we’ve been blogging about abortion, politics, religion and boobs. turns out, people want to read about Twilight and guys wearing headsets
I honestly don’t care about Twilight anymore. I never really continued after chapter 14. The best way to describe the book’s plot is the Douglas Adams quote “For a moment, nothing happened. Then, after a second or so, nothing continued to happen,” except nothing continued to happen for 300 pages.
Given the commenters on my post I wrote on Teen Skepchick, and MasalaSkeptic’s post on Old Skepchick I’ve since given up on doing what I had originally set out to do: Get people to think critically about a popular cultural phenomenon.
The key thing is I never advocated banning the book, nor did I truly ever say that there was a problem.
To quote myself in my post…
The way a girl reacts to a fictional novel is most likely not the same way she would react in real life. To be perfectly honest, I don’t actually think there’s much to worry about, but I do think that it can only be healthy to point out more often that the level of stalkerishness in Twilight might be on par with the level of stalkerishness in Lolita.
All I ever really sought to promote was not to get teenagers all across America to drop Twilight and begin reading Demon Haunted World (although I would like to promote reading Demon Haunted World), but to just use that as a way to stimulate some discussion of the book.
What do I get? A bunch of angry comments with poor grammatical skills and a lot of ad hom.
Special commendation is to be given to this commenter for what I found to be a rather polite, well-reasoned dissenting comment, although I do disagree with her. The issue about Edward’s stalkerishness that I find potentially worrisome is not that he’s unaware of his stalkerishness but that Bella, and the droves of readers are. Also, even if Edward is hormonally a teenage boy, he still has quite a lot of experience which should have given him a fair amount more wisdom.
Truly, I’d like to say it’s just a minor annoyance, but it’s not. It would seem to me that these people follow Twilight more religiously than religious people follow their religions. I’ve seen civilized conversations between religious people and people critical of religion. I’ve yet to see civilized conversations between Twilight fans and those critical of Twilight.
Perhaps it is far too extreme to say that Twilight fans follow Twilight religiously, but they get offended in the same way as religious people do to the point of saying…
You have no right to say that and u ought to keep ur opinions to yourself!
One blogger suggested that Maria would have angry mobs go after her if she didn’t take down her post. I really doubt that anybody would really kill for Twilight, and I really doubt that they are offended enough to do any sort of violent action. Let me make this clear: There is no evidence to suggest that Twilighters are offended to the point of forming violent mobs.
But they certainly get offended enough that they seem to want to leave behind all civilized, reasoned discussion.
Forget the stalkerishness, the creationism, the Mormonism. The readers are obviously not going to face any problems because that sort of thing is idealized as long as they’re thinking. The real reason why Twilight is a problem is because people are so fervent about it that they stop all rational discourse.
On the other hand, I’m going to say that in the real world the vast majority of the Twilight fans are perfectly reasonable. They know that the things being idealized in Twilight are silly, but they just read it for entertainment and that is wholely, perfectly fine. But we may want to keep an eye on the rabid Internet fangirls.
I want to say that there isn’t much of a problem, but I think there does seem to be some encouragement of not using intelligence going on here in the phenomenon of Twilight fandom. It would be idiocy to suggest that there is a causal relationship between reading Twilight and having YouTube-quality comments. I don’t think that Twilight makes people stupid. But there seems to be something going on here.
I’d like to open this up to the readers:
Is Twilight-fandom a problem or is it just an extension of the general Internet discourse expected from the masses? Should we do anything about it?
Personally, I just want them to go away, for my posts to sink into oblivion, but then, maybe I will do what I set out to do and get just one or two of those Twilight fans to think about what they’re doing for a little while.
Cue the angry Internet Twilightites.