Time to party! And there’s no party like a Gargoyles party, because a Gargoyles party has conspiracies and fights. It’s Halloween, and neither the clan, House Xanatos, nor the Illuminati is going to let it go to waste. Everyone’s wearing a mask, and they’re more than skin deep.
Miss last week’s? Read Invitation Only review.
Spoilers are in the 20/20 moments. Info from Ask Greg is in the According to Greg bits.
Gargoyles Clan-Building: Chapter Four: “Masque”
Reason(s) for existence: Further the Illuminati’s storyline and to show Xanatos’s status. To introduce Terry. To develop Thailog’s story. To show that Owen is quite capable. To deal with the ongoing relationship trouble with Elisa and Goliath.
Main antagonist(s): Thailog
Time(s): October 31st, 1996
Location(s): New York City, New York, USA; Washington DC, the Swamp
Today we are reading chapter 4, “Masque.” That’s also the theme of the comic. Everyone wears a mask, many times because it’s self-defense.
We get a very lovely cover this time that perfectly fits the dual meaning of the title. Not only is it a mask as one wears on your face, but is also a “masque” as in a gathering. On the cover, we see the gargoyles’ faces as masks, though in the comic, they’re not wearing them. There’s also a mask for Hudson, who is not at the Halloween party. As I said, it fits the title and the theme.
We open on Halloween night, the best night of the year. Three kids are out trick-or-treating. Two of them, Billy and Susan, are dressed as members of the Pack, Jackal and Hyena. Interesting, after a few years and the Pack’s shaming, people still want to dress up like them. But they were among the Pack’s biggest fans.
Another kid is dressed as a gargoyle, but rather lamely.
Little Jackal and Hyena’s mom, Sarah Browne, is the same woman we’ve seen throughout the series as a recurring character and who was on Nightwatch being freaked out for her kids’ safety. She’s supervising.
There are a lot of costumed revelers on the street, but they’re not the only masks in town. The Quarrymen are out.
The kids knock on Robbins’s door. Hudson answers. He’s quite convincing as a gargoyle. The kids compliment him on his mask.
Robbins, sitting beside the fire with Gilly and Bronx, wonders what the kids meant by Hudson wearing a mask.
Hudson says he thinks we all wear masks. Very true.
Side Note: Hasn’t Robbins ever petted Bronx? If he did, he would know the garg beast is not a dog.
We cut to the Eyrie building – the Atrium, to be exact. It is packed out, and the party is in full swing.
ADA Margot Yale was invited, and she’s doing what she does best, yelling at Brendan. We learn his last name: Quarters. Kind of a weird name. She lays into him about dressing as a gargoyle. Then she goes up and talks to Lex.
Lexington is wearing the armor / cyborg fittings we see in Future Tense. I wonder if Goliath or Owen / Puck noticed this? Angela is Dorothy, and the lion is Broadway.
Elisa and Morgan show up. Funny that Morgan is also voiced by Keith David.
Angela is a little perturbed that Elisa brought a date, but then again Angela isn’t quite up on the modern world of dating. That is, making people jealous by bringing other dates.
In the Labyrinth, Thailog is kicking butt. Or rather, hobos. Talon takes a shot with his lightning, but Thailog blocks it. Of course he’d be ready for the zapping. The guns he has are able to shoot electricity back. For some reason, Talon is susceptible to electricity. You’d think he wouldn’t be, kind of like how snakes are immune to their own venom.
Claw throws himself into the ruckus. Then Maggie shows up.
Thailog reveals he’s here to reclaim his property, the clones. I wonder if Xanatos ever thought of Thailog as his property? To an extent, I’m sure. But I think it would be more like a pet. We don’t really consider pets property like our cars, but they are ours, definitely.
Back at the castle, Judge Roebling is chatting with Goliath. Remember, Roebling performed the marriage ceremony for Fox and David. He knows all about the gargoyles. However, his memory’s a bit off, because he mistakes Delilah for Demona. It’s not a hard mistake to make, considering he only saw her briefly, and Delilah does share DNA with Demona. When Goliath explains that she’s the combination of Elisa and Demona, Roebling excuses himself. Yep, best leave now while he still has some sanity left.
Intro time: Goliath and Delilah encounter Elisa and Morgan. Morgan greets Goliath. I’m sorry, but that is one fantastic costume. G isn’t even trying to pretend like he’s wearing one. Neither is Delilah.
Of course neither is Brooklyn. He’s quite depressed about Delilah.
Angela comes over to talk to him. She says they don’t dress up so much for the other people as for themselves. Does she say this because he’s not wearing a costume?
Broadway is busy eating, and so is Lex. So they don’t notice that she’s away.
Angela points out tactfully that Brooklyn should go change into his costume. She’s probably just tired of having him mope around.
Meanwhile, Roebling is bugging Owen, asking where Xanatos, their host, is.
We cut to the answer: the White House. Not bad, but I doubt it’s an upgrade from the Eyrie Building.
Ambassador Chung is talking with David (who’s holding Alex) and Fox. She’s currently complimenting the kid. He looks like he’s going on 12 or 13 months, according to her. Fox smoothly replies that he’s not quite four months old. We know this is probably due to the fact that he has 1/4 of fey DNA, and it’s not dormant, like it was in Fox.
