Whoosh! Issue 39 - December 1999
Letters to the Editor


To write to the editor regarding your comments, observations, and questions about Whoosh!, send an e-mail to ktaborn@lightspeed.net and mark the subject "Letter to the Editor". All letters with the subject "Letter to the editor" are subject to publication and may be edited. Due to the volume received, some letters may not be answered individually or receipt acknowledged.




LAST MONTH'S EDITORIALS
SUBTEXT OVERLOAD
SHAMANS
GABRIELLE'S CHARACTER GROWTH
FOSTER AND JOXER
UBER UBER ALLES
LAO MA: A BAD INFLUENCE?
EPISODE GUIDES
WHOOSH MENTION AT CON!
AND LET'S NOT FORGET JOXER
KUDOS
CREATION, EBAY, AND COLLECTIBLES
ANNOUNCING THE ARGO CONTEST


Letters To The Editor



LAST MONTH'S EDITORIALS

Date: Mon, 15 Nov 1999
From: Allyson Heisey
Subject: Your Subtext Project

Kym:

I read your editorial on Whoosh ["Subtext and Kicking Hinder", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)] and am delighted to hear that you are progressing nicely on your Subtext Project.

When Season Three began I had a hard time understanding the direction the show was taking, so during the rerun period I dug out my tapes and ran my own Xena marathon.

After watching season one and two up to most of season three I too, 'fell back' in love with the show. I gained a greater understanding of the roles Xena and Gabrielle played, and found my hidden admiration for their courage, strength, and most of all, their love for each other.

Sometimes we forget what happened in the past, so by going back in time, we remember what it was that spawned our love for the show, and then by coming back to the present we find the love has matured and grown.

Keep up the wonderful work!

Allyson




From: Amy Evans
Subject: Your editorial was great!
Date: Mon, 8 Nov 1999

I've been a Whoosh! and Xena fan for a long time - your editorial ["Subtext and Kicking Hinder", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)] this month is truly insightful and compelling.

Thanks for this wonderful vehicle!

Amy




From: Betsy
Date: Wed, 3 Nov 1999
Subject: letter to the editor

Well said, Ms. Taborn! You hit the nail on the head, regarding your observations ["Subtext and Kicking Hinder", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)] about the subversive elements in X:WP! "Talkin' 'bout (our) generation", eh? I, in my own small way, in my high-school classroom, try to gently subvert my charges' intolerant beliefs/values, always reminding them that all differences are external. I can say that i love X:WP for the two reasons you cited, as well, ie; the subtext and a##-kicking abilities of our two heroines. Your project(s) sound(s) worthwhile and timely. Battle on!

Sincerely,
Betsy
Texas




Date: Tue, 02 Nov 1999
From: Mark Allen
Subject: The difference between fun and profit

Hello Bret

From your description of the San francisco convention ["The Night of the Heeltapped Heart", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)] it seems that the organisers have forgottten that it's the fans of the show who are the ones who have made the show popular in the first place.

There have been several official Star Trek conventions held here in Sydney over the pat few years, and unless you paid extra for the dinners afterwards, all you got to see of the special guests is the hour or so on the stage.

In comparison about 5 years ago now I went to a fan run con for fans of the UK show Red Dwarf. There would have been only about 50 fans there, and later that night, I got the surprise of my life when the overseas guest, Hatty Hayridge who played Holly the ships computer for 2 years, sat down at my table because the restaraunt ran out of tables.

For half an hour I was talking one to one with Hatty, with everyone else at the con staring at me in total amazement. !!

It looks like the hard commercial world is winning out against the more idealistic hopes of the general fan. Then again, some people can get so obsessed that they would be a danger to the guests.

Like most fans, if I had to share a lift with one of the shows actors, I would just want to say how much I enjoy their work, but some people always go a step to far.

Mark Allen
Sydney Australia


BRET RUDNICK RESPONDS

Thanks for the note -- it looks like someone is actually reading the editorials! (:

The topic of conventions brings up a number of complex issues. On the one hand, those who organise the conventions do so because that is their business and they expect to make money at it. It isn't a hobby for them, it's a job. So they do what they can to pursue their goals. The only "official" conventions I've ever attended have been organised by Creation Entertainment and although I've heard some people tell scary tales about such conventions being a bad experience for them (lost or duplicate tickets, impossible lines, bullying staff, clogged toilets, merchandise snafus) I can honestly say I've never seen or experienced such problems. Speaking as Joe Convention Attendee, the conventions I've attended have almost always gone very smoothly and without expception I've always been treated well by staff.

