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NoOneSpecial writes...

1. This is something I've never really understood, but if Princess Katharine disapproved so heavily of the Gargoyles, why did she even bother to continue the alliance with them? Regardless of what they did for the castle, she was unappreciative and acted as though they were nothing but monsters, getting offended so much by even the mention of one of them. If she had such a problem with the gargoyles, why didn't she want to get rid of them, like saying killing them in their sleep? Okay, that would probably be too bloodthirsty even for her at that time, but still, she certainly acted like she would much rather have them gone all together, so why didn't she end their alliance as soon as she succeeded her father?

2. Would you say that Katharine's later change in character was due mostly to the Captain's betrayal? Not really because she had mistreated the gargoyles, but the fact she mistreated someone who gave her his loyalty and in return she immaturely snubs him. She can't put the betrayal on anyone but herself because she ended up alienating someone who served her faithfully and who was in fact an important member of her court. Basically, the whole thing just made Katharine see what a horrible leader she had been. And of course Goliath rescuing of her, while losing his whole clan also made an impact on her, making her see he wasn't a savage as she believed him to be.

3. Why exactly did the Captain chase after Katharine and Hakon, when he knew that the latter's intention was to kill her? Did he want to talk him out of it because she had more value alive or did he actually want to save her out of some bit of honour? Why didn't he try to make a run for it before the gargoyles got to him? The fact that Goliath found him with Hakon is how he put two and two together over his betrayal

4. The Magus had a spell in place to stop the gargoyles in case they got out of hand, but why didn't he make any kind of counter measures for the Vikings? Granted, he's not that powerful, but seems like he might still be a theart with the Grimorum. Did the Captain make sure to neutralise him before the attack began?

5. Okay, I understand that this needed to happen in order to set up the basically entire plot of the show, but the Magus decision to curse the gargoyles for indirectly causing what he mistakenly believed to be Katharine's death just seemed so…….ludicrously rash.

I know Hakon said he was going to kill her and Magus was probably letting his own feeling of love cloud his mind, but by all account he really didn't know what had happened to her. I mean she did manage to make a run for it and a minute later Magus was screaming for someone to help her. He then just, somewhat stupidly, assumed she had been killed, even though he never heard a scream, nor did he try to look for her body to confirm that she was in fact dead. After he got free of his ropes, he doesn't seem to hold out even a desperate shred of hope that she may still be alive or that there may still be chance to save her, even though he had no real confirmation of death.

As soon as he sees the gargoyles, he pretty much writes Katharine off as dead and blames it on them. I just find it hard a bit hard to shallow that Magus would just so readily assume that the women he loved was dead without even seeing it happen. Did it all really just amount to him overacting because of his feelings for her? Seems to me like his personal prejudice of the gargoyles probably played a role in it as well, since that would make his accusation of them more justified. They're the monster, so it makes sense that they killed her, even if it's indirectly. As soon as he sees them, he directs all his anger toward them. Even later when Goliath shows up, he's more than ready to do the same to him, but then sees Katharine is safe and he becomes truly horrified by what he's done to the gargoyles. I would say he's even more horrified by the fact he did it all on such an emotional overreaction. Is this close to what he was feeling? It's kinda the interpretation that I take from it, but I'm curious if there is some more justification for the Magus rashness?

Greg responds...

1. Katharine was hardly about throwing away all her father's policies. If he put it in place she maintained it. I think she was smart enough to see the gargoyles as, at minimum, a necessary evil - as long as they were clearly being controlled by the Captain or the Magus or some human she could trust.

2. All of the above, I suppose. But I'm happy to leave that to each viewer's interpretation.

3. I'd have to view it again, but my memory was that they were running and hoping not to get caught.

4. The latter. Can't cast many spells without your magic book.

5. Listen again, There was a scream after she ran, which to the Magus sounded like a death scream, like Hakon had caught up to her and killed her. I know this scream is there. Because I made sure to put that scream in there for just that reason. So, on the one hand, I don't disagree with your interpretation, but it's not LUDICROUSLY rash, in my opinion. Just plain old regular rash.

Response recorded on January 30, 2017

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EXALT writes...

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?

Greg responds...

1. That seems unlikely.

2. Odds are he would have received human burial.

3. Potentially.

4. No spoilers.

Response recorded on July 07, 2016

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Paul writes...

I have a couple of questions about the "teleport to Avalon" spell cast by the Magus and later Tom in "Avalon, Part One".

Tom was able to cast the spell without using the Grimorum. Can anybody who knows the incantation cast the spell, or was Tom a special case because he had previously seen and heard the Magus cast it from the Grimorum? Or was he a special case for some other reason?

Did Elisa, Goliath, and/or Angela cast the spell to return to Avalon during their World Tour, or did the boat take them back to Avalon on its own?

Greg responds...

Hm. Good question. I'm going to posit that this was a very powerful spell, needing only an aural component. Once learned, it worked without assistance.

Response recorded on August 09, 2013

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Geoff writes...

Why didn't the Magus just throw the Grimorum into the body of water the group was in before entering Avalon or burn it with a torch before entering Avalon, instead of forcing Finella to go into a life of hiding from Constantine and forcing Mary to do the same AND abandoning her son?

And, how could Mary just abandon her son like that? I mean, I've heard of the "Parental Abandonment" trope being used for the sake of good drama (and it did turn out to be good drama in Gargoyles), but I find it a little ridiculous that she believed that leaving her only son at such a young age was the best course of action.

Oh, and here's that trope if you're interested (I <3 TVTropes):
http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/ParentalAbandonment

Greg responds...

Destroying the Grimorum isn't that easy. And given that fact, the need to protect it and thus protect Tom from being attacked on Avalon by Constantine made Mary's decision necessary. It wasn't abandonment at all. It was her staking out a defensive position to protect her son.

Response recorded on November 04, 2009

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Todd Jensen writes...

In "Avalon Part One", Tom is dubbed Guardian of the Eggs by Princess Katharine, in a manner that evokes being knighted - and is indeed depicted as dressed like a knight as an adult, as well as (while he's still a boy in Scotland, at the time of Constantine's coup) wearing a sort of medieval uniform marking his new position. Was there any influence here from his namesake, the boy Tom whom Arthur knights at the end of "The Once and Future King" and charges with keeping the memory of Camelot alive (a parallel that stands out all the more because of the Arthurian links in "Avalon"), or was this just a coincidence?

Greg responds...

Definitely influenced. I don't think we were being subtle.

Response recorded on May 29, 2009

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DECEMBER 30

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 30th...

1995
Macbeth and Demona attack the humans and gargoyles at Oberon's Palace, while the Magus faces off against the Weird Sisters at the Hollow Hill, and Goliath and Angela seek out the Archmage at the Grotto. At first things look grim, but Princess Katharine defeats Demona with help from Ophelia, the Guardian, Elisa Maza, Gabriel, Bronx and Boudicca. King Arthur Pendragon also defeats Macbeth, and the Magus captures the Weird Sisters, though it fatally weakens him. Goliath battles the Archmage, who uses the Phoenix Gate to bounce them around through Time and Space. But the Archmage cannot shake Goliath, and returns to the present, where Goliath succeeds in removing the Eye of Odin from his brow. Without the Eye, the energy from the Grimorum Arcanorum burns the Archmage to death from the inside out. The battle is over.


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DECEMBER 28

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

December 28th...

1065
Westminster Abbey, built by Edward the Confessor, is consecrated.

1994
David Xanatos, who is scheduled to be released from jail in one week, is contacted by Macbeth, who offers to rid the castle of gargoyles.

1995
Goliath and Tom the Guardian meet at Belvedere Castle in Central Park. Together with Elisa Maza and Bronx, they depart for Avalon, where they are introduced to the grown hatchlings of the Wyvern Clan, including Angela, Gabriel and Boudicca, and reunited with the Magus and Princess Katharine. Meanwhile, a recently transformed Archmage travels back in time...


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Nelio writes...

Greetings, I was watching Vol 2 these last couple days, and an amusing question came to mind.

When Angela join Goliath, he is affectively taking care of her as a "single" parent. Likewise, the Avalon Clan were on the island under Kathrine's foster care. Couldn't it be argued that Demona and Goliath owe some serious back pay for child care?

Of course this is a light humor question, but I'm still curious as to your thoughts on the matter.

Greg responds...

I think Goliath expressed his gratitude to Katharine, Tom and the Magus. I don't think anyone's expecing monetary renumeration.

Response recorded on December 14, 2007

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NOVEMBER 23

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

November 23rd...

1963
Quincy Hemings becomes White House Chief Steward.

1995
Matt finds and confronts Mace Malone at Pine Lawn Cemetery. Malone offers Matt an Illuminati membership on the condition that he pass a loyalty test. As a show of good faith, Malone tells Matt about the gargoyles and Elisa's involvement with them. Matt stews about the information for most of the night, i.e. for most of his shift with Elisa. The ghosts of Hakon and the Captain hear Tom talking to himself. They discover that Goliath is possibly still alive. Tom returns to Avalon to discuss this latest news with the Magus and Princess Katharine.


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NOVEMBER 21

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

November 21st...

1995
Matt Bluestone meets with Martin Hacker and gets information about Mace Malone's stepson Jack Dane. Later, at the precinct house, Matt realizes that Elisa's lying to him about something. He gives her the opportunity to question Dane with him, but she passes. Meanwhile in Wyvern, Tom hikes to a nearby village and learns from the locals that the castle wasn't demolished, but taken apart and shipped, lock, stock & gargoyle, to Manhattan -- where it was placed at the top of a "skyscraper".


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NOVEMBER 20

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

November 20th...

1994
Elisa, now out of danger, regains consciousness just before dawn. Broadway apologizes to her. Dracon wakes up with a permanent grey streak in his hair.

1995
The Guardian departs Avalon to see if it is safe for the Avalon Clan to leave the island. Avalon sends him to Wyvern Hill, where he sees that Castle Wyvern is now gone.


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OCTOBER 4

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

October 4th...

1994
The final touches on the castle are completed. It now sits atop the Eyrie Building, high "above the clouds", thus fulfilling the condition of the Magus' spell. The Magus' curse is broken, and Goliath, Hudson, the Trio and Bronx awaken to a brave new world. Minutes later, a group of Commandos attack and seem to steal three disks from Xanatos. This attracts the attention of New York City Police Detective Elisa Maza. Elisa also meets Officer Morgan for the first time.

1995
The werefox is first sighted in Manhattan.


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OCTOBER 1

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

October 1st...

994
Just before dawn, Goliath and Hudson discover that they have been following only a small contingent of Vikings; the rest must be preparing to attack the castle. The two gargoyles turn to stone before they can get back. Simultaneously, Demona nearly warns Othello and Desdemona, but changes her mind as she sees the Vikings approach. Instead, she hides at the foot of Wyvern cliff, where she turns to stone as the sun rises. Hakon attacks. The archers' sabotaged bows are useless, and the Captain opens the main gate, allowing the Vikings to enter Castle Wyvern, which is sacked. The humans, including Katharine, the Magus, Mary and Tom are led away bound. Hakon then sets about to destroy the gargoyles, including Othello, Desdemona, Iago and Hyppolyta. The Captain is "unable" to stop him. When the sun goes down again, Demona awakens to discover that the Wyvern Clan have been massacred. When she sees Goliath and Hudson returning, she cannot face them and flees before they can discover the massacre. The only other survivors seem to be the Trio and Bronx, who were in the Rookery. The survivors head for the Viking camp to take their revenge. When Hakon and the Captain hear the gargoyles approaching, they take Katharine as a hostage. The Magus mistakenly assumes that the Princess is dead. Blaming the gargoyles, he casts a spell on all but Goliath putting them to sleep "until the castle rises above the clouds." Meanwhile, Goliath confronts the Captain and Hakon atop a cliff. He rescues the Princess, and the two villains fall to their deaths. But when Goliath discovers that the rest of his clan has been turned to stone, he asks the Princess to watch over the eggs in the Rookery and asks the Magus to cast his spell one more time. Goliath is turned to stone with the others and placed atop Castle Wyvern. Demona later returns to the castle to find Goliath frozen in stone. She watches the Magus, Tom and Princess Katharine removing the eggs from Wyvern. She departs for good. Katharine dubs Tom the Guardian of the Gargoyle Eggs. Katharine, the Magus, Tom, Mary and the rest of Wyvern's human inhabitants take the eggs and leave the cursed castle to live under the protection of Katharine's uncle, King Kenneth II. Seconds later, three time travelers arrive in 994: the Demona of 1995 has brought the Demona of 975 along with the Goliath of 1995 to see the results of the massacre. But the 1995 Demona fails to convince the 975 Demona to take up her evil cause. The time travelers depart, returning to 975.

1995
Xanatos proposes to Fox and gives her the Eye of Odin as an engagement gift. She accepts both his proposal and the Eye. Alexander Fox Xanatos is most likely conceived on this night.


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SEPTEMBER 30

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

September 30th...

994
The Captain approaches Hakon and offers to help him take the Castle. That night, the Captain and Demona try to convince Goliath to take all the gargoyles out of the castle to make sure the Vikings leave for good. But Goliath decides to only take one other gargoyle along with him, leaving Demona in command of the others. Demona and the Captain alter their plan. Hakon will now attack during the day, when the Gargoyles are stone. The Captain swears he'll keep the Gargoyle clan safe. Meanwhile, the Trio and Bronx meet Tom, resulting in a minor altercation with Mary and the refugees. To keep the peace, Goliath sends Bronx and the Trio down to the Rookery. Demona makes one more attempt to change Goliath's mind, and Othello offers to accompany Goliath. Goliath decides to take Hudson instead. Goliath and Hudson follow the Vikings' trail. While back at the Castle, the Captain sabotages the bowstrings of his own archers.


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SEPTEMBER 29

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

September 29th...

500
Arthur is crowned King of Britain.

994
Hakon the Viking lays siege to Castle Wyvern, but is driven away by the Wyvern Clan of gargoyles. The Captain of the Guard invites Goliath and Demona to the celebratory feast. Princess Katharine is most seriously displeased. She demotes the Captain, declaring that from now on he will report to the Magus, who later prepares a spell to deal with the gargoyle clan, should they get out of hand. Seeing that Goliath will continue to tolerate human prejudice, Demona and the Captain find an excuse to temporarily lure the gargoyles away, so that the castle can be sacked and the humans taken away by Hakon, leaving Castle Wyvern to the gargoyles once more.

995
Michaelmas. Constantine III is so furious he initiates a plan to destroy all the gargoyles in Scotland.

1040
Macbeth is made High King of Scotland. He swears on the Stone of Destiny, to protect Scotland and serve her people. Macbeth names Demona and publicly rewards her and her gargoyles, welcoming them as his allies into his home and castle. Demona becomes his primary advisor. Thorfinn is rewarded with basic autonomy over Orkney, in practice if not in name.

