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A comment this time, rather than a question. One of my favorite details in the "Stone of Destiny" story was Macbeth's presence at the Battle of Bannockburn. It recently occurred to me that this might be an example, if a subtle one, of the time-honored motif of a legendary hero from long ago who returns to his country to aid it in a time of need.
The concept has attached itself to King Arthur, of course, and his return has featured in "Gargoyles" (if with a premature re-awakening). The returns of the Golem and Cu Chullain, elsewhere in the Avalon World Tour, also evoke it. For that matter, I remember your once saying that the Avalon gargoyles looked upon Goliath (from what they had learned of him through their human guardians) as a great sleeping hero who would one day awaken and return if ever they needed him - and he did indeed return in their hour of need, when the Archmage attacked Avalon.
I also recall, outside of "Gargoyles", the legend that Theseus returned to aid his fellow Athenians against the Persians at the Battle of Marathon (and Mary Renault including it in her Theseus novels) - which forms a great parallel here to Macbeth's presence at Bannockburn, both cases of a desperate struggle against an invading army.
At the same time, your use of the "return of the king" motif for Macbeth's participation at Bannockburn (assuming you had it in mind at the time) came with a twist. Macbeth returns incognito; so far as we know, none of the other Scotsmen taking part in the battle know that he's fighting alongside them. Robert the Bruce is the Scottish king who will be associated with the victory (deservedly, of course, from what I've read about the battle). No chronicle or legend even hints at his presence there. As far as we know, only he knows that he was there (we don't know if Shari knows or not; the panel depicting him at the battle is in one of her stories, but she does not mention him in the text itself). The king returned to aid his country in need, but in secret, his presence unremarked on.
Very cogent analysis.
Among the objects in the Illuminati's treasury on Eastcheap Island was a shield (medieval, by the shape of it) with a picture of a swan on it. Was this your idea, or Karine's when she drew the page?
Karine's, I believe.
In "Bad Guys" #4, you had Thug mutated into an alligator-like Mutate. While the specific choice of an alligator obviously tied in with the "armored Mutates" theme of Sevarius' new experiments, I wonder if you had the "alligators in the sewers" urban legend in mind, since Sevarius' lab was adjacent to the sewers. (Not to mention, also, that the "alligators in the sewers" myth was referred to in both "The Thrill of the Hunt" and "Hunter's Moon Part One", and whenever a legend, urban or otherwise, is alluded to in "Gargoyles", we know what that means....)
Did you guys actually post acting auditions for the parts of Young Justice in the newspaper or did you guys already know who you wanted? I know you cant and trust me I don't want you to spoil the show before it even starts, So will this show be dealing with anyting supernatural and magic or will it be completely grounded and confined to realism? Now this question I about to ask you is from a image I saw on the wall in the Behind the Scenes Young Justice interview in the background show Aqualad holding up The Joker while jokers trading cards are falling out of his hands, it was called Graduation Day or Final Exam. Anyways was that Joker if you cant answer that then okay cool. I'm totally fine with that, now did you, Brandon and Phil consult with Geoff on Aqualad's powerlimit and have you read any of the Brightest Day with Aqualad init? If so did you guys and Geoff say what would happen in the issue with the character? Because in issue #10 Aqualad's abilities are seen and he blows Black Manta back a couple times displaying that he's very powerful and there was a chest shown that was given to Aqualad's adoptive parents by Mera. Now I know you can't and won't spoil anyting, but will is power limits and parents be explored in the show? or Will his origin only be seen in the comics?
2. It covers the depth and breadth of the DC Universe.
3. That was Joker, but that was also development material not production material. I'm neither confirming or denying Joker's appearance in the series.
4. Geoff came to us to discuss our Aqualad, and we laid out how we were using him, including how his powers work in the series. Geoff came up with some great ideas for the character as well.
