In the editorial, titled More Questions, More Answers, Editor Stephen Theaker explains the lateness of this month’s issue, knowing full well he is a busy man with a lot of fiction on his plate, so to speak. He also writes reviews for Interzone and Black Static in more detail which must take up more of his time and while others might worry that this issue might be the last Theaker’s, we know there will be more. In More Questions, More Answers, Stephen answers many about this particular issue. There is the possibility of a summer issue and perhaps more issues of Theaker’s per year as there has been so much fiction sent in. We start this issue with six stories; Bound for Glory by Ellen Ashley, The Guidance Counsellor by SJ Hoskins, Tether by A Katherine Black, To Ashes, Dust by Tim Major, Yttrium 2 by Douglas Thompson and Regression by Libby Heiley.
I don’t know if anyone else has noticed with this issue, but some of the stories have the theme of death in them. Death comes in the form of a man visiting a man in a household in The Guidance Counsellor, while in Regression, it is the death of humanity and in To Ashes, Dust, the death of a man’s father. There is only Tether and Yttrium 2 that differ from this theme. Sometimes Theaker’s has an article between the stories and reviews section, here Frakkin Toasters: The Language of Battlestar Galactica rears its head with Jerry Randall taking us through the language used in the ’78 to ’79 series and the 2004 to 2009 update. As a newcomer to the series, or one who remembers the original, you might have forgot the lingo and need reminding how interesting it seemed as part of TV nostalgia. If you are new to it, you might want to take a look at the series to see what all the fuss was about; and even find out what daggit or galmonging and feldercarb is – enjoy.
The Quarterly Review is from various sources this month; Douglas J. Ogurek, Rafe McGregor, Jacob Edwards and the infamous Stephen Theaker. Here audio books, books and movies are given the critical treatment starting with the audio book of John Wyndham’s BBC Radio Drama Collection with six full cast dramatizations of The Day of the Triffids, The Kraken Wakes, The Chrysalids, Survival, The Midwich Cuckoos and Chocky. This one gets the thumbs-up from Stephen, but Jacob Edwards shares a different view of Pawn: A Chronicle of the Sybil’s War by Timothy Zahn who expected more from the man who penned a lot of Star Wars tie-in novels during the ‘90s.
When we get to the film reviews, there are a few chosen ones released last year starting in order of importance with Blade Runner 2045. Harrison Ford reprises his role as replicant cop, Deckard and Rafe McGregor has a lot to say on the subject of the various cuts of the original movie and how this new one fits into the franchise. Douglas J. Ogurek’s review of Geostorm is a reminder of other disaster movies like 2012 and The Day After Tomorrow, saying the movie had a mixed reception from critics as to Gerard Butler’s performance, but that doesn’t stop Douglas from giving us his take on it. Douglas again proves he is honest and enthusiastic with his review of Justice League where 5 super heroes in the DC universe (and a sixth one if he will join them) but it is Douglas’s review of the wonderful (best movie of 2017) Thor: Ragnarok that had me in stitches as well as agreeing with him about how good the movie was.
In Notes, Stephen Theaker has his Also Received, But Not Yet Reviewed section where he mentions new books he plans to review for the next issue of Theaker’s and this coming issue will be an all-retro Theaker issue of previous articles and stories. What I will say is I hope Theaker’s continues to be as readable and content-filled as ever with its triple helping of articles, fiction and reviews. Theaker’s is a publication you can’t keep down in my opinion and one I look forward to reading in the future.