From Fanlore
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Name: DobeyCon
Dates: 1980-1983
Location: York, UK
Type: fan con
Focus: Starsky & Hutch
Founder: Sue aka The Android
Founding Date:
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

DobeyCon was a Starsky & Hutch convention held in the UK in the early 1980s.

According to the letterzine S and H it was "as far as we know, the nearest thing to an officially organized S&H con to be held in Britain."

There were five all together. The sixth one, planned for October 1984 in Darlington, was canceled due to controversy and fannish squabbling.

While a tenth anniversary celebration was held in the UK (Ten Years On), it was organized by different group of fans.

Also see Bullet.

General Comments

As a point of interest, the subject that caused most dissension at DobeyCon's Speakeasy was not S/H, but the death-story theme. And that wasn't because all the attendees were S/H-ers, either.[1]

Is there going to be another Dobeycon, it sounds good and I wish I was there but I had to work that weekend. Why is it called DobeyCon and not StarskyCon or HutchCon? [2]

As someone who attended all the DobeyCons except the very first, I have to say that there has never to my knowledge been cause for complaint. I enjoyed each and every one, and I hope I'm going to enjoy the Cons yet to come. I rely on my own perceptions, too—I don't take heed of rumour and negative comments. Which may be why I have fun. Maybe you get out of it what you put into it, and if you attend with negative expectations, you come away with the same. Anyway, be assured I'll write a Con report next time I attend one! One of any size, that is; the mini-cons that happen serendipitously, where three or four are gathered in the name of fandom, may not be as enthralling to read about, fun through they are. [3]

I for one don't want to see Dobeycon cancelled, it's the best weekend of the year. Where else can you get away from it all, let someone else do the cooking, and have a great natter with friends and make new ones and S&H as well. Sheer bliss. What's the matter with you lot out there, I was under the impression we were all S&H fans together. Okay, Okay, I know some of you can't come, I'm not having a go, well not much anyway. But those of you who are not coming just because you've never been to it before, or you've heard that they are not all that great, could not be more wrong. DCon is and always will be the friendliest Con and with

Lynne and the Ripleys organising it, its sure to be the best ever. So do yourself a favour come to DCon, and relax, prove to yourself that you were wrong about the Con and what you were told was wrong. Believe me, you'll have a great time. [4]

DobeyCon 1

The first convention was held over Easter weekend in 1980.

It was held in Janet Hunt's "front room." [5]

DobeyCon 2

The second convention was held February 1981 at the Ashcroft Hotel.

DobyCon 2: Con Reports

Picking up another arrival at the [train] station was highlighted by [name redacted] regarding a BritRail sausage-roll with a lugubrious expression and saying, 'This is the worst lemon-meringue pie I ever tasted,' which resulted in hysterics and nearly caused our eviction from the cafeteria.

The con began In earnest very shortly after we got back, with a very short opening dissertation by Lynne, and a showing of 'Omaha Tiger.' It was my first experience of sitting in a room with thirty other people who all breathe, sigh, gasp, laugh, and groan at the same time* Quite a trip, believe me. After that, 'Starsky's Lady' proved too much for me, and I subsequently missed two of the audience succumbing to emotion during the death-bed scene. There was a concerted rush to the TV lounge at 9.25 to watch 'A Body Worth Guarding,' repeated by the BBC, much to the astonishment of the normal guests, who found themselves besieged! We were woken on Saturday by [name redacted] taking a bath (their room adjoined ours). I think she was singing... Refraining from committing homicide, we manned our table in the dealers' room... and managed to sell quite a number of copies of 10-13. 'Vampire' was scheduled, but hadn't arrived—'Deadly Imposter' proved an acceptable substitute.

