Friday, March 19, 2010

Starlog Internet Project: Starlog #22, May 1979: Pretending We Like Moonraker

The expansion of the Starlog world continues, even as the page-count decreases. The newest Photo Guidebook is released, Special Effects (probably the most successful in the series, because Starlog eventually published a total of five of them) and its line of SF poster magazines continues to grow. Meanwhile, the page count for the issue drops eight from last month, and for much of the next decade the magazine would bounce between 68 and 76 pages, except for occasional special issues (anniversary issues, review specials, etc.). Damned inflation!

Starlog #22
68 pages (including covers)
Cover price: $1.95

The SF films of 1979 are previewed in this issue, so there are lots of short articles checking in on the movies, some of which have become classics today. The main place of pride on the cover, though, is given to the James Bond SF entry Moonraker, which is a classic of cheese, but not fantastic filmmaking.

Kerry O'Quinn kicks things off in his From the Bridge column by talking about how a passion for science fiction in young people is a great thing, and he has a great response for a mother worried about her son's obsession. Letters in the Communications pages include background on Lost in Space, high hopes for The Martian Chronicles, conflicting reactions to Superman, and more. Short news in Log Entries includes insight into Star Trek -- The Motion Picture's only outdoors set, an advance SFX shot from Supertrain, a revival of Marvel Comics' Weirdworld, a preview of Time After Time, and more. Robert Martin gets his first Starlog byline with a preview of the James Bond flick Moonraker; Battlestar Galactica's Lorne Greene (Commander Adama) is interviewed by Barbara Lewis; Lewis also interviews Noah "Boxey" Hathaway ("I Want to Direct"); wait, it's more Barbara Lewis, who also brings us an interview with Alien's Veronica Cartwright; Susan Sackett's Star Trek Report notes the end of principal filming on the motion picture (she writes, "Speaking of sets, things are looking good for at least one sequel movie, since all of the valuable sets have been stored on Stage 9." Must have missed that sequel.).

David Gerrold's State of the Art discusses the coveted Hugo Award; David Hutchison displays some aliens' masks from the Star Trek movie; Richard Meyers interviews space artist Don Maitz, whose great paintings remind me of John Berkey's work; Interplanetary Excursions, Inc., visits "The Polar Dunes of Mars"; Gerry Anderson's Space Report answers readers' questions; Lem Pitkin previews Brave New World; Tom von McDonoughkin (I think we can assume that's a pseudonym) writes "Statues of the Gods," a von Daniken parody; Richard Meyers previews The Vortex; Berthe Roegger previews The Shape of Things to Come, the sequel/remake of Things to Come; the SFX section focuses on careers in special effects, with Paul Mandell looking at model animators; David Houston's Visions column looks at "The Science Fiction of Ayn Rand" and is illustrated by the great Boris Vallejo; and, last but not least, editor Howard Zimmerman's Lastword defends the inclusion in Starlog of articles on things besides SF films and TV productions.
"Show me a kid who wants to spend his allowance for a mask, a model, or a good SF magazine or movie, and I will show you a kid who is probably on the right track. An interest in science fiction doesn't automatically mean that a young person is brilliant or morally strong or creatively promising, but it does mean that the kid is attracted to excitement, adventure, imagination, and a positive attitude toward the future."
--Kerry O'Quinn, publisher, From the Bridge
To view previous Starlog Archive issues, click on "Starlog Internet Archive Project" in the keywords below.
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