1994
Xanatos inspects his castle atop the Eyrie Building. He wants everything to be perfect before he attempts to wake the gargoyles.


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SEPTEMBER 28

This day in Gargoyles' Universe History....

September 28th...

994
Tom, Mary and other refugees are given shelter from rampaging Vikings at Castle Wyvern.

995
Michaelmas Eve. Tom and the Magus get the eggs out of Edinburgh Castle. Finella drugs Constantine so that Katharine can escape, and flees with the Princess, Tom, Mary, the Magus and the eggs. The Magus brings them all to the mystic island of Avalon. He is forced to battle the Weird Sisters to achieve the island. He turns them into owls but is unable to take the Grimorum with him. Finella and Mary agree to take the book and keep it safe from Constantine. They depart. Katharine, Tom and the Magus land on Avalon with the eggs. The two time-traveling Archmages witness all this and rescue the Weird Sisters from their owl-state. The Archmages and the Sisters form an alliance. They agree to meet again in the year 1020.

1963
Vinnie Grigori is born in New York.

1980
In Paris, Demona steals the Praying Gargoyle statue from Notre Dame Cathedral. Confronted by Charles Canmore, the Hunter, she kills him and escapes. Canmore's children, Jason, Robyn and Jon swear vengeance.

1995
At midnight, Demona uses Titania's Mirror to summon Puck. They turn Elisa and all the humans in Manhattan into gargoyles and vice versa. The situation is soon reversed, but Puck arranges it so that Demona is human during the day and a gargoyle at night. Fox contacts Preston Vogel, inducing him to betray her father Halcyon Renard.

1996
Xanatos and his robots track Coldstone down in the Himalayas and disable him.


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Brandy Entity writes...

My question did Katherine ever find out that Magus loved her? And I remember him saying that Katherine and Tom raised the hatchlings like a family. Well didn't he have a place with them, too? And also do you think things might have been different if Magus ever told Katherine his feelings to her?

Greg responds...

I'll leave it to everyone to decide for themselves what Katherine knew and/or when.

Yes, he was like another father to Angela and the rest.

As I've said many times, I'm not too interested in hypotheticals.

Response recorded on September 06, 2007

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Bazell writes...

The Magus refered to the gargoyles as "unnatural creatures;" I find this an interesting sentiment from someone who has spent his life studying magic, which is something that has historically been refered to as unnatural itself. Is there a specific reason for his prejudice?

Greg responds...

No comment.

Response recorded on August 15, 2007

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Ylm writes...

1. Why did the Archmage-Plus specifically pick Macbeth to serve him alongside Demona other than just following the directions of his future self?
2. How did the Archmage intend to deal with the returning Oberon and his entourage? Could he have fought Oberon off if he had succeeded in taking Avalon from the gargoyles?
3. Who was the greater threat in the Avalon Three Parter? The Weird Sisters or the Archmage?

Greg responds...

1. Do you think he needed a better reason? (I do, but I may be a touch smarter than he is.)

2. Not sure he knew about Oberon's pending return.

3. Depends on whether you're the Magus or Goliath.

Response recorded on April 06, 2007

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Charisma82 writes...

Will you ever tell who Tom's father is in the comic books or in a TV show if you made one? If so, would it be in GARGOYLES or in one of the 5 spin-off shows?

Thank you for your time.

-Charisma82

Greg responds...

Eventually, I'd get to everything. This might happen in Dark Ages, but a Gargoyles flashback or even a TimeDancer episode might get us there first.

Response recorded on April 03, 2007

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Makhasu writes...

What does Demona think of the way Katherine, Tom, and the Magus raised her clan's children?

Greg responds...

Wow... Makhasu, I'm impressed by how fast you were able to type at 4 in the morning. This is a lot of questions, particularly considering that I specifically asked people NOT to flood the submission queue at least until I had caught up.

Anyway, again, I'm not inclined to spell this stuff out for you too much. I think the episodes should stand on their own without too much annotation. Take a look at "The Reckoning" again, and I think you'll find enough clues to the answer to this question.

Response recorded on March 01, 2007

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Duskrider Q writes...

Hey again.

Okay I'll get straight to it. . . Did Katherine and Tom ever consumate their relationship? The Magus said they became as husband and wife, but it's not like there was anyone ordained to perform a marriage; so, I took it as a comparison and not a literal union.

That's a long term relationship, but I'm thinking that they weren't brought up to have sex outside of marriage.

Greg responds...

I do think they consumated their relationship, and I think they viewed it as a marriage, performed the best ceremony they could under the circumstances and then lived their lives.

Response recorded on October 20, 2006

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Greg writes...

And my name is really Greg. :) My question refers to Tom's search for Goliath. If I'm remember correctly, Tom left Avalon every 100 years to search for Goliath. So basically, Tom left Avalon 10 times. One brief point; through calculation, I determined that 41.67 years past for Tom and the others on Avalon, while 1000 years past for those outside. In "Avalonian Years", Tom left the island approximately every 4 years to search (I hope I'm correct on those points). Any thoughts on where Avalon sent him those 10 times and how long before he was sent back to Avalon?

Greg responds...

Tom did not leave Avalon every 100 years to search for Goliath. Tom left to see if he felt it would be safe for the Gargoyles to return to the outside world.

I have very concrete ideas about most of Tom's trips. But I'm not going to reveal them at this time.

Response recorded on October 03, 2006

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Joey writes...

How did Elisa know how to wake up Sleeping King Arthur in Avalon part 3?

Greg responds...

The Magus filled her in off-camera.

Response recorded on August 22, 2006

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gipdac writes...

I’ve always been very interested in the Archmage. I really love his transformation from a kind of one-dimensional villain in “Long Way ‘til Morning” to a character with such an interning as in “Avalon” (and to a lesser extent “Vows”). And I absolutely love the idea of Archmage Plus being a villain in the Timedancers and G: 2198 series.
I also really enjoy the Magus. When he first appeared in “Awakening” I was really mad at him, but when he die at the end of “Avalon”, I was amazed at the huge change that had occurred in my perception of his character. He became such a tragic hero.
Anyways, because of my interest in these characters, some questions have come to mind,
1. When did the Archmage first come to live at Castle Wyvern?
2. Why did the Archmage start to “work” for Malcolm?
3. When did the Magus become Archmage’s apprentice?
4a. What is Archmage’s real name? 4b. What is Magus’ real name?
5. When was the Archmage born?
6. When did the Archmage discover the ruins and megalith in the caverns near Wyvern?
7a. Did Magus know about the magical ruins in the Archmage’s lair? 7b. Did he know about the Archmage’s plans for "ultimate power"?
8. Did Archmage deduce that use of the Gate, the Eye and the Grimorum together would give him the "ultimate power" or did he find the information from an outside source (i.e. another Sorcerer or magic book)?

Greg responds...

1. Well, I suppose it depends how you define "Castle" Wyvern... but the answer is 971.

2. He made a strategic alliance.

3. 982.

4a&b. I don't know or can't remember.

5. 914.

6. That I'm not revealing.

7a. Define "lair"..

7b. I'm not revealing this either.

8. Outside source.

Response recorded on December 01, 2005

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matt writes...

in "Awakening" Xanatos mentions that the Magus wrote the story of the Gargoyles down in the Grimorum, which is how (he claims) he found out about Goliath's Clan and the way to break the spell. my question is, how far does that story go? in "Avalon" we see the Magus writing in the Grimorum before he went off to Avalon and lost the book. did Magus write the story up to the point of reaching Edinburgh or Constantine's takeover or even all the way up the plans to leave for Avalon?
i wonder this because i wonder how much Xanatos knows about what happens to the Clan's eggs. he tells Goliath that the eggs are not in the rookery and we know that that is of course true, but is he hiding information in "Awakening" about the fate of the eggs?

Greg responds...

I assume that since the Magus more-or-less knew or suspected that he couldn't take the book into Avalon, he wouldn't risk divulging the "plan" in its pages -- since he couldn't guarantee that the book wouldn't fall into Constantine's hands.

Response recorded on December 01, 2005

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Todd Jensen writes...

A question about the gargoyles' time living with the humans in Castle Wyvern between 971 and 994. In "Awakening" at the beginning, all the humans living in the castle, except for the Captain of the Guard (and Tom, but he wasn't a regular inhabitant) were, from what we can tell, hostile towards the gargoyles.

Now, since gargoyles and humans had been living side by side for 23 years, I found myself wondering a little about this. I know that prejudice can often take a very long time to overcome, but I still find it a matter of mild concern that after living with gargoyles for 23 years, with ample opportunity during all that time to see what they were really like, the humans would still be so hostile towards them. (Katharine did get conditioned to fear gargoyles due to Prince Malcolm's foolish use of them as bogeymen when she was a child, of course, so her attitude is believable.)

Of course, I suppose that it would require the entire "Dark Ages" series all the way down to the Wyvern Massacre to give a real answer to this question, but I did think that I'd comment on it. (And if after 23 years of sharing their home with the gargoyles, nearly all the humans still disliked them, I can see how it is that Demona is so cynical and pessimistic about peace between the two species. On the other hand, since Katharine and the Magus did abandon their old attitudes after the massacre and even dedicated the rest of their lives to looking after the orphaned eggs, there is hope.)

Greg responds...

There's always hope. I think the prejudice was subtle and on-going, because nothing had ever been done about it.

Most humans in the castle weren't looking to slaughter the Gargoyles or even kick them out. But they took the Gargoyles' defense of the cliffside for granted... enough years had passed that the camaradery of the great battles they shared had been -- not forgotten -- but dampened.

And the leader sets the tone, and for the reasons you listed above, Katharine was not sympathetic to or fond of the Gargoyles. So those Lords looking to curry favor would tend to being dismissive. I also think that the Gargoyles still represented a mental wildcard to the humans. A great force in their midst that they couldn't fully control. It was disturbing. And then there are the archers, who do their jobs well, but who may have had chips on their shoulders because they weren't sufficient to guard the castle... and because their own boss seemed to respect the Gargs more than his own men.

The idea was little things contributing to on-going tension ... and a leader who was part of the problem, not part of the solution.

Response recorded on March 09, 2005

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Rising Moon Starsword Warrior Daiginga writes...

Why couldn't the Magus make a counter spell for the frozen gargoyles?

Greg responds...

The Magus was not great at INVENTING spells. Just at performing them.

Response recorded on July 28, 2004

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Christina (CelebornEstel@aol.com) writes...

I've been a fan of Gargoyles for a while and I was wondering what a few characters were based on. The mythology is put into the sotry so well and fits like a puzzle. Anyway, I was wondering who the Weird Sisters and Megus. The mythology of the story is beautiful and the plot is extraordinary. So, That's my question- What were Megus and The Weird Sisters based on?

Greg responds...

The Weird Sisters were based primarily on the Weird Sisters, from William Shakespeare's play MACBETH. They were also influenced by various triple/lunar goddesses from various mythologies, in particular the Graces, The Furies, the Fates/Norns.

The Magus is more of an "original" creation. He begins, I think, as fairly standard D&D wizard material. But I like to believe that he transcends the stereotype.

Response recorded on June 28, 2004

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matt writes...

in the "Avalon", when Magus is talking to Elisa, there is a flashback of Tom and Katherine playing with the young gargoyles. i was curious if you knew how old the gargoyles were in that flashback. do you have in your timeline what year that was?

Greg responds...

I do not have a fixed year for that brief flashback assigned in my timeline.

Response recorded on June 07, 2004

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Entity writes...

I'd just like to say that the Magus' death is, I think, the strongest moment in GARGOYLES. The Magus is loved by every fan, and it's because of all the humanity you were able to instill in him in about five minutes of screen time. His tragic love for Katherine coupled with his guilt which almost seems biblical by this point in the series, and the enchanting setting of Avalon, all make the Magus into... I don't even know! Just recalling his final moments brings tears to my eyes. That trembling finger. And his reaction to Goliath's thanks is heart-swelling. He simply doesn't comprehend how Goliath could be thankful to him and it's too much. Good job.

Greg responds...

Thanks.

To be fair, we had a bit more than five minutes of screen time with the guy... but I am rather proud of how we turned the corner with him for most (but I doubt for all) of the fans. Turned him from a true jerk to a true hero. That's always fun.

Response recorded on April 14, 2004

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Anonymous writes...

the magus kinda looks like puck,is it weird?

Greg responds...

I can see why you say that, but I also don't think they look THAT much alike.

Is it weird? I dunno. I guess that's subjective.

Response recorded on April 02, 2004

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Blaise writes...

