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So I know you've answered this a number of times over the years, but rather than I asking the nth time, I've spent a while thinking about the "how".
So Macbeth and Demona cannot die but by their own hand and although there are situations that seem like they could die by another's (beheading, smashed stone, etc), these situations cannot happen because of the spell the Wierd Sisters placed on them. It protects them from assured fatal injuries that normally would kill mortals (again beheading, smashed stone, etc). The spell basically would manipulate events to ensure that Macbeth and Demona would always get out of such a situation (Macbeth getting caught in the French Revolution and is scheduled to be beheaded but some mishap with the dungeon keys delays it, buying him time to escape or Demona is forced to roost elsewhere instead of her normal spot because of some freak storm preventing her in getting back, thus sparing her from being smashed by the Hunters one morning).
They would have uncanny luck in avoiding death situations that would otherwise be assured.
I guess you're basically right, but I would recharacterize it. The Sisters may not have magically enforced this "manipulation," as you put it, so much as they magically predicted future events.
Rewatched "Pendragon" on DVD yesterday. A few observations from this time around.
Hudson recognizes the wind that heralds the arrival of King Arthur and Griff; I suspected that there's an interesting story behind that and how he came to know it. Most likely something that would be told in "Dark Ages".
Griff refers to Westminster Abbey as "my abbey" when initially confronting King Arthur - for me, it evoked Goliath speaking of "my castle" when confronting Elisa back in "Awakening Part Three". Evidently part of the gargoyles' territorial nature manifesting itself.
Macbeth immediately recognizes Griff as a gargoyle, though all his on-stage encounters with gargoyles up till then were with the Scottish variety. (Of course, most of the things that went on during those nine hundred years of wandering in his life, we don't know about - only his fighting at Bannockburn on the Scottish side, and taking part in the 1950 removal of the Stone of Destiny from Westminster Abbey.)
I really like the term "rookery poem" as a gargoyle counterpart to "nursery rhyme".
Someone should write a book of rookery poems...
Rewatched "Sanctuary" on DVD today. New observations.
Elisa writes Macbeth's name as "MacBeth". Not quite as serious as the infamous "Servarius" error in "The Cage", but still a bit unfortunate.
I was amused to note that Demona barely even registers Elisa's presence in the middle of her fight with Macbeth, even though Elisa's calling out to both of them - until just before Elisa shoots her. She does finally spot the detective and aim at her, but Elisa takes her down before she can do more than that. Apparently her feud with Macbeth tops even her hatred for Elisa.
I felt a sense of near-horror, though, as I noticed how Demona and Macbeth's fight was damaging the library, with several books apparently getting damaged or destroyed.
And the silhouette of a gargoyle against the moon in the newspaper photograph bears an uncanny similarity (obviously coincidental) to the Bat-Signal.
Those typos drive me nuts.
Rewatched the "Avalon" triptych on DVD today. A few new observations.
The Magus's lyre in the "flashback on Avalon" scene looks a lot like Merlin's lyre in "A Lighthouse in the Sea of Time". Obviously not the same one, but evidently both wizards share a common taste in musical instruments.
Princess Katharine and the Magus's telling Elisa "Little is known of the Sleeping King" struck me as all the more appropriate since in 995, nearly all the major works on King Arthur had yet to be written (Geoffrey of Monmouth's "History of the Kings of Britain", the oldest extant start-to-finish account of Arthur's life, wouldn't be written for over a hundred years). There were one or two, like Nennius's "Historia Brittonum", but that was about it.
A detail that I hadn't spotted before: a couple of gargoyle-like sculptures were "guarding" the bridge leading to Arthur's resting-place within the Hollow Hill.
King Arthur and Goliath have both used a mace while fighting Macbeth (Goliath did so in "Enter Macbeth") - one of a few points in common they share (others are awakening in the modern world from a long enchanted sleep, and having scheming illegitimate sons).
The Archmage's boast that he could destroy Goliath with "just a word" struck me as apt, since all the "enhanced Archmage"'s spells were one-word ones ("Vessel", "Revert", "Ice", etc.).
It's difficult not to smile at Elisa's "Souvenirs" question after Season One of "Young Justice". Fortunately, she was asking it in a lighthearted tone.
Certain elements run through my work, I suppose...
Rewatched "The Price" on DVD yesterday.
This time around, I noted the Macbeth-robot's "trophies" line, and how that continued the "hunting" imagery I'd been paying close attention to in the series during my 25th anniversary viewing. Because trophies are one of the reasons why someone would be hunting. (As far as I can tell, it's the only time that was given as a motive for hunting gargoyles - and, of course, it doesn't count, since it was all part of the misdirection tactic.)
I rewatched "High Noon" over the weekend. ("Outfoxed", as well, but I'm giving it a separate entry.)
What struck me most about this episode this time around was that it was almost a "Shakespeare villain team-up" - Macbeth (and Demona, whom you could describe as a "Lady Macbeth" analogue) team up with Iago (more accurately, a gargoyle analogue for Iago, who's only called that in the voice actor credits). I doubt that Shakespeare should have objected to that, since he'd written at least one crossover himself ("A Midsummer Night's Dream", which blends Greek mythology with English fairy-lore).
I still like the touch of Hudson and Broadway learning to read from the newspaper - poor Broadway's still finding the word "right" a challenge (cf. "The Silver Falcon"). Again, I'm going to have to look through some books on the history of the English language to find out how so many words which sound like "-ite" came to end, in written form, with "-ight". It's probably one of the biggest challenges to someone learning written English.
Broadway's excited cry, as he and Hudson enter Macbeth's library, "Look at all these books!" struck me all the more, when I thought that, to someone who'd been born (well, hatched) and grown up in the 10th century, a library that size would indeed seem miraculous. What a difference the printing press has made!
"Iago"'s cry as "Othello" and "Desdemona" recover control of Coldstone, "I am besieged!", grabbed me this time around - such a dramatic way of describing the struggle within.
And this time, I also noted Coldstone's statement that, as long as "Iago"'s trying to recover control, "no *living* gargoyle" (emphasis mine) is safe from him. It brings home, I think, his awareness that he's now an "undead gargoyle".
Glad you liked it, still, after all these years.
Rewatched "City of Stone" today (all four episodes). A few things that stood out to me this time.
Continuing the "gargoyles being called beasts" thread: the granary guards in Part One call Demona's clan "filthy beasts". Gillecomgain doesn't use the term "beast" for Demona, but does call her a creature and a monster.
(By contrast, the "breastplate gargoyle" comments about their old home, after Demona and her clan have to abandon it following Duncan's attack, "The hunting there was good" - probably one of the few occasions where gargoyles are talking about being the hunters rather than the hunted.)
Demona's clan uses nets twice in this multi-parter - once against the granary guards in Part One, once against Canmore's army in Part Four. The nets being in Parts One and Four gave a nice sense of "bookends".
A detail that I can't believe I missed before: Demona was bearing the Hunter's mask at her belt, as if a trophy, after the battle with Duncan. (The young Canmore grabs it from her during his attack upon her.)
Demona calls Bronx "my pet"; I looked up your remarks on gargoyle beasts in the archives and found that gargoyles don't see gargoyle beasts as pets, but as equals. Maybe another sign that Demona thinks far more like a human than she'd admit (or than it would be safe to tell her)?
I like the touch of the various new kings (like Macbeth and Lulach) being hailed as "High King of Scotland" - the "high king" part conveys all the more a sense of Scotland as a collection of recently-united chiefdoms (which it would have been at the time in actual history).
We tried to get a feeling for the actual history into the piece.
Rewatched "Enter Macbeth" today.
I can't help womdering what must be going through Hudson's head as he watches a Donald Duck cartoon, thoughtfully stroking his beard. The spectacle of a duck grown to human size, wearing clothes and speaking (kind of) could be an even bigger argument for not believing everything you see on television than the revelation of the Pack's true nature.
