Too Many Long Boxes!
   
   

End of Summer
 
Fanzing Mailroom graphic by Jeremy Greene

by Chaim Mattis Keller

First…a note that made our day!

Holy frickin' JSA!!!!

I…I'm SPEECHLESS!!!! I just viewed your JSA "movie" after accidentally finding your site!!! Holy S***!! That was really amazing guys!! Man!! Why haven't you posted this up on the DC boards so MORE people can enjoy it???? Anyway..what I would pay to see the NEW team!!! I'd LOVE to hear more about whoever made it!!

Steve Sadowski, Artist on JSA

Steven Conroy, movie author, had this to say when he read Steve's note:

This is freakin great !!!! I am going out to get drunk !!!!

Well, after all those server troubles…miss us?

From: Andy (Aitchmoon@aol.com) Subject: Great you're back Hi, Just a quick note to say how much I enjoy this site and as it says above it's great you're back. Andy

You like us! You really like us!

Some comments on the Cancelled Comics Cavalcade, three issues ago…

From: C.L. Bishop (CLBishop2@aol.com)

Subject: About the Cancelled Comics Timeline

Hey, Fanzing,

I just wanted to let you know that I absolutely loved the timeline of the DC Implosion! I recently decided to hunt down an old favorite of mine in back issue bins- Firestorm- and was completely dismayed to find that my local shop only had the first five issues. If not for you guys, I might have never realized that there were only five in that run. Thanks.

Also, I found some short-lived gems in this list, which I now want to read, because I know their runs were short, and should be relatively easy to find. Karate Kid and Claw the Unconquered spring to mind.

Any chance of more timelines like this one? The information provided was awesome, and answered some questions I've had about certain series. Again, thanks for the timeline, and here's hoping for more of this sort of thing in the future.

Sincerely,

C.L. Bishop

CLBishop2@aol.com

The article's author, David R. Black, replies:

Thanks for the great letter, C.L. Regarding your request for more timelines, I'm currently working on a publishing timeline of the Warlord series and all of the Warlord's DCU appearances. Hopefully, it will see print in the "Women & Minorities" issue (along with profiles of most of the series' cast).

As for other timelines, I don't have anything planned, but I'm open to suggestions. What time period would you like to see? What would be most helpful or interesting to you? Drop Fanzing a line, and let us know!

David R. Black

From: C.L. Bishop (CLBishop2@aol.com)

Subject: Correction to DC Implosion Timeline

Fanzing,

I've written once already, praising your excellent timeline on the DC Implosion. My praise stands, but I put the timeline to work, checking my local comic shop for back issues of some of the imploded titles, and I found one discrepancy. The timeline lists Karate Kid as being cancelled with issue #12. I found issue #15 in the back issue bin, and the letters page proclaims that to be the last issue, though the story is continued to Kamandi #58, which was itself cancelled with issue #59, as you'd said. Man, Karate Kid comes back from the past and just screws everything up, doesn't he?

Just thought you'd want to know.

Thanks,

C.L. Bishop

I can't believe I didn't catch that one! I'm the compiler of the hypertext Legion of Super-Heroes Reference File, which includes full data on all 15 issues of the Karate Kid series, and I guess I overlooked that bit. Good spotting, C. L.!

Something from our Starman issue…

From: gary ancheta (gsanchet@hotmail.com)

Subject: comment David R. Black's article about "David Knight: The Pre-Robinson yrs"

fanzing,

I really liked the article that detailed the history of David Knight before Jack took over the role of starman, but I found a large error in something David Black wrote in his article:

"So how much of this story is still in continuity? Well, probably not much of it. The Mist's deceptive relationship with David could have happened (but I doubt it), and Mist's evolution into Nimbus has thankfully been ignored. David's team up with Will Payton has been ret-conned away as well. Although we're never explicitly told how long David was Starman before being killed, it's generally implied to be only a few days"

The story with Will Payton was still in continuity when last I checked. David makes comments about it in the zero issue of Starman about his encounter with Payton and that he has taken over the role of Starman "again" because of his need to be a hero. Later, in the Payton "Times Past" issue, we have Shade narrating the encounter with Will Payton and David Knight, with David acting like a jerk because Payton took the Starman name. Finally, we have David in the annual talking to his lady-love about how he needs to be a hero to fullfill his father's wishes and to make up for past mistakes (which, I kinda assumed, that he meant the time he spent apart from his father after he blew up at him and his accidental teamup with the Mist).

Robinson has been pretty keen at not ignoring ANY Starman history, no matter how small. That's why there is a Starman of 1951 running around in the book(which, in 1951, was originally Batman who took on the role of Starman when he became irrationally afraid of Bats).

And as for David not telling Payton about his brother, that's probably because David didn't really like his brother and that he wasn't worth mentioning. Remember, this was during Jack's "punk" phase, where he was just a general ass to begin with. I think David and Jack's name were in the "who's who" issues, but I'm not sure.

All in all, I enjoyed the recap of David-as-Starman and I'm envious that David found those issues.

gary

Mail continues to pour in about our movie section…

From: EV1219@aol.com

Subject: Cineplex Help

Hey FANZING!

