Alter Egos

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Title: Alter Egos
Publisher: Dog House Press
Date(s): 1996-?
Series?: yes
Medium: print
Size: letter-sized
Genre: slash
Fandom: multimedia
Language: English
External Links:
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Alter Egos is a slash multifandom anthology published in the UK.

Issue 1

cover of issue #1

Alter Egos 1 was published in 1996 and contains 109 pages.

From the publisher: "This zine contains explicit same-sex (slash: "/") scenes and will not knowingly be sold to anyone under the age of 18. Please note 'Goldeneye' features S/M. All orders must include an age statement, together with confirmation that you understand and accept the slash premise. Alter Egos 1 will remain, in print."

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

See reactions and reviews for Quality Time.
See reactions and reviews for Head Start.
See reactions and reviews for The Long Dance.
Reviewer's disclaimer: The following are my own opinions. Alternate opinions and bits of milk chocolate welcome. (Does anyone even read these things anymore?)

[zine info snipped]

(I got it via overseas mail for US $18, I believe, but beyond that I didn't keep the address and there is neither an address or any other ordering info in the zine.)

When I first heard about this zine I was thrilled. It was a multi-media with HG doing at least half the stories. Then I saw that one of the stories she did was a Crockett/Castillo and I was thrilled. When I found out that she did a DUE SOUTH story, I nearly passed out. Unfortunately, I think that the biggest problem that this zine has is exactly that: prior expectations. It's not a bad zine, overall, it's just not what I was hoping for from HG.

"City Light" by Kitty Fisher (DS)--This is actually my least favorite story in the zine. It's another in a growing list of stories postulating that Fraser instigates sex with Ray in a public/semi-public place, which is something I have a hard time buying. Add to this the frightening (and unlikely) thought that Fraser would get the idea from a movie that contained a sex scene that Fraser thought Ray really liked and that just adds to it. Not an auspicious beginning for me. (And I wish people would stop having Ray rub off on brick walls and trees. It *hurts*!)

"Head Start" by HG (Pros)--Bodie and Doyle have Meaningful discussions, the main one centering around the two of them shacking up together. More than anything, I found this story, well, boring.

"Matters of the Heart" by An English Gentleman and HG (Holmes/Watson)--I was never much into Sherlock Holmes before I saw Jeremy Brett and certainly saw no slashiness in it. (I couldn't figure out why Basil Rathbone and Nigel Bruce were *friends*!) But then I 'saw the light'--at least dimly. This is a fairly well done story that let me see the let me see the Holmes that Brett brought to life. It, for the most part, kept that wonderful mixture of affection and aloofness he displayed to Watson in the series.

"The Long Dance" by Kitty Fisher (Pros)--A two page story about Bodie watching Doyle sleep after their first night together. Eh.

"Moonlight Shadow" by HG (MV)--My favorite story in the zine. Nice intense Castillo. The biggest problem with this story is actually one that can be applied to several stories in the zine: Rather than feeling like a complete story, it feels more like a few scenes out of a much longer piece. It starts very abruptly and could very well have gone on, though the ending didn't seem nearly as jarring as the beginning. All in all, though, a good story.

"Journey's End" by Mary Rose Watson (Holmes/Watson)--I'm afraid one H/W story is my limit per zine generally. I'm afraid I just skimmed this one.

"Echo" by Kitty Fisher (Pros)--Bodie and Doyle come to say goodbye to Cowley. If you can't figure out the ending--well, I'm not going to tell you!

"Quality Time" by HG (Pros)--Best Pros story in the zine, IMO. Also one of the few first time stories and has some nice lead up and afterwards stuff, but it goes on for a little longer than I wanted it to.

"Through Smoke and Mirrors" by Kitty Fisher (Goldeneye)--I haven't seen the movie yet, so I didn't read the story. I have to admit, though, that the thought of someone slash Pierce Brosnan with *anyone* makes me smmmmmiiiillllle.

