Buffy Vs. Edward Cullen: A Feminist Mash-Up
In this video mash-up wedding the Buffy the Vampire series and the Twilight movie, editor Jonathan McIntosh presents "a critique of Edward’s character and generally creepy behavior" in order to expose "the more patriarchal gender roles and sexist Hollywood tropes embedded in the Twilight saga." I'm all for Buffy smacking down anybody. Still, aren't we forgetting all the stalk-y dudes she's dated over the years?
Apparently! Jezebel's hortense thanks McIntosh for showing that "Edward Cullen's creepiness too often gets a pass from those who brush aside his controlling, stalkerish ways as the signs of 'true love.'" Slate's Nina Shen Rastogi also commends the effort, noting that Buffy "knows from ridiculously good-looking, brooding vampire honeys. So when she tells you that stalking maketh not a courtship, you should listen to her."
Speaking as a Twilight fan who is also currently halfway through Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 4 on DVD (some call me "nerd"): Edward Cullen is a creepy, sparkling stalker, but he's harmless compared to the guys Buffy Summers has chosen for herself. Buffy the Vampire Slayer isn't off the hook with its stalking-and-violence-as-true-love-themes. And yes, I am living in 1997. Get over it.
Angel? Turned evil and had to kill him, then came back briefly in the fourth season only to —remember?—silently stalk Buffy in order to continue to protect her.
Riley Finn? Not even a fucking vampire, first of all, so I hate to even count this guy. But he did consistently refuse to accept Buffy's demon-murderin' autonomy, often following her along on missions to—yep—"protect" her. Plus, he was very, very annoying.
Spike? I haven't gotten this far yet—but Wikipedia describes their fling as "secret, mutually abusive." Sounds like an improvement.
Buffy's own history with stalking aside: The great thing about mash-ups is how they take things out of context to create new hilarious scenarios. But by taking Edward Cullen out of the context ofTwilight and applying him to a different ridiculous world of vampires, we forget how hilarious Cullen was in the context of his own movie. If you haven't seen Twilight, it was unbelievably absurd, and—in my opinion—awesomely so. He communicates only in absurdly disgusted looks! He plays baseball! He sparkles, for fuck's sake!
For the brainwashed masses of the Cullen obsessed, the vampire's stalkey ways—and his sparkliness—may very well represent true love. For those who aren't drinking the blood-flavored Kool-Aid, the absurdity of Cullen's courting only makes him more hilariously awesome—and way, way more entertaining than Riley Finn.