People are all in the whole Twilight vs. Harry Potter war and for some reason, I decide I must put my two cents in all of this.... Warning: There WILL be spoilers for all books.
Some people are all into "Twilight" all because it has romance. Yes, the whole series is pretty much fluff with action stuck in to some little points but is drowned out by the fluffiness of it all. The books focus on an extrodanarily obsessive girl who feels her life revolves around her boyfriend. And when he dumps her, she becomes a hermit with no life that wants to die. This teaches young girls great lessons I assume?
Now for "Harry Potter":
In this series we don't start out with any real romances, just friendships that build. The two biggest relationships that happen are Harry and Ginny as well as Ron and Hermione. These two couples didn't happen like Edward and Bella where one second they don't know each other and then the next one they're in love. It took six books for Harry to realize and act on the fact that he has feelings for Ginny. For Hermione, she it takes her six books to realize she likes Ron, but they don't really do much about it throughout the whole series (until the Epilougue of course). But both relationships are bulid off of more than just "You're hot" or "You're a mystery" Both of them came from a long time of friendship. For Harry, he spent a great deal of time hanging around Ginny because she's his best friend's little sister; a best friend who he spent most of his time away from Hogwarts with. Hermione and Ron became friends with Harry in their first year. They went through danger side-by-side. It's only natural that they'd fall in love.
Reasons for the romances
In "Twilight" I've found few reasons for why Edward and Bella actually like each other. I know Bella seems drawn to him because he's mysterious and strange. Those two qualities can also be characteristics of a serial killer or psychopath...... Edward seems to like Bella because she smells good and he can't read her mind. There's really no base for why they really love each other. There isn't enough depth into their relationship besides making out and Edward angsting over keeping Bella safe and Bella begging for sex.
I'm just using Harry and Ginny from "Harry Potter" to do this example. Harry actually gives off qualities that he finds attractive in Ginny. True, we don't get enough reasons for why Ginny likes Harry, but then again, it is from Harry's point of view. Anyways, Harry loves Ginny because she's smart, funny, very strong-willed, a good Quiddich player, and that she doesn't cry a lot... The last one always makes me laugh. Harry gets turned off by crying women Then again, I dislike crying women too, so he's normal. There are actual reasons for why Harry likes Ginny, and those reasons are things he finds out about her in the course of their friendship. I'm disappointed I couldn't find out some Ginny examples, but I forget the site where an in-depth study is done of their relationsip... Dang it!!!
We should at least get the main character's idea of why they love the person they do. Bella gives practically none besides the fact that she's shallow and likes mysterious men who do whatever she wants them to.
This'll be fun! When Edward breaks up with Bella, he does because he's dangerous and doesn't want to hurt her. Anybody ealse think that Edward just needs to get over himself? Anyways, when he does this, Bella becomes a catatonic nightmare that is about ready to become emo. Then she goes and makes a new friend but still mopes around being angsty (Seriously, the angst in "New Moon" almost rivals the "Warriors" series with that!) She does dangerous things that could kill her just to hear his voice in her head. So, she's being suicidal just so she can her the voice in her head talk to her. This seems like it'd be reason to be chucked into the loony bin. Anyways, after Edward thinks she's dead, he goes and tries to kill himself. Again with the angst! SO. MUCH. ANGST. So then we go save Edward and things are all well and happy till Edward has a bitch fit about turning his girlfriend into a vampire. Yay.
Now for "Harry Potter"'s defense. So, Harry does break up with Ginny after they begin dating. But his reason is noble. He does it because he knows that Voldemort will try to get Harry to sacrafice himself by attacking (and possibly killing) the people Harry cares most about. So far that's been a pretty successful tactic (after all, Voldemort showing Harry Sirius being tortured made Harry go to the Department of Mysteries didn't it?). Harry knows this and since he cares about Ginny, he decides he can't risk her getting hurt or killed at his expense. After he breaks up with her, Ginny doesn't try to change his mind and beg him not to. She simply says, "This is for some stupid, noble reason, isn't it?" Ron says that Ginny is upset that they broke up, but she doesn't start moping and becoming emo. And in book 7 toward the end, when Hagrid is bringing back Harry's "dead" body, Ginny doesn't immediatly try to kill herself. She does cry out in grief, but she doesn't run straight for Voldemort and tell her to kill her. She's much stronger than Bella....
