Orion (Star Trek: TOS zine)

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See also Orion (disambiguation).

Zine
Title: Orion (previously Stardate)
Publisher: Orion Press
Editor(s): Randall Landers
Date(s): 1985 - 1996
Series?:
Medium: print zine
Size:
Genre:
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS
Language: English
External Links: Orion Press
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Contents

Orion is a gen Star Trek: TOS fanzine published by Orion Press. This anthology zine used to be called Stardate from 1979 to 1984 for its first 21 issues, but was renamed "Orion" due to a legal dispute with FASA.[1] Hence due to the numbering of Orion it starts with issue #22 and ends with #36.

Older issues were re-released as a zine series Orion Archives.

Reactions and Reviews

An anthology-type zine, one which comes out on a fairly regular basis, is Orion, published by Randall Landers. I have purchased five to date and have yet to be disappointed by the quality of the fiction- While some of the nonaction (editorials, reviews, etc-) tends to be overly political (yes, much to my dismay, there are factions in Star Trek fandom! By "political" I am referring to these factions, not who's calling the shots in Washington) and they spend a lot of time trying to fit everything neatly into a time-line, the stories themselves are very good. Anyone with a fascination for chronological data would probably enjoy these time-lines, too; I admit to a total lack of interest and haven't paid much attention to the aspect of that zine. [2]

Orion 22

cover of issue #22

Orion 22 was published in May 1985 and has 85 pages. The cover is by Gennie Summers. It originally cost $6.50

From the editorial:
I was asked the other day what my problem was. Why do I always have to complain about something. Like the Star Trek Welcommittee, like the editorial policy of Teri Meyer in INTERSTAT, like the harsh criticism I have given Eric Stillwell of Starfleet, like the attacks I have made on the Atlanta Star Trek Society. Why must I make so much trouble for so many people [much about various fan rip-offs snipped]... So what's my problem? Why can't I just sit back and be quiet? An answer is hard to give when I don't have one. Maybe it's because I'm young, maybe it's because my Scottish/Irish blood makes me easily riled up, maybe it's because I'm arrogant, obnoxious, rude. Maybe it's because I care. I care about the little guys who are unintentionally or intentionally hurt by the above things. Maybe it's because these are causes and we all must have such causes. Others include Women Against Pornography, Mothers Against Drunk Drivers. Mine can be no better...and no worse...I hope.

Orion 23

cover of issue #23

Orion 23 was published in December 1985 it has 136 pages. The cover is by Rick Endres, art by Rick Endres, Pat Kilmer and Gennie Summers.

From The Last Word, editorial:
I have some good news and some bad news about ORION PRESS. Or June 15th 19S6, ORION PRESS ceased all zine publishing activities. Mary of our publications, such as this one, are finding homes with other presses. With ORION, will be at least one more issue of ORION (#24 due in late 1986), but after that, I Other publications are simply going to disappear, I regret to say. SENSOR READINGS and IDYLLS are both permanently cancelled. BEYOND THE FARTHEST STAR is in qrave jeopardy. REGULA is in little danger (I will continue to publish this one myself, in all likelihood). STAR TRIP, INTERLUDE, A CRUCIBLE FOR COURAGE are seeking new homes; STARDATE issues may soon be made available. But I hope that homes will soon I be found for these.

I've enjoyed the past eight years of producing STARDATE PRESS and ORION pf publications. I've enjoyed working with the contributors and satisfying the needs of our readership (at my count, there were over 5000 people who have read an ORION PRESS publication). But most of all I've enjoyed the wealth of material I've read. I love Star Trek, and I'm proud of the material I've published. I feel we here have done excellent work, though it's often overlooked. And I feel that our readers, on the whole, have been very happy with us.