5. I have read some of Brightest Day with Aqualad.
6. Geoff ran with Aqualad. We were happy to have him pick our brains, but Brightest Day is his baby.
7. No comment.
Will you be posting an update on the statistics of Young Justice episodes as you did before? I also was wondering if you were going to post the reel or trailer of Young Justice that you showed a comiccon after the Batman Brave and the Bold Panel, because in an interview you showed the guy on your iphone and it showed a few villains in it, So that's why I was wondering will you be releasing that on to youtube? Will this show be similar to Batman Under the Red Hood since you mentioned there would be deaths of main and supporting characters? Will Victor crook be caliborating with Brandon Vietti on the show with the animation and fight sequences? Will you be providing your voice to a character in the series? Did Brandon, Phil and you enjoy creating and coming up with Jackson Hyde? Since you yourself have already created a full on tv show aka Gargoyles from scratch. I'm sure it was a overwhelming challenge at first when you were asked to basicly create a whole universe in the DC Universe what did you guys even begin with?. I truely love what you guys did in creating this new Aqualad, the thing that's intriguing is his background, it's like a mixture of a heroes/lost tv episode, very mysterious and addictive which keeps you following him in Brightest Day of course, But even the way you guys brought him into the DC Universe by introducing him to comic and cartoon fans at the same time such as what Bruce Timm did with the character Harley Quinn launching the character into both medias, I'm especially excited for this New Aqualad because I'm a fan of mainly anything involving the ocean and it's hidden depths, and now you guys have Aqualad as the leader of a team that has Robin and Superboy on it all I can say is PURE AWESOMNESS!!! even if he may only be the leader for a time being. So how much input did Phil Bourassa have on the Aqualad character, did he create the characters full design or did you and Brandon say this is how his costume and powers should look and this is how his face should look? Also will he be the exact same character in the comics, but just a different appearance? I'm greatly inspired by you, Brandon, and Phil's work and I hope this show will be another success for you guys that can add to your belt, I hope this show stays on air as long as possible so you guys can keep getting paid so thank you for your hard work.
In the future, it would be really, REALLY helpful if you would (a) number your questions and (2) not present them in single paragraph form.
1. I'll try to do the statistics update periodically.
2. I have no means of posting a trailer.
3. You're misquoting me, for starters. But as for Red Hood, it's a different adaptation. We're neither trying nor not trying to be "similar" to Red Hood.
4. Vic Cook is a guest director on one episode of YJ. So of course, he'll collaborating with Brandon and myself on that episode.
5. I am providing the voice for one character on the series.
6. Phil, Brandon and I enjoyed coming up with our new Aqualad character. But his name isn't Jackson Hyde.
7. I wouldn't call it an "overwhelming challenge" though it was certainly a challenge... but one that an old comic book geek like me relished. As I've said many times before, Brandon and I began with lists of teenage characters and a basic mindset about what we did and didn't want the series to be, so that we weren't simply rehashing the great work done on Teen Titans or Justice League/Justice League Unlimited.
8. Phil absolutely created the design, but Brandon and I and Sam Register all talked to him about the basics and gave notes on the various iterations leading up to the final product.
9. I don't know how to define "exact same character" for you. There are going to be some differences. Some minor, some more significant. But the fundamentals are the same. Parallel versions in multiverse terms.
10. Thank you.
Okay, this may seem like a weird question, but...why did you guys create Aqualad? How did the decision come about? What went into making him? Also, this may be a weird request, but could you answer the question without spoiling the show?
Let me answer your last question first: No.
If you're still curious after the show's been on for, say, half a season, feel free to ask again.
I'll have to ask this question again after Young Justice premiers because obviously a complete answer would include spoilers, but are there any DC characters you wanted to use but couldn't because they just didn't fit into the universe you were creating? I think you mentioned your old character, Captain Atom, in a previous post as an example.
I'd imagine there would be a lot of characters you couldn't use because their essence is too tied up with them being third, or even forth generation characters. ie. How can you have Tim or Bart in a world premiering Dick and Wally? Or perhaps characters that could appear on their own, but they are too tied to legacy characters to feel whole without those attachments. Any examples like that. Or perhaps other, even silly reasons; maybe an iconic weapon animates badly, or an accent or action that is fine in comics is hoaky on screen? Or maybe someones back story would be necessary, but too long for a guest appearance?
