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The Phoenix Gate

Comment Room Archive

Comments for the week ending February 26, 2017

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Shari's a villain, though, so I don't think it'd make sense for her to be the lead.
Jurgan - [jurgan6 at yahoo dot com]

Jensen> As others have said in the past, characters like Shari and Nashville work pretty well as a way to deliver legit exposition as any potential newcomers would learn along with them.

JURGAN - [And, for the record, I definitely don't want to "reset" the series by "wiping out" the clan or something like that. I want to see Greg continue with the timeline he already has in mind, and not invent some new calamity to get a fresh start.]

Neither do I. (The Time War that I cited in "Doctor Who" was a different matter; the Time Lords it wiped out weren't regulars in the series. The equivalent in "Gargoyles" would probably be more a cataclysm wiping out the Third Race.)

The challenge that most interests me isn't the "When would it be set?" but "How do you re-introduce a larger clan without confusing the newcomers?" As I said, I wouldn't want a catastrophe to wipe out most of the Manhattan clan, reducing its numbers to just two or three, to make it easier to re-introduce. But I'm not sure how else you'd resolve that problem. Creating another new gargoyle clan, one with fewer members, being re-awakened in another U.S. city like Chicago or Los Angeles, wouldn't work out that well either. Maybe jumping ahead to 2198 and the Space-Spawn invasion might be the best solution - though even that might have its problems.

Todd Jensen
Hufflepuffs are really good finders

Jurgan> "It's kind of like the "uncanny valley" idea, where things being just slightly off makes you uncomfortable."

I don't know. I can understand sometime like people being uneasy about the implications of Gargoyles being Pre-9/11 in relation to a building and it's people unfairly taken from us.

But being turned off by someone using technology and trends of decades past? It just seems like one is trying to find any reason to nitpick, but can't find a more substantial reason to critique it.

Heck, no matter the times, I think it's a good estimate that there are plenty of people who find a fascination with technology, entertainment, etc from before their own time. So why should fictional characters be expected to be up to date on everything current (especially when the main clan of gargoyles came from Ancient Scotland:-))?


There's a difference between a story set in a very different world and one set in a world that's kind of like ours but not quite. It's kind of like the "uncanny valley" idea, where things being just slightly off makes you uncomfortable. Greg has said that, if he gets a chance to revive Gargoyles, he'd try to avoid being obvious about what year it was set. He's also said that there are a lot of difference between writing shows set today and writing shows set in the 90's. This discussion has convinced me that it can be done, and I'm sure Greg has put some thought into it already, but there would probably be challenges that wouldn't become obvious until he actually started doing the work. Still all hypothetical, of course.

And, for the record, I definitely don't want to "reset" the series by "wiping out" the clan or something like that. I want to see Greg continue with the timeline he already has in mind, and not invent some new calamity to get a fresh start. I was just speculating on whether it might be better to skip ahead a couple decades in the story he was telling. Given how much the status quo changed in just two years of stories, things would likely be almost unrecognizable if we skipped ahead twenty years.

Jurgan - [jurgan6 at yahoo dot com]

Antiyonder> Because the people with the money think the rest of us are idiots, of course.
Brainiac - [OSUBrainiac at gmail dot com]
There is balance in all things. Live in symmetry with the world around you. If you must blow things up and steal from those around you, THAT'S WHAT RPGS ARE FOR!

Honestly I never got the reasoning why it's considered something to fret about. I mean if stories set in a completely far removed period of time (Westerns, the Medievel era) can be permitted, then why would an audience be thrown off by a story set merely decades ago?

