With a ribbon in my curled blonde hair and face covered in pale powder, I queued up for the launch of the Twilight film.
I was dressed as Rosalie, duh.
So it’s safe to say I was a massive Twilight fan as a teen. I devoured the books, and as much as I consider myself a bit of a literature snob nowadays, I still credit Stephenie Meyer with getting me into reading in the first place.
When Breaking Dawn was published in 2008, my friend and I sat in her bed having a race to see who could finish it quickest.
And when the films came out, when I was 14, I could barely contain my excitement. I would engage in passionate debates with my friends over whether we were team Edward or Jacob (Edward, obviously).
I saw them all in the cinema (I only dressed up once, promise). Even as I got older and it became very uncool to like Twilight – I said I was watching them ironically.
So, you could expect that I’d be overjoyed at the rumours there’s going to be a Twilight TV series – but I’m not.
When I think of the saga now, I look back on it with rose tinted glasses. It reminds me of adolescence, simpler times and just really bad acting. It’s perfect the way it is – that’s to say, left in the past.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, a show is in the early development stages, with it unconfirmed whether it will simply be a retelling of the books and films, or follow a different path.
And like many grown former Twilight fans, I don’t see the point. If they’re hoping to get us back on board with this new franchise, they’re barking up the wrong tree.
See, in hindsight, I realise that the books are pretty problematic. There’s, ya know, the stalking obsessive behaviour of Edward. There’s the whole ‘we must wait until we’re married to have sex’ theme. Don’t even get me started on Jacob imprinting on a literal baby, which even at the time made me feel uneasy. And Jasper bloody fought on the side of the Confederate Army, which was somehow overlooked?!?
If they were to stick to the original plot, how on earth would they 2023-ify it? There’s no way that those storylines would fly with adults, or more socially aware teeangers today.
Plus, I genuinely mean it when I say the original films were perfect for what they were. Robert Pattinson’s constipated stare, Kristen Stewart’s stilted delivery, Michael Sheen’s high camp performance as the leader of the Volturi, the obvious change in film style from the lower-budget first installment to the monied sequels…
I mean, Renesmee – the terrifying spawn of Edward and Bella – they’re never going to be able to recreate CGI so bad it’s good again.
Trying to replicate all of these factors, which have made these films still culturally relevant (the memes abound and every former fan I know goes back to comfort re-watch at least once a year), is an impossible task.
Even the second, third, fourth and fifth in the series were unable to match up to the first’s banging soundtrack. Supermassive Black Hole! Decode! Flightless Bird, American Mouth!
A TV series will undoubtedly be of a higher quality, and ultimately that will do the Twilight Saga a disservice and may in fact tarnish its memory.
It’s been said before, but Hollywood needs to move away from reboots of films that are under 20 years old. The Harry Potter TV adaption currently underway is a case in point.
When the originals are so iconic and synonymous with so many fans’ childhoods, why would you risk ruining people’s associations with a franchise (I mean, JK Rowling is doing that all by herself, but that’s another point for another time).
The only hope for this series is if they go down a completely different route. Leave Edward, Bella and Jacob out of it and focus on someone else: The Volturi, The Quileute Tribe (but this time consulting the real-life tribe to make sure they are 100% happy with the way their history and culture is portrayed), Renesmee at 100 years old, Carlisle when he first becomes a vampire (if they could find a way to make his character less boring).
It’s the perfect solution: It lets the younger generation get their fill of the magic of the Twilight saga, while allowing former Rosalie wannabees like me to leave their memories of 2008 cinema intact.
But if they go down the traditional remake route, I know how I’ll be adapting the original script.
‘I know what you are.’
‘Say it… out loud’
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