There were at least 41 issues, plus two 1993 supplements.
Discussion About the Title
The was quite a bit of discussion about this zine's title in issues of Tell Me Something I Don't Know!. Was the title a creative spelling of "friends," or was it a play on words with the word "frenzy"? And did frenzy mean "wild excitement" or "violent agitation."
From a September 1988 AnnouncementPublished in Tell Me Something I Don't Know! #9:
COST: $4.00 per issue; $4.50 overseas. PUBLISHED: Bi-monthly. MAX. LETTER LENGTH: 2 typed pages...
TOPICS: Fan Angst (ie. why do I bother with all this, anyway? Why do I like S&H? Why do I spend the time, the money, the money? Why do I .... you get the picture, anything to say about this?)
Blond or Brunette; curly or (dare I say it?) straight; dark meat or light; why Starsky? Why Hutch?
H/C head count, how many of you dig it? Why?
Favorite Season, why? (I mean besides the no-moustache-on-upper-lip-I-like everything but 4th Season answer).
Why does Hutch have so many changes of outerwear and how does he fit them all in his locker?
And, is Starsky's tush really built on ball bearings?
More info, to follow in next SNITCH concerning who to contact in England. Also, editorial policy will be explained in Issue One. As for now, keep it friendly, keep it clean, and come out writing.I won't be doing a "/" head count, I already know how many D.).W. are out there.
Regarding the Supplements
There were at least two 1993 supplements.
It appears there may have been another supplement. In issue #27, the new editor wrote: "If you want to read the letters Pat received for the cancelled Winter Supplement/Slash Discussion please send me a SASE & I will mail you copies of the letters."
The reason for these supplements was conflict.
From the second 1993 supplement: "Hence the Supplements?—as an outlet for the questions and grievances which had been accumulating on the L/Z desk—re-routed into a Supplement and keeping the L/Z for its SH purposes. There's sort of a contract which says that an editor should pick up those problems; this editor didn't walk away. It cannot have been an easy exercise but, judging by gratified references in recent correspondence, SH fandom now has a multitude of Happy Readers, engrossed in long-awaited zines. And if they should all stand up for counting—having counted on the L/Z and on Pat —it should mean quite a bunch of grateful letters."
About Some of the Fiction
All these fanworks appear in an unknown issue after #30.
- 1996 - That Voice by K Hanna Korossy (also in Black Bean Soup)
- 1996 - He Said, He Said by K Hanna Korossy (also in Black Bean Soup)
- Those Who Believe by Jatona P. Walker (according to the fan's online posting, this was "written in 1989" and posted in an issue of Frienz.)
- A Christmas Blintz by Edina Clouds
- Gold of Autumn by Edina Clouds
- Boys of Summer by Edina Clouds
For other SH letterzines, see List of Letterzines
I can't express how important Jean's contribution to fandom was to me--I belonged to Frienz, that beloved ole paper letterzine. It was so exciting to find it in my mailbox! I remember how wonderfully connected I felt to my fandom, even fans in far away countries, when I would open up the letterzine and see names old and new. It was such a pleasure to craft a response to the last issue's comments. It even inspired me to draw a Starsky & Hutch cartoon. The fact that Jean kept Frienz going for so long--long enough for me to discover it not long before the explosion of net fandom--is something I'll always appreciate.
Jean may have been quiet at cons, but she was a doer in fandom. When the editor of the long-running SH letterzine, Frienz, needed to pass the zine on, Jean took it over. Frienz was in business for 10 years, an excellent record, and Jean was at its helm for the last four. Letterzines were the original "discussion lists". Before the internet, people put out digest or full-sized zines full of people's snail mail letters focusing on fannish issues, photocopied articles about favorite stars, and in general encouraged communication among fans and kept fandoms alive when it wasn't so easy to find your favorite show on TV. People were able to get episode tapes through letterzines, share zines, plan fannish get-togethers, advertise cons, especially smaller single-fandom cons, communicate about the production schedules for zines, and, yes, argue furiously with each other. I'm fortunate enough to have a collection of the issues of Frienz that Jean edited, and they are beautifully produced. These were digest sized with artwork, stories, articles, and of course, letters. Being a letterzine producer was akin to being a list-mom, only harder, since there were publishing deadlines to meet. You couldn't depend on folks writing in, you had to prod and cajole them to do so. Everyone *intended* to write, but deadlines crept up before folks would remember, and the letterzine editor would have to stay on top of folks to make sure there was *something* to publish. Jean's letterzines overlapped with the development of the internet, so many of the people who might've used Frienz to communicate were suddenly turning to the more immediate net. Yet, she managed to keep the letterzine going until November, 1998, when she turned it over to a British fan, and the zine turned into the Me and Thee Times.I wouldn't want to face putting VP on paper and turning it into an attractive mini-zine every few months. Jean's lovely letter zine is a treasure, and I've read it often. I had no trouble finding it on my desk when I wanted to talk about her.
Frienz 1 was published in November 1988 and contains 20 pages.
- this issue has some fiction by Ima Fool called "O'Horror Hotel"
- this issue has a con report for Zebra Con #9, by [L M], see that page
- this issue has an essay [Carol D] called "Art and the Single Fanzine" with the topic of fan art. An excerpt: Fandom is, as probably more people than Tabby have pointed out (but Tabby always springs to mind), supposed to be for sharing. For enjoyment. For fun. Should one exclude the efforts of those who don't live up to our ideals of ART, be it in writing or illoing? If you think I'm going to state an opinion on that here, you're crazy. I don't know the answer. On the one hand, an ed tries to make her zine the best it could be. On the other, well, what is fandom all about, anyway? I'd be very interested in finding out what others feel should be done.
- this issue has an essay by [Maria F] called: "The Starsky and Hutch Pilot -- Then & Now"—excerpt: Now, I still get a thrill watching the episodes, thanks to my vcr, and am fortunate enough to have the Pilot presented, at indiscriminate hours of the day and night, at least once a year on tv, and of course, I still watch it (despite having it on tape—I get a kick out of seeing the guys on broadcast tv after all this time!); I still enjoy it and learn something from it with every viewing. Now, I better understand the quips, observations and sarcastic comments David and Ken tossed back and forth at each other; I have aclearer picture of just how important police work was to them; how, even then, all the injustices and grueling chases got them down; how the sometimes futile efforts and random violence disturbed them and especially how loyal each was to the other. I appreciate more each time their compassion toward the down-trodden and their honesty in dealing with situations. I also enjoy seeing them in the "unrefined" stages before they became more three-dimensional and were admirably, and individually shaped by Paul and David.
- a fan writes: First let me say what a terrific idea I think FRIENZ is. There's nothing like a good letterzine to keep fandom alive and kickin'. With all the mumbling I've been hearing (or rather, reading) about how S&H fandom is dying out, I think that any new development, especially a l/z, is a positive step.
- a fan explains why she thinks Starsky & Hutch fiction is so good: Why spend the money? Because for the most part, S&H fans produce quality zines. The fiction seems to be better-written than in many fandoms. I think the reason is that many S&H fans did their journeyman writing in other fandoms; they come to S&H a little more seasoned than they were when they started. I think that's also the case of S&H artists. There's also a commitment to authenticity here; people research their subjects, whether it's gun calibres or physical trauma, and that research strengthens their product. Plot isn't often sacrificed for character, which makes for good reading. I spend money on cons because, with one exception, all my S&H friends live in far-flung places. Getting them all in one place is an absolute joy. There is a love and acceptance among fan friends that sometimes surpasses what one finds in mundane situations.
- a fan remembers the original Starsky and Hutch letterzine, S and H: FRIENZ is very good news, the latest in a long line of SH l/zs. Ten years on, and we still find the discussion, the exchange of views unexhausted-not really surprising with that material. So this is to be the reincarnation of the original S&H l/z? I still go back to read that one for its insights and for the detailed, substantial, series-related arguments with which various POV's were supported... I learned a lot about S&H from that first letterzine... Re-reading the first pioneer l/z is a reminder of all the people who gave me their time and kindness to enlighten me, provide information, addresses, zines, share with me, show me my way into SH fandom. The very word was new to me then. I could never forget all that, and I'll always be grateful for it.
- a fan comments on the hurt/comfort genre: ...you can count me among the H/C ... aficionados. Maybe it's because it strips away all the socially necessary masks and lets us see what lies beneath. Or maybe it's because Starsky suffers so well - oh god those writhing hip movements - yeah grab for that thigh or that belly.
- a fan addresses the TOTM: I thought I'd address the suggested topic of Fan Angst—why do I bother with this, why do I spend the time, the money, etc.? Good question! I'm 37, and only found "fandom" in 1982, when I discovered Star Trek for the first time. I'm still a big ST fan, but about 3 years ago, I think it was, I'd run out of new K/S zines to read, so decided to try some H/J, loved them, so decided to try watching S&H, which was shown here then, since I knew the blond actor who was Johnny was also "one of those cops"—that's about all I knew of it, though. Well, it didn't take long for me to get hooked on S&H and S/H, and I've been enjoying this fandom very much ever since.
- a fan invites others to join an APA: To all S&H fans who would like yet another outlet for your creativity—how about joining us in the Starsky and Hutch APA? It's called "Tell Me Something I Don't Know!", and by the time you read this, issue #10 will be out. We "publish" every other month—letters, copies of articles on S&H or Paul and David that everyone sends in, etc. If you're at all interested, please SASE me—at this date, we could use 6 more participants (30 is out upper limit.) Spread the word! EDITOR'S NOTE: I love the APA! It has an energy, vitality, and sharing that brings me right back to the early days of S&H fandom. It's great to get one every other month with an original artwork cover and never seen articles and pics inside. You can't go wrong becoming an active part of it.
- another fan remembers a previous letterzine: I got out the box containing all the old l/z's—disinterred it, to be more precise/ from the mountain of boxes at present lurking in our spare bedroom—just to refresh my memory. And several hours later, I surfaced amazed. What a vast amount of subjects were covered—so many views aired (sometimes forcibly, sometimes acidly, sometimes even vitriolic), so many opinions, ideas, discussions, often on the mast trivial of subjects. Looking back, was The Kiss in the Alley (or lack of one) such a big deal? I suppose it was, at the time. And S/H, far from being the Love That Dare Not Speak Its Name, nowadays rarely shuts up. I've heard the complaint that S/H has 'driven' people out of fandom. In a truck? Bus? Torino? But since no one is forced to buy zines, or read them, I can't see that this is a valid statement—unless it's the lack of straight stories that has led the non-S/H contingent to look elsewhere for their fix. This is possible. There's been a dearth of straight stories in the past year. There's been a dearth of any kind of story, but if I go on about that I'll get jumped on for undue pessimism- I'm hoping for a renaissance at Zebra Con. (Zines! Zines! For the love of God, give me zines!) 
- a fan tries to explain the appeal of hurt/comfort: I don't know why I like H/C. It isn't the pain & agony. In fact, that can get tiresome, as anyone who has suffered root canal treatment can testify. But the caring that the Hurt brings out—that's the anodyne. That, I would guess, is what most of us like about H/C. The 'C . And while, in S/H, there are a number of soi-disant stories which are nothing but catalogue of sexual gymnastics without plot or meaning, I don't know of any story is purely Hurt, with no Comfort. I may have missed something, mind. If there is one, maybe someone will enlighten me. But, like the 'how-many-positions-can-we-fit-on-one-page' perpetrators, there doesn't seem an awful lot of point to it. I have written the latter. I freely admit it. I've never written just Hurt. At least, not to my knowledge! I suppose I can sum it up by saying I do not like to see them suffer (they suffer so creatively!) but I want' the emotional arnica and bandaid too. You can't have one without the other.
- a long-time, BNF fan explains the appeal of the show and compares it to Star Trek: Why do I bother with this anyway? I'm into SH for entirely different; reasons than I was into Trek. In the old days of ST random, you were in it for the dream, and for the purpose of keeping the dream alive and hoping to get Trek reincarnated in the form of a TV show or film. Now that the fans have achieved those goals, there's something different about the fandom. It could be that after more than ten years, my enthusiasm has slowed considerably but you do get the feeling that the driving need to keep ST on the mind of the public and the studio just isn't there anymore. ST was a cause and to support that cause you did zines, went to cons, wrote letters, etc. SH fandom is another world. It's smaller, but I happen to like it that way. Makes me feel we're a rather select group of people with very good taste. It doesn't have the lofty feel of Trek—we are unabashedly into the 'scenery' of the show (those buns...those thighs...) and though there is some philosophy in the world of SH, questions relating to violence and integrity, and the philosophy of a beautiful love relationship, it doesn't ask the burning questions Trek does about the future of mankind. But that's why I like it. A writer can get deeply into the motivations of a character and see how his actions impact on his partnei Without all the sf folderol, SH seems a deeper, more introspective world, one that I find very challenging to write about. And if it's really the individual that is important in our world, then the feelings and philosophies of Starsky and Hutch do respond to those burning questions of mankind's future. I feel my writing in this fandom is more sophisticated, more mature. That could be because I've now been writing longer, but I also feel it's the subject matter that we're dealing with here.
- more on hurt/comfort: Sometimes, h/c seems to have acquired a negative connotation in this fandom, and that irks me a bit. "Judge and Jury" was bad h/c, yes. And "Mojave Crossing" was excellent—but saying all the same things in another story doesn't repeat what Faddis did so well. Yet nearly all SH has elements that can be called h/c—and what's wrong if it's subtle for a change? I can get Hutch giving Starsky a cup of coffee because he knows he's upset about Helen's death. I'd love to see SH fiction delve into h/c a little more.
Frienz 2 was published in February 1989 and contains 20 pages.
- some TOTM questions were: "Do you have a 'first impression you'd like to share with us? When did you first see S&H? What was it like? How did you feel?" And: "Song lyrics. Send me your fave S&H song lyric... Do we need fan awards? Do they serve any purpose beyond possibly being popularity awards... Do they acknowledge 'the best'?" Episode to discuss: "Running."
- "Smithereens," Paula Smith's regular column, is about conventions that are not fannish (dog shows, ex-drug abusers, computers)
- the column, "Forum" is by Tabby Davis and entitled "Further Reflections on the Single Fanzine, a reference to to "Art and the Single Fanzine" by C. Davis is the previous issue—the topic is about editing, putting together a zine, "sharing" in fandom, and feedback
- it has an essay by MRK called "First Impressions: Gee, Even the Hit Man Seemed to Know
- it includes fiction: "Night Bridge" by Leah S
- it includes a poem, "Touch" by Pat Massie
- there is much discussion regarding hugging: I never thought about the guys' first hug! Good question. I see two scenarios: The first deals with their first Christmas as partners. Perhaps one invited the other to his place (if they weren't working that day); they shared dinner, exchanged gifts, then spontaneously embraced. Or! maybe one of them was going home for the holidays, the other drove his friend to the airport and they hugged before S or H boarded the plane. The second possibility could have occurred the first time one went under cover without his partner. The case was particularly dangerous, with more than a slight threat to the inconspicuous officer's life, that the Partner especially worried, was so relieved when the case was successfully cracked and his friend safe, automatically hugged him when they met up again. I have a question for anyone interested to answer: When was the first time one or both knew the other was his best friend? That he loved him and would give his life for the other?
- regarding the appeal of hurt/comfort: [J] raised a point with her honest 'I don't know' on why we like h/c. I don't know either. But I thought back over my favourite shows and discovered the ones I remember best all had some element of h/c in them. No, I won't give examples, that'd date me too accurately.... I think it's be cause I like emotions up front. We are conditioned not to express our feelings too openly—and repression is not good for the soul. So h/c allows a vicarious escape-hatch? We can exercise our imaginations on how it would feel to be in that situation, without experiencing any of the genuine pain or anguish involved. And anyway, we knew it was just make- believe, so it was okay. I don't know anyone who gets off on real suffering, or real h/c, as we see it on the news. That's an invasion of privacy, and we are embarrassed and offended by it. But the fictional stuff is acceptable to us, because we know it'll all be all right in the end.
- a fan, [C R], writes: Whoa! [P], I think I love you! A S&H letterzine is just what I need! I only 'discovered' fandom not more than a year and a half ago - Blake's 7. Fanzines! Holy cow! Went totally crazy and, quite literally, caught up on 10 years worth of B7 fandom about 10 months. Not bad, eh? But not that hard, either, since B7 is a growing and relatively new (so far as being wide-spread) fandom. Burned out on B7 and cast about for something new. What did I find? You get it, frienz, Starsky & Hutch! I remembered that I adored the show the first time it was on, but it wasn't until I got some copies of the episodes that I realized just how much!... Guess you can see why this 1/z is such a breath of fresh air for me. And reading over the letters from issue #1 it looks like I've fallen into a batch of kindred souls. I, my dear fen, am a world-class wallower. Ask anyone who's ever read my stories in other genre and you'll find at least some - more likely a lot - hurt/comfort in everything. Ohboyohboy do I love a good smarmy story. Let's face it, there has been a lot of "buddy" series' on TV, and a lot of them had the potential for an enormous amount of smarm, am I right? Simon & Simon, for example, or even the perennial favorite, Star Trek. Sure, we see great relationships between the characters but how much of that openness - that wonderful caring - do we really see? Zilch. And after all, isn't that what zines are for? We've built the relationships we want for these people, oftentimes from scratch. Look at Blake 7. Now that's a stretch. Not that we've ever let that stop us, right ladies? But now, finally, we can see the caring and love between the characters. And - my goodness! - the hurt/comfort too! I mean actually see it instead of having to fill in the blanks later. Watched Miami Vice lately? Those' cheaters take us right up to the brink of a smarmy scene and go to a commercial. The finks. But Starsky & Hutch not only carried it through, they carried us through, bless 'em. And yes, I am looking for every zine and episode in existence on the show. I've hung all my other fandoms out to dry 'till then. Not that's hooked.
- a fan is a fan of One More Mountain: "One More Mountain" is my all-time favorite story ever! And I do mean ever! That story is my prime example of exactly what we were talking about - that caring that the hurt brings out. That's the big thing. I've read stories, ostensibly h/c, but all I remember about them was the hurt. Very little comfort. Hated them. I tend to skim over the hurt myself - kind of a fade to black thing - and go straight for the comfort. Purely wish there were more stories of that type. Never could get enough.
- another fan wants to know where all the "straight" zines are: I agree about the lack of straight stories lately. We had a discussion (it was not a panel) at Spectrum, a local media con. Quizzed about all-time favorite zines, almost everyone chose straight zines. The most popular was Zebra Three #1, but also mentioned were Strange Justice and LA Vespers. If everyone loves the ones done in the past, why aren't more being done?
- a fan's conversion: It was a hot day in Phoenix (it being August) of 1986 ... being an avid K/S fan (yes, I too started out as one of The Maniacs!), I had heard from a reliable source that there was more to life than K/S! Can you believe it?! Thinking this as just a treasonous attempt at converting me to another lifestyle, I ignored the temptation for a time. But even the strong weaken given enough time. So, in August, two years ago, I turned on one of our local stations that was playing the Treason called Starsky & Hutch. I figured to remain aloof to their charms and avoid getting seduced-- I lasted about 12 seconds into the opening credits... I was transfixed -- fascinated--reborn-- captured for all time! I hadn't even seen one second of the show yet-- so I stayed glued to my TV, as helpless and as captivated as anyone had ever felt going into a series. The episode being aired that day was "Moonshine" -- certainly not one of their best, but it was Really Something Else to me!! I loved it all -- the scene in the Smoky Mountain Inn was so funny. I laughed through it. And, afterwards, when Hutch had to be the one to drive them home--with his partner's feet sticking out of the window! It was so beautiful watching a show that gave you such a warm feeling throughout! I was officially hooked at the very start. As with all Deep Loves, every show that I saw only made stronger my initial impression of Starsky and Hutch being the TV series that I had been waiting for my whole life ... and I still feel that way about it... The "hugs" Universe has always been very intriguing to me. ALL of the series' that would get me hooked had this exact aspect to them—Man from U.N.C.L.E. -- Star Trek etc. But Starsky and Hutch are the ultimate example of a"tactile-oriented" Universe. I always tended to look for this in my TV, or movies, or even relationships that I had—none had this to the degree that S&H had—even today! That first one that I remember them sharing was the "alley scene" at the end of The Fix. What a hug! I've always loved that scene ...
- another convert from K/S writes: I'm also an obsessive personality, I think. Does it ever scare you how fast you can fall away from a treasured obsession? I was a rabid K/S fan, and now I can hardly bear to read the stuff. I refuse to even examine other fandoms now, because I don't have any desire to leave SH. Is that silly, or what?
- regarding fan awards: Personally, I'm not crazy about them. What is gained by receiving them? I know that it makes the artwork from a zine more valuable, and it makes the author or editor feel good. But is there anyone who would say that the awards consistently go to the best in fandom? Should they? What about encouraging new faces? If you don't get one, does that mean you're no good? I think that the opportunity for abuse is more than the benefits gained by the recipients. I don't know if you want to discuss whether it benefits the readership to review the zines produced each year. Maybe we could do that in a non-competitive way.
- regarding awards, specifically the Huggy Awards: ...there could be as many reasons for voter's choice as there are voters. Voting for a friend's production could well be one influence -- could be because it's the friend's zine which has been read. It's doubtful that every voter has always read every eligible entry. Doubtful, too, that every dedicated SH fan sends in a ballot paper. An imperfect system. But would one want to end the tradition? Can't see that happening somehow. There's always that fascinating distinction between "favourite" and "best". For example. Dotty Barry's poem, "Non constans", a marvelous piece of writing. One might well vote it "best". I could never vote it "favourite". I'd find it hard even to read it again; it's so alien in its coldness and indifference, to the way I see SH. I'd be unhappy confronted with the editorial decision whether to include it in a SH zine. But the views of potential readers would be relevant - could one deprive them? No, I don't think one could.
- regarding fan awards: My experience shows me that this sort of thing varies from fandom to fandom. I have long stopped paying attention to most fannish awards, as in one case they seem to be popularity contests and in another case, although begun with excellent intentions, their original intentions have been somewhat distorted. Based on what I've seen the past two years, the Huggies seem to be handled pretty well, are above board and tend to reflect my personal tastes. Are fan awards necessary? I don't know. One could reason that they encourage writers and artists to do their best, and yet this is all supposed to be in the name of fun, right? It's a very thin line to walk. If we do the work for awards, then we run the risk of having worked for nothing, and taking it all much too seriously (IMHO). If we do the work only for the fun, there's very little to lose—unless some clod walks up to you and tells you point blank they think your work is worthless; then again, if it's done in fun and the writer/artist-enjoys the execution, other folks' opinions won't carry much weight, will they? For myself, I tend to participate in fan-ac for the fun, certainly it would be lovely to have my work acknowledged by my peers, but I won't be devastated if I don't have a fan award to adorn my abode. I think the real rewards come from the heart: your own, with the satisfaction of having completed a project you can be proud of; and others', who, if they've enjoyed your work, are generous enough to tell you so.
- regarding fan awards: I think they're an interesting tradition, not only in SH but in ST as well, but I'm not at all sure they are a very accurate way of measuring worth...or the best of what has been produced in a fandom. It's something like Pulitzer Prize winners, most of them are not the authors who have produced enduring classics. The non-nominees are something of a who's-who of literary figures, starting with Hemingway. The same thing was true in Trek. A number of the 'classics' of ST fanfic, that people still remember 10 years later, are not usually the ones that won fan awards. I'm not saying that awards never show true worth, I'm just saying it's not always the case... I'm not against fan awards. They're often fun, and a way of acknowledging people's work. But do they really reward the 'best'? Even trying to define 'best' can open an entire other can of worms. Does it mean the most polished prose, the most technically adept artwork, or something that grabs people around the heart and yanks hard? Or is it something that yanks a little lower? Ten people might have ten separate definitions So what does 'best' really mean?
- more on awards: Do we need Fan awards? Need—not really, I suppose. We buy the zines and enjoy the art and read the stories and poems and that's the core of fandom. But Awards are at least a way of saying 'thanks' to a favourite writer or artist. Even if we never write LOCs, never get to speak to them, we can express our appreciation by voting for them. From the other side -- as a recipient myself -- I can say that it's enormously gratifying to be so recognized. And I'd hope that if all my friends did vote for me, they did it because they enjoyed what I wrote, not our of friendship. Awards may not acknowledge 'the best'— we all like different things, and one fan's best' is another fan's dreck—but yes, they do serve a purpose.
- regarding Songtape Collections: ... songs that remind us of the boys? I have a zillion faves, with unfulfilled songtape plans for many of them.
- an example of a comment regarding song lyrics and SH: My all-time favorite song that best describes my feelings for Ken and David is "Still the One", by Orleans. I also hold dear: "In My Life by the Beatles, of course; "Through the Years", Kenny Rogers; "You Are So Beautiful To Me", Joe Cocker; and, "You're in My Heart", Rod Stewart. "You've Got a Friend" (sung by James Taylor; written by Carol King) has always been my S&H theme song.
- a fan is wondering if she has missed something: This next question, I know is going to qualify as the neo question of the month, but having only recently come into SH fandom and never having seen the last l/z I must ask Terri about something she mentioned in her letter, to it: Terri, as kiss in the alley? WHAT kiss in WHAT alley??? I'm not looking to open up an old can of worms (a distasteful metaphor all by itself) but gad, what'd I miss?
- a fan addresses another's comments from the prior issue: I wanted to comment on your remarks regarding writing SH. You mentioned that you found your own writing more sophisticated and mature than the writing you've done in Star Trek fandom, and that SH allows you to get more into character as opposed to dealing with earth-shattering issues and 'sf folderol'. In some ways I definitely agree with you. I'm not just referring to your writing (although I agree with your assessment of your own stuff), I'm talking about the writing in the fandom in general. Based on what I've read, SH fan-fic definitely lends itself to a much more careful sort of writing. I think that this stems from it being set in our here-and-now as opposed to some far-flung future where every problem has an answer based on whatever kind of supertechnology the writer can concoct. Of course there is character-based fan-fic in ST; that's the main attraction, and when it's done well it's breathtaking. Unfortunately this doesn't happen very often anymore. Yet, because SH is set in our present, in a world we know intimately, there seems to be an attempt by writers across the board to be as true to that world as possible. Writing Trek certainly allows us to let our imaginations run wild and there is merit there. But what some Trek authors sometimes forget, and what becomes a basic tenet of writing SH, is that consistency and believability are necessary for the creation to work, otherwise we, the readers, who know this world so very well, will sit back and say "No, that's not right, I don't buy it" and the construct comes crashing down around us. the writing in SH is better and stronger because the authors know that the reader must be convinced This being the case, I think we're all pretty fortunate. It's rare that I've been disappointed in a new SH zine. Any thoughts?
- a new fan is very enthusiastic (and gets scolded in the next issue): A S&H letterzine is just what I need! I only 'discovered' fandom not more than a year and a half ago - Blake's 7. Fanzines! Holy cow! Went totally crazy and, quite literally, caught up on 10 years worth of B7 fandom in about 10 months. Not bad, eh? But not that hard, either, since B7 is a growing and relatively new (so far as being wide-spread) fandom. Burned out on B7 and cast about for something new. What did I find? You get it, frienz, Starsky & Hutch! I remembered that I adored the show the first time it was on, but it wasn't until I got some copies of the episodes that I realized just how much! So this is - what? - maybe two months ago and here I sat, totally insane over the series and nowhere to go. Bummer. Guess you can see why this 1/z is such a breath of fresh air for me.And reading over the letters from issue #1 it looks like I've fallen in^o a batch of kindred souls. I, my dear fen, am a world-class wallower. Ask anyone who's ever read my stories in other genre and you'll find at least some - more likely a lot - hurt/comfort in everything. Ohboyohboy do I love a good smarmy story. Let's face it, there has been a lot of "buddy" series' on TV, and a lot of them had the potential for an enormous amount of smarm, am I right? Simon & Simon, for example, or even the perennial favorite, Star Trek. Sure, we see great relationships between the characters but how much of that openness - that wonderful caring - do we really see? Zilch. And after all, isn't that what zines are for? We've built the relation ships we want for these people, oftentimes from scratch. Look at Blake 7. Nov that's a stretch. Not that we've ever let that stop us, right ladies? But now, finally, we can see the caring and love between the characters. And - my goodness! - the hurt/comfort too! I mean actually see it instead of having to fill in the blanks later. Watched Miami Vice lately? Those' cheaters take us right up to the brink of a smarmy scene and go to a commercial. The finks. But Starsky & Hutch not only carried it through, they carried us through, bless 'em. And yes, I am looking for every zine and episode in existence on the show. I've hung all my other fandoms out to dry 'till then. Not that's hooked.... [T], I think you may have just hit the nail on the head about the comment that S/H has "driven people out of fandom." No one has to buy or read anything, but there does seem to be a dearth of straight stories wherever slash becomes the 'in' thing. As for myself, there is nothing I enjoy more than a straight hurt/comfort story. But the latest SNITCH seems to be listing 100% slash zines or mixed. Now, as I'm new to this fandom and know next to nothing about it, is this the norm these days? Or is S&H, like the Professionals, almost exclusively slash?
Frienz 3 was published in April 1989 and contains 24 pages.
- TOTM: "Dt. Sgt. David Michael Starsky (aka: Starsky, Starsk, dirtball, Gordo). Who is he? Where does he come from? Why is he cop? How did he get partnered with Hutch? Give us ... the fax! Also, any post-SR ideas for him? (Please limit anatomical raptures to one page.) Also, we're looking for vignettes (no overt "/", please), First Impressions; commentaries for Forum; song lyrics; also, see T. Beckett's letter for her wonderful "Just Imagine" idea (give us period, dress, reason why you like it and a little dialogue maybe."
- "Starsky," poem by Pat Massie
- "Sons of Enoch," fiction by Cheryl Meier
- JUST IMAGINE: Imperial Russia, circa 1810: "Vingt-et-un" - T. Beckett (vignette, part one)
- IMAGINE Post-War America, circa 1946: "Doggone" - P. Massie (vignette)
- "Play Misty for Me," fiction by Molly D. Brown (part one, a choose-your-own-ending story, one that uses "//" to indicate inner thought—something that is a practice from older Star Trek fiction)
- "Hourglass," poem by Angela Talley
- Forum: by Cindy Rancourt -- "Has anyone noticed the different way the guys react when the other one is injured?"
- many fans envision a lengthy fanon backstory for Starsky
- the editor scolds fans a bit, telling them to use more punctuation and be better spellers, as she is spending way to much time deciphering their letters
- a fan writes of a gathering: By the time this letter will be printed, a group of us from the East and Mid-west (and a few from out West) will have gathered for SHare Con in the Baltimore area. A portion of us who attended Z-Con felt S&H weren't represented nearly enough and Pat and Nancy decided to rectify that grossly negligent situation by organizing an "All-S&H weekend party" to be held ASAP! A con report will be included next issue ...
