The Atlantic has the story of Brian McGreevy, screenwriter and author of a Vulture piece from last year (which we somehow missed) which decried (as usual) the sparkly, effete vampires of the 21st century. The closest thing we had to a real vampire, McGreevy argued, was Don Draper. Fair enough! I can't believe that mashup hasn't been posted on YouTube yet.
McGreevy took it further, though, and applied his principles to his own vampire novel. That novel is called Hemlock Grove (gah!) and it was published last month. The Atlantic's review is not particularly enthusiastic (and McGreevy himself seems kind of awful, bragging about the emails he gets from women who want him to come over and "eat" them and also discussing his supposedly earnest belief in the occult (sure)), though one could imagine they wouldn't be very kind to Twilight, either, if they looked at it as a work of literature instead of as a phenomenon.
Speaking of "Twilight as a phenomenon," is all of that over? McGreevy wrote an actual whole BOOK as a rejoinder to Twilight (he cites True Blood, too, but that's fucking nonsense). At the other end of the spectrum is E.L. James and her book 50 Shades Of Grey (gah again!), which started as Twilight fan-fiction. Twilight has grandchildren, in other words. How relevant can it still be?
Meanwhile: Robert Pattinson is in a movie full of self-mutilation and weird sex, and Kristen Stewart is (fingers crossed!) naked in On The Road. Not that Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart weren't grownups before, but now they have "grown up" (and expect several articles to that effect in three months' time). Oh, and 50 Shades Of Grey was recently purchased by Universal for five million. So somehow that shit is going to be like, a movie.
If McGreevy's book represents a concrete pushback against Twilight in general and Meyer's vampires specifically, I think the rest of this stuff represents something a little more interesting and meaningful about this post-Twilight era we seem to be entering. Bear with me here.
Twilight is not a sexy book series, right? The repression and the weird morals kill any titillation one could potentially derive from reading it. The movie adaptations straddle a weird line, sexed up by hot actors and actresses vamping in every frame, but still tied to the source material. So you can watch the honeymoon scene in Breaking Dawn pt. 1 and find it sexy, because it is, but ten seconds later you're thinking about Bella's bruises, wondering why the film was so restrained in its depiction thereof, and whether or not that was a good thing... and then you're not in sexy mode anymore.
I've long felt that the abundance of Twilight fanfiction represents a desire to correct this fundamental flaw in the property. Sometimes it seems like even Stephenie Meyer is begging us to save her from her own whacked, repressive head (See Cullen, Alice).
And it took a long time, but I'm starting to feel like the forces of good (good being, in this case, sex-positive) have overwhelmed the forces of evil.
Which means the era of Big Twilight is over. And the era of The Hunger Games appears ready to step in and allow for a smooth transition (That's a mixed bag of a property too, but real rebellions are always mixed bags. Right, President Coin?). Or, to put it more optimistically for the Twi-hards among us, it means that Twilight as mass-marketed faux-"phenomenon" is over, and its time as a phenomenon with no quotation marks has finally come. Because Stephenie Meyer and Summit/Lionsgate have clearly lost control of the reigns: Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart are out in public as a couple and having weird sex in movies, fanfiction and angry blog posts are becoming books (um, AHEM, publishers). The inmates are running the asylum. It feels pretty good.