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Recap / Gargoyles S 1 Awakening

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  • Story Arc: Xanatos
  • Characters: Xanatos, the Manhattan Clan, Demona, the Captain, Princess Katharine, the Magus, Hakon, Tom, Mary
  • Enemy(ies) : Vikings, Xanatos and the Steel Clan

Originally released on a VHS Movie Box set (with a Board Game), the episode was broken up into 5 parts for Syndication.

They are

  • Part I - the boys are sent to the Rookeries, Viking Attack the Castle
  • Part II - The Manhattan Clan is Frozen, while Demona is apparently destroyed.
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  • Part III - Detective Maza searches the Castle
  • Part IV - Demona is revealed to be alive and reunites with the Clan
  • Part V - The Clan and Demona attack a facility, causing a break up between The Clan and Demona.

The Captain, Princess Katharine, and the Magus next appear in Long Way to Morning. Hakon next appears in Shadows of the Past. Tom and Mary next appear in Avalon.


This Episode contains the following Tropes:
  • Analogy Backfire: The elderly gargoyle compares the clan's lack of names to rivers. The revelation that humans name rivers causes him to give up the analogy and take the nearby river's name (Hudson) for himself.
  • Animation Bump: Compared to the rest of the series. Within the five-parter itself, the second part has much more fluid and bouncy animation akin to one of Disney's films during its first half.
  • Answer Cut: At the very end of The Teaser, Elisa asks "What could be strong enough to leave claw marks in solid stone?" The scene then cuts to the title screen, which of course reads "Gargoyles."
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  • Blame Game: Hakon tries to pin the massacre solely on the Captain of the Guard.
    Hakon: He's the one you want! He shattered them!
    Captain: Why, you lying scum! (wrestles Hakon off the cliff)
  • Contrived Coincidence: The Magus casts a spell to turn the clan to stone. The counterspell...happened to be on a page that was ripped out and burned. Either Hakon happened to tear out the counterspell section, or the Magus picked the first spell before the pages that were burned away...
  • "Could Have Avoided This!" Plot: Before falling to his death, the Captain told Goliath he should have taken the other gargoyles with him when he and Demona suggested.
    Captain: If only you'd listen!
    Goliath: TRAITOR!
  • Defiant to the End: When Goliath threatened to drop Xanatos, he tells him the gargoyles would all still be stone if it weren't for him.
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  • Establishing Character Moment: For the Manhattan Clan, Demona, Elisa Maza and Xanatos.
  • Every Man Has His Price: Mentioned when Owen brings up the difficulty of finding crews to tear down Castle Wyvern.
    Xanatos: Pay a man enough, and he'll walk barefoot into Hell.
  • False Flag Operation: Xanatos' scheme involved the "impersonate the enemy and attack yourself" variation of this trope.
  • Five-Episode Pilot: The whole story arc serves as a pilot to the series and consists of five episodes.
  • From Bad to Worse: With the exception of the initial defeat of Hakon and his Vikings, the entire flashback is this for the gargoyles, and particularly for Goliath: First the Scots whom the gargoyles defended gave them no respect whatsoever. Then the Captain (the one adult human who did respect the gargoyles) had the brilliant idea of teaching the other humans a lesson by letting the Vikings take over the castle while the gargoyles couldn't protect them (resulting in the Wyvern Massacre). Then, before Goliath could take his revenge on Hakon and the Captain, they killed each other and denied Goliath his revenge. Then Goliath found out that the Magus had cursed the rest of the survivors to sleep forever. Then he found out that the only spell that could undo the curse had been ripped out of the Magus' spellbook and burned, and there was nothing left for Goliath to do but ask the princess to Take Care of the Kids, and the Magus to cast his spell one more time...
    • Adding heartbreak, after waking up Goliath is rejoiced to be reunited with his love Demona. Soon he noticed how much darker she's become. And worst of all, both she and the Captain allowed the Vikings to attack the castle, all out of hatred for humans which she, as a gargoyle, is sworn to protect.
  • Humans Are Bastards:
    • To Demona. Which caused the entire situation.
    • Not to Goliath, but the Captain's betrayal and his remaining clan being "permanently" turned to stone out of misplaced anger caused him be distrustful of humans. He thought he gained an ally in Xanatos until Elisa tells him he was just using the gargoyles.
    Elisa: Goliath, I know we haven't known each other very long, and I know you don't have any good reason to trust humans. But you've got to trust somebody in this world. And I think you'd be better off with me than with Xanatos.
  • Land, Sea, Sky: The three disks are kept in an underground base (land), on a tiny island in the bay (sea) and in an air fortress (sky).
  • Manly Tears: Goliath, when Demona tried to use their past love to sway him to her side.
  • Minor Crime Reveals Major Plot: Elisa was first introduced to the Gargoyles while investigating a case of vandalism.
  • Never Found the Body: Played with. The Captain and Hakon are very dead. Demona is not...but Goliath DID find the body. However, as it was reduced to rubble, he misidentified the remains.
  • Not the Fall That Kills You: Played with. While anyone the Gargoyles do a swooping save on lives, the two characters who fall off a cliff are VERY dead. (The Captain and Hakon)
  • No Doubt the Years Have Changed Me: Between Demona and Goliath.
    Demona: The centuries have made you weak, Goliath.

    Goliath: You said the centuries have changed me. They've changed you, too. You've become hard, unforgiving. You're not as I remember you.
  • Off-Model: Parts two and three compared to the other parts. The former as explained in the animation bump entry, the latter due to switching over to a different production team for the part.
  • Out-of-Character Moment: In-Universe: Goliath noticed Demona is more cold-blooded while inside Fortress-1.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Goliath wanted to do this to Xanatos via dropping him to his death from more than a hundred stories, but it is averted as Elisa talks Goliath out of doing this and instead allows her to arrest him.
  • Reports of My Death Were Greatly Exaggerated: The Princess in Part Two, and Demona in Part Four.
  • Robot Me: The Steel Clan robots are a sort for Goliath.
  • Shout-Out: Demona's line of "1,000 years of solitude" is a reference to the title of One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez.
  • Tranquillizer Dart: The commandos shoot Goliath with one of these while he and Elisa are walking through Central Park.
  • Unwitting Pawn: The Gargoyles, for Xanatos and Demona.
    Elisa: He used you, Goliath. He's been using you for the beginning.
  • You Have Outlived Your Usefulness: "Goliath, it seems, is too hard to control. Hm. A pity."
  • What You Are in the Dark: Demona fails it, miserably. Ditto the Captain. Goliath's rescue of the Princess probably counts as a success.

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