AVALON PART THREE

One thing I forgot to mention in my thoughts on Part Two (and it's still relevant because it was featured in the recap): the Archmage's devouring of the Grimorum. I, too, found that a great image, and a nice way of sidestepping the "no magics" rule. Not to mention I love the little "[gulp] Ah..." the Archmage does.
Anyway, onto the fight.
When the folks at the palace decide to check out the Sleeping King, and Tom prepares to go, the Magus looks at Katharine's worried face and then volunteers to go instead. Yet another something I had to watch several times before I could fully appreciate it.
Angela and Gabriel check out the grotto (is that what it's called?). I like it when Demona jabs the laser rifle in Angela's ribs, and the younger gargoyle's first reaction is to elbow Gabriel and say "Stop it!" It was cool how Goliath temporarily overrode Macbeth and Demona's mind control by "appealing to their better natures," and then how the Archmage so easily reasserted his control. He had become quite a bit more powerful here, afterall. And then, of course, once things turn sour, and one of his enemies tries to take the Eye, the Archmage loses his cool and decides to start attacking NOW. His lines here are pretty neat and chilling ("They're my creatures now," and "...if they are so *eager* to *DIE*!" are ones I rather like, too).
It never ceases to amaze me how the Magus, a 72 year-old scholarly type, is able to make Elisa, a 27 year-old athletic type, ask him to slow down. I like Magus' line about being used to traveling alone, and how Elisa's mention of "the Princess and the Guardian" is contrasted with the Magus calling them "Katharine and Tom." His story was both a surprise and heartbreak to me--I had really thought from AVALON PART ONE that he would "get the girl" as most heroes do. As I said then (three weeks ago), the Magus had never looked quite so heroic. I had disliked him quite a bit in AWAKENING ONE and TWO, yet by the end of his appearance in TWO, his remorse kind of mitigated my disdain for him. In the first part of AVALON I really got to like him--you could see the depth of his feeling for Katharine, and his resolve and cunning with the way he saved the eggs and all. In PART TWO he showed how weak he felt without his magic book, and here...well by this time, the Magus had become a character I really liked and sympathized with.
Perhaps that's one reason that I became pretty much goggle-eyed upon learning that Katharine had fallen in love with Tom and vice versa. Then again, I did (and to some extent still do) suffer from a sort of "agism in male and female relationships." Of course, for that reason, I also applaud the princess and the pauper getting together simply because it now becomes a bit more unique. And I love the baby gargoyles!
BTW, Greg: rest assured that Elisa's lips were corrected in later airings, and on my tape the scene with the baby gargs actually looks more like a night scene (don't ask me how, maybe it's just my tape).
The Hollow Hill sequence was cool! I loved the Magus' spellcasting (now he has to ryhme like an Oberati), though I was of course confused until the Magus explained how he was able to do that. The "leap of faith"...Indy Jones, yeah, but I like how Elisa looked jumping.
And then the pillar lowers with (to me) some guy on it. She walks up to him, and says his name, "Arthur Pendragon..." It was at about that point that my jaw hit the floor and my eyes became as big as the moon. This was something I had not been expecting (due to my unfamiliarity with Arthur's "death") and as such became a huge, and enjoyable surprise to me.
I also like his presentation to the rest of the good guys. Until Elisa mentioned it, I had never realized that Goliath had never truly beaten Demona or Macbeth. I really liked this--it made them seem even more dangerous than before. And of course, King Arthur Pendragon, the legendary hero, reveals that he hasn't the slightest idea "what's going on." A funny moment that shows that, though legendary, Arthur is still a human.
I like how the Archmage looks when he says "I will wait here...for Goliath." An uber-villain look without a doubt.
Arthur's taking command of the situation and showing his strategist side is a nice scene (and he later proves that he is indeed a great warrior as well), and I noticed right away how (thematically) well paired off the adversaries were.
I think I'll follow your lead, Greg, and divide them up:
Arthur and Macbeth: The way Macbeth had spoken of Arthur in LIGHTHOUSE, this battle was only to be expected. I didn't mind Arthur's "manner of magic" as oppossed to "sorcery" (a little variety is alright in my book). I was surprised at Macbeth's sucker-kick when it took down Arthur. *That* part of the cliffhanger--Macbeth's sword at Arthur's throat--really got me (they were all tense, but Mac had the greatest warrior in legend at sword point!). Of course, Arthur still manages to defeat Macbeth (marvelously, I might add) with that oh-so-cool image of his ringed fist heading straight for Macbeth's face (the camera).
Demona vs. half the cast: I guess it says something that Demona needs THAT many people to take her down. One thing I love about this fight is how badly Gabriel's wings get torn up. The poor guy really gets battle damage here. Another moment--the gargoyles on the battlements fire arrows point blank at Demona...and MISS COMPLETELY!! "Not prepared...never honed combat skills" indeed! And then Demona goes after Elisa. I wonder if maybe somewhere in Demona's ensorcelled brain she sees this as a rematch of their previous hand-to-hand in HIGH NOON. Eventually, Katharine gets into the act in a very unexpected way. A bit of a stretch with her firing the gun perhaps, but still kind of fun.
The Magus vs the Sisters: I never caught the full meaning of Luna's "There is no future for you," but somehow I knew that the Magus was going to die in this battle. Something about his character, the tragedy and struggling. It made sense to me, from the moment he said "Leave them to me" about facing the Sisters, that he would die fighting them. His use of the magic is extrodinary, and I liked how the Sisters became outraged by his using Avalon's power. I also love Phoebe's fearful "Where is the Sleeping King?" when the Sisters finally make it into the Hollow Hill. And then the Magus casts his last spell. To be honest, I thought he was "all dead" when his hand went limp and fell backward onto the beir (sp?). I was actually kind of glad that we had a little bit more time with him afterwards.
Goliath and the Archmage (and Angela): This was a big one for me. The Archmage is pretty much the oldest adversary of the Wyvern Clan (with the possible exception of Iago). There is a sort of "epic" quality here with the way the Archmage and Goliath talk to each other (A: "I've waited a millenium for this." G: "You lose again, Archmage"--how many times have superheroes said that last one to their archfoes?). I remember wondering how Goliath was going to get out of this, until Angela showed up. One of my favorite scenes in this ep is when the Archmage freezes the lake, Goliath sinks out of sight as the Archmage laughs, and then the Archmage's eyes go wide as Goliath shoots up from the depths, giving a gurgling roar, and leaps through the ice. Finally, Goliath removes the Eye and the Archmage almost seems like he will continue being a threat. Then he gets incinerated by "magic energy" and dissolves in a cool death scene. Count me as another one who thinks the final line of the Archmage is pretty cool. There is a sort of sense of that "epic" quality coming to an end here. Goliath has defeated what was (as far as we know) the first true arch-villain he had ever encountered. There could be a world of meaning within his "It is over." And then the Archmage's scrying pool, as if to spite them, displays the dying Magus.
The death scene is a good one. In some ways, I find it more moving now than I did then (again, don't ask me why). I like the final exchange with Goliath.
G: "I owe you."
M: "You...but, I cursed your clan."
G: (shaking his head) "You saved my children."
And of course Katharine's grief over the passing of her friend from childhood caps the touching moment. Good voicework from Jeff Bennett and Kath Souci. It took me several viewings to notice it, but I thought the shooting star was a nice touch.
I always wondered why the "good-byes" seemed so strange to me. I suppose individual good-byes would be more realistic, but for a narrative...eh. I kind of got that Arthur would be visiting Manhattan eventually, so the foreshadowing was not wasted.
Goliath should laugh more. ;)
Angela's coming along. A new regular. This was something I had been wondering about for some time--if one of these new gargoyles we had just been introduced to would actually come along for the rest of the show. It made sense that it was Angela, what with all the angst her parentage would bring to light.
When Tom spoke about Avalon sending you where "you need to be," I kind of got a smile as I thought to myself "Oh, you guys aren't going to be getting back home for a while..." and got prepared for a world tour. Perhaps my reading about gargoyles in Guatemala, London, and Japan influenced me here.
One last interesting note. As with the previous two, I showed this one to my mother when it first aired. YEARS LATER, as I was telling her about your original plans for sending the Magus with Arthur, Greg, and your reasons for giving him a "good death" instead, she said, "Well, they also probably had to kill him off because his voice was too expensive." I, confused, looked at her and asked "What do you mean?" She, now looking confused herself, said, "Well, he was voiced by Michael York...wasn't he?" So when you see Jeff Bennett again, you may want to pass onto him that he does a good York!
This was a good ep with a feeling of closure and a sense of something exciting coming just over the horizon. It could have been a season finale, even. Just my thoughts.

Greg responds...

I've never worked with Michael, though he's an acquaintance of my parents, but I know that other shows have used him, and I've never heard that he charges more than the typical going rate. I'd love to work with him some day. But I don't think that Jeff was doing Michael, per se. Jeff "created" the Magus voice back on Awake1. He's just phenominally talented and versatile.

The redemption of characters like the Magus and to a lesser extent the Captain of the Guard is one of the things I'm proudest of in the series. The Magus' story is sad, certainly, but he is so much more ennobled in his death, because of how hard he worked not to wipe out his sins, but to make up for them.

And on a more creative note, it's just fun to take a character who everyone hates, and find a way to turn him into a character who everyone feels for. It's very rewarding.

Response recorded on April 01, 2004

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Vashkoda writes...

Hi Greg. Looking over your G2198 responses, I picked up on something a little confusing.

You say that Samson, Delilah and Zafiro all learn Bushido in Ishimura. Then you say that Nick also goes to Ishimura to join the Order of the Guardian, and is trained in the way of the Gargoyle Warrior. I'm a little confused as to whether both groups are essentially doing the same thing--are the gargoyles *also* part of the Order of the Guardian? And yet you've referred to Nick several times as just "Guardian", as if he were the only one. So if you could please clarify this for me...

1a) Are Delilah, Samson and Zafiro also part of the Order of the Guardian? b) If not, are any gargoyles part of this Order? c) Is Delilah, Samson, and Zafiro's training in Ishimura completely separate from Nick's training? d) If so, were they able to meet in Ishiura, or do they only get introduced to each other later?

2a) I'm assuming that because it's an "Order", there must be more than one member, but because you've referred to him simply as "Guardian" (perhaps as in "the one and only"), *is* Nick the only one? b) If not, as a very rough estimate, how many would you say there are in 2198 before the invasion? ...a handful, dozens, hundreds?

3a) Is Ishimura the only training area of this Order, or is it one of many? b) If Ishimura is the only place the Order trains initiates, why was that particular location chosen?

4a) I admit I haven't done the math, nor am I sure of the life expectancy of a human living on Avalon, but is Thom, the original Guardian, still alive in 2198? b) If he is alive, does he help lead or train those in the Order? c) Is the purpose of the future Guardian(s) the same as the purpose of the first Guardian? (Thom)

Greg responds...

1. There are two "academic" tracks in Ishimura. One for Gargoyles and one for humans, though they have many classes that overlap. Any and all gargoyles are admitted to the program in Ishimura, but the admissions process for Humans is very stiff. I picture lawsuits over the inequity. But the reasoning is that they are teaching skills that in theory can be used against them, so they need to be very careful about who gets these skills. Since (a) the admission process is difficult and (b) the course work is difficult, very few humans graduate to Guardian status. Nick is not the only Guardian, but they aren't a dime a dozen. Frankly, I doubt Nick met Samson for the first time in Ishimura, because I would think that the Maza family and the Manhattan clan would still be pretty tight. Samson probably met Nick more or less immediately after he was born.

2. Less than a hundred.

3. Ishimura has a long tradition of teaching Bushido to humans. In a global environment, it made sense to locate the school of the Gargoyle Nation in that location. Avalon was much less practical.

4. The purpose is the same, and Tom is the clear inspiration for the Order. I'm not going to reveal whether or not he's alive. Mathematically, it is possible. Assuming Tom spent nearly all of his remaining life on Avalon, he'd be biologically 62 in 2198. (As opposed to biologically 54 in 1996.) But that's no guarantee of survival.

Response recorded on January 20, 2004

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person writes...

Hi Greg. Here's my question.
In Awakening part one, a man covered in white made a bargain with Hakon. Was that The Magus? And what did it have to do with the whole spell thing? Because I know it was Demona and Captain of the Guard's idea to let the Vikings have the castle. I just don't know what the Magus(or whoever it was)had to do with it.
Thanks!

Greg responds...

It was the Captain. We simply tried to fool you into thinking it was the Magus.

Response recorded on January 13, 2004

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~*Fiona Seckari*~ writes...

Dear Mr. Weisman,
What was the Magus brewing in the Episode Awakenings I?
Thanks!

Greg responds...

I either don't remember or never knew.

Response recorded on June 16, 2003

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Nanea writes...

I apologize if this has already been covered. I didn't see it, but I wouldn't be surprised if I missed it.

My inquiry is about the Magus-Katharine-Tom relationship. I normally hate love triangles because in every love triangle, there is one who loses so there is a built-in "ouch" factor for me. But in the case of Magus-Katharine-Tom, was there ever an opportunity for the Magus to win Katharine? Or were his feelings entirely one-sided which would make it all the sadder? Or if there was a chance, did he doom himself due to his feelings of inadequacy (as he relates to Elisa) or more due to his feelings of guilt for what he had done and a feeling that he did not deserve happiness?

To me, the Magus is such a tragic character because he seems the most guilt-ridden over the part he played in 994AD. Consequently, he takes on a huge amount of the burden of responsibility (and seems to be the only one to takes immediate responsibility). Yet, he appears to pay such a high price. He lives in what seems to be a state of self-flagellation as he banishes himself from the world and gives up the basis of his chosen trade to honor his service to the princess as well as honor his word to Goliath, only to watch the love of his life marry another. Finally, he spends the remainder of his days in relative seclusion.

Goodness, but the above is sad, but I think it is what makes this series so different. It didn't flinch from the melancholy.

Thanks for your time.

Greg responds...

You're very welcome. Thanks for the nice comments. I think your analysis is pretty dead on.

I think maybe the Magus might have had a chance with Katharine had he asserted himself earlier on. When the three of them first began their exile on Avalon, it would hardly have been surprising if the two of them had "married", treating Tom as their foster son.

But the COMBINATION of the Magus' feelings of guilt and inadequacy (on a number of levels) combined to prevent him from making a first move. She wasn't raised to make that move either.

It's hard to say if she ever felt as deeply about him (romantically) as he felt about her. Probably not. But the potential might have been there had he been even slightly direct about his feelings.

Response recorded on April 14, 2003

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Peter Mason writes...

received from 205.213.142.103 on Monday, September 3, 2001 11:32:32 PM
Anonymous writes...
3.Why is there a gargoyle in Avalon named Azrael? I mean it's the name of the Muslim angel of death hardly Christian.

Greg responds...

3. You try naming thirty-six kids in one sitting.

recorded on 10-17-01

But in christian mythology there are like hundreds of angels surely Catharine, Magus and Tom could have remembered thirty-six angels out of the hundred?

Greg responds...

I'm tempted to follow a question based on a smart-ass response with another smart-ass response, but I'll demur.

I'm NOT an expert on angels. I named all the ones I could think of, and that included Azrael. There would be research done before I actually named them on air, but I'm not necessarily backing off the Azrael name. The Magus may have made that choice for reasons of his own.

And you tell me that there are hundreds of angels in "christian mythology". Hundreds that have been named? Really? Can you name 36 for me? I'd appreciate it. And please, do not count Saints and or other virtuous humans.

Response recorded on April 10, 2003

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matt writes...

1. had Tom ever seen a gargoyle or gargoyle clan before arriving with the refugees at Castle Wyvern in 994?

2. where were Tom and his mother and all the others from anyway? why were they refugees?

3. who was Tom's father?

4. besides his mother, were any of the refugees related to Tom? were any of the other refugees his father?

5. why did Katherine allow the refugees shelter at Wyvern? did they give her something in return, or was she just being nice?

Greg responds...

1. Probably not. Certainly not that close up.

2. They were from a nearby village. And they were refugees because the Vikings had been raping and pillaging there way to Castle Wyvern.

3. Hah! Good question! I'm not saying at this time.

4. No. No.

5. It was her responsibility. Feudal lands worked by (in essence) serfs bring feudal responsibilities to protect those serfs in times of danger. It was the system.

Response recorded on August 20, 2002

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lance bierlein writes...

is angela really demona's daughter?

Greg responds...

Biologically, yes. But Katharine is her clan mother.

Response recorded on July 22, 2002

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Chapter XXXVI: "Avalon, Part Three"

Time to Ramble...

