Twilight Chic - Our pop culture has turned the vampire from monster to hip Other

It probably all turns on what happens when the fangs touch your throat. Not that vampires are real, so far as I know. This means you must imagine the moment of penetration — a phrasing which, in our Freud-besotted culture, is fraught with suggestion. So maybe it’s Freud’s fault that vampires turned sexy. A substitution of modern movies for old novels is also to blame. This is the only explanation for *Atlantic *writer Caitlin Flanagan’s suggestion — in her December review of that teeny-bopper vampire sensation, the Twilight series — that Lucy and Mina in Bram Stoker’s Dracula were enthralled, in a sexual manner, by the smooth-talking count. It’s a common misreading of the novel these days that has yielded an art-imitates-lit-theory phenomenon currently manifested in the Twilight movie. It sold three million DVDs the first day of its release this week , and the book may receive a Nickelodeon Kid’s Choice award this weekend. Most adults have tacitly assented to the notion that vampires are hot, and it’s so little wonder our kids have followed suit.

That Dracula was a monster rather than a masher, however, was apparent to Stoker’s contemporaries. The Bookman called him an inhuman villain, and the Daily Mail called Stoker’s novel a “weird, powerful, and horrorful story.” Letting your weak-kneed aunt read Dracula, intoned the Pall Mall Gazette, “would be manslaughter.” It took decades of creative interpretation to alter this common-sense reading.

It’s a little-disputed assertion today, of course, that Victorians had sex on the brain. Stoker may have intended, as he explained in his notes, to render a demonic monster, but we know what he was really thinking when he turned that long-toothed sex fiend from the old country loose on England’s cream-skinned virgins. It’s an article of faith, now, that any story about vampires must, as Flanagan asserts, really be a story about sex. Literary theorists love this angle, penning breathless articles like “Feminism, Sex Role Exchanges, and Other Subliminal Fantasies in Bram Stoker’s Dracula.” Their pop-oriented counterparts, meanwhile, churn out novels like Dead until Dark, a bloodsucking mystery/bodice-ripper in which vampires “come out of the coffin.” Vampires, in these modern novels, are like gays and lesbians — people just like you and me who are marginalized only because of their sexual tastes.

article.nationalreview.com/?q=MGJjZGYyODRhMzVlMDFlODQ3MTU2YWYzNGE4ODI5MTg=

I have read the entire Twilight series. My 13 year old daughter wanted to read it so I read it first. The heros are good vampires who do not kill humans but live on animals. The 100 and something year old eternally 17 vampire has never had sex because he doesn’t believe in sex before marriage. He is the one who convinces his human girl friend that they must wait until marriage to be intimate. These are not Bram Stroker vampires.

I am not putting down the Twilight series itself. I bought book one for my niece, afterall.

But

I have found myself annoyed that some of the fright and fear of vampires has changed to something sexual. Darn it. Vampires are supposed to be monsters not sexy. I should be frightened not aroused.:stuck_out_tongue:

I liked the movie that was about vampires attacking a village in Alaska because it was SCARY and the vampires were unsympathetic.

If you look at traditional accounts of vampires, the monsters were soulless and much more scary then they are now.

I disliked the movie version of the book Dracula.(I mean the one with Wynoia Rider) Mina was very strong in the book but by creating an imaginary love affair between her and Dracula, much of her internal strength and will is diminished.

As a woman, I was somewhat offended that Mina became just a love interest for Dracula.:frowning: It is ironic that the 90’s film version of Dracula made the female character weak, while the Victorian novel seemed to acknowledge her strength.

I haven’t read Twilight so I don’t know how the female lead in that movie is depicted

To some (like me), Gothic horror does well with romance, for some reason. It’s just appealing. :yup: Why should vampires always be scary?

I’ll level with you, though: It would be kind of cool to see a scary vampire come back… but would it sell? :hmmm:

Ironically Yours, Blade and Blood

More info on Twilight:(!

southafricancatholic.blogspot.com/2009/01/twilight-movie-review-by-media-study.html

If the story was good, I think that a scary vampire would sell. The problem with a lot of modern horror is that the directors aren’t always focusing on good story lines.

Can you tell that I like horror movies?:blush:

I liked Thirty Days of NIght(I think that was the name) because the vampires were really EVIL and frightening.

