Double Play (Simon and Simon zine)

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Title: Double Play
Publisher: Clarke & Keating Ink, agented by Bill Hupe in the US
Editor(s): Susan Batho (formerly Susan Clarke) & Joanne Keating
Date(s): 1986-1994
Medium: print
Fandom: Simon and Simon
Language: English
External Links:
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Double Play is a gen Simon and Simon anthology published in Australia.

Issue 1

Double Play 1 was published in August 1986 and contains 89 pages. The art is by Lana Brown, Joanne Keating, Shayne McCormick (cover) and Monica Mitchell.

cover of issue #1, Shayne McCormick
  • Editorial (2)
  • My Heroes by Monica Mitchell (7)
  • Shady Lady by Susan Clarke
  • Astrologically Speaking by Shayne McCormack
  • Reflections
  • Word Search (62)
  • Letter of the Law by L. Tristy Spence (63)
  • Mom Said, poem by Monica Mitchell (84)
  • Ads (85)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

"I am writing to ten you how much I enjoyed for first edition of 'Double Play'! I enjoy the Simon and Simon series a lot and the stories capture the feel of the programme very well, especially 'Shady Lady'. My favourite character is Rick too, but I am glad that A.J. has been allowed to show more depth. In the beginning he was just a pretty face but I heard somewhere that the actor insisted on the role being improved. He justifies the extra depth allowed him and now the series can't lose as far as I'm concerned.

It's starting again here next week - probably replays but I missed a lot of the early episodes so I don't mind. One of my work mates says its the only American show she lets her children watch as there is very little violence (and then it's generally fisticuffs) and only a little flirting - very rarely so you get an explicit bedroom scenes. I think that shows how good the series is: they don't have to hold your attention with sex and violence.

The artwork was as good as the stories, especially the Rick on page 8 (sigh!)

I hope there will be more of this magazine forthcoming. As to whether or not you should mix in other partnership stories, doesn't it depend on how much material you get? Either way, I'm sure it will be a good magazine. [1]

Narrelle received her copy of 'Double Play' the other day and has graciously allowed me to review it. Yum, yum! I'm planning to sit down tonight with the biggest mug of cocoa I can find and read, read, read!

I thought seriously about writing SiSi fiction but eventually came to the conclusion that SiSi was one of the most perfectly crafted TV series I've seen in a long time, and coming from Hollywood, that's something quite amazing. Since it is so excellent, nothing in the characters needs to be explained or justified (to me, anyway) and hence I tend to just sit back and thoroughly enjoy the show and the relationship between these two.[2]

I enjoyed the first story of "Double Play #1. It would make a good script to submit, I think. [3]

I enjoyed the first issue of Double Play, especially 'The Shady Lady'. [4]

Issue 2

Double Play 2 was published in February 1987 and contains 136 pages. The art is by Shayne McCormack and Lana Brown. Joanne Keating did the calligraphy.

cover of issue #2, Shayne McCormack

From the editorial, by Clarke:

So, Hi! Welcome to the issue! You will note that it is heavier than the last issue - no, we haven't used thicker paper - we have more in the issue, but with fewer authors.

Shayne (hitherto known as she-who-started-it-al1) supplied a piece of almost esoteric whimsy; and such wonderful illustrations! It's great to have friends with such diverse talents. Christine Jeffords sent a moderate-sized piece that we decided to shift stuff to another issue to make roan for. It is so good that it could stand alone as a non-fannish story of murder and mystery, ie. it needn't have been a SiSi story — but, believe me, we're glad it is! My, story started as a wicked idea for a scene (I'll let you guess which one...) and developed from there, with some severe prompting (threatening a caffeine addict with deprivation is a strong motivation to get it done... that and iess-than-subt1e hints every day or so from the quiet member of the team...)(zzzzz2 - Joanne).


I'm glad to see someone shares my feelings about Simon & Simon (see Margaret Pitcher's letter in the lettercolumn). SiSi is just about the only detective/police show that I would let my children watch with an easy conscience. In fact, they love it almost as much as I do. And I'm not the only mother around here that feels that way. They've (ATM 7 in Sydney) taken the show off again here for the ratings season. There really is little on at nights that I would like them to watch so that most nights, I record any that I want to watch later and turn the television off. Nothing wrong with watching our videos of SiSi and listening to music!

