Mask: Tales from the Underground

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Zine
Title: Mask: Tales from the Underground
Publisher: Kathy Resch
Editor(s):
Date(s): 1989-1994
Series?:
Medium: print
Size:
Genre:
Fandom: Beauty and the Beast
Phantom of the Opera
Language: English
External Links:
Click here for related articles on Fanlore.

Mask: Tales from the Underground is a het anthology of Beauty and the Beast and Phantom of the Opera fiction. All issues include full color covers by Janet Meeham and interior artwork by Pam Tuck. The first issue is a combined one, and subsequent issues alternate between each universe. Artwork has been uploaded with the publisher's permission.

General Reactions and Reviews

The quality of the fiction and poetry in the eight issues of Mask varies, but there's always at least one good story per issue. Warning: some of these stories are not for the kiddies. [1]

Issue 1

back cover of issue #1, Janet Meeham
front cover of issue #1, Janet Meeham

Mask: Tales from the Underground 1 was published in January 1989. It contains 157 pages, is perfect bound and is a combined issue of Beauty and the Beast and Phantom of the Opera.

Mask: Tales From The Underground I (Our only Combined Universe Issue) - 2/3 Classic B&TB, 1/3 "Phantom". Catherine, exhausted from her caseload, waits for Vincent in his chamber - when he finds her, their lives change forever... A young Vincent explores Central Park with Devin - and speaks to a young Catherine, playing Joan of Arc in a school play... Catherine, at Radcliffe, tries to reconcile the cold logic of pre-law with her yearning for magic... A young Erik, the "Phantom", encounters a blind man... Meg Giry meets the Opera Ghost long after his supposed death... [2]
  • Heavenly Voices by Joan Enright (Beauty and the Beast) 7 (A young Vincent tells his friend, Devin, of the mysterious voice her hears calling his name. the voice of a young girl named Catherine.)
  • Carousel Dreams by Joan Enright (Beauty and the Beast) 23
  • Where Dragons Sleep by Melody C. (Beauty and the Beast) 31
  • While Sleeping, Found by Rose (Beauty and the Beast) 35
  • Fairy Tale by Marcy Robin (Beauty and the Beast) 69
  • Vincent's Dream by Joan Enright (Beauty and the Beast) 70
  • Vincent's Ode to Darkness by Kathleen Hall (Beauty and the Beast) 71
  • Revelation by Marie Bidlack (Beauty and the Beast) 72
  • Transformation by Marie Bidlack (Beauty and the Beast) 73
  • Destiny 1 by Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 74
  • Destiny 2 y Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 78
  • Old Souls by Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 82
  • Jealousy by Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 86
  • A Happy Life by Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 90
  • Beauty...and the Beast by Kathy Resch (Beauty and the Beast) 97
  • Mask by Marcy Robin (Phantom of the Opera) 101
  • Beauty and Phantom by C.Kirby (Phantom of the Opera) 102
  • A Voyeur by C. Kirby (Phantom of the Opera) 103
  • If by Sue-Anne Hartwick (Phantom of the Opera) 104
  • Questions by Sue-Anne Hartwick (Phantom of the Opera) 105
  • Choice by Marcy Robin (Phantom of the Opera) 106
  • In the Night by Marcy Robin (Phantom of the Opera) 107
  • Night Child by Marcy Robin (Phantom of the Opera) 108
  • The Point of No Return by Susan M. Garrett (Phantom of the Opera) 117 (Christine has left the Paris Opera House, but the mystery continues. Beautiful young women are being murdered. And Meg discovers that the Phantom may not have died after all.)
  • Perchance to Dream by Marcy Robin (Phantom of the Opera) 132 (Christine and Raoul have forsaken France for the New World. And yet, in the bustle of New York City, Christine is haunted by vivid dreams of the Opera House.)
  • Angels of Music, Pt. 1 by Eleanore O'Toole (Phantom of the Opera) 141

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 1

B&B half is mainly short stories, poetry. Some of the interior artwork, by Janet Meehan, is quite good. Production values to a professional standard; borders medium-sized. You get a decent amount of story for your dollars. Two nice childhood stories, including “Heavenly Voices,” in which we watch a young Catherine play Joan of Arc. Other well-done vignettes are written in the “voices” of Vincent and Catherine. All in all, quite an enjoyable read. If you also like Phantom, this zine is worth buying. [3]

Issue 2

front cover issue #2 Janet Meeham
back cover of issue #2, Janet Meeham

Mask: Tales from the Underground 2 was published in 1991 and contains 162 pages. It's content is all Phantom of the Opera and the art by Janet Meeham.

