Profiles

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Zine
Title: Profiles
Publisher: "A 'Quest' Amateur Publication," (Quest, then Bill Hupe)
Editor(s): Sandy Hall, Mary Schuttler and Judy Steinkamp
Date(s): 1990
Series?:
Medium: print zine
Size:
Genre:
Fandom: Star Trek: TOS
Language: English
External Links:
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Profiles is a gen Star Trek: TOS anthology. It is 179 pages long and a collection of 12 stories and poems edited by Sandy Hall, Mary Schuttler and Judy Steinkamp. Cover art by Kathryn Dewell. Interior art by Kathryn Dewell (vast majority) with one piece by Judy Steinkamp.

This zine included a full-color poster of Spock, McCoy and the rest of the Enterprise crew.

From the flyer, this zine "explores the unique relationship that Kirk, Spock, and McCoy share."

flyer, click to read
front cover by Kathryn Dewell shows Spock in the three stages of his career -- "First and foremost, I found the artwork of Kathryn Dewell a sheer delight. The cover portrait is in color with softly muted shades that draw the eye." [1]

Contents

The Editorial begins: "Welcom to PROFILES, a Star Trek fanzine written, illustrated, and compiled by the members of QUEST. QUEST stands for Quincyans United for the Enjoyment of Star Trek . . . We took the best stories from our monthly club newsletter, begged and bribed our members to write and draw even more."

  • Profiles, poem (4)
  • Anna's Room, fiction by Mary Schuttler (While on leave visiting Iowa, Kirk and Spock discover an old farmhouse, a doll, and a strange face in a mirror.) (5)
  • Amnesia, poem by Michelle Perry (24)
  • Through the Looking Glass, fiction by Sandy Hall (a Mirror Universe story) (25)
  • A Mistake of Fate, fiction by Judy Decker (a scene between Kirk and Spock en route to Vulcan during the third Star Trek movie) (32)
  • Abreaction, poem by Michelle Perry (34)
  • Indestructible, fiction by Judy Decker (37)
  • Courting Disaster, fiction by Mary Schuttler (a shore leave leaves Kirk dying) (47)
  • Illuminations, fiction by Judy Decker (celebrating the Fourth of July) (82)
  • Walk No More Alone, fiction by Mary Schuttler (Spock eavesdrops on Kirk's emotions) (93)
  • Legacy of Paradise, poem by Sandy Hall (Spock receives a parcel.) (105)
  • Fears, fiction by Sherri Hawke (Sybock returns to help Jim.) (105)
  • Uhura: At Vulcan's Embassy, fiction by Michelle Perry (131)
  • Missing Link, fiction by Kathryn Dewell (An encounter with the Guardian of Forever, and Vulcan's past, leaves Jim Kirk unconscious and in Spock's hands.) (132)
  • art by Kathryn Dewell and Judy Steinkamp


