The True Force

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Title: The True Force
Author(s): Eva Albertsson
Date(s): spring 1981
Genre: gen
Fandom: Star Wars
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The True Force is a 4-page Star Wars story written by Eva Albertsson. In it Darth Vader sexually and sadistically tortures Han Solo. This story appears in The Dark Lord, an English language zine published in Sweden.

While the story includes sex between two men, the zine editor and the story's author would not have used the term "slash" to describe it. This is due to several reasons.

  1. Not only were only a tiny handful of "slash" zines published by this time, the term "slash" was not in use in the 1970s or early 1980s. The virgule was.
  2. Zines published then simply didn't categorize themselves as anything. Labels and Warnings are a much more modern activity.
  3. The sex act depicted was not one of of desire (at least on Han's part) but an act of non-consensual violence. Fans today would probably categorize it differently, probably "Han/Vader noncon slash."

It's possible that "The Dark Lord," the zine "The True Force" was published in, had an age statement, as this had become a topic of fan conversation starting in 1977, but since this zine was a Swedish one, this is unlikely.

The Story that Caused a Flap

This is one of stories that caught Lucasfilm's attention and generated the Open Letter to Star Wars Zine Publishers by Maureen Garrett.

cover of issue of the zine the story appeared in, The Dark Lord
This is confirmed with a phone call between Linda Deneroff, editor of Guardian, and Maureen Garrett as reported by Deneroff in a letter to Jundland Wastes:
... regarding this matter, Maureen called me some time toward the end of September. I don't remember the date, but it was before the guidelines were sent out, and we had a very interesting conversation. Basically, Maureen apologized about 'Slow Boat', saying, in effect, that she had spoken to my friend and realized that there had been a lack of communication between them regarding "Slow Boat", and that certainly in relation to the story for which the original two form letters were intended, "Slow Boat" was small potatoes. Incidentally, as I pointed out to Maureen, for a story that was printed in a foreign country and which very, few fans in this country are ever going to see, they indeed had overreacted and I was glad to see a more level-headed policy emerging. [1]

Fan Reactions and Reviews

A large part of my lack of enthusiasm for 'The Dark Lord,' though, is the result of one story. 'The True Force' by Eva Albertsson is a get-Han, a genuinely pornographic bit of trash that no editor with minimal standards of taste would have printed. It is certainly not erotic; if it was intended to be funny, it fails miserably. In fact, the only reaction I can imagine it evoking is revulsion. [2]
Well, the story that got Lucas all up in arms was just a bit more than graphic--the author did several other things that never got into general zine distribution. In general, the endings all seem weak and the main theme is voyeurism, which is not exactly my cup of drinking material. [3]


  1. from Jundland Wastes #7
  2. from Jundland Wastes #3
  3. from Southern Enclave #20