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Jurgan writes...

I never managed to get my thoughts in on the last three issues- the first two because I didn't have much to say about a story I'd already seen, and the third because the queue closed before I had a chance. I thought about going back, but decided against it, so I'll turn in my opinions on issue 4 on day one.

Art: Hedgecock is credited as the penciler, but I'm told someone else was behind the art this issue? A little strange. I'm one of those who liked Hedgecock's art, mostly. This issue was a little strange, artwise. That's mainly in regard to crowd scenes- small scenes are still pretty good. I'm gonna go page by page now.

Billy and Susan: It took me a minute to realize it, but they're dressed as Jackal and Hyena. Terrific callback. They're trick-or-treating along with a kid dressed as a gargoyle. Their mom looks uncomfortably at the Quarreymen who walk past. No doubt she's afraid of what Castaway will think of a member escorting a gargoyle costumed child. The other boy is called Terry- more about that later.

The kids get goodies from Brooklyn and Freddie Krueger, and then, after complaining about bad masks, meet Hudson. Susan gets in Greg's "Nice mask" line.

Yay, Robbins! I love Robbins. He apparently didn't think Hudson was in costume- and, ironically, he's right.

On the next page, we arrive at the Eyrie Building and see a big crowd scene, and here's where the art looks weird. A lot of the people look like caricatures. Also, I swear that's Mace Malone in the front, but that's obviously impossible. And we get Margot chewing out Brendan (Quarters) again, allegedly for being "cliche." I wonder, though, if it's really because she just doesn't like gargoyles and doesn't want her husband dressed up as one. Those two have had an odd relationship with the gargoyles, but it often seems like they've never met them at all.

Oh, I love the gargoyles' costumes. Broadway is a fun Cowardly Lion, and Angela is absolutely adorable as Dorothy (with a stuffed Toto in her basket!). Lexington, though... it's a great costume, but downright disturbing in light of Future Tense.

Elisa seems to have a thing for Disney princesses. Jasmine, this time. The costume works well, I think, though it doesn't have any subtext I can see (unlike her Belle costume, which symbolized her relationship with Goliath). It is a little risque for a first date, I think- she might be sending Morgan the wrong message. And Morgan's Sherlock Holmes costume is nice, but the point, Morgan, is to dress as someone different from what you really are. So we ended up going with Morgan. While Jason and Elisa had more chemistry, if the point of seeing other people for Elisa to have a normal life, it wouldn't make much sense for her to go out with a convicted international terrorist. Also, I don't think he'd be able to leave house arrest, or whatever it is he's under. Meanwhile, Angela is pissed at Elisa. Protective of the big guy, isn't she.

Thailog: Awesome as always. I love the fact that he has individual teeth now. Also, he can deflect electricity, it seems.

Judge Roebling makes a surprising return, and he's one of the few who knows what Goliath really is.

Elisa and Delilah meet up for the first time, as well as Morgan and "G." Elisa seems pretty uncomfortable for a number of reasons.

Brooklyn is lonely as usual. Angela seems to be flirting with him. I'm sure she doesn't mean it, but she's sending the wrong message. And Broadway's seen eating a lot again. I didn't like Broadway's eating jokes at first, because it seems like that was all there was to him. Now, though, we know the guy well enough that it's okay for him to be gluttonous on occasion. Just please, never have him eat his hat again. Also, I wonder if the reason Angela left Broadway is because he's indulging himself so- his plateful is rather disgusting. I know she loves the lug, but that doesn't mean she can't get annoyed with him from time to time.

At the White House: First alarm is that we meet an "Ambassador Chung." Now she says her son "Terry" is back in New York trick-or-treating. We met a "Terry" at the beginning of the issue- could he be the future star of New Olympians? He's a little young for that, but I'm not sure when NO is set. Was one of the people on the Gargoyle Task Force also called "Chung?"

