Docking Bay

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Title: Docking Bay
Editor(s): Cyndi Hartman
Date(s): 1981-1984
Medium: print
Fandom: Star Wars
Language: English
External Links:
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Docking Bay is a gen Star Wars zine, though later issues contain some Indiana Jones stories. It ran for five issues.

Issue 1

front cover of issue #1, Dot Sasscer
inside pages from issue #1

Docking Bay 1 was published in 1981 and has 98 pages.

Inside the zine, the publication month is September, on the cover it says October.

  • Fly in the Ointment by J.A. Berger, art by Gee Moaven (On a rebel mission to transport medical supplies, Han becomes gravely ill. Can Luke help him in time?) (4)
  • Gimme by Marcy Robin (28) (of the L.A. Filkharmonics)
  • Yoda Wept by Jan Gaut, art by Kathy Moore (29)
  • More Than Meets the Eye by Marcia Brin, art by Carol McPherson (30)
  • Droid of Constant Sorrow by Anne Wilson, art by Kathy Moore (42) (of the L.A. Filkharmonics)
  • Sanctuary, a Single Act by Irene Shafer, art by Sue Campbell (43)
  • The Bystander by Karen Miller, art by Kathy Moore (57)
  • A Power Passing by M.H. Loughlin, art by Kathy Moore (58)
  • Vader's Grey Shadow by Rhiemmenth, art by Dot Sasscer (61)
  • The Others (ads) (91)
  • front cover by Dot Sasscer

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

I've just finished DB #1 and I think it was very good indeed. The stories were all excellent but "More Than Meets the Eye" was one of the most original pieces I've seen in a long time. Marcia had me fooled right up to the very end. A very good job. My favorite piece of poetry was "The Bystander", but the best part of the zine was the cartoons...Cathye Faraci's "Raiders of the Lost Fly" was perfect! She is definitely not a fly-by-night talent.... The art was as good as any I've seen. Moaven and Sasscer know their stuff. I have only one complaint, and that's the binding. It doesn't stay together well. I don't know if there's anything you can do about this. Maybe some kind of transparent tape on top of whatever glue you're using would help. [The editor responds]: I tried that and it does work; also staples—the zine is thin enough so most staplers will work. I think I won't use that binding again.) [1]
I just received DB #1 and I think it is greatl The stories were really interesting and very well written. The artists were all superb! The cartoons were crazy and the zine was altogether fantastic... I really thought Marcia Brin's story combining BSG with SW ["More Than Meets the Eye"] was very intriguing. I loved BSG and SW, so combining the two was superl I congratulate you, Marcia, on a very good story... [2]
At long last, I'm getting around to writing you and saying how much I enjoyed DB #1. That is one nice zine. Whoever J.A. Berger is, she's great. She has an incredible knack for dialogue. It's gotten to the point that, if any zine has one of her stories I buy it. I've never been disappointed yet.... Here's my blanket comment: I like DB #1 a whole lot. J.A. Berger's piece ["A Fly in the Ointment'] was my favorite, but everything had merit. [3]
DB #1 is a lovely debut production with a straightforward layout, entertaining stories and exquisite, clear reproductions, especially of artwork. (The printing of my illustrations [for "A Fly in the Ointment"] was one of the best I have seen, including that of higher budget zines!) I was quite taken by Marcia Brin's "More Than Meets the Eye", which was an absolutely ingenius story that managed to provide a delightful explanation of the Empire's corruption using the components of the "Battlestar Galactica" universe (and the gorgeous Captain Apollo) as tools. It showed refreshing wit and imagination and may well become one of my favorite SW vignettes for its sheer cleverness.

