Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Mini-Reviews Round 81

It's been brought to my attention that, since I always make a point of reminding Americans to vote, I could stand to do the same for all you blokes across the pond.  Remember, Thursday is Election Day!  Get out there and exercise your constitutional--wait, what's that?  You don't have a constitution?  Well, go do whatever the Queen tells you to, I guess.

For everyone else, here are a few small reviews of smaller stories!  All below the break, as usual.




Rest in Chaos, by DannyJ

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  Discord's last will and testament, complete and unabridged.

A few thoughts:  I probably liked this as much as I can like a story which purports to be Discord's will.  It felt a bit too serious to me at times, especially toward the end, when a flippant refusal to explain his purpose is basically Discord's modus operandi.  Also, as long as we're still on the subject of brits from up above, this story gives Discord a couple of striking britishisms that struck me as out of his typical vernacular.  But beyond that, it's got a nicely self-serving, snarky tone which matches the character well, and many of the casual inclusions added to that tone nicely ("I fully expect alternate versions of myself to crash the party, and they must be catered for. I haven't actually sent any invitations, but I know myself. I've personally helped ruin the funerals of at least twelve alternate Discords already").

Recommendation:  If the summary intrigues you, I'd definitely suggest giving this a look.  If not, it still might be worth checking out for a few in-character gems and comic worldbuilding additions, but is unlikely to win over someone who has trouble seeing Discord doing serious, helpful planning-ahead.



Spider Candy Dare, by Lilsane

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  Rainbow Dash dares Pinkie to eat a bunch of spiders, so she does.

A few thoughts:  This is not a good story, unfortunately.  The writing is full of basic flaws (constant tense shifting, missing words, etc.), the narrative style can best be described as "unintentional stream-of-consciousness," and the punctuation suggests an overly-literal attempt to transcribe an excited teenager sharing a juicy bit of gossip.  If you can get past all that, then... well, the one-sentence summary pretty much sums it up; there's one joke here, and while "eating a bunch of spiders" strikes me as a pretty good balance of ridiculous and creepy as such jokes go, it's still a single idea trying to carry a story.

Recommendation:  Because of the narrative style, I suspect this would actually be passable to listen to.  But to read, I don't particularly recommend it to any group.



Rainbownomicon, by Void Chicken

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  When Rainbow Dash dies in an accident, everypony is distraught... except for Twilight.  Now she can finally practice her new necromancy spell!

A few thoughts:  This story is at its best when it embraces the dark humor which pervades the story.  And often, it does; Twilight's out-of-place glee, Dash's casual attitude toward cannibalism upon resurrection, and the like are twistedly funny.  The story isn't as rapid-fire with that casual darkness as I'd have liked, however; the very beginning is one thing, since it sets expectations against which to weigh Twilight's initial reaction, but there are a few other stretches where one idea is circled around for several paragraphs without much in the way of expansion.  Also, the last line is kind of a weak note to leave on, though I did like the "what we learned this week" diary entries as an idea.

Recommendation:  Readers looking specifically for dark humor and a zombie(ish) comedy will probably enjoy this quite a bit; readers not interested the same probably needn't bother, though.

16 comments:

  1. I wasn't aware I'd used any Britishisms inappropriately. I'm usually very careful about that.

    But thank you for the review, in any case. I think I'm finally starting to reach the point where I don't freak out at the prospect of you or other reviewers noticing my stuff anymore. It is a good feeling.

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  2. Wait, the Brits vote? I thought they just went with whoever could yank a sword out of a rock.

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    1. It's not all that different, to be honest.

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    2. That's just their kings. I think they're voting for the Winkies

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    3. I think they're voting for the Winkies

      That's like a Teletubby, right?

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    4. No, the dudes with the big fuzzy hats. Ugh, now I'm picturing the Teletubbies chanting "O-Eh-Yah! Eoh-Ah!" and it's creeping me out

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  3. They do indeed have a constitution: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constitution_of_the_United_Kingdom

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    1. Right. We have a constitution. We just don't have a Constitution.

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    2. We've been making do with a stand-in for 66 years now (seriously, our constitution's last article specifies that it will become invalid the day the German people freely decide to give themselves a new constitution). Nothing outlasts a makeshift solution...

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  4. Sometimes I wish America had a better system in place for choosing a president than voting, like taking the final two candidates and locking them in Alaska for a week, then whoever manages to catch the most bald eagles and bring them back to the white house wins. That way we would not only know the winner was the most devoted to the cause, but we would also get to have a majestic Releasing of the Eagles ceremony every 4-8 years. America needs more eagle related ceremonies.

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    1. The most American solution would be to select an equal number of men and women and have them compete in a series of seven physical challenges while wearing red, white and blue leotards. Unfortunately, I'm not sure how we can fit eagles into this. Perhaps a hunting event? That'd be pretty American

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    2. America tried that once, but it got cancelled in May of 1996. After seven seasons it caused a leotard shortage that we never really recovered from.

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    3. >more eagles

      Spoken as someone who's never lived in a part of the country where bald eagles are a nuisance bird. Sure, they're majestic and impressive until you've got more than a dozen of them swarming the dock, looking for cast-off bait and fish bits and pooping everywhere.

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    4. Don't you tell me I don't not know what having a dozen eagles scrounging after my chum is like! I chose Alaska for a reason! They're like pigeons up there. Big, beaky, unafraid-of-humans pigeons.

      Also I didn't say we need more eagles. I said we need more eagle ceremonies. Other than the initial eagle ceremony when you become a true American citizen, the only thing we ever do with them is take pictures of them posing in front of flags. With such an abundant supply I can't help but feel like we're missing out on a lot of potential opportunities.

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    5. You should try to weaponize eagles. It would have the added bonus of making "The Eagle has landed" get a sinister connotation.

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    6. Nothing is more American than eagle poop. :V

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