Indigo Panther

150 full-size pages or 250 digest-size
 

Includes color/b & w illustrations by Fox, Ana, Suse, Jackal, and Panther

 

Zine Information
 

Available From: Panther Pause Publishing

Contents/Description: 

 

From the publisher -

INDIGO PANTHER's pages contain exclusive stories that run the gamut through action, romance, mystery, suspense, and drama from authors including: Panther, Heuradys, Gina Jones, Chrys, Jackal, Wolf, Lisa, and Evanovich. Spectacular art, designed for each story's cover, in either color or black and white provided by artists including: Fox, Ana, Suse, Jackal, and Panther.

 

Price: N/A

Observations of a Slash Slut:
 

Review by: Lynn R lrein@blueridge.net

INDIGO PANTHER is 153 page zine in non-digest format with clear COMB binding, but the page count is very misleading.  There is a lot of "white space/blank space" in this zine.  One of the stories particularly contributed to this (The Derelict Ship).  There is anywhere from 3/4 to 1 1/4" spaces between paragraphs, and many, many paragraphs are lines of conversation (one line of conversation).  I suspect the real page count of the zine should have been about 75 pages if formatted like most zines.  The color art on the cover is by Panther, but unfortunately it is very difficult to make out that the art is a "panther" (it's actually clearer to see on this zine review website).  If not for the name, I actually thought the picture was of a black horse.  There is color art (some photo manips, some original) preceding each story, some of which are nice.  I like Suse's art for the poem "Soars," Ana & Jackal's art for "Derelict Ship", and Fox's art for "Blue on Blue."  Some of the photo manip art, if it was supposed to represent Jim and/or Blair, was not recognizable as such.  The art work by Panther and Fox for the story "Silver Lining" while very clear, led me to believe the story was going to be "Blair as an Elf" because he has such pointed ears, but this may be an actual pic of the actor.

The index page has no page numbers to guide the reader to stories.  It does contain information that I think should have been posted advertising the zine itself...pairings.  Let the buyer/reader beware that this zine has a lot of stories that aren't only J/B.  This may not matter to some people--it would have mattered to me.  Although "Only Human" by Chrys (35 pgs) ends up J/B, it starts with each of the characters with someone else.  "E-Male" by Jackal & Evan (6 pages) says it has multiple pairings (B/J, B/R, S/?) but who can tell because the story is to be continued and there isn't enough of the story to even tell the pairings.  "Silver Lining" by Fox (36 pgs & art says by Heuradys) is a Rafe/Blair story, also incomplete.  This was THE most aggravating thing about this "half-finished" zine---too many incomplete stories.  This may be OK for publishing on the net-- on lists and websites or even one TBC story in an ongoing series of zines that are published frequently (i.e. Come To Your Senses or Love & Guns series, and these zines don't do that).  It's not OK to put three stories which represent 1/3 of the page count as incomplete stories----it leaves the reader feeling cheated and unsatisfied.  In my opinion, $17.50(what I paid by pre-ordering) much less $20 (now listed as price) is too much to charge for what should be 75pg count of print with a third of it as incomplete.  I would have preferred for it to be formatted properly and the charge be commensurate with a smaller zine (although being honest, I wouldn't have bought it at all had I known what I know now about pairings and incompleteness).
 
The stories in the zine are diverse---BDSM, AU, SF included.  Readers with squicks towards the former, be warned (the zine doesn't) that "Only Human" falls into that category (I don't like them myself so won't comment on the story).  "The Derelict Ship" by Wolf (20 pgs)  is an AU slave rescue story, mostly PWP, enjoyable but totally distracting by all the white paper and spread out format.  "Silver Lining" by Heuradys has the most plot, but it has a pairing I don't like to read (those of you who like Blair/Rafe may really like the story though).  The writing is good, but the story stops at a critical spot incomplete.
 
The best story in the zine was also the one most disturbing (that's disturbing in a good way, it is very moving to read).  Gina Jones' "Blue on Blue" falls into the category of "apocalyptic" story.  To the story's credit, I was still thinking about this story 24 hours after reading it, including keeping me awake the evening I read it, no joke.  It may just be me though, because although I usually watch movies about this topic, they almost always leave me feeling disturbed.  I won't spoil the story, but it is thoughtfully written, sad, and hauntingly beautiful.  The love relationship between Jim and Blair is very evident, and the story paints images that don't easily leave the reader...a credit to the writer.
 
From this point on, the zine really looks as if it was put together with whatever the editor had that was left unfinished.  Honestly, I would have rather waited until the stories were completed and someone took the time to edit the zine.  All of the stories' format look like they were printed directly from a story list.  They do come with ratings (R, etc), and a personal comment from the author, usually requesting feedback, but no email addy to give it, not even one for the zine itself (although you will find it on this zine review website).  "Broken" by Lisa (25 pgs) has real promise as another good story, but ends after 4 chapters in a critical place.  Good indication of plotted story, unique characters, and a mystery to be solved.  If this had been a web story, I would have been back for more when it got finished.  "E-Male" is definitely the least complete, start of a SF story, not enough there to even comment on, more like a snippet than anything.  I don't usually care to see a lot of poetry in zines (just not my thing), but I found the art for the poem to be the most original (it looks like a watercolor) and creative in the zine, so I read the poem instead of skipping it as I usually do---it is a beautiful description of Jim and Blair's relationship.
 
Although there are a few positives that I pointed out in this review, I don't recommend buying the zine mostly for the incompleteness of the stories and value for price is just not there.  Too many stories leave the reader dissatisfied.  There were small parts that were enjoyable, but the overall problem left me feeling cheated about not knowing pairings and the TBC content.


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