By Laura Sue Dean
March 18, 1998
GABRIELLE 3: HELL SEASON
BORING RATINGS STUFF
LETTERS TO LAURA SUE
LAURA SUE NEEDS YOU!
GREETINGS FROM BEAUTIFUL, DOWNTOWN UNIVERSAL CITY! Gosh, you can just *feel* the buzzing going on in this town -- everyone is secretly counting down to Oscar Night, and the deadline's approaching for Emmy submissions. OooooooOoohhhh -- keep your fingers crossed that the earth will tilt on its axis and XWP will actually get a nomination! Laura Sue has been very busy scopin' out the scoops for y'all, so I hope you're ready to get current! BTW, did anyone see a certain aspiring starlet sitting down front at the SAG awards last week? Yes, it's TRUE! LSD got a ring-side seat for a part of the show and is fairly certain the camera hit her on a sweeping pan shot! (okay, okay. The sad truth is LSD wasn't there to win any award -- she was just a "seat-filler" hired by the production crew -- but HEY! I got to smell Nicholson's liquor-breath and keep the money for a change, doesn't that count for anything?)
THE NIGHT THE LIGHTS WENT OUT IN...AUCKLAND?!?! [speaking of "the night the lights went out"... do you remember Kristy McNichol's *brilliant* portrayal of Dennis Quaid's little sister in the cinematic triumph of the same name? I mean, that white leather number when she sung that song in the honkey tonk...? but Laura Sue digresses..) The city of Auckland suffered a MAJOR BUMMER -- a power outage occurred when not one, not two, not three...but ALL of the cities main power lines went down last weekend. Word is that it would take some areas up to a month to get back full power! Too bad they couldn't just combine and make use of the power of all the HCNB's obsession to use instead... Talk about a WIN/WIN fossil-fuel replacement! Good for the planet, AND keeps stalkers to a minimum!!
SPEAKING OF XENA FANS, their MAIN concern was how this would affect production of the final third season episodes. (Some speculated... with his pasta-strainer hat and pizza-pan armor that perhaps Joxer could be used as a sort of conduit to bring major voltage on set...but their hopes were dashed when reminded that he's one of the Exec Producers little brother... details, SCHMEEetails!) Sources told NGR that production went on as scheduled, with only minor delays. Those delays included having to send the dailies to Australia to be developed.
THE ON-SET BACKLOG FROM THE POWER-OUTAGE kept Xena star Lucy Lawless from an "outage" all her own...details coming up in the XENA SIGHTINGS section of this NGR.
MORE AWARDS FOR LUCY. The February issue of Mode magazine has the first annual "Mode Awards" which recognize those in different areas who have "stretched their minds" regarding women and appearances. There is a mention under "television" for "Lucy Lawless of Xena: Warrior Princess, and Sarah Michelle Geller of Buffy: The Vampire Slayer" It says that the staff chose these show because they show that women can be confident, smart, and still kick butt! (Hey -- what about GORGEOUS in leather?!?!)
THREADGILL'S OWNER RUBS ELBOWS WITH KIWI. Renee O'Connor's famous step-father visited New Zealand only to find more Threadgill's fans. As reported an Austin paper, Eddie Wilson said, "I was treated like royalty because I was from Austin...They even gave me a couple of dinner parties." He and his wife, Sandra, were in New Zealand as an eighth wedding anniversary present from Sandra's daughter Renee O'Connor. He also discovered that Lucy Lawless has a "thing" for Texas music. Wilson reported that, "She knows every word to every song Lyle Lovett's recorded." Mr. and Mrs. Wilson had a lovely time celebrating their 8th wedding anniversary with Renee and Steve Muir, Renee's boyfriend, on the South Island.
