FimFiction Link - Short ID: 514622/pipp-of-theseus
Published: Apr '22
'Pipp of Theseus' is a two thousand and four hundred-word G5 oneshot. During one of Pipp's livestreams her eyes change color, prompting her to reminisce about her past and the lie she lives.
I admit out of everything that G5 has presented until now, Pipp is the character I hate the most. Her exceedingly annoying personality coupled with how through her the concept of influencers and whatnot is forced into the universe deeply irritates me. And yet this story did its hardest to make her seem not only interesting, but sympathetic as well.
Under all the baggage the new continuity forces onto the story, there is plenty of things that I consider clever and enjoyable here. From the title, to connecting her name to bug anatomy, to giving a canon reason to why she has differently colored eyes in different media, to even some of the turns of phrases used, all speak of the author putting real care and effort into their story, which is always a welcome sight. The prose too accomplishes its purpose well, I especially liked how the past scenes contrast with the present ones.
Though "X is a Changeling" is an almost comically common trope, connecting it to the one character who (cynically put) by default "leeches on others' love and adoration" is a fun twist on the concept, as is the idea that the reason why she looks so, well, rotund is because she just put on a half-botched transformation that stuck with her.
On the other hand, I find the author's justification for how she infiltrated the royal family a bit flimsy. The story puts a big emphasis on the fact that Pipp was a starving nymph when Zipp accidentally stumbled upon her and yet she was somehow capable of mindgaming not only her and her mother, but also anyone else who might have been skeptical. It just feels a bit too convenient and hand-wavy. The reason why I think so many authors go with stillborn / dead foals being replaced - aside from the fact that it adheres to folklore - is because it ties up these specific contrivances in a believable way.
Also, as mentioned before the story very much leans into "modernity." If the idea of reading an Among Us reference along with a bunch of other Twitch-level quips in what could otherwise be described as a mostly serious fic about a tragic character who is living a lie similarly makes you frown, this might not be story for you.
Overall: 6/10 The base concept is great and the author put plenty of clever tricks into the story. However, some parts of the fic really rip into the mood and I feel the previous events the fic only mentions off-handedly are far more interesting than the actual narrative of the story itself. If the aforementioned criticisms doesn't bother you, I can recommend this story, but otherwise, as much as I enjoyed a lot about this story, it's unlikely to earn your liking.