This second edition of ORION 23 was made possible with the cooperation of Terry Sue Shank. I wish to publicly thank her for her efforts here.
  • From Ye Ed by Randall Landers (2)
  • Of All the LoC (letter column) (4)
  • The Stars of Sargasso, an adaptation by Randall Landers (an adaptation of the alleged unshod script -- "When I read this script recently, I felt compelled to do a Blish-style adaptation. Why? Because I paid $25.00 for it to an unscrupulous dealer-type. I feel that since this is a true curiosity, and many fans have been burned by the pro-dealers, I decided to adapt it as a story.") (7)
  • Shadows of Tomorrow by Lilia P. Santos ("... a first-time appearance from Lilia Santos... which touches on the Spock-Kalomi relationship from "This Side of Paradise.") (43)
  • Sarlock's Trial by Jon vanWormer ("A Vulcan is on trial for breaking the Prime Directive.") (45)
  • Miracle Worker, poem by CarolMel Ambassador (a Scotty poem) (47)
  • The I Win Scenario by Adela Petersen ("an old thorn in Kirk's side comes back to haunt him in the form of the tormentor's off-spring. And it has the logical conclusion to the Kobayahsi Maru, too.") (48)
  • Star Trip III - The Search for Sprok a parody comic by Gennie Summers ("It is along the same lines as "Star Trek: II: The Wrath of Dhon," except there is a new artist. Gennie Summers spent most of her summer and early fall working on this little monster. It was written by some guy named Randy Landers, Time Farley, and Gennie, too. Our apologies go to all the people who unknowingly helped us: Associated Producer Ralph Winters (from ST:TSfS) who provided the ending; the readers and editor of Interstat, who provided a lot of amusing material, some intended and some not; and the writers and creators of the Ambush Bug, for providing us with this anti-hero who finally gets his demise.") (53)
  • Serenidad: The Cost of Freedom (part three) by Rick Endres & Linda McInnis; set in 2275/30; continues from Stardate 21, and Orion 22, next part in Orion 24; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2272-2275 The Second Mission 4 (Warnings for Violence, sexual situations, mind rape) (80)
  • Mainviewer: a review by "Tony Zierau" of the fanzine "The Human Side" (135)
  • The Last Word, editorial by Randall Landers (136)

Orion 24

cover of issue #24
1987 flyer for issue #24

Orion 24 was published in 1987 and contains 195 pages. It has a few articles on Star Trek: TNG.

  • "The Cost of Freedom" by Rick Endres & Linda McInnis; set in 2275/30; continues from Stardate 21, and Orion 22 and 23; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2272-2275 The Second Mission 4 (Warnings for Violence, sexual situations, mind rape) (The conclusion of the third story of the Serenidad series. Princess Teresa's labor pains have begun, and if the Kh'myr Klingons discover this, she will be killed after the child is delivered. The Federation Council is still debating whether or not the Klingon's claim to Serenidad is genuine, and Captain James T. Kirk, frustrated at the situation, decides to take matters into his own hands! - Some rough language and violence.)
  • "Ad Astra Per Aspera" by Randall Landers, with Linda McInnis; set in 2275/40; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2275-2283 The Second Hiatus 1 (After the Serenidad tragedy, Sulu signs aboard a science survey ship, U.S.S. Cooper, as executive officer. He faces a new, unfamiliar crew and ship, a murder mystery at a research station, and maybe even love. - Adult situations.)
  • "Parts Is Parts" by Randall Landers & Linda McInnis; set in 2276/39; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2275-2283 The Second Hiatus 1 (Scotty's tale. The engineer plans to rebuild the Serenidad damaged Enterprise underneath Starflast's very nose. His only complications: an auditor from Logistics, an investigator named Ari bn Bern, and the Dchlman Elaan. - Adult themes.)
  • "Voyage Home" Reviewed, a review by Randall Landers
  • Interview with David Gerrold, see A 1985 Interview with David Gerrold


Orion 25

cover of issue #25, Bobbie Hawkins

Orion 25 was published in September 1987. It has 110 pages. Art is by Bobbie Hawkins, Christina Kyle, Gennie Summers, and Marie Williams.

Orion 26

cover of issue #26

Orion 26 was published in March 1988 and contains 112 (one source says 200) pages. Art by Marie Williams and Bobbie Hawkins.


Orion 27

cover of issue #27

Orion 27 was published in August 1988 and contains 164 pages. Includes a Saavik origin tale.

  • From the Editor (2)
  • Of All the LoC (3)
  • A Lonely God by Sharon Pillsbury (6) (Kirk thought Mitchell was dead. Or was he?)
  • Kirk's Puzzle, devised by Randall Landers with Lloyd Graham (40)
  • "A Klingon Holiday" by Randall Landers (The command was to capture Kirk alive. But what if the wily Starfleet captain was vacationing on a certain planet in the Delta Theta system?) (41)
  • Wait a Minute by Ann Zewen (55)
  • Teresa by Rick Endres (62)
  • Private Night written and illustrated by Takumi Nakuhara (comic) (82)
  • "To Hell(guard) and Back" by Linda McInnis (88)
  • Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, a report by Ann Zewan (107)
  • "Aftermath" by Rick Endres; set in 2275/35; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2275-2283 The Second Hiatus (109)
  • Mainviewr (157)
  • Star Trek: The Next Generation, a report by Ann Zewan (154)
  • The Last Word (162)
  • art by Rick Endres, Bobbie Hawkins, Robert Jan, Takumi Nakahara, Gennie Summers, and Marie Williams