On the other hand, I must admit to my own bias of "making a fair profit" and what exactly constitutes "fair". I'll be the first to confess that I got into HERC/XENA fandom in general, and WHOOSH! in particular, with an eye to disseminating information for free to anyone with Internet access. I like the idea of sharing whenever possible, and not taking advantage of people in doing so. From time to time, if expenses are involved, I prefer a "non-profit" approach. That's just my own personal view. I don't do it for profit. It's my hobby, not my job, and I don't expect to be paid for it.

Most convention attendees are adults and as such they are capable of making their own decisions. Even responsible teenagers and younger people can and do make their own decisions. But there is that element of fandom that is so taken with the show, so loyal to characters or so caught up in their enthusiasm, that selling them things is a bit like clubbing baby seals on the ice -- no challenge and a questionable practise.

It's a delicate issue in which the line between both points of view (what constitutes "fair" profit) can be very broad.

But I will also say that in every fan-sponsored fest I've attended (as opposed to an officially sponsored convention) the atmosphere has been more genial, less tense, and overall just more pleasant. This includes fests at which celebreties have attended. But the fests tend to be less about celebrity and more about fellow fans. It is an opportunity for fans to meet one another and exchange views. If there is a chance for a fan to express appreciation directly to someone connected with the show(s) then that is an added bonus.

Most people are happy for an opportunity to just express appreciation to those whose work they have seen. It usually doesn't take very long. There are those "scary" fans for whom reality prints a nice brochure but is a place not yet visited, however those people are very few in number and adequate security or even a "Thank you, but I need to give others some time now" is almost always sufficient. Even at official conventions, things can get a bit out of hand with people in the question line or autograph line, and we tend to remember those few more than the vast majority who, as you say, simply want to say "thanks". But in my personal observation, the smaller the venue, the smoother things usually go.

People, celebs or otherwise, are after all just people. We all share the same planet, like it or not, and it's been my experience that the more we get to know of others and their ways, culture, experiences, and customs offices, the more patient, polite, and introspective we tend to be ourselves.

At least, that's the hope! (:




Date: Sun, 31 Oct 1999
From: Maureen Shaffer
Subject: your subtext editorial

Just read your editorial re subtext["Subtext and Kicking Hinder", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)]. You have expressed so much better than I could my 'take' on what has become somewhat of a thorny issue. Excellent writing. I particularly liked your comment about the fight in COH [CRADLE OF HOPE], To me, that attitude shown by Xena is the engine that has always and will continue to drive the show. The relationship between Xena and Gabrielle just makes it a rocket.

I love all your work. This was the first Xena site I visited for a year. Didn't need to go anywhere else. Thank you.

An admirer




From: Sue Dressel
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 1999
Subject: Xena Phenomenon

Dear Kym,

You've pointed out some features of XWP that ARE truly amazing and it does us good to be reminded of them["Subtext and Kicking Hinder", WHOOSH!, Issue 38 (11/99)]. When my kids first drew my attention to the show in the first season, I was intrigued with how powerful Xena was, and now as I think back, from the very first it never struck me as false or weird that she was able to beat up guys or that she was too tough. Obviously a lot of us have felt that way, and yet before this show came on, who would have thought that this was a concept that could 'fly'. I think this has a lot to do with the talents of Lucy Lawless, though, to carry this out with so much credibility.

The fortunate pairing of two talented actresses have made this amazing evolution of their relationship in the story such a credible and acceptable phenomenon.




SUBTEXT OVERLOAD

From: BishtonCO
Date: Thu, 4 Nov 1999
Subject: Letters to the Editor

I couldn't agree more with Cherbear about the subtext overload regarding the Xena/Gabrielle relationship in the series ["Subtext: Our Favorite Topic", letter by Cherbear, WHOOSH #38 (11/99)]. I have enjoyed the depth and variety of love expression, including subtext teasers, that have been written in the script between these 2; I would hate to see the writers aim their skills mainly towards developing sexual encounter(s) between them, as if this would finally "prove" their love. There is indeed much more to love and life, and the depth of commitment and faithfulness between friends that is illustrated on the series puts nearly all other TV to shame. And that love is often demonstrated in life-and-death situations. I can't remember how many times that I have finished watching and thought, "This is an amazing relationship they (the writers) are portraying -- friends and lovers (of all types) should say and do these kind of things for each other!" Akin to David & Jonathan in the Bible, who pledged their faithfulness to each other even unto death.

