Friday, December 17, 2010

Banner made by AcrossTheSkyInStars aka Tanya Zedor
‘Tis the Season for...

And so the season of goodwill, festive cheer, and more poultry than you can shake a (peppermint) stick at, is upon us once again. Here at FanFicAholics Anon we have decided to dedicate the glorious month of December to two very special men who definitely hold a place in my heart- the Winchester brothers.

On a more personal note, it has been a while since I last checked in with the fabulous FFA community, therefore some new/er members may be wondering exactly who this new voice of fanfiction is. I am sure you must have at least noticed the name ‘Officer Buffy’s Stake’ on your many visits to the FFA page, (What... no? Really?!), but perhaps you have yet to put a face to said name. Well, I am she. I would like to take a moment to thank the General herself, Claire Bloom, and all my fellow officers for being so patient and supportive whilst a took a little time out for the birth of my third child. Now that baby Bowen is eleven weeks old and I am back in the land of the living (aka the land of the caffeine addicted) it is time for me to once again resume my officer-ly duties, and deliver to you good people some finger-lickin’ fic goodness.

For those of you who are virgins to the world of Supernatural, I am including a brief synopsis of the show before I recommend two fics that have captured my attention like a fart in a library. Please excuse any poor stabs at attempted humour, merely nod, smile and consider the toll that night feeds take on the system. So here we go...

Supernatural is a television series that explores the lives of two sexy, demon-hunter brothers, Sam and Dean Winchester. The series first hit US television screens in 2005 after an initial 10 year set-up period, and its runaway success has since seen a further five seasons spawned.

Older brother Dean is the rugged, tough-talking, sardonic type who has worshipped their (ex-military) father John from a young age. Meanwhile, little brother Sammy forms the intelligent and quietly confident half of the duo, who together travel America in their beloved black Impala searching out ‘cases’. Using a cache of forged ID’s, credit cards and documents, the Winchesters wage war against those things that go bump in the night, with a killer classic rock soundtrack thrown in for good measure.

We learn quickly that Sam and Dean grew up on the road with their hunter father John at the helm of a relentless quest; to find and kill the yellow-eyed demon that murdered his young wife, Mary Winchester. Whilst Dean has supported his father’s mission from the tender age of five years old and even pitched in to raise his then infant brother, Sammy struggles to find meaning in it with no memories of the woman for whom they fight to spur him onward. Each season contains its own mini-storyline, all of which become cleverly interwoven during the fifth (and what was said to be final) series of the show.

Supernatural is more about family relationships in many respects and rarely takes itself too seriously. With a talented (and also devastatingly delicious) leading cast, and a team of clever and witty writers to guide it, Supernatural has become one of the most watched and talked about items in US television history.

And so, on with our recs...

The Memory of Pie
Author: Micaiah
Genre: Family
Status: Complete
Characters: Sam W. And Dean W.

‘Sam made a list. Every year at Thanksgiving, even before he was old enough to write, he made a list of things he was thankful for. Dean helped him with it when he was younger and made fun of him for it when he was older...’

The first offering I have selected from Fanfiction is a worthy one indeed. This adorable oneshot is the perfect introduction to Supernatural for those of you who are new to the show, or for those who simply admire the brother dynamic that exists within.

The Memory of Pie contains some minor storyline details from the season 5 episode, ‘Dark Side of the Moon’ in which we learn that one of Sam’s best memories in life was a visit to a junior high-school girlfriend’s house at Thanksgiving. Although I am British and Thanksgiving is evidently not observed here, I can and do appreciate the sentimentality of the holidays which are undoubtedly a time for family.

Due to the clever way in which Micaiah has crafted this oneshot, it is not necessary to have previously viewed the show or that particular episode as there is ample information available in the piece itself, (and not a single demon in sight)!

This piece is a tribute to the strong fraternal relationship that the Winchester brothers share, and that Micaiah has only succeeded in building upon. Thanksgiving sees the Winchester brothers alone in a motel room as their father battles a shape-shifter somewhere in town. Having received his first invitation to a girl’s house, Sam enjoys a holiday meal with a normal family and on the ride back to the motel reflects upon all that he is thankful for, which includes his big brother.
Here, Micaiah reveals that this particular memory is one of Sam’s best only through the unrelenting efforts of his older brother to give him at least a handful of ‘normal’ experiences. Not only does this sweeten the oneshot but also the television series, in which Dean had found himself rather hurt by Sammy’s admission. Micaiah smooths this tension over beautifully without interfering with the plot of the show, or the characters. Micaiah’s portrayal of the Winchesters’ relationship shows not only depth but also a brilliant understanding of the sibling bond, and also the sacrifice required of those in a parental role. Indeed, Dean spends his Thanksgiving in the solitude of a motel in order to allow Sammy one perfect moment; a selfless action so true to the character that I applaud the author.

