A Station Eight Fan Web Site
Could you/would you be interested in spearheading a push to create new merchandise for the Gargoyles franchise? In the interest of proving it as a still-viable money-making franchise for a possible reboot/proper season 3 but also for us fans that are lacking modern representations of those beloved characters. I myself went well out of my way to aquire an enamel pin (unlicensed I'm sure) only to have ANYTHING featuring Goliath in my possesion.
I think spearheading merchandise is premature. Our best bet right now is that Gargoyles will soon be streaming on Disney+.
If fans (old and new) binge that, we'll be in much better shape on all fronts, including merchandising.
If someone else were to come along and revive the Gargoyle Series, what would your opinion be if they had full Creative Control?
Disappointment, if not outrage.
What were you expecting?
Hi Greg, big fan of your work and excited for the new season of Young Justice after quite a break.
Now for the questions:
If you could magically pick another one of the shows you've worked on to bring back, but could only pick one, which would it be?
2. Why this one? Unfinished stories, fond memories of working in it, etc?
3. Realistically, considering factors such as all the politics, the fan base, etc, in your opinion which show would you say would be most likely to come back (even if it's a one in a million chance) and which is the least likely?
1. Gargoyles would be my first choice.
2. All of the above. It's still my baby.
3. Gargoyles is most likely, especially with it appearing soon on the new Disney+ streaming service. Spectacular Spider-Man is the least likely, as the contractual problems between Disney, Marvel and Sony make it nearly impossible.
Would you come back for a Season 4?
(But pretty much the answer is always yes.)
Are there any independent mechanisms that you have, or know, where you'd be able to put out new "Gargoyles" material without depending on publishers?
I can't put out anything related to Gargoyles. I don't own it.
I just wanted to say Gargoyles inspired me to become an artist when I was a little boy. Will Gargoyles ever comeback?
I hope so.
Grand Rapids Comic-Con Journal
October 21-23, 2016
This past weekend I spent three days at the Grand Rapids Comic Con where I finally got my chance to meet Greg Weisman. I've been following him at Station 8 for almost twenty years, but I never made it to any of the Gatherings so I had never met him in person before.
After weeks of anticipation Friday came. I took the afternoon off work and set out for the convention center, ten minutes from my house. Comic Con is a different world; there were a lot of people wearing costumes, some quite impressive and others not so much. Harley Quinn (Suicide Squad version) is the most popular this year.
I grabbed a program, checked the map, and made a beeline for Greg's table. I arrived to find him talking to a Penguin. (Not the flightless Antarctic bird, but a man in a tuxedo wearing a pointy rubber nose and carrying an umbrella.) I circled around a few times, watching for my opportunity while trying to remain inconspicuous. The Penguin and his friend finally walked away and I stepped up to the table.
"Hi, I'm Phil," I said.
"Hi Phil," he replied. He pointed out the scripts, books, and posters he had for sale. "Let me know if you have any questions." (Do I have questions?!)
He was responding to an important text on his phone, so I hesitated for a moment. "I'm a big fan. I've been following you on Ask Greg at Station 8 for almost twenty years."
He looked up at me. "Oh, you're *that* Phil." He shook my hand.
I don't remember what I said next. Something fanboy-ish, I'm sure. He smiled. I didn't know what to say next. He didn't seem to know what to say. It was awkward. Very awkward.
I told him I would see him again soon, since I had a lot of stuff for him to sign, and walked away. Then I remembered that I wanted a picture to send my daughters (who were driving home from college to meet Greg on Saturday) so I went back. He came out from behind his table and we took a selfie. He looks a little uncertain in the picture.
After walking around a little more, I left to pick up my teenage son, Henry, from school and bring him back to the Con with me. We explored together, commenting on the interesting and the weird. He seemed a little overwhelmed.
We passed by Greg's table again and met Mara, who was there with Greg. She was easier to talk to than Greg. I introduced Henry, and mentioned that he was a fan of Young Justice. Greg told us about the Young Justice presentation he was doing that evening. Henry looked over the scripts and art prints Greg was selling and determined how much money he would need to bring the next day. Then we continued on our way. It was less awkward this time.
