Keep your friends close, your enemies closer, and your eye on today’s story.
The Equestrian Opposition Party
[Comedy] [Random] [Slice of Life] • 8,333 words
After more than a thousand years of comfortably occupying the throne, Celestia has more than a few enemies. Every month, they gather to plot her downfall and commiserate over their past failures. For those fed up with the status quo and ready to see a change, the E.O.P. has ever been a home and respite against the slings and arrows of dull, predictable government.
Today, a new pony joins their ranks.
(Equestrian Political Satire – Be warned! There will be discussions, debate, civil disagreement, and beer. Sweet mercy, there will be beer.)
FROM THE CURATORS: After this year’s real-life political circuses, you might be forgiven for running screaming from any story centered around the topic — but in this case, you’d be missing out. “This is a great example of how to write a comedy with political notes which doesn’t become offensive or excessively reductivist,” Chris said. AugieDog agreed — “there are no ‘straw ponies’ here” — and it equally turned Present Perfect’s head: “This is quality political humor, up with the Civil Service-verse.”
Part of that was the story’s deft touch in expanding its characters beyond just their given roles. “This was great reading as slice-of-life about a collection of eccentric misfits, and the ultimate message felt heartwarmingly pony despite the genre of political humor being filled with no small number of bottomless pits and dead-ends,” Horizon said. It also didn’t hurt that the humor consistently landed, Present Perfect noted. “It’s a rip-roaring comedy filled with characters who are instantly likable,” he said. “The joke about the machine sobbing and exploding nearly made me die.” And every one of us had good things to say about the ending. “The reveal somehow snuck up on me, even though in hindsight it seemed like the most natural thing in the world, which is always a great sign,” Horizon said, and Present Perfect agreed: “The twist at the end I did not see coming, and it only made the whole thing better, not to mention more believable.”
But all of that would have felt hollow without this story’s gentle touch on an often polarizing topic, and that by itself made it worth reading. “One of the problems with political humor is that most writers only seem interested in taking the easy way out, belittling the characters and turning them into cardboard caricatures,” AugieDog said. “This story has fun with the various political beliefs of the characters, but in the end, we see them as Celestia does: as honest, actual ponies who want to make Equestria a better place.”
Read on for our author interview, in which Chessie discusses created gods, clone cooks, and blood-shooting eyes.