Tuesday, June 23, 2009

So slay me

I have, as I’ve admitted repeatedly, never seen or read “Twilight.” I just couldn’t quite wrap my mind around the idea of a Mormon housewife writing a not-so bodice ripper about a chaste, sparkly vampire who obsesses stalks falls for a human girl. That said, I certainly don’t begrudge anyone who enjoys the series. And I don’t begrudge that Mormon housewife. Get down with your bad, not-getting-down self, lady. But what I don’t and will probably never understand is the phenomena that is “Twilight.” OK, sure, it’s the star-crossed Romeo & Juliet story told with vampires and without the unfortunate drinking of poison or stabbing of one’s bosoms. But I guess what I really want to know is, um, why? Why this vampire story? Why this fangmance?

And, more importantly, why not “Buffy the Vampire Slayer?” Sure, Buffy had its fans – its wonderful, loyal, equally-crazed fans. But Buffy was always more of a cult show; a series enjoyed by those in the know. And, clearly, David Boreanaz is dreamy and all, but I don’t think his mere presence caused 13-year-old girls to practically self-immolate in a firestorm of squeals. I mean, the show was on the WB (back when they had a frog as a logo) and the UPN (back when, well, when UPN existed) for God’s sake! Perhaps (and very likely) I’m just in the wrong demographic to understand. Though, I’ve seen more than a few of my female married-with-children co-workers toting around the books slavishly. So, to make a long, rambling questioning of the universe somewhat shorter:

What does this have?That this doesn’t?

Oh, and just for the record, Buffy would totally, totally have kicked Edward’s ass. No contest. End of story. Seriously, put a stake in it.

p.s. Buffy also had Willow. Nerdy. Lesbian. Witch. Enough said.

43 comments:

Anonymous said...

I'm so with you on all of this, I refuse to have anything to do with Twilight cos I'm not 12, but I love Buffy completely. And you are right (as always), she'd so kick that weedy little boys arse

MDB said...

That video was awesome! Thanks for posting, couldn't stop laughing.

Julia said...

It's probably because Twilight is more realistic.I mean Buffy had every kind of Monster in it and it often got really weird.And Bella seems like a normal boring girl.So you can better relate to her than Buffy.Not to offend somebody but Buffy was kinda a bitch.I didn't like her at all.Maybe it's because i'm from the younger generation but i don't think you can compare buffy & twilight really good.

Anonymous said...

My friends forced me to read Twilight. I have yet to forgive them. Twilight reads like truly awful fanfiction written by a twelve year old girl who has never had a real relationship. It is a travesty that Twilight is so popular and seriously makes me wonder about the sanity of the female gender.

I cannot express my hatred of it enough. Buffy is infinitely.

@Julia I'm from the younger generation and Bella is the typical Mary Sue archetype at least the characters on Buffy had depth.

;) babs said...

the twilight books are so bad, only 12 year olds can bear them. bella is so weak/boring.
I guess the hype is all about R-Patz.

buffy is a cult show, you can't compare it to anything.

;) babs

pernicious piggy said...

Truly...nothing can compare (or even come close to) things of the Buffyverse. I think the folks over at Jinx summed it up nicely with the shirt listed here - http://www.jinx.com/women/shirts/geek/buffy_staked_edward_womens.html?catid=1&cs=19&csd=buffy

Sez said...

nah dont think its because twilight is more realistic. where in the world does a girl move into a town and go to a new school and EVERYONE wants to be their friend as soon as they see her?... Nowhere.

superspeed, superstrenght, supervillains, love where one part tries not to eat the other part..
buffy had all of those aswell, and it was more grown up in a way even if they also did have the weird monsters.
(buffy vampires also went poff..well okay.. slowly poffing.. in the sun and did not shine like diamonds).
and yes Ive seen the movie, would like to read the books since the movie didnt do..anything at all for my vampire loving :/
was an experience though, the deafening shrieks of girls in the movietheatre when they first saw edward walk into screen..

there was also a trilogy of teenbooks called "The vampire diaries" that i read when i was little written by L.J Smith. a lot of similarities to twilight in those. im in my mid twenties now so those would have been written at least ten years ago. think those are in bookstores again since vampires has gotten cool amongst the kids again.

BarbaraRyan said...

I haven't read or been interested in Twilight. But I loved Buffy!

And you failed to mention the hotness of bad girl slayer Faith and the super-sweet and luscious Lesbian Witch Tara.

Lopeytal said...

As far as I can tell, the only thing that Twilight has that Buffy doesn't is a horrifically weak female lead. In fact, I just read an interesting article regaling the many ways in which Bella sets a terrible example for young girls reading the series, giving them a model of passivity and co-dependence upon men. Now Buffy on the other hand, there's a woman who can and DOES take care of herself!

