For over a decade, fans have loved the Twilight series. Merchandise and spinoffs continue to grow among those who grew up fretting over which heartthrob Bella would choose.
So what has made Twilight so popular? For a story that takes traditional folklore about supernatural characters and puts a whole new spin on it, there is a lot to love about Twilight.
Why is Twilight So Popular?
1. It’s An Easy Read
Twilight’s author, Stephanie Meyer, wrote the series as a young adult/teen fantasy fiction that is easy to read and hard to put down. Each Twilight book is a page-turner.
There are a few cliches and cheesy bits, but sometimes that’s what makes a book more fun. It doesn’t require a high level of reading comprehension and the plot twists and turns at just the right points.
2. The Actors Are Very Watchable
Twilight movies feature a cast full of beautiful people, from every main character to supporting actors.
The cast lineup consisted of some pretty impressive names, including Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Anna Kendrick, and Dakota Fanning.
Even without the carefully placed CGI, each actor has a captivating look that helps build the fantastical appearance of vampires and werewolves.
Combine that with top-to-bottom visual effects and you have multiple films you can’t take your eyes off of.
3. Visual Effects Before Their Time
For a set of films released over a decade ago, each Twilight movie had completely immersive visual effects.
Jacob’s werewolf transformations and the Cullen family’s mystical abilities continue to be impressive special effects even to this day.
Cinematographers also perfectly captured the intimate, gothic feel of Forks, Washington while creating a sense of other worldliness whenever the folk creatures were on screen.
Twilight fans take their commitment to the franchise incredibly seriously. Being Team Edward or Team Jacob is a lifelong commitment that each Twihard is willing to stand by.
Twilight fans seem to span a variety of ages too. There were and are, of course, the teenagers who daydream of flying through trees with Edward Cullen or racing along a river with Jacob.
But there are also the Twi-moms who may not be picturing themselves as the protagonist in this teenage love triangle but appreciate the escape from reality just the same.
5. A New Take On Vampires
Say farewell to the cape-wearing, dark-looming, Eastern European bloodsucker. Stephenie Meyer created a dream-like interpretation of what vampires could be like.
Imagine instead of burning up from the sun, they shimmer and glow. Or that maybe, instead of only existing in old castles far away, they’re right here among us trying to make it through high school.
Meyer even takes it one step further by flipping the idea that vampires just want to kill humans and swapping them for creatures of relative compassion.
6. A Break From Reality
Twilight is definitely a departure from the everyday. Each book in the series couldn’t be farther from reality, and the audience loves it for that.
Layering into a traditional romantic storyline, the idea that the world is filled with vampires and shapeshifters is just the beginning of the fictional escape from the usual 9 to 5.
Twilight is a completely fictionalized world that you can escape to whenever you need to.
Along the way, you keep your attention on a plot full of teenage fantasies about dreamy love interests and undying (not to be confused with undead) devotion.
7. The Theme Of Family
For each of the main characters in Twilight, family is the most important thing to them. To start, Bella has an endearing relationship with her father, only made closer given the absence of her mother.
Edward is loyal to the Cullens, lovingly obliged to stand by them for eternity. Jacob maintains a strong connection to his familial traditions, keeping the ways of his family and community at the forefront.
Then, later in the Twilight saga, Bella and Edward’s daughter, Renesmee, displays a commitment to family and is challenged to protect it when facing the Volturi.
8. A Gateway For The Genre
The concept of the book about crush-worthy vampires may have initially seemed over-the-top. Twilight’s success, though, led to many more fantasy fiction novels of its type coming into the spotlight.
Since Twilight, there has been an explosion of vampire novels for all ages. Meyer also shared her love of The Hunger Games novels, helping send that series into wild popularity.
When one great story leads to more great stories, what’s not to love?
9. Edward Is Everyone’s High School Crush
Let’s have a look at the long list of reasons to wish Edward was obsessively in love with you.
He has the basics covered by being painfully good-looking, and limitlessly rich, and he drives an awesome car.
On top of all that, he is a little bit dangerous and others want to be with him but he is devoted to his one true love.
Despite being the most cliche, Edward says things you would love to hear and he is always there just in time to save the day.
Some may call him a vampire; he sure sounds like Prince Charming to me!
10. Forbidden Love Is Captivating
You might cringe at some of the problematic elements of the lead romance between Edward and Bella. Even with eye-roll-inducing dialogue, it is hard not to be enthralled with forbidden love.
Author Stephenie Meyer kept the theme of a gothic, forbidden romance throughout each of the books. Even when Edward and Bella are finally together, their relationship is threatened.
The audience hangs on while continually rooting for them because Meyer finds a way to make their love actually believable, despite the fantastical world that they find themselves in.
11. Bella Is All Of Us
The protagonist of Twilight, Bella Swan, is the main reason the franchise is as popular as it is. We can all see at least a part of ourselves in her.
Bella is a typical teenager with relatable melancholy and confusion. She is awkward and insecure but also headstrong and curious.
She is introspective while at the same time incredibly feeling for her friends and family. Who can’t relate to that?
Then to have Bella discover and be made a part of some magical world with a love interest beyond her wildest dreams?! Now we all want to see ourselves in that story.
To learn more, you can also read our posts on why Twilight is so bad, why The Godfather is so good, and why movies are so bad now.
Beyond the dark and handsome male leads, and the never-ending cliffhangers, Twilight has a lot to offer fantasy readers.
It has a forbidden love story, a relatable lead, familial ties, and tensions, as well as otherworldly experiences we can only imagine. It’s the story we would all write for our 18-year-old selves.