A Station Eight Fan Web Site
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'm back (briefly) after a great trip to Ashland for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Saw eight plays (Comedy of Errors, Richard III, Tempest, Into the Woods, Great Society, Two Gentlemen of Verona, Wrinkle in Time, Family Album) in four days, and though I didn't love every play, I have to say that every production was stellar.
Then last night I saw a very cool production of King Lear at the Theatricum Botanicum in Topanga Canyon, starring Ellen Geer as Lear.
Anyway, I'm in town for just a few days, then I leave again to drop my daughter off for her junior year at Tulane and take my son (starting his senior year of high school next month) to look at a number of schools, including Tulane, Emory, Duke, UVA and Georgetown. ROAD TRIP!!
Starting in September, I'll be in town for the foreseeable future, and I promise to get back to answering questions here. Meanwhile, here are some cool links:
Warner Archive Podcast interview, regarding Young Justice:
In case you need to know where to find the Young Justice Blu-ray:
And another podcast:
http://www.goldenspiralmedia.com/as-09-arrow-squad-episode-09-interview-with-greg-weisman-of-young-justice (specific episode for Arrow Squad)
http://www.goldenspiralmedia.com/ccu-02-central-city-underground-episode-03-interview-with-greg-weisman-of-young-justice (specific episode for Central City Underground)
http://www.goldenspiralmedia.com/ (general website)
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/arrow-squad/id891769883?uo=8&at=1l3v5ck (iTunes link for Arrow Squad)
https://itunes.apple.com/us/podcast/central-city-underground-flash/id904991850?uo=8&at=1l3v5ck (iTunes link for Central City Underground)
And some sights promoting Rain of the Ghosts and Spirits of Ash and Foam:
Plain Talk Book Marketing http://www.plaintalkbm.com/
Amazon Author Page: http://www.amazon.com/-/e/B00EAUDZM6
Book Information: http://www.plaintalkbm.com/family-portrait-novel/
Facebook Fan Page: https://www.facebook.com/FamilyPortraitNovels
I'd like to apologize for not getting to many of your questions recently. It's really due to all the travel I've been doing this summer - and the need to fit a LOT of work in between the trips.
Some of you have commented that the same excuses don't seem to apply to my Twitter account, and that's true. But the difference is that I can tweet from my phone at odd times and before bed - AND with little thought.
I've tried doing Ask Greg from my phone, but it's just too difficult. I'd rather give considerable thought and have the option of answering questions in depth. But if you want to make quick contact, by all means follow me on twitter at @Greg_Weisman.
The travel isn't over, either. I leave Monday for Ashland, Oregon, for my family's annual trip to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. For the curious, we're seeing the following eight plays over four days & nights:
THE COMEDY OF ERRORS by William Shakespeare
RICHARD III by William Shakespeare
THE TEMPEST by William Shakespeare
INTO THE WOODS by Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine
THE GREAT SOCIETY by Robert Schenkkan
THE TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA by William Shakespeare
A WRINKLE IN TIME by Madeleine L'Engle and Tracy Young
FAMILY ALBUM by Stew and Heidi Rodewald
We're really looking forward to it.
Anyway, then I'm back for half a week, before the family takes another trip - this one to (a) drop my daughter off at college for her junior year and (b) take a road trip to look at five different colleges in five different cities with my son before he enters his senior year of high school. The entire trip will take eleven days, bringing me to the end of August.
But in September, my current plan is NO TRAVEL. (Stop #6 on the Gargoyles 20th Anniversary Tour is Long Beach Comic Con, which is driving distance. http://longbeachcomiccon.com ) So I should be back to answering a few questions every weekday regularly. Thank you for your patience.
So the #Gargoyles20 U.S. Tour continues. Stop #3 is CONvergence in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Well, actually in Bloomington, Minnesota, but close enough.) http://www.convergence-con.org
This is a big one for us. It includes a number of events that we used to do at the old Gathering of the Gargoyles Conventions, which ran from 1997-2009. And I know a bunch of Gargoyles fans will be attending, so it'll also be a reunion of sorts.
My schedule for the long weekend is quite packed - which is just how I like it!
THURSDAY, JULY 3, 2014
2:00pm - 3:00pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY AUDITIONS
Ever wanted to be in a radio play? Now is your chance! We are holding auditions for a live performance at CONvergence! You don't even have to be a fan of Gargoyles to enter. You just have to know how to read! Casting: Myself and Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice). Casting decisions will be posted by 7:00pm on Friday, July 4th. ATRIUM 7.
3:30pm - 4:30pm BUFFYVERSE TEN YEAR ANNIVERSARY
Okay, so Gargoyles ISN'T the only show celebrating an anniversary. The Buffy/Angel universe has been off the air for ten years. Let's reminisce and talk about the impact these shows have had on TV fantasy since their cancellation. Panelists: Myself, Tim Lieder, Cetius d'Raven, Madeleine Rowe, Mark Goldberg. EDINA.
