Today I have something for you that was submitted by my #1 Assistant and holy shit is is a grim one:
This story starts out with Rarity discovering that she has no gems to complete a dress she’s working on for a client. This, of course, necessitates her going out to the hills, the realm of the Diamond Dogs, in search of gems.
I’m going to put this right here, I am in love with this story. Seriously. This is perhaps one of the grimmest, darkest, and most horrifying story I’ve read in a while. It’s pleasently short, atmospheric as all hell, and very well written. I really really like this one.
This is a story about Rarity and I tend to find stories about Rarity reduce her down to her shallowness to the point that they are unreadable because they’re about a cutout. This one, much to my surprise and enjoyment, doesn’t do that. Rarity in this story is a workaholic, but takes a moment out of her day to comfort Spike when he informs her that Twilight has gone missing. She goes out of her way to help him look for her in the park. Although she doesn’t remain with him because she does have a job after all she still took the time to accompany him which is more that Rarity is known for as far a Grimdark as a genre goes.
It’s also worthy to note that Rarity is not the villain here as she normally is. When I was still doing my archetype theme I noted how Rarity was so often the villain. In fact, at some point I looked for a story with Rarity as a victim and was unable to find one really. I really assumed that Rarity was simply the pony that people most disliked, and so therefore was easier to make into a villain.
However, I believe that view is somewhat out of date with the changes that have come about with the Grimdark genre in and of itself. With the expansion of the genre to include not only slasher fics like “Cupcakes” but instead to include epics like “No Rest for the Wicked” and “Sunset” there has been an expansion in the thematic elements and the archetypal characters.
In addition the expansion on her character in Season 2 has allowed for an exposure to the depth of Rarity’s character. Throught Season one it was easy to write Rarity off as a selfish manipulative bitch, but in Season 2 she was given more room to grow and we saw much more of her character specifically her love for her sister in “Sisterhooves Social”. Rarity went from being a cardboard cut-out mean girl ready for insertion into your villain slot to a meaningful and introspective character.
This shift in Rarity’s characterization is very apparent when you come to the very end of the story. Rarity begins reflecting on her friends and family and what they meant to her. For a character that was so consistently portrayed as being a shallow bitch for a long time it’s jarring and touching to see an author portray her sympathetically.
The villains in this story, if you didn’t guess, are the Diamond Dogs. I actually really like the Diamond Dogs as villains in Grimdark which I haven’t often encountered. I think that their portrayal in the show as somewhat dumb and easily manipulated comes through a bit in this story, but with much more gruesome consequences. I can’t really go much into them and their villainous acts without spoiling the final bits, but it’s really an interesting way to look at them and their presence in Equestria. They are, after all, massive sentient dogs with a lust for gems and very sharp claws and fangs. Although they are dim that doesn’t make them not dangerous and I think this story does a great job showing that.
Overall I love this story. It’s definitely GRIMDARK AS FUCK! and worth your time.
Thanks for reading! ‘Til next time, take care of yourself and maim your brother!
P.s: I’m going to be at Otakon next weekend dressed as Pinkamena. If any of you are going, I’d love to chat with some of my readers. Feel free to come up and say hello!