Demona (lit.'"She-Demon"'), voiced by Marina Sirtis, is a fictional character and one of the primary antagonists of the Disney animated television series Gargoyles.[1][2][3] Demona was once Goliath's mate and was part of their 10th century AD castle's Wyvern Clan. She is consumed by a hatred of humanity[4] and has attempted several times to destroy it.

Gargoyles character
First appearanceGargoyles 1x01 "Awakening Part 1"
Last appearanceGargoyles #12 "Phoenix"
Created byGreg Weisman
Voiced byMarina Sirtis
In-universe information
AliasDominique Destine
(as human, daytime only)
SpeciesGargoyle (later human, daytime only)
FamilyAngela (daughter; with Goliath)
Broadway (son-in-law)
Artus, Gwenyvere and Lancelot (grandchildren)
Delilah (clone)
SpouseGoliath (former mate)
Macbeth (as Dominique; annulled)
Significant otherThailog

Character development edit

Cosplayer Ezmeralda Von Katz as Demona with voice actress Marina Sirtis, on the convention floor at Wizard World Des Moines 2017.

In the original pitch for the series, the initial leader of the gargoyle clan was Dakota, but it was later decided she would work best as a villain, and thus her name was changed to Demona.[5]

When asked by a fan about how she approached the role of Demona, Marina Sirtis noted that one of the reasons she identifies with Demona is that she's a very "in the now" person, who doesn't really engage in worrying about the future. Demona, as Sirtis puts it, rather HAS to live "in the now," simply to function. Genuine, honest self-reflection on her past and future would pretty much destroy her. [1]

In a 2017 interview with AV Club, Sirtis said "[Demona] was misunderstood. [...] She was kind of the only one of the gargoyles who hung on to what the humans had done to the gargoyles. She was the one that was like the walking history of pain and betrayal. On a certain level, I think she represented [...] someone like Native Americans or the First Nations peoples up in Canada or aborigines in Australia, whose lives and lands and everything was destroyed by the others who came in, as there were still people in those communities who were fighting for their equality and their rights. So she just chose really not the smartest way to do it, but like I said, it came from a place of truth for her." [2]

Character biography edit

Demona was a member of the Gargoyle clan at the medieval Scottish Castle Wyvern, Goliath's mate and second-in-command. Like the rest of the clan, Demona originally had no formal name, though Goliath frequently referred to her as his "Angel of the Night". The two mate and have a daughter, Angela, who will join the Manhattan Clan 1000 years into the future. Resentful of human prejudice toward her clan, Demona conspires with the Captain of the Guard to betray the humans inhabiting Castle Wyvern to the Viking raiders. However, Demona fails to convince Goliath to get the gargoyles away from the castle as planned, and the clan is slaughtered. When Goliath returns, he is devastated to see the murder of his clan, which he believes includes his mate. Demona abandons the castle, intending to return once he has calmed down, but returns to find the six survivors, including Goliath, under a sleep curse. This breaks her heart, beginning her downward spiral into a life of loneliness and pain.

Alone for several years, Demona has an encounter with a child named Gillecomgain (based loosely on Gille Coemgáin of Moray), scarring his face when he catches her stealing food.[6] Gillecomgain becomes the original Hunter, the progenitor of a millennia-long line of mercenary descendants seeking revenge against her.

Later, she is joined by surviving Gargoyles from other clans in 997. She encounters a time lost Brooklyn, who convinces her and the clan to help Kenneth III fight against Constantine. Though she agrees, she plans to retrieve the Grimorum Arcanorum after it is taken by Constantine's sorcerer Brother Valmont. After Kenneth's side wins the battle, the freed Phoenix (the former prisoner of the Phoenix Gate) is about to take Brooklyn to another time period. Since Brooklyn suspects that Demona wants to use the Grimorum to take over Scotland, Brooklyn offers to hold it while she takes out her half of The Phoenix Gate, and while Brooklyn is whisked away.

In 1020 A.D., Demona allies herself with a young Macbeth to kill their common enemy Gillecomgain. In 1032 A.D, an elderly Demona enters into a bargain with Macbeth, to protect his kingdom from his cousin Duncan I of Scotland, while Demona gets her youth back so she can lead the last of her kind. The pact is facilitated by the Weird Sisters, rendering both of them immortal, except if one kills the other, in which case both would perish.[7] Neither of them realize that the Weird Sisters and the evil Archmage from Castle Wyvern plan to take over the mystical island of Avalon in the 20th century, with their help. Macbeth comes to admire Demona's combat prowess, and eventually becomes heavily dependent on her clan for support in the war with Duncan's forces. In the final battle with Duncan in August 1040, Demona's combat skills so impress Macbeth that he names her "Demona" (lit. "She-Demon") and declares her as his primary adviser. The two become close friends, but Demona later loses trust in Macbeth after overhearing Macbeth's courtier advising him to sever their ties with the Gargoyles in order to win the support of the English. A concerned Demona abandons Macbeth’s forces to Duncan's son Canmore and the English armies. Canmore, in turn, betrays her, killing the last of her clan. Demona would not enter into another alliance with a human for almost a thousand years.

