Thursday, August 26, 2010

The End Of Stargate Magazine

Well friends, the time has come. Yes, Stargate Magazine ends with Issue #36.

I spent a good, long two hours in the "hot Mexican sun" [funny quote from the TV series Arrested Development] today while I waited for The One To Be Pitied to finish a doctor's appointment. I think much of it was in the waiting room next to the Highlights magazines.
While I waited, I spent a little time catching up on all of the latest science fiction periodicals in Barnes & Noble. There is very little in the way of good publications left mind you for us to induldge. I mean, the best you can possibly read and find is out there on the web. The concept of strong writing in science fiction publications is seemingly a thing of the past. As I selected a few issues to peruse, and honestly I rarely have time to sit in a book store- it was a strange experience actually- I had all of this time to read and nowhere to go. As I sat, a sweet girl with Down Syndrome visited me. She clearly had a voracious appetite for reading. She placed about ten issues in her arms and off she went. I later caught up with her in the graphic novels section where she sat at a table quietly reading. Next to her right arm was a stack of magazines and graphic novels. She was focused. She was really sweet.
Anyway, I selected the SFX magazine with the Torchwood cover #199. Ten dollars! I went to the Torchwood piece to find it was roughly a 3-4 page article with a few good pictures. The pictures left very little in the way of writing. I captured the gist of the segment in about ten minutes. There was an additional piece interviewing Brannon Braga, the writer best known for his work on Star Trek: The Next Generation, Star Trek: Deep Space Nine, Star Trek: Voyager and most of all Star Trek: Enterprise. It was a 3 page puff piece with very little information from the interview of real interest. If I recall they did randomly list his 5 favorite Star Trek: Voyager episodes for some reason. Those favorites included: Someone To Watch Over Me, Timeless [I think] and three others I just can't recall. Obviously, I opted not to buy.
So, I purchased the final issue of Titan Magazines final call for Stargate Magazine #36 [after skipping a purchase of the last two]. It had Richard Dean Anderson on the cover. Nuff said' right!? I read it cover to cover while I waited outside in the hot summer sun. With down economies and an ever-shifting consumer paradigm the magazine market is taking its fair share of hits. It's sad really. I still grieve the loss of Starlog and Starburst tremendously, eventhough SG-1 never made the cover of Starlog. Stepping back, Stargate Magazine won't be among the magazines I miss. It's simply not very good. It served its purpose. There are certainly great pictures and a few good bits [a decent Robert Picardo interview], but it's generally elementary level reading. I wonder where Stargate Universe stands? I suspect the series is beginning to come around. I am sad for those who loved the magazine, but I can safely say it's not a big loss for me. I'll miss seeing Richard Dean Anderson make the ocassional cover.
Here's a snippet from the editor of the magazine and I found myself with a strange facial grimace as a result of the remarks. "The only sure thing in life is that everything must change: it's probably not healthy for things to stay the same for too long... Stargate itself has evolved over the years. The show on air at the moment is very different from the opening year of Stargate SG-1. That's down to many factors. Tastes change, technology changes, what's socially acceptable changes-all of these have made Stargate Universe very different to the beginnings of Stargate SG-1. That can only be a good thing." Really? I have to stop here. It "can only be a good thing"? What the hell are you talking about? Guess what people? Tastes change, tech changes, what's socially or politically correct changes, and you're old. This is new. This is good. Jump on the SGU love train! That's how it feels, but I may be overtired.

He adds, "Change can be scary. There's a comfort factor in tuning into a TV show and knowing exactly what you're going to get." Let's get this straight. So SG-1 was on for ten years and all of you fans out there sat in front of the TV knowing what you were going to see. You mindlessly absorbed it like good little lemmings. Am I being overly sensitive here? I don't think so. I should think most people love their programs for a lot of reasons, comfort maybe one, but after watching for a year or even two most would tell you they are looking forward to what comes next awaiting the next twist and turn. I could go on and on, but the editor ends with "keep watching Universe" and that's fine. But the editorial really felt like a sales pitch for the new series discounting all that came before it. I won't say his thoughts aren't valid, but they did touch a nerve. NO! Your thoughts? The subject is certainly relevant to any host of programming options, but I do disagree with the thinking behind his fairly terse editorial. I have spent altogether too much time on it as a matter of fact. Again, where have all the good publications gone? I really should be spending my time on something far more worthwhile.

This is evidently the fault of The One To Be Pitied. She left me with way too much time on my hands. That's never good. As a result, I was really hungry for ice cream. You can't normally find ice cream for under three dollars [and that's on the less expensive side], but The Sci-Fi Fanatic was successful. Did you know, and I really NEVER eat there, but a McDonald's sundae costs 107 pennies? That's a cheap taste treat after several hours of sitting in the "hot Mexican sun." I'm sorry. I have to find a good article really soon. So long Stargate Magazine. Sorry to see another one go just the same. Can you believe Highlights [1946] is still around? I bet you could learn a thing or two from them. Highlights has pictures too. Maybe I should have stayed in that waiting room.

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