Sunday, March 17, 2013

50 Shades of Crap

My Rating: Well, because I hated 50 Shades so damn much, I am not going to give it a rating from My Rating System, instead, I'll just refer you to this awesome link with Simon Cowell's insults (just change all singing words with writing words and... well, you get the point.)
All points marked with a * will be elaborated on, in a later post.

Now, before the article I just want to say a few things:

       I. This will be full with SPOILERS, so you know – if you want to read it and you actually care to find out what happens on your own, maybe you shouldn't read on.

      II. Yes, 50 Shades of Grey is just a work of fiction, but art these days tends to shape our culture.

      III. It’s not a love-story masterpiece, it's porn on paper. Just accept this and move on.

     IV. People shouldn't tell me that I don't like it, because " I don’t get it”. That implies that I am stupid. While, there truly is art that I don’t “get”, 50 Shades isn’t it. I don't like it, because:

            1.It’s a work of fiction and yet it's viewed and advertised it as a manual.
            2. The relationship between Christian and Ana is abusive.  p. 218, 50 Shades Freed – proof.*
            3. The book, the author and the readers confuse BDSM with abuse.*
            4. It promotes the idea that “love cures” and I mean that literally.  According to this book, if Ana loves Christian hard enough, she will cure his emotional and psychological trauma (see 2) and as many abusive relationships in the history of the world have proven – this doesn’t work. Speaking of which:
             5. What is Christian paying Dr. Flynn for? I could’ve done a better job, and I am not even out of high school, yet.*
             6. The writing is incredibly bad. It’s filled with purple prose, needless descriptions, little to no fundamental descriptions, clichés, little to no research on what matters.*
             7. Ana is a Mary Sue.*
             8. Ana is both a horrible character and human being. She is whiny, spineless, mysogenic, selfish (almost as much as Christian) and at times – downright stupid. She has a ton of self-esteem issues, a possible eating disorder and on top of all that - slightly more personality than a doormat.
             9. Christian is a huge douche bag. Book 3, p.218+ Just an example
            10. The relationship between Ana and Kate is one-sided.*
            11. There is NO plot and when there is, the characters actively refuse to take any part in it. Everything revolves around the sex-scenes which don’t bring anything to the story. There’s little to no real conflict – it’s mostly just angst and melodrama. When there’s conflict, it is downplayed and can be resolved with one 911 call, which no one makes because fuck logic!
            12. The dialogue. Oh, dear God the dialogue! It’s cheesy, unrealistic and uses too many words to communicate too little things.

            13. Stupid, foggy euphemisms. The words “vagina” and “penis” are used a total times of 0 in the first book, and instead replaced with “down there” and “his considerable length”. WTF?
             14.  These two characters don’t love each other and quite frankly, I am not sure they even like each other.*
              15. You can feel the author pulling the strings.* Yes, it’s a book. A lot of luck and a lot of coincidences are bound to happen, but what I mean that the interaction between the characters doesn't seem natural at all. They all seem like a bunch of puppets controlled by a puppeteer.
              16. It’s started as a fan fiction of Twilight. And all she did was
 change the names and remove the vampires. Yes, for real. Here’s proof.
              17. Because of 15 and 16, some things just don’t make sense in the books: Why don’t they just call the police on Leila? Everything would be resolved right away, but you see, if she was a vampire, they can’t call the police for obvious reasons. Except she isn't, so that whole plot makes no sense. Jesus, fucking Christ on a velociraptor.              
              18. No realism. Look, there is fiction and there is fantasy. Yes, fiction is about escapism, but there’s a line and 50 Shades crosses that line, goes all the way to the edge of the eternal abyss, jumps over it, and sprints for about 200 more meters.
               19. Misogyny.*
               20. It's too damn long. So much from these books can be edited out and make one giant book, but at least it would be one. That's because EL has this awful habit to say thing that can be said into a line or two, into paragraphs after paragraphs. And money. Everything has to do with money.

               21. Rich is good, poor is shameful massage. Especially in books 2 and 3.
               22. It promotes the idea that a guy has to be an Alpha male to, best case: get the best girl; worst case: women to like him аt all.
               23. It's not as erotic as people claim. For a book, that is supposedly super-mega-innovative and it will revive/save/better your sex life, the sex reads a lot like a manual. It's also repetitive, pretty vanilla 80% of the time, and quite frankly after a few sex scenes, it gets tedious.

