Gargoyles: Deadly Force – Episode Review Continued

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We’re back! Will Elisa survive the Nepalese medical care of MGH? Will Broadway fess up to shooting her? Will Owen recover the stolen weapons? Will Dracon stop using dated gangster language?

We’re about to find out.

If you missed Deadly Force the first half, go read.

Spoilers = 20/20 moments, Ask Greg = According to Greg


Revenge Time!

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Luckily, it’s on the top floor and has a skylight. I don’t know if MHG has skylights.

Goliath finds Elisa’s room at MHG. How?

Below, we meet Elisa’s family. Dr. Sato is recounting the bullet’s path: clavicle, heart, lung, lumbar spine. What kind of magic bullet is this? It goes in toward the heart and downward to the spine. That’s some crazy-bad luck to have that trajectory. It’s easy to make bullets do odd things in stories, though. After all, they do some weird stuff in reality!

More importantly, we meet the Maza family. Peter (American Indian) and Diana (African) are her parents. Derek is her brother. Peter is a sergeant. Derek is also a cop. Family biz much? They mention her sister in AZ. Interesting reality point, Salli Richardson (Elisa’s VA) has African and American Indian ancestry.

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I love meeting characters’ families! It gives depth, lets you know these people didn’t just spring out of the void.

They look like your average loving family, heartbroken over their daughter’s injury. Diana says they can pray for her, but she doesn’t specify a deity, so I have to leave the religion field blank. Peter and Derek are angry but not enraged. This kind of thing happens when you’re in law enforcement.

Chavez visits as well. She says the prints on the gun are smudged so much they don’t look human, but assures the family that nobody shoots a cop and gets away with it. They suspect Tony Dracon, though.

As Owen predicted, Goliath roars off the wreak vengeance. Somehow he knows where Dracon’s pad is. How? They’re talking about going to a meeting at the docks at midnight for a gun show sale.

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Nice pad.

In Central Park, a robbery is happening. Broadway stops it, only to discover the thief is using one of the new weapons. The robber gives the rundown on where he got it: a guy on the docks.

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Why would a street thug spend an exorbitant amount on an energy weapon when a normal firearm will do? How does he even afford it?

Back at the hospital, Elisa codes randomly. This is another medical scene I screamed through. I’ll spare you. We won’t speak of the improper use of a defibrillator to treat asytole, which is not a shockable rhythm. We also won’t talk of the size of the epi syringe.

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Nope. not mentioning a thing about this.

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This code on TV is exactly how codes go! …Said no medical person ever.

Chavez and a ginger follow Dracon, but Tony is too smart for them. He pull into a garage the gangsters own. Not bad! Not only does he spot the tail, he has the resources to evade them. He heads off to the docks. Goliath follows.

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Matt! According to Greg, it was supposed to be Morgan from Awakening.

Broadway finds Glasses selling the weapons from a container on the docks.  He grabs Glasses by the skull and dangles him. Seeing protags really angry is revealing. How far will they go?

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If you thought the other gargs were scary when angry, but that Patrick Star here is just an idiot addicted to food, you’re wrong.

Glasses blurts out that they are waiting for a buyer for the weapons. He’s due at midnight.

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This is really disturbing to me. Not sure why.


According to Greg: The standards and policies (censorship department by another name) people actually liked the episode! They didn’t balk at the guns or gore. The publicity department sent out advance copies. Critics gave it good rewards. Parent groups that usually make an outcry over violent shows understood the ep. Even Dr. Madeline Levine praised the episode, and Gargoyles as a series, in her book Viewing Violence. (I haven’t read her works, so I can’t say if it’s good.)

Who didn’t understand it? Toon Disney’s people. This series is heavy with guns and violence. That’s part of why so many people like it! So why block this ep? Of all the eps, it showed the pain that can come from misusing guns and violence.


Goliath and Broadway stake out the gangsters. Goliath is going to “deal with the man who shot Elisa.” Broadway looks about ready to die of guilt and shame, saving Goliath the trouble of “dealing.” If only Goliath knew…

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Dracon does this deal himself. Interesting.

A gun battle in a dark warehouse ensues, with the gangsters blasting away with the new weapons at the gargs. They put up a good fight. Not good enough, though.

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Why is a laser lighting up the surrounding area?