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 27

ORION 27 was very enjoyable and professionally done, I thought. It had a nice mixture of stories. My favorites were "A Lonely God," about Gary Mitchell's revenge by Sharon Pillsbury and a hilarious Klingons on the "Shore Leave" planet story called "A Klingon Holiday" by Randall Landers. There were a couple follow-up stories in the Serenidad series which I haven't read yet but they were well done and it sounds like an interesting alternate universe series, by Rick Endres. All in all, the zine was well worth buying and I'll be sending for more. [3]

Orion 28

cover of issue #28

Orion 28 was published in July 1989.


Reactions and Reviews: Issue 28

It's up to its usual standards in reading for a true Trek fan like myself. Its production value is greatly high put together as with all other issues in the past. Stories worth mentioning: "Shades of Grey"—it's an espionage story with Chapel serving as a secret agent investigating a Romulan plot. One problem—she has amnesia and who will rescue her in this story. Other stories: "Out of the Ashes," "To the Last Extremity," and "Just a Little Training Course," a Sulu adventure on his ship, continuing from other issues in the past. Bill Hupe deserves credit in putting the zine into publication as with Orion Press producing it. There will be future issues and I will order them when released. [4]

Orion 29

front cover of issue #29, Julie Nosal
back cover of issue #29, David Lawrence

Orion 29 was published in February 1990 and contains 223 pages. Art by Gennie Summers, Jim Boursaw, Steven K. Dixon, David Lawrence (back cover), Jeanne L. Matthews (166)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 29

The main item in this zine is the novella 'Keeper of the Katra' by Chris Dickenson. The story begins with Spock's return to Vulcan bearing the katra of Sybok, and his attempts to convince first Sarek and then T'Lar that Sybok should be admitted to the Hall of Ancient Thought. The story is told from many points of view, but each section is headed, making it clear to follow; the use of italic also shows clearly when flashback is used. This is really an extremely good story. I began it with a slight uncertainty, but after only a page or two found myself unwilling to put it down, so that I abandoned my plans for the evening and read it at a sitting. The familiar characters are handled in a very appealing fashion, and the less usual ones are brought vividly to life - if you thought T'Pau could be difficult, wait until you meet T'Sai! Also, as one who has an in-built dislike for Spock-romance stories, I gave four cheers for the creation of T'Liba. If there was no other inducement to buy the zine, this one story is reason enough.

The remaining stories are all quite short. 'Blood is Thicker', by the same writer, has Kirk suffering a nightmare, while her 'Not a Bad Day's Work' has McCoy and Scott rescuing a child from the aftermath of an earthquake. In 'Dignity' she has McCoy and Spock dealing with the aftermath of a Klingon attack in which Sarek has been seriously injured. Ten years later, Spock understands McCoy's actions. 'Music Box', by Ann Zewen, deals with McCoy's reaction to his diagnosis of xenopolycythemia - a very touching little tale. Ann also wrote 'That's What Friends Are For', which explains the closeness between Uhura and Scott in STV. The zine also includes an LOC column, a chronology of the Star Trek universe, a review of STV by Kristen Brady, and a concluding editorial on the subject of Star Trek collectibles.

This is definitely a good and good value zine, and I would recommend it. [5]
I have to say that the zines I see published with the most consistent quality are the Orion zines. They are always well-edited, have some interesting stories, and some good art to go along with them. My personal favorite is number 29, especially "Keeper of the Katra" by Chris Dickerson, who I think has a very good grasp of the characters. I like the fact that a lot of the stories try to go into the characters and tell the reader something about what they're thinking and feeling. It's a nice change from the same old actions stories with little concern for what motivates the characters to take the actions that they do. [6]

Orion 30

cover of issue #30

Orion 30 was published in 1990 and contains 118 pages.

