Thursday, January 27, 2011

Buffy vs. Edward

I posted this once before, back when it first came out, but it's always worth revisiting, especially in light of our Buffy Rewatch. One of the reasons I started the rewatch was because, despite using this blog to talk about Lost for the past five years, I've constantly referenced Buffy and discovered that many of the Lost fans following this blog hadn't watched the show. I wanted to open them up to this amazing world and let them see for themselves why BtVS is still so close to my heart. But I also wanted to return to the brilliance of Joss Whedon's creation in light of the vamp-mania that's happening right now: suddenly all the vampires are broody (like Angel) or dancing around delighting in their kills (like Angelus) and the irony has been (pardon the pun) sucked right out of everything Joss did. The new vampire shows take themselves WAY too seriously, lacking the sarcasm and punch that BtVS had.

Twilight, of course, is the ultimate example of this. And as I've said many times before, I don't mock it without knowing it. I suffered through the first book, thought Edward was an abusive stalker and Bella needed to grow a spine. (And I don't mean any offense to the many of you who enjoyed the books; some of my closest friends are Twilight fans...) ;) I've seen the movies (I just couldn't read any more of that craptastic writing) and I hated those as much as the first book.

This GENIUS mash-up of the Twilight film with various scenes from the complete series of BtVS sets up the dichotomy between the two brilliantly. Edward is a useless drip, pining after Buffy; Pattinson's acting is flat and wooden compared to Gellar's in every scene; his words are mindless and boring and obvious while Buffy is quick with the puns; the dialogue is amazing, the camaraderie between her and the others is great, and the film stock just looks better (and yes, yes, I know the Twilight film was washed out to give it MOOD, but good writing can do that, too...)

If the following is what Twilight had REALLY been, it would have been awesome. Sit back, Buffy fans, and cheer and laugh as Buffy turns down his advances with "ew" face, time and again.


JavaChick said...

I read the first Twilight book before I was actually aware of the Twilight mania. I barely made it through and had no interest in reading any of the other books. Watched the first movie to see if it was any better than the book. Then I was done. I know lots of people love the Twilight series (my sister included since I gave her to book and she loved it and all the rest) but I don't get it.

I do like The Vampire Diaries though. It's no Buffy, but it's not a bad little show (in the beginning reminded me more of Roswell than Buffy). Ian Somerhalder in particurlar is really good in Vampire Diaries.

Lisa(until further notice) said...

Thank you, Nikki. If you posted this about a year ago, I either didn't watch it or it meant nothing for me, since I hadn't seen BtVS yet. NOW it is the best thing I've ever seen. It does have new meaning for a bunch of us Buffy newbies. If I hadn't started following this blog for Lost, I wouldn't have given Buffy (and Angel) a try, and now I'm so happy for having done so. It's because of you, this blog (and all those connected with it), and your books that have opened up a whole other world of fandom for me. Thanks.

Suzanne said...

I wholeheartedly agree with all of your comments about Twilight vs. Buffy. However, I do have a confession to make: if it hadn't been for Twilight, I may never have watched Buffy in the first place. I started hearing about Twilight a couple of years back, and since my daughter was at an age where she wanted to read the series, I decided to read it first. I thought I hated vampire tales at the time, so when I thought the storyline was somewhat interesting (even though the writing was very weak), I remembered Buffy. I remembered all of the times people had recommended it to me and how I had avoided it, thinking I hated vampire tales. Since Twilight had been somewhat interesting to me, I decided to give Buffy a try. Of course, I fell in love and consider it my favorite series ever. Of course, I was forced to read the other Twilight books just to be sure I wasn't exposing my young daughter to anything too terrible, but they don't even compare to Buffy! I wish I could get her to watch Buffy, but she won't.

As for the Buffy/Twilight remix, I have seen it before, and it is awesome!

Anna said...

I'd just like to defend The Vampire Diaries as well. It's still based on the brooding vampire/gleeful vampire opposition of, say, Angel and Spike (which really dates back to Anne Rice, it's not a Whedon original), but the show is amazing. Brilliantly plotted, smartly written and featuring a cast that works together perfectly as an ensemble, it is definitely a cut above every other vampire franchise out there right now.

