Monday, September 28, 2015

Mini-Reviews Round 98

So, does anyone have any idea when "DEEZ NUTS" will stop being the acme of middle-school humor?  Because I kind of assumed it would go away after a year or two... and that was rather more than a year or two ago.  Point is, I'm getting real tired of hearing it, and (for the occasional student who takes their schooling especially seriously), seeing it turned in on assignments.  Whatever; short reviews of hip-hop-slang-less writing, below the break.

All in the Presentation, by Pineta

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  Carrot Top (well, Golden Harvest, in this fic... but she's Carrot Top to me) and Berry Punch remake the "WELCOME PRINCESS CELEST" sign, at Twilight's insistence.

A few thoughts:  This is written children's story-style, with simple, declarative sentences and a few pictures (well, screengrabs from the show, but they fit the story remarkably well).  The style was marred somewhat by poor comma-ing, but I found it still had a simple charm to it.  Pineta also uses the direct, minimal style to good humorous effect; although this story is light on actual jokes, it's still amusing in the mix of earnestness and mild ineptitude that is constantly on display.

Recommendation:  Though definitely not for readers looking for any sort of challenge--for anything but a bit of ephemeral light reading--this would be a good choice for folks who are kindly disposed toward children's stories as a style, and would be a fine choice as a read-aloud or read-along for folks who share their ponyfics with early elementary-age children.

In Amber Clad, by Word Worthy

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  The history of Princess Luna's armour, as it would recount it were it capable of such.

A few thoughts:  I was somewhat disappointed by the armour's perspective: although it has a distinct personality, it's far less alien than I was hoping (in case the summary's not clear, the premise here isn't that the armour is actually sentient--it's what the armour might say if it was).  Essentially, this is less "what would a set of armour think/feel/believe" and more "a well known story told from an unusual angle."  Still, this story does combine a "faithful servant" theme with the general plot of Luna's ascension/fall/redemption, which may not be a particularly novel combination in this fandom, but is a solid one nevertheless, and more than competently presented.

Recommendation:  Readers who are looking for a unique perspective will probably be disappointed, if only because the perspective is so much less unique than it could have been.  But for those more interested in a well-done variation on the theme of "Luna/NMM's character arc," this is a short but solid choice.

Monsters, by RarityEQM

Zero-ish spoiler summary:  Diamond Tiara has monsters that keep her up at night.  But not the kind that hide under the bed; her monsters scream and fight downstairs.

A few thoughts:  As with In Amber Clad, I'd have liked a stronger sense of the character's perspective here; it's only marginally clear how well Diamond Tiara understands the situation, and in this case, that makes a big difference in how the reader might relate to her.  I also was a bit put off by the mother's voicing; her drunken slur had an effect that was more comical than anything else, which was rather the opposite of the intended mood.  Still, as a portrait of a child whose parents don't love one another, this does a nice job of showing how... let's say, certain parenting choices, can hurt a child, even if it's seemingly indirect.

Recommendation:  Although Monsters doesn't (explicitly, at least) tell us much about DT from the show, I'd still recommend it as a character-expanding piece, and for people looking for a sad, not-unrealistic look at a regrettably common situation.


  1. >The history of Princess Luna's armour
    Love this proper spelling!