Author Jessica Mason talks about how the best characters on Disney’s “Gargoyles” were the villains, like Demona and Xanatos, and how they were fun to watch and sometimes root for.
Says that when she watched the series as a young girl one of the reasons she rooted for Demona was that all the other main Gargoyles were male (before Angela joined the show in the middle of the second season), and that while she also liked the human heroine Elisa Maza “Demona could fly, do magic, was immortal, and her design was just completely awesome.”
“But more than that, Demona was sympathetic. I’m not saying that I agree with her methods or where she landed in her world view, but viewers could understand why she did what she did and felt what she felt. Demona was always defiant and ambitious, but centuries of human betrayal and seeing the worst in men radicalized her. She represented the ultimate form of cynicism about humanity, and sometimes it felt justified.”
Says a problem with good sympathetic villains on television is that they become so popular that the writers want to keep them around and often have them join the heroes, which can be difficult to do without defanging them, but that “Gargoyles” kept Demona in focus without losing her edge.
Who are your favorite complex villains, Ontd?