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By Laura Sue Dean
July 6, 2000



POWERBOOKS AND THE POOL DO NOT MIX. I have learned this valuable lesson about electronics the hard way. Never, ever, attempt to use your computer while floating...no matter how large the big inflatable floaty thing is. Flinging it onto the deck as you capsize, drink and brand new pair of Gucci sunglasses flying..is also not recommended. Well, just to let you know... my lovely little portable microcomputing device is back in action and so am I. I have NOT been, as some people have rumored, on a bender through the cantinas of Tijuana or going to visit Robert Downey Jr. in prison in a cheerleading outfit to perk him up. It's all LIES, I tell you, LIES!



I had a blast at the recent Argo Awards held on the Palace! Who knew that dressing up a little avatar in a lame gown and tiara and being a mistress of ceremonies could be so enthralling? Maybe it was the HUGE crowd that gathered for the event? Maybe it was Dave's aftershave? Or MAYBE it was that CLAIRE STANSFIELD crashed the stage in full Alti mode! Her presence threw the crowd into such a typing frenzy that it blew the circuits and shut us all down. Thanks to the excessive geeky genius of Palace Queen Betsy Book, we were all back in time to enjoy the longest and most riotous Argos ever (even without the tap dance tribute to subtext and the touching, schmaltzy series of clips celebrating the lives of all the characters we've lost this season...again and again..set to dulcimer music). Fallen Angel swept most of the awards with a smattering of golden palominos to Motherhood. Want to relive the glory or couldn't make it? View a complete transcript here on Whoosh!


Yes..it's true folks. Missy Good will be writing another episode for the series. At this rate I will soon have to devote an entire section called Missy Watch to keep up with her career. ("This morning, Missy had a chocolate donut and a cafe con leche. By 11:00 she picked up her dry cleaning...") From some itty bitty script previews seen by Laura Sue, it looks like Missy's first script rocked. Get ready for some more.


Reneè O'Connor will be getting behind the camera again for episode number ten...a Gabrielle lite/clip show episode called, brace yourself, Send in the Clones (hey..she's going to be a little busy telling everybody what to do). Of course, Renee will be also be busy getting ready for her wedding in the fall..so folks..quit sending Laura Sue e-mail asking her if Ms. O'Connor has engaged in secret nuptials..she's a fall bride-O.K.? Of course..in New Zealand, that's spring..right? I'll have to remember that when getting my outfit together when I get my bridesmaid invitation. Ahem. Still waiting...and I've got the shoes all ready to be dyed.


Atlanta was truly ON FIRE this past weekend as Dragoncon (aka "MissyCon" after Overlord/Mondo Party Planner Melissa Good) hosted a horde of obsessed Xena fans of all varieties. Despite any overinflated rumors of heated battles being fought between subtext and anti-subtext factions (and bloodstained carpets and totally RUINED upholstery -- I won't even mention the state of the rug after the beer bottle mishap between Llachlan and Kym Taborn), everyone more or less had a fabulous time. Adding to the fabulousness were the many ambrosia shots that were possibly consumed at My Sister's Room, where the local lesbian southern belles throw a crazed Xena Night. This year Claire "Alti" Stansfield and Alex "Goddess of Love" Tydings showed up for a couple of suggestive t-shirts and good natured gal-palling.

At the con itself, debonair globe-trotting yachting expert and Whoosh staffer Bret Rudnick took his travelling road show to the stage to the delight of all. I would like to point out that Mr. Rudnick's comments about my tendency to disappear for weeks has nothing whatsoever to do with my probation officer. I have been working my tushy off thank you..I'm up for a role in "Valentine" with David Boreanz ("Angel") as one of four women being stalked by a crazed geek on Valentine's Day. I have been practicing shrieks of horror out by the pool day in and day out (aided by periodically listening to Celine Dion, who somehow inspires gut wrenching howls from me). Just so you all know...I'm NOT in the slammer. As things are now, I DOUBT I will be taking any forced leave any time soon. Charlie Sheen's adorable lawyer, Franco, has taken an odd Ares-like interest in me and I've sworn off tequila shooters, so all is well and right with the world.

I hear that Ted Raimi's talk was standing room only...and Karl Urban held court with talk of XENA, Lord of the Rings, and THE PRIVATEERS, his new sci-fi show. His new film THE PRICE OF MILK, which he stars with Danielle Cormack and Willa O'Neill is showing promise as well. YAY!

