/mlp/ Fanfic Reviews

The Weather Worker's Song

FimFiction Link - Short ID: 487123/the-weather-workers-song

Published: Jan '21

Review in No. 39473000
I really liked this one. The prose did its work. It was never too embellished or too dry. Effective, I'd call it. I particularly liked how Pipe explained the specific workings of the machinery in the factory. It was full of technical terms, but they were explained in such a way that I never felt lost. Much like how Dash feels, actually.
The overall feel of the factory itself was entrancing as well. It felt ominous, and were it not for how earnest and devoted to their work everyone is, I could easily see this turning to horror. Which is a testament to its quality, considering, you know, Rainbow Factory.
On that note, I'm familiar with factory work. Thankfully, all my knowledge of factory accidents come from liveleak and old gore sites. I think TWWS did a farily accurate portrayal of what happens to flesh when in contact with highly pressurized chemicals stored at high temperatures.
In the end, I think this is a very solid story, with good characterization, a great atmosphere, and just enough intrigue to make me want more about the factory itself.
Review in No. 39475619
'The Weather Worker's Song' is an eight tousand-word oneshot depicting the early days of Rainbow's job at the CWC.
Arguably I've never been too kind to this series with my scores despite how impactful it was both to the fandom and to my interest in fanfics as well. Safe to say, this time around I am happy to give it some much-needed praise.
One thing I found just as captivating as I've had in all the previous stories is how cramped and derelict the CWC feels from the inside. Not only does it just contrast with how Cloudsdale was portrayed in the show, it also plays further into the sense of foreboding danger. The walls might be from clouds, but this doesn't stop the factory from feeling grungy and, let's just be direct, awful.
The fact that this was so nicely captured in text is a testament to the author's skills. Even before the (well-foreshadowed) catastrophe, the very locations the characters visit keep the reader on edge and just how casual the workers act about it plays better into their characterization than any explicit dialogue could.
As for the story: Despite being the shortest entry in the (lack of a better term) RF-verse, it was to date the story that engaged me the most. I'll be fair, the plot is obvious from the beginning. Subtlety isn't the name of the game here, but as rough as that might sound, this isn't as big of an issue. Even if the narrative is not very surprising, the author builds up the tension well and uses the drama to really flesh out the characters of the world, showing their more 'equine side' the other stories didn't have the opportunity to portray.
I specifically liked how Dash is presented in the story. She is on the path of falling, but in a way she is very much "falling upwards". It is her heroics, initiative, and overwhelming loyalty to her home (and more specifically the CWC) that ultimately sets her up on the path to become director of rainbow production. This middle-way "step" between her show-persona and the ruthless, broken psychopath we see in the originals works wonders to ease the former into the latter, especially in conjunction with the 'other big event' that shapes Dash's psyche.
The titular Melody isn't really a character as much of a walking plot device. This is again not that big of a deal, you can't fully flesh out an OC in so few appearances, but while her death is tragic from the point of the characters, it didn't rend me as much as the story was peppered with red flags from the get-go. Still, her songs are more than quaint and her eventual demise fits expectations in its gruesomeness.
Overall: 7/10 Though it's neither the most ambitious, nor most in-depth story in the AU, 'WWS' proved to be a thoroughly nice read, granting a glance into the world of the CWC from a perspective not previously seen. Can recommend.