Sunday, November 9, 2008

In the Twilight zone

I hate controversy and I run (on tiptoe, so no one will notice) from confrontation. I do, however, like a good discussion if it's rational and full of feeling without angst or anger.

So let's talk about Stephanie Meyer's Twilight series. Have you read them? If yes, what did you think? If no, why not?

I haven't read them, so my information is based only on what I've heard secondhand. I'd love to pretend I'm cool and make it like I'm not reading them purely because they're not literary masterpieces or because I'm immune to pop culture. But the fact is that I'm a desperate follower and all too influenced by what everyone else is doing.

The real reason I'm not reading them, I guess, is because of the subtle deception such supernatural stories create. I guess it's tricky, because none of us likely know any vampires in real life. It's easy to shelve them in the "pretend" corner with fairies and elves and trolls because they don't seem real. And they're not, really. Not the handsome, passionate vampires we find in storybooks today.

But history has revealed that there are real people who get their kicks from vampiric behaviour (I'm reminded of a specific news story I read years ago that still makes me sick). The vampire legend itself stemmed from stories of demons and evil spirits -- which, as Christians, we know are true. Nothing very romantic about that.

I don't believe that everyone who reads the Twilight series is going to be harmed in some deep way just as I don't believe that everyone reading Harry Potter is going to turn into a wizard.

But it seems slightly scary how today's popular fiction repeatedly attempts to make evil appear ever more attractive. Isaiah 5:20 says, Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness.

It's something to think about.



Sarah -- I think what you've said is a really good point. If we're looking for hope in one man, we're always going to be disappointed. Unless we're talking about The Man, of course :).

Simplythis -- thank you, Ruth! You know I'm such a chicken, especially about putting thoughts out there, double-especially when it comes to hot-button issues. It's nice to know someone understood me :).

Staish -- I don't know lots of the ins and outs, but Obama's pretty big on abortion. See Beth's comment at the last post for more info. <3 to you.

Beth -- I think you nailed it. If God doesn't know what He's doing, then it doesn't matter who's president. And since God *does* know what He's doing, it still doesn't matter who's president, because it means God let him be put there. So God bless Obama, I say!


  1. Ooh, look at me all about the controversy! I have read some of the series and I have to say that I had similar reservations about the supernatural element...and then I did this whole analytical dumb stuff I always do and came to a conclusion I'd previously come to. I don't actually *have* a conviction on supernatural-y stuff like Harry Potter and Twilight and other sorts of fantasy,etc. What I *do* have is a general non-interest in the whole genre and sometimes I've used that non-interest to be like,"Oh, I don't *believe* in reading that." when in truth? I'm just not interested. So why did I start reading Twilight? I don't know! I kept hearing from such a wide variety of people how much they liked them. And I'm a sucker for some fluffy fiction. What I wasn't expecting was a series where the characters made me so angry and the romance theme made me want to turn into a ranting, angry feminist.:-P I have to say the mythical creature aspect was far less disturbing to me than the relationship aspect. It seemed like the author tended to describe her characters one way: Bella as determined and mature, Edward as a perfect, selfless gentleman...and yet the way they acted did not live up to their descriptions. Bella always came across as selfish, whiney and weak. Edward came across as frighteningly domineering and rude. And as the series progresses there is a tangled love triangle where Bella is forbade to see Jacob by Edward, and where both "love interests" speak of her in this creepily possessive way that just makes me want to scream. I'm giving a very poor overview but I know there are people out there who have written better (and funnier!) critical reviews.

    So, in summary: I went from being reserved about the vampire aspect, to being open minded and willing to enjoy some fluff fiction, to becoming supremely annoyed at them and thinking lots of, "Why My Daughter Is Going to Know She is Worth Far, Far More Than the (Un)Romantic Heroes in Twilight." thoughts.

    Okay, I'm done. For now.;-)

  2. the whole concept behind the series just makes me feel ill really... love with a vampire? i really feel extremely queasy and possibly ready to lose my dinner at the mere thought...

  3. Goodness! Though I usually try to keep up somewhat with the literary world, I haven't heard of this series! Is it really a romance about a vampire?
    Whether fantasy is "okay" to read or not is a hot topic and one I have given much thought. Personally, I can't imagine life without Narnia and Middle Earth. My excursions into those literary lands have deeply affected my life. But Harry Potter (and all the other currently hot fantasy)? Finding a reason for my avoidence of that stuff is difficult. I think one important criteria for good fantasy is that it should not celebrate evil, but show evil as evil and good as good. A vampire for a romantic hero sounds like God's order upside down.
    There's a lot more I could discussions perk my interest any time!

  4. Thanks for your post on this Danielle....I thought I would add an interesting fact to the discussion:

    Vampires were real!! No, really. As always, this "myth" has some truth tucked away. The likely truth for this myth is that some people have a condition called 'polyphyria', an inherited disease. These people cannot make some of the enzymes in their body that form the products that produce the colour of the blood in hteir body. So they have weird sores all over them, and a weird tinge to their skin, which is especially brought out by sunlight. So they hide away, and only come out at night (cool, hey!). Thei teeth grow prominent because their gums waste away, and they get an overgrowth of hair all over their body, making them look 'wolf-like'. One of the treatments for this disease today is IV blood transfusions....but of course that is a recent phenomena, so people in the middle ages would have had to drink blood!

    Source: Human anatomy and physiology, Marieb, 1999.


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