This third part of the tryptich, was designed to be a kick-ass battle. Lots of action, lots of excitement. All (or nearly all) the pipe had already been laid out. We had two of our toughest mortal villains (Demona and Macbeth) working with the mysterious and powerful Weird Sisters and the MEGA Archmage Plus, who possessed the power of Gate, Book and Eye. That seemed like some real competition for our good guys, who had wounded to protect.

It was time to go to war.

A few other soldiers:
Director: Dennis Woodyard
Story Editor: Brynne Chandler Reaves
Writer: Lydia C. Marano

As the main titles were playing and Keith was narrating, my seven-year-old daughter Erin mentioned that Goliath and Darth Vader both do voices for phone companies.

Erin also figured out that Angela and Gabriel were being stalked by Demona, before she actually came on screen.

JALAPEÑA

Goliath says it like a curse word when he realizes that A&G are being followed. That was how I wanted to use it. As I've mentioned before, the art staff eventually threatened a coup if I didn't drop it.

But if I ever get to do Gargoyles 2198, I'm bringing it back. That's a threat, not a promise.

Anyway, Goliath attempts to appeal to Demona and Macbeth's better natures. It starts to work, but it's too late. The Archmage has a good line: "They are my creatures now."

Then Bronx and Boudicca attack, saving our 'goyles. This was hinted at in Part Two. And clarified later when Angela comments on it. But it also was my way of serving notice that Bronx was no longer going to be the puppy-most-left-behind. The World Tour was his coming out party.

Anyway, the Archmage now changes his plan. Not because he doesn't want to take any chances, but really because his sensibilities have been offended. He has another good line: "If they are so eager to die..."

But it's really that balance I was trying to maintain between his newfound ultimate power and his original clichéd origins.

HUNTING HOLLOW HILLS

Elisa asks about the Sleeping King. The Magus says he's been sleeping in his Hollow Hill. More hints as to who the king was. (If the name Avalon wasn't hint enough.)

On the way, Elisa pumps Magus for information like he was in the interrogation room back home. She already guessed that he had a thing for Katharine. She wants the lowdown. It's really not her business. Call it a habit of her profession.

(There's an animation error on my tape, which I hope was corrected for later airings. When the Magus starts to narrate the flashback, both his and Elisa's mouth are moving, mouthing the same lines. Obviously, Elisa's animator misread the X-sheets and thought she was talking instead of the Magus.)

(Of course there's another semi-error which I've tried to explain away in the past. The lighting on the scene where Katharine and Tom play with the baby-gargs Angela, Gabe and Boudicca seems very daylight. I've always claimed that it was just a very bright moonlit night. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.)

This last flashback got my five year old son Benny talking. He asked "How did the gargoyles even get born?" And had to be reminded about the eggs from Part One (which we saw three weeks ago). "Oh, yeah," he said.

Then when we got to the Sleeping King, he compared that to a character that's on his radar: The sleeping MATA NUI from Bionicle.

The Magus uses magic, explaining that "magic is the lifeblood of Avalon." This seemed logical to me. That a practioner like the Magus could train himself to access that ambient magic -- but at a price.

My wife Beth was very impressed with Jeff Bennett's performance here. As a change of pace, Jeff was only playing one character -- as opposed to his usual fifty. But it was a truly heartbreaking performance, I think.

And I have to ask, given the Magus' first appearance in "Awakening, Part One", did you guys ever think that you could or would find that character this appealing, this sympathetic? I think that our ability to allow characters to grow and change was one of the hallmarks of our series. And I had the backbone of his change planned as early as "Awakening, Part Two": (1) his love for Katharine which is unequivocal and (2) his guilt over what he did to the gargoyles, which he never tries to dodge or make excuses for in any way.

The Leap of Faith. It does seem too Indiana Jones now. But obviously it must not have at the time. Either that or we were kidding ourselves. Still, I like Elisa here a lot.

The Platform lowers on cue and Elisa finally names the Sleeping King: "Arthur Pendragon, King of All Britain... You are needed." We wanted to keep it simple. That simple. I also wanted to begin establishing the name Pendragon. Everyone's heard of King Arthur. But you have to have had a bit of exposure to the legends to be familiar with the Pendragon name. I always thought it was cool. And I think that even then I had the notion of using it as the title for a spin-off.

Anyway, we get back to the Palace, and Elisa states a fact that I wonder if anyone had focused on before (regarding Demona and Macbeth): "You've never actually beaten either of them." Goliath agrees: "Simply foiled their plans or fought them to a stand still.

And then Arthur asks: "What's going on?" which I always thought was kind of funny. They're counting on him to help save the day. He doesn't even know the set up.

So while we get him up to speed, we cut to the Archmage who orders the Sisters to "Dispatch the Sleeping King." Erin smiles and says,, "What they don't know..." is that it's too late. But what I found interesting is that Erin actually did trail off. She knew that she didn't need to state what they didn't know. Cool.

DIVIDING THE TROOPS

True to Elisa's hopes (and my interpretation of the character of legend) Arthur in fact does immediately take charge.

He'll go with Elisa, Tom and Gabe to fight Demona & Macbeth.

Katharine, Bronx and Boudicca will guard the wounded 'eggs'. (Katharine has one of her bookend tough mom statements here: "They'll not harm my eggs again!")

Goliath and Angela will attack the Archmage.

And the Magus agrees to take on the Sisters.

Eventually -- after Art figures out that Demona feels Mac's pain and Demona establishes that she and Mac need to put distance between them to minimize the link -- things change a bit and Arthur faces Mac one-on-one, while Kathy, Bronx, Boudicca, Ophelia, Elisa, Tom and Gabe all team up to battle Demona -- who as always, may present the greatest threat of all, even when it's against her own interests.

All this seemed very appropriate to me. I like how the battle divides up. How the opponents match up. And you'll notice at the cliffhanger/commercial break that every one of our battles is going badly for the good guys. Macbeth seems to have the upper hand over Arthur. The Archmage has Goliath down. The Weird Sisters are clearly overpowering the Magus and even Demona is on the verge of wiping out all her opposition at the Palace.

KING ARTHUR PENDRAGON vs. MACBETH
We gave Arthur a mace, because I didn't want anyone to think that some random sword he was carrying might be Excalibur.

When Arthur says, "What manner of magic is this?" it made me wish we had just gone ahead and said "What sorcery is this?" like we usually did.

There's some fairly effective slo-mo animation in here. Slow motion in animation (when called for in scripts) usually makes me nervous. If not done well, it can just look like a poorly-timed, poorly-animated scene. But here it seems to work.

I like how the battle ends. Arthur takes the sword fragment, and for a second, it looks like he's going to skewer Mac. But instead he uses it to pin Mac to a tree. Setting him up for Arthur's punch into camera with his ringed fist. Disney S&P let us do that. ABC S&P didn't allow those kind of fist coming into camera shots on Goliath Chronicles. But I wasn't informed of the change in policy until after "The Journey" was animated.

PRINCESS KATHARINE, OPHELIA, BRONX, BOUDICCA, GABRIEL, THE GUARDIAN & ELISA MAZA vs. DEMONA

Ophelia gets another nice moment here, as even injured, she attempts to stop Demona.

Elisa again takes advantage of the fact that she knows that Demona's hatred for her is so extreme and irrational, that she'll literally drop her weapon for the chance to grapple with Elisa, the chance to tear her apart with her bare hands.

Of course, this is after Elisa demonstrates that she never carries enough ammo. After uselessly shooting at a beach and a hollow suit of armor, she's out of bullets by the time she gets a target of flesh and blood. Of course, we made Elisa a touch dopey in this department for S&P reasons. Elisa, being a NY cop, had to carry a gun. But short of doing an episode about gun violence like "Deadly Force" (which Toon Disney refuses to air these days), we couldn't actually let Elisa shoot anyone with her gun. So we found other uses and excuses.

But ultimately, it's Katharine who brings Demona down, looking quite intentionally like a medieval Ripley, saying the other bookend: "No one threatens my eggs."

THE MAGUS vs. PHOEBE, SELINE & LUNA: THE WEIRD SISTERS
Luna says to the Magus: "There is no future for you." That was a clue from the voice of fate. Anyone pick up on it?

I also like how all the Sisters say together: "You will suffer!" But of course, he's been suffering for decades. What he will soon be is free of all suffering...

I wanted to show here (among other things) that magic itself was neither good nor evil. Magic simply existed at the disposal of those with the power to wield it.

The Magus defeats the sisters and collapses onto Artie's platform. Erin asked quietly: "Did he die?" Benny looked for another way out: "He might have just lost his power."

GOLIATH & ANGELA vs. THE ARCHMAGE

Erin asked what the Archmage was planning for Goliath... and I had to answer something like "a painful death."

Goliath asks what I thought many of you might be asking: why doesn't the Magus just kill him. And David Warner answers as only he could: "Because I'm having too much fun."

We have all this Gate-Jumping. This was an afterthought. Because at one point I had thought of having our guys steal the gate back, I had forgotten to have the Archmage use the gate in the script. So at the board stage, I asked Dennis to put this in. We were very tight for time, but he obliged me. Ideally, I'd have liked to show them briefly in some other times, but I knew we just couldn't afford to design new layouts for two second shots. Even so, who knows where and when they went? Who knows how long they were gone? Sometimes their poses changed. But Goliath is like the Old Man of the Sea. He never lets go. And finally he takes the Eye away.

The Archmage is already in trouble, but how much he doesn't know for a few seconds. Then the power of the Grimorum destroys him from within. A nice creepy companion to him eating the book in Part Two.

And I love David's last line, the forlorn: "All my lovely magic..." Believe it or not, I had to fight a little to get that line in. Just a little. But still.

DEATH OF A HERO

The Magus' death stll moves me. His quiet desire for rest. Katharine's love for him. (Not romantic love, but love nonetheless.) K: "Oh, Magus, what have you done?"

The Magus still concerned that he owes a debt to Goliath and Goliath's forgiveness. The eyes closing and the star shooting overhead.

For S&P reasons, we decided not to make it absolute that he was dead. No one mentions death. Just rest. Sleep. And he is lying on the Sleeping King's platform by his own request.

And many fans, even adult fans, chose to believe he might still come back someday. Hey, more power to 'em, I guess.

But I felt/feel that would cheapen the moment. Cheapen the sacrifice. We sent our heroes into battle. And in battle, their are casualties. Some things are worth fighting for, but if we don't understand costs, then I want people to know that when something isn't worth fighting over, they shouldn't.

FAREWELLS

For various reasons, many of our voice actors in this episode recorded their lines separately. So we recorded each character saying goodbye to everyother character. Not knowing exactly what we would use. We, in my opinion, wound up using too much of these wild goodbyes. It's very awkward sounding to me now.

Gabe & Goliath establish why Gabe and his clan don't join Goliath in Manhattan and why Goliath doesn't bring his clan back to Avalon. Though both clans are born of the old Wyvern Clan, both have found new homes, which they will not abandon.

But Angela has a bit of Demona in her. The iconoclast, she wants more than normal clan life has to offer. She wants to see the world with Goliath. He proudly agrees. He wants one of his children with him. Gabriel and Angela say goodbye. He refers to her here as his rookery sister (not as his "Angel of the Night" or some other equivalent). This was done to make clear that they regarded each other as brother and sister, not mates. I basically wanted to leave her unattached for the Trio. Nevertheless, many fans still thought that they were a couple.

Art goes off on his own to be less conspicuous, and Goliath laughs a borderline Thailog laugh. He also plants pipe for Arthur's eventual stop in Manhattan.

Mac & Demona are freed from the spell, leaving them with no memory since they were first ensorcelled. There's an awkward bit of business here as the gargs who were guarding them move away, just so that Goliath can move in and push the skiff off. Flaw in the boarding that no one caught, I'm afraid.

The Sisters move off, having been forced off-camera to explain most everything.

Bronx & Boudicca part. Now that's a couple.

More pipe: Goliath swears that no one will ever use the eye or the Gate again. Famous last words.

Tom: "Elisa, I thought you understood. Avalon doesn't send you where you want to go! Avalon sends you where you need to be!"

Both Elisa and Erin said: What does that mean? at about the same time.

What did you think when you first heard that? We had officially launched the World Tour, but you didn't know it yet. What were you thinking?

Anyway, that's my ramble. Where's yours...?


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Chapter XXXV: "Avalon, Part Two"

Time to Ramble...

"PART TWO"
Director: Dennis Woodyard
Writer: Lydia Marano
Story Editor: Brynne Chandler Reaves

I guess you guys were used to longer multi-parters from us, so you probably didn't think this was the last part when you saw Part Two come up after the title. I tried something different at the end though. Instead of writing "To be continued" I had them put down "To be concluded". It seemed (at least in my head) to increase tension to know that the next part would be the last.

I've been told by people that out of context, this episode is incomprehensible. I hope it's not quite that bad, but I will say that unlike the rest of our eps, I felt that multi-parter eps don't quite need to stand alone in the same way.

Still with all the time travel stuff, it's very complex. I remember Lydia having to come into my office after her first draft and needing me to diagram the time travel for her. The loop that the Archmage takes. I love it. But I guess it's not that easy to follow.

Anyway, this ep was designed to be the second part of a tryptich. This is the one where we focus on our villains and bring them all up to date, just as in part one, we focused on our heroes. All gearing to a MAJOR BATTLE coming in Part Three.

THE EGGS

Picking up where Part One left off, Elisa looks at Angela, Gabriel and Boudicca and says: "These are the eggs?" I love her tone there.

Guardian: "Sorry, I always call them that." It was a cheat to buy us, at least with some percentage of our audience, the shock value of expecting eggs and finding fully grown gargs and beasts instead. Still, I believe that a guy like Tom, dubbed "Guardian of the Eggs" would continue to use that term to refer to his kids, even after they are grown.

Goliath is initially shocked that the gargs have names. Angela says the standard human response: "How else would we tell each other apart?" This was done intentionally to both cover the issue of non-garg naming (which I still think is neat, but which is often a massive pain) and to indicate that these are gargs raised by humans.

BEACH FIGHT

So I'm in my office one day, after the script to "Avalon, Part Two" has gone final. And Supervising Producer Frank Paur and Producer/Director Dennis Woodyard come in. Frank hates the script. Dennis is calmer, but he seems to clearly agree with Frank, more or less.

I'm annoyed because it's VERY late in the game for them to be giving me these kind of notes. Things get heated between me and Frank.

I yell something like: "Well, what do you want me to do?!!!"

And he yells something like: "We need some action! Like a fight on the Beach with the Archmage!!"

And I start to object for about a second. Then I go, "Oh, yeah. A fight on the beach with the Archmage. That'd be cool. Would that fix it?"

