They are mesmerising, aren’t they? So real, and so flawlessly portrayed as though they’re going to jump out of the book or off your screen, and sweep you off your feet.
From drop-dead gorgeous Abercrombie good looks to personas embodying chivalry, long speeches with words twisted into a shiny silver bow, waiting to be unwrapped into the glitter bomb that is the magic of romances, they manage to hold your heart hostage even though their sugar-coated words and heart-breaking smiles weren’t directed towards you.
Sure, women identify with the female protagonists of the stories, which is primarily why they are able to fall in love with the hero as quick as butter melting in the sun. But let’s pause for a second because we dive headfirst into the idea that we were created to fall in love, but we fell in love with Edward (or Jacob, which team you picked) because of the way he felt about Bella. Now, just take a minute and think about this, if you were Alice, for example, Edward’s words and actions weren’t going to be directed towards you.
Falling in love with the idea of love seems to be a common trend across generations of women, squealing when they see the hero unsheathe his sword, brandishing it into the heart of the dragon that dares keep him away from his one true love. But let’s be real: the hero isn’t slaying the dragon for any one of us. Yet, we find ourselves drawn to the idea of his personality, and soon begin adding his character traits in the list of things we look for in men. With that list of qualities only personified by fictitious characters, how could we possibly hope to find love in real life?
Breaking stereotypes and shattering glass ceilings, women today have begun putting their faith in the idea that they are their own heroes. That being said, even the strongest, most self-sufficient person can go weak in the knees if subjected to the right brand of love. Because independence doesn’t mean not being in a relationship, or being alone, right?
Coming back to the point I’m trying to propagate here; how does a person manage to fall in love with a fictional character and then subscribe to the same kind of behaviour exhibited by the heroine that made the hero fall in love with her in the first place? The whole idea confuses me, quite frankly.
The idea came to me when someone asked me if the main character of my book was real. Now, I wrote the guy with the idea that the world falls in love with him long enough to actually finish reading my book. But no, he’s not real, and even if he was, his love was reserved for the female protagonist, isn’t it? Everything that makes him so lovable and attractive as the hero is his spectrum of affection towards the heroin, right from the ‘us against the world’ to the cutest gestures that make our lady parts cry out in anticipation of such gestures in our own lives.
But that doesn’t necessarily mean that the ‘hero’ is a hero to the rest of the world. His big, romantic gestures are reserved solely for the woman he is in love with, and despite making onlookers swoon, he isn’t going to move mountains for the onlookers now, is he?
All I’m saying is, Romeo or not, this concept of love from rom-coms has seriously got me believing in happy endings, and having been stuck at the climax of my own life for a while now, I am eagerly anticipating the moment I get my fairy-tale romance and my fireworks-inducing kiss, and then ride off into the sunset like nothing ever mattered. But until then, I suppose the idea of Romeo still sends shivers down my spine, so I might as well make do with the fictional dude in my brain until I find a way to generate human tissue and create one of them for myself.