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Avalon, Part II

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


by Kieran Dunn


by Alexis King

Act I

The Guardian, Goliath, Elisa, and Bronx arrive on Avalon and are greeted by Angela, Gabriel and Boudicca, Avalon's version of Bronx. Goliath's clan's eggs have hatched and grown. Introductions are made and they proceed to the castle when the Archmage appears on the beach taking the forms of sand. He attacks the group and tells Tom, the Guardian that he had time to prepare for death and instead he had wasted it looking for help. The group proceeds to fight the Archmage in his many forms, but in the end he tells Goliath "don't crow so loudly. After all what have you achieved? You beat up a beach. At dawn you all will die. Get used to it." He then sprouts wings, turning into a gargoyle, he turns to stone and bursts into pieces.

The group presses on to the palace, Angela and Gabriel taking flight as Goliath, Elisa, and Bronx and Budica follow Tom. On the way, Elisa points out that Angela looks like Demona only with different coloring. She asks "Whose daughter is she?" Goliath tells her that the eggs belong to the whole clan. "That is the gargoyle way."

Finally arriving at the castle, Princess Katharine greets Tom with a hug telling him that she had prayed for his safe return. Then she spots Goliath and tells him that it had been more than she had hoped for. The Avalon clan, Tom, Princess Katharine and the Magus were unprepared for an attack from The Weird Sisters, former guardians at the gates of Avalon, Demona and Macbeth. The gargoyles had not sharped their combat skills because until then, the only one that had occupied Avalon with them was the Sleeping King. And because of their being unprepared, many gargoyles were injured.

The Weird Sisters have had Demona and Macbeth under their spell for some time and have obtained three magical talismens, the Phoenix Gate, Eye of Odin and The Grimorum. The Magus says that with the Phoenix Gate, The Archmage can reverse time and space with a thought. The Eye of Odin gives the wearer a sort of altered view of reality and turns them into something that they are not. (Eye of the Beholder and Eye of the Storm). And The Grimorum which was the Magus's spell book. The Grimorum is not Avalon's magic, and because it is not, it is not allowed onto the island, but the Magus swears that The Archmage posesses that as well. Demona and Macbeth stole the trio of magics, and in turn the Weird Sisters took and gave them to The Archmage. The scene changes to show Demona and Macbeth. The Weird Sisters and two Archmages are gathered around a pool of water. One Archmage asks the other, "Isn't it time for you to go?" and the other Archmage uses The Phoenix Gate to travel back to 994 AD.

The scene is Goliath and a then good Demona retrieving the Grimorum which is needed for the Magus to cure Prince Malcolm. (Long Way To Morning) In the battle the then Archmage is rescued from falling by the Archmage who has traveled back to get and teach him. The first Archmage asks the second "Are you me?" The other replies, "I am who you will become." He tells the first to watch and learn. He reveals a scene from Avalon, Part I in which the Magus, Princess Katharine and a young Tom are battling to gain access to Avalon to raise the gargoyle eggs. The Magus turns the Weird Sisters into owls and the Archmage turns them back. He suggests an alliance and they agree after hearing that they can get their revenge for being banished from Avalon. The Archmage says good and that they will meet in twenty-five years.

Act II

It is 1020 AD and the future Archmage is showing the past Archmage one of his new allies, a then older Demona stealing food and a then young Macbeth practicing his fighting with his father. The Weird Sisters arrive and he tells them to watch over the two, to guide their courses and to watch for the Pheonix Gate, Eye of Odin and The Grimorum. (City of Stone I-IV) The Weird Sisters say "We are not allowed to directly interfere in human events. It is Oberon's law." (Ill Met By Moonlight and The Gathering I and II) The Archmage tells the sisters that even though the law can't be broken, it can be bent. He tells the trio that they will meet at the gates of Avalon in 975 years.

975 years, yesterday, at the gates of Avalon, One hour ago. The future Archmage asks the other what will he do with the Pheonix Gate, Eye of Odin and The Grimorum when The Weird Sisters arrive with them. The past Archmage says he hasn't thought that far in advance. He says maybe he'll conquer Scotland. The other says "Just Scotland? Why not the world?" He tells him that he will need a place in which to work. The past Archmage says "Avalon!" and the other says "You're finally getting it." He tells the other that the island is inhabited by gargoyles and a few humans. The past Archmage says then they must die. The Weird Sisters arrive and give him the Phoenix Gate, Eye of Odin and The Grimorum. The future Archmage gives the three magics to the other. The Grimorum is full of human magic and not allowed on Avalon, so the Archmage eats it. The sisters also bring with them Demona and Macbeth. The Weird Sisters ask what they will do with the Sleeping King. The then Archmage asks if it's true, that he has heard the legends but never thought they were true. One sister says "All legends are true," and another warns that his power is great. The archmage says that when they take over the island and kill the gargoyles and humans, they will kill him as well.


