Bonaventure

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Zine
Title: Bonaventure
Publisher: Esperanza Press
Editor(s): Tabby Davis
Date(s): 1990 (mid-summer)
Series?:
Medium: print
Size:
Genre: gen
Fandom: Starsky and Hutch
Language: English
External Links:
from Frienz #8
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.
front cover
back cover

Bonaventure is a 196-page gen Starsky and Hutch anthology. The zine has handmade art and decorations.

Flyers: Descriptions from the Zine's Editor

The Commercial. This is a preliminary notice about a SH zine which it is hoped to have done and ready as soon as possible — just maybe, by mid-1990. One principal aim in producing it to be able to donate as much as possible of the price of each copy to the PAF fund. The title is 'Bonaventure', a name which, literally, represents the meaning and purpose behind this project. It's planned as a collection of short stories, vignettes, poetry, artwork by various writers and artists, some familiar, others less so. At this stage, I can't be specific about such factors as page-count and price, but if you'd like details as those become definite, just send me your SAE (IRCs are fine) and I'll contact you as soon as we know. And if there's someone else out there who would also like to be involved in the voyage of 'Bonaventure, we'll be happy to hear from you too. [1]

A new SH zine from Esperanza Press, which we hope will be available sometime in June/July. It's nearly ready.

It's almost two hundred pages (A4 size) long. It's an anthology — a collection of stories, vignettes, poetry, by a number of writers, some names you'll know very well, others newer to SH zines. Contents take you further into the series and into those 'what if -?' and 'what next -?' questions which the end of an episode often leaves us asking.

A few examples? Well, 'Sweet Revenge' proves, as always, an episode whose situations and possibilities writers like to explore, so you get several stories from that inspiring source. Same applies to First Season in stories reflecting a the freshness and originality of those earliest episodes. And you also get sequels - remember 'Decorated for Death'? — one SH novel which is still talked about whenever SH fans gather; we get some intriguing answers to that 'what happened next?' question. And, naturally, there are stories which feature cats. (Would any SH zine really be complete without those?) So; a lot of essential SH ingredients are here - including that celebrated hurt/comfort component ... Perhaps, I could best sum up 'Bonaventure' and its contents by quoting a few words of David Soul about the series : 'Its key was a relationship between two men, a passionate, caring relationship that, week after week, was extended to other people.' (Quoted in 'The Philadelphia Inquirer TV Week', 31 Jan. 1982.)

It all adds up to a zine with a lot of variety, too much for me to write about in detail here. And there's some VERY satisfying artwork, too, some of it in colour. I'll just say I enjoyed reading 'Bonaventure.' An editor isn't maybe the best person to comment at length, anyway - too close to the project. But I think you'd like it too. For me, it brought back, vividly, the reasons which, more than a decade ago, prompted that first response to a unique series. Know what I mean?

We should have exact information on U.K. and overseas costs very soon now. Just send me an SAE if you'd like to know more. [2]

An Examples of Some Tensions Between Gen and Slash Fans: "Mixed" Zines

The Frontispiece by Suzan Lovett

frontispiece: What makes you special a breed apart? You're my friend, and you have a hero's heart. -- the words on the illo. The artist is Suzan Lovett.
Very shortly after the zine was published, the editor wrote:
As editor, I'm reluctant here to single out individual contributions [to Bonaventure). Obviously, readers will make their own choices and the zine has to speak for and stand for itself without additional words from me personally. But I'd like to make one break from that principle by referring to the 'Bonaventure' frontispiece - 'Hero's Heart', because Suzan Lovett's drawing reflects so exactly the starting-point - the ground - the basis - of this zine : the constancy of the friendship, the relationship, which is at the heart of the series. This is what (I hope) 'Bonaventure' is about, and that drawing is so close to it. [3]
This art was used later as the cover of Frienz #27 where it generated some controversy due to some fans' belief it went over the line between gen and slash -- one comment:
I was dismayed when Tabby recounted her experience with a fan who wrote to tell her that she considered "Hero's Heart" ~ the frontispiece to Tabby's zine, Bonaventure - "disgusting." The illo, for anyone who hasn't seen it, is in an oval format and shows S and H from the shoulders up, fully clothed. H is behind and to the left of S, and has his arms around S's shoulders. S's arm, in turn, is reaching back to rest beside/behind H's head. Both are looking "at the camera." Around the piece is the quote," What makes you special, a breed apart? You're my friend, and you have a hero's heart." While I don't dispute anyone's Constitutional right to like and dislike whatever she chooses, or even to be as homophobic as she likes, I do question the courtesy of writing an editor of a zine to tell her she found an illo to be "disgusting," especially an innocuous piece such as this one. Come on, now, it's not a Gayle F! If this fan thinks the idea of S and H hugging one another "reeks of slash" and is "disgusting," I find myself asking why she's in this fandom? Perhaps she might be more comfortable with "Dragnet." While I never really watched the show, I feel fairly confident that Joe Friday and Bill Gannon didn't touch much! [4]

The Removal by Gen Fans of Some of the Fiction

A fan in 2001 commented that they'd bought this zine from another fan, and it had been altered:
I got all excited because someone was selling some S/H and S & H zines on a list I belong to. THEN I got the zines.... One in particular, Bonaventure, was apparently a mixed zine (with both slash and gen stories). The problem is the owner didn't like slash evidently (lack of poor taste) and removed those stories.