Henry and I went to the Young Justice presentation. To be honest, Young Justice never grabbed me, despite Greg's involvement. (I'm more of a Marvel fan.) But it was enjoyable nonetheless. Greg is much more personable and engaging in front of a group. He talked about the strategy for getting Season 3: binge watch Netflix and buy the comics online (so WB sees the money).
After that, the Con was winding down for the night, so we drove home. Henry asked to watch Young Justice again on Netflix that night, but there was homework and housework to do. He also asked how he could get the Young Justice comics in time for Greg to autograph them.
Late that night my two oldest daughters arrived home from college with five friends. Saturday morning eleven of us were ready for Comic Con (my wife and I, our four kids [three daughters and a son], and five college friends). My girls all wanted to dress up, but there was a bit of conflict over who would be what character. The older and younger ended up both going as Elisa Maza, while the middle one painted a blue fox tattoo around her eye. Henry was planning to wear a Star Wars T-shirt and carry a lightsaber, but his sisters pressured him into painting three red stripes on his face and going as Young Gillecomgain. My oldest daughter's boyfriend wore a Gargoyles T-shirt that we later realized was not official merchandise. We were ready to go.
Upon entering Comic Con on Saturday we headed straight for Greg's table. I introduced my family and Greg seemed a little overwhelmed. My daughters were all speechless and my oldest gave a fangirl squeal. My wife (who only came along so she wouldn't have to spend the day at home alone) asked Greg about his convention schedule and how many he goes to each year. They had a normal conversation, no awkwardness at all.
During the course of the day we stopped back at Greg's table several times. We bought books and scripts and art prints. We had him sign stuff we brought from home: DVDs, comics, a Gargoyles picture book, and printouts of "Three Brothers" and "Hyppolyta" (which Greg said he had never signed before). I tried to get some clarification on the Percival/Duval/Peredur relationship, but all Greg would say is "All things are true."
We went to a panel that afternoon led by Comfort Love and Adam Withers. Greg was participating and when we trooped in a few minutes before it started he pointed us out to his fellow panelists. Later in the day when we walked by Comfort and Adam's table she recognized us as "Greg's posse" which my daughter thought was the best moment of the day.
We couldn't make it Sunday morning, so I missed Greg's presentation on "TV Production from Beginning to End" but I was there in the afternoon in time for another panel with Comfort and Adam. After the panel Greg had to leave soon to catch his flight, so I hurried to his table to buy a couple more things and shake his hand one more time.
Overall it was a fun weekend. Greg Weisman is a celebrity at my house and it was great to meet him. Each time I stopped at his table it was a little less awkward, and I enjoyed talking to him. I still have a lot of questions, but none that I actually wanted him to answer in person. I don't just want to know what happens next, I want to see/read/experience it. So here's hoping for more Greg and more Gargoyles in some form, someday.
From your lips...
It was great meeting you in person. I hope I wasn't QUITE so awkward or unapproachable. I am better in front of an audience than I am at making small talk. But I get by. :)
ALL of your past and present projects have been renewed, and you have been asked to help them all. Which one would you prioritize, and why?
Well, as many regular readers of this site know, I'm not big on hypotheticals. Reality is so much more complicated, but I'll give it a shot:
GARGOYLES first, always. We're trying to get another comic book version now. Tweet the hashtag #WeLiveAgain!
YOUNG JUSTICE, second. Season Three is real. It's here. I'm working on it.
I'm also working on the second book in the WORLD OF WARCRAFT: TRAVELER series, THE SPIRAL PATH, and recently completed co-plotting work on THE FALL AND RISE OF CAPTAIN ATOM, w/my old Captain Atom partner Cary Bates.
The third book in the RAIN OF THE GHOSTS series, MASQUE OF BONES, which I still plan to get back to as soon as I possibly can.
Everything else falls into the category of it's just too hypothetical to differentiate. But I'm very fond of THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN, W.I.T.C.H., ROUGHNECKS: THE STARSHIP TROOPER CHRONICLES, STARBRAND & NIGHTMASK, anything with the STAR WARS REBELS characters [especially STAR WARS KANAN], 3X3 EYES, DISNEY'S VILLAINS and many others.
And I'm sure Edmund Tsabard would love to finish Last Tengu in Paris.
I have a comment, and a question.
