We’ve all heard the jokes and criticisms of the Twilight series by Stephanie Meyer. However, are the critiques fair?
No, they’re not. While it is true that overall the story is cheesy and even a bit cliche, it should not be completely disregarded. Although it may not speak to everyone, that does not mean it speaks to no one.
Yes, the quality of writing is nowhere near that of Shakespeare or Dickens, but the story is clear, and the characters are well thought out. Twilight is most certainly a sappy romance series full of impossible things, but those qualities are exactly why people enjoy it.
Real life is filled with responsibilities, disappointments, decisions and many other less than perfect experiences. Stories that give people excitement and happy endings filled with impossible yet wonderful things are not only sought after, but craved.
The series was never meant to make some profound judgment about the world or teach any type of moral lesson. It is simply an entertaining and exciting, if somewhat silly, romance novel.
Since Twilight is something purely meant for enjoyment, it’s not fair to go after it with such a vengeance. I have heard the Twilight series called “trash,” “stupid” and many other similar insults. Yet some of those same people turn around and watch things like The Office because they think it’s funny. Lots of people consider The Office the pinnacle of comedy.
Now, personally, I don’t find The Office funny at all, but that doesn’t matter: I don’t have to watch it. That same principle applies to Twilight. Some are not entertained by it, and they don’t have to read the books or watch the movies.
In the same way that it wouldn’t be fair to viciously go after The Office because it is purely entertainment, nothing more, it is not fair to go after Twilight when it is simply meant to entertain. The Office isn’t trying to do anything nuanced; it is simply just another situational comedy that happened to fare very well with audiences and continues to be a comedic staple. Twilight is the same: it’s a fantasy romance book/movie series that also fared extremely well with audiences. Twilight wasn’t the first vampire movie, and it’s not the last, but just because it did the fantasy romance movie trope the absolute best and you may not like the fantasy romance movie trope doesn’t mean it should be your go-to to criticize. Twilight is objectively good as a movie series and was a cultural reset in the late 2000s.
We all want others to enjoy the same things we do, but at the same time, we want to be allowed to enjoy what we do without being viciously criticized for it. Some things, like The Office, are simply more popular overall. But that does not invalidate or condemn things like Twilight. Those who enjoy the series should be allowed to do so in peace, without vicious jokes and criticisms flying from all directions.
Anna Millar is a freshman studying journalism at Ohio University. Please note that the views and opinions of the columnists do not reflect those of The Post. What are your thoughts? Tweet her @AnnaMillar16.