  • Top Bidder by Marcy Robin (2)
  • Net Loss by Marcy Robin (5)
  • L'Autre que Je Prefere by Cathy Ehlers--On the eve of her wedding to Raoul, Christine has second thoughts about the Phantom she left behind... (9)
  • Beyond the Lake by Joyce Rebaric--Christine is reunited with Erik. But what kind of life can they have?... (36)
  • Wandering Child by Carol Smith--Christine, now the wife of Raoul de Chagny, has had one child - a very special girl named Adele... (60)
  • Hollow Men by Janet Meehan (89)
  • Behind the Mask by Joyce Rebaric (91)
  • My Phantom by Bernadette Elander (93)
  • Dark Destiny by Nancy Catherine (95)
  • Cruel World by Janet Meehan (96)
  • Master of the Game by Janet Meehan (97)
  • Sing, Then, For Me by Janet Meehan (99)
  • Angels of the Music, Pt. 2 by Eleanore O'Toole (100)
  • Let Angels Reign by Kay Brinkley (114)
  • Sometimes Dreams Can be Real by Susan K. McLeod--The Phantom is dead. But who is haunting the Opera House? (133)

Issue 3

back cover of issue #3, Janet Meeham
front cover of issue #3, Janet Meeham

Mask: Tales from the Underground 3 was published in June 1991 and contains 129 pages and is perfect bound. Its content is Beauty and the Beast. In addition to the standard fan fiction, the zine included a special art portfolio by Janet Meeham.

Mask: Tales From The Underground III: Narcissa grants Vincent and Catherine a vision of a life they shared in Elizabethan England... Catherine, depressed with memories of her parents during the holiday season, decides she needs solitude, not company... Catherine, now living in the world Below with Vincent and baby Jacob, plans a special treat for Father... A 3rd Season story in which a visit from an angel grants Vincent a view of Jacob's future... Authors include Marie Bidlack, Joan Enright, Teri Janka, Carol Kyne, Kathie Ono. Poetry by Cat, Kathleen Hall, Jeffrey Koehn, and Teri Sarick. "All Season" issue." [4]
  • Catherine in Dancing Light by Joan Enright (1)
  • Rose and Crystal by Teri Sarick (3)
  • Yearning by Jeffrey Koehn (5)
  • Paradise by C.W. Blaum (5)
  • Vincent Dark and Bright by Joan Enright (7)
  • Depth of My Desire by Kathleen Hall (11)
  • Tidings of Comfort and Joy by Carol Kyne--Vincent and the Helpers prepare a very special holiday season for Catherine. (12)
  • The Gift by Cat (35)
  • Above and Below by Teri Sarick (37)
  • My Knight of Night by Cat (38)
  • Enchantment by Joan Enright (40)
  • Emotions by Cat (42)
  • Heart Song by Cat (44)
  • The Bell's of St. Vincent's by Joan Enright (46)
  • The Sacrifice by Joan Enright (47)
  • Halloween by Cat (51)
  • Life and Death by Sue Ann Sarick (52)
  • Powerful Words by Sue Ann Sarick (53)
  • The Wayfarers by Joan Enright--Narcissa grants Catherine and Vincent a vision of a life they shared in Elizabethan England... A tale of a Beast on a phantom ship and the Lady who loved him. (54)
  • Wishes by Teri Sarick (68)
  • Defeat by Cat (80)
  • The Bond by Cat (84)
  • The Child by Teri Sarick (82)
  • Radcliffe by Teri Sarick (86)
  • The Harbinger of Hope by Teri Janka (87)
  • And Death Shall Have No Dominion by Marie Bidlack (93)
  • A Concert for Father by Kathie One--Catherine, now living in the world below with Vincent, plans a special treat for Father. (101)
  • Silent Legacy by Kathleen Hall (129)

Sample interior black and white art. Note the pencil drawings and soft shading.

