The New “Pride and Prejudice”?

Posted on February 2, 2010. Filed under: Books, Classics, Fantasy, Vampire Fiction | Tags: , , , , , , |

While it might be a bit passe to write another blog about the virtues of vampire fiction, I have a slight beef with a nameless person whose comment on a local news station rankled.

To set the stage: When New Moon came out in theaters this past November, I was one of the lucky ones to be in Knoxville, TN, where two of the stars visited for a charity premiere. Kristen Stewart and Taylor Lautner came to one of Regal Cinemas’ theaters to help promote both the movie and the event, which was nice enough, but of course all the news stations were there to video the event.

I watched with my mom, and this was before I considered reading the novels, so I wasn’t too impressed either way by the shrieking fans. However, one such fan, a mother, was caught on film, and what she said made my blood boil.

Jane Austen

Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice"

“It’s wonderful! It’s amazing! It’s Pride and Prejudice!”

Let’s get one thing straight, lady. New Moon has absolutely nothing on Pride and Prejudice.

I’m all for bringing back classics and attempting to write like the classics, but honestly, has this woman ever read a classic in her life? I don’t think so. Especially after reading the novel myself.

I’ve read them both, and Jane Austen is a class act. Her writing is truly classic in the best way, and I’m a fan. Stephenie Meyer has a lot to learn.

However, I had a conversation with someone who pointed out a few interesting points about all the screaming ‘Twihard’ fans.

  • They’re young; so have they really been exposed to classics? – Sure, there are a few older women out there who have joined the throngs, but for the most part, these are young girls who have mainly fallen in love with either Edward or Jacob. Have they read some of the greats? I can’t say for sure, but if they’re comparing the Twilight Saga to Austen or the Bronte sisters (or even Shakespeare), I have to seriously wonder.
  • Meyer cheats a little: she compares her own stories to classics. – It’s not like the comparison isn’t already there. Let’s review. Twilight had a plethora of references to the Bible. The whole theme of New Moon was Bella’s inane comparison to Romeo and Juliet. And Eclipse? It was rife with excerpts and allusions to Wuthering Heights. The only one I haven’t figured out is Breaking Dawn, which is almost too convoluted to have a comparison in the first place.

So with those two points I have to conclude that perhaps that mom was just a little deluded. I’ve read the books Meyer compares her plots to. It’s been a while since I’ve read Wuthering Heights (middle school to be exact), so I’ve put it back on my reading list just to make sure my assessment is correct.

However, my opinion is set. Classics are classics for a reason. Meyer has nothing on the classics. And, yes, I still think you’ve never read a classic in your life, lady. Don’t go by the movies, either. Get the books, grab a dictionary, sit down, and read it.

Thoughts, comments, questions? Think I’m evil to have such a horrid opinion of the Twilight Saga? Let me know.

-Rae-

P.S. New Moon has been nominated for four Razzies this year including “Worst Supporting Actor” (Robert Pattinson), “Worst Screen Couple” (The threesome), “Worst Remake, Rip-Off, or Sequel,” and “Worst Screenplay.” Interesting, isn’t it?

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6 Responses to “The New “Pride and Prejudice”?”

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I haven’t read Twilight. All the teenybopper vamps turned me off. It just seems vapid. I’m willing to say maybe it’s well written,but I haven’t read them so…?

Anyway, I *have* read the classics and thought Wuthering Heights was one of the worst novels I’d ever read. I mean, 2 horribly unlikeable characters have a tragic love affair. WTH?

Austen’s are great, especially ‘Persuasion’, but (and I know this is heresy) I also rather enjoyed ‘Pride & Prejudice & Zombies.’ šŸ™‚

Hah! I love that you enjoyed “Pride & Prejudice & Zombies!” That cracked me up!

Honestly, I’ve read “Wuthering Heights” as well, and my opinion as a kid reading it was that it was horrible. I want to read it again and look for the redeeming value of the classics so I can find something to appreciate in it. (Granted, I agree with you. It’s not a happy story at all.) My point is just that Meyer’s writing can’t compare to the classics.

Definitely not Pride and Prejudice. I’ve only read the first of the series, and my impression was that Twilight wasn’t bad. But it also wasn’t good. Lackluster, in my opinion.

Found you through NaBloPoMo.

Hey, thanks for the comment! (And for letting me know how you found me. šŸ˜€ )

I agree about the lackluster-ness of Twilight. It’s not the best, that’s for sure.

Not a classic. Will never be a classic. It makes me shudder to think that it is even being compared. Poor Jane Austen has so much to turn over in her grave about lately. (Pride and Prejudice and Zombies anyone?)

Hi there, thanks for commenting! I completely agree with you (obviously). You should have seen me screaming at the TV when the lady made those comments in the first place. (My mother thought I went mad.)

But, yes, it’s interesting how many people compare her works to the classics. I don’t quite understand it.


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