Thursday, 11 September 2008

Baker's Dozen

At the time issue 13 was published I was still based in Osaka, Japan and would remain there for about another six months. The issue marked the last of the old material that Matt Kamstra had been hoarding and final instalment of Jeff Stone's The Red Menace which took up at least a good third of the issue. In this sense the issue marked the end of an era, the closure of the Matt and Wade Campbell's tenure. In another sense the issue marked a new beginning with a revamp of the interior layout and the arrival a new logo.

Issue 13 also marked the start of the third and final batch of Pulp Who comics, covering the final storyline of the film Pulp Fiction and long-time non-contributor to RTP! Phillip Gray was interviewed.

Language problems meant that the entire issue was printed on paper the same weight as the selected cover card (something that had plagued the previous issue as well). This would be the last issue printed in Japan as by the time issue 14 surfaced I was back in Godzone.

And the editorial:
Reincarnation, Regeneration, Rebirth

No, you aren't hallucinating. Another issue of Reverse the Polarity! is currently sitting in your hands begging to be cuddled and taken home to be read. The fanzine has weathered a two year dry spell and after a rocky start back onto the road with issues 11 and 12, I think it is safe to say that RTP! will be around for some time to come. After all, it's all about reincarnation, regeneration and rebirth.
RTP! is the reincarnation of the ill-fated fanzine attempt known as The Scrolls of Rassilon which Matt Kamstra and Wade Campbell attempted to foist onto the world in early 1997. The Scrolls of Rassilon never saw the light of day but RTP! did. It's early days were an attempt to find its' feet and carve a place out for itself in the New Zealand fanzine landscape, rather than become a clone of Telos. And I think that that fear of becoming a Telos clone goes a long way to explaining the rather unbecoming attitude towards the aforementioned fanzine that featured in RTP!. One that cast a shadow over those first four issues as Matt and Wade grappled with this conundrum. In the middle of 1998 Wade bowed out and the fanzine underwent a regeneration.
September 1998 through to June 1999 (issues 5 through 8) saw RTP! flower into a zine in its' own right and shake off any doubts about being Telos by another name. Part of this may be the fact that I (as new coeditor at that point) had never read Telos and therefore couldn't care less if RTP! resembled it in any way, shape or form. Hell, they are both New Zealand fanzines about Doctor Who. It would be impossible for them to be completely dissimilar. As a result of this regeneration and flowering people began to subscribe to the fanzine. The readership by 1999 had become evenly split between those in Christchurch and those who lived in the rest of New Zealand. It even picked up an overseas reader.
The feedback received during this period was generally good and despite some small problems RTP! continued to grow. People took the time to contribute something special for each issue. However it seems it was all too good to last. There was six months between issues 8 and 9 and things began to take longer and longer to come together for each issue. Things came to a head when I left for England in May 2000 after issue 10 was published. At which point news about the next issue became hard to come by and, as you all know, it eventually appeared that RTP! had ceased to be altogether.
Thank goodness for rebirth. For here we are, the third issue after the break and still gathering steam. But change, a complete rebirth, was needed to keep the fanzine moving away from the rut it was in. Many of the changes made to RTP! last issue were rather small and cosmetic. A general tightening up of the layout that was established in issue 10. With this issue however, and the arrival of a new logo curtesy of Peter & Bridget Adamson, it seemed appropriate to completely revamp the image of the entire fanzine. I don't think there is really any better way of showing that Reverse the Polarity! is back in the running once more."
- Alexander Ballingall
The Dark Guff:

Published: November 2002
A Doctor Who Fanzine launched by Matt Kamstra & Wade Campbell in October 1997
Editor: Alexander Ballingall
RTP! Logo Design: Peter & Bridget Adamson
Front Cover: Peter Adamson
Back Cover: David Ronayne
Internal Artwork: Peter Adamson, Alexander Ballingall, David Ronayne
Letters: Peter Adamson, Alden Bates, Jamas Enright, Jon Preddle, Paul Scoones
Page Count: 52
Print Run: 30
Price: NZ$3

~ Contents ~

  • [01] COVER
  • [02] CONTENTS
  • [03] The FIRST LAW of TIME
  • [04] The TARDIS MANUAL
  • [05] The BOOTCUPBOARD [Letters]
  • [09] COMIC: Pulp Who - The Master and Saucer Smith's Wife [part 1 of 3]
  • [18] FICTION: The Red Menace [part 8 of 8]
  • [36] INTERVIEW: The Importance of Being Phillip [Phillip J Gray]
  • [42] REVIEWS: The Virgin Publications [Reviews of NAs & MAs]
  • [46] Doctor Who Bullsh*t: The New & Improved Doctor Who Drinking Game
  • [48] REVIEW: The Scope [DVD review]
  • [49] Final Exam
  • [50] 30 Second Theory
  • [51] Poetry
  • [52] COVER

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