They already did a "wiping out" at the beginning of the series, anyway. Only to discover more clans in the World Tour arc.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

I'd be more concerned about the large cast (by the end of "Clan-Building", we've twelve gargoyles in the clan - thirteen if you count Egwardo - not to mention Elisa) than the timeline. (It's the kind of thing that makes my sympathize with Russell T. Davies' decision, when he revived "Doctor Who", to wipe out the Time Lords - though I wouldn't recommend a similar cataclysm for a "Gargoyles" revival.)
Todd Jensen
Hufflepuffs are really good finders

I honestly think you'd just have to write it as a period piece of sorts. I'm not sure it's necessary for Elisa to have a modern cell phone for the story to work/for kids to relate to her. I think the whole format of the show would have to be different with such a large cast anyway. More of an anthology format with a large, rotating ensemble cast. (Which was the direction it was heading in anyway)

As Greg (B) says, it'd probably just require some contextual dancing around. They don't need to draw attention to the fact that Xanatos has a dial-up modem on his desk or whatever. Probably avoid showing the twin towers, stuff like that.


Greg never liked to stamp a year on Young Justice, even though Young Justice Wiki does that for their own clarity. Greg just says Team Year One, etc. An episode did say 2011 on a trophy at Gotham Academy, but that wasn't approved.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Just point the camera away from the Twin Towers. Simple enough.
Greg Bishansky

People would notice the World Trade Center towers in the background. It would be a bit jarring if the show is trying to imply present day. I kind of like the idea of playing up the nostalgia: clunky phones, dial-up modems to old internet sites on huge monitors, etc. Personally, I would forgive Greg for fudging his bible to adapt the show's timeline. Unfortunately, given the way shows are run now, the hypothetical studio might want a say in the matter.
Landon - [<- Gargoyles News Twitter Feed]

This is an imaginary problem. In all sixty-five episodes of "Gargoyles", the number of times the year the present day took place in was uttered exactly one time. When Coyote the Trickster said "it's 1996 not 1896".

Just don't mention the year it takes place in on screen, and nobody will notice. And for us fans, Greg can update the timeline on ASK GREG and we can post the events in GargWiki and we'll know exactly when it all takes place.

Greg Bishansky - [Sorrows to the Stones]

I kind of see the problem now. It's not the technology, which you could get away to an extent, but it's the year that's the problem. Disney probably would want something that's ambiguously set in the past, the present, or something in the future. Not something that they think would feel dated to kids by simply having it set in the 90's. Maybe if you made it kind of a gimmick, but Disney would probably see that as a drawback, which you could get away with in the comic.

I don't know if a Goliath-introduction in the opening would help things move along, because even then there'd be so much to explain. But if you did a special movie or two-parter, or something, then maybe you could set things up then, and just continue on from then in a series.

The Lion Guard proves you don't have to have much exposition with history to start something new/continue from something long ago. Of course, there's nothing culturally significant that could stand in its way, it's just set somewhere in the wilderness of Africa, untouched by humans. But character development-wise, it's not expecting you to have watched The Lion King to watch The Lion Guard or even The Lion King 2, and somehow Kion can fit in to that second film somehow.

Green Lantern's Nightlight

BRAINIAC - [Speaking of the companions, I'm quite looking forward to Pearl Mackie's Bill. From what little we've seen of her thus far, I think she'll be quite a hoot.]

Yes, I've read that she'll be asking such things as why the Daleks weren't designed to have legs (since they can fly or at least hover around nowadays, that doesn't matter as much, but still a good question) and things like that. I look forward to seeing how the Doctor responds to those questions; will he try to answer them, or engage in Willie Wonka-style evasions?

This is a bit off-topic, but related to Disney, so: I've recently read a newly-reprinted Disney comic, "Mickey's Inferno" (an English translation of an Italian Disney comic from the late 40's). It's a take-off on Dante's "Inferno" with Mickey Mouse in the lead. Mickey's old enemy Pete gets a hypnotist to hypnotize Mickey into believing that he's Dante; Goofy falls under the spell as well and believes that he's Virgil. (Under the spell's influence, Mickey even mistakes Minnie for Beatrice.) They then dream that they're venturing into Hell, for an adaptation of the adventures from the original poem, but with several other Disney characters (including Donald Duck, and Pluto - who plays his namesake from Dante as the guardian of the fourth circle) showing up along the way.