Kate said...

After recently starting to re-watch Buffy, I have been asking myself the very same question pretty much every time I see Buffy and Angel on screen together.

I also have to agree with a lot of other people who have identified Bella as a Mary Sue and a weak lead. I don't think she's a very strong example for girls to follow, especially the weird obsession that seems to be Edward's love for her. I think there are also better stories, better romances out there in literature, television, and film that people should be swooning over than the likes of Twilight.

jennifer from pittsburgh said...

I'm just curious to see if anyone is reading Twilight ten or twenty years from now. I did flip through the first book while at the library awhile back, and I wasn't engaged at all by the writing. Harry Potter it is not.
Of course BtVS is far superior :D

Syd said...

I've never seen either of these. And I think I watched one episode of Xena years ago.

Where do I turn in my lesbian card?

Brenda said...

OMG, there is no comparison. Buffy kicked vampire and monster azz! Besides, Buffy, Willow and Angel, there was bad azz Faith and Spike. I can rewatch BTVS over and over again and see something new each time. As for Julia, if you really paid attention the weird monsters were usually metaphors for the storyline. Pay attention. Oh, and miss younger generation, it's really well, not really good.

Brenda said...

Okay, I couldn't watch the video before (DA computer.) I love it. Too funny.

tlsintx said...

hmmm. interesting. my theory has always been that 'vampire' stories are metaphors for 'acceptance' stories...acceptance of beings who have been historically different, ostracized, feared, hated, hunted...so i liked them for that.

the fact that a mormon housewife came up with Twilight is so weird. stranger than fiction. then again, she dreamed it, didn't she??

Sam said...

I'm a long-time Buffy fan and have read the Twilight books; they're terrible and addictive, so I support your choice to stay away.

As for why so many teenage girls have latched onto Twilight vs. the cult status of Buffy...it's pure wish fulfillment. Don't you remember being in high school and wanting to be someone's everything? That's what Twilight provides - that obsessive over-the-top love you only feel when you're fifteen. Buffy was complicated and difficult, as a character and a story, and that makes her/it challenging. Which doesn't typically lead to hordes of teenagers (and their mothers!) in malls.

yogagrrl said...

I actually read the first book and I've gotta say that one of the things that skeeved me hardest was the author emphasizing that Edward's skin was "cold" and "hard". I thought, 'DUDE. Put your vibrator in the freezer already! How much fun would that be?' *shakes head*

Dame said...

I was just wondering this morning why, when it is so hard to get published, there are so many awful books and so many mediocre writers filling up bookstore shelves.

Anita said...

I loved BTVS. Joss Whedon is a creative genius. Firefly and Dollhouse are awesome as well.

Twilight pisses me off. I tried to watch the movie but I only got to the part where they were laying in a field for like 15 minutes of the movie and closed the streaming site.

What annoys me the most is my nickname for YEARS has been Tweyelite and has nothing to do with that stupid book but I keep getting people thinking I'm a fan of that crap movie/book. *sigh*

Love that clip btw. Buffy would so kick his ass. But honestly I think Willow and Tara could have taken him too. Hell I think Dawn could have killed him.

Le Genie Provacateur said...

First off this movie was taken from the Premise of "Let Ther Right One In" about two 12 year olds, both of whom acted infinitely MORE mature that the teens in Twilight.
Second we don;'t really know if the self immolatiion of those throngs of teenage girls is a voluntary one as and I am sure you know this: The business has a penchant for manufactoring mass hysteria and teenages are more than likely to folow a couples of girls who were planted in the audience of those onlookers at premires. more likely than not.
I watched Twilight and the acting was SO bad that I had to re watch "Let The Right One In" to se what a REAL vampire romance is and to cleanse my palate.

Robin said...

In the interests of full disclosure, I am an avowed Whedonite. Based purely on what I'd heard about Twilight I refused to read the books and only watched the movie once on DVD with friends who promised MST3K-style mockery (which was kinda awesome despite how painful watching it was for me).

I absolutely love the Buffy vs. Edward video because it illustrates why so many Buffy fans dislike Twilight -- the fact that Bella is so passive and accepting of any attention at all no matter how unhealthy it may be. We're used to having girl heroes who can hold their own, not damsels waiting to be rescued. Even at her lowest, Buffy didn't put up with her suitors being creepy for very long.

Anonymous said...

I hate to say it but True Blood would kick both of their asses!

Nina said...

