Best FF That Proves That Fortune Really Does Favor the Foolish, Because If It Didn't, Benton Fraser Would've Been Killed by an Insane Bag Lady by Now: Interrogation, by speranza. Due South, Ray Kowalski/Benton Fraser. This is one of those stories that I turn to again and again, especially when I've just read a novella involving, you know, darkness and sourness and a 2,300-word torture scene. Why? (I mean, of course, why do I turn to this story, not why do I read darkfic. The latter passeth all understanding.) Well, consider the experimental line of Hallmark cards. Fraser's list of enemies. The mad or incompetent toaster bomber. Plus, is it just me, or is Frannie worried about what else Ray and Fraser might be doing in the interrogation room? I think she's a closet slash reader, people.
Best FF Using the Phrase "Snookie-Ookie-Wookums" (Please, God, Let This Be the Only FF Using the Phrase "Snookie-Ookie-Wookums"): Every Fanfic Ever Written!, by Mooncalf, aka tsukikoushi. All fandoms, all pairings. You say you have no time to read fan fiction these days? Even fast fic is too much for you? Well, read Mooncalf's nifty encapsulations, and you'll never need to read another. She's missed a few of the rarer types, yup, but I think you'll be impressed at how much she covers. I know I was. My own personal favorite type of story: The Backstory Fic, Part 2.
Best FF That Needs to Be Forwarded to Every Marvel Author Immediately. With a Kick in the Pants or Two.: Phone Home, by Domenika. (I think, anyway. It's sort of hard to tell her name from her site.) X-Men comics, gen. I don't know if those of you who haven't suffered under the Insanity-Inducing Lash that is the X-multiverse will find this as funny as, for example, I do. I do know that even minute exposure to said Lash years and years ago will be enough to cause you to giggle at this. I laughed myself sick at this one, even though I quit my X habit cold turkey in my last year of college, when I realized that I could keep up with the classes my parents paid for me to take, or I could keep up with Marvel comics, which I had to pay to read and then pay for therapy sessions to resolve the existential confusion they induced. I couldn't do both, and I still believe I made the right choice. If you've managed to steer clear of the X gravitational well but you'd still like to get the joke, look at Alex Summers' biography, courtesy the scarily thorough folks at Mutatis Mutandis. Alex Summers is the main character in this story, so reading this will help you understand the background. Even more, though, reading his bio will give you a tiny, tiny sampling of the hysteria, chaos, and ludicrous insanity that is the canon for this world. Warning: Exposure to Marvel comics plot lines may cause cranial pain, facial swelling, and unexplained bleeding. In extreme cases, seizures and dribbling may result. Discontinue reading if any of the following symptoms appear: confusion, loss of will to live, scaly rash, disruption of electrical fields, secondary mutation.
Best Humorous FF Featuring References to Martin Luther King, Jr. and Charles Dickens: I Had a Dream, by francesca. The Sentinel, Jim/Blair. For some reason, I just find this really - funny. Maybe it's the whole "Christmas Carol" riff - I have a well-documented weakness for the Ghosts of Various Holidays of Various Times. Maybe it's that this is the strangest method of initiating a relationship I've seen yet in FF. Maybe it's that this all seems so very, very, well, Blairy - I can just totally picture him doing this. Or maybe it's because I'm with Jim on this one; I actually find Blair's dream rather reassuring, too. (And I am here to tell you, folks, that it is a sad, sad day when you realize that you're the Jim Ellison in your own personal RL pairing.) I find the happy ending, the light-heartedness, and the silliness comforting, too. Read on, my friends, for grim fic returns soon to a blog near you.