It all began nearly a decade ago, way back in 2008. Do you even remember 2008? Bush was still president, Obama was elected, and honestly that’s all I remember — except for one very important thing: the release of a little movie called Twilight.
Back then I was just a young (extremely young!) girl (adult) in search of some fucking entertainment and I heard this Twilight series was about to become a big ass deal. Not to throw her under the bus, but I believe my sister started reading the books first. There were four of them — big, thick hardcovers that contained, we would discover, almost nothing. I read them all voraciously, fully aware that they were terrible books yet unable to put them down. I felt like a drug addict, but my drug was Bella and Edward and their burning desire to fucking fuck.
As I recall, I read the books (or at least the first one) before seeing the movie in theaters. When I saw Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson as Bella and Edward up on the big screen, it felt like a dream come true. Not my dream — the dream of some horny Mormon woman who was obsessed with the band Muse.
After seeing Edward restrain himself in biology class so forcefully it looked like he was taking a shit, I was hooked. I decided to “like” the Twilight series, and my sister and I vowed to see all of the movies in theaters, which we did. We’d go when the movie had been out for a few weeks and laugh our asses off in nearly empty theaters. We always had a blast.
Then something unexpected happened. The studio decided to split the fourth book, which didn’t have enough plot for one movie, into two movies. Though we were dismayed, we had made a commitment — we were “fans.” So we paid to watch those two bad movies on the big screen and honestly they were fun! Especially the last one, which contains a legitimately entertaining battle scene! Oh, and the second to last one has that crazy, gruesome birth scene, which is very cool!
We thought we’d completed our duties — then something else unexpected happened. Some weird British woman wrote BDSM Twilight fanfic and it was published. As in books (if you can call them that). Suddenly everyone was talking about this extra horny version of Bella and Edward but at that point, I had already seen him nearly fuck her to death on their honeymoon, so I wasn’t interested.
However, I soon realized it wasn’t up to me. At that time, I was working in an office full of women, all of whom started reading Fifty Shades of Grey. They bullied me into reading the first book and I complied — but I hated it. It wasn’t fun bad like Twilight, it was bad bad, and while Edward had always been disturbingly overbearing, Christian was downright abusive. I’d read the book on the subway ride home then throw it across the floor when I got into my apartment, but like a good student, I finished it, vowing to never read another Fifty Shades book as long as I lived.
I was down as hell to see the movies though! I had, after all, made a commitment all those years ago to see every Twilight movie in theaters as a joke and I was determined to follow through to the final punchline.
The first Fifty Shades movie was surprisingly…fun? Dakota Johnson gave Anastasia an actual personality, something she had nary a glimmer of in the book. Like all my favorite movies, it was bad in a fun way and left me not exactly wanting more, but totally willing to see more.
I saw Fifty Shades Darker in theaters with my sister in Colorado. We at some gummies (I’m chill) and oh boy did we laugh! To my surprise, fulfilling my mission as a Twilight “fan” was pretty fun! By the time Fifty Shades Freed came out this past weekend, I was actually excited to see it.
Unfortunately, it was bad. Bad bad, not good bad. At one point, Christian used a sex toy on Anastasia and they didn’t even show what it was! What kind of bullshit is that? It was more serious than the other movies, and Christian was even more of a dick, and Dakota Johnson was doing her best but seemed…tired. I mean, I still liked it, but it wasn’t as fun as others.
I left the theater unaroused but eager to drive an Audi. Mostly, I left feeling glad that it was over. I saw Bella and Edward grow from awkward teens to awkward married teens and parents to a demon child. I watched Anastasia and Christian grow from victim and abuser to married victim and abuser with a (possibly also demon?) child. I laughed, I never even came close to crying, I got bored and fell asleep. I grew from a young woman to a somehow even younger woman. And now, unlike Bella and Edward and Anastasia and Christian, I’m finally ready to move on.
By the way, if they ever fucking remake any of these fucking movies, I will see them out of obligation but I will be FURIOUS. And probably really enjoy them!