FimFiction Link - Short ID: 492597/high-noon-applejack
Published: Apr '21
'High Noon: Applejack' is a two thousand and three-hundred word oneshot about a duel in Appleloosa. The inspiration for this story - the famous 'Big Iron' song - is unmistakable, not only is the story a loose adaptation of the song's events (albeit with a twist), but the main antagonist is directly named after its title. I have to preface, that I adore this fic. It perfectly mimics that schlocky spaghetti-western feel, while regardless still delivering an exciting fight scene. Not only that, but it also answers the ages old question of how would earth ponies without fingers or magic transport and operate complex weaponry. The answer? Instead of tiny guns and whatnot they just lug huge cannons around on wheels.
What makes the story even more amusing is that even if someone found the western part too corny, the author is first to agree with them. So the second half of the fic is spent lampshading this as it turns out that the whole story until now was the human versions of the ponies reading the work of an Equestrian bargain-bin hack-writer. Upon reaching the end of the duel, they all comment on just how unbelievable and tacky the story is, yet they are also interested in how it ends. And indeed the western doesn't disappoint, as Applejack trots off into the sunset but not before delivering a stoic, yet heroic speech to a child who's saddened by her departure. The story then ends with a huge disclaimer about how the author totally uses all these characters and their likeness legally.
Overall: 9/10 I'm not sure what else there is to say. The story is hilarious, doesn't overstay its welcome, tries to answer an interesting technological challenge, includes meta-humor in a way that doesn't feel forced and even uses FIMFic's formatting in a clever way. As I've alluded before I'm not a fan of EqG, yet their inclusion in this story makes sense and even adds to the entertainment value. This is a criminally underrated story that I wholeheartedly recommend.