MEDIA NOTES OUT AND ABOUT. THE 1998 GLAAD (Gay & Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation) MEDIA AWARD NOMINEES:
Outstanding TV Individual Episode:HBO Comedy Hour "Drop Dead Gorgeous (A Tragicomedy)"
The Power of HIV-Positive Thinking" (HBO)
The Practice "Civil Rights" (ABC)
The Simpsons "Homer's Phobia" (Fox)
South Park "Big Gay Al's Big Gay Boat Ride" (Comedy Central)
Xena: Warrior Princess "Here She Comes, Miss Amphipolis" (Syndicated)
FYI: ACADEMY OF TELEVISION ARTS & SCIENCES CALLS FOR PRIMETIME EMMY ENTRIES:
NORTH HOLLYWOOD, CA, March 6 -- The Academy of Television Arts & Sciences is now accepting entries for the 1997-98 Primetime Emmy Awards competition. The eligibility period is June 1, 1997 - May 31, 1998, with March 27 the first entry deadline (for all entries that were originally presented June 1, 1997 - March 27, 1998). April 24 is the second entry deadline (for all entries that were originally presented March 28, 1998 - May 31, 1998).
A copy of the ad published in the Daily Variety promoting XWP for Emmy consideration.
XENA-PHILES AND CROSSING THE NILE(S). Snipped from an Austrailan Press Release:
Never mind the marching police, among a record 300 floats in the 20th anniversary Mardi Gras parade will be 122 "Warrior Princesses" playing homage to the woman whose cunning stunts have inspired this year's Marching Girls entry. Xena herself has been invited to lead the warriors-in-waiting but the woman who leaps tall Greeks at a single bound is yet to confirm. With the girls partying on in their breastplates it could be a good night for Gabrielle lookalikes. The float is being organised by parade committee member Julie Earngey and choreographed by Virginia Ferris. Meanwhile Fred Nile and fellow party-poopers says they will blockade the policy entry. We look forward to the full turn of the wheel - protecting the State's finest 20 years after they gave our gallant 78ers the bum's rush.
From an Austrailan paper
WOW! OUR GAL WITH 122 LITTLE-HELPERS! Unfortunately, Laura Sue heard that Lucy missed her plane due to a stuff up (the afore-mentioned power outage) on the Xena set which required her to do some extra filming. So, to cover the Divine Miss L arrived the very next day (Sunday) and went to Channel 10, where she filmed some "hostess hookups" to be dropped into the re-broadcast of the show on OZ's Channel 10. Locals urged others to keep their eye on Ch10 to see Lucy plugging the Gay Mardi Gras special in a curious hybrid kiwi/Xena accent that really is most unusual... For those of you who do not live where the Australian Television reception is fuzzy at best, the entire parade can be viewed with RealPlayer. Go to http://netcast.citysearch.com.au/parade.html and you'll have a curb-side seat for all the festive goings-on! (The marching Xenas are at the end -- about three hours in so order dinner for delivery that evening!)
THE BITTER SUITE CD. The soundtrack to the Xena episode that is hopefully going to win an EMMY for XWP is scheduled to be released on 3/24 by Varese/Sarabande. They are still working on the cover art for the CD - but so far it looks and sounds great. The CD should be available at record stores across the U.S. in late March 1998 and will feature a insert with color photos, lyrics and who sang what! (and who didn't.)
LAURA SUE WAS TAKING HER AFTERNOON BEAUTY NAP when she got a call from the Real Entertainment -- the fine folks who brought you the Xena Trilogy tapes (from the Hercules series). The huckster was offering to sell me the first season tapes, two episodes per tape, 12 tapes total, at the special reduced price of about $12.00 per tape....total with shipping something like $150.00 (and they will throw in "Hercules and the Amazon Women free!). These tapes will be commercial free and something else they said escapes me....anyhow, Laura Sue remembers all the problems that fans had getting their Herc Trilogy tapes from these folks -- so buyer beware. Laura Sue called Universal's Home Video Publicity people to find out if there is any other source for these tapes. BIG NADA on that -- Chris (he's so cute!) thanked me for alerting him to Real Entertainment's poor service record, and promised to investigate. If you have problems, write to me at LauraSueDean@yahoo.com and I'll pass the info along. At the very least this should help keep them on their toes, and upgrade their phone order service... For ordering off the web, go to http://www.getxena.com. Get Xena? Sounds like an old sixties tv show!
"XENA LIMITED EDITION COLD-CAST PORCELAIN STATUE". Fully-painted, this sculpture captures Xena - actor Lucy Lawless - in an action pose about to release her weapon of choice, the chakram. A very dynamic and detailed piece, this 6.5" statue is the first in a series Hercules/Xena of porcelain sculptures. Limited to only 7,500 pieces worldwide $75.00.
