Compiled by the Espresso Addict

Espresso Recommendations

Innovative and stylish fanfiction, showcasing the very best across multiple sf, fantasy & literature fandoms. Good writing in all its forms can be found here, including gen, het, slash, OCs, AUs, crossovers, future fics, humour & pastiche

Contents: 1010 recs in 235 fandoms; 65 links

Miscellaneous: Visual

Alien films | Amélie | American Psycho | Batman films | Blackadder | Blade Runner | Bones | Breakfast Club | Brokeback Mountain | Coupling | Das Leben der Anderen | Dogma | Firefly | Good Life | Gosford Park | Grand Budapest Hotel | Hinterland | Hot Fuzz | Indiana Jones | Interview with the Vampire | James Bond | Juno | Lewis | Lost in Translation | Love Actually | M*A*S*H | Matrix trilogy | Pan's Labyrinth | Princess Bride | Red Dwarf | Remington Steele | Reservoir Dogs | Robin Hood (BBC) | Sesame Street | Sex and the City | Shakespeare Retold | Sleepy Hollow | The Hour | The Mentalist | Wire in the Blood | Yes, Minister

Alien films

Killing Elvis by David Hines

'The Chair wants Elvis stuffed and mounted. Is that possible? He wants this done by next week.' Believable science meets hilarious office politics with a great slow-building tension as one waits for the inevitable climax. Epistolary Aliens humour really shouldn't work, but somehow this clever story pulls it off

[Added 21/01/2011; Humour; 6000-20,000; Alien films]


Le Mondain Futur d'Amelie Poulain by Kinetikatrue

'She likes to think it wasn't, that Nino tells his secrets to someone, even if it isn't her. And that his world also has corners which other people can't peer around.' A delicate take on what 'happily ever after' might mean in practice, which does a good job of capturing the film's whimsy

[Added 28/01/2011; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; Amélie]

American Psycho

This is Not an Exit by Lizardbeth

'I try to calm myself, thinking about each breath, but nothing works until I picture Murray's head in a display case at Bloomingdale's, next to the Lalique.' A chilling portrait of insanity, as the police finally catch up with Patrick. The ending is unexpected yet perfect

[Added 28/01/2011; Drama; 2500-6000; American Psycho; Adult]

Batman films

The Kid from the Narrows by Ro

'You're too old for teddybears but you cling to something nonetheless. ...You fall asleep clutching the metal casing and wake with his symbol pressed deep into your palm.' Excellent use of a minor character to illuminate Batman and especially the city he patrols. The second-person narration works very nicely here (Batman Begins/Batman comics)

[Added 11/11/2008; Drama; 2500-6000; Batman films]

Lodestone by Eyebrow of Doom

'At the corner, a section of veneer the size of a silver dollar was missing, revealing chipboard beneath. Like Gordon's failings as a provider, this had a certain humble charm, but would become less charming over time.' Gritty portrait of Jim Gordon, full of well-chosen details (Batman Begins)

[Added 11/11/2008; Drama; 1000-2500; Batman films]

Such Deliberate Disguises by LC

'Out in the field, the post hanging bare.' Creepy character dissection, language precise as a scalpel (Batman Begins)

[Added 30/12/2005; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Batman films]

Tandem by Irisbleu

'His faithful Lady Liberty never disagreed with him. Ever.' This clever Harvey character study has a beautiful rhythm to it (The Dark Knight)

[Added 13/01/2011; Character Piece; <1000; Batman films]


Blackadder's Fifth Column by Kerrypolka

'Bobbie's eyes widened. "Oh, wicked," she said. "Are you a suit here to subvert the dominant paradigm? That is immense. Why don't you sign up for the finance committee?"' This episode from the fifth season, set during Occupy London, is mysteriously missing from the BBC archives. Hilarious

[Added 28/05/2012; Humour; 1000-2500; Blackadder]

Field Marshal by Lakester

I don't think I've ever recommended script format before, but this could so easily be an episode from the Beeb. Worth reading just for the turnip joke

[Added 13/01/2005; Humour; 2500-6000; Blackadder]

Blade Runner

Keep Breathing by Kittydesade

'...She liked the rain. It felt and smelled different here than it had on the colonies. You could chew the rain, it had a flavor, the whole city did.' Most of the tiny amount of fanfiction for this film focuses on Roy Batty, so this study of Zhora is a treat. The inevitable ending is beautifully written

[Added 18/01/2012; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Blade Runner]

Pride Goeth Before by Silk Knickers

'We should be their gods, not they ours.' A subtle tale of awakening, beautifully conveyed