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 3

A “Classic” Christmas tale and a story about life in the tunnels, post-SND, are like bookends to the stories in the zine's middle, which include a Catherine-as-a-ghost tale, “And Death Shall Have No Dominion” by Marie Bidlack. “The Wayfarers,” a “pre”-incarnation fantasy, is a breath of fresh air. Production value again flawless. Much art and poetry is devoted to the sadder elements of 3rd season. [5]

Issue 4

back cover of issue #4, Janet Meeham
front cover of issue #4, Janet Meeham

Tales from the Underground 4 was published in June 1992 and contains 162 pages and is perfect bound. All content is Beauty and the Beast. Three of the stories are crossovers with Simon and Simon, Batman and Quantum Leap. Art Information: Janet Meehan, Pam Tuck.

An opera singer leaves Vincent and Cathering an unusual legacy; An amnesiac woman wakes up to find herself in an isolated farmhouse, living a life she knows instinctively is not her own - while Below, Vincent mourns his lost love; Mouse takes refuge from a gang inside a semi-trailer - and wakes up well on his way to Indiana; A Quantum Leap crossover, with Sam leaping into the body of the doctor destined to murder Catherine; and much more! All stories are Classic or She's Not Dead. Color covers by Janet Meeham, accidential artwork by Pam Tuck. [6]
  • Shadowfalls by Teri Sarick (1)
  • Say Thou Not So by Joan Enright ("Catherine had always been enthralled by the tale surrounding the mysterious mansion near Central Park - of the brilliant opera singer who had retired from the world decades ago because of some unnamed tragedy. When the woman's sisters try to have her committed in order to have her property as their own, she learns from Vincent of his own childhood vigil - listening, Below, to the singer's haunting songs.") (3)
  • The Bond by Jeffrey Koehn (13)
  • The Secret of the Lost Tunnel by Joan Enright (14)
  • Devin's Gift by Joan Enright (23)
  • The Path of the Lion by Joan Enright (24)
  • Hope by Marie Bidlack (30)
  • Enigma of the Heart by Kathleen F. Hall (33)
  • Song of Comfort by Betty Mills (34)
  • The Cradle of the Night by Toni Lichtenstein Bogolub (crossover with Batman) (42)
  • Contentment by Cat (61)
  • Mouse's Great Adventure by J. Paul Burroughs ("While Above to visit a Helper, Mouse is attacked by a street gang. Injured and exhausted, he takes refuge inside the trailer of a semi-truck") (63)
  • Art Portfolio by Janet Meehan (83)
  • I Felt You Going by Sue Ann Sarick (109)
  • The Essence of Your Being by Sue Ann Sarick (110)
  • Hearts by Teri Sarick (111)
  • That Beauty's Rose Might Never Die by J. Paul Burroughs (crossover with Quantum Leap) (112)
  • R is for... by J. Paul Burroughs (131)
  • Though Lovers Be Lost by Claudia Bertrand ("A young woman wakes up, amnesiac, in a farmhouse. She is told by the owner, a disturbing young man named Michael, that she is his wife Sarah; she has been very ill; she lost their child, but everything will be all right for her now.") (149)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 4

Classic and Continued Classic crossover stories, beautifully produced and edited, involving B&B with Batman, Quantum Leap, and Simon & Simon. “The Cradle of the Night” by Toni Lichtenstein Bogolub, the zine's standout story, is a Batman/Nightwing/B&B crossover including new characters. Dick Grayson, aka “Gray” (Robin), is rescued by a tunnel girl named “Honey.” They fall in love and Gray decides to remain Below, but evil intrudes.... Also notable: “Song of Comfort” by Betty Mills (Father loves Mary); “Mouse's Great Adventure” by J. Paul Burroughs, a funny story that ends up with Mouse working as a farm hand in Grenville, IN, where he falls in love with a blind girl and fixes all the broken appliances in town; “Dr. Hitch¬man,” also by Burroughs, a B&B/Quantum Leap crossover. Also fiction by Joan Enright, Marie Bidlack, Claudia Bertrand. The reviewer highly praised Janet Meehan's artwork; other art by Pam Tuck (always excellent). [7]

Issue 5

front cover of issue #5, Janet Meeham
back cover of issue #5, Janet Meeham

Mask: Tales from the Underground 5 was published in 1993 and contains 185 pages. It's content is all Phantom of the Opera.

