Gargoyles fans would be well within their rights to think that Xanatos, in one of his many successful gambits, ultimately brought about the end of the title team. But that’s not the case. According to the action-packed animated series’ co-creator Greg Weisman, it was another notorious 90s name that brought down the winged heroes: O.J. Simpson.
Now if you think about that for a moment, it makes sense. Simpson’s murder case was all that the media and TV-watchers wanted to see throughout the majority of 1995; I even remember my teacher interrupting class to tune into the verdict as it was delivered live on TV that October day. That whole circus meant a lot, pop culturally speaking, but for Gargoyles, which had just launched its ambitious second season with daily episodes all September long, it meant the beginning of the end.
In a new interview with Polygon, Weisman marks the often-interrupted airings of new Gargoyles episodes as one of the factors in the show’s downfall. But for fans of the series, including yours truly, this lengthy interview has a ton of behind-the-scenes reveals about Weisman’s part to play in Gargoyles, the many corporate maneuvers that took place behind the scenes over the years, and the corporate decisions that came with them. Plus, Weisman teases what he’d like to see in a series reboot, a possible live-action movie, and more from an expanded universe centering on the core team.
Unfortunately, Weisman is, like most of us, little more than a very informed and passionate fan when it comes to decision-making for Gargoyles. (That’s not a knock at all; just about every filmmaker, producer, and actor who’s ever touched a comic book movie started out as a fan who could only daydream of getting to make such creative decisions with their beloved characters.) The Gargoyles property sits squarely in Disney’s hands, and the most they’re currently doing with the franchise is airing existing episodes on Disney+. That’s great for new viewers who are experiencing the seminal show for the first time, but it’s business as usual for Weisman, who has no say in what happens to the Gargoyles from here on out. The optimistic among us hopes that might change one day; here’s a sampling of Weisman’s thoughts on that matter and what the future could hold:
Gargoyles is still my baby. I don’t own it. I don’t get a dime off of it being on Disney Plus. And yet I’m so thrilled that it is, I’m thrilled that it represents a chance — even if it’s a slim chance — to bring it back. I’ve always wanted to do more. I’ve got a timeline for the show that’s 315 pages long. I’ve got notebooks and comp books full of ideas for it. Spin-off notions and all sorts of things. Literally nothing would make me happier than to go back and do more Gargoyles…
The problem with a question like that is that nothing truly exists in a vacuum. If I really had my first choice, I’d be like, “More than anything else, I just want to take Gargoyles and pick up where it left off, set in 1997, and do this period piece.” But odds are, any discussion along those lines would have parameters: Walt Disney Television Animation or whoever would be like, “Hey, this is what we’re doing.” Or “This is what we’re interested in.” So I could definitely see doing Gargoyles 2198, which launches the story into the future, and has this clean, fresh start. I could see doing TimeDancer, which features one of the breakout characters of the show, Brooklyn, which would allow us to touch on a lot of stuff. Although production-wise, that would probably be one of the harder ones. Really, I’d be thrilled to do any of it. Bad Guys was the actual spinoff that got the furthest.
Would you want a live-action Gargoyles?
I’d love to, especially if they let me write and produce it. Obviously no one wants a bad version of Gargoyles, and if it sucked, that would be horrible. But even if it sucked, it might be high-profile enough to let us do more Gargoyles comics, or more of the show. That’s a deal I’d take. I don’t earn any money off of Gargoyles. Disney owns it 100%, but I obviously feel territorial about it. And I’d love to see the property be able to grow. As long as nothing is being done with it, that’s impossible. But if something is done with it, and I think being on Disney Plus counts as something, there’s at least a shot at allowing us to tell more stories in that universe. That would be huge for me, emotionally.