U remember in your ramble on "Enter Macbeth", your daughter spotted what looked like the Mona Lisa in Macbeth's mansion. This time around, I noticed a portrait of a man apparently in 18th century attire, who reminded me of portraits I'd seen of Bonnie Prince Charlie.
The doors to Macbeth get it both coming and going; they first get broken down when Bronx escapes, and when he returns with Goliath, they demolish a second pair of doors. (Of course, it becomes academic after the whole mansion gets burned down.)
Lexington talks about getting the clock working again; I wonder if he ever succeeded before the Canmores blew the place up.
1. Donald is a mystery to us all... ;)
2. I think Macbeth owned a lot of expensive art.
3. Yeah, so much destruction.
4. He never did.
I have some questions about Macbeth and his family:
1)Is Macbeth religious? I imagine he was a Catholic back in the eleventh century, but in the present day, is he lapsed or what?
2)How much does Mac know of what happened to his family after his "death"? I suppose he knows that Luach and Bodhe died in battle, but does he know that Grouch commited suicide?
3)If yes, did that color his suicidal behavior in the present day?
1. I'd have to do a bit of research about the church in the Eleventh Century. Macbeth did, if I'm recalling correctly, visit the Pope.
1a. Probably "what".
2. All of it.
3. That's for the audience to interpret.
1. Between 1020 and 1032, what was Macbeth's job or title? He wasn't expected to become either King of Scotland or High Steward of Moray, so what was he doing (or being trained to do) during that time?
1b. Who did he directly answer to? Who had direct control/power over him? Gillecomgain, Duncan, Maol Chalvim...?
2. What was Macbeth's in-universe relationship with his cousin Thorfinn like?
3. You've said, when asked about his religion, that Mac's omnireligious currently. Do his beliefs lean towards any religion in particular? Like Christianity, Buddhism, etc? If so, which one?
4. Does Macbeth know the details about Gruoch's death? How she died, when, etc?
Thank you. :)
1b. Whomever was king at the time.
2. No spoilers.
3. Probably still Christianity, with Pagan overtones.
1. You said that Demona would have 4 or 5 great loves total. Does that number include the one-sided romantic relationships she's been in? Like the Paris romance with Macbeth and her romance with Thailog, in which only one partner genuinely loved the other.
2. You said that Demona's clan, between 1040 and 1057, often slept at Castle Moray but never all at once. What was the reason for that? Was Demona's distrust of humans a factor?
2b. What was Demona's primary residence during that time?
3. When Demona is human during the day, does she experience any psychological changes due to her being fully human? The human hormones, instincts, etc... do they affect her perceptions/interests/attractions in any way?
4. Between 1040 and 1057, did Demona have anyone other than Macbeth, human or gargoyle, that she was friends with? Was there anyone as close or closer to her than him?
Thank you. :)
1. I don't think I said that. Can you give me a reference? I definitely wouldn't count what we've seen of either Macbeth or Thailog in Paris.
2b. Castle Moray.
3. Not that she'd acknowledge.
4. No spoilers.
1. As of the end of the SLG comics, do either Macbeth or Demona know about what they did during the weeks that they were controlled by the Weird Sisters? Do they know about their actions in High Noon, how they were forced to attack the innocent people (inc Katharine, Mac's only remaining relative, and Demona's children) on Avalon, etc?
If not, what do they think happened to them between their fight in New York and waking up in Paris?
If either does know, how do they feel about the Weird Sisters as a result?
2. Do Macbeth and Demona share the "anguish" mentioned by the Weird Sisters in CoS4 the same way they share physical pain? For example, on their wedding night in Paris, could Demona feel Macbeth's emotional pain as if it were her own?
If not, how does that part of their link work?
3. Is the shared pleasure part of Demona and Macbeth's link physical, emotional, or both?
Thank you. :)
1. Largely, they do not.
1a. It's perplexing.
1b. I doubt either of them are terribly fond of the Weird Sisters in any case.
2. Emotional pain? That would require enough selflessness to acknowledge that anyone else has emotional pain.
2a. You're assuming that anguish isn't physical?
3. Have we established shared pleasure?
In Enter MacBeth, MacBeth refers to Demona as the Gargoyles' queen. But wouldn't she or even someone of her clan from the past have told him a bit about Gargoyles and their clans and that they didn't have kings or queens? Or did she leave him to believe she was their queen?
I think you're taking his statement too literally. He saw her as the leader of the gargoyles, which she was during the key moment of his natural life. He views leaders in terms of kings and queens, so used that language. (Also as a chess metaphor, I seem to recall.) But he wasn't speaking or thinking about her this way literally.
Hello! I am a huge fan of your work. I was wondering, what would have happened if someone were to travel back in time, and keep Macbeth from saving Duncan from falling off the cliff in City of Stone Part Three?
In the Gargoyle's Universe that isn't possible. It happened, so it happened. We had very strict rules of time travel.
I remember your mentioning that in the proposed "Weird Macbeth" story, you'd cast Goliath as Macduff. It recently occurred to me that that would fit the "none of woman born" element (as with Demona earlier) - if in a different manner than the Macduff of the original play.
I don't know if that was one of the reasons you'd cast Goliath for that role, but I thought I'd mention it.
It's all in there.
Since Demona is still around as of the Gargoyles 2198 spinoff, that means MacBeth is still around as well. I know you won't discuss any actual plans for the character (SPOILERS!), but can you tell us if you had specific plans for him? Or did the outline for 2198 not get that far?
I have plans for everyone and everything.
1)When Macbeth first fought the Manhattan Clan, did he know they were members of Demona's original clan? And that Goliath was her former mate?
2)As of Phoenix, how much does Mac know of Demona's past before they first met? Does he know about the Wyvern Massacre and the role she played?
3)During the 17 golden years of Mac's kingdom, did he and Demona ever discuss her past? And if yes, how honest was she?
1. He knew the former, not necessarily the latter.
2. I assume you mean as of the END (i.e. the present day 1997 ending) of Phoenix. If so, he knows about the massacre. He's heard HER version of the role she played. I doubt she'd have copped to the entire truth.
3a. She was completely honest to her thinking. Emotionally honest. She just left out a few details.
Hi Greg! It`s me again, Austrias biggest Gargoyles and Rain of the ghosts fan! I`m still hoping for more Comics and/or a continuation of the series.
I am deeply fascinated with the subplot about Demona and Macbeth. They are by far my favorites.
There is one thing I don`t understand. According to Gargoyles Timeline Gruoch was about 27-28 when she had to marry Gilcomghain. Judging by medieval standards she was a very old maid. Why wasn`t she married at "the right age" like 15 or so as it was the custom for a gentle woman?
Why didn`t Macbeth and Gruoch marry years before? They grew up in the same castle, were fond of each other, Macbeth was evidently wealthy and of noble birth so why did`t they just get engaged around the age of 18-22 or so when they were of age? What was the problem?
Best wishes for your current projects! Can`t wait to see "Masque of Bones" (P.S. Any news about its publication yet?)
Historically, what happened, happened. We were only able to guess at the reasons.
So, in universe, Macbeth was without a father and had his inheritance ripped away. (So he was no longer wealthy, and he was virtually homeless.) That gave Gruoch's father pause about allowing Gruoch & Macbeth to marry. Gruoch wouldn't marry anyone else, until Macbeth was convinced by Bodhe to reject her.
And they didn't grow up in the same castle. Bodhe and Gruoch were VISITING the night Findlaech was killed. And that was the first time Macbeth and Gruoch met. They fell in love then and thereafter, but by that time Macbeth was S.O.L.
As for Masque of Bones, I haven't written it yet, because I've been writing World of Warcraft: Traveler novels for Blizzard and Scholastic.
