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Young Justice Season One Review
I didn't have to work Labor Day, so I spent it binging the second half of season one. I'm of two minds on the season as a whole. Thematically, it was about team-building, specifically through trust and revealing secrets. M'gann was hiding her grotesque (by Earth standards) real body is the best example I can remember, but there were others. In the last couple episodes they spent a lot of time baring their souls to one another, and they became a stronger team as a result. There were little character traits early on that got expanded over time. M'gann's catchphrase was annoying until we learned where it came from (a sitcom by those hacks Brandon Weisman and Greg Vietti). Red Arrow was obnoxious and I couldn't stand him, but then we find out it wasn't his real personality but conditioning from The Light. It ends on New Year's Eve, a great time for reflection.
On a plot level, though, I'm not as enthusiastic. The individual episodes generally had pretty good plots (the Halloween ghost story was one of my favorites), but the season long arc seemed kind of weak. Mainly, it's that there was a very long build-up to a masterstroke that was resolved very quickly. In the last episode, Vandal Savage and Thom Adcox (I don't remember that character's name) takes control of the entire Justice League. HOLY CRAP HOW ARE THEY EVER GOING TO- the Young Justice team frees them all in about ten minutes. It struck me as an anticlimax. Then Savage just left and talked about "phase two" of the plan. You've often referred to "Big Bads," a reference to Joss Whedon's standard plot structure, but in a typical season of Buffy the Big Bad would be utterly defeated at the end of the season. Maybe The Light are more like Wolfram and Hart from Angel. Well, it's not a big complaint from me. I enjoyed the season by and large, I just felt that they foiled The Light's plan too easily. On the plus side, I love Savage's monologue about survival of the fittest. He also referenced being thousands of years old but didn't explain further. I imagine if I knew DC comics I would know a lot about him, but instead I'm willing to enjoy the ride.
I already have season two, so I'll start watching it soon. Since it's called "Invasion" and Savage ominously referred to "phase two," I'm guessing it involves some sort of alien infiltration and Savage is worried that the Justice League has made humanity too soft to resist. I could be totally wrong, of course, but I'm eager to see where it goes.
Feel a bit damned by faint praise. But I respect your opinion... though I don't really agree with it. Glad it largely worked for you.
I know this isn't a forum, but I would like to respond to another poster who asked if Demona was ticklish by saying:
Would you really want to find out?:)
I'm not touching this one (or her).
Been a long while since I've asked you anything here. I hope things are well with you. Sounds like you're busy these days and I'm glad to hear it.
I'm writing to ask you about Gargoyles. It's crazy to think that the property is approaching its 25th year. And very cool to think that "in-universe" Artus and other gargoyles around the world are less than a year away from hatching!
But what I'm writing about is the future of Gargoyles on television, in comics, novels, etc. It feels like the last few years have been very quiet for Gargoyles. The last Gathering is nearly a decade behind us. We've had no new material in even longer. Revisions on GargWiki only trickle in these days. Gargoyles fan sites are steadily being abandoned or dying. Even Ask Greg is far more of a Young Justice site these days. The Comment Room is pretty quiet, a shadow of what it was when I first discovered it over 17 years ago. And we fans are slowly growing older. And with all of these disheartening facts, I'm beginning to lose hope in new Gargoyles material from here on out.
It's hard for me to even admit that. I can remember getting very fired up and launching into pep talks when others would express similar thoughts over the years. Maybe I'm writing this in hopes of getting a pep talk myself. I don't know. Really, I just want to know what your thoughts on the future of Gargoyles is. Good or bad, I'd just like to hear it from the man himself.
Let me be clear: I'm not asking if you've given up on the property. I know that you have never failed to look for an outlet to tell your stories and I know that if you were given a chance you'd happily tell those stories in any medium. I'm just curious about your personal and professional opinion on any future Gargoyles products.
I will always be a fan. I will always love the stories you've told us. I will always have some hope that more stories will be told and I'll be quick to support the property if/when that happens. I'm just feeling like Gargoyles is all in the past. Honestly, am I right? Or am I just being dramatic? And if Gargoyles does have a chance in the future, what can we do to help it along after all these years?
Thanks, Greg. You rock. Thanks for everything!