The book shows a good knowledge of Dante's work (if altering it in several places to fit a Disney parody - Ugolino, for example, becomes a corrupt sports referee who made his calls to benefit the team that bribed him, and thus is condemned to gnaw on a basketball for eternity), and even narrates the story in Dante's own rhyme scheme, terza rima. (That's where the first stanza goes ABA, the second goes BCB, the third CDC, and so on.) It also includes several other literary references - in one scene, a group of schoolboys are tormenting their teachers with such cries as "Plato shoulda stayed inna cave!", and the counterpart of Filippo Argenti delivers such criticisms to Mickey as "You call yourself a poet? Do you even know what iambic pentameter is, let alone terza rima?" (Mickey finally pushes him back into the Stygian lake, while telling him to find a rhyme for "orange", to which "Argenti" cries "You'll hear about this on my poetry blog!") And wait till you see the grand finale!

(This isn't its first English-language translation, by the way; there was an earlier version in "Walt Disney's Comics and Stories" - issue No. 666, appropriately.)

Todd Jensen
Hufflepuffs are really good finders

* Or I mean what Xanatos and Fox probably use all the time.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Hudson is the one who'd probably be the least out of touch with the latest technology (even Goliath might notice Elisa using a cell and wondering what it is). You just need that one scene of asking Elisa what she's using, and in a passing reference she can say she bought a new phone. Anybody can buy a new phone, you don't need to make a big deal out of it. It's there, and then you just move on.

But at the same time, this is what Xanatos and Fox use all the time.

There's also no doubt on one occasion off-screen where one of the clan might've seen a cell being used at least once.

Green Lantern's Nightlight

"Kids won't watch because Eliza isn't calling from her iPhone? I doubt it."

I'm probably overstating the difficulties for the sake of argument, but it is something that would need to be addressed. Greg Weisman has said that cell phones were a sea change and have affected all of his writing. He said that when working on Spectacular Spider-Man, he had to consciously remind himself that most of the characters would have cell phones and that changed a lot of the patterns he would use while writing. Lots of time-honored plots would be impossible if characters could instantly contact one another ("R: J is faking! DON'T KILL URSELF!") I believe Greg is a good enough writer that he could work around the subject and carefully avoid mentioning the date, but it would take some work. I'm also afraid that Disney suits wouldn't want to invest in a revival of a 90's throwback unless it were "modern" and "relatable to kids today," and we'd end up with Poochie the gargoyle. Anyway, I'm not saying any of this would happen for sure, but it's something that would come up. Mainly I'm just trying to keep a discussion going in this room.

"Hell, the exo-armor, particle beam cannons, advanced robots, cyborgs, etc already existed."

And that is a very good point. When you're already in a sci-fi world, you can bend the rules on technological limitations a bit. Elisa is a cop, and I'll bet a lot of them adopted cells early, and most of the villains are extremely rich and can afford cutting edge tech.

"Hate to shit on your parade, but I don't see a Gargoyles revival/reboot/whatever anytime soon. Unlike the Young Justice fandom, you are smaller, not organized, determined or vocal. What have you done besides tweeting "#WeWantGargoylesComics" and crossing your fingers?"

Well, that's awfully rude, Stan. Who are you, anyway? Just pop in to criticize people and leave? To answer your question, I've written a letter to Disney, handed out fliers at an anime convention, and talk about the show online and in person a lot. Just recently I told someone I know that his six year old son Hudson might like to see a show where one of the heroes has his name. Of course more could be done, but...

To tell the truth, bringing back Gargoyles is not a priority at this point in my life. If it comes back in any form, provided Weisman is at the helm, I will buy it without hesitation. But being "organized, determined, and vocal?" We try not to talk politics in here, but let's just say that if I'm going to spend my time and energy organizing a movement, it'll be for something a lot bigger than a TV show. I think the short-lived SLG comic sapped my energy for this fight. We got eighteen solid issues of new stories, and then we went through cancellation all over again. I'm not really that eager to search for yet another avenue to pursue. I think there's a decent chance that a comic revival could occur, and I would support it with my money, but I just don't have the time or energy for much more than that. If I never see any more Gargoyles, I'll be disappointed, but I've accepted it at this point, and I'd rather be pleasantly surprised.