               24. Ignoring the bad. E.L. James refuses to take responsibility for her books and admit her mistakes just like another author that became popular with a series that is practically poop on paper. Her names starts with "S" and ends with "tephanie Meyer".
                25. Fan-fiction fan-base - fan-fiction defenses.* Because it started out as a fan-fiction (See #16), it gets the fan-fiction defenses. The fan fiction defenses are stupid, people. They are damn stupid.*
                 26. Annoying. These books contain the biggest collection of annoying phrases and expressions I have ever read. I know, that's subjective but still.*
                  27. Clumsy attempts at creating a sense of intense and memorable romance. Reminding us of things that happened days, or better yet – mere hours ago as means to tell us "look they are so connected!", doesn’t work. Stop freaking doing it!
                   28. 50 Shades Freed. God, that was unnecessary!
                   29. No obstacles. There are no antagonists,  that create even some kind of real suspense. 

                             - Jack Hyde – too clichéd, not to mention silly, annoying and over the top.
                             - Leila – god, that was a disappointing payoff!
                             - Elena – could be, but the conflict isn’t explored nearly well enough.
                   30. Inconsistently written secondary characters. Case in point: Kate; Ana’s subconscious (yes, this is a character. I shit you, not.)
                    31. Ana’s inner goddess. I hate that fucking bitch. I want to beat her to death with a better book than this one.
                    32. Choosing non-conflict over conflict. There are little to no interesting issues or subplots and when there is a spark of some, the author chooses to drop them in a favor if something mundane and boring, that we are supposed to care about.*
                     33. No character development. None. Whatsoever. It’s even worse than Twilight.

                     34.  Rape. 50 Shades of Grey, chapter 20 in the boathouse. 50 Shades Darker - after the Leila "conflict" (see 32) is resolved.
                     35. Hairism. That's a made-up word, that means: 'racism based on hair-color'. All blondes (in these books) are evil or bitchy 
                     36. WTF moment #1. Ana is a 2011 college graduate who’s never had a laptop, a tablet or a smart phone. Riiiiiiiiight!

                     37. Unrealistically fast pacing. He proposes to her after a month of relationship (five days of which they had been broken up) and they get married after two. Two months! I can’t even...
                     38. Sharing a toothbrush and thinking it’s sexy. Ok, I know I have a mild case of OCD, but I mean a freakin’ toothbrush? I don’t care how many bodily fluids and other things you exchange, your toothbrush should not be for sharing.
                     39. Ana's immature obsession. Ana is way too obsessed with her own sex life and just assumes that other people are too.
                     40. Characterization 101: One character telling the readers what they need to know about another character isn’t the same as characterization, E.L.
                     41. WTF moment #2: Ana goes from personal assistant to an editor in a goddamn week, and that is meant to be taken seriously and
 positively. I mean, come on, she wasn't even a very good assistant! I honestly didn't know whether to laugh or to cry. 
                     42. Clumsy attempts at Damsel in Distress trope. Using this trope as a whole, is fine and all, I do it too, even though it's anti-feminist – except in Christian’s case this looks pretty damn creepy. Case in point: chapter 3, book 1. Just... just that.
                     43. Christian is trying to buy Ana. I don’t think that she’s selling her virginity for gifts, because she was bound on boning him way before that, plus she doesn’t want most of them anyway, but he is definitely trying to buy her.
                     44. The premise is bullshit. Kate must be the world’s worst newspaper editor-in-charge. I mean, honestly.*
                     45. This is not how business works! Christian is shown to be this unbelievably rich & successful CEO of a huge company (that he build on his own in less than 10 years), but what we have been shown is that he never works, makes business decisions based on who he’s doing right now or who he wants to do in the future. Well, that’s a great business strategy! I am sure this cannot backfire in any way!
                     46. Ana is the emotional age of 11.*
                     47. These two communicate like teenagers. Stop playing songs to each other, you are not in goddamn Glee. Instead, try to start talking about your issues like the adults you are supposed to be.
                     48. Child-rape. Elena Robinson – around 27 at the time, starts a sexual BDSM relationship with then – 15-year-old Christian and it’s downplayed in an awful manner. 
                     49. WTF moment 3: They are shaving each other. I can't even...

                     50. It’s boring. The books tell us everything that happens and I literally mean everything. We get to hear about Ana brushing her teeth, changing her clothes, showering... For god’s sake, just stick to the important ideas! These books would be at least 200 pages shorter. To quote from a favorite blogger of mine Chris Murray “While Stephanie Meyer writes about interesting shit in a boring way, EL James writes about boring shit in a boring way".

                     Credit to: Jen Reads 50 Shades of Grey – read her blog, its awesome; Chris Murray and other sources I can’t think of right now.  :D

Elaborating on this post: 50 Shades of Crap + Details.


  1. Hahaha you're so right! I started it twice and couldn't go on, because there was nothing happening .

  2. In answer to number 28 - money. It exists for more money. Even if James couldn't see it blowing up the way it did, a three-book deal is worth more than a stand-alone or a three book deal.

    I even think money outranks her, or others, attachments to the characters (people have those?)

  3. Sorry, I said three books again instead of two. That makes no sense otherwise.