That’s also true for movie depictions of other novels, like Eragon. :eek: That one came out horribly. :frowning:

I am concerned about the conversation that is happening here. This is one of my first attempts at responding to a blog, so I hope that I will not offend you but bring up another point of view for this series.

I am only concerned that an evil demon creature has been made to seem heroic. It seems to me that evil is evil and good is good. Demons are demons. Can the devil be good. No, he has made his choice in pride and self-love to deny God. Vampires, real or fake, allow young adults to see an evil image as something good. It feels like to me another chance to diminish the boundaries between good and evil. There is so much in our society that doesn’t allow for objectivity. It is important for us to maintain that there is a good and there is an evil. There is a battle to be fought and if we hang out somewhere in the middle ground, we aren’t standing up for what we should- God! The truth!

Some issues of concern for Catholics: in this film:

"Issues:

  • Written by a Mormon, which has different elements: this may be why they wait until marriage (later in the series), to do something about reproduction. Definite Mormon touches to the story line.
  • Considered to be cliché by some, with too much sniffing, and head movements, apparently, by the female lead.
  • The mother’s pursuit of happiness, having left her father: is almost, if not portrayed positively.
  • Reminds some of Dracula, and the Titanic.
  • In the book series, as is in the movie, the Vampire lead, seems abusive, the relationship only seems to hurt, or harm Bella, and the Vampire does not respect her privacy, and hates it when any warn her away from his dangerous hands. He could be any abuser, and the book series treats abuse of Bella lightly, where she does not seem to mind the effects of a certain act, the pain inflicted on her, as she is licking her wounds.
  • Vampires could represent aristocracy, or a high school popular kids group, and a desire to join this.
  • Like the poster/cover: the screenplay is suggestive, and seems to reflect adult insinuations: for a teenage girl, and 90 year old “17 year old” Vampire (remind anyone of internet dating?)! This means that fascination, and lusts for the physical form, is romanticized.
  • Use of the word “God”, by a non-lead character: to denote surprise that the lead female; had landed the lead male character. (Blasphemy?)
  • In a phone conversation with the divorced mother: the female lead: notes that she likes a guy, the mother tells her to use “protection” (Artificial contraception, is considered intrinsically evil: by the catholic Church; also: seems to indicate consent of the parent with fornication: another negative; which could encourage teenage pregnancy! The Mother does not seem concerned about how he treats her, while the father simply gets her what looks like pepper spray, and there is insinuation about the father and a gun. The relationship, of course, seems to be kept from the parents, who are not told of the dangers, but lied to.)
  • Violence, including the ripping apart piece by piece of a Vampire: although this is not too explicidly shown: it is known what is happening.
  • Scene where female lead seems to be in underwear, lying on a bed, maybe with a shirt, and she embraces the male lead,: they then kiss, and he jumps back: in fear of eating her. (Ethics).
  • Insinuation, whereby the “Adopted” children of the male lead’s adopted “Father”: hook up with each other.
  • The Vampires don’t seem to mind the other Vampires hunting people (Ethics).
  • The Female lead does not mind if the male lead has killed people (Ethics).
  • The female lead is prepared to risk her life, at the whims of the male lead, and his family (lack of Prudence). This could encourage teenage pregnancy, and crime, as well as dispose women to abuse.
  • Male lead watches female lead sleep: seems like a stalker: she DOES NOT mind this, and is interested.
  • Female lead lies to her father, and hurts him badly emotionally.
  • Female lead lies to her mother about events.
  • American Native Americans: try to suggest that Bella leave the Vampire alone: they are considered by the Vampire as the “wolves”, who attack when he leaves her alone for five minutes.
  • Possibly dispose women to abusive partners.
  • Elements, much like horror in Anne Rice: where people are attracted to dangerous, even evil people, or concepts: and give into their power.
  • Female lead is blasé about nearly dying in a car crash, parent is portrayed as overprotective, that they care so much.
  • “Bad” Vampires, act towards people, as though prey: and “play” with their “food”.
  • The entire movie, could likely be predicted from adverts, in fact, in this regard, it disappoints: the bad guys simply catch a sniff of the female lead, and the showdown, is almost too familiar of film’s abusive bully, and strong jock boyfriend showdown.
  • Could be a comic book: which isn’t a good thing!
  • Plays on fascination with revolting subjects and danger!
  • Bit like a symbolic main character, and film: stylization may be overdone.
  • Follows predictable Hollywood patterns.
  • Main female character, simply searches the internet, and gets onto a sort of cult-like website.
  • Plot is thin, and obvious.
    "

southafricancatholic.blogspot.com/2009/01/twilight-movie-review-by-media-study.html
It is dangerous. P.s. the article is much longer than those small points.