Reactions and Reviews

Profiles is a Classic Star Trek zine produced by a Star Trek club called Quest, based in Qunicy, Illinois. It is 179 pages, published in 1991, featuring 10 stories and four poems by Schuttler, Perry, HalL Decker, Dewell and Hawke. The artwork is all by Kathryn Dewell. Profiles is a nice zine, mildly entertaining, but not very gripping. A few of the stories have intriguing premises, but the characterizations were largely superficial. It was difficult to develop a feeling of empathy or involvement in the plots. Some stories lacked clearly defined resolutions, which, at the hands of more polished writers, would have been maddening, but in this case, was simply irritating. However, there are some bright spots. First and foremost, I found the artwork of Kathryn Dewell a sheer delight. The cover portrait is in color with softly muted shades that draw the eye. Her other portraits include Kirk in a beefcake pose, a bearded Spock that evokes the mirror Spock character perfectly, and two pictures of a wounded Kirk that are jolting in their impact. Profiles opens with an interesting story by Mary Schuttler called "Anna's Room". While vacationing in Iowa with Spock, Kirk finds an antique mirror that shows visions of a little girl named Anna. The scenes grow increasingly foreboding as it becomes apparent that Anna was a victim of child abuse. After finding Anna's grave, Kirk continues to feel haunted by the past until a ghostly visitation aboard the Enterprise restores his spirits. This story had a nice tone, reflecting an easy camaraderie between Kirk and Spock. -Although Spock seemed a little out of character, the atmosphere of a lighthearted vacation was attained and added a dramatic contrast to the darker side of the story. The next three stories are brief looks at moments in the Star Trek universe. "Through the Looking Glass" by Sandy Hall takes another look at the Mirror Universe. This story has a surprisingly abrupt ending that left me saying "You mean it ends here???" "Indestructible" by Judy Decker focuses on our heroes as they struggle to survive their dunking in the San Francisco bay after depositing the whales. "A Mistake of Fate" has Kirk musing on the path fate has led him after beaming up from Genesis. Profiles then takes a darker tone with "Courting Disaster" by Mary Schuttler. This is a depressing story that includes rape, murder, torture and slavery among its elements. Kirk, Spock and McCoy, accompanied by a determined Uhura (who is tired of being left out) take shore leave on the planet Tethys. After a blissful day that fulfilled a lifelong ambition of Kirk's to sail on primitive seas, they are captured by pirates and forced to endure the brutalities of life aboard a slave ship. Although it was nice to see Uhura portrayed on an equal level, I found the story lacked the layers of horror, guilt and anger such events would surely have produced. As a result, the action fails to grip the reader and the eventual escape and rescue by the Enterprise leaves you feeling largely indifferent. The rest of the zine is comprised of three more short stories and two longer pieces. "Illuminations" by Decker features a Fourth of July celebration aboard the Enterprise. "Walk No More Alone" by Schuttler sets the stage for Kirk and Spock's friendship after a rocky start. "Fears" by Sherri Hawke has Kirk finally embrace his pain with Sybok. "Legacy of Paradise" by Hall and "Missing Link" by Kathryn Dewell provide the contrasting closing stories. "Legacy" produces ten year old twins who are the legacy of Spock and Leila's brief tryst years ago. The twins stowaway aboard the Enterprise as she speeds off on a Priority One Mission. Will Spock and his bitter son reconcile their differences and learn to care for each other? Does McCoy tease Spock about his new role as Daddy? Will the transporter malfunction leading to a life and death situation? "Legacy" is ultimately too much like a sitcom - all the problems are resolved in thirty minutes leading to the requisite happy ending. The twins are cute, however, and there are a few nice scenes here and there rising above the cliches. "Missing Link" finds the Vulcan 'missing link' skeleton stolen and taken back in time by a mysterious intruder. Our stalwart heroes dash off to the rescue and Kirk is badly wounded during the operation. On the positive side, the species representing the 'missing link', the xzchirL are creatively presented and the atmosphere of Ancient Vulcan during the tune of "First Light" comes vividly to life. But the story never does clarify who stole the skeleton or why the skeleton was stolen. The Romulans are mentioned as possible culprits but this scenario is never clarified. Profiles' final score is 48. The breakdown gives artwork an almost perfect 23 points. Overall presentation, at 10 points, receives credit for the easy to read print and professional layout. Writing at 7 points needs the strongest effort. The zine would have benefited greatly from a stronger dramatic anchor and fewer of the shorter pieces. Ultimate value receives 8 points reflecting the inexpensive price and length of the zine. Profiles is a nice effort for Quest's initial foray into fanzines and is a light, easy read for those with time on their hands. [5]
It was very-well-done for a first zine, no doubt partly due to Bill Hupe and Peg Kennedy's long experience with zine publication as well as the writing talent at QUEST. I was so impressed that I enrolled as a long-distance member of QUEST. Unfortunately, according to the note I received on my newsletter, QUEST is no longer planning a second volume, but perhaps lots of favorable LOCs could change that. There is a good deal of Kirk/Spock friendship (not K/S) in this zine along with some mild hurt/comfort, but it stops well short of the point where you begin to find yourself gagging, and wondering what kind of person you could possibly be to be sitting there reading it. One more thing, Profiles has an incredibly beautiful color cover illustration depicting Spock at three different points during his career. When I opened the package the zine arrived in, I sat there for several minutes, absorbing the subtle changes which Kathryn Dewell captured so well. I recommend this zine highly. [6]
It is my understanding this is a first effort by the editors. It is my belief that it should not be their last. The artwork, featuring Kathryn Dewell, is exemplary, including the color cover featuring Spock in three stages of his career in Starfleet. Another rendition of Spock in the I.S.S. Enterprise universe is cool and deadly. Dewell's portrayal of a badly injured Kirk is uncomfortably realistic; two other views of the captain, one smiling broadly and one frowning in deep contemplation, captures the heart of the man's personality. An anthropological study of the theorized ancestry of "Homo Eridani" is also quite well done; however, my favorite piece is the rendition of Leila and Spock's offspring, Mandy and Sar. The children project a youthful sparkle, a hint of destiny. There is melancholy in Sar's eyes, determined courage in Mandy's.

