Vampires have been around in literature and folklore for a long time — perhaps too long. The concept is overused and tired.
Enter Twilight: the YA novel that breathed new life into the sclerotic concept of vampires, turning them from badly dressed bloodsuckers with dated accents into cool sexy badasses.
Twilight: the YA novel that breathed new life into the sclerotic concept of vampires
The catch was that to experience the sexy aspect of this reinvented type of vampire you had to be a teenage girl, or a woman getting in touch with your youth years and the reckless, forbidden, dazzling roller-coaster ride of emotions that came with, at least that’s what the marketing strategy says.
Or you had to be totally gullible. Or in love. Or a totally gullible person in love. Or brokenhearted, looking for fantasies to make things better again.
Am I typecasting? Maybe, but I do so with a light heart, winding everyone up. I’m an open-minded reader, always eager to connect with all sorts of genres, both as a fan, ready to be enthralled, as well as a writer, looking for insight into commercial appeal. I loved The Hunger Games, enjoyed Bridget Jones, and watched He’s Just Not That Into You twice.
Eager to discover the magic in the newest YA sensation, I approached Twilight (the book) with all neurons firing, expecting to get something out of it.
What I got was a fridge in the face
What I got was a fridge in the face.
I tried again, reading lightly and with a frilly mind.
To no avail. It was like the best sleeping pill ever.
Enter The Twilight Movies
Having found a way to battle my insomnia, I decided to watch the Twilight movies instead. I thought maybe the visual element would compensate for the lacklustre prose.
The result? I was neither impressed nor captivated. Not even as a writer/producer looking for clues as to a hit production. The look, the feel, the pace, the director’s general approach, the acting, the setting, the music, the cinematography and shot selection — all of them fell short.
There are so many things wrong with Twilight, it feels challenged. Or is it a genial scam?
To be blunt, there are so many things wrong with Twilight, it feels challenged.
Or is it a genial scam? I mean, it’s taking people’s money while they look the other way. It’s taking the piss. I’m not referring to the usual ‘wrong’ stuff, like invented gadgets that don’t make any sense, or the loose and convenient plot points that magically link up the holes in film story lines. It’s the movies, after all, not academia.
But Twilight – Twilight is wrong on a deep level. Don’t take my word for it. Here’s an Honest Trailer to break it down.
Warning: it involves the symbolic representation of a social activity (hint hint! where the problem lies!) that’s considered gross (and illegal in most countries) giving romance a whole new meaning of weird.
See what I mean?
But who cares? We want romance and thrills.
If you haven’t watched the trailer, it points out that the vampire dude is basically an old man, which means that his romance with a teenager is, if not statutory rape, then gross.
The movie was such a hit that a sequel was immediately greenlit.
Enter Twilight: New Moon where the smarmy love affair spins out of control.
A whole new meaning of epic — if by epic we mean daft.
Next came Twilight: Eclipse. It was so bad, I won’t even go there. Even the Honest Trailer was boring.
Which brings us to the finale: Breaking Dawn.
And Part 2.
Just in case you hadn’t had enough.
From your zombie-partial Spin Doctor,
Eyes open, LOL.