Marc

Umm…vampires are mythical creations. They are not real. An author can make them demonic or not. Its not any more demonic than Beauty & the Beast. Has anyone who is criticizing the Twilight series actually read the books?

This is so ridiculous. Read the actual book before buying into other peoples interpretations.

My oldest son was very upset because the movie followed the book so poorly.:frowning:

Although I would rather my movie vampires be evil, you are correct. Because vampires do not really exist, a writer can make them be good, confused or evil. That is what fiction is all about.:slight_smile:

As you see: it is based on the movie: which is based on the book: and the views of complete experts on the topic. The views in that article are not ridiculous, but accurate.

Vampire: the concept comes from the plague. Yet: in our world: represents the Devil: but calling the article ridiculous: is a straw man argument: you explain nothing of it: yet claim I have not read the book: because I disagree with you on the book.

On this forum: your statements should have basis: and not simply insult of another poster’s words, I am not sure, this may well be against the rules of this forum.

Clearly you are a fan of the book. Personally, I am a fan of God, and what is best in obeying him: have you considered attempting to view the world in this manner: have you considered no longer laughing, if not jeering at the opinions of the “Creative Minority”, as so many do. It is much like the detractors of the Papacy’s statement, based on the infallible truth in the Magisterium, and tradition: and on science: that condoms can increase aids, and are wrong. Harvard University’s HIV programme admits the accuracy, and I have seen the statistics supporting him: yet none from those in opposition: it is easy to scoff: without backing up your claims. The movie itself is a concern: and the film review linked to is fully adequate in that regard, and does in fact refer to the books.

There’s nothing new under the sun.

Teenagers have always been fascinated by vampires, mainly because of the power that they possess. Teenagers are poised between childhood and adulthood, and often have very little "power. They aren’t allowed to sit on the floor and play with trucks and dolls all day like they did when they were children. But they aren’t allowed to drive around, get a job to make lots of money, get married, drink, etc. like they will when they are adults.

No wonder the all-powerful vampire appeals to teenagers. Eternal life and eternal youth. Flight. Invisibility. Mesmerism. Control over animals (bats, wolves, etc.). Strength of 20 men. No food requirements other than blood, so eternally thin. Ability to drink blood without acquring HIV or hepatitis. (Yes, there is a book about this subject! I can’t remember the name of it, but I read it years ago, back when HIV first became public knowledge.)

That’s just a partial list of the powers of the vampire. Pretty cool.

Vampires are like grown-up fairy tales. Instead of a handsome prince, we have a handsome vampire. And instead of a princess, we have a female ingenue victim. And instead of living happily ever after, they die–or should I say, Un-die?–happily ever after.

When I was a teenager in the late 60s/early 70s, the big phenomenon was a soap opera called Dark Shadows, featuring the “reluctant vampire” Barnabas Collins. This show was HUGE. I remember hearing stats that on any given afternoon, 20 million households were watching this show. Jonathan Frid, the 40-ish actor who played Barnabas, received over 5000 fan letters a week, mainly from teenagers. Today he’s in his 80s, and many fans, including ME, still visit him on a regular basis on his website. He has started making appearances at the Dark Shadows Festivals (conventions) again, and I will try very hard to go see him. (I’ve seen him twice.)

I’m willing to bet that a comparison between the Twilight Series and the Dark Shadows storylines will reveal a lot of simliarities. I really don’t want to take the time to read the Twilight series, but this compare/contrast would be a fun project for a teenager who wants to wow an English teacher.

Before Dark Shadows, it was a series of “Dracula” movies, starting in the 1920s with Nosferatu (starring Max Schreck), then Dracula in 1931 (with Bela Lugosi), a heap of Dracula sequels, some starring Bela Lugosi, and then in the 1960s and 1970s, a series of Dracula movies starring Christopher Lee, and even a “Blacula” movie franchise featuring African American vampires.

