Rage Against the Machine

50 shades of awful…

**Disclaimer – What follows are my opinions. This does not make them fact, but they are every bit as valid as anyone else’s. If my opinions piss you off, you must ask yourself – are you truly that bent out of shape because of what I believe, OR are you afraid you see some truth in what I say? Just a little something to chew on…**

Fifty Shades of Grey, the latest hot property in the ‘bored housewife/desperate single’ genre of books, is every bit as ridiculous and pointless as its predecessor, the waste of paper known as ‘The Twilight Saga’.  ‘Fifty’, ‘Twilight’, and (to a slightly lesser extent) ‘Hunger Games’ are all banner-carriers for exactly what is wrong with the publishing (and entertainment) industry – specifically in how it depicts/markets to women.

I’ll admit… I have a past… I once enjoyed books like these, too. I would read for the overly-dramatized “love story” – not caring that the characters were pathetic and two-dimensional, the writing was pedestrian and second-rate at best, or that the storyline was contrived, simplistic, and insulting.

But I was TWELVE.

Seriously, the fact that women across the country (world?! I shudder…) are falling head over heels for this “mommy porn” tripe is depressing – and frankly, systematic of what is wrong both with the industry as a whole AND with how women allow themselves to be treated. Or, more eloquently stated… pandered to.

There is nothing wrong with a bit of escapist kinky-sex reading – I especially understand the temptation for women who are otherwise living completely vanilla lives. But for the love of all that’s holy, women… DEMAND BETTER! If you want to read a sex book, then read a GOOD one… there are quite a few which actually have legitimate stories, engaging characters, and are worth spending your time on.

But what you’re telling publishers now is: “Oh don’t worry about us… we’ll just giggle and blush at the sex, and we really don’t need to think about anything else, certainly not standards of good literature… you can completely captivate us with the sparkles and the kisses, the bites and the spankings… that will keep us busy while you do whatever you want!”

Is that how you want to be thought of?  Better yet – is that how you’d want your DAUGHTER to be thought of? Because if you… yes, YOU (!!) don’t stand up and demand more – then by the time our daughters are adults they’ll be relegated to shiny pictures of lustful men who will dominate and control them… and they’ll blindly nod & follow like little docile lambs.

Not me, Jack. I’m gonna fight this every which way I can. I refuse to believe that I am the only woman out there who recognizes this idiocy for what it is. I refuse to believe I’m the only woman who knows, deep down in the core of her being, that if you’re unhappy with your life it is NOT the time to disappear into a fantasy where a man controls you – it is time to RAGE against the machine and refuse to accept the box that anyone wants to shove you into.

I have said before, and will likely say again, that it is my impression that for women over 16, the more they love the Twilight (and now 50 Shades) books is in direct proportion to how unhappy they are with their own lives.  (Are ya pissed yet??  Told you!)

Seriously – if you hate your life, don’t fall into line with the rest of the mindless sheep… do something outrageous. Something that betters you – not tears you down!  Chop off your hair, dye it green, learn how to play the drums, or to ride a motorcycle, study a foreign language, get a tattoo… ANYTHING!!

Don’t get all moony-eyed over the pathetically written drivel of an impossibly gorgeous man who is completely unattainable, except by the oh-so-special messed up girl that suddenly transforms/saves him but only by losing herself under his dominion. Are you freakin’ kidding me????

Fight back. It’s the only way you survive.

I tried to read some of it, just to be fair… went to Amazon & read the first several pages which only confirmed my suspicions that the book(s) is unreadable. And I’m not alone in my opinions. Some of the reviews point out the ‘triple crap’ writing skills of the author. One review after another trashes the writing, the character, the story. And these are well-reasoned, articulate reviews, not the trolls and troublemakers who just like to go around trash-talking. Here’s one brilliant review:

“This has to be the most appallingly atrocious writing I’ve ever seen in a major release. The pseudonymous British author sets the action (such as it is) in Washington State… for no reason than that her knowledge of America apparently consists of what she read in “Twilight”… but the entire first-person narrative is filled with Britishisms. How many American college students do you know who talk about “prams” and “ringing” someone on the phone?

“And oh, the repetition…and the repetition…and the repetition. I’m convinced the author has a computer macro that she hits to insert one of her limited repertoire of facial expressions whenever she needs one. According to my Kindle search function, characters roll their eyes 41 times, Ana bites her lip 35 times, Christian’s lips “quirk up” 16 times, Christian “cocks his head to one side” 17 times, characters “purse” their lips 15 times, and characters raise their eyebrows a whopping 50 times. Add to that 80 references to Ana’s anthropomorphic “subconscious” (which also rolls its eyes and purses its lips, by the way), 58 references to Ana’s “inner goddess,” and 92 repetitions of Ana saying some form of “oh crap” (which, depending on the severity of the circumstances, can be intensified to “holy crap,” “double crap,” or the ultimate “triple crap”). And this is only part one of a trilogy…

“Ana says “Jeez” 81 times and “oh my” 72 times. She “blushes” or “flushes” 125 times, including 13 that are “scarlet,” 6 that are “crimson,” and one that is “stars and stripes red.” (I can’t even imagine.) Ana “peeks up” at Christian 13 times, and there are 9 references to Christian’s “hooded eyes” and 7 to his “long index finger.” Characters “murmur” a whopping 199 times (doesn’t anyone just talk?), “clamber” on/in/out of things 21 times, and “smirk” 34 times. Finally, in a remarkable bit of symmetry, our hero and heroine exchange 124 “grins” and 124 “frowns”… which, by the way, seems an awful lot of frowning for a woman who experiences “intense,” “body-shattering,” “delicious,” “violent,” “all-consuming,” “turbulent,” “agonizing” and “exhausting” orgasms on just about every page.”