You're just being dramatic. Which doesn't mean you aren't also right. Which doesn't mean there isn't hope. Confused yet?
Here's a hard truth: Disney bought Marvel and Lucasfilm. Why take a chance on a 25-year-old action property that (to their mind) has an aging/shrinking fanbase when you can exploit sure things like Star Wars and Spider-Man?
That's the big hump right now.
In addition, comic book publishing of Disney's licensed properties has been in disarray. As I'm sure you've noticed, we made some progress with Joe Books... and then it all fell apart. We're now waiting for Joe's license to lapse and are hopeful -actually hopeful - that we can make new comics happen with a new publisher. [Name of new publisher being withheld for now until a deal is made.]
So, no, of course I haven't given up. Gargoyles is my baby, and I'll never give up on it. I hope the fans won't either, but I understand there isn't much new to talk about these days, so it's natural that interest wanes. But I hope if and when there is something new to talk about, the fans will help me launch a campaign to get that new stuff noticed.
I truly believe that our best bet right now is, in fact, comic books. I can tell original canon stories (with little or no interference), and then we can use the comics to demonstrate that the property is still viable, just as we used Netflix to prove that Young Justice was still viable.
I'm also hopeful that once Disney has its own version of Netflix up and running in 2019 (just in time for our 25th Anniversary), that they'll put Gargoyles up there for streaming. Then we can begin a #KeepBingingGargoyles campaign, and who knows what might happen?!
Meanwhile, though it's true we haven't had an official Gathering since 2009, we did have a Gargoyles-convention-within-a-convention that was VERY successful at CONvergence in 2014 in Minneapolis, honoring the show's 20th anniversary. We did all the old Gathering stuff: showed the videos, multiple panels on the subject (including the biology/cultural panel), an original Gargoyles Radio Play, and we had Marina Sirtis, Frank Paur & Greg Guler there, as well. Many old Gargoyles fans showed up, and we had a blast. http://www.convergence-con.org/about/archive/2014-convention/
I'll be back at CONvergence in July of 2018, and although it won't be a full-on Gargoyles convention-within-a-convention again, we will do a Radio Play, and I always do at least one Gargoyles panel.
Plus, I've been talking with a venue to do another Garg-con-within-a-con to celebrate our 25th anniversary in 2019. I'll keep you posted here, but you should think about attending. It'll get the juices flowing.
So, no, don't despair. I'm always pretty upfront about the likelihood of anything happening, and right now it's a bit slim. But down the road, I still see a lot of potential. Stick with us!
Hello Mr. Weisman, let me just start by saying that Gargoyles is now My #1 favorite Disney Series, and I've gotten and read the first 6 issues of the Clan Building Comic books and the 4 first issues of the 'Bad Guys' Comic Books, and here are 2 questions that I do have
1. Do you have any general comment to all of the Fans out there Who make Fan Art and/or Write Fan Fictions about 'Gargoyles', or any cartoon show you created?
2. What general advice would you give to a Fan who writing a Fan Fiction about 'Gargoyles'?
1. Not sure what you're looking for. Um... Go for it!
2. I don't read any fanfiction to protect myself legally. So I'm hardly an expert with advice and the like. So... try to be true to the characters, I guess?
Happy belated holidays. This is more of a ramble of sorts in regards to Gargoyles. Now me personally I'm more of a superhero fan which is why I like Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice better but Gargoyles is still a blast to watch. Going through the archive and watching a couple episodes of Gargoyles, it's easy to see that you put a LOT of thought and passion into it in regards to crafting the Gargoyles mythos. I'm assuming that since it is more or less an original work out of your head and other writers of the show, you probably had a real blast in writing it. The rambles you wrote on how the episodes came together and whatnot were really entertaining to read. Probably my two favorite parts of the show were the Third Race and the Gargoyles interpretation of Arthurian lore. Weaving so many mythologies and folklore under one umbrella was a pretty neat idea. And I had no idea that the island of Avalon came from the legends of Arthur. I know Disney is in control of the property but if they ever give SLG (I think that's the company) the license again I would read it in a heartbeat. You both implied in the show and outright stated so many interesting things about the future of where you going to take the stories that my interest is beyond piqued. Thanks for reading this and hope it didn't waste your time or anything.