The first story in the zine is "Anna's Room" by Mary Schuttler. In my opinion, it is the best story in the zine. Kirk is visiting the family farm in Iowa, having brought Spock with him. On one of many outings, they discover an old farmhouse on an adjacent tract of land. Through a series of accidental finds, Kirk becomes the possessor of a small, almost featureless doll, and an old mirror, which he brings back with him to the Kirk home. Almost imme-diately^ie realizes the mirror is-a window into the past, allowing him to see what happened to the owner of the doll.

"Anna's Room" is a good mystery; I read it eagerly, wondering what happened to the little girl as Kirk did, watching hopelessly as the child's fate played itself out in the window-mirror. Powerless co help someone who had been dead three centuries, Kiik takes die illogical alternative. The story is also a brief look into the hardships of a farm family struggling to survive the Depression, and losing. The resolution was, I thought initially, a little abrupt. However, having read it through a second time, I believe it was the proper ending of a real ghost story! Rating: Seven out of ten.

Through the Looking Glass," by Sandy Hall, would have been my favorite story, except for one things—it is the prologue to a novelette, not a short story! Perhaps I have a weakness for alternate universe stories, but I was ready for a good long read when I started this one. Sandy takes the reader right along, snapping "our" Mr. Spock out and replacing him with the "other" Mr. Spock. An investigation ensues, the alternate Mr. Spock's logic and honor making it possible for the captain and crew to trust that he wishes to return to his own universe as much as they wish to return the clean-shaven Mr. Spock to theirs. But what is this? What happens when communications, temporarily knocked out by the ion storm which evidently had switched the two Spocks is back on line? I won't divulge the answer, but it felt like the opening two minutes in an Outer Limits episode. The terrible part was finding there was no more story. I would strongly suggest that Sandy pull out her pen (or crank up her computer) and finish this thing! Please, for the sanity of her readers. Would have rated it higher if it had been finished. Six out of ten.

"A Mistake of Fate," by Judy Decker, is a short treatise about an unscheduled rendezvous on the stolen Bird of Prey en route from Genesis to Vulcan. Kirk comes upon McCoy after the "I've missed you" scene and they share some thoughts, worries, and concerns. Nice little tableau.

"Indestructible," by Judy Decker, is another short-short. Judy has a talent for saying a lot with a minimum of words. This time she describes the state of a man who has been through too much and has had too little time to deal with it. Nice look at a new character, who holds her own with the famous officers, especially a very-crusty Chief Medical Officer. Judy captures the characters well— I'd like to see more of her work.

"Courting Disaster," by Mary Schuttler, had one or two problems. The most obvious one was the "Screened Leave Only" premise, which was a term for the Federation allowing select individuals to vacation on undeveloped planets protected by the Prime Directive. As fussy as Fed and Starfleet powers- that-be are abbutlhe'old RD., TdouBt ariysuch screened!eave would be considered, much less allowed. Another problem was, since they (McCoy, Spock, Kirk, and Uhura) were going to this protected planet, naturally they couldn't take any of their technology with them; the vacationers had effectively placed themselves at the mercy of an undeveloped environment which harbored civil war and pirates. Although the planet was off-limits, I believe xenoso-ciologists would have access to that kind of information, making it inadvisable for vacationers to select that particular planet.

