses one of his powers, Goliath acquires and mimics that power.

I'll admit that Goliath's turnaround at the end plays on screen a bit too quick for my tastes now. But ultimately, we were still counting on Goliath's protective nature, his basic decency. His love for his daughter. It's not as strong for me as, say, Renard's turnaround or the Captain's (from "Golem" and "Shadows of the Past" respectively), but I think it basically works.

OTHER NEAT LINES (all approximate)
Erik: "I am rich in sweaters."
Goliath: "Now that Elisa is safe, we can rest in peace." (Okay, this is more of an odd line than a neat one.)
Odin (understated): "This calls for a change in strategy."
Goliath (once they're all on to him): "Is there a problem."
Elisa: "The Eye! The Eye has gone to your head!"
Goliath: "That is all you need to know."
Odin: "I have more than gained in wisdom, what I have lost in strength."
Odin: "You're on my turf with my property."
Odin: "I am not the threat."
Goliath: "So close to Death and Rejuvenation at the same time."
Elisa: "You took a big chance. Wish I'd thought of it."
Odin: "Then we have both gained rare enlightenment. The Eye's standard gift." This last one was important to me. I wanted (from the moment we intro'd the eye into the series back in "The Edge" to play the Eye true to it's Eddaesque roots.

JALAPEÑA
Goliath removes the Eye and speaks that word again. This caught me off guard last night, cuz I had thought Hudson's Pendragon Jalapeña was the last one until "The Journey". But I guess we squeezed one more in.

And Odin finally gets the Eye back. And ... and... NOTHING HAPPENS. He just sticks it back into his eye socket and it becomes... his eye. I LOVED the anti-climax of that. Generally -- not such a big fan of anti-climax, but the irony and the RIGHTNESS of it just thrilled me.

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


Bookmark Link

Michelle writes...

Hi Greg,
I'm 29 years old and I just started watching the Gargoyles cartoon as of September 2002 through ToonDisney. I am very shocked that I didn't know about this show before. I am a big fan of the 80s cartoons such as GiJoe, Thundercats, Voltron, etc.. And in my opinion, The Gargoyles are right up there with the best of them. Thank you for creating another great cult show for the 90s. Anyways, here is my question, if it hasn't been asked already. I noticed that during the end credits, Laura San Giacomo is continuously left off of the credits as Fox. I would never have known it was her, except for some of the other websites that have the actors names next to their characters. Was it her decision or someone elses to leave her name off of the end credits? Why the big secret?

Greg responds...

I have answered this before, many times, but what the heck...

It was her agent's decision. I doubt it's something he would still insist on today, but he was worried about a stigma.

Response recorded on October 28, 2004

Bookmark Link

Wingedbeast writes...

Ramble on Golem.

A great episode this.

On the climbing. I've got to say, my favorite Gargoyle shots are of them climbing. It best shows off how animalistic they are and how beautiful they are. It really drives home the "they aren't human" issue. They're creatures of instinct.

And, BTW, when Angela and Bronx are climbing up the tower, that's a great butt shot on Elisa. Gotta say. Elisa rocks. Strong woman that never gives up, protects her friends, has a sense of humor, and has a great butt.

If she's based off of anybody you know, mind introducing me? :)

Onto the rest of the ramble.

Max and Elisa parallel on that huge issue. They're the heroes beside the heroes. The difference is that Elisa started out that way. It's who she is. Considering who her parents are, it might even be an instinctive trait to her.

Max? Max isn't so lucky as to have Elisa's upbringing. He's probably had to learn that lesson that there are some things that are too powerful for him to overcome. So, he has to overcome that fear just to go into his destiny.

Elisa's learned quite the opposite lesson. Even within the series, she's learned that, even though there's always somebody bigger and stronger than she is, that doesn't really matter.

Renard gone mad. Oh come on, like you wouldn't destroy a few things if you got that kind of power. It's like a new toy. You play with it until you're through.

But, when Renard was through with the euphoria of the new toy, he was left with the cost. And, that was a great face shot of the Golem when Renard realized that he had become something. It also made sense that it was Goliath's words that finally got through.

He might, logically, have known that Elisa and Max were right, but he considered Goliath to be an equal. They both share that daily struggle of integrity. And, it's here where Goliath really repayed Renard for his lesson in Outfoxed, and reminded him of the daily struggle that is integrity.

The final fight sequence was something that struck me. 4 different heroes, 4 different styles. Max, the Golem, Goliath, and Elisa. Each very effective.

The first time I saw this, I saw the golem as a robot and Max as the mind behind it. Telling it what to do and, like a good little drone, it does it. Essentially making Max the mind. But, that scene with Brode over the big pit, last time I saw it, changed my mind. Instead of the golem's mind, the golem has it's own mind even if it is a primitive one, Max is the golem's heart.

If there were future episodes with the golem, I could see Max going through efforts to keep the golem from becoming like the monsters that he fights.

Can't wait for the ramble on "The Hound of Ulster"

Greg responds...