During the intervening time, she amasses a substantial fortune, while plotting her revenge on humanity, all the while being hunted by Canmore's descendants, who take up the mask of the Hunter. One hunter attacks her in Florence in 1495. According to Greg Weisman: "In 1920, Demona would encounter a hunter, Fiona Canmore in Paris, France. This event would have been seen in the unfinished Team Atlantis series."[8] She encounters and kills another hunter named Charles Canmore in Paris in 1980.

Some time before 1994, Demona allies herself with David Xanatos and tells him about the spell placed on the Gargoyles at Castle Wyvern. Xanatos brings the castle to Manhattan and wakes up Goliath and the rest of the clan. Despite her and Xanatos's efforts to manipulate them, the clan refuses to join her vendetta and actively opposes her. She later helps Xanatos resurrect one of the dead Gargoyles from Wyvern, Coldstone, attempts to murder Elisa Maza, and also tries to exterminate humanity on numerous occasions; first by having Puck destroy them (which failed: he impishly "destroyed" the humans by turning them into gargoyles), and then use magic to turn them into stone during the night, allowing her to go on a vicious murder spree. When magic and sorcery fail, she turns to science, hiring geneticist and villain Anton Sevarius to create a virus that would destroy all human life on Earth. She accepts an invitation to be the bridesmaid at Xanatos and Fox's wedding, with Goliath as the best man, claiming that she needed to keep Xanatos as an ally. However, it was a plot to restore the Phoenix Gate. The four travel back to 975 AD, where Demona shows her past self her clan frozen during the night, leading to her hatred of humanity.

Demona in her daytime-only human form, as "Dominique Destine"

Demona is also granted a "gift" by the magical being Puck: after she requests that he make her able to walk in daylight without turning to stone, he devises a spell that transforms Demona into a human at sunrise, and transforms her back into her “gargate” form at sunset. The transformation is incredibly painful, and hurts Macbeth when he is in proximity due to their binding spell. Initially furious at Puck's trick, she realizes the positive uses of her human form and takes up the alias Dominique Destine. Using her immense fortune and resources, she forms a company called Nightstone Unlimited, becoming its CEO. She uses the company to further her goals, allying herself with Goliath's evil clone Thailog to first attempt to steal Macbeth's fortune, and later create their own version of the Manhattan Clan through cloning. However, Thailog betrays her, leaving her for dead after a fight with the Manhattan Clan, though she survives. At the end of the show, she is still trying to fulfil her ultimate plan of destroying the human race, while winning her daughter Angela over to her cause. She is incredibly overprotective of Angela and will intervene to defend her if she is attacked. Demona is last seen on Halloween in Saint Damien's Cathedral recovering the crystal ruins of the Praying Gargoyle.

In other media and merchandise edit

Demona is the end boss in the video game Gargoyles.[9]

Demona has appeared in various toys and figurines, such as Funko and NECA. [10] [11]

Reception edit

The Mary Sue's Jessica Mason described Demona as the "perfect complex villain," writing "Oftentimes, villains are one-note and not nuanced, or they’re too evil and all we want is to see them defeated. But a great villain is one we can maybe sorta understand, who doesn’t see themself as a villain."

"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... Demona is a great example of a villain that is so much fun to watch and even kinda fun to root for. She was an icon of so many childhoods because she was complicated, powerful, badass, and fun."[12]

See also edit

References edit

  1. ^ Dretzka, Gary (1995-08-08). "What's Dramatic, Fun And Keeping These Actors Busy?". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved 2011-08-18.
  2. ^ "Gargoyles Has 'Star Trek' Ties". Orlando Sentinel. Retrieved 2011-08-18.
  3. ^ "Fifteen-year fans: the "Gathering" united by a '90s Disney cartoon". North by Northwestern. Archived from the original on 2011-09-30. Retrieved 2012-01-14.
  4. ^ "Disney's gargoyles laces cartooning with jolt of provocative storytelling". Miami Herald. 1994-10-21. Retrieved 2011-08-18.
  5. ^ "WonderCon: Greg Weisman Spotlight Panel". Comic Book Resources. 2007-03-04. Retrieved 2012-01-14.
  6. ^ Gargoyles — City of Stone (Part 1) (YouTube). Disney Shows. 1995. Event occurs at 10:10 to 10:22. Archived from the original (YouTube) on 2015-01-01. Retrieved April 24, 2014.
  7. ^ Director: Frank Paur; Writers: Lydia Marano (teleplay), Michael Reaves (story), Brynne Stephens (teleplay), Greg Weisman (creator) (September 20, 1995). "City of Stone, Part 3". Gargoyles. Season 2. Episode 24. syndicated.
  8. ^ "Search Ask Greg : Gargoyles : Station Eight". Retrieved 2012-01-14.
  9. ^ "Gargoyles (GEN) FAQ/Walkthrough by Overated". GameFAQs. 2007-06-17. Retrieved 2014-05-21.
  10. ^ "Disney's GARGOYLES Get Their Own Set of Funko POP! Figures". 12 July 2018.
  11. ^ "Gargoyles: NECA Officially Unveils New Demona Figure".
  12. ^ Mason, Jessica (2020-05-06). "Gargoyles' Demona Is the Perfect Complex Villain". The Mary Sue. Retrieved 2024-04-21.

External links edit

Further reading edit