Empire Star

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Zine
Title: Empire Star
Publisher: USS Atlantis Productions/Futura Publications, then Entropy Enterprises
Editor(s): J.J. Adamson
Date(s): 1978-1981
Series?:
Medium: fanzine
Size:
Genre:
Fandom: Star Wars & multimedia
External Links:
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Empire Star is a media fanzine that was published between 1978 and 1981 and was edited by Australian publisher J.J. Adamson.

An ad in Falcon's Flight #4 says it was the "first non-American SW fan publication."

A Han-Centric Zine

I really did like the stories in ES and I'd like to see more of them. Especially if they're about a certain Corellian ( sigh! ) ...Anyway, I would like to thank you for putting out EMPIRE STAR. Most SW zines don't carry any in-depth stories about Han. And some of them have the character all wrong. Of course, he is more complex than Luke, but how can some people be so far off? Sometimes he comes out worst ( almost) than Darth Vader. He's not that mostly. [1]
Loved ES I & II and VENDETTA- the only zine I've seen to compare to it is SKYWALKER itself. And since SKYWALKER is, of course, predominantly about Luke Skywalker, I can not get my SW "fix" on both. It's funny, most people seem to favour one or the other, I love both.[2]

The Issues

There were five regular issues, two reprints, and two specials.

The regular issues:

  • #1
  • #2
  • #3
  • #4
  • #5

The two reprints:

  • #4 reprint
  • #5 reprint

The specials:

There was a sixth regular issue proposed, but it was never published. From an annoucement in issue #5: "... still on 'hold' pending the solution the reduction problem. (We think we have the answer now -- it just requires MONEY, and lots of same)... Contains: Ellen Blair's ODYSSEY, JJ Adamson's QUEST, Elyse Dickenson's WAITING GAME, Sam Blackley's STAR SLAVERS, Jenny McLean's REFLECTIONS, Mike Adamson's THE LAST CYLON and WHEN THE STARBUCK LUCK RAN OUT etc etc."

Issue 1 (December 1978)

Empire Star 1 (v.1 n.1) was published in December 1978 and contains 61 pages.

From the zine: "This publication was printed on the dependable NASHUA 1220-S... for very good reasons."

From the zine: "EMPIRE STAR, magazine for Adelaide STAR WARRIORS, Vol 1, No 1, December 8th 1978. Created by FUTURA PRODUCTIONS to celebrate the first anniversary of the onening of STAR WARS in Adelaide. EMPIRE STAR is a periodical, published as top grade material becomes available. Our aim is quality: we will not print substandard items, thus, we cannot promise to print with any regularity. "

from the table of contents: "COVER: photo is copyright 1977 by Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation; Harrison Ford is Han Solo the Corellian Pirate and captain of the Millennium Falcon. This photograph was reproduced from an original still bearing WRITTEN PERMISSION for newspaper."
From the editorial:

A year ago, on December 8th, 1977, over one thousand of us converged upon the Hoyts Regent Theatre One, just off the Rundle Mall, and at 8,45 that warm Thursday evening, a burst of spontaneous applause broke out from that audience for one very important reason: STAR WARS had finally arrived!

Of course, the United States had been watching it for over six months, (its characters had placed their footprints in the concrete outside Mann's Chinese Theatre in August 1977 four months ago!) England still had three weeks to wait to experience that spectacular kind of insanity we have come to know as STAR WARS fever, and Europe and Asia had many, many months still to wait.

But for us, the STAR WARRIORS of Adelaide, South Australia, it all really began to happen at the Hoyts 1, Regent Arcade, December 8th 1977. Since then we have grown in numbers, paid over $2m to relive the experience (quite a figure for a small state like South Australia, with a population of only 1,2 million!) and come to hunger for STAR WARS with a driving power that simply collecting its merchandise cannot even come close to satisfying.

Out of this hunger was born this creation, EMPIRE STAR. Our purpose is to quench the thirst for STAR WARS and more of the same, and to serve as a communication between fans. Before EMPIRE STAR, there was no communication between the STAR WARRIORS in Adelaide: for this we must offer some apologies — and a few excuses!

Fans in the US got themselves organised back in June 1977, and since then they have come up with magazines such as The Corellian Smugglers' Guide, Hyperspace, Sensor Wobbles, and so on. Slowly - very slowly- the STAR WARS Corporation got itself moving, initiating the only official STAR WARS Fan Club, and fan groups elsewhere became active, creations such as Skywalker and Continuum appearing with their efforts.

FUTURA took a little longer to mobilise, but the reasons for that are quite plain: we are hung up on QUALITY. In the US, to be a member of the official TCF Club is to pay 83c for an issue of their bimonthly news letter! Often, a fan creation spreads itself over 4-8 faces (2-4 pages!) of club news and space-fillers (quizes and junky games) and for this you can pay 80c! Printing is all too often terrible, to say the least: thus is the fate of the fan writer. What Vader's Raiders, Vader's Legion and the somewhat suspect Brotherhood of 'Jetti' Knights have to offer is equally meagre and equally expensive.

Now, take a look at EMPIRE STAR, and think again about the price! Quality and Value are our mottoes, and Quality and Value are what you will receive. Use this communications frequency: it is your channel to other fans. Please write to us, and through us to the many other members of the GUILD OF ADELAIDE STAR WARRIORS, and feel secure in the knowledge that by your own interest and purchase of EMPIRE STAR you are firmly rooted in the GUILD. There are no dues and fees to pay: this creation IS the GUILD.

FUTURA is a creative partenership concerned with science fiction in general and STAR WARS in particular, and spanning fields from literature to audio-visuals; we're a small organisation as yet, but we have ambitions the size of the Death Star! It will take time for us to gather the momentum of some of the older, longer established assiciations; we would love to have you with us!