- a fan addresses another: Enjoyed your letter. As you said, the greatest appeal of S&H is that not only were they loving and caring, but they were open in demonstrating their feelings and that display of affection entranced us. NO, "/" is NOT the norm of S&H fandom. There are a number of us who see the guys as straight, despite the majority of fans believing the men to be otherwise. It's good that we can all abide opposing viewpoints and still participate happily in fandom, but S&H fandom isn't exclusively "/".
- a fan is struggling with a sort of writer's block regarding slash: I would hope that maybe a few more straight (or non-/) stories will eventually surface, by the way -- I love 'em just as much as the '/', if not more so, but I'm having trouble writing them, let's see if I can explain that coherently. I have a plot. S'right, it's straight (well, as straight as anything they're in can be), and everything is going along just swimmingly until I look at the page and damme if they're not snuggled in a corner canoodling. If I ignore it and hope no one will notice, next thing I know they've hauled each other into bed and nothing but nothing is being left to imagination. Now this does not auger well for my 'straight' plot. Okay, rip it up and try again. And guess what happens on page 34, or 45, or whatever? Right. At it like minks. Do I sound a tad jaded with S/H? I have reason. If that's not bad enough, it" been creeping in to my other writing, and that way lies—if not madness, at least severe mental trauma. And please don't anyone ask when they can see those aborted attempts at a story. Please.
- a fan explains The Kiss in the Alley Debate: A quick peek inside the old can, okay? In FIX, just before the tag, there is a hug in the alley. It is a beauty of a hug, and there was a school of fandom who saw a kiss right in there with it. Me, I didn't. Unless smooching an earlobe can be thus construed. Our Noble Editor had it right when she told you you had missed nothing.
- a fan writes of The Huntingdon Chronicles: ...the activity of let's-put-S&H-in-an- historical-setting has always been a favorite activity of mine. I don't know if I'd really want to write a whole story in that mode, but fantasizing them in various time periods can be quite satisfying. (If people at work knew what I was thinking of when that blank look settles on my face...) Huntington Chronicles is the result of an entire universe that Carol Davis and I came up with after hours and tours of phone conversations. (Thank heaven we're not long distance or we'd both be bankrupt.)
- a fan touches on the past in SH fandom: Returning to those thousand faces, and the variety and the versatility they represent, I dislike the suggestion (page 2), in reference to people (numerically or individually unspecified) alleged to have been 'driven out' of SH fandom. The suggestion pre-supposes driver(s). But who? Fandom has to have a place and space for all who want to participate; any decision not to participate in any aspect is a matter for free personal choice, rather than acceptance of some edict from some hypothetical 'driver'—'Depart!' Is it really like that? I want a welcome for every one of those thousand faces. I can't imagine that's an isolated attitude? (Ed. note: Not these days, anyway. Fandom being a much friendlier place. Unfortunately, I can remember 'drivers', several who gave me a hard time as a neo-letter writer and fan. Yes, fandom today is a much kinder place, pm)
- a fan, [J M H], scolds another new one [C R] a bit, warning her to slow down and not fan old wank: Wow! Seems like you blew into our fandom and were impressed with what you found. I'm happy that you like it; we certainly do. But I think you might want to take things a little more slowly here. Ten years of B7 in ten months? I hope that you realize that this is a small, close-knit fandom, and are ready to fit yourself in. That is not to say that you must enjoy, read, or even discuss anything you don't want to, but please don't go out of your way to fan the flames of old battles. If you want some perspective on the history of SH fandom, I highly recommend the old SH (Ed. note: Or, as it was known in the old days, S & H. pm) letterzines as well as the more recent Between Friends and Who Do We Trust Times. You can often find someone selling an old set if you keep your eyes open. I encourage you to write quality straight fiction, it's pretty clear that almost everyone enjoys a good straight story when they can get their hands on one.
- a fan, [C R], writes: ...if everyone likes straight stories so well, why aren't people writing them? I refuse to be the only one in an entire fandom writing straight stories. It's just not done...I'd kill for some good straight S&H stories. How's "TLC" coming, [April Valentine]? Is it turning out to be straight hurt/comfort or slash hurt/comfort? Which are people writing as opposed to what is being advertised for? And you readers, what are you looking for? Straight or slash? Action/adventure or hurt/comfort? I'm curious to see if there's a difference between what people are writing and what people want to read or whether it's all the same. How 'bout it, ladies?
Frienz 4 was published in June 1989 and contains 28 pages.
- TOTM: "Coffin"/"Shootout"—If you have to choose, which do you prefer? Compare/contrast realism, plotline, bad guys, time frame, h/c quotient. TEENY-TINY-TENDERS: These are the moments, minutes, and nuances that really touch, delight, and make you go "ahhh". FIRST SEASON, please. Here's an open invite to "get it off your chest or bust"! Tell us about ATTENTION MEDICO'S procedure errors. Also, any comments about Starsky's post S'Rev injuries, scars, ability to return to normal routines very welcome."
- the editor writes that she will be continuing the letterzine after issue #6 (the original run she'd promised) as response has been so good, but the catch-22 is if the response is good, the letterzine is bigger and more expensive -- she is not raising the cost of it, but is begging for cover art
- a fan writes of the fan casting she did for her zine No Easy Answers
- "How to Change a Typewriter Ribbon in One Easy Lesson" by MRK (fiction)
- "PARENTHETICALLY SPEAKING (An exercise in the art of a minor wallow) by Cindy Rancourt (fiction)
- Report from Left Field by Ima Fool
- "Doggone" by Pat Massie (fiction, part 2)
- "Play Misty for Me," part two, fiction by Pat Charles
- THE MENTAL VIDEO SHOW: Fanny Goes to the Laundromat, humorous vignette by Pat Massie
- JUST IMAGINE: Vingt-et-Un, part two, fiction by T. Beckett
- an essay by Janna Silverstein on the episode "Sweet Revenge"
- TEENY/TINY/TENDERS—The Very ESSENCE of S&H -- FIRST SEASON: "There are so many" by Maria Farina
- many, many fans compare and contrast the episodes "Shootout" and "A Coffin for Starsky"
- a fan writes: As for you, [T], from your letter I judge you to be a very silly person and I think I like you! What is it about Brits anyway? I just found another beautiful beautiful wallow called "Decorated for Death" which kept me in ecstasy at a Blake's 7 con, for crying out loud! How can you Brits write such wonderful h/c and yet so far as I know there's practically none on your television shows? The Professionals had such great promise but no h/c at all! Lot's of hurt, but... Hope you keep it up, anyway!
- a fan responds to other's comments about S&H in historical settings: [T] and everyone: setting the characters down in past scenarios is always interesting. Everybody seems to be enjoying this ides, but it makes me wonder one thing—why did so many seem not to like it when the first couple of installments of "Lost" by Lynna Bright began to appear in THE FIX? Lots of you said it was really hard to get into the characters of Christian and Manfred—taking S&H out of L.A. made them not the guys we've learned to love, it was said. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad to see the apparent change in opinion and I know now that many of you have grown to love "Lost", but it did strike me as kinda odd. I guess once we get used to an idea, it's easier to expand on it.
- a fan comments on S&H in historical settings: ...dropping our boys into a historical period does require a knowledge of history—it's got to be done well to work.' It does depend on what you're aiming to do, though. The light-hearted stories are fine, provided one never thinks of them as historical. Fantasy...olde-tyme romance...fine. On that level, credibility isn't a consideration and one can just enjoy. But to set S&H in the recorded documented past is something else again. The values and truths inherent in their kind of friendship/relationship are, of course, always valid and may be found at any time or place in human affairs. But the modes of expression, the background style of the individual characters, their day-to-day assumptions, the 'furniture' of their minds, all the contemporary imagery—all these have to be so different from late-20th century L.A., that wisdom would suggest, as a minimum, the choice of different names. S&H somehow risk being lost in the whole process, though a kind of other time counterpart could be possible, perhaps, preferably, with different physical appearance. The characters themselves, apart from exemplifying a depths of relationship which some human beings, in all times, have been able to know, cannot, by definition, be S&H. I'm not sure that those two transplant so easily. We're still enriched by the characters we know in the inexhaustible scope of their own time. And we can still have a lot of fun with all those other stories.
- a fan asks another fan about her comments in the previous issue: And [T], again: what do you mean by saying you're jaded about S/H? You sound really down on it as a theme, and that perplexes me. I don't know if that's really what you meant to imply or not. Surely you don't disagree with the premise—if you did the characters would not be trying to jump into bed every time you tried to write about them. It is pretty difficult to write characters other than the way we see them—if you don't see them as lovers, it's nigh onto impossible to get them to act that way, and visa versa. Speaking of NEA—[J] got her copy (Saturday), so I'm hoping I'll have mine in hand by Monday as this letter is going out. I'm very anxious (to put it mildly) to have a good read! I hope you get lots of LoC's once we all have a chance to get our hot little hands on your story.
- a fan remembers the not-so-good-olden days: like you I can remember the 'drivers' who made things so difficult for neo-fans- Frankly, fandom is a nicer place without such people. It's credit to us that we hung in there and didn't let ourselves be 'driven'!
- a fan writes about some drawerfic and straight stories: about those straight stories that no one is writing any more. It has been brought to my mind that Chris and I wrote about a dozen straight SH stories before we got into fandom. A couple of them have been published—KILLING GROUND, QUIET COUNTRY WEEKEND—once we'd rewritten extensively. Where are the rest, you cry? I'm ahead of you. They're not good enough. Really. That isn't false modesty. In our defence, let me say we wrote them without the benefits of VTR, of fannish feedback—we thought we were on our own. So they're more or less a form of shorthand mnemonic for our own mental video shows. Some of the ideas weren't too bad—they get recycled. But I have no intention of publishing them. If you don't believe me about the lack of quality, ask Tabby. She was too kind to criticise, but she'll know what I'm talking about. So... maybe the other straight story writers are still hiding their lights under bushels? Your other point of communication—I've found that men are much less able to communicate on an intimate level—which would fit with the difficulties we see in fourth season...
- a fan says she prefers straight stories: I believe Starsky and Hutch love each other, but not physically. If they did, their relationship would be so different than any other sexual relationship. But it is different - noble even. (That's a word I haven't heard in a long time. I guess it went wherever "chivalry" went.) Anyway, I see "pure love" here.
- a fan writes: SHareCon was FUN! The "Starsky & Hutch Party" took place March 17–19 in Md and was a warm, casual, mutual give-and-take. All attendees freely mingled, shared precious collections, personal histories, read stories, made food runs. We viewed and discussed episodes, played trivia, "pin the wound on Starsky" (a sick bunch, no?) and "psychodrama" - re-enactments of key scenes from certain episodes(such fun playing a "dead" Gillian!). We were able to dub long-sought tapes and copy articles; we even welcomed 2 new fans, which is always encouraging, but the highlight for me, however, was the discovery, after 13 years, that H calls S "Babe" in Shootout!! How could I have missed such an exquisite moment all these years??!! I'm ecstatic to know about it now, though!! Everyone present seemed to enjoy themselves and I sincerely hope we'll have another one to look forward to next year ...
- a fan writes about putting ambiguity in her fanfiction so that zines will publish it: Jumping into the discussion of slash vs. non-slash stories, I still write straight stories. In fact, contrary to what some think, everything I write is straight. But I find myself often adding elements of ambiguity simply to make sure the stories get published. I've had stories rejected because they weren't slash and the editors felt their readers wouldn't be interested. And when most zines requesting submissions are identified as slash, it can get pretty tough for those of us who prefer to write straight.
- a fan ruminates on fandom: ...many zines, cons and friends later, I've discovered that there's a chemistry not just between our dear partners, but between ourselves. We've created, in the friendships we've made in fandom, the kind of friendship we watch and enjoy so much in Starsky and Hutch, the kind of "go-for-it-at-all-costs" friendship that is so well portrayed in "Sweet Revenge": the love, the sharing, the trust, the nurturing and growth that good friendship inspires. Those kinds of friendships are very rare—and very sweet indeed.
Frienz 5 was published in August 1989 and contains 16 pages.
- this issue has much discussion (the TOTM) about the character of Kenneth Hutchinson (background, what makes him tick...)
- "Cool Blue" (poem) by uncredited
- "Shootout," vignette by Ima Fool
- "Alternate Interpretations," fiction by MRK
- "P.O.V." "by KH as told to Pat Massie" (Hutch writes about Starsky)
- "More Magic Moments"—2nd Season Teeny/Tiny/Tenders by Maria Farina, memorable tidbits from season two
- a fanwriter says: I too am hoping for LoCs on NEA—the few I've had so far have been interesting reading. 5 to 2 in favour, which is gratifying... Speaking of sequels—to those of you who want to know where the sequel to NEA is—ARE YOU KIDDING? The RED LIGHT trilogy is now complete and that universe is closed. Any other SH we write will be set in an alternate time-frame. This is one of the reasons I love fanfic—it's possible to do this kind of thing. Every story can start afresh, which we can't do with our real lives. There's always another 'what if...' around the corner in fanfic!
- a fan is eager for more fiction:
- dependent on her 13 episodes on tape, and the fact that (like so many other fans) re-runs of the show are non-existent where she lives, a fan is struggling with the TOTM: I need some help. The TOTM is Hutch, and I can't write about him because I don't know much about him. Most of what I know about him I learned from this l/z and from the few zines I've collected so far.
- more canon?: Hmmm... though I've always thought a revival movie of S&H would fall short of our expectations, to say nothing of negating hundreds of post S'REV stories, something in me would love to see them together again in the proposed ABC MYSTERY MOVE segments.
- a fan is interested in some origin fanon: I wonder where we could trace the first appearance in fan-fiction of the widely-held (and also convincing) theory that father was with the NYPD. In 'Zebra Three'#4, [Melanie R] has a story - 'Join Me in L.A.' - which refers to the NY past. Is that the first such reference? It's interesting to meet a new and different idea.
- regarding the story by Lynna Bright: Lost: For me, 'LOST' came suddenly alive in' the last issue. I don't know why. I started believing in the characters as themselves and not as S&H playing fantasy. Don't get me wrong—playing fantasies is fine, and I have fun with the idea. But I believe in Christian and Manfred now, and I'd want to know what happens even if they weren't S&H. Which is about the highest compliment I can give, I think. As for S/H—maybe it's post-zine-itis. You know, the feeling that you really never want to put together another zine ever ever again? I have no trouble at all with the premise, as anyone can see, but I'd like now and again to read a taut, well-plotted story where they aren't trying to get each other into bed on every other page. Preferably where the idea hasn't even entered their pointy little heads. But where there's lots of caring and good relationship stuff.
- a fan comments on Decorated for Death: Maybe we Brits write such good h/c because we don't get it on the screen. You know, sort of as a compensation? DFD was a milestone in fanfic, I think just wish Jill would write the sequel she promised me!
- a fan looks back at some very early fanfiction: I enjoyed those stories you mention as I'm sure others also did, and would still. I checked back to all the (invited) comment I'd offered (almost a young book!) - filed with the stories,and would still say now, as then, that the narrative seat, the gift for telling a story, produced some satisfying reading. I'm not sure about 'lack of quality'...Maybe, like a lot of fan-fiction, they kept close, in characterization, to the studio handout with its calculated, strong contrasts but I'm sure that all the positive greatly outweighed any reservations. They're very readable and I have an affection for them. Not just sentimental. They do reflect that response of First Season. The Way They Were.
Frienz 6 was published in October 1989 and contains 20 pages
- TOTM: This is the 'Catch Up' (no, not ketchup) issue. Fill-in the blanks of those topics you haven't had time-space for. Also, there were some recent absolutely great phrases in the last issues that may suggest humor topics: "THE ESOTERIC COP CODE"; "IS STARSKY'S FRAMISTAN ON THE LEFT OR THE RIGHT? and "THE FURNITURE OF THEIR MINDS".
- "Vingt-et-un" part four, fiction by T. Beckett
- "P.O.V.", fiction by Pat Massie (Hutch expounds on Starsky)
- "The True Tale of Two Torinos" by Laura Scarsdale, non-fiction about finding and owning a Torino
- "Remember," fiction by Betsy Barr
- "Rebuttal, P.O.V." fiction by David Michael Starsky (as told to his typewriter) by MRK
- Forum: Image Busters by Tabby Davis (don't typecast the characters, when did they start to deviate from TPTB's vision?)
- episode titles in German
- "Living with AIDS" lyrics by Ron Romanovsky and Paul Phillips, plus talk of the tragedy faced by the Glaser family, discussion of the AIDS quilt (which fans are encouraged to work on during ZCon)
- regarding fanon and older fanfiction: A lot of fan-fiction, too, has stayed closely with the original simplifications— and is, of course, none the worse for that. Readable, re-readable, enjoyable. The earlier fanzines don't lose their special quality and appeal. The emergence of new interpretations reminds us that there's a place for all kinds. One kind doesn't exclude another.
- a fan is feeling... out-classed: I've debated with myself long and wide about whether I should write again. All the comments I read in the past issues of FRIENDZ were intelligent, meaningful, witty and/or fun- And I'm just a daft little sod.
- a British fan writes: I could really empathize with [B], her situation is so close to what mine once was. I'd read all those earliest SH L/Zs, garnering fact, speculation, comment—without actually having seen most episodes. One - just one - motive which prompted a pilgrimage to California in 1980 was the need to watch The Fix and other episodes, which BBC, for its own strange reasons, has never shown us, and to try to do something to make them available to the underprivileged fans over here.
- regarding fanart: I think no art is better than awful art, but then awfulness is a matter of taste, and artists do improve if you'don't stomp tneir tender egos. Everyone is a critic, even if most of us can't even hold a pencil. Some of my favorite SH zines haven't even had artwork... But some of my favorite artwork doesn't need a story. Clear as mud?
- regarding old drawerfic: Well, I dunno -- you can try ganging up on me and Chris for 'not sharing' those ancient attempts at writing SH... But you'd have to be real hungry to enjoy them. Kind of like getting served old dry bread when you expected French Toast? I looked at a few of them the other day while looking for something else entirely...and I stick by my opinion. For first tries, they are not all terrible. They even have the odd good bit, which by now has been recycled. But they don't stand up to close scrutiny....I'd hesitate to say that the only way fandom could enjoy them now would be to laugh at the awful howlers we perpetrated because we didn't know any better, but honestly, the thought of all that rewriting turns me cold... Still not convinced? Okay, I'll bite the bullet and give you a few plot outline's! aid then tell me you-all want to read 'em. Get this. IDENTIKILL (good title, I grant you) has Starsky accused of murdering a girlfriend. It takes thirty pages to establish it was a ringer. ARCTURUS RISING involved a mildly crazy guy who thought he was being menaced by aliens from Outer Space. (I liked this one, I confess. The idea of Starsky impersonating a tomcat in someone's backyard appealed to me.)  In this one the lads also made the acquaintance of two sisters who had telepathic tendencies, which trait was to come in useful in EGO ASSASSIN, which I flinch to relate is so over the top it has disappeared. Probably into orbit. That had Starsky being kidnapped and programmed a la Manchurian Canditate. Hutch had to shoot him. God, I'm blushing at the thought. Then there was SOUL BROTHER, in which an old Academy Buddy turned up (and got killed) and CANTERBURY TALE, where they acted as protection for a rock star... Now if you're thinking that this lot sounds as if we took all the aired plots and some of our favourite movies and tossed them in a bag and hauled them out by the handful, you might not be far from the truth. In our defence, I have to say that we didn't know fandom existed, and so they were Just For Us. I don't suppose there's any defence for the fact that we kept putting poor Starsky through the wringer... He'd have been a basket-case by the time we were through... I hope this soul-baring classifies as therapeutic, because I have succeeded in embarrassing myself thoroughly here. I suppose it would be possible to resurrect some of this old stuff and dust it off, but—what editor would be brave enough to print it? You'd all be demanding your money back! 'They can write better than this!' you'd cry, and you'd be right. Actually, this does bring me on to another related topic, based on a loC recently received. Why do we write what we write? Why the 'realism' instead of 'romance'? (Particularly as so many want the 'romance'!) The answer has to be that we write the kind of stuff we want to read. We have to believe in the validity of what we write. Our highest praise is to say 'I wish I'd written that'. And we share what we write only if we think it's the best we can do. Fandom is composed of reasoning and highly-literate adults, and so we try for quality adult writing, as with NEA...
- a fan writes of the fiction she has contributed to the letterzine: Now, as for VINGT-ET-UN -- my mind, like the Bellman's map, is a complete blank. For the straight version, that is. The X-rated alternate is another matter, but Pat can't put that in a g-rated 1/z, and I don't want to be accused of rocking what is at present a most stable and unsinkable boat. So how's this for a compromise? If you want the straight stuff, continue crossing your fingers that I don't run out of inspiration. If you want SOMETHING ON ACCOUNT, write to me, or to Jody Lynn Nye. I'll ask her to xerox copies, and you can drop her a couple of bucks for postage and costs. (Any excess pennies will go to the Lemon Aid Fund, which has been able to contribute considerably to various charities close to our hearts. I'll list 'em one day, just so you know!)
- a fan writes of a piece of unfinished drawerfic another fan had been working on called "Driftwood": She got as far as having Starsky lying in the Hutchinson family bathroom (or one of them) bleeding quietly to death. HE'S STILL THERE. By now a withered husk! Since she began the story seven years ago, it could rival BIRD OF PARADISE as a no-show. Maybe we should point this out to her...
Frienz 7 was published in December 1989 and contains 24 pages.
- TOTM: Holiday stuff. C'iron [B], send us that Hanukkah story! Also, Zcon reports, song lyrics, vignettes, and, of course, comments on the S&H XMAS episode, LITTLE GIRL LOST.
- the editor notes that 20 issues of this letterzine are to UK subscribers
- "A S/H Christmas, (or 'Fowl Play')" fiction by Betsy Barr
- "Vingt-et-un," fiction, part 5 by Terri Beckett
- "Teeny/Tiny/Tenders" for season three by Maria Farina
- "Answers for My Lonely Soul," poem by Pat Massie
- "No Apologies, No Cigar," poem by Lucy Cribb Walk
- "Rebuttal," fiction by MRK, another in the "P.O.V." series in which Starsky and Hutch write letters to fans/readers explaining why they act like they do
- an ad for Zircon, an ad for RevelCon
- a long con report for ZCon #9 by Ruth Kurz
- other recollections of ZCon
- from the editor: Frienz, I need your help. I need to know if you want this publication to continue. I need feedback. I need response. I need letters. Without you, FRIENZ CANNOT continue. AS you can see, the format of this issue is a bit different. This change not only shows just how few letters we received, but also highlights this fine story by B. Barr. This lovely holiday moment breaks our non-"/" policy a bit. It is not graphic, however, but it is definitely "/". So, if you don't enjoy that premise, read ahead to the next contribution.... Well, that's enough begging. I've prostrated myself enough before the altar of your neglect. (Grovel, Grovel) I'm committed thru issue #9. And, I need more than those regulars (ie. Farina, Davis, Beckett, [MRK]) to make this baby viable. I've received locs and renewal checks that say you like to read FRIENZ, but without the contributions...YOURS...in the form of a LOC, VIGNETTE, CARTOON, ARTICLE, OPINION, SUGGESTION, GRIPE, SNIDE REMARK, INSULT, LETTER BOMB... these pages will become blank, silent, and cancelled. I'd really hate FRIENZ and S&H FANDOM to become the dead letter office, wouldn't you?
- a fan is puzzled: The 'violence' that so many mundanes associate with S&H always puzzled me -- I still have the correspondence from the BBC 'explaining' why they would not be showing THE FIX or the other three 'banned' episodes. Their reasons didn't make any sense to me then, nor do they now, when the screened violence has escalated to a point when the most 'violent' S&H scene would be mild by comparison.
Frienz 8 was published in March 1990 and contains 20 pages. At this point, the letterzine has just under 50 subscribers.
- from the editor: Hello to all of you out there and many thanks for the great response to the editorial letter last issue. I've heard from some new voices and from some new subscribers and also from some old-timers. This all made me feel like you really do like me. Okay, so I sound like Sally Field, but I was definitely having editor angst there around Christmas/Hannukah. From your response, I feel inspired to carry on this project and am committing to ISSUES 10-11-12. I think there are still things to say, not only about SH, but about ourselves as fans, as writers, as readers, and as women. Your renewals will show me how interested you are in the future of FRIENZ.... FRIENZ, WE HAVE VOICES... LET'S USE THEM. Let's talk about who we are, what we like, what we think, what we read, what we watch on video, what we listen to, what we care about... WHO WE ARE.
- "I Am More Desirous of the Passionate Embrace of Life Even Now as I Decay," poem by Pat Massie
- "The End of Love," fiction by Leah S.
- untitled vignette by Jackie Wagner
- "Vingt-et-un," part six, by Terri Beckett
- a fan writes: I have not read such a splendid grovel (as demonstrated by ye ed) for many years. Very touching it was. I was immediately stricken with guilt and had to go and lie down for half an hour. Of course, Pat is quite right. If we want to want to see Frienz continue then we do. have to contribute although, to be fair, those who do not write letters are making a contribution simply by having a subscription to the letterzine. It would be just as unsatisfactory if fourteen people wrote letters but those same fourteen people were the only ones to be buying the zine. All the S&H letterzines over the years have been entertaining, thought-provoking and instructive. But, more than the sum of those things, they have kept members of fandom in touch with one another and that has to be the most important thing of all. For that reason alone I should like to see Frienz continue, and I hope that it receives enough support to keep it going for a few more issues at least.
- a fan writes of lack of feedback from two perspectives: I confess! I am one of the non-writing culprits. I feel horribly guilty, and will commit ritual suicide as soon as I finish this letter, okay? There's no why except terminal laziness. I still love the boys, I still love to get Frienz, and I just haven't been doing my part lately. That's why Terri doesn't have an NEA LOC from me yet. I kept wanting to do a good job of it, I was going to reread it to refresh my memory, and well, you know.... It's not just a distance problem either, Carol and Merle are local, I loved Shadowplay, but I haven't written yet. As to [M's] question of why or why not LOC's, I can tell you from an author's and an editor's POV that they are wonderful. By whining continuously, we managed to elicit fewer than ten LOC's on Lifeline. We had a print run of 150. Nonetheless, the responses we got were encouraging, and most went into a deeper analysis than "I liked it," we were very pleased to pass these along to the authors.
- a fan writes: Oh, Lawd, I can't stand it! The thought of Pat waiting fruitlessly beside her mailbox in the bleak midwinter... Move over, Tiny Tim! Please, please, PLEASE everybody write letters? Then Pat will die happy, crushed under the weight of our deathless prose as it pours from the postman's hands. DoweWANTa1/z? Well, yes, naturally, it goes without saying, or we wouldn't be buying this, would we? I guess the question has to be What arewewi11ingtodotokeepitgoing? If your answer,like mine, was 'just about anything', then FRIENZ is gonna continue into the new decade with lots of new correspondents. Okay?... Or do you really want to read a skinny little l/z every time? Huh?... It has been often said that you get out of fandom as much as you put into it. This isn't strictly true -- I've certainly got far more out of fandom that I could ever have contributed -- but let's face it, no one likes to write into a vacuum. Without 1/zs, Cons, LoCs, without FEEDBACK, fandom withers. It doesn't die, not while we hoard our tapes and zines and dreams, but it can't flourish. I want it to flourish. We all do, don't we? Well, it CAN'T without YOU.
- the author of the Vas & Dex stories has been encouraging fans to write her distributor about a story, but isn't getting the response she wants: Also, as Jody reports a dearth of interest in SOMETHING ON ACCOUNT, anyone who wants it had better write direct to me, then I can see if it's worth putting my private fantasies down on paper!
- a fan writes: There's a lot to be said for LOCs. Next best thing to direct, face-to-face discussion, and in some ways, more satisfying than reviews. They serve different purposes, but the scope of an LOC may offer more immediacy. Reviews may require more concise, abbreviated treatment: LOCs can spread themselves, enter into more detail and dialogue (hopefully) between writer and reader. Reviews are fine—especially when everyone is clear that they can be no more and no less than one person's opinion among any number of valid opinions. A' review' which(a) summarizes story-line and (b) indicates reviewer's preferences doesn't make the most interesting reading or take us very far. Reviewing makes big demands—if it is to be competent - concerning adequate terms of reference. Could mean there's even more to be said for LOCs.
- a fan writes: You've shamed me into writing at last. I have been part of this fandom almost from the beginning, and my conscience tells me I've not been playing fair recently, in failing to contribute in any material way... Personally, I would prefer FRIENZ to continue as a letterzine, or at least with part devoted to letters. Some fiction is always welcome (thank you, Betsy, for the lovely Christmas story in this issue), but letters are a way of snaring thoughts, ideas, reminiscing about the episodes and finding new interpretations of certain scenes and aspects of the characters. Clearly this can only work if people actually write letters, and I'm hanging my head, and endorse every one of the points made in your editorial. Obviously we have all become too complacent, too ready to sit back and enjoy, leaving the participating to others. I would hate to see the l/z fold, and can only hope others will have been stirred into action, and put pen to paper.
- a fan writes: Yes, those who create, no matter how insignificant others believe the creation to be, like a little feedback. In the case of fandom's response to said creations we're talking about LOCs. No, I am not going to scream and shout; I am just as guilty as the next person when it comes to not sitting down and writing to a zine ed. Merle and I got no LOCs on 'Good Kisser', nor did we expect any. When I got promises from people at Zebra that they would send LOCs for SHADOWPLAY, my natural instinct was not to hold my breath. Luckily, I didn't. I will not pretend that no LOCs trickled in, we did get 5. I suppose we should be thrilled. Now, in case no one knows what happens to LOCs when a zine editor gets them—this is the accepted route. They are xeroxed and passed on to the contributors (unless there is a notation that the LOCer wishes otherwise). They don't even have to be signed. The reason LOCs are important is not so much the fact that the editors see that fandom is completely indifferent to their work if they don't get any, but it is usually the only way the authors get any feel for what those reading their pieces thought about them. How else can they judge what people are interested in reading? How will they know if they're on the right track? Why the hell should they bother to continue writing if no one cares? Will there be a SHADOWPLAY 2? I doubt it. We're doing' Flesh Wound' not only for the fun of it, (there isn't that much work involved in an unedited publication aside from typing), but we're hoping to make up some of the money that we lost in our larger zine. Profit? I dare anyone to find one. Speaking of 'What Do You Mean It's Only a Flesh Wound', we have three stories so far. Our deadline is the Ides of March. If you'd like to see this thing published, some of you might think of submitting some stories. We've badgered all the folks in our immediate area and gotten promises, (and that's as good as the story in hand), but we'd like to hear from some of you other authors out there. In case anyone missed our ad in SNITCH, this is going to be another FRIENZ size, unedited goodie. Will you get to read an LOC on your work? Well, I won't promise a thing.