My illustrious boss, Kym Taborn sat on 4, count 'em, 4 panels..one which looked rather fascinating to Laura Sue was on whether or not a real fan can be critical. Oh, hon, if being a fan meant I couldn't diss my favorite show, then I guess you better take away my official fan kit with the little membership card. By the way...What AM I supposed to do with that membership card? I mean, would you EVER use it as identification? Pu-lease. Give me a discount to the con instead, PLEASE!


As most everyone knows, Sharon Delaney of the Official Fan Club has been hauling her b*tt over to New Zealand to shoot a behind the scenes video. Word is from Sharon that this video will be included WITH the usual bloopers in Fan Kit #4. Despite anything you've heard on the contrary, the word from Creation is that they will be continuing with the Xena license...so another kit, more newsletters, and more conventions.


The big, big, big Creation XENA and HERCULES Convention date has been set for Friday-Sunday, May 4-6, 2001 in Pasadena, CA. Reneé O'Connor and Lucy Lawless have confirmed their attendance, barring any unforeseen commitments. If they both show, you can be sure that Laura Sue will be there barring any unforeseen commitments (like I am on a whirlwind photo shoot in St. Tropez with my gorgeous incredibly wealthy lover...but this happens less often than one might think). As usual, I will be incognito, dressed as a potted palm or something.


Well...despite my earlier report of JACK OF ALL TRADES being not being cancelled, it has, in fact, bitten the dust. RenPics is racing to put together a replacement to accompany CLEOPATRA 2525. Despite some rumors flying around that CLEO would get stretched to an hour, I think it is highly unlikely. As it is, poor Jennifer Skye's vocal cords are getting enough of a workout at the half hour mark.

One replacement idea, and a very bad one at that..in my opinion...is a show based on the Arthurian legend and set in South Beach, FL called SOUTH CAMELOT. Supposedly, the concept is that it is set in the world of rival gangs.

Laura Sue needs to step back here and say "HUH?" Have these guys ever BEEN to South Beach..I mean, hellooo! It's wealthy, it's chic, it has a huge fabulous gay population. Which gangs are they talking about? Is this like WEST SIDE STORY where a gang of drag queens rumble with a gang of thong wearing supermodels...beating each other with cha cha heels while singing and dancing with perfect precision? Unless King Arthur is supposed to be a pastel suit wearing hotel and nightclub impresario, I think the folks over there at RenPics headquarters need to lay off the cocktails.


Speaking of cocktails, Seagram, who owns Universal and Studios USA, as well as several other media thingees (and let' not forget the namesake liquor companies...which they are sadly selling off) is merging with Vivendi. In case you haven't hear of Vivendi, they own practically everything in Europe...to be perfectly vague. They are a world leader in water service as well as a power, transportation, communication, and publishing company. Of course, their most fascinating asset is, get this, WASTE TREATMENT. That's right, the people who process raw sewage will own a piece of XENA. At least now we know how to get rid of some of those mid 5th season scripts. Meow.


R.J. Stewart has completely overhauled the staff and created a totally new writing team for XWP season 6. Sadly, we say goodbye to veteran writer Chris Manheim, who has gone on to other things. For those individuals who were worried that no chicas would be penning scripts next year (aside from Missy Good), they should be happy to see Emily Skopov and Edithe Swensen on board the new crew. Yay! Girl writers!

About other Xena staff...You can expect to see Kevin Smith in only two episodes next year... looks like his dance card is getting full with other projects. Laura sue will keep you informed as to Mr. Smith's whereabouts just as soon as I know what's going on definitively.


Here's a few schnippets of spoilers to keep you going for a bit:

We won't be heading back into Eli/quasi-Christian catechism land next season except for the beginning...just to get us over that season 5 Eve/Twilight of the Gods arc.

My favorite makeover queen, ALTI, will be back and throatier than ever, along with our favorite goddess APHRODITE, but probably NOT in the same episode(s).

Ted Raimi will be making an appearance as Joxer in the form of a flashback (currently, this flashback might take the form of Joxer and Meg's wedding...which I'm sure was as classy an affair as my cousin Lula's...her reception was at a Denny's...I kid you not). There is also a highly speculative rumor that he might show up as Jett..although what Jett would be doing 25 years in the future I do not know and honestly do not want to know.

Eve and Virgil will not be hanging around too much next year, but expect to see them both early on. Fairly quickly, Xena and Gabrielle will be meeting up with Gabrielle's sister Lila, and then traipsing off to Northern Africa to wear the most fabulous flowing cotton nomadic wear. Then the gals are off to Germany and northern Teutonic points for Wagnerian melodrama ("Kill the Wabbit! Kill the Wabbit!") and really great pretzels. I have visions of helmets with horns. I have the same underlying reasons for travel that Xena and Gabrielle have...it's to get a new wardrobe. Next thing you know, they could be heading off for an exotic journey to the wastelands of Bergdorf Goodman....