Every few years, there is another remake of Dracula, which promises to be true to the story. I think what they count on is that most people haven’t read Stoker’s novel, so they really don’t know whether the movie is true to the story or not. I HAVE read Stoker’s novel many times, at least once a year since I was a teenager (that’s about 40 times). I know portions of it by heart.

I have yet to see a movie that is true to the Bram Stoker novel.

I think that a good Dracula movie would have to be done by a Christian production company because (on the surface, anyway), the novel is a “heroic quest” with Good vs. Evil. Throughout the book, there are various Christian symbols and actions, which the movies always leave out. I would love to see someone like Mel Gibson, with his vast amount of funds, do this movie right, with a screenplay that would make Christians stand up and cheer at the end of the movie.

BUT…I firmly believe that Bram Stoker had no intention of writing a novel extolling the virtues of Christianity. Just the opposite–I think he was making fun of Christianity. Apparently he wrote the novel in his Soho hidey-hole–a room that he rented so that he could cut loose and indulge in…who knows? I think he was laughing at Christians and the Church throughout the novel, and making them look ridiculous. I think, as other posters have stated, that the novel was a sneaky way of describing heinous actions that were probably very titillating in a repressed Victorian society.

I’m not sure whether this anti-Christian bias could or should be written into a screenplay. Perhaps if it were projected into the character of Dracula, it would add great depth to the screenplay.

Anyway,there are many books written about the fascination that vampires hold for humans, especially teens. I congratulate the author of the Twilight series for turning this fascination into a very profitable enterprise, and I wish I had thought of it first.

Written by a Mormon, which has different elements: this may be why they wait until marriage (later in the series), to do something about reproduction. Definite Mormon touches to the story line.

  • Considered to be cliché by some, with too much sniffing, and head movements, apparently, by the female lead.
    What?

  • In the book series, as is in the movie, the Vampire lead, seems abusive, the relationship only seems to hurt, or harm Bella, and the Vampire does not respect her privacy, and hates it when any warn her away from his dangerous hands. He could be any abuser, and the book series treats abuse of Bella lightly, where she does not seem to mind the effects of a certain act, the pain inflicted on her, as she is licking her wounds.
    This is false. The warning being hated is jealousy because the one doing the warning has a crush on Bella. In fact the lead himself warns Bella many times to stay away from him. The lead is not abusive, in fact he comes to her rescue many times.

  • Vampires could represent aristocracy, or a high school popular kids group, and a desire to join this.
    Ok…

  • Like the poster/cover: the screenplay is suggestive, and seems to reflect adult insinuations: for a teenage girl, and 90 year old “17 year old” Vampire (remind anyone of internet dating?)! This means that fascination, and lusts for the physical form, is romanticized.
    Ok this is completely nuts, not even worth an answer.

  • Use of the word “God”, by a non-lead character: to denote surprise that the lead female; had landed the lead male character. (Blasphemy?)
    Yes I believed this happened, an unfortunate but common expression among teenagers. I’m not sure if its in the book but pretty sure its in the movie.

  • In a phone conversation with the divorced mother: the female lead: notes that she likes a guy, the mother tells her to use “protection” (Artificial contraception, is considered intrinsically evil: by the catholic Church; also: seems to indicate consent of the parent with fornication: another negative; which could encourage teenage pregnancy! The Mother does not seem concerned about how he treats her, while the father simply gets her what looks like pepper spray, and there is insinuation about the father and a gun. The relationship, of course, seems to be kept from the parents, who are not told of the dangers, but lied to.)
    The mother’s personality is one of a some what ditzy left over hippy. To clarify she doesn’t tell her to use protection but asks her if she’s “being safe.” Bella cringes at the comment. Bella is not having sex with Edward. The father is shown as a cautious and some what nervous dad. He is also a police officer. Edward the lead insists on introducing himself to her dad, and comes off as very respectful and polite.

  • Violence, including the ripping apart piece by piece of a Vampire: although this is not too explicidly shown: it is known what is happening.
    It’s not shown at all minus one blurry and fast scene where it looks one chunk of the vampire is ripped off and one scene where the head is twisted, also far in the distance and blurry.

  • Scene where female lead seems to be in underwear, lying on a bed, maybe with a shirt, and she embraces the male lead,: they then kiss, and he jumps back: in fear of eating her. (Ethics).
    This is not in the book and the fear implied is of hurting her because he’s incredibly strong not eating her.

