Whoosh! Issue 62 - November 2001
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" to expedite the process. All letters received by 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 and may be published at the editor's discretion. Letters received after the 15th of the month may be reserved for a later issue.




Archaeology in Support of That Xenite Postmodern Mythology
Inside the Head of Alexandra Tydings
October Disclaimer Lawless Apology
Remember Nothing
Warrior...Priestess...Tramp
Xena Lives!
Forget Group Therapy: Boycott!
Kudos



Letters To The Editor



Archaeology in Support of That Xenite Postmodern Mythology

From: Carlos Eduardo
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2001 11:18 AM
Subject: LETTER TO THE EDITOR: ARCHAEOLOGY IN SUPPORT OF THAT XENITE MYTHOLOGY.

I've read with interest Edward P Rich's comment on my issue 49 contribution to Whoosh. Gratifying as it is to have one's work read and commented upon, I cannot, however, refrain to point that Rich falls prey to a mistake we could designate as the "boar-tusk helmet mistake".

Now, in the _Illiad_ it's said that Ulysses wore a helmet made of boar tuks woven together, and a like helmet was found in a Mycenaean archeological site; follows, therefore - in the opinion of most Nineteenth Century archeologists - that there was an Ulysses and that there was an historical Trojan War that happened as Homer told it.

Now Xena is a warrior woman of revered status; Soviet and Russian aracheologists find the remains of a woman of revered status in a Scythian archeological site; Herodotus wrote about Scythian Amazons; follows, therefore, that there existed a historical Xena living as an Amazon queen in the Scythian steppes.

Now that is, I think, a piece of Anglo-saxon empiricism that wants everyting that has subjective meaning to be grounded on empirical, "hard" facts. As M.I. Finley, back in the Fifities, said, commenting upon the Mycenaean boar-tusk helmet, no piece of material evidence can offer in itself evidence for the immaterial "rules of functioning" that make most of the life of a given society. The fact that Mycenean warriors wore boar-tusk helmets is, in itself, interesting enough, but cannot function as a substitute for the non-existent written account of Mycenaean history;others than Ulysses could sport such helmets and not necessarily to participate in a "Trojan War" that Finley, in the 1967 issue of the _Journal of Hellenic Studies_ ,has shown conclusively to be a myth.

Likewise, as long as we remain ignorant of the "rules of functioning" of Scythian society - Herodotus' account about it being most a fiction were Scythian society is deformed so as to be presented as the exact opposite of contemporary _Greek_ society, as shown in the work of the French historian FranÁois Hartog, _Le Miroir d'Herodote_ [Herodotus' mirror] - one cannot say much about archeological remains. I understand that the remains of the noble lady buried under that kurgan were already trapped in the maze of nationalities politics in the USSR and the Russian Federation, so we could perhaps restrain ourselves to enmesh the deceased further in postmodern cultural idntity politics.

The actual origins of our Xena can be traced easily in a work I've been reading about Hong-Kong cinema, _City on Fire_, by Lisa Odham Stokes & Michael Hoover, London, Verso, 1999, where one can read at pages 108-112 an account of the film that inspired XWP mythology, Ronny Yu's _Bride with white hair_,set in Ming China, where the warrior woman Lian is "an assasin for the Supreme Cult, [...] a sect led by hermaphrodict Siamese twins" [pg.108-seems familiar? Remember "Back in the Bottle"?] who falls in love with a male member of the opposing sect and must "crawl across hot coals and be beaten with sticks" [pg. 110], etc,etc. As far as I known, Robert Tapert and others from TPTB have never concealed this source of inspiration.

XWP, is, above all, a carnivalization, that is to say a satire of our present cultural settings and mores by use of a Classical mythology turned upside down. In that reside its greatest merits, and not in some bogus historicity from time past. But then, being Brazilian and writing from Rio, perhaps I tend to regard such carnivalization with a kinder eye. By the way, had I to give Xena an historico-empirical foundation, I would have seem in her a female primitive bandit from the early-Twentieth Century Brazilian Northeastern scrubs, a _cangaceira_ such as Maria Bonita ("pretty Maria") companion to the bandit Lampi„o...

