Today’s story is classified at the highest level … of enjoyable.
Mr. and Mrs. S.M.I.L.E.
[Equestria Girls] [Adventure] [Comedy] [Drama] • 10,530 words
For centuries anything magic, alien and supernatural has been handled
and covered up by the Supernatural and Magical Intelligence League of Earth and their agents. A small city in the heart of [REDACTED] in particular has been designated to always have someone from the agency at hand, even though nothing of note has happened there for so long that nobody even remembers why that policy was implemented in the first place.
Get ready for action, drama, paperwork and misguided marital counseling as you follow the adventures of the two
poor idiots dedicated agents currently appointed to watch over the sleepy town of Canterlot, where supernatural events don’t happen regularly so please stop posting videos of them on MyStable.
FROM THE CURATORS: While the march of canon has left many stories’ premises in the dust, every once in a while you run across one which improves with time. “This story was having fun with the interactions between a Chrysalis and a Tirek long before Grogar forced them to work together,” FanOfMostEverything said in his nomination. “By making it the human analogues’ job to actually prevent mayhem, it makes them even more entertaining, since they act as a fantastic two-person peanut gallery for the goings-on at Canterlot High.” But it shouldn’t have taken the wisdom of hindsight for us to see how great it was, Horizon said: “I am ashamed that I didn’t nominate this back when it won first place in the Villain Exchange Program contest.”
Behind that win (and our feature) was an underlying factor which all of us praised. “The dynamic of these two characters is the centerpiece, and it’s just marvelous to watch them work,” Present Perfect said. “They may be the good guys, at least from the reader’s perspective, but Tirek as straightman and Chrysalis as wildcard fits them both perfectly.” AugieDog echoed that: “The characters are so perfectly presented, they make up for every possible minus. I would devour a series of stories that followed these two around having their own adventures.” Horizon’s agreement was more succinct — “the characters leap off the page” — while FanOfMostEverything found that dynamic elevating the whole story. “This isn’t just a pile of wacky hijinks,” he said. “The two show great character depth and care for one another at times, along with some great off-hand comments that add plentiful depth to the human world. The overall effect is a thoroughly entertaining supernatural buddy cop series.”
Our critical acclaim extended beyond the character work, though. “What’s most amazing about this is just how effectively it works with the strengths of its format,” Horizon said. “The framing device squarely introduces the story, keeps it focused on the highlights, and then pulls the two halves of it together at the end. And on top of that is a story which unfailingly hits its comic beats and sketches out a cool and enticing ‘Men in Black’ style background for the EQG world.” It even won over AugieDog despite initial doubts: “This is just great gobs of fun from start to finish,” he said, “and I absolutely loved how it pushed straight through all the roadblocks my pesky little brain wanted to throw in its way.” All in all, as Present Perfect said, it was exemplary on multiple fronts: “Funny and insightful, it’s easy to see why this was a winner.”
Read on for our author interview, in which River Road discusses stick-figure comics, reader kicking, and Blueprint duplication.