  • Insinuation, whereby the “Adopted” children of the male lead’s adopted “Father”: hook up with each other.
    *They are only parents for the sake of appearences to blend in. There are absolutely no sex scenes, neither of the other couples even kiss each other in the movie (or in the book as far as I can remember). *

  • The Vampires don’t seem to mind the other Vampires hunting people (Ethics).
    They don’t seem to mind? There is nothing they can do about it. The lead even says he doesn’t kill people because he doesn’t want to be a monster, and refers to Vampires as monsters.

  • The Female lead does not mind if the male lead has killed people (Ethics).
    She believes he’s changed, and she’s a bit blinded by love.

  • The female lead is prepared to risk her life, at the whims of the male lead, and his family (lack of Prudence). This could encourage teenage pregnancy, and crime, as well as dispose women to abuse.
    What? The Vampire “family” risk their lives to protect her.

  • Male lead watches female lead sleep: seems like a stalker: she DOES NOT mind this, and is interested.
    He does not come off as a stalker. He wants to protect her. He doesn’t sleep so he finds her sleep facinating. He doesn’t touch her.

  • Female lead lies to her father, and hurts him badly emotionally.
    Bella lies to her dad to protect him from the bad vampires. She hates lying to him and shows great remorse.

  • Female lead lies to her mother about events.
    Also to keep the vampires away.

  • American Native Americans: try to suggest that Bella leave the Vampire alone: they are considered by the Vampire as the “wolves”, who attack when he leaves her alone for five minutes.
    This tells me the person who wrote this does not know the story at all. The Native American tribe in the story have their own legend they are decendant from wolves, and in later books some to get the ability to change into wolves. That line was from the very end of the movie, its said an amused manner and is meant as an amusing line for fans who have read the other books. The character that comes to warn does become a wolf in the next book.

  • Possibly dispose women to abusive partners.
    Ridiculous. Edward is not abusive but protective.

  • The mother’s pursuit of happiness, having left her father: is almost, if not portrayed positively.
    The girl comes from a divorced family, they have been divorced since she was very small. I think the book makes you feel very sympathetic towards the father living alone in a small town.

  • Reminds some of Dracula, and the Titanic
    Dracula? ehh no. The Titanic maybe in the story line of two people coming from two totally different worlds.

  • Elements, much like horror in Anne Rice: where people are attracted to dangerous, even evil people, or concepts: and give into their power.
    This is also ridiculous. The book shows Bella being attacted to him because he is stunningly attractive, and different from the imature boys at her school.

  • Female lead is blasé about nearly dying in a car crash, parent is portrayed as overprotective, that they care so much.
    The parent is not portrayed as over protective but normally protective. She’s more focused on how Edward was able to stop the van from hitting her with his bare hands then really being blase about it.

  • “Bad” Vampires, act towards people, as though prey: and “play” with their “food”.
    Well yeah hence the term bad.

  • The entire movie, could likely be predicted from adverts, in fact, in this regard, it disappoints: the bad guys simply catch a sniff of the female lead, and the showdown, is almost too familiar of film’s abusive bully, and strong jock boyfriend showdown.
    Ok…

  • Could be a comic book: which isn’t a good thing!

  • Plays on fascination with revolting subjects and danger!

  • Bit like a symbolic main character, and film: stylization may be overdone.

  • Follows predictable Hollywood patterns.

  • Main female character, simply searches the internet, and gets onto a sort of cult-like website.
    She’s researching the history of the Native American Legend about the wolves which leads her to look up legends on vampires. The “cult like website” is a webpage for a Native American book store.

  • Plot is thin, and obvious.

Well, unfortunately, Batman kind of powns that claim. :o

Batman, if memory serves me right, was one of the first heroes to have a dark image. :slight_smile:

Ironically Yours. :heart:

I did not break any forum rules. I have been on this forum since 2004 and have never had one infraction. I am a faithful Catholic, I do not wish to be a fan of God but a follower of God. I completely support the magisterium and the holy father. I am a homeschooling mom, who does so specifically to teach my daughter in light of Catholic church teaching. Many of these claims made that you listed are either twisted some are patently false. I went through them for you line by line to highlight some of it. I read these books specfically to make sure my daughter wasn’t going to be exposed to something inappropriate.

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