Welcome to the GUILD OF ADELAIDE STAR WARRIORS, and ***MY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU***
  • Editorial (What this magazine is, and who we are.) (4)
  • Star Wars II (All available info on the production of the sequel!) (5)
  • Empire Rumbles (The Star Wars funnies by Wishbone) (8)
  • Still, She's Got a Lot of Spirit, novelette by J.J. Adamson (Han Solo's latest scheme for making money! It should have worked, but....) (9)
  • The Portfolio by J.J. Adamson and C.W.M. Adamson (Featuring the fabulous FUTURA artists in four quality prints suitable for mounting.) (19)
  • The Critics Have Their Say (Just for fun, a collection of the crazy things the critics haves aid out our movie during its still short life!) (36)
  • Constructing the MPC Kits (Tips for model builders from veteran model maker C.W.M. Adamson) (38)
  • Just Let Me Live, Lord Vader (The Stormtrooper's Lament, words and music by J.J. Adamson.) (41)
  • Empire Rumbles (The Star Wars funnies by Wishbone) (42)
  • Flight of the White Falcon, novelette by J.J. Adamson (An undercover mission for the Rebels turns into a desperate fight for survival as Han, Chews and Luke take on the forces of the Empire -- alone.) (43)
  • Yesterday's Gone, short story by J.J. Adamson (A long time ago in a galaxy torn by strife, a four year old war orphan foraged for fond in the hull of a wrecked freighter... and Destiny took a hand.) (55)
  • Empire Rumbles (The Star Wars funnies by Wishbone) (58)
  • Future Things (Empire Star Vol. 1 No. 2 is in production right now; lookout some of the included features!) (59)
  • Comment (Communications Network -- your feedback channel.) (60)
  • Classified (The perfect Sci-Fi-Fi Marketplace!) (61)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

YESTERDAYS GONE -- The highest compliment I can pay this tender little gem is that I burst into tears while reading it! 1 too have always believed that Han must have been raised by the Wookies in order to be so completely at ease with Chewie. But my theory was that Han was found as an infant by an entire family of Wookies and adopted as a non-furry son, ( sort of the way Tarzan was raised by apes) and 1 also agree than only a child could have mastered the Wookie language so easily- Anyway, your little speculation was beautiful!

Thank you. [3]

EMPIRE STAR 1 is fantastic!!! I love it. YESTERDAYS GONE ( my favourite ) is fabulous, as is FLIGHT OF THE WHITE FALCON and STILL, SHE'S GOT A LOT OF SPIRIT. You made YESTERDAYS GONE seem so real and believable that one could take it as the absolute truth. Have you thought of writing more like it? Like a sort of continuation from where YESTERDAYS GONE left off. Well, not straight off from there, but a sort of history of Han's and Chewie's adventures when Han was a boy, teenager, up to when he meets Luke and Obiwan. You know the sort, like Han gets into scrapes and Chewie has to fish him out... I think every fan who reads ES would love them. They don't have to be very long and maybe one in every ES... I know I'd love to read them and maybe it's a good idea. ( I've always wondered about his past and YG opened a new door ). Hopefully you'll say yes!

...Also congratulations on the words and music of JUST LET ME LIVE, LORD VADER, and the artwork in ES I. They're both great. [4]

I really enjoyed it. One of the best fanzines I've seen. Definitely better than a lot I've seen. ...I liked your idea of putting the tape on the bound edges of the zine. Nice touch... The zine looked nice. The photo on the front reproduced very nicely. Most of the time they don't seem to come out very well when reproduced in zines. I just loved the cartoons!!! They were great! So FUNNY! I love Star Wars cartoons. The movie was so funny to begin with... Too many people make it all seriousness... I thought that the lyrics to "Just Let Me Live, Lord Vader" were great! An other humorous touch in the zine. And, I liked the way you incorporated them into "Still, She's Got A Lot Of Spirit."

And, speaking of that story, I enjoyed it. Yes, that sounds like Han Solo... making booze. And, that's about his luck, getting it confiscated by Imperials. I liked them having to sneak the materials away from the Rebel leaders... and the Rebel leaders being aware of what was going on all the time. It's nice to read a nice, humorous story...

I liked all the stories. I really liked "Yesterdays Gone" too. That's feasable... since Chewbacca's life span is so much longer than Han's... he could indeed have met him that way. And that would be characteristic of Chewie... losing his heart to a child.

....I'm looking forward to reading KGK-45. Mainly since it has my favourite in it... Darth!!! [5]

Your characterizations are all consistently good, your plots are well founded and develop logically, and although I personally am allergic to "hardware" SF you seem to be handling that well, too.

YESTERDAYS GONE has been my favourite so far, and I'd like to see more stories subsequent to that meeting, which indicated how the young Han's character develops, and how his relationship with Chewie grows and deepens. The premise was brilliant; I'd never have thought of it myself, but it's really got the right feel to it, if you know wh,at I mean. One of the things that has always intrigued me is the exact nature of Han and Chewie's relationship. Chewie is definitely NOT a pet, as some fan writers seem to feel.

One thing: with the exception of your love story, the work is largely lacking in sensory detail... ...A point to ponder: does H. have any formal education? Does a lack of refinement even embarrass him? Does he have hurts and fears beyond the obvious physical ones? Can't we ever explore these aspects of his character?...

...At any rate, I was most impressed with your productions-as was the mailman from whos clutches I snatched them... Keep up the good work... I'll have memorized #1 and #2 within a few days!... [6]

Issue 2 (March 1979)

Empire Star 2 (v.1 n.2) was published in March 1979.

cover of v.2
  • Green Fire of the Rhil by JJ Adamson (Seldra Kaidel, J.J. Adamson's lady smuggler, goes to Han when her brother turns up missing.)
  • KGK-45 (Leia saves Han's life.)
  • other unknown content

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 2

GREEN FIRE OF THE RHIL was very well done ( although you allowed the "moon to go behind a cloud" at a crucial moment- but I guess it wasn't meant to be X-rated, and you packed it full - fuller ( no such word, but there should be! )

In fact, then I'd have thought could be done and still retain a competent storyline. [7]

At last I got to read all of ES2. Oh yeah! As usual, loved it all. Of course there's got to be more Seldra!

After seeing your painting ( HAN & CHEWIE— cover ES 2 ) in colour, the B&W doesn't do it any justice, but fantastic all the same. KGK-45 was terrific too, I just didn't put it down till I'd finished. When you write him (Han), I can actually see him doing it! One thing that's bugging me is - is Han a pirate?! We know he's a smuggler ( wish he'd smuggle me! ) but they say he's a pirate, but there isn't any evidence. Unless my version of a pirate is wrong.[8]

Issue 3 (May 1979)

Empire Star 3 (v.1 n.3) was published in May 1979 and contains 90 pages. The front cover is by C.W.M. "Mike" Adamson and the interior art by Leonard May and Teanna.

cover of v.1 n.3, "Indomitable" by C.W.M. Adamson
From the editorial:

ES is a rich issue by anyone's standards; the main tale is LONER ON DOOMWORLD, which introduces a new character whom you will meet in future stories.

