The Untamed aka Mo Dao Zu Shi (Cdrama, Ongoing 50 Episodes, Viki & Youtube)
An adaptation, much like Guardian, but closer to the source this time around. Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation has captured the hearts of Fujoshi fandom longer than the producers have taken notice. Not to say they didn’t put their best effort into it. In fact, it took the production company over three years to bring the colorful World of Mo Dao Zu Shi to life.
A feat unheard of for these Directors; Steve Cheng(The Legends, Secrets of the Three Kingdoms) and Chan Ka Lam (The Plough Department). But they have to, they had no choice, when the fanbase of Mo Dao Zu Shi is on par with popular novel Guardian. It is essential to keep the essence of the story, while they maneuver the constraints of BL censorship. In the few episodes I have watched so far, they did exactly that. Thus The Untamed is very much like Guardian in their attempt to stay faithful to the original source, but more.
There is no need for words or declarations of love, when one can feel without touch, see without action.
Case in point, their iconic reunion in episode two, for both the anime and the live-action drama. The scene itself is reminiscent of the iconic 16-years-reunion of the pure beauty Xiao Long Nu and masked Guo Er from the Return of the Condor Heroes. With a touch of extra detail -- the captured wrist -- Wei Wuxian holding Lan Wangji back as they gaze into each others’ eyes.
Casting-wise, Xiao Zhan is perfect as Wu Wuxian, the embodiment of the carefree character, but can he pull off Wei Wuxian’s darkness? On the other hand, Wang Yibo looks more like a teenager than a man in his mid thirties, would time and exposure convey the depth of this complicated matured character? It may be too early to tell, but I will give this show a chance. Like Guardian, despite it flaws, it has still managed to capture the hearts of worldwide fans.
Silver Princess (Cdrama, Ongoing 58 Episodes, Youtube)
Starring Sophie Zhang, Aarif Rahman, Rong Qi and Fu Chou, this is a story of an amnesiac Princess who accepted her fate thrust before her so that she could regain her memories. Sent off to a foreign land on a marriage alliance, the old age story which should be routine but was not. The prince, her betrothed, rejected the masked bride who was only there for her country, not him. No, he is not the kind to allow others to decide his destiny.
Humiliated, the Princess remains composed. Thorns are never to be reckoned with. She is not there for him, the foolish Prince. Who thought this should be all about him? No, this story was always about her, and the three men in her life. The one she was engaged to but lost, the husband that was chosen, but she could never love...yet, the story ended with the first love, that could never be, but was. Who did she end up with? You have to watch to know.
There are two arcs to the Princess Silver. Slow at first, but only because they needed to provide character development for the climax. Everyone plays an important role as their relationships are intertwined. Princess Silver is an enjoyable drama with many strong female characters, while the men are devoted to the women they love. There are lessons to be learned. For better or for worse, each character concluded their journey in a satisfactory way.
Dororo (Anime, 2019 remake of the 60's animation, 24 Episodes, Amazon)
In order to prosper in the barren land, the once powerful Lord chose to trade the life of his future child for the prosperity he did not earn. While in Black Butler, the protagonist decides to trade his soul, Dororo took a darker turn. The demons of which Hyakkimaru’s father made a pact with, actually consumed every bit of the child, save his head.
Luckily, the abandoned infant was found by a savior, who raised the child more like little Pinocchio. Not to say the author drew inspiration from the classic story, but Hyakkimaru’s goal is to become a real human again by earning back all that was taken from him. His body, his humanity. Similar to Pinocchio's desire to become a real boy. With each demon he slayed, a stolen part of him is returned. Hyakkimaru the protagonist of the story, is an inspiration to others who are born different, because his desire to live is the strengths the demons craves.
For far too long, I thought Inuyasha was the top demon hunting story without rival, but I was wrong. Dororo anime debuted in the 60's and finally has the remake it deserves. If they hadn’t, we wouldn’t have the chance to watch the magic of this masterpiece come to life for the new generation.