Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Lumberjack Heroines?

A few years ago, yes, I too read the entire Twilight series. I enjoyed them. They are fluff but still entertaining. Recently, I started reading The Hunger Games, a series dubbed by some as "the next Twilight." I'm only just starting the second book, but it's entertaining.

The Hunger Games just might be "the next Twilight" for several reasons.
  • Both heroines run around in lumberjack/hunter garb
  • Both heroines are under attack from some larger-than-life entity (army of vampires, the Capitol)
  • Both heroines are in such frequent and dangerous peril that they require not one, but TWO love interests to continually save them from death & dying
  • Both heroines apparently require multiple novels of somewhat stilted emotional dialog to hash out their romantic feelings
Perhaps this is the new way of telling fairy tales. Growing up, fairy tales were straightforward lore of girls in fabulous clothes (occasionally they were poor girls who eventually got fabulous clothes) who found themselves in some sort of peril (dragons, witches, etc.) when ONE man shows up in the nick of time, they fall madly in love, and (of course) live happily ever after. The story can be told quickly in one book.

So what's the deal with taking three or four books to hash out feelings while wearing plaid tunics? I demand a return to fabulous clothes, monogamous death-defying rescues, and simple realizations that said-rescuing prince is indeed THE ONE, I love him, end of story. Can you imagine the outcry if Snow White, upon her awakening by the prince, sat up and said, "Well hey, thanks. You're really hot and all, but I'm not really sure how I feel about you since that one dwarf was super duper great too. Here, why don't you just hang out while I spend two more books emotionally torturing you while I talk about my feelings? By the way, we're creating flair buttons for the readers that say "Team Prince" & "Team Dwarf". How's that sound sweety?"

Come to think of it though, Snow White probably wouldn't have actually been awakened by a prince if she followed the Twilight/Hunger Games fashion approach. Girls sleeping in the woods wearing flannel shirts and baggy jeans are treated like they would be sleeping in the woods for a legitimate reason, ex. they were camping, got tired, and took a nap. Unless the prince is super creepy, those girls don't get kissed awake; they are left to sleep in the woods.

So give me frilly dresses, standard villains, no chatter about feelings, and the reassurance that I only need one knight in shining armor riding around on a white horse. I'm an old-fashioned curmudgeon; I prefer the fairy tales of old.

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