1. I hope you never have trouble finding work, your writing is quite inspiring. I just rewatched and, with great difficulty, reread the comics (hard to find them without paying a month's rent). It's nice to remember why I loved it so much as a kid, and find a lot more to fall in love with, like how I -never- even noticed 'David and Goliath' before.
2. Would you ever consider Kickstarter or Fig in order to get fundage to be able to work on Gargoyles more in some way?
1. Thank you. I have had trouble finding work at times, but that's the business I chose.
2. I can't crowd-fund something I don't own. And I don't own Gargoyles.
You know, I've thinking/remembering about something lately. Back in 2014, there was an April Fools' joke where can article spring up about a Gargoyles movie in the works. A lot of people believed it. In 2012, Cartoon. Network played a practical joke where it revived the Toonami block for that single night. The feedback it received, after it's cancellation in 2008, were amazing! Anyone looking it up on Wikipedia and who helped with it's revival knew what an impact it made with CN.
So, I thought, "Hey, if something that can happen on CN, where they continue to show really old animes and other cartoons, then why can't Disney stop being such money-grubbers for a single day and do something similar? Like in 2014, pull an "April Fools' joke with Gargoyles and air a few episodes. See what happens, can't hurt, right?"
What do you think? Think something like that could ever happen?
I don't see any need to tie this to April Fools Day. If they want to test it they can. It's their show to test or not to test. At the moment, they don't seem interested.
And I don't have a clue as to what any of this has to do with Disney being or not being "money-grubbers." That seems beside the point. Like you just want to use every opportunity to take a shot at Disney wanting to turn a profit, which is - frankly - silly. If Disney didn't want to turn a profit, you'd have NEVER gotten Gargoyles in the first place. Do you think they put that show on the air thinking, "Well, we'll lose money on this one..."? Cuz, NO. They thought the show would earn money for the company. And it did. And then they thought they'd have a better chance to earn more money with something else. And we were off the air. It's ALWAYS been that way. Sometimes, that helps us. Sometimes, it doesn't.
Hi, Greg. Gotta question for you: Since Disney cancelled the release of season 2 part 2 due to low sales back in day, and as fans, we openly support the release of the DVD when it finally came out in 2013 to show how popular and profitable Gargoyles is and can be, I'm curious to know know how the sales went.
As Disney only cares for profit nowadays, then it stands to reason that they be considering Gargs for a reboot or SOMETHING is the sales are a bit hit, right? Do you think it's possible for you learn how the sales went, just to see the level of interest for your own show, financially-wise? I got my copies as soon it wasn't in the $100s after its release.
I don't know how the sales went. I don't work at Disney, and that's not information they share with me. You're as likely to be able to obtain that info, as I am.
When you say, "As Disney only cares for profit NOWADAYS...", I balk. Disney the company only EVER cared about profits, at least since they became a publicly held company (before I was born). But various talented people at Disney - then and now - have always cared about more than that. It's no different now then it has been for DECADES.
And, to be clear, I don't want a reboot. I want to do more of what we were doing. I don't want to start it over, which is what a reboot would be.
If Disney ever wanted to reboot Gargoyles instead of picking up where it was left off, would you resist it or try to get on board with it?
Both, probably. But I'm not big on hypothetical questions. There are too many variables to answer it with any meaning.
You've said before that Disney is unwilling to sell the property of Gargoyles because they don't want to risk it making money money for somebody else...but that implies that they do in fact think it has the potential to make money. So what is their rationel for not doing something with it for all these years if they think it is potentially profitable?
Have you or anybody else ever offered to fund a project independantly and share profits? Would they even go for that if you did?
Do you see Disney ever letting Gargoyles fall into "public domain"?
It just seems greedy for Disney to hold on to the property with an iron grip so nobody else can use it, even though they have essentially forgotten about it - dispite the fact there remains interest for it by both it's creator and thousands of fans. If you don't think it will make money, then sell it. If you do think it will make money, then for god's sake do something with it. What is their problem...do they just not want to be proven wrong?
1. Opportunity cost. No one at Disney (that I know of currently) believes they can make more money with Gargoyles than they could by spending money on other properties they own or might develop.
2. I have offered to fund and share profits. They've said no.
3. No. Disney resists letting anything they own fall into the public domain. In fact, they are at the forefront of the corporate movement to allow copywrites to renew indefinitely.