7:00pm - 8:00pm OPENING CEREMONY
If it's not exactly a magical invocation, it is nonetheless our official kick-off for the convention! Join CONvergence mascot Connie as we welcome our Guests of Honor, give out some awards (including the Mark Time and Ogle winners), and get this party started. Panelists: Myself, Amy Berg, Emma Bull, C. Robert Cargill, Sarah Clemens, Scott Lynch, Marina Sirtis, Frank Paur, Matthew Ebel, Dawn Krosnowski, Greg Guler, Rob Callahan, Windy Bowlsby, Michael Lee. MAIN STAGE.
9:00pm - 10:00pm GREG WEISMAN'S FANCY BASTARD PIE COMPETITION
Geek Partnership Society is excited to host the Greg Weisman Fancy Bastard Pie Competition at CONvergence 2014! It is open to all CONvergence members who wish to participate. The goal is to make a pie that Greg Weisman, herein to be known as "Fancy Bastard", likes best. The winner will be told super-secret Young Justice spoilers. Find out [some of] what would have happened in Season 3! (But winner must swear to secrecy to claim prize.) See below for some helpful hints.* CABANA 110.
FRIDAY, JULY 4th, 2014
11:00am - 12:00pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY AUDITIONS
Ever wanted to be in a radio play? Now is your chance! We are holding auditions for a live performance at CONvergence! You don't even have to be a fan of Gargoyles to enter. You just have to know how to read! Last chance to audition! Casting: Myself and Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice). Casting decisions will be posted by 7:00pm on Friday, July 4th. ATRIUM 7.
12:30pm - 1:30pm FROM TV TO COMICS
We'll discuss the TV shows that expanded into the comicverse, such as Buffy, Smallville, Young Justice and Gargoyles. Did they succeed? Were any of the comics improvements on the shows? How did canon change during the transition? Panelists: Myself (Gargoyles, Young Justice), Shawn van Briesen, Jonathan Palmer, Greg Guler (Gargoyles), Karine Charlebois (Gargoyles, Bad Guys), Christopher Jones (Batman Strikes, Young Justice, Bad Guys). PLAZA 2.
2:00pm - 3:00pm SIGNING
Myself, Christopher Jones (Young Justice, The Batman Strikes, Parallel Man) and Greg Guler (Gargoyles, Phineas and Ferb) will be holding a signing session. Both Chris and Greg always have an array of stuff (books, prints, etc.) to sell and sign. But this time I'm pretty darn prepared as well. First off, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE - especially if you buy my book. ;) CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
3:30pm - 4:30pm CREATING GARGOYLES
This is what we used to call (at the Gathering) the Rocky Horror Gargoyles Show. The creators of Gargoyles show clips and tell stories of how the show came to be. Lots of visual aids. Panelists: Myself (Creator, Supervising Producer/Story Editor, Writer), Frank Paur ( (Supervising Producer/Director), Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer). ATRIUM 6.
7:00pm - 8:00pm TIME TRAVEL THEORY
Let's assume for a moment that Time Travel is possible. This panel will explore the theories behind such technology. We'll explore quantum realities, temporal anomalies and all other challenges our theoretical time travelers will be face! [Now, I suggested this panel, but then they went and put some actual scientists on the damn thing. So I may quickly be embarrassed into silence.] ;) Panelists: Myself, Nicole Gugliucci, Jim Kakalios, G. David Nordley, Amy Berg. ATRIUM 4.
8:30pm - 9:30pm GARGOYLES Q&A
Join the cast and creators of the "Gargoyles" series and SLG companion comic books to ask and talk about the property. And, as always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Myself (Creator, Supervising Producer/Story Editor, Writer), Christopher Jones (Bad Guys guest artist), Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona and Margot Yale), Frank Paur (Supervising Producer/Director), Karine Charlebois (Gargoyles Guest Artist, Bad Guys Artist), Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer, Gargoyles Guest Artist). MAIN STAGE.
SATURDAY, JULY 5th, 2014
9:30am - 10:30am GARGOYLES SIGNING
Myself, Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona and Margot Yale) and Frank Paur (Supervising Producer/Director) will be holding a signing session. Again, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
11:00am - 12:25pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY REHEARSAL
This is a closed session - for those who were cast in the Radio Play - led by Myself, Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice) & Marina Sirtis (voice of Demona, Margot Yale and Queen Bee). ATRIUM 6.
12:30pm - 1:30pm GARGOYLES RADIO PLAY PERFORMANCE
Fans and professionals - including Myself (voice of Donald Menken and Lucas "Snapper" Carr), Jennifer Anderson (Talent Coordinator on The Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice), and of course, Marina Sirtis (Deanna Troi from Star Trek TNG and the voice of Demona, Margot Yale and Queen Bee) - perform a LIVE, ORIGINAL Gargoyles radio play! ATRIUM 6.