Elisa's based on Salli Richardson. She's in the upcoming movie, ANACONDA 2.

Totally agree with your heart/mind assessment, by the way.

Response recorded on July 23, 2004

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

MONSTERS

I, too, thought the animation was rather problematic (a lot of repetition and stiff movements and expressions). The image-continuity suffered as well--when we first see the sonar tag, it's attached directly to the skin, but later it becomes a collar. Also, instead of the usual pole for steering and propelling the skiff, Goliath is now using an actual oar (of course, this is balanced by the fact that there is something rather ludicrous to traversing a mile-deep loch with a 7-ft pole). Finally, Angela did have a rather poorly done awakening sequence (although I swear that later airings seem to have cleaned it up slightly).
And yes, I noticed the similarities between the beginings of this and HERITAGE (there were subtle differences, but the overall resemblence is pretty big).
Despite all this, I still find myself comfortably watching this episode. Perhaps this has a lot to do with Tim Curry as Sevarius. He's just so fun!! And he has a tendency to get all the best lines. In addition to the ones you've mentioned, Greg (particualaly the "...finger down my throat" one), I'd like to add two more:
"Well, this shouldn't take long. I'm sure Big Daddy misses his Nessie-wessy." (Just the way Tim says that last part is great).
"'Monster Love!' How touching."
Whatever else you can say about the guy, he loves his work.
Anyway, from beginning to end...
Elisa's line about the water being too clean still works for me (I mean, there isn't any garbage floating on top of it). And the initial bump with the sub was good, too. I like Angela's pose when she puts here finger in the water after the group goes ashore (I don't know why, I just do), and her mention of trying again to find Manhattan really spoke to me (I had just started to wonder along with her).
I knew Elisa would try to contact home and let them know what was going on, but I felt like screaming my throat into a bloody mess when I saw the message saying "Tape full." Talk about frustrating. Pointless note--the first time I saw this (i.e., before KINGDOM aired), I was goofishly pleased that Brooklyn was singled out as someone to get word to. Just my pride for my fav character coming out I suppose.
The sequence with the boat (and the cameo by Margot and Brendan) is pretty fun. I like Elisa's calm, smug confidence that the whole thing is fake--and how, while she's obliviously comparing the situation to theme parks, the gargoyles notice the creature heading right toward them with somewhat horrified looks dawning on their faces.
It was several viewings before I noticed that Goliath had seen Angela's sillhouette (sp?) under water and tried to swim toward it before being blocked by Big Daddy.
The Goon Squad Leader/Head of Security finally gets a name. And we find out that Sevarius is at work in the loch. He has a rather interesting introduction here. Almost like a Bond villain, what with being heard only as a voice first, then seen as a sillohouette (sp?), then just a shot of him from the neck down, and FINALLY his face. Though, for those of us who followed the show religiously from the beginning, there was no mystery as to who this guy was (not with Tim Curry doing the voice). But I wonder what the effect would have been on a casual viewer for whom this was the first episode (something I may come back to later...).
Severius seems very...enamoured with Angela. The way he...handles her hair is very...interesting.
Angela's interaction with Nessie makes much more sense, and is much more palatable (sp?) with the knowledge that Nessie is familiar with gargoyles. Without it (the knowledge), it's alright, but seems a little like Snow White with all the animals of the forest just eating out of her hand. Thus, Sevarius' line is all the more hilarious (and even a bit cathartic).
While the gargoyles sleep, Elisa manages to find and tail the Goon Squad (typical detective). It was weird to see the Female Goon without her helmet on. Just a random observation.
I actually rather like Sevarius and Angela's conversation. Angela's calling Sevarius "the only monster here" may have been blatantly pointing out the theme, but I still like it.
And now we have actual confirmation that Goliath is Angela's biological father. Personally, I think that revelation is more for Angela's sake than the audience (or at least those who saw AVALON PART TWO). It must be weird, hearing about this great hero all your life, then meeting him, then being allowed to go adventuring with him, and then finally learning that you are his child! With her somewhat human viewpoint, that must have had Angela's mind reeling for a little bit.
One thing that really impressed me in later viewings. An almost casual throw-away line as Sevarius leaves Bruno to guard the base. He gives Bruno the gun with the implied order to kill Goliath if he "becomes too rambunctious," but he preceeded this with "It would be a shame to lose a gargoyle." There may have been a bit of sarcasm there, but I feel like the line kind of shows the scientist in Sevarius--the man fascinated by unique species.
I noticed the awkwardness of Bruno's "All right" line. Actually, that whole sequence was problematic. It took me several viewings before I realized what went on there.
For being an enemy, Bruno was pretty helpful in the mini-sub. Then again, if you're faced with an armed woman (you don't know the gun's not loaded) and a beast that could give Cujo a run for its money, you might be helpful, too!
I'm surprised the mini-sub didn't take any damage when it scraped along the side of the main sub.
One note: I never actually thought that Nessie was Big Daddy's daughter. I don't know how, but I kind of figured they were mates. Still, maybe a different name for the male would have worked better. Alpha, maybe? Or how about, Nester? NO! No, definitely not that....
It's a bit disconcerting when you see the goon at the controls for the tasers, and then, after Sevarius gives the order, seeing the doctor's hands on the controls. I do think Sevarius is the kind of guy who would try to do this sort of thing personally, but I think a scene of him pushing the Goon out of the chair and taking his place would have helped.
A good animation bit--the electricity of the taser reflected in Angela's mask as she looks on horrified.
And the monsters destroy the sub. It took me a while before I realized that those Goons probably all died. I really like that little revelation. Adds another dimension to what happened there. I also like how Sevarius vanished, and Bruno speaks of him as having "more lives than an alley cat." Nice little ominous bit that.
Actually, one thing I thought of a while back was how much Sevarius fits into the stereotypical, Saturdy morning Archnemesis role. I mean, he's seen in command of henchmen, he does the standard "telling of plans" with Angela, Goliath yells his name in anger when G recognizes his voice, he has the best lines, he vanishes at the moment of probable death, and a hero/henchman (in this case the latter) states that he will be back. I wonder if the casual viewer for whom this was the first episode would conclude that Sevarius was the main antagonist for the heroes. Of course, there is the mention of "Mr. Xanatos." You've got to admire a man whose very name warrants a musical sting.
All in all, while it certainly isn't the best episode, I find it a pleasant enough one.