I also enjoyed Irene Shafer's "Sanctuary", which was a very sensitive, touching explanation of Luke's past and highly noteworthy for the fact that it maintains Luke's innocence in the face of the disgusting onslaught of 'Vader-ls-Luke's-father' stories. Of course, my very favorite story was J.A. Berger's "A Fly in the Ointment" for its exciting plot, fine style and high entertainment value, but I really shouldn't say that as her obviously biased artist! Mrs. Berger Is a constantly fine writer and she proves her talent once again with this story. I must also compliment Dot Sasscer for her beautiful cover illustration of Han, and Carol McPherson for her fine rendition of Apollo and Leia on page 39.

All in all, DB was a highly entertaining and commendable first Issue and I'm very pleased to have been a part of it. [4]
I thought DB #1 was fine, although I wasn't crazy about "Vader's Gray Shadow"..."More Than Meets the Eye"...I liked because of who Trant turned out to be. But the part where everyone meets the Emperor was a little hokey, I thought. It was too simple a meeting. Also, I'm not really fond of mixed universes and hope you don't go that route... "A Fly in the Ointment", I thoroughly enjoyed. It was entertaining and had just that touch of mystery. Nice art too, but then I'm not surprised—both the story and the illos were penned by familiar names. The other things I liked about #1, and hope to see in #2, were the animated flies, Sludge and the binding. Those flies are great! I get a real kick every time I see one...a great idea. Sludge was funny also. I like zines with touches of humor. You know, I've seen Dot's work in other zines and somehow her illos for "Vader's Gray Shadow" seemed incomplete; hurried or something... I don't know exactly what, but it did help the story. Looking forward to more good stuff from you; DB looks like a winner. [5]

Issue 2

cover of issue #2, Cathye Faraci

Docking Bay 2 was published in May 1982 and has 112 pages. There are at least two printings of this issue, one has a blank back cover, and one has a back cover with art by Gee Moaven.

  • front cover by Cathye Faraci, back cover by Gee Moavn, other art by Yvonne San
  • LOC (5)
  • Mission to Miopave, by Rhiemmenth, art by Cathye Faraci (7)
  • The Splendor by Alicia Maria Priore (22)
  • The Challenge by Irene Schafer, art by Carol McPherson (23)
  • Everybody's Gotta Learn Sometime by Karen Miller, aret by Sue Campbell (25)
  • The Last Flight by Marcia Brin, art by Carol McPherson (44)
  • Soliloquy on Starbuck by Joni Gillespie, art by Gee Moaven (47)
  • Snakes and Roses by Eva Albertsson, art by J.A. Low (49)
  • Next Stop: Tatooine by Susan Matthews, art by Carol McPherson (61)
  • Milk Run by Linda Shadle, art by Lin Stack (65)
  • The Others (ads) (107)

Issue 3

cover of issue #3, Cathye Faraci

Docking Bay 3 was published in October 1982 and has 122 pages.

  • Pav's Justice by Rhiemmeuth (4) (The sequel to "Mission to Miopav" has Flassia mysteriously disappeared. Luke must find her before Vader does.)
  • Love Lines by Doris Telford (24)
  • Contained Reaction by Bernie Davenport (25)
  • Bloodstripe by Carol-Lynne Sappe (28) (A story of young Han's adventures as an officer in Corellian Star Fleet; how does he manage to get in so much trouble?)
  • Storytime Magic by Jean L. Stevenson (28)
  • Threnody by Irene Shafer (57)
  • I Know by Sherry Magee (72)
  • Conundrum by Jean L. Stevenson (75)
  • Galactic Tongues by Eva Albertsson (76) (an article)
  • The Ghost and Captain Solo by Kay Crist (80) (Han Solo doesn't believe in ghosts, right? So what do you think happens when he meets one?)
  • Night Thoughts by Kay Crist (1)
  • Excerpts from the Alliance Manual on Imperial Ground Forces by Mark Walton (93)
  • Quadraphonic Symphony by Laury Barnes (98)
  • The Long Way Home by Marcia Brin (In this alternate universe story, Vader captures Han after Bespin and Han discovers more than he counted on, but can he escape?) (99)
  • The Others (ads) (119)
  • art by Cathye Faraci (front cover), Yvonne Zan, Dianne Wickes, D.R. Drake, Mary Stacy-MacDonald, Virginia Rogers, Wanda Lybarger (back cover), Carol McPherson

