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REVELATIONS 2012-07 (Jul)

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Anonymous writes...

i remeber reading in the archives that you pitched a premise for transformers in the 80s. when you say premise do you mean like a story arc or single episode. do you remeber what your idea was? be interested to hear what you would have done with that universe.

Greg responds...

Cary Bates and I pitched five separate springboards for individual episodes. No arcs.

Here's one:

Transformer Premise
by Bates and Weisman

After endless study of Transformer programming specifications, Quarto Quintesson, a young programmer-artist has designed a construct that has a 97% probability of starting a devastating war between the Decepticons and the Autobots.

The Quintessons send a few Sharkticons to one of Saturn's moons. The Sharkticons drop off the construct and retreat. Earth sensors detect the Sharkticon intrusion. Rodimus Prime, Spike, Blurr and Bumblebee are in the vicinity on a diplomatic mission. They pause to investigate. Arriving on the moon, they discover the construct. The construct is a small crystalline "sculpture" on a rotating stand. The "sculpture" looks like an over-sized three-dimensional micro-chip. As it turns on its stand, colored light refracts through the crystals and a soft music is played.

Spike says: "Hey, it's like an old-fashioned music box!" But it takes him a few seconds to realize that the Autobots are absolutely entranced by the beauty that they perceive in the "Ultrachip".

Cut to Chaar, where Quarto has arrived to seek an audience with the mad leader Galvatron. He informs Galvatron of the mysterious Ultrachip that all Transformers will desire, but that the Autobots will attempt to keep from the Decepticons. Cyclonus suggests that such an Ultrachip might help Galvatron consolidate his rule over the divisive Decepticons. Galvatron is infuriated at the suggestion that he needs any help and attacks Cyclonus but then unpredictably changes his mind and sends Cyclonus, Scourge and the Sweeps to appropriate the Ultrachip.

Meanwhile, on Saturn's moon, Spike is explaining the concept of art to the Autobots, who like eternal soldiers, have never had the time to think about such things before. Spike accesses computer hologram records of various earth masterpieces...Rodin's The Thinker, Warhol's Soup Can, Bisin's Quantum Lady, etc. None has any real effect on the Autobots. The Ultrachip, however, is something new and wonderful to them.

And then Cyclonus and the Sweeps attack. The Autobots defend themselves, and the Ultrachip is momentarily forgotten, until the Decepticons get a good look at it. They too are mesmorized by its beauty. Without truly understanding why and having little to do with Galvatron's orders, they know that they must have it at any cost. The Autobots feel the same.

Spike pulls Rodimus aside and asks whether this "music box" merits all this trouble. Rodimus must explain that to Transformers, there can be no greater prize. Nevertheless, he offers Cyclonus a compromise. The Ultrachip will be left in a neutral location, where both Autobot and Decepticon can admire it. Cyclonus refuses the offer. Only the Decepticons may gaze upon the Ultrachip. Blurr in turn says that only the Autobots will be allowed to admire it.

Watching on his viewscreen, Quarto is practically gleeful, soon this skirmish will escalate into a full fledged war.

The battle continues. And the fragile Ultrachip is nearly destroyed by the conflict. Rodimus makes the extremely difficult decision to let Cyclonus take the Ultrachip. Better that the Decepticons get it, than that such beauty should be destroyed. Thus the Quintessons' latest plot is foiled by Rodimus' reason and compassion.

Cyclonus takes the Ultrachip back to Chaar and gives it to Galvatron, who orders everyone to clear his chamber. When he is alone, the mad leader destroys the Ultrachip...(or maybe he doesn't).

And on Cybertron, Kup is talking to Rodimus about the Ultrachip: "Too bad the Decepticons got it, we got a raw deal!"

But Rodimus opens a door, where we see Bumblebee, playing with crystals, constructing his own personal artistic Ultrachip, and Rodimus points out, "They may have gotten the chip, but we got the inspiration."

Now, before ANYONE posts questions about this premise, please keep in mind that this was TWENTY-SIX years ago. I remember NOTHING more than what you see above. NOTHING.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Anonymous writes...

Some questions about the YJ episode "Image."
1. How old is Marie Logan and when did "Hello Megan" originally air?
2. If the show is so obscure it's not on the Internet, why were the reruns on the Comedy Classics Channel?

Greg responds...

1. At the time of "Image", Marie is 47.

1b. "Hello, Megan!" aired during the 1979-1980 television season.

2. They were checking to see if it would get any ratings.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Nelson writes...