And I for one am glad to see a Joxer/Gabrielle counterpoint, even if it (most likely) goes nowhere, because I'm interested to see how the writer's develop and balance it against the other. Joxer is sincere and devoted, even if comical. And also the subject of Xena's pregnancy (by whom???) - I loved Xena's comment that "Gabrielle's going to flip." But they appear to be moving on, even though it should be a source of separation between them.

Hey, you know these are FICTIONAL characters! I can't get over how so many letters and comments imply that these are REAL people, or that their characters have to be developed in only certain ways to be "right." Be entertained and loosen up, friends. This is some of the best TV in years because it is well-rounded, doesn't take itself too seriously, and is unbelievably creative.

Whoosh! Keep up the good work.




From: LJ
Subject: Hooray for a non-subtexter!
Date: Wed, 10 Nov 1999

Hooray! At last someone has succinctly expressed my own views of the subtext issue on Xena:Warrior Princess. I'm referring to the e-mail from "cherbear" on the 21 Oct. ["Subtext: Our Favorite Topic", letter by Cherbear, WHOOSH #38 (11/99)] I loved the e-mail and agree with it wholeheartedly.

I get really tired of having to defend my enjoyment of this show from those who only know about it from the 'lesbian support' angle. The show is about so much more than that and it cheeses me off, too, to have it reduced to the 'are they, aren't they' angle all the time. It's about Xena and Gabrielle having adventures together, fighting for the greater good, finding out about their own limits and each other's limits, about how much they can rely on each other and how much they can trust and care for each other and then being unafraid to express how they feel to each other, whether it's through words, a hug, or whatever. Its so refreshing to see this in a TV show which also can boast continuity of character development, great costumes, music, action, comedy/drama and well written story lines consistently over a five year period.

Like "cherbear", I don't care if they are lovers. That's their business. I love them if they are and I love if they aren't just as much. This is not intended to piss any subtexters off - they have their views and they are welcome to them. I'm glad they can see what they want to see and get as much enjoyment out of the show as I do. But its not the only view and I think that's important. They are in danger of stereotyping the show in exactly the way that they do NOT want to be stereotyped themselves.

I have to agree with "cherbear" that I think it IS the result of such a repressed culture where every move at work or elsewhere could be misconstrued as sexual harassment or prejudice of some kind that has come to view simple messages of love or tenderness as only a prelude to sex of some kind. It really annoys me! I'm from the north of England originally and I know that all of my friends I grew up with have always been very open about hugs and kisses between us. It's simply a sign of the affection between us and is enjoyed by both the giver and the receiver alike as an affirmation of that. It's only when I came to live in Canada that I noticed the change and that that kind of greeting, even between close friends, was treated with a frosty response. Nobody touches any more!

And thanks for printing her letter - all views count - and it was good to see one that matches my own for a change. And long may X:WP continue, - into a sixth season, I hope!

PS I still LOVE your website.... Keep up the good work!




Date: Tue, 26 Oct 1999
From: MacKenzie Horton
Subject: Sick and Tired (letter to the editor)

First of all, I'll introduce myself because if you don't read Highlander fic odds are you've never heard of me. :)

My name is MacKenzie (Mac Xavier) and I am a member of the Gabrielle and Joxer Romantic's Society. Now, before so many of you start throwing tomatos or priming your flame throwers, let me get into a little more detail, hmmmm?

Besides being a member of the GJRS, I'm also a twenty two year old homosexual female. That's right, there's a lesbian who likes the idea of Joxer getting with Our Favorite Bard. Shocking ain't it?

To be absolutely honest, I just don't see Gabby and Xena as a couple.... Well, as a couple without Joxer, anyway.

The really terrible part about this? My so-called "refusal" to see subtext on Xena (which I liked in the first place because it was a woman whooping up on the bad guys) led to a permanent break-up with my first serious girlfriend two years ago.

Then I get on the net, and low, I enter in the mist of the Joxer Wars.

Ouch.

Not only had such pettiness cost me someone I thought cared about me, it had also poisoned what had once been a safe haven.

I mean, come on people! I know some of you out there have to know how hard it is to be openly gay in a small town! Well, the net is the ultimate in small towns and it's just as hard to be openly pro-Joxer here!