LAURA SUE WAS CRUISING THE "FEMINIST" BOOKSTORES recently and came across some lovely fashion accessories -- XENA BUTTONS! They are a must-have for any fashion-conscious Xena fans (and you KNOW you are!) All buttons have the official logo:
*Xena with staff
*Xena on top of Callisto with caption "Chicks Kick *ss"
*Xena with sword
*Xena pic caption "Chicks Kick *ss" (circle button)
*Xena logo (circle button)
*Xena closeup (circle button)
*Xena closeup inside Chakram (circle button)
*Xena caption "Worship me like the goddess I am" (circle button)
(hmmm. Laura Sue could use a few buttons like that her own darn self!)
SPEAKING OF FASHION STATEMENTS. More goodies from Previews:
XENA 3D SILVER FIGURE EARRINGS - US$10.00
XENA 3D SILVER FIGURE NECKLACE - US$12.00
XENA 3D SILVER FIGURE PIN - US$6.00
ARES GOD OF WAR T-SHIRT - US$17.00
XENA and GABRIELLE POSTER - US $5.00
XENA WITH SWORD POSTER - US$5.99
XENA WARRIOR PRINCESS POSTER - US$5.99
XENA STARTER DECK - US$5.99 (WIZARDS OF THE COAST GAME)
XENA BOOSTER PACK - US$2.99 (WIZARDS OF THE COAST GAME)
HERCULES & XENA MYTHIC MONSTER SOURCEBOOK - US$27.00 (WEST END GAMES)
TOPPS OFFICIAL XENA:WP MAGAZINE #3 - US$4.95 (Cover A is "The Bitter Suite" and Cover B is HTLJ "Armageddon Now")
THE SECOND ANNUAL PITTSBURGH XENAFEST will be held on Saturday, May 2nd, from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. at the Greentree Marriott. Fest activities will include Xena Jeopardy (and other cool trivia events), a martial arts show and a display of leather goods and jewelry, as well as a charity auction (and raffle), and many videos, including hard to get interviews and appearances. Registration will be $20 in advance, or $25 at the door. Anyone seeking any more information can contact Oshram with any questions.
UPCOMING CONVENTIONS INCLUDE:
Raimi: Boston (03/22/98) Creation
DC XenaFest (03/28/98) Fan
Weisbrot: NYC XenaFest (04/18/98) Fan
Pittsburgh XenaFest (05/02/98) Fan
TBA in Phoenix (05/31/98) Creation
NWP XenaFest (05/30/98) Fan
Trebor/Sears: Las Vegas (06/14-18/98) Multimedia Con
TBA in Minneapolis (08/08/98) Creation
TBA in Cherry Hill, NJ (08/29-30/98) Creation
TBA in Atlanta (09/03-06/98) DragonCon
TBA in San Francisco (10/18/98) Creation
TBA in Santa Monica (01/99) Creation
ORGANIZING A FAN CONVENTION, FAN FEST, OR WHATEVER, drop Laura Sue a line and I will shamelessly promote the heck out of it, especially if you give me a comp ticket to the event!
AS IF WE DIDN'T KNOW. Lucy is the No. 1 Trendsetter for '98, according to People On-Line.
RUMORS OF A VALENTINE'S DAY WEDDING for everyone's favorite Warrior Princess and her beau were sweeping the net. Sorry kids, but that wasn't the day. Now LSD may know WHEN and WHERE the big event is scheduled to take place, but has decided she won't post it. Hey...even LSD thinks LUCY and ROB deserve to celebrate their special day w/out HCNB's hanging around outside.....*some* things should remain a secret!
BRET OR PAT...YOU DECIDED! Last NGR we asked, who would you rather watch on XWP: WHOOSH's very own intrepid jet-setting playboy editor, or BABYLON 5's Pat Tallman (Lyta). Well, the readers have responded! Pat Tallman won with 68% of the vote (of course, that means 32% wanted Bret!!! Hear that Bretster???). One polite reader couldn't make up their mind, they wrote: "How about both, but not at the same time". Hmmmm, do they know something we don't? Stay tuned and find out how prescient that 32% was!
Excited about his impending date with a Beautiful Amazon, WHOOSH's intrepid jet-setting playboy editor, Bret Rudnick, makes a beeline for Macy's to obtain his complimentary Elisabeth Arden Makeover!
