• Member Since 10th Jul, 2011
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Masterweaver


Just an average insane brony, doing average insane things. Professional Fanfiction Writer and Purveyor, relevant links are on my profile page.

E

"Rule number one." Pipp put on an uncharacteristically serious face. "Your fans cannot be your friends."

Sunny blinked. "What?"

"Oh here we go," Zipp muttered to herself.

Chapters (1)
Comments ( 48 )

This was a pretty interesting story and pipp made some good points about who is your friend or not when it comes to fans so that was pretty cool of her just to give her a heads-up what's going to happen

"What? Don't be silly. Unicorns have been pecking through wood with our horns for ages, and we're all good brain pones!"

Sunny carefully shared a look with Hitch.

:rainbowlaugh:

----

Pipp nodded. "One of them burped once."

Sunny blinked. "...what?"

"Another one had just the worst pet," Pipp continued. "Absolute menace."

:rainbowlaugh: :fluttershyouch:

----

I was trying to follow the title, but Upvote and Like are the same thing? Maybe Comment?

Nice story and commentary on parasociality and stuff!

This was really good! And pretty damn accurate. I met and spent some time with Pen Stroke (of Past Sins fame) at BronyCon 2019—but outside the con venue—and I'll admit I was kinda starstruck at first, but then after a bit I was just like, "Oh right. He's just a guy, too." Everybody that's had their time in the limelight, however long it may be, is 'just a person,' too.

Question:

"To us, you're Sunny Starscout the earth pony, and our friend. And that means a lot. But to your friends, you are Sunny Starscout, Friendship Reborn, Fount of Magic, Unifier of the Tribes--there's two Sunnys, is what I'm saying.

Did you mean 'fans' here?

Surprised they haven't crowned Sunny princess yet. It's been eons since they laid eyes on a goddess.

This... is fanfiction perfected. I don't think Pipp was bad by any means in the film, but she was definitely less fleshed-out than the rest, and mostly I'm sure that was because of the runtime. But this is what I really think Pipp will be like in future official G5 entries, and what she could've been in the film if they'd had more than 90 minutes of runtime to work with.

Of course this is also kinda what "Fame and Misfortune" could've been if M.A. Larson hadn't been made a scapegoat. I've got faith Hasbro knows better than to repeat that mistake.

"I'm not saying you couldn't be their friend, Sunny. If they suddenly reappeared somehow, I honestly think you could. But you'd have to get used to... well, them being ponies, not icons." Pipp's voice was solemn as she landed. "And that's the position you're in right now. Some fans, maybe, they'll become your friends. Some very important ponies too. But you're starting off with a lot of power, and not much emotional connection. You have to be careful, understand? For their sake... and for your own."

I love this paragraph. Absolutely everything about it. Even without the story surrounding it I would hit Favorite just for this. But I also love the movie-accurate humor of this fic, and I absolutely adore Pipp talking about cancel culture. Sad to hear that happened to their dad, but I kinda hope it turns out to be canon if only for pure comedy.

About the only weak point is Izzy, who seems a little ditzier than I personally read from her in the movie. I'm cautiously optimistic that this fic's level will be her worst in the series, because, well... Prolly a hot take, but I think Izzy can be safely summed up as "What Pinkie Pie is Supposed To Be (and sadly wasn't always back in FiM)". Definitely a lot more cute and huggable than Pinkie ever was.

Still, pretty much everything else about this fic is perfect. Maybe a couple of spelling and/or grammar mistakes here or there, but aside from what Level Dasher pointed out, nothing leaps to mind while I'm typing this, so a definite good job there.

I may honestly make a "Super-Favorites" bookshelf just for this fic and King Of Love Bugs, among a select few others.

Yes, Unicorns are indeed good brain ponies.

Damn, this is so good.

I was gonna write a fic with Pipp but idk now

10995249
“Perfected” is, perhaps, a strong word, but this comment sums up my thoughts reasonably well.

I was supremely disappointed by the shallow showing Pipp got in the film, and am already looking forward to seeing how the fandom explores her solid foundation (I’ve been throwing a few ideas around myself); this work is a fantastic application of what we know about Pipp and how she can be extrapolated beyond her archetype, so bravo.