"Shelter from the Storm" by HG (DS)--The last story in the zine and one of the longest. I was going to say that it mostly suffers from that expectation level I referred to earlier, but turthfully, I had some basic problems with the story. For instance, Ma Vecchio's instant awareness of what's going on with her son and the Mountie. They're standing there cooking, that's all! We all would be going "who-ha!", but that's because we're *looking* for it. There's also the fact that there is absolutely no clue for sometime that the two of them are lovers. I thought the first time that I was reading it that Ma Vecchio was making an assumption about the two of them that was incorrect and *then* they would look at each other and go "humm". But there are still some nice Fraser and Ray moments in here and the dialogue, especially for Fraser was good.

Overall, this is a very cosy zine. I'm not sure how else to describe it. If you're looking for angst, you'll have to look elsewhere for the most part. If you are looking for first times, with one or two exceptions, you'll have to look elsewhere. And if you are looking for HG's typically very high quality writing--have I mentioned how much I liked JIGSAW PUZZLE? [1]

Issue 2

cover of issue #2

Alter Egos 2 was published in 1997 and is 119 pages long.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 2

See reactions and reviews for Midnight Truths.
See reactions and reviews for Putting Off the Armour.
It's a shorter zine, so this should be a shorter review. I hope. Pain in the ass disclaimers first...

Reviewer's Disclaimer: I bought it, I read it, now I'm telling you what I think. Sometimes I think things are good and I'll try to tell you why; sometimes I think things are not so good and I'll try to tell you why. Please keep in mind, though, that these are my opinions and mine alone, not facts etched in stone. And just as there are things in the universe older than the universe itself, everyone doesn't always agree with me. Salt to taste and speak up if you have something to add.

[zine info omitted]

I got this for the same reason I got ALTER EGOS 1: I like DS and I'm in feeding frenzy mode. I also would probably read HG's grocery list if she decided to share it with the general populace, so it seems more than worthwhile to me, even though I have little to no interest in the Sherlock Holmes stories peppered throughout the zine. I think this issue is better on the DS side than the last and it also has a longer Pros story at the end of it by HG that I think is worth a look. (Since I did not read any of the SH stories other than to skim one or two of them, I won't review them. There are only four stories in that fandom and they are all relatively short--the longest is 6 pages--so if you aren't interested in them, either, I wouldn't say they overwhelm the zine.)

"Red Ruse" (DS) by Cherilyn--Cute little story about Fraser telling Ray about his feelings and a slight amount of obfuscation on both their parts. Nice opener for the zine.

"Midnight Truths" (Pros) by Ginny--Short little 'the lads have a talk while sitting on a stakeout' story. It's only three pages, but it's a bit gooey for my tastes. I just get a little squirmy when guys start reciting poetry to each other. I keep thinking I'm going to have to write a story someday where one character does that and then the other turns around and recites the one about the Ball-Turret Gunner (which ends with them having to remove him from the turret with a hose).

"Wonderwall" (DS) by Catherine--Based around "Juliet is Bleeding", this is probably my favorite DS story in the zine. I liked, among other things, the treatment of the immediate aftermath of the episode, specifically Fraser taking Ray home afterwards. I have to admit that JIB has one of my favorite last scenes--beaten by VS, of course--in a series that always knew how to really end an episode.

"Never Try Writing at 3AM" (Pros) by Cherilyn--Or don't believe every synopsis you read. Snicker.

"Cold Nose, Warm Heart" (DS) by HG--A first time story with a full plot. While I like the occasional plot in a slash story and admire someone who can pull it off, I found there to be something more than vaguely disturbing about this plot that distracts me from a lovely conclusion. I do wonder at how much time Dief has to spend in the kitchen, though, since this is the second story in the zine where he gets sent there so that Ray and Fraser can have sex. :-) (Just a note, though: There *would* have been a convenience store open nearby probably, no matter what time in the morning it was. 'Open all night' and 'Open 24 hours' are watch words in this country. Personally, I worship the words 'Breakfast served 24 hours.' :-) )

"Three to a Pack" (DS) by Ginny--Another first time story. While the story is okay, I can't say I care for the pov to be a person outside of the main pairing, especially in first time stories. Particularly I don't generally care for it when it's from the pov from an animal, even one as person-like as Dief.

