Review of "Fortean Times"
Ciao Confessions - Every review of mine with an overall E rating, I've written whilst drunk and don't remember writing in the morning. Is that good or bad?
I started reading this monthly magazine many years back - my mum used to buy it on a regular basis, and I had a couple of favourite sections of the magazine I found amusing . Nowadays, I read it from cover to cover each month.The word Fortean comes from the name of Charles Fort , an avid collector of strange news stories, particularly relating to the paranormal . Fort had a strong disregard for religion and science, branding them to narrow minded to allow for a lot of occurences. Fort was fascinated by tales of UFOS, aliens, ghosts and alien big cats , as well as alternative cultures and societies.
The magazine is a mix of things - articles debunking conspiracy theories, stories on alien big cat sightings, urban myths, showers of tadpoles - all sorts of strange and crazy things can be found here .Some articles require a very open mind - such as articles discussing the existence of UFO's . Other articles are based on actual occurences , such as the showers of tadpoles, that while proven to have happened, can not be easily explained .
While the cover of the magazine is simple and uncluttered, usually a clear photograph with a big headline across the top and smaller headlines down the left hand side, the inside of the magazine can seem a little cluttered , with big stories running along the centre of the pages and smaller snippets lodged along the side .My favourite sections of the magazine are the strange death section (which I instantly flick to upon opening the magazine) detailing the crazy ways some people manage to die . For example, a mexican man was enjoying sexual relations with a chicken in a cave, when part of the cave collapsed, pinning both the chicken and him to the ground . Lovely stuff.
I also like the section that copies real news headlines that were perhaps unfortunately, but amusingly worded - for example 'Minister Quits Over Brown Smears' which brings to mind slightly soiled underpants, or the slight worrying 'Organ Pulled out of Vagina' which just boggles the mind .The larger articles in the magazine can cover some 4 pages on occasion, and are always well written and very balanced - the magazine doesn't, for example, attempt to convince you that aliens do or do not exist - it simply gives you the information and leaves you to make up your own mind .
Towards the back of the magazine are reviews of books , games and films , most of which are a little away from the mainstream. There are also a variety of advertisements for an assortment of products and companies - t shirts, jewellery, hydroponic supplies etc .Overall, I enjoy the magazine - the writing is clear and intelligent, whilst being easy to read . The photos, while occasionally being a bit gruesome, illustrate the articles well, and there is plenty to make me think, as well as make me laugh.
At 4.25, I feel its a good price for a monthly magazine , as it will keep me busy for a good few days as I read articles then spend some time thinking about them . For anyone with an interest in the paranormal, whether a believer or not, I recommend this magazine .I'll leave you with a short snippet from this months little 'Michael Jackson Conspiracies' section .
"Some bloggers suggested that President Ahmedinejad had Jackson killed in order to shift the world's gaze from the violent post-election clampdown in Iran . It certainly worked in terms of media both new and old, with everything from newspapers and TV to Twitter obsessing over the dead star to the exclusion of much else "Go buy it!
Product Information : Fortean Times
Manufacturer's product description
Listed on Ciao since: 06/08/2001