Jurgan - [jurgan6 at yahoo dot com]

* Elisa.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Kids won't watch because Eliza isn't calling from her iPhone? I doubt it. When Boom introduced new Darkwing Duck comics it had all the latest references, but does that really make a difference? No. You read because you like the characters. And when your characters live in a world when any kind of technology can be created, it doesn't really matter if they're using modern technology.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Masterdramon> "...it basically starts the slate clean with every character but Jack and Aku."

Not entirely; thus far, we know a certain Scotsman will be putting in an appearance (which pleases me greatly).

Todd Jensen> "... one companion leaves and another succeeds her...the new companion learns about the Doctor alongside the audience as she travels with him..."

Speaking of the companions, I'm quite looking forward to Pearl Mackie's Bill. From what little we've seen of her thus far, I think she'll be quite a hoot.

Brainiac - [OSUBrainiac at gmail dot com]
There is balance in all things. Live in symmetry with the world around you. If you must blow things up and steal from those around you, THAT'S WHAT RPGS ARE FOR!

Brooklyn has a whole family. If you introduced it at a later point in one of the kids' lives that could work, because the new audience would be learning things through them, yet still be a continuation for the older audience.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

No! I meant "soar" not "sour."
Green Lantern's Nightlight

I agree with Masterdramon's points.

Reboots, I believe, work best when both the original and the rebooted series are based on some other material. "Ducktales", for example, was based on Carl Barks' comics (and even adapted a few of his stories). Yu can likewise reboot series based on DC and Marvel Comics without a problem (I don't think that most of us had any problems with "Young Justice" being set in a different universe from that of "Batman: TAS" and "The New Batman/Superman Adventures"). And also when, as Masterdramon said, there's less of an overall story.

Even "Doctor Who" is easier to bring back (I don't count it as a "reboot"; the Doctor in the revived series was still the same character as the one from the original series, just further on in life); you've only got one constant character, the Doctor himself. He has companions, but one companion leaves and another succeeds her. And he's continually traveling, not only in space but in time as well. The closest to a regular setting is the TARDIS. It's also easier to re-introduce to the audience; the new companion learns about the Doctor alongside the audience as she travels with him (something that the first season of "Doctor Who" did admirably).

But with "Gargoyles" we've got a whole clan living in Manhattan, which had grown even more by the end of "Clan-Building". You could introduce a new human character to serve as an audience surrogate, but that would probably feel awkward. ("Doctor Who" simplified its background in the revival by wiping out the Time Lords in the Time War, but I don't think a similar cataclysm that wiped out nearly all the gargoyles, leaving Goliath as the sole survivor of his species, would work.)

Todd Jensen
Hufflepuffs are really good finders

If anybody stopped Greg from working on YJ and Gargoyles at the same time it would be Disney and WB, not himself or either fanbase.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Greg working on YJ and Gargoyles at the same time seems unrealistic at this point or any other point. But depending on how much he can take on, I don't see that as an issue. One of the guys of Arrow works on several other shows.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Stan (Lee) > We're just talking pie in the sky. The best chance we have is a comic continuation. Surely if Darkwing Duck can sour again then so can Gargoyles.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

EVERYONE> Hate to shit on your parade, but I don't see a Gargoyles revival/reboot/whatever anytime soon. Unlike the Young Justice fandom, you are smaller, not organized, determined or vocal. What have you done besides tweeting "#WeWantGargoylesComics" and crossing your fingers?

Greg W. is also tied to Young Justice again now, and even if by some miracle there was some kind of Gargoyles revival and he dropped Young Justice to work on that (as he implied he would do), he would antagonize a massive fan base that would boycott that show and ruin any of his future projects.

The best chance you got is to reach out to the Young Justice fanbase and try to hitch a ride on their power. Have you even tried to assess how many Young Justice know or like Gargoyles?


