Gargoyles: The Green – Episode Review

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It’s Captain Planet meets Gargoyles! Sort of. There are no rings that summon a green defender of the Earth. There is, however, a magical artifact that bestows the ability to stay awake during the day to the gargoyles. (We humans have a similar invention: caffeine.) Irreplaceable rain-forest plants are in danger from corporate America’s greed, and only a small band of native gargoyles stands between them and extinction. Jackal and Hyena have signed on as contract killers, eager to hunt down the gargoyles. Can Goliath, Angela, Elisa, and Bronx make a difference?

Miss last week’s? Read The New Olympians episode review.

Spoilers are in the 20/20 moments. Info from Ask Greg is in the According to Greg bits. 


Season 2, Episode 38: The Green


Reason(s) for existence: To further the Pack’s story. To follow what Cyberbiotics is up to. To visit the NYC clan, sort of. To meet more gargoyles. To press for saving the rain forest. To gratify Greg’s desire to make a feathered serpent garg and visit another continent.


Main antagonist(s): Jackal and Hyena, Vogel (vaguely)


Time(s):  February 15th, 1996


Location(s): ChacIxChel, Guatemala


Disney Gargoyles - The Green - title

The Mist.

Goliath & Company land in another river. It’s in a rain forest. Again.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - jungle river

Mangroves? Yeesh, more jungle.

As they float along, they hear gunshots. There’s a confrontation between a group of white guys in hard hats (who must be construction workers bent on destroying the rain forest) and two gargoyles who are trying to flip over a piece of heavy equipment.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - construction guys shooting

Mausers, or are they lasers? And why are they all white dudes?

Out of nowhere swoops Jackal and Hyena. They can fly now, thanks to jet packs. I guess they could always fly, but they just didn’t use the power much. They actually do very well.

 

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - jackal and hyena

I don’t know how they can store so much fuel. Maybe they use something like Iron Man’s suit.

Jackal mentions they are in Guatemala to deal with vandalism done by gargoyles. Convenient.

The gargoyles jump in to help.

Hyena and Jackal put up quite a fight. They manage to take down the two other gargoyles with a taser and net.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - jackal and hyena catch gargoyles

Will Hyena ever get to see if gargoyles taste like chicken?

But of course, in the end they’re no match for Goliath. He throws a backhoe bucket at them, which hits them both and knocks them far, far away into a swamp. I think Superman would have been pleased with that throw.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - goliath throws backhoe

I think the writers are slightly misinformed on how heavy that bucket really is.

The new gargs introduce themselves as Zafiro (he looks like Quetzalcoatl the Feathered Serpent) and Obsidiana. They’re protecting the Green. No, not marijuana, and not money. They mean the rain forest.


According to Greg: He really wanted to use the feathered serpent design.


During the fight, Bronx sustained a laceration on his foot from Hyena. It’s getting nasty now. Goliath says the abrasion is deep. Well then, it’s not an abrasion anymore, is it? It’s a laceration.

Obsidiana says that in this forest there are healing remedies. She puts some pollen and a leaf on it. The problem is, many of these plants are being lost forever as forest destruction occurs. This is true in real life. Many amazing plants are used as medicine. What we think of as strictly lab-created medicine often started out as plant-based. Opium, for example, comes from the poppy. This is also where we get opioids like hydrocodone and oxycodone.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - pollen on wound

Ah, Disney’s natural world! And the forest creatures probably provide accompaniment to your songs and help you sew your dress, right?

The native gargoyles bring the clan back to the Mayan pyramid where they live. They protect it day and night. See, they have amulets that keep them awake. They’re not made of caffeine or amphetamines, either. I don’t know if the gargs take them off to heal or when they get tired. Do they sleep like normal humans or other animals? They can’t just go 24/7. I wonder if it messes up any other internal workings? I’m also assuming they’d age twice as fast as other gargs too since they don’t have the time-out of stone sleep.

We meet two other gargs, Jade and Turquesa.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - mayan gargs

Oh, forgot to say, the amulets are made of stones – like jade and turquoise

Anyway, a sorcerer wanted to protect the pyramid, so he made a magical item, a sun plate. And he made a set of a amulets to go with the plate. The sun is gone now, taken by poachers who killed the other clan members. But the amulets still keep them from turning to stone, so it must be intact somewhere.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - pyramid

Nobody’s seen that on satellite or from the air yet? It’s in perfect condition…

As the gargoyles are divulging all this wonderful information, Hyena and Jackal are watching and listening with their extendable ears and eyes. They’re on wires, yes. Now they know what the amulets do.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - eye and ear jackal and hyena

You’d think they could send little flying things over there, kind of like a Snitch. But no. Wired.

Jackal has the wonderful idea of destroying the amulet. That’s great, but where is it? They head back to their upscale villa to use the internet. Who does this villa belong to? We don’t know yet. But I’m assuming it belongs to whoever hired them to protect the construction crews. I’m not really sure what this group wants with that area, as it’s out in the middle of nowhere.