I THOUGHT this was supposed to be a place where we could exchange ideas, feelings, and friendships. Not a place where we have to defend those same things. I even went to atx, because I had heard that there were a large number of lesbian Xena fans there. I went once, and the day I was there some poor person said that they liked Joxer and was flamed out of existance. It's kind of obvious that I'm not homophobic (gee, ya think?), I'm also not a sexist juvinial male. Nor am I a klutz, a geek or a dork. No, I don't personally identify with Joxer. But, I DO identify with being able to tell someone very special that I loved them after I thought I'd lost them forever.

Don't knock the guy unless you've walked a thousand miles in his boots.

I'm sick and tired of being attacked for what I am on one front, and what I see in a show on the other. Lighten the heck up, boys and girls.

MacKenzie Horton




From: Suzett Perry
Subject: Letter to the Editor
Date: Tue, 2 Nov 1999

Somehow "miffed" ["Subtext: Our Favorite Topic", letter by Cherbear, WHOOSH #38 (11/99)] is under the impression that the "subtexters" are residing in a narrow world which is defined solely by the physical element. Quite the contrary. As "miffed" so eloquently says, "sex is merely a drop of water in the ocean of love". Subtext is not defined by that drop of liquid, rather, it is the whole ocean. I do wish you would not lump us all together by saying that "the subtexters narrow views are starting to piss me off" or that "However, I do feel that to reduce their relationship only to this sexual element, really IGNORES a huge statement that can be made for just PURE LOVE. When I read all this stuff about subtext, I wonder how many people out there are just living in their crotches?" I don't know anyone who simultaneously ignores the pure love and supports subtext. That is impossible to do.

You have just done what you accuse us of doing? i.e. underestimating one's definition/position.........and you went public about it.

Perhaps when you do this, you are referring to the article about "Where Have All the Kisses Gone." The problem with the show is that they like to sit up on the fence. Up until this 5th season, it didn't annoy me too much. When it is appropriate for them to kiss (whatever that kiss may mean), they have avoided it. These inconsistencies are annoying and destructive to the flow of the story, which THEY HAVE BEEN ESTABLISHING!! These expectations are not unreasonable or far-fetched, after all, it is the creators of the show who have previously established, in almost every episode, that they are soulmates. Season 4 verified that notion with direct statements. Little room for interpretation there. NOTE: None of these statements apply to the current season's shows. The current season is awful. It is typical Hollywood cliche. There is nothing more boring than the crap that comes out of Hollywood. (It has very little to do with New Zealand; that is a Hollywood machine living and breathing down there.) I may not be around for much more Xena. Again, you don't get too far by trying to please everyone (no one!!) with a stupid and bland show.

In any case, expecting some show of physical affection has little to do with one's crotch. Quite frankly, I am surprised that you should jump to such a conclusion given all of your statements about love's real definition. It is not something that anyone I associate with would disagree with, and I am surprised that you don't get it. Do not trivialize and reduce subtext to copulation. Unfortunately, it seems to be the only thing that intrigues many heterosexuals. When they think of love between two people of the same sex, it is a "physical relationship"; whereas heterosexuals are allowed to be in "love". Why don't you just look at all of the warning labels they put on TV shows where two individuals of the same sex are going to show affection. EVERY Ellen episode had a warning label on it!! And for what?!?! Yet, they have no problem airing fairly explicit sex scenes when heterosexuals are involved. I never met any lesbian who thinks that subtext is defined solely by a physical relationship. That's just stupid and ignorant!! It is you people who cannot move beyond the limiting physical aspect.

Subtext refers to the spiritual connection, the devotion, the sacrifice, the commitment, and YES, my friend, it also includes the physical aspect. As you say, "... PU-LEASE allow (subtext to be) ...something deeper and wider and more." It was NEVER boiled down to whether or not they were having sex together. Never.

Most Sincerely,
Suzett L. Perry




SHAMANS

Date: Thu, 18 Nov 1999
From: Gur Arie Livni
Subject: HOW REAL ARE THE SHAMANS OF THE XENAVERSE?

I have just read the article "HOW REAL ARE THE SHAMANS OF THE XENAVERSE?" by Linda Knighton (better late than never) [WHOOSH #38 (11/99)]. I must say that it was not only excellent in terms of research but also cleared an issue I (and maybe even most xenites), have been wondering about. Up until now I actually thought SIN TRADE was another inconsistency. Those shaman costumes looked just like native american costumes and it looked like they were placed in Siberia just so that the Xena won't be the first to discover America (that would be a riot). Great article, great research. The only thing that did bother me (this one's for the graphical editor, Kym), was the size of the attached pictures. Those images were small and didn't have the option to enlarge them. A really good example for this would be the crown of the Silla Kingdom. I don't think anyone was able to figure out its details. Of course, once again, other than that- excellento.