I'm very disappointed with you, Dorothy. Usually you write wonderful things, now you're just being mean. This doesn't fit you. Buffy and Twilight are two completely different things, different stories and how on Earth can you compare them? It's like comparing music and architecture and saying that one of it is superior. Actually I am a fan of both Buffy and Twilight... and your complaining about a huge success of the Twilight saga "written by some Mormon housewife" sounds like nothing more than pure jealousy. What's wrong with Twilight being so popular? Buffy had her time, thank you. All 7 seasons, 8 with comic book. You are a free person, you don't need to read Twilight, don't need to watch it, if you are not interested. Whining that someone wrote a popular book is just pathetic. I'm sorry, but think a little bit more, before you put something on your blog.

Joana said...

I also have never seen twilight, but i´m sure buffy is much better. have you ever read a book called "buffy the vampire slayer and the philosophy", or something like that? it´s really great!
despite the title, buffy is one of the best and most intelligent tv shows ever made! people tend to think it´s about a teenage slayer killing vampires, but there´s so much more beyond the initial plot! it´s nice to find someone who shares my opinion about this show.

Anonymous said...

buffy and twilight is, in my opinion, directed at two different audiences. Btvs is more for the older masses than the shrieking hords of li´l-uns ;)
and I agree that Bella is an awful portrait of a leading lady.. would´ve been pretty cool to see her kick the bad vamps a**, at least a little bit (no i didnt mean edward so put those daggers down twilightfans).

and I do not believe that Dorothy´s opinion about a movie or a show or book is based on anything near jealousy. It´s an opinion, we all have at least a few of those and we are entitled to have ´em without having people trying to put us down for it.
you like twilight? then yay for you. that guy over there likes buffy, yay for him :)

TheWeyrd1 said...

It's that horrible notion that girls should be SAVED by the MALE hero and NOT the ones kicking ASS! Sigh.

PS. Syd you don't have to turn in your card if you will at least watch some more episodes of Xena...or many clips of Willow...heh.

Cade said...

The difference is about who's the lead character. Who is more romanticized? Buffy was straight talking, take no prisoners. She was a girl who could take care of herself (and others on most occasions.) The female protagonist in Twilight is...well...the anti-Buffy. She relies solely on Edward's self-restraint to keep her safe and can barely protect herself. She is passive and docile. That's what really annoys me about the screaming throngs of Twilight lovers. I wish they could get behind a STRONG female lead as passionately as they get behind this insipid, shrinking one.

Anonymous said...

You've been reading my mind! I totally don't get all the Twilight hype and I honestly don't see the appeal of that Pattinson guy. His hair's a mess and he looks stoned half the time. Granted, I'm not a 12 y.o. girl but still...

Ordy said...

I loved Buffy. I am a sucker for a love story. I like vampires and monsters and things that go bump in the night. I like fanfiction. I can't bring myself to even watch the Twilight movie after hearing how absolutely horrible the books are. I've been tempted to pick one of the books up just to see for myself but so far I've managed to resist torturing myself.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree that Twilight and Buffy are like apples and oranges. Plus people you gotta remember that Buffy is "the chosen one". It would have been an interesting premise to watch Bella receive the 'calling' of being a slayer during this little love fest. That would have been some real tension. Similar to the Buffy/Angel circumstance.

Also, I think the author depicts a new version of vampire lore and anything that adds to the mystic or lore of a creature shows creativity.

Yes, the sparkling is lame, but True Blood has 'fangbangers' and the vamps are harmed by silver, and EVERYBODY knows that silver harms werewolves.

Andrea said...

BAHAHAHAHAHAHA. The best part: The switch from Twilight shots to the Harry Potter shot.

You made my night Ms. Snarker.

Norma Desmond said...

What really scares me about the whole Twilight thing is that it has made some seriously creepy stalking sexy to young girls. They're not going to be happy unless a boy follows them in the shadows, watches their every mood. It's sick and just... just... I don't even know. There's way too much wrong with the teen romance in Twilight than could ever be covered in a blog comment.

Penny Cillin said...

That video was excellent! I do love Buffy. I do not understand the whole Twilight thing, then again I am not usually interested in what Tweens are doing or watching. But if they found something that makes them happy, no matter how mediocre it is, good for them. Unfortunately, from what I understand, it sends girls a message of dependence and passiveness.

babydykecate said...

That video is hilarious. My 13-year old sister is one of those obsessive Twilight fangirls, so after being introduced to 7 seasons of Buffy at University this year, I've made her promise she'll watch Buffy with me when I return home. I can only hope that she'll see the awesome of Buffy and slowly convert her friends ;).

Gadget Geek said...