This is a point I don’t often see explored from this angle (i.e., the big important pony that others see is not the pony that wakes up in the morning with a messy mane). I myself tend to think about it a lot from the opposite end (Celestia as the pony wearing the queenly mask, as it were), and new ponies allow for new perspectives. I think Pipp is probably the best to tackle the problem, given that she, alone of the main cast of this generation, is used to dealing with that kind of parasocial pressure (as you say, Zipp seems like the type to duck out of the way if she can)--and dealing with it in a way fundamentally different to the previous princesses we’ve explored.

I’m on board. Well written, and well done.

This may be a stylistic choice, but there is an instance of “on the other hand” which may better be rendered “other hoof,” and, depending on how pedantic you’ll allow me to be, “hand them out” could possibly be rendered “hoof them out.”

This fic was great, and holds a very true message within it about hero worship. It’s also a good example of how I hope they utilities Pipp social media star personality within the show itself.
Awesome work

But to your fans, you are Sunny Starscout, Friendship Reborn, Fount of Magic, Unifier of the Tribes--there's two Sunnys, is what I'm saying.

"Everything alright, Sunset?"
"Yeah, just... aller vois."
"I, uh, don't take Prench."
"'Going to see.' It's like déjà vu but in the other temporal direction."

In any case, exquisite exploration of Pipp. As others have noted, she got the shallowest exploration out of the whole main cast, so seeing her offer some critical insight to Sunny beyond "feel the rhythm" is a delight. So is the explanation for what happened to the pegasus king. Plus, it's great to see you back in the saddle of ponyfic in general. Suffice to say, thank you for this.

Oh, this was good! Perfect mix of funny, heartwarming, and serious, with a very real point that we fans should keep in mind more often. This gets five Pipps out of five. :duck:

Ri2

10995247
They haven't even understood the concept of alicorns and goddesses for centuries. She's lucky nobody tried to lynch her.

Quite the interesting and very entertaining display of cuteness! Not only that, but the lesson within is a nice thing to think about/reinforce in life! Truly some top-shelf stuff! Hope ya didn't mind, but I just HAD to make a reading of this super likable fic of yours!

Audio Linky!: https://youtu.be/j1STc1ypsQ0

(I don't mean to offend anyone with this comment in any way!)

10995754
Oh I don't mind readings. Although... did you mean to set it to premiere tomorrow? I can't actually play the video...

"And this!" She whipped her hoof around. "This is... uh..."

"A creative expression of my positive feelings toward my friend and the changes he has brought about in my life," Izzy offered. "I've actually done one for each of us, I was going to hand them out after this meeting."

This is actually a perfect supplement to the lesson. Hitch is at least three things, after all. He's Hitch, he's Sheriff, and he's A Friend. That third one adds extra perspective. Izzy would do well in the art world.

This was awesome! I can read a whole series of the twins teaching the ins and outs of dealing with fame. Lot of potential for fun stories there.

"You know how after the flight strings were revealed they threw her in jail?"

But-but-but...she was being a phony pony full of baloney! How could you not? :trollestia:

"Another one had just the worst pet," Pipp continued. "Absolute menace."

Fluttershy didn't think so. :ajsmug:


I like the message of this, but I also like how its presented. I can just about see an actual episode coming from this, and since there is that G5 TV show to look forward to still...who knows? :raritywink:

I'm still kinda getting used to the idea that we have this whole new cast of characters in a new version of the world to play with now. The possibilities are feeling kinda endless at the moment. :rainbowlaugh:

10996321
fluttershy? i thought they meant opal llol

10996394
Oh, but there's a many a fan who think Angel Bunny was somewhat misnamed though... :trollestia:

10996397
i agree with that honestly. tho opal is the one actually beating up rarity and clawing at sweetie. suppose it's between that and angel who is constantly belligerent

Pipp, the popstar pegasus idol teaching sweet Sunny, savior of friendship and magic and uniter of Equestria some important lessons. :twilightsmile:

We're not flawless, we're works in progress. 🎶

#UncancelDad

"You know how after the flight strings were revealed they threw her in jail?"

Sunny cringed. "...Yeah..."

"That's cancel culture. I mean, a pretty extreme form of cancel culture, but..."

"Wait, are you saying this country actually punishes politicians for lying? That's awesome!"

Dan
Dan #23 · September 30th · · 30 ·

Cancel culture is not a thing.

This was a simply fantastic short read. Phenomenal way of fleshing out Pipp, who really didn't get that much time in the film.

And an excellent lesson about navigating newfound fame.