PARTY MARE: ARGO? Could somebody please tell me what the letters/numbers on Argo in ONE AGAINST AN ARMY mean? Did Argo get drunk and wander into a Tattoo parlor? Did she go directly to the set from a late night of clubbing and forget to wash off the 'hand stamp'?
SAY IT ISN'T SO!!! Turns out there was some confusion lately as to whether or not, ROC had gotten her navel pierced (ouch! Ouch! Ouch!). The truth of the matter is that one of the doubles used in THE QUILL IS MIGHTIER had one - NOT Renee. The Gabs of Steel remain unblemished!
GABRIELLE 3: HELL SEASON
WHILE WE WERE ALL HAVING A BLAST in Burbank this January, our fearless bard was back in NZ, slaving away making this week's X-lite episode [FORGET ME NOT] ...Poor Gabby... Looks like TPTB are STILL making her suffer in season #3, her very own SEASON OF HELL! HAUNTED BY GUILT, unable to sleep she goes to some temple to erase her memory. TOTAL HARSHNESS! Everything in her brain will be wiped, much like some amnesia victim in a daytime soap!
ON A LIGHTER NOTE, LSD is totally psyched that she totally predicted the "homage d'week" with her references to Kate Winslet. No, LSD hasn't been doing, er, LSD -- she's talking about when Gab crosses the river of woe (#2). Seen any movies lately that feature a beautiful, wet-haired women (in a wet, white see-through gown) wade through waist-high water with looks of terror on their faces lately?! They even had Gabby push some miniature ICEBERGS out of her way! Talk about Titanic-MANIA!!?!?!?! Doesn't surprise Laura Sue ONE BIT that they did that, cause everyone KNOWS our Renee O'Connor should get 14 Oscar nominations, too!
AND MY NEXT TITANIC HOMAGE PREDICTION! Yes, LSD predicts that all the stops will be out for major Titanic homaging with the upcoming XWP episode, TSUNAMI (to be released 04/20/98, a week after the EPISODE FORMERLY KNOWN AS FISH SHTICKS). And if they don't... they blew a wonderful opportunity to be the first of many blatant rip-offs to come. It's an ugly job, but someone has got to do it, and it might as well be the boys and gals of RenPic!!! They homage so well, don't you think?
HMM. HARD TO ASSESS A RIFT when Xena is only in the last two minutes of the episode, but Laura Sue is UP TO THE CHALLENGE!!!! Xena leaves Gab alone with JOXER! JOXER lies to Gab so she believes she's in LOVE with him! So she wants to be TAKEN by JOXER? (Have MERCY!) BTW, did you check out the Galibido on our grrl?... .... ....Huh? Oh! Sorry. Laura Sue was distracted for a moment. Anyway, Laura Sue notices that now that the rift has officially ended, (we think) the grrls friendship just grows stronger and stronger ... and this reporter gives THAT action a HUGE high-five!
BORING RATINGS STUFF
MEANWHILE, BACK AT THE RANCH, we were discussing the ratings for the first serious repeat period for the 3rd season. We got up to DIRTY HALF DOZEN which is a still a mystery to Speedy since no one seemed fit to release the numbers to the public that week.
AFTER THE REPEATS of THE FURIES, BEEN THERE DONE THAT, and DIRTY HALF DOZEN, TPTB (the powers that be) scheduled four non-third season repeats. A daring strategy??? Well, with a 22 episode season and 52 weeks in the years, even after a complete repeat of the season, you still have 8 weeks of repeats to play around with. So, they decided not to go with showing TITANS one..more...time, and also did not go with a third repeat for a third season episode (no matter how zen it would have been), but chose the new seasonal classic and three second season episodes.