Just a word about LONER: people who are familiar with VENDETTA will notice that several paragraphs from that novel are actually reprinted- almost verbatim from the original, and the reason for this is plain. VENDETTA and LONER occupy the same time-space, and there comes a time when the scenes actually overlap! In VENDETTA the gap between the RSS Alderaan making the jump to hyperspace after the Battle of Kessel and Millennium Falcon leaving Base One after the post-battle-bash was almost never filled... Here, in LONER that gap IS filled, so that by beginning with STAR WARS-The Novel and reading both novels and the novelette a together the time line is completely unbroken from the capture of Princess Leia"s blockade fighter through to Han's making a new friend by way of beating him half to death - and being beaten half to death himself in the process (rather reminiscent of John Wayne's THE QUIET MAN - but it wasn't really planned that way). The unbroken-time-line bit has absolutely no significance whatsoever... it's just interesting!

Harrison Ford fans will probably notice the rather striking similarity between the Han-Dav standoff and the Barnsby-Wheeler standoff of FORCE TEN FROM NAVERONE. This is purely coincidental— LONER's climax was not drawn from FORCE TEN; LONER ON DOOMWORLD has been in the works for over six months- in fact was scheduled for EMPIRIE STAR 1, but just took so long to complete and ran so far overlength that it didn't even make ES 2!

Also in this issue are BATTLESTAR GALACTICA, The LSO, and so much more that it is impossible to list it all here.

THE BUSH PILOT BLUES actually began as a joke: in the first place it was going to be a darts match, then a football match, and it gained a modicum of dignity in the form finally seen here! We hope you get as many laughs out of it as we did.

NIGHTMARE also began life as a joke, though of a different nature, and its 'black-gag' atmosphere is most chilling.

One question we would like to ask you is can 'single combat' carry off the climax of a story? The rumours of THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK have it that the climax will be a light sabre duel between Luke S. and his father, Big Darth Vader. The question is: do you think it works well enough in LONER for it to work in TESB? NOT that a comparison between a novelette and a major motion picture (with Panavision, Technicolour, six track Dolby System Sound and additional special effects by every SFX shop in Hollywood) can hope to be really objective... but it's a thought.
  • Editorial (1)
  • Star Wars II (essay about rumors about the upcoming new film and Han Solo's death, urges fans to write letters in protest: "Han's death is bad news. His departure from the film and from the Universe of STAR WARS is a loss both to the fans who admire the Han Solo character and the actor who breathed life into him - and to the logistics of the STAR WARS Universe itself. Han was and is a 'unit of measure,' a yardstick against which we the viewers, can gauge the other characters; he is a rationalizing influence to the righteous and a pep-up to the pious. He provides a lunatic humour, the crazy free- spirit that Luke, Leia and the rest never could by simple reason hf their basic Idealism. He provides the raw, uncalculated courage of the partially insane which can off set the noble self sacrifice of followers of 'damned fool idealistic crusades, and allow us to see the idealism for what it is - not be totally blinded by the corona cast by the saintly halos of Jedis past and present. Subtract the smuggler and STAR WARS is left with a vale of innocents... no cynic, no sarcastic wise cracker, no mercenary- no 'kick.' And admire Luke as one may - one cannot help but admit that that film does not really seem to get started till the Cantina scene - at least, not if you want to see crazy Errol Flynn style swashbuckling, high adventure - thrills and spills at top speed. THAT is Han Solo's role in STAR WARS, to bring the fun and the danger, to pep-up the staid and philosophical sphere in which he revolves; and if he IS subtracted he will need to be replaced quickly by some other character who will provide the same service.") (5)
  • Loner on Doomworld by C.W.M. Adamson (7)
  • Portfolio by Leonard May ( 42)
  • Battlestar Galactica, article about visiting the set, by Lee Hern (47)
  • Musing on Star Wars, essay by The Muse (51)
  • London Symphony Orchestra, article (52)
  • What a Piece of Junk, fiction by C.W.M. Adamson (54)
  • Nightmare, fiction by J.J. Adamson (59)
  • The Aagan's Rim Universe, article by J.J. Adamsson, C.W.M. Adamson, and Jenny McLean (65)
  • Hardware Wars, review (68)
  • The Bush Pilot Blues, song by J.J. Adamson (70)
  • Zine Review: The Mos Eisley Tribune, see that page (83)
  • Comment (84)
  • Kendo, article about Japanese sword fighting (88)
  • End Run, about this zine taking a pause in order for the editors to publish Solo (88)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

I read ES 3 and what can I say... First class again. I really mean it! I enjoyed it from cover to cover.

LONER ON DOOMWORLD was very good but my favourite story was NIGHTMARE, which 1 thought was a killer. I watched my best friend read it and she had the same reaction as me. Excellent.

And WHAT A PIECE OF JUNK, boy, it can certainly get to the heart of any Cancerian ( sentimental ones at least ).

I especially liked the article on the London Symphony Orchestra as I am doing an assignment on John Williams for music at school, the article was very informative and helpful. Thanks a lot for that.[9]

BUSH PILOT BLUES -- Delightful! I chuckled all the way through it- I'd love to see this on film! To see Han tricked into a uniform and ( blushing all the time) bested by a mere female- too much!

NIGHTMARE -- That really was a nightmare! To have Han see Chewie die right before his eyes was too much pain to think about- Glad it was only food poisoning!

LONER ON DOOMWORLD -- I found this story very interesting particularly in light of a rumour floating about just now that some thing very similar to this situation will happen in TESB- I've heard that a "defected stormtrooper" character will be introduced into TESB as a "replacement" for the departed Han Solo! and that he will be portrayed by a black actor called Billy Dee Williams. ( ED; recent info says that Williams plays an old friend of Han's the Baron Lando Calrissian) As you may know, many blacks here in the States have denounced STAR WARS as "racist" because it had no black or non-white characters- and this may be George Lucas' way of trying to rectify that... What is the exact translation of "kutch?" It certainly must be mean.[10]

Read through ES III pretty fast- couldn't put it down- I liked LONER ON DOOMWORLD- very interesting side to cloning- mmm.

