December 30, 2008

I feel like writing about something I hate.

How about Twilight! OK.

Twilight is a poor excuse for erotica, a vampire story, a love story, and a collection of some words written down on paper. I hate that it has become the cultural phenomenon that it is, and that whenever I meet someone new the first question I’m asked is, “So, have you seen Twilight yet?”

No, I haven’t.

Twilight is poorly written. It’s repetitive, cliched, dull, and unimaginative, and it's full of plot holes. It makes vampires as un-scary as they can possibly be. It tries to pass chivalry, stalking, emotional abuse, physical abuse, and traditional gender roles off as TRUE LOVE <3

Obviously, I have serious issues with the series, and my opinion will not be changed by another reading, a viewing of the movie, or a decent review. Whether it is a good book, or even good vamp fiction, is up to the reader. But it is undeniably un-feminist, anti-choice, and very Mormon.

It's ok to like Twilight. But I wouldn’t mind listening to people go on and on about it if they realized how trivial it was, or how gratingly backwards it is. What disgusts me is the whole meme that Twilight is this wonderful book for girls, and it’s changing teen fiction, and it’s a cultural landmark, and it’s universally recognized as the perfect love story™.

Twilight is essentially one woman’s fantasies in book form. And while they may work for her, it saddens me that they’re expected to be the norm for all of us [women]. Not all of us adhere to such traditional gender roles. Some of us want to go to college, even if, horrors, it means we’ll have to be away from our boyfriends for a while. Some us would rather not die at 18 in order to live in isolation for the rest of eternity. Some of us do not think it is thrilling when a creepy guy watches us sleep, kidnaps us, or is chivalrous. How about writing a book that represents more varied ideas of love, some that transcend ‘traditional’ cultural values and norms? A strict reinforcement of (hetero)sexist standards of relationships is hardly groundbreaking.

Of course one can still be a feminist and love Twilight. I really don’t care about someone’s personal taste in literature. But I hope my generation isn’t shocked when this all fades away, doomed to obscurity, after legions of women rise up and realize how pathetic this ‘cultural phenomenon’ really was.

I do not in any way feel that Mormons are sexually repressed, but I do believe that Mormonism as a faith upholds ‘traditional values’ about sex that are inherently not progressive.


  1. Firstly, congratulations on the blog! I can't blog, but I do actually like reading them. Best of luck with it all.

    Also, I really like this post you've made on the subject. It's really quite alarming how Twilight has captured the unenlightened younger generation; I admit that I did enjoy reading the first book, for the most part, because it was only borderline nauseating, and sometimes I read that type of story just to be reminded how NOT to write. However, it completely went downhill, and i just read the proceeding stories so that i could criticize them. I think that's a somewhat valid reason - the anti-witches-and-magic-will-corrupt-our-children's-view-of-god maniacs who run around burning Harry Potter books mostly haven't read them, and that's what I call ignorance, never mind the fact that there's much better literature out there than HP. Anyways, I digress; I like the points you made, because it pretty much sums up how I feel about the matter, except that I am too lazy to actually write down much. Verbal tirades are often just as effective. Cheers!

  2. sometimes I read that type of story just to be reminded how NOT to write.

    Ha :) Tirades, written or verbal, suit me fine. And thanks, Jacob :D

  3. Blaaaaaah
    Since you were nice enough to leave me a comment that made me smile, I decided to get off my lazy ass and rewrite my response to this.
    Mkay. So. Twilight.
    I happen to like it. I enjoyed reading the books. I enjoy rereading them from time to time. I didn't find the writing style all that annoying.
    However. I do not think Twilight is some cornerstone of modern culture or some other bull like that. I do not by any means think that it is the best thing ever written. Not by a LONG shot.
    I like it because it is a marginally entertaining escape from any form of reality.
    It is not not in the least realistic, nor is it an accurate depiction of the 'perfect' relationship. It's blatantly cliched. But nonetheless, I enjoy it.
    The crazy, rabid fans are annoying, though. And it's way overrated.
    So yeah. That's basically it. Peace.

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  5. vHehe, thanks. I'm glad you think Twilight is the overrated cliche it is, but can also appreciate it as decent escapism. my point was more that the media has been describing twilight like the 'perfect love story,' and my vitriol was directed at the crazy, rabid fans who will eat up anything they're told to, not at the reasonable ones like you. :] Peace

  6. While I don't hate the Twilight series quite as much as you do, I agree that it isn't a great work of literature. Stephanie Meyer has some serious issues to work out if Edward is her idea of a perfect man. His stalker-like obsession with Bella may seem romantic to her, but I’m sure if you woke up to see a huge, sparkling teen boy who is yearning to suck the blood out of your body in your room in the middle of the night, you wouldn’t throw your arms around him and attempt to have half vampiric beastly children with him.

    About the fangirls? I'm afraid. Deathly afraid. Edward fangirls, I mean. I like Jacob fangirls - I am one, in fact. It's amazing that there can be a character that, though he isn't perfect, is sweet and funny and not a stalker or abusive, and that people hate him because he doesn't have 'the BODY of a GOD!' or isn't 'the PERFECT guy!'.