Well, the season 4 tapes have been shipping from the Official Xena and Hercules Online Store...but does Laura Sue have a HORROR story to tell you ("I see...dead VHS cassettes...."). A loyal reader of mine told me this tale of woe: she had ordered the season 4 tapes, and didn't have time to start watching them right away. When she did get around to viewing the tapes, she was disappointed with the quality. She just considered that VHS, being a lousy format to begin with, meant lousy quality. Then she noticed one of the labels was coming off. Lo and behold, behind the label was another one. A label for the Disney flick "Mulan". Shocked, she looked beneath another to see "First Kid". Horrifyingly, the tapes were dubs over children's videos! One tape was completely blank! What becomes even more annoying is that the people at the Online Store didn't seem concerned at all.

Now then..I urge ANYONE who orders these tapes to inspect them carefully upon arrival. If they are not right, you must DEMAND that they give you real tapes, not dubs. If they rip you off, you should contact the Better Business Bureau and report their *ss. Unfortunately for Xenites this is the only place I know of that sells the tapes. Power in numbers, people. The squeaky wheel gets the grease. Never host a party without enough ice. (sorry..I thought I should keep giving advice).


Hey Laura Sue,

It's wonderful to (finally) have an excuse to contact you. As a fan of Xena & Star Wars, I was really hoping the current filming in Australia would translate into seeing some of my favorite New Zealand actors in Episode 2. Starwars.com announced Jay Laga'aia has been cast as a "loyal security officer" & Daniel Logan (Hercules) was also mentioned. Do you know if anyone else from the Xenaverse will be joining cast or crew? Long may you dish!

- Ruth

Hey Ruth,

Currently, no one else we know of from the New Xenaland set is appearing in Star Wars. Conversely, however, there has been a vicious rumor that the ever popular JarJar Biggs will be replacing Joxer in season 6.

-Laura Sue

Dear LauraSue,

I wanted to ask you some questions about Xena, especially about the episode "MotherHood".

1) Xena kill Athena at the end and Ares gives up his immortality. But what happens to the Fates, the Furies, Celesta, Morpheus, and most of all, WHAT HAPPENS TO APHRODITE? Xena didn't kill them.

2) Ares gives up his immortality to save Gabby and Eve. Nice move, man. But why Ares has GodLike powers in "The Xena Scrolls" and "Yes, Virginia: there is a Hercules"?

3) A question about "the Xena Scrolls": look at the Chakram in "The Xena Scrolls". It is the old one. Why?? Xena has a whole new chakram in season 5.

4) In the episode "The Reckoning" , Ares brings back to life 2 persons. Why can't he heal Gab and Eve in "MotherHood"?

5) If Hades is dead, where do dead souls go? And if Celesta is dead, why people continue dying?

As proven by season 4..there are WAY too many places for dead souls to go (reincarnation, heaven, hell, amazon land of the dead, and Florida)

6) In the episode "Motherhood", Hope appears. Is it only an illusion by the Furies? Because Hope is supposed to be dead in "A Family Affair".

Thanks in advance,
Angela Carter

Dearest Angie-baby,

My my....Soooo many questions! I'll answer them one by one as best I can...Some gods...like Celesta, for instance, are immune to the prophecy. Humanity always will need Death. As for the Furies..humanity will always need madness, revenge and really bad fashion sense. Aphrodite, as Goddess of Love, will continue to exist and inspire lingerie to this very day (humanity will always have a need for sleazy wardrobes). Not all Gods needed to buy it..just the whole "Olympian Control" thingee to make way for this One God guy.

As for the chakram and Ares' powers...You are assuming that there is someone who does continuity for Xena. Please stop looking for logic! Why would they have buried Ares in his season 2 costume?

As for healing Gabrielle and Eve, He needs Athena's blessing. Again...this makes about as much sense as successfully cryogenically freezing someone for 25 years.

As for where dead souls go: as proven by season 4..there are WAY too many places for dead souls to go (Tartarus, Elysian Fields, reincarnation, heaven, hell, amazon land of the dead, and Florida)

And only the Furies could dream up Hope with such a bad wig.

Whew! Now you know why it takes me so long to write an update sometimes when you get enough multi-questioned mail like this!

-Laura Sue


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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