4. Calling Disney 'greedy' is both redundant and unfair. They're a publicly held corporation with obligations to their stockholders. Of course, they are focused on profits.
5. Yes, indeed, they do not want to be proven wrong. If an executive is proven wrong, he's at risk of being fired.
I should note that you sound outraged, and I'm not even a little outraged, even though I'm the creator of Gargoyles. I KNEW what I was doing. I was paid a salary to create something for Disney. And I knew they would own it when all was done. But without Disney, there is no Gargoyles. Or at least not the Gargoyles we all now know and love. And I still have hope that as time passes and executives change over, we might get another bite at the apple. It's not impossible. After all, for years we didn't have the comics or DVDs. And then we did.
What would be your preferred medium to bring back some of your work? Comics, animated TV/movie/mini-series, live action, etc?
It would depend on parameters. Whichever would give ME PERSONALLY the most creative freedom and authority.
1. Did you ever worry that you would be approached to start working on shows you've done in the past while you were already working on one? (Ex: Let's say you were working on Young Justice, but Disney approached you to work on Gargoyles again.)
2. What would you do if situations like that ever came up?
1. No, I should have such problems. I'm usually lucky to find one job. Having two I wanted that badly has literally NEVER come up.
2. I don't really deal in hypotheticals. The realities in front of me are confusifying enough.
The youtube channel watchmojo has just put up a video for its 3.8 million subscribers of ''Top 10 Best Cartoons That Got Cancelled''. it placed your works of art Gargoyles at #5 and Young Justice #4.
How do you feel about that?
Also how would you respond to their comment that young justice fans felt ''cheated and abandoned'' due to it unresolved plot points?
also since its seems young justice is still in the media scope after a year are the chances of a season on Netflix or any form of story completion still being looked into?
1. Well, I'd prefer the shows were still going, but I'm happy we got the recognition and that folks still seem to miss those shows. No love for SpecSpidey, huh?
2. I think that's unreasonable, frankly. Believe me, I'd love to have done more episodes, more issues of our companion comic series, etc. But nothing is guaranteed to last forever, and certainly no one was "cheated". The fact is, the series didn't have the ratings or the merchandising support to continue. Our fans are wonderful and intense, but unfortunately not quite as numerous as I think everyone believes. It's still a business. And if we don't have the numbers to pay for the series, then that's a damn shame, but that's all it is. To be clear, I'm not blaming the fans; just pointing out that there weren't enough fans buying toys or sitting in front of their sets to keep us on the air.
As to unresolved plot points, would folks have preferred if, for example, Brandon and I hadn't put in that last scene with Vandal and Darkseid? We certainly could have skipped it, and one less thing would be unresolved, but I believe the show would have been less interesting if we made sure not to introduce any thread that couldn't absolutely be tied up at season's end.
3. Okay, there's no such thing as "story completion" for Young Justice. It wasn't designed to ever end. All of us who worked on the series would love to do more, but if we did do more, there would be still more concepts introduced so that whenever we ran out of "more" there would still be loose ends. And so on, and so on, and so on...
Meanwhile, I don't believe either Warner Bros, DC or Cartoon Network has any current plans to bring YJ back in any form. Netflix would be great, but if Time-Warner isn't interested in pursuing the property, then all other considerations are moot.
And "the media scope" is a relative concept. YJ was something special, but it never did Game of Thrones numbers, for example, not in terms of ratings or in terms of pop culture awareness.
Again, it doesn't give me pleasure to say all of this. But the realities are what they are.
Well, I just binge-watched all episodes of Gargoyles on Youtube to relive my glory days of when I was a kid. Thanks for giving me that show.
I know that the answer to "when are we going to get more Gargoyles?" is "Not up to me." But seriously, when are we going to get more Gargoyles! Right?!
OK so to my real questions.
1. Since it is up to Disney, do you know the process they go through to decide if a show or story is worth revising? I'm curious to know what their reasoning is for not bringing it back (I assume it has to do with the almighty dollar).
2.Related to question #1, what can we as fans do to help revive the show or a spinoff. I know it's one thing for us to ask for the show to come back, but that doesn't tell Disney anything. I know in the past you mentioned buying the DVDs. I've been telling my friends who would enjoy it to rewatch it on Youtube (and have their kids watch it too). Is there a certain # of Youtube hits they need before they will talk about reviving it? Or again, does it come back to merchandising?