Not only is the piece well-written and emotive, but the author has managed to successfully adopt the tone of an eleven year old child and stay true to it, which is something to be commended. Micaiah’s use of language (particularly grammar, spelling, punctuation, etc) is both masterful and beautiful. Overall, this oneshot left me feeling warm and wonderfully fuzzy, as well as craving a piece of apple butter and pumpkin pie!

I would most certainly recommend this oneshot to all, whether a dedicated Supernatural fan or simply a curious potential viewer/reader. You are sure to find something within that both pleases and moves you in equal measure. Well done Micaiah!

The second fic that I have selected is also by Micaiah and once again centres around the Winchester brothers. There is no shortage of notable Supernatural authors on FFN, however for me Micaiah marked the discovery of a unique talent and so I make only the smallest apology for focussing on another of her pieces.

Toy Soldiers
Author : Micaiah
Genre : Angst
Status : Complete
Characters : Dean W. And Sam W.

‘How could one lifetime be summed up in so little? There was so much more to his brother than what was in those few items stacked up on the bed.’

Micaiah begins this oneshot with a direct quote from one of Eminem’s more recognised songs of the same title, before progressing to draw upon the childhood memories that she is so adept at creating for the Winchesters. The beauty of writing for a show such as Supernatural is that little of the protagonists’ pasts are set in stone, and Micaiah uses her obvious talent for sentiment when filling in some of those blanks. In this oneshot, it is a packet of plastic green toy soldiers that tug at the heart strings, whilst also helping to illustrate the bond that the brothers have always shared.

Similarly to the last fic I reviewed, the events here are also set during season 5 of the show and, regrettably, being a regular Supernatural viewer is a necessity to understand this one. Although the fic does not really comprise of any action, it includes and explains a major plot element of season 5, so look away now if you have yet to make it that far into the show! In this oneshot Micaiah deals with Dean’s feelings towards Sammy’s impending banishment to hell as a result of Lucifer hitch hiking in his skin.

What Micaiah has created is a very real look at the loss or even potential loss of a sibling, and how the one ‘left behind’ may both feel and come to terms with that. There is a plethora of emotions in this fic ranging from joy to sheer despair, and the reader is taken on a journey that is much similar to the natural grieving process. Micaiah once more proves her capability with these characters by keeping the dialogue punchy and believable, but also managing to tap into the minds of the characters. There is no direct window into the characters’ thought processes in this piece, but Micaiah clearly explains what either Winchester may be thinking at any time through use of omniscient narrative. Overall, Micaiah has taken a very psychological approach to this fic that is impressive but never in danger of leaving a clueless reader behind.

Without disclosing too much, the ending is hopeful at best for the Winchesters and leaves the reader somewhat recovering from the earlier depressions the piece contained.

All in all, Micaiah manages to portray herself in as little as two short oneshots as an author to be reckoned with. With no fewer than 91 Supernatural fics under her belt (all of unfailing quality) I was left wondering exactly where this author continues to find inspiration from. However, one thing is for sure; as long as the extremely high quality of her writing remains constant, I am glad that she does!

Micaiah’s profile is available to view on where links to all 91 of her Supernatural fics can also be found. Please take the time to read the words of a truly dedicated and passionate author, and remember to leave that all important review. If you are short on time, there are two simple words that never fail to suffice; ‘you rock’.

Over the coming month, the FFA officer team will be scouring the net for more Supernatural fics, so come on over for a great read and feel free to rec away yourself. After all, there’s no such things as too much Winchester!

Aka Officer Buffy’s Stake

1 comment:

  1. Wow! Thank you so much! I'm actually kinda at a loss of what to say here. Both of these stories are two of my own personal favorites that I've written and I always feel strange saying that for some reason. I'm really glad you liked them so much! Thanks again for this awesome Christmas present! :)