Then came the Writer's Panel, which ran over the alloted time— [two names redacted] and myself faced an interested audience and attempted to answer questions on aspects of writing and zine production. This was followed by a showing of The Great Houdini and 'The Psychic,' before the room had to be cleared for the Costume Party. I think I can fairly say that I have never seen anything to equal the sight of Terrible Tess and the Playboy Island Calypso Singers in performance. Twice. They won some well-deserved applause for their rendering of 'Zombie Jamboree.' [Name redacted] was arrested by a Hutch-clone and handcuffed to a table, but managed to escape—the Starsky-clone was no help at all... The evening broke up into smaller parties and discussions, and again we didn't get much sleep. I was much entertained by Whirly's description of DobeyCon's Big Brother, and her visit to U.S.A. I did not surface Sunday morning until after breakfast.

There was a showing of a collage-tape—interviews and the infamous blooper-reel, which had already enjoyed one private running, but was in demand for a second time round for those who hadn't seen it before. Also those who had, but didn't believe it. While we were recovering from that, the organisers cunningly hit us with the Auction...

'Survival' and 'Shootout' followed this—the whole audience breaking into spontaneous applause during the latter, when the Hutchinson Finger made its appearance. This had become something of a standing joke, with almost everyone giving impressions of Hutch's digit. The con closed with [name redacted] proposing a vote of thanks to Sue and the Committee, much to Sue's embarrassment, and the distribution of the various prizes—[S S] for the Fiction and Poetry Contest, [M L] for the Costume Contest, and [R T] for the Quotation Quiz (which was a bitch!). [J L] won the Art Contest—but wasn't with us. After that, it was simply a case of making one's goodbyes. The hotel didn't run out of Coke until Sunday lunchtime, which showed forethought—what is more, they want us back. Which may say something about the hotel... Whatever, It was a great weekend in every way. And we hope to do it again—see you there, folks. Same place, 1982? Know something? I can hardly wait.[6]

I got to the hotel (via York Minster and the Richard III inn—hooray!) and they took my room money straight away (waah!) but in return I got a nice badge with my name and a slice of Torino on, so I soon recovered. I soon spotted that everyone else had a similar badge, except the committee. They had alligator badges [7] for speedy recognition. There were lots of old friends to talk to, and some new ones including my room-mate [name redacted], and so we sat around and talked until the opening ceremony: tastefully short, and then we got to business.

Three S&H episodes on Friday evening, one courtesy of the BBC, then some of us defected to see a PROFESSIONALS video. There followed another talk session on a variety of subjects largely unconnected with S&H. Odd! Saturday began with breakfast (yes, we did eat from time to time), three episodes and blooper reel, followed by lunch for those who'd survived said blooper reel (it was utterly hysterical) and beautiful 'Coffin.' And we had a Writers' Panel, which produced some fascinating discussion and overran its time somewhat, but who worried? I watched 3/4 of The Great Houdinis and snuck off to see DR. WHO when I got fed up of all the silly spiritualists.

In between all this I haunted sales tables, buying little but acquiring much useful (?) information, and also (hazarding life and sanity) embarked on reading the tale of The Black Box. During the costume party, not many other people were dancing, except, of course, Terrible Tessie (a thinly disguised Stuartsky) and her Playboy Island cabaret. Not many costumes in evidence, either (oh all right, fair cop, guv, I'll plead guilty!) but I had great fun playing with 'Starsky' & 'Hutch's guns! Most of us eventually defected to the PROFESSIONALS again (well worth it this time, and say what you like, Bodie Dan sweet, for about two minutes anyway!) and I finally went to bed, only to discuss Deep Things with my room-mate till about 3 a.m.

On Sunday morning we saw a tape from America with various lovely DS & PMG interviews, and some home-video bloopers which were ...interesting. They cleared up the recent 'Fix' controversy satisfactorily, at least. (It's just like Connie's diagrams, folks! It's amazing how wishfully some people think.) I loved the alternative titles sequence, using the Magnificent 7 theme over instead of the original(s)—a stroke of genius, that. So then we had a bit of an auction and I bought some scripts, and helped run up the bidding on some zines I couldn't quite afford (all for charity, after all—what else are auctions for?). Surprise extra items materialised, in the forms of 'Survival' and 'Shootout'—lovely. A last chance to share our love. Then it was the Awards Ceremony —didn't know any of the winners, but rejoiced with them anyway.

