For a while now, I’ve posted little jabs at the Twilight series and its insane fans, without giving any real substance as to why I loathe it so much. Or rather, why I loathe that it’s popular. There are thousands of bad movies and books out there that I’m sure I would hate, but don’t mention here, because they aren’t making Stephanie Meyer a millionaire and haven’t spawned a rabid fan base of absolute, maniacal, raving idiots that consists of emo teenage girls, and evidently adults that only read at a seventh grade level.
Firstly, in demonstration of the low mental capacities that infect many Twilight fans, I will look to poster-boy emo-vampire- man-hunk Robert Pattinson (notice I say many fans, not all, I’m being very careful here. Surely you, intelligent reader of this site who also enjoys Twilight, would not fall into this category). What does he think about the craze? How much does he love it?
Very little, in fact. “People ambush me and try and find out what hotel I’m staying at, as well as wanting to touch my hair. Everyone just screams and screams. It still feels surreal,” he says, indicating a distaste for the exact same raving idiots I’m talking about. “But Reed,” you say, “He’s a movie star. People go crazy over any movie star.” Okay, I’ll grant you that.
What about people who scratch themselves to bleed and walk up and ask him to drink it? “One time, there were these four girls, in Chicago I think, and they had all scratched their necks until they bled. And then when they came up to me they had these bleeding scabs. It was gross!” Pattinson says. That’s weird. No, no no, that’s beyond weird. That’s pure, unadulterated, funked up. But sure, that’s an isolated incident, no need to- “A mother recently gave me her baby and asked me: ‘Can you please bite her head?;” he continues. Are you kidding me? I’m sure Nicolas Cage has to deal with this all the time.
Okay, but still, isolated-“Anywhere we’d go for Twilight was a psychotic situation. The sound was deafening, and it’s thoughtless, as well…You get a slew of all these bullshit questions like, ‘What’s it like to kiss a vampire?’ and ‘How much do you love Robert?’ Then you’ll get one that’s actually real, but you’re like, ‘No, I can’t right now, I can’t even consider [it],” says that other star, Kristen Stewart.
That’s enough, methinks. “Thoughtless,” she said. I have never heard anyone involved with that other wildly popular (and superior in every way) fantasy series say anything close to that.
People tell me that I should like this series, because I like fantasy, love Harry Potter, and am a Superman freak. But liking fantasy and being entertained by stories of the supernatural hardly guarantees enjoying every little bit that the genre spits out. I love Dracula, the novel. It’s a fantastic, entertaining and disturbing book. I don’t like Dracula 2000, a movie that adapted the story to take place in space.
But I think I like that more than Twilight.
Twilight is atrocious, in every manner of the word. The story? I’ll admit, when you summarize the story to it’s absolute, barest manner, it sounds okay. But those bare bones are just, “Werewolves, Vampires, and a girl who loves one of each.” Alright, fine. It’s an old tale, and I have never been into vampire stories, but I can kind of see why people are. Then Stephanie Meyer decides to make changes. Vampires don’t die in the sunlight, they sparkle. Okay, that’s… That’s kind of stupid. But hey, a little originality, a personal twist.
Then it all goes to hell. Edward can read minds, but for dumb inexplicable reasons, he can’t read Bella’s. Meanwhile the tone is, as I have said many times, that of a sixth grader who has just experienced horniness for the first time and discovered what a thesaurus was.
The writing is truly miserable, and I’m not exactly Hemingway. I’m not the only one to say that, plenty of people with more literary credentials than writing on a movie blog have done that for me. But just to bring in the poster child, here’s what Pattinson has to say:
“When I read it … I was convinced that Stephenie was convinced that she was Bella, and … it was like it was a book that wasn’t supposed to be published, like reading her — her sort of sexual fantasy about some — especially when she says that it was based on a dream, and it’s like, “Oh, then I had a dream about this really sexy guy” and she just writes this book about it, and there’s some things about Edward that are just so specific that … I was just convinced that this woman is mad, she’s completely mad, and she’s in love with her own fictional creation. And I sometimes … feel uncomfortable reading this thing, and I think a lot of people feel the same way, that it’s kind of voyeuristic … It creates this sick pleasure in a lot of ways.”
First of all, I do give kudos to him for actually reading the source material, and managing to get through it. Now I haven’t read all the books, I can admit that. But I have flipped through them, and read a few chapters, just to see what all the craze was about. It doesn’t take long to see what he’s talking about. It’s all about Bella wanting to pounce Edward, in flowery, imbecilic language laced with chains of synonymous adjectives and cheesy teen angst. You know, stuff girls just eat up. Apparently. I had actually held them to higher standards.
