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I cover two chapters here, and I’ve got a few other things I need to mention. This might run a little long, so hang in there, okay?

First: Robert Pattinson. I’m ambivalent about him as an actor; I’ve seen good things, and also not-so-good things, in his acting. But one thing I love about this guy: in real life he has an amazingly expressive face. And since Edward/Pattinson is clearly the physical inspiration for Christian Grey (don’t argue with me, just check out my post about character déjà vu), when I try to picture Grey, I see Pattinson. And this is probably a horrible disservice to Robert Pattinson, and I’m sorry, but there it is. So I give you, Christian Grey:

"Hello Ana"

“Hello Ana”

Now, if you’ve seen the movie version of New Moon, you know there’s a scene that’s not in the book, in which Edward basically gets his ass handed to him by Felix. I so wish this was in the book, because by default there would be a scene of Christian Grey having his ass handed to him. Can we make that happen? Every time Grey does something horrible, can we have him body-slammed by Daniel Cudmore? Imagining that just made this book so much better…

Eat it, bitch.

Eat it, bitch.

A note about fan-fiction: several people have brought up that of course there will be Twilight-ish elements in Fifty Shades of Grey, because at one point, James was willing to acknowledge that this started as fan-fiction. I know this. But let me present this argument: fan-fiction is not renaming the characters and essentially telling the same story with minor changes and then making shit-tons of money off of it. Fan-fiction is taking existing characters and giving them back stories or new adventures that you think would be cool, acknowledging the original creator, all the while not making a profit from it.

Which leads me to this point: the plagiarism isn’t just in character descriptions or locations. I’m finding whole fucking scenes lifted from Twilight, with the basic elements changed a little to fit Ana and Christian, but otherwise the same damned thing every time. I’ll be sure to point them out, don’t worry.

The “flip:” I’ve discovered pretty quickly that EL James is a fan of the “flip.” Basically, she changes something to its opposite: black to white, male to female, and vise versa. I’m sorry, but using someone else’s idea and inverting parts of it is still plagiarism. (I’ll explain this theory later with Leila/James and Jack Hyde/Victoria.)

Chapter 2

Okay, I’m going to leave out some of the lesser bits of character/scene plagiarism (yes really, I’ve left stuff out) for the sake of time and my sanity, and focus more on the blatant parts that I think we can all agree on.

So in Chapter 2 of 50shades of Theft we learn that Ana works for a hardware store, Clayton’s. And not just “a” hardware store, “it’s the largest independent hardware store in the Portland area,” but in addition to the owners they only have 3 part time employees. I have no clue what’s up with that. Anyways, Ana tells us that even though she works at a hardware store, “ironically, I’m crap at any DIY.” It would only be ironic if we didn’t already know how painfully clumsy she is, but you know, we can’t expect this to make sense.

Okay, you all see that right. This is Bella working at Newton’s, the outdoor supply store, even though, you remember, she’s absolutely crap at anything to do with outdoors stuff.

We also learn from Ana that she’s, “much more of a curl-up-with-a-book-in-a-comfy-chair-by-the-fire kind of girl.” Which makes sense, because she’s the even more naïve version of Bella, who would, “read Wuthering Heights — the novel we were currently studying in English — yet again for the fun of it.”

When Ana goes to sleep:

“I curl up in my white iron bed…” and there’s the flip from Edward’s black wrought iron bed.

And then, “that night I dream of dark places, bleak white cold floors, and gray eyes.” This is one of those things I feel like I shouldn’t even have to say, seeing as how every Twilight book starts with something about Bella’s recurring dreams. And those dreams pretty much become a recurring theme throughout each book. (Jenny, I repeated “recurring” on purpose, so don’t judge.)

Then we learn about Ana’s parents {and these squiggly bracketed words are mine}:

“I call my mom in Georgia {not Florida!} to check on her, but also so she can wish me luck for my final exams. She proceeds to tell me about her latest venture into candle making {which is not the same as Renee’s latest skydiving venture} – my mother is all about new business ventures. Fundamentally she’s bored and wants something to occupy her time, but she has the attention span of a goldfish. {but she’s not silly or flaky like Renee} It’ll be something new next week. She worries me. {but not in the way that Renee causes Bella to worry}

“And I hope that Bob {Phil} – her relatively new but much older {see, not much younger like Phil! making it the exact opposite makes it original!} husband – is keeping an eye on her now that I’m no longer there. He does seem a lot more grounded than Husband Number Three. {The extra two husbands are supposed to throw us off the trail, I guess.}”

And then she talks to her stepdad Ray. Clearly he’s not based on Charlie, because Charlie is Bella’s biodad, and Ana’s biodad died, so she had to make do with her step, Ray.

“…it’s not so much a conversation as a one-sided series of grunts in response to my gentle coaxing. Ray is not a talker. But he’s still alive, he’s still watching soccer on TV, and going bowling and fly-fishing or making furniture when he’s not.”