Shenok




GABRIELLE'S CHARACTER GROWTH

Date: Sat, 13 Nov 1999
From: Angie Cabrera
Subject: letter to the editor

I have recently been catching up reading the Onelist digests for Whoosh [To join the WHOOSH sponsored mailing list at onelist, go to http://www.onelist.com/community/whoosh]. I have been amazed to say the least at the 'controversy' about Renee's character. Since the beginning of the series, Gabrielle has shown more growth than any other character including Xena. Xena is already 'grown' but has shown definite changes since the beginning. The actresses have been incredible in their respective portrayals. While I am more of an LL fan than a ROC fan, she (ROC) has really blown me away with her more recent acting in XWP. I would like to see her still do the bard thing, like writing their exploits down in a campfire scene. I like the warrior spirit that has returned to her. Her 'way of love' stint, while admirable, didn't feel right for the program. Exploring other cultures and oneself and how everything relates is something most people go through in their early years; ROC, as Gabrielle, is no exception. We, the fans, get to see this with her. Xena gets to experience something denied her in her early life and has Gabrielle there to validate this. Am I the only one to notice other changes in the characters (IMO, for the better) since their 'deaths'? Wouldn't that experience CAUSE some changes?

Every episode is taped and watched several times to catch as much dialog and 'tips to the fans' as possible. While there are some slips, the effort that both LL and ROC put into their characters is nothing less than brilliant. How come these two are not in some BIG movies? They are REALLY GOOD actresses! I can only assume that Hollywood just hasn't caught on yet......




FOSTER AND JOXER

From: Andjam
Date: Thu, 28 Oct 1999
Subject: Yes Ted, there is a Joxer (Letter to the editor)

How long will it be until there is a Joxer-themed issue of Whoosh? And not a furkin' "April's Fool's" one...

I know that it may somewhat be a choice between hatred (not by Valerie Foster but by people in general) and invisibility (a choice lesbians also face), but why wasn't Joxer listed by Valerie Foster last edition as one of the "several third parties present to potentially threaten the Xena/Gabrielle romance" [a href="../issue37/foster1.html">"Yes, Lucy, There is Still a SUbtext on XENA", by Valerie Foster, WHOOSH #38 (10/99)]?

Valerie Foster seems critical of Joxer taking "two millennia" to see Xena and Gabrielle as having a "love affair". Some people are born "clueless", and it isn't a lifestyle choice or a crime against humanity.

I hope I'm not being overly critical. I just wish that the Xenaverse, including Whoosh! and especially Tom's Xena page, were a little more tolerant of Joxer.

Andjam




UBER UBER ALLES

Date: Sat, 13 Nov 1999
From: Cody Shepherd
Subject: a moment in the history of über

first time i've ever poked my nose into the über section of Whoosh...nice to see someone who shared my interpretation of "Deja Vu All Over Again" (co-option for the het kiss)!

one point in uber history that i think is worth mentioning: über has enabled Xenafic bards to publish their work! Tropical Storm, Accidental Love, Lucifer Rising...and there are more on the way. Surely, an important step in the advancement of fanfic, bringing the archetypes (and they are wonderful archetypes) to the world (or at least amazon.com).

keep up the advanced composition,

cody


KYM TABORN RESPONDS

Thanks for checking out the Über site on WHOOSH. It's my new baby so I am eager to show it off.

In my hierarchy of Über, I call published ÜBER, "Post-Über".

As stated in the page on "What is Über" it is written:

"POST-ÜBER: These are stories which were originally Über, but have been sanitized in order to exploit the archetypes in the work, thus allowing the stories to be reborn as non-derivative works. Examples of this are Missy Good's "Tropical Storm" and B.L. Miller's "Accidental Love"."

However, you are correct, it is a major event in Fan Fiction-ology that Über has allowed fan fiction writers to publish their initially derived works as independent works without having to get involved in the whole licensing brouhaha, which is definitely a first. At least in the volume department.




From: Betsy
Date: Sun, 21 Nov 1999
Subject: Ausgezeichnet!