And then came the end... Well, nearly. [Name redacted] and I caught the same train, as far as Birmingham anyway. Goodbye to my other good buddies. See you next year at DobeyCon 3! [8]

DobeyCon 3

The founder of DobeyCon says in S and H #20 that there will not be a third one:

The last one was tough enough and left me feeling very equivocal about its success and the value of another attempt. I won’t go into reasons, and I hope it won’t be said that I can’t take criticism, but I feel that now is the time to pull out, rather than halfway through arrangements for another con. However, if anyone would care to take up the mantle, I will be happy to advise wherever I can.

Two fans, Lyndy Harding and Stephanie "Tiger" Jones, did step up, and the third con was held in February 1982 in Swansea, South Wales.

DobyCon 3: Con Reports

I know I've said it before, but thanks once again, to you and to Steph, for making Dobeycon 3 such a terrific weekend. It was certainly worth all the hassle of finding someone to look after the kids for the three days, even if I do now owe my Mum a year's supply of chocs.[9]

From all I have heard, Dobeycon 3 was a resounding success and England I think Lyndy and her committee deserve to be congratulated for all the hard work they obviously put into making it the success it was. Due to lack of holiday I was unable to go, but I know enough people who did go to hear any and varied descriptions of its delights. Even British Rail decided to co-operate and suspend their long drawn out strike in time for people to make their way to darkest Wales.[10]

However, since we had no committee as such I'd like to put the record straight and mention the people who were responsible for making D3 the great success it was they. They are Terri & Chris (10-13 Enterprises), Jill and Chris (Black Metal Press), Lynne and Shirley, Jan and Cathy and last but certainly not least my partner—Tiger. If anyone deserves praise it's her. She put 'the show on the road' and made D3 what it was. I just wanted everyone to know that.[11]

DobeyCon 4

March 1983?

DobeyCon 5

October 28, 1983, Maidstone, Kent, England; Con coordinator, Sandi Chapman.

DobeyCon 5: Con Reports

With only an eight-month gap between DobeyCon 4 and 5, it looks like this thing could get to be a habit. It really started for us when our manic taxi-driver dropped us at the hotel with the farewell comment, "Watch my Starsky and Hutch take-off!" He couldn't have known -- could he? We were among the first arrivals, which is probably why we got lost in the maze of corridors before we tracked down Sandi and Freda in Room 22, still feverishly sorting out the Auction material. Nothing loath, we pitched in and helped stick stickers, wrap and write, while folk trickled in, and the Con was under way well before the official Opening Ceremony. There was even a cake, to our delight—no one had thought of that before -- actually the bottom tier of a wedding cake (cracks of "How appropriate") decorated cunningly with red icing, red roses, and a toy Torino. [Lynne D], as one of the few fans who had been at the very first DobeyCon, represented them all and made the first cut, inspired no doubt by the anticipation of a showing of "Bloodbath" later that evening. (It was during that showing that Rafferty, the 10-13 mascot raccoon, was kidnapped a la Starsky by a would-be disciple of Simon Marcos, and for the next twenty-four hours we were deluged by cryptic and threatening notes... Such is Con-insanity.)

Saturday was memorable for "Las Vegas Strangler"—a large contingent of those present hadn't seen it before -- the Charity Auction which raised 300 pounds -- and the Speakeasy. That was when Rafferty was discovered, paws bound, hanging from the curtain rod by his tail. There was also a great deal of spirited discussion, and we would have over-run our time if it wasn't for "Vendetta"—the rat-in-the-fridge scene was all I remembered of the first showing. Abigail Crabtree joined the lengthening list of females with rocks in their heads, but it was Hutch wondering aloud how the perpetrator had got into his apartment that got the laugh of the evening. Doesn't the whole of L.A. know he keeps the key above the door?

