Let's start with a little housekeeping: in my last set of mini-reviews, I commented on the fanfic Lilies of the Field. After the review, though, I was the author pointed out (very politely, I might add) that he'd revised the story the week before I posted my review, and that what I'd reviewed was the defunct version! I've since read the current version, and modified my comments appropriately.
Head back to round 124 to see my updated opinions. And then, if you still haven't gotten your fix of fanfic-commentary, click down below the break to see a few more.
Twilight Sparkle Solves Love, by Biplane
Zero-ish spoiler summary: Rarity drops in to visit Twilight, only to discover that she's solved the ineffable mystery of love. Mathematically.
A few thoughts: This is basically a one-joke story, and even at under 2k words, I had had my fill of it by the time the story ended. The ending, by the by, was of the "gag tangentially related to the story, concluding nothing" variety. With all that said, it's not like the one note the story executes on is unfunny in and of itself, and there are a few amusing lines (I enjoyed some of Twilight's discarded theories of love, for example), but really, this is very much a WYSIWYG fic.
Recommendation: That's "What you see is what you get," by the way; I don't know offhand if that's a recognizable expression/acronym (acropression?) outside of the US. But yes: this is a story for reading if the titular joke sounds funny to you, and for skipping over if you're looking for... anything else at all, really.
If Horses Had Gods, by Ponky
Zero-ish spoiler summary: Twilight asks each of her friends if they believe in God--and what "God" means to them, in the first place.
A few thoughts: This didn't really connect for me, because the author's POV on the matter was too clearly applied. Don't misunderstand me, it's clear Ponky made a serious effort to portray a variety of beliefs... but it's telling that the closest he comes to showing an atheistic view of Dash's teen-nihilism. Or, take Pinkie's chapter (seriously, go ahead and take it; it's only 55 words, and then you'll have the context for what I write after this parenthetical ends. Ready? Here we go!): can you imagine that chapter being written exactly identically, but with Pinkie's "yes" changed to "no?" The point is, this story is unambiguously written from a Judeo-Christian theistic viewpoint.
With that said, it's fair to note that it's a broadly inclusive Judeo-Christian theistic viewpoint, which only touches on the idea of an omnipotent creator/arbiter of morality, which (wisely) leaves any specific moral or religious icons/beliefs out of the picture. Still, it's not exactly hard to parse the author's take on religion through the characters' words, and since the story is ultimately nothing more or less than the main six talking religion, it ends up feeling less like a character or worldbuilding study than a projection of one person's religious views onto some pre-existing personalities.
Recommendation: This probably won't offend anyone who broadly agrees with the author's theistic views (people who don't are on their own to determine whether or not they'll be offended; I suspect I've given enough context so far for them to make good guesses about how they'll react), and readers looking for some simple, unchallenging reflections on belief (i.e. get ready for another rehashing of the teleological argument) will probably find it right up their alley. Those averse to authors projecting their own understanding of religion onto horses probably don't need me to tell them that this is not the story for them.