I read and reviewed the book ‘Twilight’ awhile ago, and although I enjoyed the read and could understand why a teenage girl would go gaga over it, I was still curiously puzzled enough by the ensuing Edward-mania to go to a midnight masquerade for the launch of the fourth and last book in the series, ‘Breaking Dawn’. The teens I was chaperoning were probably surprised at how much fun I had; I especially enjoyed dropping shocking little sentences here and there (oh, the reaction to some of them was priceless!), and so I thought I would do something Twilight-related yet again once the movie came out.
Unfortunately enough, a little thing called a sprained ankle prevented me from going to the midnight viewing of the movie, but I still talked to some teens, both boys and girls, and boy did they surprise me.
First of all, Edward-craze doesn’t seem to be limited to girls only. One teenager I spoke two, a lovable little 14 year old, told me that he loved Edward because he was the gentleman that his grandfather was and he wanted to be. He admitted to being puzzled by the rudeness of his peers, and didn’t like the way they treated girls. He had been low-key before about being a gentleman, but now that Edward was the in thing, he had decided to come out of the gentleman’s closet. And, judging by the adoring glances some of the girls accompanying him were casting, it seems that he might have nailed it on the head.
Another teenage boy I spoke to, a big 18 year old taller then my father, told me how he hated the way women were seen by the entertainment industry. He had three little sisters he had taken to the movie and didn’t like to think that other guys thought of them that way. Then he told me that he hoped that Twilight would pick up enough for in the population of guys so that they “get the point: being mean to girls and calling them *itches isn’t cool”.
Needless to say, I was very impressed.
The girls also had something to say about that. One feisty 17 year old told me that she wanted to be treated like Edward treated Bella – i.e. with respect. When I asked her how she would make that happen, she already had an answer: she was going to treat herself with more respect. According to her, that entailed not acting a way because it was expected of her, or dressing in a way because it made her more sexy, but rather to be her own self, to dress herself in a way that people couldn’t but respect her, and talk to others they way she wanted them to talk to her.
Be still, my heart.
I don’t know yet if I happened upon a sample of teens that was a reflection of the entire population of teens in Canada, but if I have, there certainly is more hope for the future than I thought! One thing is certain: I am going to be talking to a lot more teens in the coming weeks just to see how this whole ‘Twilight’-mania has affected them.