Black Bean Soup

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Title: Black Bean Soup (also known as "BBS Newsletter")
Editor(s): Caroline L. Craig/Snow Bear/Snowbears, back-up editor: Buc252
Type: letterzine, newsletter
Date(s): May 1995-January 2000
Medium: print, then online
Fandom: Starsky and Hutch
External Links: "on hiatus"
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Black Bean Soup is a gen Starsky and Hutch newsletter and letterzine published between 1995-2000. The editor referred to it as "basically a newsletter verging on a letterzine sometimes." [1]

It was originally a weekly publication, but in late August 1997, it became a monthly one.

At the top of the issues: "This publication registered with the National Association of Fan Clubs (NAFC), the Fandom Directory, and advertised in GAZ (Generic AdZine), as well as on the Internet."

The zine contained news, fannish discussion, articles about the show and actors, a trading section and a limited amount of fan fiction. It existed in both as a mailing list (and often pointed out this did not mean "online on the internet") and as a print item sent through the mail (dubbed "snail mail"). The print versions were eight pages in length.


This was a traditional newsletter, not unlike Livejournal-type newsletter communities; it contained articles, information, chatty commentary, etc., and was emailed out to its subscribers once a week. People who did not have access to email could still pay to have the newsletter printed out and mailed to them.

Starsky & Hutch fans would have been familiar with the title "Black Bean Soup" as it was the name of the song Hutch sings in the episode "Death Notice." See it here.

Band of Friends

The "Band of Friends were fans that volunteered to send other fans back issues.

The Welcome Letter

Like many things of the day, the welcome letter included not just information about the newsletter itself, but about internet-related things; it was assumed (often rightly) that people would be new to computers and the internet:

Welcome to Black Bean Soup! (BBS, as opposed to bbs or bulletin boards) Black Bean Soup is an online newsletter for fans of the show Starsky & Hutch. It is issued weekly (on Sundays) and contains articles, new, bios of some of our members, trivia quizzes, inside info from Dean Treadway at TNT (which currently has the rights to the show in the U.S.), and a trading post section where folks can buy/sell/ask for copies of things. Right now we are up to (volume number) so there are a lot of back issues which you may get if you want. Back issues also include an episode guide for the series, credit lists for the stars, addresses of stores/shops where you can buy pictures and/or S&H collectibles and fanfic (fiction based on the series, written by fans). [...] if you want all the back issues, let me know. There is a "Band of Friends" who will send you the back issues, should you want them.

At some point BBS added: a webpage. The public links on the site included a page explaining the abbreviations used in the newsletter, a page explaining some S&H basics, a page of pictures, and links to other S&H sites.

Archived But Now Gone

A private page, whose URL was given out only to subscribers, included the newsletter's archives, with every back issue available for download, as well as transcripts of many of the group's online chats.

Unfortunately the website vanished during Yahoo's purge of Geocities sites, and only the front page and the episode guide was archived by the Wayback Machine.

The Issues

  • V.1: May 1995-December 1996
  • V.2: there were 45 issues, January 1996-December 1996
  • V.3: there were 36 issues, January 1997-December 1997
  • V.4 there were 10 issues, January 1998-December 1998
  • V.5: there were 12 issues, January 1999-January 2000

The Beginning: "Why I Do Black Bean Soup"

From the editor:

For those newer members who haven't heard the story, two years ago now, I had started to post on the S&H bbs of AOL. I had a lot of articles and info that I had gathered over the last couple decades and I wanted to share it all with those who loved S&H too. Of course, this was back in the days when you paid by the hour on AOL so typing lengthy articles onto the bbs rapidly became cost prohibitive. (I now have unlimited access with AOL so that helps a *whole* lot! LOL) Because I had been getting a newsletter from another group of which I was part,I promptly borrowed their idea and started doing multiple addressee mailings! Thus BBS was born. We've gone from one mailing list to 19 plus several snail mail subbers and our fame seems to have spread across the globe. The poser in the first issue is probably one worth repeating for those who never saw it - [a fan] asked, "Why 'Black Bean Soup'? [as the name of the newsletter]" The answer was "when I was searching for a name for this rag, LeapYearDH kindly suggested this and I loved it right away!" "Black Bean Soup" is the title of a song written by Gardner McKay and David Soul, released on the 1976 album "David Soul" and sung by our guys in the episode "Death Notice" (#6).

Basically, the words are "All I want is black bean soup and you to bring it to me." As I said last year, I've been bringing it to you ever since and having great fun doing it. :) [2]

From the editor in 1997:

