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Double Jeopardy

Synopsis |  Review by Juan F. Lara |  Review by Todd Jensen


by Kieran Dunn


by Adam Cerling

Act I

A year ago, in a dark storage room of Xanatos's castle, a Steel Clan robot suddenly activates. It tracks Elisa's voice; she stands upon a parapet, trying to persuade Goliath to seek a new home. The robot bursts upward through the stoneworks and attacks Goliath. Although its claws rake his arm during the fight, Goliath crushes the robot swiftly. Owen soon appears to explain the robot's presence: a freak overload occured in its circuits. Owen attends to Goliath's wound.

Tonight, Elisa drives along the coast, sent to investigate an anonymous tip that a meltdown will occur at the power plant. Lexington and Broadway fly overhead, kept in contact with Elisa via a radio headset. A winged shape attacks the pair, flinging them aside, then swoops down to force Elisa off the road. A crack of lightning illuminates a nearby cliff, and the three see Goliath's shape against the sky. The shape vanishes with a maniacal laugh.

In the Genutech building, Dr. Sevarius gives a professional thief a stack of cash and a mission--the theft, apparently, of a statue. "But it would be easier at night," remarks the thief. Sevarius's tone becomes condescending. "No, it wouldn't--trust me on that."

"You should've heard his laugh," Lexington interjects. "Made my hair stand on end--if I had any." He and Elisa explain the night's events to Hudson, back at the clock tower. They are sure they saw Goliath on the cliff. Goliath and Brooklyn are absent, on patrol. They do not return before sunrise.

The light of day finds Goliath's statue perched on a tower of Xanatos's castle. To Xanatos and Owen's surprise, a helicopter arrives, and a team of thieves quickly enwrap the statue in straps and lift it away. Owen fetches a laser rifle, but Xanatos orders him to hold his fire for fear of damaging the gargoyle. "Is this a plan you've neglected to mention?" Owen inquires. It is not.

In the helicopter, the thief Sevarius hired reports success to his employer.

That evening, Goliath and Brooklyn return to the clock tower to be interrogated by the others. Goliath denies every charge. "Surely you know I'm not in the habit of playing childing pranks or laughing maniacally in the dark!" "Do y'even know how to laugh maniacally?" Hudson muses. Brooklyn gives Goliath an alibi, and the mystery of the previous night's events remains unsolved.

The thieves' helicopter delivers a metal crate contining the stolen gargoyle to Dr. Sevarius at an abandoned offshore oil rig. "I've never seen a statue that needed to be put to sleep," remarks the leader upon seeing Sevarius's tranquilizer gun. "You have now," Sevarius replies as something begins to pound its way out of the crate. The gargoyle bursts free--it is a white-haired, ebon-skinned twin of Goliath.

Act II

Goliath, Elisa, Lexington and Broadway search the place where "Goliath" was sighted. They find a Gen-U-Tech tracking device, and speculate that the previous evening's belligerent visitor may be one of Xanatos and Sevarius's mutant creations. Lexington and Broadway are dispatched to investigate. Goliath and Elisa set off to find the creature.

Xanatos recieves a call to deliver $20 million to the oil rig in exchange for his Gargoyle. Owen discovers that the oil rig is secretly owned by Xanatos enterprises. Xanatos decides that the culprit must be Sevarius; he was the only other person to know about the "Thailog Project."

Lexington and Broadway break into the Gen-U-Tech building and quickly discover via computer a record of the entire Thailog Project. From blood samples taken a year ago from Goliath's skirmish with the "malfunctioning" Steel Clan robot, Dr. Sevarius created a clone. Sevarius accelerated the clone's growth and taught it with a subliminal education program designed by Xanatos.

Goliath notices a small boat en route to the abandoned oil rig. He takes to the air with Elisa to follow it--it is Xanatos.

Xanatos arrives on the rig, carrying a suitcase of $20 million. Sevarius, amused, meets him and chortles over the money, but Xanatos isn't tickled. Shedding his trenchcoat to reveal his exo-frame, he grabs the doctor by the collar and holds him up against a wall. Sevarius is mystified and alarmed.

Above, Goliath and Elisa have chosen not to inturrupt Xanatos and Sevarius's discussion, but rather they investigate an anguished howl emerging through a heavy steel portal. The room inside is round and metal, and Goliath's doppelganger is chained to one wall. "I am Thailog," he declares. Goliath is shocked and enraged that Thailog exists. Elisa realizes Thailog is a clone, but Goliath is simply furious that Xanatos "pieces off [Goliath's] soul." Elisa persuades him not to take out his anger on Thailog; the latter is an innocent victim, and in a way, Goliath's son. Then Thailog unfastens his manacles and lunges at Goliath, pressing a mask over Goliath's face, forcing him to breathe a gargoyle-weakening gas. Goliath unconscious, Thailog advances on Elisa, laughing maniacally.


