The Significance of 2015.08.17 in a Special Fandom

Due to my recent obsession over Li Yifeng, I started watching The Lost Tomb (盜墓筆記), a mega seasonal web drama series that’s based on a crazy-good novel of the same name written by Xu Lei (other translations of the name, 盜墓筆記, include:  Daomu Biji, Grave Robbers’ Chronicles, and Grave Robbery Note).  Then, because of this drama series, I started reading the novel recently.  And finally, because I read the novel, I’ve come to understand the significance of today, August 17, 2015  — the reunion of the main character, Wu Xie (吳邪), and another character of great significance in the story, Kylin Zhang (張起靈).

The live drama series of the popular novel, The Lost Tomb, starring Li Yifeng, Yang Yang, et al.

The live drama series of the popular novel, The Lost Tomb, starring Li Yifeng (as Wu Xie), Yang Yang (as Kylin Zhang), Liu Tianzuo (as Wang Pangzi/Fatty), Chang Tzuyao (as Wu Sanxing/Third Uncle), Wei Wei (as Panzi), and Tang Yan (as A’ning — this actress here drives me nuts!  She’s in virtually every drama series that I want to watch! @___@)

A brief summary of the novel taken directly from Wikipedia:

50 years ago, a group of Changsha grave robbers dug out manuscripts of the location of treasures from Warring states, but an encounter with an undead rendered almost the whole group dead. In the present, the young grandchild of the sole survivor, Wu Xie, discovers a secret within his grandfather’s notes. Together with his third uncle, Wu Sanxing, and a few other experienced tomb robbers, to search for the treasure. But what no one expected to find the intriguing mysteries that accompanied their tomb robbing adventure – just who was the owner of that tomb? Will they be able to find the real coffin? And just where will these puzzle lead the group?

Embarking on eight-volume’s worth of adventures, as Wu Xie slowly unravels millennium-old mysteries, he sees the deterioration of his naive world as he discovers the people around him are not what they seem and that he could trust no one in this tomb robbing world of deceit and lies.

For those who love adventure, action, sci-fic, history, and bromance (no homo, but apparently this is one of the biggest topics that most female readers rave about — especially about Wu Xie & Kylin Zhang…me included XD), then you simply cannot miss this story.

The story is so popular, that there are manhua (comic) version of the story and fantastic fan arts.

The story is so popular, that there are manhua (comic) version of the story and fantastic fan arts. Kylin Zhang is such a popular character that he tends to stand in the middle of posters. XD That is not to say that Wu Xie is being overshadowed as the main character. No, not at all. In fact, the story would not be the same without either one of these two characters — the chemistry of these two characters is just insane!!

Anyways, so why is August 17, 2015 significant?  Why is the reunion between Wu Xie and Kylin Zhang so important in the readers’ mind?  Well, to put in short, Kylin Zhang has chosen to sacrifice a decade of his life, in Wu Xie’s stead, to protect the secrets behind Qingtong Door (青铜门 – Bronze Door).  The two have made a promise to meet again a decade later, which happens to be August 17, 2015.  The author of the story even wrote, as an afterthought, to a lucky reader the following quote:  “用我一生,换你十年天真无邪” (rough translation:  “Using my whole life in exchange for a decade of your innocence.”).  This quote is said, supposedly, in Kylin Zhang’s perspective and the word innocence is a play on words with Wu Xie’s name (his name sounds similar to the word, “innocent” and also, his character has an unmistakable streak of naiveness).  Since then, fans everywhere (especially female fans) are totally swooned over this Wu Xie/Kylin Zhang ship.

Actual comic book cover.

Insanely wicked artwork by fans!

Days before August 17, 2015 — heck, even years before this date — fans are doing countdowns and anticipating what the author might install for them in the celebration of this reunion between Wu Xie and Kylin Zhang.  Don’t believe me?  Well, listen to these songs yourselves* (originally composed & sang by fans…heck, even one of the original sound tracks for the live drama series is composed by a fan):

Or this.

Apparently, the author, Mr. Xu Lei, is never one to disappoint fans and in the celebration of August 17, 2015, he has uploaded a short epilogue.  Unlike all the extraordinariness that the characters have faced throughout the novels, the reunion is surprisingly simple, which actually brings out the message that ‘ordinary is a kind of happiness’.  In the case of this story, it is a very fitting one indeed.

Hm….seriously, it seems fans should be the ones drawing for the comic instead.

The “Iron Triangle” of the story: Wu Xie, Kylin Zhang, and Wang Pangzi (Fatty).

Finally, the drama is going to be broadcast eventually on Viki TV with English subtitles and for those who understand Chinese, you can just head over to Iqiyi to watch the entire series.

*A special thanks to Yukee over at AFF for introducing me to these awesome songs!  ^^

 

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11 thoughts on “The Significance of 2015.08.17 in a Special Fandom

  1. Have you finished the books? A little synopsis then? Pretty please? The English translations have up to 6 books only 😦 and mind helping me try to make sense of the last episode for the TV version? Thanks a bunch 😀

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    • I’m still reading. ^^” But even if I finished the books, I don’t think I’m the best person to ask for a synopsis (honestly, I’m terrible at writing synopsis @___@). I’m sure there a lot of book fans out there who could help and willing to help (& more qualified than me too). Sorry about that!