Turns out the amulet is in New York City, in the American Museum of Natural History. Convenient.

Jackal has the wonderful idea of sending Hyena all the way to New York to destroy the amulet. On Cyberbiotics’s dime, no less. No, it doesn’t make all sense to me either. They could just come in with snipers, take the gargs out one at a time, and you’re good to go. Or you can have somebody else destroy the amulet in New York. Well, maybe we’ll get to see some of the New York characters. It’s a rather heavy-handed way of getting a few of the Manhattan Clan into the action again. It’s been a long time since we’ve seen them.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - hyena eating big apple

Eating an apple as she plans to go to the Big Apple.

Side note: Hyena is eating an apple. This means she is somehow capable of…still doing that. I don’t know if she actually needs to eat. Jackal, however, I’m not so sure about. Remember, he can stretch his torso, and it looks like it’s all machine. I’m thinking he went whole hog and only kept his head. These siblings are so creepy.

That morning, Elisa goes on patrol with the leader of the Mayan Clan. She watches as he scares off a few local farmers who are cutting down a tree with an axe. He says the clan never hurts the humans. Elisa is a bit upset, because these people are poor farmers, and if they don’t cut down a few trees, they won’t be able to farm. Since they lack modern farm equipment and knowledge of agricultural practices, they need a lot more land to farm. The clan leader has a good point, though: there is no such thing as a few trees.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - zaphiro scares farmers

Good old superstition! It keeps the locals from rising up and wiping out these forest demons. Heck, there’s probably a cult based around them, what with him looking like Quetz and all.

In New York, Hyena is breaking into the museum. Of course, who should happen to be in that area of the giant city but Broadway and Lexington. They follow her inside. A throwdown ensues, in which Hyena spends most of her time talking to herself, revealing all her plans about destroying the amulet and gargoyles. She puts up a good fight against the two.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - hyena balling

Suddenly we’re playing Metroid Prime. Yes, that ball is her.

We break off from the fight. We visit Jackal, who is lounging in a hot tub at the villa. I guess he can drink/eat, since he’s got that pineapple thing going down.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - vogel, jackal at villa, hot tub

Does Vogel ever go home at night and wonder how in the heck he ended up in the position he’s in? He’s seen gargoyles, magic, and now mutilated psychopaths. Like Owen, Vogel doesn’t get nearly the credit he should for being long-suffering.

We see who the villa belongs to: Renard. At the moment, though, Vogel is somehow involved with these idiots. And by Vogel, I mean Cyberbiotics. Renard is ill, so Vogel is in charge. (I wonder if Fox is doing anything about this situation?) Anything to take advantage of it, that is.How the heck he got mixed up with Jackal and Hyena I don’t know. Renard keeps some shady company, it seems. First a thug in Prague, and now crazy killers.

Vogel is pissed about paying for Hyena to fly to NYC. He’s also pissed because the gargoyles are still out there causing trouble.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - villa at sunset

Want.

Vogel wants the Bobbsey Twins to deal with the gargoyles and stop the vandalism. ASAP. Jackal relates his plan about Hyena destroying the amulet. When they all turn to stone, he will go about destroying them, or chiseling his face into them.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - jackal face on gargoyle

So…would the gargoyle not wake up? Like, how much damage is enough to kill them in their sleep? Losing an arm, maybe? Would the garg wake up with its face a mass of shredded meat?

Vogel is much like Owen: He just wants the job done. He doesn’t care how. He has no special loyalty to the gargoyles, despite what they did for Renard. Actually, he may have a slight bit of dislike for them, since G messed up Vogel and Fox’s scheme to take down Cyberbiotics.

Vogel does say Renard probably wouldn’t like their methods, but he personally doesn’t care. I like Vogel. A lot. He’s efficient, intelligent, and snarky.  Almost like an Owen Lite.

Vogel, in his passive-aggressive way, says it’s generous for Jackal to allow the gargoyles to live until daylight, because as per the contract, whatever loss they cause tonight will come out of the siblings’ paycheck.

When Elisa and the leader get back, the clan announces it and Goliath will be going on another attack. This does not sit well with Elisa. She wants to know who the real owner of the land is. Now, these gargoyles function like Indian tribes, believing that no one strictly owns the land. Except for them. They own it, because they live on it, and thus only they know can/should be done with it.

I’m actually really happy to see Elisa in a slightly different outfit.

But I digress. Elisa says that there are other ways to protest injustices besides vandalism. She’s right. Vandalism invites crackdown by legal forces, as well as more push-back. True change is not done that way. Only by sensible action that follows due course is it possible. True, back in the old days we could go to war with each other, but nowadays things are different. Fighting one group ends up bringing the entire world down on your head. It’s just not smart. You can do more damage by becoming part of the institutions and fighting against it from the inside.