Regards
Carlos Eduardo Rebello

Edward P. Rich responds:
I donít think I can respond directly to Professor Rebello since I agree with much he wrote, either in his original issue 49 contribution or about my own humble offering, Archeology in search of that postmodern, etc., etc,. Of course the discovery of the remains and possessions of a real Scythian shamaness doesnít in itself mean that the remains of Xena and Gabrielle will also be discovered. Being in agreement basically there isnít much to debate. But I did say they could be. As for the Ice Maiden, she was a pretty tough lady ready to be immersed into anything anyone cares to say about her. The only mistake I have fallen prey to, and it is one that is far beyond correcting, is that of being a hopeless romantic. Convincing me that there never was a Ulysses, no King Priam, no beautiful daughter Polyxena, no Helen, no Trojan War, no horse, no Troy, no Odyssey, no discoveries of archeologist Schliemann, that Homer and Herodotus were authors of fiction, - then all that would be like trying to convince Virginia that there wasnít any Santa Claus after all. The Abbe Barthelomy in his Anacharsis did what Francois Hartog did but much earlier, that is attempt to make Hellenistic Greece [and France] the ideal of civilized society and the place a young Scythian would go to become civilized. In cultures without written languages we will always remain ignorant of their "rules of functioning" and must depend on archeology to provide us with what little we do know about them.






Inside the Head of Alexandra Tydings

From: Virgina Kelly
Sent: Tuesday, October 09, 2001 10:58 AM
Subject: Letter to the Editor

I just read your FABulous interview with Alex Tydings and just wanted to say thanks so much for publishing it. The interview was delightful to read and quite inspirational. Thanks again and congratulations on five years!

Sincerely,
ROCHarlot





October Disclaimer

The October 2001 disclaimer was "Exhaustion after 60 issues, the cancellation of Xena: Warrior Princess, nor terrorist attacks will keep us from publishing this journal. To Whoosh, happy anniversary; to Xena fandom, long may it live in fellowship and community; and to the United States of America, which allows us the security and well-being where we have the luxury of going on and on about some knuckled-headed TV show that makes us laugh, makes us cry, makes us angry, makes us think, makes us interact, makes us silly, and allows us to find friends from all over the world, long may it live too."






From: Edward P. Rich
Sent: Monday, October 22, 2001 7:24 AM
Subject: Defending the Ice Maiden

[I would like to] congratulate you on your comment about Xena-culture at the end of the masthead of the current Whoosh issue when compared to the World Trade Center. It tends to put a knuckle-headed TV series with a yucky sucky ending into proper prospective. This is another reason I donít care to debate with Prof. Rebello. We no longer live in that postmodern era he and I did when we wrote our articles. We live now in the post-WTC era when the unimaginable is beginning to happen for real and our lives will never be that way again.






From: Lilli Sprintz
Sent: Tuesday, October 30, 2001 9:14 PM
Subject: Letter to the Editor

I just, after several months (it feels like months!) of being glad I was raised in Philadelphia and not my sisterly city New York, want to thank you for the HUMOR you have continued to expose us to, that it may actually get us to laugh first before going out and doing damaging to other citizens.

Just read your "Disclaimer" You all are wonderful.

Lilli





Lawless Apology

From: Silencebard
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2001 4:58 PM
Subject: "Lucy's Apology???" October 12, 2001

Did you see the article that on Mary D's site, where Lucy apologies to fans about the ending? Well.... (http://199.97.97.16/contWriter/endnews2/2001/10/11/enter/3487-0050-pat_nytimes.html)

Part of me felt like a weight had been lifted off of my shoulders because I was feeling like Ms. Lawless didn't give a crap about the fans. That had me shocked for a longest time after the FIN event. So, yes this small apology did make me not hurt so much. I can't hate the woman, because she did give us her all for six years.

