____________________________________ On Hiatus ___________________________________

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Fatal Attraction

Are you busy?  Can we talk about Twilight for a second?

So first off, I’m a lover, not a hater.

But before we talk about Bella, which is what I really want to talk about…Let’s talk about how I almost never read this book.  Almost never even heard about it.

What?  Was I living under a rock?—Well, close enough.  I was living in a tent…well, actually, as summer came to an end, I was upgraded to a cabin with walls.  You have no idea how excited I was to have a door!!!  Not that I didn’t LOVE living in a tent, because I TOTALLY did…Besides, when I say I was excited about having walls and a door, that was pretty much the extent of my extravagance; you may not believe it, but my cabin was actually smaller than my tent.

And, on top of all my plush accommodations, I was living 20 miles outside of nowhere—in every direction.  Not only did my cell-phone not work, but the phone company actually removed our pay phone.

I’m not complaining—this was BY FAR, the most AWESOME AMAZING job I’ve ever had; I’m just trying to convey to you that I’m not kidding or exaggerating when I tell you I was living in a void of civilization.

But somehow, one of my friends had a copy of Twilight.  In the middle of nowhere.  I was kind of iffy at the time…not sure if I should read it or not.  I had cut myself off from YA when I went off to college, but up until then, I would read anything I could get my hands on.  I mean, I had already caved and become a complete Harry Potter addict, but if I read this book, would it mean a complete devolution of my reading habits?

Yes, as it turns out.  I have completely regressed, and now choose to blatantly read anything I feel like, whether it looks mature or not, simply because I enjoy it.

And I loved Twilight—It totally reminded me of the L.J. Smith books, and the Cate Tiernan books I used to crave before I swore off YA.  And the only reason I stopped reading them, is because they stopped writing!!!  (And I’m SO glad they’ve started writing again!!!!)

But there still seems to be a stigma on YA, or Twilight, or Harry Potter, or just whatever happens to be popular at the moment.  People seem to be threatened by these books—I mean, what’s the big deal?  If you don’t like it, don’t read it.  That’s all I’m saying.

Now.  On to Bella.  I keep hearing people say she’s wimpy.  She has to be saved all the time.  And while I understand this perfectly, because, yes, most of us would be able to fight off super-powerful vampires on our own…Here’s my theory:

From the first time I read Twilight, I believed, unlike Edward (and pretty much every other character), that Bella was SUPPOSED to die.

All her life, Bella is known for her klutziness.  She’s not good at being human.  Bella is several fatal accidents waiting to happen.

And what’s your first clue?  Yeah, she moves to a town with vampires.  Which actually isn’t a problem for ANYONE else in town—Because they’re vegetarian vampires, who don’t attack humans…except in Bella’s case.  Until Bella came along, no one was getting hunted or eaten, the Cullens were happy being sullen, alone, and aloof.  She walks into town, and suddenly Edward’s diet is about to disintegrate into binge mode.

Then there’s the car spinning out of control in the icy parking lot, and the fact that her other best friend is a werewolf.  Getting a paper-cut and bleeding right in front of bloodthirsty vampires?  Death defying motor-cycle rides and cliff jumps.  Walking into a DEN of the most powerful vampires on earth?  Being hunted by an army of newborn vampires, and a crazy-stalker vampire?  Trying to not have your vampire boyfriend kill you while the two of you are making out?  These are all things that would kill most people.

And frankly, I think they should have…because as we find out in Breaking Dawn, Bella is A LOT happier dead.  And she totally rocks the dead thing—Who’s a better newborn vampire than her???  Um.  No one???  She’s a natural.  All this time, she totally sucked at living and was literally asking to die, and it turns out that everyone’s efforts to save her have been in vain.

So that’s my response to everybody who is criticizing Bella for being too much of damsel in distress—She never needed saving; she needed killing.  But that’s just my opinion.



Becky said...

I can't stand people who love to hate it when they haven't even read it! I know people who purposely go out of their way to not read it. I'm not sure if they avoid it because it's the "in thing" or what. Just don't knock it until you try it is all Im saying!

As for Bella needing to be killed, I think that's hilarious! Definitely a different perspective then she's just clumsy. I do have to say that now that she is a vampire with extra special talents, I don't think she will need saving anymore.

Thanks for the post!

anjohnston said...

Hey, the logic is sound.

I am one of the few people that did not mind Bella. Honestly, I know I wouldn't be able to fight off a bunch of super strong and speedy supernatural beings. I'd try my hardest but wouldn't fair so well on my own.

The biggest point for me is that when she needs to have courage she does. She could have let her mom die in the first book when James threatened that he had her but Bella didn't. It took some major guts to walk into that ballet studio on her own, knowing she's going to die to save her momma. Somehow, she got her feet moving anyway.

Sure, sometimes she whines and she's indecisive but aren't we all at times?

I totally get where you are coming from here! Nice argument.

Erika said...

loved hearing your point of view.

My problem is with the writing... Its all iffy and I don't understand the depth is shallow if any and i may have been in love with the books the first time i read through them. The secound time I saw so many cracks in the plot.

My opinion!

Eloise said...

Love this post! <3 I find it infuriating that -ALL- of the people I know who love to criticize Twilight have never read it, or skimmed maybe twenty pages of it. The people I know who gave it a try and disliked it are much fairer. Bleh.

I never found Bella wimpy at all. Like you said, she encounters five hundred situations where she should have died, but didn't. But she never plays the victim and even saves Edward's life in Eclipse... So yeah. I like Bella. <3

Bookworm Andrea said...