I estimate Macbeth is, or at least was, a fan of theater given that he knew Shakespeare well, liked the Macbeth play, and borrows his aliases from it.
1. What are some other plays he was particularly fond of? Of any genre or time period. The idea of Macbeth attending Broadway musicals makes me smile.
2. Did he ever try his hand at acting or play-writing? Especially in the more modern times, the stage seems like the last vestige for an immortal to physically revisit some of those olden days. Can't say if it would be nostalgic or not for him though.
1. I'll leave that to your imagination.
2. I think so.
Hi Greg. Hope you're well. I'm working through my to-read pile, but I have both Rain of Ghost novels on my desk waiting. I'm glad you decided to put books out. Xanatos, Macbeth, & Puck/Owen are my favorite characters from any medium, and I recently found out my dad loves the Star Wars Rebels series. He never watches cartoons. I haven't seen it yet, but he said he enjoys it because the characters were written really well. I wasn't surprised to hear that.
Had some more domestic, trivia-type question regarding Macbeth during his retirement from the world around 2198 & earlier (pre-Invasion). Couldn't find anything in the Archives.
1. How is Macbeth occupying his time by this point? Activities, interests, etc. I'm very interested in this sort of thing because I feel it adds dimensions to characters.
2. Secondly, was there something specific that caused him to want to withdraw from the world?
3. What was it, if you're willing to share?
Respect & Appreciation,
1. No spoilers.
2. No spoilers.
3. No spoilers.
1) The spell the Weird Sisters cast on Demona and Macbeth ensures that the two of them are unaging and immortal, only able to be killed by one another. However, in "The Mirror", Demona expresses her wish to no longer turn to stone during the day, stating it makes her "vulnerable".
If Demona were to be shattered by someone other than Macbeth when stone during the day, would it bypass the Weird Sister's enchantment and kill both her and Macbeth permanently, or would the enchantment be powerful enough to simply piece her back together?
1. Vulnerable to Macbeth, at least. The rest of your question is hypothetical and moot.
Hello, Mr. Weisman. Back again.
Something that bugged me a little when I was watching "High Noon" and "The Price"; in both episodes, Goliath wonders how Macbeth could have escaped from the Weird Sisters (of course, Macbeth didn't actually escape, but that's neither here nor there with regards to my point).
Anyway, my question is this: did it never occur to Goliath that the Weird Sisters might have just let Macbeth go? After all, he doesn't really know anything about the Sisters at this point; they're almost entirely an unknown quantity. Did he think that they'd keep Macbeth and Demona prisoner indefinitely (that isn't rhetorical; I really do want to know)?
Thank you for your time, sir. Have a nice day.
I don't know about indefinitely, but the Sisters didn't take them casually, hence Goliath's response.
Gargoyles is a great show. Now that my praise is out of the way, I'm moving onto the question.
I watched the version of City of Stone with your commentary (which was very amusing) but there was one part which stood out to me. In the beginning of Part 4, we see Demona of the eleventh century meet up with Macbeth. You (or one of the other commenters) acknowledged that Demona was, and I quote, "a bit in love with Macbeth". It makes sense why she would feel this way, seeing that Macbeth was a close ally of hers.
Was this really true, or were these possible feelings of hers frivolous?
Um... all of the above?
Mostly, I prefer to leave that to every viewer's interpretation.
At the Blue Mug Convergence 2014 Panel, you have stated that Mac and Demona had lots of sex while they were engaged. Didn't you previously state that "Dominique" had presented herself as a good catholic french girl, presumably to avoid having sex with him?
One of the two was a mistake, you changed your mind, or what?
(By the way, I must admit that, if you did change your mind, I liked the original version more.)
All things are true. Few things are accurate.
Or put another way, don't take a Blue Mug TOO seriously.
I think the original answer is better too.
Why does Demona and MacBeth's pact make it where they can only die by each other's hand's?
I understand that neither can die while the other lives, but wouldn't that just mean that they would both have to be killed at the same time? And if the one killing the other isn't physically hurt by the same action why does that supersede the "when one lives, both shall live" rule.
Also, what happens if they're decapitated or if Demona had been destroyed during the day when she still turned to stone?
The pact is what the Weird Sisters declared it was. That was one of their conditions. They could have chosen a different condition, but they didn't.
The "when one lives, both shall live" condition means specifically that no one else can kill them. Because as long as one of them is alive, the curse will drag the "dead" one back into life, as you saw in multiple episodes.
And if Demona kills Macbeth or vice versa, the other is hurt - in fact killed by the action. So it supersedes the other rule because that's what the Witches declared.
As for the what happens if question, it's moot. Because it's a hypothetical question that hasn't/didn't/pretty much won't ever occur, because Luna is the Weird Sister of fate and knows.
Would Macbeth or Demona have to be in complete control to kill one another? I.E. if one of them were brainwashed or possessed, would it still work?
I guess so.
In the Gargoyles universe weve head about Macbeth ad nausium...but close to nothing about Lady Macbeth, who, in my opionion (as at least in the begining of Shakespear's play) was FAR more interesting.
In your view, was she a witch?
I'm leaving the term "witch" up to your own interpitation, whatever that may be, and a simple "yes or no" will suffice.
You saw Lady Macbeth on the show. Gruoch, remember?
1. In 'Double Jeopardy' Lexinton and Broadway view the tapes of Severius, detailing the creation of Thailog. (I'm being a bit specific in case some details have slipped your mind over the years) Anyway, Severious artfically aged Thailog to be the age of Goliath, but how did Severious know Goliaths age or did he just estimate?
2. Also in that tape, Severious mentioned how he managed to counter the 'slow aging process'. Goliath would later explain to Elsa that gargolyes age at 1/2 of humans, so once again, how did Severious know that?
3. If Thailog had been aged differently, say to the age of the Trio or Hudson, would that have affected his mind by much?
4. In Vows, Thailog and Macbeth meet for the first time and I do love Macbeths reaction. 'Who the blazes are you?!'. Did Macbeth react like that because he was put off by Thailog's resemblance to Golaith?
5. In that same scene, Thailog slips Macbeth a gun and allows him to escape. So I'm assuming that Macbeth was not entirely sure of Thailog's intentions, other than that it looked like he was double crossing Demona, but it has me thinking. Does Macbeth count Thailog as an alley, enemy, or just neutral?
1. He estimated, I suppose. But I also think it's possible that he had that information from Xanatos, who may have gotten in the past through Demona.
2. I don't remember this. Are you sure you heard that right? Because Thailog from this point on ages at a normal rate.
3. Too hypothetical to answer.
4. He was reacting to that, yes.
5. I think by the time Macbeth and Goliath were done comparing notes, Macbeth would regard Thailog at best as someone to be very wary of.
Who rebuilt macbeths home after it was destroyed in enter Macbeth ?
You mean what contractor did he use?
I just wanted to write and just give you some thanks for some of the great shows you have helped create, Greg.
Young Justice I enjoyed thoroughly, though I am more a fan of the first season than the second; I like fewer characters and more characterization as opposed to detailed plots just as a personal preference. I will also say I was not a fan of how Wally West was handled but I am sure you have heard your share of them. I will just say that the Wally of the comics and the Wally of Young Justice seemed to be entirely different characters which seemed a shame to me, given all that could have been done with him. He had such a rich comic book history that I really do not understand why more was not done with it but that is your creative decision. Just not my cup of tea.
I adored your version of Dick Grayson however. He was competent without being overly skilled; he suffered under pressure but learned from what he was exposed to. His relationship with Wally in Season 1 was one of my all time favorites. Thanks for the great run!
Secondly, I could not write you without mentioning Gargoyles. I mean, wow. I think I was in fifth or sixth grade when I first caught it on the air. I just remember being deeply enthralled with it. I thought Elisa was an awesome character, as I did not see a whole lot of strong female leads back then and she was definitely that. I also adored the interesting family background you gave her. So often, characters fall into the stereotypical white, black, etc and she brilliantly avoided those.