This was a funny story and I liked it.

Pipp Pipp hurray!! ❤️

10995786
He sets up a lot 😂 but it’s up now 😊

Look its an interesting idea to explore parasocial relationships and internet culture through Pipp. ANd its well written. But I'm just really distracted about something, thats really being the fly in the ointment.

Dude. Come on. Call me a radical leftist, but I'm really not sure I'd describe a throwing a revolution against a monarch/political leader who'd perpetuated a century long lie that they alone possessed magic as "Cancel Culture." That was the violent overthrow of the status quo. Social hysteria. It wasn't a loud twitter mob, it was Pony Cromwell.

They weren't cancelled, they were overthrown for lying to their subjects for centuries about their ability to fly. It wasn't the twitter Mob. It was an actual Mob.

Its hard not to view it through the same lens as the "Divine Right" of Kings. "We are special, thats why we get to be Kings." When it turns out that they aren't in fact special, the populace (Briefly) overthrew their monarchy. They perpetuated a lie for centuries, for the sole purpose of remaining in power, and created the illusion that they they and they alone possessed magic - and imprisoned strangers who threatened to reveal that secret.


Now, though the internet is scarcely the place for it, we can have a sensible conversation about cancel culture, which I do think has been blow way out of proportion. To my mind, "Cancel Culture" is only a social ill if someone is being punished for something that an ordinary person wouldn't lose their job for.
For example, I work in public health. If I said something racist to a colleague, then I could, and probably should be fired for it, because I can't be trusted to work with that colleague, and employers have a right to create the work environment conducive to their service or product. Same as if I were to sexually harass someone. Or make inappropriate jokes. That's the litmus test.

"Would this celebrity face punishment for this thing, if they weren't a celebrity? If they had a 9 till 5 job, doing ordinary things, with a boss, coworkers, and an otherwise normal life?"

If the answer is no, then thats a genuine case of "cancel culture" getting out of hand.
But if its simply a case of a celebrity being fired a job because your boss found out about you belonging to a racist organisation, or people choosing not to associate with you because of the things you said publicly, well tough luck. The worst is comedians, I find, who are upset that their audience's tastes have changed, and rather than make new material and adapt to the market, simply rant about how "You can't say anything these days", as if they are entitled to be found amusing... Nine times out of Ten, I find the people ranting about "Cancel Culture", are in reality simply facing the consequences that an ordinary person would face, and are having a "Don't you know who I AM?!" moment. There is this perception that its okay for an ordinary person to be fired from their job, but the celebrity should get a second chance. Which is simply nonsense. Treating celebrities like they are something special when it comes to social conduct is precisely how we ended up with the worst of the worst getting away with things in broad daylight. Its a rather dangerous mentality to have, because its only a matter of time before it gets exploited by the legitimate monsters of the world.

But circling back to MLP, what occurred was neither of those things, because it wasn't being "cancelled". It was being overthrown. Conflating the two is... a little problematic, because regardless of how you feel about cancel culture, its unavoidable that the royals were ABSOLUTELY in the wrong there, when it came to faking their magic.

10995249
I thought this nailed Izzy. As for who in the Mane 6 is most reflected in her, Pinkie is definitely who I thought of. with her incessant attempts at making friends with everyone. And often completely missing out on the mood. She doesn’t have that Cloud Cuckoolander, almost otherworldly vibe to Pinkie. This means Izzy is not as totally unique of a light in the world of Equestria. Or leave as large in impact in the minds of viewers like Pinkie clearly did. I don’t think we’ll ever have phrases like “Izzy being Izzy” or “It’s Izzy, don’t question it.” However, she’s still might be my favorite character in this whole shebang. She’s filled with sweetness without being cloying at all, which takes serious writing skill to pull off. I suspect that Izzie will be harder for writers to screw up. Sometimes when writers tried their hands at Pinkie, her short attention span became obnoxiousness, obliviousness became stupidity, and zest for life into selfishness. I could also see how Izzy could be more approachable for some types of people, since she’s not quite as high-pitched, and doesn’t talk at such a rapid fire rate. Whereas if less-skilled writer were handed Izzy, I don’t think the danger would be of turning her into a jerk. The pitfall would probably be more like making her an overly-nice nonentity that can’t effect things.

How do you mean using M.A. Larson as a scapegoat?