"Uh. Yeah."

And that was it. Our fights were always like that. We always only wanted to make it better. He'd get worked up, but the solution wound up being simple and when push came to shove (we never actually pushed and shoved by the way) we agreed on nearly everything.

It was also good to have Dennis' calming influence. Frank and I would go momentarily nutty and Dennis would always maintain.

So anyway, after the fact we added the memorable fight on the beach. Now I can't imagine the episode without it. It forced us to trim down some the Archmages travels (cause we were already long) but it definitely improved the episode.

I think, not sure, but I think I wrote that fight because it came so late in the game. It's also possible, I might have taken it back to Brynne and/or Lydia to write. I really don't remember anymore.

Either way, there are some great lines:

Goliath: "Don't be too insulted!" I love how he goes nuts here. We really get a reminder of his warrior-ness.

Archmage: "Don't crow too loudly, after all, what have you accomplished: you beat up a beach." You beat up a beach. That's one of my favorite lines in the whole series.

Archmage: "At dawn you all will die. Get used to it!"

Tom: "Let's get out of here before the very air attacks us!"

The fight itself is pretty cool too. I like how Bronx and Boudicca immediately team up. I like the symbolic nature of the Archmage growing wings, turning to stone and then shattering. I think that was a board-artist's addition. I don't remember seeing that in the script. (And I'm too lazy to stand up and check right now.)

At the end of the fight, my five year old son Benny asked: "Why can't they glide to the castle?" I had to explain the flight rules.

ANGELA & GABRIEL

Elisa slides up to Goliath: "Angela sort of looks like Demona, except her coloring is different. Exactly whose daughter is she?" Again, I love Salli's reading here. That need to know. The jealousy. The feeling for Goliath -- who dodges the question by saying that all children belong to the clan.

But of course Elisa knows. Knows something that I believe never occured to her before. Sure, she knew that Goliath and Demona had been mates, lovers. But she didn't let her mind traverse to the next logical step. Parents. Together. Goliath and Demona.

And of course, the audience knows it too, I hope. It was never meant to be a secret to anyone but Angela who her biological parents are. These lines also served to point that out.

On the other hand, we didn't make a big deal of Gabe's bio-parentage. But I wanted it to be semi-clear that his folks were Othello and Desdemona (Coldstone and Coldfire). Anyone get that at first viewing?

REUNIONS

Everyone returns to Oberon's Palace. There are many injured and Gabe is apologetic. As Leader, he feels responsible. But there was 'never any need to hone our combat skills' before this.

Tom & Katharine are reunited. Elisa, the cop, picks up on the human dynamics, the relationships, immediately. She sees the Magus' reaction to their reunion.

I also really like the exchange between the Princess and Goliath.

K: "This is more than I could have hoped for."
G: "What you've done for the eggs is more than I could have dreamed of"

SLEEPING KING

We kept dropping hints. He's mentioned by the Magus, but the conversation moves quickly on.

Later, the Weird Sisters mentioned him. The Archmage is surprised to hear he's not a myth, causing Seline to say her famous: "All things are true." line. The Archmages promise to kill the king later.

And Elisa brings the guy up at the end. This policy was me trying to play fair and make his awakening in Part Three not seem artificial. But also not to allow the guy to distract from the matter at hand.

Of course, most of THIS crowd must have known the s-king was a ref to KING ARTHUR. Particularly when the Hollow Hill ref was thrown in too. But did anyone not know on first viewing?

LOOSE ENDS

This was an episode for tying up Loose Ends in a big way. Solving some mysteries.

Why did the Weird Sisters do what they did? (At least objectively.)

Why were Demona and Macbeth working together in "High Noon"? (Elisa: "They hate each other." Guardian: "I saw no sign of that.")

And how did the Archmage survive?

Tom unwittingly hints at the truth when he says that the Archmage seemed to be able to be in two places at once.

Now let's reveal...

WEIRD SISTERS

Wow! Did we get negative feedback from fans when we played the Sisters as villains here. Of course, I always had it in my head that the Sisters had three aspects. Grace, Vengeance and Fate. Sometimes one aspect is ascendent, but there is always a touch of all three in anything they do. But after the Sisters' Fateful appearances in "City of Stone", many fans rebelled at the notion that the objective reason they did all those things was for simple petty vengeance here in "Avalon". Oh, well.

[When Benny saw the Sisters for the first time, he said "Weird Sisters" with an interesting tone of awe. They're his favorites. But he didn't comment on them being bad guys here.]

The sisters have some nice lines...

L: "What is time to an immortal."
Phoebe: "This is true." (in ref to what cannot be broken can be bent).

ARCHMAGESES

Okay, this was just fun for me. In many ways the origin of much of this was the flat out talent of David Warner. He brought such life to the underwritten (and clichéd) part of the Archmage in "Long Way to Morning" that I just knew I'd have to bring him back. Many of the events of "Vows", "City of Stone", "High Noon" etc. were all geared toward bringing him back as a real THREAT!!

Yet with all this, I didn't want to forget the character's roots. We tried to set a balance between his clichés and his new power.

Think about it. The Archmage+ (as we called him in the script), had only been plussed for about a day. Still he's full of arrogance. His power hasn't raised him above that hybris nor above the thirst for vengeance nor above gloating or above impatience. That's his flaw, but also the fun, I think.

And of course, David. Wow.

Praise for Salli Richardson as Elisa. For Kath Soucie as Princess Katharine and all three Weird Sisters. For Frank Welker as Bronx and Boudicca.

But this Archmage stuff here is a tour de force, I think. David just went through, playing both characters. Both versions of himself. Keep in mind, he hadn't been privy to all that the writers had planned. He had come in for his small parts in both "Long Way" and "Vows". Now suddenly, he's this guy(s). Amazing.

"Do you know what to do?"
"I should. I watched you do it."

"Show some dignity."

"I could put you back where I found you."
"No, no." (I love that no, no. So tiny and fearful.)

"Not where. When."

"If you don't know, don't guess."

"The book must remain in play."

"Try to keep up."

"We're not doing her any favors."

"The rules that cannot be broken can surely be bent."

"Nine hundred and seventy-five YEARS??!!"

"I hadn't thought that far in advance."

"What am I supposed to do, eat it?!"

"Now I understand."

"As it did. As it must. As it always will!"

All great fun.

FLAWS

All these episodes were being produced simultaneously. All in various stages of production. So inconsistencies were bound to happen.

The Egg boats are messed up here. Demona's model in her flashback. Etc.

And storywise, what's the deal with Macbeth? I can see why the Archmage wants to include his former apprentice Demona in his plans. He felt betrayed by her, and is glad not to be doing her any favors by enslaving her.

But Macbeth?

Okay, it's not a true flaw. Macbeth is included because the 'plan of the Archmage' -- birthed whole from the timestream without the Archmage ever actually coming up with it independently (though he takes credit) -- included Macbeth.

It is the provence of Luna, not Seline, at work.

But still, I'd have liked to have been able to figure out some connection between the Archmage and Macbeth so that he wouldn't question the boy's inclusion. Thankfully, the Archmage+ is so arrogant, he takes credit and thus never questions. It occurs to me now, that I could have made a connection between Mac and his ancestors, all related to Katharine and Malcolm. Oh, well.

CAPTIONS

These became fun for me. Adding Captions indicating place and time is one of the very last steps in production. So I'm in there for the "On-Line" with Jeff Arthur, our post-production supervisor, and I'm just indulging...

Sure we start with...

"Scotland, 984 A.D."

But pretty soon we're at "YESTERDAY" and "SIX HOURS AGO" and "ONE MINUTE AGO" and finally "NOW".

It still makes me smile.

POWERING UP

So the Archmage gets the eye. Power. But he's still an idiot. He needs wisdom. He eats the book, which I always thought was really creepy and cool. Now he understands. Now we truly have two Archmage+es. But they can't coexist forever. Aside from how complicated that would be to choreograph, and aside from the fact that the timestream needs the younger of the two to fulfill his role....

They also couldn't coexist because both are too arrogant.

So we repeat the scene of departure to close the circle and tack on: "Finally. I thought he'd never leave."

BATTLE FLASHBACK

We get to see a new clan awake from stone. I hoped that was fun.

Ophelia appears (pre-injury). She looked way cool. For all those people who thought that Gabe and Angie were a couple, take a look at the way Gabe is holding Ophelia and looking at her after she's injured.

LAYING PIPE

In addition to the Sleeping King, we were also laying pipe for our whole fourth tier WORLD TOUR. Tom says: "Avalon dropped me in your laps." He credits Avalon with sending him to Goliath.

The Magus declares that he is without magic and useless. Katharine rebels at that: "Don't say it, and don't think it!" She loves him. Just not the way he wanted her to love him.

Bronx and Boudicca want to go with Goliath.

Elisa asks about the Sleeping King...

And Goliath, Angela and Gabriel take off on a stealth attack.

And we immediately see that the Archmage knows they're coming.

Uh oh.

As the Archmage says... "[We've layed all the damn pipe we could possibly need and more], Now the fun really begins!"

To be concluded...

And that's my ramble. Where's yours?


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Memo for "Avalon, Parts Two and Three"

In preparation for my ramblings, here's the memo written to Brynne Chandler Reaves & Lydia C. Marano on the last two parts of their Avalon outline. I've added a few [notes], to indicate some handwritten changes to the document.

WEISMAN 2-2-95

Notes on "Avalon, Parts Two and Three" Outline...

GENERAL

ARCHMAGESES
For purposes of clarity, I'm going to refer to the new and improved Archmage as Archmage+. There will be a number of scenes where the Archmage and the Archmage+ will be appearing together. And a few scenes (including one scene repeated twice) where two Archmage+s will appear together. For those scenes I'll refer to them as 1st Archmage+ and 2nd Archmage+, but they'll look exactly alike.

CLARITY
It goes without saying that any time travel episode is going to be complex. So make an extra effort to be as clear as possible. Both in stage description for the artists, and in dialogue for the audience. I know we resist expository dialogue generally. But as you'll see below, the Archmage+ needs to explain things to the Archmage. So it won't feel artificial.

ACT BREAKS
I'm going to leave that up to you. See how the scripts progress.

BEAT SHEET
"Avalon, Part Two"
1. Pick up right where we left off. Pretty much your beat XX. Tom does need to explain that he still refers to the gargoyles as
"eggs". It's an old habit. He apologizes if it caused confusion, but they have been in Avalon long enough for him to grow old. Of course the eggs hatched some time ago.

Also none of the wounded gargoyles should be at the shore. We'll see them back at the palace.

Also don't forget that Angela has Goliath's coloring, which doesn't escape Elisa's notice. And on your Beat XXB1c. the line should expand to: "Daughters and sons belong to all of us, Elisa. That is the gargoyle way."

2. At Oberon's palace. Pretty much your beat XXI. But keep in mind, that the palace is in crisis mode. Acting as a hospital of sorts, to many wounded gargoyles.

Elisa should notice the tenderness between Tom and Katharine when they are reunited. She should also notice the pain it causes the Magus.

Don't forget to describe the Magus as 72 years old. Also describe Gabriel as looking like a young Othello with Desdemona's coloring.

The fact that the young gargoyles act more human than the trio may be too fine a point to get across. They've been raised by humans, but as a practical matter a lot of what we would think of as human is really just contemporary. And obviously, the trio are much more contemporary than these gargoyles.

You need some reason why Tribeca doesn't already have a name. Maybe, Katharine and Tom had tried not to name any of the gargoyles at first, but it just got too difficult for them with the sentient ones. But they didn't bother to name the Beasts? [We dropped the Tribecca notion eventually, and Tribeca became Boudicca. -GW 5/21/02]

Also, both Gabriel and Tribeca will be present in beat 1. So you may want to introduce them there along with Angela. That frees Beat 2 to reintro Katharine and the Magus. (Magus may be acting as a healer, using natural remedies and polstices.)

When Magus makes his point about Oberon's Children having been absent for nearly 1000 years, he might slip in a subtle reference to the sleeping King. (i.e. Arthur.) Something like: "The island's totally deserted except for the sleeping king." And then before anyone has a chance to ask about the sleeping king, something forces a change of topic.

3. Pretty much your beat XXII. Except that the Magus and Tom should probably be the ones to go into detail. The Magus knew the Archmage the best. He'd recognize that the Archmage has evolved into the Archmage+. If the Magus wasn't positive that the Grimorum cannot be brought onto Avalon, he'd swear that the Archmage+ had it. Plus when the Archmage appeared, he carried the Phoenix Gate and wore the Eye of Odin. Goliath realizes that those items must have been stolen from him.

Tom led the first disastrous attack. He saw Demona (doesn't know her name, but recognized her as Goliath's former love) plus some human in strange armor who used a weapon that fired lightning (Macbeth) and the Weird Sisters who once guarded the island. Again Goliath and Elisa can put two and two together. Macbeth and Demona never escaped the Weird Sisters. The Sisters have been using them all along. When Demona and Macbeth stole Coldstone, it was just a cover to steal the Eye, the Gate and the Grimorum. They must have given the items to the Archmage.

All Tom knows is that the Archmage+ is incredibly powerful. So powerful, he sometimes seemed to be in two places at once.

4. Enemy camp. Obviously, somewhere on the island, but where? In or in front of a cave? Someplace pleasant and relaxing, since the villains have every reason to be confident? I'll call it the GROTTO for easy reference, but anywhere is fine. [In the margin, I wrote: "Vengeance Angle"]

Present are the 3 Weird Sisters, Demona, Macbeth and... TWO Archmage+s. Each carries his own Phoenix Gate. And each wears his own Eye, (maybe imbedded like a third eye in his forehead?). They are dressed in black. Their beards are short. Maybe a metal skullcap (ala Merlin in EXCALIBUR). All very dangerous looking in contrast to the cliché Archmage that we knew.

1st Archmage+ says to 2nd Archmage+: "Shouldn't you be going?"
2nd Archmage+: "I suppose I should." 1st Archmage+: "You know what to do?" 2nd Archmage+: "Of course. I watched you do it." So the 2nd Archmage+ raises his Phoenix Gate and says the Phoenix Gate spell, disappearing into the past (see "Vows").

5. We follow 2nd Archmage+ back to 984 A.D. (He can even say: "First stop: 984 A.D." He can have a lot of attitude.) He arrives just outside the cave and secretly watches the battle between young Goliath, Hudson, Demona and the original Archmage ("Long Way To Morning"). (Again, he can fill us in, by commenting on it wryly to himself.) The Archmage loses the Grimorum and falls into the bottomless fissure, the Archmage+ uses the Phoenix Gate to pop into the fissure. He then uses the gate to transport himself and the Archmage to safety.

