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Hi Greg, I have a question about traditional gargoyle culture and lifestyle--that is, their culture/lifestyle as it existed before being exposed to a ton of human interaction and influence. I realize these details likely vary from clan to clan and from century to century, but for instance, the Wyvern clan.
How might the Wyvern clan have lived prior to forming its alliance with the humans who then built the castle? We get some sense of this in the series: communal, leader and second, etc. But:
1. Aside from the rookery, would the area where the clan lived have contained some structures or shelter of any kind that the gargoyles built?
2. Would there be areas designated for certain functions (like, a place where food is prepared and cooked -- assuming they'd cook food), or would the area they occupied be more fluid in how they used it?
3. Did the clan always stay in a certain area, or would they move around at all to different areas, depending on time or year or something?
4. Aside from the leader and second, were there any other specific jobs within the clan, for instance people whose responsibility was the hunt, or would everyone sort of participate in all clan activities?
5. Related to this, in what ways did the clan's lifestyle/behaviors change after they formed the alliance and the castle was built? I imagine, even if the humans were at first very enthusiastic about their new gargoyles allies, there must have been some culture shock (on both of their parts) with having to share the same space and live together.
Thank you for your time!
2. Tend toward the fluid, I'd think. But I'm sure habits become traditions over time.
3. Clan life centered around Wyvern Hill, but they hunted, etc., all around the vicinity.
4. Warriors were also hunters. And every gargoyle was a warrior first, though some had other interests. Desdemona, for example, was spiritual, the closest thing they had to a Warrior-Priestess.
5. I think you can see most of this in our pilot.
Since Goliath and Demona are the same age roughly in 994 what would happen when Goliath became to old to lead the clan and stepped down? Wouldn't Demona also be too old?
Yes, it would have been a concern eventually. But they were both young at that stage, and the bigger concern at that time was death by violence, not by old age.
Hey Greg, I'm a huge fan of Gargoyles, but there's something that's been bothering me for quite some time... the fact that Goliath's clan, with the exception of Goliath, didn't name themselves until they awoke from their cursed slumber.
It strikes me that, at a bare minimum, they would have had extreme difficulty formulating plans for defending the castle and assigning roles. If they didn't have names, how did a typical strategy briefing go? How did Goliath make clear which gargoyles were in charge of which task? How did people get the attention of single gargoyles in the middle of a crowd?
Could you write a hypothetical dialogue of what they would say when setting up plans to defend the castle when addressing the entire, pre-slaughter clan?
I could. But I won't.
Gargoyles didn't have defined specific names, but they referred to each other by relationships, signifiers, etc. (For example, "My Angel of the Night" or the "Gargoyle of the Sword".) I'm sure they made it work.
You have said there were homosexual Gargoyles, are there also transgender Gargoyles that could transition? Also, how does surgery for Gargoyles work? Is that even a possibility for them, like something as easy as adding stone or shaping stone while they were in stone sleep, or operating on them while they were flesh or would it be impossible?
There has been no such thing as gender reassignment surgery for gargoyles. Frankly, there's been no such thing - for the most part - as SURGERY for gargoyles, period.
You definitely cannot operate on a sleeping gargoyle. But you could, in theory, operate on a gargoyle at night. I suppose you'd use an epidural or something. (I'm not a doctor.)
But, yes, I imagine there have been transgender gargoyles over the centuries.
We know that separations and affairs are quite rare among Gargoyles; what about rape? How rare it is among Gargoyles, and how much heinous it's considered as a crime?
It's rare and extremely heinous.
We know that, when Elisa dies, she's going to receive a Wind Ceremony, despite being human, because she's a full-fledged member of the clan. With that in mind...
1)Is she going to be the first human to receive a Wind Ceremony?
2)If, back in the middle ages, the Captain of the Guard had died without betraying the clan, would he have been given a Wind Ceremony?
3)If the Magus hadn't asked specifically to stay in the Hollow Hill, would he have been given a Wind Ceremony?
4)What about Katharine and Tom? When they die, are they going to receive Wind Ceremonies?
1. That seems unlikely.
2. Odds are he would have received human burial.
4. No spoilers.
This might seem like a weird question, but how do gargoyles greet each other. Like from different clans. Same or opposite sex greetings different? If then, how so? Like for Hudson, if he met a younger gargoyle (male or female) from another clan, how would they greet each other? Just very curious. I just can't find an answer to this question, I've looked nearly everywhere. Can you help me?
Did you look at the show itself? Or the comics? We've seen Hudson and other gargoyles meet and greet gargoyles from other clans multiple times.
Did Demona remember, when she saw the Magus, Katharine, and Tom taking the eggs out of the rookery, that she had laid one of those eggs?
Of course. But she also regarded ALL of those eggs as her rookery children. She could not have singled out the one egg she personally laid from all the others if she tried.
Hi, Greg, hope the tour's going well. Hope you have fun!
I've got a question about gargoyle eggs and customs. Does rookery parentage apply to every gargoyle in a generation of the right age to reproduce? For example, would Iago/Coldsteel be considered one of Angela's rookery fathers despite the fact that he never mated or had any involvement with producing eggs?
To some extent, it's up to the individual. One doesn't have to be a biological parent within an appropriate generation to participate in the raising of hatchlings. (It takes a clan, afterall.) But if one in essence opts out of the responsibility, that's considered a bit odd, but allowed.
When I visited Puerto Rico last fall (October of 2013) we went on a tour of the cave system in Camuy- which is awesome. On the tour, our guide commented that normally, human settlements only exist in caves that have a clear entrance and exit that face east and west- so that there is light in the cave during the day. For that reason, caves with north/south facings would be avoided.
Anyway, my question is- did pre-bronze age gargoyles tend to have settlements in cave systems over other areas- since their eggs need thermal energy access anyway?
Rookeries tended to be in underground caves.
Do gargoyles, as a race, have an common origin myth?
Generally, yes. But the clans over time became so spread out and isolated, variations abound.
Was there ever a Wind Ceremony for the gargoyles at Castle Wyvern?
If you mean the gargoyles massacred there by Hakon, then, no. Sad, right?
Dose Brooklyn have a younger sibling I read gargoyles couples each normally have three eggs/ three children so I know he has a brother dose he have a younger sibling.
For all we know, Brooklyn is the youngest of the three biological siblings. If he did have a younger sibling, he or she would be the same age as True.
But, of course, I'm not going to confirm or deny anything. No Spoilers.
Keep in mind that Brooklyn considers his siblings all to be the same age, give or take a day or two. The biology matters less than the Rookery.
Do gargoyles (specifically the Manhattan clan) recognize / notice misogyny and sexism in human societies? If so, what do they think about it? Does a similar gender hierarchy exist among gargoyles?
Thank you for your time!
1. It may sneak up on them. They'd probably think it was nuts. Especially since, from their point of view, ALL humans are so physically weak that the differences between male and female would seem negligible. Plus they certainly know that both male and female humans can be deadly and dangerous.
2. Largely no.
I read the gargoyles wiki on how they only have one mate for life but I couldn't find anything about how they actually chose their mates. Is it like a human and they just chose their mate by courting and falling in love with that gargoyle or does it have to do with certain things, like the horns, wing size, color, etc.?
Attraction plays into things, of course. But you saw how Angela and Broadway got together, and there are no RULES, per se.
I've checked the archives for this question to have been asked, but found nothing on the subject, so if this has been asked and answered already, I appologize in advance.
How long is a typical "reign" (for lack of a better term) for a clan leader - barring that leader being killed in battle, relenquishing the role early, being forcibly removed, etc.?
If you feel like pinning down a specific (which I verry much doubt, but hey, fingers crossed), how long did Hudson lead the Scotish clan before turning leadership over to Goliath?
I'm going to hazard a guess of arround 50 years...basing that assumption (and that's all it really is) on him/her being between at least old enough to mate (40) and hatching their last egg (90) - but probably older than both of those "landmarks"...am I even close?
I don't think there's a typical length, certainly not a set term. Death or retirement come when they come.
As to Hudson specifically, I don't have that information here at this office. Sorry.
So the #Gargoyles20 U.S. Tour continues. Stop #3 is CONvergence in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Well, actually in Bloomington, Minnesota, but close enough.) http://www.convergence-con.org
This is a big one for us. It includes a number of events that we used to do at the old Gathering of the Gargoyles Conventions, which ran from 1997-2009. And I know a bunch of Gargoyles fans will be attending, so it'll also be a reunion of sorts.
My schedule for the long weekend is quite packed - which is just how I like it!
THURSDAY, JULY 3, 2014
2:00pm - 3:00pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY AUDITIONS
Ever wanted to be in a radio play? Now is your chance! We are holding auditions for a live performance at CONvergence! You don't even have to be a fan of Gargoyles to enter. You just have to know how to read! Casting: Myself and Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice). Casting decisions will be posted by 7:00pm on Friday, July 4th. ATRIUM 7.
3:30pm - 4:30pm BUFFYVERSE TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY
Okay, so Gargoyles ISN'T the only show celebrating an anniversary. The Buffy/Angel universe has been off the air for ten years. Let's reminisce and talk about the impact these shows have had on TV fantasy since their cancellation. Panelists: Myself, Tim Lieder, Cetius d'Raven, Madeleine Rowe, Mark Goldberg. EDINA.
7:00pm - 8:00pm OPENING CEREMONY
If it's not exactly a magical invocation, it is nonetheless our official kick-off for the convention! Join CONvergence mascot Connie as we welcome our Guests of Honor, give out some awards (including the Mark Time and Ogle winners), and get this party started. Panelists: Myself, Amy Berg, Emma Bull, C. Robert Cargill, Sarah Clemens, Scott Lynch, Marina Sirtis, Frank Paur, Matthew Ebel, Dawn Krosnowski, Greg Guler, Rob Callahan, Windy Bowlsby, Michael Lee. MAIN STAGE.
9:00pm - 10:00pm GREG WEISMAN'S FANCY BASTARD PIE COMPETITION
Geek Partnership Society is excited to host the Greg Weisman Fancy Bastard Pie Competition at CONvergence 2014! It is open to all CONvergence members who wish to participate. The goal is to make a pie that Greg Weisman, herein to be known as "Fancy Bastard", likes best. The winner will be told super-secret Young Justice spoilers. Find out [some of] what would have happened in Season 3! (But winner must swear to secrecy to claim prize.) See below for some helpful hints.* CABANA 110.
FRIDAY, JULY 4th, 2014
11:00am - 12:00pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY AUDITIONS
Ever wanted to be in a radio play? Now is your chance! We are holding auditions for a live performance at CONvergence! You don't even have to be a fan of Gargoyles to enter. You just have to know how to read! Last chance to audition! Casting: Myself and Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice). Casting decisions will be posted by 7:00pm on Friday, July 4th. ATRIUM 7.
12:30pm - 1:30pm FROM TV TO COMICS
We'll discuss the TV shows that expanded into the comicverse, such as Buffy, Smallville, Young Justice and Gargoyles. Did they succeed? Were any of the comics improvements on the shows? How did canon change during the transition? Panelists: Myself (Gargoyles, Young Justice), Shawn van Briesen, Jonathan Palmer, Greg Guler (Gargoyles), Karine Charlebois (Gargoyles, Bad Guys), Christopher Jones (Batman Strikes, Young Justice, Bad Guys). PLAZA 2.