I also firmly owe you thanks for igniting my interest in Shakespeare. I remember that I saw "City of Stone" when we were having to pick plays and such to read/analyze for school and after seeing that awesome four parter, I went right to my English teacher and asked if I could read MacBeth. It is still my favorite of the Bard's works.
The characterization of Demona was incredible. Most villains are so one dimensional but all the villains of Gargoyles were so well fleshed out. I am a creative writer myself and working on my first work to aim towards publication and I definitely count Gargoyles among my top inspiration for how to do characterization. To this day, I will tell people if they want to see a well fleshed out villain, go watch Demona from Gargoyles. I honestly would rank her about equal to Gollum from "Lord of the Rings." She can be diabolical, sneaky, cruel and yet you can totally see why she would have turned out that way and I can switch very easily from feeling such anger at her to feeling overwhelming pity. Bravo, my good Sir!
Thanks. Always nice to have the work thoughtfully appreciated.
I just watched Enter Macbeth and I have a question about why he went to Xanatos with his offer. How did Macbeth know that there were gargoyles living modern Castle Wyvern in the first place?
He had seen them.
In 2198 are the Wyrd Sisters still watching Demona and Macbeth?
Do you mean still in cooperation with the Archmage? No.
You said that Macbeth found the play bearing his name to be rather amusing in how it got most about him wrong. What do you think his view on the Highlander film would have been?
I think he would have found the notion of Sean Connery playing an Egyptian Spaniard, while Christopher Lambert played a Scottish Highlander, hilarious.
I wrote this up on my blog last Christmas (a bit of a gift to myself there) and thought I'd share it here.
For every hero, or group of heroes, there must be villains. The villains test the hero, the villains make the hero. In the realm of superhero lore, Batman and Spider-Man have been cited as having the greatest rogues' galleries in comics. And I do not disagree. Sadly, other heroes or teams seem to come up lacking. Sure they may have one or two great villains, but the rest seem to be meh. The FF have Dr. Doom and Galactus, sure. The X-Men have Magneto and the Sentinels, Green Lantern has Sinestro, but the rest of their rogues galleries have always seemed, at least to me, to be okay at best. I know some will contest this opinion, but it's my opinion and as far as this blog goes, that's the one you're stuck with. Personally, I always thought the Third Great Rogues' Gallery belonged to "Gargoyles." So, let's honor them.
First of all, here's who didn't make the list and why:
Wolf - Nothing against Wolf, he's fun. He's a big dumb thug, but he's fun. But, as of yet, I haven't found him to be very interesting on his own. And I always thought his teammates were more interesting and fun to watch.
Tony Dracon - I like him a lot more than a lot of other "Gargoyles" fans seem to. He's usually fun, but he didn't quite have enough to make this list.
Oberon - I never thought of him as a villain, and I still don't. Even when he was trying to kidnap Alex. Did I agree with him? Not at all, but I don't think he was in the "legal" wrong either.
Robyn Canmore, Dingo, Matrix, Yama, and Fang - If you don't know why, shame on you.
Second of all, here's who I hope to add to the list some time:
Queen Mab - Come on Disney, let Greg do it!
Morgana le Fay - Ditto.
With that out of the way, let's dive into list.
20. Duval and Peredur fab Ragnal
At present, we've seen too little of these two to know much about them. But what we have seen has been enough to give us an intriguing mystery, especially if you've been following ASK GREG for the past fourteen years. They are the guiding hands of the Illuminati Society, which was created a century after the Fall of Camelot, by Sir Percival to "set things right." Which of these two men is Sir Percival? Well, I have my theories on that. Peredur fab Ragnal is the Welsh name for Percival, and Duval sounds like a modern alias for Percival as well. In fact, for years Greg Weisman told us that Percival was Duval, and then when the comic comes out we get Peredur. Following that, he said nothing changed from his original plan? So, who is Sir Percival, and what's the deal with the other guy? Again, I have my theories.
But I imagine that should new material ever come our way, one or both of these guys will shoot up on this list.
I also enjoy the idea of Duval being cybernetic, but I think he needs a bit of a re-design. Especially in what he wears.
19. The Banshee/Molly
The Banshee may have only been in one episode (with a cameo appearance in another), but damn did she leave an impression. Everything about this character was executed flawlessly. The character model, the animation, the voice, the effects! I loved how ghoulish she appeared, you could see the background through her.
It also helps that "The Hound of Ulster" is one of the best World Tour episodes. The script is tight, the animation is gorgeous, and a lot of the character actions are subtle and over the top when they need to be. Look at Molly's brief, brief exchange with Rory's father for the subtly, which contrasts the wonderful over the top performance as the Banshee.
This guy was a jerk. I mean, really. A paranoid tyrant who thought the world was out to get him. Well, not the world so much as his cousin, Macbeth. I suppose I can understand seeing Macbeth as a threat to the throne, but he just seemed to go out of his way to make Macbeth miserable. He reveled in it. When he died, we were all happy to see him bite it.
Batman has Joe Chill, and Spider-Man has the Burglar. Goliath has this Viking chieftain who massacred his clan. Well, Hakon may not have acted alone, but with the swing of his mace, the series really began. Like his descendant, Wolf, he's pretty one-note. But he plays that note masterfully.
But perhaps the better story isn't even the one where he shattered the clan, but the one where his vengeful spirit attempted to drive Goliath insane. That episode was the perfect send off for Hakon, even more so than falling off a cliff to his death. His angry, vengeful spirit was trapped alone at the bottom of a cavern for all of eternity without anyone or anything to hate. At least that's where I think he should have stayed. Hakon might have ranked higher if he didn't come back one last time in an episode that I thought was one of the show's only misfires. But hey, sixty-five episodes, eighteen comics, and only one misfire. You're still golden.
Now this guy is fun. I love his design, both as a gargoyle and as a robot. I love his Doc Ock-esque tentacles, and I loved Xander Berkeley in the role. Coldsteel is a manipulative jerk, and it's fun to watch him work. His favorite victim is usually Coldstone, and his goal remains unchanging… possess Coldfire. In a nutshell, he's a creepy stalker.
What's also fun is that he's had three voice actors, and not because Berkeley was unavailable. When he controlled Coldstone's body, he was played by Michael Dorn. When he possessed Brooklyn, he was voiced by Jeff Bennett. And they both did it without talking like their regular characters. Watch "Possession" again and listen to "Brooklyn" speak. It's obvious who is in the driver's seat.
I also enjoyed his appearance in the comics, working for Xanatos to distract our heroes from the theft of the Stone of Destiny. Where will he go from here? I'm not sure. I tend to think he works better when he's teaming up with other villains than acting on his own. Well, he did see potential in the Coyote robot, so maybe that's not over; one could see him working with Thailog too; perhaps even re-team with his rookery sister, Demona… they did get along quite well in "High Noon."
15. Constantine III
What can I say about this guy? He follows a long tradition of Disney tyrants, and is just as fun to watch as any of them. Sometimes I think the tenth and eleventh century villains are even more vicious than the modern day villains, and Contantine sums that up.
When we first meet this guy, he uses Finella, the woman who loves him, to lure King Kenneth (who is in love with her) out just so he can murder him in cold blood and take his crown. Then he casts her aside so he can marry Princess Katharine and better secure his claim to the throne. And he tries to keep in control with barely veiled threats against her charges. Harsh.
But even better than that is his return in the "Gargoyles" comic book where he's hunting down and murdering every gargoyle clan he can find, and trying to find Katharine and her friends. By now, he's been in power for two years and rules with an iron fist… which leads to a civil war. This guy is such a jerk that he even kills the messenger that the army of the Three Brothers sends. You never kill the messenger.
