Archive for August, 2012

Fifty Shades of WTF.

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

(I’m angry and it will be obvious.)
(I’m sorry if you’re a big fan of this book.)
(Maybe don’t read any further.)

I gave in to the hype of Fifty Shades of Grey in June. It is abominable.

Poor Nick was around me more often than he may have liked while I was reading and had to suffer through my agitated and fanatical grievances over, what seemed like an endless and alarming amount of, bullshit erotica crap. This book certainly did not champion, nor bring new meaning to, our sex life. If anything, Nick was looking for a complaints department. It’s like I’d be reading in bed gripped by the wrath of rage that it was conjuring in me and Nick would be all “Mmmm, let’s make out.” And I’d be all, “Mmm, no, wait, don’t touch me. Ana’s inner goddess just pole-vaulted over the fifteen foot bar, I think I’m going to be sick.” So he’d roll over defeated and grumble something like, “What does that even mean? Fucking book.”

I never read Twilight or watched any of the movies. Apparently the author, a big fan of the Twilight series, thought the only thing the main characters were lacking between each other was sex, so she took it upon herself to satisfy her need for dark, Twilight sex between her favouriteist characters and wrote the Fifty Shades trilogy. I honestly bought this book because I was expecting to be seduced by it. I wanted something juicy that was going to make me wanna just a little more than I already wanna. But noooooo. It made me wanna barf up pancakes at every page turn.

First of all, this book is written in such a puerile and shoddy way, it actually alarmed me. No, actually, at first it made me laugh, then as it wore on it actually made me furious. I started to question the motivations of every single, damn person involved in this book. From writer (I use that term very loosely) to publisher to promoter to whoever the braniac is who decided it should be a Hollywood movie. Second of all, I nearly screamed my tonsils back into my throat when I read that her research for this book came from none other than the internet. Or wait, sorry, not only that but she also contacted various “experts” whom she also found on the internet. Wai.. wai.. wait.. what?? The internet? Not from reading Anaïs Nin or Anne Desclos? Maybe Clan of the Cave Bear? Or from watching 9 1/2 Weeks, at least? Not even a nebulous, lust-filled past? A memoir? A roll in the hay with nipple clamps? Not even that? The internet? This bugs me even more because I think, if the stupid internet didn’t exist then Fifty Shades of Grey wouldn’t either.

I know by this point, some of you are not feeling sorry for me and thinking, “Then why the hell did you keep reading it?” Okay, well it’d be like this: Think back to the last time you had a glorious moment of shameless gluttony. Pick your poison-maybe a 43 g bag of sour cream and onion chips? Maybe a tub of ice cream? A huge Toblerone bar? A bag of Oreo cookies? You’ve started eating away and five mouthfulls in you know it’s going to be ugly, you know that damage will be done to your organs if you continue at that pace, and yet, there is no way you’ll be able to stop. So, you go through these transitions:

optimism and hope
apprehension
retreat! retreat!
defeat
unglued
retreat?
…defeat
recoil
weaken
re…
……treee
defeat
resign.

It was similar to that.

Okay, we’ve got 22-year old Anastasia Steele (first of all…). She’s portrayed as a virginous, naïve, doe-eyed, clumsy, stunned, sassy whippersnapper; who is also described as intelligent and academic, otherwise known as a complete mess of an oxymoron.  She’s like Barbie: fun to play with but, turn her into a real-life woman and you’d be terrified.

 

 

At least, I HOPE you’d be terrified.

I guess part of her problem is that she’s almost too cliché. Like, of course she’s a virgin, of course she’s beautiful, of course she’s naïve, of course she wears Converse, of course she wears her hair in pigtails (Christian Grey thinks these are cute? What?!?! Pfft, they’re just pig tails), of course she drives a classic VW Beetle, of course finds herself so unimpressive even though the rest of her social network thinks she’s Eva Peron. Of course she has never owned a laptop or had an email address. Of course this is all meant to be unassuming but reeks to the high heavens of manipulative predictable banalities.  Oh andof course she’s able to abate a devastatingly gorgeous, mysterious, grossly rich, aristocratic, elusive, stoic, troubled, control freak who is, {of course} into kinky, dominating sex. There really is zero depth to her and she’s about as flat as a paper doll. Betsy here is probably more interesting…

McCall’s July, 1905

For most of the book Ana is obtuse, clenching the muscles deep in her belly, biting her lower lip, rolling her eyes, talking/arguing/discussing with her inner goddess and subconscious, flushing, moaning, whispering, orienting her vagina “down there,” watching Christian remove “foil packets” from his jeans pocket/jacket pocket/night table (gag); either fawning over Christian, cowering from him, or dancing around his kitchen listening to her iPod (Oops, he caught me. OMG I’m like, so embarrassed!), orgasaming, and crying.

-snore-

Christian is of course astonishingly rich and gorgeous to the point of it almost being illegal. He wears jogging pants just off his hips and plays piano like a melancholic Rachmaninov. He’s aloof, arrogant, elusive, “fifty shades of fucked up” (yawn), a control freak and a stalker who gets turned on by virgins. He doesn’t make love, he “fucks…. hard.” He’s threatening, impatient, aggressive, jackhammers through Ana’s virginity and pulls out her tampons.

But, “he’s sooooo freaking hot!”
“Wow, just… wow.”

Christian spends a lot of time growling, scolding, lecturing, despondent, moping around, moody, and stroking his index finger against his lower lip.

The writing reads like something I would have put together when I was fourteen and I didn’t yet have the maturity and vocabulary to write a story with metaphors and alliteration. Actually, even at fourteen I might have written better than this. Of alllllll the ways, is this really the way it had to be?

“…and my very small inner goddess sways in a gentle victorious samba.”
What the fuck does a “gentle victorious samba” look like anyway?!!

“My inner goddess has her pom poms in hand – she’s in cheerleading mode.”
I want to punch her inner goddess for this.

“My subconscious is frantically fanning herself, and my inner goddess is swaying and writhing to some primal carnal rhythm.”
Come on.

“Of course. Silly me. Such a sad, exciting score, which no doubt you can play? So many accomplishments, Mr. Grey.”
“And the greatest one is you, Miss Steele.”
Noooooooooooo.

“Laters baby.”
I don’t care how hot he is…

“So you’ve just slept with him, given him your virginity, a man who doesn’t love you. In fact, he has odd ideas about you, wants to make you some sort of kinky sex slave.”
Yep, now just take it one step further and FUCKING RUN, dumb bitch!
(Sorry that might have been out of line).

“I ignore the unwelcome stab of disappointment. Why do I want to spend every single minute with this controlling sex god? Oh yes, I’ve fallen in love with him, and he can fly.”
Wendy, clearly, you’re not listening.

I really could go on, and on, but don’t want to give this book any more of my time and attention. E.L. should be thankful that I devoted 1271 words to writing about her precious book.