The story has some finer points, however. I enjoyed Uhura's point of view, her sitting back and observing "the three," noting the ins and outs of their friendships. I appreciated her ability to acknowledge the triad-friendship without necessarily feeling left out herself. She knew her own value, and the regard the men had for her, and was never insecure or timid while in their company, despite the change of venue. There was also a nose-to-nose confrontation between the pirate leader and Kirk—they were opposite sides of the same coin. A grudging respect ensued, which later led to a resolving of the conflict. This character study was good— I always enjoy a new character who makes me interested.

There was the token rape, unfortunately. Perhaps that is an unfair statement, but of all the Uhura stories I've read, rape plays a major role in a lot of them. Undeniably, given the setting and the characters our heroes must deal with, it probably would have happened. I just cringed when it did, though—again. Uhura comes through it, however, and comes through for everyone in the end, helping Spock cope with a captain who lies near death and an injured McCoy.

On the whole, the setting seemed a bit contrived. The story held its own for the most part, but the believability was affected because of the problems. Three out of ten. "Illuminations" by Judy Decker. Um, another problem with contrivance, here. Kirk wants to impress his fellow officers and crew with the importance of fireworks to celebrate the U.S. Fourth of July anniversary, and commences injuring himself and another crewmember in the process. Spock finds out Kirk did not cause the accident due to carelessness, but through a freak accident, and takes it upon himself to alter the chemical mixture so that a fireworks battery could be launched in deep space. A display ensues, brightening Kirk's recovery and awing everyone with the colors and designs...

Problem one: Just my opinion here, but I don't think Kirk would be that "America"-zealous. He may have fond memories of the fireworks of his youth, but not to the point of making homemade explosives in a chem-lab. Kirk takes some pretty big chances, I must concede, but he is not foolish.

Problem two: McCoy's equating fireworks and the Fourth of July with freedom. Perhaps McCoy, being from the Deep South where vestiges of old allegiances might hang on longer, could have a soft spot in his heart for old American traditions. I believe his education and experience would have made him doubt Kirk's sanity rather than defend his actions. The story just didn't work for me. Two out of ten.

"Walk No More Alone" by Mary Schuttler. There have been countless stories concerning the budding friendship between Kirk and Spock. Some of them touch on the growing mental bond between the two men, ranging from the merest "sense" to a direct psi-interconnection. I never grow tired of them; there is no end to the possibilities. Mary has picked one out and given it to us as she sees it. I like her point of view. No casually accepting Kirk here—he downright resents the bond, once he discovers it forming. Kirk is a private individual; Mary plays his reaction— and Spock's subsequent action—true to character. McCoy acts as intercessor here and helps Kirk to see the bonding as not an intrusion, but an augmentation of the growing regard he has for Spock. Mutual trust ensues and the bond is cemented. We can look forward to the famous friendship which lies around the corner. A good read. Six out of ten.

"Legacy of Paradise" by Sandy Hall. Ever wonder what might have happened if Spock and Leila consummated their relationship? Well, Spock finds out—the hard way, when his two offspring present themselves to him after stowing away on the Enterprise. Of course, he doesn't know until that point that he is a father. Mandy and Sar (Amanda and Sarek) bear the physical traits of one of their parents, but the similarity flip-flops emotionally and mentally. Mandy is blond and blue-eyed, but she is more logical and in control of her emotions, and enjoys the ability to mind-meld with her brother. Sar, on the other hand, though black-haired and pointed-eared, is emotional, angry, and insecure.

Sandy explores the almost overwhelming job facing Spock as he seeks some rapport with his children, while awaiting an opportunity to reunite them with their mother. Strained relationships always make for good copy. However, I was a bit disappointed at the end, when the light banter about having children on the ship, Spock's playing marbles, etc., took the place of Spock cherishing those few hours with his children, considering their future, wondering about their mother, what might have been, etc. Five out of ten.