If there are characters like that, which (among the none spoiler ones), bugs you the most not to be able to play with?
Captain Atom is in the series. What I said is that he doesn't have a major role. That the sentimental side of me kept trying to give him a bigger role, but he just didn't have a connection to any of the leads, so it never worked out.
The idea of characters not "fitting into our universe" doesn't really enter into it. The fact is we're a kind of adaptation, and any character we DO choose to include is adapted to fit into our universe, while still maintaining the elements that we feel are essential to said character.
We always make choices, but again, it's premature to discuss those choices.
I have three questions for you about Young Justice. No I don't want any spoilers. I wanted to know about the creative process about it. So here are my three questions.
1.Since you were allowed such great amount of character to use from DC Universe. How did you decide which ones to choose? What was the process for that?
2. How do you come up with oringal story lines while still keeping true to the comic book character's mythos?
3. It has been said there will be romance in Young Justice since we're seeing teenagers. How do you decide who is going to like who in the show?
If by answering these questions might lead to spoilers then please don't answer them. I do want to see the surpises that are to come. But I'm really curious how writers decide these for a show based on comics.
1. It's a VERY fair process question... but there's no way for me to answer it AT THIS TIME without SPOILERS, beyond the general, which I've already done (check the ASK GREG Young Justice archive). Feel free to resubmit the question after, say a half dozen or so episodes have aired.
2. Uh... practice?
(Seriously, we try to internalize the characters as much as possible and, in effect, ask THEM what they'd do next.)
3. Some things feel right. Again, I'd be happy to go into much more detail AFTER the episodes have aired than now.
I'm finally all caught up on the ASK GREG queue. Gonna take a short break, but we'll open the queue again on September 27th, 2010 in preparation for the release of Superman/Batman: Apocalypse which also contains the DC Showcase Green Arrow short that I wrote.
As always, I urge you guys NOT to flood ASK GREG with questions. Check the archives. Check the FAQs. Ask questions of the loyal fans in the Station 8 comment room.
AND, please, THINK BEFORE YOU POST. I am NOT, for example, going to SPOIL "Young Justice" before it airs. I'm not going to SPOIL "Gargoyles" either since I still have hopes of bringing that back. I'm not even going to "SPOIL" Spectacular Spider-Man, because I don't see any real point in revealing future plans and ideas independent of their execution.
Happy to talk process. Happy to talk about what's ALREADY aired or been published. Happy to talk about Mecha-Nation and many other things. But. NOT. GONNA. SPOIL.
What comic universe would you say you're more knowledgeable about: DC or Marvel?
I'm pretty equal on both companies.
Fairly knowledgeable (all things considered) on pre-1970s stuff.
More knowledgeable on the 70s.
Extremely knowledgeable on the 80s.
Less knowledgeable on the early and mid 90s.
Almost completely ignorant of the mid 90s through 2006.
Somewhat knowledgeable but with huge gaps on 2006 through the present...
Of course, I worked at DC as a freelancer from 1983-1991, and on staff from 1985-1987, so I have more INSIDE knowledge of that company, but during that period I was reading ALL the Marvel books too, so if we're talking CONTINUITY and CHARACTERS, I know both companies pretty darn well. I certainly grew up reading both. And when I was a little kid, I didn't even get that there were different companies that made comics. I'd see Green Lantern team up with Superman in one book. And Spider-Man team up with the Fantastic Four in another. And I didn't know that next month I might not see Captain America team with Batman. It took me a while to get the whole competing companies idea.
I'm sorry to hear you are feeling some vitriol coming your way for the differences between the Young Justice comic book and coming cartoon. As a huge fan of YJ I was hoping for a Spec Spidey type treatment of the original source material and I bet others were too. That said, I just keep repeating to myself that that is not to be so I should just look forward to a different great cartoon.
I did have the thought of, 'then why not use a different name?' If I can come up with a couple more ridiculously bad ones to balance the numerous "Blah" ones I may post some names that came to mind...
