Avalon Part Two

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"Avalon" Part Two is the thirty-fifth televised episode of the series Gargoyles, and the twenty-second episode of Season 2. It originally aired on November 21, 1995.

Summary

The Story

Previously on Gargoyles

Act One

On the shores of Avalon, Goliath, Elisa, Bronx, and Guardian look upon two fully grown gargoyles and a gargoyle beast standing on a nearby cliff. They glide down and the female gargoyle greets Guardian with a warm embrace. Elisa can't help but ask, "These are 'The Eggs'?" and Guardian clarifies that he's always called them that. The female gargoyle beast also rushes to Guardian before Bronx begins to interact with both. The female gargoyle approaches Goliath, telling him she's heard so much about him that it's like a dream come true. Guardian introduces her to both Goliath and Elisa as Angela. Goliath is surprised that the gargoyles were given names, and Angela comments on the practicality of the matter, "How else could we tell each other apart?" The male gargoyle, Gabriel, beckons everyone to head to the castle and Angela notes that the area is dangerous.

As they walk away, the sands begin to shift beneath Goliath's feet. The sand rises, taking the shape of a bearded man, towering over Goliath. Goliath recognizes the voice and face as that of the Archmage, and a second sand construct proceeds to clobber Goliath with an arm formed as a mace and bury him in sand. Sand vines begin to ensnare both Angela and Gabriel, as well as Bronx and the other gargoyle beast. One of the Archmage sand constructs pauses from burying Goliath to confront Elisa and Guardian. The two humans draw their weapons, and Elisa shoots two bullets into the head of the Sand-Archmage, but to no avail. Elisa then dodges an arm made of sand emerging from the abdomen of the Sand-Archmage, which Guardian slices away with his sword. Now on the ground, sand proceeds to bind Elisa to the beach like the gargoyle beasts. More Archmage sand constructs surround Guardian, but he continues to attack, slicing one Sand-Archmage from its head down to its torso, only for the sand to take hold of his sword. As it slams Guardian into another sand construct, the Archmage mocks the human, telling Guardian he gave them all until dawn to prepare for death when he used that time to look for help. Sand heads of the Archmage form above Angela and Gabriel, who begin to suffocate from the sand around them. From the sand heads, the Archmage insists there is no one that can stop him, and is insulted that Guardian and the others thought otherwise. Growing frustrated from the sand and insults hurled at him, Goliath breaks free from the mound burying him. He quickly frees Elisa just as another sand construct of the Archmage attacks Goliath, its arms shifting shape into pointed spears. Goliath jumps at that Sand-Archmage, slashing its head down to the neck. The two other Sand-Archmages begin to tower over Elisa to strike at Goliath, but Goliath pounces on both, decapitating both and continuing to pound one of the constructs to the ground. From below, Elisa pulls Guardian out of one of the sand Archmages while Bronx and the other gargoyle beast free Angela and Gabriel. Goliath makes quick work of the third sand-Archmage when the sands shift beneath their feet once more to form one last Archmage construct, who succinctly mocks the group's efforts: "After all, what have you achieved?! You beat up a beach! At dawn, you ALL will die! Get used to it." At this point, the Sand-Archmage has grown gargoyle-like wings and then turns to literal stone before it explodes, raining rubble on Goliath and the others.

"Let's get back to the Palace before the very AIR attacks us," Guardian comments. As they walk, Elisa joins Goliath and asks about Angela, noting that she looks like Demona but with a different complexion. "Daughters and sons belong to the whole clan, Elisa. It is the Gargoyle Way," is all that Goliath provides.