Bella is easily one of the weakest characters I have ever read about. To make it worse, she's female, once again making it seem like women are the weaker sex. Bella doesn't do anything without Edward or at least thinking about him. She makes in blatantly obvious that she needs him and is weak and pitiful without him. She doesn't seem to be able to have an independent thought or action. Now, there are Alice, Rosalie, and Esme. But Alice and Rosalie don't really have the developed personalities to show how they are away from Jasper or Emmett(I will bring this back up later). As for Esme, she's shown as the caring, motherly type; not a fighter. In "Twilight" women are portrayed as weak to their male 'overlords', which in the real world is far from the truth
Now, we move on to Hermione, the biggest female lead in Harry Potter. She is shown as brilliant and having her wits about her. Ron and Harry often turn to her when they require help and they can't figure it out. On many occasions, it is shown that Hermione is more intelligent than Ron and Harry. It is also shown that whenever Ron and Harry aren't around, Hermione is perfectly capable of doing things herself. Unlike Bella, Hermione has a life outside of the men. Same with Ginny. Ginny doesn't mill around doing whatever her brothers or Harry tell her to. She's fiercly independent and can make her own decisions. I will bring up 2 more female examples as well. Luna Lovegood. Though Luna isn't introduced until the fifth book, she plays an important role. She goes to the Department of Mysteries and fights just as well as the guys do. In the seventh book, she's one of the few who defy the Death Eaters and continue Dumbledore's Army. One more example is Molly Weasley, who is like Esme in the fact that she's the motherly type. However, in the Battle of Hogwarts, when Bellatrix Lestrange fires a killing curse that narrowly misses Ginny, Mrs. Weasley jumps right in and fights Bellatrix herself. Molly even wins the deul against the vicious death eater who killed her own cousin and tortured Neville's parents. Even a motherly figure like Molly Weasley is a strong enough female character to rise up and kill one of the most powerful Death Eaters known.
For "Twilight" the characters seem to never have any growth or change. Bella, Edward, and crew are all the same form chapter one of "Twilight" to the end of "Breaking Dawn" Maybe Rosalie likes Bella more now 'cause she's got a baby. Doesn't change that Rose is selfish. Alice remains her perky self, Emmett stays the muscle man, Jasper as the brooding hottie, Esme the mother, and Bell and the hormonal idiot. Their characters don't change and new traits don't arise after situations happen.
I'm only using one character for this argument in "Harry Potter" even though all of them, no mater how big or small thier role, have developed. I'm using Draco Malfoy. For the first five books, Draco is characterized as being a cocky jerk who only likes to get Harry and his friends in trouble. He's shown to have a very prejudiced attitute towards mudbloods, since he himself is a pureblood. In Half-Blood Prince, though, we are shown that there's more to Draco that just a jackass. The movie spends a good portion showing how Draco doesn't want to fulfill the task Voldemort has given him, but plots to do so anyways out of fear for his own life. In the confrontation where Draco is about to kill Dumbledore, it is very evident that he doesn't want to. He even begins to lower his wand, which would mean death for him instead. Draco's character is very well developed in the sixth part of the series, showing his unhappiness of being chosen to be a Death Eater to his fear about messing up. All of the characters change a bit over time to overcome the evil known as the Dark Lord.
I can't even really find a sufficiant villain in the "Twilight" series besides James and Victoria. The Volturi really don't seem to have the air of 'evil' or anything about them. They're more like cops just trying to enforce the rulse to keep their race safe. If anything, the three brothers are more like comic figures to me rather than villains. And James and Victoria are just like normal vampires that drink human blood. They see Bella, a human, and they want to eat her. Simple as that. And Victoria is motivated by revenge for her mate. Basically, I see the fail-tastic Victoria as being the biggest villain in "Twilight"
Meanwhile, we have a villain introduced straight away for Harry: Lord Voldemort. The biggest thing about Voldemort is that we get to see how he became the twisted man he is when he rises back to power. He's also a very manipulative man who will do anything to get what he wants, which sounds more like a villain than any "Twilight" character. Voldemort also has tons of followers who play roles as villains too. Such characters like: Lucius Malfoy, Bellatrix Lestrange, Narcissa Malfoy, Barty Crouch Jr., Peter Pettigrew, and more. There is a very long list of people in Harry's world that contribute to the world of villainy. Voldemort also kills just because he can. His purpose for hunting down Harry only starts once he fails to kill him.