[Added 03/01/2007; Drama; 1000-2500; Blade Runner]


Seeley Booth's Bones by Dira Sudis

'The phalanges are arranged in gentle curves, like a hand in a comfortable state of rest, like a casual wave hello or goodbye. She lowers her own smaller hand over them, not quite touching.' An unusual character study that succeeds, somehow, in sidestepping creepy and heading instead for bittersweet. (Beware the character death implied in the title)

[Added 03/01/2019; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Bones]

Breakfast Club

Most Likely To by Kaneko

'Around the ten-year-reunion mark there was a second, smaller spike during which complex sums were worked out (receding hairline −2; law school +1; appearance on Wheel of Fortune +3) to create a whole new map of failure and success.' A slow-building coming-of-age story for Brian, with a fluent style & an amusing structure

[Added 01/02/2011; Romance/Erotica; 6000-20,000; Breakfast Club]

Brokeback Mountain

A Man's God-Given Right by Trascendenza

'Their roots gave them stability and comfort, helped them weather the inevitable trouble, made the nights when one of them had to sit on the porch with the shotgun easier to bear.' I don't usually recommend fix-it AUs, but this feels absolutely right, with spot-on character voices and a decided lack of saccharine

[Added 11/11/2008; Drama; <1000; Brokeback Mountain]


Grown Men Do Things Together by Katta

'Real life does not resemble porn. That's why it's porn.' Dialogue at its best: delicious fun

[Added 30/12/2005; Humour; 1000-2500; Coupling]

Das Leben der Anderen

Operation Reunification by Blueteak

'He could understand why she had not cast him as a rescuer. After all, when people thought about the uses of Deus ex Machina they almost certainly never thought of Stasi captains.' Blueteak really gets into Weisler's head after the film, as he – & Dreyman – slowly come to terms with the tragedy. Weisler's report-like viewpoint is leavened with a deep tenderness & flashes of sly humour

[Added 29/10/2014; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Das Leben der Anderen]


Godma, or, The Seven Stages of Grace by Merlin Missy

'Her friends are starting families, yet all they have to worry about are what colleges to save up for, and the hundred little darker worries every parent has about car accidents and child predators. Bethany has to consider the near-surety that her child is destined to wind up murdered for the sake of the rest of the world.' This long loosely knit sequel loops in all the film's players, and successfully balances a suitably offbeat humour with flashes of serious insight

[Added 04/10/2013; Drama; 2500-6000; Dogma]

The Priest that Tastes the World by Proserpina

'Being the Voice of God could be a confusing experience. He was never quite sure which thoughts were his own and which were the speech of God.' Sweet & funny, with some perfect observations on the deity

[Added 30/12/2005; Humour; 1000-2500; Dogma]


Plum Blossom Song by Unovis

'In a small scarlet book, in neatly inked numbers, Inara tracked her year according to Sihnon.' A delicious little peek into the Companion's way of life. Delicately written, with a deft mix of humour & sadness

[Added 19/08/2005; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; Firefly]

Something in Leather by Mosca

'Kaylee...was lost in the imaginary world where she was a magical cowgirl princess. Wash understood imaginary worlds and was cautious of interfering in them.' A clever ensemble character piece, cunningly masquerading as kinkfic

[Added 19/08/2005; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Firefly]

Good Life

Too Much, Too Little by Cheapmetaphor

'She has her own pursuits. Music, pottery, an upstairs bathroom in major need of redecorating.' A delicate character study that feels much longer than its thousand words

[Added 30/12/2005; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Good Life]

Gosford Park

Sometimes On The Rarest Nights by Clionaeilis

Clionaeilis constructs an entire era through Ivor Novello's letters to Mabel Nesbitt in this clever epistolary story, with its seamless blend of fact & fiction. The glimpses of other characters' futures are a bonus

[Added 18/07/2009; Character Piece; 6000-20,000; Gosford Park]

What Henry Wants by Clionaeilis

'"Ivor was right about this being the wrong place to play master and servant -- it's not a game to these people, Henry."' Clionaeilis fleshes out the cipher of Morris Weissman, one of the film's most opaque characters. The piece also explores the realities of being queer in the Hollywood of the time

[Added 28/01/2011; Character Piece; 2500-6000; Gosford Park]

Grand Budapest Hotel

Most Valued and Distinguished by Argyle

'In that time, he drank two cups of milky Darjeeling; filed a hangnail from his left index finger; inspected his hairline for greys, and finding four, pinched them free; and listened to Sketches of Spain, side two, on the hand crank gramophone his grandfather gave him for his twelfth birthday, and which he had, quite obstinately really, gone to great lengths and expense to keep in working order.' A perfect origin story for M. Gustave, just as whimsical & digressive as it should be. Fabulous!

