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If I only want to see canonical things, in what order should I watch and read Gargoyles (1994) and its associated works?

A thing is "canonical" if series creator Greg Weisman says it is.

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First, define our terms:

  • Broadly speaking, Weisman considers things to be canonical if he had creative control over them, which is typically reflected by a writing or executive producer credit on the work in question. I will be using that (Weisman has a credit) as a practical definition of the Weisman canon.
  • Seasons 1 and 2: Both seasons of Gargoyles, which originally aired on the Disney Channel in 1994-96. Season 1 is 13 episodes long and season 2 is 52, for a total of 65 (TVTropes link).
  • Season 3: The only season of Gargoyles: The Goliath Chronicles, which originally aired on ABC in '96-97. You will sometimes see fans refer to this as "TGC."
  • Clan Building, graphic novels published by Slave Labor graphics from 2006-09. Color, 12 issues total, collected into two books of six each. Issues #9-12 were not released individually.
  • Bad Guys, graphic novels also published by SLG from '07-09. Black and white, 6 issues total, collected into one book which is allegedly titled Bad Guys: Redemption (but it doesn't say "Redemption" anywhere on my copy). Issues #5-6 were not released individually.
  • Some other Gargoyles-branded stuff got made, but none of it is canon. Confusingly, this includes a series of Marvel comics. When I say "comics" without qualification, I mean the SLG comics, not the Marvel comics.

The episodes are on DVD and Amazon Video, but the comics are out of print. Amazon groups the episodes into "seasons" 101-105, which do not at all correspond to the above definitions, except that "season 105" is the same as season 3. The DVDs group the episodes more traditionally.

For a while, the episodes were also available for free (legally) on both YouTube and Disney's website, but they've been pulled for reasons unknown. I'm only mentioning this because you may see other people talking about it.

Anyway, enough logistics. Here's the ordering I came up with:

  1. Watch seasons one and two of Gargoyles, in order, without skipping episodes.*
  2. Either watch S3E1 "The Journey" or read Clan Building #1 and #2. Prefer Clan Building if you have it, but don't worry too much if you don't. You do not need to see both; they are nearly identical.
  3. Do not watch any other episodes from season three. The rest of canon contradicts them, and they are widely regarded as terrible.
  4. Read Clan Building, #3-5.
  5. Read Bad Guys, #1-6, and read Clan Building #6-12, in either order.

If you just want to read Bad Guys, you can probably skip Clan Building #3-5, but there are several minor story connections which you will miss out on if you do this. If you have both, read them in the order shown above.

Splitting up Clan Building #6-12 into smaller chunks:

  1. #6 is a standalone.
  2. #7-9 are a story (don't buy #7-8 separately, because you'll need the collection for #9).
  3. #10-12 are another story.

Ideally, you should read these in the order shown. However, the connections between them are weak at best, so you can skip or reorder as necessary. Stories (2) and (3) are only available as a single book, so you may as well read them in that order. All three** are dependent on #1-5, and only make sense if you've read those first.

Bad Guys is all one story. Read it from beginning to end. Don't buy individual issues,*** because you'll still need the collection for #5-6.


* A few episodes are skippable, to some extent, but most are not. A full listing of which episodes you can skip (and how much you'll get away with it) is beyond the scope of this answer.

** You can almost get away with reading #1-2, and then skipping all the way to #10-12, but I can't quite recommend it because a few things won't make sense.

*** The fact that some issues are worthless was not planned; that's just how it ended up when the license expired. You might think the license expiring would be a foreseeable event, but apparently licensing is complicated, as is suddenly rushing out comics on very short notice.

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