2:00pm - 3:00pm GARGOYLES BIOLOGY AND CULTURE
A "what if" panel about the biology and culture of the Gargoyles universe. Creators and performers speculate about anything and everything going on outside the frames of the TV series. Panelists: Craig A. Finseth moderates Myself (Creator, Producer) and Greg Guler (Lead Character Designer). ATRIUM 7.
3:30pm - 4:30pm RAIN OF THE GHOSTS
I'll be reading from and talking about the world and characters of my novel "Rain of the Ghosts" and its sequel, "Spirits of Ash and Foam," which comes out July 8th, 2014, one week after the convention! ATRIUM 3.
7:00pm - 8:00pm ONE ON ONE WITH GREG WEISMAN
Hal Bichel will moderate a one-on-one panel with Myself. PLAZA 2.
8:30pm - 9:30pm SIGNING
Once again, I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
10:00pm - 11:00pm BLUE MUG
Ever wonder about the sexual habits of Gargoyles? Ever wonder who was sleeping with whom among the Young Justice Team or the cast of Spectacular Spider-Man? Join us for for a late night peek at your favorite animated series. This panel will get blue! (So attendees will be carded!) Panelists: Myself, Christopher Jones, Mara Cordova (Last Tengu in Paris Artist). It is also rumored that Edmund Tsabard (an unfancy bastard and Last Tengu in Paris Writer) may make an appearance. EDINA.
SUNDAY, JULY 6th, 2014
11:00am - 12:00pm PROTOFEMINISTS IN SHAKESPEARE
Shakespeare portrayed several intelligent, independent, and self-aware women--Juliet, Lady Macbeth, Katharine, Beatrice, Viola, Rosalind. We'll discuss the problematic and the remarkably (for the era) fleshed-out aspects of their representation. Panelists: Myself, Elizabeth Bear, Ashley F. Miller, Joseph Erickson, Alexandra Howes. EDINA.
12:30pm - 1:30pm GARGOYLES FAN PANEL
It's the 20th Anniversary of Gargoyles. Come share your favorite moments from the show. As always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Daniel Mohr moderates Myself, Ryan Alexander, Robert Wagner, Maggie Schultz, Jennifer Anderson, Karine Charlebois. ATRIUM 6.
2:00pm - 3:00pm SIGNING
Myself and Greg Guler (Gargoyles, Phineas and Ferb) will be holding one last signing session. Greg G. always has an array of stuff (books, prints, etc.) to sell and sign. And I'll be selling and signing copies of my first novel RAIN OF THE GHOSTS for $10 cash, which includes the book, a personalized signature and signed copies of the original development character designs by Kuni Tomita for the television version of Rain that never was. In addition - and by popular demand - I am selling and signing an array of my animation teleplays for $20 cash from such series as Gargoyles, Team Atlantis, DC Showcase (Green Arrow), Men in Black: The Series, The Spectacular Spider-Man, Roughnecks: Starship Troopers Chronicles, The Batman, Batman: The Brave and the Bold, W.I.T.C.H., Young Justice and even the 2009 Radio Play "The Spectacular Spider-Man Meets Gargoyles". I'll also sign anything else you bring and put in front of me for FREE - especially if you buy my book. CONVERGENCE CENTRAL.
3:30pm - 4:30pm YOUNG JUSTICE
Creative minds behind the Young Justice TV and comic book series will talk about this fan favorite. We're planning some special surprises as well. And, as always, Cosplayers are welcome! Panelists: Myself, Marina Sirtis (voice of Queen Bee), Christopher Jones (Artist YJ Comic). MAIN STAGE.
5:00pm - 6:00pm CLOSING CEREMONY
It's not over 'til the gynoid sings - or something like that. Join CONvergence mascot Connie and our Guests of Honor as we say farewell to another convention. Shenanigans may ensue. Panelists: Myself, Amy Berg, Emma Bull, C. Robert Cargill, Sarah Clemens, Scott Lynch, Marina Sirtis, Matthew Ebel, Frank Paur, Dawn Krosnowski, Greg Guler, Windy Bowlsby, Rob Callahan, Michael Lee. MAIN STAGE
SEE?!! I told you there was a lot. And that's only the stuff that I'm doing. CONvergence is jam-packed with all sorts of pop culture nutritional goodness. So stop by and say hello!!
*In the interest of Full Disclosure, Fancy Bastard would like all to know that he especially likes the following pies:
BERRY (pretty much any kind of berry or a mix of same)
BANANA CREAM (herein to be known as the funniest pie)
Combinations of some of the fruit pies can be great. Contestants are welcome to try other pies at their own risk.
Fancy Bastard does NOT especially like the following pies:
Anything with Chocolate or Lemon or Meringue
Raisins in Apple Pie
Almost never Cherry, though he has tasted the rare exception...
