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Twilight Vs. Vlogger Alex Day: No Contest

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[show=alexday size=large]Confession: I make fun of the ever-so-slightly-popular teen vampire book series Twilight a lot, but all of my information is second-hand, because I decided a long time ago to never actually read the books. Alex Day has made me feel pretty good about this decision.

A British musician/vlogger who’s gotten over 12.5 million views on YouTube (s GOOG) since 2006 (Wikitubia credits him with introducing the “vlog tag game”), Day has been very very slowly reading and reviewing the first book in Stephenie Meyer’s magnum opus since October 2009 — chapter by chapter.

Day is incredibly charming (when asked who I was watching today, I miiiiiiiiiight have referred to him as “my new secret online video boyfriend” — sorry, Internet James Franco), and his gleeful dislike of the series is addictive. His criticisms range from the stupidity of heroine Bella Swan, whom he often addresses directly while reading out loud from the book, to the actual quality of the book’s writing, which contains no shortage of poor phrasing, bad grammar and ridiculous asides. There appears to be no shortage of material on the latter score, leading to Alex’s review of chapters 10 and 11 ending bluntly with the dismayed announcement that “she has a degree in English Literature!”

It’s not just Day’s snarky charm and literary insights that makes his videos engaging, however. Each critique is spliced with random moments from his life that, rather from distract from the intended purpose of the video, serve to highlight his wit and engage people who came for Twilight mockery with his other videos, which feature his personal music, his friends and his opinions on other bits of media.

The experience of essentially having the story broken down and analyzed on this level, by someone critical of it, is probably the most palatable way to comprehend this franchise without actually reading it yourself. The one catch is that Day is reading the book incredibly slowly: As of April 6, he has completed chapter 12, which puts him at about the halfway point of the novel. Personally, I hope he starts reading faster — though I’m not remotely curious about what happens next.

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