Cell phones existed in 1997. The internet did, too. It was still new, but it was there. You could put that stuff in a third season of Gargoyles without drawing attention to it. Hell, the exo-armor, particle beam cannons, advanced robots, cyborgs, etc already existed.

Just have Elisa make calls on her phone and don't show her texting, and it'll be fine.

Greg Bishansky - [Sorrows to the Stones]

If there's a template from any series revival that a new "Gargoyles" should follow, it's "Samurai Jack."

"Ducktales" was not a heavily plot-driven show. With a handful of exceptions, it was a bunch of episodic adventures with minimal character development or arcs, based loosely on comics that were ALSO episodic adventures with minimal character development or arcs.

That's not a knock on either the original show or the source material, which are very fun in their own way. But it makes a "hard reboot" easier. You're simply doing more adventures in the same vein.

And as for "Doctor Who," it's a concept where doing "soft reboots" is baked into the very DNA of the property. Each Doctor is for the most part a wholly different person, whose new actor brings with them a tonal shift and whole new set of adventures, so it's much easier for the audience to pick up fresh with any given iteration as their "first."

Plus, for both "Ducktales" and "Doctor Who," by the time 2017/2005 (respectively) rolled around, both had been passed around back and front by a varied, eclectic mass of writers. There was no singular creative vision from start to finish across all the "canon" material, as there is for "Gargoyles" or "Samurai Jack."

They're really quite apples to oranges comparisons to "Gargoyles," and their respective approaches wouldn't work at all for the way the universe is set up.

A "new" Scrooge works because Scrooge McDuck is, frankly, a broad character archetype that any new writer can pick up from a neutral point and put their own spin on. A "new" Doctor works because that's the entire concept of the franchise.

But you can't have a "new" Goliath. You'd just have Goliath who's 20+ years older. If you try to tie the progression of in-story time with real world time...no, I just can't imagine that working at all.

The upcoming "Samurai Jack" revival, conversely, is penned by its original creator and is billed as him finally getting to complete the story arc that's inherent to the very premise. It utilizes a time skip, but one SO enormous (50 years) that it renders moot the enormous gap in the real-life airing schedule.

Really, with time skips, you want to keep them small (ala "Young Justice: Invasion") or you want them SO big that it essentially gives you an entirely fresh start (the new "Samurai Jack"). In the latter case, it reduces the amount a new viewer feels like they missed, since it basically starts the slate clean with every character but Jack and Aku.

But the ensemble nature and heavy interconnectivity of the "Gargoyles" universe makes that difficult. You want to start "fresh," you have to go far enough that ALL of old main cast is gone.

Which is all a roundabout way of saying I agree with Greg B. At this point, "2198" is the best blueprint for a revival series. It requires very minimal catching up of new viewers and will largely satisfy returning ones, if the Wise Man is at the helm.

Masterdramon - [kmc12009 at mymail dot pomona dot edu]
Ko Whiro te atua o te kino o te ao.

This conversation is of course entirely hypothetical, as none of us are Disney executives, but it's something to discuss. I think it's safe to say that most of us here want to see more of the universe that Greg Weisman and others created in 1994. I might watch a new version of the show with new creators, but I probably wouldn't care enough to seek it out. Ducktales is a very different show in that it had no real continuity between episodes (and also it was basically an adaptation of Carl Barks's Uncle Scrooge comics, so it's not like the 80's show was "the original" either). But Gargoyles was a continuous story with long-term character development, and I imagine none of us are that interested in seeing what would basically be AU fanfiction.

The problem with any revival of Gargoyles in this day and age would be the timeline. The stories we have seen are set in 1994-1996. Would it be possible to market a show to kids if it was set in a world similar but different to the one they live in? Greg has said before that the biggest difference in writing shows today is that everyone has cell phones. If it were a show obviously set in a fantasy world or hundreds of years in the past, that would be fine. But a modern show that nevertheless is missing things kids take for granted like cell phones and the internet would be trickier. I'm not an expert myself, but I imagine Disney executives would demand the show be "modern" or "contemporary." Would Greg be able to make a show that accurately portrayed events in 1997? I know any of us would watch it, but it would have to appeal to a large audience of young people if it were to survive. Part of me thinks he should just go back and add twenty years to every event that took place after the gargoyles woke up. So they'd awaken in 2014, Hunter's Moon would take place in 2016, and everything else goes from there. Then we could all just mentally rewrite the events to take place at different times. This feels a bit blasphemous, but I don't really see how to deal with the timeline issues. I'm sure Greg would take any offer he were given and find a way to make it work. A comicbook would probably have much more flexibility since they're already basically a niche property. In that case, he could probably be straightforward with the timeline and it wouldn't be a problem.