Dear Webmeisterin:

Ich liebe es, ich liebe es, ich liebe es!!! I've had such fun finding new stuff on this site. Danke schoen!

Betsy
Texas




From: C. O'Grady
Subject: Uber Page
Date: Sun, 21 Nov 1999

Hey Kym

love the Über page! I am a big fan of über stories - I even wrote one you have on the index! And a detailed index of all the stories is great. Keep up the good work

Cathy O'Grady
(Catkin- Sound of Chakrams)




LAO MA: A BAD INFLUENCE?

From: Ariadne de la Montagne
Subject: 'Purity'
Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999

Dear Ms. Taborn:.

Never having been a fan of either the Chin episodes or Lao Ma (probably I'm in the minority here), I was not looking forward to the 'Purity' episode. But what really made me almost laugh was the line Xena delivers to Lao Ma's daughter that Lao Ma taught her 'compassion' said with a trembly lip and misty-eyed look.

Am I missing something or didn't Xena go on to become the biggest jerk in all of Greece, plundering villages, orphaning families, ordering crucifixions, putting heads on sticks (charming!), almost killing a child (Yakut) until Borias stopped her, and looking like she was having a good old time doing it? Never mind the scene where Borias is shocked to find out that she and Alti killed someone just so they could cross over, and Xena dismisses this with 'we've killed so many, what's one more?' Oh sure, that's real compassion all right. All this happened AFTER she'd been mentored by the Great Lao Ma.

I can accept the fact that Xena is a reformed Himmler, er, I mean warlord, and I can accept that she's truly sorry for being such a bad girl and is trying like heck to atone for it. I can even like her ( I do obviously or I wouldn't watch the show). But this is stretching it a bit, even taking into consideration that consistency has never been the writers' strong suit. Okay, the show's pure fantasy but even with fantasy some things are a bit too much to swallow. Is it too much to ask not to insult our intelligence?

Ariadne de la Montagne




EPISODE GUIDES

From: Shelkatt
Date: Sat, 30 Oct 1999
Subject: Re: Whoosh!

I just wanted to let you know that the Xena episode guides are totally awesome. I love both the plot synopses as well as the commentaries; having several people's opinions gives me lots to chew on, especially since I don't get to watch Xena as often as I'd like. I especially like the commentaries of Missy Good and Beth Gaynor.

Keep up the great work...I don't spend much time on-line, but your spot is one of my regular stops!

shelkatt




WHOOSH MENTION AT CON!

Date: Sat, 27 Nov 1999
From: Susan Sasso
Subject: Alti

Just thought that you would like to know that Claire Stanfield mentioned your website at the Chicago Herc/Xena convention today [11/27/99]-she said that she's been surfing the web and she found many great sites and yours was one of them, she also said she would have her own sit up soon, http://www.clairestanfield.com. I thought you'd like to know that you are appreciated

Keep up the good work.

Susan Sasso




AND LET'S NOT FORGET JOXER

From: Andjam
Date: Mon, 15 Nov 1999
Subject: Beyond a joke (Letter to the editor)

Can we Joxerites not be the butt of the next "April's Fools" joke?

Sure, the aim of it should be to poke fun. But it should be in good humour. Targeting exclusively a group that may be dedicated but not powerful and suffers too much hatred on-line doesn't fit the bill.

We may be the Xenaverse's chosen people, but can someone else be chosen on 1 April 2000?

Andjam




Date: Wed, 27 Oct 1999
From: Miryam Hohenwald
Subject: Letter to the Editor

I find Whoosh! to be a timely, intelligent magazine that I enjoy every month. However, I must ask myself one question. While I am not a Joxer addict, I have friends who admire him, and I must admit, he is growing on me. So why must Whoosh! omit more than the lion's share of Joxer coverage? When "The Phantom Menace" was released, George Lucas knew what was coming when Jar Jar Binks appeared, yet did he omit Jar Jar from the majority of TPM coverage? Nope. I only think the same should be done for Joxer. Aside from that, keep up the wonderful work.

Sincerely,
Miryam Hohenwald


KYM TABORN RESPONDS

I am consistently amazed by the urban legend that WHOOSH refuses to do any pro-Joxer or Joxer-related material. I guess some people desperately want to believe that WHOOSH is purposely not printing those multitude of Joxer articles being submitted. I have never turned down a Joxer article. If people do not write them, we cannot publish them. Articles do not write themselves, and I cannot say, "Hey, I want to do more Joxer coverage" and then have it miraculously appear before me. It don't work that way.

