Bella goes to prom. The end.
Okay no, I won’t do that to you. Bella has been convinced that Alice has been prepping her for becoming a vampire. Because ever since she’s learned how she can be turned into a vampire she’s been pestering Edward to make her one.
Since Edward hasn’t been a douchebag for several chapters, he has to make up for it in a spectacular display of jerkassery now. Charlie calls Edward, since apparently Tyler showed up at the Swan house.
“I’m sorry if there’s been some kind of miscommunication, but Bella is unavailable tonight.” Edward’s tone changed, and the threat in his voice was suddenly much more evident as he continued. “To be perfectly honest, she’ll be unavailable every night, as far as anyone besides myself is concerned. No offense. And I’m sorry about your evening.” He didn’t sound sorry at all. And then he snapped the phone shut, a huge smirk on his face.
Both Edward and Tyler are in the wrong.
On the one hand Tyler is extremely presumptuous and apparently blind. Bella has been infatuated with Edward from the very beginning. She’s presumably been spending all her time with the Cullens and eating her lunches with Edward. If one were logical they’d assume that Bella and Edward were dating.
So what was he hoping to accomplish? Did he want Bella to take him to prom out of pity? That’s not any better.
And Edward is a complete jackass. He should have heard this in Tyler’s mind. He’s been planning to ask Bella to prom since the beginning of the school year. Edward could have headed him off at the pass at any time before this. But no, he lets Tyler make a fool of himself presumably because he thought it was funny. He condescends to Tyler, and nearly threatens him.
This should be the final nail in the coffin for any reader who still thinks for some reason that Edward is the model of what a boyfriend should be.
Bella freaks out and doesn’t want to go. It’s highly implied Edward would drag her there whether she wants to go or not.
Because damn it, life’s too short not to drag your introvert girlfriend into highly social situations. You only have a limited amount of time to watch her squirm in discomfort.
We get to the prom and Bella is scared. And insecure, because of what Rosalie is wearing.
She was beyond belief. Her vivid scarlet dress was backless, tight to her calves where it flared into a wide ruffled train, with a neckline that plunged to her waist. I pitied every girl in the room, myself included.
Excuse me, but shouldn’t this be violating the dress code of a school dance?
Each school would have a slightly different dress code certainly, but I’m sure that there’s a general rule about it.
Now the woman with a “plunging neckline here” has a gap that shows her cleavage. We’re supposed to believe that Rosalie’s goes down to her waist, like this.
Now I’m all for women dressing in what makes them feel sexy, however, there is no way in hell that Rosalie would be able to get away with it at a school dance. If you want to dress your characters all sexy-like, then you have to keep to the setting and rules of your world. You’ve set this story in high school, so you need to stick to your setting. This sort of thing would not fly.
Are we supposed to believe that the dance chaperones are too busy ogling Rosalie’s boobs to reprimand her?
Oh and hey, Bella gets a funny, just in time for the book to end.
“Do you want me to bolt the doors so you can massacre the unsuspecting townsfolk?” I whispered conspiratorially.
“And where do you fit into that scheme?” He glared.
“Oh I’m with the vampires, of course.”
He smiled reluctantly. “Anything to get out of dancing.”
See here? Character moment. A brief shining glimpse of the snarky heroine we could have had. Bella doesn’t have to be a kickass Buffy stand-in for your story to work. She could have been like April O’Neil. A damsel on occasion, but has a clear idea of what she wants. She pursues her goals, has ambitions, and has an attitude. That could have been Bella. She’s not the strongest person in the world. No special powers, but she could have made up for it in likability and a good sense of humor.
But no, Twilight has to take itself so damned seriously.
All the snark comes to nothing, because Bella does end up liking prom after all.
Jacob Black shows up, because Billy bribed him with car parts to deliver a message.
“Well—this is so stupid, I’m sorry Bella—he wants you to break up with your boyfriend. He asked me to tell you ‘please.’” He shook his head in disgust.
“He’s still superstitious, eh?”
“Yeah. He was…kind of over the top when you got hurt down in Phoenix. He didn’t believe…” Jacob trailed off self-consciously.
Bella gets pissy that Billy is still trying to save her life. She scoffs at Billy’s (completely valid) concern for her well-being. And Billy wasn’t wrong. She did get hurt while associating with vampires. It was partially the Cullen’s fault she was nearly killed. He’s just doing what he can to try to keep his best friend’s daughter safe from harm.
Jacob tells Bella that his father told him to warn her that “We’ll be watching.”
Spooky werewolf foreshadowing? Check.
Jacob hands Bella back to Edward, who feels like being critical of Jacob’s word choice.
“He called you pretty.” He finally concluded, his frown deepening. “That’s practically an insult, the way you look right now. You’re much more than beautiful.”
Shall we unearth our thesaurus and all words associated with beautiful as an ode to the wondrous perfection of Bella Swan?
Edward gets angsty about Bella bringing up being changed into a vampire. Again.
“So ready for this to be the end.” He murmured, almost to himself. “For this to be the twilight of your life, though your life has barely started. You’re ready to give up everything.”
“It’s not the end, it’s the beginning.” I disagreed under my breath.
No Bella, it’s the end. You’d suffer, you’d die, your human life would be over. You’ve experienced nothing in your life. Shut your mouth and, I never thought I’d say this, listen to Edward for once.
I touched his face. “Look.” I said. “I love you more than everything else in the world combined. Isn’t that enough?”
“Yes it is enough,” He answered, smiling. “Enough for forever.”
And he leaned down to press his cold lips once more to my throat.
Okay this would have been a half decent ending if Twilight had been a stand-alone book. Is it silly? Yes. Is it flawed? Oh hell yes. But its failings are so much more glaring as part of a series. Some of the mistakes are continuity errors when put in context with the rest of her worldbuilding.
The most glaring problems are with characterization and the fact that no one really grows or changes. Even though I don’t like it, I could accept a character that doesn’t really grow much during the first book. It’s just ludicrous however that Bella doesn’t grow as a character throughout an entire series.
Bella has almost zero conflict, no hard choices, and is always portrayed as being right. It would have been one thing if she’d been a bad character at the beginning and grows into something tolerable. If anything Bella’s character gets worse as time goes on.
So that’s the end of Twilight. I won’t get back to this series for a couple months, and I’m going to give myself a couple of days to recuperate before I start on my next review. I’ll be announcing it by the end of the week, and you can feel free to make suggestions for books you’d like me to review.
Thanks for hanging in there with me. I appreciate it.