In "Twilight", no characters anybody cares about die. We think one is going to die at some point or another, but then they end up living. Now, I'm not one for just going in and killing off characters. But character deaths are a good way to tug at readers' emotions and help with the plot. Character deaths should mean something, which always makes the plot much more interesting. If a character had died, it'd make the story take an edge of pain and sadness into it as well as the desire for revenge.
In "Harry Potter" so many characters die that I can't even list them all. Voldemort dies like 5 times and keeps coming back. But the others' deaths have meaning. Cedric's death helped to show that Voldemort was back. Sirius's was to give Harry more reason to be angry with the dark side; it was also to make him a little more isolated. Dumbledore's death had signifigance in it because it was showing that the Dark Forces were beginning to take over and infiltrate Hogwarts. Snape's death (one of the saddest) was to show that he had decieved Voldemort and that he really was good all along. And the deaths of Lupin, Tonks, and Fred were so that the battle against evil could be over. No character really died for no reason.
I actually had to look up themes for Twilight. It's been a long time since I've read the books. Now, the themes in Twilight are things like: Love, fear, good vs. evil, communication, appearances, and sex. While most of these themes are good choices (and ones that have been used by many other books/authors), the way they are presented in "Twilight" is not that great. For instance, "Twilight" teaches us that love can only exist between lovers and that nobody else really matters except for the love of your life. Appearances is another one. It shows us that when somebody is physically attractive, thats all that truly matters and you should disregard everything else about a person. Sex. We all understand that Bella is a teenage girl with raging hormones. But she is quite pushy about having sex with him. She spends a good deal of time trying to get Edward to have sex with her... it gets old quite fast.
As for "Harry Potter," themes such as loyalty, bravery, prejudice, friendship, love, good vs. evil, and of course: death. I know prejudice isn't exactly a good theme, but Rowling makes sure to show her audience this. For example, Hermione is looked down upon by Draco because she is a "mudblood," or witch who comes from two non-magical parents. Wizards and witches with muggle parents are looked down on in society by a good portion of pure-bloods. Draco constantly treats Hermione scornfully, as she does not have magical blood, as he feels he does. However, Ron is also from a pure-blooded wizarding family, and he accepts Hermione for who she is.
In "Twilight," I guess Bella is a heroine. Except she doesn't do much of anything. She just sort of sits there and whines about how it's "all her fault" that everything bad is happening, yet she does absolutely nothing to stop it herself. She's more of the damsil in distress type. It's nice to see that sometimes, but after several instances where that's all she is, it's annoying to read. Edward isn't exactly much of a hero. True, he does rescue Bella from getting hurt/killed. But what else does he really do? He doesn't really care about the newborns in "Eclipse" until he learns they'll come and try to kill Bella. Then he actually starts to give a shit. Nice guy, that Edward. He only really cares when his little girlfriend is in danger. He really isn't hero material.
For "Harry Potter," many of the characters are heroes. Almost everyone fighting for the good guys can be considered a hero/ heroine. As for heroines, Hermione fits this category. She's brave, loyal, determined, intelligent, and independent. She's been known to save herself as well as Ron and Harry on several occassions. And yes, there have been incidents where they've saved her (i.e: In the first book/movie where Harry saves her from being killed by a moutain troll), but she's shown that she can save herself when needed. As for Ron and Harry, the main heroes of the story, they may not be as clever as Hermione but they both manage. They both posess loyalty and bravery, but they also, especially Harry, are shown to be selfless. They, like Hermione, know that their escapades to stop Voldemort could kill them, but they do it anyways to save hundreds of innocent people who Voldemort would/has slaughter(ed). In "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows," Harry gives himself up to Voldemort, where he knows he faces certain death, but he does it so he can stop the deaths of the people around him. If Voldemort kills Harry, he will be at his weakest, and easy for somebody else to kill. In addition, all of the characters fighting for good can be considered a hero. They all fought for what they believed in. They all risked their lives and in some cases, they even gave their lives so that others could live to see another day. If that's not a true hero then I don't know what is. (For a hero other than Harry, Ron, and Hermione, look down at my "love" section. I describe the bravest man in the entire series)
Both "Harry Potter" and "Twilight" are fictional (sorry delusional Twilight fans. Edward and Jacob aren't real), but when it comes to use of creatures, Rowling clearly wins.