I noticed that in the blurb for "Rain of the Ghosts" a) there are a few names borrowed from "The Tempest" (such as the Ghost Keys also being called the Prospero Keys, and your protagonist has a friend named Miranda), and b) the story is set in the area of the Bermuda Triangle. Was this influenced by the theory that one of the inspirations for "The Tempest" was a shipwreck in the Bermudas in 1609?
I don't think it'll surprise anyone to learn that "The Tempest" will play a role in the Rain series as a whole, though not so much in the first two books. Beyond that, I'm not going to spoil.
Since you are a big Shakespeare fan, I thought to ask if you've read A Midsummer Tempest by Poul Anderson? It's set in a world where all of Shakespeare's plays really happened?
No. And I won't, so as not to crowd my head with other folks' ideas. Sounds really cool, though. We were trying to accomplish the same thing (among other things) on Gargoyles.
Twitter vs. ASK GREG - To the Death!!!
So for the first time in nearly a month, I lurked on a few sites and someone was bitchin' (that's right, I said it) about the fact that I was tweeting a lot but hadn't spent much time here at ASK GREG.
Mostly, the responses that person received from other fans were dead obvious, but they bear repeating:
1. Twitter is a lot more convenient. I can tweet with my phone during downtime. (I tend to do it while I'm doing my isometric neck exercises.) I can also do Ask Greg with my phone during downtime (as I did yesterday when I was stuck at an airport), but (a) it's much more difficult because the screen is so small and (b) I have no access to the materials that some questions require. So Ask Greg answers done on the phone tend toward the short and unsatisfying.
2. Stop acting so entitled. Greg Weisman has NO obligation, explicit or implicit, to answer any questions on ASK GREG ever. Let me repeat that: Greg Weisman has NO obligation, explicit or implicit, to answer any questions on ASK GREG ever. I do it because I enjoy doing it (most of the time). But if for any reason I take a break for however long, that's life. I will not be made to feel guilty about it.
Those are the two main points, but there are a couple others:
3. I've been traveling A LOT. Since the end of May, I've taken four trips up north to Lucasfilm, one trip to Denver Comic Con, one trip to Oregon for their Shakespeare Festival and a family trip to EUROPE. I still have both San Diego Comic Con and New Orleans MechaCon (http://www.mechacon.com/) coming up in the next couple months, plus at least one more trip to San Francisco for Lucasfilm. When I travel, internet is a dicey prospect at best, and that's on top of the fact that the reasons for the trip tend to preclude me having the free time to post on ASK GREG.
4. I've been SWAMPED with work. That's a good thing. (In fact, these are all good things.) I have tight deadlines on Star Wars Rebels, a looming deadline on the second book in the Rain of the Ghosts series, plus a few other random freelance things that I'll mention (perhaps) when they're finished. Lots of work means less free time to post at Ask Greg.
As for Twitter, I'll admit I might be a little addicted, but the bald-faced truth of the matter is simply that I was basically coerced into joining Twitter by my book publisher, my agent/manager and my family. I am making an extremely conscious attempt to raise my profile there (and gain followers) for the sake of RAIN OF THE GHOSTS. I make no bones about that. I'm not trying to hide the fact AT ALL. I want/need the book to do well, and Ask Greg just was NOT reaching enough people. Hence Twitter.
Having said that, I have no interest in using or allowing Twitter to replace ASK GREG. Folks have asked me questions on Twitter, which I've either ignored or used as an excuse to nudge the askers over here. It's a tad difficult, since the ASK GREG Question Asking Function here is currently down until I catch up, but whatchagonnado? ASK GREG still matters to me, and Twitter hasn't changed that at all.
So really, the title of this ramble is a sham. The two resources are not in conflict at all. I'm hoping Twitter brings MORE people to Ask Greg and maybe, vice versa. (And maybe that's the real reason for this post. Heh heh heh.)
Ha, Dingo's name is Harry "Monmouth", and he's taken in by John Oldcastle, who takes the name Falstaff. I just got that. Well played, sir.
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.
I've seen the novel The Mysteries of Udolpho pop up multiple times in the series (Young Justice), and I've scanned the Wikipedia page (I would read it, but Outlaws of the Marsh isn't something you flick through in an afternoon, and my to-read list is long enough already), and I can't see anything tying it to the plot outside of a girl with a bad father, which would be Artemis, I guess?
1) Is there reason or rhyme to this, or is it just you showing off your literary power level, as you're known to do (which we all love, by the way).
And another question on a similar idea:
2) Where's the Shakespeare, man? Your name on a show promises Shakespeare, and YJ remains bardless. Bring a little of him back from Oregon for the team, wont you?
1. It's kinda the original gothic novel.
2. Stuff has to fit, you know? If I just wedge it in artificially, how does that help anyone? And I find it hard to believe there have been NO Shakespeare references at all. That seems unlikely.
I'd like to make an observation about "Salvage."