They make their way to Oberon's Palace, which is positively teeming with gargoyles, but with many injured. As they enter a hall serving a makeshift hospital, Goliath asks how many are wounded, and Angela and Gabriel explain the clan was unprepared and had no need to practice their combat skills before this night. The Magus and Princess Katharine, both much older, are treating the wounded as best they can. Katharine stops what she's doing to greet Tom, relieved at his safe return. Elisa can't help but notice the two's warm embrace and the impact it has on the older Magus. Goliath is in awe to greet Princess Katharine once more, and her spirits grow more cheerful and hopeful. Goliath expresses to her that he is glad to be here – that Katharine's protection of the clan's children was something he never dreamed that he would ever witness. Katharine laments that if only the times were equally glad. She tends to a wounded gargoyle, and Goliath registers that the injury was caused by laser burns, and asks how the battle transpired. While the Magus busies himself making natural remedies and poultices for the wounded, he explains to Goliath that since they arrived on Avalon, the island has been completely deserted – except for the Sleeping King – and peaceful, until this recent attack. The Weird Sisters led the attack, followed by two with "magical" weapons. Guardian describes the first as a bearded man and the other a gargoyle they recognized as Goliath's Second-in-Command. Goliath and Elisa recognize Demona and Macbeth in the descriptions and they figure the two, who normally hate each other, must still be under the control of the Weird Sisters. The Magus then explains that it is his old master, the Archmage, that commands their attackers. But this Archmage is a more powerful sorcerer; he wears the Eye of Odin on his brow and carries the Phoenix Gate. If the Magus wasn't confident that the Grimorum Arcanorum couldn't be brought to the island, he would swear the Archmage had that as well. Elisa then figures that Demona and Macbeth must have stolen those talismans from Goliath while under the Weird Sisters' thrall, who Goliath figures gave them to the Archmage. Guardian admits that the Archmage seems formidable enough to seem to be at two places at once.

On the island, Demona and Macbeth stand by with their modern weapons as the Weird Sisters relax, sitting and looking at the reflection of the Grotto. Two identical Archmages look at the pool as well, enchanted to show the conversation between Goliath and the Avalon Clan at Oberon's Palace. The Archmage tells his older self that all the pieces are now in place, while the younger self revels that Goliath and his clan are doomed. The older Archmage asks if the younger is about to leave, double-checking if he knows what to do. The younger Archmage assures his older self that he does while activating the Phoenix Gate on his chest: "I should. I watched you do it." He vanishes in the Phoenix's flames.

The Archmage arrives in Scotland, 984 AD, witnessing his younger self battle a younger Hudson, Goliath, and Demona in his cave. As his younger self attacks the three gargoyles with his Lightning Spell, the older Archmage thinks to himself how his younger self starts off well enough, but he lacks control (especially in regard to his temper). Having lost the Grimorum at this point in the battle, the Archmage from 984 grabs a broken stalactite from the ground and runs at them with it, with intent to impale Goliath or his then-Angel. The gargoyles move aside, and the Archmage loses his footing, falling into the chasm and out of sight. There is so much to teach him, the enhanced Archmage from the present day muses, and activates the Phoenix Gate, taking him to the chasm below with enough time to save his younger self. The younger Archmage is shaken from the near-death experience, the sight of the sorcerer who saved him, or both, but the Enhanced Archmage has no patience for him. The younger Archmage asks who just saved him, but the Enchanced Archmage merely activates the Phoenix's flames once more, only demanding "Patience" to his younger self.