Greg responds...

I tend to agree with everything you've stated. Tim was just so good, it was easy to let him carry the episode, even though -- up to this point -- he had been the scientist/flunky. He had never been an episodic villain in his own right.

Good times.

Response recorded on July 16, 2004

Bookmark Link

Dave writes...

I have a question (duh!) what if sometime in the distant future disney brought gargoyles back would you be able to do the job of writing new episodes? If so what if the actors for the characters weren't available, would you still use the same characters, or have to start over from scratch?

Greg responds...

It's all very hypothetical, but, yes, I'd certainly hope to brought back as the writer-producer of the series. We'd reuse as many voice actors as we could.

A few members of our former cast have passed away, and we'd deal with them on a case-by-case basis.

Response recorded on June 28, 2004

Bookmark Link

VAMBER writes...

Does Avery Brooks do the voice for Goliath? If not, then who?

Greg responds...

Keith David is the voice of Goliath. (Keith can currently be seen as the Imam in "Chronicles of Riddick".)

Avery Brooks did the voice of Nokkar the alien for us.

Response recorded on June 28, 2004

Bookmark Link

Forliya writes...

hey,Um, I'm wondering if you could tell me how many gargoyal
cronicals are thear? because I'm embarresed to say that I'm in love with goliath. I know its stupid but I cant help it.Oh by the way can you tell me who dose the voice of goliath ? because it goes by so fast on the credits I cant read it on the screan!

Greg responds...

We made 65 episodes of "Gargoyles" over two seasons.

They made a third season, 13 episodes, called "Gargoyles: The Goliath Chronicles". I wrote the first of those 13, but had no real involvement beyond that script.

And the voice of Goliath is the amazing Keith David.

Response recorded on June 21, 2004

Bookmark Link

Zarok writes...

Hey Greg
I wasn't able to get to the Gathering this year so I have a lot of questions regarding the unmade Team Atlantis/Gargoyles crossover…

1) Can you give me a synopsise of the plot please? (Keep in mind that I've seen "Atlantis: The Lost Empire" and by the time you've read this I'll have probably have seen the direct to video sequel. So you don't have to waste time explaining who Milo is and stuff like that.)
2) You've said that Fiona is alive as of 12-31-95, so is she immortal or is she just really healthy? (It's possible, I know someone who's a hundred and six.)
3) Besides protecting the gargoyle race from a specific threat, what else can the praying gargoyle do?
4) In the gargoyle universe the majority of Atlanteans were human right?
5) If you had gotten to do more of Team Atlantis would we have seen gargoyles other than Demona or was this episode meant to exist in a vacume?
6) I don't suppose you'd consider posting the script up here? (not likely but a fella can try can't he?)

Greg responds...

1. Nutshell version: Milo & Company are in Paris battling a sewer monster. Doc runs into an old flame, Fiona Canmore, who is hunting "a demon". That demon, of course, turns out to be Demona, theoretically the last of her kind. Demona uses a smitten Mole to find the Praying Gargoyle, and uses the statuette to artificially animate every stone gargoyle in Paris -- in order, basically, to murder the local humans. Team Atlantis defeats Demona's plot, but Doc prevents Fiona from killing Demona.

2. She's just really old.

3. It's uses are manifold, but are all geared toward protection of the Gargoyle species.

4. All Atlanteans are human, though once upon a time there may have been an Atlantean clan of Gargoyles.

5. Not in a vacuum, but I doubt the producer and executives in charge of Team Atlantis would have allowed me to do more than this one-shot deal.

6. No. Though I play the audio tape at EVERY GATHERING, so if you want to hear Marina Sirtis as Demona and Sheena Easton as the Hunter one more time, I suggest showing up in Montreal this August.