It's that moment where the creature says (through Blue):
Where is the stillness of wood, of stone, of crystal, of metal? All this noise, all this life is pain. We sense the power in this place - power enough to destroy us, to end the pain, to be still again.
And Superboy says, "I can identify."
And then it hit me…
Oh that this too too solid flesh would melt…
the thousand shocks that flesh is heir to…
I wondered if we were intended to hear an echo of Hamlet in Connor and the… whatever it was. One of the reasons that Hamlet is so despondent is that he believes the girl he loves has betrayed him. Then, I remembered that the girl Connor loved and probably still does betrayed him.
So, my question is: am I reading too much in to this? Or, did you intend for there to be deliberate overtures of Hamlet in this scene and in Connor's character in general?
I'd love to say otherwise, but it wasn't in my conscious mind. But you know, it's all rattling around in my brain, so...
Did you have Beatrice and Benedict in mind when you created the Wally-Artemis dynamic?
Shrug. I suppose it'd be cool to answer yes, but the truth is - and I'm not pretending otherwise - it's a pretty common trope, and mostly what we had in mind was Wally and Artemis and tracking how they'd react as individuals.
YOUNG JUSTICE: INVASION: EPISODE: 210: "Before the Dawn": Premieres: this Saturday, October 13th as part of Cartoon Network's DC Nation block. (It repeats Sunday too.) Check local listings for times.
Keep in mind, this tenth episode of Season Two was plotted before we knew if we'd get the second half of the season. Once we got that pick-up, we assumed this would be our hiatus episode. Instead, we took the break after 207 (which was a great and exciting stopping point, so no complaints). But nothing changed about our story in 210. This is a significant episode on every level: plot, character and LOTS of action. Don't miss it!
I'm posting this reminder a couple days early, because I'm leaving this afternoon to head up to Ashland, Oregon for the Shakespeare Festival. But believe me, my DVR is set to record both YJ and Green Lantern.
I've told you this a couple of times, but I wanted to tell you again. It was the first time I saw "The Mirror," and Brooklyn uttered THE line: "A Midsummer Night's Dream."
At the time, 1995, I was only 12 and hardly knew what Shakespeare was, but the line... the name of the play... it stuck with me forever.
Because of you, and Michael, and Brynne, and the other writers... I owe my love of Shakespeare. Can't thank you enough!
My favorite of the Bard's works is, of course, "Dream" but, of the 18 or so of his works I have seen, I happen to love "the Tempest," and "Titus Andronicus" as well.
I got to see "Dream" again last night, for the third time, and again, I laughed myself silly.
I remember asking you if you'd ever seen the play, and you said "Many times."
I was just wondering, which of the Bard's plays is your favorite?
Once again, thank you for opening up a new world for me.
I've answered this before, so you can check the archives for more details, but I don't have one favorite play. I like many, many of them, and even like bits in plays that I don't love entirely. And I'm always open to see a new production of ANY of Shakespeare's works.
But I'm very glad that we were able to inspire a love of Shakespeare in you. It's very gratifying.
I ask a question before about Superman and Superboy from Young Justice before, but now I have a personal question about Gargoyles that I have wondered about off and on, for a while now.
Much of Gargoyles was inspired by Shakespheare, whose works I became familiar with from Patrick Stewart, and really enjoy myself.
My question is: What Princess Kathrine in some way named for the character from 'The Taming of the Shrew,' because when we first meet her she certainly acted like a shrew and then later on she becomes 'tamed' in a way?
I don't think so. Michael Reaves named Katharine, I think, before we all got started on the Shakespeare kick with Macbeth.
Though I haven't seen "Coldhearted" yet, I've read a bit about it, and learned that Perdita originated in a Green Arrow story that you wrote a couple of years ago, meaning that you created the character. Did you name her after the Perdita of "The Winter's Tale"? (I thought it likely, given your fondness for Shakespeare, but wanted to make certain.)
Yes. The Lost Girl.
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.
1. Would you be willing to get into the inspiration behind "Doc Shakespeare"?
1b. If so, what was it?
2. Was the pursuit of a live action pilot at the time driven by a purely creative desire, or more about taking advantage of specific commercial/economic advantages present at the time? Or a combination?
1. Research, research, research. The more research I did on Shakespeare and his family, the more fascinated I became with his eldest daughter.
So the story behind this ramble actually goes back two years, starting when I first read your Ramble on EQUIVOCATION:
Regrettably I would not have the chance to attend the Oregon Shakespeare Festival that year, dedicating my travel expenses to the last Gathering in Los Angeles. Before I go any further, can I say that I am quite jealous that you and your family go every year to Ashland? Because I am d:
Anyways, it didn't hit me until about month or so later that I could simply buy a copy of the script just as you had mentioned doing. A thorough look at (and a telephone call to) the OSF's Tudor Guild Gift Shop revealed they had quickly sold out of their entire supply, and that odds were, it'd be a while till they got more, if ever. Of course, by the time I DID check back with them, the OSF was done foe the season and Equivocation was not being performed again in the near future.