2:00pm - 3:00pm SIGNING
Myself, Christopher Jones (Young Justice, The Batman Strikes, Parallel Man) and Greg Guler (Gargoyles, Phineas and Ferb) will be holding a signing session. Both Chris and Greg always have an array of stuff (books, prints, etc.) to sell and sign. But this time I'm pretty darn prepared as well. First off, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE - especially if you buy my book. ;) CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
3:30pm - 4:30pm CREATING GARGOYLES
This is what we used to call (at the Gathering) the Rocky Horror Gargoyles Show. The creators of Gargoyles show clips and tell stories of how the show came to be. Lots of visual aids. Panelists: Myself (Creator, Supervising Producer/Story Editor, Writer), Frank Paur ( (Supervising Producer/Director), Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer). ATRIUM 6.
7:00pm - 8:00pm TIME TRAVEL THEORY
Let's assume for a moment that Time Travel is possible. This panel will explore the theories behind such technology. We'll explore quantum realities, temporal anomalies and all other challenges our theoretical time travelers will be face! [Now, I suggested this panel, but then they went and put some actual scientists on the damn thing. So I may quickly be embarrassed into silence.] ;) Panelists: Myself, Nicole Gugliucci, Jim Kakalios, G. David Nordley, Amy Berg. ATRIUM 4.
8:30pm - 9:30pm GARGOYLES Q&A
Join the cast and creators of the "Gargoyles" series and SLG companion comic books to ask and talk about the property. And, as always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Myself (Creator, Supervising Producer/Story Editor, Writer), Christopher Jones (Bad Guys guest artist), Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona and Margot Yale), Frank Paur (Supervising Producer/Director), Karine Charlebois (Gargoyles Guest Artist, Bad Guys Artist), Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer, Gargoyles Guest Artist). MAIN STAGE.
SATURDAY, JULY 5th, 2014
9:30am - 10:30am GARGOYLES SIGNING
Myself, Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona and Margot Yale) and Frank Paur (Supervising Producer/Director) will be holding a signing session. Again, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
11:00am - 12:25pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY REHEARSAL
This is a closed session - for those who were cast in the Radio Play - led by Myself, Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice) & Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona, Margot Yale and Queen Bee). ATRIUM 6.
12:30pm - 1:30pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY PERFORMANCE
Fans and professionals - including Myself (voice of Donald Menken and Lucas "Snapper" Carr), Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice), and of course, Marina Sirtis (Deanna Troi from Star Trek TNG and the voice of Demona, Margot Yale and Queen Bee) - perform a LIVE, ORIGINAL Gargoyles radio play! ATRIUM 6.
2:00pm - 3:00pm GARGOYLES BIOLOGY AND CULTURE
A "what if" panel about the biology and culture of the Gargoyles universe. Creators and performers speculate about anything and everything going on outside the frames of the TV series. Panelists: Craig A. Finseth moderates Myself (Creator, Producer) and Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer). ATRIUM 7.
3:30pm - 4:30pm RAIN OF THE GHOSTS
I'll be reading from and talking about the world and characters of my novel "Rain of the Ghosts" and its sequel, "Spirits of Ash and Foam," which comes out July 8th, 2014, one week after the convention! ATRIUM 3.
7:00pm - 8:00pm ONE ON ONE WITH GREG WEISMAN
Hal Bichel will moderate a one-on-one panel with Myself. PLAZA 2.
8:30pm - 9:30pm SIGNING
Once again, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
10:00pm - 11:00pm BLUE MUG
Ever wonder about the sexual habits of Gargoyles? Ever wonder who was sleeping with whom among the Young Justice Team or the cast of Spectacular Spider-Man? Join us for for a late night peek at your favorite animated series. This panel will get blue! (So attendees will be carded!) Panelists: Myself, Christopher Jones, Mara Cordova (Last Tengu in Paris Artist). It is also rumored that Edmund Tsabard (an unfancy bastard and Last Tengu in Paris Writer) may make an appearance. EDINA.
SUNDAY, JULY 6th, 2014
11:00am - 12:00pm PROTOFEMINISTS IN SHAKESPEARE
Shakespeare portrayed several intelligent, independent, and self-aware women--Juliet, Lady Macbeth, Katharine, Beatrice, Viola, Rosalind. We'll discuss the problematic and the remarkably (for the era) fleshed-out aspects of their representation. Panelists: Myself, Elizabeth Bear, Ashley F. Miller, Joseph Erickson, Alexandra Howes. EDINA.
12:30pm - 1:30pm GARGOYLES FAN PANEL
It's the 20th Anniversary of Gargoyles. Come share your favorite moments from the show. As always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Daniel Mohr moderates Myself, Ryan Alexander, Robert Wagner, Maggie Schultz, Jennifer Anderson, Karine Charlebois. ATRIUM 6.
2:00pm - 3:00pm SIGNING
Myself and Greg Guler (Gargoyles, Phineas and Ferb) will be holding one last signing session. Greg G. always has an array of stuff (books, prints, etc.) to sell and sign. And I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE - especially if you buy my book. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
3:30pm - 4:30pm YOUNG JUSTICE
Creative minds behind the Young Justice TV and comic book series will talk about this fan favorite. We're planning some special surprises as well. And, as always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Myself, Marina Sirtis (voice of Queen Bee), Christopher Jones (Artist YJ Comic). MAIN STAGE.
5:00pm - 6:00pm CLOSING CEREMONY
It's not over 'til the gynoid sings - or something like that. Join CONvergence mascot Connie and our Guests of Honor as we say farewell to another convention. Shenanigans may ensue. Panelists: Myself, Amy Berg, Emma Bull, C. Robert Cargill, Sarah Clemens, Scott Lynch, Marina Sirtis, Matthew Ebel, Frank Paur, Dawn Krosnowski, Greg Guler, Windy Bowlsby, Rob Callahan, Michael Lee. MAIN STAGE
SEE?!! I told you there was a lot. And that's only the stuff that I'm doing. CONvergence is jam-packed with all sorts of pop culture nutritional goodness. So stop by and say hello!!
*In the interest of Full Disclosure, Fancy Bastard would like all to know that he especially likes the following pies:
BERRY (pretty much any kind of berry or a mix of same)
BANANA CREAM (herein to be known as the funniest pie)
Combinations of some of the fruit pies can be great. Contestants are welcome to try other pies at their own risk.
Fancy Bastard does NOT especially like the following pies:
Anything with Chocolate or Lemon or Meringue
Raisins in Apple Pie
Almost never Cherry, though he has tasted the rare exception...
Hello Mr. Wiesman,
I have been reading the archives and I have a couple of questions regarding the more obscure Gaegoyle clans:
1) Youve mentioned that the Xanadu clan exists to protect the Beast lineage. My question is, are their Beasts all from Chinese stock, or have they incorporated other "breeds" (so to speak) into that gene-pool? Basically, Im asking if they all have the same basic appearance, or reflect all types of Beasts.
2) You also once said that the Lach Ness clan were aquatic in nature. Does that mean that they are truly amphibious (like frogs), or can they just hold their breath for long lengths of time (like dolphins)?
1. Leaning toward the latter, but haven't made a final decision yet.
2. Likewise, I haven't decided, though again I lean toward the latter.
These might both be good questions to bring up at the Gargoyles Biology and Culture panel this July at CONvergence. There are always some actual biologists in the room to advise me.
If, for whatever reason, the body of a Gargoyle can't be recovered for the Wind Ceremony, is there some kind of alternative ritual?
It's the same basic ritual, just without the ashes or dust. Though, like humans, Gargoyles may be reluctant to declare someone dead without a body as evidence.
Gargoyle Culture & Biology
So, in most social species there is an evolved strategy that encourages gene diversification and limits inbreeding. In lions, for instance, the males leave the pride at maturity to take over a different pride and mate with the females of that group rather than stay and have only their sisters and aunts and female cousins to mate with. In bonobos, it is the females that often leave to join new groups and find unrelated males to mate with.
Now, obviously, in the Gargoyles Universe, up until very recently there was very little genetic exchange between the surviving far flung and isolated clans. But back in their heyday, when the nearest clan to your own was well known and could be reached, was there any sort of social strategy to encourage genetic diversity or has finding a mate among your own rookery siblings always been the norm?
And now that the clans are becoming more known to each other and able to move from clan to clan more easily, will this issue cause more inter-clan mating? Does the mixing of the 2198 rookery eggs have anything to do with this or is that just a symbolic gesture of the Gargoyle Nation?
Well, keep in mind that rookery siblings are almost by definition NOT biological siblings. But there's probably a lot of cousins in there.
There will definitely be more inter-clan mating in the modern age. And ganging the 2198 rookery eggs may have had a dual purpose.
But this is definitely a topic I'm open to discussing... say at the Gargoyles Biology and Culture panel at CONvergence this summer!
Hey again Greg, I have another question for you
How do gargoyles view homosexuality? More specifically the Manhattan clan sense Lexington is confirmed to be homosexual, but knowing about the other gargoyles would be nice too.
Thanks Greg, I wish Peter David the best and I'll see if I can help.
As for Peter, I'll thank you on his behalf.
As for your question, I'm afraid it's been ASKED AND ANSWERED over and over again. Please check the ASK GREG Archives under either "Lexington" or "Gargoyle Customs" or both.
Hey Greg! Hope that you're doing well, and that the holiday season is treating/did treat (depending on when you read this) your family happily.
What follows is a paper I recently submitted to my Contemporary Political Theory class at Pomona College, interrelating several of the concepts from the book we discussed that week ("You Are Not a Gadget" by Jaron Lanier) with the notion of namelessness in traditional gargoyle culture.
My professor (unfamiliar with the show, but very intrigued when I explained it to her) really got a kick out of the piece, and I earned a more-or-less "A-" equivalent for it. But as long as I've got it sitting around, I figured you might enjoy giving it a read as well.
[NOTE: You may want to review this post you made on Ask Greg in 2004 beforehand, as it is cited frequently: http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/askgreg/search.php?rid=387].
Now, without further ado, the essay. It has been edited from the submitted version only by rearranging paragraph breaks...
The 1994 animated television series Gargoyles posits a highly intelligent species which dominated the Earth prior to human genesis and ascendance.
These gargoyles possess a unique culture which predates humanity's by a significant period, but the first on-screen depiction of the gargoyle species takes place in the 10th century, after millions of years of convergent evolution between the two cultures.
Indeed, the pilot episodes depict the essential death of one lingering component of gargoyle culture, at least for the series protagonists: that gargoyles lack personal names. This idea is first discussed in a conversation between two gargoyles and a human boy:
TOM: I'm Tom. What's your name?
GARGOYLE #1: Except for Goliath, we don't have names.
TOM: How do you tell each other apart?
GARGOYLE #1: We look different.
TOM: But what do you call each other?
GARGOYLE #2: (shrugs) Friend.
For context, "Goliath" is the leader of the clan of gargoyles to which the protagonists belong, and their liaison to the humans with whom they share an uneasy alliance; those humans felt incapable of dealing with a nameless entity, and Goliath did not bother to reject the name they selected for him.
Still, he does not use the name in communicating with his own clan until a betrayal by their human allies and a magical curse cause the protagonists to sleep as statues and then reawaken in 20th century Manhattan.
Here they meet and befriend Elisa Maza, a police detective who is both confused by and - for reasons she has trouble articulating - uncomfortable with this traditional lack of names. The following exchange takes place between Elisa and the clan's elderly mentor:
ELISA: Are you coming on the tour…uh, what do I call you, anyway?
GARGOYLE: Must you humans name everything? Nothing's real to you till you've named it, given it limits!
ELISA: It's not like that! It's just that…well, uh…things need names.
GARGOYLE: Does the sky need a name? Does the river?
ELISA: The river's called the Hudson.
GARGOYLE: (sighs) Fine, lass…then I will be 'the Hudson' as well.
ELISA: Great! Hudson it is.
From that point onward, that particular gargoyle is known as Hudson, and only Hudson.