3.Do you have a guess as to why it's not on Netflix? That's a way more prominent medium (in my opinion) to get people to watch a show and gauge interest. My experience with people and Youtube is that they want 3-5 minute clips, not to sit down and watch an entire episode.
Last thought, Thanks for your work. I just finished Young Justice season 1 on Netflix. Great work on that as well. I'm very much looking forward to Rebels, and as soon as I am employed again, I plan on getting your books (books if it takes me a while).
1. I assume you're right, but THAT is assuming they've given it any thought at all. I'm not sure they have - not counting the occasional knee-jerk "No Thanks" that I get every time I ask. Otherwise, I've no real idea.
2. YouTube really does NOTHING for us, as far as I can tell. Or maybe they'd help if the numbers were just through the roof relative to YouTube, but that seems unlikely. DVD sales definitely help. Since the new DVD of Season Two, Volume Two is just getting released at WalMart, it could help a ton if those sales skyrocketed.
I should clarify that YouTube helps to acquaint folks with the show if they aren't already fans. That's a good thing. But the numbers aren't close to high enough to help us get MORE material produced.
3. No idea.
According to the "What Might Have Been" section of TVTropes, Disney briefly considered reviving "Gargoyles" in 2002. Do you know if this is true?
Not to my knowledge.
If you ever get Gargoyles or one of its spinoffs on TV, do you have any specific characters in mind for actors like Steve Blum, Vanessa Marshall, and Lacy Chabert?
No. Gargoyles has a life of its own in my head. Casting is very much secondary to character. However, those are all three amazing talents, and I love them all as performers and people, and I'd be honored to have them become part of the Gargoyles family.
Hey Greg, have a few questions on the business side of things:
You've said that Cartoon Network and Warner Bros. insist that Young Justice is NOT cancelled, just not picked up. Even if they do pick it up how would that work?
1. You've obviously moved on to work on Star Wars: Rebels along writing Your Rain of Ghost series. If they were to approach you on continuing the show would you be able to? I mean you've said that you and the production team created a bible of sorts for future story lines and character arcs, so you wouldn't have to start from scratch… but that is a lot of work.
2.Would you continue on doing Star Wars Rebels while someone else worked on the show?(The Goliath Chronicles) Or would you still be allowed to juggle both shows? (As unrealistic as that sounds)
I ask this because unlike Spec-Spidey, which was cancelled for legal reason, YJ had no real reason to end. I'm sure most of us would have been more than content with a continuation of the comics set during season 3.
3. Now that you've finished Spirits of Ash and Foam, are you planning out and writing book 3 currently or are you waiting on the sales numbers on the first two books to get the go ahead and get seriously started?
Thanks for the time. Don't have Disney XD so I'll have to wait to catch Star Wars: Rebels online.
1. It is a lot of work, so it would all depend on timing. I often have windows of availability, and when these windows open, I'm usually at one or more places trying to get something going on Young Justice or Gargoyles, etc.
2. This is all too hypothetical to answer. I can generally do a comic or two while working on a series, if the schedule isn't too brutal on one or the other (or both). But I can't answer these questions in a vacuum.
3. I probably should wait, since the third book has not been ordered. But I have begun doing the research for Book Three of Rain, i.e. Masque of Bones.
if you had a choice what superhero show would you like to do
Honestly, I'm not too picky. But my preference would be to return to a series I did before, whether Gargoyles, W.I.T.C.H., The Spectacular Spider-Man or Young Justice.
Just a quick question this time. The other time I asked you something about gargoyles and you said that you wouldn't write it for free... wich came as a bit of a shock to me as you have said before that it is your baby proyect.
It's understandable as this is your job and main source of income... But I have to wonder if you would ever have or if you have a personal proyect wich you would do for free.
You deserve every cent you get paid but.. Many (amateur/fanfic) writters write stories for fun and I wonder if this is the case with you. thank you!
I don't write for fun anymore. To be honest, it's too much like work.
