FimFiction Link - Short ID: 440879/starlight-glimmer-makes-many-mistakes
Published: Jun '19 — Jul '19
(Part 1 of 2)
Starlight Glimmer Makes Many Mistakes is a Adventure/Comedy/Random story written by MagicS. The premise is that Starlight and Spike are thrown backwards in time after Starlight casted a time travel spell on the Cutie Map while blackout drunk, and there's no Cutie Map in the past to just return to. So Starlight decided that while she's waiting on Twilight to look into the past for them, she'll see about making things better to impress her, making changes in the past.
On its own, this wouldn't be a dealbreaker of a premise.
But one of the problems is how OOC Starlight is, especially when you take into account that this is placed as happening after S8 (Cozy Glow mentioned), so she'd logically be more responsible, which is a flaw exponentially amplified by the fact that she has Spike there to ground her.
This is a flaw that the author outright admits to.
It can be exemplified in an exchange that happened as early as chapter two, and comparing it to something S7 Starlight said.
>“Oh I’m sure it’ll be fine.” Starlight was not half as concerned. “Besides for all we know any changes will just create some alternate timeline or whatever and where we come from will be fine. Maybe we’re not even really in our past in the first place but some kind of crazy alternate world, Discord told me about those.”
>Spike frowned at Starlight. “I hope you’re not trying to use that as some sort of excuse to mess around with things, I’m not falling for it.”
>Starlight groaned in annoyance. “Are you just dedicated to not having any fun right now, Spike?”
All Bottled Up:
>Trixie: We'll meet you there! [to Starlight] Quick! Do you have a spell that will make the spa ponies forget that the map table was there?
>Starlight Glimmer: Haven't you learned anything about using magic to solve your problems?
>Trixie: No. If we learned that lesson, how will we ever have fun?
>Starlight Glimmer and Trixie: [giggling]
(to be continued)
(Part 2 of 2)
But that isn't in and of itself the biggest problem here, it's only a contributing factor.
It discarded potential plot threads. Starlight being Ponyville's librarian? She burned down Golden Oak Library because she forgot to extinguish a candle before leaving to see Mayor Mare on arranging that. Maud's cave and the Castle of the Two Sisters were also destroyed, the latter of which had a megaparagraph of some of the most contrived, unfunny schlock you'll have the displeasure of reading, which'll be bonus posted.
Anyway, none of that matters, the timeline shifts with Applejack's parents being saved, with an unamusingly cackle-y Chrysalis (which is unfortunate that her POV was unentertaining because I like her being portrayed as a pure villain) deciding not to invade Equestria due to witnessing Starlight's power while disguised (which is dumb), or Sunset being thrown through the portal early after her bratty self was failed to be improved upon, because we never see the consequences of anything. Twilight eventually finds Starlight and Spike, and the temporal disruptions that their changes caused them to be sucked into a present time world (denoted by "Starlight's World" in chapter titles) where Empress Starlight took over Equestria by broadcasting that mind control spell in ELTSD through the Crystal Heart, to reinforce it, while she's figuring out a way to more properly realize her goal.
From there, the story turned into an actually somewhat decent adventure tale in the three of them trying to stop her, but it's undermined how much Starlight has grown from how her alternate self hasn't by the fact that the story had up to then had her behave OOC on multiple occasions for "comedy," to further it, with one highlight being mind controlling a pony to get a meeting with Celestia scheduled faster, and so it begs the question of why the hell that wasn't the primary story to begin with; you could've just skipped to the point with the meta explanation at the very end via AN that the reality breaks connected by divergences were caused by Discord and the Tree of Harmony trying to summon for help by cooperating, in being mutually bound and neutralized, the reality break moments being them trying to pull them through time.
You don't even see what happens in Starlight's World after she loses. It just cuts to a pointless Princess Starlight vs Tirek scenario, then when that's dealt with, they go back to their original timeline, Starlight (who is a unicorn again from being an alicorn in the aforementioned scenario) gets a lifetime ban from alcohol on the premises, and must write a 100 page essay.
Overall, this gets a 3/10. Starlight's World might've been a 6-7/10 were it not connected to the rest, and the tone shift was serious and stark enough you wonder why it wasn't standalone.
Wouldn't recommend this beyond personally dissecting why it failed as a whole.
Bonus: Megaparagraph, Chapter 6
>Starlight briefly lost control of her magic and spell, dropping the journal but firing a small concentrated blast of magic out the tip of her horn that bounced off the walls of the reading room. Books were knocked off their shelves, one of the chairs had a hole shot through it, and Spike was knocked upside the head by it causing him to accidentally breath fire onto the rug before the magic ricocheted out of the room and down the hallway they came from. The out of control magic continued to knock down any remaining torches or chandeliers on its rampage and just by happenstance ended up going into the organ room where it collided with the organ, not completely destroying it but getting inside its pipes to ricochet and resonate to an even more powerful degree (while at the same time creating some actually pretty nice music) upon which exiting the pipes it blasted straight through one of the castle’s walls into the hallway with the standing armors. The magic barely nudged the first suit of armor but it was enough to cause it to fall over sideways, knocking over the next one and then the next one like an incredibly loud and cantankerous row of dominoes. Now the ball of magic sped into the main hall of the castle, hitting and knocking over each and every pillar as it pinballed back and forth between the walls before finally sliding along the back wall at just the perfect angle to bifurcate the two formerly beautiful tapestries. But Starlight’s magic was hardly done yet. Bouncing off the corner of an entryway the magic was shot into the floor, breaking right through the stone and smashing into the slide that Starlight and Spike had used just earlier. The magic slid down the slick metal, gaining more and more speed before it finally hit the bottom of the slide, obliterating and setting fire to the pillows that were set there. The pillows however changed its trajectory just enough to make the magic careen into the central pillar that held up the basement, half destroying its base and causing a huge portion of the castle to suddenly shift and sink down with the floors directly above it splitting apart and the walls of the basement suddenly cracking to allow tons of dirt and rock to flood and bury it completely. At the same time Spike’s fire raged out of control, devouring the reading room and spreading out to the rest of the castle, smoke and fire burning out the windows and temporarily threatening even to consume more of the castle than Starlight’s magic had destroyed. Luckily (just for once) there wasn’t enough flammable material for the fire to spread to the other half of the castle from where the reading room was. So it only ended up mostly burnt instead of completely.
You'd think they'd realize smash-cutting to the aftermath would be more amusing.