Monday, 25 March 2013

Harry Potter vs Twilight

I was surfing Yahoo! Answers today (good old Y!A remains one of my favourite time wasters, though I have far less time for it now than in days gone by,) when I came across a question that basically resurrected the whole Twilight vs Harry Potter debate. Now that some time and distance has passed since I have read both books, I was able to provide a fair answer. I liked it so much, I thought I would duplicate it here: 

[W]hen Twilight first became popular, a lot of misguided people in the media dubbed it as, "the next Harry Potter." This was due to the fact that the books had a large teenage fan base. As I said, this was misguided, as 1, Harry Potter was popular with people of all ages, whereas Twilight appealed mostly to early teens and female twenty-somethings and 2, The content and quality of writing were quite different. Harry Potter fans were, naturally, annoyed to see what they felt was "their" book being constantly likened to something that was quite different and in many ways, cheaper in nature. 

So they rebelled, pointing out the many differences. (This was later done in spectacular style by Stephen King. I wont repeat his famous quote here.) 

The most vocal of the Twilight fans, fought back, with claims that often proved their lack of knowledge about books. To many of them, Twilight was a good book simply because it was the first "adult" book that they had been able to properly understand. Of course it is going to seem like a good book, when they have nothing to compare it to! Also, Twilight stirred up feelings of security--in Edward, Bella has a father figure who can "care" for her and offer her the promise of eternal youth. It's a vast difference from Harry Potter, who must, ultimately, face his destiny alone. 

I think yours is a story that we'll see a lot of in years to come, where people start out with books like Twilight and then progress naturally to things that are better written and have a broader appeal, once they become better read and more knowledgeable.

A good answer? What do you think? Where do you sit on the Harry Potter vs Twilight debate?

4 comments:

  1. "Harry Potter is about confronting fears, finding inner strength and doing
    what is right in the face of adversity. Twilight is about how important it
    is to have a boyfriend." - Stephen King ;)

    There's nothing much that can be added to that is there. Oh and nice answer.

    Though I initially did like the twilight series, I never ever compared them to HP. HP is totally another parallel. But yes as time moves forward, I obviously lost the appeal for those books.

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    1. Thank you for your brilliant answer, Madiha.

      The two series truly are different books. Personally, I don't think Twilight is an awful book, rather it's a bit of escapism and perhaps a bit morally ambiguous. :-)

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  2. Interesting answer. I don't understand the comparison at all. Those books are like night and day, not even on the same level let alone the same audience. I like the Twilight books. I like Harry Potter. People should take each for what they are, seperatly. Like them or don't. :-)

    Tamara @ Shelf Addiction

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    1. Thank you. I think the whole comparison is horribly misinformed and was most likely started by someone who had not read either series.

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