B7 COMPLEX #2 (multimedia)

Review By Betty Ragan

B7 COMPLEX #2 (gen, US, 1984, 100 pgs, ed. Deborah M. Walsh)

Note that this is actually the revised reprint edition of the zine. Apparently the original 1982 edition had slightly different contents, including an episode guide that didn't appear in the reprint. The stories are the same in both editions, though.

Overall, this was a decent, enjoyable zine. Long out of print, I assume, but definitely worth taking a look at if you can find a copy.


"Dioscuri" by Mary A. Fall: The _Liberator_ responds to a distress call from a Federation training facility whose complement of cadets has discovered that the Federation has something extremely unpleasant in store for them and has chosen to rebel. Of course, as always, it turns out to be a trap, but this time it's one that features both Travis and a disturbing face from Avon's past. An interesting story featuring a really great premise, good dialog, a strong showing from all the characters, and lots of Avon-angst. Unfortunately, the writing style, while grammatical and perfectly readable, is rather awkward and detracts quite a bit from the story's impact. (Note to aspiring writers: the word "said" is your friend. Really. Reading "Gan laughed, "Vila mourned," "Vila sighed," "Gan protested," etc., etc. used as dialog tags in the space of half a page is *really* distracting.)

"Good Clean Fun (part 1)" by Patricia Cash: Vila plays some practical jokes on Avon, and then has to endure the agony of waiting for Avon's wrath to descend upon him. Silly but fun, with some *very* amusing and memorable images.

"Split Infinitive" by Deborah M. Walsh: This is by far the longest story in the zine, but that's fine because, IMO, it's also the best. It's an "Ultraworld" AU in which Tarrant does mix up the tubes containing Avon and Cally's consciousnesses, leaving them stuck in each other's bodies. I've always liked this as a story concept, and this is a good treatment of it, albeit a somewhat dark one: both Avon and Cally suffer considerably from the experience, and the others aren't exactly having a happy time of it, either. The method they pursue to get themselves switched back again is very well thought out and believable, as is the answer to the question of who gets Cally's telepathy, making for a pretty satisfying story all the way around.

"Good Clean Fun (part 2)" by Patricia Cash: More silliness as Avon uses his considerable technical skills to extract his revenge on Vila.

"The Last Stone" by Mary A. Fall: Brief missing scene from "Terminal" as Avon goes down to look for Cally's body. Familiar territory, but not too badly done.


"Decision" by Linda M. Lanzi: A poem from Vila's POV as he contemplates leaving the rebel life for a nice, safe, boring planet. Excellent Vila-voice, and, unlike the majority of fan poetry (or even poetry in general, really) it works quite well for me, probably because there's no attempt to force it to rhyme.

"Reflection" by Elizabeth Carleton: Another poem, this one featuring Avon angsting over Anna. Not as good as the Vila one, IMO, but not bad, probably because it doesn't rhyme, either, but does display a pretty good feel for the rhythm of words.


Quite a bit of artwork in here, both illos for specific stories and a few stand-alone pieces. Artwork is by Robin Belyea, Mary D. Bloemker, Patricia Cash & Deborah M. Walsh. Some of it's not really to my taste, and some of it's quite good. There is an "art portfolio" section featuring portraits of several characters with relevant quotes from the show which is nicely done and attractively laid out.

Non-B7 content:

There is also a "Tomorrow People" story in here ("Rift" by Mary D. Bloemker), and the first part of a "Tomorrow People" episode guide, but not being a "Tomorrow People" fan, I can't really comment on those.


Editor: Deborah M. Walsh
Publisher: Moonrise Press (Malden, MA)
Date: Original edition: March 1982
Revised reprint edition: July 1984

B7 Fiction:
Mary A. Fall, "Dioscuri" (S1)
Patricia Cash, "Good Clean Fun, Part 1" (S2?; humor)
Deborah M. Walsh, "Split Infinitive" (S3; Alt-Ultraworld)
Patricia Cash, "Good Clean Fun, Part 2" (S2?; humor)
Mary A. Fall, "The Last Stone" (S4; Rescue; A/C death)

Non-B7 Fiction:
Mary D. Bloemker, "Rift" (The Tomorrow People)

Non Fiction:
The staff, "You are receiving this zine because..."
Deborah M. Walsh, "Scorpio Rising" (reprint edition only)
Mary M. Bloemker & Robin Belyea, "A Blake's 7 Portfolio-- Part 2" (portraits & calligraphed quotations)
Avon-Restal Security Systems ad (humor)
The staff, "Orac's key"
B7 episode guide (original edition only)
Tomorrow People episode guide (first series)
Calligraphed quotation from Dorian
"Episode Guide to This Issue" (first edition only)
"The Best of B7 Complex" ballot (in reprint only)

B7 poetry: Linda Lanzi, "Decision"
Elizabeth Carleton, "Reflection"

B7 art:
Deborah M. Walsh front c. "The Broad and the Bard" (A, So)
p. 39 A, C; illo for "Split"
p. 44 C, D; illo for "Split"
p. 47 A; illo for "Split"
p. 55 Ta
p. 58 V
p. 64 C,Ta,ocm; illo for "Split"
p. 73 illo for "Split"
p. 74 illo for "Split"
back c. B-J
Robin L. Belyea p. 5 A; illo for "Dioscuri"
p. 8 A,B,G; illo for "Dioscuri"
p. 10 V, B
p. 13 illo for "Dioscuri"
p. 16 J, C; illo for "Dioscuri"
p. 18 A; illo for "Dioscuri"
p. 36 Se (Art Portfolio)
p. 38 A
Pat Cash p. 27 V
p. 77 B
Mary D. Bloemker p. 30 J (Art Portfolio)
p. 32 V (Art Portfolio)
p. 34 So (Art Portfolio)

Non-B7 art:
Deborah M. Walsh p. 84 Tomorrow People
p. 87 Stephen Jameson
p. 90 illo for "Rift"
p. 95 illo for "Rift"
Mary D. Bloemker p. 98 Tomorrow Child

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Last updated on 24th of October 2001.