- a fan writes: I want to see FRIENZ continue. To keep Pat happy (and too busy to get into any trouble!). To continue a letterzine in fandom. But do I want to do what it takes (write in) to keep it going? In all honesty, not really. I'm at a "passive" stage in this fandom... I still like to read what's being said, but I don't feel any urge to write in with my own opinions. Since I "Captained" the S&H Apa for over a year, I do know how frustrating it is to try to keep something going with few contributors. The obvious problem with S&H fandom is that there's noting new coming out, and neither of our beloved actors are doing much acting in other new things, either. Since most of us have been involved in this fandom for some time, this means we've run out of much that is new or insightful to say. In my own case, I've also had a resurgence in my love of my first fandom, Star Trek, this past year, and added to lots of stress at work, I generally only have enough time to feel much real involvement in one fandom, which is ST for me, for now. I'm sorry about it, because there are lots of wonderful women in this fandom, but that's how things are from my perspective.
- where's Penny Warren when you need her? By the way, Pat, I don't think it's your breath, interest waning, or fandom being dead. The problem is we don't have a Penny Warren. What you need is to get someone to say something so off-the-wall that no one can resist writing in to explain in long and loving detail why said person is an idiot and an asshole. In all probability, neither side will be right, but you can have a really good fight. Nothing perks up a letterzine like vengeance, hatred, and vitriol. Don't like that idea? Then why not try a prize for the letter with the most typos. Maybe a free issue or the movie rights to" Judge and Jury". My question is: is there anything left to write a letter about? After the original SH Letterzine, Between Friends, the Times, Hanky Panky, Intermission, and any other letter-type zines that I've omitted, do we have anything left to say in this form? It seems most of the original ideas are being crafted into stories—which is good, I'm not knocking it. Thankfully we've gone beyond the do-they-don't-they, anti and pro slash arguments that were a trademark of years gone by. But what are we going to replace them with? If the Dreaded SH TV Movie ever comes about, I'm sure that will engender some discussion, is there an interest in re-re-hashing the episodes? What do people want to talk about? What kind of letters do people want to read? Why have I rambled on for so long and not given you any answers?...
Frienz 9 was published in May 1990 and contains 20 pages
- LOC TOTM: Should we lift our G-rating? Should Beckett be allowed to finally give us that sex scene? What episode have you recently RE-viewed? FIC TOTM: "Spring Fling"—write an outdoor, off duty scene or vignette.
- "You Can Take this Backpack and...," fiction by Cinda Gillilan
- "Minnie's, fiction" by Oyella Dean
- another installment of "P.O.V." by MRK
- "A Special Place," vignette by Alison Wilson
- "Sometimes Spring," vignette by Pat Massie
- there are a number of con reports for SHareCon, see that page
- the editor writes: "CONTROL, THIS IS COOTIE-THREE!" I just had to use that. Someone came up with that saying at Sharecon 1990 this past March and made it up for me as a button. Somehow it seems to summarize ALL the fun and madness we had at that mini-con. It feels so good to be with other SH fans and friends and live together for a week-end that the post-con letdown is fierce at times... kind of like being separated from a co-joined twin, I think. If you've never gone to a con, you really ought to sometime to MEET and GET to KNOW other fen. You're ... none of us ... are alone out there. I have been getting the feeling lately of a bi-coastal fandom in S&H. The Westcoasters get together often and the Eastcoasters do so as well. That's great, but let's not get so cozy in our coastal groups that we forget there's a lot of other fans who are NEW to S&H, and NEW to fandom in general. Why not reach out to them when you see a new name in these pages? You can say hello in that letter you've been MEANING to write since #4. Also, some of our new frienz need episodes... desperately!!! These fen would be able to write US stories IF they had some episodes. And, with the show not being in any regular syndy market that I know of, we need to co-ordinate our efforts to get them at least several of the BEST ones. I am working on getting some kind of cloning network together. My problem is that my tapes are Beta and I have one VCR.
- a fan writes: I think a "G-rated" letterzine is refreshing. [April Valentine's] "Fix" accepts "/" material, so those who relate to that, can send subscriptions and submissions there. I know the thought is that those who don't believe the slash premise can just skip over writings dealing with the subject, but why does "/" have to permeate every S&H publication? Regardless, Frienz will continue to have my support, for it's a perfect mix of letters and fiction and a vital lifeline to fellow S&H fans.
- a fan ponders exclusivity and IDIC: Some interesting topics came up that last afternoon at SHareCon. One in particular is probably worth debating in these pages. Should SH fandom remain small, or should we be making an active effort to reach out to new people? It's already clear to me that one of the aspects of this fandom that nearly everyone likes is the special feeling of community that comes from belonging to a fandom in which everyone knows everyone else. I felt it myself at SHareCon. I felt like a long-lost sibling being welcomed back into a very large family. You don't find that a lot these days—it's definitely something I treasure. On the other hand, while SH fandom seems to be a prolific producer of zines and other products. I've read in these very pages about the lack of LOCs to zines, about low participation level in this letterzine, about too few submissions to proposed zines. Some new blood might help. Also, there is some concern among us that we are being deliberately exclusive. As we say in the computer biz is this a feature, or a bug? This growth issue is somewhat related to the TOTM: whether this letterzine should lift its G-rating. I've been a fan of K/S since the late 70's. Even though I wasn't into SH slash back then, to me it's a natural outgrowth of their evolving relationship. I think I've been comfortable with the idea of slash for so long that I no longer have a good appreciation of just how shocking the notion is to someone who has never considered it before. (Best response I've ever heard from an outraged neofan when the concept was explained: "Oh, leave it to Beaver!") In a larger fandom. those of us interested in slash have learned to be cautious about we say in mixed audiences. We have lost some of our freedom of expression. One of the things that impressed me the most at SHareCon was how well the pro-slash and anti-slash fans (if I may use those somewhat bellicose terms) co-existed and respected each other's views. Never have I seen a better example of Trek IDIC. I think one of the reasons it works in SH fandom is because it is so small; everyone is valued as an individual. Thai's something that tends to gel lost in larger fandoms.
- a fan wants to know if remaining a small, closed fandom vs a larger, more well-known one is worth the challenges, and she brings up, for the first time in a Starsky & Hutch letterzine, the Internet: The growth question comes up in part because of an offer I made to Pat Massie to publicize this letterzine on the Internet, a wide-area computer network that reaches hundreds of universities and organizations world-wide. (If any of you are affiliated in any way with a college or university, there is a fair chance that you have access to the Internet newsgroups.) In the year or so that I've been reading the Internet newsgroups. I've never seen any mention of SH. But I'll bet there are plenty of people out there who remember it and who love the boys just like we do. If we do decide to grow, we face some challenges that other fandoms don't. Most people haven't seen SH in over ten years. It's difficult to remember the episodes in any detail. And since the show isn't being aired anywhere, it's hard to get people caught up with fandom as it exists here and now. Fan fiction demands an intimate knowledge of the episodes, whether you're a reader or a writer. I picked up a new Beauty & the Beast letterzine titled Tunneltalk during a brief excursion I made to Fan-Out, the media con that was being held across the street from SHareCon. I haven't digested the whole thing yet. but I did read a really interesting letter from Victoria Clark (of ST zine Nome fame) on the nature of fandom. She proposes that television is modern folklore, accurately reflecting the society which created it, and that we, the fans, are folklorists who have accepted the responsibility of keeping it alive and nurturing it. Rather than be ashamed of our interest in a television show, we should be proud, for we are continuing a tradition that has existed for millennia. Food for thought the next time someone says "You're into what?" and a factor to be weighed as we consider the growth question.
- a traveling suggestion: audio!: Here's an idea to help make those long plane, train or automobile trips seem shorter: audio tape your favorite SH episode and listen to it on the car cassette player or on a Walkman. If you've never listened to just the audio portion of the show, you'll be amazed at how much of the video your mind remembers when prompted only by the sound. I'll be taking "Coffin" and "Shootout" with me as I drive the New Jersey turnpike this summer.
- aside from a few exceptions, fans equate "G-rating" with "straight" fiction: I'd like to see the G-rating on the L/Z lifted, slash is a fact of S&H fandom and as such should not be ignored. However, I know there are those who would like to keep the G-rating - each to his/her own. Maybe we could settle for something half-way between the two. For example, Betsy's story in the Christmas issue was definitely S/H, but surely can't have offended anyone. S/H isn't just about explicit sex as some anti-S/Hers seem to think.
- a fan weighs in on "G-rated" and "allowing slash" in the letterzine: Should the G rating be lifted on this l/z? I thought that was done in #7, sort of, considering the slash story (which was fun reading even though I'm not into slash. Love Starsky's sweatshirt!). I assume that question is meant mainly to mean whether or not to allow slash references or fiction with explicit scenes. Well, since I'm not into slash, I'd prefer that this 1/z stay straight. However, if the majority of votes go for allowing slash, I'll accept that. I do have two requests though. One: Can we eliminate explicit stuff? Two: Most importantly, in the interests of peace and having this 1/z continue in a healthy state, if slash is allowed, let's be mature and "agree to disagree". I don't want this 1/z to turn into a war zone of bitter verbal hostility between those who believe in slash and those who don't (which seemed to happen to the original S&H l/z, from what I've heard).
- a fan writes of slash in the letterzine, and offers one of her stories up to fans who would like to continue it on their own: I imagine the G-rating may be a restriction for some, but I don't mind it. After all, there are still fans out there who don't subscribe to the S/H premise and don't want it rammed down their throats on every page of the 1/z... We've gone past the arguments, thankfully, as Carol says -- we don't need to thrash out the yes-they-do, no-they-don't possibilities. What do we talk about instead? Speaking personally, I just ramble on about anything that springs to mind. As for this sex-scene -- WHAT sex scene? To date, it does not exist on paper, and may never do so, so I hope no one is holding their breath... Likewise Part VII of VINGT-ET-UN. Anyone else want to take it up? Feel free.
- a fan addresses another's letter from the previous issue: You made a point when you said we don't have a Penny Warren. Not that I ever found her letters irritating or even off-the-wall -- but they certainly made you think! Whether we have another such in our ranks, as yet undiscovered, is something we'll have to wait and see... I'd rather not fight,however. I'm basically a pacifist-type.
Frienz 10 was published in July 1990 and contains 20 pages.
- FICTION TOTM: "HOT" (It's July; it's true love; it's a stake-out in the dessert; the AC is broken and you're feeling decidedly DC; Capt. Dobey's emotional state as he reads your latest 'flashy' report got it? WRITE IT!) NOTE: I will print '/' of a non-explicit nature and will let non-'/' readers know to avoid it. TV TOTM (SUGGESTED BY [M R K]:) Best Buns Shot from an episode use good journalistic style, WHO-WHAT-WHEN...ha!
- "Dessert Song," fiction by Oyella Dean
- "Caitlin," fiction by Alison Wilson
- "Castles in the Sand (Fall into the Sea... Eventually)," poem by Pat Massie
- moving on to better tech: It's only in recent years that I've had a VCR and certainly know the enjoyment to be found in listening to audio-tapes of episodes, it's all I had for a long time.
- a mention, and glimpse, into the future: I'd love to get some info on internet from you, too!
- a fan writes: I certainly want FRIENZ to continue. It's just that with all our lives so busy it's difficult to make deadlines and keep up with all the necessary fannish correspondence. I always enjoy receiving FRIENZ in the mail and read eagerly keep up with all the news of fandom. I think that we've always discussed the size of this fandom and worried about whether it's dying out. But if the enthusiasm of SHarecon is any indication, to say nothing about the fact that I'm continuing to get stories to publish for my zines, we aren't in ay real trouble. Everything goes through stages. Right now, like Starsky says in "Missives", we seem to do more phone calling than letter writing. And those of us who live in areas where there are lots of other fen, as we do here in the Baltimore-Washington area, are lucky—we can hang out together, watch episodes and chat about the characters as much as we want. It's a shame some people are more scattered and don't have any local fan friends to share tapes, zines and talk with. That's why we do still need letterzines.
- a fan was frustrated by the popularity and focus of ZCon: I sent my money in for Zcon '91 and am told I am #11 on the waiting list. 175 people are already signed up, which is the maximum, and the editor of the S&H l/z gets her money in one year and several months in advance and I'm put on a waiting list. What I wonder is...who are those 175 fans, surely not all S&H fans? So, unless the folks ahead of me die or something, the S&H l/z will not even be represented at Zcon. I am somewhat...uh, disturbed by all of this and wonder if anyone else is on a waiting list? Also, has Zcon changed for you? Or, is it still fun? Why do you go? Surely not for the S&H programming, it gets worse every year. The people? And, if it is the people, why not have our own S&H only con established (like SHareCon) and leave Zcon to the professional con promoters and vendors. Yes, I'm hot, but that is the TOTM, isn't it?
- a fan and zined describes LoCs and why feedback is important: You're the one we're writing for! You are knowledgeable about the characters, you know what you like and don't like... as much as anyone who purchases and reads a zine. Everyone's opinion is valuable to us. And since we don't get paid in money for the work of writing these things, letters of comment are all the more desperately wanted. It's the only payment we receive. To know someone liked our story, to find out that they were moved by it, enjoyed it, even disagreed with it... that's the icing on the cake. For someone like me who does write, crafting a story is a pleasure in and of itself. I do it because I still have things to say about these characters and because I enjoy expressing those ideas on paper. I could keep all my stories in my bottom desk drawer, happy to have done them for their own sake, but that's somehow not enough. I publish them and then sit back and wait for some kind of reaction. And when it isn't forthcoming, it's a terrible disappointment. People are always asking for new stuff to read, but we don't know how our work is being received. If nobody sends letterbombs, we figure okay, it must not have been too awful. And we write the next story, and wait again. If there is silence, it begins to feel that publishing zines is a terribly thankless task.... You don't have to have a degree in literary criticism, just send your thoughts. We would get more out of it if you say a little more than "I loved the whole zine", but at least that's a start.
- regarding slash and this letterzine: Our G rating? I don't thin stories in FRIENZ need to be explicit. There are plenty of places for that, and since this zine is read by all, we don't need another publication where we have to "warn" people about stories they might not want to read before they begin them. As I've always said, if you don't read any slash at all, you miss a good portion of SH fiction. (If all you know of slash, by the way, is KS, you should know that it bears little resemblance to S/H fiction.) Anyway, some people see the relationship as more intimate, others as simply friends, but we all care about the Relationship, don't we? So if someone writes a story that includes the slash premise but isn't graphic, I think it should be included in FRIENZ. [M], I know you see it the relationship the other way, but don't say you wish "/" wouldn't "permeate" all our publications. It's not a matter of any "side" taking over. As much as I welcome non-slash material for FIX, I would like to think slash was welcome in FRIENZ, too. There should be both types of stories in this letterzine. (There are in THE FIX, too. Friendship stories are always welcome, though I do receive more "/". But hey, I can't print what I don't get, can I?) There's room for us all here—this fandom would shrink if there were to be a big schism again.
- a fan writes: I hope 1 haven't ruined anyone's summer by not continuing with VINGT-ET-UN. I just ran out of ideas, I'm afraid. Printable ones, anyway. Once, very late at night, I did play around with some alternatives for Part VII... The Count pulls the trigger. A flag pops out of the end of the pistol, with 'BANG' written in large friendly letters thereon. The Englishman falls dead... Or -- the Count pulls the trigger. The gun fires. Hutchinson lunges, and the ball zips neatly through the fabric of his shirt, merely grazing the skin, and then he bears the Count to the floor under his weight and... Ah, yes, well, that's another story. As I said last issue, if anyone cares to speculate on what happens next, feel free. Betty -- Cinda -- I'm pleased you enjoyed it as far as it went, anyway!
- a fan writes of her original character series: I was deeply touched to see that our own Vas and Dex have made it into the 'featured fandoms' at the S&H 15-year Anniversary Con... The only team who aren't and never have been on the screen.
- a fan tells another: A word of reassurance for [A]. The arguments that once raged over '/' are, hopefully, dead and buried. The issue is no longer up for discussion in the sense that it once was. Over the years we have learned tolerance, and now agree to disagree in the nicest possible way. Fandom is certainly better for that.
- regarding the "closed" aspects of SH fandom: ...in the case of S&H fandom, small is beautiful. That's not to say we don't welcome new people. I'm sure we've never consciously sought to be exclusive. Yet, I'll admit a smaller, close-knit group attracts me more than the idea of a vast, impersonal fandom. However, there must still be fans of the show out there, who don't know we exist. They could provide us with a needed boost, even rekindle enthusiasm.
- fandom outreach?: Should we try to expand fandom? Well, I often wonder how many people there are around who love S&H as much as us, and have never even heard of fandom. Knowing how much it's given me, I feel sad that they are missing out on so much. Fandom could bring so much to them and they could bring so much to fandom. On the other hand, I do feel special belonging to a group that people seem to enter by first knowing someone who's already discovered it.
- should SH fandom remain small?: How small is small? Guess it should be as large as people want it to be, and it readily expands to welcome all who want to participate. And there's no single, definitive-type fan. And no password. Should we actively try to reach new people? Betsy suggested one possible way to do that. I'm not quite sure how it can be done otherwise than by publicising projects/interests/activities in fan publications and by extending a very warm welcome to anyone who's interested as/when we learn of their existence. There must be some sort of grapevine? I hear constantly from people who are discovering or re-discovering the delights ef S&H and who want to know more. SNITCH does a great job there. Just one name, one address, is often the key to so much more for anyone who wants to know more. That was my own experience ... years ago... Maybe finding an address was just a lucky chance, but I think it was more a real interest which set me searching and asking.
Frienz 11 was published in September 1990 and contains 20 pages.
- a review of Bonaventure, see that page
- subscriber stats: there are 35 US members and 21 UK members
- TOTM: Zcon—does it still mean S&H? Do we need it as a fandom? TAG SCENES—your favorites.
- the editor writes: I am unable to personally answer correspondence from you due to time limitations. As some of you know, I owe you letters dating back to 1976. I am sorry about this because I do enjoy talking to you. I can, however, answer you in these pages and will always reply to any correspondence regarding the lz. Also, in any letters requiring a reply please SASE.
- a fan gives a brief history of the beginnings of SH fandom: I think I can provide some of that historical perspective. The fandom was born several years before 2'Con (5-79). At ST America in 9-76, the editors of Rigel, Carol Ann Lee and Vicki James, were urging ST fans to watch S&H. By 5-77, at SeKWesterCon Too, there was already an S&H room. One night I watched S&H off-TV slides there with Lorraine Bartlett, etc. Connie Faddis might have been one of the etc., as she'd gotten hooked on the show in early Dec. of '76. I don't know about Teri White. The "others" probably included Laurie Haldeman. There were also S&H rooms at ST Philadelphia (7-77) and T'Con (3-78).
- a fan writer complains about lack of feedback:
- a new fan wants to know something: Does anyone know if the majority of S&H fans are straight or slash? I would dare to guess straight, although I know S&H as a series was considered "a slash lover's dream" by many. I ask because straight S&H fiction is now much rarer than slash. What is the main reason for this?
- regarding the letterzine's future content: On the question of 'G' or 'R' rating for FRIENZ -- after mature consideration, I'll comedown on the side of the 'G'. That shouldn't mean the subject cannot be discussed, of course. I am very much against unnecessary censorship. But let's exercise taste and tact. And Pat, as editor, still has the final say-so. After all, when S/H is 'all that's being written' (Is it? I hope not!) we do need a non-S/H forum to discuss the other stuff. Oh, you know -- the police work they have to do occasionally? The ideas that got us into this fandom originally? Speaking personally, the premise of S/H didn't rear it's head until we'd knocked off a round dozen of the 'straight' stories—but that was before we knew about fandom, anyway.
- a fan makes the rare distinction that slash does not equal explicit material: I do have a complaint, & this applies to everyone who has been equating "/" with X-rated. I'm totally in favor of keeping "Frienz" a G-rated zine. But G-rated & straight are not the same thing. If a straight story where in the only sex is one of the guys kissing his girlfriend is acceptable, then a slash story where the only sex is S&H kissing each other should also be acceptable. Homosexuality is not in & of itself X-rated, & I'm sorry but I resent the implication that it is.
- about ZebraCon from a fan in the UK: ...it does strike me as more than a little strange that the editor of a S&H l'zine is unable to book for ZCon '91, having applied so far in advance. Pat, I can understand your bemusement, I don't know the extent of S&H fandom over there, but 175 already booked up? Where are they all when it comes to other S&H activities? Like writing to, or participating in, l'zines, for instance. In a way, it ties in with what we have been saying about the size of S&H fandom. Is ZCon now multimedia, rather than just S&H?
- about cons: SHARECON sounds wonderful. A whole weekend of undiluted SH—definitely my kind of scene. And the SHARECON zine last March - 'Wanna Share?' - is a delight. Love it. October promises to be a high point for SH with three CONS planned: SHARECON and REUNION CON and ZIRCON. There's plenty of evidence that SH fandom is light years away from being moribund - or 'slack' or 'pathetic' ... all words I've known to be used for it, but not compatible with my own experience or, it seems, with many other fans'.
- regarding ZebraCon: Having attended the last 4 Z-Cons, I can say I've enjoyed myself less at each one. I appreciate all the work Karen and Jean put into the gathering, but S&H seems to have become just a side attraction. Yes, there are S&H panels and the same amount of S&H episodes as Pros shows, but S&H fans are the minority at Z-Con (originally conceived as an S&H-only con) and I've felt less enthusiastic about being there every year. I'm not implying that this is a result of conscious, deliberate intentions on the hosts' parts, but neither is it a figment of my imagination, for the past 2 Z-Cons have found more than a dozen of us grumbling about feeling snubbed and lack of worthy programming and discussing alternate gatherings for S&H fans—which led to the creation of the wonderful SHare Cons. Much as I enjoy participating in panels, the trivia contest, Pat's plays and always relish time spent with fellow S&H fans, I've decided I won't be attending Z-Con in 1991. [April Valentine] made a valid point in a phone call to me in July, that S&H fandom will suffer more at Z-Con if less fans turn out for the gathering, but I think suburban Chicago is too far to go, for too much money, for so little S&H. So the APA won't be represented next year, either. I'd much rather take a train to MD or VA for an all-S&H weekend twice a year. I hope everyone attending the next Z-Con has a marvelous time. I'll be thinking of you all and hope to see a number of you in October for SHare Con.
- regarding ZebraCon: Okay, it's as much PROFS as SH these days, but I'll still go as often as I can. Because - yes, it has to be the people. It's about my only chance to meet so many fans at one time and in one place. Sure, SHare Con and it's ilk are a great idea, but how many purely SH fans are there? Enough to make a SH-only con a viable proposition? Used to be so but is it still? ZirCon over here in late October, is a mixed Con. The little affairs, like the Mediawest splinter-groups and SHareCon, are fine for local people, but less so for those with large distances to travel. I would say that if we could muster between fifty and a hundred fans, then a solely SH Con would be viable If we can get someone to organise it, of course. I would say that we do need ZCon (or something else like it) -- oh, the fandom can exist without it, but the sheer high of getting together and being able to talk and discuss and laugh and generally o.d. on fandom is something I don't want to have to do without. Over here, with the demise of DobeyCon, we have experienced that kind of lack. I only hope that ZirCon can fulfill a need, and be repeatable.
- a fan is dissatisfied with ZebraCon: There are a lot of firsts in my life, but my first Zcon (which was Zcon 2) stands out as a real watershed in my life. It marks my first trip alone, my first plane flight alone, my first S&H adventure, my first meeting of our fen. The experiences connected with that con changed my life. I grew more confident, more outgoing, and more eaqer to be a producer in this fandom. I've taken all this personally, you see, as an arena of self-expression and sharing. That's what it has meant to me. And, most of all, Zcon means S&H...not Trek...not Uncle...not Pros but my one fandom. So, I feel a bit out of it anymore. Last year especially was a downer: my first vendor experience in a corner in the other sales room; no S&H play; and, of course, all that energy given to fundraising for PAF, which was great, and a way to mourn, but it certainly didn't lift my mood any. Everybody gets busier and busier at every Zcon doing their own thing. We're so busy being busy we forget that Zcon is all about women sharing their love of relationship and S&H. I feel like an outsider at my own con. Zcon is too important a meeting place to ignore, but it's not meeting my S&H needs.
Frienz 12 was published in December 1990 and contains 24 pages.
- TOTM: TWO SHOTS...in film parlance a two shot is an image with two people in it usually shot from medium to close-up range... WHAT'S YOUR FAVE 2-SHOT IN SH? LOC's...THE FINE ART OF COMMENTING ON PAPER...USE THIS LZ TO LET THAT WRITER OR EDITOR KNOW...about that zine, story, poem, etc. (Favorable comments especially welcome.)
- "The Tale of the Rampant Rodent," fiction by Tabby Davis
- a fan writes of Bonaventure:
- a fan has enjoyed some of the recollections of early SH history: Someday someone will have to compile all of our memories, sort them out, and put them into some coherent, readable form.
- a fan writes a letter praising some of the female characters on the show, saying they weren't all "empty headed bimbos": I would suggest all these were reasonably well-drawn, even if their roles were not sufficiently large to make any lasting impact. What I'm saying is that the series, within the limits imposed by its format, did pay some attention to the female roles, perhaps rather more than we've given them credit for.
- a fan is amazed by the varied voices of fandom: I've discovered it is rather dangerous to generalize or make assumptions about S&H fandom. I doubt if any two of us actually see the characters in exactly the same light. Of course, there's consensus, in very general terms, about the 'relationship'. The one thing that drew us all together in the first place. But the variations on what constitutes the partnership, and makes it well-nigh perfect, are many. This is no bad thing from a fandom point of view, because it provides endless opportunities for discussion, stimulates interest, and keeps us coming back for more. I tend to smile when, occasionally, someone appears to be speaking for the whole of fandom. It's natural, I suppose, for each of us to think our own cherished opinions are shared by everyone else. However, after many years in this fandom, I've come to realise that there are just about as many different interpretations of a single scene, as there are fans watching that scene. In the end it comes back to the fact that we all love these characters so much, we are able to take on board opinions and ideas about them that run contrary to our own. A good reason for the enduring quality of S&H fandom.
- regarding straight and slash writers: ...it's hard to know the exact numbers of fans who see the relationship as a slash one or those who like to keep it all platonic. There are many fans on the periphery of the fandom. It is true, however, that most of the producing fans that I'm acquainted with do see the relationship as a slash one. And that may be why there is more slash fiction than non-. Writers who prefer to write non-slash material just haven't been around lately. As I writer, I write the kind of thing I'd like to read, and I'm sure most writers basically do the same. It's not that we wouldn't be open to non-slash fiction, but that very little has been done. Any story that is well written and believable in its own context is good to read. A lot of the non-slash to come out in the last few years just hasn't been outstanding. As [T] said, many writers wrote a lot of straight stories before moving into slash. If you do see the relationship as evolving that way, going back to write non-slash can seem like covering old ground. Many friendship-partnership themes have been done already, although there's always nuances that new writers can explore, of course, but to move forward with an exploration of that relationship, many writers say all they need to say about them as friends, then begin to work on the physical expressions that their love can take. As for people who read zines, there must be a pretty good number who like slash, as it's not too difficult to sell nearly a hundred copies of any one zine in the early months that it's out. We do print runs of 100-150, usually, and even zines that do not premiere at cons sell out in a reasonable length of time.
- regarding the definition of slash as, by default, explicit: I'll add my voice to your comment about "G" rated and "straight" not being identical. I never really enjoyed the style of HANKY PANKY (for those who haven't read this l/z, it was done in the mid-eighties (actually finishing as I was entering this fandom, so I never contributed to it) and it was a no-holds barred exploration of slash. People discussed openly all aspects of the characters getting it on and the stories were your basic rocks-off stuff. A little of that goes a long way, and when you're done with the romantic stuff, the more unusual begins to be seen. I was afraid of the genre going the way K/S has gone in recent years. (Fortunately, S/H has some of the best, most tasteful slash I've ever seen—that's why I'm still into it, folks.) HP also had stories and discussions of lots of other "slash couples", which didn't interest me at all. I wouldn't want [P] to have a TOTM like "who do you prefer to have on top, Starsky or Hutch?". There are plenty of things everyone can feel comfortable discussing. But I don't want to feel I have to watch what I say and keep all my comments about their feelings for each other strictly generic. "Homosexuality is not in and of itself x-rated... Very well put. What I would like to see for FRIENZ are some serious, interesting discussions of the inner characters, what drives them, what they would do in certain situations, why they became cops. Has it all been said? I don't think so. Let's try to get into some meaty discussions in the future.
- a fan weighs in on the type of fiction she likes: Since I'm not into slash (in any fandom) I'm generally uncomfortable with reading it, even if it's not explicit. However, I'm willing to accept Pat's decision to print non-explicit slash stories in some issues of Frienz. I know that not all slash stories are explicit or x-rated; I also know that some writers who are into slash also write (wrote) good straight stories. S&H needs straight stories more than slash writers right now to keep things balanced, it seems.
- a fan writes of preferences: [Do] you know of any S&H zines that can get my grubby hands on. I'm not a "/" reader, but will not rule a zine out if it is mostly hetero and slightly "/".
- a fan writes about her SH fandom beginnings: The first SH episode I ever saw was 'Death Ride'. I was bowled over by the way S&H worked together. I could see straight away that theirs was more than a good working relationship and I was hooked. I loved the comedy in that episode and the banter that flow—ed between them. Pretty soon, I began to see how their relationship could go much deeper than friendship and that attracted me even more. All this was back in '76 and it wasn't until '80 or '81 that I discovered fandom. Imagine my joy at finding all those like-minded people and all the exciting things that fandom brings. There we're even people who saw S&H having the same kind of relationship as I saw; that was the best thing of all.
- more on slash and straight: I don't know if the majority of fans are straight or slash, but I do know which of the two is the more vocal. As I've said before, these days the Love That Dared Not Speak Its Name rarely shuts up.
- about cons: It was very sad to read in FRIENZ 11 that these days Zebracon is becoming less and less S&H. I'm never likely to get to Zebracon unfortunately and couldn't make it to any of the Dobeycons. Recently, though, I attended ZIRCON '90 in Hilton Keynes and had a wonderful weekend. The CON was for 'The Professionals' series as well as for S&H but was very well proportioned between the two. It's hoped that ZIRCON will be repeated next year—I certainly hope so. IT could be the start of something big, I'm sure.