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

Docking Bay #3, edited by Cyndi Hartman, offers a generous selection of Star Wars stories, two Raiders of" the Lost Ark stories, two articles, miscellaneous Star Wars poems, and a few cartoons. In terms of sheer quantity, the zine's worth the investment. Let me start off looking at the Star Wars stories, since those predominate and I am most heavily into Star Wars myself. Marcia Brin's offering is "The Long Way Home," based on the premise that Han Solo, not Luke Skywalker, is Darth Vader's son. Now, before anyone becomes unduly agitated about my giving away Marcia'. plot, the revelation of Han's paternity in this story is a given, and therein, I feel, lies the story's flaw. Many a fannish argument has revolved around why Darth Vader pursues the Millennium Falcon from Hoth when Luke Skywalker is right over the next ridge. Inevitably, the argument comes around to the idea that Vader is reading a Force-sensitive on the ship. Given Han's abilities as a pilot and his phenomenal "luck," he is as logical a candidate for Force sensitivity as any of the others-he may even be Vader's son, for all we know-but once so intimate a relationship is established between Han and Vader, Marcia, I feel, is obliged to explore it. It is not enough to use it merely as an explanation for Han's rather mysterious past or his Force sensitivity. All of the Star Wars characters, no matter who our favorites are, have an unnerving habit of taking over our stories. Marcia, having postulated a relationship between Han and Vader, must tell Vader's story. The logic of the story demands it. When she refuses to, "The Long Way Home" turns into nothing more than a description of Han's getting the Force, an experience he puts to very little use in the story. In short, Marcia's story fails because she has chosen the wrong story to tell. One possibility would have been to tell the story of the revelation. A better choice would have been to tell the story that wanted telling-that of Han's relationship to Vader, and Vader's to Han. "Pav's Justice" by Rhiemmenth is the story of Luke's rescue of the eight-year-old empath Flasia from the evil clutches of Darth Vader. I object on general principles to stories in which adorable orphans are rescued from the bad guys. It's as if, not having a strong enough hook to otherwise get me to, read her story, Rhiemmenth is playing on my sympathies. Everyone loves adorable eight-year-old orphans. If I don't like Flasia, I must be some sort of cad. Well, I find myself wondering if I would have found Flasia quite as engaging as an adult? I doubt it.

Rhiemmenth is also guilty of a failing similar to Marcia Brin's - that is, she brings up tantalizing ideas in her story and fails to develop them. Luke's mission at the story's outset is to find an Imperial mine. Why? Who are the worshippers of Pav? Why should their recognizing Luke's father's virtues (Vader is not he, in this case) make them any less repulsive? They sacrifice human beings, yet Rhiemmenth seems to feel their nodding acquaintance with Luke's father exonerates them. What is the debt they owed Skywalker senior? Language is a major problem in this story. It fluctuates between the colloquial and the high-falutin', for lack of a better description. Everyone refers to Vader as "Darth," as if they were all the best of friends. In all, I found "Pav's Justice" silly and irritating.

The remaining two Star Wars offerings in Docking Bay are a ghost story, "The Ghost and Captain Solo" by Kay Crist, rather amusing but for Kay's confusing meters with feet, and a story in which Han gets to rescue all of Corell from a few of his fellow Corellians in cahoots with some alien baddies, "Bloodstripe," by Carol-Lynn Sappe. This last was interesting, but again, didn't go far enough. A novel is hiding in here.