A minute of confused explanation reveals Sevarius' belief that Xanatos put him up to the kidnapping; the details of the plan were sent from Xanatos's headquarters. It only takes a moment for Xanatos to realize the true identity of the master manipulator--Thailog. "Well, what d'ya know. The kid turned out to be a real chip off the old block." On cue, Thailog plummets from the sky and presses a metal disk to Xanatos's exo-frame. Electricity leaps from the disk and drops Xanatos to the deck.

Chained in the round steel room with Goliath, Elisa, and Sevarius, Xanatos asks Thailog why he never sought an arrangement, if all he wanted was the $20 million. Thailog is scornful--he doesn't want to live his life as Xanatos's stooge and the doctor's guinea pig. "Typical," remarks Sevarius. "You do, and do, and do for them and this is what happenes. They twist the knife in you." "Don't tempt me," Thailog growls. He is confident of his ability to find a use for the money. Goliath tries to warn him away from that path, offers him a place in his clan--but Thailog has already decided against that. He hates his "father." He plans, with two hundred gallons of oil and a flare gun, to incinerate the rig and cook its contents. He leaves with the money, closing the portal behind him.

Elisa has no trouble slipping free of her manacles. "I love a woman with delicate wrists," says Xanatos. The other three, unfortunately, are still trapped--the gas left Goliath weakened, and the disk left Xanatos's exo-frame shorted out. The solution comes from Sevarius: use the remaining electricity from the disk to boost Goliath's chemistry. Eliza takes the device.

Outside, Thailog covers the platform in oil. Hearing a monstrous cry from Goliath, he says, "Now I know where I got the temper."

The electricity cleanses Goliath's system, and he frees the others. Emerging from the round room they find the platform slick with spilled oil. The humans head for Xanatos's boat. Goliath intends to face his "son" alone.

Goliath find Thailog ready to depart, and offers him another chance to start over. Thailog refuses, reaching for his flare gun, but Goliath attacks. The suitcase bounces aside. During the fight, the gun goes off and the oil goes up in flame. An explosion separates the combatants. Soon Goliath sees Thailog, retrieving the suitcase, and cries out to him; but further explosions topple a steel tower upon Thailog and throw Goliath from the oil rig.

Elisa, watching with the others in the boat, is horrified as flame engulfs the platform. "What can I say, detective?" Xanatos asks, his arm around her shoulders. Goliath bobs to the surface of the water. "Save it!" Elisa cries joyfully, pushing him away. Goliath climbs into the boat. Soon Lexington and Broadway arrive.

The next day, Xanatos sits thoughtfully with his tea. He expresses his suspicion to Owen that Thailog may have faked his own death. Thailog has $20 million, Goliath's strength, and intelligence greater than Xanatos's-- Xanatos may have created a monster.


by Juan F. Lara

This campy episode had some funny moments, but it didn't seem as good as most "Gargoyles" eps.

Good Points

Nega-Goliath, um, Thailog. :-) - fun character. I enjoyed hearing someone with Goliath's voice speak in a casual contemporary tone and act greedy and cunning. I expected him to be a Frankenstein-like innocent at the mercy of other people. So his behavior in Act 3 surprised me. Thailog also showed depth in how he related to his "fathers", in particular showing some affection for Goliath at first.

The plot had a lot of twist that fooled me. At first I thought Sevarius was carrying out another Xanatos scheme. But Xanatos's distress over the kidnapping seemed real. So I wondered who was really behind the caper, or if a flunky like Sevarius had suddenly tried to go independent. Then I thought it was a Xanatos scheme again from Sevarius's behavior in the oil rig. And I never guessed who really was behind everything. So Bates did a great job at playing off my expectations.

Bad Points

Bates apparently tried to write a comedy, giving the characters lots of sarcastic or wierd remarks. Owen in particular got a few digs at Xanatos, like when he noted that "a certain large consortium" owned Xanatos's land, and the final scene was a send-up the usual ending where Xanatos would explain how everything went IN his favor. A lot of these lines and scenes were very funny. But this episode felt more like a parody of "Gargoyles" than a "Gargoyles" episode. Characterizations seemed self-consciously off. Except for Goliath regarding Thailog as his son, I didn't find anything particularly compelling in the story. So this comedy episode didn't work for me as other "Gargoyles" eps have.

The creators may have planned to create Thailog from the beginning. But the opening scene still came off as clumsy ret-conning. This scene also had a continuity gaffe: The scene was dated 11/15, but Xanatos got out of prison on 10/31.

Does Sevarius now qualify as the official comic relief? :-) Actually, he did prove useful in figuring out how to free everyone from the trap. But his bad-acting routine and nebbishness in Act 3 felt out of place in this show.

