Friday, June 27, 2014

Mini-Reviews Round 42

I forgot to mention this earlier, but there was another minific contest which I bestirred myself enough to enter last weekend; you can see and vote for the entries here--the former indefinitely, the latter through this weekend.  Still, less than 15,000 words isn't really that much, especially when you consider that I'll be concurrently bulling my way through all 180,000-odd words of The Irony of Applejack.  If you're looking for something else to read, though (jeez, there's just no pleasing you), click on down below the break to see my short thoughts on a few recent fics I've read.

A Hell of a Time, by Aragon

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  A look at how Celestia, Luna, and Cadence passed the time during their brief imprisonment by Tirek.  It turns out it was a remarkably snarky yet pain-filled episode.

A few thoughts:  I would describe this fic as one really great, really funny idea--that Twilight uses violence to solve all her problems, and Celestia is in denial about this--preceded by a bunch of physical comedy, random gags, and running jokes of variable quality.  While the first two-thirds of the fic was often entertaining, it wasn't until towards the end that the story gained focus as talk turned to Twilight, the rest feeling like a super-long setup more than anything else.

Recommendation:  If you like humor based on character assassination and gags repeated so often that they go from funny to repetitive and back around the horn to funny again, this is definitely worth checking out.

It Ain't Easy Being Pinkie, by Blueshift

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  The breezies piloting reconnaissance/war vehicle "Pinkie Pie," and their ongoing mission of bee-harassment.

A few thoughts:  I'm having a lot of trouble thinking of anything to say about this more enlightening than "It's a Blueshift comedy."  It's random, wacky, over-the-top, and takes itself seriously despite, or perhaps because of, its extreme silliness.  It also has breezies, which I kind of like despite despising the way their episode ended.

Recommendation:  If you like Blueshiftian comedies, this is definitely one.  If you don't... this still definitely is one, so I guess don't read it?

Discord's Day, by SpinelStride

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  Discord needs an outlet for his chaos, and his friends come up with a novel idea: let him take over Equestria again, but for only a single day each year.

A few thoughts:  There are a lot of individual things I liked about this story.  The ending is sweet, what Discord does on his day is interesting, especially when Dash explains the logic behind it, and there's a mild but persistent humor to the whole story.  But the characterization of Discord here doesn't really work for me; he's far too static and predictable, to the point where... well, to the point where Dash can explain what he does this--and every--year in just a few paragraphs.  He comes across more as generically but mildly malevolent than particularly chaotic.

Recommendation:  If you don't mind a Discord more interested in annoying people than in chaos and randomness, there are a few interesting ideas here.


  1. Okay, I think Aragon has finally gotten all of this reviews. :B The system can be broken!

    Point of discussion: am I the only person who gets confused by the existences of Aragon, Alaborn and Abalidoth?

  2. Okay, yes, I have the nagging feeling that I should have learned a lesson out of this whole reviewing cycle I've been through, but I'm completely blank. So yeah, thanks for the review! Totally made my day (again).

    Also, I've never heard of Alaborn and Abalidoth, but I can see how one would get confused. We should hang out so we can be called the Triple A.

  3. Word of the Day: Blueshiftian.
    I love how that's a thing.