Hopefully, it's informative and entertaining and there's no purpose other than that, other than to provide a 'meeting place' where fans can get to know other fans and hopefully become friends. I don't really expect anything from those who get it although it is nice to get feedback occasionally... and the courtesy of a quick note to let me know if you're dropping your online services/your sub to the newsletter... If I only had a nickel for every time I've heard someone say, 'I thought I was the only "adult" that still loved Starsky & Hutch...!' I'd be a millionaire today. LOL. The extra bonus is that, through BBS, a lot of folks have not only found out about S&H fandom but about fandom in general. This has definitely not been an effort for monetary success - I don't make a dime off of this so all my rewards are in personal satisfaction, not dollars. BBS is something of which I'm extremely proud -- I've put a lot of time into this because I love S&H and the friendship portrayed by the two main characters, because I've found some of the same kind of friendship with a lot of the BBSers I've met online and in person over the last two years, and because I've always enjoyed fandom in general. I've gotten a lot out of fandom from other editors over the years and hopefully, this is my way of giving something back. I still find time (occasionally) to devote to my other interests and, when I've "exhausted the possibilities" or interest wants and I've moved on to something else as my main focus, I'll quit doing BBS. My only role is as editor, a sort of central focusing point through which folks can come together and share their love of the show and friendship with each other. When it's over, it's over and I'll honestly be able to say to everyone (quoting from a David Soul song): "You've given me, honestly, the best days of my life." Thank you all! [3]

The Back Issue Helpers: "Band of Friends"

Buc, as I mentioned earlier, is the head of the Band of Friends (yes, named after one of David Soul's albums). This is a group of helpful BBSers who have broken down the massive amount of previously published issues in order to share the load of distributing copies to newer members who'd like to see where we've been in the past. There is a lot of information in some of these previous issues. [4]

Fan Club Associations

There were several fan clubs with which BBS had cooperative agreements:

Black Bean Soup Fan Gatherings: Black Bean Soup Bash

There were two mini-con for this newsletter in Washington, D.C., one in 1996 and one in 1997.

This con generated the zine Forever Friends.

See Black Bean Soup Bash.

Black Bean Soup Drinking Game

Black Bean Soup Starsky & Hutch Drinking Game

Stats and Demographics

Membership was steadily grew by very respectable levels for the time: in May 1995, when the mailing list started, they had 28 members. By December 1995, the number had grown to over 90. By March 1997, it had 242 members. At that time 100 members participated in a demographic survey: 135 were in the U.S. (including one in Hawaii); 1 was in Brazil; 1 was in Japan; 8 were in Canada; 30 were in Germany; 2 were in Switzerland; 1 was in the Netherlands; and 19 were in the U.K. The ages ranged from 15 to 52 with the majority of people falling into the thirties. At the end of its run, it had 350 members.

For other Starsky and Hutch letterzines, see List of Letterzines.

Privacy, Fans, and Online Privacy

Also see [[See Privacy vs. Freedom of Information, a late 1996 discussion in v.2 n.39 pt.2.

Privacy and fans on the Internet were a constant topic.

In from a summer 1996 conversation in the newsletter:

Here’s another idea I’d like to propose. A good friend of mine has a web page (RGB or Real Ghostbusters) which includes an episode guide (yes, another one I did) and a fairly complete zine listing for that fandom... it’s 15 pages printed out! In it, she lists mm zines (multi- media) with RGB stories in it, RGB novellas and RGB zines and, for ones that have permission to publish it, the info on where/how to get them. Now, I know there are a lot of concerns about “advertising” on the net but I think this is a great resource for that fandom. I would really love to attempt one on S&H. It will take a while since I’ll have to get permission from the editors involved but I think it would be worth it and being a web page out there on the Internet, other lonely S&H fans will be able to find it by doing searches and then they’ll be able to find us too! So many of you told me you were glad to find BBS and learn that you were “not the only one out there.” And that’s why I’d like to make the information more easily accessible to those who are desperate to find it. Anyone have any comments, suggestions, or advice? I can do this now and store the web page on AOL’s server so it won’t cost me anything extra. I’m currently reading up on HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language) but if anyone can help me with creating this thing. I’d love to have your assistance. This may take a while but I think it will be worth it when it’s done.

About my idea of an S&H web page - I've gotten some feedback but would like to make my position perfectly clear, in case there's any confusion out there. What I am planning is a web page for S&H which lists things like BBS, the chat groups on various online services, fan clubs and dealer sources, with connections to an episode guide page and a zine listing page" I would be happy to accept any ads folks would like to post (like one for the reflector list) and I would only post addresses or sources for folks who authorize my posting their addresses (e-mail or snail on the Internet. In the zine listings, only zine editors (who provide their permission) would be listed along with their addresses {or the address of authorized distributors}- NOT the names/addresses of any authors included in the zine (unless they specifically authorize that they be listed as one of the authors included and then it would be last name only, NOT address). If you're interested in finding out the kind of thing I envision, take a look at my friend Sheila's Real Ghostbusters' page at: <> I'd appreciate any help anyone can give me at this point. AOL will allow me to make a home page and store it on their server (as Sheila did) but, to make it *really* terrific,I'd like to be able to allow all kinds of links to other web sites. I know some of you out them already have web pages so, if you're willing to allow me to link up to your sites, just drop me a line and let me know. : ) I really do think that this could be something terrific for lonely people who are looking for others in Starsky & Hutch fandom, as well as info on the PMG IFC, DSAC and other groups. [6]

In March 1997, the editor wrote a summary of the newsletter and included some anonymous stats such as members' ages, geographic location, as well as email addresses. She introduced her work and said:

I've been on America Online for over three years now and, aside from a failed romance, I really haven't had any bad experiences. Several of my friends have met over the Internet, met in person and ended up getting married. But, yes, there are true stories about weirdos out there - just as there are in any portion of society. So caution is good but please don't worry too much about this forum. This directory is only being sent to BBSers. Now, if you feel like sharing it with some who did not participate (Kirsten, I'm thinking about all the German DSAC member who might like to see this), that's fine with me. But I won't publish this on the net anywhere or e-mail it to anyone except those on the list. Hope this is something that can give you some fun - meeting new folks or getting e-mail pals, whatever!