Yet another scene of the villain touching the heroine's chin while she's in shackles, only this time it's Elisa instead of Jasmine. :-)

An odd skin and hair pigmentation? ( rolls eyes :-)

Animation by Animal-Ya and Morning Sun. Character movement seemed stiff for most of the ep. In the opening scene Elisa and Goliath seemed as robotic as the Steel Clan robot.

Quotes and Dyns

They worked in another instance of Broadway learning to read while working on a case.

So when does the Demona/Thailog team-up occur? :-) I wonder if both will try to have children to populate the world with their vision of gargoyles.

Lexington: You should've heard him laugh. Made my hair stand on end, if I had any.

Goliath: I don't know what you're talking about. Surely you know I am not in the habit of playing childish pranks, or laughing maniacally in the dark.
Hudson: Do you even know HOW to laugh maniacally?

Sevarius: The order came from your office, by electronic mail.

Goliath: Money is a necessary evil in Xanatos's world, but not in ours. [Oh, sure. You're not the one who pays for your food. :-)]

Xanatos: I love a woman with a delicate touch.
Elisa: You work with handcuffs as much as I do you pick up a few tricks.

Thailog: Now I know where I got the temper.

Owen: It's unfortunate you couldn't prevent all that ransom money from burning up, sir. That $20 million would just about cover the installation of a more secure computer system for the corporation.

Owen: You mean that creature is still out there? It has the money. It's as powerful as Goliath. And it's SMARTER than you? [Ouch. :-)]
Xanatos: Owen, I think I created a monster.


by Todd Jensen

The introduction of Thailog into the series produced perhaps one of the most chilling antagonists in "Gargoyles". What makes Thailog so unsettling isn't just the fact that he's a dangerous adversary, cunning enough to outwit even Xanatos, and possessing the great physical strength of a gargoyle, though these help. Instead, it comes from the fact that he bears such a strong external resemblance to Goliath (if with different coloring), and even has the same voice, but is Goliath's opposite in terms of character. Where Goliath has the strengths and weaknesses of a medieval heroic warrior (courage, loyalty, a strong sense of honor, stubbornness, and a tendency towards vengeance when those close to him have been harmed), Thailog has a thoroughly modern-day amorality comparable to that of Xanatos, filled with greed and subtlety. It is the incongruity, a Goliath-like body housing a very un-Goliath-like mind, that makes him truly stand out so.

Thailog's entrance as a potential successor to Xanatos as a scheming mastermind adversary was all the more fortunate, since Xanatos had already begun to recede as a menace to the gargoyles - paradoxically, not in spite of the traits that made him such an effective opponent, but because of them. Xanatos was an extremely practical man, interested above all else in what would be useful to him, and that meant that if he were to pursue the gargoyles, it would have to be for a serious reason, to achieve some serious goal. His original purpose for awakening the gargoyles, to make them into his henchmen, had failed, and the very fact that Xanatos had embarked on so many schemes to create his own gargoyles (the Steel Clan, his suit of gargoyle armor, the Mutates, and finally Thailog) was sign enough that he was aware of this. If Xanatos had had a vengeance-mentality like that of Demona or the Pack, he could have attempted to capture or kill the gargoyles based on that motive, but he was too sensible to engage in such behavior (even while being aware that such desires could be useful to him in attaining his objectives, as "Leader of the Pack" shows). And, as he had mentioned at the end of "City of Stone", the gargoyles were often useful to have around, which provided him with a definite in-character reason for him not to destroy them. As "The Price" would show (only four episodes after this one), there were other plausible reasons for Xanatos to capture a gargoyle besides making it into a personal operative; nevertheless, it had become increasingly clear that it was not in his interests to continue hunting them. Not that this interfered with his serving as an antagonist - the gargoyles could still get involved in his schemes even when they were not the primary target, as many episodes showed - but one can't help but suspect that the series needed a new enemy for the clan who could combine Xanatos's strengths with a genuine and long-lasting motivation for going after them. And that new enemy was Thailog, who had the motive: the desire to overthrow his fathers, among whom was Goliath.

While the original conception for Thailog arose out of a mere fluke involving the voice recording (see the Tidbits section below), the element that shaped him much more strongly was Greg Weisman's interest in the Bastard archetype in literature and legend (Greg has even stated that his favorite Shakespearean character is Edmund in King Lear - whom Thailog certainly evokes), a role which he saw Thailog as fulfilling in the series. Thailog is, in a sense, Goliath's illegitimate son, with Xanatos and Sevarius's cloning operation providing a way for this concept to be acceptable to Standards & Practices in the way that a more literal interpretation of the concept obviously would not. But in a sense, Xanatos and Sevarius are also Thailog's fathers, having deliberately arranged his creation and even taught him their amoral principles - taught him only too well, as it turns out. For Thailog is ready to declare his independence from his fathers, to work for himself, and instead of simply asking Xanatos for money, comes up with a cunning scheme to seize it from him, staging his own kidnapping via Sevarius (whom Thailog duped into doing it through tricking him into believing that Xanatos was ordering the kidnapping as one of his plans) and then holding himself for ransom, thus bringing Xanatos, Sevarius, and 20 million dollars all within his grasp, the first two to get rid of, the third to keep for himself.