NIGHTMARE was good too- Vader is so mysterious he could be anyone-Luke's father- Han's brother- how about Ben's son?! Wish I could write - that would make a GOOD story.

I don't know how you did page 45 -but I'm glad you did - thanks.[11]

Received EMPIRE STAR 111 intact, [[the post office]] was in a nice mood that day obviously...

...The first story I read in ES 111 was NIGHTMARE. That one's a great story, and what a nightmare the poor guy had.

Hardware Wars was intriguing. I remember it was shown at a library up here once but, alas, I had to work that day. Missed it. But it sure sounds like fun. From the picture, I guess the critter that looks like the Cookie Monster must be the Wookie. I've got to see it some day.[12]
Thanks for sending EMPIRE STAR 111. Very good! Except, once through NIGHTMARE was enough. Shot by a blaster and not killed out-right: ugh! There's got to be better ways to die![13]
Have got my nose into ES 111. Have read NIGHTMARE and BUSH PILOT BLUES so far. What a sneaky twist in NIGHTMARE! Just about giggled myself to death reading BUSH PILOT BLUES. Warning: never read a fanzine on the way to work. Especially Han stories. One never gets any work "done until the story's read! It's fatal. Haven't got stuck into LONER ON DOOMWORLD yet. Have scanned over it though ( loved the fight! ). Love the cartoons, the artwork, everything! [14]

...Thanks also for my copy of ES III. It was great. NIGHTMARE really had me going. Nice to see some nightmares turning out for the best. But Darth Vader his (Han's ) brother? He must have had his growth stunted

( ED: er, Dave is some 6" taller than Harrison, which isn't much in the scheme of things, really. But Dav is almost a FOOT taller than Mark- so where does that leave poor little Luke, if Big Darth is supposed to be his father?! Stunted growth-?!!

...By the by. We would very much like to gather all the Harrison Ford/ Han Solo fans, i.e. Corellians together in a sort of loesly knit organization wa would like to call The Harrison Ford Fan Network. Just to keep all Fordfen and Corellians together and up to date on all of his goings-on and

ED: if you would like to become a part of the proposed HARRISON FORD FAN NETWORK, contact Linda, or the Han-Club with which she is associated:
LEAGUE OF CORELLIAN INDEPENDENTS. Zine correspondence, submissions and their newsletter, write: Jani Hicks.[15]

Thank you for EMPIRE STAR III... At the rate that Futura Productions is putting out these great zines, my allowance appears to be shot indefin- ately. Oh well, it's worth it- a great deal.

...EMPIRE STAR III was great- how does your brother do those paintings? And I liked the portfolio in it also. I do hope fervantly that you will produce more EMPIRE STARs and not stop at Whoever WISHBONE is, please tell the artist that I like the cartoons too.[16]

ES III was up to the always high standard I'm coming to expect from Futura... In ES III I did love "Indomitable" ( the cover painting ) and the Han portrait in the art portfolio... WISHBONE was at his incredible best in ES III! I just loved the TESB illos and the Tatooine Rope Trick, and the Rebel Alliance victory party was quite simply a masterpiece.

...In ES III I also enjoyed the climax to LONER ON DOOMWORLD and BUSH PILOT BLUES. Every now and then I come across a piece of fan-fic that I would give anything to see acted out on the big screen. Han and Chewie splitting the pre-flight checks and falling over each other in Janice Sidwell's MOS EISLEY TRIBUNE I tale, MISSION: POWER FAILURE was one scene and the unveiling of Colonel Solo in BUSH PILOT BLUES was another. Those paragraphs were beautiful...

...Is the fanzine review going to be a regular feature? That'd be great, I think. I did enjoy ( and agree with ) your review of the MET. [17]

Well, congratulations are in order! Another fine issue of EMPIRE STAR! My favourite this time was one of the shorter pieces; THE BUSH PILOT BLUES. It offered an interesting slant on Rebel life- the idea of interservice competitions- and then, of course, the idea of Han getting shanghaied into the contest, and his reactions thereto, was priceless. ( So were Chewie's! ) What a devious group of minds in that Rebel High command! I enjoyed the O. Henry- esque twist of Kolvina being female, and I liked the bit about Dodonna being Jedi, You mentioned... that he comes into the "Republican Chronicles;" does that author feel the same about his past?

( ED: Ian Kraemer's series, "Republican Chronicles," will most probably appear in ES IV, or begin in the next volume, in mid-1980. Willard, Dodonna, Kenobi, Bail Organa, Darth Vader and Palpatine himself are all featured; Ian traces the last few months of the Old Republic, and the beginning of the Imperial Era ).

LONER ON DOOMWORLD was also good: it's nice to a break, every so often, from the Rebel point of view; seeing things through Grechai's eyes makes for a good contrast. And then the interrogation scene -- the Alliance using the drug loaded mind probe... I guess they balk at physical torture, but not at a little thought alteration. It makes sense.

It was fun to see Han and Luke taking Jabba's side in WHAT A PIECE OF JUNK; and NIGHTMARE was a chiller, though of course I knew by the title that it wouldn't be 'real.' WISHBONE is up to his/her usual standards- especially the 'Vader at the Party' page- and the Aagan's Rim map is help ful, though I could wish you had put in a distance scale so that the relative jumps between worlds could be fig ured out. :

( ED: in each story we did quote the distance-in-hours between worlds, and from this a chart- in hours- might be figured for the Aagan's Rim map... Done in light years it was too unweildy; done in miles, there were just SO many zeros it wasn't funny! )[18]

I enjoyed ES III as much as ES I and VENDETTA. Especially NIGHTMARE. Gods! I've read it al least 4 times. Poor Han. He seems to get the rough end

of the deal more often than not... The story I enjoyed the most in ES I was YESTERDAYS GONE. Your concept of the Han and Chewie relation ship was perfect...[19]

Thanks very much for... EMPIRE STAR (III). I enjoyed it immensely ( and that's an understatement! ). The quality of the fiction is every bit as good as anything I've read in the prozines. I especially liked LONER ON DOOMWORLD- the author has certainly done his ( her? ) Homework.