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Marco…Polo!

Cowboy Up

Dracon runs for it, but Goliath snags his foot and dangles him over the railing. Apparently Goliath likes to play Batman and hang his foes over long drops. This drop, unlike those Hakon and Xanatos faced, probably wouldn’t kill him. Wait, Goliath is fixin’ to crunch Dracon’s skull! This is serious.

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No dignified wrist or collar grab here.

Let’s slow down. Goliath wanted to kill Hakon the second time around, but Hakon rudely fell off a cliff first. Goliath wanted to kill Xanatos, but Elisa and the clan stopped him. Now Goliath really wants to kill Dracon, because Dracon almost killed Elisa (or so he thinks). Elisa is a stand-in for Goliath’s clan and his lover. Will Goliath kill his enemy? Who’s going to stop Big, Purple, and Angry?

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Wonder if there’s an increase in PTSD after the gargs arrived in NYC?

Broadway steps up, even if he fudged a bit on how exactly the gun went off. This manning up is a phenomenal character growth scene. He’s taking responsibility for an act of stupidity that almost cost Goliath’s best friend her life. Broadway could have let Goliath kill Dracon, thus killing a piece of Goliath too and sending him down a dark path. This show and its character arcs never disappoint!

Side note: Somebody needs to do an alternate universe where Broadway doesn’t step in. It could be like the eps Future Tense or  For It May Come True (Goliath Chronicles, barf!).

Taking responsibility takes guts. To stand up and say yes, I messed up badly, is one of the most horrible feelings ever. It’s worse than when someone embarrasses you, because you embarrassed yourself by being an idiot, even an unintentionally idiotic idiot. As we discussed in Thrill of the Hunt, embarrassing your character is the most painful thing you can do to them. It’s also what will make them grow, or at least change, the most.

Let’s talk about Dracon for a sec: Unlike Xanatos, he wasn’t aware gargoyles existed before he saw them. The gargs just rocked Dracon’s world. It’s gotta be akin to a religious experience, right? In the middle of a gun deal, he’s suddenly facing two monsters. Then the big purple one is roaring at him about Maza and dangling him upside down over a two-story drop. It’s a wonder Dracon can get a coherent thought out.

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“Shocked” would be an understatement.

Overall, he handled the encounter well. He didn’t utterly panic. He didn’t start screaming. Even his guys operated pretty well in the face of a new sentient, violent species.

Side note: Somebody needs to write a fan fic where there’s a cult that worships the gargoyles.

How will the widening of Tony’s world affect him? If gargoyles are real, what else is true, and what else is false? This is totally beyond Dracon’s experience.

Goliath ties Dracon and his thugs up with some metal pipes that bend really well.

The garage door opens and who should roll up but Owen. He appears to be alone. I’d wager, there are about twenty Xanatos Enterprises security services personnel ranged about the warehouse. No way somebody with as much sense as Owen has would walk in without at least two snipers covering him and a thorough screen of the building. I’m leaving out Mike Ehrmantraut from Breaking Bad and Better Call Saul, of course. Even he does a thorough check of the location and the parties involved.

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This part was such a twist!

Owen is the buyer. Since the cops have proved useless, he’s taking matters into his own hands by buying back the weapons. This shows he and Xanatos Enterprises have a wide range of contacts. He set this up in a day. He also had the cunning to think of the idea in the first place! Who else, other than Xanatos himself, would think, “Hey, why don’t I just go buy the stuff the gangsters stole?” I’m wondering too, if once Dracon sold Owen the weapons, Owen would have contacted the police.

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Hats off to Goliath, because he firsts asks if all the weapons are present.

Either way, Dracon will be in good company soon enough as he lands in the local correctional institution.

Owen can’t resist a dig at Goliath: “Excellent job, by the way. He will be pleased that you have recovered his property.” In hindsight, maybe he should have let it go, but I doubt it would’ve changed Goliath’s next move: Destroying the guns.

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It was a worthy effort.

 

Goliath leaves a gun on them to show the cops who was responsible. Goliath is catching on about this law and order biz.

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Aren’t the cops gonna wonder about the crunched gun?

While Owen is definitely ticked off, he doesn’t show it, only reversing his earlier statement. Goliath offers to discuss the matter with David.

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Don’t be so quick to take Xanatos lightly, Goliath.


