Wednesday, 10 September 2014

Ponyfic Roundup 22

Here we go again! Although I'm not including the EqD contest finalists in these lists, I am going through them steadily. It may be some weeks before I get to the end, but I already know that I'm going to have one or two mildly controversial opinions. Back to this week's batch of stories, though, and it was a generally rather disappointing collection this time round. One standout, however.

Pick of the fics

Tea Time by Einhander
Celestia and Cadance
Slice of Life; 5K words; Mar 2014; Everyone
Far and away the best story this week, this is a deceptively simple tale about... well, what the title says: Celestia and Cadance talking over tea. A clever use of changing perspective and some really interesting points made almost in passing. (Even Sombra gets a name-check.) On the surface, there's not a lot to this, but then that's the case when making a cup of tea as well. Only just misses a 9, but I'm more than happy to give this 8.5/10.

Other stories

Airshipping is Magic by Blueshift
Trixie and Twilight
Romance/Random/Comedy/Alternate Universe; 1K words; Jan 2012; Everyone
This one came up at the BUCK fanfic panel, of which Blueshift was a member. It's one of his earliest "Pony is X" type stories, and is a shipfic starring Trixie and Twilight as airships. Well, of course. Originally published in spring 2011, it's not nearly as good as Blueshift's more recent work, and even has a genuinely distracting repeated typo. (Is it "Trixieburg" or "Trixieberg"?) Still amusing, but not hilariously so. 6.5/10

Behind Closed Eyes by memphisgurl
Slice of Life; 1K words; Jun 2014; Everyone
A very short piece in which a pony alleged to be Snowdrop explains how she understands the concept of colour. A fascinating idea, but it doesn't quite work, largely because the narrator really doesn't sound at all like the Snowdrop we see in the Silly Filly Studios animation. I did like some of the phrasing: "White, the impossible color" for example. Frustrating because it could have been so much more. 5/10

Flying Hard by terrycloth
Twilight and CMC
Slice of Life; 1K words; Jan 2014; Everyone
Another PR, another really popular story (+23/-0) that didn't convince me. The newly ascended Twilight ponders, in her usual scientifically wordy way, the problems flight presents. As is no secret, I don't usually have a problem with wordiness in itself, but here it gets irritating because the story doesn't really go anywhere. (Well, apart from the afterthought-ish CMC stuff.) Readable but not very memorable. 5.5/10

The Nightmare in Ponyville by FluttershyFan5
Mane Six, Celestia, Luna, Discord, Spike, Derpy and OC. [Phew!]
Comedy/Random; 3K words; Feb 2012; Everyone
When I read it, this was one of the worst-rated fics on the site (+0/-16), though it's since picked up a couple of upvotes. It's certainly not good, with a confused plot based on a letter from Celestia, lots of technical errors (speech tags especially) and some truly weird OOC moments. (Fluttershy is almost unrecognisable at times.) But it's not, quite, as bad as its rating suggests and does at least have a fairly interesting concept at heart. 2.5/10


  1. Controversial opinions? Bring it on!

    Will definitely give Tea Time a bash, though.

    1. By my standards. Probably not by yours!

    2. Maybe I'm just being an arrogant intellectual, but I really couldn't get anything out of Tea Time. It all felt too forced and superficial – not at all like the characters it meant to portray.

    3. Fair enough, of course. From your previous comments, I think I'm less likely to worry too much about depth to a story if I enjoy it -- that really is my only real criterion -- so perhaps that has a bearing. I didn't really find the characters to be off in that particular setting (I know I'm a slightly different person over tea), though again that's just me.