In September 1998, the editor wrote:

Another thing that is liked by some fans, disliked by others, is the posting of fanfic on the net. This definitely has its pros and cons and the issues of privacy and editing quality are very seriously under debate. But, if anyone has a web page and would like to include fanfic on their site, just let me know and I'll try to hook you up with people who would like their stories posted online. [7]

One Member's Part in a two UK Documentaries

From v.5 n.5, a description of working behind the scenes on the Starsky & Hutch closed set, and then later, participating and facilitating in two documentaries - "The David Soul Documentary" (1998) and The Starsky & Hutch Documentary" (1999):

Black Bean Soup Was Very, Very Gen

Many of the members of this community were militantly gen and the community's leaders and BNFs were very outspoken in their anti-slash stances. [8]

Slash was mentioned as a sub-genre a handful of times but not in any way elaborated upon. The newsletter contained occasional flyers for both ZebraCon and Revel Con, and the S&H Genzine Lending Library was advertised and described, but the topic was never discussed in any way, nor did any fans describe themselves as slash fans.

In March 1997, the editor of the newsletter wrote:

For those of you who ask why I keep BBS at a "gen" level (or nothing "adult"), it's partly because there are still some members about which I know nothing other than their e-mail address. Since the Congress of the United States passed the "Decency in Communications Act," I personally don't want to take the chance of printing anything that might possibly be considered indecent or sending anything improper to any minors.

For many tribbers to this newsletter, this slash/gen divide also meant they operated in a separate sphere than slash fandom, and in many respects, in wider fandom. In May 1997, a fan, Nancy L. Rogers, wrote:

“This is, I suppose, an editorial in the form of an open letter. It pertains to gen S & H only, as I’m not familiar with the realm of slash.


To Lorraine Bartlett,

Lorraine, you were the original, the first to bring Starsky and Hutch to the world of fanzines. You gave this show a life beyond a mere 92 hours of screen adventures; gave to the audience who wanted more, and kept the legacy alive. As a latecomer to fandom in general, and S&H fandom in particular, I see your contributions as invaluable. Thank you for keeping your zines in print for the sake of those like myself who are new to the phenomenon of fan writing. It's a solid foundation that's been laid for the fandom built upon it to this day.

To Nanci Casad, Nanci, you brought revival to the building. You began the current generation of fanzines. You gave many of us our first "break" in S&H writing, if not in any fanfic at all. Yours was the faith that there still was an audience out there, ready and eager to read new stories about a series long off the air.

Though the fandom had never died, you brought it back to cohesion - "tangibility", if you will. Thank you for giving us those new stories, for encouraging more, and for showing us that yes, there was still more to be said in a fandom with two decades of zines to its credit.

To Caroline Craig, Caroline, you are in large part responsible for the vitality in the life of today's S&H fandom. You are the guiding force of a diverse body of people whose only common interest is a 1970's TV show. S&H is the heart, but you, through the BBS newsletter, are the blood that circulates to every part. (Friendship is the soul.) You have made possible a network that brings those members together, a means to contact others who share that common interest. Thank you for your leadership, for your patience, and most of all for the blood that keeps this fandom not merely alive, but on its feet as well.

The three of you are the tripod that supports the active S&H fandom of today. Thank you all for what you've given to us. [9]

In 2017, a fan, Linda McGee, wrote of much more serious matters regarding the subject of slash and this newsletter:

The internet was a whole new world, and when it first came into existence and came into common usage, no one knew how it was going to affect the world and their lives and fandom and publication, and at that point in time, fandom was like this private little world, and you had to really look for it to find it. And people were writing. They weren’t using pseuds


One of the women involved in the anti-slash group had a — I guess you’d call it a letterzine that she published online, and the subscribers included children, police officers, who knows who, and without asking for my consent, she published a review of “The Lucky and the Strong,” the first zine, and she did not — let’s see how to phrase this — she made a point of mentioning that, for religious reasons, she didn’t read the slash stories. But she did reviews on the gen stories, and she made a point of mentioning every single slash writer by name. She didn’t even mention the title of the story, as in, “In Linda McGee’s story, blah blah blah blah blah,” and that just — that didn’t make you feel real safe. And, as I said, this had a readership of people in all kinds of professions. Things were certainly better than they’d been 20 or 30 years before, but homophobia was still alive and well. You could be killed just for choosing to be gay, and writing about two guys in bed together? Not really a safe topic. So, it didn’t seem safe for my writers or me to make it all public. The stories had a happy ending. The internet probably helped open up the world a lot to the idea of fan fiction, but I couldn’t predict that in 1993. [10]

The End of the Run

The editor almost called it quits in 1998, citing lack of submissions and interest:

