Anti-Edward Cullen: A Treatise

This post is brought to you by VampyChronicles, two 20-something, self-professed anti-fans of Twilight. They’re currently reading through Stephenie Meyer’s series, snarkily blogging as they go about chapters, bad merchandise, the movies, and whatever else comes to mind as being ridiculous and/or irksome.

Edward Pic Originally, we were going to write about the top five things we hate about the whole Twilight phenomenon. We were going to poke fun at the inspiration, complain about the abysmal writing and lack of plot, point out how unbelievable and un-relatable the characters are, ponder over the unhealthy relationship between Edward and Bella, and then wrap it all up by bemoaning how Twilight has infiltrated every aspect of popular culture.

But, along the way, we realized that, while things like Stephenie Meyer’s eighth-grade writing style and reliance on her trusty thesaurus bother us to no end, and we continually have the urge to punch Bella in the face, it’s really Edward Cullen that we have the biggest issue with. Every point we made eventually led back to him, and the fact that we cannot comprehend why he’s such a heartthrob.

So we scrapped our original idea, and decided, instead, to take a closer look at Edward and prove why no girl should want to date him, and no guy should strive to be him. Ever.

We’ll point out the obvious first – Edward Cullen is a vampire. He is first attracted to Bella’s blood. Not her looks, or her personality, or her mind – but her blood. It’s bloodlust, folks, in the truest sense of the word. And, let’s be honest: no girl should be okay with her boyfriend wanting to kill and eat her.

But wait!

Edward Cullen Twilight Edward is not your average, coffin-dwelling Stoker variety of vampire, nor the murderous, blood-sucking kind that most other authors choose to write about. No, Edward Cullen is a “vegetarian,” live-among-humans, sparkle-in-the-sunlight-instead-of-exploding kind of vampire. In other words, he’s a pussy vampire. He is not cool, not desirable; he just happens to be really, really pale.

Which makes sense, since he’s undead, but since when are dark circles and pasty features (and, in Robert Pattinson’s case, disheveled, dirty-looking hair) a turn on?

It’s probably a poor decision to get involved with any sort of vampire if you’re not also of the vampire breed. But to get all swoony over a wimpy, angsty vampire who only wants you for the stuff coursing through your veins? No. Please refrain.

Edward is also creepy. We don’t care if you don’t eat or sleep – if you creep in through our bedroom windows at night to watch US sleep when we barely know you (or, even if we do know you, for that matter), that does not spell true love.

That spells restraining order. Perhaps psychiatric help.

It’s certainly not something we would condone, let alone find romantic. And how about that time Edward followed Bella to Port Angeles? Sure, he ended up saving her from potential rapists, but should that really excuse the fact that he was clearly stalking her? At night? Our answer: no.

But Edward gets away with this sort of behavior. Why? Because Bella is so whiny and insecure that she finds herself astounded that someone as “perfect” and “beautiful” as Eddie-kins could possibly want anything to do with a boring old mortal like her. It’s this astonishment, coupled with Bella’s infatuation with having her very own cultured, rich, “dreamy” bloodsucker that leads to the rest of our points.

Edward exploits Bella’s so-called insecurities – inconsistent as they may be –EdwardCullen and blatantly takes advantage of her. He may not be able to read her mind, but he sure figures out pretty quickly how to push her buttons. Edward becomes very controlling, very quickly.

It starts out with little things – insisting on driving Bella to and from school, for example – and progresses to more major things, like dictating who she can and can’t be friends with, and deciding where she’ll apply to college. He reads the minds of those around her and uses his sister Alice’s visions to keep tabs on Bella. Because of his super-vampy speed, he’s always there in the nick of time to stop her from doing things he disapproves of.

Like remember the time he disabled her truck, a la the nuns from The Sound of Music so that she wouldn’t be able to go and see Jacob? Yeah, that’s not okay.

