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Wednesday, August 25, 2004


(W) Warp 57, The Weekly TAFF News, Weirdness Before Midnight, Westwind

Warp 57 / Cathy Palmer-Lister, MonSFFA, P.O. Box 1186 Place du Parc, Montreal, Quebec H2X 4A7 Canada / www.monsffa.com / The spring ‘04 issue of this creative clubzine features a Locus parody on the cover and good stuff inside. There’s even a theme – although I suspect it’s accidental and I know it’s R-rated. For instance, there’s a hilariously-illustrated piece on Furries, mostly dealing (fortunately) with the comics, although some flabbergasting photos from AnthroCon 2003 finish the piece and come close to finishing me. In this vein, there’s an article about fictional ape-human sex (I’d hate to see an article about factual ape-human sex) with the inspirational quote “Concupiscence overcame me!” Wow! After all this, the page about real Unas, as opposed to those on Stargate:SG-1, is downright relaxing. Another neat bit follows on the making of chain mail, Reinhardt take note, itself followed by a squib on the Dracula myth, in turn followed by reviews of The Chronicles of Riddick (which left me cold) and Taking Lives (notice how its poster is dominated by Angelina Jolie’s lips?). Then there are photos of local fans in Renaissance garb, book reviews, model reviews, meeting reviews ... a lot to MonSFFA and its fanzine, ‘ey?

The Weekly TAFF News / Randy Byers, 1013 N. 36th St., Seattle WA 98103 / fringefaan@yahoo.com / The annual publication of the TAFF winner, listing the voters in the USA-to-UK race (the subsequent contest was won by James Bacon), thanks those who stood in for him at Torcon (Alan Rosenthal and Mary Kay Kare were indeed great auctioneers), and gives a preliminary account. He reports on the grand time afforded him at Seacon ‘03. Hope we do as well for Bacon at N4.

Weirdness Before Midnight #3 / Dave Szurek, 503 North F #829, Aberdeen WA 98520-2601 / dzsurek@iopener.net / $2.50 or trade / I can’t figure out if Szurek has the sensibilities of a schizoid teenager or affects them as a defense. He says he’s 40; he must be an old hippy like me. Perhaps he figures only insanity would justify his obsessive love for horrible horror movies of the ilk of Plutonium Baby and Crack in the Floor – but hey, this is the choir he’s preaching to. He shouldn’t change his style, anyway, because there’s something nobly askew about purposefully devoting a percentage of one’s life to the enjoyment of seriously stupid stuff, and his deadpan reviews are invested with humorously self- and film-deprecating disgust. (“Unexciting crime drama is like getting an enema.” What need we know more than that?) Besides, occasionally he finds precious brio in this baggage, diamonds in the dross – what my friend Mark Verheiden used to describe as “something there.” It’s fun to watch him search. There’s a lot more here, and mostly, it’s worth hacking through Dave’s terrible layout – a long series of cyberposts on life, the world, and the internet (how come we never see ads about enlarging one’s foot?), and pages of introspection that defy comment but are worth the plunge. Throughout the zine, Chris Friend contribute good paranoid artwork. So, yes, I want to see more issues, if only to share Szurek’s anguish when he finally sees Fertilize the Blaspheming Bombshell, and realizes it’s simply dull.

Westwind #270-1 / George Nyhen, NWSFS, P.O. Box 24207, Seattle WA 98124 / westwind@nwsfs.org / free to members; dues $20/year / Spring issues of the NWSFS clubzine, a little plain but impeccably reproduced and utilitarian. NWSFS has socials, mass excursions to fannish restaurants, cruises, and CascadiaCon. These issues champion all, review the director’s cut of Alien, which I found less edgy than the original release. Single candidate elections are pending, with mugshots printed here of the contenders. Talk about a sinister-looking krewe!

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