Another part of me feels Ms. Lawless might be waking up to what the show meant to many, but it still falls short in a way. It did hurt me that they took and just destroyed the concept of soulmate. But what got me worse was

That my hero didn't go down in a blaze of glory. She went down like a wimp. Not for the quote greater good unquote. She decided suicide was preferable to life. She couldn't handle a mistake, an accident , (it was an accident) or deal with the fact she was tricked by a crafty character like Akemi.

I never would have minded if TPTB had simply killed the character. I wanted one big battle for the true sense of the greater good, with people calling her name out as the hero she was always meant to be. That would've been her redemption. Fighting by the side of her soulmate until her last breath. If not that, I would've of loved Missy Good's singing ending, rather than what we got.

This was may be just me and yes, this is my opinion, but it was the worst ending (feeling wise) I've ever experienced. This left just a bad taste period and left me with a longing for some type of closure. Now I just wonder why? One of Lucy's quotes in the article was:

``We really just tried to get a story on film every week,'' Lawless says. ``That's an immense task. But we broke their hearts (with the finale), I think.''

She thinks?? I can tell you that the majority of the folks out there do have broken hearts. Another quote was:

"That said, Lawless adds, some viewers mistakenly believed that the show's makers - chief among them her husband, producer/writer Robert Tapert, who co-wrote and directed ``A Friend in Need'' - plotted each episode with an eye toward the effect it would have on viewers."
Coming from the article that a friend of mine pointed out, when Rob answered back at the critics... http://www.eonline.com/News/Items/0,1,8465,00.html (From June)
"Rob Tapert, co-creator and executive producer of the series (and husband of Lawless), says the reaction is "exactly what we thought it would be."
Seems in his own words, Rob claimed to know what he was doing. Meanwhile I have to constantly relive this on all the lists, and now FIN is being shown again at the worst time in the world. I'm not left saying good-bye to my hero the Great Warrior Princess. Xena was a show about strength, acceptance, and love for many. We all as fans took something good from it. I'm left saying with the FIN ending , why??

Was sticking with the so-called creative genius the reason they hurt so many loyal people? There was no happy medium? Would it have been so bad to have had an ending that gave you some peace of mind? Not visions of butchery and a lone soulmate, now Xena, Jr.? My hero is gone in a pointless manner and there is no way to fix it. Greater Good meant nothing. So did the word soulmate.

For some who say that the character of Xena wasn't a hero, well, to me you are wrong. She was. Just as many people were led astray into drugs of violence and turned their lives around, so did this character. She was blessed with this gift of strength of spirit and was led down the wrong path in life. She found her way and was following her destiny just to be cut down as someone's trophy. A frickin trophy for an accident! She was honoring a friend's last wish, a friend who betrayed her. The character is a better person then I. If I was betrayed like Xena was, I would've just left her ass in the snow.

Trying hard not to sound like a cynical cretin by thinking this was her trying to save face. Or that she contradicts herself from interview to interview. I will accept this appology. So Lucy, thank you for at least trying to mend my wounds as well as other's. Thanks for trying to understand the fan's point of view. I'm glad that you tried and now I can think of you as an actress and smile once more. Maybe in a way my wound is now a scar. Maybe.