Six hours ago. The gargoyles awaken from their stone sleep and are immediately attacked. The Weird Sisters, Demona and Macbeth and the Archmage storm the castle and injure many gargoyles, but the Archmage stops and gives them the night to make their piece, but come the dawn he will be back to destroy them all. The Weird Sisters ask why they were called off. The Archmage says that at dawn there will be only three humans to deal with and he wanted to give them time to get Goliath. His vengeance will not be complete without him there. One minute ago. The scene is Demona and Macbeth, the Weird Sisters and two Archmages gathered around a pool of water. One Archmage asks the other, "Isn't it time for you to go?" and he does. The scene changes, now to the castle, and The Guardian explaining that after the battle he had left to find Goliath. The Magus says if they don't succeed in winning the Archmage's battle before sunrise, that they will lose the battle altogether. Goliath looks at Elisa and says they can fight Demona and Macbeth. They have done it before. But that they need help in defeating the Archmage and asks the Magus for help. The Magus considers himself worthless without the Grimorum, but Princess Katharine tells him he is not. Goliath decides that taking the Gate and the Eye will level the playing field but he says to Elisa to come up with a backup plan in case theirs doesn't work. He takes Angela and Gabriel wth him and as he leaves, Elisa asks the others to tell her about the Sleeping King. Then we flash to see Goliath, Angela and Gabriel going to confront the Archmage.


by Juan F. Lara

Now, the Archmage's story. :-)

The main purpose of this part was to explain various plot points in the overall continuity. So we had the Archmage going back in time to save himself and set up some pivotal moments in history. I was amused by the contrast between the bumbling Archmage and his self-assured future self. But I didn't particular care about his storyline. His timeloop intially was confusing, but I eventually understood what was going on by the end, and the loop was much clearer in the second viewing. I did like the jumps from time to time building up to the present.

This episode gave an apparent motivation for the Weird Sisters' actions. But the motivation of avenging their banishment diminished the Weird Sisters' stature, making them seem no better than Demona or the Archmage. The Sisters sounded like they had more profound motives in "City of Stone". So I suspected that the Sisters had ulterior motives in going along with the Archmage which they'll reveal in the conclusion. We'll find out for sure on Wednesday. But as of now the Sisters' behavior made me go "huh"?

I thought the Archmage consuming the Grimorum wasn't enough to get around the Avalon law. He himself shouldn't have been able to enter the island then. So I thought that the Sisters were letting him get away with this until they turn on him.

History took its particular course only because the Archmage saw his future self steer that course. I wondered why he'd need "soldiers" when the Sisters were such powerful allies. He probably wanted revenge on Demona, but why recruit MacBeth? These questions likewise made me feel uncomfortable about the episode.


Disney used Anima Sam Won instead of Dong Yang as a partner for Koko. The difference showed in that the animation wasn't as stunning as in Part 1. But I still found it passable.

Guest stars: Brigette Bako played Angela, the apparent daughter of Goliath and Demona, and Ruben Santiago-Hudson played Gabriel, who looked like he descended from Coldstone. The episode also featured another gargoyle-dog, named Boudicca.


Archmage: There is no help for you under the heavens. I'm insulted you thought otherwise.
Goliath: Don't be too insulted.

Future Archmage: We'll meet again at the watery door to Avalon in 975 years.
Archmage: 975 YEARS?!!

Archmage: You mean we went through all that trouble to get the Grimorum, and now I can't even take it with me?! What am I supposed to do?! Eat it?!!
Future Archmage: You ARE learning.

Future Archmage: It will take some time.
Sister: What is time to an immortal?

Part 2 accomplished its purpose of filling plot points, and I thought that it was a good episode. But I didn't get into it as much as I did Part 1.


by Todd Jensen

Part One of this multi-parter had revealed that the eggs (and Princess Katharine, the Magus, and Tom) were still unexpectedly around, and how that had happened. Part Two would now do the same for the Archmage, who had apparently fallen to his death in the chasm in "Long Way Till Morning". While Tom had mentioned the evil sorcerer's return in Part One, it was not until this episode that we would find out how it had happened.