Fast forward to summer 2011, where I stumbled upon a copy of the play script at my old college in Los Angeles. I don't know how the conversation started, but the person I was talking to mentioned that the school was trying to get permission to perform the play that school year!
But before I allowed myself to get excited, I remembered I was only in town for the week to visit some friends I hadn't seen in over a year since I graduated in May 2010. My friend sympathized that my horrible, horrible timing wouldn't have me in Los Angeles if and when they did perform the play (and especially after hearing me recite your ramble from 2009 with alarming precision) he was generous enough to let me take a script with me back home!
I tried to be patient, reminding myself that I had waited two years to find a copy and that the AskGreg queue was closed during the Young Justice hiatus, but that VERY short flight back to Phoenix was suddenly felt like an eternity. Of course, its just my luck that even though I read it back in early August, I only JUST now remembered to write this rambling as yesterday (November 5th, 2011) was Guy Fawkes Night.
So did I enjoy the play, even when I only read it as a script?
In a word: YES. :D
But one thing is for sure: I really, really want to catch an actual performance now. I won't go into too much detail here (since you've seen the play and I don't want to spoil others that might read this before catching/reading the play themselves), but I will say this play reminds me quite a bit like Shakespeare in Love (a film I also remember you writing about more than once), though its obvious that (even if Stoppard and Cain were working with the same muse) this is a noticeably older Shag than the Will we saw in the 1998 film. For one, Shag's working for the King James VI/I and not Queen Elizabeth. For another, the only person caring for him these days is the very mature Judith. Finally, he's now an established name (he'll still be remembered in, oh, fifty year's time!), though the romances and comedies seemed to have been eclipsed with his slew of historical plays, earning him the reputation of killing "more Kings than any man alive."
The various references to Shag's other plays were fun, especially Hamlet and Macbeth. Speaking of the Scottish Play, remembering what you said about how Macbeth (in the Gargoyles Universe) was a drinking buddy of Shakespeare's, I vaguely wonder how the events in Equivocation looked from his perspective. ;)
I'll also say that after briefly mentioning "Doc Shakespeare" in your Equivocation ramble, I made sure to pay close attention to Judith's interactions with Shag, if only to one day have them as a reference point in understanding the characters . . . much like I hear Roger Lancelyn Green's works are a good place to see your early inspirations for King Arthur.
I must also admit to re-reading your thoughts from 1999/2000 about how Shakespeare in Love opened a door to understanding Will as a man . . . and having missed out on the 2005 Gathering in Las Vegas, I can only imagine how you treated Will (and Judith) in Doc Shakespeare. I guess I'm just hopeful to one day see you a work of yours introduce William Shakespeare the man, be it in the Gargoyles Universe or some other original work (and references in shows like The Spectacular Spider-Man will always be fun too).
I'll end this by saying THANK YOU so much for recommending Equivocation. I look forward to watching a performance one day (may the stars align soon) and its only a matter of time before I find my way to Ashland for the Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
Well, I've seen Equivocation twice now. That first time in Ashland, and again here in Los Angeles (Westwood, specifically) at the Geffen Theatre, starring Joe Spano (from Hill Street Blues) as Shag. He was also fantastic in the part. I just love this play.
His take on Judith is different from mine, as is his take on Susannah (who doesn't appear but is mentioned). But I've got no complaints.
I do tend to shy away from portraying Will Shakespeare himself in my stuff. It makes me nervous. Even in Doc Shakespeare, Will is an off-screen presence. Talked about - but never appearing.
We do try to go to Ashland every year, and I've never been disappointed. Ashland was also the first place I ever saw Stoppard's ARCADIA, which may be one of the most brilliant plays I've ever seen.
Haven't posted here in a while, and since I did a bit of message board lurking this morning, it seems to have led people to believe all sorts of odd things, so...
Where have I been?
Well, in early June, my family and I went to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon.
We saw seven plays in four days. Six of them (Henry IV, Part Two, The Language Archive, To Kill a Mockingbird, Julius Caesar, Love's Labours Lost and Measure for Measure) were just stellar productions. Everyone was great, but I'd like to particularly single out Susannah Flood in both Language Archive and Mockingbird, Dee Maaske in Mockingbird and Michael Winters as Falstaff in 2HenryIV.
Coming back from that, I was understandably swamped and didn't have time to post.
Next, I went to Minneapolis for the always great ConVergence convention. I did about thirteen panels. Some of which, like Gargoyles and Spider-Man and Young Justice, I felt qualified to be on. And some, like Dexter and Galaxy Quest, my only qualification was being a fan of whatever we were talking about. This was my third ConVergence, and it continues to be the best run convention I've ever attended. And now that the Gathering of the Gargoyles is no more, it has become my FAVORITE convention to attend.