Battle on!
Silence





Remember Nothing

From: Randi Mogul
Sent: Friday, October 12, 2001 11:47 AM
Subject: Calendar Issue Submission

I do have a favorite episode that I would like to share with you. My all time favorite ep is from Season 2 and is called Remember Nothing. This was the episode where Xena saved the Temple of the Three Fates and was given whatever wish she wanted in return for their gratitude. She said she wished she had never followed the sword in the first place so the Fates return her to Amphipolis as a peasant girl, who can still fight like Xena, but refuses to shed blood or she will go back to a life of fighting again. Well, of course along the way, she meeting Gabrielle who is a slave, her old boyfriend, and her brother Lyceus who is a brave young man who always wants to do the right thing. What I love about this episode is we see that Xena's life makes a huge difference on all those people around her, even though she doesn't even realize it. The Amazons are being tamed by Krykus the warlord because Xena wasn't there to stop there fued. Muzentius is also a huge evil warlord who teams with Krykus because again, Xena wasn't there to kill him and stop him as well. Gabrielle would never have become a slave because Xena was there to save her from the beginning. All these lives that she touched that she didn't even know about. And I love the fact then when she sees Gabrielle lose her blood innocence by killing Muzentius, she immediately gives up her new life of peace to kill and go back to way of the sword as she has always known. The whole idea of It's A Wonderful Life, works for me no matter how many times it has been done. Never was it finer than is this stellar episode which I have always loved and watch over and over again.

Thanks!!
Randi Mogul





Warrior...Priestess...Tramp

From: Xena407
Sent: Friday, October 26, 2001 11:08 AM
Subject: Calendar Issue Submission

ok my fav. episode and why would have to be - warrior,priestess,tramp

why - well there are really a lot of great ,fantastic episodes in the 6 year running of Xena we all know that, and of course it really would be extreamly hard to really pick one out of the many right - well not really for me , yes there are fabulous episodes in a multitude but this one sticks out for a reason. Lucy's abillity to show that she is multi-talented. think of it, triple lucy wrapped up all together in one episode? can you ask for anything else.

Sure she play's herself Xena the warrior princess but she plays licia the hestian virgin priestess and our loveable tramp, bar maid meg -sort of the comic relief of the 3.and those who have seen this episode should agree about lucy's loonecy of having fun on the set , renee knows of this and so does ted. so my pick of the multitude of fantastic episodes warrior,priestess,tramp still holds as my favorite episode of all time.





Xena Lives!

From: Paul Menone
Sent: Friday, September 28, 2001 7:20 AM
Subject: XWP THE END?

You cannot kill that which cannot die. Xena lives in OUR HEARTS. They can kill the show and stifle our internet voices. We reach out from the grave of lost episodes like a ghoul that feeds on bad writers and lost TV producers! We will not go away! They cannot drive us away. We will be heard! They must appease us or suffer the consequences of a resurrected Callisto! And an Army From Hades!!!

Long Live XENA!!!

Long Live Gabrielle!!!

Paul Menone





Forget Group Therapy: Boycott!

From: Dafydd Galahad
Sent: Monday, October 08, 2001 2:41 PM
Subject: letter to the Editor

BOYCOTT

Many fans suggest that we protest the "Master Vision" by boycotting when Lucy stars in X-Files season 7. But will that reallly hurt TPTB? Studios USA's big cash cow is the Jerry Springer Show, if we boycott products advertised on Springer, that will hit TPTB where it hurts.

It will need a deal of organization, but for the sake of Xena and the sake of Gabrielle and the sake of the Love they shared, it's worth it. Each network has a different slew of adverts. For each network, we will need a website listing the products, a chat-room to debate which products to target and a facility for voting. (Please don't make the chat-room Java, I can't get that.)

Battle on
Dafydd ap Thomas





Kudos

From: Chandni Saxena
Sent: Monday, October 15, 2001 11:20 AM
Subject: Thank You

All I want to say it thank you...thank you very much. I'm a student in High School and with everything that's been going on in the world lately I've been kinda glum. I stayed home from school today because I was sick and decided to go online after a pretty long time...I truly wanted to see what was left of the xenaverse. It's kinda sad, a lot of the sites have closed down or haven't had updates for the longest time. It's sites like Whoosh and Ausxip that basically make me feel better.

I just read the disclaimer about how nothing will keep you from stopping this site from running and I felt a lot better...Thank you again

Sincerely,
Chandni Saxena





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