Sitting here eating some tomato soup flipping through Time, the magazine maybe still celebrating the demise of Newsweek. I see an interview with the Twilight series author Stephanie Meyer. Now, I liked the books, read them (in French which I feel makes it more ok) and enjoyed the movies. Anyway, she has a new book and a new character named Melanie. Time asked her what kind of role model Melanie was to young people. She replied, "I don't really think we should be looking for our role models in fiction."
Now I don't know this new Melanie character, I just question Meyer's call that we ought not look to fictional characters as role models. Didn't we learn from Dorothy that "there's no place like home?" Why are fictional people less likely to be candidates than "real" people? Some French finance minister was just found today to have been hiding millions in Swiss Bank accounts to avoid taxation. I think we ought to grab role models where we can get them. More importantly, fiction is one of the very important mediums through which we can imagine different futures for ourselves.
Sometimes I borrow a little bravery from Lara Croft, why not? Anne, of Anne of Green Gables fame, helped me figure out growing up. I also grab the boy role models. We need to be Ferris Bueller for a day or mess with the rules of time like Marty McFly. I think we're just as likely to find role models in fiction as in the world and I don't want to let more authors off the hook letting them continue to create weak characters that do not evolve. Maybe this is why television tends to bore me. For example, watched "the Good Wife" recently with my family. How did I like it? I said,, "well, it's okay, but I didn't really find myself liking anyone." He responded with something to the effect, "Yeah, they're all rotten." But he likes that. He also liked that about Seinfeld. They were all so shallow and selfish. Some say I just cannot relax, but I like fiction with great acts of bravery, help me see new ways of conceptualizing identity, and living even more extraordinary lives than my own. I like you Meyer, but I'm still committed to finding the heros. If there aren't any, I'll make them up myself.