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Pony Stories 402

03 May

Turns out you people aren’t just bored with no lives. FimFiction apparently counts me looking at my own blogposts. So the 3-4 views that show up are just me checking to make sure everything is right and adding the links back and forth for the previous/next bits. Watched The Avengers last night (the first one) and hopefully going to see the new one tonight. Every time I see the first one I become more convinced that Loki was under mental influence and/or control. It just fits so well and is the only thing that explains some of his tactics and dialogue. Also, I still think that all the bad guys falling down dead at the end makes sense. It was a slave army. Of course there would be something in place to kill them if they lost contact with the central command nexus (or whatever).

Big Master Review List stats: Authors: [2190], Stories [5016], Total Reviews: [8003]

  • A&E: The Case of the Obsessive Compulsive Disorderer by Doccular42
  • Fated to be a monster by Rated Ponystar
  • Twilight Sparkle of the Royal Guard by King of Beggars
  • Princess Luna’s Academy of the Arts and Sciences by Distaff Pope

A&E: The Case of the Obsessive Compulsive Disorderer by Doccular42

I liked it. Was fun and could easily be an episode of the show. Or an episode of a detective spin-off anyway. Had the right mix of silly and action. Well, 90% of it was show quality. The epilogue decided to make a sharp ninety degree right turn to give us character development via backstory trauma and terrible blackmail or something. It was done well and gave their characters depth, but man was it such a change in tone that I almost have whiplash. Do want to see if there are more stories with these characters though.

Fated to be a monster by Rated Ponystar

Brief little character study of Spike. Functional, actually pretty good, but felt as bit flat. Guess it was because there wasn’t really any tension or buildup. Still, if you are looking for a little Spike centric story you can do a lot worse than this.

Twilight Sparkle of the Royal Guard by King of Beggars

I need to read more adventure ponyfics. I enjoy the good ones a lot, such as this one. A look at what could have been if Twilight and Shining had swapped lives. Shining Armor as Princess Celestia’s student and Twilight Sparkle as a royal guard. I like how it is a mirror image, but I can see how the little details would be different if Shining had been the guard present. Or how Spike is about a decade older because it was Shining who hatched him.

I do like how Twilight as a guard is more social simply because the books she reads on military strategy cover the importance of soldiers helping each other and forming bonds through socializing and how that makes better military units. So she’s still not a pony that knows everypony, but she isn’t a huge shut-in either.

On top of that, had some cool worldbuilding for Diamond Dogs and dream magic, and all of the princesses had good characterizations. This was far too short and now I’m waiting impatiently for the author to finish writing the sequel that has only just started.


 

Princess Luna’s Academy of the Arts and Sciences by Distaff Pope

The cutesy picture and fluffy description are lies! Don’t believe them!

Okay, this review is going to be a bit spoiler-riffic. Mostly because I think knowing more about the story going into it is a good thing. It’s… Ugh. I haven’t had a story twist me up this emotionally in forever. All ick and depressed and actually having physical reactions to all the ick. So, um, good work on the author’s part? Not easy getting an emotional reaction from a reader and this was a really strong one. Just wish it was a good one instead of… yeah, ick is about what I am going to use. I probably should have stopped reading about 2/3rds the way through. Not because it’s bad, but because it was so dark. Not the kind of dark that’s the villain mind-controls the protagonist so she eats her own children. It’s the kind of dark where a good half of the story is taking a sweet character and pouring her down the drain bit by bit until she’s a cruel sociopath, and making it feel almost natural. It wasn’t a big switch at any point. Just little steps that were mostly understandable and in a lot of stories would be the sign of things getting bad right before the optimistic turn that pulls the character out of the darkness. That second part never happens in this story. Just keeps getting poured down the drain.

It was really brutal. Also pretty much the opposite of everything the show stands for. Heck, Fallout: Equestria was more true to the show than this story. Heck… I’d say that Project: Horizons was less dark and more true to the show than this story is. Mostly because I tend to consider slow unstoppable psychological self-destruction to be darker than just about everything else. So I give this story a plus on being well-written, and several minuses for no pony in feel or theme, and making me feel utterly horrible even though I wanted to know how it ended badly enough that I kept reading.

So, yeah, recommended if you really want to see a perfectly characterized happy-go-lucky Sweetie Belle slowly dissolve into a cruel manipulative sociopath one tiny step at a time, all from her perspective so you can see and empathize exactly the fears and self-delusions that dragged her down. If not, run away! There isn’t even a happy ending. There is a tiny, vague, maybe-if-you-want possibility of a happy ending. Fair warning, the first part of the story is pretty much standard fluffy slice-of-life coming-of-age CMC stuff. I was fooled too when I was getting into it. The author says there is a happy ending coming and claims to be writing a sequel. So I’d recommend waiting until that one is done before starting on this. Unless, as mentioned before, you want to read a story that’s a extrapolation of Sweetie Belle’s character and flaws down the worst possible path it could go. Then jump right in.

I need to read something fluffy and happy to regain my emotional equilibrium. Oh, and the story Frequency? You are totally forgiven for the minor discomfort your ending put me through.

Yeah, something light and fluffy like Entertain Them or Guide Them. I’m honestly only half-kidding about that.

The actual recovery stories I consumed for emotional recovery:
The Mare Behind the Mare by Eakin
Regarding The Need for Sex Education by GaPJaxie
Twilight Sparkle Makes a Cup of Tea by GhostOfHeraclitus
Whom the Princesses Would Destroy… by GhostOfHeraclitus
Obiter Dicta by GhostOfHeraclitus

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7 Comments

Posted by on May 3, 2015 in Ponies, Reading 2015, Reviews

 

7 responses to “Pony Stories 402

  1. iisawiisaw

    May 3, 2015 at 2:24 pm

    Those “recovery” stories are among some of my top favorites! TSotRG is also a great one.

    I’m with you; more good adventure stories are needed.

     
    • Griffin

      May 3, 2015 at 2:49 pm

      Yeah, I went back to some of my favorites for that.

       
  2. Logan

    May 4, 2015 at 2:31 pm

    A story with “A&E” in the title illustrates the perils of a multinational audience! Here in the UK, it means “Accident & Emergency”, the officially outdated but still almost universal term for a hospital’s Emergency Department…

     
    • Griffin

      May 4, 2015 at 7:05 pm

      Huh. Learn something new every day I suppose. Didn’t know that.

       
      • Logan

        May 6, 2015 at 9:38 pm

        Yep. The TV show you may know as 24 Hours in the ER was actually first shown in the UK as 24 Hours in A&E.

         
  3. Distaff Pope

    January 23, 2017 at 12:19 pm

    Hey there, just saw this review of what’s now The Unbearable Lightness, and I was wondering if you had any plans or intentions to review the sequel work Your Own Worst Enemy. If The Unbearable Lightness is Sweetie’s slow descent into darkness, YOWE is her brutal struggle to get back into the light. Anyways, just thought I’d let you know that The Unbearable Lightness was never intended to be a stand alone, but the first part in a duology.

     
    • Griffin

      January 24, 2017 at 3:06 am

      Already read it and pretty sure my review/reaction to it is already up. Just haven’t gotten it on the big master review list yet.

       

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