One Hero’s Journey: Demi Gods Semi Devils
Posted on October 16, 2012
It’s mid-October and I’ve yet to write, anything. What a terribly, terribly boring lakorn world.
Thankfully, upon the recommendation of J (Scribblings of a Fangirl), I picked up “Demi Gods Semi Devils” a 2003 Chinese period, sword fighting drama, and much to my surprised, got sucked into another world of adventures and heroes’ journey.
Our first unlikely of heroes, Duan Yu, is mostly made up of daintiness and naiveté, yet has a fierce drive to put anyone else’s livelihood before himself. The only trouble is, he has nary a martial arts skill neither common sense. This strikes me as callous and a recipe for disaster. Who let the baby out of the carriage? But it all soon made sense to me.
You see, Duan Yu is actually the crown prince of a kingdom called Dali and he escaped his comfortable world to discover the outside, pugilistic world. How else must a prospective King, in his own right, gain the knowledge necessary to rule his kingdom? Scripture, poetry and Buddhism laws come natural to Duan Yu, as well as his self-sacrificing trait. We get a glimpse of this upon his adventure, where he meets one horrible encounter after another. I suppose a humbling trait like self-sacrificing shows worthiness in a future ruler, but this also means that he ends up getting skewered and speared on everyone’s behalf. Will he survive long enough to make it to the throne?
Tricky question. Poor kid, he has no idea that leaving his Kingdom will open pandora’s box. The two females he encountered -and set to believe may be a potential bride- end up being his biological half-sisters. Good grief, the story gets even more complicated because his father’s past practically came back to bite him in the ass. Incestuous insanity. It was a scene even I couldn’t turn away- will he do it? Fortunately for my sensibilities, he did not. Whew.
What a mess.
Also along the way, I could not help but wonder whether he will ever pick up any martial arts skills. His father and the royal highness (uncle) are all skilled. The whole pugilistic world is skilled. Can someone unskilled skate by unscathed? (I know, that was a lot of s’s..) The answer is, no. And part of his learning process or character development, is discovering the price of martial arts.
I’m curious to learn how it will all come together, especially when there is a hint of rivals for the throne as well as bits of another leading hero who gets woven quietly into the storyline. His name is Qiao Feng, an infamous chieftain of the Beggar’s Clan, who also achieved one of the highest levels of martial arts, as well as alcohol tolerance. But keeping his newly acquired throne (of the chieftain variety) will not be an easy endeavor, as a particular someone wants to overthrow him. There is also the mystery of his original birth, 30 years prior, where a baby was seen rescued after a massacre attempt. But his story shall be revealed later, as I’ve yet to get to the guts and meats of his character.
There is also a third hero, who has yet to be introduced. What is the connection to the three heroes? How will it all come together? Hurray to a compelling series!