Finished reading INTERZONE 250 (TTA Press)
Actually, I finished reading it a couple of weeks ago, but I haven’t had a lot of headspace to spare lately, and this is a big issue and I wanted to do it justice. (Just typo’d “headspace” as “headscape”. Might start using that instead from now on.)
For its 250th issue, INTERZONE shows us what happens when the upstarts and up-and-comers of 2014 get their hands on the contents of Grandfather SF’s old toybox…
The Damaged by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam
Bad Times to be in the Wrong Place by David Tallerman
The Labyrinth of Thorns by C. Allegra Hawksmoor
Beneath the Willow Branches by Caroline M. Yoachim
Predvestniki by Greg Kurzawa
Lilacs and Daffodils by Rebecca Campbell
Wake Up, Phil by Georgina Bruce
Cover by Wayne Haag
Ansible Link by David Langford
Book Zone by Paul F. Cockburn, Barbara Melville, Duncan Lunan, Stephen Theaker, Lawrence Osborn, Jack Deighton, Matthew S. Dent, Simon Marshall-Jones, Elaine Gallagher, Juliet E. McKenna, Iain Emsley, Andy Hedgecock, Maureen Kincaid Speller, Ian Sales, Ian Hunter
Future Interrupted by Jonathan McCalmont
Laser Fodder by Tony Lee
Mutant Popcorn by Nick Lowe
Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam chooses the ROBOT, pulling out its innards and repackaging them in the bastard lovechild of a Ken doll and a Rampant Rabbit, then confuses Grandfather by playing a game that’s more about capitalism attempting to order back the tide of post-scarcity economics than about sex or exploitation.
David Tallerman chooses the MATRIX, and when to Grandfather’s horror he breaks all the little bodies in their little pods, innocently claims there never were any bodies, and it’s okay, look, the server’s still intact and that’s the important bit.
C. Allegra Hawksmoor chooses the CYBERPUNK (with REAL FUNCTIONING IMPLANTS!), lulls Grandfather into a false sense of security by starting a game all about espionage and the digital military just like little Billy used to, then gently, cheekily, tweaks the old dodderer off-balance by substituting Billy’s voudun cyber-mythology for one a bit like those Angela Carter fairy tales Grandfather never really ‘got’.
Caroline M. Yoachim chooses the TIME MACHINE and confounds Grandfather by playing doctors and nurses with it instead of going exploring like he used to.
Greg Kurzawa chooses the EXTRATERRESTRIAL INVASION; leaves the INVASION ORIGIN toggle stuck exactly halfway between OUTER SPACE and PARALLEL DIMENSIONS, in direct contravention of Grandfather’s mint-condition instruction manual; and after all that, leaves the toy to one side, only just in sight, while he plays house.
Rebecca Campbell chooses the ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE, and to Grandfather’s delight she’s heard of QUATERMASS! But she’s a thoughtful one, and spends the whole afternoon just listening to the thing and nodding, ignoring Grandfather as he frets about it trying to enslave her and the others.
Georgine Bruce choose both the CORPORATE DYSTOPIA and the REALITY-ALTERING DRUGS. Grandfather watches her game with a sad smile on his face. Little Phil would have enjoyed this one, he thinks.
Gendercrunching issue 250
Story authors: 5:2 (5f, 2m)
Illustrators: 0:5 (0f, 5m)
Reviewed authors: 4:11 (4f, 11m)
Book reviewers: 4:11 (4f, 11m)
Other contributors (columnists): 0:4 (0f, 4m)
Masthead (editors, etc.): 0:5 (0f, 5m)