Well, this is a happy and a sad occasion. As you might have guessed from the header, this is the 4th Anniversary Issue but it is also the last issue of BBS, at least for now. As they say in TV-land, we’re “going on hiatus.” 8 May 95 was the first issue of this newsletter and, after three years (most of which involved weekly issues), I have finally decided to take a break. Even though we reached 300 members, interest has dwindled since S&H is no longer being shown on a regular basis. Between an ever-increasing number of folks who dropped their subs by going offline and not letting me know (i.e., I get lots of E-mail returned as unknown addressees) and only a faithful few people participating by providing input, I believe the time has come for me to hang it up. For now, I’d like to sit back and enjoy fandom as a participant, rather than have the responsibility of doing this newsletter each month. I have also grown tired of begging for input and, as stated previously, I didn’t want to feel that this was just me talking to myself or repeating myself endlessly. We’ve had only a few responses to any posers provided. No questions for The Specialist for quite some time. I rarely get bios anymore and, with ~300 members, I only received Anniversary Issue input from 4 people. I feel the quality of the newsletter would only decrease and my goal at all times was to provide a quality information source. I will keep the mailing lists (for now) and if anyone sends me buy/sell/trade info for a Trading Post section, I can send out “as they occur” notices to everyone, as well as any important info that anyone wants to share with all the other fans. [Of course, should anyone wish to have their name permanently removed from my mailing lists, just send me an E-mail and I’ll be happy to do so.] Snail mail subbers will be refunded any money owed them and should I decide to do BBS again in future, I’ll drop you a postcard and let you know. It is also possible that someone else might want to “take up the gauntlet” so to speak and do another newsletter for S&H fans. If anyone wants to do this, I will be happy to pass on articles which I have yet published and have saved on disk.

Hopefully, the chats, the bulletin boards (bbs), and the various reflector lists/web sites will keep the fandom alive and strong. Last year's directory will have to suffice since I've not had the time to finish doing a new one but I will definitely complete the Table of contents for volume 3 and what there is of volume 4 and will send them out with the current mailing lists when they are done. I have no doubt that there will always be S&H fans since I've been in fandom for almost 20 years and I know there is *always* a fandom for any show you can think of - no matter how small the fandom or how short-lived the show. I still love $&H and will hopefully see lots of you at future cons (including Z Con in 99!)" It's been a real pleasure

to "meet" you all - those I know in person and those I only know via E- mail. Like I've always said - s&H fans are a special breed, probably because it all started over the friendship between Starsky & Hutch! <vbg>[11]

The editor took a month-long break, starting in late July 1997. At that point, she said she might end the newsletter, but in any case it was certainly going to become a monthly, rather than weekly publication.

In September, the editor returned with some reassessments:

I'm here to announce the revisions to BBS. This is "your* publication! Yes, I do most of the work (and it is a lot of work at times!) but this is a newsletter for all of us to share our joys, our sorrows, our triumphs and our disasters. Gone is the old Bears who worried too much about trying to please everyone and never wondered what it was that she wanted. Gone is the old Bears who begged, pleaded and groveled for input on certain anniversaries and occasions. I will put what things I have to share into BBS and the rest of it is up to you. I know I got a lot of nice letters (E-mails) from folks after I announced the return - lots of people said they had never contributed much but did enjoy and appreciate all I had done. And that's fine! I am deeply grateful for the kind words expressed by many of you who were as concerned about my health and well-being as you were about this newsletter. Support of friends like you helped make this difficult period a little easier to bear. But now comes the hard part. This time around, I am not going to fret myself to death about putting out "the best darn Starsky & Hutch newsletter in the world. LOL. This witl be the best I can make it and if it's not enough to please everyone then I'm sorry, but that's life. lf people contribute interesting stories, articles, tidbits of information then it will be a fun-filled issue. lf no one cares to contribute, then it might be a small issue with not that much information provided. As always, f will appreciate those who contribute items for AB$lgusand$ix who have faithfully done the guizand wh+hetp greatly by serving on the Band of Friends), Nancy Rogers who constantly submits ideas for posers or questions for the specialist (although I might not choose to use everything she submits to me), and those dedicated few who serve as specialists, providing information when asked for info to use in fanfic or just to ease their curiosity. Aside from all that - this is your newsletter as much as it is mine. You have every right to submit information like the death of a family member, a promotion at work, the birth of a child, a change of homes or whatever! I ask again that everyone who has not already done so please provide me with their birthday because I still want to include the birthday wishes section (year is optional/not necessary although I do wish to keep track of any minors in the group). I honestly believe that sharing your happiness doubles or triples the joy. And a burden shared with friends is a burden lightened somewhat. lf people provide input, I will do my best to include it (reserving the Editor's right to turn down anything which I might deem inappropriate - don't want this to become a political or religious forum. This is a newsletter for entertainment purposes only.). lf there are no posers submitted, none will be posted and that section will be dropped in that month. lf a poser is posted for two consecutive months and no one sends in-any kind of response, thenlha - poser will be dropped - end of discussion. Same thing for the Specialist section. If no one has any questions that month, it won't show up here. I realize that people have other interests in life (as do l) and not every month will be overflowing with information. The bottom line here is - NO PRESSURE! On myself or anyone else! I'm also going to try a few new things and, if they seem to go over well,-then we'll continue to do them. lf not, we tried, it didn't work so we shrug and go on from there. lf I do something new and only get five responses that people liked it - those of you who didn't like it but didn't speak up will not "have your votes counted' so to speak. The majority wilt rule (for the most part) and, by that, I mean the "vocal* majority. <vbg> So, taking a deep

breath and kicking back your computer chair or your Lazy Boy recliner - and off we go! [12]