[snipped]

I do think it is tacky to sell a zine that is NOT complete (and it's obvious it isn't since the index shows the stories were once there and have been removed) without telling the buyer that. I would never sell a zine in that condition without telling. [5]

Some 2001 comments by Flamingo:

I can give you the most likely scenario regarding this zine. There is another lending library besides the S&H Lending Library that The Committee runs. It is a gen only library that will tell you right up front that it not only limits its selection to gen material, but it also will take mixed zines, like Bonaventure, remove the slash content, and then offer the zine to its members with only the gen content. They do not remove the indexes. Many of its library members, like ours, copy the zines that they borrow, so it's not unusual for these altered zine copies to be passed on from fan to fan. This library also offers in-print zines, and we have obtained copies of mixed in-print zines, like TLC, with the slash removed. It is likely that the fan who sold it may have gotten this altered copy passed on from another or even a third hand, and may never have compared the list of stories in the index with the actual contents and may not have realized it was censored. I know Bonaventure has lots of very short stories in it. Also, it is most likely the way she got the zine from whomever sold it to her. These censored zines are floating around fandom and will surface from time to time, so be aware of them. The people who do this (remove the slash from mixed zines) feel very strongly against promoting slash material. I've been told they will even remove the slash content from an individual story. I have not seen these individual stories altered, but I have seen altered zines. This is the most likely scenario regarding this particular zine. My experience is that most slash fans would not *remove* stories from a zine, but rather copy it, since most slashers promote slash fandom and selling a zine without the slash certainly won't promote it.

The situation with mixed zines is kind of interesting, when you go over the history of it. Of course, when Star Trek came out there was only gen, and then the Trekkers invented slash. It was so outrageous, so revolutionary that I don't think initially anyone would have considered mixed the two...

By the time SH became a fandom with zines to publish, slash had been around a little while. But SH had always been a small fandom, especially in comparison to Trek (remember, we're talking of a time when there were 2 fandoms essentially -- Trek and then SH), so SH people weren't fussy -- they read everything since there wasn't but so much being published (and there was no net. In fact, there were no computers. In fact, early early on there were no photocopiers. Can we say mimeo machines?) Since there was less slash than gen being written, and since editors often didn't have enough stories to fill a zine anyway, and since zines were so hard to produce, and since SH fans were just damned glad to get any kind of story, mixed zines were the only sensible way to go. There were always editors who would not take slash stories, but it wasn't like today where there were lots of places to put a story so you could make a choice. It was the editor's choice, and if you were lucky, your story would fit her zine and people would get to read it. Even today, there are only so many SH zines (and the net is a newer phenomena, and many of the out of print zine material will never be presented on it since the authors can't be found), so if you want to read SH, especially classic SH, you've got to get your hands on out of print zines like Bonaventure, so you don't really have a choice. The way people strongly opposed to slash expressed their choice was to remove the slash. I know that the editor of Bonaventure received an envelope of shredded pages that were the slash stories from Bonaventure, and a very nasty letter, as a protest that she had permitted slash in the zine. Another thing was that these zines were almost always produced in very small quantities, maybe 100 if that many, and the way most people got them was through copying one other fans. So, usually buying the zine or not buying the zine only impacted the reader, not the producer.

Because SH has been around so long, some of these issues do seem rather strange in light of today's multitude of zines, internet access, etc. [6]

For more on this topic, see Starsky & Hutch: Tensions Between Gen and Slash.

Zine's Editorial

Bonaventure...

...the name comes with hopes of happy voyaging through the pages which follow.

I really had no thought of attempting another zine, but, in Huggy's perspicuous words, 'when the spirit's willing, the flesh can do all kinds of groovy stuff.' True. Just how groovy this is, I'm not the one to say & pronouncements are properly left to readers. But I hope everyone will find something here to enjoy. (I did.)

That question -- what would people enjoy/want to read? -- was one constant criterion in putting this zine together. You get the variety which you find in any anthology, the variety which is one of the attractions of any such collection... different aspects of S&H, some reflecting First Season, others the differences which had developed by Fourth -- and in between along the way. And after.