10995448
I thought I understood this phrase, but I’m not grasping it in this context. FoME, could you help me out?

This was really funny! I know full well I'm not the only commenter who felt like Pipp was underused, and I feel like you found such a natural outgrowth of her role. Sunny has vision, Izzy has boundless kindness, and Pipp... would logically know all this stuff.

Also can confirm, Pinkie did indeed burp that one time

Very nice, some good thoughts here.

10997800
If it's the phrase I think you mean, it's a tongue-in-cheek reference to the Oversaturated World, where Sunset has also picked up more than her fair share of honorifics and devotees.

10997992
And when she swallowed her own spoon. And when she needed to cough up a notepad to write with. And... this seems like a personal problem.

10997800
To quote TVTropes' Trivia page for the episode:

The suits at Hasbro were the ones who came up with the premise for this episode. M.A. Larson knew that it was going to feel like an attack to the fans, and even wrote an alternate version where things were less mean-spirited, but the higher-ups forced him to go through with the episode.

In other words, the big wigs wrote the episode and put Larson's name in the credits instead of their own name(s).

10998596
Huh, I never knew that. I just always thought the episode was hilarious and thoughtful with looking at parasocial relationships. For the ponies in-universe, and the meta context of the MLP fanbase and showstaff.

10997800
10998596
To further clarify it, here's a recording of Larson explaining the story of how it happened in full at a convention.

In all fairness, how Larson came to write it is a bit more nuanced than is publicly known, and he explains that nicely in this (as well as about a couple of other things about how writing worked for FiM), but yes, the original idea for the episode hadn't been Larson's and he didn't like it, but it was his job to make it work as best as he could anyway.

Personally, I never had an issue with Fame and Misfortune, as I understood what the intention behind the original idea had been (whether or not it succeeded in conveying that is something I'll leave to others to decide)...but that said, I do kind of like the alternate idea Larson talked about pitching a bit better than what we ultimately got.

10997610
That part was a joke. A flippant exaggeration for comedic effect, because CC is not the point of the story.

Oreon #38 · October 2nd · · 1 ·

10997610
You're right, but I think you miiiight be overreacting, just a tad? I don't think Masterweaver was purposefully conflating a monarchy being overthrown with "cancel culture". - and while I know CC tends to be a buzzword, I don't think that's how they meant it here.

I do however, see Pipp conflating those two things as a perfectly normal personality flaw. She's a princess, she's quite literally almost the highest part of the hierarchy, and an influencer at that. Of course someone like that would conflate those two things - because even though they're not the same, they have aesthetic parallels that might make them *seem* the same to someone who also conflates their influencer-ness with their princesshood... but I do see your point.

(I'm trying to make the argument that Pipp doesn't see the difference between a monarchy and an influencer, and so, to her, "cancel culture" and "a mob rightfully overthrowing a ruler" might seem the same. But things get confusing when you involve the author and I can't claim to know what Masterweaver intended. I can only give benefit of the doubt, and aim to do so.)

what I called you all here for. It's Super Important."

Dear Princess Celestia: today I learned that whenever I see the word "super" capitalized, my brain subconsciously expects "Trampoline" to follow.

Also I don't remember where cuz I didn't want to copy paste a bunch of different things but somewhere one of the ponies says handing out things rather than hoofing out things.

Also I like the characterization of pip being a perfect friend properly on the surface but kind of at the mercy of her own facade some Evita or my fair lady or good witch Glenda or even Rarity energy. So in this case, the idealized idea of pipp is not that of those who idolize her, but her own self.

Lastly, pip talking about parasocial interactions has the same energy as when in the movie is he tells hitch that his sheriff badge was creating unhealthy power dynamics. I love shit like that.

Anyway have a great day!

Really well done, you captured the characters quite well!

(Side note, hyped for gen 5 series!)

10999115
Thats a fair point. I certainly hope that's the case, as its a much more interesting route.
I don't personally get the sense that Pipp is supposed to be wrong in any capacity in this, its framed as being genuinely good advice, but I suppose there could be an element of unreliable narrator there. You may be on to something. As I said, I did enjoy the story and found it to be well written.
That was just something that really stood out to me, and I found to be very distracting from the rest of the story; even to the point of overriding the rest of it, if that makes sense?i Guess I just find the sociopolitical ramifications of overthrowing a century old dynasty over an uncovered conspiracy to be a very interesting thread to pull at, and reducing that down to cancel culture a term that is so frequently misapplied anyway, really rubbed me the wrong way. But everyone has their tastes I suppose.

