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About three things I am absolutely positive. First, that the “Twilight” series is awful. Second, there is a part of society, and I don’t know how dominant that part may be, that will thirst for my blood now that I have said that. And third, I don’t care and am still going to unconditionally and irrevocably join the multitude of people that dislike the series.
Before the comments start pouring in, first thing’s first: I did give it a fair shake. I tried to read the novel about a year ago, though “tried” is the most important word in that sentence. I tried to get past the ridiculously shallow characterizations. I tried to ignore the fact that characters would pop out of nowhere and blurt out exposition so the semblance of a plot could be moved forward. I even tried to swallow the character descriptions that read as though they were written up on the way to the publisher’s; to wit, in the opening paragraphs, Bella’s (the protagonist) mother is introduced as looking, “like [Bella], except with short hair and laugh lines,” without regard to the fact that we haven’t actually been given Bella’s physical description yet. But in the end, I made it to chapter five before I threw the book against the wall for it not making a lick of sense.
Fast-forward to last week when I was standing inside of a video rental store. I knew I would be writing an opinion piece on the phenomenon, and I figured that I should not only refresh my memory but also maybe give it another go at impressing me. I rented the movie and then sat through all 122 agonizing minutes, with constant reminders of how atrociously awful the story is. There is no depth to any of the characters, and the performers in the film make no real effort to hide this.
The first two-thirds of the movie are devoted nearly entirely to exposition, with the actual plot not even beginning in earnest until there are about 30 minutes left. And to top it all off, vampirism isn’t even really an issue; it’s played more for comedy than anything else. My thoughts can be summed up this way: I don’t drink, but this movie made me wish I did if for no other reason than to make the whole experience a bit more tolerable.
I realized that I was maybe being a bit too harsh on the film, and so I talked to my brother, who roughly said (and I’m paraphrasing with his permission here), “Just because you’re a film major doesn’t mean that every film has to be amazing.” And I agree with him; there are plenty of movies out there that are very enjoyable even though they are markedly bad.
For example, I thoroughly enjoyed “Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull” – an awful movie by most metrics, yet very enjoyable. But as I ran through “Twilight” again in my mind (because I certainly wasn’t going to put it back in the DVD player) I just couldn’t pick out a single thing that was entertaining. Nothing about the movie made me want to keep watching. I didn’t care about the characters, I didn’t care about the plot, and I mostly just wanted the whole thing to come to some kind of a conclusion.
In the end, there is a laundry list of things that I can’t stand about the “saga.” From the shallow characters to the uninspired plot twists to the complete disregard for anything vampires have been in the past to fact that Robert Pattinson isn’t even that handsome, my thoughts run the gamut. But what really gets me going, the thing I despise about the phenomenon more than anything else, is that Stephenie Meyer, the creator of the books, is making millions.
Go reread the sentence I quoted at the top of the piece, and realize that even though Mrs. Meyer filled four novels with this kind of drivel, she is making more money than most of us can expect to see in our lifetimes. The argument can be made that she was just writing to the niche that she found, and that she wouldn’t be popular if she wrote things that people didn’t like. But why should artists deserve credit for simply creating something so accessible that skill is not needed?
“Twilight” is a watered-down romance novel for the masses, which can only be called “literature” by the same people that can call the Black Eyed Pea’s insipid song “I Gotta Feeling” “music.” It is not music, and “Twilight” is not literature.
“Twilight” is a poorly written fad, and that’s it.
Contact CU Independent Staff Writer Nathan Bellis at Nathan.email@example.com.