Here's a list of our Joxer articles published so far:

So You Want to Be a Tedite?
By Jessi Albano
WHOOSH #06 (03/97)

Is Xena a Warrior Born or a Warrior Made? A Dialogue
Moderated by Richard LaFleur
WHOOSH #09 (06/97)

R.J. Stewart: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly
By Deb E. McGhee
WHOOSH #09 (06/97)

Xena: Warrior Princess Quest Update
By Richard LaFleur
WHOOSH #13 (10/97)

The Softening of Feelings Toward Joxer
By Melissa K. Stuart
WHOOSH #16 (01/98)

Gabrielle and the Joxer Syndrome
By Shelley Sullivan
WHOOSH #21 (06/98)

Are You a Joxerholic? Take This Simple Test to Find Out!
By Filippa Morgan
WHOOSH #23 (08/98)

Why Joxer is Seen as a Threat and Other Problems
By Jennifer Waldeau
WHOOSH #26 (11/98)

The Joxer Scrolls: Interpretation, Introduction, and Discussion
By Jessi Albano
WHOOSH #27 (12/98)

Archetypes in Xena: Warrior Princess
By Carolyn Bremer
WHOOSH #30 (03/99)

Debunking the Myth of the Joxerphile
By Rebecca Littlehales
WHOOSH #35 (08/99)






KUDOS

From: L. S. Stosalovich
Subject: Congratulations
Date: Monday, September 27, 1999

Wishing you, and all those who are a part of the Whoosh team congratulations and all the best for providing three great years. I look forward to reading Whoosh every month. Thanks for all the fun.

Linda




From: Nicola Guest
Subject: Great Site!
Date: Fri, 05 Nov 1999

I just wanted to tell you all how great the "Whoosh" site is.

I'm a Uni student over in England and I've been watch XWP for over a year now (the UK show it on 2 tv stations 3 times a week, and every day on holidays, so I've managed to see all episodes but the first series) So your site is a great source for reading about what I've missed!

Nicola




Date: Sat, 13 Nov 1999
From: Monica
Subject: 2u

just like 2 say i enjoy very very much the "whoosh" site!! keep on!

Monica
Israel




From: Jerazk
Date: Sat, 27 Nov 1999
Subject: site The Whoosh site(s) are still the best sites around! Thanks for being!




CREATION, EBAY, AND COLLECTIBLES

Date: Sun, 31 Oct 1999
From: Debbie Cassetta
Subject: Creation, Ebay, and Collectibles

Over the past year or so, we have seen a proliferation of Xena items for sale on the ebay website. Some of these items are put up by fans trying to make some money from memorabilia they have purchased over the past few years. Others are being put up by scam artists who are selling forged autographs to unsuspecting buyers (case in point, the autographed Maxim prints of Lucy Lawless). Some are being offered by autograph vendors who found a profitable outlet. Other items are being put up for auction by Creation Entertainment, who not only holds the license to sell Xena merchandise, but also own the rights to run the Official Xena Fan Club. And, Sharon Delaney, who is president of that official fan club, is also acting as Lucy’s liaison to the fans.

There are issues that arise from using ebay as a sales tool and involve the sale of a large number of unique items that have been sold by Creation on ebay. As far back as I can remember, these items were used to raise money for charity. They’re not licensed items. They’re things like scripts and media kits that get donated or given to Creation, and they get the cast members to sign them when they appear at the cons. That happened this last January when Lucy was in the US for the Santa Monica convention. She signed and dated a bunch of items and those items have been, for the most part, auctioned off for profit on ebay. I saw one convention (Orlando) where a couple of these Lucy autographed items were auctioned, but truthfully couldn’t tell you if the money went to charity or Creation. But other than that one con, to my knowledge the rest of the items have been sold on ebay.

Creation has been asked about the practice by a number of fans, but they have steadfastly chosen to ignore the questions. But as the official licensee, as the official fan club, and as the liaison to Lucy Lawless, there are conflicts that should be addressed, not ignored. They are the only people with access to Lucy. There is no fan club to intervene. There is no other source of autographs. The result is that they control the release of those autographs, and they manipulate the price of them as well. And if you question them on any issue regarding the sale of merchandise, or the inability to get reasonably priced autographs, or the amount of the charitable donations being made by the fans at Creation events, or if Lucy’s okay with them selling these items for profit, the questions go unanswered. And the merchandise continues to be posted up on ebay.

