As a ’90s punk scene hangaround, I owned my share of “zines”, handmade and oft photocopied fan magazines. I even produced 3-4 issues of my own zine, Cool Pants (I know, I know…), while in early high school. However, with the increased use of the Internet in the past couple of decades, printed fan zines have all but disappeared.
Enter Grace Chan, Ryan Lambert mega fan, who decided it was time to bring back the fan zine in the form of I Heart Rudy, a tribute to Ryan Lambert’s badass Rudy persona from beloved ’80s horror comedy Monster Squad.
Grace, like many American 20 and 30 somethings, is a big fan of Monster Squad. Her love for the film was one of her primary motivations for taking on this fan zine project.
In part, I’m doing this project because you always hear about/from the men who are fans of Monster Squad, but seldom from the ladies. So, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity to compile all these female-centric stories of showing Rudy (and in turn, the movie) some love.
For those unfamiliar with the process of compiling a zine of this nature, Grace offered some insight on her process (above cover art by Joanna Beray).
I gathered stories from women who had crushes on their favorite bad ass Squad Member, and even reached out to Ryan Lambert for interview and a few photos of him for the zine.
Having the object of your fan zine appear directly in your fan zine is a pretty ambitious goal for the inaugural issue, but Grace accomplished this goal without having to recite an incantation in German or kicking a wolfman in the “nards” (you can read page one of the interview as it is printed in the zine by clicking here or scrolling to the end of this article). While this fantastic interview is the centerpiece of the issue, the stories she’d collected truly bring the zine to life.
I got many really awesome stories… there’s one girl who has Rudy and his crossbow tattooed on her leg, and named her 1st car after him. There’s another girl who told everyone Rudy was going to marry her when she grew up. And another one who was introduced to Monster Squad when she was 6 years old and would run up and hug the tv whenever Rudy came on the screen; Really cute stories that spark some sweet nostalgia. After all, we’ve all had those innocent and earnest crushes, at some early point in our lives.
Grace has high hopes for the future of this DIY project and is having a great time producing it. Nostalgia and retro fetish properties always have a market, it seems, so it’s no stretch to expect people to latch onto this fun piece of the ’80s.
This is an old school print zine, all the way! I wanted to make something tangible, that people can take with them. Back when Monster Squad came out, all we had were magazines to tell us about our favorite celebrities. I’m modeling the zine after those cheesy (but awesome) ’80s teeny-bopper magazines.
Here in LA, zines are having their day again. We had 2 Zine Festivals, one in Highland Park, one in Long Beach. And there’s always cool zines for sale at indie bookstores and comic shops.
The first run of the zine is sold out, but you can still order one for a few bucks (with a free Rudy pin). As you can see, Andre “Sean Crenshaw” Gower, the leader of the Squad, grabbed his copy at a local comic shop near him. He loves it so much, he even sleeps with it.
Before you run out and grab your own copy or begin compiling your own zine to encourage a new generation of worship for Fat Kid, Chunk, Romy, and/or Michelle, we leave you with a page from I Heart Rudy‘s interview with the man, the myth, the legend… Ryan “Rudy” Lambert. Anyone with a sweet tooth for nostalgia and kitsch will love this fanzine and everything it represents.
And if someone asks if you’ve heard of The Monster Squad or I Heart Rudy, you simply reply…
I’m in the god damned club, aren’t I?