  • Je Reviens by Cara Liane 2
  • The Bastille by Cara Liane 28
  • The Diary by Mary Ann Warner 39
  • Mirror of Dreams by Angelamarie Varesano 45
  • Don Juan Triumphant by Cara Liane 52
  • A Dream of the Phantom by Lynn McKinney 72
  • Angel of Music by Lynn McKinney 73
  • Erik by Lynn McKinney 74
  • A Fairy Tale by Catherine S. Ehlers 76
  • In Search of Erik by Mary Ann Warner 99
  • Promises to Keep by Susan K. McLeod 107 (Christine and Erik have been reunited, and she has resumed her career at the Opera House. But a stalker is following her...)
  • Intermezzo in a Minor Key by Guinn Berger 118
  • A Kindness by Leatha Ann Betts 124
  • Erik's Song by Leatha Ann Betts 126
  • Dialogue by Jan P. Kraft 129
  • Daddy's Little Girl by Christine Wiamer 132
  • Phantom Mask by Mary Ann Warner 141
  • Flight of Angels by Cara Liane 142 (Christine returned Erik's kiss with all her heart, relieved at this final resolution of her dilemma. His hands moved on her freely at last, dizzying, swooping caresses that set her aflame. He would take her now, as she had always dreamed he would-- but then his hands gentled, the bruising pressure of his mouth softening. Erik forced himself to draw back, his eyes feverish, drinking the sight of her flushed face. She was utterly beautiful, and he wanted her desperately.)

Issue 6

front cover of issue #6, Janet Meehan
back cover of issue #6, Janet Meehan

Tales from the Underground 6 was published in July 1994 and contains 135 pages. Art by Janet Meehan and Pam Tuck. Its content is Beauty and the Beast.

Includes: THE FOUNDLING by Stephanie Davis. (Vincent finds an abandoned baby, and is filled with reflections on the joys and pain of fatherhood.); FORTUNES by Guinn Berger - (One night at college, Jenny Aronson read the tea leaves for Catherine, predicting Catherine would meet a very special man... one who would love her more than life itself. When she meets Stephen Bass, she feels the dream is coming true...). PLUS - enter J.P. Burrough's universe, where Catherine and Vincent live their happy life Below, with their beloved son Jacob. They encounter old friends and make new ones in the following stories: In SPECTRE IN OILS Kristopher Gentian leaves them a mysterious painting foretelling an impending murder... In HIDDEN FACES Bridget O'Donnell returns, and Joe Maxwell finds romance with a tunnel-dweller... In L IS FOR LISA (a sequel to "Mouse's Great Adventure" from Mask IV) Mouse's girlfriend comes to New York for important surgery, but a drug deal gone bad threatens the doctor who can perform the operation... In STUBB'S LAW Isaac Stubbs returns, and only Catherine and Vincent can save his daughter's life... And in THE RENEWAL, a sequel to "A Fair and Perfect Knight", Catherine encounters Michael Richmond, now a teacher facing a crisis of belief in the value of helping others. Art by Pam Tuck. All stories are Classic or "SND." [8]
  • The Journey by Kathy Resch 5
  • Fortunes by Guinn Berger 6
  • Mane Street by Teri Sarick 15
  • Hidden Faces by J. Paul Burroughs 17
  • Vincent's Life by Melissa Mastoris 33
  • L is for Lisa by J. Paul Burroughs 35
  • Stubb's Law by J. Paul Burroughs 57
  • Spectre in Oils by J. Paul Burroughs 69
  • The Renewal by J. Paul Burroughs 87
  • Of Love and Hope by Kathy Resch 107
  • Beautiful Soul by Melissa Mastoris 109
  • The Foundling by Stephanie Davis 111
  • Ring by Teri Sarick 123
  • Crystal Roses, Crystal Thorns by Teri Sarick 123
  • Thy Sweet Love Remembered by Jeffrey L. Koehn 125
  • Holding You by Teri Sarick 135

