A Little Crazy

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Gargoyles #1 by David Nakayama

The first issue of the Gargoyles comic by Dynamite Entertainment was released on December 7th, 2022. [1]

Solicitation

Series creator GREG WEISMAN and illustrator GEORGE KAMBADAIS reintroduce the Manhattan Clan, a family of Gargoyles at full strength, though modern New York City is full of attractions and distractions, and each member of the clan has begun to go their own way. But their bonds will be tested, when nefarious factions from all across the world attempt to steal that rarest, most precious of possessions...an unhatched Gargoyle egg!

Review

Gargoyles is back, as another comic book series, this time from Dynamite. The first issue offers good prospects for the new series.

Greg Weisman provided a good way to re-introduce the cast and their situation to new audiences, through Elisa's voice-over narration. This feels particularly appropriate for a detective, and on the whole, captures Elisa's voice well. One of the highlights is her explaining about the gargoyles by adapting the opening narration from Season Two, culminating in, "They are defenders of the night. They are... well... you get the idea." Elisa provides basic introductions for all the members of the clan (except Bronx and Fu-Dog, who will presumably need to wait for future issues), including the new members Katana and Nashville. As she does so, we see the gargoyles interact with her and with each other, to help give us all the more a sense of what they're like. (In particular, we find out more about Nashville; he's picked up a familiarity with British slang, for example.)

We also see the gargoyles continuing to protect the city. In the opening pages, they help Elisa and Matt catch the three street thugs after another robbery (Lexington takes over the driving of their getaway car, in a possible call-back to his driving Vinnie's motorcycle in "Awakening Part Three"; fortunately, he safely parks it, indicating that he's gotten a lot better at handling motor vehicles). While the gargoyles handle this problem with little trouble, the organized crime situation in Manhattan is taking a more serious turn; with Dracon and Brod both in prison (since "Turf"), a gang war has developed over who takes over their rackets (including a confrontation between the remnants of Dracon's gang, led by Glasses, and Brod's, led by Jack Dane). Presumably this will be one of the major action threads of at least the first few issues.

Coldstone and Coldfire step in to deal with one such gang battle, which leads to Coldstone and Goliath arguing afterwards about how they should handle their mission to protect the city. Coldstone is still bitter about the way humans respond to gargoyles (which he had displayed even before the Wyvern Massacre, as the opening of "Reawakening" showed), while Goliath insists on continuing to work (if slowly) towards making peace with the human race. This leads to one of the funniest moments in the issue, when he refers to the criminals of Manhattan as "a superstitious and cowardly lot", prompting Elisa to comment on the Batman reference (which Goliath, of course, was unaware of). The scene is all the more amusing, in light of the concerns in the television series' development days that it might be perceived as a rip-off of Batman: The Animated Series.

But stranger developments are at work. Talon and Maggie are about to have their child (following the revelation of Maggie's pregnancy back in "The Rock"), and Thailog has learned of this and is planning to claim the child for his own. All while Elisa plans to head down to the Labyrinth to greet her new nephew or niece, suspecting nothing...

It's a good start to the new series; let us hope there'll be many more issues. (And I hope that Elisa's narration will continue for future issues; it'll come in handy when other figures, such as Xanatos, make their return appearances...)

Tidbits

This issue continues the Gargoyles tradition of appearances from the "recurring bit characters". As mentioned above, the criminals whom the gargoyles apprehend are the three street thugs. Officer Morgan has a cameo, talking with Matt after their arrest. A bystander injured in the gang war is revealed to be the Jogger (and he's being loaded into an ambulance by a couple of the hospital personnel from "Deadly Force"). Brendan and Margot make a silent cameo as Elisa starts her explanation about Talon, and when the scene shifts to the Labyrinth, we see not only the Mutates, the Clones, and Al, but also the "new Mutates" introduced in the Bad Guys spin-off, Benny, Erin, and Thug.

As Maggie goes into labor, Al suggests they should "call the midwife", an allusion to the famous BBC drama series. (It began airing in 2012, approximately fifteen years after the events in this issue.)

Cover Gallery

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Links

<< Previous Episode: "Clan-Building" Chapter Twelve: "Phoenix" Next Episode: "Here In Manhattan" Chapter Two: "A Lot Crazy!" >>