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Total “Eclipse” of the heart or suffocating “Twilight” triangle?

By July 1, 2010 10 Comments

Edward and Jacob continue to romantically woo/tyrannically control Bella

Fans swoon as Robert Pattinson sparkles! Hearts thump as Taylor Lautner shuns superfluous garments! And I was right there in the thick of it all at Eclipse‘s opening night, lining up to watch sexy vampires and  six-packed werewolves battle it out for the love of one inexplicably lucky human girl (you’d think that would be enough to get Kristen Stewart smiling once in a while).

In the interest of brevity, let’s try to disregard the fact that I’m a theoretical adult and still fangirling over Twilight. Instead, let’s take a look at this mythical love triangle between Edward, Bella, and Jacob, shall we?

As a true fan (or freak, whatever), I diligently read all four books in Stephenie Meyer’s vampire series, so I was fully aware of what was to unfold onscreen in Eclipse. But seeing the action come to life reminded me of how disturbingly disconcerting some of the story’s romantic details really are.

Now remember, I’m saying all this as the most dedicated Twilight addict this side of the quarter-century age mark. I love the ridiculously contrived dialogue and the debatably unreadable prose. But let’s be honest here: Edward is kind of a possessive jerk and Jacob is pretty much a creepy perv. Now hold up! Don’t throw blunt objects at my head yet! Let’s break it down.

Edward wants to keep Bella very, very (VERY) close.

Jacob flashes his biceps before putting the moves on Bella.

Subject A: Edward is so intent on “protecting” Bella that he dismantles her truck’s engine so she can’t escape his watchful eye. Um, perhaps a bit dramatic?

Subject B: Convinced that he is, in fact, Bella’s true love, Jacob forcefully kisses her against her will, insisting, “You love me too.“ Sure, she (unsuccessfully) punches him, but in real life, behavior like that invites a swift kick to the groin and a healthy mist of pepper spray.

The guys commit a long list of other moderately offensive/borderline abusive acts throughout Eclipse, and I’m certainly not the first one to take note of their testosterone-fueled antics (seriously, Google “Twilight, abusive relationship” and see what comes up).

But I want to know what other Twilighters have to say. Are Edward and Jacob overbearing, macho losers, or just fools in love? And is Bella really a 21st century female role model, or just another lame damsel in distress (our blog contributor, Ashley, has already shared her thoughts)?

Talk it over in the comments section. Just be aware that however compelling your arguments are, my inner fangirl will continue to squeal as soon as Breaking Dawn comes out.

— Michelle Konstantinovsky is a student at UC Berkeley’s Graduate School of Journalism and an avid admirer of shiny objects and preteen entertainment. It would be nice if you visited her website: www.michellekmedia.com. Also, she may learn to use Twitter more effectively if you follow her @michelley415.