Response recorded on May 18, 2004

Bookmark Link

Rocky Cliff writes...

I'm not sure if this question was asked before, but who provided the voice of Fox in the Gargoyles series? She was never listed in the end credits.

Greg responds...

Laura San Giacomo.

Response recorded on May 12, 2004

Bookmark Link

Kahuna writes...

How old is Tress MacNeille?

Greg responds...

I have no idea. And I'm not rude enough to ask.

Response recorded on May 03, 2004

Bookmark Link

The Cat writes...

Subject Make-A-Wish, Nov. 1999
Hey Greg.

Okay I this isn't exactically the best place to ask this but I'm not going to see you at The Gathering this year and by the time the next Gathering rolls around I'll probably have forgotten the question.

Anyway, my mother was telling me that _you_ asked her whether or not what was said about the road kill in Texas was true when we met ya'll back in November of 1999 through Make-A-Wish. However, I don't seem to remember you asking that. Then again my memory has gotten rather faulty lately.

What I want to know is were you the one that asked that or was it someone else?

Okay, another thing(more like a personal ramble on what was said that day) after we got finished taping the mock episode of Turf ya'll are all signing pictures and my script. Thom says something about his character Lexington and about Sheena Easton(I had no idea who she was then, but not long after that day I saw her on the Home Shopping Channel.)
Thom: Sheena Easton always said "The wee one is playing with his...weewee." I can't think of the word that she used though.(Something to that effect.)
Jeff(quickly supplies the word): Willyad!
All the while I'm thinking:'Tippickle men. Obsessed with that part of their anatomy! Well,I'm tired I'm not going to say anything. I just want to get to the hotel and fall into bed.' (That wasn't exactly what I was thinking, but there might be little kids out there that their parents do not wish them to know such things just yet.)

Anyhow, you get the idea. By the way in case you were wondering how I was capable of remembering that little chat between Jeff and Thom. It's because my mother accidently filmed it. If those two were a little more conservitive I might be tempted to use that darn tape as blackmail.

Well as they say down here, Adios Amigo. The Cat.
Hmm, curiousity is suppose to kill The Cat, I wonder how many of my nine lives I've wasted this time around.

Greg responds...

I don't even know what this Road Kill comment is in reference to. It doesn't sound like even the kind of topic I'd raise.

And I doubt you could blackmail Thom with something THAT tame.