The younger gargoyles who survived the centuries follow suit; the two who conversed with Tom become Lexington and Brooklyn, for example. And Goliath more-or-less fully accepts the moniker afforded him by the Dark Age humans.
As Gargoyles creator Greg Weisman points out, "naming is clearly addictive," and once they are established the convenience they offer makes doing away with them virtually impossible. Thus, for the Manhattan Clan of gargoyles, namelessness largely remains a thing of the past for the remainder of the series.
In "You Are Not a Gadget," Jaron Lanier describes the phenomenon experienced by these gargoyles using the term "lock-in."
As Lanier puts it, "lock-in…removes design options based on what is easiest to program, what is politically feasible, what is fashionable, or what is created by chance." Furthermore, the process "also reduces or narrows the ideas it immortalizes, by cutting away the unfathomable penumbra of meaning."
Despite originally referring to programming language, this is a perfect description of the process that "Hudson" has been subjected to in the previous scene.
Names are a method of defining identity, which necessarily must involve "giving it limits." But in traditional gargoyle culture, identity has greater meaning than that; it is amorphous, and changes with the circumstances.
The gargoyle who first made a compact with the humans at Castle Wyvern is the same gargoyle who mated three times and produced three progeny; he is the same gargoyle who fought the evil Archmage and received a wound that blinded him in one eye; he is the same gargoyle who slept for centuries and once awakened, found himself fascinated with the television show "Celebrity Hockey."
Does one name - Hudson - really encapsulate all of these aspects of his identity?
In-and-of-itself, all it signifies is that the place Hudson awoke in was modern-day New York (a cut line from the episode's script even has Elisa commenting, "Good thing we weren't facing Queens," emphasizing with humor how off-hand and esoteric the choice was).
That name was "locked-in" as the full and entire representation of the character from that point onward, solely because it was politically feasible (it makes dealing with Elisa and later human allies far more expedient), it was fashionable (every other intelligent being in 1994 New York has a name, so why not the gargoyles?), and it was created by chance (quite literally in this case, as the "Queens" quote illustrates).
And the result is that the very meaning of his identity is narrowed. He is no longer capable of being someone at a particular moment, and someone else in the next.
He is always Hudson.
There is an even greater story here, however, which Weisman's later musings have helped to illuminate. As he once observed, "Gargoyles don't seem to have a native language. They acquire human language, perhaps much the same way that they acquire names…And language, in many ways, is just sophisticated naming."
This is a compelling point. As he later notes, a different and arguably much more persuasive response that Elisa could have offered is that the river is called "the river."
Languages are systems for describing objects, concepts, actions, etc. using strict and uniform definitions, confining them to names that society calls words.
But does a name like "the sky" really fully encapsulate the meaning inherent within the depths that humans observe from below? Does it even begin to provoke a holistic understanding of its astronomical, religious, chemical, or poetic contexts?
And even more to the point, what of metaphysical concepts like "justice"? Can a single clear definition even exist for such a weighty and nebulous notion - and if not, does sticking the name "justice" to it not necessarily limit it?
Lanier certainly appears to believe so. As he conceives it, the system of symbology under which all current human languages operate is itself a lock-in; at best, a "middleman" between intent and "directly creating shared experience" that he wants to work to cut out.
His method for doing so is improvements on virtual reality, until researchers develop "the ability to morph at will, as fast as we can think."
Lanier envisions a world where the rather simplistic words "I'm hungry" will not be the only way to communicate the sensation which has brought them on - instead, he sees potential in the power of virtual reality technology to place us in the bodies of others, as a way to intimate the sensation itself.
Humanity would no longer have to be limited to extracting some piece of the concept it calls "hunger," giving it that name, and using it as code so that others who know the symbology of the English language will understand some approximation of that concept.
The concept would simply be understood, and communication would be a straightforward matter of imparting that understanding.
But perhaps there is an even better solution than this - although one that is, unfortunately, largely forgotten.
Presented with the puzzle that gargoyles are highly gregarious and intelligent by nature and yet appear to lack any notion of their own language, Weisman has mused that perhaps, long before human language evolved and became the locked-in method for communication, the gargoyle species possessed "mild psychic abilities that left them with no need to create language."
While emphasizing that he was only asserting a possibility, the communication he imagines - where it was not "words that they intuited (or transmitted or read or whatever) but emotions, maybe images or sensations" - sounds exceedingly similar to what Lanier hopes to achieve through virtual reality.
Such communication would be consistent with what audience knows about pre-human gargoyle culture, where definition and identity are situational as opposed to consistently codified.
But if that is the case, it leads to a rather lamentable conclusion. As Weisman puts it, "perhaps the very language skills that gargoyles learned from the human race dampened their psychic intuitiveness;" in other words, lock-in of a very particular method of communication (symbology) "locked-out" another method that presented communicative possibilities human technology can currently only dream of.
The initial insistence on not using personal names, then, can be considered a lingering hold-out of a bygone era where every concept was considered unlimited, and every sensation intimated in their full depth.
In dealing with nascent human cultures, gargoyles must have gradually accepted the limiting of concepts like "sky" or "river" because this made interspecies congress significantly more efficient, but they resisted the longest on the limiting of the very depths of the self.
But with the permanent instatement of "Hudson" and the rest, there does not appear to be room to return to the possibilities an unlimited identity presents. Human language has killed them.
Of course, both the gargoyle race and their culture are fantastical constructions, but that does not necessarily mean that humans cannot learn from their fictional example.
While humans do not seem to share these "mild psychic abilities" (although there are some who would vehemently disagree with that statement) that Weisman hypothesizes, that there are methods of sensation and communication which precede language skills is clearly documented.
As with gargoyles, members of the species Homo sapiens did exist well before the development of the earliest known language, and while current understanding of those early cultures is limited at best, there is also a much more immediate example to turn to.
Newborns spend a few years before they learn to define the world around them in the code of words - the sun is an experience to them long before the strictly defined, limiting name of "the sun" is ever applied to it.
The depths of what could be learned from observing children raised without learning language skills, interpreting sensations and intimating them to others via methods of their own device, are boundless; of course, the enormous ethical travesty presented by such experiments means they are not a viable avenue for inquiry.
So instead, humans turn to fiction - attempting to realize through others what that they have long since lost, and yearn to find again.
Greg Weisman has often described gargoyle culture, and pre-human gargoyle culture specifically, as something of a wish fulfillment for him. "I'm such a human," he laments with a written-out sigh, "But I aspire to gargoylosity."
Well, if the virtual reality morphing that so excites Jaron Lanier can indeed allow humans to experience sensation as a pre-human gargoyle (or a pre-language human, or a baby, or even a cephalopod) did/does - if it has the potential to turn the clock back as well as forward, and show what it is like for things simply to be, without the cumbersome and restrictive middleman of naming them - then perhaps that is an aspiration that more humans should share.
At first, when you mentioned 'You Are Not a Gadget', I couldn't help thinking the follow-up statement would be 'You Are a Chip, a Dale or a Monterey Jack'. Talk about lock-in.
Anyway, is it immodest to say that your essay warmed my heart? I enjoyed reading it. And I found it quite insightful. I do believe my own thinking has evolved since I wrote that ramble on gargoyles' latent psychic abilities. My thinking now is less psychic and more intuitive based on sensory clues.
But it doesn't change my positive response to your thesis. And it also speaks to one of my goals - perhaps even needs (NEEDS) - as a writer. Using words, multiple, multiple words, in an attempt to reach beyond the lock-in that comes with words like river or sun or Hudson or, most especially, Greg. The original version of Hudson's line was something like: 'Nothing is real to you until you've named it, defined it, given it limits.' More words to more fully illustrate the concept. And often in my writing I find myself trying to paint pictures with more and more words in an almost poetic sense. That verbosity is often counterproductive when writing dialogue. But I LIKE to think it lends - even when cut back and cut down - a certain depth to the dialogue. But it's a constant push and pull in my writing between trying to find just the one right word and using many, many to paint that fuller picture.
I live with roommates directly across the street from a church and directly above a funeral home. We have a gargoyle in the window facing the church. Is this bad? We've been experiencing weird happenings in the house and get uneasy in a particular area of the house and I'd like to know if removing the gargoyle might help. I know that they're meant to keep evil out of a church and that's why they face away from them, but I wonder if having a gargoyle facing the church is bringing bad vibes to my apartment.
I doubt it. Probably the reverse. It's protecting you from something even worse.
(We're kidding around here, correct?)
When you were writing the "Gargoyles" comics for Slave Labor Graphics, did you ever mentally associate any of the scenes you wrote with the different musical themes from the television series? (I thought of this question after I realized that I was mentally linking Brooklyn's words when he returns from his Timedancing, "Forever... forty years... forty seconds... however you keep time, the dance is finally done" to the music that played in "The Gathering Part One" when Goliath was talking about how Avalon had finally released them from its quest and now they were home.
Honestly, I'm not sure I did.
I have a question about gargoyle justice. Goliath considered dropping Tony Dracon to his death in "Protection," but decided that "gargoyle justice isn't human justice." So, I have to wonder... in what circumstances does a gargoyle arrive at taking the life of another to extract justice? I guess I'm just curious to know where does banishment end, and death begin?
An enemy in the heat of battle - particularly one who has attacked a member of the clan - was considered fair game for killing.
I did my best scouring the AskGreg archives trying to look for this answer and I'm PRETTY sure it hasn't been asked. If it has, I totally apologize. :(
I was re-watching 'Deadly Force' and really got to thinking about Goliath coming so close to doling out 'justice' for Elisa when he thought she had died. My question is this:
1. If a clan member does commit a crime what do his/her clan mates do? I know the trios infraction in the first episode got them a night in the rookery, but what do modern day gargoyles do in order to 'punish' the gargoyle whose committed the crime?
2. If a gargoyle kills a person (justified or not), is their punishment strictly dispensed by their clan, or are they given up to the human authorities?
1. It's unclear. The old BIG punishment of banishment is no longer too practical. We saw them imprison Demona in 'The Reckoning' - but that obviously didn't work out well.
2. This is too hypothetical to be answered without context.
You've mentioned before that name designations don't mean much to Gargoyles. Does that extend to things like dates, months and seasons? For example if a Gargoyle clan lived totally isolated from humanity would they bother with any kind of classifications of time as they already seemed to be very attuned this by their biology.
I don't know. You'd have to have retroactively isolated them to know. They definitely seem more 'at one' - and thus less dependent on language.
In July 2008, Chip asked you "Do Leo and Una have any biological children, and have we seen them so far in the comics?" and you responded "Lunette is theirs. That wasn't meant to be a secret. Leo + Una = Lunette."
Did you mean that this wasn't meant to be a secret from us or did you mean that Leo and Una and the London Clan themselves are aware of Lunette's biological parentage? You've said in the past that the London Clan continues to raise their young in the Gargoyle Way, but they are not blind. Despite the communal parenting, do they generally have a good idea about which hatchling came from which couple? And was Lunette's name, and it's Leo+Una-like pronunciation more than a coincidence. Was the name given to her because the Clan knew her parentage?
I meant it wasn't meant to be a secret from the fans.
Beyond that, Lunette was a longstanding name within the clan, with Arthurian associations.
You've said in the past that gargoyles follow a vague religion that is both monotheistic and pantheistic, and that at present Coldfire would be the most interested in it. What are Demona's spiritual viewpoints? Was she ever a "believer." Is she still one, or is she lapsed? The closest we've ever gotten was her not considering a Wind Ceremony for her smashed clan a priority in "Tyrants."
For that matter, what are Angela's spiritual beliefs? She was raised by humans after all.
I think Demona is probably lapsed - or at least inattentive.