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 6

Most of the fiction here is by J. Paul Burroughs (5 stories), who writes persuasive, eventful tales even if every once in awhile he gets his series facts wrong. In “Hidden Faces,” Burroughs has V/C again visit Brigit O'Donnell with the hopes that Brigit's resiliency will help new widow Lorna come to terms with her grief. But what proves to really help is guest Joe Maxwell.... In “L is for Lisa,” Mouse is reunited with sweetheart Lisa who visits NY surgeon Byron Stock, who may be able to restore her sight, in a sequel to “Mouse's Great Adventure” from M-4. The excellent “Stubb's Law” reunites C with Isaac Stubbs, trying to retrieve estranged, pregnant daughter Tracy from the hoodlum she's fallen for...and upon whom the law is about to crack down. In “Spectre in Oils,” Burroughs revisits Kristopher Gentian, who's trying unsuccessfully to warn his friend, a medium, that she's in mortal danger, and enlists the help of V/C. In “The Renewal,” despairing teacher Michael (of “A Fair and Perfect Knight”) finds help from Brooke and others. In Guinn Berger's “Fortunes,” college student C has her fortune told and copes with the fortunes of her friends and with possessive boyfriend Stephen Bass in a slice of bittersweet college life and growing up. In Stephanie Davis' strong “The Foundling,” V, longing for fatherhood, finds an abandoned baby in the park and has dreams that cannot yet be fulfilled. And finally Jeffrey Koehn's “Thy Sweet Love Remembered” adds a romantic coda to “A Happy Life.” Poetry by [Kathy Resch], Teri Sarick, and Melissa Mastoris. Again, there's an abundance of excellently done artwork by Janet Meehan and Pam Tuck. As always, a handsomely produced and readable zine. [9]

Issue 7

front cover of issue #7, Janet Meehan
back cover of issue #7, Janet Meehan

Mask: Tales from the Underground 7 was published in September 1995 and contains 164 pages. Color covers by Janet Meehan with additional art by Pam Tuck. The content is all Phantom of the Opera.

The zine features an illustrated section called: A "Phantom" Portfolio of four full page black and white illustrations by Janet Meehan.

  • Pandora's Promise by Cara Liane 1
  • The Sweet Seduction by Christine Johnson 42
  • Little Lotte by Carrie Hernandez 43
  • Night Music by Cristy Lytal 59
  • A Collector's Piece by Cassandra Y.I. Kam 61
  • All I Will Ever Want by Teresa Dunkin 75
  • Let the Dream Descend by Cassandra Y.I. Kam 79
  • A Different Ending by Christine Johnson 111
  • The Mirror by Christine Johnson 114
  • Reflections by Cassandra Y.I. Kam 115
  • Angel of Music, Angel of Blood by Christine Wiamer 122
  • A New Life by Mary Ann Warner 124
  • Rubber Duckies by Joyce Rebaric 133
  • The Angel of Music by Christine Johnson 138
  • Out of the Ash of a Burning Rose by Cara Liane 139 (An urgent message from Meg Giry brings Christine back to the Opera House - and the ruins of the man who loved her...)

Issue 8

front cover of issue #8, Janet Meehan
back cover of issue #8

Tales from the Underground 8 contains 188 pages. Its content is Beauty and the Beast.