(ED: C.W.M., primarily an artist, is a 'he,' 'C.W.M.' is Charles William Michael, and he's 'Mike' to his friends).

The descriptive writing is so precise, so authentic that it was a joy to read. It's analogous to the sort of science fiction that I like to read- plenty of technical throw-away but the characters retain their psychological qualities; they don't get lost in a background of hardware and expository dogma. Well done!

On a scale of 1 to 10, I'd give the other stories about an 8 1/2.

BUSH PILOT BLUES was so well written from a technical point of view that it made me wonder if you either are a pilot ( or have been one ) or

know someone who is. I hate to keep repeating myself, but it's so authentic! It makes the SW universe real. [20]

I just finished reading EMPIRE STAR III. BUSH PILOT BLUES was simply superb. Flat feet! Oh, just so. If I like something I will never hesitate to say so. If I don't like a story, I say so too.

The first story in that issue, LONER ON DOOMWORLD, did not meet up with ray expectations of your work. I really felt it to be laboured and boring. I grant that it was a wholly new approach to the STAR WARS concept, but for me, it just didn't work. I'm sure that the other stories will. Maybe it was too "introspective" and philosophical for my taste. [21]

The minute I received ES III was the high point of my day. Thanks very much... I haven't yet finished ES III completely, but I have read LONER ON DOOMWORLD, WHAT A PIECE OF JUNK, THE BUSH PILOT BLUES and NIGHTMARE, and two other short artides. I loved them all and by the time you read my letter I'll have probably re-read it all again.

I tell you I just absolutely loved NIGHTMARE. I've read it 3 times. It's fantastic. Please write more like it, it was great.

ES III is fabulous, it's a great mag... I loved your artwork, the portrait of Han especially. Great! [22]

Obviously I liked ES III- a lot. Especially because of the variety of the articles, which makes your zine superior to those that are stories straight through. I like to read about STAR WARS too.

About the single combat climax of LONER ON DOOMWORLD- I'm not sure I understood the psychology of the story- I can't identify, such a bitter hatred. Possibly because I have neither seen combat nor killed anyone, but I trust this holds true for most of your readers (!). Does Han hate him because he is a clone, because he is a stormtrooper, or both? How can he hate Dav as a clone? He 'meets' only one Dav in the story, and he wouldn't have been able to see who he had shot down in combat if stormtroopers wear helmets/masks while flying. Han's "kutch" seems as barbaric as nigger.

I can understand his hating a stormtrooper, but not is such an intense, personal sense. So, for me, the climax didn't seem powerful enough- I could hardly believe their practically shaking hands after the fight. However, a duel between Luke and Darth might work in TESB- I can understand Luke's wanting revenge for Ben Kenobi's death ( this could be raittigated if he knows Darth is his father before he battles him ), and I can understand Darth's wanting to kill the upstart who destroyed the Death Star. But I think you're right in believing that this might not be as potent a climax as the des truction of the Death Star.

ED; the psychologies for LONER are based firmly in WW II. Han hates Dav at first... How should he feel? He hates with passion, as a British soldier might regard a German in Europe, or as an American might regard a Japanese in the Pacific theatre. The fact that he hates on a personal basis is just indicative of the fact that in Han's eyes Dav personifies all the evil of the Galactic Empire. It is to Han's horror that he has killed this self same man on many an occasion: he is almost afraid to let himself like the man- for if he does- he also knows that he must kill him again, and not just once. Finally, the Corellian has no option but to accept the ex-Imperial as free-man- and even friend: he is equalled in a fist fight. A fight is the greatest equalizing force there is, and a camaraderie often develops between men whom the incredibly personal and intimate experience of combat has made them brothers -- "blood brothers."
[snipped]
Kutch? Barbaric- certainly... As is, limey, Yankee, frog, wog, gook, bung, nigger, chink, Nip, honkey, kraut, Jerry, Hun, Paddy, Murph, Jap, taff, Packy, nignog, dego, wop, pommie, Yid... You can add Han's hate of the Empire to his hate of stormtroopers, to his revulsion of the idea of cloning, to his horror of having to closely associate with the man he has killed eo often, and will kill eo often- multiply it by the mere fact that it is enemy meeting enemy face to face... The product is violence of several natures, as LONER set out to show, as it also set out to show that men can be friends when their mettle is tested and proven.[23]

Issue 4 (April 1981)

Empire Star 4 (v.2 n.1) contains 128 pages. It was published in April 1981, which is what it says on the cover. The date of March 1980 (on the table of contents) is explained in the extremely convoluted editorial -- what appears to have happened (money, airline strikes, and errors in planning) caused the the zine to be over a year late as well as the contents of the last two issues switched. This last fact meant that any stories in parts (in this zine, and others) were now out of order, as well as making both tribbers and readers wait multiple years between segments.

front cover of v.4 (original issue 1979), Mike Adamson, featuring work from the "Hunter" project
back cover of v.4 (original issue 1979), Mike Adamson, featuring work from the "Hunter" project

Fandoms: Star Wars, Star Trek: TOS, and Battlestar Galactica.

[Editorial: A Sad Story]: This isn't EMPIRE STAR IV. Most of you were expecting to receive ES V in its place anyway- but this isn't the ES V you were expecting either. Circumstances have been so far beyond our control it has become utterly absurd, so rather than delay after delay we have literally pounded together an issue which we believe will be a good one, maybe even a great one- and certainly a supremely controvercial [sic] one.

Now, let us attempt to sort what has happened into comprehensible fashion, and give you the sad story as to the Limbo to which ES vanished for so very long- and why.

ES IV was/is a 200 page issue with reduced type- a good idea, to reduce the type to save space and give better value per dollar? We thought so. And then we found that good quality reductions on the machine we purchased for the purpose are almost impossible to get. This has backed ES IV into a blind alley; there are narrow exits: another two hundred hours' typing and two new heavy duty typing hands to get the zine back into full size type format (yes, it is all typed up and buried securely in a box by the reduction problem- a wealth of fine material locked down and awaiting exhumation ); or, the sum of US$670 would be required for a contractor to do the job. That amount of money does not exist (yet); when/if it does, ES IV will appear posthaste looking as gorgeous as we thought it would in the first place. What could we do?