The newsletter, however, did not cease until the end of 1999. BBS's final issue was December 1999/January 2000:

The end of a year, decade, century, millennium ... and the run of BBS. Life goes on and lots of S&H talk lists have developed, providing immediate gratification for those who are still heavily into this show. Unfortunately, input has dwindled to almost nothing [...] Well, it's been a great run. I'm thrilled that this E-newsletter went from 10-15 AOL subscribers to well over 300 worldwide during its five-year run. We've had members from the U.S., Canada, Brazil, Argentina, Egypt, Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Italy, Germany, The Netherlands, England, Scotland, Cornwall, Ireland, Northern Ireland, France, and Switzerland! I think many of us have made a lot of friends through this medium and it just goes to prove that, while you do need to maintain some sense of caution when corresponding via the Internet, it's also a great way to meet folks from all over the world and hopefully bring us closer together through a shared interest.

Sample Newsletter Contents


sample of a print edition
  • IOU by Merry, published in 3 parts (October 1995)
  • The Gate by Emmie (October 1995)
  • It's A Wonderful Hutch by Cathy Bixler (November 1995)
  • When Our Luck Runs Out, poem by Pegora (January 1996)
  • The Request by Merry Schainblatt (January 1996)
  • He Said, He Said by K. Hanna Korossy (May 1996)
  • Movie Magic by Merry Schainblatt (March 1997)
  • Re-Release by Gretchen M. Cupp, in commemoration of the re-release of Star Wars (March 1997)
  • Ante Up by Tiffany Park (February 1999)
  • That Voice by K. Hanna Korossy (March 1997)
  • When It's All Just Too Much by K. Hanna Korossy (June 1999)
  • The Little Things by K. Hanna Korossy (December 1999)

Regular Columns and Sections

  • Poser (questions for fans by fans)
  • Tell Me Something I Don't Know (zine reviews)
  • Who You Know, What You Know, and How You Know IT (episode trivia quizzes)
  • Spotlight On (bio of a member)
  • Take It Any Way You Can Get It (idea swapping forum)
  • The Specialist (questions and factual responses about technical information)
  • Trading Post (ads and requests)

Fan Comments

About the Two-Year Anniversary of the Newsletter

Some 1997 fan testimonials about the two year anniversary of "Black Bean Soup."

What is it about a group of people that start out being drawn together through a shared love for three fictional cops and their entrepreneurial sidekick? Who wind up experiencing something that turns out to be so much more fulfilling then they could have imagined? Like most of you, S&H has been dear to me since it originally aired back in the 70’s. But, I've only recently found if again through you wonderful folks at BBS. Started out by reading the newsletter, and enjoying the humor and latest news on things S&H. Since then I've had the privilege of chatting with some of you about, well, any little thing that seemed to be on our minds.<g> It’s so nice to be able to talk with folks who understand the importance of ’Cowboy Boots’ and ’Black Strap Molasses’. And who know that a diet of ’Three Day Old Burritos’ is the best way to increase your running endurance. Then someone mentioned fanfic! I never knew there was any fanfic on S&H. Sad, I know. But don’t shed any tears on my account, ’cause I’ve been busy making up for the lost time. <g> Thanks to all of you, especially to those kind-hearted souls who have put up with, and yes answered, *all* of my questions. (What’s your favorite episode, fanfic piece, poem, DS song, etc.) And yeah, now'll know what it’s about, FRIENDSHIP! [13]

Congratulations on 2 years of Black Bean Soup! This is a wonderful newsletter! Not only does it inform, but it invites us in to share our own thoughts, feelings and ideas. That is a rare and wonderful thing.

I like all the different sections for various reasons. It’s great to see the bios, to learn not only how fans differ, but also how much we all have in common. The Posers section stirs one’s imagination. Even if you don't answer the question publicly, it sets the mind off on a new way of thinking. The video alerts help me catch movies and such that I would surely miss otherwise. Both the Specialist, and Who You Know, What You Know, How You Know It are a goldmine for those interested in writing fanfic. Every week, I enjoy trying to answer the questions in the latter, and I always make note of little things that could make or break the credibility of a story. Thanks Buc and Bix!

