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Friday, September 30, 2011

Reading Savage's Hide and Drink Through Twilight

There's more here on Hide and Drink.

Edward Cullen Entering the Cafeteria
This is the moment the audience and Bella first see Edward Cullen in Twilight. 

For those who haven't seen the film or read the books,  this is prior to the scene in the biology lab where Edward imagines all the ways he is going to kill Bella and drink her blood. 

All this precedes the opening of Hide and Drink but it is not necessary for reading Hide and Drink, but does add to the horror. Hide and Drink is a fanfic based on Meyer's Twilight.
The resonances with H.P.Lovecraft are inescapable. In Meyer's Twilight Lovecraft is only on the periphery. In Hide and Drink Lovecraft breathes through it. In his book on Lovecraft, Houellebecq has given us a portrait that is loving, respectful and profound. And he has said about Lovecraft, How does he do it! And in fact you cannot know. Lovecraft is all seduction and there is really no way to produce his seductive horror without entering the Order of Seduction and leaving the Order of Production, mimicry,reproduction far behind. I have already said elsewhere that this is what Savage does in Hide and Drink.

Savage has created an Edward from his Double, the monster that emerges and is kept down in the  biology lab scene, but which takes precedence in Hide and Drink. Edward goes to Bella's house, attacks her, drinks from her and instead of draining her and killing her has the idea that if he keeps her he can go on drinking indefinitely until and unless he kills her on purpose or accidentally. So he abducts her and makes her his captive. 

I was taking her blood in gulps. I had to slow down or she would be dead in seconds.And when she dies, this blood will die with her.

There was no other blood like this. Once she was gone, it would no longer be within my grasp. But if I stopped now, she would heal. Her body would make more. The blood would replenish. I could drink again. The promise of more – it was the only incentive that could have caused me to stop.
My tongue slipped over the cut, sealing it. (H&D 1 Bite and Run) And here we have Baudrillard's Impossible Exchange.

He takes her to a remote cabin in Canada. He knows he has to ration her blood, so he decides on every three days. We feel the excessiveness of this and how it weakens her and our anxiety increases with hers. When the three days are up, and she has finished her last meal of the day:

Once she finished her final meal of the day and started to clean up, I decided I had waited long enough.
I inhaled deeply.
There was a difference in the scent from the day before, even if it was slight. It was a little darker, deeper, and more pungent. I watched it flow through the vein in her neck as she reached down into the sudsy water for another supper dish.
I stepped up behind her, my finger drawn there, to that spot just under her ear. I ran my finger along the bluish line and her body stiffened when I touched her.
"Its time," my voice came out in a hoarse whisper. Her breath caught in her throat. (3 Cry and Consume)

And so we enter into a rhythm. The days after he feeds he is more relaxed, he tries to make her comfortable, gets movies for them to watch, is considerate. Gradually his anxiety builds up as his need increases again. But the reader has entered her horror. We know the feeding time is coming again and we, as does Bella, anticipate it in fear. It is the waiting that permeates everything between them and us also. This is the skill Lovecraft has in his stories. Everything is quiet but completely apprehensive, the terror an awful presence. Worse because it is silent and invisible. We wait for Edward's words,

It's time.

Because this is when Death stands there in the room..                                                                                                              
I absolutely could not read this without thinking and feeling the whole time of Jaycee Dugard. Garrido, like Edward, is predictable. They both perseverate, repeat, and the horror of Jaycee feeling the rhythm of his need, knowing the time is approaching again, and being alone in the meantime as Bella is not, is to experience her feelings in an almost intolerable way. Savage has created a fiction that informs us with a knowing. It is worth far more than all the circulating information, fed us by the media, that we know about her captivity.

Edward takes her into the bedroom, restraining her for the drinking and then holds her and soothes her afterwards telling her how sorry he is over and over and over and he knows he will never stop. In Bella's despair she clings to him because there is no one else there for comfort as she sobs.