Chung is unsure what to say, but David covers for her, saying the kid is “larger than life, just like his parents.” True that! And I love that when Xanatos says this, it’s not a boast, it’s the truth.
According to Garg Wiki: The Terry that we see trick-or-treating is the same Terry that Ambassador Chung is talking about. It’s also the same Terry who was supposed to appear as a main protagonist in the New Olympian spin-off series that never was.
The chef calls the attendees to the table for dinner. Xanatos spots the Illuminati ring on the chef’s finger as the chef hands him soup.
David excuses himself and follows the man. Now in private, they introduce themselves: 36 and 2.
Before we can figure that out, we have to go back to the Labyrinth, where there is fighting. Lots of fighting. The Clones are helping Thailog. Remember, he brainwashed them. This is like in Brave New World, where not only are they genetically engineered to be servants, they’re also brainwashed from day one to do his bidding.
Maggie tries to call them off, but before she can get too far, Thailog blows up half the tunnel on top of her. This is a great distraction.
That’s when Brooklyn’s counterpart informs Thailog that Delilah is at a party with Goliath. Oh boy. Party crashing is coming.
Talon stays with Maggie, leaving the new chick that the homeless guy was talking to to warn Goliath. Um, how does she plan to get into the Eyrie Building to warn Goliath? Do they have a hotline with a red telephone? Or maybe a bat signal?
Back at the castle, Elisa is not enjoying herself. She slips off outside. G joins her.
Elisa is still a bit shocked and confused at seeing her half clone. She says it hurts to see Goliath with her. Girl, you left him!
Goliath asks, how does she think he feels? Gargoyles are supposed to mate for life. First he had Demona, who we thought had died. Then he thought he had her again, and then she turned out to be crazy. Now he has Elisa, who isn’t even his species. Now he’s lost her too. I’m thinking it’s time to declare yourself a bachelor.
Elisa says, “Tonight was a mistake.” It’s kind of a broad statement. She promptly runs off. At least she’s not blaming him.
As G is left watching her disappear, Thailog and the anti-Trio arrive.
Thailog wants Delilah, but Goliath won’t have any of it.
But just as they’re about to have a throwdown, Owen shows up. Remember, he’s chief of security, and he’s also in charge of the castle AND party while Xanatos is gone. And unlike Xanatos, Owen is not going to let the place be destroyed again.
He declares he must confiscate Thailog’s weapons. Only Owen would think of demanding such a thing. And only Owen would do so by simply walking up to Thailog and asking. Or rather, insisting. But while it might seem that he’s outgunned, he is not. He has the entirety of the Xanatos security forces and some pretty heavy armaments backing him up. What’s more, he knows that the pen is mightier than the sword. In this case, his negotiating skills are better than Thailog’s firepower or Goliath’s rage.
If Thailog hands over the weapons, Owen agrees to dismiss security and summon Delilah. He will also allow Thailog and G to fight hand-to-hand. But there is to be no destruction of Eyrie Building property. He’s tired of having to oversee reconstruction efforts. He’s got enough to do already.
Side note: It amuses me a bit to think of the aftermath of destructive events. Xanatos, though somewhat disappointed, stays positive. After detailing how he actually came out ahead despite his building being trashed yet again, he offhandedly assigns Owen to handle repairs. Then Owen is left to deal with contractors, security clearances, and the media.
While Goliath instantly thinks of this deal as “trading” Delilah, Owen clarifies that he is offering her a choice. Indeed, both Thailog and Goliath have forgotten that Delilah is not just a stand-in for Demona and Elisa. She is her own creature, with her own will and desires. Unlike the other clones, she hasn’t been left ignorant, either. Somehow, she has less brainwashing than them. Thailog must want a mate who is not Stepford Wife.
Everyone agrees to Owen’s terms. Not surprising. I think he usually gets his way, it’s just not this blatant. I love how he gets to show his competence at managing issues without his boss around. Yet another example of how this series differs from others, and how Xanatos differs from other antagonists: a competent lieutenant.
Thailog readies for the throwdown, but like his tutor and foster father Xanatos, he’s not going to fight fair. Unlike Xanatos, though, he’s willing to kill Goliath. A blade shoots out of his Gauntlet, and he promptly Shanks Goliath in the gut.
Lots of good stuff in this chapter. Lots going on, period. It’ll be interesting to see why the Illuminati wants to speak with Xanatos personally. Is it just because he didn’t take their call, or because this is something that they can’t risk being overheard?
What’s Thailog planning with the clones? If I know one thing, it’s that he shouldn’t be allowed to have his own clan. Also, the whole evil twin thing gets overdone if you use all the gargs. Hey, why’s there no Bronx?
The drama between Elisa and Goliath continues. It still seems out of character for her.
I enjoyed the scene with Alex. It’s good to see how other characters view him, because as a reader, I don’t know if he’s supposed to look like a 1 year old, or what. It’s also a good twist that he’s well-behaved, avoiding the cliche of a spoiled brat. He also shows that his mom and dad are great parents.
Tune in Tuesday to see if Goliath bites it, what’s up at the White House, and if Elisa comes around.