It IS a very Spec Spidey treatment of the source material. It's just that our definition of the source material is BIGGER and more EXPANSIVE than yours seem to be. Just as on Spec Spidey, we developed YJ to combine characters from different eras to create a cohesive, coherent yet contemporary whole, without losing what's classic and iconic about these teen characters. That meant borrowing from classic Teen Titans as well as Young Justice and other arenas as well. Just as we borrowed from Spidey's high school years, his college years and more recent arenas as well. On Spec Spidey, we said it was early days in the Marvel Universe (recast as 2008). On YJ, it's early days in the DC Universe (recast as 2010).
It's the exact same thing -- from my point of view at least. It's adaptation with a starting point. Where it goes from that starting point...? Time will tell.
I have a question about Avalon. In the past you have stated several times that it is always summer on Avalon, "unless Oberon decrees otherwise," and that Avalon is "a summer place -- by decree."
So I'm curious: what was the climate and weather like on Avalon during Mab's reign?
Thank you, as always, for answering so many questions.
Hey again Greg,
This question kinda came to me out of nowhere earlier and I tried searching the archives to see if it had already been touched on. To my suprise it doesn't seem to have come up so I'll ask it here. Did Elisa ever have a partner before Matt and if so, whatever happened to him/her?
I'm sure she had at least a couple of partners over the years. But she was definitely a solo act when we first met her.
Elisa's backstory is definitely worth exploring, but I'm not going to do it here at Ask Greg.
A couple of questions regarding the Archmage:
1. The Archmage is very much a walking evil sorcerer cliche, and I always got the impression that was entirely deliberate on your part- but is it on his? In other words, do you see him as the kind of guy who hams it up because it's fun (like Sevarius and even Thailog to an extent) or is all of that genuinely his personality?
2. Magic-users on the whole are generally portrayed in fiction as being intelligent, especially powerful ones, but the Archmage makes some sloppy oversights. Would you say he's a smart guy too drunk on his own power to think clearly, that he's rather dim but with a natural knack for dark magic, or somewhere in between?
3. Demona was the Archmage's apprentice- do you think witnessing his cruelty had any role in what initially soured her opinion of humanity, laying the foundation for what would later grow into her genocidal fury? Or was it unrelated?
4. Finally, how would the Archmage+ compare in terms of raw magical power to one of the lords of the Third Race, such as Oberon or Odin? Mostly, I'm just curious as to what would have happened had he successfully conquered Avalon, only to run afoul of Oberon when he returned.
1. I mostly believe that's him. It may have been less of a clichÃ© a thousand years ago.
2. In the immortal words of Abe Simpson: "A little from Column A, a little from Column B.'
3. Couldn't help.
4. It would have been interesting. But see my Hulk vs. Thing discussion in the archives.
i'm so excited for young justice but i have to ask
1. is artemis olivia queen?
2. there were some characters that were only in the comic(secret, empress, slobo) will they appear in the cartoon?
You HAVE to ask? Because if you don't, you'll... what? Spontaneously combust? Sing a torch song? Juggle priceless Ming vases?
Well, I won't question it. Let's just say you HAVE to ask and leave it at that.
(Of course, I don't have to answer.)
[I think I am getting meaner and more sarcastic. I'm sure I'm alienating more people than I'm amusing.]
As humans, we can express ourselves culturally, emotionally and even spiritually through the arts (music, dance, drama, literature, etc). Do gargoyles practice the arts? Do gargoyles even have the capacity to create art? I have always wanted to know since having seen the episode "Kingdom" in which Broadway, Lexington, and Brooklyn return home to the Clock Tower after having attended a rock concert in which Brooklyn proclaims "did you hear that guitarist wail?"
They have the capacity. And I'm sure some are artists.
You've said in the past that "Awakening" was originally written and recorded as a four-parter. Out of curiosity, in the four-part version, where would the cliffhanger between parts three and four have been?
You know, it's been so long, I'd have to look at the actual scripts to figure that out. And I only have copies of those at my Beverly Hills Office. Since I'm mostly at Warner Bros these days, I only get to B.H. about once a month.
thanks for coming out to comic con this year. always nice to see you.
just wondering if you ever caught pirates of dark water, and what you thought of it. i hear that WB's releasing the series DVD "made-on-demand". we need to get Disney to do that with Gargoyles. there probably wouldn't be any bells or whistles added to the release, but i'll take it any way i can!