20/20 moment: Xanatos will be discussing matters with Goliath soon enough. Goliath doesn’t understand Xanatos. Xanatos, however, understands a lot about Goliath and is about to understand even more.


More than anything, Owen looks thoughtful as the gargs leave and the guns smoke.

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He’s filing this all away for future use.

There are 37 guns on the streets still. It’s a nice loose end for the writers to use later if they want.

Side note: Somebody needs to write a fic where rogue elements get a hold of the weapons. Xanatos and co have to recover them. Actually, I’d settle for somebody just writing a fic with Xanatos in it.

Bland Head Cannon: Owen makes a snarky remark to Dracon about not being gargoyle-proof. Or maybe Owen just raises his eyebrow at them. Same difference.

Wrap-up

Broadway comes clean with Elisa, who survived being inappropriately defibrillated. And being shot, yes. Elisa admits that she should have been more careful with her weapon…because when you live alone you should totally expect someone to shoot you with your own gun while you make supper. They both promise to be more careful. Well, Broadway, I should hope you are!

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Elisa quickly forgives Broadway. Must be all the meds in her system.

What about Dracon and his crew? They’re locked up for Grand Theft. The cops found them babbling about monsters. Um…the cops didn’t think it was odd that whoever took the gangsters down wrapped metal bars/pipes around them? Doesn’t that cause some confusion? How about security footage of the area? I guess the gangsters and/or Owen took down the CCTV.

Goliath and Broadway sleep outside the window. I’m sure nobody will notice two gargoyles on the roof of a hospital.

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Believe me, if there’s one thing that people look at a lot – patients and staff – it’s the roof.

There’s no Xanatos Tag Ending this time. I imagine David took the news with the usual calculating calm. He would be interested how Goliath reacted. He would also approve of Owen’s handling of the situation. As far as how Xanatos views Dracon, well… I would guess David would give credit for the theft of the guns. Imagination would get maybe a C, since it was a pretty standard plot. Contingency plans rate D+, considering Dracon didn’t really have any. The mitigating factor to that would be that Dracon had zero experience with the gargs. After all, Xanatos’s first interaction, and the Pack’s, landed him in county. Overall, I doubt Xanatos sees Dracon as a threat worth his attention. David is more interested in “playing” with Goliath, the really interesting adversary.


Final Thoughts

I appreciate that this ep wasn’t ramming gun control down our throats. It wasn’t even making guns themselves out to be bad so much as it was showing the respect they require. The damage the weapons did happened because sentient beings misused them. Throughout Gargoyles, you’ll see more guns than in a gun store! Everybody from Xanatos and Owen to Elisa and Demona has a gun or two on them. They use them frequently. Depending on the character and situation, their use can be for good or ill. Guns are just the tools.

I love meeting new antagonists. Dracon is a new spin on the classic mobster. That’s hard to do. Having him be young and willing to get his hands dirty sets him apart. He’s got promise. This isn’t really a show that fits well with the Mafia story lines, though. This isn’t Batman.

Of course, the standout antagonist in this episode is Owen! He’s not 100% opposed to the gargoyles this time. They both want to get the guns away from Tony Dracon. Motivations and plans differ, but not in a way that pits them against each other – until Goliath’s destruction of the weapons.

Seeing how the gargs treat Owen, and vice versa, in a day-to-day, non-adversarial situation was fun. How often does a show have the protags interact casually with one of the main antagonist’s partners/majordomos?


20/20 moment: And we cameo Matt. He was Chavez’s driver.


Time is ticking in the gargoyle universe. Xanatos will be home in early January, leaving little time for the gargs to get the heck off his property. Will they need a nudge? Yes. And there’s a man who’s dying for the opportunity to deliver that push. Tune in next week!

In the meantime, what did you think of the antagonists in this ep? How about the themes? Comment!


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Lead researcher at Villainous Life Natures Research. Writer, reader, snarker. Lover of all things Geek and Dark. INTJ.
Read my reports at vlnresearch.com and learn how understanding villains can help you succeed in life.
Find my action-adventure post-apocalypse zombie thriller Wolves of the Apocalypse series at lcchamplin.com.
I write fiction because the characters in my head have too much attitude to stay in my skull, I want to see the world through different eyes, and I want to live life through different souls.

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