Lessons I have learned from this week’s Subspace:
1) People are still super-pissed about “Farscape.”
2) I should never, ever try to write something funny, ever again (this
week’s Letter of the Week is fun enough for everyone.)
We have a “Frell the Sci Fi Channel” section this week. But
first, a letter from the Serbian Bureau of RevolutionSF, via writer Zoran Zivkovic:
Subject: The Two Zoran Zivkovics
That's great! LOL! Serves me right. Fortunately, our new PM, with whom I
share the name, belongs to good guys. But my name could have been Slobodan
Milosevic, also a frequent Serbian name. Can you imagine problems I would
face in that case...
Subject: Scare Tactics
I felt like the worst human being in the world. Lower than low. Lower than
a rattlesnake's belly button.
Why? Because I loved that show! It was great.
Then I read your review and I felt much better. You really liked it. You
even got into S.D. in a fancying way. You enjoyed the pain. Cool.
This makes me feel good again because it's plain YOU are MUCH lower a scumbag
than I am.
I really do like that show. Just need a good lie to explain my whereabouts
when it's on. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Watching 90210 reruns?
Subject: Crispin Glover
Crispy Crispin Glover is the MAN! He is high up there in the ranks of spookiness
along with Jhonen Vasquez and Tim Burton. Have you ever heard the song "Clowny
Clown Clown" that he wrote? Oh wow..if that isn't the scariest song I've
ever heard, then I don't know what it is. His birthday is April 20th, and
mine is April 23. Go us. I wish we were made for each other.
-scary fangirl #45 (email@example.com)
I’m still mad at him for almost kicking David Letterman’s head
Subject: Buffy Going
Buffy is going. Only a few more eps and then Tuesday after dark Tuesday
night with nothing. No pithy lines, no cute, perky heros and girly heros.
No fighting monsters and demons in ball gowns or slinky sweaters. No sweaty
sexy minutes that are ok because one of those involved isn't human.
NO, I can't make it. I WON'T make it! Can't breathe, lights dimming...*thump*.
Don’t anybody tell him about “Dawson’s Creek.”
Let’s start the Farscape / Sci Fi Channel section RIGHTCHERE. For
some of these, I’m not gonna say anything, and I’ll just let them
simmer amongst the rest of you. Others, not so much.
Subject: Where were you, Farscape fans?
Where were all you "let's burn down the Sci Fi Channel's offices"
Farscape fans, who have apparently *only now just discovered* how capricious
and arbitrary the Sci Fi Channel can be-- where were you when CRUSADE was
cancelled *before it had even aired*??! I mean, arguing with the Sci Fi execs
about ratings numbers is utterly meaningless when you consider that they dropped
the (Bonnie) Hammer on CRUSADE before there were any numbers to argue. It
hadn't even aired a single time when it was canned! I've only recently come
to Farscape and will miss it, and I do have sympathy for its disappointed
long-time fans, but I find it somewhat humorous to read so many rants, here
and elsewhere, in which people are (to quote Casablanca) stunned-- STUNNED!--
to find out that the suits at Sci Fi can be illogical and uncaring about the
fate of a quality SF show. This isn't something that started with Farscape,
my friends-- and all the griping in the world won't help. Unfortunately. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Crusade! There’s a blast from the past. I’ve been doing
this for four years, and we were mad when the Crusade thing happened,
too. But your letter makes me look back now on my boyish naivete.
Back then it was just weird that Sci Fi would cancel a show abruptly. Who
knew that we were merely on the brink of the penny-pinching show-smashing onslaught?
Ah, lost innocence. Everybody join with me to hum “Cat’s in
the Cradle” while you read the remainder of this column.
Subject: Farscape companion review
Just to let you know that the Companion you reviewed was a straight reprint
of the 2000 book - we had no option but to let it go as that, as that's what
Titan had negotiated. There are three further books in the series - one per
season, with the final one out next month. Hopefully some of your criticisms
were addressed by the later volumes; although I would love to have printed
complete synopses, it was felt that we'd started one way and should stick
to it so there was a continuity!
Author, The Farscape Illustrated Companion series
These next 2 letters may seem not to be about Farscape, but read
through them till the end… it’s like stages of grief.
Why is it whenever people list Neil Gaiman's works they always skip Stardust?
The lists pretty much jump straight from Neverwhere to American Gods. Don't
get me wrong, there isn't really anything wrong with that EXCEPT for the fact
the it discounts on of the most beautifully written books I have ever read.
It is almost like poetry except with a story and funnier. What the frell?
Speaking frell.....WHY GOD??? say it ain't so. Farscape gone forever left
in a pile of ash crowned with an engagement ring. DAMNIT!!! I have to go drown
my sorrow. (Girl_on_a_dragon@hotmail.com)
Subject: What Would [X] Do?
Any chance that this contest will be coming back? I miss it. I miss it almost
as much as I miss Farscape. Don't ask me how much I miss Farscape, because
I really really miss it. (email@example.com)
From contributor Rachel Ivey:
Subject: Frell Sci Fi
Aaron Davis' commentary was excellent. He suggests the very same course
of action I took on Saturday, March 22nd, the day after the final episode
of Farscape aired.
