What can I say other than: “I am a sucker for a good story”. I love reading, and fantasy has always been one of my favorite genres. But strangely enough, I have not read a lot of Furry-works, and so I was super excited when blue1kitty1cat1 reached out to me and asked if I might check out their new story called “Sunny and Moony”.
They were nice enough to send me both the trailer and the first chapter, both of which was posted via their YouTube Channel.
I will admit, reading stories on YouTube is something new to me. I tried writing stories on YouTube once, but never took time to try and read stuff that others had created. For me, it can be hard if the slides are too long or if there is too much going on in the background. But in the case of “Sunny and Moony”, there was a lot that was done right.
- The Trailer:
Already the Trailer has drawn me in with those cute characters…and it’s good to have something that gives off a visual. I think that without having seen the trailer, I might not have had the same ideas or images in my head had I just read chapter one alone.
I like that the trailer is short and it isn’t very complicated. It shows character sketches and concept art which shows that this is something that took time, effort, and that there was care involved. I also liked the music. But can I just say that both these characters are just too adorable? They are frickin’ precious and I love it! But the trailer was a good way to advertise something new, and it had me curious enough that I was eager to give Chapter One a solid read…
- Chapter One:
First, let me get my nit-picks out of the way. The trailer showed a cute image and really made you curious about what the story might be like once you jumped into it. And while the video for chapter one does have a title card at the beginning to show you the characters…when just looking at this thumbnail and seeing words rather than an image of the characters drawing you in, most people would just keep scrolling…
…but that’s just me seeing this from a “viewer” perspective and knowing (as a YouTube creator) that thumbnails are important!!!
But with that out of the way- here are my thoughts on the actual story.
In summary, the story is told from Moony’s perspective as she looks back on a fateful encounter she had a few days prior with a rabbit from the Sun Kingdom. Obviously there is some strife between her kind (the Moon Kingdom) and the Sun Kingdom because Moony has always learned that they are vicious warriors- she has heard of their dangerous nature from her teacher: Lunette. This gives me the vibe that the two factions were once at war or that there is some dark history there that keeps these two races apart. Meeting the Sun Rabbit fills Moony with dread…she sees it as some dark omen or sees it as a threat to the other citizens of the Moon Kingdom. We know that Moony herself is small and sees herself as inconsequential and weak.
Then there is Sunny…
I was actually surprised to learn that Sunny is a female, and her horns give off the vibe that she is someone of importance. Moony notes that horns and antlers belong to the ancient race of Jackalopes, and the only other person she knows with these antlers/horns is the ruler of the Moon Kingdom (Artemis). But Sunny is not like the Sun Rabbits that Moony has learned about. Her nature is very calm, collective, patient…she is understanding and knowing that Moony is terrified of her, she takes time in showing that she is no threat to the little bunny.
So the characters are well-paced for the most part, and the story lets you ease your way into knowing how they handle situations. They interact very realistically, even if this means that some parts of the story move a little slower than others.
But back to the plot: Sunny has come to the Moon Kingdom because she believes that Moony is in danger. She saw Moony calling out to her from a dream, and she has arrived to protect the little bunny. But Moony does not recall any such dreams involving Sunny, and she becomes concerned. This is where I have to point out that I am glad that Moony is at least realistic. She is very wary of the race she has heard nothing but terrible things about…on top of that, she does not immediately believe the things that Sunny is telling her. Moony eventually flees from Sunny and it brings us back to the present where Moony is washing dishes.
We are then shown that Moony regrets running away, but she does not have time to dwell on it because she blacks out after realizing she has not finished her task from Lunette- and we are left with a cliffhanger until Chapter Two.
Another thing that makes a good story (in my opinion) is if the plot draws you in enough to where you can theorize about it and/or it leaves you with questions. We are left with a cliffhanger…and immediately thoughts were running through my head: “Lunette is not what she seems, maybe she is the one behind the threats to Moony? She obviously lied about Sun rabbits…is this a conspiracy of some kind? What happened between the Sun and Moon Kingdoms? Who is Sunny really? What secret makes Moony so important? What is so special about the Jackalopes?”
Not only does a good story allow you to theorize, but it actually makes you feel things…like joy, suspense, and curiosity. And I had all those feelings while reading. It has me wanting to read on so I can answer the questions left behind…and I really want to know where everything is heading. It’s a good intro to draw people in and get them hooked. There are just some ways in which it could be done a little better.
And while the YouTube format can be a bit rough…I think “Sunny and Moony” has all the makings of what can be a great story, the most important thing it has is POTENTIAL!
If I could give some advice, I would recommend better thumbnails in the future. The author is also an artist, and I see a lot of talent going to waste if there is not a thumbnail to show the story off with. A good thumbnail can do wonders for the viewer counts…so the author should use that to their advantage!
Another thing I might add (and again, this is my opinion) is artwork in between so many slides. Add a break from the reading and really give the person a visual on where they are and what is going on. Atmosphere is something this story can be seriously lacking at time, and a visual on the Kingdom, surroundings, etc can only add to the emotion. I think doing so would keep people interested for longer and add just a little bit more substance to make the story really feel alive.
Lastly, I would make the videos SHORTER.
The story was good…but I can not think of many people who can focus on words for 26-minutes via a YouTube video…especially if it is not being read to them. I am glad there are no voices, but to keep an audience interested, split the chapters into 2-videos per chapter that way you can hold people’s attention for longer. There is no need to cut down on the writing, just make videos 10-12 minutes with words, images, etc…and I think this author has a great formula for success!
On that final note, the music that gives this story its atmosphere is A+ so please keep using it (but credit where you found it of course).
Because I wanted to do this story justice, I asked around to see if some friends could also lend their thoughts for this blog:
- Other reviews:
“Firstly, I’d love to comment on the trailer: it was well done and definitely looks inviting to those who haven’t heard of or seen anything about the series before. The editing on it is absolutely wonderful. The transition between the introduction and the story is interesting; the descriptive language flows, and the storytelling is unique and interesting. The use of the video format helps give your writing an extra dimension in depth and makes it step forward even more. I especially love the ambiance, sound effects, and musical transition that provides the story with more atmosphere, and would love to continue seeing it as the story progresses. There are some major things done well, and a few that could be done better or focused on; while your writing and music sets the mood, it’s still somewhat difficult to understand your characters’ world and the significance of some things about which they speak. Some of the relationships mentioned between some of the named characters are also not described or given details that might help your audience identify with and grow more attached to your characters.”
“It’s something I think people would like. But, I can also see where it could use some polishing. Some more sentence structure could use some work, and I look forward to the atmosphere flushing out in future uploads. Video is a very different way to upload a story.”
But what do YOU think?
Check out the story and let me know what you thought of “Sunny and Moony” in the comment-section down below. Also, if there are other Furry-works you would like me to review, feel free to drop a link for me in the comment-section as well.
Here in the next couple of months I will be at ACFI with my buddy Flamesvoices and my wife…so look forward to more posts after that convention in October.
Thank you all so much for reading and for your continued support. I will see you all in the next one! 😉