Thursday, 3 July 2008

Come in Number Twelve, Your Time is Up!

Matt Kamstra had stepped down as Editor of RTP! with the completion of issue 11 in April 2002. Only a month later both Matt and I were winging our way to Osaka, Japan where we both planned on staying for at least six months. For a fanzine that had only just managed to haul itself out of a two year hiatus this could have proved to be a huge complication. Luckily I was taking my then year old G4 Titanium PowerBook with me on the trip and would be able to edit the fanzine with it. Whatever role Matt might have taken in a sort of advisory capacity as I edited RTP! in Japan while have to remain unknown. After only a month there, Matt elected to return to New Zealand while I stuck it out for what eventually would be almost a year.

Issue 12 was very much an attempt at clearing the decks of older material, hence much of the issue was illustrated by odd pictures from Peter Adamson that didn't match the written material, especially in the case of the interview with Jeff Stone. This also explains why this final installment of "The Scope" (Jeff's reviews column) covered books from some time back. Also featuring was my latest attempt at a comic, this time in a vaguely manga style, entitled The Construct that the Doctor Built. This was a re-working of an idea I'd intially had back in 1998 as an anniversary story before replacing it with the Christmas-set Myhrr. The issue also marked the final appearance of Graham Muir's comic creations, Saucer and Birdy seeing off the Daleks.

And my first editorial as a solo editor:
So here we are again.
Another issue that combines all the subtlety of a sledgehammer with the wit of a drunken conversation.
In the four and a bit years that RTP! has traversed the line between bad and extremely bad taste, in the search for that something extra to give our readers, we have brought you the highs of the “Update” column, where we have revealed to the world the reality that is Matt’s inability to spell check. And we have brought you the lows of straight out plagiarism and wholesale theft of other peoples’ good ideas in the form of Pulp Who and others.
What does this say about RTP!? I like to think of RTP! as an expression of our enjoyment of that little known sci-fi series Doctor Who. So what if the effects were dodgy, the acting painfully awful and the scripting something left to be desired. The contents of RTP! have always struck me as a fresh and playful exploration of our continuing fascination with the series, one that doesn’t shy away from the series faults and instead builds them up as further reasons to enjoy the programme.
And the survival of RTP! is a testament to that enjoyment. The fanzine has embraced some of the most outlandish aspects of the series and the surrounding wasteland that is the public arena. We haven’t shied away from interpreting and expanding upon such elements as absurd villains and monsters, the never ending mill of fan rumour, public perception of the series and its fans, as well as the existence of this very fanzine itself. We have gloried in beating the series to death in all its forms because we know that as long as we continue to enjoy the series it will survive all that we can throw at it.
It is now the second half of 2002 and in less than eighteen months the series celebrates its 40th anniversary. As per usual rumours abound about the series making a comeback. It is also RTP!’s 5th anniversary in October and it has made a comeback. What does this mean? Well, it proves once and for all that Matt Kamstra, even if he is a very, very lazy bastard, can make good on his promises better than the Beeb. Make of that what you will ...

- Alexander Ballingall
Looking forward to beating his head against a brick wall ...
Being Guff Malkovich:

Published: September 2002
Editor: Alexander Ballingall
RTP! Logo Design: Peter & Bridget Adamson
Front Cover: Graham Muir
Back Cover: Peter Adamson
Internal Artwork: Peter Adamson, Alexander Ballingall
Letters: Peter Adamson, Alden Bates, Jamas Enright, David Ronayne, Jeff Stone
Page Count: 52
Print Run: 30
Price: NZ$3

~ Contents ~
  • [01] COVER
  • [02] CONTENTS
  • [03] EDITORIAL
  • [04] UPDATE
  • [05] The BOOTCUPBOARD [Letters]
  • [08] Newspaper clippings
  • [09] REVIEWS: The Scope [Reviews of PDAs & EDAs]
  • [15] COMIC: The Construct that the Doctor Built
  • [29] A Very Cabbage Retrospective
  • [31] CARTOON: I was a Doctor Who Vegetable!
  • [32] INTERVIEW: Modern Art [Jeff Stone]
  • [38] A Minute in the Life of rec.arts.drwho
  • [39] Doctor Who Bullsh*t: Series Revival Rumour Generator
  • [42] CARTOON: Saucer + Birdy—In 'The Power of a Dalek or Two'
  • [44] FICTION: The Red Menace [part 7 of 8]
  • [52] COVER