I would love to see a remix that brought together Buffy and Damon Salvatore (the "gleeful" vampire of The Vampire Diaries). It would be very entertaining to watch them match both physical power and wit.

AEC said...

That was great! I have to admit to reading/watching Twilight, I'm not a rabid fan by ANY stretch, but I did want to see what all the fuss was about. BtVS is SO much better than Twilight!

Nikki Stafford said...

For the record, I wasn't subtly bashing Vampire Diaries. I haven't watched enough of it to say one way or the other. I will admit, I watched the first 4 episodes and thought Stephan was Angel and Damon was Angelus, and that SO much had been stolen from Buffy (really? her best friend is a witch? Is she a lesbian, too?) but then I got up to about episode 9 and really started to like it. I have like 30 episodes on my PVR to catch up on, and a lot of my friends watch and love it, so it's one of those shows I really want to watch. ;)

Kristen Romanelli said...

I'm so happy whenever I see this. It doesn't get old.

Jenn said...

Love this! Read Twilight but hated it! Vampires should not sparkle; they are killers (although I do admit to loving The Vampire Diaries...could definitely be the actors.) I highly suggest to readers The Strain Trilogy bu Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan and The Passage by Justin Cronin. Both have vamps at their nasty best!

Verification word: acaper...where's the Muppet?

Rebecca T. said...

@Anna: oh, yes - I would LOVE to see Buffy vs. Damon. L.O.V.E. That would be amazing.

The thing I love about The Vampire Diaries (other than Damon) is that Elana actually stands up for herself and is a fairly strong female character. I mean, she's no Buffy, but she's not supernatural either. (lack of character strength is my biggest issue with Bella in Twilight)

As for this clip, it makes me laugh and I am amazed at how well it was spliced together. I am always impressed by people's savvy in the video department.

Lesley C said...

I'll admit that I polished off the first three Twilight books, loved them, then read the fourth, and hated it. So, for me, Bella left Edward and ran off to have werewolf babies with Jacob. (It was only upon watching the movies I realized how stalker-ish Edward really was. The remix video did a great job of highlighting that.)

I'll also toss out a book recommendation: Sunshine, by Robin McKinley. Written well before Twilight, it's one of my favorite books ever, not just one of my favorite vampire books. And if you like it, I'll also recommend Deerskin, by McKinley. Be warned, however: it deals with some tough subject matter (rape).

Fred said...

It's sad to see this mash-up because it proves a point with fantasy or sci-fi narrative, that the best seems relegated to television. Once upon a time, movies (film) provided the ultimate experience of vampires, monsters, sci-fi and such because television was just too grainy and relied heavily on dialogue for exposition.

Now, it seems the tables have turned. Television has the time for self-reflexivity, for developing a certain knowingness in the audience that just doesn't translate to the hour and a half on the big screen. But I think the most telling difference that has happened in television/media studies is that writers on BtVS at Slayage (and elsewhere) actually like the show. For a moment, go back and read some of the earlier (academic) writings on television and just see how much the academics hated television (television was to be loathed, film to be loved).

On the one hand, Buffy is part of a lineage from Xena all the way back to Emma Peel (The Avengers). Poor Edward never had a chance, he was no Mr. Steed. But one final point, we can all love BtVS, its fandom is wide ranging, whereas, Twilight is more limited in appeal (and I guess the writing shows that).

verification word: "pariere" a fancy way of saying Parisian with a liguid and bubbly essense.

Beth said...

This vid always makes me smile, sometimes laugh out loud. Thanks for re-posting it!

Robin said...

I go back and watch this video every few months, just because it makes me smile.

Are you aware of the Reasoning with Vampires blog? A fantastic woman is reading the Twilight books and commenting not only on their dangerous behavior models, but also on the horrible grammar and writing style they contain. I adore it because it means I'll never have to read the books or see any more of the movies. Well, and because I'm a language nerd. :)