Magazine: InterGalactic Medicine Show #47


Orson Scott Card’s InterGalactic Medicine Show, issue 47

The department took away my canine partner, my badge, and my gun, but I’m still going to take down Talking Chicken. I leave my car by the highway and walk, baseball bat over my shoulder. I ignore the signs saying “Rainbow Farms employees only”.

The huge metal barn is the perfect place for Talking Chicken to hide out; I don’t know why I didn’t realize it before. I kick in the door, but don’t see the hundreds of chickens I was expecting — there are thousands of chickens.

I feel the blood pounding in my head, the amping up before any combat situation. I roar at the chickens, “You thought Colonel Sanders was bad? Get ready for ME!” Wading into the sea of poultry, I swing my bat left and right, left and right, sending birds and feathers flying. I swing until my arms are rubbery from exhaustion, but I’m still facing almost as many chickens as when I started.

The barn echoes with a thundering boom from behind me, and I spin to face an old lady holding a shotgun.

“Git away from my chikkins.”

I drop my bat and clap my hands over my ears, shrieking. “They’re talking! Can’t you hear them talking?”

Short Stories

Fixe by KC Norton A steampunk story with an underwater theme. There was some awkward wording at the beginning, but I either got used to it, or it ceased.

What the Blood Bog Takes by Barbara Barnett This human sacrifice story had some creepy elements, but the ending somehow left me unsatisfied.

I Was Her Monster by Jessi Jackson A lesbian schoolgirl is protected from a bigger lesbian by her guardian monster.

The Debugging of Martin Jarreau by Rahul Kanakia Everyone has a computer “life coach” in their head.

Intertwined by Kate O’Connor If taking LSD let you navigate a starship, this story would describe your experience.

The Topaz Marquise by Fran Wilde This story is described as “vintage”, although it’s from 2014. A jeweler buys a cursed gemstone.

Some nice men in white coats offer to let me crash at their place for a while. They promise there are no talking chickens there.

InterGalactic Medicine Show (often abbreviated IGMS) is an online/e-reader magazine only, and there are several issues (including the one I reviewed) available for free viewing. I chose to read issue 47 instead of the “sample” issue, because I was afraid the best stories had been picked for the sample, making it more equivalent to a ‘best of’ anthology than to the other magazines in my quest.

If you like what you read in the samples, IGMS is attractively priced: $15 gets you the next six issues, plus access to every previous issue in the history of the magazine. I will probably go back and read the other free issues at some point, but for now, IGMS is not the magazine to end my quest.


  1. It’s the last para that sells it – “Some nice men in white coats offer to let me crash at their place… there are no talking chickens there.” 😀

    1. I’m glad you liked it. Sometimes I forget the wrap-up paragraph…

  2. Okay, I’m becoming as hooked on the quest for talking chicken as your hunt for a great magazine. Sounds like this one had more promise.

    1. There will be at least one more talking chicken episode…

      I’ll post a scorecard/ranking at the end of the quest. I can’t remember where this one fell, but I’m pretty sure it’s not in the top three.

  3. How was “I Was Her Monster.” Guardian monsters sounds like an interesting idea for a story.

    1. It’s an average story. The idea is that every child has a guardian monster, but the monsters fade away as the children get older. The main character’s monster stayed around longer, to the disapproval of the adults and possibly the other kids.

      Some of the female-female issues seemed out of place to me since the characters were so young.

  4. I subscribe to IGMS, and have done for a while and I think this is a pretty fair appraisal of the issue (the best, for me, the cult-rescue short ‘Intertwined’) and probably of IGMS as a whole. Whilst some stories stick, others are as described. Well done PDC.

    1. Thanks. As I said, I’ll probably read the other free issues when I’ve wrapped up my other magazine readings, although the number of magazines in my quest is now up around 18 or 19, and I have a phase II planned after that…

      Do you subscribe to any other magazine besides IGMS?

      1. Asimov, BSFA, Interzone… all well-known. Occasionally read others.

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