- three cons in one month! Then there was SHARECON, beginning with a marvellous birthday party. I never before had wall-to-wall presents.) SHARECON... meeting and re-meeting so many friends... the inventive, imaginative song-tapes, new zines (coinciding with the shock of finding one of my own short, short stories included in a zine whose existence I'd never previously heard of!), the good reading in the second SHARECON zine, all the plans and all the projects, especially in tracking down some colour-copying in a very important cause... above all, the talk, the exchange of ideas, the kindness and the friendship. And THE ROSE. Thank you, [M]. SHARECON was a time I'll never forget - certainly, for me, nothing like a 'little affair'...I'm truly grateful to everyone who gave me that very good time, to [N] especially for her gifts and talent for making it all so special. REUNION CON, a week later, was another highlight, with its superb Art Exhibition and its varied programme. Good to be in L.A. again, back at the 'Bonaventure' almost ten years after my first acquaintance with that unique rendezvous. And the tour of the LAPD was a wonderful bonus in that weekend. [C] and [L] left us with some great memories, plus the most classy CON programme book I've ever seen. THANK YOU for that and for so much more. There were the new zines too, still no more than skimmed until the jet-lag stops lurking. Good to have the 'Penal Code' sequel. And 'Bird of Paradise' actually flew into my hand. Perhaps I'll appreciate those illos more clearly when I've read the story; first impression is that they relate more to the rock band scene and to the drug-taking than to S&H. Maybe that's by design. Reading could elucidate. THREE SH CONS in a single month - must surely be a record? All of them featured those SH qualities one has come to value so much. October ended with ZIRCON, right here in UK, in a weekend packed with good things in another varied programme. Over a number of years, ZIRCON'S organiser, [S S], has been giving a lot of service to SH fandom in UK through those regular London Fandays, a tradition now, I believe, of around a dozen of them) which have provided any interested fans with enjoyable opportunities to meet and talk and share. ZIRCON, however, gave us a whole weekend.
- a fan asks another:
- more on cons: Unless the SHers support ZCon, then there won't be any SH programming because there won't be any call for it. So if you want it, make your wishes known well in advance -- it's unfair to turn up and then bitch that you're disappointed in what you got if you never told the organisers what you wanted. ZirCon, this coming weekend, is a mixed Con, but I doubt I'll be attending any of the Pros programming -- I'm going for the SH. And that's what I'll be expecting at ZCon in '91, too.
- about SHareCon: SHarecon was wonderful, not quite as frenetic with games and such as last time, but terrific for sitting down and discussing SH and fandom together. There was a real feeling of closeness that I wouldn't trade for anything. It was great to visit with [J], whose busy professional life has prevented her from being silly and fannish lately, again, and all my other friends. I think I got some time to talk with just about everyone, one on one, which was great. Whether we were into slash or not, we all have so much in common, and we have loads of fun. And [T], having you there was perfect, especially since we got to share the Zebra Birthday cake. Friday night was hilarious as we dressed in our 70's "fashions"—bell-bottoms, platform shoes, the whole bit. We had a great spaghetti dinner with the requisite red and white checked table cloths and watched song tapes, filked and sang "The Rose" surrounded by beautiful SH artwork and posters. ([P] wrote a couple of really funny filks that I hope we'll all be able to get the words to, soon.) [T] and I blew out our candles, then listened to the crowd chant "Simon, Simon" as the ice cream cake was cut. Saturday morning was the swap meet, and there were loads of Zebra things to buy, plus copies of"Variations", [P] and [M's] new zine. We all wore so many Zebras that the hotel staff asked if we were some sort of zebra club. "Yes," was the best answer to that question. We stayed up late Saturday night watching episodes in my room (have you ever reclined on a bed watching a TV that's in the bathroom?—don't ask, please. Just take my word for it, it's possible when it's a necessity.) Sunday came all too soon, and the long good-byes nearly made some of us late for our transportation home. We left richer for the shared experience (schmaltzy, yes, but so true.)
Frienz 13 was published in April 1991 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM; FANZINES—my favorite all time SH zine. Why? EPISODE—Huggy Bear: pimp, snitch, bar owner, or what? How does this guy stay out of jail. SURMISE—SH 1991...what are the guys doing today? (not the actors, the characters)
- the editor notes: "UK subs are up, but US subs are down. I hope to do a renewal outreach after this issue goes out. Regular subs keep the kitty purring. Numbers this issue are 21 for UK, 19 for US."
- there is a con report for ZirCon, see that page
- favorite zines: It's difficult to pin down just one all time favorite. I'll always have a special feeling for the first ever SH zine, ZEBRA III #1, because of the unforgettable "Mojave Crossing" by Connie Faddis. At our Paul Muni Special con, the tenth anniversary of SH, Carol Davis and I gave out the "Encore Awards", so named because every piece of fanfiction, art, etc. since the beginning of SH fandom was eligible. And "Mojave Crossing" is the story that won "Very Favorite Story Over All". Everyone, whether you're into slash or non, can enjoy and appreciate this beautiful hurt/comfort story. Also in ZEBRA III #1 is "Bomb Scare" a good story by Jan Linder. I'd read this zine years before actually getting involved in SH fandom, though. Much, much later, the first slash SH I read was CODE 7 #2. But the zine that pushed me that extra step into the world of SH was WHO YOU KNOW, WHAT YOU KNOW AND HOW YOU KNOW IT, edited by Elaine Hauptman and Lucy Cribb (Walk). The two stories that were my favorites were [Rosemary C's] "The Last Charade" and Lynna Bright's "A Place to Hide". Although I love this zine, there are a couple of other stories that I don't re-read like the others. The one zine that I still love and continue to re-read is MURDER ON SAN CARMELITAS. I did publish it, so it feels a little weird saying it's my favorite, but since I was the publisher rather than the author, it's not like I'm boasting' Lynna's story is beautiful, moving, hot and so true to the characters, and Suzan Lovett's artwork adds so much to the story that I'm really proud of this zine and pleased to know a lot of others feel the same about it as I do.
- favorite zines:
- favorite zine: With fewer that 15 S&H zines, my choices are somewhat limited. But I would have to say "Wilderness". It was one of the first zines I got my hands on, and I couldn't stop reading and re reading it for weeks. Reminded me of my favorite episode (SHOOTOUT), so that must have had something to do with it, too.
- favorite zine: ...favourite, all-time SH zine? Did everyone have the same problem with this? I look forward to reading other replies. I tried. I tried a process of elimination. Tried short-listing. Just one zine? Is it possible? But you want names. And I can't pick just one. Names ... "The Thousandth Man" and 'The Goliath' by Suzan Lovett. Both. They're a set. Why? - you also wanted to know. Well... the writing ... non-derivative, totally free of cliche, the clear, direct style, never verbose yet never leaving out anything that should be there and gifted with that essential quality of insight into character, the balanced blending of characterization and story-line, the lines of poetry chosen to reflect the themes, and, of course, the superb, complementary artwork. Two SH novels to treasure. So - not bad for someone who couldn't choose? And so many other titles come flocking in. How about anthologies? e.g. those ZEBRAS which were my first introduction to the warm and wonderful world of SH zines... back in 1979... How about more recent collections? -'Code Seven x 4, 'Shadowplay', 'Nightlight'? The page-turning, original aspects of 'Scales of Justice'? The beautiful writing of 'San Carmelitas', with its bonus of beautiful illustrations? The imaginative insights of 'Coda'? or of 'Graven Images'? Could go on. And on. Couldn't I just cheat and have everything bound together in one vast volume? No?
- favorite zine:
- favorite zine: Impossible to choose just one favourite fanzine. I've had so much pleasure from so many zines containing innumerable S&H stories which have enriched my understanding of the characters. I do, perhaps, have a special affection for the early Zebra 3's, simply because these were the first zines I read, and were my introduction to the delights of fandom. Everything that followed was, and continues to be, a bonus.
- a fan says she wouldn't see slash for either Starsky or Hutch if they had been married: I see the characters as basically straight guys who have developed such intimate feelings for their partners that slash becomes possible; they have no one else to provide that kind of intimacy, the total bonding of soul and spirit and body. Why would they need to go to bed with their partner if they already have a sex partner, a life partner in a wife?
- about females in SH's world: Yes, there were females who were worthy of mention -- I'm sometimes at a loss to understand the attitude of fans who would rather the lads never came within shouting distance of women, let alone had relationships with them. Misogyny is an odd thing to find in a fandom composed almost entirely of women, but that's what it's starting to look like. I'd make a guess that the worst offenders are the S/Hers. Don't all jump down my throat—I write S/H myself. However, the primary attraction for me has always been the relationship between the two guys, whether its '/' or straight, and since they live in a real world, they are going to interact with women. And while many of the women in S&H were less than worthy of notice, I'm not sure one should automatically take the scissors to them...
- about Hanky Panky: [M] takes us back some years with the reference to 'Hanky Panky'. I'm not sure that it entirely qualifies as a SH publication in the same way as, say, FRIENZ. There were doubtless good things in it but, apart from the correspondence, HP's primary invitation was: - write a '/' story. Just pick two characters and write a '/' story. Any two. Okay ... for anyone who wants to do it. But hardly central to SH. Light-hearted fun? - but maybe a little close to a somewhat mechanical, repetitive writing exercise. [M] comments, 'I never really enjoyed the style of HP.' Neither did I. Just too involved in one fandom, possibly. Whatever - I let my sub lapse. In my limited experience of it, HP never seemed like a SH zine. Perhaps it didn't mean to be.
- about Vas & Dex: ...to all of you who have read/are reading/ might like to read the Vas and Dex universe! You might have wondered if we'd quit writing this—well, we haven't, we just needed to take time to write other things. Now we're back, and there's a whole load of new stuff available. And TRIVIAZINE, too. which contains one story so totally Over The Top that we never dared put it out elsewhere...
- about zines: This TOTM led to an hour or so's browsing among the zines. They present great variety, not to mention their neatness and originality. There are stories and story-endings which might be designated 'happily ever after', though I didn't notice even one which was written in terms of everything fine and perfect for ever and ever. No story seems to contain that sort of statement; there are no claims to unbroken, future bliss. But many feature an established, sure relationship, looking to a future with hope, though with no simplistic assumptions about permanence. Entirely credible. There are, in such stories, relationships grounded in constancy, which may grow and deepen, endure, whatever the external circumstances. Bonds of that kind last. They do exist. That's partly where the mythic element comes in. Realism isn't necessarily negative.
- a fan is somewhat bi-fictional: I'd guess that it would be fairly common in SH fandom for at least some to read/write both slash and straight fiction. I think i t would depend on the individual. I've read a little slash (not all SH), mostly non-graphic, but it's not a habit. I'd definitely rather read straight fiction. As for writing slash, I have no desire to try because I'm uncomfortable with the premise. I'm glad that some fans that see the S&H relationship as slash also at times write straight fiction, too.
Frienz 14 was published in July 1991 and contains 80 pages.
- TOTM: If you were writing a review of the show, how could you convince your readers that S&H is not "just another cop show"? (I was reading an old review of the show, I was sure the reviewer must have been watching some other show because all he talked about was guns and car chases.) SNOWSTORM...I watched this the other day. So here's somethings I thought about...did Hutch shoot that cop? Or, did the gun go off or what? I feel so bad for Hutch the way he's sitting there dejected. I just wanted to reach out to him. Do you think there was a review by IA about this shooting? Also, is this the first episode in which the guys share a cup? And, is it togetherness and closeness that causes them to drink out of the same cup or cheapness on Hutch's part?
- a fan from the UK is inspired by the Tony Hillerman novels: I've always wondered how S&H might respond to some of the American-Indian values, and these books fuelled speculation on such encounters. It's a theme I'd like to work into one of those post-'Decorated for death' stories - a lot of scope there.
- favorite zines: I don't have one favorite zine, I don't think, but I do have my own categories. Most beautiful zine cover goes to Nightlight (though that will become a tie when Distant Shores comes out—of course, by the time you read this, it will be out! Those two covers alone are worth the price of admission) Hottest zine: Murder on San Carmelitas. Biggest impact: Gunther's Revenge (the first '/" I ever read) A forgotten multimedia is the first "&." Code 7 #4 has a place in my heart just because it arrived on a day when I was so up, it was like extra hot fudge on an ice cream sundae.... I guess I'd have to say that The Fix #6 would have to be my favorite; how can the zine in which your Huggy-winning story was published not be your favorite?
- a fan address another fan regarding her remarks in the previous issue: I understand your reasoning, but the dismissive tone made me feel like a poor relation. About sex getting in the way -- stuff getting in the way is pretty much what makes up the plot. Right? I mean, if everything went smoothly and nothing got in the way, what would we write about? Please don't quote me your "Love that dare not speak its name" quote. It's not original, it's very offensive, adn as long as heterosexuals are encouraged to "flaunt" their relationships, and homosexuals are expected to keep their mouths shut about theirs, it's quite homophobic.
- several fans write that they enjoy the women in the series, and that: Some of us are denying our womanhood (and displaying jealousy?) when objecting to females in important roles in S&H.
Frienz 15 was published in October 1991 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM: Should we start running ads? (Just as an aside, I keep cost down by keeping page count down.) Or, should we keep ads in a separate publication, like a Snitch? DOGS...episodes with dogs in them; episodes that are dogs; does Starsky like dogs; did Hutch have a dog as a kid; why cats are better than; name the dog SCENARIO: SH find a little lost puppy, they take it home, what does it look like, what do they name it? (or, for you non-"/" fen, who takes it home and etc.?)
- "Gotcha!"—fiction by Ima Fool
- the editor writes: Three new fans in a supposedly "dying" fandom. This fandom is lazy at times, into other interests, involved in the unavoidably mundane, but we are not dying. Three new members of FRIENZ attests to that.
- a fan responds to another's comments in a previous issue: Now let's see if I can follow this—"it is possible to love more than one person. It is possible that there are many forms of love. More than one kind of love is possible with any of the persons loved. With me so far?" Gee, that's far too complicated for me to grasp. What's going on here? I thought you were trying to find a way for them not to have to go to bed, and here you are saying that even if married they could and maybe would still do it. Hey, I'm not against that either. Come on, [T], what side are you really on in the eternal slash question? Not that this fandom needs to reopen the entire debate, I'm just wondering how you really see this relationship. I'm never quite certain, because you've written so many stories but seem to really put the premise as a whole down.
- regarding Distant Shores and artwork: I always enjoy [J. Jones'] drawing and it was good to find more of it in 'Distant Shores', together with all those other very talented artists—just one aspect of a terrific zine. I've recently heard arguments in favour of 'sacrificing' artwork in order to reduce zine costs. Obviously a subjective choice and ultimately, of course, a matter for editor/author. I think it would be a most sad and serious loss both to individual readers and to fandom generally. Imagine, for example, if we had never seen that beautiful cover of 'Distant Shores.' SH fandom has been very rich and fortunate in its artists...in my opinion, I'd hate to lose the artwork...
- On the comment quoted in a letter in the previous issue about women characters in the series: I shouldn't have thought that a less than enthusiastic response to some of those adman lookalikes could necessarily be equated with 'a denial of our womanhood'. Those ladies are there partly because the idiom of TV programmes requires them - part of the paokage. But there were plenty of other women characters whom we - and S&H—can take seriously... plenty of a much more original kind for many of us to identify with. It could, be argued that it is those decorative replicas-of-a-type who represent denial of the much bigger definition of 'womanhood' which I (we? most of us?) prefer.
- a fan from the UK mentions her trip to the US and some fanfiction: It was fascinating (to coin a phrase) to drive through the country [Tony Hillerman] writes about so vividly -- to visit the town of Shiprock, and the Navajo reservation. A part of America I could willingly spend much more time in. It's a funny thing, but my very first S&H story, one that is so appallingly bad that I don't let it into daylight, was set on Mesa Verde. It was nothing like I had imagined it. Another good reason to bury the thing. However -- we did get it right in the V&D series, later -- SUNDANCE is not going to need a rewrite -- and as for involving S&H with the Native American culture, I did dabble in that with HOUSE OF CARDS... Only because we knew from ROSIE MALONE that Starsky had spent time with the Huichol Indians, however. Otherwise I am not sure how we could have made it fit...
Frienz 16 was published in December 1991 and contains 18 pages.
- TOTM: favorite hurts
- from the author of the just published zine, Distant Shores: I'd like to take time to thank everyone who voted for DISTANT SHORES in the Huggy Awards. It's so hard to express exactly what those awards mean to me... DISTANT SHORES was totally a labor of love and to have it accepted and praised so much was thrilling and so very satisfying. I know I've said it elsewhere, but after working for all those years on a project and then submitting it for public consumption, pulling it out there to be examined and criliqued by the toughest audience in the world... having so many nice compliments reminds me of the reason I began it all in the first place. The reason we all do this. We do this to share our feelings about two very special characters. There isn't enough Starsky and Hutch; there will never be enough. So we have to create our own. And to know that someone else, that a lot of someone elses, saw in my story the same things they love about Starsky and Hutch... that's about the best thing that can happen to an author. The response to DISTANT SHORES has been more wonderful than I ever anticipated. So many LoC's, so many kind comments. It's been very, very gratifying and I thank each and every one who took the time to write and who voted in the Huggy Awards. And I also want to say that I adored Paula Smith's version, "Distant Snores", the musical. I've never been spoofed before. For those of you who didn't get to see the play at ZCon, the script will be published in FIX #11.
- regarding h/c: Hurts are good, because they allow the characters to touch, often areas of their bodies that they wouldn't ordinarily be touching. The comforter then can be tender, caring, worried... hurt one and hurt the partner, too. What could be more enjoyable? Hurt/comfort seemed to develop a bad name in this fandom after awhile—I guess too much of a good thing is always possible. I'm not talking about pain for the sake of pain alone, I'm not talking about being sadistic to our lovely characters. But injuries and hurts can break down barriers, let the characters open up to each other, say the things that might not be said otherwise. Hurt/comfort came before slash, and it can be the bridge between the two extremes. Hurt/comfort has always been a classic plot device, even with male-female relationships. How many times has the stalwart hero finally ended up in his lady's arms when some pain finally allows him to show his vulnerability. Vulnerability is important to show the humanity of the character. I don't like to see these guys weak or wimpy, bemoaning the problems they have. But when they are vulnerable, they are so touching...
- regarding injuries to characters as permanent or disfiguring: ...if handled right, I think anything could be acceptable to the readers. Personally, I wouldn't want something so horrible and traumatic to happen to them that I couldn't stand to see them like that. Permanent scarring is allowable... up to a point (I don't like burns, or amputation). I struggled with permanent brain damage to Hutch, but had to strike a balance between something realistic and something I could live with [in Distant Shores]. But if we decide to put the characters in life threatening danger, we risk (and they have always been willing to risk) permanent damage. What would it be like to see Starsky with a scar... on his beautiful face? If we flirt with blindness or paraplegia, wouldn't it be more truthful to go all the way and have something like that happen, rather than pulling a trick out of the rabbit's hat at the end to put everything to rights? It's it more interesting to deal with the characters as they attempt to pull their lives back together after something like that? It all depends on the writing. It could be maudlin, implausible... or it could be touching, beautiful and inspiring. So many of the best SH episodes had as their basis hurt/comfort, I think it's a theme that should at least be acknowledged and allowed lo appear in our continuing fanfiction.
- about the TOTM: favorite hurts: Do I prefer (prefer!?) bullet wounds, disease or other injury? Would I like (like!?) to have something disfiguring?... It isn't easy to decide this, but I think I prefer it when one of them gets shot, because it is the quickness, the unexpectedness, that affects me most. In "Shootout", to pick this one as example, the scenes where S&H enter that restaurant - the scenes before the shooting - are always the most touching for me. I see Starsky's exuberance, and Hutch's fond indulgence, his gentle teasing, and while watching them I never cease to think that I know something they don't: that only a few minutes later that peaceful scenario will be shattered. Starsky will spend the rest of the evening helpless and in pain, and Hutch will have to put up with two killers all by himself, while having to fear for his partner's life. Stories like this one make me think about mortalily - theirs, the one of my husband, the one of my friends. Things can happen so quickly, can't they? One moment I might joke wilh a beloved, the next moment my life might never be the same again.
- a fan is optimistic: STARSKY & HUTCH fandom dying? Nah. . .not from where I see it, either. We may be small, but we're still going strong. And if we don't have the zines to prove it lately, that's okay. I'm willing to bet there are stories being passed around without benefit of being published in zines. The fanfic is still alive, as well. It's just harder to find, that's all.
- a BNF explains her position on slash: As for where I stand on the 'eternal' question—I'm where I always have been. I see both sides. I write both kinds. I am not putting the premise as a whole down, only aspects of it that I personally cannot agree with. Such as the attitude (found, thank goodness, in only a few fans) that '/' is the only way to go. And that nothing else is worth reading. Yes, I have come across this. All I can say to these people is—you don't know what you're missing! I also object to the belittlement of females, both in the show (the bimbo syndrome) and in fanfic. Where are the strong female characters, the sympathetic characters (like Minnie), the women who reflect us, the fans, the writers and readers? No, I'm not talking about Mary Sue. Unless it's well-done, that should stay in private fantasies! Okay? It was never a case, for me, of finding a way for them not to have to go to bed—rather the reverse. In order to write S/H convincingly, I had to convince myself that it could happen. I never had trouble with the other idea...
- a fan writes about the TOTM, what kind of hurt: I prefer injuries (as in bullet wounds, knife wounds, bruises, lacerations, broken bones, etc.) to diseases. I don't know why. Possibly...it's because these are the injuries most likely experienced in police-work on the streets. I tend to inflict these things on Starsky, so I guess that gives him the edge for 'Best Sufferer'. But then again, he's best at comforting, too. Hmrrm. Disfigurement (see DECORATED FOR DEATH for prime example of this!) is not something I could personally do, but the odd tasteful scar is okay. (I love the Dr. McCoy idea—that man could cure a rainy day!) I must admit I have a tendency to 'copy' damage we saw on screen, then cube it. For an example, see the V&D version of THE FIX, VORTEX. Or THE PLAGUE, in TOUCH AND GO. (Why am I using V&D as examples? Because we have always felt freer to inflict payne&aguny on them, that's why. So we did. And do. I mean, has there ever been a story in which Starsky gets crucified?) I guess we never felt the show went far enough—couldn't, with the restrictions of TV at the time. Another few years on, and we had HILL STREET BLUES showing us the gory details. No deodorised violence there.
- a fan writes of the sequel she wrote for Decorated for Death: The damage which I found very hard to take was what happened to DMS in 'Decorated for Death'...was partly why I wrote that post-DFD story, restoring two blue eyes (having received DFD author's prior blessing). I know—wish-fulfillment fantasy. But WFF is permissible when it builds on the existing fantasy?
- a fan has reservations about a term:
- regarding h/c: I have to admit that I am a hurt/comfort junkie and so my most worn tapes contain the following - THE FIX, COFFIN, SHOOTOUT, THE PLAGUE, BLOODBATH, THE MONSTER, SURVIVAL, THE TRAP, BLACK AND BLUE, (I have just copied all of these on to one hour 1ong-play tapes so I can indulge in non-stop H/C for hours, with just the help of a fast- forward button - how's that for obsession?) And I must also tell you, because I know that you are a very understanding bunch--that I watch the 'good' bits of SHOOTOUT at least five times a week - seeing that dear boy writhing in pain and his bestest friend touching him so, so gently, sets me up for the day!! I recently borrowed a clear copy of SHOOTOUT from Tabby and am now embedding on my brain all the little touches and grimaces and leg clutches that I missed on my old fuzzy copy - Pure Heaven! So Frienz of mine tell me, do any of you still feel that stomach tingling lurch when you watch these h/c shows?? I once heard this feeling described as 'frissom' and this has always seemed like an appropriate description to me. Frissom when Starsk is stammering in SHOOTOUT, caught by Hutch in COFFIN, splinted by Hutch in THE TRAP, and cuddled by Hutch in BLOODBATH, and I wouldn't be without my doses of frissoming for anything!!!!
Frienz 17 was published in February/March 1992 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM: "FRIENDSHIP... Fan friends. What meeting other fans has meant to you. Friendship SH style."
- "Confrontation," fiction by Alison Wilson
- a fan writes: Every new fan I've ever talked to has been struck by the sheer open-hearted niceness & welcome of SH fans, & I certainly found that true. And in the last year, year-&-a-half, every serious discussion I've had with anyone on the state & future of SH fandom, one opinion has been unanimous—[April Valentine] has kept this fandom going single-handedly. Her energy & enthusiasm & generosity are what SH fandom is all about, & I can't imagine where we'd be—if we'd be—without her.
- a fan continues the mini-feud with another one: I agree with your statement that there will never be enough SH... I was looking back through some of the old l/zs. In S&H #29, just ten years ago, there were nine proposed zines, thirteen available zines, and three forthcoming. Unless my maths lets me down, that's a total of twenty-five. In the last year, we had your two, and the FIXs. (I am not ignoring FRIFNZ or the APA -- but I am talking fiction here.) This is why I am bewailing the lack of zines. I am in no way denigrating the people who are producing. I just wish there were more of them. Is this a crime against fandom? Of course there are people working at keeping fandom going—I'm one of them. If I didn't acknowledge that, I wouldn't be writing this letter. What I don't want is for us to get complacent. If I may quote from BETWEEN FRIENDS, November 1984, '...let's have more stories published, and more zines!' And from WHO DO WE TRUST TIMES, March '87, '...In my opinion, we have precious little being published in this fandom...' your words, [M]... I'm glad you have a pile of stuff for TLC—enough, I hope, to fill it, so we'll see it in 1992? As I recall, it was advertised as a 'proposed' zine way back in '87...
- a fan continues the mini-feud with another one: So now we're down to comparing which species has better barf? Okay, you can prefer cat barf to dog barf, and I'll agree with you. One comment on the slash question: if you had to convince yourself that a slash relationship would happen before you could write it, why do it at all? For me, I write slash because I see the characters that way. I don't have to be convinced. If someone isn't convinced, it is kind of difficult to write it convincingly. Fan writing is something you do because you want to, why force yourself to write something you don't believe in? That's why I didn't write K/S, I just didn't see it. Never did, still don't. But I saw it with Starsky and Hutch, so that's what I often write.
- a fan announces a proposed zine: And now -- an experiment. 10-13 Enterprises Rides Again! (Son of 10-13? Revenge of 10-13?) Taking up the gauntlet of [April Valentine's] challenge, I'm going to ask for submissions for a zine. The theme is to be what they do best—policework. The fiction can be straight or slash, of any length, crossover universe or mainstream, but it must be primarily concerned with the job they do and how they do it. I'm not asking for police-procedurals. We don't need to know the ins and outs of departmental practice. The provisional deadline—October '92, but that can be flexible. I will even rewrite the cat-and-dog story (yes, Tabby, you remembered the opening!) tor it. Unless I get a better idea, anyway. New writers will be given encouragement. Artists -- if you are willing to illustrate specifically or generically, let me know. All submissions considered! If we like it, we print it. (Guess what - - that's just what I said in S&H #30, back in '82...) SAE with 2 IRCs for guidelines, if necessary. Provisional title? How about 'Once More, With Feeling'!
- a fan writes: Here goes, for the last and final time. If anybody disagrees, or doesn't get what I mean from now on, so be it. I give up.... Sorry, but I don't sit around fantasizing about Starsky or Hutch being comforted by a terrific, strong, independent woman. Frankly, that's why I'm so surprised at all the confusion over calling a woman who interferes interfering. Is that what some of you are into this show for? If you want male-female hurt/comfort, why have two male leads in the show in the first place? Go for "Beauty and the Beast" or "Remington Steele" instead. But if you are into male friendship, male bonding, male hurt/comfort, Starsky and Hutch delivers. And when a woman gets to do what a partner should, I feel something is missing. I have no problem with love scenes with a woman—we aren't likely to see the guys kissing each other or kissing some other guy, so that's the only way we can enjoy the character's/actor's kissing technique. Okay, I'm off my soapbox and you can call me weird, but we're all still friends, right?
- fan finds this fandom friendly: I've found people in this fandom to be far more warm and generous than most other people I encounter. Perhaps some of S&H's relationship has rubbed off on all of us too. Most everyone is ready and willing to help however they can, whether it be with something material or mere advice. I've already received some of the finest, most constructive editorial comments on a story I've ever had in all my writing life.
- a fan is in some distress: Fan friends, what meeting other fans has meant to me. Well, I would say what meeting other fans has meant to me is having real friends for the first time In my life, feeling loved & understood (& loved in spite of that understanding), of being able to say anything, being able to tell the truth & be who I am without being afraid of losing that love I need so much. I wear my heart very much on my sleeve 1n fandom because I want to be found, I want to be read, I want to be loved. For a woman who's spent her whole life feeling like she was on the outside looking 1n, fandom has become my "inside." The "Innest I've ever felt—& one of the best times of my life—was MediaWest about three years ago. [April Valentine] & I had just met at the 1st SHareCon, & I was looking forward to seeing her again. I ended up spending practically all my time in [April] & Lorraine's room, watching episodes, & talking, & laughing a lot which made it no different than any other con or fan get together. What was different was the fact [April] & Lorraine's room was on Dealer's Row, & people were stopping in regularly to buy zines. Most of you know the feeling of walking into a room where a bunch of people are talking & laughing, & feeling like you're intruding. Well, I was on the other side of that, not feeling like an interloper but like I really belonged...& it was sublime. I'm really scared right now...I feel like I'm losing my identity (ok, quit laughing, guys, I'm serious here). I've had a kind of writer's block...more like an inertia, an inability to move; it's not that I can't think what to write...it's more like I can't remember how to think about writing. I feel lost. I've never felt like this before, so alienated from myself & everything & everyone around me, like H in that awful isolation room in "Plague." Like I'm dying & not only can't anybody help me, they can't even touch me. It's very lonely; I'm very lonely.... Sorry, I seem to have drifted off. SH fandom. Every new fan I've ever talked to has been struck by the sheer open-hearted niceness & welcome of SH fans, & I certainly found that true. And in the last year, year-&-a-half, every serious discussion I've had with anyone on the state & future of SH fandom, one opinion has been unanimous—[April Valentine] has kept this fandom going singlehandedly. (That excludes conversations with [April], of course) Her energy & enthusiasm & generosity are what SH fandom is all about, & I can't Imagine where we'd be—if we'd be—without her. It's been theorized that SH fandom is as open & generous as it is because we're all looking for the kind of close, unconditional, unquestioning friendship S & H have (yes, I believe in /, &, no, that's not what I'm looking for in fandom; I'm happily married. But seeng S & H's relationship as becoming a sexual one doesn't lessen the friendship any) It may be an idealization, but what's the point in striving for imperfection? We all already have that. We aren't looking for perfect people, we're looking for symbiosis... we're looking for love, & a few laughs along the way. It seems natural to look for what we most desire among others who crave the same thing.
- regarding h/c: I agree with your h/c discourse. The fact that S&H willingly displayed vulnerability, secure in the knowledge that his friend/partner could/ would be able to assuage the fear and not ridicule the weakness(es), is a marvel and special treat to view. It makes the men thrillingly alive and is a large part of their great appeal.
- regarding "interfering females": An interfering female is one who gets in the way of what we want to see: S & H expressing their feelings for each other. Kate Larrabee is an interfering female because what we want to see is Starsky, not Kate, looking after an injured Hutch. Interfering females are those who think they should come first with S or H, when everybody knows that S comes first with H, 4 vice versa. And before I hear any arguments, the name of the show is "Starsky 4 Hutch," right? Not "Starsky i Hutch i The Women They're Involved With." And we're watching to see them together. Terry isn't an interfering female—no, not because she dies, but because she respects S's relationship with H.
