Firstly, I would like to apologies for the erratic, inconsistent structure of this piece, I simply have not gotten around to fixing it. With that said the subject of this review is the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer or as a dear friend of mine so aptly labeled it "Twatlight". Enjoy.
I would like to begin by asserting that this series is indisputably and irredeemably a complete load of pop-culture trash that has almost no literary merit. I’m pretty sure anyone with any notable experience in the discourses of literature and art would agree with that assertion. Apart from the sustenance of dramatic tension I cannot, off hand, think of a single notable literary device in the entire series that has been implemented to any great effect. The chronological first person narration is un-imaginative and over done, the language is simplistic, literal(incorporating almost no figurative language) and reflects a limited vocabulary. Even the characters themselves lack depth and dimension.
I'm also almost certain that every philosophical text that ever presupposed to establish a set of aesthetic principles or criteria for labeling a work as "beautiful", ranging from Plato to Wimsatt, would laugh at the idea of attributing the Twilight saga any value what so ever.
There are however a number of reasons for the mass popularity of the series. Firstly, as I’ve said, the language and style are simplistic and easy to digest, requiring minimal effort from the reader. Secondly it deals with theme’s that appeal to a mass and diverse demographic. For example I'm sure a multitude of people fantasize about finding the brand of idealistic, romanticism love that Edward and Bella share( which I will speak more about shortly). Thirdly, and this is probably the only attribute of Meyer’s writing that has any value, she is particularly adept at building, sustaining and drawing out dramatic tension.
A close friend of my best described the books as “junk food” in that they seem appealing and are easy to digest but are ultimately bad for you.
This paragraph is for all you romantics out there. The kind of idealized love, between Edward and Bella, that is fore grounded this text simply does not exist and any text that positions readers into believing that it does(and seeking it out) is ultimately detrimental. Firstly men(or women) like Edward simple do not exist, never have and never will, and no I am not referring to his status as a vampire, but rather the fact that he is the perfect embodiment of the "knight in shining armor" stereotype, which is a standard that no living person will ever meet. Secondly, the idea that Edward and Bella express and understand the kind of love and devotion for one another that they are depicted as having under such limited circumstances is improbable, if not impossible. "Love at first site" (which is very close to what occurs) simply does not exist. Attraction at first site exists, but not love usually requires you to actually know a person before hand. Also, they cannot possibly know whether or not they are capable of spending eternity together when they have know each other for such a short expanse of time. Relationships change, evolve and, more frequently than not, die and no one can predict how these things will proceed in a single human lifetime let alone eternity.
This text also marks a massive recession for feminism. It propagates and foregrounds a weak, disempowered female lead character (Bella) and depicts her as entirely dependant on the interventions and support of predominately male characters. The effects of this on influential young women, who look to pop-culture texts for examples and “role models” when establishing their own “identities”, is potentially devastating.
Also need I mention the other dominant ideological standpoints that the texts support including the "sanctity and necessity of marriage". Marriage is the patriarchal institutional around which a long list of oppressive ideologies such as sexism and heterosexism are built.
On a final note Edward (and all the Cullen’s for that matter) is a pitiful excuse for a vampire who, when compared to Anne Rice’s Lestat, is a laughable subject. His dialogue and actions are not the least bit realistic or congruent with the implication that he has supposedly lived hundreds of years i.e. someone of that age would not use teenage colloquialisms. Also the fact that he is apparently highly attractive, irresistible to women, has lived for centuries and is still a virgin is improbable and quite frankly pathetic.
In summary, the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer is a complete load of shit, by a bored moron house wife, that has received an unprecedented amount of attention and I am so fucking sick of hearing about how great it is. I know writers(some of them on here) that by far surpass Meyers standard, yet whom have never been formerly published, and that to me somehow seems an injustice. But I guess that in essence Meyer's work is alike to a fashion trend that will pass quickly and be long forgotten. I have no doubt I will accrue a long list of enemies for this review and, for the record, that doesn't bother me in the least.
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