So we just learned that Ray: is not very verbose, watches sports (SOCCER!) on TV, and has many hobbies, of which only one is fishing. Doesn’t sound familiar at all. But you know what, maybe I’m being unfair this time. My own Dad is not very talkative, watches (American) football and NASCAR, and he likes to fish. So maybe it’s just a generic dad thing.

(Also, do older American men really watch soccer on TV?)

Wait, wait! No. Then there’s this: “we discovered that both Ray and José Senior were in the same army unit together. As a result, our fathers have become firm friends too.” Charlie/Ray and Billy/José Sr. get to be best friends again, after all.

Eventually we get to meet Ana’s bestest bud ever, José.

“I watch José open the bottle of champagne. He’s tall, and in his jeans and t-shirt he’s all shoulders and muscles, tanned skin, dark hair and burning dark eyes. Yes, José’s pretty hot, but I think he’s finally getting the message: we’re just friends.”

Guys, guys… Amongst all that, I’m most upset because she doesn’t use the Oxford comma. If I didn’t know it already, I would have just realized how confused I am going to be for this entire series.

But we see who this is, yes? Yet another character lifted straight from Forks: Jacob Black, ladies and gentlemen. The super hot, super tan, super friend-zoned guy that will always be there for BellaAna even though she shuns him and tap-dances all over his heart. (I know that Bella doesn’t become great friends with Jacob until later, but the timing is inconsequential to the fact that this is Jacob Black if he were Mexican instead of Native American.)

(FYI, Twilight is always past tense and 50shades is always present tense, and I’m aware of that. The point of this is more to show how the lines are basically the same exact thing. But some people have expressed a desire for the game to be more of a challenge, so I’m going to shift the Twilight lines to present tense. Stephenie Meyer, please forgive me.)

Quote 1:
“When he touches me, it stings my hand as if an electrical current is passing through us.”

Quote 2:
“Our fingers brush very briefly, and the current is there again, zapping through me like I’ve touched an exposed wire.”

Chapter 3

*The first line I think is actually Chapter 2, but makes more sense here, so deal with it: “I shuffle from foot to foot, embarrassed. It’s good to see Paul, but he’s always been over-familiar.” For those not in the know, Paul is the younger brother to the hardware store owner.

“Paul is cute in a wholesome all-American boy-next-door kind of way.” Translation: Paul is also friend-zoned.

Introducing Paul

Introducing Paul

[edited to add: if it wasn’t clear, Paul is Mike Newton, from Twilight.]

“I am restless that night, tossing and turning.” Yes BellaAna, we know….

After the photo shoot, at the coffee shop, Christian keeps asking Ana about her thoughts and wants to see her face because she’s a “mystery” to him. Not at all like Edward quizzing Bella during Biology class. Because, you see, Edward can read minds, and he is genuinely perplexed that he can’t read Bella’s. In Christian’s case, it just comes across as creepy.

There’s a little more back-and-forth reminiscent of Edward and Bella in class when they first started talking, and then this happens:

“He tugs the hand that he’s holding so hard that I fall back against him just as a cyclist whips past, narrowly missing me, heading the wrong way up this one-way street.
It all happens so fast – one minute I’m falling, the next I’m in his arms, and he’s holding me tightly against his chest. .I inhale his clean, vital scent.” (I didn’t add that extra period at the beginning of the last sentence, by the way.)

1) Cyclist? Correct me if I’m wrong, but don’t we generally apply the term “cyclist” to a bicycle rider. I mean, I’ve known a few motorcycle enthusiasts, and I would never, ever call them “cyclists.” If she meant “biker” she’s confused the hell out of me, yet again. If she did mean bicyclist, well then I’ve been hit by a cyclist before; it’s not the best feeling in the world when a moving bicycle meets a pedestrian, but it’s also not the end of the world. It usually turns out worse for the cyclist. In that case, this is forced drama, and a failed attempt at that.

2) I guess saving Ana from the ambiguous “cyclist” is the worst that Christian has to worry about, since Tyler already fucking totaled his Sentra when he nearly crushed Bella to death and Edward had to jump in and legitimately save her life.

OMG, are you okay?

OMG, are you okay?

Closing Notes:

If you want to follow the train wreck that is 50shades to its illogical conclusion without melting your eyeballs, follow the blog of @Jenny_Trout.

If you see abuse in 50shades, or want to understand what domestic violence survivors are talking about, @EmmaTofi, @katjevanloon, and @Sageling are putting together a blogring with links to stories, articles, and other posts of interest.

You can also follow @50shadesabuse on twitter.

If you want just a regular, real world example of BDSM (not the misrepresentation of it as seen in 50shades), check out the blog of @itsjustahobby. *Not safe for work*