Response recorded on April 26, 2004

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

HERITAGE

I don't think I expected "our heroes" to get home after just one stop, so it didn't surprise me that they ended up someplace else first. Of course, even I didn't expect them to be traveling for as long as they were....
Anyway, I love the way Angela is sitting in the skiff when she notices the sea monster. It's a small thing, barely on screen for a second, and I probably only notice it because I think she looks quite alluring there, but it's something that strikes me everytime I watch this episode.
The sea monster has an excellent design, very unique, and the ensuing battle has some real nice moments, such as when Angela appears to be riding a wave into battle.
Of course, the sea monster appears to damage the skiff during the battle, and in the next scene a hole can be seen in the upper side of the skiff (not in a "sinkble" area, per se). So, how'd it get fixed? Well, Grandmother may have "healed" the skiff as she healed the island, or the skiff may have just fixed itself (hey, it can sink itself, as we'll see with Arthur later on).
I knew something was up with that raven when it seemed to appear out of nowhere, and then landed on top of the totem pole.
Actually, during my first viewing, I had been wondering when the subject of totem poles would be addressed. From what I had heard (and that was little) they could have fit into a "inspired by gargoyles" category, and I was quite happy they showed up. I don't remember my reaction to the revelation that they didn't actually have any gargoyle connection, but thinking about it now, I'm rather glad you guys went with them being what they are in the real world, Greg. Sometimes a spade is a spade.
Natsilane/Nick fills a fairly stereotypical role, to be sure, but he is acted well, and given some nice lines and facial expressions. I also liked Grandmother, and had always wondered if she was a figure from North American myth and legend as well. Good to know that she is.
I'm almost ashamed to admit this, but I had thought Queen Florence island might actually be a real place until I read your ramble, Greg. You can tell I haven't spent much time in Canada (aside from the area around Niagra Falls).
Ah, Raven as a gargoyle. It's an excellent design, I love his red eyes and the pattern of feathers over his chest. However, there are some...glitches in his gargoyle design. The fact that he has no tail, five fingers instead of four, and even his eye color differentiate him from the "normal" gargoyle design. More, in my eyes, than his having a bird's head. I'm not nitpicking the character designers, though--and for all I know, there are gargoyles out there with similar abberations (just look at Sora's two-toed feet in BUSHIDO)--I actually think those oddities are neat. They might even be considered hints that this fellow isn't exactly what he appears to be. He also has a nice entrance: assuming the form and place of the top totem pole creature he had landed on in the morning. Anyway, I kind of figured that this was the "Raven" that Grandmother had spoken about in the previous scene. When he referred to Grandmother as an "evil sorceress" I thought that maybe this was a POV problem. Two different sides with half-true gripes fighting each other. I couldn't buy for a minute that Grandmother was evil, but I wouldn't be surprised if she were a sorceress, and Raven spoke a story that seemed to resonate with how gargoyles were treated. I thought maybe bringing peace was the ultimate goal. Of course, things turned out differently.
RE: "Elisa as sexy when feverish and vulnerable." Are you sure that's not just because she's probably topless (at least) underneath that blanket? ;D
Raven leads our gargoyle heroes to the caldera of the volcano, and introduces them to his clan. I liked their designs as well--especially the wolf and eagle ones. But I found it extremely odd that they did not come out or say anything (WARNING lights began going off in my brain there, I think). Still, I did like Goliath's initial joy over the thought of finding gargoyles living in other parts of the world.
Grandmother uses Haida (is that spelled right?) medicinal techniques to cure Elisa's fever, but I wouldn't be surprised if she used just a little magic to put Elisa to sleep (I thought I heard a "magic-like" sound effect or something). And yes, I think the "...and roots" line and Natsilane's silent reaction to it are funny. Actually, my brother has caught this episode a few times, and always gets frustrated that Natsilane doesn't believe that "roots" and such can cure a fever. As far as he's concerned *all* medicine came from plants and the like. Well, I guess my brother's not too far off the mark--I know at least aspirin comes from a plant.
Our heroes start to search for each other. Raven's "disappearing clan" was a nice little confirmation for me that this guy was not what he claimed to be.
Goliath's little phrase "Humans fear what they do not understand. And what they fear, they often seek to destroy." It's a nice, truthful little phrase. Maybe that's why it has been used in so many other places (DARKSWORD book one, for example). The funny thing is, Goliath has been telling Angela truths all along that play right into Raven's lies. Sheesh, no wonder Goliath wants to rip the Trickster a new one when he learns the truth. I'd be pissed, too.
Finding the wallet was a nice touch. Another, earlier one, was Elisa wondering if totem poles were connected with gargoyles. Grandmother knows exactly what Elisa was talking about. Like I said, nice.
Bears by themselves are scary enough, but a Trickster influenced bear? I didn't envy Elisa. Of course, Bronx takes Yogi out with little problem (and manages to have a cute moment directly afterward).
Fun line from Elisa: "Are Goliath and Angela OK? Heh, right, like you're going to answer."
I think I may have jumped out of my seat and applauded when Goliath and Elisa hugged. It was so unexpected, yet perfectly natural between them (and long overdue I thought--besides which, by this time I had concluded that G & E would kiss SOMETIME during this season, and while this was not quite that, I found it pretty close).
The characters compare notes and go off to find Grandmother, who transforms into the Thunderbird at the (music-less) cliff-hanger. By this time, I was thouroughly confused as to what was going on and went to my old standby attitude--ride the storm out and see what happens.
One of my favorite bits during the ensuing battle: Angela lands on the Thunderbird, and the chest-face wraps its tounge around her leg and throws her off. The look on Angela's face is great. Then of course there's the bit where the Thunderbird's wings pass through Raven's illusions. By now, I already knew he was the bad guy, and applauded Angela's trying to dupe him. Of course, he shows up later so it's doubtful she was successful, but it's nice that she makes an attempt.
Finally, the truth is revealed. Grandmother and Raven are kinsmen of Puck (at least figuratively) and Raven shows his other preferred form. I like how the design on his shirt is evocative of his feather pattern in gargoyle form. Another thing I liked in this scene was Grandmother's quiet joy that gargoyles still live (if they don't thrive). She's a very benevolent Oberati.
Elisa shows the gargoyles to Natsilane, quoting Shakespeare for good measure, to induce him to take up the fight. I love Angela's jump to right in front of Natsilane with the shield and weapon. I also love Nick's line: "Wait! You're asking me to fight a creature of legend...with a stick. Get real." Funny, and indicative of his world view at the same time.
Natsilane's sudden appearance at the caldera always threw me. I try to rationalize it, as usual. When he takes up the cause and armements, his clothes are magically changed and he is transported to the volcano top. At any rate, Bronx, Elisa and Grandmother arrive a bit later than Nick.
I love how Raven gives his chant here: "Totem beasts entrapped in wood, the time has come to...do some good." I guess he's not much of one for rhyming.
It's a nice battle, though nothing particularly of note except for Goliath's playing possum, and Natsilane mastering the use of his weapons.
I like Raven's last two lines in this ep and the way his voice actor (and I am kicking myself for not remembering his name) delivered them. "Your people have fled!" Nicely defiant. And "This place no longer amuses me," along with his laugh (I LOVE that laugh). Now that you mention it, Greg, it would have been a bit better for him to fly off in raven form, but the gargoyle form works alright.
And then Grandmother heals the island. I liked her hair becoming the water.
A word on the repetition (sp?): Yeah, I noticed that, too. It's a bit of an annoyance, but there are little differences. In this episode the sea monster wasn't the focus, the companions were reunited well before the end of the adventure, and Natsilane is younger than Peter Maza, chose to live where he grew up, and doesn't have the "estranged father" element that Peter had. It's not much, but the little details help prevent this from becoming too tired.
HERITAGE is mostly an average episode for me (nothing that particularly grabs me, but a nice watch), and I think it says something that even an average episode compels me to write *this much* about it.