I don't write for free, though I do (occasionally) write "on spec". That is, I'll write something that has the chance of paying off later, even if no one is paying me for it immediately. For example, my first novel, RAIN OF THE GHOSTS, was written on spec. (And took over a decade to pay off - minimally.) The second book in the series, SPIRITS OF ASH AND FOAM, was not written on spec. My publisher, St. Martin's Press, ordered it. The third, MASQUE OF BONES, which I've barely begun researching, will also be written on spec, unless St. Martin's Press decides to pick it up.
But the big difference with those books, over something like GARGOYLES, for example, is that I OWN the RAIN property. I don't own GARGOYLES or YOUNG JUSTICE or WITCH or THE SPECTACULAR SPIDER-MAN. It would, frankly, just be foolish for me to invest my time (which is money to me) in something that isn't mine.
GARGOYLES is without a doubt my baby. I feel that strongly. But it doesn't change the hard, cruel fact that I hold no ownership in it at all.
You previously said that you don't like gran finales and you don't intend to really give closure to any of your shows/stories. Not even gargoyles that as you described it is your "baby" even if you don't own it.
Does that mean that we will always get cliffhanger endings from your tv show when they get canceled?
What about your new book series, will it end in a cliffhanger too?
As much as I am a fan of your stories Greg, It feels empty not to have any closure at all.
No offense but basic story telling has beginning-conflict-resolution and as fans we never get to see a resolution of the overall plot.
I mean having an ending that gives the illusion that "the story never truly ends" is great (that's not what I am critical of).
But I think that not having an ending that acknowledges that the story has to end for real life reasons(maybe becuase you simply can't write stories forever, becuase you aren't getting more episodes, becuase you have to move on etc)... is disrespectuful to your fans that expect to have a complete story.
Take JLU unlimited ending. It even ended with wonderwoman saying "...and the adventure continues" and even left two unresolved plot points, But at the same time it ended the main plots and acted as a send off/good bye to it's fans and it didn't feel empty.
Sorry for being so critical, you are a big inspiration and even if I don't agree with you always I think you are a fantastic story teller (an inspiration for me in fct) and I am planing on buying our new book.
I NEVER leave a season with a cliffhanger.
I ALWAYS leave a season with open-ended closure.
I don't mean to sound disrespectful to you or any of my fans, but that's how my mind works. If you don't like it, I can't really help you, because you'd be asking me to change the way I tell stories.
But perhaps we're not so far apart. You cite the JLU ending, which I haven't seen. But you state that, in essence, it has open-ended closure, even noting it had unresolved plot points. That's EXACTLY what I do at the end of EVERY season. Not everything is going to be tied up into a neat knot, but every major plot point of that season will be, as happened at the end of Gargoyles, WITCH, Spectacular Spider-Man and Young Justice.
So what exactly are you looking for from me that's any different?
And thank you for buying RAIN OF THE GHOSTS. It's much appreciated! Sincerely!!
given the Veronica Mars movie has nearly double the estimate budget needed to make the movie a reality (which means even with unexpected hiccups they have good odds of financing it)
So....If the movie successfully debuts (which will probably take a bit of a while since producing a stellar film takes time) and it turns out to be a great success (which givcn the creative team behind it, grants good odds)
Well, I seem to have gotten a little side tracked, but I just wanted to say that I would be one of the people happy to pledge some money in the support of one of your amazing creations and im certain the many many fans you have would quickly pledge for such a cause!
Thanks. But as it's turned out - at least so far - no one seems to interested at the major studios in following the VM model.
Dear Mr. Weisman,
You have been responsible for two of my favorite shows--Gargoyles and Young Justice. They have brought me much enjoyment and I thank you greatly for that. You a writer of the highest caliber, able to write deeply intrinsic plots and characters who are both philosophically intelligent and comically amusing. Your talents are recognized not only by your fans, but also through organized bodies with highly publicized awards, such as the Emmy.
So quite objectively, your work is very good and many people enjoy the shows you produce. Why is it then, and I ask this with as minimal offense as possible, that your shows always seem cut tragically short?
Gargoyles and Young Justice both deserved additional seasons, yet the cries from fans seem to fall on deaf ears. Are network producers really so blind?
I'm not sure the Emmys have recognized my talents... but I'm glad the fans have.
The thing to keep in mind is that MOST shows don't go on forever, and few even go as long as their creators would like. My situation is not unusual at all.