It’s impossible to deny that Twilight is one of the biggest, most inexplicable extragavanzas to ambush the young adult fiction genre. It’s easy to understand why frustrated pre-teens are drooling over it, but what surprises me even more is how many people who absolutely HATE the book have ended up reading it.
I have never in my life heard the phrase “Yeah, it sounded really stupid, so I read three books of the series just to see how awful it is” before Twilight. Why? If you are a connoisseur of fine literature, go back to your Dickens. However, if you a snarky cynic who delights in the stupidity of others…Twilight is a gold mine.
- It’s a reverse dating guide. Twilight does a fantastic job of showcasing what NOT to do. Do not enter your girlfriend’s bedroom and watch her sleep. Do not jump off a cliff when your boyfriend dumps you. Don’t date someone who is not speaking metaphorically when he says he wants to eat you. Never ever, ever form a relationship with your ex-girlfriend’s vampire baby. It’s a fetus, dude! That’s beyond pedophilia.
- Play the grammar game. Are you a grammar Nazi? Do you love to spot writing and continuity errors? Twilight will keep you busy for four full-length manuscripts with as many mistakes as my preschool books (an indicator: in preschool, I did not actually know how to form actual sentences).
- You’ll get all the jokes. Once you have an inkling of the Twilight saga, join the not-so-secret society of Twilight haters, where the sparkle gags never end.
- Pure schadenfreude. Bella is possibly one of the most irrationally miserable heroines in of literature, ever. It can be annoying to listen to her pine after pallid Edward, but it can also be hilarious.She does have one point that the haters can clue into: her sense of superiority. Bella waltzes through the book making people drool over her for no apparent reason as she has pretty much no social skills and no fucks to give about anyone except Edward. She sees everyone as below her and yet hordes of boys almost run her over in their SUVs to ask her to dances. Characters even acknowledge that she’s unworthy, but still flock to her. Is this beginning to sound like a certain pop culture phenomenon yet?
Sorry…did that get too real?
5. You’ll feel like a comparative genius. Between Bella’s brains (who enjoys taking long walks down dark alleys towards a group of thugs and forming relationships with things that want to eat her), Edward’s romance skills (because nothing turns me on like my crush breaking into my house to watch me sleep) and her father Charlie’s parenting skills (“Wait…I have a daughter?”), you’ll never feel as stupid as these characters act.
If you can’t stomach actually reading the books but don’t want to miss out, check out Alex Day Reads Twilight. It’s full of snark and British accents, so it can only go up from there.
*This article has spoilers through the third book. In fact, it even has a spoiler in the first sentence. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
In spite of how much I love The Hunger Games, I will say that the series pulls a Fox Face—that is, it chokes right at the end. My issue? By the end of the third book, Katniss actually becomes a part of the cycle that she’s fighting, pretty much making all of her fighting for three whole books pointless.
When Katniss is launched into the world of the Hunger Games, it’s actually right up her alley. Katniss, the hero of the week (as in, she might not outlast the week) is what you get when you mix Disney Princess hair with Buffy’s combat skills. She understands when to be prey and hide and when to transform into the predator and brave the initial dangers for the ultimate prize. These instincts, combined with her impatience with political games sets her up to be the perfect opponent to the media-driven control of the Capital.
This works like a charm for her in the first book. Katniss is a master at bending rules (such as her demonstration for the level ranking, and of course her stunt with the berries) and though she has to do some schmoozing, she’s pretty terrific at hitting the Capital without getting dinged.
Katniss seems to have lost her mojo during book two and spends it acting like a deer in the headlights until she forced back into action in the arena. It doesn’t make for the most dynamic of plots, but I’m used to the second book being slow.
But then we go onto the third book…
…where I want to gnaw my foot off—and not because I’m starving.
Katniss spends almost the entire third book in a coma. No, not an actual coma, though she is as drugged out as an ‘80s pop star. She shuts down completely—which is exactly what she blames her mother for back in the first book.
Gone is the girl driving the action–which is particularly unfortunate as she is the catalyst for the whole revolution. Instead of truly taking up the
mantle or shooting down the flawed revolutionaries, Katniss simply puts off reacting unless somebody is getting blown up.
The real kicker comes when Prim is killed to prevent Katniss from taking a more active role in the new government (which is even more pointless because, as I’ve stated, Katniss is already pretty much in a coma at this point). Prim’s death proves that all of Katniss’ sacrifices were ultimately useless. What was the point of saving Prim in the first place, only to die just as pointlessly, a pawn in the ultimate Hunger Game?
But wait, it gets more frustrating…
Some may think that Katniss’ act of killing the President is noble, but it is fueled by the need for revenge and prevention of another such catastrophe. These are the exact two causes for the Hunger Games—revenge on the uprising districts, and a supposed prevention of it ever happening again.
By killing the President, Katniss is actually coming full circle with the motives she was supposedly fighting against. These deaths are the product of the incoming government, hinting that the new system is already set in the same cycle born of violence.
Katniss does nothing to prevent the continuation of this cycle as she is back in hibernation mode immediately after killing the President Coin. At the end of the book, we are left with two resounding messages: that noble sacrifice changes nothing, and that governments are ultimately powered through the deaths of the innocent.
I can admit that these ideas can be valid—but it’s freakin’ annoying that you’ve spent three books following a story of righteous revolution to realize that the whole thing was just a mockery of it and that your kickbutt heroine becomes a sleepwalker halfway through.
That being said: when does the second movie come out?