And then there was his rather creepy relationship with his new protégé, Gillecomgain, which led to the two inspiring each other in a very twisted ways. Constantine is inspired by Gillecomgain's scars to wear them as war paint in battle, and in turn, Constantine inspires Gillecomgain to become the Hunter. As if Gillecomgain needed any more inspiration. Which brings me to…
Let's face it, even as a kid, Gillecomgain had issues. Obviously there was a lot of darkness instilled in him by his father, who himself had some very understandable issues also. What did these issues lead to? One rogue gargoyle was going through their barn, and Gillecomgain pointed a pitchfork into the shadows to scare a thief only to get slashed across the face. What did THAT lead to? Arguably the events of the entire series.
Gillecomgain's life didn't get better. Constantine III took an interest in him which set him on the path of becoming a masked political assassin, not to mention his continued hunt for the demon that scarred him. Like dominos, this led to events that made Macbeth the man he is today, the Canmore clan what they became, and set the tone for centuries of hatred and pain. And all because of one scratch in a barn.
As a character himself, Gillecomgain stacks up well. There is a moment after his arranged marriage to Gruoch, who obviously doesn't love him, where you almost wonder if you should feel bad for a man whose wife obviously despises him. Then he crushes her rose underfoot. What does this mean? Here's a hint, Luach might not have been Macbeth's son. Powerful stuff.
13. Falstaff/John Oldcastle
Okay, this guy is fun. Him and his gang of LARPers gone bad. They appeared only in the final two issues of "Gargoyles: Bad Guys" but they made an impression. I loved the buildup Falstaff received. We see him take a young Harry Monmouth (who would grow up to become Dingo) under his wing. Train him to be a thief, and take pity on the poor boy after his mother ran out on him. Only for that shocker of a final page where we see Oldcastle with his hands wrapped around the throat of her already dead body.
I really love his gang. At first glance, they seem super human, but are in fact incredibly skilled. And I love that Oldcastle, maybe the world's greatest thief, named himself after Shakespeare's king of thieves. He looked the part, and just seemed to take so much joy in everything he did, and that helped make it a joy to watch him do it.
I hope we get more at some point, because I want to know more about him. Why did he murder Dingo's mom? And when did the Illuminati recruit him? Does he have any other responsibilities for the Society other than guarding their giant vault? Well, until next time, and I believe there will be a next time.
Of all the new characters introduced in the comic books, the most intriguing has to be Shari. Is she Thailog's new executive assistant, or does she own him? So far it seems to be a little bit of both. But I'm sure it's far more one than the other.
I love the narrative device of her storytelling, and I wonder where her knowledge comes from. Sure, she's a very high member of the Illuminati Society, but there are some things she just shouldn't know. And yet, she does. Like I said, she's intriguing. Now, I have my theories on who she really is, in fact I think it's so obvious, I almost wonder what the point of not revealing it was, aside from the fact that I can't see a place in the stories released to do it.
And as a final bit of trivia, Shari's look and basic design was inspired by stage actress and long time "Gargoyles" fan, Zehra Fazal. I've seen her perform on stage, and she is brilliant. She definitely deserved to be immortalized in "Gargoyles" canon in such a way.
11. The Archmage
Who would have thunk it? A one-shot villain if "Gargoyles" ever had one. You watch "Long Way to Morning" again, and you'd never think this guy would have become so important in the grand scheme of the series. Well, let's just say that David Warner kicks ass.
While I do write off his appearance in "Long Way to Morning" as 'obvious one shot villain,' he's still fun, even there. But I think what everybody remembers most is his turn as the villain in the "Avalon" triptych. I loved "Avalon Part Two." I thought the script was brilliant. I thought David Warner's dialogue with himself was tremendous. The entire endeavor was just wonderful.
Do I agree with the decision to kill him off? Absolutely. I don't think he would have had any staying power in the modern day material. The guy is a clichéd sorcerer, even if he's a very fun one. However, that doesn't mean I think the character is done entirely. There is plenty for him to do in a certain spin-off that takes place during the "Dark Ages." Or maybe even something to do if one were to TimeDance and have an encounter with him.
What can I say, I have a soft spot for this glorified toaster oven. At first glance he may seem like Ultron wearing half of Xanatos's skin, but the influence from Xanatos is evident. This robot has a sense of humor, sometimes even a perverse one. Granted it's not sentient or self-aware, but it almost seems close enough to fool you.
I love all the designs he goes through. They're all different, while at the same time reminding you of who you're looking at. But my favorite will always be the first one. I loved the look, I loved his perception-warping weapon the most. I wish he'd used it more often.
What's next for this character? Well, Greg has kept extremely tight-lipped. We know more upgrades are on the horizon, but come "Gargoyles 2198" … well, let's just say I think I know what the Xanatos of "Future Tense" was actually foreshadowing.
9. Jackal and Hyena
The "Gargoyles Universe" is well known for their complex, complicated villains. But sometimes, it's nice to just cut loose. Enter the sociopathic Jackal; and his twin sister, the psychotic Hyena and we're in for a good time whenever they show up. These two will crack you up one moment and then make you sick the next.
The first time they appeared, they didn't seem THAT bad. Then, come their second appearance, you have Hyena nearly slicing a fan's face up, and smiling when she gets arrested. Following that, we have Hyena falling in love with a robot. And then, after that, the two volunteer to trade in their body parts for cybernetic implants. Frankly, it's rather sick.
Jackal almost seems normal when you compare him to Hyena. "Normal" being very relative, until we get to "Grief" where he becomes the avatar of Anubis, giving him power over life and death, and what does he do? He decides he wants to end all life on Earth. Yeah….
I'm glad these two are close siblings, because they deserve each other. Still, whatever else they are, they're very fun bad guys. Hell, even a friend of mine named his gold colored Aztek after Hyena.
8. Anton Sevarius
Dr. Anton Sevarius earns points for being the creepiest villain we have encountered so far. He's even creepier than Jackal and Hyena! Sure, he's pretty much a hired gun, but the guy enjoys it. He revels in it. I can sum up Sevarius with one quote. After he was asked why he was doing this:
"For science, which as my associate Fang indicated, must ever move forward. Plus there's the money… and I do love the drama!"
This guy is only slightly more ethical than Dr. Mengele! And I also need to give a ton of credit to Tim Curry for really bringing this guy to life. Apparently, Brent Spiner was the first choice to voice Sevarius, but Curry got the role, and Spiner was cast as Puck. Thank god for those decisions.
Another moment that really stands out was when he was all over Angela in "Monsters." Does he have a sexual interest in her? I don't know, probably not. I think he just took pleasure in making her as uncomfortable as possible.
I think my other favorite Sevarius moment comes from "Double Jeopardy" where he thinks he's taking part in a Machiavellian scheme of Xanatos's and decides to act the part… very badly, I might add. So much fun, even when he makes you scream.
7. The Weird Sisters
Okay, let's get this out of the way. Silver haired Luna is the Sister of Fate; Raven haired Selene is the Sister of Vengeance; and Golden haired Phoebe is the Sister of Grace.
The Weird Sisters are, for the most part, a complete mystery. They have plans within plans that stretch through the centuries, after all what is time to them? They could even give Xanatos a run for his money. What is their agenda? Only they know. We've seen two thirds of the story, with Luna ascendant during "City of Stone" and Selene ascendant during "Avalon." But there is a missing piece, where does grace fall in their plans for Demona and Macbeth? Hopefully time will tell.
These three are great fun to watch. I love how they can be both nowhere and everywhere. And I love how they can and will take on different forms depending on who is looking at them at any given moment. Where do their loyalties lie? Well, it seems to be with Oberon, but I've long suspected there is something bigger at play with these three.
It would be easy to say they were plucked straight out of the Scottish Play, but in several folklores and mythologies, the Weird Sisters are present in some form. There is just something elemental and primeval about them. And that's part of what makes them a great element of the series.