[Added 12/08/2015; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Grand Budapest Hotel]


Ar Haner Nos yn Glir y Daeth (Upon the Midnight Clear) by Lost Spook

'The rough waves that eat away at the town and sweep over the edge of the Prom on a bad night have been the end of unwary drinkers before now.' An all-too-brief casefic, very much in tune with canon, that really brings Aber in winter alive

[Added 12/08/2015; Drama; 1000-2500; Hinterland]

Hot Fuzz

Model Village by Basingstoke

'There's a camera in the school lunch room, and one on every exit, and one in the lavatory. All the boys wash their hands carefully now.' An Orwellian AU, bleak & spare

[Added 28/01/2011; Drama; 1000-2500; Hot Fuzz]

Indiana Jones

Indiana Jones and the Chinatown Ghosts by Lemuel Cork

'If Sallah could hear him now. Mr. Tough Guy, used to be able to take a bullet in the arm and keep going full-steam, save the girl and get the gold and the hell with the pain, and now he was griping because his eye patch dug into his cheek.' A peek at the hero, after the story ends. Melancholy & atmospheric

[Added 03/01/2007; Drama; 2500-6000; Indiana Jones]

Interview with the Vampire

Un Vampire se dÉplace dans l'espace et le temps (A Vampire Moves In Space and Time) by Cephalopod

'...The freshwater oceans and silicate soil of La Jeunesse failed to match the oceans of Earth which all humans still contained some small part of. There were supplements, for citizens. New arrivals tasted better, Lestat said, but the whole planet had the taste of a boiled trout.' A novel setting & an unexpected twist mark this original take on the mythos. Memorable & strange, with a surprisingly moving ending

[Added 28/10/2014; Drama; 2500-6000; Interview with the Vampire]

James Bond

Iterations by Rheanna

'It would be easy to dismiss what he hears as merely an echo of his own steps, but Bond knows better. When he looks over his shoulder, no one is there.' Clever short which slides between metafic & horror

[Added 25/05/2012; Drama; 1000-2500; James Bond]


Something That Feels Right by Starfishofelves

'It's kind of hard to ditch somebody after you've officiated their guinea pig's funeral and shit.' This vignette absolutely nails Juno's voice, and provides another dose of the film's irreverent humour over teenage rites of passage

[Added 28/01/2011; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; Juno]


Each to Each by Jenwryn

'Robbie runs water over his face, avoids his reflection, leaves Lyn a voicemail saying he probably won’t be calling her at breakfast like planned, but that he trusts she’ll still be emailing him the ultrasound photos, and finds himself some trousers. He needs to do the laundry. He needs another hour’s worth of sleep.' Jenwryn takes on one of the oldest slash clichÉs in this satisfying casefile, and shows just why the trope got written in the first place. More of a feel of the show than much fanfiction

[Added 11/08/2012; Drama; 6000-20,000; Lewis]

Even Now We Are by Jenwryn

'The waves are impatient to eat the land, James thinks; impatient to lick wet tongues beneath the fundamentals of earth and dust and dry-boned roots.' Gorgeous contrast between Lewis's earth-bound practicality & Hathaway's flights of philosophy in this future for the couple. Hathaway's point of view is hard to pull off, but this succeeded for me

[Added 10/08/2012; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Lewis]

Oranges and Lemons by Toft

'He's been in love before. He's thirty-three years old. It shouldn't feel the way it does, dizzying, leaving him lightheaded and ashamed and wanting, wanting, wanting.' Toft cleverly plays with the reader's expectations in this unusual vignette. To say more would spoil it

[Added 11/08/2012; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; Lewis]

Lost in Translation

Late by Memorycharm

'Sometimes, Charlotte thought she'd imagined meeting him in Tokyo.' A delicate coda that somehow remains perfectly in the spirit of the film, despite the film ending perfectly

[Added 13/01/2005; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Lost in Translation]

Love Actually

Down At Your Door by Bluestalking

'Billy would have to be tumbling off the edge of a cliff before he’d ever notice it was there, and Joe had doubts about whether he’d ever stop laughing before he hit the ground.' Pitch-perfect voice for Billy Mack in this futurefic, which fixes the cop-out ending of the film for this couple

[Added 04/10/2013; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; Love Actually]