We see the family Xanatos again. I can't get over how cute Alex's costume is. Alex apparently has a favorite word: "Doggie!" Last time he said it was to Bronx, but now it's just random. It also seems he's growing a lot faster than one would expect, according to Chung. That makes sense, now that I think about it- he's too young to be saying any words at all. His grandmother's genes are showing in him. Also, a little subtle bit: Fox has a handheld mask that's the same as her tattoo. Seems rather pointless to me.

Xanatos meets with another Illuminatus. "Thirty-six. Two." Yikes. Looks like people were right, and the numbers are ranks. I find it a little artificial that all the people Hacker met last time were rank 36, but it's not completely implausible. This, then, is a very high-ranking member who probably is tasked with guiding the president to making decisions favorable to the society. I guess we'll find out more next time.

Thailog's fight with Claw looks great, but doesn't last long thanks to the clones. As I expected, once he showed up, they immediately snapped back into obedience. Thailog calls Maggie "Norma Rae." I considered that maybe Maggie was an alias and Sevarius had told Thailog her real name. I've since been told that it's a reference to something, but I don't get it.

Maggie gets herself hurt, and Derek jumps in to help. Yeah, he's not the brightest bulb in the box, but he's a good guy and doesn't lack for courage.

"Wow. Haven't had a good maniacal laugh in weeks." HAHAHA! Thailog is so great. I'm a little confused about one thing, though- in the close-up of his face, right before the maniacal laugh, it looks like he's wearing some sort of glasses or goggles. What that's about?

Derek stays with Maggie, and so Mysterious Unnamed Girl from last issue goes to warn Goliath. Hopefully we figure out her deal sooner or later- probably next issue, as part of the triumphant conclusion.

Elisa continues to be uncomfortable with Morgan, and leaves him to make small-talk with Delilah. Oh, I would love to see more of that conversation.

Goliath and Elisa have another heart-to-heart, only Elisa seems to have turned even more irrational. But hey, that's the way people are at times. She decides it was a "mistake" to go on a double date like this, "but it doesn't change anything." Bravo, Greg. I'd hate to go through all that drama last issue and then get over it so quickly. I hope we go some time before they finally admit to themselves that they're going to stay together forever.

Thailog drops in with more comedy, and Goliath just glares at him, rather than going over the top screaming. Goliath knew he was gonna come back sooner or later. But then Owen walks up, cool as ever, and demands the guns back. Because they were created by Xanatos Enterprises. He's still interested in recovering them from way back in Deadly Force. I briefly considered that he might turn into Puck. Were Alex in the castle, he could probably get away with it, but here it's unnecessary and probably impossible. It would also have confused new readers. Much better to have Owen simply being awesome as Owen.

Oh, dear, an army of commandos aiming at the gargoyles! It's not like they've ever beaten those before! It works, though, because Thailog is not afraid of them- he just doesn't want to take unnecessary risks with a fight. Another great line: "I have transcended any pleasure received from supervising the endless reconstruction of this castle." Yeah, haven't we all.

What I did not expect was Owen offering to turn Delilah over. However, he has no reason to feel loyalty to her. He also rightly points out that Goliath can't force her to stay unless he doesn't care about her right to make her own decisions. This, of course, is hampered by the fact that she may still be unable to make her own decisions. We'll see.

And then we end with Thailog absolutely owning Goliath. As soon as I saw the blade, I remembered the cover of issue 5, and I knew what was going to happen. You can't see the blade go in, but the look on G's face says it all. I don't know if he's ever taken such a vicious injury.

Great issue, except for a couple art problems. Are we going to have a massive gargoyle brawl in front of all of these people? That could put a serious damper on Xanatos's plan, as they'd have to realize that those were real gargoyles. We'll find out how all this ends come July!

Greg responds...

THailog's weapons were designed to absorb and release electricity.

Elisa ordered her costume, assuming she'd be with Goliath. Then she changed her mind about that, but it was too late to get a new costume.

Just rent the movie "Norma Rae" and hopefully you'll get it. Or not.

Thailog's wearing a black domino mask.

Response recorded on May 21, 2007