Bears, you deserve a round of applause! Doing anything this complex on a weekly basis for 2 years is commendable. But putting together a newsletter that is both informative, creative and entertaining is a small miracle! Congrats for the first two years, and in the words of a blonde-haired singer we all know and love, "Don’t Give Up On Us" <G> [14]

"Are you sure they're not axe-murderers?" I’ve heard that line a lot since I became a subscriber to BBS, and have told people of my plans to visit with some of my new friends.. It's been said with the best of intentions, and when people have asked. I’ve tried to explain, but it isn’t always easy. Not that many people are lucky enough to have found a way to meet wonderful, caring people, that I’ve been delighted to travel with, and share memories, love, and laughter. In today’s society, so many people do not always have priorities where they place friendship and "doing the right thing” above material gain. So many times we read surveys about people feeling it’s okay to cheat and lie, and do just about anything to get ahead. How nice it is to be able to make new friends from among a group who cherish the ideal of friendship that was embodied in a 1970’s cop show! Thanks to all of you, and especially to Caroline for inventing this way for us to get together. Happy Anniversary' to BBS.[15]

Wow! Second anniversary already and I’ve been a part of it for a year. I joined BBS on the first anniversary and what a year it’s been <vbg>! I've learned things, swapped ideas and read some great stories. But, best of all. I’ve gained friends that I will forever love and cherish. Thank you![16]

Hi and best wishes to all my fellow BBSers. It’s hard to believe that two years ago 1 wasn’t even aware you all existed (I didn’t join till 7 months later), and now it seems as though I’ve enjoyed your company for so much longer. It continually amazes me how much talent is out there«and how much fun. Who would think that a simple love of Starsky & Hutch (both show AND guys) could bring about such a widespread connection.

I’m so happy to be a part of it. The best part by far has been my friendship with our very talented editor. She’s really special and I know our friendship will outlast even BBS!

So here’s to many more anniversaries and I’m looking
forward to meeting so many of you all at the BBS DC Bash 2 in June.[17]

It's hard to believe it's been two years since Bears started her newsletter, the little newsletter that grew and grew. And got better and better. I've been able to grow a little with it; BBS has put me in touch with fellow fans, three of which have become very good, close friends. Without BBS, these people would have never touched my life, so just for that alone, I owe Bears and BBS a big debt of gratitude. And now that I'm online, I've found new friends and am looking forward to meeting even more of you, via the chat or email or whatever. It's also enhanced an old friendship (Yo Bears!) and I'd like to thanks Bears here and now for her patience in helping a friend learn to geek. :) I've looked forward to seeing that snailmail envelope, ifs often being the only good piece of mail in the box. I've learned technical stuff from The Specialists, been able to read articles about the guys, and learn more about all of you who send in your bios. It’s always fun to get to know people.

A special salute to Bears for all her dedication and to her "baby”, BBS.[18]

Bears, I wasn’t sure what I could contribute to your anniversary issue, not having been a BBS reader for that long, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized it has made an impact on me, things have changed, and Fm very happy about it!

First of all, I'd like to thank you for your labor of love (BBS). As a lifelong addict of TV, and a closet fan of certain actors for years (I mean, it’s not exactly the thing to bring up at those prerequisite company cocktail parties, the fact that you are waiting breathlessly for this week’s episode of, whatever...), I had naively assumed that there would always be groups devoted to say, ST, but never, ever, knew that there was a dedicated bunch of fans for Starsky & Hutch. What a revelation! As a supposedly mature <g> person, I periodically reminded myself that I should really grow up, get a grip, get a life, and do something responsible, like join the PTA... until I learned about BBS and you folks. (Not that BBS promotes irresponsibility, just that I never wanted to do that other stuff in the first place, or had, and found it dry as sand.) BBS let me know that it’s all right to hang onto your daydreams. Now? Well, it is wonderfully fresh and liberating to be able to talk about S&H with other fans, people who won’t look at you like you're one egg short of an omelette. Thank you for that. I’d like to also thank Merry for being so gracious, for inviting me to her house so I could watch episodes I hadn’t seen before, or in a long time. For discussing fanfic and sharing writing efforts. Thanks, Merry! Oh yes, the fan fiction...lest I forget, a thanks to the powers that be for opening up to me that wonderful world. At last a place to indulge my hedonist little self, and be allowed a creative outlet for my own work. Better than a scholarly paper any day<g>. Hope to meet more of you BBS’ers soon! [19]

I felt a little strange, reading about Bear's anniversary issue. After all, how do you break down all the fun and wonderful things that you've seen and done in almost two years of fandom? How do you thank all those people for wonderful conversations, and the deadly serious discussions of plots, character reactions and motivations that would probably have the Mental Health Community shaking their heads in wonder, muttering "It's only fiction people! Only a series for heaven's sake!” <VBG!> So I m just going to do this the easy way, and thank all those people who’ve understood my questions, my nit-picking and were kind with my point of view even when we saw things differently. I've learned a lot, changed my mind various times, and had a wonderful time throughout it all. And special thanks to Emmie, who understands my weird jokes and knows what I m trying to say, even when it doesn't come out well. [20]

I remember getting my first issue of Black Bean Soup, thinking what a wonder it was that there were other people in this world who were as interested in this old 1970’s TV show as I was. I was still fairly new to AOL, but had managed to find the Starsky & Hutch bulletin board, and, thereby, the then-named BearsLady2 who put it together each week.