Any woman who David Xanatos would marry would have to be cut from the same cloth he is, because anyone else would be beneath him. Fox is that woman. Hell, sometimes she gets the better of him, whether they're sparring in the dojo, or playing chess. And he doesn't resent this; it's just further proof that he's found the love of his life.
It's weird to watch her in "The Thrill of the Hunt" at times, because Wolf, Jackal, Hyena, and Dingo just seem so far beneath her, she almost seems out of place there. And yet, at the same time, the more we learn about her, the more it makes sense. When we meet Halcyon Renard, a huge piece of the puzzle is put into place. She was never a daddy's girl, in fact, quite the opposite. She was clearly motivated, for years, by just annoying her father. Maybe her mother too.
And I think it was just as much of a shock to her that she loved David. But I wonder what their relationship was like before her prison sentence? Obviously Xanatos made her a television star, but what else was going on there?
She was his lover and employee. And a trained mercenary, let's not forget that.
Like her husband, she grew and developed as the series progressed, and is every bit as interesting a character as he is. In fact, in an alternate universe, I wonder how the series would have played if Fox was in Xanatos's role from the get go.
Ah, the prodigal son… and he's a bastard. Literally.
I love this guy, he's just a hoot. Thailog is as powerful as Goliath, as brilliant and amoral as Xanatos, and as hammy and immoral as Sevarius. All at once. And it shows. In every single appearance, it shows. The guy is a walking Oedipus complex, what with his desire to prove his superiority to his fathers. I suppose one might say that he's already gotten the better of Sevarius, since he has the good doctor on his payroll. And while he outsmarted Xanatos once, I don't think he's done. Turning Nightstone Unlimited into a powerhouse to rival Xanatos Enterprises is obviously a means to this end. But what next?
I think my favorite thing about Thailog is that while he is a clone of Goliath, that's the last thing that comes to mind when I think about him. He's a fully developed character in his own right, and not simply Goliath's evil twin. On that note, I'm happy his coloring is different, because the last thing this show needs is an entire episode where the gargoyles try to figure out which one is the real Goliath.
And how can anyone not find that maniacal laugh of his to be anything but endearing?
4. John Castaway
John Castaway is a fascinating character, hell to crack the top five, he has to be. Castaway is a weak man, and at the heart of everything, a frightened child. Too weak to stand up to his brother and say "this is wrong" and too weak to admit he was wrong when he pulls the trigger and everything goes to Hell. I think the only thing that has changed is his support system.
Now that the gargoyles have been revealed to the world, Castaway represents a political movement who are moving against them. And it's rather frightening. Not for being a group of hooded thugs, they are not, but for being like a cross between the neighborhood watch, and a support group. Oh, there is a violent wing of the Quarrymen, we know that. But with Castaway's shrewdness, and the Illuminati's backing, I don't think he would do something stupid like fire anti-aircraft cannons in Manhattan, or hijack a train. No… because that would make Castaway much less difficult to defeat than he is. And even then, who says that happens? The Quarrymen are destined to be a problem for at least the next two hundred years, and like the Hunters before them, his descendents will lead the organization.
Keep in mind, we can all trace this back to a scratch in a barn in the tenth century.
Well, where do I start? Well, I suppose I will start by saying that I almost feel bad for putting him on this list at all. He has a strong sense of honor, if skewed. He's worked against our protagonists and with them. But, in the end I think the only side he's on is his own. While he is more of an ally now, that doesn't mean he hasn't been part of the problem before and won't be part of the problem again.
His story is terrific. Rather than follow the Scottish Play, the story we got was a loose adaptation of the true history of Macbeth and his reign over Scotland. Yes, we had Demona and gargoyles, and the Weird Sisters and sorcery, but we also had a history lesson unfolding, even if we didn't know it at the time. And it's terrific. To this day, it's my favorite tale in the entire mythos.
When we first meet him, the centuries have certainly taken their toll. He is not above attacking the gargoyles, taking hostages, and committing grand theft. And yet, we never once think of him as evil, despite doing some pretty unethical and amoral things. That changes with "City of Stone" when we learn his story and feel sorry for him. But at the same time, I think the perception among many fans has swung around too far. Yes, we understand him more now. But that wasn't his redemption. Far from it.
I think the tail end of "Sanctuary" and "Pendragon" is where the change begins, and I stress this, begins. In the former, he learned that he is still capable of love. In the latter, while some didn't quite get why he competed so violently against King Arthur for Excalibur, well, it always made sense to me. This is a man who has suffered so much, who viewed his existence as sad and endless, that he was looking for something to give it meaning and maybe justify every terrible thing that has ever happened to him. Being the new Once and Future King would serve that purpose, wouldn't it? Well, it doesn't quite work out for him, but over the course of the series we have seen this man go from suicidal renegade to a man who doesn't think life is completely worth living, and now seeks purpose in his existence. Did he look like a fool clutching that broken sword? Well, he was a broken man. And once you hit rock bottom, the healing can begin.
2. David Xanatos
He was designed to be a heroic character, and he was cast as the villain of the piece. That, right there, is what makes this character so brilliant. He has so many positive qualities, so many admirable traits. He's smart, he's cool, he's suave, he's practical, he knows his priorities, he doesn't sweat the small stuff, he doesn't hold a grudge; the titled heroes have more personality flaws than he does! But he is also incredibly ruthless, and while he's not evil, he is incredibly amoral. He seems to be the walking personification of Frederick Nietzsche's ubermensch when one stops to think about it. And he is awesome.
I am actually struggling here, what more can be said about David Xanatos that hasn't already been said? He's designed many tropes all by himself. There was never a villain like him in animation before, and even after he's left, there still has never been anyone quite like him. He doesn't surround himself with dimwitted henchmen and beat them up and scream when they fail. No, quite the opposite, he is always surrounded by incredibly competent people. His assistant and majordomo, Owen Burnett comes to mind. And he so rarely loses. In sixty-five episodes, and eighteen comics, I can count the number of actual losses on one hand. Aside from that, he always comes out on top. Always. But when he doesn't, he doesn't throw a fit and scream, he shrugs it off and moves on to the next plan. There are always contingencies. This guy is the coolest guy in the series.
His character arc throughout the series is brilliant. I love his rivalry with Goliath, and I love how he doesn't hate or even dislike Goliath. He likes Goliath a lot, admires him, and regards him with what I can best call a mix of interest and benign amusement. That's far more interesting than Megatron's hatred for Optimus Prime. And I really love how Goliath would often use the word "evil" to describe Xanatos. Sure, Xanatos has done some evil things, but Goliath's view of him for the longest time was very two-dimensional. It almost represents how most audiences, especially in animation, were trained to view the villain. No, Xanatos wasn't a Dark Lord, or a diabolical evil. He was simply a trickster. A human trickster.
While Xanatos and Goliath seem to have made some form of peace, that still didn't make Xanatos one of the good guys! I love that! In a way, he's still the enemy, and now the gargoyles are living with him, and they know it! He still has plans and schemes, and while he likes the gargoyles and helps them out, that doesn't stop him from manipulating them to his own ends, or even working against them. And best of all, as far as Xanatos is concerned: it's nothing personal.
I also have to give a ton of credit to the performance of Jonathan Frakes. He made Xanatos sound so sophisticated, fun, and erudite.
David Xanatos, he should run a seminar on villainy. Often imitated, never duplicated.
Demona is the clear number one on this list, for reasons both grounded and very esoteric at the same time. At the most minimal of glances, she seems very typical. We've seen genocidal human haters before. But scratch the surface, even a little, and we get the deepest creation of not only the series, but one of the deepest creations in the realm of fiction. I'm going to say this now, and roll your eyes all you want, but Demona would not be the slightest bit out of place in Russian literature. Or William Shakespeare's for that matter. I love this character.
