that scene when liu qingge finally recovers shen qingqiu’s body after five years… yeah
that scene when liu qingge finally recovers shen qingqiu’s body after five years… yeah
It’s funny how MXTX somehow managed to avoid both the ‘bury your gays’ trope and death becoming cheap and meaningless and transparently reversible* DESPITE all three main pairings having a character who died at least once.
*see the MCU, all that I gathered about SPN and uhh apparenly Star Wars, lately
All this SPN drama is making me think of Scumbag System/Scum Villain’s Self-Saving System.
For those who don’t know, SVSSS is the first novel of the same lady who wrote MDZS, the novel with served as the basis for The Untamed, which some of ya might recognize as ‘the really gay Chinese drama on Netflix’. If you like Supernatural I’d recommend The Untamed right now, in fact, it’s got monsters and plot and complicated family politics and the novel it’s based on is canonically gay (the show just doesn’t include sex/kissing due to censorship laws but otherwise sets up the main couple more or less the same way, no passing off onto het ships or no homo-ing at all). It’s a little tricky to get into at first but just keep with and it will really pay off.
Mo Xiang Tong Xiu wrote SVSSS while she was in highschool, so as a novel it has… well, content one would easily deem ‘problematic’. Mostly consent issues, romanticizing some notably bad behaviors, and… hmm, I don’t know sum it up in a list of warnings so I’ll just explain: the main love interest is a teenager when the story starts, and the lead character is essentially a ghost who has taken over the body of an immortal wizard teacher, but isn’t actually the immortal wizard teacher. The pair hooks up eventually, but not until like ten years have passed and the Immortal Wizard Teacher guy has been dead for like five of them, so the age/experience gap gets bridged before the romance starts but it’s still weird enough to be worth warning for. It was written by a teenager and it shows in several places.
There was recently a donghua (Chinese animated show) made based on this novel. (There was also a manhua/comic, but it got canceled). You can watch the show on WeTV’s website or app. The animation quality is what I’d probably call ‘old playstation game cinematic’ levels of quality, like a lot of background characters are literally the same model copy and pasted and it’s pretty stilted in some places, but they had like… a shoestring budget, so…
…I’m not doing a good job of selling this.
Scumbag System/SVSSS is about a repressed Chinese novel reader who has been stuck in a love-hate relationship with a long-running series. At the beginning of the story, said series has just gotten its terrible, unsatisfying and poorly written ending. Our guy (Shen Yuan) gets so upset that he accidentally chokes on his food and dies. Because he dies cursing out this long ass serial novel he obsessively read (despite hating most of it - he was too attached to the main character to give it up and he’s also a sucker for monster stories), he is swept off to the world of the novel. He wakes up in the body of the story’s first bad guy, the titular scumbag/scum villain, who ended up being dismembered (or ‘stuck in a pickle jar’ for the more PG version) by the protagonist in the novel. The scumbag villain was the protagonist’s abusive mentor. In order to avoid this bleak fate, Shen Yuan tries to change the protagonist’s situation and actually look out for him, though he has to contend with things like universe restrictions that prevent him from behaving too wildly out of character (at first), the past miseries of the protagonist’s standard ‘tragic upbringing + dead mom’ backstory rearing up quite a bit, and the fact that he can’t alter certain story events without immediately getting booted back to his original body. Which is dead.
The story is basically about defying narrative destiny on multiple levels - the narrative destiny of a villain’s death, the narrative destiny of Luo Binghe (the novel’s protagonist) becoming a spite-driven sexist power fantasy, even the narrative destiny of the world itself. All while Shen Yuan figures out that he’s not as straight as he thought (and that the novel’s protagonist isn’t either).
And all that is why I am currently recommending it to infuriated SPN fans.
The story can be a little tricky of follow since it’s very reliant on tropes from Chinese novels, but if you’ve seen The Untamed you can probably identify most of the story elements involved, and the fandom (and general MDZS fandom, in fact) has lots of people who are often happy to explain confusing things. Myself included.
Anyways, the good news is that SVSSS canonically does what the final season of Supernatural was seeming to do, and the better news is that there is plenty of fanfiction and fanart and quite a lot of it is good shit. There’s a large fandom presence on twitter too.
I’m not going to lie and say ‘oh it’s the perfect fix, it’s got no problems!’, but if someone is searching for something that hits certain buttons in the wake of the towering disappointment of SPN’s finale, or a change of pace that deals in some similar themes, it might do the job. (And if anyone needs more specific content warnings or links, hit me up, though I can only say for sure 100% what’s in the novel since the show isn’t finished yet - the novel will almost certainly require more content warnings though, since it’s explicit, and the show is bound not to be).