The answer was a compromise: to advance ES V in the schedule, bringing it out as ES 4(5), then go ahead with E5(6), the number in brackets obviously in reference to the actual issue it was supposed to be, while the freestanding number refers to the sequence-number. By the time E5(6) has appeared- with a little luck ES IV will be out of its muddle and ready to appear as- yes, you have it, ES 6(4)! Confusing, isn't it? We think so to- try to think of them as ES, Vol. 2, Numbers 1,2 and 3 instead!

To your further confusion, the BATTLESTAR GALACTICA premier appeared- in lovely reduction format- in the captive ES IV... But we try our best to elucidate, presenting the whole sorry matter as concisely as space will permit. When we get around the reduction problem you'll read DEATH SHIP and WHEN THE STARBUCK LUCK RAN OUT by C.W.M. Adamson, the ES co-editor, and ODYSSEY by Ellen Blair, the editor of the Stateside FALCON'S FLIGHT, plus an absolute treasure trove of SW fiction, including the novel, QUEST, which is the much hankered-after sequel to BREAKOUT, the tantalising novelette which appeared in SOLO. This ish will be out just as soon as we can manage- that's a promise. But in the meantime, we went ahead with ES 4(5)... And that's only half the sob story. Because there had been such a gawdawful delay- ES IV proper was to have appeared, on schedule, in July 1980- we decided to hurry up the project by recruiting a typist with willing hands and the heart of a lion. Good idea? Again, we thought so too. The recruit was Lynette Lichenstein of Houston, TX, USA- all praises to her for lending us the much needed aid, a lot of hard work. Lynette and J.J. typed half the zine each; Lynette posted her half from Texas to South Australia... At approximately the same moment in time that QUANTAS, our very own idiot Aussie flying bloody kangaroo airline WENT ON STRIKE!! Where the typescript is, nobody knows: Singapore, Hong Kong, Hawaii, possibly San Francisco. One place it isn't is the Home Of EMPIRE STAR where it is- amazingly- supposed to be. QUANTAS should go back to work this week (week ending 27 the Feb.), but as it is presumable that at least fifteen million pieces of mail will be piled up in Timbuktu or wherever, we don't expect to receive Lynette's work for perhaps another month, perhaps two. So- the stories you expected to see in ES 4(5) will just have to appear in E5(6), and there isn't one teeny thing we can do about it. The stories were Eva Albertsson's A MATTER OF TIME, Brenda Cunningham's YOUNG AND RESTLESS, and Linda Shadle's CORELLIAN DOORPRIZE.

All our apologies go to Eva, Brenda and Linda; to Ellen Blair, Elyse Dickenson, Samantha Blackley, Jenny McLean and everyone whose work is in the reduced ES 6(4) and thus rescheduled and rescheduled again. Indeed, our apologies go out to all our subscribers too for the quite understandably irritating, infuriating delays. What could we do? Many people have had the kindness to say- not to worry; and we're pressing on re ardless. To prove it- here we are.

The main feature in this pounded-together issue in non-fiction, an item of great controversy, without doubt: THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK. We'd like to point out here that this is- generally- not a review of the film. It is an exercise in logic- cold, hard and unforgiving logic; if THE EMPIRE STRIKES BACK will not stand close examination... How will you judge it? Many were those who called SW the greatest film ever made; what do they call TESB? How do you call it? We simply asked the questions and applied a very basic logic to the plot, 'science' and characterisations exhibited in the film; we took it apart to examine it... It won't go back together again, strangely enough. Is TESB the film they say it is? Read THE EMPIRE STARIKES BACK and decide for yourself.

Also this issue the first BATTLESTAR GALACTICA material actually reaches print; we hope you enjoy it... We believe that (most of) our readers are intelligent enough to accept the logical look of TESB in the spirit it was intended- so we hope you will enjoy that too. Next time, join us for the stories that should have been in ES this time- plus a lot more. ES 5(6) will also contain TOO LATE by Kay Crist (a TESB tale), VIPER STARHOUND by C.W.M., our co-editor; right now we're just waiting on QUANTAS!

In the answers to the answers in the TESB feature, the body speaking as 'EMPIRE STAR' personified is in fact a chorus from J.J., Mike (who is C.W.M. when he's being formal), Angela, sometimes Bill, and WISHBONE, who wishes to be as anon, as ever. Occasionally the ES brigade speaks up individually, and Nikki White, editor of MULTIVERSE, joined us a little late. We would like to thank Kay Subich, Karen Miller, Nikki White and those affiliated with ES for taking the time to do this with us... Most of the people who received the pilot release of "The $64 000 Quiz" had not the energy to answer at all. A special note to contributors and subscribers: the lamented ES 6(4) will be the FINAL ISSUE of EMPIRE STAR, due Out when prombelms are at last overcome; price will be US$11, and within Australia, A$5.50. Our next isse, ES 5(6) will be out sometin^ around May 25th, QUANTAS willing; price- US$9, and within this country, A$4.50. THE BEST OF EMPIRE STAR is being printed right now- a very few 'extra' copies have been scheduled for later orders etc., but when these have gone- we have no reprint plans. Hutcy- Price US$11, and Aust$5.50. Contributors: EMPIRE STAR is absolutely overflowing up to the very last page of the final ish, and we cannot accept any more material, fiction or art- sorry.

That is the whole sad story- it's as if we've been dogged by a bit of bad luck that's taken quite a while to clear, yet, on the creative side of things we've been moving very fast indeed, with more words going down in hard-copy and more fictional projects undertaken and finished in less time than ever before.

It is just possible that, given a year or so to recover from the ordeal, we might reactivate EMPIRE STAR- but right now, we're reeling at the thought of it. For now, then, let me sign out and thank you for your patience.