I don't think Angela knows too much about the Gargoyle Way. I do think she was raised with medieval Christian values, without necessarily being baptized a Christian.
And now, here's a question about gargoyles, clones, attraction, and gender traits. I really miss the Blue Mug A Guests, this would have been a perfect question for them.
Male gargoyle clones' eyes glow red, and the female clones' glow white. The complete opposite of natural hatched gargoyles. I was just wondering, how would gargoyles who might attempt to mate with clones deal with this?
The only way I can extrapolate is by picturing human women with gender specific traits that only a man would have, or vice-versa. Most heterosexuals would consider such things to be massive turn-offs, unless they're a bit kinky. I know it's not as extreme as a female with a penis, or a male with a vagina. But I'm trying to extrapolate. Maybe like a beard on a woman, or breasts on a man. Okay, that feels a bit off too.
Now, we didn't see Brooklyn get anywhere with Delilah, he probably never even saw her eyes glow. And considering he was just seeing her as a body, an available female, I wonder just how much of a turn-off that would have been for him if he did make even a little progress.
On the other hand, we have Demona who was with Thailog for at least half a year, and assuming she is 100% heterosexual, I am wondering if that would have unnerved her at all. But, she definitely seemed very physically into him, so maybe she has bisexual tendencies, or she's just really kinky, or maybe she just didn't care one iota. I don't know.
What are your thoughts on this?
I don't get monolithic about this stuff. Different gargoyles would respond differently. To some, maybe to most, it might just seem exotic.
I realize this may have been answered before, but would the manhattan clan be tolerant of homosexuality? What about other clans?
Dude... if you REALIZE this... why don't you check out the ASK GREG archives and get your answer there - instead of bogging down the queue with already answered questions!
In the time long ago when there were gargoyle clans all over the world, how common was mating between members of different clans? Did gargoyles nearly always choose a mate from their own clan or was inter-clan mating fairly common when multiple clans existed in a general area?
I don't know about "fairly common", but it was not rare. Though of course, geography plays a role here. You aren't going to see Mayan gargoyles mating with Loch Ness gargoyles in the first century.
Do gargoyles have the same nudity taboos that humans have? I know that Demona cannot go around bare breasted like Goliath does for obvious reasons of cultural modesty in the real world. But what about within the universe of the show?
Some clothes help with comfort and feelings of safety that have nothing to do with nudity taboos. So although the answer is no, I don't think they do exactly, that doesn't mean that I think they'd choose to wing around nekkid.
What's Demona's insight towards other forms of life in earth? For example, does she share human's outlook in life that everything in this world is there to be exploit by "superior intelligent" creatures like her kind?
Does she consider human ways of exploiting animals and the enviroment acceptable (she hates us and all we do, but I mean...taking aside its us who are doing it)?
Would you say she is more of a cat or a dog "person"Â¡
She has nothing against bears.
I think she'd take a more organic/naturalistic/holistic approach to the environment, as do most gargoyles culturally. But she's also big into expediency and certainly not immune to hypocrisy.
As for Dog or Cat, I could really see her with either... but really with neither.
Hey, Greg! If you don't remember, we met at the Gathering last year in L.A. (I was the one in the black hat and the striped scarf)
Okay, this may sound strange...
Besides Halloween, can gargoyles celebrate any other holiday?
They can celebrate every holiday.
You've said gargoyles find human rascism nonsensical. Do gargoyles have their own sorts of rascisms we'd find nonsensical? If so, have we ever seen its effects? can you give examples?
I'd rather explore this in stories than out of context.
I've read that Angela and Broadway will/would eventually have three hatchlings of their own at some point in their future. Now, while I am VERY happy for the two lovebirds, I can't help but wonder if their different upbringings and views on parentage & child raising would prove an issue for them. I mean, Broadway was raised in the traditional Gargoyle way and never knew who his actual biological parents were, nor showed any interest in learning who they were, & I've even read that if he ever did find out Hudson is his dad it wouldn't really change anything between them (which is the norm for most garg clans). However, Angela was raised by humans and cares very much about her blood ties with Goliath & Demona, wanting her father to acknowledge their bond & rejoicing once he does & over time their bond deepens, & wishing to bring Demona back into the light because of her connection to her despite being aware of her dark & troubled nature. I guess what I'm saying is, Angela strikes me as someone who'd want to raise her children personally & form a strong mother/child bond with them whereas Broadway would likely treat them the same way any gargoyle of an older generation would treat those of a younger generation. So I guess my question is, would Angela's & Broadway's different upbringings cause some problems for them in their relationship & in raising their hatchlings? Or would Angela convince Broadway to form a real parental bond with the kids as Goliath has formed with her? I can't really see Angela NOT making her blood ties known to her kids while Broadway just keeps quiet about it. Hope my questions make sense, this is my first time doing this, & thankyou for your time.
Probably fewer problems than you think. They'd BOTH still behave as parents to all eggs hatched. How is that going to differ between them?
In any case, these are issues that will hopefully be explored in the years to come.
A recent question about the relationship between Hudson and Demona got me thinking...
There was one off note in the question (the rest of the analysis was pretty cool)- Hudson would not have any discomfort at the idea that his rookery children were mated to each other. Given that the chance of multiple births is statistically zero and the strong predilection to marry within ones own rookery there is nearly no chance of biological incest ever happening so there would be no sibling taboo.
I recalled a factotum that caught my attention a few months back- Even the most gung-ho kibutzes in Israel got rid of true communal child raising in the 70's because their children were forming sibling bonds and not marrying. Of the thousands of children raised in the system, about 30 married within their own community and not even one married within his or her age group. (err... I suppose, by definition, two would be the minimum for that....) These children were raised with the intention of being future potential spouses but humans are hardwired not to look at siblings that way, even none biological siblings. A similar problem arises in some endangered animal sanctuaries - I remember a documentary mentioning that if male and female rhinos are housed together they eventually stop mating completely - it may have been anthropomorphizing, but they called it developing a sibling relationship. Obviously there are degenerates and incest does happen, Egyptian royalty was designed with sibling marriage, but we are biologically wired against it even when it is not based on blood and therefore dangerous on a Darwinian level.
It makes sense that Gargates, having evolved as very different species with different circumstances would be fundamentally different at times, but they are so very similar in some ways is it surprising when the differences pop up.
1) Do gargoyles have an incest taboo or does it just not come up?
2) If they do not have it, or, at least no strong one, what do they think of it when it occurs with humans? (I don't mean abuse, rather, for example, if they read about Egyptian kings marrying siblings does it give them pause or it just passes as an oddity.)
3) Are there any other instances that come to mind of there being a basic difference between humans and gargoyles? Not a culturally based one - or if it is culturally, it as outgrowth of their biological reality.
Sorry this last one is so vague. It is hard to think of examples. You once answered that racism puzzles Goliath. It makes sense that a species that seems to have nearly uinlimited skin color possibiilities even within a small and relatively isolated population would think the human skin tone based racism is plain odd. (Granted, gargoyles might have their own version of nonsensicle racism that makes no sense to humans.) I can think of where similar differences would be rooted- they are completely nocturnal, they have wings, the do not share the sleeping experience in any way etcâ¦- but it still seems more the sort of thing that occasionally pops up and surprises you. Maybe...a creature with usable wings would be hardwired against agoraphobia or fear of heights. err. Maybe, not so much, they can still fall if their wings get bound up, so at minimum the concept of falling might lurk somewhere even in their minds.
1. For the biological reasons you stated above, it's a non-issue. Obviously, some rookery siblings develop sibling relationships. Others do not.
2. It depends on their understanding level.
3. Not at the moment.
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.
Did Hudson influence Goliathâs decision at all as to who shouldâve been Goliathâs second in command?
If something had happened to Goliath before he had chosen a second in command, I would assume that Hudson wouldâve become leader at first, but then would choose someone else to lead since heâs older and believes that a younger leader would be best (which is indicated in the episode Upgrade). If this was the case, who would Hudson have considered becoming the new leader of the clan? Would he have based his decision along the same lines as Goliath, or would he have looked for other qualifications?
Thank you for your time and all that you do,
Hudson and Goliath are two different guys... but I still think Hudson would have ended up choosing Brooklyn.
And now I have a question on Goliath and religion.
In the VHS version of "Awakening" as the trio glide off to steal the disc, Goliath says "godspeed lads. They'd better not be harmed." In the TV version he just says "They'd better not be harmed."
Since you edited the VHS release, I have to ask. Would Goliath say "godspeed?" Considering what you have since revealed about gargoyle religious beliefs, I was wondering. In your mind, did he say it?
And while I'm here, what's the canon status of the VHS version of "Awakening?" There is some material in it that wasn't in the TV and later DVD version?
1. Yes. But as a colloquialism.
2. It's mooshy, since in my brain elements of both versions are mooshed together.
I just realized something very sad. Because gargoyles only age at half the rate of humans, by the time the Trio/Angela and Goliath are in their 40s and 50s respectively, Elisa, Fox, Matt, Xanatos and all their other 'original' human friends will have either died or be quite elderly.
1.How do the gargoyles cope with knowing they will outlive these friends (pending unnatural deaths)? It has to be depressing, especially watching your friends grow old before your eyes.
2. Was this something Elisa and Goliath considered before admitting their feelings for one another?
These are issues we would absolutley be exploring over time. Keep in mind, that prior to the current era, most of our Gargoyles had few close human friends. So this is new for them.
The whole 'Gargoyles don't have names' thing has been bothering me for a while.
1. If Demona had been given a chance to choose her own name (not an alias), what would she have chosen?
2.Would she have chosen one at all?
2. The Wyvern clan originally didn't have names. But the Gargoyles in other countries we meet later on all have names. Did they choose the names themselves? Or were they named by their biological parents? Or perhaps the clan as a whole named them?
1. I don't know how to respond to this hypothetical question. She was in essence given the choice of accepting or rejecting Demona, and chose to accept it.
2. Probably not.
3. Traditions differ in each clan. The Mayan gargoyles didn't have names so much as "offices" based on the pendants they were custodians of. The Ishimuran and London Clans had actual names. But biological parentage doesn't play a role in most gargoyle societies. The Avalon gargoyles were named by Princess Katharine, Tom and the Magus. But mostly by Katharine.
Anouther question that should reach you by the holiday season. Happy Holidays!
You've gone over the importance of the equanoxis in the garg verse as they are important to garg breeding, but what about the soltices? seeing as how they are the longest and shortest nights of the year do they have any significance to gargs beyond a diffrent time frame?
Hey there again. I have'nt found this so I'm asking. Is Demona so emotionaly attached to Angeala because shes HER daughter or because shes one of her rookery children. It seems like she values the biologic conection, and if thats true then it seems like a hipocrocy to be so bent on the "true" gargoyle and then do something so human, but thats just my misguided oppinion. If you could do something to guide it that would be most helpfull, thanks.
I'm going to stick with "All of the Above" at this point.
Why do the Gargoyles never upgrade their equipment with the changing times?
I understand from the archives that Hudson uses his to make up for his age, but, despite the number of times their stony rears were handed to them by technologically/magically superior foes, they never seem to try to even the playing field. Tradition is one thing, but I'm reminded of the famous Churchill quote on the subject of a major overhaul of British naval technology: "The traditions of the Navy are rum, the lash, and sodomy."
I think it's less about tradition than comfort. But you've seen some of the cast 'upgrade'. Brooklyn, for example, is now heavily armed.
One last question before bed....
From what little we've seen, it seems that Brooklyn and Katana are parents, not just rookery parents. (All those years with just each other would make it seem inevitable. There are no rookery siblings or other parents.) You wrote that Broadway and Angela ~choose~ to raise their children in the gargoyle style. So...