Impropriety by Miggy

'HINDE'S HIND, blared the front cover of that day's Sun. Pink cotton bikini briefs covered in cartoon strawberries took up much of the lead graphic.' Miggy is a dab hand at writing comedy, and this take on how Natalie might adapt to dating the PM is sweet, funny & in character

[Added 21/01/2011; Humour; 1000-2500; Love Actually]


Because the War is Endless by Nemo the Everbeing

'The Father isn’t a half-bad nurse. If he took off the crucifix and flashed a little leg I just might be in love.' A pitch-perfect Hawkeye voice carries this piece through the rather unlikely pairing

[Added 25/11/2011; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; M*A*S*H]

Love Me Because Nothing Happens by Alestar

'"Where's Pierce?" he asked gruffly. / BJ shrugged. "You were right, Frank, the whole time." He caught Radar's eye. "He was a Communist. He defected."' A post-Korea piece packed with sharply observed setting details & infused throughout with a lovely bittersweet melancholy

[Added 12/08/2015; Drama; 2500-6000; M*A*S*H]

Matrix trilogy

I See With My Eyes by Suaine

'Here though, here her body had all the wrong parts.' The Matrix gives such an interesting perspective on being trans, I'm surprised this hasn't been explored before. A lean, sparse vignette where every word counts

[Added 29/05/2012; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Matrix trilogy]

Pan's Labyrinth

Returning to the Deep by Tristesses

'Mercedes' dreams are redolent of loam and damp earth, ripe with drops of water splashing on old stone like the clicking of insect's feet, wet like Ofelia's blood on her hands, sinking into her skirt.' I was rather worried about Pan's Labyrinth fanfiction, because the film is so perfect, but this futurefic is poignant & ambiguous, just as it should be

[Added 29/05/2012; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Pan's Labyrinth]

Princess Bride

The Most Excellent and Lamentable Tragedy of Westley and Buttercup by Atra

'"This is True Love. It ends happily. We must believe that."' Perfect characterisations as the world spirals out of control in this anything-but-happily-ever-after ending for Westley & Buttercup. It's the frame story, though, that really makes this heartbreaking

[Added 17/08/2009; Drama; 2500-6000; Princess Bride]

Unemployed in Greenland by Miss Pryss

'It began with a mermaid, which in Inigo’s experience was true of about 85% of all stories worth telling.' Miss Pryss catches the whimsical tone of canon in this tale of Inigo & Fezzik's first meeting. The sweetness is counteracted by some precise, & often amusing, details

[Added 09/08/2015; Drama; 2500-6000; Princess Bride]

Red Dwarf

Making Up The Numbers by Kahvi

'The planet was probably Earth, though these things were often hard to tell. Interdimensional differences between planets could mean anything from variations in continental shift to kumquats being a different color.' A dark take on the series, with flashes of leavening humour

[Added 25/11/2011; Drama; 6000-20,000; Red Dwarf]

Remington Steele

And Still More Tomorrow by Medie

'Murphy...tells himself he's a detective, some days he even believes it. Most days he punches the clock and waits for the weekend.' Bittersweet backstory for a character that canon short-changed & most fanfiction overlooks

[Added 11/11/2008; Character Piece; 1000-2500; Remington Steele]

Put the Blame on Steele by Yahtzee

'In Steele's opinion, reality is grievously overrated.' A top-notch character study, done just as it should be, through the movies. I smiled all the way through this one

[Added 03/11/2004; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; Remington Steele]

Six Ans de Mer by Dirty Diana

'Maybe she's not a falling kind of girl.' Subtle picture of a shifting relationship

[Added 30/12/2005; Romance/Erotica; 1000-2500; Remington Steele]

Steele to be Discovered by Xenon

Excellent characterisations & good dialogue, married with a twisty plot with the same madcap feel as the series, make this a gem amongst Remington Steele fanfiction. Xenon's other adventures listed on the author's site are also worth a look; I'd particularly recommend 'Edge of Steele', 'Steele and Old Lace' & 'Steele Stolen'

[Added 29/10/2004; Drama; 6000-20,000; Remington Steele]

Reservoir Dogs

Stories Untold by Russian Blue

'Changing his tone of voice, the pace of his delivery, his word choice, his body language. Building Mr. Orange.' Russian Blue uses structure & repetition to counterpoint the film's random violence in this clever vignette

[Added 04/10/2013; Drama; 1000-2500; Reservoir Dogs]

Robin Hood (BBC)