The two arrive in the middle of unknown waters of 995 AD, and the Archmage from 984 panics that he can't swim. The Enhanced Archmage merely commands the word "Vessel" with a hand out-stretched, and a skiff rises from the depths for them to land on. It dawns on the younger Archmage that the sorcerer that saved him is, in fact, him, but the Enchanced Archmage corrects his younger self by explaining that he is who the younger self will become. The younger Archmage demands the Enchanced Archmage help to reclaim the Grimorum from Goliath, but the Enchanced Archmage insists that it will be reclaimed in good time; the spell book must fulfill its role in the timestream. The younger Archmage is clearly impatient, wondering why he was even brought to these waters. The Enhanced Archmage suggests he could take his younger self back to where he found him, and his younger self takes the hint. The Enchanced Archmage encourages his younger self to think: what does he want? The younger Archmage quickly responds, "Ultimate power – and revenge!" The Enhanced Archmage lists off what they will need practically to achieve these goals: allies, soldiers, weapons, and a base of operations. "Be silent, and watch," he instructs his younger self. The two Archmages watch the Magus, Mary, Tom, Princess Katharine, Finella, and the gargoyle Eggs float in front of them on three separate skiffs. The younger Archmage reasons that they are here to take the Grimorum from the Magus at this point in time, but the Enhanced Archmage scolds him: "If you DON'T know, DON'T guess." He explains they are here to make powerful allies. The two watch as the Weird Sisters begin to grow into giants on their Barge, preparing to attack the mortals. Princess Katharine begs for the Magus to do something and he is quick to react; as the Weird Sisters' energies converge on the Magus, he successfully manages to not only block their magic, but bounce it back onto the Weird Sisters, turning them into barn owls. Even as owls they attack, but the Magus swats them away with his oar. They fly off, screeching.

Princess Katharine and Finella's skiff floats up to the Magus's, and Katharine celebrates his victory, but the Magus is dejected, declaring that he can't go with them to Avalon. He can't bring the Grimorum Arcanorum; but the book is essentially a map to Avalon, and he won't risk Constantine or his sorcerers getting their hands on it. The younger Archmage is stunned that the Magus is giving up the "source of his power" and wonders if they are going to take the book from Mary and Finella. The Enhanced Archmage reprimands his younger self once more; history cannot be changed. The younger Archmage grows infuriated – if his older self is so powerful, why can't he get what what the younger self needs? But as they fly to the Weird Sister's barge, the Enhanced Archmage explains that if the younger Archmage doesn't get them for himself, then the Enhanced Archmage won't have them in the future. The Enhanced Archmage restores the Weird Sisters with a hand wave and the word "Revert". The three are not amused: they explain that Oberon charged them with protecting the gates to Avalon, but they have now been banished from the island by a "magician's parlor tricks". The Enhanced Archmage offers an alliance, but Selene explains matter-of-factly that they make no pacts with sorcerers. But when the Enhanced Archmage promises them a chance for revenge, Phoebe informs them that they will listen to his proposition. The Archmage explains it will take some time, but Luna is unconcerned: "What is time to an immortal?" The Archmage declares they will meet again in twenty-five years and that they will all have their vengeance.

Act Two

The two Archmages arrive in Scotland, 1020 AD. In Dunsinane, several men stand guard outside a granary when the roar of gargoyles echoes towards them. A band of gargoyles descends from the sky and traps the men in a net. The gargoyle leader breaks into the granary with a mace, and her gargoyles start gathering food. The younger Archmage recognizes the gargoyle leader as his former apprentice who betrayed him – she certainly cannot be an ally. The Enhanced Archmage clarifies that Demona will not be an ally but cannon-fodder . . . and the first of the soldiers they will need. "Trust me, we're not doing her any favors," he assures his younger self. The Weird Sisters arrive to witness the selection.

Meanwhile, Findlaech and a young Macbeth enthusiastically spar on the balcony of Castle Moray. As they watch the nobles, the younger Archmage is dismissive of the boy as a candidate, but the Enhanced Archmage explains that Macbeth will be a great warrior if he should survive to adulthood. The Weird Sisters appear once more and the Enhanced Archmage instructs the three to protect Demona and Macbeth, to guide their courses. Luna interjects, reminding them of Oberon's Law, which forbids the Weird Sisters from directly interfering with human events. The Enhanced Archmage counters, saying "The law that cannot be broken can surely be bent." Phoebe agrees. As they begin to depart, the Enhanced Archmage tells the Weird Sisters to look out for the Grimorum Arcanorum, the Eye of Odin, and the Phoenix Gate. Selene is perplexed: The Enhanced Archmage already has the Eye and the Gate. At this, the Enhanced Archmage laughs: he won't have the talismans until the three bring them to him in the future. He'll meet the Weird Sisters again at the watery gates of Avalon in nine hundred seventy-five years.