The explanation, while startling, is also an ingenious one, involving another time loop as in "Vows". The Archmage is rescued in mid-fall by a mysterious but extremely powerful wizard who turns out to be his future self, having finally achieved his goal of uniting the Grimorum Arcanorum, the Eye of Odin, and the Phoenix Gate, being thereby transformed into the ultimate sorcerer. The "enhanced Archmage" then takes his former self down through the years, one stop after another, so that the original Archmage will know what to do and how to do it. We see him establish an alliance with the Weird Sisters and order them to, first recruit Macbeth and Demona, and then to locate the three magical objects that he will need to become the "enhanced Archmage". While this sequence is effectively suspenseful (particularly as the captions change from dates in Scotland's distant past to "Yesterday" or "Six Hours Ago" - giving a feeling of advancing doom drawing ever closer), it is also extremely funny, through the "enhanced Archmage"'s increasing exasperation over the behavior of his past self. The original Archmage shows himself to be not particularly bright; it takes him almost forever to understand the nature of the time loop that he's in, and his constant queries drive his future self up the wall to such an extent that he finally shouts "If you don't know, don't guess!" Even funnier is when the "enhanced Archmage" tells the Weird Sisters to meet him again in 975 years, the original Archmage gasps, "975 years?", and is immediately rewarded with a silent glower from his future self. But the crowning touch comes when it turns out that the Archmage had never even decided what he was going to do with the Grimorum, the Eye, and the Gate when he finally united them - and he has to be prodded into coming up with the objective of conquering the world, the obvious goal for a cliched villain like himself!

The scene where the Archmage devours the Grimorum was probably the most shocking moment in the entire episode for me, since the spell book had been a fixture in the series from the start. It had seldom been used up until now, but it had spent most of the episodes in the gargoyles' care (with even a scene in "Enter Macbeth" where they had taken care to bring it to the clock tower when they left the castle, even if it meant facing a disapproving Owen), and now it was gone. The Grimorum doesn't truly depart the series until the next episode, but for me, the point where it disappeared down the Archmage's mouth was the point where it left, forever.

Indeed, the "enhanced Archmage", despite still being burdened with the weaknesses of his former self's character traits (though he'd never admit it), comes across as a truly awe-inspiring figure, assisted all the more by David Warner's superb job of voice acting for him. He shows his power to the extent that he no longer needs the Latin incantations that he once did, simply shouting out "single-word commands" to work his will. (Note that he doesn't even speak the incantation needed to activate the Phoenix Gate anywhere in the time loop sequence.) He genuinely has become one of the gargoyles' most formidable opponents ever - and he knows it.

While the Archmage's time loop takes up most of the episode, we still get to meet the Avalon clan, now hatched and grown up, and the much older Princess Katharine and Magus. The names of the two Avalon gargoyles whom we become most acquainted with, Gabriel and Angela, display how Princess Katharine and the Magus's beliefs about gargoyles have truly changed; their charges are given names that reflect angels rather than monstrous giants. And Goliath's joy and relief at seeing his clan's eggs alive (if under the shadow of the Archmage's threat) is truly moving.

We also get our first strong hint of Angela's parentage, when Elisa notes her resemblance to Demona but with Goliath's coloring. Goliath might be aware of it, but he dismisses it as unimportant with his explanation that individual parentage is unknown among gargoyles; the entire clan raises the young together. Nevertheless, the audience has been prepared here for the revelation to come about Angela's biological descent.

Finally, we get a hint of things to come in the mention (by both the Weird Sisters and the Magus) of the "Sleeping King". I regarded this allusion with particular interest, since I knew that the leading role of Avalon in legend was as King Arthur's resting-place, and was wondering, from the time that it was first introduced into "Gargoyles", if this element would make it into the story. And once I heard his name, I eagerly awaited the point when he would be brought in on stage - and felt a surge of excitement rush through me when Elisa asked for more information about him near the end....


Angela is not the only member of the Avalon clan to be the biological offspring of two gargoyles whom we had already met in the series. According to Greg Weisman, Gabriel is the biological son of Othello and Desdemona (as his appearance strongly hints). (On a related side-note, Greg has also mentioned that Broadway is Hudson's biological son, although neither of them are at all interested in this piece of information, thanks to the gargoyle custom of "Daughters and sons belong to the whole clan.")

In the original draft for "Avalon Part Two", the Archmages' time loop included two more stops that had to be cut for time: a visit to Scotland in 1040 (where the "enhanced Archmage" instructs the Weird Sisters to make Demona and Macbeth immortal) and to New York in the present day, during the events in "City of Stone" (where the "enhanced Archmage" would deliver further instructions to the Weird Sisters that would lead to their actions in that episode).

The latter scene, incidentally, could explain a remark by the "enhanced Archmage" to his former self about how the modern world is now powered by science and technology rather than by magic. From the point of view of the episode as aired, this is astonishing, since his time in the 20th century is spent entirely on Avalon, rather than the outside world, and so could not have seen this first-hand. (Admittedly, he does witness Demona and Macbeth making use of their high-tech firearms in their initial assault upon the palace, which could be how he learned of it. An even more entertaining possibility is that the Archmage doesn't actually know this fact, but only says it because it's all part of the time loop!) I wonder if this line could initially have been left over from the longer version of the episode, where he would have had the opportunity, during his brief stopover in Manhattan during the 1990's, to learn of this.

During the Archmage's visit to 1020, we witness again Demona's granary robbery from "City of Stone Part One", and a cameo by Findlaech (teaching Macbeth swordplay).

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