Twilight Fad

Say the word “twilight” in a room of tweens and see the hysteria ensue. It is this hysteria that has prompted the writing of this piece. I want to discuss the whole Twilight Saga craze that is upon the nation at present. As an English Literature major and Harry Potter fan, I felt it necessary to see what was the cause of this fanatical behavior permeating middle schools and high schools across the country. It is this reason that I began reading the series. I have read three of the four novels and enjoyed them. Stylistically, they are nothing special. There are printed errors in the series and, all in all, it really doesn’t prove to offer anything new to literature as a whole. However, with that being said, the series holds just one thing that I feel is the driving force behind its popularity and success; an oddly alluring passionate love story filled with the ultimate forbidden love and the perfect “protective man.”

Originally, I began the first novel after I completed my finals in December of 2008. I finished the 500 page novel in about 2 days. The writing is extremely easy to read. I would blow through 60+ pages an hour. But, more than that, I was enjoying it, enthralled into the story. I enjoy vampire novels and am a big Anne Rice fan, but the twist on traditional vampirism and the love story personally captivated my attention. I immediately turned my girlfriend onto them. She is not the most voracious reader, but with this series, she tore through all four novels in the course of one semester, on top of working full-time, carrying 15 units, and being involved on-campus. She quickly became one of the series die-hards.

The passion within the novel that is held between Bella and Edward is something that is seemingly unattainable in reality, which, in turn, makes it ever so more attractive to the 12 year-old girls idealizing about love and a man of their own one day. The passion created is imagined to be more than that of mere human love, but an unknowable gravity of romantic magnetism and lethal thirst. Even describing it here makes it sound enticing.

I hold that it is, in fact, not the vampire-werewolf aspect of the series that is truly bringing about the success, but the love story. The vampire-werewolf piece of the series simply adds another layer onto the passion element I have already discussed. Yes, it is the vampire theme that adds to the novels unique love story twist, but the vampire-werewolf piece of the series is a simple love triangle that I don’t see as a major contributor to the novels’ overall goal. Rather, it proves just a distraction, an easy place to go that would allow ample and excessive marketing ploys for tween females to choose “teams,” Edward the vampire, or Jacob the werewolf.

Don’t we all want the type of love that is uncontrollable, the type of love that is truly unconditional in every sense of the word? Yes. Author Stephenie Meyer creates this type of relationship and she does so by using the idea of forbidden love with the notion of vampires.

Oddly enough, love is something of a give and take, madly passionate attraction. You want to hold them so close, you want to hug them as hard and as long as physically possible, but you must restrain yourself and be both passionate and gently at the same time. Its almost in and of itself a paradox, just as attempting to woo a girl is for a young man, but that is another story.

I understand the appeal many have with the storyline, however I do maintain that saying it is better than Harry Potter is a stretch, to say the least. Harry Potter basically revitalized and reinvigorated the “coolness” of reading for children of all ages and had the wide appeal to cater to adult readers as well. The Twilight Saga, however, contains content that is inappropriate and most certainly above the heads of children at large. The saga offers a tantalizing loves story, but that is about it. It offers no lessons of life, no truly thoughtful commentary on the human experience, other than an extremely fictitious love story, which I hope young girls across the world aren’t holding out for to become their future.

I enjoy Twilight as a series and a fad, I am just wondering when the craze will dissipate.

4 Responses to “Twilight Fad”
  1. The intangible love story and excitement of mixing romance with folklore is always going to be a huge hit. I agree with everything you said, and i believe the craze will slow soon but stop soon after the last movie has made it to blockbuster. If you talk to teenagers or girls our age they will all tell you that they think that the characters (jake and edward) are very attractive. For this reason the series is being driven to the upper echelon of “tween” hysteria. Harry potter twilight even things like blade or the underworld movie series excite immensely because of the fact that they exist in our world under our noses. While individuals read these novels or enjoy these cinemas it probably gives them an air of excitement even in everyday life where they effect a paradigm shift into the shoes of their favorite characters. I enjoyed reading your review. Have a good one>

  2. Twilight is a fun series. As long as you don’t equate it to Lord of the Rings, it’s perfectly fine to enjoy Twilight for what it is. Like you said, it’s a page turner and easy to get through. A lot of Twilight haters are bitter that they can’t seem to find the passionate, inexplicable love between Bella and Edward. The anti-Twilight movement members dislike the average writing quality of Ms. Stephenie Meyer, but it seems to appeal to a huge audience. There’s no reason for anyone to despise Twilight, but it must be said that Harry Potter is a better series in all senses of the word.

  3. Thank you! At least I am not alone.

    Ralee – It is great to hear from you buddy! Fabulous writing, if I do say so myself.

    Laura – You’re the best! Why have we only become friends in the past year? Lol.

  4. Awwwww Tyler you’re the best!

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