I think that really paints a clear picture, don’t you?  It’s not enough that the pathetic woman is subjugated… it has to happen with monumentally poor writing.  And anyone who reads, “loves”, and spreads this mess is only perpetuating the downward spiral!!!  If we don’t demand better, we’ll never get it.

Here’s a GREAT review – funny, insightful & so very on point: 50 Shades Review

And just in case you’re too pissed at this point to actually click over & read the outstanding review, here’s one of my favorite bits…

“And so it’s no surprise that ’50 Shades of Grey’ has become so wildly popular with women of all ages because we’ve been made to feel repressed and believe that porn is just this primitive, icky thing guys watch. If porn is a cave-drawing and ’50 Shades’ is Monet, I think we need to invent fire already so we can burn this thing down. Who do you think has more dignity? A woman in a porn film or Anastasia in ’50 Shades of Grey’? Trick question. The answer is Aunt Jemima. A bottle of vaguely racist maple syrup has more dignity than you if you took more than a second to realize that pornography is more thoughtful and respectful of women than this ‘novel’.”

I now open the floor to your comments… if you wish.

How long will we shackle ourselves?

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11 thoughts on “50 shades of awful…

  1. You make some very excellent points here!
    “If porn is a cave-drawing and ’50 Shades’ is Monet, I think we need to invent fire already so we can burn this thing down.” HAHA HA!

    I don’t think I’m totally on your wave length in terms of all fiction, but certainly with Twilight and Shades of Grey. From the excerpts I’ve read it’s absolutely terrible. The state of the human race is starting to worry me. What irritates me is the only reason they’re probably going crazy over it is because they are ignorant to the fact that better books are out there. It’s like they didn’t realise erotica existed before Shades of Grey.

    I’m curious though, how exactly does the Hunger Games fit in to your argument? Is it the love triangle? Because I thought the series was great, although it did have several flaws in it also.

    • I think you’re right – I think a lot of the ‘hysteria’ is because the “mommy porn” readers don’t realize there’s actually quality literature out there. That’s one of the reasons I wanted to write this – hopefully to shake some people up and make them pay attention.

      As for ‘Hunger Games’, I will admit that I only read the first one, and wouldn’t even see the movie. I did have a problem with the ‘triangle’, I also had a problem with a girl who is supposedly so brave, strong & self-sufficient being so completely cynical & clueless about a guy’s feelings for her. I remember being 16… and I don’t know a single 16-year-old girl who would spend that amount of time, especially in a life & death situation like that, with a guy (especially after it turned physical) and still maintain that sort of cold detachment – it’s just not realistic.

      And since I believe that we as women have strength & power in our emotions, it’s stripping her of that power – making it read as though the only power she has is in the brutal and calculating struggle for her life. Now don’t get me wrong… I’m an ass-kickin’ southern chick who is spot-on with a rifle & has done a stint as a kick-boxer – but that is not the sum total of my power, and I would defy anyone to prove differently.

      Oh yeah – and the writing is affected & uninspired. Just because it’s “technically” a young adult novel is no excuse for sub-par writing.

      I could go on – but I think that just about covers it… did that answer your question?

  2. Holy Mother! Remind me never to write anything “pathetic and two-dimensional, […] pedestrian and second-rate at best, or that the storyline was contrived, simplistic, and insulting!” THIS is a monumental review!! You go, girl!

    • Thank you, my darlin’! 😀 Sometimes I just get pushed to the breaking point & I cannot abide blatant & perpetual idiocy… have to say something, or I’m part of the problem!

      Glad you liked… and I’ve read your writing – you have *nothing* to worry about. You rock.

  3. Remarkable post! I have not read 50 shades, nor do I plan on doing so. Everything I have read has stated that this is horribly written. I simply don’t have the time or money to waste on bad literature. There are far too many good books out there that demand my time! 🙂

    • Thanks! And you are absolutely right… there is no end to the fabulous books out there – to waste time on drivel is just wrong.
      Good luck in your literary journey – and thanks for stopping by & commenting. 😀

  4. I’ve never even heard of this series, though I did read the Twilight crap and hate it… Am I really that alone in finding Anne Rice’s sexually incapable vampires more erotic than that tripe?? I’m so glad no one I know reads that stuff either….

    • You’re not alone! I found Anne Rice’s depictions extremely erotic. (And side note, if you like her vampire stuff you should probably read some of the things she wrote under a different name – very erotic.)

      I personally don’t have any problem with what consenting adults do to/with each other… I don’t have a problem with it being detailed in books… (as a matter of fact, I’ve got quite a few ‘steamy bits’ in one of the books I’ve written!) What I have a problem with is perpetuating the idea that weak-willed pathetic girls can somehow be the “saviors” of so-called ‘fabulous’ men, but only by completely losing themselves and doing whatever it is that makes the man happy. That’s just insulting – and we should demand better.

      Thanks for adding to the discussion!

  5. Coming from someone who lives this alternative lifestyle 24/7 and has a remarkable MASTER, i APPLAUD you for speaking out and sharing your opinion. i have been encouraged by many to read this book but just have not been able to get through it. Unfortunately, it did make me roll my eyes. LOL

    • Thanks so much for your kind words. 😀

      Over the years I’ve known many people who were in the lifestyle, and what I discovered from each and every one of them is that it’s not about putting anyone down or forcing anyone to do something against their will (or agreeing to something *just* so someone will love you!). It’s all about a mutual agreement to give & take control – and there is inherent power in that, on both sides. It’s about domination, not subjugation – and while that may sound like splitting hairs to some, in reality they are very different things.

      Thanks again for dropping by & adding your thoughts – I appreciate it!

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