There are two Star Wars related articles, one by Eva Albertson on language in the Star Wars Universe, "Galactic Tongues," and a second on the structure of the Imperial military by Mark Walton, "Excerpts from the Alliance Manual on Imperial Ground Forces." Eva's is the better of the two; in fact, it's aImost the best Star Wars offering in the issue. Eva comes out rooting for plain old education to explain Han's linguistic ability; not the Force, not little bitty translation machines implanted in his brain, just plain old education. The article's well-written and tightly reasoned. You don't need a road map or a notepad to follow her argument. Not so Mark Walton's effort. It was needlessly repetitious and well nigh incoherent. I still have no idea how Mark thinks the Imperial military is structured-why, for example, are cruiser-based storm troopers part of the Imperial ground forces-and I read the article at least twice. A first read will leave most readers scratching their heads. Jean Stevenson has a marvelous Raiders story in here. Called "Storytime Magic", it tells of Indiana's marriage to Marion, the subsequent birth of twin daughters, and their adoption of an orphaned Dutch boy. The power of this story lies in the telling; Jean knows how to write. It's a trick story, which you can take as you will, but Jean's ability to draw realistic, human characters makes it altogether enjoyable.

Irene Shafer's Raiders offering is called "Threnody", an exploration of Marion's thoughts just after Indiana appears asking for the headpiece to the Staff of Ra. There's nothing much new going on here, since we pretty well know what Marion's thinking from the movie, but it's not an objectionable realization of the scene.

The poems in this issue are based on Star Wars, and except for Sherry Magee's "I Know" and Jean Stevenson's almost inevitable "Conundrum", pretty average. I object to poetry in zines primarily because it is used as filler and therefore editors don't seem to feel they need to work on it much. Poetry, unfortunately, is about the hardest form of writing imaginable. I think It's even harder than drama. To quote a poem on poetry from an old issue of Masiform D, "One word per line does not a poem make, any more than water without a shore would make a lake." I wish writers and editors would respect the art a bit more. Most of the art in Docking Bay #3 is by Cathye Faraci, who has a pleasant, cartoonish style. It works very well in "The Ghost and Captain Solo" and terribly in "Pav's Justice," where all the priests look like clones of the Emperor and Darth Vader tromps about in high-heeled boots. D.R. Drake, who did the art for "Bloodstripe", does wonderful portraits but is in desperate need of work on foreshortening figures.

Mary Stacy-MacDonald's cover illustration for "Storytime Magic" is lost in single-value cross-hatching which makes the figure appear flat and the background busy. Part of the problem, I suspect, may be technical. There is only a given range of line that can be picked up in offset. Too fine lines can get lost; heavy lines can bleed together and lose definition. Stacy ought to experiment and learn what works in a given medium. And why, for heaven's sake, was Wanda Lybarger's fine ilio relegated to the inside back cover? It's cover material.

Overall, I liked Docking Bay #3. There's enough material and good writing to make it worthy buying. [6]

Issue 4

interior page from issue #4, art by J.A. Low
interior page from issue #4, art Suzy Sansom
front cover of issue #4, Deb Drake

Docking Bay 4 was published in 1983 and has 142 pages.

  • Corellian Alliance by J.A. Berger (The Empire begins an attack on a Corellian colony world and Han, Luke, and Leia try to rescue a family there.) (3)
  • Word Search: Characters in Empire by Lynda Vandriver (26)
  • His Father's Eyes by Deb Armson (27)
  • Credit Where Credit is Due by Jacqueline Taero (35)
  • The Arrangement by B.J. Kreuz (36)
  • It's Not Over Yet by B.J. Kreuz (39)
  • Incident on Izilden by Martie Benedict O'Brien (Han lands on a planet to find...unexpected trouble.) (40)
  • He's Always a Lover by Deb Armson (49)
  • Survivor by Martie Benedict (50)
  • Places and Planets in the Star Wars Universe by Kay Crist (52)
  • Hangover by Deb Armson (56)
  • Treasure Hunt by Sheila Paulson (Lando Calrissian has a job for Han and Chewie.) (57)
  • The Last Time I Saw Lando by Jacqueline Taero (81)
  • What's a Duck? by B.J. Kreuz (82)
  • Obi-Wan by Rhiemmenth (93)
  • Captive Princess by Pat Nussman (97)
  • The Habit of Strength by M.H. Loughlin (102)
  • Timeline by Marcia Brin (106)
  • The Second Time Around by Marcia Brin (134)
  • Word Search Answers (136)
  • The Others (ads) (137)
  • art by Deb Armson, Deb Drake (front cover), J.R. Dunster, Cathye Faraci, Jenni Hennig, Wendy Ikeguchi, B.J. Kreuz, J.A. Low, Wanda Lybarger, Sharon Palmer, Suzy Sansom, Angela-Marie Varesano, Yvonne Zan, J.A. Low