6. A hilltop or someplace safe. The Phoenix Gate deposits both the Archmage and the Archmage+ a few feet above the ground. The Archmage+ floats. He says "Freeze". And the Archmage freezes in mid-air. The Archmage+ says "Feathers". And a huge pile of feathers appears right below the Archmage. Archmage+: "Resume". And the Archmage tumbles into the pile of feathers.

We get some sputtering and outrage from the Archmage. And introductions. Archmage+ is his future self. Archmage realizes that means sometime in the future he accomplishes his goal of getting the Eye and the Gate. But what of the Grimorum? Archmage wants Archmage+ to use the Gate to go back and take the Grimorum back from the Gargoyles. Archmage+ says they can't accomplish their goals that way because they didn't accomplish it that way. History cannot be changed. But don't worry. We'll get the Grimorum. He uses the Gate and they both vanish again. [In the margins, by these two paragraphs, I wrote: "You want power, revenge. Allies Soldiers Weapons Base]

7. They reappear in 995 A.D. just in time to see the Magus use the Grimorum to reflect the Weird Sister's spell, turning all three of them into owls. (Archmage+ continues to use one word commands like "Float" and "Invisible" to keep them above water and undetectable. His command of magic is that complete. He can also fill Archmage and audience in on where and when they are, fairly naturally in dialogue.) Archmage recognizes his former apprentice the Magus, who's obviously grown into a potent sorcerer. But the fool just hands over the Grimorum, his source of Power, to Finella. Archmage thinks he understands now. They'll take the Grimorum from Finella. But Archmage+ says no. That's not why they're here. They're here to recruit. [In the margin, I again wrote: "Allies"]

Once all the various skiffs have moved on, the Archmage+ finds the three owls and transforms them back into the Weird Sisters. The Sisters are furious that they were defeated. When Oberon forced all of his "Children" to mingle with the mortals of the real world he had left the guarding of Avalon in their supposedly capable hands. Oberon will be very pissed off that they failed. Archmage+ offers them a chance to get even. It will take time though. The Weird Sisters don't mind. Time is one thing they have plenty of. "Then," says the Archmage+, "I will see you again in twenty-five years." And with that, he uses the gate and vanishes with the Archmage.

8. The year is 1020 A.D. ("City of Stone, Part One") and the Archmages appear via the gate. They meet up with the Weird Sisters. The Archmage+ shows them a vision of the forty year old Demona, the fifteen year old Macbeth and their enemy the HUNTER. [In the margin, I wrote: "Soldiers"] The Archmage+ wants the Weird Sisters to help Demona and Macbeth defeat the Hunter. Weird Sisters remind him that Oberon's Law prevents them from directly intervening in the lives of mortals. Archmage+ knows they are magically prevented from breaking Oberon's Law. But he also knows that they can bend it quite a bit. O.K., fine. But how does helping Demona and Macbeth do anything to help the Sisters and the Archmages achieve their goals? Archmage+ tells them that in order to achieve these goals, they will need powerful warriors, fighters adept at sorcery and weaponry, fighters we can control. These two are the perfect candidates. Guide them, help them, protect them for the next twenty years. The Archmage+ will return then with further instructions. The Weird Sisters agree and depart.

Archmage isn't too happy about this. He recognizes Demona as another of his former apprentices. One who betrayed him by losing the Phoenix Gate "years, uh... decades ago." Why are we helping her? Archmage+ tells him not to worry. This is our revenge. Believe me, we're not doing the gargoyle any favors. And again, he uses the Phoenix Gate to make them both disappear.

9. They reappear in 1040. The Weird Sisters report that they have done their best to aide Demona and Macbeth. The first Hunter is dead. But there is a new one now who's even more dangerous. Archmage+ is very pleased. He knows that Demona and Macbeth will arrive soon. He instructs the Sisters to guide them into making a magical pact that will link their life energy together. We will need them alive and vital centuries from now. We must make them immortal. [In the margin, I again wrote: "Soldiers".]

Sisters and Archmage are confused. Immortal warriors are powerful. How will we control them? Trust me, says Archmage+.

Archmage+ renders him and the Archmage invisible, just in time to see the fifty year old Demona and the 35 year old Macbeth enter. ("City of Stone, Part 3") We see the Weird Sisters link them magically.

Afterwards, the Sisters explain that the job is done. Neither can die, unless one kills the other. Excellent, says the Archmage+. Keep an eye on the two of them. Also keep an eye out for the Grimorum, the Gate and the Eye of Odin. The Weird Sisters are confused. Archmage+ has the Eye and the Gate. Archmage+ laughs. But I didn't have them. Not until you brought them to me. We'll meet again on an island called "Manhattan"... in 955 years.

Archmage: "Nine-HUNDRED and fifty-five years?!!" But before he can protest, the Archmage+ uses the gate to transport them both away.

10. 1995. Manhattan. Weird Sisters as NYC Fashion Models rendezvous at Tavern on the Green, with the Archmages. Archmage+ says: "Disguise". And he and the Archmage, seem to be wearing modern clothes. Over a pleasant candlelit dinner, the Sisters fill us in. All three magical talismans have fallen into the hands of this gargoyle... and an image of Goliath appears in the candlelight. Archmage recognizes Goliath, and can't believe that he survived this far into the future. Archmage+ says, "This isn't the future yet."

Archmage+ asks about Demona and Macbeth. Sisters respond that both are phenomenal fighters, proficient with modern technology and weaponry and half-decent sorcerers to boot. Plus each warrior has his or her own agenda. Demona is determined to wipe out humanity. And Macbeth is equally determined to wipe out Demona, even though he knows it will cost him his own life. They will be very difficult to control. Archmage+: "Yes, yes, but what are they up to now?" [And yet again, I wrote "Soldiers" in the margin.] The Sisters believe that Demona is about to cast a powerful spell to turn everyone in Manhattan into stone. Macbeth will take this opportunity to hunt her down.

Archmage+ is very pleased. He advises the Sisters to help Goliath defeat both Demona and Macbeth. Make your final move after they've fought each other, but before Macbeth has a chance to end their lives. At that point they will be weakened enough for the Sisters to put a sleep spell on them. Then bring them to me. Where? Macbeth's home on this island.

[Optional, if you have space: The sisters exit. Archmage+ asks the Archmage if he'd like to watch the action. Archmage says yes. Archmage+ says: "Somehow I knew that."]

Archmage+ uses Gate and both disappear.

[Optional, if you have space:
11. Invisible Archmages watch a replay of the final scenes from the end of City of Stone, Part Four. The ones where the Weird Sisters help Goliath talk Macbeth out of killing Demona. Put them both to sleep. Tell Goliath that they will take responsibility for them and vanish with them. The Archmages depart as well.]

12. Macbeth's mansion. The Archmages appear as do the Sisters with Macbeth and Demona. The latter two are sound asleep. The Archmage+ whispers to the sleeping warriors. He "suggests" that they work together to steal the Grimorum, the Gate and the Eye from Goliath. The Sisters provide the clock tower location, and suggest that they steal Coldstone as well. That way the theft of the talismans won't be detected immediately. Demona and Macbeth leave together to carry out this plan, completely fogged about how it came to them or why they are working together. [By the margin of both paragraphs 12 & 13, I wrote: "Weapons".]

Archmage asks about Coldstone. Weird Sisters say he is another warrior that might be of use to them. Archmage+ shakes his head. Coldstone wasn't part of the plan, so he can't be now. If his presence aids in the theft of the talismans, fine. But he must be separated from Demona and Macbeth, before the next stage of the plan can be set in motion. They will meet again at the watery door to Avalon.

[Optional:
13. Invisible Archmages watch Demona and Macbeth steal the Eye, the Grimorum and the Gate from the secret hiding place in the clocktower from "High Noon".]

14. The Archmages reappear above misty water. Archmage+ says: "Boat". And a boat magically appears beneath them. They float down to it. While they wait for the sisters, Archmage demands to know the plan. Archmage+ finally fills him in: "Soon the sisters will bring you the talismans. The ultimate magical power that you've always dreamed of. [In the margin, I wrote: "Base".] But once you get that power, what will you do with it?" Archmage is baffled. He hadn't thought that far ahead. He mutters something about conquering Scotland. Archmage+ suggests conquering the world, but warns that it will not be easy. The modern world is a place of science not sorcery. Magic is potent, but so are modern weapons. The Archmage will need a safe place to launch his attacks from. That haven is Avalon. The only problem is Avalon is occupied. Fortunately, Oberon and his children have abandoned it. But there are a few humans and gargoyles living there. Our first job is to kill them. The Archmage is very pleased with his counterpart's plan.

The Sisters join them on the raft, along with entranced Demona, entranced Macbeth and the three talismans. The sisters warn the Archmages that the Gate and the Eye are not a problem, but the Grimorum is a book of human sorcery. It cannot enter Avalon. Archmage+ is unconcerned: "Give him the Eye." Seline gives the Archmage the Eye of Odin. The Archmage puts it on. The Archmage+ explains that the Eye grants power and insight. It makes the wearer a more powerful version of himself. It usually takes weeks to transform an individual, but the Archmage+ has the ability to speed things up. "Change," he says. And the Archmage begins to metamorphose -- painfully -- into another Archmage+.

When the metamorphosis is complete, the 1st Archmage+ tells the 2nd Archmage+ that he now has the power of the world's greatest and, frankly, most evil sorcerer. But he lacks the knowledge. The exhausted 2nd Archmage+ gets the message. He asks Phoebe to give him the Grimorum. He uses his new-found power to swallow it hole. The 1st Archmage+ is very pleased. Now he is one with the magic, and there's no need to worry about bringing the Grimorum to Avalon. Even Luna is impressed. She hands the 2nd Archmage+ the Phoenix Gate, completing his power. 1st Archmage+: Shall we proceed?

[Note: I circled paragraphs 15, 16 and the first paragraph of 17 and wrote: "One Beat" in the margin and "But show it to us." By 15, I also wrote "Base".]

15. The 1st Archmage+ materializes in the palace of Oberon, in front of Katharine, Tom, the Magus. He tells them to "Make your peace, for at sundown, you die." He uses the gate to disappear again.

16. He reappears in the Grotto, joining the 2nd Archmage+, the Sisters, Demona and Macbeth. One of them spots Angela and Gabriel watching them and sneaking away. Demona asks if she should stop them. No, says the 1st Archmage+, they'll be back.

17. Sure enough, Tom the Guardian leads the gargoyles against the villains. It's a disaster. Many gargoyles are wounded. None of them can fight on a level with either Macbeth or Demona. Let alone the futuristic weapons that they bring. The Weird Sisters avoid direct interference, but still manage to use their magic to ensnare their opponents in their environment. And the Archmage+ is everywhere, popping in and out, using the Gate, vanishing. Using magic. He's devastating. (During the fight, play the two Archmage+s so that Tom might say something like "It was like he could be in two places at once." As opposed to Tom realizing that there are two of them.)

Tom is forced to sound retreat.

[I marked the rest of seventeen and 18 and wrote "combine" in the margin.]

Demona and Macbeth want to pursue and finish them off. But the 1st Archmage+ is supremely confident. Why bother? If we wait until Dawn, the gargoyles will all be stone. Only the Guardian, the Princess and the Magus will be left to defend the palace. It's so much easier to sit back and enjoy the cool breeze for a few more hours. [In the margin, I wrote: "Waiting for Goliath. Important. Vengeance. He wants Goliath.]

Luna asks: "What about the sleeping King?" The 2nd Archmage+ is surprised. He had heard the legends of the sleeping king, but didn't know that they were true. Seline assures him the King is on the island, asleep. Phoebe warns that the King's power was once very great. 1st Archmage+: "Then when once we've taken the island, we'll just make sure he never wakes up."

18. Time cut to a few hours later.
1st Archmage+ says to 2nd Archmage+: "Shouldn't you be going?"
2nd Archmage+: "I suppose I should." 1st Archmage+: "You know what to do?" 2nd Archmage+: "Of course. I watched you do it." So the 2nd Archmage+ raises his Phoenix Gate and says the Phoenix Gate spell, disappearing into the past. Obviously, this is an exact repeat of Beat 4, and finally leaves us with only one Archmage+ for the rest of the story. Archmage+ makes some comment about how the other one was getting on his nerves.

19. AND Finally, we return to the present and resume from beat 3 with our heroes in the palace. Tom picks up his story where he left off. After, there disastrous mass attack on the Grotto, they all realized they were in deep shit. Sunrise was only six hours away. They thought about hiding the gargoyles, but realized there was no place on the island where the Weird Sisters couldn't find them. They had to get help. Tom ventured out by skiff to the real world. As he had done once every century. The skiff landed at Wyvern, and Tom was shocked to see that the castle was missing. He went to a local village, where he was told that the castle had been moved to the top of a skyscraper in a place called NEW York. Tom picks up on the word "skyscraper". Is it possible that the castle has risen above the clouds? One villager's seen it in New York. It's definitely above some of the clouds. (You can show this village scene in flashback if you have space or time.) Tom returns to his skiff, returns to Avalon, and launches off again, praying that Avalon will send him to this NEW York. (Hinting that he doesn't have a lot of control.)

Sure enough he found New York and Goliath and brought him and his friends back. But the mission took two days in the real world. That's two hours here on Avalon. There's only four hours left until sunrise.

Tom apologizes to Goliath. He's tried to train the gargoyles to be warriors, but he's self-taught himself. Plus Avalon always seemed so peaceful, etc. Protective instinct must never have developed. Maybe if Goliath led the next attack... But Goliath is sure Tom did his best. Sometimes a direct attack isn't the answer. Sometimes stealth is required. If we can steal the Gate and the Eye back from the Archmage, we may have a chance. Goliath will need someone who knows the island. Gabriel and Angela both volunteer. Fine. Goliath asks the Magus to come as well. His magic might prove useful. The Magus cannot meet Goliath's gaze. He hesitates. Finally, he says that without the Grimorum he has no magic and would be a liability to Goliath. Elisa wants to come, but Goliath asks her to stay behind. If this mission fails, Tom and the others will need her expertise on dealing with Demona and Macbeth. Goliath, Angela and Gabriel depart. After they go, Elisa turns to the Magus and asks: Tell me about the sleeping King.

20. They sneak into the grotto and for a beat it looks like they might succeed in their mission. But no. They are caught. Woops. [In the margin, I wrote: "Arch+ sees them coming."]