Then there was my first story. I’d thought out many of them in my head to fight insomnia, but never before tried putting one of them on paper. It was more of a shock to me than anybody when not only did Bears read it and want to put it in BBS, but the response was very positive. It was more exciting than anything I’d done in a long time. Bears and those readers encouraged me to go on to write another, then another.

One of my fondest memories is of my very first IM [Instant Message - a method of one on one communication on AOL], prompted by my story’s appearance in the newsletter. How was I to know that the person who IM’d with her kind thoughts was to become more like a sister than my own. Starsky & Hutch taught us how to be special friends, and it only grew more wonderful as we added other close, special friends who had also learned from the pair of detectives.


Of course, this tribute wouldn’t be complete without mentioning my very first zine - my introductory shot that was to develop into a lifetime addiction. I had no idea that anything like this even existed - this was before I’d even attempted writing anything, too - until I saw an ad in BBS for the Zebra 3 zines. About the same time as I ordered three of the six of those, I also ordered a pair of zines called Good Guys Wear Fangs I and II, for no other reason than that there were S&H stories in them. The “Fangs” zines arrived first, and I was totally enraptured of the three stories in them - in heaven you might say. Looking back on it, it’s probably a good thing those came first; if I’d gotten the Zebra zines first, I just may have gone into shock from the shear enjoyment of them! Many other zines have followed since then, but those will always have a special place in my heart, just because they were the first.

I remember the first time I wrote the quiz, helping out to cover for our original QuizMaster J, who was on vacation. It seemed a small thing to do to help out, and today, now that J has retired from her quiz hostessing duties, I (with Bix, of course) enjoy it just as much. And, of course, it gives us a good excuse to watch our tapes - something we never get tired of doing!

For all these wonderful “Firsts,” I owe my sincere gratitude to Caroline, our own SnowBears2, for creating Black Bean Soup two years ago and for keeping it up ever since. It’s a hard job, believe me. The one week I did it, I found that out first-hand. But it’s a labor of love that keeps us all together and in touch, so .... THANK YOU, BEARS, AND HAPPY BIRTHDAY, BLACK BEAN SOUP!!![21]

Sample Comments from the Newsletter

A special SOS from Sylvie of the DSAC (David Soul Appreciation Club): "would anyone out there have a clear copy of the S&H Broopers?! David is currently desperate for a copy of this 60mm gem" and is relying on us to help him out!!! Sylvie would send a signed picture as a reward and pay for all p&p - They would even keep the supplier's name confidential so that that person isn't inundated with similar requests. Please me know if you would have any way to help him out. Sylvie only has a 5mm extract (with very, very poor image quality and sound) but David swears there is a lot more to the bloopers (we're not sure that Paul would still have his own copy either). [22]

One thing I would like to stress to new members and members of the DSAC who might see this newsletter - this was started as a way for fans of the show Starsky & Hutch to share information and get to know each other. While we all love S&H, especially for the relationship between the two guys, most of us are also interested in the works of David Soul and Paul Michael Glaser and we’d be more than happy to share anything you might care to send us. I also think it is interesting to note that, while we started out getting together over a common interest in the show, many of us have gone on to become good friends and we now share much more than just this one show. [In fact, several people are coming to the DC area in June for a get-together and we’re all looking forward to meeting face to face and sharing some good times, as well as doing some of the typical “tourist" things that one can do in Washington DC. Anyone who is interested in joining in on our get-together (now scheduled for 7-10 June), e-mail me for additional information. Ed] I personally think it is wonderful that we could meet each other this way and I’m learning about all different parts of the country and even places overseas through this forum - what a great experience! I also think it’s fabulous that there is a whole new generation of kids out there who have come to enjoy the show as we did back when it first aired. Both David Soul and Paul Michael Glaser should be proud of what they accomplished with this one portion of their much larger careers. The show's main impact is for the relationship between the guys and not the fighting or car chase scenes and I think that is what both gentlemen wanted to get across in the series. I send my congratulations to both stars of this series, as well as great appreciation for all the work they have done before and after S&H, providing us with many, many hours of great entertainment! It is one of my favorite things about doing the newsletter that now people all over the world can find out that they are not “the only one in the world” who enjoys this. Who knows? Maybe the Internet will help us all get to know each other better all around the world. <g> [Okay, enough with the emotionalism. I’ll stop now.] [23]

Whereas the Trading Post is more of a buy/sell/trade section of [Black Bean Soup], this section would be more like a swap meet. For example, I don’t make music videos myself but know of several folks who do. I do, however, listen to music a major portion of each day and occasionally find myself thinking “Gee, that would make a terrific song for a S&H video!” Here’s an idea of a song that I think would make a terrific video (although it may have already been done and I just don’t know it - that’s entirely possible): “You’ve Got a Friend” by Carole King. (It was also done by James Taylor, I just happen to like the Carole King version better) Here’s the deal - anyone who likes this idea may feel free to make a S&H music video using this song. And, if there’s anyone else who has suggestions for good songs, just send 'em in. Then, whoever makes music videos, if you’re looking for a new idea, just come here and check out the offerings. We can also swap story ideas too if you want to do so. As Fee had said, some folks don’t write but have some good ideas of stories they’d like to read. In that case, I would post a story idea offered up by someone and anyone who wants to write it up could do so. The only word of caution I would add is that, since it seems more and more people are becoming concerned with “rights”, etc., I would say that, if you submit an idea to this forum, it’s “free for the taking.” And, if you use an idea from this forum, then it would be only appropriate to write your story with credit for “Concept from....” or something along those lines. Now, I don’t want to get into lots of legal hassles here. I believe that the basic tenet of fandom is sharing (especially in S&H fandom!) So, my idea of the song “You’ve Got a Friend” is FREE!

