Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Chapter 18: Noses Just Don't Work That Way

“Their walk was catlike, a gait that seemed constantly on the edge of shifting into a crouch.” I know they’re vampires and predators and stuff, but this is kind of silly. These are not the traditional skulky vamps, but the kind that gain preternatural beauty which enables them to draw in their victims. Buffy-vamps don’t skulk, because they don’t need to. They look normal, and then WAGH! You’ve got a vamp chomping on you. It doesn’t make sense to have feral vampires when these vampires have no weaknesses and look fully human (albeit extremely gorgeous ones with odd eyes). I also imagine they do that stupid parakeet head bob that actors do when they’re trying to portray a feral character.

“The clothes were frayed, though, with wear, and they were barefoot.” While I have a dear friend who does hike barefoot, most people do a double take when they see barefoot people tromping through the woods. Again, this makes no sense. They may be the equivalent of vampire hippies, living in the woods as opposed to among the livestock, but still. Getting to eat people has a certain hinging on looking normal, or maybe they just move so fast that people don’t even notice when these things come sneaking up on them. Maybe that’s why no shoes?

“Their sharp eyes carefully took in the more polished, urbane stance of Carlisle” Filthy hippie vamps, meet WASP vamp.

Disregarding the movie, black people continue to not exist in Twilight. Laurent, who was played by Foreman from House, is actually Italian in the book. Well, presumably Italian, as he has olive skin, black hair, and solid muscles. So where’d he get that French accent? Maybe he’s from the south of France? Or an Italian descendant born in Quebec?

“His eyes moved appreciatively over Carlisle's refined appearance.” Ho yay!

For all that this is a potentially life or death situation, this scene is awfully bland. Bella’s just like “Ho-hum, here are some vamps that eat people. They’re a bit creepy I guess. Blah-di-blah-di-blah… Carlisle called me family! OMG!!! Oh wait, now they’re trying to eat me.’ The rest is just a conversation about home life habits of Meyerpires.

“My hair ruffled with the light breeze, Edward stiffened” Immature yes, but *snerk*

“A swift rigidity fell on all of them as James lurched one step forward into a crouch.” Just wanted to point out another terrible sentence.

“We reached the Jeep in an impossibly short time, and Edward barely slowed as he flung me in the backseat.
"Strap her in," he ordered Emmett, who slid in beside me.” This is just… I know he’s supposed to be worried for her safety, and it’s understandable, but he’s treating her like a naughty child. First he just throws her onto his back like a backpack, then throws her into the car, raging the whole time. She didn’t ask to get dragged along to vampire baseball after Alice TOLD them that there were feral filthy hippie vamps in the neighborhood. He deliberately put her in danger, and is now acting like she should be punished for not telling him no.

“"Where are we going?" I asked.
No one answered. No one even looked at me.
"Dammit, Edward! Where are you taking me?"
"We have to get you away from here — far away — now." He didn't look back, his eyes on the road. The speedometer read a hundred and five miles an hour.
"Turn around! You have to take me home!" I shouted. I struggled with the stupid harness, tearing at the straps.
"Emmett," Edward said grimly.
And Emmett secured my hands in his steely grasp.
"No! Edward! No, you can't do this."
"I have to, Bella, now please be quiet."
"I won't! You have to take me back — Charlie will call the FBI! They'll be all over your family —Carlisle and Esme ! They'll have to leave, to hide forever!"” Again with treating Bella like a naughty and particularly stupid child. They’re in the car, why can’t he take two seconds to explain the whys and the wherefores before effectively kidnapping her? We already know that he doesn’t need to see the road to drive, because apparently the road has a conscious thought pattern that can be read, so it would hardly divide his attention. He can communicate telepathically with Alice who could easily explain while he drove, even if she was looking out the windows. Or Emmett could explain, since he doesn’t seem to be doing anything but securing the prisoner. And Bella, now that Meta-Bella has long since died for want of sense, can only think about how this kidnapping will make things hard on Edward’s family, not that her father might have a legitimate reason to be worried.

“Alice spoke for the first time. "Edward, pull over."
He flashed her a hard look, and then sped up.
"Edward, let's just talk this through."
"You don't understand," he roared in frustration. I'd never heard his voice so loud; it was deafening in the confines of the Jeep. The speedometer neared one hundred and fifteen. "He's a tracker, Alice, did you see that? He's a tracker!"” Because women shouldn’t speak when the men are doing manly things. Edward doesn’t seem to realize that it might be bad to be dragging Bella away without even a modicum of explanation. Also, the function of a tracker doesn’t really make much sense. What, they get one sniff of blood and decide that they must have that? I know vampires are supposed to be evil, but this is just stupid. Why would a vampire knowingly track down a human that he knows is in protection of SEVEN other vampires, against a truce that has already been settled? Furthermore, why don’t the Cullens just keep Bella with them? A tracker, okay, so he tracks. What, does he have ridiculously strong super-vamp-powers that would enable him to be a fit opponent for seven old vampires with prodigious strength? I mean, it’s nice to have a bit of plot that isn’t ‘I WUV U SOOOO MUUUCH! O WAIT I KILL UUUU!!!!’, but this plot is nonsensical.