And it is so very erotic. The reviews often mention that fact and the reviewers feel perverted for feeling that way. So we enter DeSade's world I think. Because it really is incredibly erotic in the way it affects the reader.
For Savage's Hide and Drink Edward

The blood blossom flowers
At the fragile girl's throat
The vampire leans down
Holding her imprisoned supine form
His mouth open
His lips caressing
Silken skin suckling
Plumbing pulsing each precise
Throbbing into him
Drinking and calming his frenzy
Then his venom seals her wound.
Saving her for yet
Another day
Another night
Another time

The novel enters the long slow time of Proust, of primal time, of eating and waiting and sleeping and dreaming and nightmares. The outside world recedes and its demands dissolve. 

Kenzaburo Oe: Every time you stand at a crossroads of life and death, you have two universes in front of you...(A Personal Matter)

Oe on captivity and confinement in Nip the Buds, Shoot the Kids

Nonetheless, for aliens like captured wild beasts to be safe before others watching them, it is best to lead the will-less existence of a stone, flower or tree:a purely observed existence. (22)

A dissertation of Marguerite Duras's work at the University of Helsinki:

Sirkka Knuuttila
Fictionalising Trauma
The Aesthetics of Marguerite Duras’s India Cycle

Monday, September 5, 2011

Kristen Stewart and Michael Angarano and then Rob Pattinson

I am a fan of William Burroughs cut-up technique. This is a variation on it of Kristen Stewart and Michael Angarano. He is bored with her. People that are bored with you are bored with you because they are boring, not because you are boring. I find these pics sad but very instructive. Many young girls are in a relationship with a guy who is bored with them. The girl will dress differently, try to look hot, do different things with her hair, her make-up, work out, try to get Megan Fox's body, do surgery, even acquire degrees and go to graduate school, all in the hopes of interesting him or the new guy, and on and on and on until you get too old to care anymore. One can look at these pics and interpret for pages and pages, and all that does is make you look smart. Interpretation is about Dominance. Who does it better. When you are good at it it is hard to let it go. Foucault takes you through his thinking on it, as does Susan Sontag in Against Interpretation, and by the time the two of them finish with your head, you have to give it up. So while I can think of dozens of reasons why Angarano looks so bored with Kristen Stewart, I'm just going to flip that kind of thinking off. (God I wish that baggage would stay in the trash for good. I'm getting better though.)

Bored Again
During this time Kristen Stewart films Speak where she meets Angarano when she is thirteen and begins to go with him at fourteen. She films Cake Eaters at sixteen and Into the Wild at sixteen. Stewart has said she does films that her heart chooses. In each of these three films she is longing and yearning and interested in sex. (She gets raped in Speak, but she is hot in the beginning of the film.) she is in Adventureland just before Twilight and while not so yearning in it, she  begins to look for intimacy. She is lovely in all of them, but   Cake Eaters is a performance she may equal in her career but she will not surpass it. She is that perfect in it. She is luminous in Into the Wild and tragic. She secures the lead in Twilight. The rest is history.

To the left is one of the Twilight premieres. This is Stewart's big night.

Cake Eaters to the left and below it Speak. On the
bottom right a still from Cake Eaters.
More Alive with Rob


 Rob Pattinson is interested in her. Rob Pattinson is an interesting person. 

Kristen trying to be affectionate and well.....Michael is just bored.

If you have seen Kristen Stewart in Catch That Kid (can't find the pic I want) she climbs a wall. In this film she has beautifully molded shoulders, strong, lovely, straight.

Now look at her shoulders in the pic with M and K playing at musical instruments, and the rest of the pics with Michael. Her shoulders are slumping, her body is slumping. The Inscription of the Body in adolescence is beginning. Her shoulders turn inward, protecting her, just like Bella Swan's do.

You will see that she is thinking of herself as boring. The subject/object dyad cannot be separated. They are not independent. She is being slowly shaped, her body and her mind into thinking of herself as boring.  Just after Twilight she said that acting was the only thing she could do. This is the secret meaning of Country Strong. When Kelly Canter is not on stage performing, she BORES her husband to numbness. When she realizes that she is only a simulacrum, there is no original Kelly anymore because she is in fact boring when she is not performing, there are only flashes of who she once was, she kills herself. A beautiful beautiful way under appreciated film and a performance by Paltrow unequaled by even herself.

Kristen's Stewart's salvation lay in her marvelous films, and the recognition she received by other actors for her excellent performances: Sean Penn; Robert deNiro; Donald Sutherland; William Hurt; Maria Bello; The cast in Objects of Safety; Jody Foster; and so on.