Thanks for the kind words. We always thought we were working firmly in the super-hero genre - bastard genre though it is - in our storytelling, just minus the trappings (capes, tights, etc.). Glad the show's working for you. Obviously, I'd recommend watching all 65 episodes of the first two seasons in order, followed by the eighteen existing issues of the SLG comic book series.
And, yes, we're all hopeful that the comic will come back sooner than later.
What websites do you usually look at when you want to see the fandom's reaction to something?
I actually try NOT to do that at all. It makes me a bit crazy. One loves the praise and hates the haters, but if one values the praise, then one must place value on the hate. So I've learned the hard way - believe me - that I'm better off NOT. Just not.
Once in a blue moon, I can't resist however. But there's no set place I go. Just what I stumble upon, usually, that I don't have the willpower to click away from.
Well, my first thought in reading the first sentence was: "how completely obnoxious." And it only gets worse from there.
Look, no one has to like Gargoyles or appreciate it. But the writer makes all sorts of false assumptions about the MAKING of the show and the INTENT of those creating it. That's annoying to me.
See, I'm a HUGE fan of Batman, the Animated Series, and I have always openly admitted that the fact BTAS was successful gave Disney the courage to put Gargoyles on the air. But the assumption that we were chasing it, content-wise, is just wrong. So the idea that we were trying to emulate it and somehow blew it is ridiculous.
But in the end, to each his or her own. This review doesn't change my opinion. And if it had praised the series unrelentingly - that is, if it had praised something that I didn't feel deserved praise - it still wouldn't change my opinion of the series. My take: it's not perfect, but I'm extremely proud of the work we did.
Frankly, though, I'm not sure why you felt the need to bring this review to my attention. Is it fun to piss me off? Cuz it ain't fun to be pissed off.
I have a comment, and a question.
1. I hope you never have trouble finding work, your writing is quite inspiring. I just rewatched and, with great difficulty, reread the comics (hard to find them without paying a month's rent). It's nice to remember why I loved it so much as a kid, and find a lot more to fall in love with, like how I -never- even noticed 'David and Goliath' before.
2. Would you ever consider Kickstarter or Fig in order to get fundage to be able to work on Gargoyles more in some way?
1. Thank you. I have had trouble finding work at times, but that's the business I chose.
2. I can't crowd-fund something I don't own. And I don't own Gargoyles.
I'm way behind reading Ask Greg so I can't comment on anything current except this: Just showed my 7 year old her first episode of Gargoyles. (Also her almost 4 year old sister: My big one was willing to wait till seven, but not until we found a time my little one wasn't watching too, so she agreed to let her sister come into her bed if she woke up scared. I'm not being overprotective; she's crawled into my lap on Sofia the First episodes.) No big surprise, but they loved it. They begged to watch the second episode past bedtime because of the cliffhanger. (I would have caved had Awakenings been just a two parter.) It was pretty fascinating to keep my mouth shut and see them guess who was a good guy and who was a bad one.
You have made my day!
Today I was reflecting on a few instances in my life where I had to make difficult choices: the easy road or the right road. I can specifically remember thinking about integrity in those moments, thinking about Renaud's "What have I become?" versus Demona's "What have they done..." Ultimately, despite the difficulties, I tended to do the right thing and tell the truth, both to myself and to others. In one case, this resulted in me being fired from a job.
The reason I'm telling you this is that, while I had some excellent role models growing up who showed me integrity, it would be unfair to say that Gargoyles didn't have a strong influence in my youth that would lead me to become the man I am today. I am now a teacher of elementary school students and see many young people with and without strong moral role models. In either case, it is clear to me that they are very influenced by the movies, TV shows, celebrities and social media in their lives. And it is my hope that mixed into all the stimuli they are receiving the kind of moral reinforcement that I had in Gargoyles. I am very grateful to you and your peers for creating a program that I not only wanted to watch, but that made me a better person. There is a lot of red tape that goes into public school education, and I know that in your field there is a lot of that too. But I wanted to encourage you to remember the impact you can have on young people. It is not all about ratings and toy sales and demographics. You have the power to guide the adults of tomorrow. You certainly helped to guide me.
Keep up the great work! And thank you from a lifelong fan.
You just made my day. Thank you.