      However, I can attempt to help you make sense of the last episode for the TV version since I finished watching that. Since I’m not sure which part confused you, please do not hesitate to let me know if you need more clarification about a specific part of the episode. ^^

      So, for the last episode, Wu Xie made the mistake of sitting in this particular chair (that guarantees winning of bids) at Old Lady Huo’s auction in the restaurant. To teach Wu Xie a lesson & make it difficult for him, Old Lady Huo told him that she would answer any questions about the fish artifact if he managed to sit through the entire auction (which ends at 4:30pm). Soon, Wu Xie realized the mistake because people just keep bidding even though they knew they would lose the bid to him in the end (so basically those people were trolling him by keep increasing the value of the artifact). By sitting in this chair, he was basically asking to get himself bankrupted, pulling himself into unbelievably high debt, and tainting his family’s reputation.

      Wu Xie did kept his promise and managed to sit in the chair until 4:30pm, but had to leave first because of the chaos. Amidst the chaos, Jie Yuchen (young Miss Huo’s fiancé) helped Wu Xie and his friends escaped. Wu Xie thought Jie Yuchen looked familiar, but couldn’t remember where he saw the man’s face. Hope it won’t be too much of a spoiler for you, but Jie Yuchen is supposed to be Wu Xie’s childhood friend. Also, Kylin Zhang who had been observing this whole time secretly helped them escaped as well.

      Once they thought they have successfully escaped, Chen Cheng Cheng (CCC lol) revealed herself to be on the villain’s side. She works for the same boss & organization as A-Ning. She tried to take Wu Xie & High Shao as hostages now that her plan to take the fish artifact (& find out more info about it) foiled. However, Wu Xie managed to escape when Old Lady Huo’s people caught up to them. Miss Huo even gave them a ride to escape from the place (this probably indicate two things: 1) Miss Huo is probably Wu Xie’s childhood friend as well, since they’re all part of the 9 families of great thieves & tomb raiders; 2) Old Lady Huo finally relented and decided to follow through with her end of the promise).

      After that CCC fiasco, High Shao found out about a photo that has a guy that looks suspiciously like Kylin Zhang. They found it strange that Kylin Zhang didn’t seem to age at all despite the photo was taken a long time ago (about 20 years ago…and also Third Uncle is in this photo as well). Third Uncle told Wu Xie that while it’s true that the person in the photo looks like Kylin Zhang, he doesn’t believe that they’re the same person because it is virtually impossible for a person to not age one bit throughout 20 years. Then, Third Uncle revealed that this photo was taken prior to an undersea tomb expedition. A lot of things happened during that expedition and even until this day, Third Uncle couldn’t figure out what went wrong with that expedition.

      Anyways, after looking at the photo again, pondering about the unchanging face of Kylin Zhang, Third Uncle seemed to have figure out something. Soon afterwards, Third Uncle seemed to have disappeared. Wu Xie wasn’t seem sure if Third Uncle simply left or if he was kidnapped. Basically, this open ending will take you directly into season 2, in which they will most likely explore about Kylin Zhang’s background, the undersea tomb expedition, and find out more about the fish artifact. This kind of ending is actually quite common amongst American season TV series (ie. Supernatural, The Vampire Diaries, Gossip Girls, etc.), but it’s probably quite a novel technique amongst Chinese dramas (& Asian dramas in general).

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      • How did you know that Jie Yuchen and Miss Huo are Wu Xie’s childhood friends? They don’t even mention these characters in the book(1-6 English Version).

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      • The above chunks of paragraphs is in regards to the webseries, so please keep in mind that it could differ from the books quite a bit….for example, the character of Chen Cheng Cheng. lmao XD But to answer your question, I remember it’s something I saw on some Chinese websites….could be baidu.

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      • Did you ever finish reading the comic or the actual series? Would you mind explaining a bit of watch happened in the story? I’m desperately waiting but I don’t know how long I will have to wait. I’ve read the translated version, but it only goes up to vol. 6. I just want to know if Kylin is really immortal and does he live that long? I’m currently watching mystic nine, and people are saying that the main character in mystic nine is Kylin’s ancestor. I got confused cause I heard that he (Kylin) is immortal and have been living for hundreds of years… cause if he is… he had to be around during the mystic nine days.

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      • Holy moly! I didn’t even know that the Mystic Nine is already out! O______O Seriously, I got to stop living inside a cave. XD

        No, unfortunately, I dropped the books part-way through because got too busy these days. But it’s such a good story that I’ll definitely pick it back up and read everything again from the start…and hopefully by the time I get to read the story again I can read everything in English (my Chinese reading ability is too slow @_____@).

        But based on the information on baidu (Chinese equivalent of search engine & wikipedia), you are definitely on the right track as Kylin did appear during the Mystic Nine days. The book author, himself, mentioned that Kylin is actually not yet 100 years old. So I guess he could be a kid or teen during the Mystic Nine days. However, based on one book that focused more on Kylin’s background, as the whole gang started to really question where Kylin comes from and why doesn’t he age one bit, it is specifically mentioned that Kylin has crossed path with all three generations of Wu Xie’s family.

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    • Sorry that I respond so late!! >< Anyways, what happened at the ten year reunion is relatively simple. Wu Xie & Wang Pangzi went to where Kylin was and kinda bombed opened the door. There, they waited for Kylin to come out. The first words that Kylin said to Wu Xie were: "You became older." And to which Wu Xie just simply smiled and replied, "Let's go home."

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      • Thanks! Awww that’s so sweet! I hope they live happily ever after, occasionally going on an adventure or two, the three of them together.

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      • Haha I tried listening to the audiobooks, but I couldn’t stand them. One dude who’s voice I liked for Wu Xie only did the first volume. The guy who did all the books and the epilogue made Wu Xie sound like some grungy old man.

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      • Phew…good, that you checked back. I was wondering if you ever got your answer about the epilogue. ^^”

        Whoa, good thing I didn’t listen to the audiobooks. It would have probably killed my impression of Wu Xie by the sound of it. @______@

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