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Learn for Life

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For Those That Yearn For Adventure #30: Cyanblackstone's "The Eagle Has Landed" and "The Eagle Is Sealed" · 10:31pm Apr 27th, 2017

The monumental moment of 1969 with Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin just got more monumental, as the two astronauts discover an equine lifeform! Banished by her sister, will this new creature find friendhship in these two? Will Armstrong and Aldrin have discovered an alien species? Or will they have brainstormed an idea that's four decades ahead of its time?

Sorry about that, but my knowledge of space exploration is so scant that I believe any attempt to play up the mysteriousness of space, or the magnitude of the Lunar Landing to serve my own needs would've been disingenuous at best. If you're looking for a story that ties in Earth's moon with Equestria's, then this is the one for you. A new look at the 1969 landing on the moon, ladies and gentlemen, fillies and gentlecolts, this is

The Eagle Has Landed AND The Eagle Is Sealed
by Cyanblackstone
Year Published: 2014
Tags: Adventure, Human (both), Comedy, Random (Landed), Crossover (Sealed)
Word Count: 1,539/4,518 (6,057 total)
When Apollo 11 lands on the moon, Neil Armstrong utters his famous lines as his boots land in the lunar regolith, but when he turns around he finds something no one was expecting or had ever planned for.
There's an alien on the moon. And it's blue, four-legged, and staring at him.

When President Nixon orders, you obey. And now that he wants Luna on the LM and heading home, how is Neil ever going to convince her to follow?
But it doesn't even get that far, as an innocent mistake endangers the mission.
And even as the mission is endangered, tensions are rising back on Earth. While the drama plays out in Mission Control, just what is going on behind the Iron Curtain?
No one knows, but it's certainly not conducive to Apollo 11's welfare.

Originally, I was going to review "The Eagle Has Landed" on its own, but after how short it was, I decided to include its first sequel. I may do "Splashdown" later, but for now it's just going to be these two.

So what's going to happen in this pivotal moment? How will it ripple throughout the world? What will happen to Armstrong, Aldrin, and the mysterious creature? Read on to find out!

The Short Review

I wouldn't recommend reading the first story just by itself without its sequel, as I don't think it has enough meat to be all that satisfying, given the implications of finding a different lifeform and Luna meeting other things during her banishment. The concept is really neat, the characters are written good, and it is a succinct story. Its sequel adds a lot more to it as a special moment, as both stories take place in the initial landing on the moon. Going into it, I didn't find enough in the first story to call it a solid story; it was more like a conceptual idea that continued into the second story (and I assume into Splashdown). The writing is alright, with the dialogue being a highlight.

The Long Version

The first story covered a lot less than I thought it would have. It takes place in a single moment (when Armstrong and Luna meet) and doesn't go anywhere before or after that. it begins with Armstrong giving his famous one small step quote, and then his saying "What is that?" two paragraphs later. It moves quickly, which I found odd at first, and I wouldn't say it was the best choice, but it does move along briskly enough. The dialogue between Armstrong, Aldrin and the people on Earth are well-written enough, with some humor and genuine emotion to give the story life. At the end, there's a profound message about what it could be like if and when we actually make contact with extraterrestrial life.

I just don't think it's enough on its own. It feels more like a first chapter than an actual story. The story works if you read its sequel, and that may've been how it was intended to be written as. On its own, "The Eagle Has Landed" is too brief to explore this special moment. It is written interestingly enough, with terse and tight interactions between everyone, but it ends abruptly. The significance of the word "Equestria" isn't explored by anyone in the story, no one seems interested in looking for extraterrestrial habitats, no more conversation goes on between Armstrong and Luna—it just ends. This is definitely asking for too much, but I don't think the writing's strong enough to convey the special moment between the two main characters.

But I'm definitely asking for too much. I thought it was okay, but not enough on its own. Its sequel, "The Eagle Is Sealed," does a lot more with it. It gives characterization and action to Luna, a dire conflict in space (which wouldn't necessarily have enhanced its prequel), and more scope and weight to each character. The writing is more deliberate, lingering on each moment with enough attention to make it vivid, yet fast enough to make the action move along. The dialogue is even stronger, and in general it feels like an actual story. If you consider "Landed" as its first chapter, I think both go together very well.

Getting more technical into it, this may be a nice set of stories to discuss point of view. This is one of the few stories where I feel the third-person-multiple actually works. You can see what's going on directly on the moon, and what the American government is trying to do down below. More for discussion is Luna's point of view in "Sealed." On the one hand, seeing how Luna sees the humans can be enlightening to the reader on how an Equestrian would see humans on the moon, so it would seem very crucial to a story like this. On the other hand, getting her point of view takes away from the mystery that Luna has to Neil and Buzz. It could be argued that since we know about Luna from the show, this is unnecessary; I just think it's something to consider.

I'm not sure I can say much more, either because there's not much more I can add, or because I'm out of practice. So allow me to conclude this.

"The Eagle Had Landed" and "The Eagle Has Sealed" are nice stories that tweak the 1969 lunar landing enough to make it mesh well with Equestrian lore. The writing is solid enough, with the dialogue being particularly good. I will recommend reading them one after the other, and not to just stop at "Landed.

Apologies for the brevity; I've been too long out of practice, and need to get back into the swing of things. Hopefully this review does the stories justice.

If You Yearn For More Adventure
#1: Fluttershy20’s “Last of the Dragonlords
#2: Toixstory’s “Freeze Frame”
November 1st: Words Failed Her by Nonsanity
November 2nd: Great Big Sky by shortskirtsandexplosions
November 3rd: 30,000 Feet by the Grey Pegasus
November 4th: Stop Me by Wing Nut
November 5th: Yearbook January by Regidar
November 6th: The Three Sisters by Wanderer D
November 7th: The Lonesome Drake by Bok
November 8th: Making Friends by arcum42
November 9th: Wheels of Fire, Wings of Fliers by ChaoticHarmony
November 10th: The Lone Crusader by Cute Reality
November 11th: The Frozen West by Cozy Mark IV
November 12th: A Rumble in Time by Lab Matt AND Broken Roads by Not_A_Hat
November 13th: Pip by Invictus
November 14th: Raiders of the Cutie Mark by DJLowrider
November 15th: The Ancient Heart of the Everwood Dragon by Grey Faerie
November 16th: The Motion of the Stars by Carabas
November 17th: Complaints Department by TheDarkStarCzar
November 18th: Height by PoweredByTea
November 19: Blue Steel Railway by writer
November 20th: device heretic's "And the Temptress Came Unto Her" and Glimmerglaze's "It's Also About Time"
#23: Imploding Colon’s “Austraeoh”
#24: cosmicbiscuit's "Fire Opals"
#25: Respite, More Than Angel, and Daring Do and the Weapon of the Ancients
#26: King of Malta's "Fashion on the High Seas"
#27: Applejack's Family Bonding, Arrow 18 Mission Log: Lone Ranger, and Stairway to Equestria
#28: DalTRS's "A Tale of the Sun, Moon and Stars"
#29: Jade Ring's "Dear Crusaders" trilogy

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