Edward calls his controlling nature being “protective” of Bella. We understand that she’s clumsy and dumb, Edward, but that doesn’t give you the right to completely take over her life in the name of safety. Once she begins dating Edward, Bella starts lying to her parents and blowing off her friends. She and Edward become attached at the hip – totally dependent on one another. At one point, after Bella tells Edward that she loves him, he responds with, “You are my life now.”

THIS IS NOT HEALTHY. You should be able to still retain some individuality while in a relationship, no matter how head-over-heels you may think you are.

But Edward is also a little moody, and inconsistent. He plays the whole, “I love you. … But I’m no good for you. … But I love you! … But you should really stay away” card. How is anyone supposed to decipher such mixed messages? He says he only cares about Bella and her safety and happiness. But then what does he do?

HE LEAVES HER. He claims, again, that it’s to protect her from his family and their way of life. But, clearly, the girl is way into him. He had to have had at least some inkling of how broken-hearted she’d be. And how overdramatic. Come on, Edward, you’ve been posing as a high school student for the past century. You should understand by now how angsty and irrational teenage girls can be!55387_std

Bella, of course, is devastated. Since Edward was her life, she now has nothing else to turn to. She tries to fill the void (those throbbing, raw “holes” in her chest) with Jacob and dangerous activities that will trigger hallucinations about Edward. … This really has nothing to do with Edward being a bad boyfriend (except the fact that he didn’t consider this reaction from Bella before he left), but just shows how dumb Bella is for letting Edward manipulate her like that.

Granted, she’s a weak character to begin with, so manipulating her isn’t too difficult. She totally deserves the chest holes.

Edward continues the manipulation once the two make up and get back together at the end of the second book. They become inseparable once again, taking all the same classes and spending every free moment together. Bella is immediately back under Edward’s spell. In fact, SHE’S thankful that he still wants her. … Honey, HE left YOU, remember? Ugh.

Edward becomes especially protective of Bella and her activities (this is where forbidding her to see Jacob comes in), and he starts pressuring her about her future. Bella wants to become a vampire, but Edward won’t hear of it; he’s not even willing to hear her arguments on the topic. Until he realizes that he may be able to coerce her, that is. He tries to bribe her with gifts – expensive gifts – to see things his way. In the end, he compromises – a ring on her finger in exchange for her virginity.

True, it’s usually the other way around (the girl begging for marriage, and the guy begging for some hanky panky), but it doesn’t really matter. The reality Edward 2of the situation is that Edward uses his charm (those dazzling, topaz eyes and sweet vampy breath), money, and control over Bella to get what he wants.

And what does Bella get in return? Well, she does get sex. But then she also gets a mutant baby that literally tries to rip through her stomach, forcing Edward to turn her into a pasty, sparkly immortal, too. Hmm. Somehow, we think Edward got the better end of the deal.

So, to recap, Edward Cullen an ideal mate does not make. Stop kidding yourselves, pretending that he’s suave and desirable. Did we mention that he SPARKLES? Seriously. Please, girls, find another literary symbol to drool over. Edward Cullen is not worth your time. Or saliva.

By B.J. Keeton

B.J. KEETON is a writer, teacher, and runner. When he isn't trying to think of a way to trick Fox into putting Firefly back on the air, he is either writing science fiction, watching an obscene amount of genre television, or looking for new ways to integrate fitness into his geektastic lifestyle. He is also the author of BIRTHRIGHT and co-author of NIMBUS. Both books are available for Amazon Kindle.


  1. I also wonder why young girls seem to like the guy for some odd reason. I am pretty sure if I any guy would behave like Edward, they would turn him down within minutes. If they would even bother to talk to a strange paleface at all.

    1. It’s the “bad boy” image they dig. Some people go through a developmental stage where settling down seems the absolute wrong thing to do, and because of that, characters like Edward and Mr. Darcy appeal to the rebel inside. What’s worse, though, is when such fantasies become reality and women and men enter into abusive relationships because these kinds of books and movies color their perceptions of normalcy.

      1. The real big question, however, is even though these girls/women love the bad boy, is it the book that catalyzes the unhealthy relationships or is it inborn. Does the book originate their mentality, or does it relate to it?