The younger Archmage can barely wrap his head around the expanse of time: "Nine hundred and seventy-five years?!" The Enhnaced Archmage glares at him.

The two Archmages arrive on the Weird Sisters' barge in 1995, a day before Guardian set out to find Goliath. The Enhanced Archmage asks his younger self what he will do with the ultimate power he's always dreamed of once the Weird Sisters deliver the Three Keys to Power. The younger Archmage admits he hasn't thought that far ahead: "Perhaps I'll conquer Scotland . . .?" The Enhanced Archmage tells him that with so much power, a single nation is too simple; they could conquer the world. He warns his younger self that the modern world has become a place of science, not sorcery, and that any weapon today is as powerful as any spell cast. For that reason, the younger self will need a base of operations that humans cannot reach. The younger Archmage puts two and two together finally: Avalon will serve as the safe place to launch his assault on the world, once it is rid of the few humans and gargoyles that currently inhabit the island.

The Weird Sisters arrive with the talismans and an entranced Demona and Macbeth. The Enhanced Archmage commands Selene to give his younger self the Eye of Odin. He magically fashions a skull cap for his younger self to wear on his brow. The Eye enhances the younger Archmage, giving him a similar appearance to his older self. The older Archmage explains that his younger self has power but lacks the knowledge to which to wield it, commanding Phoebe to give him the Grimorum Arcanorum. The Weird Sisters are resistant: the Gate and the Eye may have been forged on Avalon, but the Grimorum contains mortal magic. "By Oberon's Law, no magics may enter here save Avalon's own," Luna asserts. The younger self grows indignant; they went through all this trouble to get the Grimorum and he can't bring it to Avalon? The younger Archmage sarcastically asks, "What am I supposed to do, eat it?!" and the older Archmage merely replies that his younger self is learning. Hearing his older self's hint, the younger Enhanced Archmage proceeds to magically consume the Grimorum, much to the Weird Sisters' shock. Sated, the younger Archmage now understands; they bend the law without breaking it. The book is a part of him now and can go where he goes. With that, the older Archmage commands Luna to give the Phoenix Gate to his younger self. Luna asks what are they to do with the Sleeping King, and the younger Archmage is surprised that the legends are true. Selene declares: "All things are true," explaining that Sleeping King rests in his Hollow Hill. The older Archmage prioritizes taking the island first. After that, they can be sure the Sleeping King never wakes.

The older Archmage orders the Weird Sisters and their charges to proceed, and revels to his younger self at the fact that everything is going according to his plan: "As it did, as it must, and as it always will!" He laughs maniacally as they depart in the Phoenix's flames.

Act Three

Six hours before Guardian arrived with Goliath, Elisa, and Bronx, he sits at an outdoor table waiting to be joined by Princess Katharine and the Magus. As the Sun sets on the mystical island, the rest of the Avalon Clan begins to wake up from their Stone Sleep. As the gargoyles join the humans down below, the Palace walls explode, debris and rubble raining down on those nearby. The Weird Sisters (who were responsible for the explosion) vanish as soon as they appear, as an entranced Demona takes to attacking the gargoyles from above while Macbeth covers the assault on the ground. Angela demands to know who they are and what they want, but they are unresponsive. Demona and Macbeth fire their weapons on the untrained gargoyles, and Demona even swipes her claws at another gargoyle's wing, cutting them with her slashing. The two are magically pulled back by the Weird Sisters, vanishing from sight. The Enhanced Archmage appears in the Phoenix's flames, blasting energy at the gargoyles trying to flee. One gargoyle attempts to throw a spear at the Enhanced Archmage, only for him to disappear and reappear behind the gargoyle, attacking with another energy blast. Guardian pulls out his sword and commands the clan to regroup to him, when the Enhanced Archmage's face suddenly appears from the sky. He tells the Avalon Clan that this skirmish was just a demonstration of his power. The Enhanced Archmage declares that they have until dawn before he returns to destroy them all.

