In the fifteenth episode of the second season of Gargoyles, OH, MATT. Intrigued? Then it’s time for Mark to watch Gargoyles.
Seriously, my internal narration for this episode was mostly me thinking, “Oh, Matt, WHY?” I didn’t expect a sequel to “The Silver Falcon” because I’d considered most of that storyline resolved at that point. Matt was foolish in his pursuit of the Illuminati because there were other forces at work, yet he was allowed his belief because in the end, it was harmless.
AND THEN THIS EPISODE COMES ALONG AND SERIOUSLY MESSES WITH ME. The noir vibe for “Revelations” was a whole lot of fun, even if we have seen it before from this show. It still felt new, though, because the writers spun it from Matt’s perspective. And what an opening, y’all! It was bewildering for an obvious reason – WHY THE HELL IS GOLIATH TRAPPED IN A NIGHTMARE BY MACE MALLONE – but also due to the camera panning to reveal that Matt is watching the whole thing. He definitively knows that gargoyles exist! How the hell did he get to that point?
That’s the usual fun for in media res type stories, and I was pleased that the build-up to that scene was entertaining to watch. Matt Bluestone is passionate to a fault at times, and I spent a long time believing “Revelations” would further confirm my thoughts on him. I didn’t believe that Martin Hacker’s information on Mallone’s step-son would lead anywhere significant, and I certainly didn’t think it would confirm the existence of the Illuminati. At the same time, I was fascinated that “Revelations” forced me to consider how Elisa’s secret-keeping affected other people! Matt is naturally paranoid, but Elisa was keeping him in the dark. It only made his paranoia worse, especially when he could tell that she was lying to him.
So that new perspective from the show really helped this episode feel a lot more exciting than if it was just about the quest to find the truth behind the Illuminati. Folding Elisa into this (but seeing it all from Matt’s POV) gave us a new understanding of their partnership. It also allowed the show’s writers to make an important step forward: Elisa officially introduced Matt to the gargoyles. Of course, that introduction is complicated because… well, I was surprised by Matt. He had devoted so much of his life to exposing the Illuminati, and yet, when he actually locates Mace Mallone and is given a chance to be invited into the secret society… he takes it. Like, with very little hesitation? Oh, he does that whole thing where he requires Mallone and his associates to prove they’re of good faith, but I expected him to balk at the idea of joining the Illuminati!
In hindsight, his decision made more sense to me. This was about infiltration, not membership. It wasn’t about any innate desire to be a part of this group; he figured that this was the best way to get the proof that he’d always sought. I think that could have been made a little more clear, though I admit that I didn’t think the best of Matt after his enraged confrontation with Elisa on that highway. DUDE, YOU ALMOST KILLED YOURSELF AND ELISA BECAUSE YOU WERE CONVINCED THE GARGOYLES FOLLOWED HER AROUND. Not a cute look, Matt! (Seriously, just add, “Oh, Matt, no!” As a perpetual commentary to this episode. It works really well.) So maybe I was biased into thinking that he’d gone to the dark side or something. He was violent, he lied to Elisa, he conspired to get Goliath into the Hotel Cabal… dude was not on a good path.
Thankfully, he comes to realize how much bullshit that Mallone is spitting. (Spoiler alert: a lot.) It nearly comes too late, and can we just all acknowledge that the Hotel Cabal is awful? What the hell was that place??? A labyrinth of death machines meant to make a person lose their sense of reality? That’s just straight-up evil, y’all, so I don’t exactly feel bad that Mallone is ultimately caught in his own creation. I assume that’s the last we’ll see of him, but who knows at this point? Maybe Matt didn’t get the proof that he wanted, but he was able to get some personal closure, right?
EXCEPT NO, HE DIDN’T, BECAUSE HACKER MAKES MATT A MEMBER OF THE ILLUMINATI IN THE VERY FINAL SCENE. Y’all, it’s such a weird moment because I don’t know what it means for Matt’s character. Is he still going to pursue his exposure of the Illuminati now that he’s in it? Can he even do that? Was Hacker’s move a way to silence Matt by granting him the privileges that come with being a part of the group? Look, I don’t even know, which means it is entirely possible that Mallone will find some way back into the narrative.
Anyway, I enjoyed this episode, and the character stuff was the best part. Mostly: I am so happy to be watching Gargoyles again, y’all. SO HAPPY!
The video for “Revelations” can be downloaded here for $0.99.
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