I e-mailed Sci Fi Channel to tell them in no uncertain terms that the ONLY
reason I was ever exposed to any other Sci Fi Channel programming was because
of Farscape. I went on to say that without a 5th season of Farscape, I had
no reason to watch the Sci Fi Channel at all. I told them that if I had the
option of dropping the channel from my satellite channel line-up, I would
have already done so.
I'm with Aaron. Forget Sci Fi Channel. We can find quality entertainment
Yeah I got a really big problem!!! Put Farscape back on the dam air. How
they could even take it off the air is beyond me. So why couldn't they make
a sister show off of Farscape to keep the audience hooked??? Why didn't they
have a spin off called Moya or something? It just pisses me off that they
took such an awesome show off the air. There was no reason for it! I tell
ya I would have a rally to put that show back on the air. It was the best
scifi show that I have ever saw! (JCalandra1000@netscape.net)
Subject: the Farscape article
"My plea to science fiction fans everywhere is to completely boycott
the Sci Fi Channel. Don't watch it anymore."
Man, I'm way ahead of you guys. I stopped watching the Sci Fi channel months
before Farscape got canned...when The I-Man was.
Btw, I was mortified when Paul Ben Victor got cut in half in Daredevil.
You shouldn't kill off that kind of person, he's an inspiration to short,
bald headed, karate pimps everywhere. (TheDharmaBomb@WhoZat.com)
”Little boy blue, and the man in the moon…”
From Paul Riddell, contributor emeritus:
Subject: Frell the Skiffy Channel
Aaron Davis was, as usually, right on the ball as far as how Skiffy Channel
management didn't want to keep "Farscape" going in the first place.
Considering the late-Friday timeslot, where only shut-ins and agoraphobics
would come across it in the first place, and the lack of advertising and promotion
compared to garbage like "Crossing Over", this was a done deal a
while back. (If the Channel management really _had_ given a flip, don't you
think we'd be seeing reruns on regular television a la "Stargate SG-1"
so as to build up the viewer base?)
However, I come to praise Aaron for one point that became patently obvious
over a year ago. When the Skiffy Channel resurrected "SCI FI" magazine
at the end of 2001, a lot changed in the formatting. In particular, did anyone
notice that not only does the magazine no longer have a letters column, but
that the magazine doesn't carry contact information for the people involved?
In other words, it's the party line all over again: we don't care what you
think, and we don't care how strongly you feel about it. Just shut up and
watch that "Battlestar Galactica" Chain Reaction and the same five
crappy movies we bought because nobody else wanted them."
If the last three years after getting ditched from "SCI FI" has
taught me anything, it's that I don't miss it: either the magazine or the
Channel. I just remember the days when Skiffy made the big promises, and it
was Comedy Central that consisted of nothing but bad direct-to-cable movies
and lousy TV shows that TVLand didn't want. Times change, don't they? (firstname.lastname@example.org)
“When ya comin’ home, son?” “I don’t know,
Pardon me, I’ve got to go get a tissue.
Enya is hot. I don't think that her sound Sail away is irritating at all.
OK I will like to get her email address. Also I will like to know which of
her sounds are in the LOTR.......! Enya I can't get in contact with you but
I think that you are really hot. We Vincentians are loving your music every
bit of it. I admire you so much. You are a beauty. (email@example.com)
I hope this guy doesn’t think Enya works here.
Because if she did, I would TOTALLY gossip about her behind her back.
Subject: Sci-ku: Stephen King Movies
Y'know...if you added a syllable to the second line of:
Offer your wisdom
(Or at least *some* snarky wit):
We'll give you free stuff!
It'd be a properly formatted haiku too. yes, i'm that bored (Jeremy@lemmingventures.com)
What’s wrong? That second line is supposed to be 7 lines. Perhaps
your boredom would be soothed by a nice long nap. Preferably, at your desk during
work. Go on… just close your eyes…
Subject: Blairdevil Strikes Again
W00T! Just watched Trial of The Incredible Hulk! Now I'll always wonder
what the DD movie would be like if John Rhys-Davies played the Kingpin instead
of Michael Duncan Clarke. ::thinks:: W0000T!
I would like to apologize to grey_cyberpunk for insulting him. Even the
smartest people can make spelling errors on the internet. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
I likewise own “Trial of the Incredible Hulk.” “Blairdevil”
here says you can download it on Kazaa. Rex Smith fans, rejoice!
Subject: Gundam News
You've seen the models, now see the real deal!
Bandai Japan has announced that it will release a radio-controlled model
of "Dom," from Mobile Suit Gundam, in early June. The 35,000 yen
(U.S. $290) robot can be controlled to enter battle with other Dom's and the
force feedback remote control will transfer battle jolts back to the pilot.
WOOHOO! Real-life Gundams are now one step closer to becoming a reality!
You can read the full report at Anime News Network. (email@example.com)
Anime’s coming to life and it HAD to be that one, huh? Skipped right
over big-eyed schoolgirls. (Who do not exist in nature.)