Greg responds...

Yeah. Thanks.

Raven was well-played by Lawrence Bayne, btw.

And of course Natsilane was my first exposure to Gregg Rainwater, who's one of my favorite actors.

Response recorded on April 21, 2004

Bookmark Link

Todd Jensen writes...

Here's my ramble on "Shadows of the Past".

First off, of course, this is where the Avalon World Tour begins (if you don't count the "Avalon" triptych), which makes it a biggie. I agree with you that the reruns in between the three instalments of it (which aired, as I recall, in November-December 1995, February 1996, and May 1996 - more or less) make the World Tour seem longer than it really was. (Incidentally, you're right that you were able to bring out more than 18 episodes of "Gargoyles" in the September-December period; I remembered that the "fall run" ended with "Grief", and so worked out that it was 30 new episodes during that period).

As I mentioned before, I enjoyed the Avalon World Tour, and agree with you that something like that was necessary for the series at some point (especially in bringing in enough other gargoyles to make it feasible for the species to survive and recover - as I've mentioned here before, something along the lines of the World Tour was probably the only realistic way for Goliath to discover that there were gargoyles left in other parts of the world, given that he couldn't simply hop on board the next flight from New York to London or Japan).

Angela's correct (from the original legends perspective) about it always being summer on Avalon; in fact, I remember that the old Welsh legends about Avalon (or, more accurately, its "literary predecessors") called it the Summer Country or the Region of the Summer Stars.

In hindsight from "Vendettas", I picked up on the significance of that axe that Goliath unearths - and agree with you now that Hakon's mace from the Wyvern Massacre would indeed have worked better. Too late for that now, though.

I also liked that line (which I considered very poetic) of Elisa's about "old wounds".

The Captain and Hakon's tormenting of Goliath was very effective - probably the creepiest part, in my opinion, was when Angela and Elisa appear in Goliath's eyes to be the Captain and Hakon - but then we hear Angela and Elisa's voices coming from the Captain and Hakon's mouths.

The Captain of the Guard's change of heart worked for me (again, I especially liked the bit that you mentioned where he's looking troubledly at his hands as he and Hakon solidify). In fact, it made sense in view of his role in "Awakening" - he'd never wanted the clan massacred, and was horrified as to how that had gone wrong. I might add that Hakon showed, again, just how creepy he is when he gets into the fight with Goliath and begins laughing as his fists pass through Goliath - the reason for that being now, not that Hakon's insubstantial and Goliath solid, but the other way around.

Incidentally, the Captain actually appears better-looking in the scene where he's giving Goliath his thanks, just before he ascends.

And I'll confess that I'm one of those who would have preferred Hakon to have remained trapped in the cave for all time - I felt, when "Vendettas" aired, that it destroyed some of the effectiveness, in retrospect, of Hakon's sentence: trapped alone for eternity, with nobody at hand for him to hate. (Also, "Vendettas" felt anticlimactic on the Hakon front; in "Shadows of the Past", he battles Goliath by skillfully undermining him with a lot of psychological subtlety; in "Vendettas", he's reduced to simply fighting him in a slugfest with a big dumb werewolf - though don't tell Wolf that I called him that. :) ). But I do think that you made a good point about how, ultimately, Hakon would have to be given more permanent resolution than just that.

Incidentally, your treatment of the megalith that the Captain and Hakon were using, and your comments on it, make me wonder now how you would have handled Stonehenge if you'd ever gotten to do an episode involving it (especially since you mentioned having had plans to send King Arthur and Griff there during their quest for Merlin) - a pity that we may never know the answer to that now.

Greg responds...

*I think it's appropriate that as the Captain is (in essence) redeemed and "ascends", that he is beatified a bit.

*I get what you're saying about Hakon, certainly. And yet, I really like "Vendettas" and hardly think that Hakon's post-Vendettas fate is likely to be any kinder than his post-Shadows fate. And although Hakon was the series' first big villain, he was hardly the most impressive of our villainous creations.

But, let's be honest, I just couldn't resist giving Clancy Brown the opportunity for a David Warner-esque tour de force performance. I'm sure I'll get into this topic more when (some day) I get around to rambling on Vendettas, but I think Clancy's double duty in Vendettas is perhaps even more impressive than what Warner did -- (a) because Clancy did what he did with a then amateur voice director (i.e. me) and (b) because the two characters he was playing (Wolf & Hakon) allowed for much less subtlty than Warner's two Archmages. (This of course, is not designed to take any credit away from the brilliant David Warner, simply to give Clancy his just desserts as well. And speaking of Clancy, he does a great Mr. Freeze in the new "The Batman" series.)