Anyone can use it and I don’t care who gets what credit. I know some of our members are using responses from “The Specialist” for story input and that’s great but this section can also be a place where someone writes in with a problem (when you hit a snag in a story or get writer’s block) and asks for advice/suggestions on where to go from there. If you don’t feel like sharing with others, DON’T send your ideas to me. I see this as a forum for free exchange of ideas and concepts and don’t want to find someone suing me somewhere down the line for “copyright infringement" or some such nonsense. [24]

I've noticed something about the TV shows I used to watch. The first season is the trial period, when everything is shaken up and settling in. Season two is the one in which the characters start having fun.

Then #3 rolls around, and the powers-that-be think, "Okay. We've established ourselves now, given the fans some episodes they won't mind watching in reruns. Now it's time for us to prove that we're more than just entertainment. Let's concentrate this year on social issues and show the world that we care." So they do. Now season four comes, and the actors are getting restless. They want more character development. They're thinking about their future careers. They're thinking about Emmy awards, even if they don't admit it. All of this translates into the "heaviest" year of the show up to that point. After that, the emphasis shifts to exploring new ideas, finding ways to (hopefully) keep the audience interested.

Granted, I haven't seen all that many shows with a run of four or more seasons, especially the ones created within the past ten years, but this pattern generally holds true for the ones I *have* seen.

Okay, so what does all this have to do with BBS's third anniversary? Well, there are some similarities to be observed. We've pretty much managed to steer clear of out-and-out "message" issues, but this has been a decidedly more serious year than were the previous two. It doesn't look good for season ... er, year #4.

On the other hand, this should be a definitive year for the newsletter. It will be a time of testing, I'm sure, but a time also of change and opportunity - a "refining," if you will. Assuming that we pass muster, BBS's fourth anniversary will find it internally stronger than ever. You just wait and see!:) [25]

A story idea that I just can't sit down and write myself, but I think has the potential for some good "leather scrunching": I would like to know about the original case the boys cracked against Simon Marcus and his followers. We know from "Bloodbath. that he is convicted of 2nd degree murder and that he molested children, that S and H caught him in that storefront and that he had a run-in with the rancher. It must have been a huge case as the media attention was great at the sentencing. Maybe one of them went undercover.....maybe someone they knew was a victim....the possibilities are endless, really! [26]

This is the place where folks can swap ideas for stories, videos or whatever. If anyone has suggestions for good songs to be made into videos or story lines that they'd like to see written up (but you don't write), just send'em in and maybe someone else can use them. The only word of caution I would add is that this is a forum for free exchange of ideas and concepts. If you use an idea from this forum, it would be only appropriate to write your story with credit for "Concept from,..." or something along those lines. I don't want to get into lots of legal hassles here. I believe that the basic tenet of fandom is sharing (especially" in S&H fandom!) If you don't feel like sharing with others, DON'T send your ideas to me.[27]

A note to any new folks on AoL who would like to join us for a chat - a bunch of us usually meet each Saturday night at 10 p"m. (Eastern) in the private room "Huggy." If you need instructions on how to get there, just let me know and we'll fill you in. [28]


  1. ^ from v.3 n.26 (July 1997)
  2. ^ from v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  3. ^ from v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  4. ^ from v.4 n.6 (September 1998)
  5. ^ from "Black Bean Soup" v.4 n.1 (January 1998)
  6. ^ from v.2 n.27 and v.2 n.28 (July, August 1996)
  7. ^ from v.4 n.6 (September 1998)
  8. ^ One example: Nanci Casad included ads for her zines in "Black Bean Soup." Casad is the author of GARBAGE LIKE THAT HAS NO PLACE IN FANDOM (1996)
  9. ^ from "Black Bean Soup" v.3 n.21 (May 1997)
  10. ^ from Media Fandom Oral History Project Interview with Linda McGee
  11. ^ from v.4 n.5 (May 1998)
  12. ^ from v.4 n.6 (September 1998)
  13. ^ from Trish in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  14. ^ from Nancy in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  15. ^ from Merry in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  16. ^ from Cat in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  17. ^ from Fran in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  18. ^ from Carol in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  19. ^ from Ceej in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  20. ^ from Cindy in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  21. ^ from Buc in v.3 n.18 (May 1987)
  22. ^ from v.4 n.9 (November 1998)
  23. ^ from v.2 n.8 (March 1996)
  24. ^ from v.2 n.34 (September 1996)
  25. ^ from v.4 n.5 (May 1998)
  26. ^ from v.2 n.40 (May 1997)
  27. ^ from v.2 n.40 (May 1997)
  28. ^ from v.3 n.21 (May 1997)