Sunday, to accommodate those who had to leave early, the Closing Ceremony was brought forward, with the prize-giving for the Art, Poetry and Fiction Contests. Sandi Chapman, Debra Warner, and Carla Salveta were the respective winners. The Caption Contest produced some hilarious results -- one of my suggestions even won a prize. It will be treasured...

The discussion following dealt with the S/H premise, and was very well attended (there was alternative viewing for non-attendees) and see-sawed blithely from the sublime to the ridiculous. It's just as well we've all got a sense of humour! It could have gone on longer, if it hadn't been for lunch-call—in fact, it did go on into the afternoon among some of us. People were starting to say goodbye -- two from Oz turned up to say hello, but then they do things different Down Under. They joined us for a second showing of "Sweet Revenge", which they hadn't seen before. From the whimpers and sighs, I think they enjoyed it. For us and a few others, DobeyCon 5 lasted until Monday morning, but for all who attended, it was a thoroughly enjoyable weekend spent in company with like-minded idiots -- who, like us, are already making plans to be at DobeyCon 6, in Darlington (where is that?) in October 1984. Proof positive, if any were needed, that THE LEGEND LIVES ON! [12]

Maidstone was the place, Friday, October 28th the date, they came in all shapes, sizes, ages, with just one thought in mind - a weekend devoted to, and concentrating on S&H. The well-chosen hotel, and smooth organisation, plus the congenial company of fellow-fans ensured that another successful S&H Con was underway. A beautifully produced booklet told us what was in store. The opening ceremony on Friday evening was followed by videos, while the adjoining room offered the delights of the art show; and a selection of zines. Saturday highlighter the Charity Auction (expertly handled, as always, by Lynne Dolan ably assisted by Lyndy Harding), lots of goodies on offer, and a substantial amount raised for the Paradise House Appeal; the Speakeasy, chaired by Terri Beckett, Lyndy Harding and Jill Ripley; more videos, including the ever-popular bloopers. Sunday morning there was the choice of still more videos, or the S/H discussion, after which I had to leave to make my connections home. I took with me happy memories of a very enjoyable weekend, all-too-quickly over. Our thanks are due to Sandi,and all who worked so hard to make Dobeycon Five such a success. [13]

DobeyCon 6: Proposed, Then Cancelled

It was proposed for October 1984.

From a progress report in Shootout :

Hi there. We thought it was high time that we gave a progress report on the preparations for Dobeycon 6. By holding the con in Darlington we hoped to avoid train changes for those travelling by rail as Darlington is situated on the main North/South rail system. It is also easy to reach by road. As soon as we walked into the Coachman Hotel we knew that we were in the right place. It's a lovely, listed building - a genuine old coaching house, plushly decorated with a warm, welcoming atmosphere, and we are anticipating a very happy weekend there. The hotel has a restaurant rather than a dining-room and the staff seem most pleasant. However, one of the main attractions of the hotel is the Business Wing. This consists of four adjoining rooms - the main room will be the video room and will be set out with easy chairs (we don't want anyone to suffer with con-bum), another room will be the dealers' room, another will be a zine-reading room and the last will be set out as a talking area/lounge for those who wish to meet friends, hold talks, relax or whatever.

We have the run of the hotel, which has a lounge bar as well as a public bar, from Friday lunchtime until Sunday night. Incidentally, we have negotiated special rates for those who wish to stay overnight on the Sunday. Friday's evening meal, all of Saturday's meals, Sunday's breakfast and a traditional Sunday lunch are included in the price. Luckily, we - being teachers - have the summer in which to prepare things and by giving up our usual two or three weeks away we have managed to roundup/ prepare a great deal for Dobeycon and things are running along smoothly.

