The Future Tense Affair

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Title: The Future Tense Affair
Publisher: Buffalo Chip Press
Author(s): D.W. Chong
Cover Artist(s): Gennie Summers
Illustrator(s): Gennie Summers
Date(s): 1984
Medium: print
Genre: gen
Fandom: Man From U.N.C.L.E./Star Trek: TOS
Language: English
External Links:
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front cover by Gennie Summers
back cover by Gennie Summers

The Future Tense Affair is a gen Man From U.N.C.L.E. and Star Trek: TOS 98-page crossover by D.W. Chong ; based on a story by Lucy Seaman; illustrated by Gennie Summers.

It was probably edited by Jim Rondeau.


From an ebay seller: "It's the story of a Klingon assassin traveling back in time to New York City, Earth, 1969. A team from the Entrerprise goes after him, but Spock is captured by an U.N.C.L.E. agent. How do you explain this one to Mr. Waverly?"

Reactions and Reviews

When I first road the advertisement In UNIVERSAL TRANSLATOR for THE FUTURE TENSE AFFAIR I thought, "The Man from U.N.C.L,E. meets the Crew of the Enterprise?! Oh, come on!" But what the heck, I spent most of my elementary school years talking to my pen anyway and it only cost seven dollars (which is not bad considering tho price of most zines) so I went ahead and ordered it.

Let me take a moment here to mention how wonderful it was to order a zine and have it delivered to me within one week. Most zine publishers are not known for prompt response and I thought that my experience was just a fluke. I have since ordered more items from the same publishers and found that each response is handled just as quickly. Thank you Melody and Jim for being so organized. Now back to the review. The story involves a Klingon plan to alter 'what is' by tampering with 'what was'. Does this sound like a familiar storyline? How many of you have read Barbara Hambly's ISHMAEL? I'm not going to debate the decided unoriginality of the plot device. After all, if the story didn't work why would so very many authors use it again, and again, and again...What is important here, is how the story is handled. Are the characters true pictures of the people we have come to know and love? Are the circumstances believable? Are the scientific anomalies explained in enough detail to promote understanding and yet not so much detail that you need a degree to simply grasp a concept? Is there enough action, suspense, mystery?

The answer to all of the above is YES. Although the only real mystery involved is to what use Spock plans to put a hot plate in preparation of his plankton & yeast dinner. I thought there was a Klingon proverb about plankton & yeast being a dish best served cold. Oh no. that's 'Revenge is a dish best served cold'. Well, to my way of It is always nice to watch two of your oldest friends meet each other for the first time. That is the way I felt when I read THE FUTURE TENSE AFFAIR. This is an interesting, exciting, intelligent and nostalgic novella. It is well worth the money and your time. So, if you want to spend a few hours reading with a fond smile on your face then, by all means, order THE FUTURE TENSE AFFAIR. [1]

... one of the best zines I've run across in years. It's a mixed U.N.C.L.E./Star Trek universe story which doesn't an especially innovative premise, but handles it so beautifully and inventively that it is pure pleasure to read.

The basis of the plot is that the Enterprise is after a group of Klingons who are using a Guardian of Forever-like time portal to return to the twentieth century Earth to change history and stop the future formation of the Federation. Naturally, a chase ensues through the portal and the Earth that the Star Trek characters end up in is the U.N.C.L.E. Earth. They eventually join forces with Illya and Solo to get the bad guys. The joy of the story is to be found in the characterization, the dialog which is simply right for everyone, and the ending which gets everyone home safely, but not quite in the way you'd expect. There's places in it that are laugh-out-loud funny, and it also has the absolute best mind-meld scene (between Spock and Illya) I've ever read. Utterly right and first rate.

The art for these zines is not in general up to the stories... FUTURE TENSE AFFAIR has a cover that can only be described as as embarrassing, although some of the interior art is at least adequate. I won't bring up the illo of Uhura that has her cross-eyed, and judging by the evidence, a recognizable Solo is beyond most people. If there is ever a reprint I would suggest the art be simply omitted since the writing certainly doesn't need it. Or perhaps an artist especially good in portraits, like a Siegrist or a Moaven, could be used.

So--even if you are not an U.N.C.L.E, fan, DO buy this zine. Make yourself happy, make Jim happy, maybe make D.W. happy and we'll get more fiction which will make us all happy. [2]

Inside Sample Gallery


  1. from Treklink #4
  2. from Cheryl Rice in The Clipper Trade Ship #54