Returning from ConVergence, I then got quite ill. In fact, I'm still home sick today. (Home sick as opposed to homesick, clear?)
So THOSE are the reasons I haven't posted. Nothing nefarious.
Next topic: YOUNG JUSTICE UPDATE.
We have aired episodes 101-109 (i.e. Season One, episodes 1-9).
(Yes, episode 110 accidentally was posted on Cartoon Network's website, but I'm going to pretend that never happened.)
Episodes 110-115 are in the can, i.e. they are completed and ready to air.
Episode 116 awaits only the final on-line, i.e. the final review of the episode. This has been delayed ONLY because I've been out sick this week.
Episode 117 will have it's sound mix on Friday. (I hope to be back at work by then.)
Episode 118 has been edited and work progresses on scoring and sound effects.
Episode 119 is ready to begin post-production.
Episodes 120-123 are being animated in Korea.
Episodes 124-126 are in layout in Korea, while we finish the final color models here in the States.
Episodes 201-202 (i.e. Season Two, Episodes one and two) - Are fully recorded and are in storyboard. (201 was written by me. 202 by Nicole Dubuc.)
Episode 203, written by Kevin Hopps, is almost fully recorded. We have one actor left to pick up, who has been out of town. It is also in storyboard.
Episode 204, written by me, will record this week. It is also in storyboard.
Episode 205 - Brandon Vietti, has turned in his draft of the script. I have to read and edit it.
Episode 206 - The outline, written by Peter David and edited by me, went out Monday for notes, which are due tomorrow.
Episode 207 - Kevin Hopps turned in his outline, which I need to read and edit.
Episode 208 - I'm writing this one. I'll start the outline, after I've edited the outline to 207.
Episode 209 - Jon Weisman turned in his outline, which I need to read and edit.
Episode 210 - Kevin Hopps is working on his outline.
We do NOT yet have a pick-up beyond episode 210, but our bosses have told us to start blocking out episodes 211-220 in anticipation of one.
Episode 211 - We've broken this story. I still need to find time to write up the Beat Outline, though I have it all on index cards.
Episode 212 - We've got the basics of this one down, but we (i.e. myself, Brandon and Kevin) still need to finish breaking the story.
Episodes 213-220 - We've got a very clear sense of the arc and what things need to happen, but we haven't started on these yet.
NEXT TOPIC: DEBUNKING YJ RUMORS
False Rumor #1: YJ IS A GREG WEISMAN PRODUCTION
Everywhere on the Internet, all I see is that YJ is Greg Weisman's show. That's just blatantly false. This is a VIETTI/WEISMAN production. Just as Spectacular Spider-Man was a COOK/WEISMAN production and Gargoyles was a PAUR/WEISMAN production. I am not, nor have I ever been, a one-man show on ANY project I've EVER worked on. EVER. And in particular, on YJ, it's extremely unfair to Brandon to leave him out of consideration. Brandon is heavily involved in every aspect of production, INCLUDING SERIES DEVELOPMENT AND STORY. He's been right there with myself and Kevin Hopps breaking every single episode. It's been a team effort from day one. Many of the series' best ideas came/come from Brandon. And this is aside from the fact, that of course, Brandon can write - but I cannot draw, which arguably makes him MORE important to the production than I. I am exceedingly proud of this series and my own work on it - though certain very vocal fans seem to think I shouldn't be - but that doesn't change the fact that Brandon and I are a team.
False Rumor #2: YJ WAS RUSHED INTO PRODUCTION
Another blatant misconception. Look, Brandon and I are both perfectionists. Neither of us would deny that we'd LOVE to have more time on each and every episode. But that's not the same as being rushed. Let's make a comparison: on Spectacular Spider-Man, I basically had one week to develop both the series and the entire first season. Then Vic Cook came aboard, and we raced to get into production in less than two months. Brandon and I had seven months to develop the series, break the first season (which granted had twice as many episodes as the first season of Spidey) and head into production. The show isn't and never has been rushed. That's not to say the schedule isn't tight. But we haven't aired a single episode that wasn't ready to air. And we won't.
False Rumor #3: YJ ISN'T AIRING NOW BECAUSE WE'RE REWORKING EPISODES BASED ON INTERNET CRITICISM
This is my favorite. I love it the most because the first person I saw who posted this rumor also said that I'd deny it. So here I am denying it, which of course serves to PROVE that he or she was correct, see? Let's be clear: for better or worse, this series is COMPLETELY unaffected by internet criticism BECAUSE of schedule. Everything of any significance was set and DONE before even the pilot movie aired last November, so we couldn't address fan concerns even if we wanted to. And, honestly, we don't want to. We don't in part because there is way less consensus than some people seem to think. For example, for every post I see expressing hatred for "Hello, Megan!", I see a post that likes it. And personally, I like it. Brandon likes it. So why would we change it, even if we could? In fact, even Season Two is moving forward more or less disregarding "fan" criticism. Brandon and I always had very clear ideas for what we wanted to do in Season Two (and even Season Three, should we get one) and those ideas haven't changed. As with every series I've co-helmed, all we can ever do is write and produce to OUR OWN passions - and then just cross our fingers and hope enough people share our passions to make it a success. Anything else is doomed to failure, because if we're not passionate about it, it'll show in the work, and then no one will like it. And just to make it clear: WE LIKE OUR SHOW!! Doesn't mean you have to - but don't try to tell me I don't.