*The ideas used in Shadows for the Megaliths, were in fact cribbed from ideas I've had for Stonehenge for some time. (Pre-dating the creation of Gargoyles, in fact.) It would be interesting to see (even to me) how I handled Stonehenge now. On the one hand, I wouldn't want to repeat myself, but I'd also want to be consistent and I don't want to betray the notions I've had in my head forever. That's the problem when your brain begins to cannibalize its own ideas. A danger I find myself facing all the time.

Response recorded on April 12, 2004

Bookmark Link

Blaise writes...

AVALON PART THREE

One thing I forgot to mention in my thoughts on Part Two (and it's still relevant because it was featured in the recap): the Archmage's devouring of the Grimorum. I, too, found that a great image, and a nice way of sidestepping the "no magics" rule. Not to mention I love the little "[gulp] Ah..." the Archmage does.
Anyway, onto the fight.
When the folks at the palace decide to check out the Sleeping King, and Tom prepares to go, the Magus looks at Katharine's worried face and then volunteers to go instead. Yet another something I had to watch several times before I could fully appreciate it.
Angela and Gabriel check out the grotto (is that what it's called?). I like it when Demona jabs the laser rifle in Angela's ribs, and the younger gargoyle's first reaction is to elbow Gabriel and say "Stop it!" It was cool how Goliath temporarily overrode Macbeth and Demona's mind control by "appealing to their better natures," and then how the Archmage so easily reasserted his control. He had become quite a bit more powerful here, afterall. And then, of course, once things turn sour, and one of his enemies tries to take the Eye, the Archmage loses his cool and decides to start attacking NOW. His lines here are pretty neat and chilling ("They're my creatures now," and "...if they are so *eager* to *DIE*!" are ones I rather like, too).
It never ceases to amaze me how the Magus, a 72 year-old scholarly type, is able to make Elisa, a 27 year-old athletic type, ask him to slow down. I like Magus' line about being used to traveling alone, and how Elisa's mention of "the Princess and the Guardian" is contrasted with the Magus calling them "Katharine and Tom." His story was both a surprise and heartbreak to me--I had really thought from AVALON PART ONE that he would "get the girl" as most heroes do. As I said then (three weeks ago), the Magus had never looked quite so heroic. I had disliked him quite a bit in AWAKENING ONE and TWO, yet by the end of his appearance in TWO, his remorse kind of mitigated my disdain for him. In the first part of AVALON I really got to like him--you could see the depth of his feeling for Katharine, and his resolve and cunning with the way he saved the eggs and all. In PART TWO he showed how weak he felt without his magic book, and here...well by this time, the Magus had become a character I really liked and sympathized with.
Perhaps that's one reason that I became pretty much goggle-eyed upon learning that Katharine had fallen in love with Tom and vice versa. Then again, I did (and to some extent still do) suffer from a sort of "agism in male and female relationships." Of course, for that reason, I also applaud the princess and the pauper getting together simply because it now becomes a bit more unique. And I love the baby gargoyles!
BTW, Greg: rest assured that Elisa's lips were corrected in later airings, and on my tape the scene with the baby gargs actually looks more like a night scene (don't ask me how, maybe it's just my tape).
The Hollow Hill sequence was cool! I loved the Magus' spellcasting (now he has to ryhme like an Oberati), though I was of course confused until the Magus explained how he was able to do that. The "leap of faith"...Indy Jones, yeah, but I like how Elisa looked jumping.
And then the pillar lowers with (to me) some guy on it. She walks up to him, and says his name, "Arthur Pendragon..." It was at about that point that my jaw hit the floor and my eyes became as big as the moon. This was something I had not been expecting (due to my unfamiliarity with Arthur's "death") and as such became a huge, and enjoyable surprise to me.
I also like his presentation to the rest of the good guys. Until Elisa mentioned it, I had never realized that Goliath had never truly beaten Demona or Macbeth. I really liked this--it made them seem even more dangerous than before. And of course, King Arthur Pendragon, the legendary hero, reveals that he hasn't the slightest idea "what's going on." A funny moment that shows that, though legendary, Arthur is still a human.
I like how the Archmage looks when he says "I will wait here...for Goliath." An uber-villain look without a doubt.
Arthur's taking command of the situation and showing his strategist side is a nice scene (and he later proves that he is indeed a great warrior as well), and I noticed right away how (thematically) well paired off the adversaries were.
I think I'll follow your lead, Greg, and divide them up:
Arthur and Macbeth: The way Macbeth had spoken of Arthur in LIGHTHOUSE, this battle was only to be expected. I didn't mind Arthur's "manner of magic" as oppossed to "sorcery" (a little variety is alright in my book). I was surprised at Macbeth's sucker-kick when it took down Arthur. *That* part of the cliffhanger--Macbeth's sword at Arthur's throat--really got me (they were all tense, but Mac had the greatest warrior in legend at sword point!). Of course, Arthur still manages to defeat Macbeth (marvelously, I might add) with that oh-so-cool image of his ringed fist heading straight for Macbeth's face (the camera).