However, there is one tiny thing that is spoiling our arrangements for Dobeycon and that is that hardly anyone wants to come. To date we are less than a third subscribed and to be honest, we are becoming quite panicky about this. If things don't pick up in the next few days — before the end of August — we're going to have to cancel Dobeycon. Not only will we be highly embarrassed (after all the hotel's kind concessions) but also terribly saddened. If Dobeycon 6 fails through lack of support this year, we can't honestly see anyone being willing to try to organize one for next October -- what will it be anyway — Dobeycon 6A?

The only way we can see this unhappy state of affairs being resolved is for you guys to either register and fill us full of confidence or, for heaven's sake, please write and tell us where we are going wrong so that we can alter things to suit you all — the programme is, after all, only a proposed one and we did build much of it around your answers on the questionnaires. The three of us feel that it would be a dreadful shame if Dobeycon were allowed to die — as we said, once it's gone, it's gone forever and that will leave an unfillable void in S&H fandom. When else will as many S&H friends have the opportunity to meet in the comfortable surroundings of a fine hotel and spend a weekend centred upon the series that brought us all together in the spirit of Starsky & Hutch and fandom? Letting Dobeycon die will be hammering a nail in the coffin for Starsky and Hutch. Please don't let that happen. It's up to you. [14]

DobeyCon 6: Fan Comments Regarding Its Cancellation

Well by now most of you will know that DobeyCon 6 has been cancelled, and I'm not only sad but angry and a little ashamed as well. To Lynne Dolan and the Ripleys, I can only apologise. All the hard work and months of preparation have came to nothing.

At this moment in time I feel ashamed to be a British fan of S&H, that for whatever reason differences between fans cannot be set aside for a weekend. There are various rumours flying round as to the reason for the cancellation - perhaps the full truth will never be known - but I am angry to think that people would not attend a get together because someone they didn't like was also going.

But most of all I feel sadness; sadness because S&H fandom now has no annual get together ~ who now

would be prepared to try and organise another DobeyCon - and that the small number of UK S&H fans have been further split - does this herald the end of British Fandom? [15]

Dobeycon 6 - I was very upset that it had to be cancelled, as I had been really looking forward to meeting everybody. I always thought (correct me if I am wrong) that S&H, P&D and everything to do with S&H meant a lot to you all, but I seem to have been mistaken. That's all I am going to say on that subject. [16]

'People' care when prejudice mars something as valuable to S&H fandom as D/Con. 'People' care when unpleasant, untrue rumours are circulated. 'People' care when a certain element seem hell-bent on destroying a unique fandom some of us have strived hard and long to maintain.

Hopefully there is a future for fandom, L/zs, and cons.... As I've continuously repeated, I admire and respect Soul and Glaser’s talents but I think now, in the interest of S&H fandom, it would be best for all concerned if the "Soular Energy" people started their own L/z in which they could discuss David and his career to their heart's content. I'm honestly under the impression that these 'people' would be far happier if such a forum was introduced by/for them. They've already demonstrated that they'd much rather spend their time and energy at a David Soul 'get-together' than attend a Dobeycon Convention and support S&H fandom. This is, of course, their prerogative, but it does tend to prove where these 'people's' loyalties lie. [17]

I'm certain many of you were devastated to learn of D'Con's cancellation. How very sad the whole situation is - but before crying down our own back's let's spare a thought for Lynne Dolan and Jill 'n Chris Ripley who worked so very hard through the spring and summer months in preparation for what would have been the best Con to date. I make no exaggeration here! Not only have 'would-be' attendees missed the opportunity to view such videos as 'Homeward Bound', 'Wait Till Your Mother Gets Home' and 'Jealousy'. In addition to that, I happen to know the items for the 'Grand Charity Auction' would have The Rippers...if so you'll know what I mean). The organisers had planned many surprises for us and the whole weekend would have been the most memorable in S&H fandom.

Well - it's much too late to do anything about it now. You all had a chance to join in the fun and share the 'goodies' - you made your choice! What I'd like to know is - why the lack of support? Is fandom becoming so lethargic we'd allow the legendary DobeyCons to slip unceremoniously down the tubes!