THE WEEK OF 12/15/97 released the highly Christmas-oriented, A SOLSTICE CAROL. XWP placed 3rd in the action hours, but first (thank goodness!) in the first runs! Who took first in the action hours, you ask? Do you even need to ask? The perennial number one action hour in the weekly syndicated charts was X-FILES! Earning its lowest rating to date, a 6.3 ("Fallen Angel"), Speedy was happy for a moment thinking if X-FILES went down a tad and XWP went up a tad, maybe XWP could take her proper place on top! But noooooo, X-FILES shot up again after this Christmastide lull in the ratings. This lull not only affected the powerhouse X-FILES, but allowed WALKER: TEXAS RANGER, of all things, to whup the pants off of XWP. WALKER earned a 4.8 and took 2nd place in the action hours. XWP was closely behind with 4.7, and STAR TREK: DEEP SPACE 9 hobbled in at 4.5 ("Empok Nor"), with HTLJ in the dust at 5th place with 4.3 ("A Star to Guide Them", another Christmas themed episode). All I can say is thank goodness they are not trying to produce more Christmas favorites!
THE WEEK ON 12/22/97, traditionally a low ratings week, X-FILES made a terrific come back with an 8.2 rating ("Eve"). HERK and XENA tied for 2nd place with 5.3. XWP aired the intense DESTINY episode, where Caesar, Julius Caesar was first introduced, and Herk aired "As Darkness Falls", an episode with Lucy Lawless playing a non-Xena role from Herk's 1st season. WALKER stayed at 4.8 and consequently took the 3rd position in action hours. STAR TREK: DS9 earned a 4.6 for "A time to Stand". NYPD earned a 4.5, PENSACOLA a 3.8, and TEAM KNIGHT RIDER, the show that should be shot and put out of its misery, earned 2.6.
THE WEEK OF 12/29/97, saw the behemoth X-FILES take a serious dive to 7.0 ("Fire"), but that did not make it stop from taking the coveted number one spot in action hours. XWP came in 2nd with 5.6 for repeat of the 2nd season, THE QUEST, which was also part two of DESTINY. HTLJ's came in 3rd with a 5.1 with "The Outcast", the sequel to "As Darkness Falls" and which also guest-starred Lucy Lawless in a non-Xena role, but this time from the 2nd season of HTLJ. "Outcast" contains that great line from Iolaus where he notices that Lyla looks a lot, and I mean a lot, like Xena. STAR TREK: DS9 hit 5.0 for first run episode, "Magnificent". And what about WALKER: TEXAS RANGER? It went down a whole tenth to 4.7.
THE WEEK OF 01/05/98, brought the last repeats for the first repeat cycle. X-FILES started to slowly grow with a 7.2 ("Beyond the Sea"), and XWP grew too with a 5.8 for ORPHAN OF WAR, the 2nd season opener who introduced the world to Solan, Xena's only known child. HTLJ and ST:DS9 tied at 3rd with a 4.9 for the shows "Mercenary", Herk's 3rd season opener, and first-run "Waltz", respectively. EARTH: FINAL CONFLICT made the charts at 6th with a 3.8, just below NYPD BLUE which made a 4.0.
AND SO ENDETH THE FIRST REPEAT CYCLE. In the next Speedy column, I will cover the first four shows of the 2nd first run group. That takes us to the end of the Rift cowboys and cowgirls!!! Some very interesting things happened ratings wise in this next group of shows. Just to remind you, that 8 new runs were aired, and then 4 more repeats of 3rd season episodes are scheduled and THEN the last five episodes of the 3rd season will air. XWP still has a chance to knock our socks off. I am hoping for a growth in ratings for WHEN IN ROME and for the SACRIFICE episodes. Until then, mates, this is Speeedy signing off.
LETTERS TO LAURA SUE
Dear Laura Sue,
Since you mentioned the animated movie in the above NGR, I thought I'd point out an unintentional pun in the movie: RE: That "Giant Bird" that Gabrielle gets turned into: In Eastern Legends (Arabian Nights, etc.) that kind of mythical giant bird is called a Roc. Laughed my head off when I saw it in the damn movie.
Always look forward to and enjoy your column.
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
Thanks for the heads up!
Dear Laura Sue,
Went to my 1st convention in Plano, Tx 2-weeks ago. They showed some music videos about our favorite girls.#1 Tribute to them both set to "Sisters are Doing It For Themselves"
#2 Tribute to Xena set to "You're Simply The Best"
#3 Tribute to Gab. set to "Wind Beneath My Wings"
Any chance we can get copies of these videos now or in the future? They were really fantastic, moving pieces of work...especially the tribute to Gabrielle.
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
Dear music-video fan,
Don't I WISH. TPTB emphatically insist these are not available for purchase, even if you beg and start to cry a little bit when told no. IF LSD was in the market for said videos, she'd check the XWP black market, because it would be your only outlet for a copy of these babies.