1. Are there currently any clans who have adopted human parenting, like they adopted human naming? Will there be by the future series?
2. Even those choosing to raise children collectively, are their strong human influences to that thought? (For instance, noting a rookery child looks like you.)
3. Am I correct in my assumption that Brooklyn and Katana are more like human parents in that respect?
4. It has been strongly implied that Elisa and Goliath will in some way adopt. Should they raise a child, would it be as individual or collective parents?
More later, (when I can hopefully decipher my handwriting).
1. We'll have to wait and see.
2. See above.
3. See above.
4. See above.
Did the Gargoyles have a diffrent title for thier race and just adopted the name Gargoyles from man, or were they always known as Gargoyles
It seems that the word "Gargoyles" descended from the Atlantean word "Gorlois". Whether that word is truly Atlantean, or itself came out of something the gargoyles themselves articulated is as yet unknown.
Here's a question about Lexington, and how Gargoyle culture pertains to him.
According to you, Gargoyles show affection to each other by stroking each others' hair.
Lexington is (As far as I know), the only bald Gargoyle. He is also (As far as the fans know) the only homosexual gargoyle. Did him not having hair factor into him leaning toward homosexuality? Or did that just happen to fall into place?
Uh... remember Broadway? Kinda puts the lie to your theory.
How do gargoyles feel about skin color prejudice among humans? Obviously, it would vary from one gargoyle to the next, but I wondered about that since each gargoyle clan that we've seen shows a wide variety of colors. We know that clans are family units for gargoyles (since the entire clan raises the eggs and the young gargoyles look upon all the older gargoyles as their parents), so it would seem normal for them to have such a broad spectrum of coloring in the family. And I wondered whether, under those circumstances, gargoyles might find the human attitude of looking upon humans with a different color as outsiders and "not-us" as, not just wrong, but almost alien and incomprehensible.
I do think it would be fairly incomprehensible to them
GATHERING 2009 - Monday, August 24th
Midnight - The goodbyes begin for folks who are leaving first thing Monday morning or right now. Said goodbye to Marina, Zehra, Sarah, Michael McAdam and probably quite a few others...
1:30am - The party downstairs finally breaks up and I head up to my room.
4am - Went to bed. But I just couldn't sleep at all.
8am - Finally gave up and got up.
9am - Brought my luggage to my car and then went to the staff breakfast: crepe, ham, potatoes, OJ.
10am - Comic book panel with Karine Charlebois and Greg Guler. I'll just repeat the main message I gave. I have no info on the future of Gargoyles comics beyond this: SLG's Dan Vado is sincerely interested in doing more. His ability to make an offer for the license to Disney will depend on the sales of the three trade paperbacks. Beyond that, we had some really interesting discussions about the books.
11:30am - Gargoyles Biology and Culture panel with Jade Griffin and Matt Parker. I love this panel. Always full of interesting discussions, that influence how I handle things in the Gargoyles Universe.
1pm - Closing Ceremonies. Okay, I admit it. I pretty much lost it more than once. It was VERY emotional. A number of us told stories of past Gatherings and how they changed our lives. It was warm and all too fuzzy, but wonderful. I love all you guys. Thank you.
2:30pm - We finally closed the Closing Ceremonies. I helped Patrick and a bunch of other volunteers carry things down to Patrick's rented van. Then we headed up to the Constaff Suite for a dead dog party. Christopher bought pizza for everyone, which was very generous. I had a coke and a virgin jello shot. And we just hung out.
5:45pm - Time to go, to return to real life. I hugged EVERYONE. Jennifer Anderson walked me to the elevator. I was pretty wrecked. It felt a bit like it felt to end a long job. You walk away. What else can you do? You take your memories with you, but you also know you're leaving a piece behind.
But it's been a FANTASTIC THIRTEEN YEARS. Thanks to everyone who ever attended a Gathering. You really changed my life!
Do gargoyles posess a written/spoken language all there own or do they just adopt ones similar to the local humans?
Check the ASK GREG archives under "Gargoyle Customs" or come to the 2009 Gathering's "Gargoyles Biology & Culture" panel.
I've loved this show ever since I was a kid. In fact you could say this show helped me get through elementary school cause I'd rush to get my homework completed so I could go right the tv when I got home to watch the newest episode. Now that I'm older I still get this wonderful since of nostalgia when I watch this and start asking questions about the Gargoyles I never thought of as a kid, specifically their biology and culture since I loved those electives in high school.
1. Are gargoyles more likely to get certain traits and characteristics if they're from a specific clan? If so, is it just genetics or do they aide them in their territory? If not, does that mean that all gargoyles are generally the same with just different looks that are just for show?
2. How do gargoyles see the sun? Do they see it with a sort of reverence like Demona and Hudson did in The Mirror, or do they see it more of a curse due to their vulnerability?
3. Are there any diseases only gargoyles can get?
1. All of the above, if I understand your question.
2. All of the above, depending on the individual gargoyle.
3. None that I know of.
Good to see this place open again!
My question is basically, how do Gargoyle populations sustain themselves? With females having (almost always I've believe you've said) a maximum of three eggs, and as you said in reference to why gargoyles practice communal parenting: "Perhaps this is the result of the high Gargoyle mortality rate. " would it not be an intense struggle to just maintain a clan's population?
And with this in mind, even considering that in modern day mortality rates for gargoyles has probably dropped significantly, wouldn't the practice of the London clan of limiting each pair to two eggs total be very risky for the continuation of their clan?
Thanks for you time
1. Yes, it has been a struggle since at least the Iron Age of Man.
2. Obviously, if the population starts dropping dangerously low, they'll allow the third eggs to get it back. The point is to maintain a consistent quantity, not blindly follow rules for the sake of rules.
Hudson has or had a biological child in Goliath's generation, the Trio's generation, and Bronx's generation. That means that Goliath and the Trio would have considered him one of their rookery fathers and Hudson regards them as his rookery children. (I'm guessing he regards Bronx somewhat differently, though correct me if I'm wrong.) So why do we never hear Goliath or any of the Trio calling Hudson "father" or him referring to any of them as "son"?
Their relationships are MORE specific than that. When you have a LOT of fathers (back in the day), many different varieties of relationships develop in addition to the paternal-filial. That doesn't mean they don't consider Hudson a rookery father, but it's not how they define him.
I have two questions about gargoyle homosexuality:
We know there are homosexual male gargoyles, but are there any lesbians?
How do homosexual gargoyles fit into the gargoyle social structure? Do they face any difficulties socially because of their sexual orientation, either similarly or unexpectedly different from humans?
2. I've answered this many times before. Check the archives under either Gargoyle Biology or Gargoyle Customs.
This is more of a Wyvern Clan culture question than a hypothetical one.
After Goliath sends the Trio and Bronx to the rookery and Demona questions his decision to punish them (out of their earshot like a good second, as you noted in the commentary), Goliath tells her that he will make it up to them somehow. If the Wyvern Massacre hadn't intervened, what are some things Goliath might have done to make it up to the Trio and Bronx?
I'm not sure he even knew. Probably a heart-to-heart and a little winging.
First of all, thank you for such an intelligent, brilliantly-written series.
Secondly, I have a question regarding Broadway and Angela's kiss in The Journey. I'm sorry if this has been answered before, but I don't recall finding anything related to it in the archives.
You've stated (I believe in the DVD commentary) that gargoyles don't kiss to show affection, but rather wrap their wings around each other and stroke each other's hair. So why do Broadway and Angela kiss? I've had a number of theories, myself:
1. being younger, Broadway and Angela (especially Angela) have been heavily influenced by the tendencies of humans, ie. ways of displaying affection. I mean, Angela must have seen Tom macking on Katherine a few times back on Avalon, right? Not to mention the fact that the eggs were raised in an unconventional (human) way.
2. To show the pair actally kissing would have truly established them as a solid couple in the minds of viewers. It's also a lot more heart-wrenching to see them kiss with Brooklyn watching them.
3. It WAS The Goliath Chronicles, and the writers weren't aware of all the nuances in the world of the gargoyles.
Well, I've probably gone and answered my question, in there. But thanks for taking the time to read through this, anyway!
You and Gargoyles truly are the bees' knees.
We're stuck with 1 & 2, since I was the writer of "The Journey".
Not so much a question as an add-on. One question on the Gargoyle FAQ asks why Gargoyles do not kiss as humans do. While it is true that kissing is a human custom, it is not universal; some cultures view kissing as gross or bizarre. In ancient Inuit tribes, couples would share affection by leaning close to each other so they can feel the warmth of each other's breath. That is where the original term "Eskimo kissing" comes from. In Bali, couples will lean close to each other and gaze into each other's eyes as a show of intimacy. (This has changed as Westernization moved in.) Kissing was not a custom in many Asian countries until relatively recently, when American culture became very popular. The Sirinio in Bolivia and the Thonga in Africa do not kiss as they see it as a sharing of dirt and saliva.
So it goes...
Hello Greg, long time fan of gargoyles, and most of my questions about the Gargoyles universe have been answered by browsing the archives but these questions.
I see from the archives that Angela and Broadway will raise their children in the traditional gargoyles fashion, and I am assuming that Brooklyn and Katana will try to do the same. But this has led me to some interesting questions about the relationships between generations of gargoyles in the same clan.
I have seen that from the first episode that gargoyles from the same rookery generation call one another rookery brother or rookery sister, or if there are close bonds just brother and sister. So my first question is do gargoyles have the same endearing names for an older or younger generation with in the clan, for example rookery mother, rookery father, rookery son, rookery daughter, or some other term like those? Yes I do know that Goliath's generation calls Hudson My Mentor, I am assuming that is so only because he was the leader and teacher of the clan before Goliath.
Another is I have noticed that Hudson has a stronger relationship with Goliath then any other of Goliath's rookery siblings, or at least just the ones we have met so far. I am assuming this is do to, that Hudson saw Goliath's potential as a successor and paid special attention to him to prepare him for the role. I have also noticed that gargoyles in one generation develop strong ties with a few siblings like Coldstone's and Goliath's relationship. My next question is do stronger relationships develop between certain hatchlings and certain members of the parenting generation or members of another older generation of gargoyles?
But in Mark of the Panther Goliath, who is having trouble dealing and even understanding Angela's unusual need for parents and her attachment to him after she finds that she is his biological daughter, says to Elisa's mother Diane "gargoyle hatchlings belong to the whole clan, I cannot hold one hatchling over the others." So are these kinds of relationships, I have asked about in the previous paragraph, taboo, shunned, frowned upon, or generally accepted as a part of the growing up process of young gargoyles, or are they just Goliath's personal words do to the fact that he is the clan leader?
Thanks for even putting up a general questions website, not many writers do that or post the site on there publications. I apologize for my long winded questions but it just the way I write. Just to let you know Gargoyles has been a huge influence in my own stories and don't worry I have absolutely no fan fictions of Gargoyles and I have never understood why people have to do them, they don't make sense to me any ways.
I can't wait for Brooklyn's little trip, especially the clan's reactions when he gets back five minutes later, they will be priceless. I might have to scan the images in and use them as a desktop. I just can't see Time Dancer done in six issues like I heard the spin offs will be done in, too much happening from what I have found on Ask Greg. Well I guess that is why it is third in line and thanks again.
Some gargoyles will develop stronger relationships with some. With that many parents, siblings, children, etc. running around, it's natural. But neither "shunned, frowned upon, or generally accepted" fits the bill to my mind. Amd citing Hudson/Goliath hardly proves anything. Hudson's pre-massacre relationship with anyone else in Goliath's generation has not been explored. Nor has Goliath's relationship with anyone else from Hudson's generation even been touched on.