I love this post! Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I totally agree with you! It took me a long time to give in to twilight and ultimatly I read them because I hate watching books-made-movies without reading the books. I fell in love and am now sadly what I like to call a twi-tard. I work at a movie theatre and have heard this argument many times and I just laugh.

nymfaux said...

Thanks for all your comments everybody!!! :) I'm glad I could make some of you smile :)

@Becky --I totally agree with you!
And I think Bella should do ok, now that she's dead ;) It's definitely one of my pet peeves when people put so much energy against something, without making the effort to check their facts--If you haven't read the book, how do they know they don't like it? How do they know their arguments are valid?

@anjohnston :) thanks! I didn't mind Bella either, but then I started seeing comments in different places about her being too wussy and "save me"-- and I wanted to share my opinion, because I hadn't heard it anywhere else. I agree with your points about having courage when she needs it--I'm sure if she wasn't indecisive sometimes, or was too kick-ass, everybody would be rolling their eyes at how over the top it was!

@Erika All opinions are welcome!!!! I think they're a fun read and enjoy them, but I totally understand that not everybody has the same tastes, and different moods--Have you read the companion piece, Midnight Sun?--It's on Stephanie Meyer's website, I felt like it was a good compliment to Twilight--it may help fill in some of your cracks...Or, have you tried Cate Tiernan?--She writes witches, not vampires, but I feel like she has more depth--I didn't get into her middle series, but I LOVED Sweep, and her upcoming Immortal Beloved (I read an ARC and LOVED it!!!)...Everything doesn't fit everyone, but that's the fun of sharing!!!! :)

@Eloise--Becky was saying something similar and I totally agree with you guys!--I don't understand how people can get so worked up about something they've never read!!!!--If you don't like it or aren't into it, that's fine, but no one is being forced to read it, so why do people have to put so much effort into hating something, or putting it down? Didn't we learn anything in kindergarten??? ;)

@Bookworm Andrea Thanks!!! I think twi-tard is so cute ;) I am SO jealous that you work at a movie theater!!!!--That's my other passion...But I'm the opposite, I find that if I read the books first, they usually leave things out in the movie, and I don't enjoy it as much--But when I watch the movie first, I enjoy them both, and let the book fill me in on all the juicy extra stuff--I know I'm weird, but it works for me :)

strange_candy_reviews said...

Lol, that's a great view. Bella is way better at being a vampire than human. I'd never even heard of Twilight until Breaking Dawn was released. I read them in four days. I did really, really like them. I got caught up in the hype and jumped on the band wagon. but now I'm just, meh, about the books. But it is annoying when people scoff "Twilight! Please. It's a load of crap." if you haven't read it, you can't really knock it.

Liz. R said...

Ha, that's an interesting point of view, one I've never heard before! You're right - Bella was less wimpy/whiny as a vampire. I'm a Twi-hater, it's true, but I can respect your opinion. Though I still think James should have killed Bella in the first book and that should have been that :P.

nymfaux said...

@Strange Candy--It totally bugs me, too--If I haven't read something, I don't go trashing something, but whatever...

@Liz R.--I TOTALLY would have been cool with it if she'd have died and they'd have made her a vampire in the first book...I don't think that's *QUITE* what you meant, but I'm pretty sure she wouldn't have just straight up died ;) But I totally think you have valid opinions, you have just as much right to not like the book as I do to like it, and it's all about sharing :)

Buried in Books said...

That was my take on Bella after she became a vampire. If Edward had made her a vampire in the dance studio, the book would have ended and no series. But, the way she became one relieved Edward of his guilt about it and resolved things with Jacob. I'm so hoping Stephanie Meyer will finish Midnight Sun. It gives such a different view of Edward from the stoic character Bella sees. It's actually almost funny, in parts.
But I understood Bella's character completely, just don't care much for the actress that plays her.


libertyfallsdown said...

Hahahaha this post made me laugh. Lots. In a good way!

First off, thanks for stopping by my blog on the hop and sorry for not stopping by to say hi back sooner. It's been a mental weekend for me...

I love your view on Bella. I'm not much of a lover of Twilight, to be honest, though I did enjoy reading the books. I just found most of the characters a bit one dimensional. And you could rip the plot to shreds with a feather. BUT, there is something about the story that sucks you in. I didn't mind when I was reading it - it was only when I thought about it afterwards that it all sort of fell apart.

But I like this idea of Bella needing to be killed. It does make the whole series make much more sense XD

nymfaux said...

@Buried great minds think alike!!! ;) I'm ok with the books and movies, but I can see your point about Kristin Stewart--She's got "teenage angst" coming out of her pores!!!

@Liberty :) I love to make people laugh!!!! And whether anyone's a lover or a hater, or ambivalent, I don't think there is anyone left who isn't glad Bella is dead!!! ;)

Allison said...

Thank you for posting this! I have been pondering a post "In Defense of Bella Swan" for a while... I'm still waiting for a psychologist or anthropologist to publish a paper re: Twilight. We actually discussed it for around 15 minutes in my grad school Adol. Psych class.

Basically, when I was in high school, I suffered from a severe, untreated mood disorder, and I was a lot like Bella. Yes, I was weak, and I pretty much just hung around my boyfriend. So I think Bella is a realistic protagonist. No, in the first 3 books, she's not a hard core awesome Xena Warrior Princess type... but she is still very relatable to some people.

And in Breaking Dawn, Bella totally comes alive as a vampire (like you said). She defies Edward, discovers her inner strength, and saves everyone. This is a GREAT message for girls, who like me, were very lame in high school-- they just need to find their voice and use it.

I could go on, but basically, thanks again! I'm a new follower. :)