That great scientist, Richard Feynman, once said: "The highest form of understanding are laughter and human compassion. Well, those, surely are S&H qualities too. I hope they show through the contents of this zine.

Typos and creative spelling which many have escaped eagle-eyed proof-reading, are mine, all mine. I'm not an experienced typist (you noticed?) but decided to go ahead anyway, on the Starsky principle that 'this thing with machines has gotta end right here.'

I want to acknowledge with gratitude the encouragement and support I've received from a lot of people in undertaking this project. Contributors to these pages all have busy schedules and I appreciate their time and involvement. I should especially like to record my thanks for the help and technical expertise I'm lucky enough to have had from Linda Hansford, without whom it's unlikely that I would have produced this zine. 'Bonadventure' owes a lot to Linda.

So... we hope you'll like this latest addition to S&H zinery. After a lot more than a decade, the zines keep coming, don't they? New fans, too, to join the 'old' ones... nothing ephemeral about this fandom! How could there be...

Thought a lot (wouldn't anyone?) about the title. 'Bonaventure' was a popular name among those 16th century ships which set out in quest of new worlds... hopeful ventures, embarked on a good cause. So the name seemed to fit here.

Contents

Sample Interior

Reactions and Reviews

1990

I received my copy of Tabby Davis' BONAVENTURE and it is as lovely as I knew it would be with all Tabby's personal touches that can't be duplicated by any copy machine. In spite of having too much to do and no time for reading, I have been treating myself to bits of it, indulging in the pleasure of a celebration of 15 years of these guys. [8]
Looking for new Starsky and Hutch stories, did I hear someone say? Well, try Tabby Davis' delightful zine, Bonaventure. She may live in England, but she fills orders so fast it will make your head swim. And the zine is lovely. I haven't finished it yet, but there are some fine stories, and glorious artowrk. Suzanne Lovett's portraits of the young Starsky and Hutch are worth the price. [9]
This aptly-named zine is a real treasure-trove for S&H fans. I personally love anthology zines and Bonaventure is one of the very best I've read from anywhere at any time. Whatever your taste in S&H fiction, there is something here for you. There's an amazing variety of stories, some episode—related, spanning all seasons. There's some fine poetry, and beautiful artwork some of which is in colour. The zine is stylishly produced, easy to read, and a lot of loving care has obviously gone into its production. I particularly like the fact that, for the most part, the stories portray the lighter side of S&H. They have a note of positive optimism that echoes the series and brings the characters alive for me in such an enjoyable way. There is such a feast of reading, it's not my intention to single out any particular stories, they all have merit, and every one of the contributors is to be congratulated. But to give some idea of the wide ranging choice, there's the Beckett/Power "Arcturus Rising" - S&H's close encounter with some earth-based Arcturans, for all those "Decorated for Death" fame, at last a sequel by Jill Ripley, plus a further intriguing look at what might have happened, in the story by Belle Eyre. If you read and enjoyed "Decorated for Death", you won't want to miss these. Linda Hansford cleverly continues where "Losing Streak" left off in a story called "Tooth Fairy", while [M R K] "Sundance and Butch" features two beguiling kittens. In Pat Charles' "Cone Fly With Me" Hutch gets an unusual birthday present - and he's not sure if he wants it. "A Very Special Day" by Sara Crispin gives us a glimpse of an older S&H, contemplating retirement together. These are just a fraction of the goodies in Bonaventure. There are many more. Tabby's own contributions are considerable. Her stories range from Hutch moving into his Venice apartment, through a "Plague"-related episode, a very perceptive fill-in on, the events in"Hutchinson: Murder One", some heart-searching over Lionel Rigger, and a post-"Survival" story. You'll gather, this zine is value for money. Don't miss it. I can't recommend it too highly. [10]

References

  1. from Frienz #8
  2. from Tell Me Something I Don't Know! #19
  3. from Tabby Davis, September 1990, comments to Tell Me Something I Don't Know #21
  4. from Frienz #26, for more, see Frienz #25, #26, and #27
  5. December 4, 2001 comment on VenicePlace, a mailing list, quoted anonymously
  6. Flamingo, December 6, 2001, VenicePlace, quoted on Fanlore with Flamingo's permission
  7. Terri Beckett wrote of this story, then drawerfic in Frienz #6 -- "ARCTURUS RISING involved a mildly crazy guy who thought he was being menaced by aliens from Outer Space. (I liked this one, I confess. The idea of Starsky impersonating a tomcat in someone's backyard appealed to me.) In this one the lads also made the acquaintance of two sisters who had telepathic tendencies..."
  8. from Tell Me Something I Don't Know! #21
  9. from Tell Me Something I Don't Know! #21
  10. from Frienz #11