Why Teens Love Vampires: Popular Themes in Books Teens Read Today [Teen Article]

Rachel is a 16-year-old born and raised in NYC.  She enjoys singing, debating, traveling and writing.  Her favorite subjects are English and Science; she wishes to pursue  a career in either of them in the future.

Why Teens Love Vampires
They’re everywhere! In bookstores, on the bus…EVEN on your own couch!  What are they?  If you ask one of them yourself, they would simply reply “Twilighters”.  For all those parents out there wondering, “Why Twilight?  Why vampires and werewolves and other supernatural beings?”  The word vampire is also being shortened to “vamp” when spoken about with teens, showing how often the word is used (words only begin to shorten if used a lot).  Since most do not understand why this vamp fad is so popular (even among some adults), let’s break it down into 5 reasons why this is:
1.    Teens are curious about the things they don’t understand.
We are attracted to things that aren’t normal for us.  Teens are known to be morbidly curious about things that break our monotonous habits (like the new boy/girl in class).
2.    Forbidden love only makes things more tempting.
Reverse psychology actually works more often than you would think.  More often enough, teens would do things IN SPITE of what the “status quo” is.  That alone is a really strong temptation.  However, bring an undying “Romeo-and-Juliet” love into the picture and teen girls (even the occasional boy) will come flocking.  Teens LOVE to read about how polar characters fall in love despite the fact that the guy vamp is SUPPOSED to want to drink the girl’s blood dry.
3.    Series about the supernatural are not exclusively for girls.
Yes, there are quite the number of guys who like the Twilight series as well.  Though they may not openly say it, these closet readers are what we Twilighters adoringly call “Twi-guys”.  Wanting to find true love is not limited to girls.  The stereotype of girls as the ‘romantic’ ones in this way is not always true.  Guys want to find true love just as much as girls do.
4.    The Fairy Tale Complex.
Ever since we were little, this generation’s teens watched Disney and other fairy tale based cartoons.  Also known as the Disney Complex.  This is the belief that all of us will find our happily ever after quickly and smoothly.  Series like Twilight has the inevitable future of a happy ending, though they show the struggles to get the happy ending, displaying how strong the love between the two main characters really is.  In a way, it intensifies the attraction to the series BECAUSE of the knowing that this will be a fairy tale ending as well as the ability to relate to the main character.  This is a subtle way to make the fairy tale story more real to most readers.
5.    The Manga Effect.
The manga effect was what REALLY caused this fad.  Most teens started to read manga (Japanese comics) a while back.  Many of the manga topics were about love and (of course) vampires.  TV show producers, teen writers, and movie directors saw this and tried to use it to their advantage.  Since teens are the country’s biggest consumers, it would be best to aim products and new shows at those who would watch the most.  In doing so, more and more TV shows started to incorporate the supernatural in them.  Some of them were shut down after lack of story plot/too much similarities to mangas.  However, those that are still on,  I’m quite sure, are here to stay.

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2 Responses to “Why Teens Love Vampires: Popular Themes in Books Teens Read Today [Teen Article]”

  1. Judy Tyree
    October 22, 2009 at 12:00 pm #

    I have a 13 year old who now tells me she doesn’t belive in god, she was cutting herself, has read every twiglight book and since then a book aweek about these vampire stores. I have not stopped because I am so excited about her reading so much. I think that part is great but the vampires and angels of the dark etc., not wure where that is going to take her. Hopefully not these kids that were all black with the heavy black makeup and other nonsence. Not sure what to expect, and very afraid. I want to get her more into God , but she is not interested at all please help.

  2. Vanessa Van Petten
    October 30, 2009 at 2:33 pm #

    I think that her wanting to read is great. I also have read all of the Twilight books and think they are very careful not too encourage dangerous behavior (they do not even have any sex before marriage). I would try to et her some older role models that she can look up to who love reading, but know what is safe.

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