Know Your Enemy by Unsentimental Fool

'He hadn't been sure that her absolute confidence was entirely flattering. He was after all a man, and a formidable one. Would it hurt her to tremble a little?' Enjoyable identity porn that mirrors the show's playfulness in a world where Robin Hood aired after the watershed (if only)

[Added 29/08/2013; Romance/Erotica; 6000-20,000; Robin Hood (BBC); Adult]

The Wolf's Head by Corrielle

'"Well met, Sir Guy," she said. "I would say that you are welcome in my house, but I would not have my first words to you be a lie."' A thought-provoking AU novella in which a small divergence, Robin's mother being alive, spirals out to change everything. The repercussions for Robin, and for Guy, are unexpected, but always remain believably within character. I'd love to see a sequel continue this universe

[Added 25/08/2013; Drama; 20,000-50,000; Robin Hood (BBC)]

Sesame Street

Exclusive Content by Ellen Fremedon

'They all good shows, but truthfully Cookie proudest of early UK coproductions. Me, Claudius first time on television monsters do period drama in monster dialect. No one outside monster community notice, but it big deal.' An entire piece in Monster speak, which milks a great deal of humour from the dissonance between content & mode of expression. The monster versions of Hamilton &c are worth the price of admission alone

[Added 30/10/2017; Humour; 2500-6000; Sesame Street]

Sex and the City

The Good That Won't Come Out by Cheapmetaphor

'Samantha thinks that this is the worst part of getting older, you have to smile more.' Excellent not-so-happily-ever-after tale. One of those stories that's more profound than the show that inspired it

[Added 13/01/2005; Character Piece; <1000; Sex and the City]

Shakespeare Retold

Eff-em-ell, and Other Quotes for the Official Biography by Fahye

'...Tim has vivid memories from the post-post-election-party party of the newly-elected leader of Her Majesty's Government drinking far more vodka than her size would suggest she could handle, eating eggplant dip out of a bowl with her bare fingers, and then racing around the room on her husband's back.' Pitch-perfect voices make this short feel like a DVD extra (The Taming of the Shrew)

[Added 27/05/2012; Humour; 1000-2500; Shakespeare Retold]

Sleepy Hollow

The Tin Man by Ro

'As for Ichabod Crane: the bullet did not miss, not in this world, for the Lady shot true and shattered his heart to pieces.' Nicely written little AU, a blend of horror & whimsy very much in character with the film

[Added 13/01/2005; Drama; 1000-2500; Sleepy Hollow]

The Hour

Impatient Both of Delays and Rivals by Disenchanted

'Adam was one of those bad actors who compensate for their lack of talent by clinging to the common wisdom that all members of the profession are bound by nature to be false.' Most The Hour fanfiction is a bit syrupy for my taste, but this edgy piece bucks the trend, succeeding in making Angus sympathetic without making him out to be any nicer than he is

[Added 12/08/2015; Romance/Erotica; 2500-6000; The Hour]

The Mentalist

Five Ways Patrick Jane Hasn't Died Yet (And One Way He Never Will) by Dira Sudis

'A good performer knows that how he gets off the stage is as important as everything he does on it. This isn't depression. It's professionalism.' An unusual take at group characterisation, as dark & twisted as the inside of Jane's head ought to be, but rarely is. Heed the warnings on this one

[Added 07/08/2014; Character Piece; 2500-6000; The Mentalist; Adult]

What You See Is What You Get (If You're Looking Hard Enough) by Sixthlight

''s not the settled East, where the land is laced with iron and running water. Things are wilder out here, for all the cities and the regular dirigible service across the Pacific and the electrick lights you can see at night, if you're brave or stupid and out in the hills above Sacramento.' The premise is neat, but it's the well-developed fantasy AU background that really makes this casefic. It works just fine with only the barest knowledge of the source, as I can attest

[Added 29/08/2013; Drama; 6000-20,000; The Mentalist]

Wire in the Blood

Erotophonophilia by Loz

'Sex. It has to be sex. It's always sex in cases like this. Repression. Expression. Shut it in, let it out. Murder is always about lust, isn't it.' An intense vignette that nails the character voices, particularly Tony's

[Added 11/11/2008; Drama; 1000-2500; Wire in the Blood; Adult]

Yes, Minister

A Completely Authorised Biography by Lakester

'Sir Humphrey found Jim Hacker to be -- not only an open book -- but one with large colourful illustrations.' Amusing sketch that captures Sir Humphrey's voice remarkably well

[Added 22/04/2006; Humour; 1000-2500; Yes, Minister]