Let's start with the surface elements first. She's got a terrific character design, and was so very well animated. Marina Sirtis deserves a tremendous amount of credit for the work she did bringing her to life. She embodied that character so completely that I never want to hear anyone else ever voice Demona on any animated project. No one can do it. Period. Hearing Marina Sirtis voice Demona was just as much of a revelation as hearing Mark Hamill's Joker. And I will stand by that statement even under threat of torture. She is also just such a badass! An intimidating warrior, an immortal, a sorceress, and she transforms into a human during the day! Hell, in both forms, she's pretty hot.
Now, for the esoteric. She has a guilt complex that makes Peter Parker's look tame by comparison, but she spreads it around to everyone else rather than internalize it. And considering how much she has to feel guilty over, this makes her arguably the most dangerous character in the series. She cannot accept her own culpability for the terrible things that happened to her, and for all intents and purposes, murdering her clan. She may not have swung the mace, but her ambition, her bigotry, and her cowardice put them in front of it.
Her favorite scapegoats are humanity as a whole, who make an easy and convenient target for her to project her guilt and self-loathing on. Now, does she have a point? Yes. Let's face it, humans can be bastards. We've done terrible things as a species. But, just as you cannot blame every Muslim for the attacks on September 11th, or every German for the Holocaust, Demona is wrong to blame every human for the terrible actions of a few. And at the end of the day, she was either directly or indirectly responsible for those actions. She betrayed her clan, and caused the massacre; she created the Hunter, and betrayed Macbeth. Demona created her own pain, and she intends to wipe out every man, woman, and child on the face of the Earth just to justify every damned stupid choice she ever made.
Despite all of that, she is an eternally conflicted character. She is not a one-dimensional cut-out. Deep inside, she knows she's wrong, she knows what she did. But she cannot and will not acknowledge that. And that's what makes her hatred for Elisa Maza so interesting. The one human she hates most is the one that has been a true friend to the gargoyles, because Elisa is living proof of just how wrong Demona really is. And the fact that Elisa and Goliath are now in love doesn't help considering Demona's lingering feelings of jealousy.
Of course, there is Demona's biological daughter, Angela. She is probably the one person Demona cares about in the world. My single biggest regret about the cancelation of the comic book is that we didn't get to see the two of them interact again. I am beyond curious to see where this goes. But one thing I am confident of, it's not heading towards a hysterically easy redemption. Nope, if we take the plan for the "Gargoyles 2198" spin-off seriously, and I most certainly do, Demona is still plotting against humanity long after Angela has died. Is it sad? Yes. Is it tragic? Yes. Is it Demona? Absolutely.
I also love how she is a walking mess of contradictions. Her belief system is based so much on lies she tells herself, that she will rationalize anything she can to fit her world view. Why? Because the alternative is admitting she is wrong, and right now, she will not do that. Cannot do that. Sadly for both her and Angela, I see tragedy in their future.
Demona's through line is one of the main reasons I am so desperate for "Gargoyles 2198" to be produced. I want to see how her story ends, and if it's going to end anywhere, it's in that spinoff. This is a story I am dying to see, and if Disney never produces it, well… one way or another I intend to find out what happens to her. What her ultimate fate is going to be. We know she'll have an epiphany of some kind. How does it happen? Why does it happen? What's the fallout? How does her story end?
Demona is an endlessly fascinating character. We've never seen anything like her in the realm of western animation before her debut, and I don't think she's been replicated since. Why? I don't know. But lightning has been caught in a bottle, and I am rather happy that no one has attempted to imitate this unique and perfectly conceived character but tragically flawed person.
What? No love for Bruno?
Some questions about Macbeth and Shakespeare...
1)Did Macbeth have a particular reason to choose the names Lennox and Macduff as his alias? I mean, why those and not, for example, Donalbain and Seyton?
2)You previously stated that Macbeth was mostly amused by the shakespearean version of his story. Is this true also regarding Shakespeare's portrayal of Gruoch?
3)A)What do you think is Macbeth's favourite shakespearean comedy?
3)B)And his favourite tragedy?
1. I seem to recall Michael, Brynne or Lydia having a clever reason for why Macbeth specifically chose those two, but I can no longer remember what it was.
2. Ultimately, it was so far removed from the truth, that all Macbeth could be was amused at the bad history (which he was already long-accustomed to) and marvel at the artistry and the truths revealed there even if they were not hi truths. As for Gruoch, he saw so little (really nothing) of his wife in the boy playing Lady Macbeth that he couldn't be too upset. It may have also helped that the name Gruoch was.never used in the play.
3a&b. I'll leave that for each fan to imagine.
What exactly did Demona's position as Macbeth's primary adviser entail? He said that he had planned for her to govern at his side... very, very strong words for a king. We know she maintained command of her clan, and she also seemed to have command of a number of his human troops but what was she doing during "peace time?" Was she advising him on strategic and diplomatic alliances? Tax policies? This was definitely much bigger than what Goliath's or Hudson's positions with Prince Malcolm were. When I hear "govern at my side" it makes me think that for all intents and purposes, even if not in name, she was the co-ruler of Scotland.
"Peace time" is a relative term. She helped him maintain his army and (if you will) his air force, along with other defenses. She advised him on military strategy, and as we saw, he was open to hear anyone give advice on anything. But her primary job description was basically Secretary of Defense.
She was not co-ruler of Scotland.
I was wondering, was Blade a possible inspiration for Macbeth's modern design?
Did Demona carefully think through her Operation Clean Slate plan? If the virus was meant to eliminate all human beings, wouldn't that kill Macbeth, as well? If so, that would mean that by her killing him she would be engineering her own death due to their magical link.
Greg Weisman says:
"Good question. Keep in mind that magic isn't an exact science. The Weird Sisters told Macbeth and Demona that 'When one lives both live.' Demona used the magic Praying Gargoyle statue to insure she would survive the fullfillment spell. So would Macbeth have survived? Probably. She knows about the mortality link. She would not want his death at her hands if that resulted in her own. Towards Macbeth, her impulse should not be murderous by necessity. And mindset has a real effect on magic results. However, Demona isn't the most stable and rational of characters. She certainly has murderous feelings toward Macbeth. And if their linking spell 'perceived' the death of all humanity as a successful attempt to kill Macbeth, then it might very well have killed her as well. Did she consider this? Maybe.
Maybe it was a risk she was willing, even eager to take. Maybe somewhere underneath it all, she's a bit suicidal. Could she die with the idea of leaving behind a human-free 'paradise' where her daughter could live in safety? Remember, Moses led the Israelites to the Promised Land, but he was not allowed to enter it himself. Maybe that's how Demona felt about it.
Then again, maybe not. Very provocative question."
[Response recorded in the Station 8 "Gargoyles" FAQ, Section VI.]
My first question didn't post for some reason, so here goes again:
1. Given that aside from that one stint in Florence, and NYC/Scotland, the place we see Demona show up the most in the series and comics is Paris. That, combined with her choosing a french name and identity made me wonder if Demona has some special affinity for Paris/France. Or am I just reading too much into it?
2. You've said that Demona is biologically the equivalent of a human 35, and at the beginning of the series Goliath was about 28 I think. Since in Awakenings the clan all thought Demona had been frozen in stone like them, didn't any of them notice that she maybe looked different, or older? (It's hard to tell with animation if she really did;)) I realize there was a lot going on, but didn't anyone notice anything...off about her? Or is Demona just one of those people that, magically protected from the effects of age/rough lifestyle, can pass for younger?
3. During the time of his reign and their alliance, did MacBeth ever find out that Demona is a sorceress? If so, what did he think about it? At the time, I would guess he might respect her ability to learn a...scholarly pursuit, maybe, but I can't imagine Grouch at least would be comfortable with it, especially as it seems her husband being suspected of sorcery was already a rumor.
