Millions of girls and their mothers have been enthralled by Stephanie Meyer’s Twilight book series. It’s been the female cultural phenomenon of the past five years, and I gave it a shot with the first book but gave up on it just short of the baseball game. (Granted, the kids were younger then and there was little time to read.) Watching the movies has left me even more stymied.
Apparently I’ve just grown too cynical to enjoy this fantasy. I can’t imagine what Bella’s thinking.
- To be a vampire is to crave human blood constantly. Although the Cullen crew has somehow managed to control this desire, I ask you why a girl, i.e. Bella, would want to add another craving to her life. Isn’t it enough already to battle chocolate and doughnuts? Given the choice, would you want to view every warm-blooded human as the equivalent of a tempting neon Krispy Kreme “hot now” sign?
- Sure, Edward’s darkening eyes, protective instinct and superhuman strength sound sexy. But do you really want to cuddle up to a guy with perpetually cold skin? Have you bought illuminating foundation, iridescent eye shadow, and glistening lip gloss just to be outdone by your own date’s luminous, diamond-like skin?
- Vampires who don’t devour humans have to hunt wildlife at night. Let me tell you, excessive hunting has doomed as many marriages as excessive golf. On the plus side, a vampire husband would never be asking you what’s for dinner.
- Vampires don’t sleep. This could be helpful with a new baby – no taking turns with the 3 a.m. crying – but a real nuisance on nights when you have a headache.
- Since vampires don’t age, Edward has been passing himself off as a high school student for hundreds of years. Doesn’t being a perpetual high school student sound like some version of hell? As for Jacob, can any shape-shifting wolf pack be more intimidating than a high school clique?
- The aspect of the story that is most credible is that Edward, despite an ability to read anybody’s mind, chooses to pursue the ONLY girl whose mind he can’t read, Bella’s. However, I would argue that this mind-reading ability would only be a disadvantage long-term. Imagine the double-nagging it would be to hear her thinking he needs to take the trash out even before she finally tells him to take it out.
Despite my doubts, I won’t give up on the genre. There’s too much True Blood to avoid it now.