I refuse to watch/read anything re: Twilight, I'm so sick of hearing about it. When things are over publicized, they usually disappoint me. Not to mention I'm not crazy about vampire ish anyway with the exception of Buffy.

Alicethepsychicbaby said...

Oh, Nina, Nina...

Complaining that someone stated their opinion on their blog is pathetic. Think before you comment, thank you.

Also, Twilight...is just awful.

Anonymous said...

Wangsty in a word (well two combined) is what annoys me about it. No humour like Buffy. However Robert Pattinson/ the entire twilight cast is *very* pretty unless you're undead yourself!

The video makes a good point, Buffy was much more of a strong role model for girls than Bella as Edward can come off a bit creepily controlling. I'm not really into the chastity parable theyre selling either.

mousse said...

Yeah, I feel that they are really different, gearing to different audiences as well. Buffy is cool, badass, and exciting in a way that makes you want to kill badguys and be sexy. Twilight is mysterious (kinda) and sexy in a way that makes you want to feel the way that the characters feel. Bellas' character can appeal to anyone who feels insignificant, plain, or ordinary. The fact that an amazingly sexy vampire falls in love with her give girls hope, and something really nice to fantasize about. For me, it was the sexiness. Although I ffelt that it was written poorly, the way she described the sensations of touch and smell really reeled me in. Believe me, the movie isn't half as sensual as the books!

Nicole Seiffert said...

LMAO Alicethepsychicbaby!

I was going to suggest that Nina look up the definition of "snark" or perhaps read some Dorothy Parker, but your reply was absolutely perfect.

BuRCu said...

As someone who was dragged into the theater to see Twilight and probably will be doing the same for every damn movie of it - why do I have to be such a good friend? =Pp - I must say that Twilight unfortunately sucked. =))

I love almost anything that involves vampires, but the movie had me whispering to myself like a maniac: "Vampires do not shine under sunlight. They turn to dust, or burn in flames." Repeat it over and over until you start feeling numb and then watch "Once More With Feeling", and/or "Hush". That was my cure. =))

And Ms. Snarker, that video made my day/night/week. Thank you.

Bridget said...

I'm glad I've finally found girls who share my opinion! (That said, the ones who don't are twenty-one, straight and very definitely the girly-girl novel set.)

Also, can someone please tell me something (and bear with me, it'll take a moment): vampires are hundreds of years old; girls in vamp series' are always in their teens to early twenties (thank you True Blood); I get irritated by the immaturity of partners just a few years younger than me. So, why, in the name of all that is good and right in this world, are vampires not irritated by their nubile young girlfriends? Oh, wait, maybe it's the "nubile" part of that.

Anonymous said...

i can understand that edward needs a good ass kicking but stop and think for a minute about what you are comparing. they are completely different story plots so how the fridgemagnets can you compare them.

a) BUFFY - good vs evil with a few love/hate relationships, lots of deaths and battles.

b) TWILIGHT SAGA - bella being a teenage girl has 3 people fancy her; her friend, Jacob a werewolf and Edward the vampire. this is about the rejecting of human kind and wanting to become something more exciting. as it is, there is that ongoing fued between werewolves and vamps, bella creates a love rival. its all about a teenager trying to make an adult decision without being so adult about it.

stop trying to compare something that isn't going to work.
Besides, they are from 2 completely different generations and 2 completely different authors so stop moaning and accept them for the beauty that they carry rather than the negative points. if you want something to moan about then moan about Dragonball Evolution being the biggest cock-up in film making history.

Anonymous said...

oh and btw .... Nicole Seiffet and Alicethepsycicbaby ...... leave nina alone
it is possible to be both a twilight and a buffy fan as not only she is but me and my mum are too ... i have buffy on dvd and they are meant to appeal to different audiences. im 18 so im still old enough to remember buffy and and i am still apparently young enough to like twilight ... Who says its just aimed at chilish 12yr olds? think of Bella like your typical Walt disnay princess, they all depend on guys .... just grow up and get a life, if u dont enjoy the twilight saga then ignore it

also for those who haven't read/watched it bcuz they r told its crap and bcuz vapires dont sparkle .... try watching/reading it b4 judging it because you may even be able to see past that particular peice of information and enjoy it as there is much more to the series than just edward ... like Jacob for instance :D

i know vampires dont sparkle in the stereotypical vampire but look at it this way, Vampires have to have a way of attracting their prey to them so they were always said to be beautiful creatures with deadly fangs ... What if this is Stephanie Meyer's way of showing that beauty ... just because your not used to it doesn't mean it can't be right but also you don't have to agree with it but don't diss the entire story because of one particular detail.