For "Twilight," vampires are obviously what the books are all about. Now, that's good and such, but it seems as though Meyer completely butchered the legend of vampires. I grew up believing that they couldn't go out into the sun or they'd burn to death, their shadows moved on their own, garlic was dangerous to them, the slept during the day in coffins, and that they could be killed by a wooden stake. But, that's just me. I grew up with "Dracula" and movies such as that. Props to Meyer for trying to break the whole idea of vampires, but she kind of ran a little too far with it... It seems her vampires are more like beautiful sparkling zombies. As for the werewolves, well, they aren't even werewolves. They're shape-shifters. Werewolves only transform at the full moon, don't care if a person is friend or foe while in that stage, and don't remember anything about being a werewolf. In Twilight it is portrayed as something that isn't bad. It's not a gift, it's a curse.
In "Harry Potter," Rowling also uses werewolves. But her werewolves are true to nature. In "Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban," Professor Remus Lupin is a werewolf, who does transform towards the end. While he is a wolf, Lupin goes after Harry, Ron, and Hermione, who are later protected by Snape. After Lupin swats Snape out of the way, he goes for three of his students, but is stopped by Sirius Black. Lupin gravely wounds Sirius, who happens to be his only remaining best friend from his school days (as James is dead and Peter is a dirty coward who sold out his friends in fear). Lupin is a true werewolf. While on the subject of werewolves, there's also Fenrir Greyback, who in my opinion, is an extremely terrifying character. He is known to attack young children, even when he isn't in his wolf form. He's viscious and very deadly. Just thought I'd bring that up. As well as werewolves, Rowling also used creatures such as centaurs, unicorns, hippogriffs, goblins, dementors, basilisks, thestrals, elves, and more. I forgot acromantulas, which are the huge spiders that Aragog and his children are. Rowling uses many mythological creatures other than werewolves in her stories. She even uses vampires, though they don't play a huge role in Harry Potter.
The idea of death/immortality
"Twilight" has vampires that will live forever unless they are killed by another vampire. The idea of living forever is seen to be wonderful and great to the characters in "Twilight," particulary Bella. She dreams of living forever with Edward and the rest of the Cullens. She'll never age; she'll never die. When talking about immortality, Edward states it gets easy because after a century or so everybody you once knew is dead. He says this as if it's no big deal. Sure, your old friends and family die but you get to live forever! It doesn't exactly seem that great.
"Harry Potter" however, teaches us that death is as natural as birth. Voldemort wants to live forever, while the rest of the characters are perfectly fine with dying when they need to. "Harry Potter" teaches its readers not to fear death, as it is a peacefull thing we must all one day experience. As Sirius says, "[It's] quicker than falling asleep." An example can be found in the story of the Deathly Hallows. The third brother, the one who asks for the invisability cloak, uses this to live a long and happy life. Then, when he has become old, he takes the cloak off and gives it to his son. Death comes for the old man and he happily goes with him, treating him as an old friend. In addition, in the story of the three brothers, the second brother gets the resurection stone. He brings back his lover who had died. However, she hangs herself so she can die again, as she was happier being dead. Unlike "Twilight," "Harry Potter" shows that we're all going to die someday, and should accept it. Nobody can live forever.
The theme of love gets its own category. It's the most important part, in my opinion.