"Fears," by Sherri Hawke, is a short treatise about the aftermath of Sybok's demise, when Kirk's fears are indeed confronted in a dream. He is made to relive Spock's death from radiation, and his own grief, just as he was made to relive it when melded with Sarek. The point of the confrontation is to make Kirk see that the pinnacle of his grief over Spock's death was his failure to tell the Vulcan how he felt about him; his "fear" was that he would fail to tell anyone he loved that he loved them before they, too, were taken away.

He awakens from the dream and makes a decision, remembering Sybok's words: "I cannot help you any further... the choice... is yours..." Kirk chooses. I liked this. Seven out of ten. "Missing Link" is the longest story in the zine, and the last one. I have a feeling there is a sequel to this one, or should be. Kathryn Dewell has taken a hurt/comfort story and made it into something more. She has created a situation where the remains of an ancient being, believed to be the middle step in the evolution of the modem Vulcan, are stolen. The big-wigs are assembled on Vulcan, calling Spock, Kirk, et al to a secret meeting, where it is disclosed that beings, as those belonging to the same species of the stolen bones, have mysteriously appeared in the Vulcan desert. Conclusion: someone has brought the creatures into to change-present-and future Vulcan history. Although it could be argued here that there was little the creatures' presence in current Vulcan could do to the ancient history (unless one of them was Surak's ancestor, perhaps), it is a viable concept. Kirk and crew are given the dubious task of returning the creatures to their own time. Of course, it doesn't go as smoothly as that.

During the transfer, Kirk is attacked by a large cat and is separated from Spock. Spock searches for and eventually finds Kirk, but both are stranded in the past because one of the creatures has been in contact with Kirk, thus altering history. Spock must find the creature and, through mind-meld, erase the memory of Kirk in its mind. Meanwhile, Kirk is weak and sick from the wounds inflicted by the cat-creature, and Spock must provide for his needs.

As I said, it's hurt/comfort, but I liked the premise of the story. Here's the twister: after all is said and done, there is one problem—whoever stole the remains still has them, and there are broad hints that we haven't heard the last of them. There's an unsolved mystery here—hence, another story in the making? Five out of ten.

There are some nice bits of poetry, etc., which round out the zine. The editing was top-notch throughout. Grammar, spelling, good command of the language prevailed from beginning to end. All in all, I found it enjoyable and entertaining. I'd like to see more, folks. Overall rating: 5.1 out of ten. [7]
There is at least one suggestive illustration here, Kirk standing, bottle in one hand, pants undone, chest hair leading down to nether regions....other interesting illustrations include the Evolution of the Modern Vulcan (with Spock as the specimen) , The story Through the Looking Glass has an illustration of Spock with the beard (like in Mirror, Mirror), the final story, Missing Link also has an illustration of "the guardian of forever" from the episode City on the Edge of Forever. The last page has an ad "For Sale, the Starship Enterprise... have you ever dreamed of owning your very own Starship? Now you can!....These works of art are carefully handblown glass in a small shop in St Louis and shipped directly to you insured. No two starships are exactly alike. hang it in a window to catch the sun's rays or have it mounted to stand on your desk or shelf for a small fee you can even have it personalized with a brass plate! Each starship is 5-6 inches long proportional in width and height. $30" (bases etc. also available) (I wonder if any of these are still floating around out there?) I skimmed a few stories, one includes the rape of Uhura at the hands of pirates (the rape itself is not explicit) and the torture of McCoy by the same pirates. I have not read the whole zine, so I can't say much. [8]

References

  1. from STARLink #16/17
  2. from STARLink #16/17
  3. from The Trekzine Times v.1 n.3, illo by Kathryn Dewell
  4. from The Trekzine Times v.1 n.3
  5. from STARLink #16/17
  6. from The Trekzine Times v.1 n.3
  7. from The Trekzine Times v.1 n.3
  8. from an eBay seller in 2015