Issue 5

cover of issue #5

Docking Bay 5 was published in May 1984 and is 138 pages long. It is offset. Writers and artists include: Suzy Sansom, B.J. Kreuz., Marcia Brin, C.L. Smith, Jenni Hennig, Jacqueline Taero, Lynda Vandriver., Deb Drake, Wanda Lybarger, Martynn, Nancy S, Angela-Marie Varesano.

From an ad in Kessel Run #4: "What are Bothans and why are they dying to bring information to the Alliance? The results of this writing contest plus much more. Due spring of '84. Print run limited to pre-orders."

  • When Dreams Come Home by Rhiemmenth (9 pages)
  • A Sample of Tri-Dee Viewing In The Restored Republic (2 pages)
  • Her Brother’s Keeper (32 pages) by Kathy Agel. (another entry in the 'Starbird' series concerns Han's sister, Cara, and her efforts to help retrieve Han.)
  • In Thy Service, My Lord (by Marcia Brin (3 pages) (presents Boba Fett as a loyal servant of Vader's, operating at Jabba's palace under Vader's orders to rescue Han.)
  • Gratia Artis (18 pages) by Eva Albertsson (Told from the point of view of an intelligent snake called Zindra, it concerns Indiana Jones' slipping into a gate in the middle of his escape from the temple in RLA, whereupon he lands in another dimension.)
  • Whatever Happened To Heroes…Of The Rebellion (3 pages)
  • The Phoenix (9 pages) by B.J. Kreuz (has an elder Luke, a Jedi teacher, directing political negotiations.)
  • The Cross-Universe Get Story To End Them All (4 pages)
  • A Bedlamite’s Dream (37 pages) by Carol-Lynn Sappe. (An IJ adventure set in Norway, involving Nazi and heavy water experiments, a mysterious monster reminiscent of Doyle's Baskerville hound and--incidentally--a search for the fate of the lost tribe of Israel.)
  • Word Searches (2 pages)
  • A Sample of Tri-Dee Viewing the Restored Republic by Mark Walton
  • Leia 10, Ewoks 0 by Suzy Sansom
  • 1970 Revisited, poem by B.J. Kreuz
  • The Sands of Home, poem by Jenni Hennig
  • Times of Rebellion, poem by Jenni Hennig

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 5

DB#5 is a fun, cozy, relaxing zine offering some memorable writing and art, as well as enough varied material to warm the heart of any Luke, Han or Indiana Jones fan. 'When Dreams Come Home" by Rhiemmenth is apparently part of an already established series, set after ROTJ, wherein Luke returns to Tatooine and meets up with his old boyhood friends (who are well-named: Deak, Windy, Fixer). Basically an interlude and not complete in itself, the story is memorable for its sensitive handling of human reactions, especially those of Luke's friends as they learn of their old companion's exciting adventures, Luke himself never fully comes alive, but the appearance of Wedge makes the character act more believably, as Luke's mysterious silence draws itself out.