At the museum, the fight still rages between Hyena and the Manhattan clan members. Aren’t there any cameras in this museum? Aren’t there any alarms? Broadway gets tossed by Hyena into a mammoth skeleton, bring it down. They basically annihilate half the place. Where are the guards?

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - mammoth

Wanton destruction of property yet again. And these are the good guys!

They eventually get the sun plate away from her, and incapacitate her. Yes, I’m skipping a lot of the fight. Go watch it if you’re so interested. Like I said, it’s basically her taking too long to do anything as she monologues. You’d think she’d know better by now. Just shoot the gargoyles and be done with it.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - hyena back

Look at her back. Those are her jet pack vents. They’re coming out of her shoulder blades in this pic. See what I mean about “how do they get enough fuel”?

Broadway and Lexington wonder if they should destroy the sun plate. Well, that would be ironic! They don’t.

The dynamic duo drop an unconscious Hyena off at the cop shop. Morgan and his partner arrive to find her.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - cops find hyena

Oh goody, now what are they supposed to do? Handcuffs aren’t going to do squat.  She’s not just going to throw her hands up and surrender.

Jackal, meanwhile, goes to war with everyone else. He sends the construction crew away and starts taking down trees on his path to the pyramid. He also uses fire. It’ll keep them busy until the sun comes up, which should turn them to stone, because the amulet should have been destroyed. We know it wasn’t.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - forest fire

This club is hopping tonight! It’s on fire!

One of the necklaces is torn off during the confusion. Bronx picks it up. So he and the rest of the daylight gargoyles take out Jackal. All is well.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - bronx hanging off jackal

Somehow the amulet gets stuck in Bronx’s teeth, is that what I’m supposed to believe?

Jackal’s tossed all the way back into the hot tub. Vogel is on the phone at the moment. He doesn’t seem surprised to see his contract killer splash down. He says they should break off the contract with Hyena and Jackal. They should also pull out from the rain forest and cut their losses.

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - vogel on phone

At this point, Vogel will jump at any chance to be rid of these lunatics and go home to NYC. It must be nice to be away from the old man, though.

What an Earth is Cyberbiotics doing here in the first place? Who decides to build something in the rain forest when there are so many other options? Then again, this is the same company that thinks having a tower in the middle of the river, a flying research station, and an underground lab in the subway tunnels is a good idea. Oh, I forgot the Fortress II, which is another airship, but manned completely by robots. Genius!

Disney Gargoyles - The Green - jackal in hot tub

Nothing like a nice, relaxing soak after getting your butt kicked.

While this battle is won, more remain. They can’t get rid of every threat. Which is why they should probably go the Eco-tourism route. And also, this is why the vandalism crap is dumb. You can’t keep doing that. Eventually people are going to notice you. But, for the moment, the rain forest is again saved.

They send Jade and Turquesa with a raft of plants to Avalon as a backup, though.

The rain forest, the touchstone of the 90s, remains intact for the moment…


Final Thoughts

This ep… Hyena and Jackal are the main villains. What do I say about them? Not much. They don’t change much. They get weirder and more depraved. That’s about it. It’s interesting that they’re both back to being best buds after Grief, when Jackal tried to destroy the world AND turned Hyena into an 8 month old.

Vogel is an antagonist, but not a hard-core one. He’s not malicious. He just wants the work done. He’s trying to do his job, like always. This rain forest idea was probably one of Renard’s, to put some stupid research center out in the middle of Guatemala. Renard likely didn’t put much thought into it. He’s got an ego the size of Montana, so he of course wouldn’t think of the repercussions of his actions. Vogel is quite willing to abandon the idea when he faces resistance. I wonder if it’s something he wanted all along?

I’m just glad it’s not Xanatos Enterprises behind the project. I know that’s what they want us to think when we see the Pack members. But it would be cliche for XE to at fault yet again. I’d like to think House Xanatos is fairly environmentally responsible. (I have no basis for this idea other than it’s something I hope for because I’m a fan. But hey, at least Fox used the desert for the Matrix experiment.) However, I’d love to see Owen instead of Vogel.

It’s nice to see Vogel in a leadership position. Like Owen, he doesn’t actually want to run things. He’s comfortable in the shadows, offering his advice and support.

What’s also interesting is that despite his betrayal back in Outfoxed, he’s redeemed himself to the point where Renard trusts him to run the company. That’s a major jump from majordomo. I’m not sure if Vogel is in charge officially, as in according to the org chart of Cyberbiotics, but he has a significant level of autonomy now.

I wonder what Vogel and Fox’s relationship is now? Did he mention the golem fiasco to her? Are they even on speaking terms? Not that it was Fox’s fault that he got in some trouble with Renard… She didn’t force Vogel to work with her. I still want to know the backstory with that – how she talked Vogel into playing Judas.

Aaaah we’re still 2 eps away from Cloud Fathers! Next week we want to believe. In aliens, that is. On Easter Island. It’s a Pandora’s box of an episode, but Greg went there, so we must also boldly go. Make it so!

Thoughts? 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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