The organisers have been given various reasons for people's cancellations, lack of interest etc and being the incredibly decent people they are, respect those reasons without question.

However, since some of you insist I'm not so nice, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt - just this once. I am certainly a little suspicious of people's motivations concerning D/Con cancellations, lack of support etc. There have been rumours, some from ambiguous sources which may have influenced some of you. Is it, perhaps, a case of salt being rubbed in open wounds? A certain element in fandom have already been quick to judge some of us and label us as hostile. This is such an unfortunate attitude. Having attended all past DctoeyCons I can truthfully say there has never been bad feeling or hostility at these gatherings. Naturally there has been heated discussion but we've all respected each others right to hold an opinion. Besides which no-one has ever been obligated to join in every conversation.

The DobeyCons are so full of love and friendship; they are the very place where those of us who disagree over certain aspects or premises in S&H fandom, can sit down together or prop up a bar and talk things out amiably! At DobeyCons people discover one another and learn from each other - also about each other! I've seen more friendships bonded at DobeyCons than at any other gatherings I've attended. It really is a great shame that such a phenomenon has been allowed to disintegrate.

The past five DobeyCons have all been successful and well-attended. Why has 'DobeyCon 6' been so badly affected? After all, we're the same group of people, with the same ideas we held all those years ago. Have our attitudes changed that much? Has anyone been influenced by certain facts? Where does the fault lie? [18]

By now, of course, the cancellation of DobeyCon 6 will be stale news. I have to say that I am personally very disappointed that this had to happen - not only because I'll miss out on seeing people I only see at this one time of the year, but because there are so many others who will also miss out on something they were looking forward to. And because we won't now be able to share our little 'surprise' items with all of you. Or not as fully. I can only hope that the apathy or lethargy or whatever else led to the lack of interest in the con isn't something that will strangle British S&H fandom - and that saneone else is willing to take on the organisation of another get-together, maybe not as large or as good as the one that was planned, but at the least a chance for us to meet up for a few days of S&H friendship...?

Is there anyone out there who doesn't remember what it was like before the discovery of S&H fandom? Oh, we all came to it by different routes, but the magic moment is surely the same - the feeling of astonished delight that all these other people share the love of S&H. The cultural desert no longer threatens - you're no longer alone with your dreams and fantasies hidden like something to be ashamed of, but part of a family who share your visions.

S&H fandom is like a family - families have their bickerings, their fights, their falling outs and slanging matches, too. But there is something stronger than those - the love that holds the family together. The common cause. 'Me and thee against the world.'

Maybe we need reminded of that. The meaning of S&H is friendship. Caring. Sharing.

It appears there is a large question mark hanging over British fandom - as to whether it should continue to exist at all. Before anyone jumps down my throat, let me say that there is reason to doubt. DobeyCon 6 has had to be cancelled through lack of support - but only two years ago, the Con organisers were snowed under with registrations. I don't know if this is the symptom of a mild attack of apathy or something a lot more serious. So - suppose you tell us. What do you personally want from fandom? Do you want yearly conventions? Do you want zines? Do you want letterzines? All these things take time, money, and effort to produce, but we're not quibbling about that, so long as you enjoy what we do. If we're doing it wrong, tell us. All it costs you is a postage stamp.

If you simply don't want anything more to do with fandom, no one is twisting arms. It's still a free country. But I don't want to find myself back in the cultural desert - I know some of you will agree with me. So it's up to us whether British S&H fandom stays alive and kicking or slides into limbo - whether we're giving it a shot in the arm or greasing the slide.

It won't die. The Legend will live on. S&H means friendship, and the friendship, the love, will survive. But something indefinable and very precious will have slipped away and won't return.