In Panther, Goliath is NOT having trouble with Angela's "unusal need for parents". He's concerned about what her specific need to acknowledge their BIOLOGICAL relationship might mean... both in terms of his relationship to the rest of the Avalon Clan and especially HER relationship to her biological mother.
Not all of Brooklyn's TimeDancer adventures are designed to fit into one six episode mini. Just one six-part story. I could tell TimeDancer adventures for forty years. And I hope I get that chance.
Is the practice of raising eggs communally based on tradition for Gargoyles, or is it more of an instictual biological imperative? The answer we usually get is that it's the Gargoyle way, but is it the Gargoyle way because they're told they've always done it that way, or is it the Gargoyle way because instinct tells them that if they lay an egg in the rookery, all eggs in the rookery are theirs? It is the most sensible course of action, based on their reproduction, but did the practice arise because of how they reproduce universally as a species, or do they reproduce universally as a species because of how they practice parenting?
... Chicken or egg?
Egg or gargoyle?
hi mr weisman again.
I was wondering what kind of beliefs do gargoyles incorparate from peoples religions into theirs
I'd advise browsing the Gargoyles Customs archive here at Ask Greg. Then if you still have questions, post again.
Dear Greg -- I would first like to just say what a wonderful series you created and that I'm happy new stories are being made after all these years!
My question relates to the concept of monogamy in Gargoyle culture --
You had stated that Gargoyles are both biologically and culturally inclined towards monogamy, including, for the most part, remaining alone after a mate dies, etc. You also said at one point that affairs, cheating, divorce, etc. are quite rare, though wires do on occasion get crossed and such things do happen, so...
1. Obviously every clan and every individual within a clan is different, but if two gargoyles were cheating on their mates with one another, how would the other clan members, in general, react? Would they consider it clan business or personal business? Would the two 'cheaters' be treated any differently either socially or 'officially' by the clan leader? Would cheating on one's mate be considered a banish-able offense? I'm speaking of an affair where both cheaters consent to the relationship and not an Othello-Desdemona-Iago situation.
2. Similarly, how would a clan typically react to two mates 'divorcing' one another? Would one have to leave the clan -- would both? Likewise, would it be considered the entire clan's business or personal business?
I apologize that I'm asking for generalizations (I know after years of reading Ask Greg that you don't much care for those!) but hopefully you can answer anyway because I'm very curious about this.
Thank you and all the best!
1. I think officially it would NOT be considered "clan-business"... but that's not to say the clan or clan leader might not still attempt to deal with the situation.
2. Same answer.
As answered in a previous question, Gargoyle females (can) bare eggs at 'biological ages 25, 35, and 45'. What about the males; what's the age limit for their potency? Also, does age difference play a great role in choosing a mate or is it mostly love and good genes? Finally, how common is it to take a new mate after a previous mate has passed away?
Re: the males. Don't know.
Age difference between mates is relatively rare. They usually are the exact same age, give or take a few hours.
Gargoyles RARELY take a new mate after a previous mate passes away.
This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....
While Elisa again tries to convince Goliath to abandon the castle, they are attacked by a Steel Clan Robot. Goliath destroys it, but Owen uses the opportunity to acquire some of Goliath's genetic material.
The Pack attempts to rob a bank. The gargoyles try to stop them. Goliath is badly injured - allowing the Pack to escape. Hudson informs Goliath that he needs to choose one of the Trio to be his Second-in-Command.
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*I hope this doesn't sound like story suggesting*
Was Nashville concived before or after Katana and Brooklyn's mating ceremony?
Well, since they don't mate until after the ceremony (such as it is)...
We know that there is faerie magic and mortal magic. Mortal magic seems mostly to be used by humans. Is it less common for gargoyles to study magic than humans? If so why?
Seems less common, but that may simply be because there are fewer gargoyles period.
You said in your FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) archives that Broadway and Angela would probably raise their children the gargoyle way, "children of the clan, not individuals," by not favoring biological children over the rest of the clan's children, but does that mean they won't identify their own biological children. I believe that if they didn't recognize their biological children, they wouldn't have been so particular about the naming of their own children (Artus, Gwenyvere, and Lancelot) after Arthurian characters in reference to Broadway and Angela's connections to Arthur, Broadway being inspired to read from hearing about the Scrolls of Merlin and Angela living on Avalon where Arthur slept. So, do Angela and Broadway recognize their biological children but attempt to parent all clan children instead of favoring their biological children, or is the naming of all their children after Arthurian characters coincidence?
You're assuming that Broadway and Angela named them. Facts not in evidence.
Hi Again Greg!
In Gargoyle Society, You have stated that Clans would use Banishment as a form of Punishment. You have stated that Iago was Banished before the Massacre, but then came back to the clan, and I believe you have mentioned that it was because he set Othello against Goliath over Desdemona. Did Gargoyles who were banished, and without a clan have a lower chance of survival than those in a clan? Would clans let other nearby clans know about those who were banished so that they would not assist them during their Banishment. (Of course this would only apply if there were nearby clans.) Would Temporarily Banished Gargoyles always return to the Clan at the end of their sentence? Or would the majority stay away and find a new Clan, Home, or Protectorate? What sort of things would constitute a Banishable Offense?
Thanks for Reading, Writing, and Answering!
Gargoyles aren't generally solitary. So any clan who saw someone stumble in, would pretty much know the score... unless that person weaved a tale... a tale that would be pretty easy to prove or disprove. Generally, gargoyles don't like being banished, so they'd tend to come back when their sentence ended. But I'm sure there have been exceptions, and not all sentences were temporary. Lot's of potentially banishable offenses. Use your imagination.
how do gargoyles decide the clan leader? and y is the leaders mate usally second in command? ( by this i mean clans like avalon or ones without current leaders to chose)
I'm confident I've answered this before. Check the archives -- and/or ask in the comment room. I'm sure the friendly folk there (http://www.s8.org/gargoyles/comment/index.php) can direct you to the correct answer.
This is more a ramble reply to Alex Garg's post, but I definitely think this is a fascinating subject, and could make a great Ask Greg discussion.
Honestly, at this point, I don't think anyone in the Manhattan Clan cares much about any of the clones. Any of them. What was the first thing said when Thailog appeared to perish and the clones had no where to go? "We can't just bring them back to the Clock Tower can we? I mean, they kind of give me the creeps."
Right there, the Manhattan Clan wanted nothing to do with them. Wanted to pretend they didn't exist. Let Talon take them to live in a sewer. Out of sight, out of mind. Not that the reaction is not understandable, it is. I think we'd all be uncomfortable around clones of ourselves made against our will and knowledge. It's a fundamental violation of our individuality.
Did any of the Manhattan Clan go down to see them between "The Reckoning" and "Invitation Only"? I'd be very surprised if the answer is yes. The one time they do go down, they want something. Goliath is following Elisa's request to attempt to date Delilah. Brooklyn... just wants to make a play for the only available female he's aware of. They were down there both for selfish reasons.
So, yeah, all of their talk about free will probably was less for the clones' sake, and more towards the Manhattan Clan's hatred for Thailog. They hate Thailog, so naturally they don't want the clones to be helping him. At this point, do they have any other reason to care?
Lexington's only real concern when Brentwood chooses Thailog is how it makes him [Lexington] look. Not concern for Brentwood's safety, or eventually having to face him as an enemy. Lex thinks it makes *him* look bad.
I know this is a pretty serious indictment of the Manhattan Clan. I love them, they are heroes, there's a lot to admire in each and every one of them. But, they're not saints. Which is fine, they're more interesting this way... if I wanted a group of pure goodie goods, I'd read a Silver Age Justice League of America comic book.
I don't disagree with any of the above, but I would temper it.
Again, I think Angela has an INTEREST in individuality and wouldn't want Delilah blindly following ANYONE. Delilah may have reacted to Angela as if Angela was giving her another order, but I don't think it's hard to see that that was clearly NOT Angela's intent. And if your looking for proof, just check out Angela's relationship with Goliath. She respects him as a leader. As a hero. A legend. She loves him as a father. But check out the World Tour, particularly Sanctuary. She's hardly following G. blindly.
And Goliath... in his slow, deliberate, bleeding-to-death way... had clearly given all this some thought too. He told Thailog that Delilah would not CHOOSE him (i.e. Thailog). He may seem confident of this (perhaps even over-confident), but there's nothing to indicate that Goliath plans to decide FOR her. And he doesn't decide for Brentwood either. There's preference and action. Two different things.
This is something that had I wanted to bring up in the Culture/Biology panel at the Gathering, but we ran out of time. Besides, it feels a little better to be able to ask this question now that "Bash" has broad exposure (although it's still new enough to constitute a SPOILER warning).
Gargoyles and Free Will.
A theme of Gargoyles since the introduction of the clones has been just how much control they have over making their own decisions, particularly given that they were programmed to obey Thailog. This comes to a head in "Masque" and "Bash," where the clones are bombarded with the "Free Will" message to the point where they can finally make their choices, but what's most curious to me is the pressure that they receive from the Manhattan Clan.
It doesn't surprise me that Maggie would bring it up in "Masque" - she was born and raised in a democratic society, so the idea that people have free will and the right to self-determination is ingrained in her psyche - but for Goliath and Lexington, and Angela to a lesser extent, to make the case for it in "Bash" was more surprising.
Goliath and Lexington both come from an era where there was no broadly applied concept of a person's right to self-determination. On the human side was the reign of the Catholic Church (and I'm writing very generally now) which in terms of ethics framed the argument for free will in such a way that while humans have the *capacity* to choose between different courses of action, our *obligation* is to obey God's commands; the fact that they did not was why we were expelled from the Garden of Eden. Therefore, under those circumstances, we don't really have a choice - God's infinite wisdom overrides our mortal judgments. That dogma then went on to inform the monarchies of the day, Scotland not excepting, where kings ruled by Divine Mandate. The idea that a king could be overthrown for unjust rule wasn't introduced until St. Thomas Aquinas, an act which prior to him (and even well after) would have been viewed as taking up arms against the will of God; and even then it was the laws of the Church which would be the standard by which a king would be considered ruling in an unjust manner, not the opinions of his subjects.
The gargoyles' "government" also has no apparent nod to free will or self-determination. Goliath became the leader because Hudson said so, Brooklyn became second-in-command because Goliath said so, and in each case the other gargoyles appear to acquiesce unconditionally to these decisions. Even in mating, you mentioned in the panel that gargoyles aren't necessarily choosing mates as much as they are naturally drawn to one another - even in human rituals it's a subject of debate over just how much "choice" we have in when and with whom we fall in love.
While you've said that gargoyles are free to pursue their own hobbies and curiosities, it doesn't strike me that alone is enough to constitute an understanding of free will in the sense of making determinations about leadership in the way that the clones were being pressured to choose between the Labyrinth and Thailog.
So from what we saw in "Bash," where Lexington demands to know why the clones are choosing to help Thailog, and where Goliath says that "choice must extend to those who choose unwisely" - which is a very different concept than a basic, arbitrary choice between right and wrong - I have to ask: Where have Goliath and Lexington gotten the understanding to ask those questions?
Angela also presents an interesting case, because while she was raised by humans, she was raised by humans for whom it can't be assumed would have had the same understanding of free will as you and I do having grown up in a democratic society as it applies to personal choice, much less in making decisions of leadership. So is her command to Delilah founded more on her hatred of Thailog, or is she also making a case for free will; and if the latter, what informs that for her?
Touching on the same vein: Since 1996 would be the first U.S. election year that the gargoyles have really been exposed to - it seems to me that in 1994 the Manhattan clan was more curious about their new physical surroundings than cultural; and it was a midterm election anyway with much less media hype than a presidential cycle - what do the gargoyles of the Manhattan clan make of democracy, given their less than democratic heritage?
