Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Twilight

With the film version of New Moon, the sequel to Twilight, raking in the cash, I'm left wondering where that money came from, because it's enough to get the country out of the economic crisis. (Okay, probably not... But it sure seems like it!)

Now me, I haven't read any of the books or seen the movies. I don't even want to. What irks me is how insanely popular the series is and how insanely devoted the fans are, so the media buzz has been non-stop. I'd be in the same boat about Harry Potter, but at least the media buzz only happened when a new book or movie came (or comes) out in that franchise.

I heard about Twilight from friends on MySpace, who mentioned it in statuses and bulletins. Then, there were comments on a YouTube fan video I'd made. Note: the video was Rebbecca St. James' song Lion matched with clips from The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe. (Why? Because the song was on the album Music Inspired By The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch & the Wardrobe, and had actually been written for that album, and EMI and Disney are both YouTube partners, so there'd be no problems with the video.)

Someone thought the song fit Twilight, and at first I shrugged it off. Then, after reading more comments, someone mentioned Twilight was about romantic vampires. I commented that I doubted Rebbecca St. James, a Christian music artist, would license her song for that. And then came the hate. Seriously, these insane Twilight fans started criticizing me for not making the video a Twilight video, "because that's what the song matches."

Some even claimed it didn't fit Narnia. I mentioned that I did it because the song was on a Narnia album, and if people didn't like that it wasn't a Twilight video, then they could make their own. Some idiot seriously replied "Making videos is a waste of my time." I thought, "So trolling on YouTube videos isn't?"

Finally, I was sick of it, and disabled comments and ratings. If people couldn't civilly enjoy my video for what it was, that was their problem and not mine. Narnia fans who could appreciate my videos sent their comments as comments on my channel and as personal messages, which I didn't mind.

Honestly, romantic vampires? How messed up is this? And reading a bit more online, it sounds like it gets even crazier. Sparkling bodies, and werewolves who transform at will.

Watching a commercial for New Moon on television, my sister remarked "Why can't this Bella girl get a normal guy? She's dating vampires and werewolves!" Her husband replied that in the next one, she could date a mummy. "He'd be pre-wrapped."

I've seen lots of comments that the books aren't that good and neither are the movies. ("So, Edward and Jacob take their shirts off, but Bella doesn't? What good is that?" "Yeah...") This could be proof that people do enjoy crap, but try getting them to admit that. Rather, it seems, people like Twilight because they like to fantasize about being intimate with the Supernatural... Or Edward Cullen is the hottest guy ever. (And if that one scene I saw on TV of Robert Pattinson taking his shirt off is how that looks, girls have LOW standards...)

It's not healthy to long after a person who does not exist or is dead. Fantasizing is not bad in moderation, but obsession is not good. As an Oz fan, I run across people who wish they were Princess Ozma's boyfriend or husband. (I actually own a book where a thinly-veiled Gary Stu becomes involved with Ozma.) Jonathan Ian Mathers, writer, voice actor and animator of the popular internet cartoon "Neurotically Yours" has often expressed concern at the amount of nude fan art of his female former Goth character Germaine. (Main character Foamy shouts, "stop sending me nude pictures of Germaine! There's 80 gigs of them on my hard drive!")

I've never been much of one for vampires, but I want my vampires scary, and if they're not, they should be aware that normal relationships are impossible. (If they're immortal, people they love will grow, age, and die while they remain the same.) After seeing the BBC's Being Human, I kind of got a fondness for werewolves, and also love the film An American Werewolf in London. In both, being a werewolf is a curse. It's not fun, and they have no control over what happens to them under the full moon or what they'll do. (They can control where they'll be, for example, in Being Human, George makes sure he transforms in an enclosed room or in the woods.)

I wouldn't care if the Twilight fans and media buzz could be easily tuned out by those who aren't interested, but it's not. Instead, it's force fed to us almost everyday. It's maddening!

3 comments:

Nathan said...

While I'm not so keen on the idea of sparkly vampires, the real problem I have with the Twilight series (and I'll freely admit that I have also never read the books nor seen the movie) is that they present an abusive relationship as something a girl should aspire to. Edward Cullen might not suck blood, but he treats his girlfriend like crap, and that's much scarier in day-to-day life.

As for werewolves, I think the idea of lycanthropy being a curse is actually a fairy recent one, with the subjects of earlier werewolf myths being able to transform at will.

alancook said...

Have you ever seen 'Interview With A Vampire'?

A great film of Anne Rices' book.

alancook said...

I found a copy of the first Twilight book at work.

It took me about 3 pages in to realise that it was badly written and aimed at teenagers.