So why aren't we airing new episodes now? That's a fair question that I don't have an answer for. After all, we have six unaired episodes in the can, with four more on the verge of completion. It's a Cartoon Network decision. Some fans have argued that they shouldn't have started airing ANY episodes until ALL episodes were in the can. But that too is a decision above my pay grade.
My best guess - and that's all it is - is that CN will air new episodes - starting with 110 ("Targets") - in September. The good news is that the later they wait, the more weeks they can go uninterrupted by reruns. I do know that Season Two (i.e. "Young Justice: Invasion") will begin airing as part of DC NATION in March of 2012. And by then ALL of Season One will have aired. So do the math.
People have asked me if I'm bummed about losing momentum by this delay. But the thing is we've ALREADY lost all momentum. So as long as they PROMOTE us whenever they finally do start airing us again, then pragmatically I'm good. Yes, I'll admit to a certain level of frustration in that I want our stuff to get out there, but if CN has a plan to make the most of the episodes, then more power to them.
Anyway, I think that's it for now. I'll get back to answering questions on ASK GREG as soon as I can find the time. (But keep in mind that San Diego Comic-Con is fast approaching. Note: Young Justice has a panel scheduled for Sunday, July 24th at 10am, with a signing to follow. I'll also be signing Gargoyles comics (and whatever else anyone might want) at the SLG Booth from 11:30am to 12:30pm on Thursday, Friday and Saturday (July 21, 22, 23).
Gargoyles obviously had a lot of influence from Shakespeare, and so did Spectacular Spider-Man, towards the end of the series. Will we be seeing at least a little bit of that theme in Young Justice?
I think that this is just a coincidence, but I decided I should mention it to you.
I was rereading Chapters Three and Four of "Bad Guys" today, because of their link to New Year's Eve, and noticed that the captions stated that the Eastcheap Island adventure took place five days after the confrontation with Sevarius. We know that the Sevarius adventure was on New Year's Eve, so the encounter with Falstaff must have taken place on January 5. And January 5 is Twelfth Night - a holiday after which one of Shakespeare's comedies was named.
I was amazed and impressed by that revelation, but I assumed that it must be a coincidence; the Eastcheap adventure draws on Shakespeare, of course, but on Falstaff rather than on "Twelfth Night". Still, when I mentioned it in the comment room, Matt suggested that I share it with you, so I did.
Thanks. I'll be honest, it was PROBABLY a coincidence. I think. But it's been SO long since I actually wrote the script (way before the book came out, which was already some time ago) that it's possible that I had Twelfth Night on the brain and timed it that way to amuse myself. I just can't remember.
Have you ever seen Orson Welles' adaptation of of Henry IV, Chimes at Midnight (titled Falstaff in some countries)? I really enjoyed it. After all, Welles as Falstaff. It doesn't get any better than that.
On the same note, who is your favorite Shakespeare screen actor? Olivier? Welles? Branagh?
I have not seen Chimes at Midnight, and I definitely consider it a gap in my education.
I guess I'd have to say Branagh... just because -- from a cinema standpoint -- Henry V was a revelation to me.
Some time ago, I mentioned a book by Eleanor Prosser called "Hamlet and Revenge", which argued that Hamlet's goal to avenge his father on Claudius was not a righteous duty, but a misguided and dangerous quest. Recently, I thought about a passage in it in connection to "Clan-Building: Volume Two".
In one of the early chapters, the author discusses Kyd's "The Spanish Tragedy", one of the leading revenge-plays before "Hamlet". The protagonist, Hieronimo, is out to avenge the murder of his son Horatio. After discovering his son's body near the start of the play, he decides not to bury it until he can achieve his revenge, an act which, Prosser comments, would have unsettled the audience.
This reminded me of the scene in "Clan-Building" where, after Demona reports the slaughter of the Sruighlea cell by Constantine and Gillecomgain, True suggests that they hold a Wind Ceremony for the dead gargoyles, and Demona rejects it in favor of pursuing revenge on the humans who did the deed. I just thought I'd share it with you.
Thanks. I like the parallel a lot. And I agree with what it reveals about character... though I've never read "The Spanish Tragedy" unfortunately. At least not yet.
I just got back from taking my kids to the Oregon Shakespeare Festival in Ashland, Oregon. Saw five uniformly great productions:
Henry IV, Part One
Merchant of Venice
Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice
Can't recommend any or all of them strongly enough...