        The way I figure it, it comes both ways. For those that are molded by something such as a fictional story so easily, then they are just going to drop the mentality for the next shiny bauble that comes along. For those that relate to the story, they would have committed themselves to dangerous lives with or without the book.

        Poor authorship and unoriginality aside, the reason I can not stand Twilight isn’t because of what it is, but what it has become. I absolutely HATE it when an intellectual property becomes popular by preying on weakness. This is exactly what has happened with Twilight. The two groups of people mentioned above have propelled mediocrity into fortune.

        Granted, there are a few people that are fans for honest reasons. They actually enjoy the way the books are written, and instead of seeing the story as unoriginal, see it as the best parts of dozens of other stories. I can’t argue that with that group of people. It is truly their taste and it is no one’s place to tell them they are wrong.

        However, these people are few and far between and there is not nearly enough of them to turn it into the billion-dollar monster it has become.
        .-= John A.´s last blog ..Pride and Prejudice and Comics =-.

  2. First of all, I must say the worst thing about Twilight for ME wasn’t Edward, but author’s obviously twisted sense of morality, honesty, psychology, etc. That’s why everything she praises as good is basically, bizarre and not worth anyone’s attention.

    When it comes to Edward, it means a lot. First of all, no matter what people say, Meyer did make him scary. Scary in a creepy, controlling kind of way, because, after all, he IS a stalker and an abusive boyfriend.

    I understand Meyer didn’t want to make him that way. I get it. He was supposed to be mysterious, handsome, rebellious- but also honest, loving and wonderful in any aspect (in other words, an ideal man for many females out there). But Meyer lacks any writing talent whatsoever, and she failed.

    The Edward she wanted to create is still a cutout, a Gary Stu and not a realistic character in any case. It’s not fun to read about those “perfect” characters. But at least he would not be as creepy as he is now.

    The problem is, all those little “princesses” that adore the story are young enough to remember the fairytales about prince charming, but also old enough to have wild hormones. All they want in a book is a hot main character, and in their brains, it automatically means he’s a nice, loving person. Plus, the Bella is so void of any personality whatsoever that any girl can easily step into her shoes. And voila! Edward becomes a perfect human being and an ideal man of her dreams.

    I don’t hate those girls. After all, I was 13 once. But I still blame the author. While I’m not one of those people who think writers must educate kids and force messages in their books, I do think the whole idea behind “Twilight” is one huge mess and FAIL opportunity to tell a (potentially good) story.

    It does look like the author herself is still 13, with all those unrealistic ideas about love, sex, marriage, life, or any other thing for that matter. Which is a bad, bad thing. The other bad thing is her personal twisted logic and bizarre ideas she has about life.

    And the last, but certainly not the least: that woman can’t write. And I don’t mean in a way she can’t write good. She can’t write AT ALL; she can’t present her thoughts in a coherent way. Not to mention she lacks true imagination or talent for storytelling.

    1. Ha! Ok, I wrote this in about one minute, and I got angry while writing it… I apologize for all the grammar mistakes and the like (“The Bella” and similar). Though, I must admit, she is one of a kind.

      1. I agree totally. Actually, my next installment for Anti-Twilight Week (which is two more posts–one from me and one from my wife) deals with Meyer’s inability to write and worldbuild. She succeeds in making Edward a frightening character, like you said, through no real talent of her own; she just makes him everything men //shouldn’t// be.

        And also, thank you for the “the Bella” comment. My wife and I were driving this morning and she was reading your comment to me from my iPhone when we ran across that and giggled because you took such care to elaborate eloquently on your points and missed backspacing over a “the” at one point. Then the phone buzzed again with your follow up comment, and I died laughing. It was so funny that it was like you were responding to our very thoughts. You made my morning.

        1. I am not a native English speaker, and I do my best to double check all my posts and comments. I guess “Twilight” made me mad enough to forget about it.

          Can’t wait for new anti-Twilight posts!

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