Kathy Agel's "Her Brother's Keeper", another entry into her "Starbird" series, concerns Han's sister, Cara, and her efforts to help retrieve Han. Agel goes to great lengths to portray Cara as a female version of Han, but she largely comes across as a caricature of her brother, though occasionally a real human being does peep through. Events happen too quickly, and description and exposition are very sparse. There are seeds of a fuller story here, and Cara certainly has potential to grow in her own right. As it is, however, commitment from the reader is never fully elicited. But I think Agel should certainly keep at it. Marcia Brin's vignette. 'In Thy Service, My Lord' presents Boba Fett, a loyal servant of Vader's, operating at Jabba's palace under Vader's orders to rescue Han.

Thoughtfully written, as are most of Brin's pieces, it is a fascinating alternate version of the events on Tatooine in ROTJ (and certainly more logical and creative), if a bit too forced in exposition. In "Gratia Artis," Eva Albertsson offers the zine's funniest and most imaginative piece. Told from the point of view of an intelligent snake called Zindra (yes, you read right), it concerns Indiana Jones' slipping into a "Gate" in the middle of his escape from the temple in RLA, whereupon he lands in another dimension. There he finds intelligent snakes, hombears and humans all living together in (some) harmony. Zindra dislikes humans but she gradually learns to like Indy, just as he reluctantly learns to appreciate her. It was a joy to read simply because of the attempt to do something NEW with Indy.

"The Phoenix* by B. J. Kreuz has an elder Luke, Jedi teacher, directing political negotiations. Mainly an interlude ln the middle of a larger story, it fails to interest or involve the reader. Perhaps with more exposure, the story's ideas night become more interesting to the reader. But in itself, this piece stands more as an expository bridge without much impact.

Carol-Lynn Sappe's "A Bedlamite's Dream', the zine's longest story, is an IJ adventure set in Norway, involving Nazi spies and heavy water experiments, a mysterious monster reminiscent of Doyle's Baskerville hound (that remains unexplained) and—incidentally—a search for the fate of the lost tribe of Israel. The biggest problem here is that, because of all the many unfulfilled sub-plots, the story never fully coheres but I think any IJ fan will enjoy the love games between Indy and Marion and the straight action/adventure focus. I do wish Marion wasn't always shouting and complaining but her handling of the two shy German scientists was quite hilarious and believable. Action, and not characters, have the greatest impact here.

Of the filler pieces, the more memorable include *A Sampling of Tri-Dee Viewing in the Restored Republic" by Mark Walton which offers such viewing delights as "I Love Leia" and "Calrissian's Way") 'Leia 10, Ewoks 0" by Suzy Sansom which...ah...compares Leia's attraction against that of the Ewoks to the young male audience in ROTJ; B. J. Kreuz's poem, '1970 Revisited", which makes an interesting and sensitive link between the idealism of the 60'e and the dreams expressed in SW. There is also Jenni's two powerful, poetic songs told from Luke's point of view, "Times of Rebellion' and 'The Sands of Home" (to two of Dan Fogelberg's tunes)] and "The cross-Universe Get Story to End Them All" by Jacqueline Taero, with all of HF's roles meeting and fighting each other.

Nancy Stasulis' full illos for Agel's story are a joy to look at and her rendering of Han's sister makes the character stand out more than she does in the story. Martynn's illos for Albertsson's piece match the author's humor, especially the one which has Indy rather upset at waking up to find a large snake in his bed. J. R. Dunster's illos to Sappe's story are particularly bold and dramatic, and it matters little if her faces don't quite resemble the characters themselves. Carol Salemi's front cover of Luke and Leia is beautiful and captures a very emotional moment between the two.

Overall, a fair, enjoyable, unassuming buy. A few typos only, and occasionally light printing ate the only graphic complaints. [7]


  1. a LoC for issue #1, printed in Docking Bay #2
  2. a LoC for issue #1, printed in Docking Bay #2
  3. a LoC for issue #1, printed in Docking Bay #2
  4. a LoC for issue #1, printed in Docking Bay #2
  5. a LoC for issue #1, printed in Docking Bay #2
  6. from Jundland Wastes #13
  7. from Southern Enclave #7