"Putting Off the Armour" (Pros) by HG--Can't say I've ever truly understood the fascination some seem to have for the episode "Wild Justice", but this is still a good story. Set around said storyline, this deals with it and a few subsequent episodes. I actually liked the sub-plot of Kate Ross' joining CI5. Gives a bit more depth and reason for her being there--and the idea of her staying there since Cowley didn't seem particularly thrilled with her presence. And as in many HG stories, getting Bodie and Doyle into bed is probably the easiest part of the battle. I would have liked a bit more angst and argument in the final reconciliation, but it still all worked for me quite a bit.

Was it worth it? Probably a bit more than the first issue. Everyone seemed to have more of a grasp of Fraser and Ray in the DS stories and I think the stories were more solid overall. I also noticed fewer problems in the Britishims department, which I appreciate. And it's probably worth getting if you're just an HG completist. If you're getting it for just DS or especially just Pros, then I'd suggest a couple of people going into buying one copy. The overseas cost just seems to make it a little pricey for too few of stories. That doesn't mean they're not good, just that a bang-for-your-buck or at least page-count-for-your-buck equivalent isn't very high.[2]
"I have to make an admission here, until I bought Alter Egos 3 I had never read a Due South story and I had never watched a single episode. Although I knew it was slashy, this was not intentional - our paths never crossed. It was only on reading the excellent stories in AE3 that I realised what I had been missing all this time. Of course, doing things "arse about face' (as I usually do) I bought Alter Egos 3 first and was so impressed that when funds permitted, I then bought no.2. This is another excellent zine, containing Due South, Professionals, and Sherlock Holmes stories. Although it was primarily for Due South that I bought it. These stories are all featuring the original Ray and Fraser combination. Why did they need another one, by the way? What was wrong with the first one? As usual with the Alter Ego series, these stories are all of a high quality and very enjoyable. Although the Due South are my particular favorites, there is also a very good more meaty Professionals story to sink your teeth into!. Altogether this is a lovely readable zine with a good mix of stories and moods. It is also a good value for the money. Recommended.[3]

Issue 3

table of contents issue #3, click to read

Alter Egos 3 has 135 pages.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

I will confess that the main reason I bought number three instead of starting at number one was that it had a Friends Joey/Chandler story in it. FTE somewhat satisfied my passion for Gerald/Kimble but I've been wanting Joey and Chandler to get together for years so I could not let the opportunity pass me by. It's short, guys, but it's very sweet. OK, on to The Fugitive. There are four stories here, two gentle and reflective and two where all the action is. Personally, I recommend the second two as they are as steamy and sexy as FTE was. These stories are not related to FTE, by the way, and tell of Gerald and Kimble getting together in new and interesting ways that do not disappoint. Let's face it, if these two are not destined for each other clutches, I don't know who is. Now on to something different. When I bought Where the Lightning Strikes, Due South was new to me (yes, I know it's been around for ages, but I never found time to watch it), and that made me realise what I'd been missing. Fortunately, Alter Egos 3 came through with some wonderful Due South stories that made me eager for more. My favorites are Prodigal Mountie, a beautiful 'what if' story by Ellis Ward, and The Ghosts that Haunt me by Catherine, where Ray is forced to confront unpleasant things from his childhood and deal with his feelings for his friend. Other stories are of the Highlander, Star Trek (Lovely to meet Kirk and Spock again - they seem to be largely forgotten these days) and the X-files, in a tension fraught story that brings Mulder and Skinner together one dark stormy night in Denver. This zine also has 135 tightly packed pages and is the perfect companion to a long hot bath on a cold, winters night. Highly recommended.[4]
  1. ^ In 1996 Michelle Christian posted this following review to the Virgule-L mailing list. It is reposted on Fanlore with permission.
  2. ^ In 1997 Michelle Christian posted this following review to the Virgule-L mailing list. It is reposted on Fanlore with permission.
  3. ^ Pillow Talk no.7
  4. ^ Pillow Talk no.2