At the Grotto, Selene wonders why they were called off from the attack. The older Archmage explains that if they wait until dawn, the gargoyles will be stone and defenseless, leaving just three humans to finish off. Further, he needs time for them to bring Goliath. Otherwise, his vengeance would not be complete.

A minute earlier, the two identical Archmages look at the pool as well, enchanted to show the conversation between Goliath and the Avalon Clan at Oberon's Palace. The Archmage tells his older self that all the pieces are now in place, while the younger self revels that Goliath and his clan are doomed. The older Archmage asks if the younger is about to leave, double-checking if he knows what to do. The younger Archmage assures his older self that he does while activating the Phoenix Gate on his chest: "I should. I watched you do it." He vanishes in the Phoenix's flames.

The remaining Enhanced Archmage says to himself: "Finally. I thought he'd never leave!"

Back at Oberon's Palace, Guardian explains that after the Archmage's first assault, he went in search of help, mentioning that "thankfully, Avalon dropped me in your laps." Princess Katharine and the Magus remind everyone that they are running out time. If they don't defeat the Enhanced Archmage and his forces before sunrise, "the next battle will be over before it begins." Gabriel informs everyone that they have three hours left until dawn. Goliath is confident about taking on Demona and Macbeth, but he needs the help of the Magus and his magic if they hope to take on the Enhanced Archmage. The Magus tells everyone that, without the Grimorum, he is useless. Princess Katharine vehemently disagrees, telling him not to say it, let alone think it. She goes to comfort him as Goliath strategizes that if they can recover the Eye of Odin and the Phoenix Gate, it will reduce the Archmage's power considerably. Even if that were possible, he knows they can't take on their enemies in a frontal assault. Knowing it will take stealth and be surgical to succeed, he takes only Angela and Gabriel as his guides. As they leave, Goliath asks Elisa to think of a contingency plan in case their efforts fall short. Elisa isn't sure where to start when she suddenly remembers something the Magus mentioned. She asks the three humans to tell her about the Sleeping King.

From the Grotto's waters, the Enhanced Archmage sees Goliath, Angela, and Gabriel approach. "Now the fun really begins!" he says and begins to laugh maniacally once more.

To Be Concluded . . .

First Appearances

Characters

Locations

Miscellaneous

Quotes

  • "Don't crow too loudly. After all, what have you achieved?! You beat up a beach! At dawn, you ALL will die! Get used to it." -- The Archmage
  • "Let's get back to the Palace before the very AIR attacks us" -- Guardian
  • "She's not an ally, she's cannon-fodder. The first of the warriors you will need. Trust me, we're not doing her any favors . . ." -- The Archmage

Continuity

Angela, Gabriel, and the other gargoyle members of the Avalon Clan are introduced in this episode. Angela becomes a regular cast member beginning in this episode.

Elisa Maza comments to Goliath that Angela "looks like Demona, but her coloring's different" and asks about her parentage. This foreshadows the revelation in "Monsters" that Angela is the biological daughter of Goliath and Demona. Goliath's response (that gargoyle children are raised by the entire clan) foreshadows his reluctance to accept her as his daughter until the episode "Mark of the Panther".

Angela is not the only member of the Avalon Clan to be the biological offspring of two gargoyles whom we had already met in the series. Gabriel is, in fact, the biological son of Othello and Desdemona (as his appearance strongly hints) – though this would not be confirmed until "Reunion". (On a related note, Greg Weisman has also mentioned that Broadway is Hudson's biological son, although neither of them are at all interested in this piece of information, thanks to the gargoyle custom of "Daughters and sons belong to the whole clan.")

The Archmage travels back to 984, and witnesses the events depicted in flashback in "Long Way To Morning". We learn that the Archmage was able to survive his plunge into the chasm by rescuing his past self.

During the Archmage's visit to 1020, Demona's granary robbery from "City of Stone" Part One reappears, this time from his perspective, and Findlaech makes a cameo, teaching Macbeth swordplay.