END PART TWO

START PART THREE
21. Looks like curtains for our three heroes. Goliath even resorts to making an appeal to Demona and Macbeth. Can't they see they're being used. Does it suit Macbeth's sense of honor to wait 'til dawn to slaughter innocent gargoyles. Demona hates humans, but why would she help the Archmage hurt her own children. It doesn't make sense to Demona and Macbeth. They start to come out of the spell. But the Archmage+ is just amused by Goliath's pleas. With one word: "Obey", Demona and Macbeth are again his to command. Fortunately, rescue comes from another quarter. Bronx and Tribeca. To some extent, the rescue only succeeds because the Archmage+ is complacently amused. He likes watching the little mice run the maze. In a few hours it'll be all over anyway.

22. Goliath and Co. return to the palace. The mission was a failure.

[Note: the following paragraph was crossed out.]
But not a complete failure, says Angela. In the confusion, she got away with the Phoenix Gate. Angela wants to use it to go back in time and stop the Archmage+ before he arrives. Can't be done, explains Goliath. History cannot be changed. He's learned that lesson, painfully. Can they escape to the future? They'd be abandoning Avalon. The situation they arrived in might be even worse. Better to make their stand now. Well could they use it flee the island? This time Gabriel says no. This is his home, the only one he's ever known. He will protect it, not abandon it! Goliath is impressed. The gargoyle way is strong in Gabriel. But Angela's disappointed. Stealing the gate didn't help very much. Goliath assures her, that it helped a lot. They've taken away the Archmage's mobility. And gained some for themselves. The Gate doesn't have to be used for time travel. It can be used just to move instantly from place to place. But how will that help? Goliath isn't sure yet.

Hey, where's Elisa and the Magus?

23. Elisa and the Magus journey to the "Hollow Hill" where sleeps the sleeping King. (It's Merlin who sleeps in the Crystal Cave. At least by my research.) Maybe they have some time to talk. Elisa has noticed that Tom and Katharine are close. The Magus tells her that as the boy Tom became a man, he and the Princess fell in love. (Again, if you have the room and/or the inclination, you can show this in flashback.) Now they are husband and wife. They raised the gargoyles as their own children. Elisa wonders where the Magus fits in. I don't, he says. But his feelings for Katharine are also obvious to Elisa. How could he stand to stay and watch them grow closer? He had to stay. He had done an unforgivable thing when he cast his spell upon the gargoyles. He owed it to Goliath to tend the eggs. His pain is not important.

24. They arrive at the Hollow Hill. They see the sleeping King. He lies on a bed, surrounded by arms and gold and jewels. They move to wake him, but are intercepted by two hollow suits of armor. Elisa empties her revolver into one, but it's pretty useless. Suddenly the Magus casts a rhyming spell. (Rhyming in English, not Latin.) The armor is defeated, though it leaves the Magus drained. Elisa is shocked. She thought the Magus had lost his magic. He had. Centuries ago when he lost the Grimorum. But the island is full of magic. It is everywhere: in the wind, in the water, in the trees and certainly in this hollow hill. His training makes him sensitive to it, but summoning it without study is very hard. It's an unpredictable and often unsuccessful endeavor. He cannot be counted on.

Elisa approaches the sleeping King. For the very first time in this three parter, we hear someone speak his name. Elisa: "Arthur Pendragon. King Arthur. You are needed." And King Arthur awakens. It's that easy.

Suddenly Goliath and Angela appear via the Phoenix Gate. [The phrase 'via the Phoenix Gate' was crossed out.] What did Elisa think she was doing? Elisa realized that Demona and Macbeth are two of the greatest warriors of all time. It's a hard truth, but even Goliath has never actually bested either of them. The best he ever did was foil their plans or fight them to a draw. They needed someone better. They needed the best warrior who ever lived. Arthur clears his throat. Would someone please tell him what's going on? Angela's excited. In a minute, she says, and using the Gate, teleports them all away. ["and using the Gate, teleports them all away." was crossed out.]

[From this point out, stuff in {} is crossed out material.]

25. Back at the Grotto, The Archmage+ {has only just discovered that the gate is missing. He} is furious, and his demeanor does not improve when the Sisters wryly blame his own hybris and complacency. Fine, he says. Then we will attack now.

26. Back at the palace, Arthur's just heard the gist of the situation. He's not thrilled. This isn't what he was supposed to be awakened for. He doesn't have Excalibur. He doesn't have his knights or Merlin... But he looks around the room and sees the faces of those who need him. He will do what he can. Gabriel enters. They're out of time. The villains approach. Arthur will lead Tom, Elisa and Gabriel against Macbeth and Demona. Goliath and Angela will {use the Gate to} face off against the Archmage. Katharine, Bronx and Tribeca (and whatever other healthy N.D. Gargoyles we've shown) will stay with the wounded gargoyles and do their best to protect them. But who will take on the Three Weird Sisters. I will, says the Magus.

27. The battle. O.K. This is going to be a big one. You want to have space for it, cause it's the fight we've been building towards for THIRTY-SIX EPISODES, so we've got to make it worthwhile. (Also we have tons and tons of epiloguing in this one, so we need the audience to feel like they want a good long rest after the mega-battle is done.) You'll do a lot of intercutting between the various fronts. But for clarity here, I'll take them one at a time. (Also feel free to adjust or expand on any of the details... I'm just trying to give a big picture overview.)

ARTHUR, ELISA, GABRIEL, GUARDIAN vs. MACBETH & DEMONA
The Archmage+ has sent his two warriors as an advance force to soften up the enemy. Macbeth is impressed by this new warrior. He asks his name, and when he hears that it's Arthur, we can see that he's momentarily shaken by it. He's an Arthur-buff. A great admirer. Well. He's always wanted to test himself against the best. For his part, Arthur's quick to figure out that when either Macbeth or Demona are hurt, both feel the pain. He instructs his troops to use that to their advantage. Demona realizes that she must put some distance between herself and Macbeth. She'll still feel his pain, but not as severely. She gets past Arthur's force and into the castle. Arthur sends Gabe, Elisa and Tom in after her. He'll handle Macbeth.

ARTHUR VS. MACBETH
Macbeth is quickly deprived of his lightning gun. Both wind up using medieval weapons. It may even come down to hand to hand combat. Finally Arthur wins.

DEMONA vs. KATHARINE, BRONX, TRIBECA
Demona gets into the palace. She is confronted by Bronx and Tribeca, but they don't stop her. She finds her way to Katharine and the wounded gargoyles. We need to see by this time that Demona's bloodlust is so high, that there's no chance of talking her down again. The spell on her has worked her into such a froth that she can't see that what she's doing is against her own interests. She's a brainwashed assassin. Katharine is ready to die for her charges, and it looks like she might have to.

DEMONA vs. GABRIEL, GUARDIAN, ELISA
They arrive just in time, Gabriel and Guardian save Katharine temporarily. But they're no real match for Demona either. She's about to kill them all, when Elisa says wouldn't you rather have me. And there it is. Someone Demona hates so much, that no spell is more powerful. She leaps at Elisa, giving the others time to regroup. Ultimately, Demona is taken down by sheer force of numbers. Maybe Elisa gives the takedown blow.

MAGUS vs. THE WEIRD SISTERS.
They can't believe this old, impotent man is challenging them again. Without his precious Grimorum, no less. But he rises to the occasion. It's a sorcerers battle, so have a lot of fun with it. And the Magus wins by trapping them. Probably in some kind of iron or some kind of chain. (But here's a thought, that only just occurred to me. Should the Magus give his life in this fight, i.e. be mortally wounded during it. Maybe drained beyond any hope of recovery? He would be the one real casualty of the battle. Goliath would of course forgive him on his death bed as the old man passed away, finally at peace, maybe with Katharine's kiss on his lips. I know we planned on sending him off with Arthur, but I can't help wondering if we didn't make this fight to easy on our heroes. Isn't it necessary for them to lose something truly precious, i.e. the life of a friend? I have very mixed feelings, cause I like the character a lot. I could probably be swayed either way. Before you go to script on part three, talk this over with both me and Adrienne [Bello, our S&P executive].)

GOLIATH, ANGELA vs. ARCHMAGE+
Goliath attacks directly. And is really being trounced. The Archmage+ has not forgotten how Goliath defeated him back in "Long Way to Morning". He's really punishing Goliath. But that was part of the plan. Angela uses the gate to {bop in, and} throw the overconfident Archmage+ off balance. {She and} Goliath {toss the gate back and forth between them. They vanish and reappear.} The Archmage+'s magic still is formidable, but the tactic is infuriating him, which makes him sloppy. Finally, Goliath manages to grab the Eye and wrench it off the Archmage+. (Note: As in Eye of the Beholder, this should be damn painful for Goliath.) The Archmage+ immediately metamorphoses back into the old Archmage. But he's not through yet. He's still got all the power of the Grimorum inside him. But without the Eye to contain that power, he has a problem. You see you're not supposed to bring human magic onto Avalon. The Grimorum is burning him up from the inside out. Nothing gory, but he is destroyed in magical flames. It is over.

28. Epilogue time. Goliath realizes that the Eye and the Gate were not meant for mortals to use. He swears never to use either of them again. (He'll break this promise later, but it at least explains why he doesn't immediately use the Gate to take him, Elisa and Bronx back to Manhattan). He and Angela gladly walk back to the palace.

29. It is now only ten minutes until sunrise. Decisions must be made. They ask Goliath if it is safe for the Gargoyles out in the real world. Unfortunately, no. Not really. They invite him to bring the other gargoyles back to Avalon. No. That won't work either. Some of them must continue to live in the real world. Learn to live with humans. It will take time, but if they don't try, the outside world will never be safe for gargoyles again. Given that Goliath is willing to take any gargoyle who wants to leave. From here, you can pretty much pick up back on your outline: BEAT XXXX. (Though obviously if we kill the Magus, Arthur's leaving alone.)

30. Pretty much your Beat XXXXI. Arthur (and the Magus?) leave first. Also we have to deal with Macbeth and Demona. They can still be unconscious. The trapped Weird Sisters are forced to free Demona and Macbeth from the spell. They tell our heroes that neither warrior will remember anything that happened to them since the spell was first cast in City of Stone, Part Four. Somehow, we have to rationalize sending them off unconscious on a skiff of their own. Good luck. Finally our 4 travelers leave for Manhattan, poling out into the misty water. But Tom knows from experience that "Avalon does not take you where you want to go. Avalon takes you where you need to be."

That's it. Call me with any problems or questions, and in any case let's talk about the Magus.


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Chapter XXXIV: "Avalon, Part One"

There's no memo, outline or script for this one on my computer, so we'll head right into my ramble on...

"AVALON, PART ONE"
DIRECTOR: Dennis Woodyard.
WRITER: Lydia Marano.
STORY EDITOR: Brynne Chandler Reaves.

THE RECAP

...is all over the place. So much was coming together in this three-parter. The Weird Sisters, the eggs, the Archmage, Tom, Princess Katharine, the Magus, Macbeth, Demona. This was our most ambitious story yet. Which given episodes like "The Mirror" or "Vows" and multi-parters like "Awakening" and "City of Stone" was saying something.

Of course "Avalon" was never designed to be the cohesive single story movie that "City of Stone" was. It was designed as a tryptych. Part one would bring our heroes up to date. Part two would bring our villains up to date. Part three would pit them against each other.

"Avalon I" also represented the first episode in our fourth tier. The three-parter was what we called a 'tentpole'. We knew we couldn't air it until all the Tier 3 episodes had aired. And we knew we couldn't air any other Tier 4 episodes until this three-parter had aired. Despite the fact that "The Price" aired out of order, generally our Tentpole/Tier system worked very well. Out of 66 episodes that I worked on only two: "The Price" and "Kingdom" aired out of order, hopefully with minimal damage to the continuity.

THE TITLE

The title was one of mine. But initially I wasn't sure that we were going to call the island Avalon. Now, it's mind-boggling to me, but I actually had my assistant Monique Beatty (who's now a producer in her own right) research Brigadoon to find out if that name was created only for the musical, or if it was something pulled from legends. I was thinking of Avalon, but looking for something from a Scotish tradition as opposed to British. Fortunately, Brigadoon was created for the musical. So we were 'stuck' with Avalon. Which made including King Arthur a natural.

Many series don't reveal that an episode is going to be a multi-parter until you get to the 'To Be Continued' line at the closer. "Avalon, Part One" could have just been titled "Avalon". The conventional wisdom is that people are reluctant to commit the time to a multi-parter in advance. That it is better to hook them on the story before revealing that they HAVE to come back to see the end. I always felt that was cheating. What is your reaction to seeing "Part One" attached to a title?

OPENING

Another cool shot of our gargs waking up. Always nice to reiterate that at the start of our bigger stories.

Bronx gets left behind. Of course, this often happens. It was one of the things that the World Tour would set about correcting in a BIG way. But we made his getting left behind a bit more obvious here. Usually, he just doesn't go. This time they won't take him and he's sad. We were laying pipe.

My 5-year-old son Benny asked where Hudson and the Trio were going. I had to think about it. "On Patrol, I guess."

OLD FRIENDS

Then the GUARDIAN shows up. I love his cool, Goliath-inspired armor. My 7-year-old daughter Erin immediately demanded to know who he was. I wouldn't tell her. (I'm so mean.) Did any of you guess?

Of course he immediately encounters BRENDAN & MARGOT. (What would one of our multi-parters be without him?)

Then comes the three gang-bangers from "AWAKENING, PART THREE". As usual, Keith David does the voice for one of them -- making it distinctive from both Goliath and MORGAN, who's about to come in and speak. The problem is we got a touch confused. In Awakening, Keith voices the bald white guy. Here he does the same voice, but it's assigned to the black guy. Hard to say which is wrong, except by virtue of which came first. It annoys me though.

Morgan's fun in this. I really like him. No one but Simon DelMonte will get this, and I don't know if he even reads these rambles, but Morgan kind of reminds me of Jeff Goslin, a character that Cary Bates and I created in Captain Atom.

Anyway, I like how Morgan talks Guardian down. And I like how the sword is much heavier than he thought it was going to be. His cop buddies tease him, but he maintains his sense of wonder and goodness when talking about the Guardian to Elisa.

That's kind of a cool scene. First off he describes Guardian's armor: "Real armor. King Arthur stuff." Anyone think this was a clue to what was coming in the next episode? Even with the Avalon title? Then he tells her the guy's looking for Gargoyles. Elisa of course discourages her fellow officers from taking Garg reports seriously. Everyone who's seen one must be a nut-case. These guys should form 'a club'. Then she finds out that this Guardian was asking for Goliath by name. BOOM.

BELVEDERE CASTLE

Site of our last encounter with Demona and Macbeth. Another clue.

Once Elisa got a look at the Guardian's armor, she must have thought -- yeah, there's a Goliath connection here all right.