Just a funny question I can think of:

How would Commissioner James Gordon react if you played the song "Bad Boys by Inner Circle" (The same theme song from the TV show "Cops" and the "Will Smith & Martin Lawrence movies") when he's around?

Greg responds...

I guess it would depend on context.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Jeff H writes...

Hey Greg,

First of all, thanks for the great work on Young Justice. It is incredibly enthralling and engaging. I definitely feel the same investment to catch every episode week to week as I did with Spectacular Spider-Man. The great ingenuity in storytelling is quite apparent here as it was in SSM.

I've had the great pleasure to catch the latest episode, Image, and I had noticed something in the end during the scene between Queen B and Miss Martian. It seems that during some angles in the scene, there is someone in the corner, hiding in the shadows, watching the whole exchange. I couldn't tell if what I saw was genuine or a pixel issue due to my TV being quite outdated, and I tried confirming it by watching the rerun, but to no avail. I have a belief that it was Robin in the corner, but can you confirm this? If the figure was meant to be ambiguous, can you confirm that here was a figure in the corner at the very least? Or are my eyes just seeing things? Thanks for your time.

P.S. Huge kudos to the introduction of Gar. What a fantastic approach to such a fun character as well as the references in the Hello, Megan credits.

Greg responds...

I think you're seeing things, I'm afraid. Let's blame the pixels.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Jasser writes...

I'ed like to start off with a complaint, really guys? I understand you have questions about unaired episodes, but do you HAVE to word them like plot summeries? the probebly twist's of the FOUR episodes are now compromised. Sorry Greg, but i don't think ill be checking the unawnsered question section anymore, the next month of episodes have soured because of it. I'm sorry, but i just really enjoy that sense of surprise when you get deeply immense in a show and they hit you with that curve ball, it's no fun seeing it coming.

Okay, that was unnecessary and whinny,but hey-moving onto questions...

1. When megan retained her human eyes in her ''fake'' real martian form, was that an oversight on her part/attempt at remaining connectable, or do girl martians really look like that.

2.Could you please elaborate on Queen Bee's form of hypnosis?Sorry for vagueness, but the wiki entry is dry and i'm curious.

3.Can Teekle be killed? (that sounds like something that would be asked in the past..)

4. Is the whole ''Hello ,Megan!'' catchphrase going to continue now that it's origin has been revealed?(you must have been laughing every time someone said is was forced and tiring-considering that was almost the point..that was the intended reaction.mind=blown).
5. Dose doctor fate need sleep? and what dose he do when he's not survaying the world for magical threats and what not..

Greg responds...

0. I understand and feel your pain, but it's now fair game to check the unanswered questions as the moderators are booting all spoilers out.

1. It was fake.

2. It's pheromone driven.

3. Sure. But not easily.

4. On occasion.

5. Nabu doesn't, but his host does. And when is he NOT on duty?

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Chaz Alexander R. Clark writes...

So mr. weisman. When you pitch the comedy version of the gargoyles. Why it got rejected? that could be a cool show.

Greg responds...

You'd have to ask Michael Eisner that question.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Brazilian Guy writes...

Could you give us a few details on what the process to create an episode is like? I have no idea what doing online and locked picture mean...thanks!

Greg responds...


1. We start/started by breaking down the entire season on index cards on a VERY large bulletin board.

2. Once the basic arc was approved, I wrote up premises for every episode in the season. Each premise is about a page long.

3. We brought in our freelance writers and broke down a handful of episodes at a time, with each writer in the meeting (myself included) taking one episode as their own, but with every writer in the meeting contributing ideas and notions to everyone's story.

4. The writer goes off with my written premise and the notes from the meeting and writes up an outline. This is a prose document, broken down by scene/sequence of about 8 to 10 pages in length. For me, as a story editor this is a VERY important step, as it nails down the story, making script writing much easier.

5. I do a rewrite on the writer's outline and submit it to WB, CN, DC, Brandon Vietti and the episode's director for notes.

6. The writer goes off with my revised outline and all the notes and writes a script.

7. I do a rewrite on the writer's script and submit it for notes to WB, CN, DC, BV, S&P, legal and the episode's director. Usually showed it to Kevin Hopps as well, who was great at catching my mistakes. The first season, Kevin was on staff, and it was part of his job. The second season, he just did it as a favor. Good guy.

8. I do another rewrite or polish based on all the notes.

9. We record the script, casting any new rolls, etc.

10. Simultaneously, the storyboards are begun...

11. While at the same time, design work for the episode begins: characters, backgrounds, props, effects. This is ALL black and white line-art at first.

