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The Phoenix Gate

Unanswered Questions


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Anonymous writes...

Mr. Weisman,

In the Earth-16 universe, when did Hawkwman and Hawkwoman first arrived on Earth? Please give an exact date (mm/dd/yyyy), if possible.

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Anonymous writes...

Mr. Weisman,

Since Saturn Girl, Phantom Girl, and Chameleon Boy were finally able to go home to the 31st century in the Season 4 finale, will the technology from that time period be able to repair the burn damage on Phantom Girl's right hand?

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M. writes...

Regarding this ask https://s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?qid=26325
Does yoir answer mean that Jade was still with Roy in YJ Legacy? Because you said that the main reason Jade left him was that she found out she was pregnant and he couldn't focus on them. But here you're saying she fled the Shadows because she realized she was pregnant. Something is not adding up. Does that mean that she left Roy (for whatever reason), joined the Shadows again, AND THEN found out she was pregnant and left them? I apologize if this question comes out as rude. I just want some clarity regarding this topic.

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Anonymous writes...

Mr. Weisman,

In a flashback, the Outsiders fought against Kobra near a radio tower, but there were no specifics as to where this fight took place on Earth. If this happened somewhere in the United States, can you please give the specific location? Also, can you please tell us what exactly led up to the fight in the first place (because I want to know how the Outsiders found out what Kobra was up to)?

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ThunderCrash writes...

So in a previous response you said "No, there aren't two bodies per character, with one in storage, as in Miracleman. Their bodies are transformed magically when they say, "Shazam!". But when asked about whether he would need to get two cure chips for both Billy and Captain Marvel or just giving Billy one would do the trick, you said "I'm sure they took no chances.". So did the team and justice league give him two cure chips to ensure no possibility of mind control despite only having one would do the trick simply out of paranoia. Can you explain this, I am having a little doubt whether to think of Captain Marvel and Billy as the same physical body or is it more the magical augmentation will also have the control chip in it even after the form disappears. Basically is the health and physical state of Billy Batson(fractures, mind control or just the flu) influence his Captain Marvel form(Captain Marvel having a fracture for instance) and vica versa.

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Anonymous writes...

Assuming Jason's personality is the same in the Earth-16 universe as it is in the comics, was he brought into the Team by Bruce Wayne and Dick Grayson in the hopes that learning how to be a team player and making friends with others around his age would help get Jason to simmer down on his anger and violent tendencies? Did it actually help Jason to some degree; even though he ultimately died? Also, given his personality, did Black Canary had to talk to Jason a lot in comparison to the other young heroes, and did that frustrate her at times?

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Anonymous writes...

If Wonder Girl's father is Zeus in the Earth-16 universe, does that mean all of Zeus' siblings are Wonder Girl's paternal half-aunts and paternal half-uncles, all of Zeus' children are Wonder Girl's paternal half-brothers and paternal half-sisters, and all the children of Zeus' siblings are Wonder Girl's paternal half-cousins?

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Anonymous writes...

#1. At the time when he first encountered the Justice Society of America, what was Vandal Savage trying to do, and how did the JSA managed to defeat him?

#2. Aside from Vandal Savage, what other dangerous supervillains did the JSA encountered before they eventually disbanded?

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Clark Cradic writes...

Did Superboy spend much time in Smallville? I got the implication he and the Kents were pretty familiar. Is his connection to Clark as his "brother" known to people outside the team/family?

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Alex (or Aldrius) writes...

Arc 3 "Zatanna" ramble

So, this arc is strange to me. In a good way. Lately I've sort of been trying to think of arcs and stories in terms of a core dramatic question. What is the story asking? And what is the answer? Normally to my observation the question is usually asked by the end of the halfway mark of the story, with the answer coming at the end. In some form or another.

This arc is strange because it answers the question before it's even really been properly asked.

So in effect, this story is a Dr. Fate story I think. That was the strongest element to me, that was the most important part, it was certainly the one I actively cared about the most (it's really an arc that's been going on since near the beginning of season 1). The dramatic question as such, is "are Zatanna's students worthy to take up the mantle of Dr. Fate?". But that question isn't *really* asked until the very end of the story after they've dealt with Child. And by that point the question has already, very clearly I'd say, been answered. They are. (except for Mary)

So I really like that element of the story structure, that it sort of works in reverse. Really different.