Free will seems essential to any discussion of Abrahamic religions... starting with the Garden of Eden. What God wants does not mean He FORCES you to do it, and I think even 10th century Catholics and Scotsmen got this idea whether or not they could articulate it.
And free will doesn't absolve us of personal debts, religious responsibilities, community obligations and the like. (Not to mention the laws of physics. Just because I have the free will to say I want to fly, doesn't mean I can.) Certainly Gargoyles would understand that. One ignores community contracts (even -- again -- if one cannot articulate these ideas) at the risk of banishment. (Cf. Iago, Demona or Yama.)
As for the articulation itself, well... I think we have demonstrated that Goliath is very well read. And that Lex is a very fast study. As for Angela... well, like her mother, she's not one to deny the right of the individual. I'll leave the rest to your interpretation.
Democracy probably seems to them to be the lesser of evils vis-a-vis humans. But I don't think of Gargoyle society as undemocratic per se. Leadership questions don't seem to vibe with democracy gargoyles-wise, but a good leader is sensitive to the needs of those he leads. Hudson chose Goliath, and as far as we know there was only one real objection to the choice (a clear minority). Goliath chose Demona as his second, with no objections that we know of. Goliath chose Brooklyn as his second with, again, NO objections... even from the two other gargoyles competing for the gig. So... draw your own conclusions. Gargoyles may just be better attuned to each other based on NON-verbal cues... They don't need to name things or spend a fortune on television advertisements to know what there community is looking for in a leader.
Or maybe not. Interesting questions. We should definitely raise these issues again next summer.
"Gargoyles protect." It's fairly straight-forward, but how did this cultural tradition begin? As the credo exists throughout the world, it was obviously some instance that happened very early in the evolutionary history of the Gargate species. Was it a pact made by the original gargoyle clan with a single human or community? Is it a biological urge (doubtful though, i.e. Demona, Thailog)? Or is it a tradition orally passed from generation to generation from the earliest of times by a single, extremely noble gargoyle/clan?
I think it originates with the need to protect the gargoyles' own rookery. Which would, I imagine, be a biological imperative.
I've noticed since first watching the show that most gargoyles do not use weapons. Demona does (which is understandable since she has witnessed- and perhaps taken part in- the development modern technology), as does Thailog (also understandable since he is the polar opposite to Goliath and uber-evil). However, Hudson is the only "old school," shall we say, gargoyle who consistently carries a weapon. What is the history between Hudson and this blade? Is it unusal that he carries it, or have we just not seen enough gargoyles to see others who choose to utilize weapons?
Other gargoyles utilize weapons. Check the Hudson archives for a more detailed explanation of why Hudson uses one.
Will we ever see the biological parents of Demona, Goliath, Lexington or Brooklyn in the comics in Flashbacks?
Sure. But you might not know it, as it's of no moment to these characters. If I hadn't let it slip that Hudson was Broadway's bio-dad, would you have guessed, known or cared?
Do Gargoyles have there own unique appreciation for artistic asthetics? I have noticed that the Manhatten clan has developed a true appreciation for human literature (like SHakespeare), but do they have there own asthetic disposition for other art forms such as music or painting?
I'm sure that, just like with literature, they've learned to enjoy the human endeavors in art. Also, I'm sure that each individual has his or her own opinions when it comes to what they enjoy, just like everyone else, but have the Gargoyles ever (or will they ever) developed an artistic culture of their own? Or do they, in general, have a unique opinion as to what constitutes art? For example, I could imagine that battle styles could be a sort of art form within clans.
I deal in individuals more than species-wide generalities, but probably.
1.Before humans made contact with gargoyles, did gargoyles have a unique (non-written)language unto themselves?
2.Before gargoyles made contact with humans, did gargoyles have a unique written language unto themselves?
1. We've discussed this before... it might not have been necessary for them... isn't language a process of naming?
What do gargoyles eat?And would they kill or hurt humans?
Gargoyles eat more or less the same stuff as we do. And kill for more or less the same reasons.
Do gargoyles generally hold mating ceremonies, or do they more or less elope? In "Vows," Goliath and Demona facilitated their own union-would there have been a more official ceremony later attended by the clan?
I'm not responding to this at this time.
Hi Greg. It's great to see Gargoyles back. Anyway, I have a question about when the Wyvern Clan split between 988 and 994. What I would like to know is why didn't the departing Gargoyles take any of the eggs with them? The new clan would have missed out on an entire generation of the clan. Or did they do something like take more of Bronx's generation(978) with them? I guess that would make sense. Thanks.
The why had to do with the difficulty of establishing a new rookery. Otherwise, I think you answered your own question.
This is less serious than my last post.
It had occured to me the other day while watching the Green that the Guatamalan clan and all the other clans take names. Some of them such as the Griff's clan have had contact for some time with humans, but what's Zafiro excuse. Is it only a Wyvern Clan tradition, not a gargoyle tradition across cultures, to remain nameless?
Only the four pendant wearers had names. Unfortunately, only the four pendant wearers were still alive.
Is there any significance to loincloth color for the gargs? Goliath and Hudson, both leaders, have brown, whereas the Trio has blue.
None that I know of.
Have you thought of how you would handle traditional gargoyle namelessness should you make "Dark Ages"?
I've thought about it a LOT. Probably won't make a final decision until I'm forced to. (The same was true about what to do about the Goliath Chronicles.)
How often do gargoyle clan leaders name their mates their seconds? Wouldn't it make more sense to have a younger second, not a contemporary?
It often depends on just how young the leader is, I would think.
Do you really think Brooklyn was ready to be a second back in 994?
But as you've seen, Goliath was Hudson's second. Yama was Kai's. So a younger second is sometimes chosen.
You've said that gargoyles predate humans. Were there ever any gargoyle cities, civilizations, or unique cultures?
Cultures... sure. But I'm not seeing them defining civilization by human standards. And cities... depends how big a rookery has to get before you qualify it as a city. Competition for resources kept rookeries smallish. With new rookeries spinning off of existing ones when necessary.
How do gargoyles view their beaked brethren like Brooklyn in terms of physical beauty?
I don't believe in monolithic appraisals. But I'm sure MOST would find Brooklyn as attractive as many of our fans do.
You've said that gargoyles show affection by stroking hair. What do they do if their mate is bald like Lexington and Broadway?
Sunday, June 25, 2006: 3RD DAY OF THE GATHERING OF THE GARGOYLES
So how is everything going? Good I hope. Only one more day of Gathering of the Gargoyles. I'm sure everyone is having a great time out there at the gathering. Everyone must be really busy trying to get to everything there. Just curious, but how many sessions are going on out there? Do people have time inbetween sessions to do anything else? Did you do any sight seeing in L.A.? I hear that next year the gathering will be in Tenessee near the Smokey Mountains. That would be so cool to go to. There must be a lot of sight seeing to do for the next gathering, that is if you have time to get away from the convention. I've been to Tennessee once up in the Smokey Mountians. I barely remember it, but the few pictures I have in my mind are of very beautiful scenery. I can picture the mountains with dark clouds around the top of them. Maybe I can get a plane ticket and head out there next year not only for the gathering, but to recharge my memory of the scenery. I think that if there was another gargoyle clan out there in the U.S. (besides the Manhattan clan), they should be located in a place like that. The mountains would be great cover, and there are little towns all around in there that they could protect if they felt the need to. I'm really hoping that I can convince someone to go with me now that I'm getting myself psyched for the Smokey Mountains.
Since the gathering is almost over for 2006, I might as well get your opinion on it. Did you think that the turn out was better or worse this year than other gatherings? Did a lot of voice talents from the Gargoyles show come to the convention? By the way, how many of these gatherings have you attended? I know that this one in 2006 is the 10th annual one, but did you go to the first few, like the 1st or 2nd gathering? Who exactly started these gatherings (don't just say fans, please)? Do you think that more talents from the show will come to next years (2007) gathering?
Well, now that I've questioned you out, I might as well mention a few things that happened today since this is sort of a journal of what's going on during the gathering. Today is Sunday, so of course church. After that, we (my family) had tacos and I slept for a couple of hours. I woke up to find nothing great on TV or on TIVO. Later, my parents and I watched some murder mystery movie where some woman was being tricked into thinking she was crazy by her husband and best friend so they could get rid of her and get all her money that she'd made. It was interesting. Not as good as it would have been to be at the gathering (I had to throw that in there).
When I mentioned church, it got me thinking. I know religion is a touchy subject for a lot of people, but I was wondering if any gargoyles were religious in some way. If they are, do they practice human religions or do they have one of their own? I could see a clan living in a big church building with the stain glass windows and such, with them posing on top on the steeple or roof during the day and then protecting the town at night. I can just imagine the picture in my head. It would look rather gothiky though.
Now that's my ramble/journal for today. Just one more for tomorrow. I'm sure you'll miss my long talks about nothing (probably not). I hope all is well, and thank you for your time.
Turn out for 2006 was high for a Gathering. Having the con in L.A. always helps, because we can get a TON of special guests (because they're all local) that we couldn't afford to bring to a more distant location. Someone from the Gathering would have to give you exact figures, but I believe the attendance was probably our second highest ever - second only to G2001, which was also in L.A.
We did have quite a few voice actors, including Keith "Goliath" David, Thom "Lexington" Adcox, Brigitte "Angela" Bako, Elisa "Obisiana" Gabriellie, Morgan "Petros" Sheppard, Jim "Dingo" Cummings and others. Plus quite a few voice actors from WITCH and other shows as well.
I've attended all TEN Gatherings. It might seem like quite an achievement, but really it's all thanks to the fans, who pay my way for every non-L.A. convention and put me up (and put up with me) at the L.A. cons. There are a handful of fans whom have also been to all ten conventions. They are my heroes.
"Who exactly started these gatherings (don't just say fans, please)?" - Okay, I won't say fans. I'll say FAN. May "Elisa Maza" Li (I hope I'm spelling that correctly) was THE fan that got the ball rolling by almost single-handedly organizing the first Gathering in NYC. Burned her out so much that she didn't attend again until this past year, when she was given the Fan Guest of Honor award. Of course since then there's been a long list of people who have contributed. I'd list 'em, but I'm sure I'd forget some people, and I don't want to offend.
For info on Gargoyles religion -- which is both Animistic and Monotheistic -- check the archives under GARGOYLE CUSTOMS.
How will the others in the clan react to Lex being gay? Angela and the other boys may be more accepting, but Hudson and Goliath struck me as "old school" in terms of acceptance. (well, not Goliath as much. He is dating a human for christs sake!) Just curous.
You're assuming that for Gargoyles, "Old School" means homophobic. I don't accept that.
In fact "Old School" for humans wasn't homophobic either. Homophobia is a relatively RECENT phenomena, as far as my (very limited) research has revealed.
Gargoyles don't 'marry' (at least not as humans do)from what I've gathered. Most people demand that marriage comes before children, or at least what their idea of what marriage is. I have friends who liked the show and bought the dvd (although they aren't the hardcore fans that would attend a Gathering..I tried LOL) and if hatchlings started appearing without any 'wedding' taking place beforehand I know for a fact that they would stop watching out of moral beliefs. Many conservative viewers would likely follow suit. So onto the question..(if new eps are ever made) do you see gargoyles observing a ritual of some sort that could replace a wedding in the mind of a more conservative viewer?
Gargoyles have a "Commitment Ceremony" which is the equivalent of a human wedding. This isn't something I've added for conservative viewers by the way, it just is part of my conception of their culture.