"Twilight" depicts teenage love, but only the love between a boyfriend and a girlfriend. It doesn't really focus on the love one has for their families or for their friends. When Bella is given the option of becoming a vampire and eventually leaving all of the people she loves behind (including her father who pretty much has nobody else in the world), she easily jumps on board of this. Her decision shows just how little she cares about how hurt her father will be when she becomes and vampire and can never see him again. Also, once Bella hooks up with Edward, she's shown to rarely care about her friends afterwards. Especially once he dumps her, she ignores all of her friends, even though they would help her get through the pain (believe me, I know this for a fact that friends are the best medicine for a broken heart). When Edward is involved, Bella rarely spends time with her friends, instead choosing the creepy guy who watches her sleep over them. In "TWilight," love's just shown to happen between a man and a woman who fall in love, which is not true. Love can occur in many forms. Romantic love is not the only type of love that is out there.
As for "Harry Potter," love is shown to occur between romantic interests as well as friends and family. For friends, the love between Harry, Ron, and Hermione (though the Ron and Hermione become a cannon couple) is shown multiple times throughout the series. Ron and Hermione constantly face dangers with Harry because the love him and want to be with him through it all. In addition, Ginny, Neville, and Luna can be added on too. When Harry believed that Sirius was being tortured at the Ministry, he wanted to go alone (perhaps with Ron and Hermione), but Ginny, Neville, and Luna insisted that it didn't matter and they cared about Harry and Sirius just as much as he did. They all don't abandon Harry when the going gets tough, proving that they're true friends who would die for their friends. Now for family: Hermione is shown to love her parents very much, affectionately talking about them when asked at Slughorn's party. In the seventh Harry Potter, Hermione erases their memories of having a daughter so they will be in less danger from Voldemort. It breaks her heart to do it, but she does because she loves them and wants them to be safe. Another example is Molly Weasley. Molly is shown to lover her sons and daughter above anything else. This love also extends to Harry and Hermione, who she treats just as though they're her own children. She often nurtures Harry, even buying him Christmas/birthday presents. Molly Weasly clearly exemplifies love between family. Finally, for family, the biggest example: Lily Potter gave her life to save her son. The whole reason Harry is alive is because of his mother's sacrafice for him. She clearly loved him more than anything else in the world, as did his father, who tried to save his wife and son at the cost of his own life. Finally, there is romantic love. I'm not going to go into all of the love in here as I did above. I'm only really going to cover one love I didn't get a chance to earlier. And that is the love Professor Snape shows. Throughout the books (up until the end of the seventh), Snape is thought to be evil and one of Voldemort's most trusted death eaters. In the seventh book, as he lay dying, he gives Harry some of his memories. When seen, it is shown that he loved Harry's mother, Lily. When Lily and her family are in danger of being killed, Snape pleads with Dumbledore to hide them all, saying he will do anything for Dumbledore in order for Lily to be safe. Because of his promise, Snape becomes a spy for Dumbledore. He pretends to be on the Dark Lord's side, risking his life every day for Dumbledore, just because he wanted the woman he loved to be safe. After Lily was killed, Snape worked as hard as he could to protect Harry from being killed by Voldemort. Later, he talks to Dumbledore about how Lily was killed even though Dumblebore swore to protect her. He goes on to state he wishes he were dead too. (It's a really heartbreaking scene) Dumbledore then tells Snape that Harry lives, and that he has his mother's eyes. Snape agrees to protect Harry, as long as nobody else knows what he's doing. After some time, Snape realizes that Dumbledore is raising Harry so Harry can be killed at the right time. Snape becomes angry, stating Dumbledore is raising him like he's a pig for slaughter. When Dumbledore says Snape can't say he's developed feelings for Harry now, Snape goes on to say that he doesn't care much for the boy, as his is like his father. When Dumbledore is confused about this, Snape casts a patronus charm, revealing his patronus is a a doe, just like Lily Potter's was. Once Dumbledore sees this, he says, "Lily? After all this time?" Snape replies stiffly with, "Always." Throughout the books, Snape loved Lily Potter with all his heart, risking everything so her son would live on until the proper moment. Even Snape's dying words relate to Lily. He says, "You have your mother's eyes." and then later, "Look....at....me." Most likely to look into the eyes the are identical to the woman he loved's eyes. Severus Snape was one of the bravest heroes in "Harry Potter" and he did everything he did out of love. In a final note, Dumbledore states the biggest theme to Harry in the final movie: "Don't pity the dead, Harry. Pity the liviing. And most of all, pity those who live without love."