Subject: The Rear-Ending of Farscape
Not to argue with the author, but I think I can hazard a guess as to why
the AggieCon this year had such a low turnout, and it has nothing to do with
the war or with the fact that so many of its previous patrons no longer have
jobs allowing them $300 or more of disposable income per week. It's a problem
with conventions all over: a lack of promotion.
This has been a sore point with me for the last decade: I hear con committees
crying and kvetching about how their turnouts get smaller and smaller every
year, but does anyone do anything about it? Gee, it couldn't have ANYTHING
to do with the fact that most cons expect the attendees to jump through hoops
to get there, rather than making it as easy as possible for new fans to attend,
could it? It, of course, has nothing to do with the fact that the "promotion"
for most cons consists of sending a quickie schedule to "Locus"
or the "Asimov's" con listing in the back, which only brings out
the same five wannabe writers who hope to con some editor into buying their
eighteen-volume "Absolutely Fabulous"/"Farscape" crossover
It has noting to do with the con staff waiting until the week before the
con to contact the local newspapers, or giving TV crews enough time to do
a report other than the usual "look at the freaks" specials that
run the Sunday night of the convention. It also has nothing to do with cons
that are set up in airport hotels that require ridiculous tolls to get in
or out, or ones that are held in hotels so far away from basic amenities to
save a few bucks on security deposits. Oh, it has nothing to do with con staffs
that let the misanthrope who roundfiles all of his e-mail run Guest and Con
Relations, so that nobody else in the staff discovers that half of the guests
can't attend until the day of the convention. And what say of cons that schedule
themselves deliberately in the middle of Spring Break, opposite a big local
football game, or any other event that was scheduled months or years in advance?
(My personal favorite in this regard is Armadillocon in Austin: to save a
couple of bucks, the con moved from mid-October, when the Texas heat is at
least tolerable to those not born in a lead smelter, to the week before classes
start at the University of Texas, guaranteeing that the only people who attend
are the con staff, the few poor guests, a handful of newbies who don't know
better than to go outside in Austin in August, and the sycophants who can't
get enough of Bruce Sterling yammering "It's on the Viridian List! Have
I mentioned the Viridian List?")
Naaw, it has to do with the war. Silly me.
Sorry to bring up the issue, but when I hear conventions complain about
low turnout, I want to scream. Most make a big deal about getting big-name
guests and then assume that attendees will discover the con through telepathy
or psychic osmosis. Either that, or the hubris is so high that the staff just
assumes that the world needs what they have to offer. (A classic point is
with the crew running each year's WorldCon continuing to run on the same weekend
as Dragon*Con. For all of its faults, Dragon*Con at least advertises to its
core audience, and advertises well, while all each WorldCon has to offer is
the opportunity to vote for the Hugo Awards. Oh, joy: I plunk down $150 for
the privilege of joining another 110 idiots in voting for an award that serves
no relevant purpose any more and for books and magazines nobody's actually
read. Where the hell do I sign up?) Then, when the convention flubs, it's
everyone else's fault.
To be fair to AggieCon, the crew running it does a pretty good job, and
I'd be much more inclined to spend my hard-earned cash in College Station
than with a lot of the incompetently run cons out there. Just quit worrying
about scheduling yet another "How to get published in science fiction"
panel with the same four tired guests (thank Elvis Paul Riddell is no longer
writing, because at least we no longer have to listen to him bitch and moan)
and spend some time on promoting your site to someone besides the same eight
geeks who'll be at A-Kon or Armadillocon, okay? (firstname.lastname@example.org)
While some of you are preparing your responses to that, here’s my
Letter O’ The Week.
A few months ago someone in a Subspace letter accused me and Edgar Harris
of hating that show Lexx, because we do, and alleged that I had sex with reindeer.
So I went with it, in a comedic manner, as I am wont to do. I wrote that
I enjoyed the activity, which is illegal, probably impossible, and dad-gum it,
not in the Christmas spirit.
But I don't! In fact, I never even tried it. Not even in college.
Then I get this letter. I got it a week BEFORE April Fool’s, so that’s
out. Be warned that you may not want your child reading this. In fact, you may
not want yourself reading it.
There are no words.
Subject: Reindeer Intimacy
I am not sure you are the person to write to. I know that lots of jokes
are written about people like me. I am a zoophile. I am very much attracted
to Reindeer, as well as Whitetail, and Elk. I have never been with one though.
Most of my intimacy has been with horses. My mare and I had ten years together,
but sadly died, three years ago. I was in love with her physically and emotionally.
I feel like I lost a wife for sure. I have dated other horses, briefly, but
have not found the right one. It is difficult to enter into another relationship
after such a loss. I think I am still deeply in love with her. I certainly
could understand the same relationship with a Reindeer. My attraction is only
physically, and I have never met one, but I would like to meet one someday.
I am attracted also to cows the same way, but have only hugged and kissed
them. It has been my experience that these animals know our feelings for them,
and respond by flirting and can make things embarassing in public for sure.
I cant help my feelings, just as another person cant help how they feel about
a pretty girl.
I would like to talk to the guy on your staff, who enjoy's Reindeer in that
special way. (email@example.com)
I grew up in rural Alabama, but dude that ain’t right.