Pax Vobiscum -- JJ
  • Editorial (A Sad Story) (4)
  • The EMPIRE STARikes Back. Questions about The Empire Strikes Back (e.g. "How did the Imperial Fleet find Hoth?") with suggested answers from a handful of fans and responses from the editors. (6)
  • Addendum to The EMPIRE STARikes Back by Angela Callender (44)
  • There is a Way (45)
  • Han Solo: Lady's Man for All Seasons by Sherry Magee. Article on Han's relationships with women in fanfiction. (46)
  • Perspective: A View of The Empire Strikes Back by Nikki White. Negative review. (54)
  • Post Script on Empire and ES Review Ratings (57)
  • Time Trap! A New Star Trek Tactical Game by JJ and Mike Adamson. Choose Your Own Adventure-style game. (Star Trek: TOS) (58)
  • The Portfolio, art by Adamson and Adamson (58)
  • A Corellian's No Fun When... by Dannell Lites (73)
  • Rescue Mission & Rescue Mission II: Variations on a Theme by Sheila Paulson. Poems. (74)
  • And He Calls the Stars His Masters by Sherry Magee. Filk. (79)
  • The Great Romance by Dannell Lites. Filk. (81)
  • Confessional on an Odd Tuesday by JJ Adamson. Poem. (Star Trek: TOS) (83)
  • poem by Susan Matthews (84)
  • Coda by Denise Sheets. Poem. (Battlestar Galactica) (85)
  • The Wild Colonial Boy by Adamson and Adamson. Filk. (Battlestar Galactica) (88)
  • Portfolio for Hanatics Only, art by JJ and Martynn (89)
  • The Captain's Verdict (Time Trap Solution) (Star Trek: TOS) (94)
  • Important Announcement about ES's next ish! (97)
  • Young and Restless by Brenda Cunningham. How Han first won the Falcon off Lando Calrissian. (98)
  • Phlegathon by Mike Adamson. The Colonials investigate a long-dead planet and discover its robot defenders. (Battlestar Galactica) (106)
  • The Fanzine File (121)
  • other art by JJ and Mike Adamson, Michael Avenhouse, Donna Ellison, Martynn and Debra Milsom

Issue 5 (February 1982)

Empire Star 5 (v.2 n.2) was published in February 1982, has 131 pages, and contains mostly Star Wars, some Battlestar Galactica.

flyer for issue #5, printed in Starwings #1
  • Editorial (4)
  • Ion Storm in a Tea Cup (LoCs) (6)
  • Perspective: (19)
    • Bombed Out in Space by JJ Adamson
    • Our Man in Their Future by JJ and Mike
    • The Almost War of '82 by Mike
    • Music of the Spheres by JJ
    • In Praise of Feathered People by JJ
  • Death Ship, story and art by Mike Adamson ("In the search for fuel, a scout Viper from the Galactica finds not only the precious ore but also a prize undreamed of—a derelict Battlestar, and it is there for the taking.") (28)
  • Don't Jump to Conclusions, story by JJ Adamson, art by Mike Adamson ("A funny I thing happened on the way to Tatooine: responding to an emergency call, Han Solo found himself taking aboard astronaut Jack Scott of Apollo XTX, who swears, and declares that faster than light travel is not possible, and so the Millennium Falcon cannot possibly go anywhere!") (48)
  • When the Starbuck Luck Ran Out, story and art by Mike Adamson ("He's a rambler, he's a gambler, he's a long way fron home, and there's no way in this story that he's going to get left alone! It was all in the name of fun. Or, revenge...") (51)
  • Yesterdays Gone, story by JJ Adamson, art by Mike Adamson ("In the closing days of the Clone Wars, Corel was the scene of a telling battle: many cities were ruined, the spaceport among them. Littered with dead ships, it was a store house of free spare parts, and Jak Moonraker and his mate, Chewbacca, found their ship, the Millennium Falcon, in need of one. That part was not all they found.") (54)
  • All About Postage (57)
  • Wishbone Sends Up the "TV WEEK", text and graphics by Wishbone ("Television programming may never be the same again—the networks should hope they live through it, as Wishbone lets them have it with both barrels. Laugh your way through July 11th (year no object), with: lust in SPACE, SEARCH FOR YESTERDAY, ASK THE LAYABOUT BROTHERS, LIFE ON MARS. The memorable episode of STAR TREK, THE WAY TO EDEN. Be Scornful of the rubbishing JOURNEY TO THE BOTTOM OF THE WORLD, thrill to the extravaganza, LUNE, while, in a daring scene they didn't think would make it by the censor, Twikki is exploding on BUCK ROGERS...") (58)
  • Corellian Doorprize, story by Linda Shandle, art by S. Kaiafah ("Well, what would you do i f you were a Corellian smuggler and someone left a squalling infant at the bottom of your ramp?!") (60)
  • A Case of Conscience, story and art by Mike Adamson ("You are a Terran jet fighter pilot, shuttling to meet your unit in the tropical hell of the Coral Sea. The hawkish alien fighters of the Ultimate War strike from space above and you go down. In the storm tossed, fang-filled terror of the open ocean your only allies belong to the most persecuted race in the galaxy. A tale from the early days of the HUNTER saga, circa 1998.") (74)
  • Napalm in the Morning, filk, words and music by JJ Adamson, art by Mike (78)
  • Too Late, story by Kay Crist, art by JJ Adamson ("Aboard Boba Fett's ship, Han Solo gathers his wits: his future is uncertain and his whole world has become danger. Where are his friends? Lost among his enemies, there is no way for him to know. Has Darth Vader had them put to death? What hope can there be? What is left?") (113) (discussed in Han and Leia in Fanfiction)
  • Day of the Lead Cubit, story and art by Mike Adamson ("Colonial combat pilots wear no space suits, so what do you do when you crash land on an airless moon? You are trapped in your cockpit, perhaps miles, perhaps only inches from safety. Is Starbuck worried? You bet! And so is everyone else.") (113)
  • A Good Blaster at Your Side, feature and art by Michael Avenhouse (126)
  • The Fanzine File (131)

Issue 4 (reprint)

Empire Star 4 (reprint) was published in April 1985 and contains 52 pages. It contains from the original issue #4 excerpt for flyers printed in the back, the two art portfolios and one of the poems. .

[The editorial]: Where do the years go - answer me that! Or better

yet, don't answer,.. I'm not too sure I could handle the reply. Seems like only yesterday that I was sitting at this same IBM and pounding out ES #4; but that was five years ago. Five years! [24] Who needs a time machine? The zine has not been reprinted since 1980 because it was quite simply an economic impossibility. And to do it in its original form would still be impossible, the costs of photocopying being what they are. This zine was originally 130pp with dust gold covers. Of course, we owned our own printing machines in those days, which is why it was still an affordable $4.50. These days, it'd be cost ing closer to $8.50 plus postage! Not possible. Right?

