(If you haven’t read or seen Twilight, spoiler alert…)
(During the filming of Twilight, Kristen Stewart was still a child and she had to take breaks from working to uphold the child labor laws, look at how young she was when the first film began.)
I think the Media holds responsibility for the stories it presents to the public. Films can promote subtle messages, a form of programming. It’s interesting to look closer at what popular films are promoting.
In Twilight, Edward Cullens died of Spanish influenza, he might have died when 17 or so, but his soul continued absorbing life experiences for another 100 years or so. He wasn’t a frozen teenager that was revived, although he lived like a vampire Peter Pan for decades. He attended high school how many times? He’s a creepy old guy that’s in love with 17 yr old Bella, an average modern teenager. Bella is not a genius surgeon or Nobel Peace Prize winner. Maybe if she were more extraordinarily mature, if she was a teenager emancipated from her parents, self-supported financially and lived on her own, she would be more adult-like, but even then, the pair would be unequally matched. Edward is exceptionally immature, but that’s still no excuse for him to seduce and marry a virgin teenager, straight out of high school.
Bella also had a simultaneous crush on Jacob Black, the Native American werewolf. He too thinks he’s in love with Bella until he realizes that he’s always unconsciously been destined to love her unborn daughter Renesme! What? He babysits her daughter, is there at every stage, as she’s growing up rapidly. He even defends her life when she’s a child. He really did a great job of grooming her! He creepily waits for her to come of age (hopefully he waited) and he ends up marrying her, happily ever after. Hmmm sounds like pedophilia once again. Just because Renesme’s body rapidly matured, didn’t mean she’d mentally matured. He married her when she was mentally 5, 9, 12? I never read the Twilight trilogy but in the films she ages within months from birth to prepubescent childhood.
Why should vampires or werewolves be exempt of pedophilia? Did the writer, Stephanie Meyers, realize what she was actually advocating as an ideal romance? Did the producers, directors, actors and all the rest think about what they were doing? The “fairytale” message reinforces the older man, younger woman relationship and takes it a step further. Statistically young women married to significantly older men are often abused, it’s an unequal power dynamic. Females don’t need to be protected and controlled by an older, father figure.