I never saw Pirates of Dark Water.
And I'm game for getting Gargoyles out any way we can.
i grew up with gargoyles, infact, it helped me grow... when i was 9 i was shy and by coping brooklyns personality i grow in to a crazy person and i wanted to thank you... because with out gargoyles i would have never learned to draw and be an arist and now i am the top artist at my school.
and now my questiom: as you my know (and im sure this has been asked) lots of old shows have been remade in to these big epic moves (transformers for example) and i was wondering if there was anychance for a live action gargoyles movie? i know hundreds of people who would be so happy! so is there any chance??
It's a confusing question right now, Amanda. Please check the ASK GREG Archives under "Live-Action Movie" to learn more.
Really looking forward to Young Justice, everything I've seen and heard so far sounds great.
My question is:
Was there a particular reason for making Robin so much younger than the rest of the Young Justice team?
Very exited about the show and can't wait 'til November.
I think this is a great (and legit) question... which I urge you to ask again sometime AFTER the series has premiered. There's nothing I can say now that wouldn't in some way be a spoiler.
Hi, Greg. "Gargoyles" happens to be your very best project. It's so well regarded by people like my mother and I. BOOM! Studios currently publishes several Disney comic books, such as "Darkwing Duck." Since "Gargoyles" is a Disney cartoon and your creation, would BOOM! have to ask for your permission to publish all-new "Gargoyles" comics, but under the title of "Disney's Gargoyles"?
They wouldn't need MY permission. But if they got the license for the book from Disney, I'd hope they'd ask me to write it.
I have a few questions about Young Justice.
1. How many episodes has Peter David wrote?
2. Who else will be writing for the show? Will Geof Johns write any episodes?
3. And finally who are the main directors for the show?
1. He'll have written two episodes by the end of Season One.
2. I've answered this already. See the archives.
2a. Geoff has not written any scripts this season. (The guy is a tad busy.) But he's been involved in and contributed to many creative discussions of the series.
3. The main directors under Brandon Vietti are Jay Oliva (11 episodes) and Michael Chang (10). The other episodes are being guest directed by Sam Lieu (1), Chris Berkeley (2), Matt Youngberg (1) and my ol' buddy Victor Cook (1).
Mr. Weisman, I read your response on my question about the novel I wrote. I can't say I was thrilled with the response_ but I think that maybe it was because you didn't understand my motivation behined it. I posted a comment on your blog about the "Gargoyles" movie Disney wants to release. I was hoping you would read it and then perhaps we could discuss my motivation and reasons in more detail.
A few things...
1. I apologize, but I get so many questions here, I can't remember either what you wrote here about your novel or how I responded. So I can't tell you whether or not I understood your motivation.
2. I don't have a blog. Just ASK GREG here. So I don't know where you posted your "comment" about the Gargoyles movie or how that would effect my mindset about your novel.
3. You're welcome to post your motivation here, but if your novel is in any way based on Gargoyles (and if it's not why are we having this discussion?), I can't see WHAT motivation would make me excited about it.
4. I'm sorry if all this isn't "thrilling" but I really don't understand what you expect from me. Why would I be happy about someone else doing a Gargoyles-based property, either as a movie or a novel?
But perhaps I'm completely off-base (see response #1 above) so I'll stop now.
How much of Teen Titans and Justice League/Justice League Unlimited have you seen? I got the impression that you'd watched a bit of them since you referred to them as great shows in a Comic-con interview.
When we first began developing Young Justice, I watched the first two seasons each of Teen Titans and Justice League and was halfway through the first season of Justice League Unlimited when production started up . Meant to watch EVERY episode of both (all three) series, but unfortunately I just don't have the time now.
What's the status of Supergirl in this show... has she already arrived? will she arrive? does she not even exisist?
I can state definitively that Supergirl will not be appearing... in Gargoyles.