“"There are no options," Edward hissed.
"I'm not leaving Charlie!" I yelled.
He ignored me completely.
"We have to take her back," Emmett finally spoke.
"No." Edward was absolute.
"He's no match for us, Edward. He won't be able to touch her."
"He'll wait."
Emmett smiled. "I can wait, too."
"You didn't see — you don't understand. Once he commits to a hunt, he's unshakable.
We'd have to kill him."
Emmett didn't seem upset by the idea. "That's an option."
"And the female. She's with him. If it turns into a fight, the leader will go with them, too."
"There are enough of us."
"There's another option," Alice said quietly.
Edward turned on her in fury, his voice a blistering snarl. "There — is — no — other- option!"” Again, Edward is a grade A asshole. Yeah, I can see being protective, but this is just psychotic. He’s doing this against her will and leaving her father in danger to satisfy himself. He already hangs out in her room every night, so how long would this tracker have to wait? Obsessed with tracking is more like obsessed with stupid.

“I broke it. "Does anyone want to hear my plan?"
"No," Edward growled. Alice glared at him, finally provoked.
"Listen," I pleaded. "You take me back."
"No," he interrupted.” It’s the respect and compassion that really draws me into this relationship.

“"I demand that you take me home." I tried to sound firm.
Edward pressed his fingers to his temples and squeezed his eyes shut.
"Please," I said in a much smaller voice.” More paternalistic squick.

“"You're leaving tonight, whether the tracker sees or not. You tell Charlie that you can't stand another minute in Forks. Tell him whatever story works. Pack the first things your hands touch, and then get in your truck. I don't care what he says to you. You have fifteen minutes. Do you hear me? Fifteen minutes from the time you cross the doorstep."” Weak woman thing’s plan isn’t good enough until I say it’s good enough!

“He glared at me in the rearview mirror.”Why is he glaring? Is he that mad that she didn’t want her father slaughtered? I mean, disrespecting him constantly is one thing, but I’m pretty sure she doesn’t want him dead. Although Edward’s orders really don’t make any sense, since James can’t follow Bella’s scent in a truck, presumably. After all, he didn’t catch her scent until she was upwind of him, which makes him a pretty piss-poor tracker. Also, smell doesn’t work the way Edward (or rather, SMeyer) seems to think. The Earth is constantly in flux- the wind is always blowing, bacteria are always reproducing, insects and animals and other humans are constantly crossing the same paths. Unless Bella is Pepe LePew, her scent is not going to be traceable from a truck, because diesel wipes out blood. It’s established that no one smells blood unless they’re close or are blown in the wind (which still doesn’t make sense, because blood is internal. The unique scents of each body have to do with sweat and skin composition, which is why all perfumes smell different on different people. Skin, not blood). Even allowing that vampires can smell blood that is inside a creature, they would not be able to track it unless the person in question was bleeding. There would simply be too much cross-contamination.

“”Bella, please just do this my way, just this once," he said between clenched teeth.” When does she not do anything his way? This is really where Edward just gets strange – he does not realize that he’s controlling, domineering, manipulative, any of it. He probably thinks himself a most reasonable man.

“Emmett looked at me, insultingly surprised again.” So it’s all right that Edward thinks you’re stupid, but not Emmett?

Two improperly italicized ‘gets’ on page 183: “will [i]get[/i] hurt — she'll[i] get[/i] hurt,”

“"Bella." Edward's voice was very soft. Alice and Emmett looked out their windows. "If you let anything happen to yourself— anything at all — I'm holding you personally responsible. Do you understand that?"
"Yes," I gulped.” I sort of understand this, but he’s still making her out to be the bad guy here. There is no trust and no love in this relationship, just mutual sexual obsession. Even the dearest loves could bear to be parted for a week in exchange for one partner’s safety, but not Bedward.


  1. Thank you so much for doing this. Whenever I need to find a particularly offensive bit of SparkleFest writing for an example, I look here so that I don't have to suffer through the books myself. :^)

  2. heh...Bedward
    I now have an image of Squidward in my head...sparkling and with woman's hair.
    (Yep, both Edward traits...Bella must have finally been consumed by his controlling possessiveness.)

  3. The guy who played foreman in house was omar epps and he did not play laurent. You're thinking of edi gathegi who played a conservative mormon doctor candidate in season 4 of house, edi plays laurent. Also I absolutely love this blog.