As for Goliath, Thailog (having become aware of the biological link that they share) was initially willing - if not without a strong effort on his part - to reach out to him (albeit by splitting the stolen money with him, something that Goliath obviously would never have agreed to). But here Goliath fails his "son" in a different way than Xanatos and Sevarius; initially outraged to discover what Xanatos has done, he angrily calls Thailog an abomination. Elisa correctly points out to him that he can't hold Thailog responsible for how he came into being, and Goliath realizes his error, but by then, the damage has been irreversibly done. Thailog, angry at being rejected by the only one of his three "fathers" whom he was even halfway ready to accept, decides to make him one of the objects of his hatred as well. (Admittedly, even if Goliath had handled the revelation about his clone better, Thailog's embrace of Xanatos's machiavellian world-views would probably have prevented, or at least severely hindered, any union between the two; he certainly shows nothing but scorn towards Goliath's beliefs about protecting the city, commenting, "Where's the profit in that?")

Goliath, Xanatos, and Sevarius escape Thailog's initial attempt to kill them thanks to Elisa's help, but it is clear that both Goliath and Xanatos have been profoundly affected by the experience. Goliath is saddened over the fact that he had failed his "son". Xanatos, on the other hand, is alarmed at the realization that his scheme backfired so seriously upon him, resulting in his now being faced with an extremely dangerous rival. At the very end of the episode, we see him troubledly looking out from the battlements, confiding in his fears to Owen, while Thailog laughs evilly somewhere in the distance.

While focusing on Thailog's emergence, the episode continues the "Gargoyles" tradition of amusing or effective "character bits" for the supporting cast. Sevarius displays his fondness for mad scientist cliches once again (including one of his funniest scenes ever, where he proceeds to indulge in an over-the-top rant to Xanatos about why he "kidnapped" Thailog, followed by, in a lower voice, "There, how was that?"), while Xanatos again exhibits his defiance of the conventional animated villain formula in his almost-reluctance to engage in revenge (moving against Sevarius on the simple basis that you can't afford to continue to employ a man who steals from you and then demands ransom money for the stolen goods). Owen gets a memorable moment of his own when he comments, after Sevarius's mercenaries make off with the stone Thailog, "Is this a plan of yours that you've neglected to mention?", sounding almost hurt here.

As a final note, this is the last time in "Gargoyles" that Xanatos was portrayed as embarking upon a new project to produce gargoyles of his own (though he would still make use of the Steel Clan and even attempt to keep the Mutates in his service in "The Cage"). Of course, after robotics, genetic engineering, and cloning, there were very few (if any) options left for him on this path that he hadn't made use of already, but the consequences of the Thailog Project seem to have played an important role in this. Xanatos comments in his usual glib fashion, "I should have known that no copy could live up to the original", but from the way in which he broods over the menace that Thailog now represents, one can't help but suspect that he has been scared off future efforts after seeing the way in which his experiment has turned on him.


The concept of Thailog was initially inspired by Greg Weisman's hearing Goliath's name spoken backwards while rewinding the voice acting tapes during the making of the first season. (It helped, also, that Greg was favorably impressed with Keith David's voice acting talent, and wanted to give him the opportunity to stretch that by playing a thoroughly villainous character as well as the noble Goliath.)

Owen makes a fresh mention of the Emir to Xanatos (the first mention being in "The Edge"); by this time, Greg was thinking of turning the Emir into an on-stage character, which would be achieved in "Grief".

Xanatos includes Demona, Macbeth, and Renard on his list of suspects behind Thailog's "kidnapping", even listing Renard twice (the second time comes when Owen reports that the oil rig named as the rendezvous for the ransom money is secretly owned by a large corporation, and Xanatos immediately asks, "Cyberbiotics?"). While one finds it highly unlikely that Renard actually would be engaged in such an action (though there is "Golem" to consider), presumably Xanatos doesn't give much thought to the fact that a person's sense of integrity would be enough to withstand the temptation to abduct anything as valuable as a cloned gargoyle.

The dates given in Sevarius's video documentary about the cloning and education of Thailog are all dates of personal significance to Greg Weisman (the birthdays of himself and various family members, his wedding anniversary, etc.).

Broadway spells out the word "clone" carefully while watching Lexington hacking into Sevarius's files on the Thailog Project, another indication of his slowly learning how to read.

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