- regarding "interfering females": I guess that's what I'll have to decide about my term "interfering female"—Joan. I think I'd better just give up, because every time I think I've finally gotten it all down on paper so others understand what I mean, someone else comes along who misunderstands what I mean. Here goes, for the last and final time. If anybody disagrees, or doesn't get what I mean from now on, so be it. I give up. Believe if you want that I hate my sex, that I don't want any female characters in the aired episodes or in fiction. That's not what I mean, of course, but it looks like that's the impression I seem to be giving. Look, I'm female. I think women are great. It takes two sexes to make the world work. Starsky and Hutch can have girlfriends, Rosey Malone works wonderfully well. But if you want to know if I mind if one of the characters gets hurt and someone nudges her way between them or in a story gets to comfort the character instead of his buddy—that's what I call an interfering female. ( I wouldn't want another guy invading the partner's territory, either.) That is the only kind of female who interferes, not well-rounded characters. Anyone who's read Distant Shores knows that I included female characters all through it —Sally Hagen from the series itself, and my created character, Melissa Samuels, Hutch's doctor in Australia. Sorry, but I don't sit around fantasizing about Starsky or Hutch being comforted by a terrific, strong, independent woman. Frankly, that's why I'm so surprised at all the confusion over calling a woman who interferes interfering. Is that what some of you are into this show for? If you want male-female hurt/comfort, why have two male leads in the show in the first place? Go for "Beauty and the Beast" or "Remington Steele" instead. But if you are into male friendship, male bonding, male hurt/comfort, Starsky and Hutch delivers. And when a woman gets to do what a partner should, I feel something is missing. I have no problem with love scenes with a woman—we aren't likely to see the guys kissing each other or kissing some other guy, so that's the only way we can enjoy the character's/actor's kissing technique. Okay, I'm off my soapbox and you can call me weird, but we're all still friends, right?
- regarding "frisson": I hope always to feel that frisson when watching hurt/comfort. I used to worry about wearing it out, by watching the episodes too much. But every now and then, you look at something you've seen a zillion times and all that feeling is right back again. That's what's so wonderful about SH!
- a fan says she came to SH fandom from Star Trek: I'd met many other ST fans over the years, but they almost always made me squirm. Many of them really did remind me of that old SATURDAY NIGHT LIVE convention spoof. But SH fans are a totally different breed. I don't miss ST a bit.
- too few zines: I agree with your statement that there will never be enough SH... I was looking back through some of the old l/zs. In S&H #29, just ten years ago, there were nine proposed zines, thirteen available zines, and three forthcoming. Unless my maths lets me down, that's a total of twenty-five. In the last year, we had your two, and the FIXs. (I am not ignoring FRIENZ or the APA - - but I am talking fiction here.) This is why I am bewailing the lack of zines. I am in no way denigrating the people who are producing. I just wish there were more of them. Is this a crime against fandom? Of course there are people working at keeping fandom going—I'm one of them. If I didn't acknowledge that, I wouldn't be writing this letter. What I don't want is for us to get complacent. If I may quote from BETWEEN FRIENDS, November 1984, '...let's have more stories published, and more zines!' And from WHO DO WE TRUST TIMES, March '87, '...In my opinion, we have precious little being published in this fandom...' your words, [April Valentine]... I'm glad you have a pile of stuff for TLC—enough, I hope, to fill it, so we'll see it in 1992? As I recall, it was advertised as a 'proposed' zine way back in '87...
- regarding A Plain Day: So I'm not alone in believing that it is possible to write convincing SH without trauma getting in the way.' There's plenty of writing to support that belief—for example, in one of my favourite stories, 'Shared Sunday', the first story in the first of the SHarecon ('Wanna Share?') zines. I enjoy reading about the times free from the fast-moving, action-packed scenarios. In fact, the first SH anthology I put together (it's a dozen years ago...) was called 'A Plain Day', for that reason. I wish there could also have been such episodes. Vain hope - they would never have fitted the formula. I don't, of course, mean that I reject trauma' as an important ingredient in fan-writing ...just saying it's possible to disregard or minimise it, yet still to write satisfying SH.
Frienz 18 was published in April/May 1992 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM: What aspect of SH fandom do like most, & why? (filking? watching the show with fen? music videos? zines?) What part of S&H do you remember to help you make it thru your day, or, a hard part of your life? (A story? Part of show?)
- who makes fandom?: Some comment was made this issue about those who make fandom. In my view, we all make fandom happen. Without the writer, the reader has no story to read. Without the reader, the writer has no audience. Without the editor, we do not improve as writers. Without the publisher, we do not have zines. Without Locs, we don't have a letterzine or feedback. Without the characters, we wouldn't have this wonderful relationship to spin stories about. And, without the actors, we wouldn't have the series. We all help create fandom and enrich, nurture and enjoy it. We all make it so.
- who makes fandom? One fan does not a fandom make. While while I agree that [April Valentine] has certainly done her share, there are other people out there pulling just as hard, you know. Pat, for one. I can name at least half-a-dozen others without whom fandom would be the poorer. None of us can be credited with 'singlehandedly' keeping tins fandom going.
- who makes fandom? While [April Valentine] tirelessly has done/is doing much to promote and sustain S&H fandom, she's not "single-handedly" keeping it alive. You can't overlook Pat's work for Frienz, nor my efforts for the APA (despite its current hiatus), or the countless writers - both published and not - of fiction. Locs, reviews and poetry, the artists and fans who gladly and eagerly copy tapes and zines for newer enthusiasts. We ALL contribute- to SH fandom and have made it the warm, vital club everyone knows it to be. 'No offense, [April].'
- the "new" Snitch is starting up: Monday, 6th April—memorable date—brought an 8a.m. telephone call from Illinois when Mary told me that SNITCH was on its way and should be with us in time for the SH Fanday in London on the 11th (coinciding with another SH event in Baltimore). It's great to have this very helpful publication restored; I'm really glad that Mary can take over what Carol and Merle started for us—THANK YOU to all three of them.
- regarding an underground story: Oh, to those of you who are still quivering with shock over my comment last ish -- 'has there ever been story where Starsky gets crucified -- but haven't gotten around to writing to ask me about it. If you want to know more about it (and it is a good!) or you'd like info on the rest of our alternate universe, write to me or Jody Lynn Nye... and we'll fill you in. LemonAid is not a secret society, we don't demand signatures in blood, and we love to share what we write. It also helps our favourite charities, which is the gilt on the gingerbread.
- regarding song vids: To watch music-videos is a delight, too, but - for reasons I don't quite understand myself - they make me feel lonely. It's the only aspect of SH-fandom, where I miss company.
- regarding "interfering females": Sure the show is called Starsky and Hutch. William Shakespeare wrote a play called Hamlet, but there were a few other characters who took part in the proceedings. 'Nuff said. Like [April Valentine], I'm passing on 'interfering females' from now on.
- what fandom SH fandom means: From time to time SH fandom has been described as "small". I'm not sure what standards of comparison are used, but its appeal to me has always been greater because of its smallness, if that is the word. The friendly approach, the feeling of closeness, of belonging, are things not always found in larger fandoms. Small or not, this one has stayed the course. I've 'belonged' right from the beginning, and in my experience, over the years, a great many people have contributed much to keeping SH fandom alive and kicking, sustaining the interest with zines, l'zines, artwork, Cons, fanget-togethers. It doesn't seem to me that too much has changed today. There may be fewer zines, but FRIENZ is currently playing a considerable part in maintaining fandom's viability, providing a forum for the exchange of views ,and keeping us in touch with one another. The list of its l'zine predecessors is a long and honourable one. My cupboards are overflowing with SH literature of all kinds. It's a sharing as well as a caring fandom. I think we should count our blessings. The output may not be as prolific as it once was, but what we get is always worth waiting for.
- regarding the TOTM: In order of preference -- the people, the zines, the cons. Have to admit that music videos aren't my thing, and as my singing voice is rivaled only by Starsky's (Care for a duet On Blueberry Hill, sweetie?) then my enjoyment of filking would not be shared by those listening to filk..... Zines I love because I love reading. And writing. Simple, really.
- regarding the TOTM: I like ALL aspects of SH fandom, and it's almost impossible to say what I like best. Zines do come high on the list, videos of course, and it gives me a lift at any time, just to sit and watch a favourite episode. Preferably by myself - no distractions! Likewise, re-reading a favourite zine or story, can transport me momentarily from the humdrum everyday routine, to the infinitely more entertaining SH universe. A form of escapism? Of course it is, and I love it.
- regarding the TOTM: What aspect of SH fandom do I like most? If any other tv series I know had been the issue, I would have answered this question with an unhesitating 'reading zines', because no screened picture had ever been able to match what my own or other fan-fiction writer's mind could conjure up. With S&H it's different, though, and so I have to name as a favorite aspect a combination: I most of all enjoy to watch an episode, and then to read a story connected to it. My best examples: "The Plague" and "Solitaire", or "S.Rev." and the zine LIFELINE.... What part of S&H helped me through a hard part of my life? I have joined S&H-fandom only about one year ago, so I have no tales of death, disease or natural disasters lo tell. But every year in late Fall and towards Christmas, I use to suffer from severe feelings of homesickness (Germany is not my home-country), and during this time I lend to eat too much, to cry too much, and to question too much the soundness of decisions I made more than a decade ago.
- regarding the TOTM: Without a doubt it's the exchange of letters and making so many wonderful new friends. It's neat to be able to compare notes with someone else who enjoys the same things, especially when that "thing" is as vital to our lives as S&H. Of course, a close second would be all the wonderful zines we have. I think I'll still be trying to catch up reading all of them at this time next year. I have quite a large collection of them now, and love them all. Just wish I could spend my entire summer doing nothing but reading exclusively that.
- regarding the TOTM: What aspects of SH fandom do I like or enjoy the roost? That is a really hard question to try and answer. I enjoy watching the shows because you can see them. I am in my twenties and am part of the M-TV culture. I know this will sound terrible for a librarian to say, but I spend more time watching T.V. than reading a book. The majority of reading I do is fannish literature. I keep up on the current literature by listening to the abridged tape version in my car. When I was a new fan I enjoyed watching the show with other people because they could always out new items to roe. I still enjoy watching it with fans. But I find myself discussing different things such as camera angles, lighting, and the story lines. I love music because you can g«t so many feelings into it. Again I am of the generation where music means a lot to me. I always have a tape of CD playing. I guess what I am trying to say is I enjoy watching the shows, filking, and reading. All three of the items combined makes S&H more meaningful and special for me.
- regarding the TOTM: My favorite aspect of S&H (and other) fandom has always been personal letters, letterzines, and zines. I've always loved letterzines, finding out others' reactions/opinions. Through personal letters I've made several good fandom friends, and discovered some other non-fandom interests that we have in common. It's a way to get honest but tactful feedback on some of the fanfic efforts that I share, and discuss possible story plots. Since I can no longer hear on the phone, letters are often my only way of keeping in touch with long-distance friends.
- regarding the TOTM: What aspect do I like best in SH fandom? Zines—definitely zines. I'll sit and read a zine (in ANY fandom) sooner than watch on episode, if I have to choose. 'Course, reading and listening to an episode at the same time is double the pleasure.
- regarding the TOTM: I guess my very favourite S+H activity is zine reading as it is something I can do almost anytime.But then again I also loved Zircon as it put me in touch with so many other members of our very special group.And then again to return home from a very frustrating day at the office and be able to pop in a tape, has got to be one of the most cheap, legal and delicious ways to recover ones sanity! So there you go a really decisive answer for you - I love it all!! and yes, I do also find that the show helps me thru rough patches of my life, I just remember how S+H deal with difficulties and that makes me a stronger,more confident person.
- regarding the TOTM: My favourite aspect of fandom has got to be the zines, I think, but an extremely close second would be watching the episodes. The zines are slightly in front because of the slash aspect which is very important to me. Having said that though, I have to see and hear the guys too. After that comes discussing the show with like-minded people, sharing my ideas and feelings and learning from them too. I also enjoy discussing the show with other fen as this can be very rewarding and amusing. Fandom is great and I'm glad I discovered it and all the good friends it has brought me, but I think as long as I had the videos and the zines I could just about manage without all the other bonuses.
- regarding the TOTM: Watching episodes with other fans is my very favorite way of experiencing/ enjoying/sharing S&H. The ideas/observations/comments exchanged are priceless.
- a con report for Zircon, see that page
- a con report for SH:102, see that page
- "Story" by Tabby Davis ("From the Cutting Room Floor"... You know how it is. Some scenes the slot just doesn't have time for. Remember "Crying Child?")
Frienz 19 was published in June 1992 and contains 16 pages.
- it contains a flyer for SHareCon
- the [[TOTM: "What would be your favorite situation to see S&H in? Something humorous? Something serious? You can use an episode or spin your own situation. Let's keep this clean."
- "A Confrontation," continued, fiction by Alison Wilson
- several fans describe their experiences at the London Fanday; one fan writes: One UK aspect of SH fandom whose notices do appear in overseas publications are the FANDAYS. The latest of those occurred in London on a sunny April Saturday with around twenty fans meeting to share and swap and (yes, Linda) eat, and, most of all, talk. It was good to welcome two American fans as well as several new SH devotees, still in the happy state of having episodes new to them waiting to be watched. That sort of anticipation certainly brings a lift to life.
- a fan defines frissom: Judging from my own reactions, you should go in search for "frissom" in the area of your tummy. Watch out for some kind of "flight"-feeling (as if you were on a swing-boat in an amusement-park) in scenes like H. holding S. cradled in his arms, telling him "I'm here. I'm here." over and over Or S sitting in a bleak backyard, bravely trying to see twelve more hours to live as a "bottle half full". Or H telling S that' this ain't no fun ...and the game is 'Hutch is dying'..."
- another fan writes; I think for "frissom" read "frisson", which means, roughly, a shiver - either of delight, or fear.
- frissom? Does it have some recondite significance? I'd been assuming it was just an idiosyncratic way of writing 'frissson.'
- a fan is a fan of small: The smallness of the SH fandom appeals to me. I am not a small fish in a big pond. I feel like I know what is going on and that my opinion counts. I am involved in other farndoms (Please forgive me!) but I don't know about half of what is going on. This is the only newsletter I get. I can follow what is happening in this fandom. I really feel that my opinions count.
- about zines: Zines, I see, come high on most people's list of what they like best about fandom. Understandable, and appropriate, because zines are, and always have been, our main link with S&H outside of the show itself. They have expanded our knowledge of the characters, far beyond the necessarily limited view of the original scriptwriters. We owe a great deal to all the talented writers who have contributed such a wealth of wonderful stories for our entertainment and continued enjoyment. I believe the general standard of writing in this fandom is considerably higher than that of most other fandoms. I can't claim to have a wide experience of other fanfic, but I have read some, and have not come across anything that compares with S&H writing.
- a fan writes of a story: I'm sorry—no, I have no spare copies of 'A Plain Day.' It's a while ago and it was never a published zine with a large print-run. It was done when I was very new to fandom. I'm not sure I'd even heard the word, 'fanzine', in those days. I lacked the knowledge, the facilities, not to mention the leisure time, to print or publish anything in the context of fandom. APD is an anthology of SH words and pictures; some of the stories have been published since. I took a copy to California in 1980. As far as I know, it's there still. And there's one here.
- a fan is feeling daunted: [T], how are submissions for the new zine doing? Hope you have some, at least, by now. I'm still working at trying to write something, but the mandatory police-work requirement has stopped me cold. Hope others are coming through much better for you.
- on fandom generosity: The very first person who helped me sent me tapes of DS's albums and returned my check, saying somebody sent them to her at no cost, so she didn't feel right about taking any money from me.
- the S/H premise: None of us are anti, but all of us agreed that there can be too much of a good thing And we wondered where the new writers are -- the ones not writing '/' , that is. Where is the new Mojave Crossing? Or Broken Faith? Or Beginnings' We don t believe that there aren't writers o£ that calibre left in fandom. Perhaps they think no one will want to read straight stories. Well, take it from me—you're wrong. There is an audience out there! So get 'em out dust em off, and send 'em in...
Frienz 20 was published in September/October 1992 and contains 28 pages.
- TOTM: Do "we" discriminate against non-slash writers?, AND has characterization suffered in fanfic?
- this issue has an essay by Paula Smith called Dream On; it is reprinted a year later in Psst... Hey Kid, Wanna Buy a Fanzine? #4.
- this issue contains a very hateful letter by a fan (E B M) who's never written in before; it maligns and insults the letterzine and many of its subscribers on a very personal level; the editor in the next issue says the letter was meant to be funny
- the editor states this zine's policy on pseuds:
- many fans asked who "L. Leigh" (the writer of a short note in the previous isse, and suggester of the TOTM about discrimination) was, suggesting her name was a pseud (something fans in this letterzine seemed to object to) and wondering if she were a real person as they'd never seen her name in fandom anywhere; L. Leigh herself wrote a letter in this issue which included: Most of you don't know me, and are probably wondering who the hell I am. I've been in SH fandom a while, but preferred to keep to myself. Lately, there's been reason to change that attitude. I hope I didn't offend or anger too many people with last issue's TOTM, but I won't apologize for it, either. I've had enough of feeling like those of us who aren't die-hard slash fans aren't welcome in SH fandom. It know that's not the case with many slash fans, but there are those who are as narrow-minded in their tolerance as the straight fans were years ago. Please, folks, don't misunderstand me. I'm not looking to argue the point, or to cause problems. I just want us all to be aware that the prejudice can run both ways, and we need to be a bit more sensitive to the views of others.
- Is fandom hierarchical?: I've bean in contact with this fandom since 1980. I've seen people come and go, letterzines rise and fall, and cliques form and reform the direction of fandom. My first experience with hierarchy was in the nature of the Personality Cult. In this true life experience, while I was attending ZCon, 2 a women sitting next to me thought I was a then popular fan artist. She got all excited and the next thing I knew, six people ware talking to me all at once. I finally got a word in and broke the news that I was not this artist, but a new fan at her first con. The general response was "Of," and, being ignored for the rest of the evening. Conclusion one, therefore, was that there were indeed 'stars' in a fandom, some designated because of what they did, some due to creativity and productions. The egoist in me created Ima Fool for just such a starring role. [snipped, fan then describes writing one of her first letters to the letterzine of the time, S and H]... [It addressed] the then raging "do they? / don't they?" controversy. I used, as is my style, humor to poke fun at both sides. Well, it turned out that the then guest editors called the lz originators about this PERSON (me) who dared to question the sanctity of slash. They were offended and almost didn't print my letter. How do I know this? They told me. After I had been around for a bit, and they understood my sense of fun, and after, by the way, I had created my 'star' persona. Ima Fool, I was let in on all the "trouble" my letter had caused. Thus, I saw that within fandom there was an Inner Sanctum that was deciding policy, appropriate response, and fan worth. The third experience I had with hierarchy was The Lavender Private Party that marked the outing, as it were, of slash in this fandom. This event, at a ZCon whose number eludes me, involved a lavender invite to a private room party where slash art was to be auctioned off. When I got there, most of the con was squeezed into your average sized hotel room. So much far a closeted fandom, I thought. But, beyond the fact that the Secret Fandom that dared not be shared in the open was something like seeing how many people you could get into a telephone booth, there was the fact of the Uninvited.... Some Is In and Some Is Out.
- a fan, who has written slash herself, questions the term and its meaning: I do know one thing; the use of a washcloth as a transition device is sloppy, especially if the cloth is wet. I also know that it is, at the very least, questionable characterization to write your heroes boffing each other in the butt and then, (a) call than both straight; (b) be unable to fathom a gay past, closeted teen years, let's say, for one or both; or (c) wonder how these two guys could be sexually involved, not come up with an answer, but write the story anyway. And, I do think that one's research should extend beyond looking at the drawings in The Joy of Gay Sex. Where is the gay sensibility in all of this? Oh, right, it's FANtasy, I forgot. I also think that keeping up with the endless "/" combos must be a lot of work for fan readers. It seems like there's a new one every con I attend. (Only the names change, the sex scenes remain the same.) Finally, I don't think the terms slash and straight really describe the types of fiction all that well. I mean, the series was too kinky to be seen as straight, as were H/C stories that relied on blood rather than semen as the shared fluid of choice. And, slash stories aren't really about being gay, so that makes'em straight. I propose we use S & H, or, SH, rather than those two terms that don't quite fit. Or, my fave: S ? H ... cuz ya never know.
- "Do we discriminate against non-slash writers?": How can I comment upon that question without clarification as who's asking this? Who is "L. Leigh"?  Who is "we"? Meaning, who is this group of people that ostensibly does the discriminating? Is "we" the editors? Then I don't think that it's true. Each "Fix", for instance, contains both, straight and slash-stories, and [April Valentine's] editorials convey to me the feeling that she is very aware of how important this well-balanced mixture is. Then maybe "we" applies to the readers? [T] told in FRIENZ #16 about fans she'd met, who wanted to read nothing but slash-stories, who considered S/H the only way to go. But she mentioned also, that such an extreme point-of-view were an exception. As for me, I, too, know some people of that kind. But I never considered them true fans of the S&H series, so I never heeded their opinion in this regard. Those, who truly love S&H - and aren't they the kind of people, whose opinion should singularly count for the writers? - will welcome (or at least accept) both kinds of stories, straight and slash.
- discrimination?: Has characterization suffered in fanfic due to "/"? I think it's the opposite. Slash writing is very emotional. There's a lot of h/c, sometimes physical, often mental. Because it is so emotional, we are aware of the characters' feelings, their fears; because it goes beyond straight h/c, there is a greater intensity of that emotion. Sometimes it seems as if one or the other of them could use a good shrink; Hutch particularly seems to go off the deep end at times--but then, maybe the Hutch we saw on TV could have used one, too, considering his inexplicable tendency toward unearned guilt and lack of self-confidence. Maybe it's because the writers are so good, but I've gained a lot of insight into both characters through "/" stories.
- non-slash discrimination?: A difficult [question], but very interesting and thought-provoking. Difficult especially for a non-writer like myself who obviously has no personal experience of being discriminated against, or otherwise. Not easy, either, for someone who has never subscribed to the slash premise, but nevertheless has no problem reading it. For some time now, slash fiction has predominated, and I echo [T's] comment regarding those not writing slash - where are they? I'm sure there are people who want to read straight stories - myself, for one, and it would be good to see more of them being written. There were many first-rate straight stories in the early SH zines, and I turn to those more often than to the later ones, because [T] is right again - you can have too much of a good thing. The repetition - pages of it sometimes - is the thing that puts me off slash fiction, but It seems to be what slash devotees, writers and readers, enjoy most. None of this actually addresses the question of whether or not there is discrimination. I simply don't know. I'd like to think there isn't, or if there is, that it is unintentional.
- non-slash discrimination?: This is a question that seems to come up repeatedly, and I'm not certain why. If you like apple pie, but love chocolate ice cream, are you "discriminating" against apple pie? I personally see the SH relationship as "/" (beginning either very late 4th season or post-SR), so that's how I write it, and what I prefer to read. But that doesn't mean I can't or won't read and enjoy straight stories. "Breath of Life", by [April Valentine] (in TLC), is, in my opinion, one of the beat pieces of writing ever produced in this fandom, I've been involved in SH since 1984, and am fortunate enough to be friends with many of fandom's DOBs (Oops, that's "Dirty Old Broads".). In all that time I've never heard anyone make any negative remarks about straight SH as a genre, or suggest any reluctance to read it. Once again, writing quality is what's important. On the other hand, many "straight" fans refuse to read "/". This is a matter of personal preference, and doesn't offend or threaten me, or make me suggest that there is "discrimination" against "/" writers. Writing is not easy, at least for me. It's damned hard work. I'm not only entitled to write the characters the way I see them, I have to do so! To those who may think there's not enough "straight" SH being published, please bear in mind this isn't a restaurant, where you can just order up what you want and have it delivered. Instead of whining that others aren't writing what you want to read, try sweating a little blood yourself.
- more on discrimination: Do we...? I don't know, I don't think so. For one thing, most of the writers I know write both straight & slash. I know I've received a couple of straight submissions I had to reject because they couldn't be fixed & I've worked hard with one writer on a straight story to make it the best it can be. I have the promise of anohter straight story from a writer whose quality is beyond reproach (she also writes slash) & and one story whose orientation I didn't ask because the writer is so good. I don't write straight myself, because I don't believe in it. If you see a story with my name on it & and they didn't do it, or talk about doing it, or think about doing it, then it's pre-slash  If they didn't do it in the story, they would've done it, only the story didn't go on long enough.
- discrimination?: ...allow me to ramble right on with our topic of the month. I've been trying to figure out just what it means: "Do we discriminate against non-slash writers?" What's this we? Does this mean we as an entire fandom? Does this mean editors or readers or writers? I don't see how the question can be answered collectively. And, you'll pardon me, I don't see why, after all this time, it should have to be. It's really getting very, very redundant to have to keep considering this question or variations on the same theme. Okay. Some people are into slash. That happens to apparently be the majority in this fandom. Some people aren't into slash. For whatever reason, they seem to be in smaller numbers. Maybe it only seems that way because they don't write in to the letterzine, don't go to cons, don't buy zines, don't write LoCs, don't call people on the phone—but hey, if they're not doing any of those things, then I don't really consider them a part of Starsky and Hutch Fandom. If they're not doing any of those things, what right have they to complain about the course a fandom is following? Why would they even care? At any rate, it seems to me that a small number of individuals keep raising the same old question that has been answered by a large number of people. I have no problem with the fact that some people prefer straight SH to slash. But it does seem that some people have a problem with those who prefer slash SH to straight. This seems to me to be just a rephrasing of the old "do they or don't they" question.
- discrimination: Having only been involved in fandom a year now, I haven't run into any discrimination myself, and certainly not as a "non-slashwriter." If anything, I think the reverse of that might be true—slash writers might sometimes be victims. It seems slash fans are open to reading (and/or writing) most anything, while slash opponents are vehemently opposed to anything that so much as hints at slash. I personally write both and see a need for both, and frankly think each fan should be allowed to choose. Discrimination is wrong, no matter who the victim.
- discrimination? I read every story that I publish in my zines. As for zines published by other editors, I read all the stories in them, too. Okay, to be perfectly honest there have been stories that just didn't grab me that I haven't finished but I haven't skipped them because I've figured out Starsky and Hutch aren't going to have sex. And anyway, whether I read a story or not is really my business, isn't it? Is it discrimination to order only the foods you like in a restaurant rather than ordering those items you also hate or are allergic to just to humor the cook? Is it preferable to watch TV shows you don't like simply because they're on the air, not based on whether you like their theme and content?... So now somebody is fuming out there, saying that those of us writing about this topic are just saying we don't discriminate against the non-slash writers, but that we in fact do. I guess there will always be discrimination perceived where none exists and try as we might to justify our actions, to explain our feelings, our words will go unheeded. Well, in that case, I must say that the problem then rests with those who don't heed these words, who don't believe what anyone says on this topic. If it seems like discrimination because there are more slash stories and slash zines than non-slash ones, so be it. I can't help that and I'm a little bit tired of having to say so, over and over again. If everyone who thinks they are being discriminated against or who thinks that not enough non-slash is being published in this fandom would spend their time writing non-slash stories and publishing them instead of complaining, maybe that situation would change. Until it does, this is the fan-fiction you're going to get. You may not like it, but many people do, and that's just the way it is.
- do slash writers mess with characterizations: I've read quite a lot of "/" stories in which the characterisation has been very good, and some in which it has been abyssal. I suppose the same could be said about straight stories. However, I sometimes find it hard to accept all the agonising and soul-searching that goes on in "/" fiction. Often followed by rather swift capitulation. Followed again by more soul-searching, or alternatively complete acceptance of what will be a totally new way of life for both of them. This seems out of character to me. I'm aware that a writer's objective is to explore the characters we saw on the screen further, but have to say I've occasionally felt I was reading about two other people entirely. That again raises another often-posed question - do we have the right to criticise a writer's characterisation because it doesn't correspond with our own? We each have our personal concept of SH and it's quite evident that we all differ to some degree in the way that we see thee. No big deal in itself, it's what makes this fandom endlessly interesting and stimulating.
- slash as poor characterization? Yes. Absolutely. Resisting the temptation to give examples, I can think of too many S/H stories in which the protagonists talk 'like a couple of passionate girlfriends'. Please. Men do not talk like that. Believe me. Certainly not to each other. (And I have that on the best authority!) There is a distressing tendency to make one or other of then 'feminine'—the effeminate stereotype—to emphasise the fineness of Hutch's hair, for example. The choice of words can be at fault here, e.g. the use of 'slender' for 'lean'. [I would like to refer all of you to a book to be published this year—TEXTUAL POACHERS, by Henry Jenkins of M.I.T. Professor Jenkins goes into detail on this subject as well as others, using fanfic from many different tandems to illustrate his thesis.] The '/' premise is perfectly valid, given the characters and relationships as portrayed on screen. The potential is certainly there. However (and this is the biggie) it seems to us (as in [C] and myself—I'm not using the Royal Prerogative) that seventy-five per cent of the time, the characters as portrayed on screen are not carried on into fanfiction. Often, what we have are two totally different people with the same names and general appearance. There are the perennial excuses of 'but this is how I see them,' and 'I'm only writing for my own enjoyment'. Okay. Fine. But if you are writing S&H for consumption by anyone but yourself and your own circle of non-critical friends, then please take a moment to think of the characters we saw on toe screen. That's who we got hooked on. That's who we want to read about. Regardless of genre. If you don't want to do that, then go back and change the names. Call them anything except Starsky and Hutch.
- do slash writers mess with characterizations: It is true that once in a while I (just like everyone else, I suppose) stumble across a SH-story or novel I don't like, and it's also true that in most instances it's the characterization that bothers me and spoils my fun. But never has there been any Connection between my non-acceptance, and the fact if the story was straight or slash.
- a fan addresses another in a rare display of outward tension in this letterzine: I WASN'T GOING TO RESPOND TO YOU IN THE L/Z ANYMORE. BECAUSE YOU ALWAYS SEEM TO IGNORE MY QUESTIONS, EVADE MY POINTS, I'M TIRED OF IT. BUT I'M EVEN MORE TIRED OF THIS CONSTANT COMPLAINING OF YOURS. FIRST YOU SAID WRITERS OF STRAIGHT STORIES WEREN'T WRITING BECAUSE EDITORS WOULDN'T PUBLISH THEM—NOW YOU'RE SAYING IT'S BECAUSE READERS DON'T WANT TO READ THEM. THE WRITERS I KNOW (AND RESPECT) WRITE FOR THEMSELVES, NOT FOR POSSIBLE READERS. YOU KEEP SETTING YOURSELF UP AS SOME KIND OF CHAMPION OF STRAIGHT WRITING. BUT WHEN I SENT YOU A FLYER FOR MY 2 PROPOSED ZINES, ONE Of WHICH IS ACCEPTING STRAIGHT STORIES, YOU SENT ME A SLASH STORY WITH HAS NO POLICE WORK AN NO PLOT. YET ISSUE AFTER ISSUE AFTER ISSUE YOU COMPLAIN ABOUT A DEARTH OF STRAIGHT STORIES. IF YOU CAN'T PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH. MAYBE YOU SHOULD STOP PREACHING.