Joanne and I are not only going through SiSi withdrawal though. As well, they've taken off The Professionals,and Hardcastle & McCormick, and "Are You Lonesome Tonight?" finally finished its Australian tour. (Yes, Virginia, we did go to Adelaide to see it!) Without these stories, we'd have a hard time!

From the editorial, by Keating:

There are a few special thankyous to pass on before I go any further.Shayne has really excelled herself with this issue. When I asked if she would illo Christine's story she agreed ... until I handed her a list of the twelve I would've liked. I can still see the stunned look on her face (where was the camera?!). By deadline time she had done six, plus a 'facer' page for it, plus another one that was so 'nice' it migrated to the cover (all by itself, honest!). She did these all in two weeks, and anyone who knows Shayne, knows how good this was. She's methodical rather than fast, and she also much prefers doing 'portraits' to specific illustrations. And as if this wasn't enough, when I asked a special favour of her she came through with a wonderful drawing in almost record time (I think, because it so tickled her sense of humour). Susan wanted an illo for 'Groupie Heaven' but it was past deadline time, and we had nothing suitable in the file. I couldn't see the harm in asking, and look what it got us! If I didn't already know that Shayne had her own off-beat sense of humour, I would have suspected she'd been taking a leaf out of Lana Brown's book. For all those people who are familiar with our B7:T0S zines, they may find the 'Rick With Towel' on page 15 reminds them in a subtle way of the now infamous 'Avon With Pillar' that crops up in the most surprising places! There is no connection though, but it did it for me, once I stopped laughing (Susan still hasn't stopped). To show my appreciation, Shayne, if someone were to dump A.J. on my doorstep with a big bow around his neck I would give him to you first !! (Yeah, that much!)

Lana again came through with some very nice illustrations. What I like so much about hers, is that they are so unlike any other of the SiSi styles around at the moment. Apart from being very good, they have a unique flavour that I really like. They are a different style even from her 'usual' Blake's Seven material.

I think, also, I should thank Christine for the little story she sent our way. Somewhere, in one of her letters, she said it was the only completed story she had unplaced in a fanzine. I'm not surprised! How long did it take you to write it, woman ??! It took me a week to read it. It is long, and very detailed, and has to be one of the best stories I have read in a long time, and I am not making a distinction between fannish and 'normal' stories. What is nice is that she treats the boys not as the stars of the story, but as two characters among many equally interesting characters.

  • Editorial (5)
  • Groupie Heaven by Susan Clarke (7)
  • Kindred Spirits by Shayne McCormack (27)
  • The Girl Nobody Knew by Christine Jeffords (45)
  • Letters of Comment (132)
  • Reviews (133)
  • Advertisements (136)

Issue 3

Double Play 3 was published in November 1987 and contains 108 pages. The art is by Susan Campbell, Shayne McCormack, Lana Brown & Marianne Plumridge.

cover of issue #3, Susan Campbell

There is a note in it that issue #4 is full, due out February 1988 and the deadline for issue #5 is July 1, 1988.

From the editorial:

Dear Readers, do you realise you are holding in your hands an incredibly rare item. This is the first zine from our stables in a long, long time that is over two months late. DonH ask me how it happened. Neither of us is quite sure. I still think Eccentricon had a lot to do with it. Somewhere around that time we lost our act - in amongst all the others things that had to be done - and we're still trying to get it back together. Even the October issue of Chronicles just made it by the skin of its teeth. It is getting printed last day of October and even that was a minor miracle.

  • Editorial (2)
  • Night Journey, poem by Maree Celeste (3)
  • Shadowed Days by Susan Clarke (5)
  • To Christie, poem by Monica Mitchell (40)
  • Night Foray, a tacky story by Susan Clarke (41)
  • Triple Linkage by Christine Jeffords (45)
  • Reviews (99)
  • My Defence, a fiction -- oops, factual report by Susan (shamefaced) Clarke (100)
  • Advertisements (101)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

"Excellent artwork (in #3). Loved the cover (and the inside page. I couldn't decide if it was the same piece). Keep hold of all your artists.

