I was curious what all the hype surrounding this series is about. I also thought that since the series is so huge success, I can definitely find there something to learn and better my writing. Boy, how I was wrong.
First, I have to confess I read the first book only till this scene: Bella is in the car with Edward who drives her back to Forks after they had a nice dinner at Port Angeles (I believe that’s the town’s name) where Edward, under Bella’s interrogation, revealed plenty of his secrets.
Okay, why did I stop reading on that particular scene? Well, no reason except I finally got bored to death and understood I just can’t waste my time reading a book I don’t like.
Okay, I don’t say the book is bad or something like that. I’m just not 17 year old girl craving for fairy tale romance in her life to be interested in such a book. I really liked the clumsy and insecure main character and her father a little bit. But that’s about as far for my affection for characters as it is. You can’t really say more about Bella Swan than that: she’s clumsy, insecure and protect-my-dearest junky.
Other characters, like her school buddies, are about as deep as we need them to be to carry us readers on while the main interest, Edward Cullen, is developing.
So, to him at last. Edward is as beautiful as a young man could be, he’s rich and smart and strong and mysterious and… Well, you can add to this list all the 17 year old girl desires for her prince. Not that this prince will wear a shining armor, rather dark one. And of course, bad boys always attract girls irresistibly, so Edward keeps telling Bella he’s a dangerous guy, they shouldn’t be friends and stuff like that.
That works perfectly for a young girl, I suppose, but I myself find it stupid. Consider this. A girl comes to a new town where she knows no one except for her dad and one boy, she has no friends in the beginning. Then she finds some nice friends to have lunch and chat with. But she suddenly attracted to a mysterious handsome guy she knows nothing about. She gets some hints that he’s a dangerous person and then more hints on his true nature: he’s a vampire. And what modern, self-contained and very mature young girl does? You won’t believe. She hit Google and looks for books trying to find more information on vampires and such – in other words, she suddenly, out of the blue, thinks it can be true, vampires can exist in real.
Seriously? I mean, what modern girl would do that? Well, I myself not a bit a modern girl, of course, but somehow I think a girl in such situation would simply laugh at the possibility of her mysterious school buddy being a vampire. But Bella Swan amazes us and believes the truth is out there.
Which really destroys this book for me. Her easy believing smashes up my believing in her as a real character and in the world she lives in. Don’t get me wrong. I’m not against vampires – in fact, I love “Interview with the Vampire.” But that was the book of a totally different level. “Twilight” is just so shallow, so short-sighted and lazy for me. Hollow characters without believable motivations, predictable plot, not an interesting thing.
Is there something to learn? I think so. What I saw here is that the book is heavily targeted on its audience, and that’s the great thing. Stephenie Meyer knew who she had been writing for, readers knew what the kind of book it was, but the main thing is, publishers knew it too so they could build a huge marketing campaign to assure the book’s success.
I have to confess here for the second time: I couldn’t watch more than one and a half movie. The middle of the second one, with naked boys and big scary wolves, just hit my limit.
First, what I liked about the movies? Well… I think we should move on to the next question.
What I didn’t like? Edward, old man really since he is immortal and have been living a really long time, is supposed to be wise or at least smart and experienced, right? But he looks like just a boy in extreme need to get laid. Remember the scene where Bella first meets him in class? It seems so comical, not a bit dramatic or mysterious as it should’ve seemed.
And that’s the main problem of these movies. They look just comical, all these vampires against vampires or against werewolves conflicts. All this melodrama when Edward says he can’t be with Bella because it’s dangerous for her because she’s the only one who attracted his attention as a prey. Poor vegetarian Edward, he suffers so badly.
I just couldn’t watch these movies seriously. If they would be comedies – and they definitely look like ones – they could’ve been much better. Yes, they’re supposed to be drama, but they look so silly I can’t help laughing.
A good book, as well as a good movie, should not only entertain us greatly but also teach us something. This idea isn’t new, right? But so many books and movies forget about the importance of the subtext, of what they tell us between the lines. Sometimes there’s just nothing to tell, they are as hollow as a dried up well.
As some critic wittily noticed, the “Twilight” series is about how great it is to have a boyfriend. Especially a young, handsome, strong, rich and immortal one like Edward Cullen. If I were a girl in her teens, maybe I would fall for it. But right now, me being just myself, I don’t see any reason to praise “Twilight.”
What are you thoughts on the matter? Am I being harsh? Or maybe too soft?
Featured image credit: “Twilight field (widescreen)” by Alexey Kljatov