Frienz 21 was published in November/December 1992 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM: What is slash? Genre? Myth? Relationship? AND "Do we enjoy what Paul and David are doing now, or their old stuff, before or after S&H?"
- "Mind if I Join Ya?," fiction by Tabby Davis
- the editor writes that [E B M's] letter "was meant to be funny"—something that most fans didn't understand
- the fan, [L L], writes and says she is going back to lurking
- a fan writes: [E B M], if you are not a figment or a pseudonym, then you have to be joking, right?
- fan writes: Welcome [E B M]...It's a shame you've had to harbor such bitterness about so many things. Hope venting your feelings in issue #20 helped.
- a fan writes: Whew! I think a couple of typewriters or whatever must have been smoking last issue. Some of the letters got pretty hot—under the collar.
- a fan is suspicious of two letters in the previous issue, the first by [L L] and the second one by [E B M]: First to [L L ]: I think your letter must be a plant. Is it you, [addresses the editor], to increase the response level? I might take it seriously, except that I'm not aware of any instance where non-slash fans were made to feel unwelcome in S&H fandom. And why is there no first name? No address? [L L] sounds like [E]; are you [E B M], who writes a wickedly funny letter-- except that I can't help wincing at some of the personal remarks, particularly those aimed at [M]. Maybe I'm thin-skinnned, but I don't find that funny. But I wonder about [the editor's] hints about pseudonyms (L L]?) and using humor to poke fun at both sides. Is that what this is, a joke? I really don't know quite how to take to take these two letters.
- about [L L's] letter: The letter sent in by [L L] strikes me as a bit defensive. Actually, I would have expected a comment of this nature to come in issue 22, after she had the chance lo read the letters sent in on the proposed TOTM. Why did she suspect that anyone would be angered by the topic? Was she in fact hoping to spark some controversy?... And one more thing, [L L] what's your address? Why is it that you are the only contributor to FRIENZ lo send in a contribution without your address?
- about [L L's] letter: I had thought of responding to [L L], but since [L L] is clearly a pseudonym (real people have first names), I probably already have. But it seems clear that L. was either deliberately trying to anger or offend (or why apologize before she could have read any of responses?) or else L. read the responses before they were published. Intentionally inflammatory letters have been standard fare in SH for a long time, so the 2st possibility doesn't bother me, but I find this 2nd idea disturbing, as it seems unfair to the rest of us, pseudonyms aside, and it makes me suspicious.
- a fan writes: I was pretty stunned at some of the letters in the last issue. All of this slashing (pun intended) at each other isn't going to change how anybody feels. [T], I know you're trying to fill a non-slash zine and must be feeling frustrated. But to say that 75% of the time the characters we see on screen are not carried out in fanfiction seems to be a major dig at the slash writers. I agree with [C] that even in the series we didn't always know S & H's thoughts and motivations. Who can say for sure how they would react, especially in an emotionally charged situation? Even in the series, they both were unpredictable at times.
- a fan comments on Paula Smith's essay, Dream On which was printed in the previous issue: With the unerring insight of someone who must have been quite awhile in fandom. Paula Smith has managed to list in her essay all the pre-conditions and scenarios I love and cherish most in a slash story, and she's thoroughly and mercilessly passed sentence upon them, by declaring how "tiresome" they are and "unrealistic", and "homophobic", and "unlikely". What could I possibly answer to that? Maybe I'm a moron, maybe Paula intended to provoke. Maybe our opinions are really that opposed. In neither of those cases do I feel up to a suitably quiet and thoughtful answer.
- another comment on Dream On: I did enjoy Paula Smith's article on slash. It seems to me that the reason we like slash—and in fact relationship stories in general, including hurt/comfort—is that we are searching for such a meaningful relationship in our own lives. We want a relationship where everything works out all right. We want someone who understands us perfectly. We want the perfect sexual partner. Sure, it's idealized. And it's okay to idealize it to the point that two formerly straight people could fall in love even though they're the same sex. It does happen in real life...
- a fan writes of sexuality, WNGWJLEO, and "gay sensibility": I do like to see a gay sensibility in fanfiction - it shouldn't all be angst about whether or not it's okay to have sex with one's best friend. And in SH fiction, I do believe we have that. Note Lynna's sequel to "A Place to Hide". In "A Place in the Sun"(FIX 11), Hutch goes home to his live-in girlfriend and confesses not that he's fallen in love with a guy and can't have a commitment with her - but that he is "gay." Yes, folks, he uses the term. In my own novel, DAY BY DAY, Hutch fired his lawyer because he felt the man discriminated against him because of his relationship with Starsky. One plot line in that story was about Hutch accepting the fact of their relationship, in effect, accepting their gay lifestyle. No, they don't have to join the gay community to be "really" gay, either. Just coming out is enough. And who's to say they won't go to Gay Pride together sometime? Even in older stories, they aren't always saying "I'm straight but I have sex with my friend." Look at the excellent "Water is Wide"—they go to a gay bar in a resort town and pretend they don't know each other, letting other men try to pick them up. They end up with each other, despite the knowledge that they could find other men attractive, that other men could want them both. And in DISTANT SHORES, I never once mentioned the fact that they are both men as something preventing their affair. This isn't a thing that got in the way of their eventually becoming lovers, it isn't mentioned as a factor at all. I wanted to explore the idea of them becoming lovers without this old-hat scenario being part of it. Hutch's injury and their dealing with that is enough. All first-time stories do not have that same "should we or shouldn't we" angst—that's a generalization, possibly made by readers who don't read carefully enough.
- regarding hierarchy in fandom: I'm not sure there is really a hierarchy in fandom. The term might have seemed applicable ten or twelve years ago, when the experiences you relate took place, but I like to think we have moved on since then. Left all that behind, as it were. I'm not an authority though, and the idea that even all those years ago, there was a "secret fandom" to which only the select few were admitted is more than a little disturbing. I do think, right from the beginning, and increasingly as time went on, certain "names" became very well-known. Mostly because they were the more active participants - the writers, artists, zine editors, Con organisers. They became "stars" if you like, not necessarily because they wanted to be, but because of what they contributed to fandom. Those of us who had no particular talents or expertise to offer, were rather in awe. I still believe there are some people who are hesitant about expressing opinions, but as you said, it's a whole different ball game now - isn't it?
- a fan takes another to task for theorizing that 75% of fanfiction is poorly characterized: Which stories are these in the "seventy-five percent of the time"?... Alternate universes, as we have many of in The Fix? Are you saying that your version is the only one (because I most definitely disagree considerably with certain liberties I feel you've taken with the characters in some of your writing. And from what I recall, your "excuse" was that "that is how you see them." I thought the way it worked was that you write them the way you see them, if anyone who disagrees can write you about it personally; when someone else writes the characters in a way you disagree with, you can do the same. But the whole tone of your last letter gave every indication that unless we write things your way, we shouldn't be writing at all. And I wish you'd for god's sake knock it off. Quit making these sweeping generalizations unless you can back them up with specific examples.
- a fan writes: You weren't the only one attacked for daring to question slash. [T] and I were both panned in the early letterzine for saying S&H did not have to be gay or hopping into bed to love each other. It is one approach, but not the only one. I write slash. I wrote all the things in H/J that Paula "condemns" in Dream On. She's right. It's unrealistic fantasy. Some friendships with never a bed in sight can be stronger and last longer than many love affairs. While it is possible for men to not know they are gay until they fall in love with a man, it is unlikely they'd have anal intercourse the first time they make love, or call themselves straight once they establish regular sexual encounters. Writing these love stories answers some need in us to find what we enjoy most, what we're perhaps missing in reality, or just want more than is realistic. When we write unrealistically, we are usually told about it, giving us a chance to learn from our errors or excesses. I find I still want my characters to love one another exclusively, realistic or not. I've tried for years to figure out why I enjoy reading and writing slash. I've decided I'm just a romantic, dirty old broad.
- on fandom: Whenever a group has existed for some period of time, and hasn't remained static, there will be "old" and "new" members. I've seen new fans welcomed eagerly, haven't you? In any group, those who provide products valued by the whole (in our case, zines, illos, or cons) will be accorded respect and appreciation, in any group, those who share similar views will be drawn together. This is natural human behavior, not some Evil Plot. Is it oversimplification to say that what a fandom "is", is the people who participate in it? We're an otherwise diverse group of individuals who share those particular characteristics and needs which drew us into deep emotional involvement with a 70s cop show", we're Human, and therefore subject to human imperfections. We have the gifted, and "just plain folks." We've got the egotistical and the insecure, sometimes coexisting as facets of a single person; we have have self-centered irritants and a very few "saints" (okay, only one!). But, mostly we have a lot of sensitive, sincere, generous people who were affected by a loving partnership they saw on the TV screen, and who would like to see that level of caring mirrored in their own lives I remember when I first became involved in fandom, that feeling of being outside the swing of things. But, isn't that true when one enters any, new environment? You know I'm basically a shy person, but fandom is a special place where many of the usual criteria necessary for societal acceptance don't apply, and I soon developed several good friendships... I'd be interested in hearing other people s perceptions regarding their own entry and current "status" in this little subculture of ours.
Frienz 22 was published March/April 1993 and contains 24 pages.
- TOTM: Memorable moments from fanzines... highlights which crystallize characterization and reflect relationships
- It has the missing piece of "Hutch Fever" that was published two years earlier in The Fix #22.
- the editor writes: "If you are unhappy with Issue #23 being an attempt to Clear the Air and get fandom back on track again, I will refund your money for that issue."
- a fan writes in about the death of a fellow fan
- this issue has a con report for Media West*Con 1992: some highlights she mentions—being on the Sunday morning panel with April Valentine, Pat Massie, and Linda McGee, a fan's lovely red Torino dress, buying an old button that said "Starsky & Hutch Fans Unite!", eating at the Red Lobster, and sitting at a table selling slash zines while wearing another fan's badge as to "not besmirch my own reputation -- at least among people who don't know me."
- a fan has some lengthy comments on the story, "The Last Charade," in Who You Know, What You Know, & How You Know It, see that page
- the TOTM is fannish memories of favorite moments from zines and fans have lengthy comments on this subject
- a fan—very tentatively—asks the editor why the letterzine costs so much per issue; she's done the math and just can't figure it out: I'm not trying to embarrass you or put you on the defensive, but could you please explain this? I'm not the only one wondering. Thanks. Personally, I might not even care if you made a small profit, though, it'd also be nice if you managed to pass on any profit to charity, like Terri and Tabby did/do.
- a fan in Germany writes and complains that despite phone calls, offers to help, numerous letters of inquiry, and years of waiting, Amapola Press has been unresponsive, rude, and hasn't delivered what she ordered: I'm afraid there's already a lot of damage that can't be undone. Yes, it is sad that all this is caused by one single press (and let's not mince words: one single person), but rather understandable if that single press is about the only one still publishing S&H zines.
- the editor says the TOTM for next issue is "Clearing the Air" and: We should say what we need to say here. Vote. Give opinions. Talk about experiences with Amapola Press, good and not so good. Make suggestions, address the issues.
- a fan writes of the recent tensions in SH fandom: I haven't written to FRIENZ in a while, but I have been keeping tabs on what's been going on. Which is why, to be honest, I haven't been writing. And if all the bickering and arguing is turning me off, I can't help but wonder what it will do to prospective new fans. Starsky & Hutch is a small fandom, a closed fandom. No one advertises outside. But we need new blood if we're to continue to flourish. Is it that we don't want to flourish? Is it like the last season of S&H, we just want to get it over with? If so, the thing to do is step aside for the next generation. If not, we've got to show them that we can overcome our problems and pull together—show them the warm and open people that I encountered when I first ventured in all those years ago. I'm talking about most of you! Yes, believe it or not, there are new fans anxious to join in. Most of them never even realized we existed. I don't want this fandom to die, I don't want the message of love S&H taught us to be lost—disillusionment is rampant enough in the 'real' world... Love each other, be good to each other, respect each other. Failing that, don't spoil it for the others who are coming to bring us a breath of fresh air. They are our future. Remember your good experiences in the beginning, and let them have the same chance. Show them how special it can be. If you don't, eventually this fandom will cease to exist, and Starsky & Hutch will no longer live forever in our hearts.
- a fan who's been waiting for a long time for some submissions to her zine is getting fed up: In case any of you are wondering -- the deadline is still open. I'm still waiting. Hope springs eternal, and like that. It is around this gloomy time of the year that my paranoia is at its worst, however. I did start wondering if there was maybe some kind of unofficial boycott in action. But then, I know that had to be the paranoia talking, because if this fandom I've is stooping to that kind of thing, then it's not the fandom I've loved for more than ten years. I mean, that would be just too childish for words. Let me make something clear. I do not NEED to do a zine. I have more than paid my dues in that respect over the past ten years.
- about tolerance in fandom: My impression is that, hitherto, '/' aspects have hardly made headlines in our letters—just one theme among many others. There's always so much to discuss and we don't focus on any one aspect.... We enjoy all enjoy good writing. The S&H zines which I produced sold out fast, needed re-printing, inquiries still arrive. Contributors and customers included many fans who had written - and read - S/H. They showed absolutely no discrimination against zines which were not in the S/H category, we're not picky where there's good reading on offer. A decade ago, some things were different. But that's ten whole years—more. Remember the vulnerability which surrounded the publication of the first volume of 'Code Seven'? That editorial preface reflected the discrimination (and the intolerance) of that time against a S/H sine. But that suspicion/confrontation was then. This is '93....We have moved on. As [L] truly says, 'we have progressed - to the point of mutual tolerance'. Those ancient questions feel less and less relevant.
Special Supplement: Winter 1993
This mini-issue was made up of a very long open letter by the editor, plus some short notices. It contains six pages (most of which is undated) and a part that appears to have been written later and is dated February 22, 1993.
Some dating confusion, some of it contradicts itself:
- In it, the editor says she is committed to publishing issue #21 and #22, and that she would decide what to do after that.
- She says that issue #22 "will be out in March" and issue #23 will have a deadline of May"
- She mentions "21 issues of Frienz" as having been published.
- She also mentions a fan asking about profit "in issue #22."
- Best bet: it was published between #22 and #23 and dated as per written not published. Or something like that...
I'm late. Your expectations of Letterzine #22 are given over to this pregnant pause and the birth of voice. I speak as myself. There is no editorial "we" here. And, yet in this delivery, I feel I may very well express some of your own emotions.
[personal problems redacted]
I go to fandom for escape from these mundane issues, as do many of you. I told myself years ago that I would remain in fandom as long as it was fun. Well, lately it hasn't been much fun. And, I'm tired.
I'm NOT tired of Starsky and Hutch. I love those two guys. They rescued me from despair and brought me into a circle of creativity and belonging.
I'm NOT tired of fandom. S&H is my only fandom. And, over the years it has given me an outlet to express myself in poetry that often transcended fannishness, and a place to be foolish as Uncle Ima. It's given me some dear friends who I can be myself with.
I'm NOT tired of you. Hey, I love you. I understand what it means to be a writer, and a reader. I understand what it means to find comfort in a TV show. I understand how wonderful it can be to connect with other fans. I know how energizing and fun ALL this can be. But lately, fan activities have become exhausting, more of a job than an elective fun hobby.
I AM tired of Amapola Press. I am tired of hearing about checks being cashed and zines NOT being sent. I am tired of the misconception that one person single-handedly keeps fandom alive. (What do you call 21 issues of FRIENZ?...) Chopped liver? A burrito? Kelp?
I AM tired of hearing about fans waiting years for fanzines ordered from Amapola Press. I AM tired of hearing about fan requests regarding information related to their order being routinely ignored.
QUESTION: If a fan orders a zine in 1991 and sends 5 letters asking about the status of that order and receives no answer to her five letters, or, her zine, who does she turn to?
When I called the editor of Amapola Press on February 13, 1993, about this fan's problem, as well as the other mail order zine delays, she informed me that these back orders had been sent out that very day. She also wanted to know why I was involved in this "back order" problem. Hmmm... Because I'm a part of fandom, too. Because you don't answer your mail? Because this is not a single-person's fandom, but OUR fandom?
And, while I am aware that the editor of Amapola Press is going thru a tough time just now, I am also aware that these mail order delays are of long standing. Literally, going back YEARS.
THEREFORE it is my recommendation that fans no longer purchase zines from AMAPOLA PRESS via mail order. Buyers Beware.
I AM tired of the sanctity of slash. I feel I am allowed to NOT enjoy it and I am allowed to express my preference for the original Starsky and Hutch. I guess I prefer my moaning, groaning, thrashing, and sighing (not to mention thigh-grabbing) within the context of H/C.
Do you know what I first noticed about Starsky and Hutch? What turned me on? It wasn't rear ends, rectums, erections, or leanly muscled tushes caressed by faded denim...tightly. It was their acts of intercourse... the way they talked to each other. It was the way they took the time to let the other guy express his feelings. It was the way they helped each other and went that extra mile. It was the way they cared, not only about each other, but about BEING COPS. In my opinion, the ultimate act of caring for another is to lay down your life for them, not to lay ON them! And, frankly, I am tired of fiction that reads like a visit to the proctologist. And, it's okay for me to say that, because I am a part of fandom, too. I am not challenging anyone's delight in "/". I am merely stating MY preference...also valid and worth sharing.
So, yes, I AM tired. And, it is not much fun anymore.
DID YOU KNOW that there is a difference between fandom and the business of fandom? A fan wrote into #22 asking about the "profit" I make on FRIENZ.
I am happy to say that I operate OUR letterzine with a credit balance. I started it with my own money and with the generous support of two fans who subscribed for 6 issues simply based on the fact that they knew me. I ran it at a personal loss for six issues. We started breaking even with issue seven. The sale of back issues has really helped us out. Our credit balance is now: $173.00 (one hundred and seventy-three dollars.)
This balance remains in a separate account. I can use this balance as a way to: handle postage increases, printing increases, changes in the number of subscribers, special cover art (ie. the cover of #6, which was pencil, and expensive to reproduce. But, who can refuse a Lovett?), postage related to LZ business, larger per page print runs, and a litre of Diet Coke on paste-up night.
When I close down FRIENZ, the credit balance can either be split among subscribers as a rebate or given to charity. YOU tell me. YOU decide. It's the club's kitty at the end of my involvement in our letterzine.
Most recently, I have rolled-back the per issue price to UK readers. It has been their loyal support that has given me the bulk of per issue operating costs. I can only say that without their generous support and trust FRIENZ would not still be in existence.
So, now that I've done my routine from PARTNERS. I hereby do tender my resignation...my patient(?) submission (Webster's New World Dictionary, definition #2.) to continue the production of the letterzine, even though I felt like quitting two hours ago.
So, why continue? So, that I can get another Huggy Award? Well, when you produce the only LZ in this fandom, how can you NOT get an award? To add funds to my Swiss Bank Account? To wade through an Everest of mail related to Amapola Press? To spend eight hours on the phone, long distance... on fan business and related Amapola Press problems? To spend a long two weeks assimilating the information related to fannish problems, and deciding how best to proceed? To write three drafts of a letter like this one, and still realize I have probably not said everything I needed to say, and that you needed to hear in the best or most impersonal way.
But, I'm tired. And, I can't ever be anything but personal. I'd like to just MAKE NICE on the pages of letterzine and never make waves, so that it is a safe harbor for you frienz to dock in. But, what happens when serious issues threaten fandom? When our good and loyal frienz leave because they are being ignored or abused? Who will champion them?
That's why I will continue. Because of YOU. Because of letters like our friend Christine sent for #22...coming soon. Because of [L L], who wasn't too timid to speak up. Because of the notes and cards you send outside of any deadline. Because of Starsky and Hutch, who saved my life at a time when HOPE was gone. Who rode into my life on a siren song. Who cheered me up, when I was blue. Who gave me...YOU.
THEREFORE I will continue producing the letterzine because I CARE. But, I need your help. I need a break....
I really need help with TOTM suggestions. Please. Ideas welcome.
I really need help making FRIENZ fun again. What do you like to talk about? What do you like to share?
Also, for those of you who aren't able to TYPE a letter, send a legible handwritten one, and we'll see you become a part of the voice.
REMEMBER: This is YOUR letterzine. Not mine. You make it happen. Your input is valuable. Your voice is valid. Your comments appreciated.
Now on to the final part of this missive, ISSUES AND ANSWERS.
So, how do we take care of fan problems? Who does a fan write to, if she has been ignored? How do we keep the tone of FRIENZ friendly, when fans are upset?
Perhaps a SUPPLEMENT like this one offers an answer. I, least of all, want to make the letterzine a bitchy-problem-oriented unhappy place where we air dirty linen, and argue and disagree. Yet, it is my belief that SILENCE IS A DANGEROUS THING...
THEREFORE I submit to you that the goals of LZ and fandom should be for us: To Have Fun. To Share. To Care. To Make and Keep Friends.
We must also: COMMUNICATE. Producers have a responsibility to RESPOND in a timely manner. And, to deal HONESTLY with the consumers.
Above all, even though it is difficult to do, we must have the COURAGE to deal with those issues that violate any of the above.Does this make any sense to YOU? Can you add more? Define it? It all adds up to a COMMITMENT and CONTRACT we can make with each other.
ON SINGLE-HANDED FANDOMS:
Real exclusion can occur whenever there is a single-minded approach to a fandom's needs, (ie. the sanctity of slash). Short-sightedness can occur when four fans in the USA, who talk on the phone every other day, begin to think they ARE fandom.
I have chosen to break the silence on these personal feelings of mine here with you because I feel an attitude of single-handededly saving fandom implies ownership of a fandom by one person, or by one press. And, fandom belongs to all of us.
Without fanzines a fandom flounders. Without stories a fanzine isn't made. Without art new interpretations of the characters aren't created. Without letterzines fan networks aren't laid. Without ad zines fan needs for products aren't sated.
Without readers writers create in a void. Without writers readers don't have the words. Without producers fandoms don't thrive. Without consumers fandoms don't survive.
Without the flame of your interest, involvement and enthusiasm, this fandom would burn less brightly. Each and everyone one ^ iic; creates and recreates fandom. Each individual contribution, a letter, a card, a story, a zine, a poem, a renewal, a cloning, a good wish, a prayer, connects us in a web of wonder.
Without Starsky and Hutch, we'd have no partnership to enjoy and participate in.
Without DS and PMG, we would have no characterization at all to wander in, write on, and wonder about. In my opinion, it's the integrity of their interpretation of two men who love each other that double-handedly makes this fandom. Without that Truth, we would have no fandom at all. Their single-minded vision of what relationship means continues to affect us all almost twenty years later.
Their contribution is Golden.The rest of us...ALL OF US...readers, writers, producers, consumers...come up to sterling quality, no more.
Proposed Special Fiction Supplement: Summer 1993
This is a flyer for a proposed summer fiction supplement, one that was never published. This supplement was supposed to have been called "Sun, Sea, Sand, and Ants."
In it, the editor refers the fannish fighting that had been occurring: "We've had enough bad news, let's have some FUN....This will be OUR Zine. For FUN. Write on."
We've had enough bad news, let's have some FUN. Summer themed stories. Vignettes, humor, poems, episode fill-ins. Starsky baseball stories: this guy loves baseball, coached Little League, has a card collection. He's a fan (Hey, no wonder we like him.) Or, Hutch, and a sunburn. How 'bout midnight, moonlite swim and crab? Or, that first post-SF summer. Or, something HOT... LA and a record heat wave? Or a picnic where ALL goes wrong. I'd like it to be a copy ready zine made available to all interested S&H fen. I will gladly help with story ideas, or typing for those who cannot. This will be OUR zine. For FUN. Write on... No graphic sex please.
Special Supplement: Summer 1993
The summer 1993 non-fiction supplement, however, was published. It was 23 pages long.
I decided that it was in the best interests of fandom to send this out to you in this format. There are good letters to read, honest LOC's that deal with certain issues we have been discussing as a fandom.
I did feel that since I am hearing from new fans (thanks in large part to the ad [Leah S] has been running), I didn't want to offer this "clearing the air" issue for sale. Therefore:
1. This is NOT Issue 23 and is sent to you at no charge. 2. Issue 23 will be aregular issue. DEADLINE: SEPT 3 TOM: RESPONSES TO #22. ALSO, "BABE" ... WHO SAID IT? WHEN? WHERE? PLUS, "PAIN" ... WHO WRITHES BETTER, S OR H? INJURY UPDATE: COUNT THOSE SCARS.
3. If you have any responses to LOC's in this supplement, write to the letter writer directly. I am closing the book on these topics as of this supplement. But:
A. Abusive letters will not be tolerated.
B. If I hear that anyone has written an abusive letter, I will cancel the letter writer's subscription.
4. PSEUDONYMS: The need for an artificial identity to hid behind may relate to a need for "safety". And, even though, it would be nice to think we are all friends here, there are fen out there who feel unsafe. I will be writing more on this later.5.OF DUCKS AND CLIQUES: If it has feathers, swims in the water, and quacks, it is a duck. If it is a small, exclusive circle of people who think they own this fandom, and, think that snubbing me in halls at cons hurts me, it is a clique; if it has feathers, swims in water and quacks, it is a flock.
- a very short con report for MediaWest*Con
- a reprint of an article about practicing Random Acts of Kindness and Senseless Acts of Beauty
- from a fan's letter: Pseudonyms and anonymity featured more in those first SH publications whose producers felt vulnerable, faced with hostile disapproval - and the threats - from some of those who didn't agree with what they were writing and publishing. I recall issue 27 of that first 'S&H L/Z' (November, 1981) in which Terri made a special announcement of her intention to publish S/H slash fiction in her 'Red Light universe'—and how, at that time, there were people who wished they might share the same freedom to follow that course, but for whom job-security and other practicalities were real obstacles. Those threats weren't make-believe. But, happily, those old S&H vs. S/H confrontations are hardly relevant now. Many readers enjoy both genres; good zines are never short of readers.
- from a fan: FRIENZ 22 had a lot of good things. Theresa Kyle's "missing scene" fiction, Christine"s (and others) "memorable moments from fanzines", the letters from [Iris S] and [Leah S] addressing the more contentious issues. The two supplements told their own story,and you were right, Pat, to air your personal views and feelings on the issues that were causing you so much concern. I'll admit to being among those who wrote to you 'off the record', thus adding to your frustration. I did say, in that letter, we should "communicate", be honest with ourselves and each other, which perhaps has not always been the case. Some of us tend to steer clear of topics which may give rise to arguments, or offend in some way. Perhaps there are times when we should be a little more forthright. On the subject of Amapola Press, (a perpetual thorn in your side), I've had no personal experience of the problems, but am aware that others have. It is worrying because of the effect it is having on fandom, and the goodwill of fans In general. If, as Leah's letter seems to suggest, fandom is being damaged in a wider sense, and, as a result, old and new members are being turned off , then we all should share your concern, Pat. You have done, and are doing more than your share to keep this fandom afloat and on an even keel. Please believe we are grateful for that. Your view of S&H is very close to my own, and I'm glad you stated it, while acknowledging that other views and preferences exist and are perfectly acceptable. I've always preferred h/c to '/', but I can happily co-exist with fans who take the opposite view. Why should any of us wish to deny freedom of choice in how the characters are perceived?
- a fan writes: Though I suppose since things have become so stirred up recently, this "Clearing the Air" TOTM is necessary now. Still I wish with all my heart things had never reached this stage. Yes, there have been problems with [April Valentine] and Amapola Press. Yes, changes need to be made. What I think should not have happened were all the hurt feelings and disjointed noses which came about as the end result. I felt especially sympathetic toward Iris whose problems with Amapola Press seem to be the worst I've heard of so far. I can find no acceptable explanation or excuse for rudeness, and being laughed at by anyone constitutes just that to me. I know there are two sides to every story, but it certainly sounds as though her intentions to help were good. I'm sorry, Iris, that you no longer have time for the S&H fandom, but if your circumstances change, remember—some of us will always have places in our hearts for other S&H fans too. Some of my comments here will be direct quotes from a letter I wrote to Pat following her Spring Supplement though most are not. I personally feel very badly so much has happened to pull this fandom apart. I completely agree with [Leah S's] letter that the fandom needs new blood. If some of the originators need a break or even choose to withdraw from the S&H fandom family completely, perhaps it's time. But that does not mean we want to see an end to it. On the contrary—I've been involved less than two years. Just now am I beginning to get my proverbial feet wet writing S&H stories; I certainly don't want to have to quit so soon. I hope, Leah, you continue to get lots of responses to your ad offering to provide info for interested new members. A "welcoming party" per se is just what S&H needs. I wish there were some way to make older members more interested, but fandom is too personal for that. I myself have already strayed over into a second fandom (Man From U.N.C.L.E.) but no way will I abandon S&H as long as the fandom is alive. There should be room in all our lives for multiple fandoms, and old doesn't necessarily need to equate to "tiresome." Perhaps some of your newcomers will soon see fit to start producing zines. I've heard it rumored that [April Valentine] and [MRK] plan not to participate in FRIENZ any longer and that Amapola Press may go on "hiatus" indefinitely. I sincerely hope that isn't true. Both ladies have provided wonderfully thought-provoking letters and delightful responses to the various TOTM's. I can well understand why Martha may have some deeply hurt feelings and she has my sympathy in that I also know what it's like to be on the receiving of waiting what seems like forever for a zine from her—courtesy has to work both ways. No one person holds any fandom together "single-handedly" as has been so incorrectly suggested about [April Valentine] in the past though she unquestionably is one of the best S/H writers and zine producers the fandom has. Unfortunately her behavior has been to the detriment of the fandom by her inconsideration toward others. It hardly seems fair an entire fandom should be threatened with demise due to just one person, though I personally will hate to see the demise of her fine zines (like THE FIX) and novels like Distant Shores.
- a fan writes: Compounding the problem is the slash controversy, which seems to have existed since the lz's began. I've been reading many of the old lz's and everywhere it's the same—why can't people be broad minded enough to accept others reading preferences as just that, preferences, and let them be? Personally, I love slash stories, but I also feel one has every right to prefer the "original S&H," and to freely, without condemnation, express their opinion as such. To each their own, and it should be just that simple—unfortunately ifs not and that does detract from the "fun" of fandom. Alison expressed the same thought equally well or better in #22 and she's not a slash fan so apparently both "sides" feel the same. Granted, I wasn't around to know anything about the Star Trek or other fandoms, and the U.N.C.L.E. realm seems very small. Yet not once have I encountered anyone in that fandom who has chastised me for writing slash. The longest wait I've had for a zine I've ordered is slightly over two months, no comparison to the lengths of time previously noted here. Perhaps [April Valentine] might consider letting someone like Peg Kennedy act as marketing agent for her zines, allowing her to concentrate on writing and other endeavors. That might solve a multitude of problems for everyone.