The "Sleeping King" is referenced for the first time, foreshadowing Arthur Pendragon's introduction in the following episode.

Tidbits

In the original draft for "Avalon" Part Two, the Archmages' time loop included two more stops that had to be cut for time: a visit to Scotland in 1040 (where the Enhanced Archmage instructs the Weird Sisters to make Demona and Macbeth immortal) and to New York in the present day, during the events in "City of Stone" Part Three (where the Enhanced Archmage would deliver further instructions to the Weird Sisters that would lead to their actions in that episode).

The latter scene, incidentally, could explain a remark by the Enhanced Archmage to his former self about how the modern world is now powered by science and technology rather than by magic. From the point of view of the episode as aired, this is astonishing, since his time in the 20th century is spent entirely on Avalon, rather than the outside world, and so he could not have seen this first-hand. He also calls Demona "cannon-fodder." (Admittedly, he does witness Demona and Macbeth making use of their high-tech firearms in their initial assault upon the palace, which could be how he learned of it. An even more entertaining possibility is that the Archmage doesn't actually know this fact, but only says it because it's all part of the time loop!) These lines might have been left over from the longer version of the episode, where he would have had the opportunity to learn of this during his brief stopover in Manhattan during the 1990s.

When Goliath is surprised that the Avalon Clan has names, Angela responds "Of course, how else could we tell each other apart?" This mirrors Tom's question in "Awakening", "How do you tell each other apart?" to which Lexington replied "We look different."

Early in this episode, the Archmage mocks the gargoyles by saying, "What have you achieved?! You beat up a beach!" This is referenced in the animated series W.I.T.C.H., in the episode "I is for Illusion", when one of the protagonists asks "How are we supposed to beat up a beach?" while fighting the monster Sandpit. Season 2 of W.I.T.C.H. was story edited and produced by Greg Weisman, and the episode was written by Cary Bates. The quote would also be referenced in the second season of The Spectacular Spider-Man.

When the Archmage proclaims how everything is going according to his plan to his younger self (more specifically when he says "as it always will"), the background switches to their base on the island, which they had not yet reached, but appears earlier and later in the episode as the only other place both of them had the "Enhanced Archmage" look.

Archmage's time loop

The Archmage's travels through time.

Greg Weisman describes this time loop as a "quirk of the timestream", a "working paradox" without independent origin, as opposed to the "Grandfather chestnut". When trying to illustrate the mechanics of the loop, Weisman compared it to his own "Gettysburgh chestnut":

"I am a historian. My specialty is Abraham Lincoln. I travel back in time and meet him just before he's scheduled to give the Gettysburgh Address. To my horror, I discover that he's got writer's block. The most famous speech a president ever gave, and Abe can't think of what to write. I panic. And "write" the speech for him. Of course I didn't compose it. I simply write down the Gettysburgh Address from memory. Abe loves it. Gives the speech. Reporters transcribe it. Historians put it in history books. I study it and go back in time. Time flows unbroken. It is a "working" paradox. A paradox that doesn't short circuit the time stream. Now it raises a HUGE question? Who composed the Address? Not Abe, he got it from me. Not me, I got if from a history book. Not the historians or the reporters, they got it from Abe. The answer is it was born with the timestream, created by God or the Big Bang or whatever. It is mysterious. But it works." [1]

Both the Gettysburgh and the Archmage's loop fall in line with the bootstrap paradox theory, which essentially represents a causal loop that was not created by third party tempering of the timestream—it simply exists. This paradigm complies with the time travel rules innate to the Gargoyles Universe, which establish that time cannot be changed.

Toon Disney/Disney XD Edits

The scene where Elisa fires her gun three times at the Sand-Archmage's head was removed. The three bullets passing through and the holes closing afterwards is missing. Also, it cuts out the scene where Bronx and Boudicca pounce on two other Sand-Archmage heads (the one's imprisoning Angela and Gabriel) and slash at them.

DVD Release

Links

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