The Requisite Twilight Post where I investigate Why DOES Edward’s face look like a foot?
Stephanie Meyer is a genius. She has single-handedly reinvented and ruined vampires all in one foul swoop. Her success has occurred despite atrocious grammar, selfish unlikeable characters and a story where by the end you’re most likely rooting for the bad guys to kill them all. Oh and then there’s the pedophilia and the woman-hating themes and… yeah… you should sit down, this is going to be a long one.
Once Upon a Time there was an incredibly useless girl who never considered anyone’s feelings but her own all in the name of “shyness”. This mind-numbingly irritating girl loves to cook and clean and do all manner of appropriate female activities. For some reason, beyond my imagination, every male who comes into contact with her becomes completely obsessed. Boys fall over themselves to ask her to prom, try to kill themselves because they can’t have her, and even turn their backs on their family and heritage just to be near her. I guess I should be dumber and more eager to please the men in my life, then maybe I’d get supernatural creatures drooling over me too!
So why, WHY, for the love of God are these books so popular. I can tell you, you aren’t going to like the answer though. The reason is we’re all lemmings. We’re stupid and these books are simple. We love the tension of the innocent *cough*creepy*cough* relationship Edward and Bella have. We love to see Jacob suffer, his love so true. And most of all we love a happy ending. Because of our stupidity we are willing to forgive plot holes the size of craters and inconsistent character choices. And we keep coming back for more.
Now, I am one of “those twilight people”. I’m a mom in my thirties with a little too much junk in my trunk and yes, I have a Team Jacob t-shirt. I even wear it in public. In fact last weekend I went to the TwiCon in Baltimore. So before you start calling me a hater, you should know I have devoted hundreds of hours for these fucking stories. Yes, I’m stupid too.
Ultimately I think it’s the flaws in Twilight that make it so exciting. We love to bitch and rip something apart. We love to gossip about how Meyer ripped of this or that author. The world of fanfiction has exploded since Twilight. I think the reason is that we are all desperate to FIX what is so fundamentally broken. Add some super-hot teenagers and look – you have a phenomenon.
For brevity’s sake, let me break down the major issues I have with the Twilight Saga:
- Bella goes from being food to the love of Edward’s life in about 17.5 hours
- Edward watches her sleep. This is creepy as shit.
- Edward is 109 years old, Bella is 17, how is that not pedophilia?
- Edward sparkles… really… he sparkles… wow… Vlad would be so impressed.
- Later in the story we get real, bonafide pedophilia disguised as “imprinting” with Quil and Claire.
- Bella spends half a year falling in love with Jacob, like a normal happy girl, and drops it all without even a thought, as if Jacob never mattered.
- Jacob ever bothers speaking to Bella again after she went to Italy
- VAMPIRES CAN’T HAVE BABIES!
- Precognition means you can see things before they happen. How the fuck does Alice keep getting surprised?
- The terrifying power of the Volturri is about as exciting as a high school debate team dance off.
- Bella prides herself on not being good enough for anyone or anything. Wow, what a lesson Steph, thanks for giving that gem to millions of teenage girls.
- No sex scene – COME ON! It’s been thousands of pages coming!
- Bella keeps trying to kill herself and for some reason people keep stopping her!
- The single most disgusting and violent birth scene in the history of literature.
- Jacob chooses Bella over his pack and heritage.
- Jacob imprints on an infant
- VAMPIRES CAN’T HAVE BABIES
There is so much more. Plot holes and rationalizations that I can’t even think about without foaming at the mouth. But for me what it comes down to is the depiction of a girl who believes herself to be nothing. She’s not pretty, smart, charming, anything of worth, until she changes herself for her man. She changes so completely it occurs at a cellular level. Only then can she be accepted or find any self-worth. And all the while she treats the people who love her and are good to her (her father, Jacob, Angela) like shit under her whiny shoe.
As a mother I would rather my daughters read the ridiculousness that is the Sookie Stackhouse series (at least Sookie can stand up for herself!) or The Black Dagger Brotherhood.
Sure, Sookie has big boobs and works in a bar, but she handles her own pretty well. She isn’t afraid of a fight and is willing to put herself out there for the people she loves. She doesn’t take stupid suicidal risks, she uses her brain and solves the fucking problem!
And before you start yelling at me about how BDB is just porn, stop and think about it. Yes, these books are formulaic. But what is the formula?
- Damaged and angry man is on the edge of a breakdown
- Man meets kind woman who speaks to his soul
- Woman is independent and smart
- Woman trusts man despite his wicked ways
- Man does something incredibly stupid
- Woman leaves and refuses to return
- Man searches his soul and comes to terms with his demons
- Man repents and does something drastic to prove he’s worthy of Woman’s love
- Woman takes him back after much consideration
So what if there’s a lot of hot sex, that’s definitely the message I’d rather my girls learn! Now if we could have all that hot sex and Jacob, I’d be a mighty happy girl!