I love your column! I read it all the time!!! Now, Help!!!!!!!
I've been waiting for months for someone to release a full size stand-up of Xena, and when I read in your last column that they're actually doing it, I almost dropped my Chakram! WHERE can I get one, or two, or ten? I've searched all the on-line stores and haven't found one yet. Please Help!!! Thank you,
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
LSD gets one or two queries about these every week, so she checked in with a reputable source. LSD cannot name said source, but she *can* tell you that said source was the genius behind the beautiful 1998 Xena and Gabby calendar, the one who sweated blood to get it done in time for Burbank....so that her boss could use them as "VIP SMOOZE SWAG," and yet, said source did not get to rub elbows with hardly ANY VIPS.. :( This makes LSD sad, very sad indeed.. ANYWAY, regarding the Xena Stand ups: Apparently they will be made by the same company that made the star trek stand ups. Unfortunately, they aren't made yet. That's why you can't find them. Check back with Creation every few weeks, they should be able to help you.
Hi! I love your column! Oh, BTW, you did a good job in "Little Ezekiel"! [LSD note: FINALLY, someone gets it!] Anyway, recently I e-mailed West End Games' Editorial Department asking when the Xena RPG would be coming out...here's the (TENTATIVE) schedule:February: The Xena/Hercules boxed set (Price $30)
April: The "Gazetteer"
May: "Mythic Monsters"
June: The H&X "Intro Adventure Game"
August: Untitled miniatures rules
September: "Ancient Powers"
November: "Treasures of the Ancient World"
I hope this helps you...
Also, if there any experienced RolePlayers who want to help me create Xena-Related characters, E-Mail me.
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
und noch was koenntet, waere es moeglich das ihr mir eine kopie von xena's schakram geben koenntet bitte ich bin so ein fan ich bitte um antwort.
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
dear danke shoen,
Thanks for illustrating what a Huge, INTERNATIONAL success that NEWS, GOSSIP, RUMORS has become. To get a replica Chakram, call Creation Entertainment or visit their website and click on XWP merchandise.
Dear Laura Sue,
I just heard on the netforum that there are plans for a sequel to "The Debt" where Xena and Gabrielle go on trial for the murder of Ming Tien. Have you heard anything about this tidbit?
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
Darling, one hears all sorts of things in hallways, around corners, and in the restroom, not that Laura Sue ever listens to such gossip, mind you (pssst -- helpful hint, if you pick your feet up it looks like no one is occupying the stall). But semi-seriously, anything like that is likely to be in the barest of planning stages, much like Laura Sue's career these days. Speaking of barest, Laura Sue keeps getting the *strangest* mail offering the *strangest* roles, but we are *not* going to go there! Rest assured, though, that the good people at WHOOSH! will keep you posted on episode rumors. Laura Sue always repays her "debts"!
I'm just curious about the status of the show "Amazon High." I know the pilot movie has been filmed, but that's it. Other than that, I haven't heard much since October 1997. Has a network picked it up for syndication? When will the pilot be on television? Y'know, those kind of questions. I would appreciate any information you can provide.
Thanks! in advance.
LAURA SUE RESPONDS:
Dear Thanks! in advance.,
Although AMAZON HIGH has technically left post-production and is now being scored by Joe LoDuca through May this year, and they are, as we say in the business, "shopping it around", Laura Sue has heard murmurs that they are considering possibly re-shooting or re-working the movie. As to the boys shopping it around, there has been a big rumor circulating the gossip-mongers that there are interested parties, but that RP is holding out for a better deal. So, this remains to be seen...stay close to NGR for any updates. LSD will stay on this story! Also, the fact that RP just sold YOUNG HERCULES to FOX KIDS will make the pot a little bigger for AMAZON HIGH, however Danielle Cormack may not be in the series (she was in the pilot) because she has joined the cast of a new show in NZ.
LAURA SUE NEEDS YOU!
If you HAVE any good dish, write me. Need a rumor confirmed, denied, or ambiguously tap danced around? I'm your gal! Just drop Laura Sue a line!
I can't print every letter, but I'll do my best to answer your questions... and report those late-breaking XWP stories!
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