12. The boards are roughed out and get notes from the director.

13. The boards are cleaned up and submitted to Brandon and myself.

14. Brandon and I give notes, and the boards are revised.

15. Meanwhile, designs are approved and then we go through the same process with color and background painting.

16. Boards are slugged for time to make sure the show isn't too long or too short.

17. X-Sheets (timing sheets) are created to give detailed information to the animators about how long each individual action will take and to give mouth movements to the characters.

18. All these materials are shipped to Korea to either Moi or Lotto to be animated.

19. We occasionally call for "Wedge Tests" that allow us to preview important or tricky bits of animation in advance to make sure we're getting what we want.

20. The animation comes back rough from overseas. Our editor Jhoanne Reyes compiles it into what we call an A-Frame. It's a very ROUGH cut.

21. Brandon, Jho, David Wilcox and myself call retakes, i.e. we ask the overseas studio for animation corrections. We also call out visual effects for Matt Girardi.

22. Brandon, Jho and I edit the episode, LOCKING it to the exact time that the network requires.

23. We spot the locked episode with our composers, Dynamic Music Partners, pointing out where and what we are looking for in the music.

24. We do the same thing with Audio Circus, our sound effects experts.

25. We preview the music in advance of the sound mix to make sure it's on target.

26. Generally, by now most of the retakes have come back from Korea and Matt's done most of his effects work too.

27. We mix the show for sound. That is we sit in a room and painstakingly balance the sound effects with the foley with the music with the dialogue.

28. We "On-Line" the episode. This is our last final view of the finished product to make sure everything is as good as time, budget and our abilities will allow it to be.

There's obviously more to it than all of the above, but that should give you the basics.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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Curious writes...

(1)So obviously Bialya and Qurac along with the two asian countries in the episode with Red Arrow and Cheshire were all fake. Do you guys choose to create fake countries in order to not offend the real countries?
(2)I saw that you guys kept the cat mask concept on Cheshire from Teen Titans. Is there anything else that influenced you from the Teen Titans show? If yes you can just say yes, you don't have to go into detail about the influences if they cause spoilers.
(3)Is Young Justice going to be formatted like the Justice League t.v series episodes where like only a few members of the team get to go on missions? For example, in the justice league series Batman, Haw Girl and Wonder Woman would have an adventure and in the next episode It was Flash, Man Hunter and Green Lantern.

Greg responds...

1. No. It has more to do with already existed in the DC Universe (pre-New 52, which didn't exist yet when we were working on our seasons).

2. I can't think of any other conscious influences, but I won't deny that it's all part of the soup.

3. The Team is big enough now - and has been, frankly, since the beginning - that it doesn't always make sense for everyone to go on every mission. That's why we have squads.

Response recorded on July 17, 2012

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SDCC 2012

Leaving in just a few hours for San Diego Comic-Con. Looking forward to a fun weekend with my kids and old friends. I'm doing a few signings too.

Thursday, July 12th from 12pm - 1pm - I'll be signing Young Justice comics and trades at the DC Comics Booth #1915.

Thursday, July 12th from 5:30pm - 7pm - I'll be signing Gargoyles comics and trades at the SLG Comics Booth #1815.

Friday, July 13th from 5:30pm - 7pm - I'll be signing Gargoyles comics and trades at the SLG Comics Booth #1815.

Saturday, July 14th from 9:30am - 10:30am, I'll be signing Mecha-Nation comics and trades at the APE Comics Booth #1804.

Saturday, July 14th from 1pm - 2pm - I'll be signing Young Justice comics and trades at the DC Comics Booth #1915.

Saturday, July 14th from 5:30pm - 6pm - I'll be signing Gargoyles comics and trades at the SLG Comics Booth #1815.

Autographs are free. So stop by and say hello!

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Anonymous writes...

Hi Greg, big fan of the show. In "Alienated", we saw a museum of sorts within the Hall of Justice. Guardian's costume was in a display case, so I was wondering, is he retired as a superhero as of the beginning of season 2? Thanks!

An Ask Greg Helper responds...

JIM HARPER: "We get it, you're a clone! But you're not the only clone on this rooftop, and I know from personal experience how tough it was to come to grips with being a copy of someone else. That's why I gave up my identity as Guardian - so that I could figure out exactly who Jim Harper is supposed to be."

[From "Young Justice" episode 204, "Salvage." Originally aired May 19, 2012.]

Response recorded on July 03, 2012

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