The stories were all very good. The longer ones had meat (lots of thought went into them) to them. The shorter one was fun. I enjoyed them all. Keep up the good work! [5]

"How do you guys do it?! Each issue gets bkter and better, Susan. "Shadowed Days" was your best story yet. Though I must admit to a little frustration at not finding out exactly what was on those photos. I have an idea but it could be entirely off base.

Of course, being the stinker that you are, you probably don't know what's on the photos either. The only criticism I have and I might be wrong since I missed the first 2 or 3 seasons, I don't think Rick and A.J. ever called their mother by her first name, it's always Mom.

"Night Foray" was cute and for the first time in a long time, I enjoyed a story by Christine Jeffords. Usually, she gets so descriptive, I have a terrible time sitting through her stories. Her story ideas are generally very good, but she leaves absolutely nothing to the imagination of the reader. In 'Triple Linkage,' she had a few spots where she got carried away, but it was an improvement over most of the things I've read by her.

Susan Campbell's cover is one of the best pieces of art I've seen in a fanzine and as usual, Lnha did her usual terrific job. I just can t figure out why you haven't been able to turn her into a SiSi fan yet.

All in all, as I said, DP just gets better and better.[6]

I really enjoyed DOUBLE PLAY #3. It was a good as the other two issues. My congratulations to both Joanne and yourself and to the writers. Wish I could write Si Si as well. Always knew Rick had a 'shady' past and 'Shadowed Days' proves it but 'Triple Linkage' was the best of a very good lot. Wonder what it would be like being that close to someone? There's a phrase that popped into my head whilst I was thinking about this story - 'like caves of night and my little death'. We all have our 'caves', I suppose, and our Rick's to rescue us.[7]

Issue 4

Double Play 4 was published in June 1988 and contains 110 pages. Art by Shayne McCormack (front cover, other), Jocelyn Munro, and Marianne Plumridge.

cover of issue #4, Shayne McCormack

From the editorial by Susan:

A statement about the future of DOUBLE PLAY:

Before you jump to conclusions, yes, it does have a future, but its nature will depend on you the reader. Joanne is unaware I am writing this as she has her own problems at the moment including [personal info redacted]. I think she's very weary. I know I am. She's just about the best friend one could have, but at the moment all the good will in the world and if we could somehow manage to develop a teleport (we live over 100 km apart - she in Sydney suburbia and I in the beautiful Blue Mountains - and yes, I'm prejudiced) and [personal info redacted] we are having a great deal of trouble paying the bills and getting together for work sessions.

Our policy of no subscriptions or advance orders has to change, and the definite schedule we were working under will have to be loosened up somewhat.

Except for CHRONICLES, the mailing of which is dictated by postal regulations, our zines will come out as soon as there are enough advance orders. Prices for these will be based on the last issue. Those who pay in advance will not have to pay any increases in price. Notification can still be done by s.s.a.e. for Australian readers, or a s.a.e. and 2 ircs or $1US for overseas readers.

We have to do this or let the zines go altogether. We have never let our subscribers or contributors down, and won't now, but we do need those advance orders to buy the paper and plates and spirals we need for the issue.

We're depending on your support.

From the editorial by Joanne:

This issue sees an extra special story by Christine Jeffords - I guess you don't need to hear again just what we think of Christine's SiSi writing. It is illustrated by Marianne Plumridge (who by this time is probably regretting ever suggesting that she could do artwork for our range of zines. [personal info redacted]

Shayne has supplied a great cover - even better than her previous ones - and made more remarkable because it started off as a title page illo for one of Susan's stories.


Susan has done her thing in a small way this time around, several small ways in fact. She had to fill in at the last minute for Maree Celeste, who promised a piece for this issue, but due to a heavy work schedule could not make the deadline. Susan, while sympathising, retaliated by whipping up a couple of her (infamous) short, tacky stories, and she kindly dedicates them to Maree. That'll teach you, lady; you won't go AWOL again in a hurry after you read them. One of Susan's pet paranoias, the dreaded tupperware, rears its intimidating head in this issue, thereby proving that she can write a story on almost any subject when the Muse descends.