  • "False Colors" by Ann Zewen; set in 2276/30; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2275-2283 The Second Hiatus 1 (When an Orion passenger liner is destroyed by a Federation starship, Admiral Kirk is send in to investigate.)
  • The Difference by Chris Dickerson (A story of McCoy's tragic first mission as a Starfleet officer.)
  • Complication by Pamela Corsa (an undercover Spock poses as a Romulan)
  • "Popcorn" by Chris Dickenson; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2234-2265 The Beginnings (about a seven-year old Spock's first visit to Earth)
  • "Gillian Weep Not" by Linda McInnis (a story about Spock, Gillian, George, and Gracie.)


Reactions and Reviews: Issue 30

In Ann Zewen's False Colors (48 pgs). Admiral Kirk Is called on to investigate the destruction ol the Orion passenger-liner Acadia by a Federation starship under the command of Captain Bailey, last seen in the episode The Corboraite Maneuver. News of the disaster has been made public and Nogura is forced to assign a reporter to cover the investigation in order to assure public confidence in Starfleet's investigation. The reporter, Caren Hollis, is very quickly at odds with Kirk, accusing his of whitewashing the investigation to protect Starfleet and one of his former crewmen. The story was disappointing for a number of reasons. The plot is predictable, but I'm willing to concede that the story was not written as a mystery but as a character study of the two principles, James Kirk and Caren Hollis. If the latter is actually the case allow me to point out some of the weak points in Zewen's development of Hollis and her relationship with Kirk. The first problem I have with False Colors is the oversimplification in characterizing 23rd century reporters. I can live with Zewen's assumption that muck-raking and sensationalism will remain staple features of broadcast journalism but it helps to remember that journalists are human beings whose lives are effected by more than the pursuit of truth. It would have been nice to have seen Hollis carmg for something more than "the story". The second problem I have is with what appeared to me a very large inconsistency in Hollis' motivation. The story begins with her and Kirk in an antagonistic relationship rooted in their respective professions: the professional soldier attempting to protect the integrity of the service and a Starship Captain who was once under his command, and the reporter trying to get to the truth of the story without vegard to reputations. We learn right away that the women has a very large ego. She protests to Kirk that no matter the extent of the cover up of Bailey's guilt in the destruction of Acadia, not only won't "her" viewers accept Kirk's whitewashed report, but as if to speak for the whole of the Federation she remarks that "the public will not be so philosophical about letting whoever's responsible" off the hook. Then at the end of the story, she takes sole responsibility for solving the mystery of the Acadia disaster in her broadcast report, even though pages earlier she remarked privately to Kirk, "We found the answer, didn't we?" All the cat fighting between Hollis and Kirk is evidence for her self-centerednese and unwillingness to compromise on anything having to do with Kirk or the investigation. I would submit that anyone who has put their ego on the line as Hollis has is not likely to submit to, and will in fact actively oppose, any attempt at manipulation. Imagine my surprise then, to find Hollis submit to Kirk's sexual advances! It was entirely inconsistent with the character's development. It would have been much more consistent to have had Hollis verbally chew Kirk up and spit him out, humiliate him and threaten to expose his advances (or attempted rape) to get better access to the information she wanted. Furthermore, I objected to Zewen's depiction of Kirk as someone who uses sex to settle grudges and even scores. Not that such behaviour doesn't actually exist, but somehow I see Kirk as being more intelligent and sensitive than to engage in such. Can Ann please tell us what a 'punishing kiss' is? Is this the way a professional handles human relationships? Next thing you know. Kirk will reprimand Uhura by bending her over the communications console!

Of the two issues of Orion I have read, by far my favourite writer is Chris Dickenson. The Difference (8 pgs) and Popcorn (5 pgs) are two of the reasons why. She takes simple, manageable scenes, and makes them come to life with her characterisations. Nothing in either of these stories is particularly complicated in terms of plot. A small cost of characters and only one or two locations helps her to focus in on what she wants to develop. The Difference is written in the form of a flashback. Upon witnessing the suffering of patients in a 20th century hospital during The Voyage Home, McCoy remembers one of his first incurable patients and the reason he was able to carry on despite the loss. In Popcorn, McCoy and Spock take a trip to the mountains and spend the night in Spock's aunt's cabin. While there, Spock recalls a childhood memory about popcorn. Since it's so short, saying more would give it all away.

Brevity and clarity, however, are not hallmarks of Pamela J. Corsa's Complication (17 pgs). The major problem I have with her story is that there were too many complications for a 17 page story. This is a draft outline for a novel. and I think the editor was remiss in not returning the manuscript to the author for a major rewrite. Here are all the events which precede her story and which are covered in one page as a kind of introduction:

  • The Romulans develop a new weapon.
  • The Federation decided to send someone deep cover into the Romulan Empire to steal said weapon or weapon plans.
  • Spock is chosen for and accepts the mission.
  • Spock undergoes reconstructive surgery to make him look more Romulan.
  • Spock infiltrates the Romulan Space Service.
  • Spock gains enough trust to be assigned as Commander of the vessel which will test the aforementioned weapon.