Luckily, there was quite a lot of the text of ES//4 that could be culled out. In those days, the EMPIRE STRIKES BACK row was at its height. Some of us hated it, some of us loved it, and ES was the venue for a BIG World Title Debate which continued into ES #5. We got hate mail, we got kind mail, we think everyone enjoyed it. But the ESB debate is much too long in the past now, and the easiest way to cull 80pp out of ES #4 was to cut it, the flyers printed in the back, the two art portfolios and one of the poems. (My apologies go to Dannell Lites and Denise Sheets, your material just couldn't be squeezed in with a crow bar!) That pares the zine down to what you have in your hands here, at the price of $4.50 - same size, same price as SYNDICATED IMAGES. What's next? EMPIRE STAR #5 can only be pared down to 64pp, so we've decided to reprint it in digest/reduced format, and the cost should be about $4. Certainly, we'll know by the next Fanzine File column in SI. Fourteen extra pages for 50c less sounds fair to us, and the type will look good in reduced form, because it was all typed in Gothic. Of course, that still leaves 50pp of ES #5 left over; they couldn't be reduced again for inclusion in the reprint, as they were already in reduced form. We think we can bring out an Empire Star Special to publish the missing stories and articles. If you're interested, send a SASE marked 'ES Special,' and we can forward you the info as it's available.

But for now - we hope you will enjoy EMPIRE STAR #4!
  • Editorial by JJ Adams (3)
  • Han Solo, Ladies' Man for All Seasons by Sherry Magee, art by Donna Ellison (4)
  • Time Trap, game and art by JJ and Mike Adamson (11)
  • Rescue Mission by Sheila Paulson, art by Martynn/Donna Ellison (16)
  • The Wild Colonial Boy by JJ and Mike Adamson (20)
  • The Captain's Verdict by Time Trap Solutions (21)
  • Young and Restless by Brenda Cunningham, art by Donna Ellison (24)
  • poem by Susan Matthews (32)
  • Confession on an Odd Tuesday by JJ Adams (33)
  • And He Calls the Stars His Masters by Sherry Magee, art by JJ Adams (34)
  • Phlegathon, story and art by Mike Adams (36)
  • The Fanzine File (50)
  • The Aussietrek Adelaide Con Poster (52)

Issue 5 (reprint)

Empire Star 5 (reprint) was published in September 1985 and contains 61 pages. It contains only three stories from the original issue #5.

This issue contains no editorial or letters of comment.

On its table of content page: "EMPIRE STAR is not an authorised or official edition of any publication. No attempt is made to supercede copyrights held by: George Lucas, Twentieth Century Fox. Lucasfilm, Glen Larson, Universal or the ABC Network."

  • Day of the Lead Cubit, story and art by Mike Adams (Battlestar Galactica (1978) (3)
  • Corellian Doorprize, story by Linda Shadle, art by S. Kaiafah (Star Wars) (16)
  • Too Late, story by Kay Crist, art by JJ Adamson (Star Wars) (30)

The Best of Empire Star

front cover by Mike Adamson

The Best of Empire Star was published in mid-1981 and contains 223 pages. The art and cartoons are by Leonard May, Mike Adamson, J.J. Adamson, and Wishbone.

It was advertised in issue #4, with a caution that there were very few extra copies printed: "Represented in this EMPIRE STAR Super Special are the stories and artwork from the first three issues of EMPIRE STAR Magazine, which comprised the now out-of-print Volume One."

This is the cycle of stories known as the Tales From Aagan's Rim:

VENDETTA (novel}; LONER ON DOOMWORLD; STILL, SHE'S GOT A OF SPIRIT; FLIGHT OF THE WHITE FALCON; KGK-45; GREEN FIRE OF THE RHIL; WHAT A PIECE OF JUNK; NIGHT MARE; THE BUSH PILOT BLUES; BREAKOUT (published in SOLO); QUEST (yet to be published; a novel) and EMPIRE STAR; THE NOVEL (yet to be published).

All the stories were written by either J.J. or Mike Adamson, date from February 1978 to June 1981. Most appeared long before EMPIRE STRIKES BACK, and so the story, lines cannot follow the official ones, instead, we present the TALES FROM AAGAN'S RIM, the Universe of Empire Star. QUEST and EMPIRE STAR: THE NOVEL [25] will appear shortly, completing the cycle.
  • Introduction (4)
  • Chart: Principal Star Systems of the Galactic "Arm of Aagan" (5)
  • Vendetta by J.J. Adamson (also published as the zine Vendetta)(6)
  • Loner on Doomworld by Mike Adamson (80)
  • Still, She's Got a Lot of Spirit... by J.J. Adamson (115)
  • Empire Rumbles, cartoons by Wishbone (135)
  • Just Let Me Live, Lord Vader, song by J.J. Adamson (140)
  • Flight of the White Falcon by J.J. Adamson (141)
  • KGK-45 by J.J. Adamson (153)
  • Green Fire of the Rhil by J.J. Adamson (188)
  • What a Piece of Junk! by C.W.M. Adamson (Mike Adamson) (200)
  • Nightmare by J.J. Adamson (205)
  • The Bush Pilot Blues by J.J. Adamson (211)

References

  1. from a letter of comment in Solo
  2. from a letter of comment in Solo
  3. from a letter of comment in Solo
  4. from a letter of comment in Solo
  5. from a letter in "Empire Star" #3
  6. from a letter of comment in Solo
  7. from a letter of comment in Solo
  8. from a letter of comment in Solo
  9. from a letter of comment in Solo
  10. from a letter of comment in Solo
  11. from a letter of comment in Solo
  12. from a letter of comment in Solo
  13. from a letter of comment in Solo
  14. from a letter of comment in Solo
  15. from a letter of comment in Solo
  16. from a letter of comment in Solo
  17. from a letter of comment in Solo
  18. from a letter of comment in Solo
  19. from a letter of comment in Solo
  20. from a letter of comment in Solo
  21. from a letter of comment in Solo
  22. from a letter of comment in Solo
  23. from a letter of comment in Solo
  24. Actually, the original issue was typed five years ago in 1980, but not published until 1981, as per the original editorial.
  25. This last novel was never published.
  26. from the artist in "Empire Star" #3 where this art was first printed