Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Review - The Masks We Wear

In a week of dull grey, one story emerges that caught my eye. And while its style is not one I appreciate as well as most, it is definitely deserving of a bit more attention. So here it is!

The review of The Masks We Wear, after the break! (Unrelated: nerdy Dash is adorkable.)

The Link:

The Story:

I'm sorry to say I am going to HAVE to spoil something in this story or else I really can't talk about it, but you will get a warning.

Extreme no spoiler version: Rainbow Dash has an embarrassing secret that Twilight discovers, and she then tries to comfort Dash and bring her out of the mask she's created to hide herself.

Spoiler version: Rainbow Dash, a week after her whole pet finding fiasco, has taken a day off to get in touch with herself, closing herself in a hidden wooden hideaway in her normal cloud abode. However, Twilight pops in for a visit, accidentally stumbling upon Dash [THIS IS WHERE SPOILERS BEGIN. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED] watching japonimation. Turns out that Rainbow Dash is a huge nerd, her normal braggart persona a mask for her intellectual mind. However, she is uncomfortable with the truth being reveled and it is up to Twilight to lend a friendly ear and help bring Dash out of the shell she's been hiding in.

The Characters:

Rainbow Dash and Twilight Sparkle take full focus, with Tank and Spike getting minimal screen time. Rainbow is not quite the one from the show, though that fits into the big reveal and makes sense with it, and once you accept this new insecure Dash as needed for the story it works fine. Twilight however has maintained a fairly accurate show portrayal, though she did come across in parts as a bit more socially, I don't know, savvy than she normally is. Not quite the adorkable Twilight we know and love, but well within the standard fan fic wiggle room and definitely a needed adjustment for the story.


See, this is a tricky one for me, for as far as story types go, this is not one I am a fan of. A plot that, in simplest terms, has its climax, struggles and defining moments all in the majority of it that can be summarized as “two ponies talk” is not a plot I read a lot. I prefer action, comedy, maybe some mystery, a good bit of ridiculousness, and round it off with a good moral.

That said, this was very well done for the style. They got a bit deep and times and shallow at others (mostly the start) and characters were a bit squishier than usual, but it kept me interested throughout and it resolved in a way I genuinely liked. I could have used a bit more slapstick or some action to break up that middle section, but the focus on the small motions and expression changes was excellent and there was nothing out of place at all. Even as a not-fan of the style I did enjoy the story, so that has to say something about the execution, right?


Yes. Again, a bit slow for my tastes and lacking those rich descriptions and perfectly paced sections of an action story, but it wasn't one, and I can't judge it in a category it isn't. For the story it was everything was suitable, just enough to picture it without drawing the mind away or throwing it off balance, and it is not a bad story in the least. Literally the story type is my biggest complaint and it's a minor one, so I'm trying to stress that my personal tastes are probably putting a slight negative edge on the story that should not be there. Just making that clear, because this deserves a read.

In Conclusion:

A bit of depth and a slow paced character story, but one that should not be missed. If you aren't an action fan, this is for you. If you are, give it a try anyway, you'll probably like it!

And that's it for this review. To be honest I probably would have picked something different to review, but nothing else caught my eye. None of the other stories that came out this week (well, only a couple of the others, and they were rejected for other reasons) had an even remotely interesting description, and I'm afraid that is a big stumbling block on stories for me. I need to be sold in the first three paragraphs, and the description is one of them. So good job Rokas for knowing the art of the hook, and good job on a story well written!

Until next time my friends, have a wonderful day.

Your hooked writer,