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Sunday, August 23, 2009

Isn't It Romantic?

Ok, Twilight fans are seriously getting a little out of control. They are just a little too obsessive. And about a story about a stalker and a girl who doesn't realize she's in an abusive relationships.

Some of the reasons why I think
Twilight fans are getting a little out of control:

  1. You can now have your very own stalker - Robert Pattinson style. You can purchase an outline of Edward Cullen to paste onto your bedroom wall so he can watch you sleep, just like he watches Bella. Just what I always wanted - a shadowy figure hanging out in my bedroom while I sleep. Twilight fans see Edward's stalker tendancies as romantic, but they really aren't. There's nothing romantic about a stalker. Portraying stalking as romantic is just encouraging abusive relationships - Edward treats Bella like his possession istead of an autonomous human being. (h/t to o filthy grandeur!)
  2. Edward Cullen Ken and Bella Barbie. Is there anything more to say? You can now buy Barbie's designed after your favorite Twilight characters. Now you can play with the dolls while you watch the movie and reenact your favorite stalker-y scenes.
  3. Twilight fans can't take criticism. Jezebel has a post about how Twilight fans, unlike die-hard fans of Harry Potter, LotR, Star Wars, and Star Trek, can't take criticism of their beloved movie. Fans of other movies can take jokes about said movie - and even sometimes are the ones that make the joke. But Twilight fans cannot handle any ill-mouthed words. They are so connected with the characters of Twilight, that they cannot picture anything wrong with them. Never mind the fact that it portrays an abusive relationship (not only emotionally abusive, but sometimes physically as can be seen in the New Moon trailer) and a girl who is always in need of being saved. It's apparenlty the best piece of literature and the best movie ever made.
Even though I am weirdly fascinated by the phenomenon that is Twilight, the phenomenon has recently gotten too out of hand than I can handle. Recently at a block party, my twelve-year-old neighbor, whom I know very well, made a comment that caught me off guard. I knew she really liked the Twilight series - she's read the book, owns the movie, and is anxiously awaiting New Moon. When we were filling out name tags for the block party she randomly (and i mean this is completely out of the blue) says, "If we had to put one fact about ourselves on here, I would put 'I love Jacob,'" (for those of you who don't know, Jacob is the werewolf in Twilight that is in love with Bella).

People's lives are becoming consumed by Twilight. It's gone from a phenomenon to a lifestyle. And that's what scares me. Edward is seen as romantic instead of a possessive stalker, like he really is. But that's nothing really new. What's getting out of hand is the increase of marketing and profiting off of promoting Edward as romantic, especially with the wall decal pictured above. The wall decal of Edward also comes with the words "Be Safe." Maybe it's just me, but I don't exactly feel safe with a shadowy figure hanging out in my bedroom.


Lauren said...

THANK YOU for this. There are a great number of young people in the age range of 11-17 or so who I know and care about a lot (family friends, former campers, former students) - they need to know that Twilight is not an accurate reflection of a healthy romance!

JT said...

Oh lordy, I couldn't agree with you more. There is nothing whatsoever healthy about Edward and Bella's relationship, and all I can hope is that for every young person idolizing Twilight, there's a conscientious adult to discuss a better ideal to work for. Wishful thinking? That being said, I have read the books and did find them very entertaining, but never felt the blind obsession of the masses. And to speak to your point about Twi-hards not being able to take criticism, being a die-hard HP fan myself, part of the joy prior to (and imm. after) the seventh book coming out was having critical discussions about any number of HP-related topics. If Twihards engage in any criticism of their beloved books, they would be forced to acknowledge its faults, which of course they can't see!

Criss L. Cox said...

THANK YOU. AMEN to everything you said.

At the Borders where my critique group meets, there's a huge Twilight paraphernalia display, and I hate staring at it every week. But in doing so, I noticed even more creepy abusive stalker-y behavior: every poster or photo of the movie has Edward grabbing Bella in a very possessive, aggressive way. They don't hug lovingly, they don't hold hands. Instead, he's grabbing her arm, or her shoulder; she's standing in front of him and he's holding her so she can't get away.

Twilight is poor writing, and horrible role-modeling. And you're right, Twi-hards are unhealthily obsessed with Meyer and the characters... it makes me sad whenever I hear someone I respect say she liked the books.

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