- from a fan: Yes, I'd like the fun, the sharing and caring to be the mainstream of this fandom. I would love us to get back to basics and discuss the show, S&H, the other characters, the contrasts in the series' four seasons. I'd like to talk about Hutch's moods and vulnerability, Starsky's effervescent nature which can sometimes take a dive into the depths of despair. The complexities of the partnership, the friendship constantly tested, constantly affirmed. All that went far beyond the often bland, predictable scripts and kept us riveted to the end, and almost twenty years on. So, maybe we've been into it all before, but in discussion, new things emerge, we can suddenly see a scene, or a dialogue exchange differently through someone else's eyes. Be nice if we could forget about hierarchies, slash versus straight, whether or not Pat makes a profit on FRIENZ (that one HAS to be a joke, no?), and all the other things that are not what fandom is, or should be, about. Let's be happy again.
- a fan writes: Is slash still an issue after all these years? Maybe, but why? It shouldn't be—we shouldn't want to fight over this, and there s no need. Just because slash is no longer underground and maybe even the majority opinion doesn't mean it exists in a state of sanctity. Individuals shouldn't be penalized for daring to question the concept of slash. Whatever our views on the issue of slash, we shouldn't have to be defensive about it.
- a fan writes: In my mind S&H are lovers. I felt this way long before I ever discovered fandom. In the past, I have felt that those who shared this view were discriminated against by a minority. But this was all over, a very long time ago, or so I thought. I have good friends who don't believe in the "/" premise, but we've been friends for more than ten years—so I just can't see what all the fuss is about. I don't really see the need for pseudonyms in FRIENZ. I think full names and addresses should be printed with all letters, why do we need to hide from each other? This is not even a publication in which one should feel a need to hide from 'outsiders'. I think it's okay to use pseudonyms in stories if that's what a particular writer prefers.
- from a fan: Once upon a time, when I was new to fandom, I thought it was possibly the nicest place to be—perfect escapism, and frienz, and sharing. Thirteen years on, I find I still feel the same way. Most of the time. But there are things that bug me, and as Pat says, Silence Is Dangerous. Resentments fester. The freshness, the warmth, the caring, are soured and not so much fun anymore, and it becomes as hard to deal with the problems encountered in fandom as it is with those in the real world. However, they have to be dealt with. And what we have been experiencing recently is, I am sure, a hiccup purely down to a failure to communicate. I know I'm not alone in feeling this way. Let's get to basics. Let me say right now that my own problems with Amapola Press are minor. Two zines did not arrive as expected. Letters went unanswered. Then both zines (or duplicates thereof) arrived. End of story. It isn't the first time that things have gotten lost in transit, after all, or been delayed by the Forces of Mischance or H.M. Customs and Excise. It was only when I started hearing about zines that had been ordered and paid for in full and had not arrived even after eighteen months and repeated letters that I suspected a problem. Anyone who has ever produced a zine knows that it isn t easy. It is time-consuming, and irritating, and it needs more organisational skill than almost anything I've tackled yet. Amapola Press brings out FIX an a more or less regular basis, and other zines. I couldn't cope with that workload. I freely admit it. But I am wondering if Amapola Press isn't trying too hard, and bitten off more than it can comfortably chew, thereby blocking the essential lines of communication. No one minds a zine being late. Fans are incredibly patient people. Even more so if they know what's going on. For what it's worth, therefore, I offer the following advice—no one is single-handedly responsible for the continuation of fandom, so don't try to be. If you are having problems with your zine, then let people know. A postcard would be enough. At the very least, it would avert the fannish paranoia that the Unauthorised have gotten hold of it! (Don't laugh—this did happen to STROKES!)
- from a fan: As for your comments on single-handed fandoms, I just want to say that I once told [April Valentine] that another fan told me that without [April] there would be no S&H fandom. This fan has since pretty much left S&H for The Pros and never contributed to FRIENZ or the APA. To her fandom meant reading zines, so in her view the person who put out the most zines made the greatest contribution to fandom. [April] was not at all pleased when I told her that. I know she mentioned you and FRIENZ as an example to disprove it.
- a fan from the UK writes: I don't consider (U.S.-) fandom's quarrels any of my business. Its seemingly never-ending self-doubt is totally beyond me, too, and I'm not overly interested in discussing things like the possible existence of a hierarchy or a "secret-fandom" within the fandom, or the probability that there's a person thinking that she held, or will hold - could hold r fandom alive single-handedly... [snipped] Re. The Use of Pseudonyms - on Stories: Re-reading certain favorite stories of mine - some of them slash - I never fail to feel a little sadness on account of the fact, that the author's name is in all probability a pseudonym. There's a woman whose birth-place is thousands of miles far from here, and I find her (for instance) describing to the last detail some sweet sexual fantasy of mine - how could I not wonder about her identity? But then, I understand the necessity to be careful, too - especially in regard of slash - so I don't think that there should be a change in policy. Re. The Use of Pseudonyms - on Letters to FRIENZ: I agree with you in this, Pat - the feasibility to use a pseudonym might help shy fans to write in. So I would, if I were you, welcome and publish all letters, those with and those without (real) name and address. There's an important hitch to it, though. I would expect those fans to never forget, that this permission isn't a matter-of-course, but a concession that's being granted to them. I want them to be aware, at all time, that knowing our identity while withholding their own automatically puts them in a stronger position during our discourse, and that - between friends, at least - obliges them to a demonstration of particular tact and restraint. Maybe we, the others, find it a little easier to "stand the heat", but that doesn't mean that we wouldn't know - from our own experience - what it means to be shy, or insecure, or afraid of being hurt. I would expect everyone, who writes an anonymous letter to FRIENZ, that she's more than anyone else careful in her choice of words, especially then, when the topic is of a sensitive kind. L.Leigh has repeatedly been congratulated on the courage it took to speak up against the "sanctity of slash", but for me her/his letters were primarily an example of how easily a difficult discussion can get nipped in the bud, when the person who tries to bring it up hits a completely wrong note.
- from a fan: Ever since [MRK's] fateful remark in FRIENZ #17, people have spared no effort in order to emphasize, that [April] has by no means kept SH-fandom going single-handedly. But would you contradict as well, if I said that there is hardly anyone else, whose attendance has influenced SH-fandom's development as much as hers did? Anyone else, whose work has enriched this fandom as much as her work has? The question of responsibility towards new fans has been raised - okay, so, what about this responsibility? [April's] stories in "It's Love", Cap'n" - if there are any - could easily become her last SH- pieces. How will we explain that to new fans, in, say, two or three years? They'll give, which is utterly understandable, a shit about thirteen open zine-orders back in 1993. Instead, they will be as enchanted as we are - or were - by [April's] incredible talent as a writer, by her loving, tender, her totally unique stories. If our present action cuts down the number of those stories, it's this very fact that will forever be remembered, and not the reasons that made us turn on her in the first place. - However justified those reasons may have been!
- from a fan: [I want to thank everyone who wrote to me upon receipt of their zine to say that they understood how my current life situation had caused the delay. Your kind words of understanding were very much appreciated. For me, fandom has always been an oasis and fan publishing, a hobby. Earlier in the year, I thought about whether I should make the publishing a business for me, as so many are doing in fandom these days. But I have always believed that we shouldn't make our living out of the characters created by other people and put on screen for us. Fan publications should be done out of love, not for profit. Still, even if I was not to be making profits from doing zines, I knew that to continue on a large scale I would have to find some way to handle things in a more business-like manner. Several alternatives were considered. However, due to the fact that I have much less time and energy to devote to publishing, I have decided instead that it is time to stop. I wish everyone well and hope that Starsky and Hutch fanzines will continue to keep alive the story of two men who love each other, but just happen to be cops.
Frienz 23 was published in Autumn 1993 (the deadline for the next issue was January 1994) and contains 20 pages. This is the last issue that was edited by Pat Massie.
- TOTM: Clear the air and get fandom back on track again
- missing scene from Hutch Fever by Theresa Kyle
- a copy of an open letter was printed in this issue, its subject was the non-delivery of zines—while this letter was distributed in other places, it was printed here as a direct result of many fans being unhappy with Amapola Press, see GAZ Letter to Fanzine Editors, Publishers and Buyers
- the editor writes: FRIENZ will be going QUARTERLY in 1994. And, this year, I will not be publishing a holiday issue. That is one reason this issue is a month later than originally promised. The other is that I wanted to be able to write an LOC myself. Also, in WINTER 1994, I would like to do a full sized SUPPLEMENT on S/H. What do you think? I would like LOC's, ESSAYS, a story or two, zine reviews, and whatever else we can think of. Obviously, there is a great interest in S/H in this fandom, and while I like to keep the LZ gen-oriented, I think many of you could use a topic to warm things up this winter. (See inside lz for more Info on Winter Sup.)....I told myself, when I began this LZ that I would do it for five years. That was in Autumn 1988. Wow! I feel very happy that I stuck with it (and, believe me, this year was a real fannish challenge), and that I delivered what I took money for. I haven't always been as regular a publisher as I would have liked, but I have communicated with you and have provided a forum for our fandom. I'm proud of my effort. And, I, too, marvel at times, as do my friends, [M] and [L], how I ever did it while I going through all my personal trials.'Grace, I guess. And, an extremely stubborn nature. Survivors have both it seems.
- the editor writes: I want to thank you all for your patience this publishing year while we attempted to straighten out some fannish problems. And, even though, we didn't print actual letterzine issues, we certainly had a great deal of communication between us I I have included in this issue a letter from the editor of GAZ. I as very happy to see that fans now have a place to make official complaints regarding zines, zine eds, and problems. S&H has weathered a difficult period, and our fandom survives. With the publication of TL&TS it is also growing, with buyers of the zine expressing interest in FRIENZ. I was truly impressed with how quickly Idiot Triplets Press produced their zine. And, I am very happy to be a part of its distribution.
- a fan writes: When I first subscribed to this l/z, I wanted to read about characters, the actors. I still feel the same way We have gotten off the track lately and spent much of our time discussing fandom itself and its problems, but 1 hope we can now go back to the main reason we're together -- the enjoyment of Starsky and Hutch.
- a fan complains about other fans asking her to read their fiction-in-progress: I've had more works in progress thrust at me or told to me than I care to remember. I must have a "tell me about your new story" kind of face. It's just not fair! I mean, I'm always at a loss as to what kind and considerate thing I ought to say to avoid these works in progress. By the time I realize I should have said, "I have to go to the bathroom, or, my car is double parked, or, I'm wanted In surgery," an authoress already looms over my left shoulder, and I hold her precious cargo in my reluctant hands. And yet, though I try to read her manuscript with concentration, echoing in my mind is the drumming certainty that I am trapped. I have to come up with something to say, something nice. Her ego needs maturing not jack hammering. The last thing she wants is the truth. The rhythmic pounding of an encroaching migraine threatens, as I speed read the opus for a page, a paragraph, a sentence that grabs me, delights me, or, at least, doesn't put me to sleep. Comments like: "Gee, nice margins!" or, "What a frequent use of hyphens, and in such unusual places!" seem somehow insincere. Comments on a plot in which one of the guys is set upon by nasty evil men who do nasty evil things to him all told in pulsating detail. But, though held hostage, beaten, raped and traumatized, he gets over it in three days, simply by having sex with his partner: "Have you ever considered researching a topic before writing about it? or, "Issues that you describe in your story often take years, and not hours to resolve." seem somewhat stern. "Have you ever considered a career in drawing?" seems sort of harsh. Or, the offered plot is one in which S&H are lovers. They have sex for 69 of the 72 pages of the story. The comment, "What plot?" seems sadly discouraging. Or, the unique and original storyline is: It's their first time. But, they aren't really gay. Still, they couple as though they had read a manual or taken a university level course, or had had a helluvva lot of practice. "The sex is wonderfully penetrating; the plot is not." seems satirical. "Where have I read this before?" seems short tempered. While, "I really like the way you use commas." seems silly. I've found that "My goodness! That was really something!" gives none of my real feelings away. As does, the ever reliable, "I like the part where S and/or H (or whoever the slashified duo is) comforts H and/or S." Guiltily insincere, I slink away seeking solace in a Singapore Sling and twelve Tylenol.
- about this fandom: I am very happy that there is an S&H fandom still alive and well. I am sorry to see it in such an uproar though. I guess I will add my two rents worth to the melee. I was first introduced to slash in ST fandom and my initial reaction was "no way!". However, curiosity got the better of me and I read some. I found that I enjoyed some of it. An with anything, some stories are well done and others are not. I am first and foremost an H/C fan. I have always been, even as a child I remember watching various TV shows for that special affectionate moment when my favorite character was injured. I guess by some standards that is a childish viewpoint and shows how immature that I am (and I am that!). But, I have a live and let live attitude about "/". I like a good H/C story and if it is slash it will not keep me from reading it. I will not turn away any S&H reading because usually I run find something that I like in a story. I also like the exclusivity that the S&H relationship has in slash stories, maybe that comes from being an only child. (I also was born and raised in San Francisco, maybe "/" is in the water. HA!) I do get jealous when some one, either male or female, comes between the characters. Now this may not be the healthiest attitude in reality, but S&H is after all a fantasy world and I guess I can have it "my way" there... I hope that everyone will agree to disagree and continue to enjoy S&H, I will always be a fan no matter what happens in "fandom".
- a zine is cancelled: First, the bad news. As the contributors already know, the proposed zine ONCE MORE WITH FEELING is cancelled. The reason? Not enough submissions. No, really, people, three stories (however worthy) do not a zine make. My thanks to those few who did write something, or who took the trouble to enquire.
- a fan wonders: Maybe it is the memory of the flack the slash-fans endured in the early days that makes them so vocal and strident now?
- a fan speculates on anonymous letters: You could write those, it was observed, and then, under your own name, reply to yourself, keep up an ongoing conversation.
- Babe?: To be honest, I cannot recall a single instance in the series when either one of them said "Babe". As the word has been used extensively in S&H fiction, I presume it must have been said at least once or twice in the series itself. Enlighten me, folks. I also have to confess that its use in fiction has bothered me from time to time. Probably a purely personal reaction, but it doesn't ring true. I have trouble imagining either of them saying it, which may be why I've blocked it out of the series!
- a fan describes a Starsky & Hutch London Fan Day in April 1993: Saturday morning I took the Underground to the White Hart Pub for the SH Fanday. Sara and I heard sirens and watched emergency vehicles, only then learning that another major bombing had occurred. Two bombs, actually. Fans trickled in all morning saying the underground and busses had all been stopped. Once came from Stratford - by taxi. Two others finally got there by mid-afternoon and really needed the lunch saved for them. Last April there was a major bomb during our Fanday, too. Hmm. NOTHING deters fans from discussing old and new TV shows and zines, and characters, and stories. We had a great time sharing. Bombings are futile as they only make people mad, more stubborn, and less prone to work things out. I heard people say we carried on after Hitler's blitzkrieg in WWII, we'll carry on after the IRA.These SH Fandays are a delightful way to get fans together to share ideas and interests. I have been lucky enough to have been to four or five of them, even on the 4th of July, a nice way to bring two countries closer together. Starsky and Hutch have brought a lot of people close together, who never would have known one another without the joys as a mutual interest. That kind of love is always beautiful. SH fandom is definitely alive and well in the UK.
Frienz 24 was published in March 1994 and contains 20 pages. It is the first issue edited by Jean Holmes who promises to keep it running up until at least issue #28.
- TOTM: Plot (see Tabby's essay) episodes, stories. Or, the kinds of things you look for, avoid. What is plot?
- a fan responds to the fan who did not like to read other people's unfinished fiction: It was enlightening to learn your feelings about being approached by writers at Cons. I wonder if all editors consider it an imposition to be asked to read unsolicited works. I'd think the easiest way out would be to politely say you'll read it gfter the Con when you get home then write her; that would let you off the hook of having to stroke any egos personally. I agree it would be difficultto know what to say on the spur of the moment if a story is lousy, so agreeing to read things "later" would seem like the simplest way.
- a fan casts her vote: I also like the idea of a "Winter Supplement," particularly since it's slash. We slash fanatics really have no lz outlets to discuss our passion so something like this would seem great. Any chance it could turn into a quarterly feature (hint hint), depending on the response to this first issue, of course? I think the slash fans would enjoy having somewhere they could write their feelings freely, without fear of offending anyone.
- a fan doesn't care to read your sex scene: I don't want a sex-scene that reads as if it was lifted directly from THE JOY OF GAY SEX. I'd rather not have a sex-scene at all. Plenty of emotion, affection—yes. The mechanics of sex are not, for me, the stuff of great literature. Write it erotic, not technical. And if you want me to take it seriously, then it has to be just a part of 'what happens'.
- a fan comments on fandom: [L's] letter talks of 'starting a new chapter in SH fandom'. Guess that's actually something we've been doing for years; like most things in which human beings are involved, fandom, too, evolves. New chapters ... not to be equated with any break from all that has gone before in the growth of this fandom ... this past decade-plus, starred with a LOT of very special memories and associations. Some things we probably wouldn't miss? - like, say, anonymous letters? Me—I promise always to sign my real name in correspondence with my fellow-fans.
- regarding "Babe": ...'babe' occurs in zines rather than in the series. It also occurs - often - tn the extensive collection of creative song-tapes which has grtbwri up around the episodes; perhaps those are an influential factor.
- a fan asks: And now here's a very tentative, final thought. (I'm not even sure whether, at this stage, it makes any sense to mention it...) I wonder if it is crazy for me to consider embarking on the production of another zine?? The possibility really began with an enthusiastic and persuasive offer from a transatlantic source of help with some of the practicalities...encouraging! I would probably need to have it done some time this year. If anyone feels interest in such a project for a new SH zine, I'd be very happy to hear. The title would be RENASCENCE.
- at least two BNFs who've written slash in the past have been quite grumpy about it in the last few issues of the letterzine—one writes: Overall, there is a preponderance of stories that use sexual relationship as plot. Whether this ultimately challenges fan writing, whether it promotes new approaches to plotting beyond the recent rash of "dark" investigations into rape and SM, I can't say. Coming up against utter sameness in plotting though, I can say that the last zine I read all the way through was Code 7 #1.
- a long-time fan writes: To all my dear S/H friends, and I have many. I have tried to believe in the concept, believe me I've tried. But I cannot, for the life of me, see how S. and H. could form a lasting homosexual relationship and keep their jobs. (I know somebody will tell me I'm wrong). For me, what they do, how they do it, their work, and their dedication to it, are paramount. It's the reason for their existence, the way we came to know them, why the series was so enjoyable. I've been grateful for the subsequent expanding of horizons in fan-fiction, but despite that, the characters remain, for me, the ones we saw on the screen. I feel sometimes my imagination must be limited, but what I saw there was a close friendship, based on a long-time working partnership that threw them together for all those hours per day. A friendship that endured, and would have endured, despite any changed circumstances. That was all I needed to love S&H, folks, so forgive me for not being able to go the step further that seems to be important to many of you. Your tolerance, and acceptance of what must seem to you a reactionary p.o.v. is appreciated. I'll continue to enjoy - and perhaps occasionally marvel at - the widely diverse portrayals of S&H in fanfiction. And I'm very glad that we've resolved the l'zine "problems". The exchange of opinion:;, and discussion have always been an important part of fandom for me. Thanks to Pat for her patience and perseverance in sorting things out and putting us back on an even keel.
- regarding plot, or lack thereof: The show's success owed pretty nearly everything to the playing, not only of DS and PMG, but the regular supporting cast, plus all the other excellent actors and actresses who appeared in the series. It's been said that there were only a handful of standard plots, which were rotated among the various similar- styled shows—not too hard to believe. At the time we originally watched the show, in those far-off days, would I be wrong in thinking we were not so concerned with plots, we simply looked forward to seeing our heroes week by week. We got more discerning later on, and undoubtedly fanfiction helped to focus attention on plots. We began to see that many of the series plots left a lot to be desired. Much of the fiction, even in the early days, had plots as good, or better than the^ episodes. So, yes, plots do matter, although in fiction it is possible, as Tabby points out, to do without them. But it needs a very good writer to dispense with plot altogether. Easier,perhaps, in a short piece, or a vignette, where the characterisation is all.
- editing, do we need it?: I'm sure someone else must have told you by now that 'whaddya mean - I'm not a good kisser?' was a wonderful little A5-size zine which appeared in '86. The stories were all based on S&H's first kiss. It was published by the same press who did 'Lifeline—another great zine. I know WYM was not edited and I believe 'Lifeline' was not edited either. As both zines held quality stories I wonder if all this editing that goes on is quite necessary.
- a fan's beginning: I was definitely a fan of the original series, but at the time didn't know fandom existed. I finally found it. just as SH fandom was becoming virtually exclusively slash, Meaning, everybody but [M F]. This gave me the advantage of picking up a good collection of classic '&' zines fairly cheap from people moving on to other fandoms, mostly Pros. The drawback was that the all-slash writing coming out then didn't really appeal to me; I just couldn't relate it to what I'd loved about the series, which I saw as two cops who had an exceptional partnership and friendship. Their being cops was a major factor --I mean, let's face it, how exciting would the series have been for us if Our Boys had been, say, insurance salesmen? I didn't so much object to the slash premise as such, but moat of the writing focused exclusively on bedroom action. In which case they might as well have been insurance salesmen...
- the slash was boring: That's why I basically dropped out of the fandom at that time: I didn't find the slash stories morally objectionable, I just found them boring! I am delighted to see the fandom staging something of a comeback (this is a new experience for me!), with so many new people coming into it, and many of them predominantly '&' fans. With any luck this will lead to more '&' fanfic, a trend already started with the '&' section of THE LUCKY & THE STRONG and Nanci Casad's novel The Mind Enslaver. For that matter, I've been very pleased to find the writing quality of the newer slash much improved as well. I picked up a copy of IT'S LOVE, CAP'N at ZCon and was very favorably impressed, as I told Monica in an LoC. And I don't recall noticing any 'throbbing shafts' or 'tight, hot tunnels,' the stock terms which I found ubiquitous to the point of nausea in the early slash. (Now if we could just retire Meanly muscled.' Not that they aren't, but the term's been over-used. Again in my individual and non-professional opinion.) Both ILC and the slash section of TL&TS had stories with lots going on besides their love life, which made them much more interesting to me.
- ZCon comments: While I enjoyed zine-hunting and meeting other SH fans at ZCon, I was very disappointed in the shortage of SH programming. I had submitted three different SH topics, so it wasn't that they didn't get any input What say we try for more SH representation at MediaWest this year? Two of the topics I had suggested are: 1) Not Just Another Buddy Show--What Made S&H Unique? and 2) New Souls for the Faith, or, What Episodes and Zines or Stories Would You Use to Introduce a New Fan to S&H? If anybody would be interested in doing either or both of these, drop me a note or postcard. My experience with MediaWest has been that if you present them with a panel, complete with title and at least 3 panelists you're pretty well assured of a spot on the schedule.
Frienz 25 was published in June 1994 and contains 20 pages.
- TOTM: You've tried the rest, but you keep coming back to the best. What is it about S&H that keeps you interested and coming back for more?
- it's been a bit of a turn down for zines: Sorry to hear of the cancellation of Londa's Home for the Holidays Isn't that something like the third S&H zine cancelled within a year? I know Linda's "..Turned to Fire" will be out later this year, and Nanci Casad is tentatively planning another zine (straight stories only), but that doesn't seem like very much for a fandom that used to be so large. Where have all the S&H writers gone?! Probably to other fandoms like I have, as well as lacking new ideas for S&H. Too bad—I still very much enjoy reading S&H. Tabby, I hope your Renascence proposed in Frienz #24 is getting lots of submissions and going well.
- not everyone wants to go to a con: It's certainly been a fast winter. Hard to believe it's already Spring. By the time this is published another MediaWest will be over too. I hope it had a good attendance, and that S&H was well represented too. Since I have no interest in attending any Cons in person, I support them vicariously (and buy LOTS of the new zines released every year too!)
- a fan had a great time at MediaWest: I just got back from MediaWest, where I had a fabulous time! I highly recommend this con to anyone interested in more than one fandom who wants access to tons of zines, and likes the idea of being at a con that takes over an entire hotel!
- some on MediaWest: Well, and here it is only 51 weeks to the next MediaWest! This past one was great fun, even if I did have dismal zine hunting. Usually I come back with half a dozen or so new zine3—this year only one. The S&H panel was good even if sparsely attended; we strongly suspected many others who would otherwise have come were standing in the next year's con registration line instead. I think there were more people at the S&H room party than were at the panel. The room party was also instructive. I've been to similar affairs before, where episodes of a series are to be shown; usually they end up just forming background noise for fannish conversations. Not so here, there was almost total silence as everyone focused their attention on the screen. Some people said they hadn't seen the series for about 20 years. I hope we picked up some 'new souls for the faith', as another fandom puts it.
- the best slash: And though I know others will disagree, S&H (to me) also provides the most beautiful basis for the slash premise of any series I've yet to see. Their relationship is obviously the deepest possible sort of friendship and a great deal more. It's no surprise many of the stories with the most intense emotional content are S&H.
- the recent conflicts between slash and gen fans, and the situation involving Amapola Press, have made some fans step back from this fandom: Admittedly it's become more difficult for me to keep "coming back for more" recently, both due to my expanding fandom interests and the dissension here. No one wants to deal with bickering and arguing in fandom; there's more than enough of that in the "real world." Now that things have settled down, S&H fandom is again becoming more pleasant, and I'm enjoying it more again. Doesn't help me come up with any plot inspirations, but stories by others are always fun to read.
- zines as a barometer of fandom health: There are times I think this fandom is in a revival, but then I see proposed zines getting cancelled left and right for lack of submissions, and I have to wonder.
- reading what's available: I don't refuse to read S/H, but consider it strictly alternate universe. Unfortunately, if one wants to read SH, it's about all there is.
- a fan proposes the lending library: Recently we seem to have quite a few new people discovering SH fandom. (Yea!) In addition to episodes, all these folks want to get their hot little hands on—yes -- zines. Problem: Many zines -- "&" and "/" -- are out of print and virtually impossible to find second-hand, especially if one can't go to cons. It's occurred to some of us that a lending library, similar to the one [Karen B] runs for "The Professionals", might be a good solution. We would have a collection of out of print zines available for loan at a nominal fee. The borrower would reimburse the postage costs and return the zine within a reasonable period of time, during which she could, if desired, make her own copy. Zines which are still available (such as the Zebra 3's) would not be included. If we do this, the question arises of where to get the loaner zines (Xeroxes would be fine). 1 have a couple I could contribute to the cause, and could copy a couple more, but I frankly can't afford to reproduce my entire collection, and no longer want to ship out my originals. An effort like this would require the support of more than one or two fans. So I thought I'd toss the idea out and see how it sounds to you. We have a responsible party who's volunteered to handle the library. Does this seem like a good idea to you? Is it a service you might use? Is it an idea you're willing to support in any way? For example: 1) Do you have extra copies or unwanted zines you could donate to the library on a more-or-less permanent basis? 2) Do you have access to copying, so you could donate cloned copies, or could copy other people's zines at no charge for inclusion in the library? 3) Would you be willing to donate cash toward copying costs? I have a friend in another fandom who has her own machine and will xerox zines for us at a small cost. (She doesn't want to make a business of copying SH zines for others, but would make us a single copy of a zine for use in the library.) Once again, this seems like a possible way to feed new fans (and any older ones whose collections are incomplete!). But one or two fans can't do it alone, nor should they be expected to. So, are you willing to help in whatever way(s) you can? Please write to me at home or through the l/z with your ideas, suggestions, and offers of assistance.
- complaints about an illo, one which was later printed as the cover of Frienz #27: I recently heard a comment on an illo in a zine 'Bonaventure') which I published in 1990. Remember Suzi's frontispiece, 'Hero's Heart'?—which I've always thought of as a beautiful example of SH artwork. This comment called it 'disgusting' ... 'it reeks of S/H.' I can find no rational response, is there one??
- virtually all slash? I don't believe that SH fandom has ever been 'virtually exclusively slash'. I agree that much of the later fanzine fiction accepts the '/' premise... I hope there will always be a place for all opinions and interpretations. I hope any good SH zine would find eager readers—I have no grounds for assuming that it wouldn't. [M] refers to 'slash fanatics'... I don't think I'm one; I'm just someone who welcomes any good , insightful, perceptive writing—and that of course, could be '/' or non-'/'. I'd never take up a pre-determined position, refusing in advance to read anything in one category or the other.
Frienz 26 was published in August 1994 and contains 28 pages.
- TOTM: What episodes or stories in zines would you use to introduce new fans to Starsky & Hutch? Is there a single episode that stands out in your mind when you explain that S&H is mot just another cops n' robbers show?
- fiction, "Alternate Tag to 'Satan's Witches'" by Theresa Kyle
- regarding the illo "Hero's Heart," from Bonaventure (and printed as the cover of the next issue of Frienz): I also think Suzan Lovett's "Hero's Heart" is beautiful, but I can understand how it might upset someone who is violently anti-slash.
- regarding "Hero's Heart": 'Hero's Heart' -- was good to learn how many people love that lovely drawing. Any question about '/' or non'/' is immaterial. It's just beautiful artwork. Either is fine.
- regarding "Hero's Heart": I was dismayed when Tabby recounted her experience with a fan who wrote to tell her that she considered "Hero's Heart" ~ the frontispiece to Tabby's zine, Bonaventure - "disgusting." The illo, for anyone who hasn't seen it, is in an oval format and shows S and H from the shoulders up, fully clothed. H is behind and to the left of S, and has his arms around S's shoulders. S's arm, in turn, is reaching back to rest beside/behind H's head. Both are looking "at the camera." Around the piece is the quote," What makes you special, a breed apart? You're my friend, and you have a hero's heart." While I don't dispute anyone's Constitutional right to like and dislike whatever she chooses, or even to be as homophobic as she likes, I do question the courtesy of writing an editor of a zine to tell her she found an illo to be "disgusting," especially an innocuous piece such as this one. Come on, now, it's not a Gayle F! If this fan thinks the idea of S and H hugging one another "reeks of slash" and is "disgusting," I find myself asking why she's in this fandom? Perhaps she might be more comfortable with "Dragnet." While I never really watched the show, I feel fairly confident that Joe Friday and Bill Gannon didn't touch much!
- a UK fan does not like the word "slash": I've never like the word... it sounds abrasive, aggressive, harsh. In English idiom the word for that virgule can be stroke. I like that better. But I recognize that 'slash' is just a useful word.
- a fan writes: SH fandom is growing. I even have friends on the internet asking and I gave them your address for more info on S&H.
- the lending library: Good news first: Ladies, it looks as if the Lending Library is going to happen1 So far we've had about fourteen zines donated, (Thank you, Barbara, Trish, Kath, Kathleen and Nancy) with several more promised (Lyria, Nanci, Monica Rose, Pat, Marian). We've also had some folks promise to send money toward copying costs. Yes! But, (she says, cheer leader-like), this doesn't mean people should just sit back and expect others to take care of things; we still need help from everyone. If you need to know what we already have, drop me a line and I'll tell you. If there are particular titles you'd like to see included, let us know that as well. Wouldn't it be great if we could offer all the out of print zines? [K S] had what I think is a great idea: At the front of each zine in the library will be a page or frontispiece thanking the person who contributed it. Besides giving credit where it's due, it will let those who donate cash know how their money was spent.