I'd just like to start by saying I love your sight and am a loyal reader. I recently started downloading some of the stuff you have on your site. The font package works like a charm but I have a few questions/comments about the cineplex downloads. By the way, my Quicktime works fine and I dont think that is the problem.

On the individual download pages, the stills dont match the movie you get when you hit the link.

Second, on some (JLA, JSA preview) the video is infested with purple and green pixels that arent supposed to be there that keep jumping around the screen.

The Superman Reborn video is just sound and no picture the screen just says "Downloaded from Fanzing"

Also, I dont know if it is supposed to be that way, but in the Crisis video there are black vertical lines on the picture.

JLI has no picture.

Please Help me out.

Your Fan,

Manny

Our movie-maker, Steve, replies:

Hey Manny,

Sorry to hear about the trouble you are having it sounds like you either need the correct codec for the files or try re-downloading the zip files.

You could also make sure you have the latest verison of Quicktime and the Media Tools pack for mediaplayer.

With the Superman reborn one try playing it in Windows Media player because it sounds like you don't have the correct video codec to play it.

Hope this helps

Steve

And finally, some very, very old business…

From: Ted Bragg (tedbragg@yahoo.com)

Subject: Old format better?

Hiya Michael!

I was flipping through the old (the REALLY old!) Fanzings, and noticed the ones that used the large GIF files, and imagemaps, loaded 10 to 12 times FASTER than the new ones.

Even on my DSL connection, the difference is striking. And just for kicks, I tried loading the page over a standard (actually, sub-standard…) AOL connection.

Very fast load times. The server has less connect/disconnect/confirm messages to dish out, which sped things up alot. Even on AOL.

During peak lunch hour.

Anyway, I was wondering why the shift from the freeform gif/imagemap to the HTML/image setup? Sure, the pages are less in size somewhat, but look at what you miss out on in formating, design, and well…

Stuck with HTML formatting. I'll be honest: I think it pales compared to the old GIF/map setup. time consuming YES, definately, and you probably had extra help on those (noticed some pages had a different 'feel' to them from the others…)

The older Fanzings looked like a fanzine. The new format looks more like a website. Part of the charm of the early Fanzings, at least to me, is the magazine look.

Any plans to return to that format? Any specials in the works using gif-maps?

TTYL!

Ted

Our Editor, Michael Hutchison, replies…

Well, the old format wasn't by me…it was by the previous editor.

Personally, I HATED that format. The articles were much shorter due to the GIF format, and long stories were almost impossible. Add to that, they did NOT pop up fast when we were on the old 33.6 modems back in 1998.

Plus, you've got the many problems of image text. Visually impaired users utilize computer "readers" to turn text into audio narration, which is (incidentally) why web pages need to use descriptions for images. And what if you think the font is too small, or you don't like the fancy font that I used? If the page is an image, you're stuck. If the page is text, you can use your browser to enlarge (or shrink) the text to the desired size, or you can read it in your preferred font.

And how is a search engine to catalog the words on a page if they're a solid image?

As for why a lot of text and coding with a few images would render SLOWER than the old GIFs…I must admit, I'm a bit surprised at that. If I had to guess, it's probably a combination of the much larger articles and the rendering of the Server-Side Includes and other page components. Still, I shouldn't think it would take too long.

So, we won't be going back to the days of all-GIF pages. That doesn't mean that the layout suffers too much. With the Fanzing fontpack, stylesheets and the proper coding, pages can be quite attractive in layout…at least, in theory. I don't profess to be the world's greatest design artiste. More to the point, until the vast majority of our readers have CSS-capable browsers (in other words, when Netscape pulls its thumb out and gets with the times), I have to refrain from some of the truly beautiful work that can be done with CSS. Using layers (which don't work in all browsers yet), it's possible to achieve much of the graphic control that was done in the old GIF format.

Michael Hutchison

In addition to our esteemed editor's concerns over the .GIF pages, I'd like to throw in a few more advantages of the current format: Cut-and-paste ability. Quicker printing, and, on many of the pages, better quality if you don't have a color printer. More handy table-of-contents.

When I'm not at work, I use a 28.8 modem, and the difference is profound. I'm very happy that Michael is working hard to incorporate the latest features of HTML and modern browsers and internet tools into this fanzine. Sticking with something as static as the old format would have made growth and expansion extremely difficult, if not impossible.

And that's the mail for this month! Before I sign off, I'm going to risk giving myself extra work to urge you readers: If you like what you see here, let us know! Feedback encourages our good writers to continue. And if you don't like what you see, let us know…constructive criticism encourages improvement! Your feedback, both here and in our forum, is important to us. This is a fan magazine, and all forms of fan participation are welcome!

Letters Editor Chaim Mattis Keller, aka Legion-Reference-File Lad, is a computer programmer who lives in New York City with his wife and four children.

 
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This piece is 2000 by Chaim Mattis Keller.
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DC characters are used here in fan art and fiction in accordance with their generous "fair use" policies.

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