/mlp/ Fanfic Reviews

An Apple Sleep Experiment

FimFiction Link - Short ID: 390375/an-apple-sleep-experiment

Published: Oct '17

Review in No. 37881232
Anyone here read >https://www.fimfiction.net/story/390375/an-apple-sleep-experiment ?

I'd like to critique it a bit. Short description:

>When Applejack is left with no options, she turns to Twilight for a spell that will keep her awake in order to finish her work. It works like a charm… until she realizes it doesn’t wear off. Slipping into madness, Applejack turns into a monster.

This story, as per the description and the author's own comment, is a Cupcakes-esque shock fic based upon the "Russian sleep experiment" creepypasta. The attempt here is to create a grotesque horror story utilizing Applejack in such a scenario, with its own quirks and storyline. Right away I unfortunately have to say contrivance is this story's greatest folly. The conflict arises due to Filthy Rich, prior to the story occurring, taking advantage of Granny smith's need for money to support their farm in dire times, and locking her into a predatory "deal with the devil" of sorts. I have not watched the show in some time, but during the zap-apple episode where he interacts with the apple family, he seemed to be very cordial, putting up with Granny Smith's hillbilly antics in a good-natured way. The author has written him here throughout the narrative as a generic evil rich guy in order to drive the conflict. Long story short, another deal is struck to repay the debt by providing DOUBLE the usual amount of zap apple jam to Filthy Rich. This is the basis of the story.

There is a bizarre heatwave going on in the background of the setting, which is the cause of the Apple Family's present troubles. It wilts their trees and makes working very difficult. On the subject of contrivance, the next chapter opens with what I assume is the author realizing "oh shit, this heatwave makes no sense whatsoever" as Twilight is used to directly explain the how's and whys to us:

>Pegasi are having trouble finding water to make clouds and rain
>The Princesses are looking for a spell to transmute saltwater into rain clouds because saltwater "doesn’t process the same in Cloudsdale’s weather machines"

But this leaves me with many questions:
-What are pegasi homes made out of? Are they a different type of cloud that doesn't get evaporated in droughts? Could you break off pieces to help farmland grow?
-The idea of something as simple as separating salt from saltwater being a spell out of reach and needing to be developed by is hysterical to me
-Clouds in real life can be made from saltwater, in fact if you live on the coast, to my knowledge, you'll be in a region that rains enormously. It stands to reason that the process of evaporation and condensation would remain somewhat the same, so I don't understand how this is a problem.
-Celestia controls the sun itself. Does she get off on torturing her own ponies and causing mass strife? Couldn't she just gently move it away a smidgen? Tell it to cool down? Why did it get this bad in the first place?

Review in No. 37881263
I have a problem that this whole story exists is because Applejack's farm has excess money problems because of the drought. Granny Smith kept the finances a secret, sure, but once that secret is out, could Applejack not ask for aid from Twilight (princess, personal connections to the ruler of the land) Rarity (owns high-tier fashion businesses; is generous). Applejack is also an Element of Harmony and hero of the nation, and her farm is relied upon by Ponyville. Surely they could chip in monetarily, or she would be receiving some kind of government stipend? Even then I think she has a lot of sources to ask for help

The story carries out with a reasonably standard progression of events, from her being angry at being exploited by Filthy Rich, her condition worsening, hallucinations, etc, until she becomes a rampaging monster who kills ponies in an abandoned part of her orchard, thinking they're Filthy Rich.

At one point she is confronted by Lyra in the middle of the day in Ponyville, and AJ knocks her out, drags her to Sweet Apple Acres, and executes her. Did nobody see Applejack that entire time? AJ is stupidly durable for some reason. During her spree she has been awake for a week or more, her hind legs have been fractured and set incorrectly, suffers massive exhaustion and heatstroke, and is covered with wounds, but is perfectly capable of moving quick enough, manipulating tools, and bucking ponies to death.

Eventually, two really funny things occur. Rainbow Dash, fast flyer, is the one chosen to enter the dense region of the orchard and administer an antidote to Applejack, and not Twilight who is very powerful with magic. Applejack seems to be possessed by a demon now, somehow, and delivers what is probably the cringiest speech i've ever read:
>“You think there’s anything left in here to cure, Rainbow?” Applejack taunted, leaning in close. “Do you still believe you’re savin’ me?”
>“Didn’t ya know Rainbow? Ah am the thing you fear most! Ah am the madness crawlin’ around under yer skin, squirming… writhing around inside just waitin’ to get free…”
>“And that truth… is that in the end, there ain’t nothin’ at all… ‘cept me”

AJ is cured and imprisoned. Twilight tries to gaslight AJ into thinking she overworked herself and did all that evil stuff because of heatstroke. Presumably she does this to not take the blame for making the potion. Everyone is content to let her rot forever. She also refuses to speak of what happened to AJ's siblings, and lets her know Glimmer is replacing her as an element. I find that hilarious. Story end.

I'm not really considering giving this a "final thoughts" section. I really just wanted to go over these problems it has. It's a really bog standard shock/ gore "Cupcakes" fic.

Anyways who here has read it? Any thoughts? Am I retarded or missing something?