“But it’s entertaining.” They say. “I know it’s dumb, but it’s fun to read. Is that so bad?” No. You’re absolutely right. Reading trash is fine, occasionally. Except few people acknowledge it as such, and those that do don’t read anything else. It’s not like they balance out Twilight with a nice bit of Dickens, or Hugo, or even the aforementioned actual-book-about-vampires “Dracula.” No. They put down the book and then pick up that other piece of feminine literary trash, Cosmo (Ba-zing!). That’s why I think it’s a shame that Transformers is going to be the number one film of the summer. Is it really so bad to want to be entertained by something dumb every once in a while? Can’t I just see some explosions? Fine. Except people saw this movie multiple times, and many would likely say a movie like Moon sounds stupid and boring. That, and it requires intelligence to do ‘dumb’ successfully. Do you really only want trashy entertainment, whether it be in the form of explosions or emo vampires, or do you want things like character development, plot, and so forth? If I showed you clip after clip of things exploding, you probably wouldn’t be entertained, no matter how much you liked Transformers, and slide-shows of vampires entwined romantically probably wouldn’t get you that same high. But we seem to be getting dangerously close to the time when those are accepted forms of entertainment. Hasn’t anybody read “Brave New World?” No? Just “Twilight” then, I see.
Pattinson has also said, “When you read the book it’s like, ‘Edward Cullen was so beautiful I creamed myself.’ I mean, every line is like that. He’s the most ridiculous person who’s so amazing at everything. I think a lot of actors tried to play that aspect. I just couldn’t do that. And the more I read the script, the more I hated this guy, so that’s how I played him, as a manic-depressive who hates himself. Plus, he’s a 108-year-old virgin so he’s obviously got some issues there.”
Seems to sum up this piece of garbage book nicely. I may not like the character he plays, but I’m liking Robert Pattinson more and more. Now I would never condone burning books, even bad ones. That’s too Nazi-esque for me, or “Fahrenheit 451.” (No? You started it, but then “Eclipse” came out. I see).
So basically he just brought the whole emo thing to light; as if we weren’t sure of it already. And while I didn’t like the movie, by all accounts it seems better than the book.
And now, the real clencher, perhaps the biggest reason why I hate that this series is popular. I can handle cheesy romance, even when it’s written really poorly. Romance novels are popular, I get it. But this particular story sets a horrible example for girls. “Bu-But it teaches chastity until marriage! That’s not a bad thing.” No, it’s not, if they weren’t symbolically screwing every other page. Or if it didn’t depict female sexuality as a terrifying force for evil.
But more than that, this series delivers some terrible messages. For one, in about two to three weeks after Bella and Edward start any sort of dating, she’s all ready for him to bite her on the neck and give up her very humanity, give up everything that she is. Really? What a great message for young ladies. Sacrifice everything that makes you, you, for the man you love; or claim to love, at 17 when you’re still emotionally immature and have only known him for a month. Whichever. And I know there’s always a fine line between ‘stalker’ and ‘romantic’ (and that line is usually how attracted to the guy the girl is), but I’m pretty sure it’s creepy that Edward went up into her room to watch her sleep. Romance is gazing at someone from across the schoolyard; stalking is breaking into someone’s house.
But that’s not where it ends! There’s so much more. In the second book, Edward leaves her and she starts a relationship with Jacob the Wolf-Man. She strings him along for the rest of the series, showing it’s okay to toy with someone’s emotions only if you’re doing it to get back somebody you love. (Oh, and also, at the end of the novels Jacob falls in love with a baby. Meyer writes it so it sounds all poignant, that he recognized his soul mate in her, but let’s face it, that’s pedophilia. No, sorry, that’s infantifilia, something so terrible it’s not actually recognized as a word, even though linguistically it makes perfect sense. But don’t worry, Meyer has made it so vampire/human hybrid babies grow up in, like, an accelerated fashion, so you know, it’s, like, all cool).
Later on in book two, when Bella is distraught at Edward’s absence and her poor plights of love, she decides she’ll just jump off a cliff. Fortunately Eddie boy swoops in to save her. Good timing.
Moral: If you really love somebody, but have lost him, go ahead and engage in self-destructive behavior to win him back. Thanks, Steph!
The entire books, which as I’ve already stated have bad plots and are poorly written, are all about a girl who wants a guy so desperately she wants to sacrifice everything that makes her her for him. Now I’m a pretty conservative guy, but this is some sick stuff. In the ultimate middle finger to feminism, and to literary merit, Meyer goes ahead and makes her a vampire in the end of the series. Oh, thank goodness. It’s real, true love.
No it’s not. It’s angsty, misogynistic, destructive garble that people are reading by the truckload. And I don’t like that.
How to write your own Twilight book.