Features: A TRUTH BEYOND KNOWLEDGE - a novel by Sandra Necchi. This intense, edge-of-the-seat novel explains all the many mysteries left dangling by 3rd Season. Vincent and Catherine mount the rescue for their son, and find healing and fulfillment in their love. Joe Maxwell, Elliot Burch, and Diana Bennett play major roles in the investigation and rescue. Involves all the familiar Tunnel characters - Father, Mouse, Jamie, Mary, plus Peter Alcott. PLUS - enter J.P. Burrough's universe, where Catherine and Vincent live their happy life Below, with their beloved son Jacob. Far from being cut off from the affairs of the world Above, Catherine and Vincent find many opportunities, through their love, idealism and courage, to continue their work of helping others. They encounter old friends and make new ones in the following stories: BLINDSPOT - a sequel to the popular "Mouse's Great Adventure" from MASK IV. Mouse and Lisa continue their romantic adventures.... THE FORGOTTEN HERO - Father has a chance to rescue a childhood hero - a swashbuckling silent movie star who has fallen on hard times... VENDETTA - An enemy of Father's from the McCarthy era returns for revenge... VICTIM BY PROXY - Catherine and Vincent are in danger from the daughter of a man Catherine brought to justice. All stories are Classic or "SND." [10]
  • Beauty by Melissa Mastoris (3)
  • Forever by Stephanie Davis (5)
  • The Forgotten Hero by J. Paul Burroughs (15)
  • Vendetta by J. Paul Burroughs (29)
  • The Secret People by Teri Sarick (48)
  • A Different Life by Melissa Mastoris (49)
  • Victim by Proxy by J. Paul Burroughs (51)
  • Winter Candles by Teri Sarick (66)
  • Blindspot by J. Paul Burroughs (67)
  • Under the Moon's Light by Melissa Mastoris (83)
  • Down Here by Melissa Mastoris (85)
  • A Truth Beyond Knowledge by Sandra H. Necchi (87)
  • A Dream Come True by Melissa Mastoris (190)

Reactions and Reviews: Issue 8

Most of this zine is a novella, "A Truth Beyond Knowledge" by Sandra H. Necchi, a good writer. It's a revised retelling of Third Season, in which Catherine is injected, not with morphine, but with a coma-inducing drug by Gabriel's tame doctor. Taken Below, Catherine eventually revives when Vincent, in dream, contacts her through their bond. Meanwhile the investigation of her disappearance, and of the "black book," proceeds, involving Joe, Elliot, and eventually Diana Bennett in a credible way, though the story's events past the point of Catherine's revival only rarely echo those of the actual Third Season. A further complication is the death of Colin Reynolds, a subplot that weaves among the other events. Eventually, Catherine again confronts Gabriel and takes a revenge that many readers will find satisfying. As the editor puts it, "'A Truth Beyond Knowledge' is one of the most satisfying 'SND' stories I've ever read—[Sandra Necchi] ties up all loose ends from the 3rd season, involves all the familiar characters in this engrossing novella, and ties it all together brilliantly."

Most of the rest of the fiction is by another good writer, J. Paul Burroughs. "The Forgotten Hero," tells how a former screen hero, Erroll Flynn-like Dominic Starke, now an aging, homeless alcoholic, has one last act of heroism left in him after the tunnel community takes him in. "Blindspot," a continuation of previous stories in which Mouse/Mickey, in love with formerly blind topside girl Lisa, is himself blinded in an explosion set off by enemies gained in the previous stories. Taken Below to recuperate, he attempts to send Lisa away, but comes to a truer appreciation of what really matters after she's trapped by a cave-in. In "Vendetta," Father's former friend from medical school who later became an enemy when Jacob Wells revealed a crime he'd committed, attempts to get revenge. In "Victim by Proxy," it's the daughter of Marty Belmont (from the pilot) who attempts to take revenge on Vincent.

In Stephanie Davis' "Forever," Vincent is bespelled by gypsy Katarina, who believes him to be her destined mate, tied with bonds of blood. Catherine to the rescue! Also poems by Melissa Mastoris and Teri Sarick. Art by Janet Meehan, Pam Tuck (the latter inexplicably badly reproduced in the copy seen).

As always, this zine is excellently written and scrupulously edited. [11]

References

  1. Phantom Books: Anthologies, Archived version
  2. from the editor
  3. from Helpers' Network Quality Fanzine Review -- 1997; WebCite
  4. from the editor
  5. from Helpers' Network Quality Fanzine Review -- 1997; WebCite
  6. from Media Monitor
  7. from Helpers' Network Quality Fanzine Review -- 1997; WebCite
  8. from the editor
  9. from Helpers' Network Quality Fanzine Review -- 1997; WebCite
  10. from the editor
  11. from Helpers' Network Quality Fanzine Review -- 1997; WebCite