10995124
If Pipp had just mentioned that she is absolutely, 100% certain that, at one time, each and every one of them pooped, I think Sunny would have gone full Daybreaker. :rainbowlaugh:

Very good points to remember overall.

"Sorry, Sherrif, it's a speed challenge," Zipp explained. "Hit the trap and launch off before it snaps. I'll let 'em know, but it's not going to stop any time soon."

That’s sounds like fun. Slightly irresponsible but fun nonetheless. Would totally do the same if I was a Pegasus who experienced flying for the first time in my life. :pinkiehappy:

"How many were there?"
"Twelve incidents."
"Drat." Zipp grinned. "I only did ten."

Little did Zipp know that her mother was responsible for the other two incidents. :trollestia:

"Oh." Sunny's shoulders sagged. "I'm... sorry for your loss. I... my father died, so I know what it's like to--"
"Dad's not dead," Zipp stated flatly. "We just can't ever be seen with him in public again."
"...what."
"That lettuce leaf was not his fault!" Pipp choked back a sob. "I know he screwed up but--" She took a deep breath, shutting her eyes and wiping away a tear. "Perky Pipp, ponies prefer perky Pipp, promise pretty petals Pipp..."

Unexpected but hilarious. :rainbowlaugh: Must’ve been a pretty big screwup considering he basically received the Pegasus equivalent of Damnatio memoriae. On the other hand, it probably prevented him from being thrown in jail like Haven, because everypony forgot/ignored that he existed in the first place.

Is this lettuce leaf incident a reference to something that happened in RL? I’m not up to date with celeb scandals, so they only thing I can think of is the Equestria Girls clip with Sunset Shimmer about embarrassing yourself.

Hopefully we learn more about the Mane Five’s parents in the show. Especially the absences of Zipp & Pipp's father and Sunny’s mom is very notable. With Hitch and Izzy one can at least assume that they are still alive but offscreen.

Because you actually did bring back magic--with some help, sure, but your fame is based on facts, not views.

Because everyone is always rational and believe in facts. Like the "fact" that Unicorns are evil creatures who spent their whole day thinking about frying Earth Pony brains. If Sprout would claim that the whole thing was staged and Sunny is actually a puppet installed by her Pegasi and Unicorn overlords, there would be at least a few residents of Maretime Bay buying into it.

"Another one had just the worst pet," Pipp continued. "Absolute menace."

I guess everyone know exactly about which pet they are talking.

But to be fair… Spike had his good moments.

(Before I get lynched and or canceled: I’m joking, of course. I like Spike.)

"And like, I'm pretty sure there was one time that princess woke up with a terrible bed mane, and couldn't get it looking right all day--"

"At least one of them pooped at least once. "

----------

The more they revealed about Pipp the less optimistic I became about her as a character. A princess, popstar and Influencer glued to her phone? That felt like a receipt for making an unlikeable character. Now I didn’t hate her in the movie, but sadly there wasn’t really anything that made me care about her, either. Hopefully the special and the series will turn her into a more interesting character with some likeable qualities.

Which is exactly what this story did. Pipp actually provided useful and insightful advisees and came across as genuinely likeable pony with some character depth. There’s wasa real good lesson in this story about why putting people/ponies on a pedestal can be bad.

All in all , it was a short but nonetheless great fic I enjoyed reading very much. :twilightsmile:

Good story. Although yeah make you wonder who really in charge of ZH if the royals can be arrested so easily. Like do they hold any real power or just figure heads. The more I think on it the less it manes sense

PresentPerfect
Author Interviewer

Unicorns have been pecking through wood with our horns for ages, and we're all good brain pones!

Funniest thing I've read all day. :D

This is some really solid fanfic, i like it! Pipp's characterisation was great, the jokes were funny, and the whole thing just worked. I feel like the ending felt a little off tho, maybe it was just a little too much lore-dump for a conclusion? Idk, it didnt really hurt the overall effect.

Also, kinda a side comment here, but i think it's cool that we have sisters in the main 5, that's a dynamic we never got so explore before

Pretty good. I do think Sunny will be mostly safe from this in Maretime Bay, where she already has a Reputation - it's the unicorns and pegasi she has to watch out for, especially the ones like her who never bought into the whole "earthponies suck" idea.

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