Be positive. Don't think 'I can't make a difference.' In fandom everyone makes a difference.[19]

Lynne, Chris and Jill have been treated by some quarters of this fandom. A fandom, it should be remembered, that was based on love. What happened to all those people who were so keen to have another DobeyCon when asked at Maidstone? Okay, so times are hard on all of us; but rail and coach fares haven't gone up that much in the last year. You all knew it wouldn't be a cheap weekend. As a matter of fact they got a better deal on the hotel than we did. But even if some of us did feel the pinch, that doesn't excuse the rumours and in-fighting that's gone on these past few months. As co-organiser of Dobeycon Five, I feel very sorry for Lynne and the Ripleys, to have everything fall through after all their hard work.

As a fan, I feel ashamed. [20]

It would be a mistake, I'm sure, to write off British S&H fandom on the strength of the Dobeycon cancellation. Whilst appreciating the disappointment felt by those who had planned to attend, not to mention the frustration of the organisers, we have to try to keep things in perspective. It appears that most people who make up this fandom do not attend Cons. Fandom itself predates the Cons, both here and in the US and I cannot believe that its continued existence depends on a single weekend get-together annually, enjoyable as they may be.

For myself, the letterzines have always been a more important source of contact, plus, of course, the personal correspondence I enjoy with many fellow-fans. The l'zines keep us in touch with current trends and thinking in fandom, and I would be far more concerned about losing them than about the disappearance of Cons. Others may disagree, but these thoughts were prompted by what seemed some over-reaction (however understandable) to the cancellation of the Con. There are many

reasons why people do not - or cannot - attend Cons. I've been given a number of valid ones by friends who were not going to Dobeycon 6, and none of them correspond to the speculative reasons put forward in some APB letters. S&H fandom is alive and well, and none the worse for being not especially addicted to periodic group get-togethers. [21]

I make no apology for this letter only to say, sorry it had to be written while Carla and Linda were guest editing.

My sentiments echo those of Carla, Linda, Terri, Lyndy etc but that's not going to stop me having my say.

As an ex organiser of DCon, I Know just how hard Lynne and the Rippers have worked - I also Know how ungrateful some of you can be. I never thought I'd see a day when DCon was cancelled, I'm disgusted with the way Lynne & Co have been treated. I am sick at the way some people have behaved, just because so and so is going you don't want to go, so what you didn't have to talk to them, plenty going on without even seeing that person . At one time S&H fandom was friendship, love and loyalty. To some of us that still holds.

It's the rest of you that couldn't give a damn* I can remember a time when I thought I was the only S&H fan, I'd never heard of fandom, then I got in touch with a certain pint sized person from Bristol, and well, never looked back.

As I couldn't come to DCon 5, through no fault of my own, despite the rumours about that, I was really looking forward to this weekend, so you can <well some of you> imagine how upset I was, at it being cancelled.

I'd 1ike to know why? - I'd like the people who spread the stupid rumour to come forward, but it takes guts to do that, and they haven't got any. I'm usually a very placid person, but when something like this happens, it makes my blood boil. All I can say is that some of you, and you know who I mean, are a bloody ungrateful lot, I'd like to see you do better, and I don't mean organising less important Cons on the same weekend, fair enough if it was a big Con.

I'd like another get together, but you'd all have to make your own way down and book in a hotel, after the way Lynne and the Rippers were treated, and the way I was at my DCon, I won't organise. Lyndy asks have our attitudes changed that much? Mine hasn't a lot, just because I like other TV shows, would like to get involved in other fandoms and 'cos I'm broke that I have to sell my stuff that (no-body seems to want) doesn't mean I've 'gone off' S&H. I'm still a part of fandom, and always will be, rumour-spreaders please note.

I think people have been influenced by certain, not so much facts, Lyndy, more by what other people have told them, and they are too weak minded to find out the facts.

