Monday, November 30, 2009

'Twilight' . . . Just a Teen Romance, Don't Expect Anything More

When I wasn't doing the whole Thanksgiving celebration thing last week, I was immersed in the world of Twilight.

My editor at Mommy Tracked had asked me to write a column about the film New Moon, the second film based on the four-book series, which has become a mega-hit. To prepare to write the piece, I Netflixed Twilight and watched it with my Twilight fan daughter (who's read three of the four books), went to the theater to see New Moon, proceeded to read Stephenie Meyer's book, New Moon, and then, because New Moon included so many Romeo and Juliet references, re-read the gold standard of angst-ridden teen love stories.

My conclusion after spending all that time thinking about vampires, werewolves and tragic teen romances: Don't go asking the Twilight book series to be Shakespeare, or the films to be Oscar caliber, or have its lead character be some kind of feminist hero. (The lead character Bella Swan, plunges into a deep depression in the second film/book after her vampire boyfriend, Edward Cullen, dumps her.) The whole Twilight phenomenon is a love stories about teens (though the vampire dude has actually been on earth for more than a century) seen from the irrational teen perspective of "I can't live without him (or her) or I shall perish."

Why are thirty- and fortysomething moms -- nicknamed "Twimoms" -- so enthusiastic about the series? I write in my column that these women "can recall with fondness those days of being adored by an infatuated boy who sees nothing in his world but you. Their days are now filled with ferrying children around, work, all things domestic and something as quaint as a love life that seems as though it's been put on the backburner, moms can recall the days when when romantic love was everything by pouring through the thousands of pages of Twilight books and hours of feature films, like they're taking a little vacation, albeit with those pesky, bloodsucking vampires and irritating werewolves."

Have you seen the Twilight movies and/or read the books? What do you think explains the mania for all things Bella, Edward and Jacob?

Image credit: Summit Entertainment via GateHouse News Service.

1 comment:

rita said...

You've got it. That pretty much explains why a 57-year-old grandmother is so obsessed with I mean interested in All Things Twilight. To the point that she bought a Pocket Edward doll and takes photos of him having adventures all over the place, assisted by her two over-50 sisters.

And her husband has forbidden her to take "that thing" into their new home.

As if.