The rest of the 16 pages of the story detail how Kirk and Spock are able to steal the weapon from the Romulans and effect Spock's escape. One additional annoyance about this story: if the "weapon" is so important that Starfleet sends in one of its best officers on a potential suicide mission, I think it's important to let the readers know exactly what kind of weapon it is and what kind of threat its use might entail.

The jewel of Orion 30 is Linda Mclnnis' Gillian Weep Not (13 pgs). It's a touching story of Gillian's attempt to find George and Gracie, now living free in the Pacific Ocean. With Spock's assistance, she is for the first time able to communicate with her aquatic friends. I salute Mclnnis for portraying the expatriot's feeling so well and wonder if she has spent any extended time abroad. The feeling of being cut off from your past life, from everything you once were, is really unimaginable until you live in a foreign country (or in Gillian's case another century I. The initial need a new expat feels to be in touch with something from his former life is very powerful and necessary in reminding one of who one is and where one came from. Congratulations to Ms. Mclnnis on such a fine and touching story. [7]

Orion 31

Orion 31 was published in March 1992.


Orion 32

Orion 32 was published in October 1992.

  • "The McAulliffe Rescue" by Christina Schinella
  • "Serendipity" by Amanda Cassity (The Enterprise is ferrying ambassadors to a newly discovered world when on eof its shuttles, with Kirk, Spock, McCoy aboard, is attacked.)
  • "Questions" by Rick Endres
  • "The Return" by Steven K. Dixon
  • "Until We Meet Again" by Shayna Gitnick
  • "Shadow Play" by Pony Godic (Has Spock, McCoy and Chapel, seemingly disappearing while on the surace of a newly discovered planet.)


Orion 33

cover of issue #33

Orion 33 was published in July 1993 and contains 134 pages.

  • Sam by Ann Zewen (6 pages)
  • The Killer Instinct (2 pages)
  • The Night Watch by d. William Roberts; (10 pages)
  • Just What The Doctor Ordered (13 pages)
  • The Horla’s Lair by Pony Godic (50 pages) (The Enterprise is searching an entire enclosed by a forcefield. The best minds of the Federation have devised a plan to open the field, and the Enterprise enters the region. But the crew finds they have opened a Pandora's box which could bring about the end of the universe.) (originally in Star Voyage #4)
  • Southern Comfort by Linda McInnis reprint from Beyond the Farthest Star #2 (8 pages) (McCoy finds himself turning to an old friend in order to work through some emotional baggage.)
  • Return To Xantharus by Randall Landers (25 pages)
  • Eulogy (6 pages)
  • A Chronology Of The Star Trek Universe (5 pages)


Orion 34

Orion 34 was published in July 1994.


Orion 35

cover of issue #35, Zaquia Tarhuntassa

Orion 35 published in June 1995 and contains 124 pages. All art is by Zaquia Tarhuntassa. Summaries for this issue from Media Monitor:

  • Nexus by Virginia Boehm Worthen ("There's an echo of James T. Kirk, and where there's a will, there's a way." James T. Kirk died in 2371. Well, Maybe not. 'Nexus' by Virginia Boehm Worthen provides us with one possible way out for a certain starship commander.) (was first posted on the Internet)
  • "Heaven" by Donna S. Frelick; reprinted in Orion Archives: 2275-2283 The Second Hiatus 2 ("Antonia's story... While starting out in the Nexus, the story quickly progresses to Kirk's flashback with details a certain summer spent with a certain someone who we've never met before Star Trek: Generations.")
  • "Fairy Tale Ending" by Joanne K. Seward ("A look at a group of cadets who find their posting on the Enterprise different than they imagined it to be. A good story with an honest look at life aboard a starship.")
  • The Search for 'Generations', a review by Susan Bredon-Smith


Orion 36

cover of issue #36

Orion 36 published in July 1996.

External Links

References

  1. note on the Orion Press zine list page explaining the name change.
  2. from The Trekzine Times v.1. n.2
  3. from Treklink #27
  4. from Treklink #20
  5. from IDIC #11
  6. from The Trekzine Times v.1 n.3
  7. from IDIC #17
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