Hey greg, love the show and see you in Vegas! Now for my question...
Gorlois is the Atlantean name for Gargoyle. So how is it used? What is the singular and plural? Are Gargoyles Gorloien? Was the Captain of the Guard Gorloisian or Gorloien since you said he was (WAS.. traitor) Gargoylean (if thats a word)? This has been gliding about my brain since I found out about "Gorlois." I realize I'm asking you to mix english and atlantean, so do what you can. Thanks for answering this and all our questions!
PS: If you could mention to Goliath and the others that we in the SF Bay Area would be happy to host a fledgling Gargoyle clan. We've got tall buildings, lots of room to glide, great weather, and lots of wind. Oh, and tell them not to worry about earthquakes, all our buildings are retrofitted and earthquake safe. I guess by Samson's time there isn't one here, but I'm still hoping nothing is set in stone.. at least till sunrise. Thanks!
If you hold a Gathering, they will come.
As for Gorlois (pronounced gor-LOY), it is the Atlantean word for Gargoyle. It's used for both singular and plural. Like "sheep".
Hi Greg! I couldn't make it to Montreal this year, but I've made up my mind to go to Vegas. Thank you so much for the DVD; I'll buy several copies when it comes out! Now, on to my questions... This is something that's been puzzling me for a while, and I couldn't find it anywhere on the archives. I'd be so happy if you had the answers.
1. In the episode Reawakening, after Coldstone and Goliath fell into the river and Goliath was losing consciousness, he holds on to Coldstone's forearm. Is there a deeper meaning behind that? Was it:
a) a warrior wrist-shake
b) a cry for help
c) asking forgiveness
d) an unconscious reaction
If the answer is a, b, c, or d, why? If none of the above, what? I'm just so curious about that scene. It's so deep and moving; definitely one of the best scenes in the entire series.
2. When Goliath and Coldstone are in the river, Hudson is heard in the background saying "A gargoyle can no more stop protecting the castle than breathing the air," it slowly trails off. Was Goliath thinking that and it trailed off as he lost consciousness? Was Othello? Or does it have a deeper meaning?
I would be so grateful if you had the answers! Thank you so much, and I look forward to meeting you in Vegas!
1. All of the above.
2. It's somewhat symbolic, but yes, Goliath wa thinking of it. And it trailed off as Goliath began to lose consciousness. I like to think that Coldstone was thinking something similar.
Do gargoyles believe in corporal punishment?
I'm sure the point of view on the subject isn't monolithic, but I tend to think not.
I've got a number of questions about Gargbeasts and their relation to the Clan. It always seemed to me that the Gargoyles had a deeper connection to their Gargbeasts than we humans tend to have with our "lesser" beasts. (Though, where dogs are concerned, I don't get how a creature that is naturally caring and loyal can be considered lesser to anything.)
1. Are Garg-Beasts considered siblings, parents, and sons/daughters by the rest of the Gargoyles in a clan? Would Goliath consider Bronx a Rookery Son and the Trio consider him a Rookery Brother?
2. Do GargBeasts and Gargoyles nurse each others offspring? (Evolutionarily, I can see the advantage in this, as it provides a greater variety of anti-bodies to the hatchlings.)
3. While I have serious doubts that a Gargbeast can ever become a Clan leader, are they ever in positions of authority or rank over the sentient Gargoyles?
1. No. There is an awareness that Beasts are a separate species. But I do believe that the bond between Gargoyles and Beasts is stronger, and more akin to blood relation than the bond between humans and their pets. Beasts are not considered pets. They do not have "masters". The relationship is closer to one of equals than of master/pet. Grok?
2. I don't think so. But I'll admit I haven't given this much thought.
3. I won't say 'never'. But it doesn't seem likely. Though you should keep in mind that typical gargoyle "government" isn't exactly ripe with bureaucracy. There is the Leader and the Second. And that is all. Beasts ARE warriors. And on that score, Bronx, for example, is considered an equal to Lex or Broadway or Hudson or Angela. Only Goliath as Leader and Brooklyn as Second have actual authority over Bronx and the others. Now, keep in mind, one of the other Gargoyles might tell Bronx to do something in the heat of the moment. Or ask him to come somewhere or refuse to let him go along. But that's not authority. That's just life. Hudson might likewise tell Lexington to do something in the heat of the moment. Or ask him to come somewhere or refuse to let him go along, etc.
In "Future Tense" when Broadway is "killed" Goliath says "Goodbye, my friend". This surprised me. Wouldn't Goliath think of Broadway more as his son? The word "friend" just seemed awkward to me in context of the relationship between Goliath/Broadway. What are your thoughts?
Broadway is too old for Goliath to regard him as a Rookery-Son. And too young for Goliath to regard him as a Rookery-Brother. Now, without a doubt, Goliath regards Broadway as family, as part of his clan, as a cousin, as someone so close to being a "little brother" that it might not be unexpected for him (if he were human) to use the term.
But Gargoyles aren't humans. They don't use the term "little brother" to describe that relationship. Or any relationship, really.
And the word "friend" to a gargoyle carries real weight. It's not insignificant or casual.
1)Well based on the fact that Goliath rested on the highest tower of the castle and Demona, Hudson and a gargoyle I couldn't identify below him, I assume it was tradition that the gargoyles took their sleeping places after their status in the clan, correct?
2)Had the other gargoyle resting beside Demona(not Hudson) any special status in the clan? Or for Goliath?
1. Generally. We tried not to be too anal about it though.
2. I'd have to look again.
Okay, I looked in the Gargs Custom archive and in FAQ. I cannot find a direct question and answer for what I am wondering recently. Perhaps you did answer it and I missed it somewhere. If I did, I apologize. Let me know and I will do a better search. But here's my questions.
1.)Do gargoyles have a ceremony similar in anyway to a wedding ceremony as humans do?
2.) I remember Goliath and Demona watching a wedding and Demona broke the Phoenix Gate and gave Goliath half as a token of her love, similar to the wedding rings, but was this normal of gargoyle customs?
3.)Or did they simply announce their mate-for-life and go on with their lives?
4.)Or could that even be different from clan to clan?
I doubt very much the ceremony would be as lavish and pomp as human weddings are, but it would probably have been a lot less stressful and a lot more romantic
1. They have a "first mating ritual".
3. See 1.
4. Well, yes, certainly. I thought we were talking about Wyvern.
When gargoyles scale a battlement, they like to just throw their talons into the rock like there is no tomorrow, chipping away at the solidity every time. They do this night after night, and my question is, how were Wyvern's walls, battlements and towers still standing after years of this abuse? This may seem like a question meant to stump you on an aspect of the show we were invited to turn our cheeks to, but I have got to say, almost 10 years later I'm eating perogies and I start jabbing my plastic fork into the Styrofoam container and wonder... this just isn't going to go away! I need to know!
Sigh. If you need to know that badly, suggest an answer that works for you, and I'll see if it makes sense to me too.
Cuz the honest truth is... not something I dedicated any mental time to.
Hi Greg, this is my first time posting a question am almost reluctant to do it because of the amazing volume of questions that all the other Gargoyles fan post. I guess it's just an amazing testament to the show.
First off I wanted to express my love and admiration of the show. I have been a fan since the show first came out and I was about 10 or 11. The best part of watching the show now is that all the subtle nuansces and social commentary that was slightly lost on me as a child is fully realized and appreciated in me as a college student.
Second, I wanted to say that I spent the last 3 days LITERALLY reading all the archives I could to find an answer to my questions....Some I found answers to and some I thought up as I was reading some of the other questions posted by other fans. Which is why I wanted to say what a wonderful resource this website is...so having said that it prompts this announcement "THANK YOU GORE FOR HOSTING THIS SITE!!"
Now, on to the questions. Okay you are probably going to flip when you read this one....yes it is yet another "Gay Gargoyle" question...so sue me I'm gay and it's a topic that staunchly interests me. I wanted to ask if a Gay Gargoyle would imprint upon his or her mate just as a Straight Gargoyle would? I only ask this question because I figured the answer would be "yes" since in all your other responses about Gay Gargoyles you indicated that there would be no difference between Gargoyles, Straight or Gay. But I figured that since this is your universe and that since you are the author of said universe that it would be highly unethical of me to assume something without asking the creator.
Now that I got my first question out of the way, I wanted to ramble alittle of how much my appreciation of Gargoyles has grown from reading the questions in this forum. I never knew any of the subtlies that existed in the show such as the stroking of hair and horn, the tradition of not naming things, the practice of the whole clan being the Fathers and Mothers to all the rookery children, and the wonderful Wind Ceremony that you went into detail here in the forums. This all highlights the amazing differences between Humans and Gargoyles. This intensely intrests me now that I'm in college and am a Anthropology student,(yes I do realize the oddness of the situation, a Anthropology student getting a kick out of studying culture that isn't that of man). I particularly love the not naming tradtion in Gargoyle society. Both of my parents are deaf so growing up my first language was Sign Language, not English. This put me in a unique position of knowing 2 names for everything, and knowing 2 different ways of expressing my own name. One being that of my spoken English name "Lovel" and the other being the expressed gesture of my Sign Language name (which I can't even express in writing becasue it is something you have to see instead of read). So when I read your response to a ramble of one of the fans that Hudson would have been put off by the odd tradition of giving the sky a name when it already has a name, and that he would think it odd of giving himself a name since he is already known as "Friend,Father, Mentor, Old Friend etc." This delighted me when I read it since it made me reflect on how my name is not really who I am and I never identify it as "ME". When I try and think of who I am I think in adjectives, kind, friendly, smart, jolly, the last thing that comes to mind is my name. I also enjoy knowing that I can also think of myself as a gesture instead of a spoken word or a sound. Having said all of that,(thanks for putting up with it for this long), my second question would be, How would a Gargoyle refer to the great Hudson in a story? To clarify you once repied that a Gargoyle would refer to another one in a story as "The one of Broadshoulders". This made me wonder how would the clan refer to Hudson in a story. For that matter how would Golaith be refered to in 2198? Would he be refered to by his human name of Golaith or would he have a Gargoyle "name" to which they would refer?
Thank you for your time and I appreciate everything you have done for all us fans. I also want to thank you for coming up with such an amazing universe and introducing it to everyone here. Thanks
I'm not entirely certain what you mean by "imprinting". But most gargoyles, gay or straight, mate for life.
Hudson wouldn't have just one name in the Middle Ages. "Broadshoulders" or the like, if used by everyone, would just amount to another name.
Different individuals would refer to Hudson by different callouts when necessary, including many of the ones you named above "Old Soldier" "Mentor" etc. "Friend". Mostly relationship driven things.
But naming once initiated is contagious and addictive. Goliath is Goliath is Goliath.
we know that gargoyles were once widespread around the world and much more common than today. we also know that gargoyles are extremely territorial and protective, so my questions are:
1. was there ever a time, in early gargoyle history, that wars between Gargoyle Clans were fought?
2. if so, were wars fought over territory? differing beliefs? something else?
3. if there were not any wars were there any minor battles between Clans or have Gargoyle Clans always had peace between them?
4. was there ever a time when two or more Clans shared strict borders between their protectorates or were the Clans pretty well spaced out even thousands of years ago?
5. how many Clans existed at the peak of the Gargoyle Species? closer to 1000? 10,000? 1,000,000?
1. I think it would be ridiculous to issue a blanket "no". I think this would be a rare and isolated phenomena in a world which at the time would have had almost unlimited territory to expand into and no predators truly able to hurt the species. But to say it NEVER happened... no. It must have.
2. I don't currently have anything specific in mind.
3. See above.
4. Largely the latter, but again, I don't want to issue an absolute.
5. I'm not good with numbers.