Before we delve deeper into this article, please know that I do not like Twilight and my disdain is not without base because I have read two books(or skimmed through it), and I watched the 1st movie. I will try to be objective of my criticisms on Twilight and keep my unjust opinions out of this article.
First, a quote:
"The real difference is that Jo Rowling is a terrific writer and Stephenie Meyer can't write worth a darn. She's not very good," -Stephen King
Leave it up to the Horror Master to be direct to the point. He then adds that:
"People are attracted by the stories, by the pace and in the case of Stephenie Meyer, it's very clear that she's writing to a whole generation of girls and opening up kind of a safe joining of love and sex in those books. It's very exciting and it's thrilling and it's not particularly threatening because they're not overtly sexual."
Stephen Kings says here that Twilight's appeal is not its artistic value but the story itself. The pacing is good, the story is understandable, there are no complicated metaphors and symbolisms, and no intricate plot twists. It is just direct-to-the-point and has no creativity. The writing, as some Twilight fans will attest, is terrible.
Firstly, because of the exaggeration of the vampire-human-werewolf love triangle. I know that this is a romance novel but it brings the genre to extraordinary heights when the story focuses on lengthy descriptions of Edward's features and Bella's insecurities and obsession. Novels, to be considered good, must have depth. Sadly, Twilight does not have depth. Twilight's story can actually be shortened into one book but its story is extended for three more books. It lacks the mythology of Lord of the Rings, the symbolisms and artistry of One Hundred Years of Solitude, and the magic(pun intended) of Harry Potter. The readers are just drawn by its simplicity.
Secondly, the main character is static. Based on the two books and the series' synopsis that I read, Bella does not grow beyond his insecure, confused and weak visage. She remains the same person from beginning to end. Edward, on the other hand, is made to look like, as The Oatmeal puts it:
"Imagine everything women want in a man, then exaggerate it by ten thousand - and you've got Edward Cullen."
And he is right. The effort that Meyer has put into making Edward the best man possible is astounding it borders on obsessive compulsion. I have no doubts when I say that the true selling point of Twilight is Edward's perfect personality. It is not the books artistry, not the story, not the catharsis, but Edward's personality. I know friends who obsess on Edward and wants to marry him and say how handsome and perfect he his even if they have not actually seen or met him. Who can blame them? Meyer may have spent all her writing prowess in describing the glittery Edward. Again, glittery.
In short, static character in which every girl can relate + a girl's perfect man = millions of copies sold and a movie deal.
The movie is not different either. Actually, it gets worse because of the same poor dialog repeated and will be repeated(I am sure) in the four movie adaptations, unremarkable acting from the leads and staleness of the plot. As renowned film critic Roger Ebert(he gives Twilight a two-thumbs down) puts it:
"For most of its languorous running time, it listens to conversations between Bella and Edward, Bella and Jacob, Edward and Jacob, and Edward and Bella and Jacob. This would play better if any of them were clever conversationalists but their ideas are limited to simplistic renderings of their desires."
Also, Twilight gives us a lot of new societal problems like depression (because of the non-existence of Edward's in the world), neglected academic and social life, heightened standards of females in selecting male counterparts, obsession and marital problems. These are serious problems. I even read something that Twilight-related psychiatrist visits became more common after the movie came out.
Just like what I said about K-pop in my last article, Twilight is also a fad that will find a hard time in finding a place beside the greats in fantasy literature like Lord of the Rings and Chronicles of Narnia. Just like SuJu will never have a place beside The Beatles and Michael Jackson. However, as everything with fads, the most important thing is that they make their fanbase happy and bring their creators lots of money. If the greats' job is to provide immortal art, the fads' job is to provide fleeting happiness.
PS. A funny comment about male Twihards by, once again, The Oatmeal(full article here):
"If you're male and you like Twilight, you're gay. I don't mean that in the derogatory sense, I mean it in the "you want to put your testicles against another man's testicles while gripping handfuls of chesthair kind of way."
Also, I really hate the name Renesmee.