Demona vs. half the cast: I guess it says something that Demona needs THAT many people to take her down. One thing I love about this fight is how badly Gabriel's wings get torn up. The poor guy really gets battle damage here. Another moment--the gargoyles on the battlements fire arrows point blank at Demona...and MISS COMPLETELY!! "Not prepared...never honed combat skills" indeed! And then Demona goes after Elisa. I wonder if maybe somewhere in Demona's ensorcelled brain she sees this as a rematch of their previous hand-to-hand in HIGH NOON. Eventually, Katharine gets into the act in a very unexpected way. A bit of a stretch with her firing the gun perhaps, but still kind of fun.
The Magus vs the Sisters: I never caught the full meaning of Luna's "There is no future for you," but somehow I knew that the Magus was going to die in this battle. Something about his character, the tragedy and struggling. It made sense to me, from the moment he said "Leave them to me" about facing the Sisters, that he would die fighting them. His use of the magic is extrodinary, and I liked how the Sisters became outraged by his using Avalon's power. I also love Phoebe's fearful "Where is the Sleeping King?" when the Sisters finally make it into the Hollow Hill. And then the Magus casts his last spell. To be honest, I thought he was "all dead" when his hand went limp and fell backward onto the beir (sp?). I was actually kind of glad that we had a little bit more time with him afterwards.
Goliath and the Archmage (and Angela): This was a big one for me. The Archmage is pretty much the oldest adversary of the Wyvern Clan (with the possible exception of Iago). There is a sort of "epic" quality here with the way the Archmage and Goliath talk to each other (A: "I've waited a millenium for this." G: "You lose again, Archmage"--how many times have superheroes said that last one to their archfoes?). I remember wondering how Goliath was going to get out of this, until Angela showed up. One of my favorite scenes in this ep is when the Archmage freezes the lake, Goliath sinks out of sight as the Archmage laughs, and then the Archmage's eyes go wide as Goliath shoots up from the depths, giving a gurgling roar, and leaps through the ice. Finally, Goliath removes the Eye and the Archmage almost seems like he will continue being a threat. Then he gets incinerated by "magic energy" and dissolves in a cool death scene. Count me as another one who thinks the final line of the Archmage is pretty cool. There is a sort of sense of that "epic" quality coming to an end here. Goliath has defeated what was (as far as we know) the first true arch-villain he had ever encountered. There could be a world of meaning within his "It is over." And then the Archmage's scrying pool, as if to spite them, displays the dying Magus.
The death scene is a good one. In some ways, I find it more moving now than I did then (again, don't ask me why). I like the final exchange with Goliath.
G: "I owe you."
M: "You...but, I cursed your clan."
G: (shaking his head) "You saved my children."
And of course Katharine's grief over the passing of her friend from childhood caps the touching moment. Good voicework from Jeff Bennett and Kath Souci. It took me several viewings to notice it, but I thought the shooting star was a nice touch.
I always wondered why the "good-byes" seemed so strange to me. I suppose individual good-byes would be more realistic, but for a narrative...eh. I kind of got that Arthur would be visiting Manhattan eventually, so the foreshadowing was not wasted.
Goliath should laugh more. ;)
Angela's coming along. A new regular. This was something I had been wondering about for some time--if one of these new gargoyles we had just been introduced to would actually come along for the rest of the show. It made sense that it was Angela, what with all the angst her parentage would bring to light.
When Tom spoke about Avalon sending you where "you need to be," I kind of got a smile as I thought to myself "Oh, you guys aren't going to be getting back home for a while..." and got prepared for a world tour. Perhaps my reading about gargoyles in Guatemala, London, and Japan influenced me here.
One last interesting note. As with the previous two, I showed this one to my mother when it first aired. YEARS LATER, as I was telling her about your original plans for sending the Magus with Arthur, Greg, and your reasons for giving him a "good death" instead, she said, "Well, they also probably had to kill him off because his voice was too expensive." I, confused, looked at her and asked "What do you mean?" She, now looking confused herself, said, "Well, he was voiced by Michael York...wasn't he?" So when you see Jeff Bennett again, you may want to pass onto him that he does a good York!
This was a good ep with a feeling of closure and a sense of something exciting coming just over the horizon. It could have been a season finale, even. Just my thoughts.

Greg responds...

I've never worked with Michael, though he's an acquaintance of my parents, but I know that other shows have used him, and I've never heard that he charges more than the typical going rate. I'd love to work with him some day. But I don't think that Jeff was doing Michael, per se. Jeff "created" the Magus voice back on Awake1. He's just phenominally talented and versatile.

The redemption of characters like the Magus and to a lesser extent the Captain of the Guard is one of the things I'm proudest of in the series. The Magus' story is sad, certainly, but he is so much more ennobled in his death, because of how hard he worked not to wipe out his sins, but to make up for them.

And on a more creative note, it's just fun to take a character who everyone hates, and find a way to turn him into a character who everyone feels for. It's very rewarding.

Response recorded on April 01, 2004


: « First : « 50 : Displaying #265 - #314 of 452 records. : 50 » : Last » :