Jurgan - [jurgan6 at yahoo dot com]

It's possible that Carl was using "reboot" loosely. But if you mean "reboot" in the sense of "a completely new 'Gargoyles' Universe", I'd argue against it. That would take away one of the main reasons we want the series back - finding out what happened next to the characters we'd known in the original series. If it's going to be set in a different universe, I'd suggest going for an entirely new series not connected to "Gargoyles" at all.

(Funny that the conversation has brought up both "Doctor Who" and the "Ducktales" reboot, because David Tennant will be voicing Scrooge McDuck in the new "Ducktales".)

Todd Jensen
Hufflepuffs are really good finders

JURGAN> If we're going to do something like that, then let's just go with "Gargoyles 2198".

But no reboots, please.

Greg Bishansky - [Sorrows to the Stones]

I've started to think the best outcome for Gargoyles (at least on TV) would be a soft reboot similar to 2005 Doctor Who. Start a new "sequel" series set in the present day, but one helmed by Greg Weisman based on his original timeline of what would be happening in 2017 (or whenever). A fresh start would allow new people to get on board and he could gradually fill in the details of what happened between 1996 and 2017 to create the new status quo. Meanwhile, the DVD's are there for people who want to know how it started, and perhaps a comic series to flesh out some of the big in-between events. That's just how I would do it, mind- it would all depend on what Disney was willing to endorse.
Jurgan - [jurgan6 at yahoo dot com]

We don't want a reboot of "Gargoyles". We want to continue where we left off. Greg Weisman's "Gargoyles" or no "Gargoyles".
Greg Bishansky - [Sorrows to the Stones]

I think we all have a great opportunity. I found out that the show Duck tales is being rebooted for Disney Channel. And since Disney also shows violent shows like Star Wars Rebels. I think this might be the best time to persuade Disney animation to reboot the Gargoyles show. So I suggest that you consider making a petition and send it to all Gargoyle fans to get as many signatures as possible. The more people sign it, the better chances Disney or Netflix will seriously consider rebooting the series. Though there will have to be some significant changes to it. Tell what you think of this Idea when you are able to.
Carl Tiessen - [CGTangle at gmail dot com]
Carl Tiessen

All I can find is TaleSpin and DuckTales.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Well, anyone with an iTunes account, some spending money, and a distinct lack of personally-owned Gargoyles episodes...go FOURth and buy them!

<evil grin> I regret nothing.

Brainiac - [OSUBrainiac at gmail dot com]
There is balance in all things. Live in symmetry with the world around you. If you must blow things up and steal from those around you, THAT'S WHAT RPGS ARE FOR!

It's Amazon Video, though. There's 5 volumes. (The last one is the third season.)
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Chip > I thought that was great news! I looked it up on Google, though, and I can't find it.
Green Lantern's Nightlight

Third in the name of Gargoyles being purchasable on iTunes someday...

*Checks iTunes*

Crap...Why didn't I waste my wish on a million dollars or a new car or something?


Chip - [Sir_Griff723 at yahoo dot com]
If you've ever taken a road trip through the Pacific northwest, you've probably seen a bumper sticker for a place called Gravity Falls. It's not on any maps, and most people have never heard of it. Some people think it's a myth. But if you're curious, don't wait. Find it. It's out there somewhere in the woods. Waiting.

Second to the power!

Whatever that means.

Hi, guys, to another week.

Green Lantern's Nightlight

Vinnie - [tpeano29 at hotmail dot com]