Goliath shows with Bronx, who gets to come along and come along and come along for once. Bronx always seemed underutilized to us. We knew we couldn't bring the whole clan along. (Too many characters and no poignancy.) But Bronx was an easy addition. Of course, Bronx is also useful as a kind of living personality test. If Bronx likes you, it's a damn good sign. Bronx likes Tom. Does he remember him? What scents do you figure the Guardian carried back from Avalon. Anyway, Bronx engenders immediate trust in the Guardian for Goliath.

I love this scene. Guardian gives everyone so little time to catch up. He talks about the Archmage, reveals that he's Tom and talks about 'the eggs' being in danger. *That was a fun idea. Keep you guys thinking in terms of eggs for twenty minutes and reveal that it's just a pet name for the Avalon Clan.*

Benny asked: "What kind of Eggs?"
Erin: "Gargoyle Eggs."
Benny: "I didn't know Gargoyles hatch out of eggs." [Well, keep in mind it's been a year since he saw the first thirty episodes. And he's too young to remember the first time he saw the ones we're watching now.]

Then there's the skiff. Elisa: "Where'd that boat come from? ... To where? The other side of the lake? ... Wait for me!"

This all sounds fishy to her. Nothing makes sense. I wanted to get a clear shot in there of the pond in Central Park so that you could see objectively that it doesn't go anywhere. But I never quite managed that. I wanted you guys to be confused. Or at any rate to have a million questions. But like Elisa, no matter how suspicious, I figured you'd want to go along for the ride.

FLASHBACK

Mary, Katharine, the Magus and young Tom are all reintroduced. It's very clear that the first three have all learned their lesson from Awakening. They've all really become better people. Tom, of course, didn't need to learn that lesson. But he does learn to be a hero. He officially becomes the Guardian. It begins, I believe, as just a nice gesture on the part of the Princess. Later, of course, it'll become the truth. Then there's the long journey. I like the montage there. Hardship. We never had the time to show enough of the hardship of tenth century life.

Our gang heads into Edinburgh. Constantine's followers are all over the place. They all seem to look like Disney storyboard artists for some reason. ;)

VOICES

There's some stellar voice work in this ep. Morgan Shepard as King Kenneth II. Sheena Easton making her Garg Premiere as Finella. Ian Buchanan as Constantine. (I've already mentioned Keith's versatility.)

But as usual, real props must be handed out to Jeff Bennnett and Kath Soucie.

Jeff plays Brooklyn, the Magus and Maol Chalvim. (No Bruno or Owen or Vinnie in this ep, I'm afraid.)

Kath plays Katharine, Mary and all three Weird Sisters.

They're amazing.

SOAP OPERA

Benny saw Finella and said: "That's one of the witches."

A year ago, Tom was his favorite character. Now Tom barely registered. And he really is fascinated with the Weird Sisters. Anyway, I corrected him, but I was glad that they were appearing later.

Ian Buchanan, once of General Hospital, is playing a cad here. We have to very quickly set up a lot of politics, sexual and otherwise. This story was as historical as we could make it based on the available research, the fact that we had to fit in a few fictional characters and eggs, and screen time compression.

Believe it or not, we also had another character originally that we cut early on because it was just getting too damn complicated. Katharine and Maol Chalvim's cousin: the future King Kenneth III. The father of Bodhe. Yep. That Bodhe. The father of Gruoch.

Kenneth III winds up being made High King of Scotland after Constantine is killed. To get a sense of their relationship, at least as I see it, you might want to check out "Once upon a time there were three brothers..."

(Or to give you a hint, ten years after the events depicted here, King Kenneth III would be murdered by Maol Chalvim's operatives during a civil war. Maol Chalvim was also known as Malcolm Forranach, the Destroyer. We used the Maol Chalvim version of his name so as not to confuse him with Katharine's father Prince Malcolm. Just as in City of Stone we emphasized Malcolm Canmore's Canmore name for the same reason.)

Anyway, Maol Chalvim seems intense but right on the money here. He's even kind of heroic when he and the Magus bring Tom back to Katharine's apartment, and he begs Katharine to go. Kind of heroic. He still leaves her. We were trying very hard to balance out his minor role here with his future roll as the grandfather of and major influence on Duncan. (Of course, he's also Macbeth's grandfather, as well.)

After Katharine tells Maol to go, there's a weird cut of him just standing there smiling. We needed some kind of transition before he took off running, and I guess that was the best we could do. But it's still awkward as hell.

THE MURDER

But I'm getting ahead of myself.

We establish early on that Katharine doesn't think much of Constantine. You wouldn't know it from Awakening, but obvioulsy she's learned to be a decent judge of character.

Kenneth isn't quite so sharp. Everyone can see that he's a fool for Finella. And he doesn't recognize Constantine's threat (despite the fact that Constantine's father was a bitter enemy and) despite the fact that his son flat out tells him to beware. My thinking was that the crown had kept bouncing back and forth between different branches of the royal family. Kenneth had hoped that by taking Constantine in, instead of banishing him, he'd be able to be a positive influence on the boy. A nice idea perhaps, but maybe Kenneth was too innattentive to pull it off. And Maol probably was too covetous to really be a brother to young Con.

Anyway, Constantine tricks Finella and kills the king. We hear Finella sobbing, just to prove that she was neither in on it nor that she would approve of it. (Though one wonders what her reaction would have been down the road if Constantine hadn't spurned her in favor of Katharine. Would she have adjusted to the crime? Or did Constantine become an unredeemable villain in her eyes immediately? I hate to say it, but I tend to think it's the former. Actually, I don't hate to say it. She's more interesting to write that way.)

Erin asked: "He killed King Arthur? Why?"

That's a tough question. So first I had to explain that it was King Kenneth, not King Arthur. Then my wife Beth helped out by explaining that Constantine wanted to be king.

We come back from the act and we see that Constantine was ready for the takeover. The Banners are immediately changed in a scene clearly inspired by the Ian McKellan (spelling?) movie version of Shakespeare's Richard III. (A version I heartily recommend, by the way.)

We also continue to set up the Magus' own tragedy. He loves Katharine. Has loved her since before Awakening. That feeling is shown to deepen here when she is once again in danger. And when Constantine tries to coerce her into marrying him. (The astute Mary and Tom have to hold him back.) Here, we sense that maybe Katharine might some day return that love. That's what I wanted you all to think anyway. Did you?

Constantine takes his crown. Originally we wanted to stage this with the Stone of Destiny as we did with Macbeth. But again, I think we just had too many sets.

Michaelmas. I just like that word.

Constantine is fairly astute himself: "You have 36 very good reasons to obey." We kept reiterating the number of eggs for what was coming later.

THE ESCAPE

The Magus disguises broken pots as eggs and vice-versa. But it always seemed to me that the kitchen staff at Edinburgh sure broke a lot of pots. I mean a LOT!

I like the lines: "Taking the wee bairns for a walk?" and "I don't think I like Gargoyle eggs." Very menacing.

Princess K burns her wedding dress. She feels she cannot leave because C will follow her to "the ends of the Earth." So the Magus responds: "Then I will take you beyond them." Again. Very romantic moment between them.

Finella joins the troop. The WOMAN SCORNED. She's really fun now. Dangerous. I always laugh when Constantine drinks the brew and collapses so abruptly.

Erin: "The Weird Sisters". My kids are just fascinated with this trio. I wonder if they still will be by the end of this three-parter or if like many fans, they will be disappointed?

They get turned into owls. But the Magus worries about giving up the source of his power. K doesn't care about that.

And Finella and Mary agree to take the book. I love these two. I think they'd make a totally kick-ass team. I doubt it would be commercial enough, but I'd love to do a spin-off show just with these two women. At any rate, there was the plan to include them as recurring characters in TimeDancer.

Tom has to leave his mother and his childhood behind. Now his role as the Guardian is a way for Katharine to make him accept the loss. It is the start of their relationship, though neither knows it. I watch this now, and I can't help thinking of the Anakin & Padma relationship and where that's destined to go.

AVALON

Back to the present. We see the impressive shores of Avalon. Very cool painting.

Bronx reacts. Guardian: "He's found the eggs..." And the music swells and two gargs and a garg beast appear on the cliff.

Now is that a cliff-hanger or what? What was your reaction?

Erin and Benny wanted "to see ther rest!" I told them they'd have to wait a week and we got a lot of protesting. Just what I was hoping for.

Anyway, that's my ramble. Where's yours?


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Gipdac writes...

In Awakening pt2 Xanatos says the Magus wrote the whole story in the Grimorum Arcanorum, but we know that he learned about castle Wyvern from Demona. So…
1) Did the Magus really write about when he turned the gargoyles to stone?
If the answer to one is affirmative, then…
2) At what point did the Magus end the story? (i.e. did he write up until they left for Kenneth's castle or did he write more then that?)
3) Did the gargoyles ever read the story?
4) Could the gargoyles read the story? (I'm guessing if the Magus wrote the story it was in Latin, and Brooklyn at one point said something about knowing some Latin, but could Goliath or Lex read Latin?)
5) What else did the Magus right about?

Greg responds...

1. Yes.

2. It wasn't a diary, but a magical record. But to the extent that he was adding to the Grimorum that might have included the preparations for the trip to Avalon.

3. I don't know.

4. Goliath could. But the Magus may not have written in Latin. I'm not sure.

5. He was right about a lot, but wrong about a lot too.

Response recorded on December 05, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

1.How did the leader of the Avalon clan get to QFL? I mean Avalon takes where you're needed not where you want to go.
2.Can gargoyles on Avalon lay more eggs than the ones in the mortal world?
3.Why is there a gargoyle in Avalon named Azrael? I mean it's the name of the Muslim angel of death hardly Christian.

Greg responds...

1. I'm not going to get into logistics at this time. But figure he landed where ever he needed to be, and assuming that wasn't Queen Florence, he took a bus.

2. Potentially.

3. You try naming thirty-six kids in one sitting.

Response recorded on October 17, 2001

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Anonymous writes...

Was it intentional to make Nick Maza similar to Captain of the Guard since both are described by you in the Garg bible and the 2198 contest as much like a gargoyle as a human can be?

Greg responds...

You're taking that too literally.

I was actually trying to connect Nick up to Tom, thematically.

Response recorded on September 08, 2001

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Lord Sloth writes...

I now have a list of questions to for you about love. ahhh

1. Does Hyena love Jackel?
2. Does Jackel love Hyena?
3. How serius are Hyena's feelings to Cyotie? Is she madley im love with him, or just mildly attracted? Either way, it's kinda gross
4. How does Cyotie feel toward Hyena? He seemed up for they idea of "making sparks fly".
5. Does Fox love Anistasia(before and after the Gathering)?
6. Does Halcyen still carry a torch for Anistasia? And does he now know that she is Titania?
7. Does Titania love fox?
8. Does Puck love Alex?
9. Does Oberon love anyone besides Titania?
10. Does Dracon dream about Elisa and him being together?
11. Was Brooklyn attracted to Demona before "Temptation". He seems to go after the most females.
12. Does Iago feel in love with Desdemona, or is it a strong sexual attraction, or is it just to hurt Othello?
13. Was there a time when Desdemona had feelings toward Iago?
14. Does Vinnie have a special someone (besides himself), or does everyone think he is too wierd?
15. Has Thailog ever felt love, even in the slightest way?
16. Was Malcolm and Elaina's wedding more out of love, or convenience?
17. Do Banquo and Florence have a thing for each other?
18. Does Cagney have a special kitty friend, or just Elisa?
19. Has the Magus been yerning for Kathern all of his life, and never told her how he felt? If yes., thats pretty sad.
20. And, somewhere deep deep down, both Goliath and Demona both yern to again be one, now and forever. Right? I better be. And this would have been shown in latter episodes besides dark ages right?

I'm sure you can see from my questions that I am QUITE the softy. And I love how Gargoyles uses this topic so often. Great job!!!

Greg responds...

Twenty Questions! YAY! :P

1. Sure, to the extent she knows how.

2. Ditto.

3. Something between madly in love and mildly attracted.

4. He's indifferent in the incarnations you've seen.

5. Yes.

6. Yes and Yes.

7. Of course.

8. Sure.

9. Yes. His children and his Children and the island of his birth and all the funny little mortals. He's a benificent one, that Oberon.

10. Probably.

11. I think Brooklyn respected Goliath too much to think that way, to allow himself to think that way.

12. The first two. The third is just a side benefit.

13. No.

14. He is currently available? You interested?

15. He's not admitting to it, unless he's lying.

16. Politics. And a hope of love.

17. They're exes.

18. That avenue has not yet been explored.

19. Not all his life. After all, he's ten years older than she is. But yes, it is sad.

20. I think somewhere deep, deep down Goliath wants to be with Elisa. And somewhere deep deep down, Demona wants to be with someone who is right for her.

Response recorded on September 06, 2001

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Demoness writes...

~Avalon's Magic"

We see in the episode "Avalon Pt3" the Magus uses Avalon's magic to transform the Iron Knights into iron chains. We also know that the Fae can tap into Avalon's magic too and we also know that Avalon's magic can effect iron. So this is my question.

1. Can the Fae use Avalon's magic to effect iron too like the Magus can?

2. If the answer is no. Why can't they?

Greg responds...

1. No.

2. The Magus was a mortal conduit for the magic. It's one of the reasons that what he did killed him. He was adapting the island's magic to something it was not supposed to do.

Response recorded on September 01, 2001

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matt writes...

i just watched "Awakening 1 and 2" and wow, i love these eps, particularly "Awakening 1" its beautiful!
anyway, i was wondering some things about the sleep spell:

1. would the sleep spell work on a human? could a human be put to sleep for a thousand years?

2. what is the spell's peculiar attachment with the castle? the spell says "until the castle rises above the clouds", but what if the Magus tried this spell on some rogue gargoyles? would they still sleep til Castle Wyvern rose above the clouds? what if the gargs live in another sort of structure, like the Mayan Pyramid? would the spell still work? i just don't quite understand the spells need for a link to the castle. could Magus have changed the spell to say "sleep until the sky burns or whatever"?

3. was the sleep spell in the Grimorum when Magus first acquiered it? was that spell in the Grimorum there when the Archmage first acquiered it?

i guess the Grimorum being transported through time by the Phoinex gate over 900 years really helped it to be presearved, eh?

Greg responds...

1. The spell would work on humans. But we age while we sleep. So we'd die long before the castle rose above the clouds.

2. Open ended spells require more power, more energy. Setting a limit (no matter how unreasonable the limit may seem) makes casting the spell easier. Certain spells were written or adapted to certain limits. The Magus may also have adapted the spell to his needs. But basically, it was the equivalent of "til Kingdom come".

3. I imagine so.

Didn't hurt.

Response recorded on September 01, 2001


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