Before I leave off I want to say a short word about LoCs. We're suffering a drought of them at the moment. Its a bit disconcerting. We know the zines are well-liked ~ you're buying them ~ but that's the last we hear about them, except for the word-of-mouth comments. That's okay for us, but the writers and artists need the feedback too, not just for ego—boost, but for future inspiration as well. Please be kind to them, and write us a short letter to say what you thought of their work. You may not think saying 'I liked it' is very exciting but they will, especially if they are reasonably new contributors.

Thank you kindly. Now read.

  • Editorial: Sue's Turn (2)
  • Editorial: Joanne's Turn (3)
  • The Joke, part one by Susan Clarke (4)
  • The Party by Susan Clarke (7)
  • The Brothers Simon, poem by Margaret Pitcher (10)
  • The Arizona Connection by Christine Jeffords (11)
  • Reflections of an Actor, poem by Margaret Pitcher (105)
  • The Joke, part two by Susan Clarke (106)
  • LoCs (109)
  • Ads (109)

Issue 5

Double Play 5 was published in November 1990 and contains 96 pages.

front cover of issue #5, Jocelyn Munro

The art is by Kay Crouch, F. Gray, and Jocelyn Munro.

From the editorial:

In this issue we continue the DOUBLE PLAY policy of printing the different, or unusual SiSi stories. There are plenty of places that will accept the action/adventure, hurt/comfort stuff, but here we try to supply stories that touch other areas, the bizarre, off-beat, the controversial or disturbing, or the just plain weird. For example, this time around, the stories deal with runaways, child molesting, and werewolves (not all in the one story, thank goodness), plus other things.

Margaret Pitcher's story of a rich kid runaway shows aside of street life that we very rarely contemplate - not all street kids are forced into that way of life by circumstances beyond their control, some choose it knowingly, and are better suited for it than a 'normal life in the suburbs'. An interesting idea.

Val De Vries has written us a Christmas story with a few more twists, turns, bumps and bruises than the usual, run-of-the-mill Yuletide tale, but then what else would you expect from the boys.

Susan's piece is wonderful (This is Joanne talking, not Susan!). It is hair-raising and tense, and the images invoked when the werewolf strikes at its various victims arc very, very vivid. The ending is, paradoxically, both amusing, and disturbingly sad.

Jenny McLean has supplied the poetry for this issue, as well as a couple of vignettes, and along story on the subject of child abuse. It is both brutal and frank, and well-written, so be warned here.

The issue is illustrated by Jocelyn Munro, and Kay Couch. Jocelyn is a fan artist from Canberra, who in the past has provided artwork for Star Wars and Battlestar Galactica zines. When she fell into SiSi fandom she landed on her feet, and promptly started drawing the boys whenever they stopped still long enough. Naturally enough we moved with unusual speed and grabbed a lot of them as they came off the drawing pad. At present she is working on her own media zine, and illustrating for Cristine Jeffords' SiSi zines. Kay is a fan from Adelaide who has not only been sending artwork our way but moral support as well, which is always very welcome.

There will be more issues of DOUBLE PLAY - just trying stopping us as long as Susan keeps writing about her favourite boys. And this goes for some of the others as well, writers and artists.

  • Art Credits (1)
  • Editorial (3)
  • The Fundamental Things by Jenny McLean (5)
  • Little Lost One by Margaret Pitcher (7)
  • Memories by Jenny McLean (19)
  • Sounds of Silence, poem by Jenny McLean (22)
  • Not Mine to Give by Valerie De Vries (23)
  • The Silent Cry by Susan Clarke (39)
  • Daydream Believer by Jenny McLean (63)
  • Crying in the Rain, song lyrics by the Everly Brothers, by Jenny McLean (93)
  • Ads (94)

Issue 6

Double Play 6 was published in February 1994 and contains 92 pages. The cover is by Jocelyn Munro-House.

cover of issue #6, Jocelyn Munro-House
  • Editorial (2)
  • Crocodile Simon by Susan Clarke (3)
  • The Debt by Ciáran (44)
  • Dear Abby by Maree Celeste (63)
  • Seasons by Maree Celeste (won a 1995 FanQ) (65)
  • Brothers by Marianne Plumridge (79)
  • Down to the Sea by Shayne McCormack (82)
  • LoCs (87)
  • Ads (89)


  1. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #2
  2. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #2
  3. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #2
  4. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #2
  5. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #4
  6. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #4
  7. ^ from a letter of comment in "Double Play" #4