- a fan will donate her zines to be copied for the lending library: I may be able to help. I have lots of nice, out of print zines. I lack lots of postage money to ship them for copying. My Mustang needed a carb rebuild and I'm now broke. Can anyone donate postage? All I want is my zines returned to me in the same condition that I sent them in.
- more on the lending library: ...copying permission is hereby given for all the 10-13 zines (with the exception of 3-11, and NEA, in case Paula or Jody still have a copy or two left. Interested parties should contact them) -- I think the idea of a SH fan library is terrific. Would I use it? Possibly -- though international postage might be prohibitive as well as risky...
- a fan responds to another who'd asked if Mary Sues "were still being written": Yes, sad to say Mary Sue's are still out there. I bought a ghastly Alien Nation zine that wound up being the most hideous example of a Mary Sue since ...name your zine. Of course, the bond between the boys almost precludes such a story, but...
- too close?: ... I have something I'd like to ask. Does anyone aside from me think that Starsky and Hutch's relationship, (while lovely to watch) could be damaging to them? Think about it. They seem to mostly only share their positive, nurturing and protective qualities with each other. I know it'sbecause they know they can only trust each other, and they spend so much time together. But can such complete, total intimacy be self-destructive? Can two friends become too close? The reason I'd like input is because I have a story idea...
- regarding tolerance: How I agree with your comment that you hope "there would always be space for all POV." I do too! Unfortunately many non-slash fans are so completely intolerant of slash that it makes me wonder how the two factions have ever survived without starting World War III.
- about cons: I don't get to a lot of cons, but I can't imagine not attending any at all. One of my regular con roommates has described MediaWest as "a combination of religious revival and family reunion," which pretty well covers it. It's something I look forward to all year, even if the way it's run does sometimes prove very irritating.
- a ZebraCon memory: I find I attended one more ZCon in'89, then none until 1993. I was still disappointed in last year's so far as SH programming went. Let's face it folks, if we want more than 'the obligatory S&H panel at ZCon, we're going to have to do it ourselves. Even if it means a group sitting around on the floor of the hotel lobby. One idea I'd had, reinforced by your comments, would be something like a "writers jam," a gathering to exchange and sort of brainstorm story ideas. This way we could share our stories and problems with each other instead of unloading them on poor Pat! And maybe inspire more SH writing?
- slash as the majority?: You say that you don't believe SH fandom was ever "virtually exclusively slash." That may be, but if there were any non-slash elements around in 1986 and following, I sure couldn't find 'em!
Frienz 27 was published in November 1994 and contains 32 pages. The cover of the zine was reprinted, in part, to responses in "Frienz" #25 and #26 to this illo from fans who'd seen it in the 1990 zine Bonaventure.
- fiction, "The Magic Christmas Tree" by Theresa Kyle
- this issue has a long, very interesting letter/essay by Pat Massie focusing on Hutch's perceived "meanness," boundaries, macho behavior, Starsky's relentlessness, and the psychology behind their relationship
- the editor wrote: If you want to read the letters Pat received for the cancelled Winter Supplement/Slash Discussion please send me a SASE & I will mail you copies of the letters.
- this issue has a long update on the lending library
- there is much discussion about whether Starsky and Hutch are TOO close to each other
- a mention of the internet: I'm a computer dummy and am wondering how to contact you and other S&H fans on the internet. What is your internet address?
- regarding "Hero's Heart": After having read the comments about the fan who did not like the picture in Bonaventure, I also took a look at it again. (Thanks so much to Tabby for sending a copy to me!) I thought it was beautiful and fit right in with the series. I'm really surprised that someone didn't like it. Maybe they were joking??
- regarding "Hero's Heart": I have to agree with you on the question of why the fan who objected to "Hero's Heart" is in S&H. I wasn't aware of slash in SH fandom when I made my first SH contacts in 1990, but quickly discovered its existence. And while I was uneasy with it for a long time, it didn't make me run for the hills. There's room for everyone.
- regarding tolerance: Regarding your comment that "many" non-slash fans are intolerant of slash -- I hope that "many" is not an accurate adjective. While there may be one or two people who forget that we live in America, most gen fans I have known are perfect willing to accept that others might have different opinions. I think the award in the tolerance department must go to [M F]. In the years when SH fandom was primarily "/", [M] still chose to be involved - writing letters, attending cons, putting the APA, sharing her sunny personality, and above all, being a friend. I'm sure it must have been frustrating being in such a minority, but she loved the show and cared about people enough not to let that dissuade her from being a part of fandom... Speaking more generally, I know it's frustrating not to have many zines of one's chosen genre coming out. In that regard, I'd be happy to read more gen, myself, but I can only write the characters the way I see them. I hope with all the new folks coming in, we'll have more writers of both genres!
- about slash and SH history: From what I gather, 1n the earlier days of the fandom, the slash and non-slash elements virtually did "start WW III." It apparently got really nasty and pretty much tore the fandom apart, before the slash side emerged victorious and the non-slashers largely left fandom. Look at the old "&" zines and see how many of those names you see around today. I discovered the fandom just after that, but the echoes were still around. I think that's why most of us are trying so hard to be accepting of others' point of view, to be sure that doesn't happen again this time.
- the fan who is starting the lending library thanks another fan: Thanks for permission to include your zines in the Library. Your generosity is appreciated! I would hope that, given that the zines are out of print, no editor would have a problem with this.
- a fan writes: YES! That idea (that such a close, intimate relationship can be damaging) is very valid indeed. It's something Chris and I have been exploring in our (non-SH) THRESHING FLOOR universe. We touched on it in NEA, also. The problem in a nutshell boils down to this -- if the only person they trust ia each other, who do they turn to when the other isn't there any more? Suddenly there's an empty space. A vacuum, because no one and nothing else can fill it. Scary.
- regarding other fandoms: Speaking of other fandoms, I have joined a new one recently and am amazed at the number of (what I consider to be) Mary Sue stories in it. I have purchased several zines now and have been very disappointed in many of them. You would almost not know that these characters are partners in some stories! That is something that has not been the case in the S&H fandom. I know that that subject has been tackled here before. But, it is nice that most of the stories, whether slash or not, do concentrate on the relationship between S&H. I have noticed too, that most fandoms in general have come up around shows with partners in them. I mean you see the occasional "Magnum PI" story or a "Time Trax" here and there but, not the abundance that you would see around the partnership shows. I know that I enjoy the stories that center on the partners in whatever fandom I am in, because that is what drew me to watch the show in the first place. And often times if the series did not give me what I wanted then I looked to the fanzines to do it for me. That again is what makes S&H so special, the fact that the series did give that relationship such importance and respect.
Frienz 28 was published in January 1995 and contains 28 pages.
- TOTM: Just 5 years until 2000. What do you suppose cops will be doing then?
- the tip of the iceberg: The suggestion that SH fandom is/was 'virtually exclusively slash', in my own (obviously limited) experience this isn't so, though I can see why it might sometimes appear to be. The image of an iceberg often occurs to me as an apt metaphor for fandom. I there's so much going on that can't be visible to everyone all the time. One's own small-ish corner may not encompass all aspects, though natural assets such as this L/Z do so much to widen awareness and foster communication.
- an offer for the lending library:
- it's all in the filter: Although I'm not into slash, I never denied anyone their right to read/write/print slash & I am bewildered as to why anyone would find the "Hero's Heart" illo or quote offensive. It's a beautiful drawing. S7H did show their love/concern for each other by touching/hugging & even a casual observer would know that. It's a great illo & quote.
- tolerance: I agree and appreciate your statements about difference of opinions in the fandom and that we should all get along. There are always going to be different views and opinions but we should learn to respect others opinions even if we ourselves don't agree. I don't like slash myself, but, if others want to read it. that's up to them, who am I to judge or put down. The purpose of fandom is to make friends with people you have something in common with and to have fun, there's no reason for a tide of war to break.
- timing: ...right on top of that news [of Elizabeth Glaser'death], comes word that S&H will begin showing on TNT on January 3. What should have been exciting news is bittersweet now. After waiting for years for the show to come back on, I can't help feeling the timing couldn't have been worse. Don't get me wrong, I'm very much looking forward to it, and I plan to be sitting right in front of my TV, VCR remote in hand, each and every evening. But I'm afraid some episodes will be hard to watch.
- a fan comments on a fan's letter in the previous issue, and has some observations about fandom and gender roles: Your exposition last issue on the Starsky-Hutch dynamic was a masterpiece! I'd been wondering how I missed noticing Hutch being so cruel to poor little Starsky; I always thought they were pretty evenly matched in the Snipe and Dig Department. Sure, there's a surface competition between them. I see much the same, in a somewhat kinder,gentler form, with my group of women friends. "If your friends can't Insult you, who can? After all, we know you best!" But everybody gives as good as they get; we all know it's only in fun and when it comes to serious matters, we'll be there for each other. I see it as the same, only to a rougher surface degree, with S&H. Most of It's just horseplay. This is something that has needed bringing out, and you've done it beautifully. I've long thought that with media fandom in general, a major appeal to us as women is that it gives us men as we wish they could be—and in fan writing we can make them even more so. That goes double for S&H, who are not afraid to care, and to show it openly when appropriate. I still remember my reaction on seeing that hug at the end of THE FIX. Wow, thought I, here's something I've never seen before, two men who can love each other and not be afraid of it. (I hasten to add that I saw, and still see, that love as non-sexual, which was a major part of its appeal.) But being an almost exclusively female fandom, we do in some cases tend in fan writing to have the guys talking and acting too much like women: I've read zine stories where one or the other of these two strong, tough, competent cops are dissolving in tears about every third page. That seems just as wrong, or at least as 'not S&H', to me as having them be exclusively macho dolts. Note that I'm not saying they aren't macho dolts on occasion. Perhaps many occasions... But in the fact that they are frequently able to rise above it lies their appeal.
Frienz 29 was published in March 1995 and contains 36 pages.
- TOTM: Does the series give us much information about what S&H were doing after they left the Academy until they became partners?
- contains the Huggy Award winner, "The View from Under the Bed" by Linda McGee
- a short mention of RevelCon: RevelCon 6, a multi media Con happened last weekend here in Houston. As the Con began on St Patrick's Day, most fans wore something green -like headbands sprouting big, green shamrocks. I even found several S&H zines in the Dealer's Room that I have not read: L A VESPERS 1 & 2 and 1013! To spread awareness of S&H fandom, I put out fandom flyers on their flyers table.
- trying to keep the love alive: I wonder if there are other S&H fans like myself who have branched off into other fandoms and rarely even watch S&H for prolonged periods of time. Since we don" have cable TV, ! can't watch the daily episodes being run now, but I do have a complete collection of tapes. Since becoming involved in other fandoms, I rarely watch S&H. however, and wonder if others have done the same, then eventually come back to watch more regularly again. I've been away from it for quite some time now, and wonder if I'll ever watch or write it with the same intensity again.... Good thing we have our zines and tapes to help keep us warm!
- the world was a little smaller then: Does anyone have a valid phone number for TNT? The number I was given (404-827-1647) is never answered. Very odd for a business number.
- a fan says that her dependence on closed captioning is what makes or breaks her ability to follow a fandom: Obviously I haven't left S&H, just let other fandoms dominate, and I've been vocal enough about wishing S&H had CC to keep a larger share of my attention.
- about an upcoming zine:
- a mention of fans being on-line: Can anyone who gets Prodigy tell me if an explanation was given as to the reason for the sloppy editing of TNT's airing of "The Fix"?
- a fan writes: I just realized that the first issue of FR1ENZ is dated 1988—an achievement in on-going service to fandom. Thanks to everyone who has kept it coming. The first issue of the first SH L/Z was in 1979 and in all the time since then I don't think we have ever been without a L/Z—more than one at certain times.
- a fan writes of this fandom, and some changes: My experience of fandom has been much the same as [T's]. I haven't found it to be exclusively slash either, though perhaps 'slash' seemed predominant in later years. I have friends who are about evenly divided pro and anti, and some who could be categorised as "don't know"- maybe even"don't care". Whatever-no one now claims the high ground, we've reached an accept able tolerance-level and fandom has benefited from that.
- about some episodes: "Ballad for a Blue Lady" must be the ultimate NON-h/c episode. I've never been able to figure out why they acted towards each other the way they did - like strangers. Perhaps there was just too much left unexplained - well, neither of them seemed to want to take the time to explain anything.... Could ["Dandruff" be the episode that justifies PMG's sometime comment that S&H was a "cartoon"?) By the 4th season me thinks both he and DS were less committed to the show than in the earlier years, and were not so vigilant in script-vetting
- a UK fan describes her introduction to this fandom: I rediscovered Starsky and Hutch only last March at my first multi-media"/" convention. (Devacons 3 and 4 in Chester were very enjoyable weekends). On the journey to the con I found myself hoping I would find S/H zines, although I don't know why; K/S was my reason for attending, and I hadn't thought about David or Paul since my schooldays. Fortunately, the zine trilogy "One More Mountain", "One More River" and "No Easy Answers" was on sale in the dealer's room. Although I had never seen "Sweet Revenge" and thought the shooting was "fan-fictional", I thought the story was wonderful and couldn't put down the zines until I had devoured every word.
- an early mention of vids: What aspects of S&H do I like? (Apart from the obvious attributes of P&D as seen on video). The answer is most definitely "/" stories, or Relationship stories which don't rule out that possibility. My other passion is music videos.
- a fan says she discovered fandom itself two and a half years ago, had gone to a Star Trek con, and the rest is history: You might be wondering what all this has to do with SH? Nothing I guess, except I came away with some zines, good ones, which I read on the journey home and was hooked, and on the lookout for more. To cut a long story short, one thing lead to another as more fandoms came to my attention until a chance remark one day opened a whole new universe and I discovered "/". This was what I had been looking for all my life. And I thought I'd invented it and enjoyed it quietly and secretly after watching TMP and then reruns of original ST! If only I had known. How could I have failed to discover it before? Actually, apart from ST, I've done things the wrong way round and read fan fiction before watching the shows properly. This is certainly true for Profs and SH. I enjoyed both and knew which actors/characters I preferred but had too much else on my plate, like a young family and a job, to treat them as anything more than undemanding relaxation. I'd be interested to know how many others have read and enjoyed slash stories before watching a series. Almost certainly reading prepares the way but it is surprising how often the suggestion Is there on the screen. One of my favourite pastimes is to watch with the sound off and concentrate on body language searching for instances where it appears to contradict the script.
- regarding close friendships and the show: I think you're right that a good part of the appeal of this show is the viewer's opportunity to experience that vicariously. I know that's what appealed to me. I remember thinking early on in the first watching, "I'd rather have a friend like that than a lover any day!" And I still feel that way, come to that. Since men for the most part don't seem as focused on relationships as women are, that is probably why S&H fandom is almost exclusively female. Yes, I'm sure guys watched it for the gunfights and car chases when the series was originally on, but I sure haven't seen any indication that it continues to hold them as it does us.
- a UK fan says a good story is important, but so is the art: Is there anyone else who buys a zine just because of an illustration? I'm told this is more common amongst American fans than those this side of the Pond. It's challenging, If expensive to track down original copies of old zines with good pictures.
- a fan is unhappy at the non-existent SH programming at the upcoming MediaWest, and she has issues with a lack at ZebraCon: Speak up now and maybe we can get it done this time! I'd suggest we again try presenting these ideas to the ZCon concom; my guess, however, is that they will ignore them again as they did mine last year and just schedule 'the obligatory S&H panel'. But I don't think there's any rule that says we can't post notices, pick a corner somewhere and do our own S&H programming, or am I the only one who'd want to?
- a mention of being on-line: A technologically advanced friend is also on-line, and tells me there s an S&H topic on one of the computer bulletin boards-I think she said it was GEnie. She's a new Kung Fu fan, rather than S&H, but she checks it for me and reported with some chagrin that the S&H board is much more active than the KF one at this point. I Are any of us Frienz on the bb also, or are they an entirely different group?
- regarding the new lending library, keep it low-key: I received the library zine package from Linda McGee today. Look for her notice elsewhere in this l/z. Do please Include a SASE when you write me about it. I've agreed to do this for one year, then we'll see how it's going. I've already heard from a couple of people requesting info. One mentioned that she'd heard about the Library through a friend on the GEnie bulletin board. Discretion being the better part of valor (or cowardice of survival, depending on your point of view), Linda and I have agreed that while it's fine for everyone to pass along word about the Library to personal friends and acquaintances, we would request that it not be posted for public consumption. I don't know the terminology, but not where just anybody who signs onto the board can read it? There are some weird people out there... With some really weird attitudes about slash. This kind of problem we don't need!
- more on the lending library: Okay, ladies, the Starsky & Hutch Lending Library is a reality now, and it's off to a great start! Barbara now has thirty-seven zines in her custody, ready to be shared. Wouldn't it be great to have all of print zines available for lending? With your help, we can. We've enclosed a list of the zines currently in the Library. How about taking a look to see if you can add anything? All donations gratefully accepted, and you even get your name mentioned right up front on the 'Thank You' page! (Hard to believe I was never a cheerleader, isn't it? SH just brings out the 'rah-rah' in me, I guess.) To avoid duplication, it might be a good idea to let either me or Barbara know in advance what you'd like to send, so we can tell you if someone else is already going to donate it. By the way, it's the policy of the Library to include zines in their complete, as-originally-published form. We don't mean no xerox copies. We love xerox copies! We mean that no stories, illos, etc. should be omitted. I mention this because we received one donation from which the contributor had apparently decided to excise a story. So, please, if you can't send the entire zine, let us try to get it from another source. Also by the way, Barbara said she'd had an enquiry about the Library from someone who said she got the info via a computer network, which started us talking about the subject of on-line communication. While we think it's great to pass the word to friends on a one-to-one basis, we're a little leery about making a formal announcement to be read by the general public. You just never know who's out there. TNT is on line. Who else might be? Someone from Spelling-Goldberg who doesn't like the idea of fanzines? Fandom has existed quite peacefully for years without letting the Powers That Be in on it. So, if by any chance you'd thought of putting an announcement on a bulletin board, we'd like to recommend discretion instead.
- some money up front: Regarding your suggestion of a $40 security deposit for zines borrowed from the Lending Library. ! think this sounds quite fair. I made the mistake of trusting a pen-friend with three zines totalling nearly $60 and have never seen them again. (This is another fandom. not S&H.) Allegedly they were "stolen" from her by an ex-boyfriend, but her story had more holes than Swiss cheese. A painful, and expensive, lesson well learned by me, especially since one zine is irreplaceable.
- a new fan, [K H K], introduces herself: Hi! I'd like to introduce myself, as I am completely new to your fandom.... I've been heavy into fandom for years, particularly Star Trek and Quantum Leap with a little S&S and UNCLE thrown in. I've managed a club, written QL stories and corresponded all over the world, and I thought I had seen it all in buddy shows and h/c. Then, at a friend's urging, I tuned into TNT's revival of S+H, and by the third episode (The Fix), I was irretrievably hooked. Having an English degree, my first reaction was to scavenge the library for further information, which netted three TV Guide articles and two from woman's journals. Hardly satisfying. My usual fanzine haunts turned up only a couple of used zines. Then my friend passed on this address, and suddenly I am overwhelmed! You mean I'm not alone?!! I don't know how I missed all this before, but I have a lot of catching up to do! Actually, what I am really looking for is one or two people to correspond with. To be honest, this l/z is a little too much for me: I blushed my way through parts of it. No offense. I am absolutely for people having the right to read or write what they wish, but a lot of it's not for this church girl. I am completely into h/c, close relationships and even much physical contact, but none of it sexual. Anyone out there still interested to talk? That still leaves so much to discuss... I'd love to react to a couple of interesting things that were mentioned in the issue that [J] sent me to start me off. I had to think a little bit about guys v. girls in emotional impact, but I believe that for whatever reason, guys tend to be less overt about their feelings for each other even when they have the same depth of feelings as ' women. That's also what makes S+H more satisfying and touching than, say, Cagney & Lacey, because we are privy to something that is more rarely expressed than the close friendships women often foster. Does that make sense? They may not have a closer friendship than other guys do. particularly cops or soldiers or other partners who are bonded by facing death together, but we get to see them demonstrate it for each other. I don't think such a friendship is harmful. It's wonderful! Who wouldn't want to be that close to someone?... I am a writer by trade, by choice, and by passion, and I would love to get into S+H writing. Is there some area that hasn't been covered over and over yet? Like H's break up with Vanessa, or maybe some missing scenes from episodes? Has anyone done an "It's a Wonderful Life"- kind of story? (Don't know why, but that's been playing around in my head) How forgiving are you all to new writers? I've sent two stories to [N C] for consideration, so maybe you can judge for yourselves soon...
Frienz 30 was published in May 1995 and contains 28 pages.
- the letterzine has 54 subscribers
- TOTM: What are your favorite little things that Starsky or Hutch do for his partner? For those who are watching the series via TNT, after its long absence from TV, what's especially enjoyable in what you see?
- a fan writes: Greatest pleasure: seeing edges on things. And the Torino a nice, bright red. I've been watching third gen copies til now. On the other hand, those 3rd gen copies are uncut...
- the lending library: Congrats on getting the Library off the ground! What an exciting new chapter in the fandom's history!!
- a fan writes: Yes, some of us in Frienz are on certain computer bulletin boards. I am only on Prodigy and have not seen any mention of the lending library on the S&H bbs on that network. However, it could have been mentioned on GEnie or American Online.
- another mention of being "on-line": Thanks for the good insights on Hutch. A friend was telling me about some on-online discussion which seemed to conclude that if Starsky had died 1n 'Sweet Revenge', Hutch would have killed himself; the only question being whether before or after getting Gunther. I agree with you -- e1ther of them would be devastated by the loss of the other, but they're both strong enough to go on.
- computer communication and cable, to ways for a fandom to rejuvenate: I've met some wonderful new fans who are rediscovering the show and reliving their past from the computer boards. So, you're right, the fans are growing thanks to TNT.:)
- a fan addresses another fan, one who went on to become an extremely popular writer of MANY stories in this fandom and others: You make perfect sense in your comment that we have the opportunity to see Starsky & Hutch, men, express feelings of friendship that we rarely do in television (or real-life for that matter). S&H aren't afraid to express their feelings for one another: that's what's so special about this show! You also mentioned you are a writer. Why not send some short stones, vignettes, to Frienz. We'd love to read them!!
- a fan allows Hutch a little extra temporary happiness: I admit I wouldn't want to see it too often, but I don't mind those episodes with Hutch in love. Come on, why the fuss - it never lasts, and in the end there is always still Starsky by his side!
- a fan makes a list: Which of Hutch's ladies would I like to be? Let's see - not Diana, she's crazy; not Vanessa, she's dead; not Gillain, she's dead, too; not Abby, she got beat up so badly she left and went home; not Anna, she had to go back to Russia. There's Laura from "Deckwatch" and Judith from "The Plague" - but Laura would have to change her attitude and Judith her plane reservation.
- a fan dreams: I think I'm of the weird minority that thinks that Hutch and Gillian's relationship would have worked out. If Grossman wouldn't of killed her, I think she would of told Hutch that night that she was working for him and wanted to get out, and he would of helped her get her life straightened out and on the right track. If I ever write an alternate universe S&H story, it will be where Gillian and Terry don't die, they marry S&H, and they ALL become best friends.
- the power of writing: I agree with your comments on the Kira episode (it's titled "Starsky vs Hutch"). I disliked the whole premise, enough so that I used the plot of my QUANTUM LEAP-SH story to be that Sam had to leap into Hutch to prevent the affair so that S&H's friendship wouldn't end up ruined in the long run. I used the power of the pen (typewriter?!) to have Sam shave off that stupid mustache at the end! HA!
- a fan has roamed a bit: I think it'd be safe to assume that a lot of us have branched off into other fandoms and let S&H be less of a priority.
- another fan writes: You're not alone in branching out! Those who know me best call me a "channel hopper", and NOT because I can't control my finger on the remote1! (Though that's also valid...) It's just that I seem to collect fandoms like stray animals. And though I seldom pull out SH eps. these days, when I do, I tend to focus on h/c. As for the writing, I find it takes me a long time to put the idea on paper (or PC, really!) even if I've got the story mapped out. Other characters keep intruding. *sigh* The perils of living a multi-fandom existence. But I wouldn't trade it for the world, as it's let me meet MANY good friends along the way. Yet one thing is crystal clear: SH was the first fandom I was ever part of. rather than just experiencing, and as a result, I'm here for the long haul. It's a WONDERFUL place to be!!
- a fan writes: I'm good friends with some people who are very into slash. They know my view, and that I am in the minority in that I object to all slash on a religious/moral basis, not just personal opinion. However, it's never an issue since we respect each other's right to our separate opinions.
- The London SH Fanday: ... a regular April tradition here for many years—was more, this time, than the usual happy gathering of fan-friends. It was a chance to celebrate the 20th SH anniversary year. So, beneath the candy-apple-red letters of the congratulatory banner, surrounded by twenty candles, sat the magnificent CAKE,, white icing with (edible) decorations in denim blue. It was all very satisfactory in every way. As always, it was very good to meet new fans as well as 'old'. People were telling each other that they didn't look twenty years older ... can SH carry those built-in rejuvenating qualities? whatever—it was a renewing occasion. And it was exactly right timing that the arrival of the SH trailer-tape for the re-runs in USA coincided with the Fanday. It's short, true, but also truly satisfying. THANKS, Linda, for making it possible for fans on this side of the ocean to see it. Your time and kindness are bringing a lot of joy. News of SHarecon suggests an equally happy occasion there. And the first of the ZEBRACON reports has arrived. And new zines are on the horizon. There's a lot of action in this fandom.
- a fan talks of her zine: And finally ... and hopefully ... 'Renascence', a zine to remember the 20th anniversary year, could be ready for the printer by July. For several sound reasons, I don't want to make the wrong guess and print many more copies than would be needed, it would be helpful to have an notional number for a print-run. A lot of people have already told tie of their interest—are there more? Such information doesn't represent a definite order, of coursej but it can be a useful guide. There will be a flyer when I know the cost and the number of pages ...
- about a possible movie: For years there have been rumours about a S&H reunion movie and, to be honest, I've never wanted there to be one. 'Sweet Revenge' left us free to make up our own minds about what might happen next in their lives and there have been so many excellent zines and stories doing just that, whether it be slash or straight. I have a feeling we'd only be disappointed.
- about a possible movie: Count one emphatic vote from me against an S&H reunion movie. Heck, I didn't even much like 4th season! And while it was nice to see the present-day PMG and DS in the TNT interview clips, I frankly thought they both looked dreadful. The years have not been kind. I think I would find a reunion film just depressing.
- about a possible movie: I don't know about the majority, but personally I wouldn't want a S&H reunion movie. My reason being that I just don't think it would work. The series had great relevancy to the time it was made. There would have to be new concepts and adjustments, both scriptwise and in the general feel of the show. Would we really like that? I doubt it. As Huggy once discovered, you can't go back. Better to keep and cherish the memories.
- on fandom: I think all of us have had the experience of moving on to a new fandom, but since I am extremely hard to 'hook', I don't jump into every new fandom that comes down the pike. Therefore I don't so much leave old ones (except to the extent they die out on me), as just, very occasionally, add a new one. I had discovered S&H fandom's existence just as it was fading out, to be replaced by S/H, which to me is a whole 'nother fandom and not what I saw on the screen and wanted more of. So I eventually found and got involved in Blakes 7. But now S&H seems to be reviving, I've been watching episodes again (on tape) and hope to remain involved for some time to come. I think one of the pleasures of moving on to a new fandom is going back and watching tapes of an earlier one—and falling in love with 1t all over again!
- on SH's relationship: The marriage questions you brought up are, I suspect, a reason for the rise of slash, the feeling that no one else could love them as they love each other, nor should come between them. I can't say as I would argue with that, but I still don't see them becoming physically lovers with each other. They're just too Interested 1n women 1n the series. I think they would have a continuing succession of unsuccessful relationships with women. Cops are well-known for that anyway, It's a job that does not bode well for marriages. And if they were lovers, I think 1t would be destructive of their working relationship. You've had a domestic spat that morning, are nursing resentment and are just a little less quick responding as back-up... There's a good reason police departments don't allow married couples to also work as partners.
- commenting on a theft: That's so sad about your zines being stolen. I've been very fortunate with that in both the QL and S & H fandoms. I've never had any problem with things not being returned. Maybe it's the integrity of those two shows that draws the fans to it, who are honest and trustworthy.
- cross your fingers:
Frienz 31 was published in July 1995.
- TOTM: As the series ended with "Sweet Revenge" what do you think S&H might do later? Have you read/written any stories- novels that depict any likely possibilities?
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Frienz 36 was published in May 1996.
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Frienz 37 was published in July 1996.
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Frienz 38 was published in September 1996.
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Frienz 41 was published in March 1997.
- K.S. Langley got issue #41 in March 1997, but stopped subscribing after that.
- from Kath Moonshine at And Now a Word from our Sponsors..., posted 2002, accessed December 18, 2012
- comments by Flamingo, June 2002, shortly after Jean Holmes' death, quoted from VenicePlace on Fanlore with Flamingo's permission
- from Frienz #1
- Sometime after 1989 when this letter was published, this fan started writing a lot of slash.
- She has just published No Easy Answers.
- from Frienz #7
- Later published in Bonaventure.
- "The first mention I recall of USENET was in the ST letterzine INTERSTAT in June 1984. In May 1990 a S&H letterzine, FRIENZ, made the first mention I saw of 'the Internet--a wide-area computer network that reaches hundreds of universities and organizations worldwide.'" -- see K.S. Langley's reply to the post "Fandom 1994-2000-ish, part 1" by Arduinna, posted April 7, 2012
- Many years later, this fan wrote the controversial Sentinel story Phantom Pain.
- She'd written a short note in the previous issue complaining that non-slash writers were discriminated against.
- The first use of this term in a Starsky and Hutch zine.
- This is the first mention of this book in a S&H publication. This fan's knowledge of a book not yet published is because she is one of the fans who was interviewed and then quoted extensively in the book.
- This is an excerpt that had been previously cut from "Hutch Fever" by Theresa Kyle -- Starsky & Hutch Archive -- "This story was published in "The Fix 10" in 1991, and later that year won the Huggy for S&H's best humorous story of the year. Before submitting this story I cut out two scenes because I thought it made the story too long for "The Fix", which usually ran less than 100 pages. (For those who are curious, it's the scenes that take place on Friday afternoon and Friday evening.)... I have reinstated the extracted scenes in this version, so on this archive, for the first time, is the story as it was originally written." -- Starsky and Hutch Archive, posted October 25, 2011, accessed November 1, 2011
- a fan comments that these Fandays have been happening for over ten years, sometimes three in a year.