In February of this year at the Creation convention in New York City, I questioned the types of items that they were putting up for auction by Creation on ebay. Thet were auctioning off some unique Xena collectibles such as production scripts and media kits. All were signed by Lucy Lawless. These items brought in thousands upon thousands of dollars. Not necessarily bad news.

What struck me, however, was the fact that these collectibles were the type of items that were traditionally auctioned off at the Creation conventions with the proceeds going to charity. But suddenly, once Creation migrated those items to ebay, the sale of the items became a for-profit enterprise for Creation. That bothered me and I questioned practice and whether Lucy was aware that these specific items were being sold in this way. We've been told repeatedly by Sharon Delaney for Creation Entertainment that Lucy didn't want her autograph going only to people with money (those being gold seat holders at the conventions), and for that reason she wouldn't sign autographs at the cons. This practice of selling to the highest bidder on ebay flies in the face of that. A gold seat at the Santa Monica convention cost $65 last year. A Lucy Lawless autograph on ebay will cost you at least $200, and more likely end up at a price closer to $400. Seems to me that there is something radically wrong with what we are being told as compared to what we are being shown on ebay.

I was told at the NYC convention that “some” of the money from the ebay auctions was going to charity. From what I learned that day and over the past months from the people who held the high bids on these items is that that statement was untrue. The payment for the merchandise goes directly to Creation. No charity involved. No tax deduction to the bidder. And whether or not Lucy is aware of the practice and approve of it or whether she is under the impression that this is merchandise that will be put up in the charity auctions, well that question was never answered.

The practice continues and over the past few weeks additional items have been put up for auction on ebay. They continue to be for-profit for Creation Entertainment. This past month, several Xena items were put up for auction on ebay. A Season Five media kit autographed by Lucy Lawless sold for $1,200.00. Another media kit was put up and it went unsold because at $510 the reserve hadn't been met. Likewise, a production script (Intimate Strangers) was also up for sale on ebay. A $385 bid, and that auction ended without the reserve having been met. Leaves you wondering about how much money they want to make from these items? Any charity in the nation would have been happy with either of those bids as a donation.

The entire question of ebay and its use to sell licensed merchandise is one that could make your head spin. We can, and in some circles have, debated this issue ad nauseam. I believe that Creation has the right to sell licensed merchandise on ebay. I don’t, however, think it is ethical to use that medium as a means to have fans (even if it is just one fan per item) pay more than the item is worth. That should not be happening, but unfortunately it is not an uncommon event. By labeling something “RARE” they are creating a market for something that may or may not in fact be rare or hard to find. Simply put, some fans are new to the Xenaverse, and others simply place their confidence in the vendor, and they will bid over and above the cost of the item. So, as they say, let the buyer beware. Creation doesn't hesitate to set astounding reserve prices, but there is no set cap at the high end. Defeats the purpose of the auction. So let the buyer beware, as they say.

I am not attempting to make a judgment on whether or not Creation has the right to sell its licensed products on ebay. What I am questioning is the practice of putting unique, one-of-a-kind autographed items on ebay for profit, not because Creation isn’t entitled to a profit, but because what they are selling are the items that in the past were used to generate donations for charities. It is sad because ebay is so profitable for the seller (in this case Creation Entertainment) that it has the effect of taking money out of the hands of the charities. I don’t think there is much argument among fans that that is fundamentally wrong. So is letting fans believe that items being auctioned at Creation conventions are gerenerating funds for charitable organizations. That may have been the case as one time, but most items auctioned off at the conventions these days are sold for profit by Creation, and the items benefiting any charitable organization are few and far between. Somehow that bit of information tends to get lost during the live auctions.

Debbie Cassetta / Mistopholees
Sword and Staff




ANOUNCING THE ARGO CONTEST

From: JacQuest
Subject: Argo Post
Date: Thu, 18 Nov 1999

Hi All,

To celebrate Argo and we are having an Argo Poetry/Story/Artwork contest with special prizes and great judges. With the thousands of poems, stories, and all the artwork in the Xenaverse relatively few feature Argo in a central role. We would like change that.

Let your creative juices flow! Argo needs you!

For further information and details on the contest visit: http://www.poky.net/xena/argo/contest.html.

Contest sponsored by:

Jacquee and Liz, Ultimate Xena Cookbook,
MaryD, Australian Xena Information Page
Lynka, Lynka's Xena Page
Felioness, Tales from the Children of Xena and Gabrielle




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