Thanks so much for still taking the time to answer Gargoyles questions, since I'm sure Young Justice is taking up a lot of your time and attention lately :)
1. Perhaps. Maybe she liked the work they did with the guillotine.
2. One doesn't have to invoke magic to look largely unchanged between the ages of 28 and 35. Some folks just have the genes for it.
3. Demona was never much of a practicing sorceress in those days. She had a bit of training and dabbled. I'm sure Macbeth was aware of that.
I have a MacBeth question this time. You mentioned a while ago that MacBeth has worked as a stage actor in the past. I thought that was such an interesting tidbit about a guy we don't necessarily know a ton about. Was that you idea, and if so, what inspired it?
You also mentioned that you saw MacBeth as acting in a lot of George Bernard Shaw plays probably. Why is that? Shaw was pretty political - do you think that influenced MacBeth's decision to do those plays?
1a. It just felt right. Plus I like the idea of him collaborating with Shakespeare.
2. Yeah. It just felt like Shaw's work would appeal to Macbeth.
Are the gargoyles aware that the two owners of Nightstone Unlimited are Demona and Thailog? The Alexander Thailog name could be a giveaway, and did Macbeth tell them Demona's human name after the action died down in "Sanctuary?"
I don't think that Macbeth knew about Nightstone, and thus it never occurred to him that - once outed - Demona would continue to use her alias.
Something that I've always wondered about "Double Jeopardy"- when Xanatos and Owen are discussing who could have "abducted" Thailog, Xanatos explicitly lists a small number of enemies- and he uses that exact word- who could have pulled it off. Specifically, the three he names are Demona, Renard, and Macbeth. Now the first two are easy enough to understand- Demona is the enemy of all humanity and has a history with Xanatos personally, while Renard is his main business competitor- but so far as we've seen Xanatos and Macbeth have only met in person twice (once in "Enter Macbeth", when Mac was actually working for Xanatos, albeit for his own reasons, and once in "City of Stone" when Mac pretty much ignored Xanatos and focused all his efforts on Demona). So my question is- why does Xanatos consider Macbeth an enemy? Have they had an offscreen run-in that we never saw, presumably because it didn't concern the gargoyles, that would lead to this attitude, or is it just a case of Xanatos naturally being wary of someone with the resources and skills to pose a legitimate challenge to him? Or is there some other reason?
I think they've been at odds -- and he feels Macbeth has the resources. "Enemy" probably is too strong a word.
In 1050, when Macbeth visited the Pope in Rome, did Demona accompany him?
Story for another day.
I know you hear this a lot, but I wanted to start by saying that I've always loved Gargoyles; I was raised on it. It was one of the things that started my love for the fantasy genre, and it taught me by example how to write/appreciate stories with complex characters and well-thought stories. I also love TSSM and Young Justice, and started watching both after hearing you were working on it. ;) :) Thanks for all the hard work you've poured into your work over the years. :)
My question has to do with Demona and "Operation Clean Slate". (I hope I'm not repeating a question; I tried searching for it but couldn't find anything.) Anyways, I was wondering a couple of things:
a) if Demona knows about other sentient life outside of humans, gargoyles, and Oberon's children--like the New Olympians--would she care that she's probably killing all of them, too? (I'm not asking if she does know about them--I imagine you probably want to keep that to yourself. ;))
b) Would killing the entire human race count as Demona killing MacBeth? (To be honest, I've never fully understood whether they actually have to kill each other practically simultaneously, or whether just one killing the other would be enough. MacBeth seems to believe the latter, but if he's mistaken, then I'm assuming they would both survive.)
Thanks for your time! :)
a. I'll leave that to your interpretation of the character.
b. This has been covered. Check the archives.
Thanks for the kind words.
i have a serious question if Macbeth dies of a natural cause like a heart attack or something does that mean Deamona dies as well from it?
I'm not interested in these hypotheticals.
I just re watched City of Stone, and in part 4 MacBeth "dies" for the first time. His wife convinces him to leave Scotland, citing that his subjects would no longer accept him as King if they knew of his magical bond with Demona. My question is, who has to know that he died? The only people who saw him killed were his family and the Hunter...and who of MacBeth's subjects would believe the Hunter over the Royal Family? Granted, after long enough his people would notice him not aging, but during that war and with his family so vulnerable, it seems like a terrible time to fade into the wind.
Thank you so much for creating what I and many people consider the most intellegent and literally epic animated series ever, and for staying connected with your tireless fanbase.
By the time Macbeth and Gruoch could have/would have gotten to them, Bodhe and Luach would have announced Macbeth's death.
So I'm watching "City of Stone" again, one of my favorite storylines, and I'm wondering, how on earth could a young MacBeth not realize Gillecomgain was the Hunter who killed his father?
I mean, clearly they know each other, and the Hunter is wearing a mask that has markings the exact same shape of Gillecomgain's giant scars. Doesn't seem like the best disguise.
Asked and answered already. Check the archives.
While I'm going down memory lane, I wanted to tell you my first impression of Macbeth. I don't know if you intended to use skillful misdirection, but when Macbeth first came on the show, I just thought he was a regular, albeit really athletic, guy whose shtick was call himself "Macbeth." Like how Batman villain Maxie Zeus dresses up like Zeus or the Mad Hatter who models himself on an Alice in Wonderland character. When Brooklyn and Lexington brought up Shakespeare's play, I was like, "That's it. He's just a big fan of the play taking it too far."
Later when I saw City of Stone, I was like "He doesn't think he's Macbeth. He is Macbeth!" Even in "Lighthouse", I still thought he was just an eccentric, especially when he used the alias Lennox Macduff.
Was I dim or should I have realized he really is Macbeth before "City of Stone?"
No, you weren't dim. We were looking for that ambiguity.
You have answered previous questions about Luach's father with saying that, while born during Gruoch's marriage to Gillecomgain, Macbeth may have been his real father. Did you ever intend for this twist to surface in the comics when you rekindled the series?
Also, the year after Macbeth's "death", when Luach was killed, why, rather than going to join Macbeth (who surly knew of his son's death and his wife's desolation), did Gruoch commit suicide? Or is that simply history, and thus undependable?
By what means could Gruoch have found Macbeth?
A comment this time, rather than a question. One of my favorite details in the "Stone of Destiny" story was Macbeth's presence at the Battle of Bannockburn. It recently occurred to me that this might be an example, if a subtle one, of the time-honored motif of a legendary hero from long ago who returns to his country to aid it in a time of need.
The concept has attached itself to King Arthur, of course, and his return has featured in "Gargoyles" (if with a premature re-awakening). The returns of the Golem and Cu Chullain, elsewhere in the Avalon World Tour, also evoke it. For that matter, I remember your once saying that the Avalon gargoyles looked upon Goliath (from what they had learned of him through their human guardians) as a great sleeping hero who would one day awaken and return if ever they needed him - and he did indeed return in their hour of need, when the Archmage attacked Avalon.
I also recall, outside of "Gargoyles", the legend that Theseus returned to aid his fellow Athenians against the Persians at the Battle of Marathon (and Mary Renault including it in her Theseus novels) - which forms a great parallel here to Macbeth's presence at Bannockburn, both cases of a desperate struggle against an invading army.
At the same time, your use of the "return of the king" motif for Macbeth's participation at Bannockburn (assuming you had it in mind at the time) came with a twist. Macbeth returns incognito; so far as we know, none of the other Scotsmen taking part in the battle know that he's fighting alongside them. Robert the Bruce is the Scottish king who will be associated with the victory (deservedly, of course, from what I've read about the battle). No chronicle or legend even hints at his presence there. As far as we know, only he knows that he was there (we don't know if Shari knows or not; the panel depicting him at the battle is in one of her stories, but she does not mention him in the text itself). The king returned to aid his country in need, but in secret, his presence unremarked on.
Very cogent analysis.
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