The Chaos Lord stuff just isn't really my thing, I think is what it comes down to. I like the primordial element, I like the reinterpretation of Klarion, but the body horror and the smug ageless child thing isn't my taste. (It's possible Black Lagoon ruined it for me, though.) But I do really like the mythic elements here, the need for a familiar, the way different familiars manifest. I even sort of like the idea of the Lords of Order and Chaos holding court (sometimes with one another). And I think it's cool that Vandal Savage sort of solved the problem through diplomacy. Though I think his argument was a bit obvious (though I guess it wasn't to the Lords of Chaos).

The mindscape stuff in the middle of the arc was a bit odd to me. Mindscapes have always been a Weisman classic, so I wasn't particularly surprised to see them here. These were pretty effective and at times creepy, but I kind of wish we'd gotten this information in a more traditional way. I think the main thing that threw me off here was the placement of them. They sort of come in the middle of the action, when things are extremely desperate, It's an odd time to take a break to do some character development. In fact the whole pattern of the arc is odd to me. It's almost constant rising of stakes, and then when things are at their most intense, we sort of wander off to focus on some down time. Either meeting Jason Blood, or Dr. Fate, or the stuff with Klarion and the bus.

Then there was the stuff with Zatara. Now, I think partly the purpose of the stuff with Zatara, or my impression of it was to make Zatara less of a prop. Zatara potentially could be nothing more than an objective for Zatanna. She's got to rescue her nice, but unremarkable father from despotic forces. I think that's a good intention, but again came in at an odd time in the story. It also sort of muddled the through line of the storytelling in a way I wasn't the biggest fan of.

Because ultimately, while I think I'd argue it is a Zatanna, Dr. Fate Zatara story, I'm not sure it's important to really understand Zatara beyond the fact that Zatanna cares about him. And I don't really begrudge the storytelling that indulgence, I'm not an essentialist the way some people are, but I just think this story already has so many characters and subplots going on it winds up just being another layer to contextualize and care about and the show is already asking a lot. It didn't need to work this hard to make me care about Zatara, or to explain Zatara. I already care about Zatara and Zatanna.

The religious elements too, I think I'm not sure what to think of. I'm not a religious person, and Christianity in particular makes me very uncomfortable. So the shot of Nabu and Zatara facing off with an Ankh and a cross behind them made me chuckle a bit. Just because it reminded me of a narmy 70s comic cover (was it based on a cover actually?). But I think religion is a *very* big topic, and it's hard to kind of compartmentalize in this sort of story. Like, for me, what's important about Khalid's story isn't his relationship with magic, or with god, but his relationship with his mother. Which there isn't time or space to explore because of how ambitious this arc is. So it kind of just gets boiled down to him feeling pressure to choose something, and him deciding he doesn't have to choose. And I wish we got more context for that. Though there's an obvious irony in him being pressured into becoming a doctor and ending up as doctor fate, obviously. I'm less enamored with that now a few months later than I was when I watched it, but I still appreciate it.

One other thing I wanna comment on, because I've seen this criticism that this isn't really Zatanna's story. Which I suppose is true. I've seen this idea put forth by a lot of youtubes and film critic-type people, the idea of sort of the want/need and the core narrative of a character. Like because Zatanna doesn't transform, or learn something, or realize an unrealized need it's not her story. She knows what she wants at the beginning of the arc, and she knows how she wants to get it. And things just kind of... fall into place after that and she gets what she wants, the story wouldn't really have been that different if Zatanna had just knocked on Dr. Fate's door and had a conversation with him about cycling hosts. Which means perhaps the story is less dynamic and connected than it could be, but I don't think that's a *problem* necessarily.

Because ultimately the transformation is Dr. Fate's. This is a story about Dr. Fate. And I think that's good. Your P.O.V. character or protagonist doesn't necessarily need to be the character to whom things are happening.

It's interesting because I think this is also *very* reflected in Kaldur's arc.

I've rewritten this like 4 times to try and make it sound as constructive and not negative as possible, and I think I failed miserably at that, but there *is* a lot I liked about this arc. It's generally stuff that's just... always good, though. The characters are well drawn out, the conflicts are endearing, the story's creative, the global scope was impressive. It wasn't petty, it felt like everything was consequential. I still love this show's take on doctor fate *a lot*. I liked that we got a resolution to the Dr. Fate arc that started so many years ago.

So... yeah, I liked it. The Kaldur arc was my favourite of the season, though, so I'm looking forward to writing that ramble.

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