I'd still love to see a yearly Con, I'll miss seeing all my pals this year, still maybe next year, just a small get together between ourselves, Lyndy. Maybe you should have brought those 'overcoats' back. As I said I'm usually very placid but some things you can't bottle up and I'm fed up with being 'Mr Nice Guy' - for once, next month, who knows, the tranqualisers might have worked. [22]

From the day APB 32 arrived, I've been pondering how I should start this letter. So much was (rightly) said in that issue on the cancellation of DCon 6 that to say much more would be wrong but I do have to say a few things. I share the feelings of disappointment, sadness, anger and loss expressed in the letters in the last issue (and elsewhere in fandom) because like everyone else who planned to attend, I had been looking forward to DCon 6 ever since it was announced in Maidstone last October at DCon 5. I feel perhaps most of all angry at being denied the chance to be with people I so rarely get to see - and angry that the work that was put into organising and arranging the con was all for nothing. I had such high hopes for that weekend; to see them come to nothing was more than just disappointing.

I don't want to write a letter that consists of nothing but moans and groans on the subject of DCon 6; so I won't say much more on the subject. But I would like to say that I feel that the blame for what has happened rests on all of us -- yes, all of us -- because we have been too quick to argue over silly things in recent months* because we've allowed those arguments to get out of hand and to become personal; and also because it seems we may have forgotten what APB is here for in the first place - and that is for us to share our thoughts, feelings and opinions on S&H, in the spirit of friendship, sharing and love that the series showed us. Do we have to go on 1iKe this? No, I don't believe we do, nor that the majority of folk in fandom want to. Does what happened to DCon 6 herald the end of British fandom. Carla asks? No, I don't believe it does. But it is up to us to see that it doesn't. So please, let's put aside forever the silliness, the bitchiness, the pettiness and the nit-picking that have been a part of this fandom in recent months. Let's remember the love and caring, and the friendship we saw in the series and fandom in the first place. Isn't that what fandom is supposed to be all about anyway?

We can't go back and put right what went wrong; but we can see that it doesn't happen again. Why don't we give it a try? [23]

From the expressions of shock in ARB 32 on the cancellation of DobeyCon, I'm wondering a couple of things - firstly, if it wasn't the readers of APB who pulled out at the last minute, then who was it, and where do we find out why - and secondly, with so many people regretting the demise of the Con, surely we can guarantee a healthy attendance at the next one, wherever that may be. Dunno about Glasgow, though - don't jump on me, Carla and Linda, but I live about as far south as it's possible to get without getting wet, and that's one hell of a journey. Darlington was going to take the best part of a day and cost an arm and a leg - Glasgow might as well be on the moon. Some of you in the Far North will feel the same way about a Con in this neck of the woods - we really need a halfway point...

And someone brave enough to organise it. [24]

I thoroughly agree with your sentiments concerning D6 and fandom in general. Being the co-organiser of the Dobeycon which was inundated with registrations and remembering the joy we felt at the obvious success of the venture I feel utterly deflated by the demise of DCon 6 and I Know how angry Jill and Chris and Lynne must feel. [25]


  1. ^ a remark in a S and H
  2. ^ a fan in S and H #33/34 asks
  3. ^ from Between Friends #9 (1985)
  4. ^ from APB #32
  5. ^ comment in Shootout #10
  6. ^ from S and H #21
  7. ^ reference to a common SH in-joke regarding alligators, turtles, chelonians, and caymans, see Tagging Along
  8. ^ from S and H #21
  9. ^ from S and H #32
  10. ^ from S and H #32
  11. ^ from the con organizers in S and H #33/34 asks
  12. ^ from Between Friends #1
  13. ^ from Shootout #3, by Joan H
  14. ^ from Chris Ripley, Jill Ripley, and Lynne Dolan in Shootout #7 (September 1984)
  15. ^ from APB #32
  16. ^ from Shootout #10 (January 1985)
  17. ^ from Shootout #10 (January 1985)
  18. ^ from APB #32
  19. ^ from APB #32
  20. ^ from APB #32
  21. ^ from APB #32
  22. ^ from APB #32
  23. ^ from APB #32
  24. ^ from APB #32
  25. ^ from APB #32