Because of [convinient plot device] SQQ and/or SQH are cursed to say every thought that passes thought their minds. Cue everyone just losing their shit over how much of a mess they are.
Concept I love to see in fic: Shen Qingqiu + truth serum of some kind (especially willingly!).
I love seeing him bluntly telling LBH about how gorgeous he thinks he is, and how if LBH wasn’t so well endowed, or more patient, they’d probably sleep together more often (and they have a very healthy sex life as it is!), and answering questions about how he feels for others (”Yue Qingyuan? He’s a very devoted big brother type” “Liu Shidi? Very handsome but his temper is unreal!”) and possibly an identity/system reveal? *chef’s kiss*
BONUS: The two of them sleep together while SQQ is still under the influence of the serum and his honest self talks constantly about how much he loves his husband and how he’s feeling (including actually telling him if it hurts so they can fix the problem! No shame in stopping for a second to add more lube if needed!)
BONUS BONUS: SQQ reveals a kink or two while under the influence and LBH is nothing if happy to oblige! 👀
Based off a scene in chapter 30 of Just One Yesterday
Thinking about this again, but: Is there already a community/tumblr page/twitter page/discord server/whatever of Chinese cultural consultation for fic writers? Similar to Brit-pickers of ye olde, or Writing with Color here on tumblr?
If not, are there other Chinese ppl who would be interested in being a mod on such a tumblr page/twitter ask (probably via cc or some such)/or sth? I’d prefer a range, including diaspora in various parts of the world, Asia-based Chinese ppl (I’d prefer not just Western diaspora Chinese ppl), mainland-based if we can get them I know tumb & twt are banned…, recent immigrants, etc. The goal would be to act as an “ask blog” of sorts for specific questions similar to how Writing with Color does, as well as hopefully provide a pool of ppl who would be willing to act as cultural consults/Chinese-pickers/sensitivity readers for ppl to work in a more close/intimate way the way a beta reader would.
Bu yeah, if this doesn’t already exist, it’s an idea I do kind of want to get off the ground, because I do have ppl still asking me about it and it’s something I WOULD like to exist bc I feel like it could be a good resource for ppl or a good hub for cultural appreciation & learning, but it’s something which I don’t think I’d be able to do alone, nor would I feel comfortable doing alone since culture is so complex/in no way a monolith, and different perspectives are so important to providing nuance as well as verisimilitude, etc etc.
I don’t know what to do with this information
Just some lil portraits of these idiots
some SVSSS crossover with The legend of Luo Xiaohei. SY meets a cute beast he’s sure Airplane-bro stole from a cute series.
Me, plotting out an SVSSS fic that (based on available evidence) exactly 3 people would read: WHY AM I LIKE THIS?
(It’s a rarepair…rare foursome…there’s one fic for it on AO3…it was a gift to me in the recent poly exchange…)
im very self-indulgently imagining liu qingge developing like a mild enmity/rivalry with somebody, and luo binghe pitching a massive fit about it because he did NOT spend five years fighting that asshole over his shizun’s dead body only for liu qingge to just. go become nemeses with SOMEONE ELSE??? how could he just abandon me like that i thought we had something.
eventually shen qingqiu notices binghe’s sulking and, in a startling and uncharacteristic display of emotional intelligence, actually asks him about it. and binghe is like well obviously i have nothing but contempt for liu qingge, he means nothing to me and i do not care what he does so there’s no reason for me to be upset about him brawling with some nobody. but even if it’s irrational, because it’s not like they were actually close or anything, he’s still just a little bit hurt and he doesn’t know why!
as usual im projecting but i do not think we focus enough on how luo binghe is batshit fucking crazy and wouldn’t know how to act normal towards other people if his life depended on it. once he gets in a moderately stable and positive relationship and also destroys the demon sword which has been gently scrambling his dick and brain he’s a lil bit better but god that man needs professional help. get well soon king xx
in aus where SJ is the one transmigrated lbh once again getting lost in abyss only to return as the destined hunk is great but? alternatively lbh staying as a disciple and gaining power? with or without sj’s help? surpassing him in both power and size soon but still remaining his cute faithful disciple proving himself to him so SJ finally caves in? with or without systems help? also excellent
☁︎·̩͙✧ 𝙃𝙪𝙖 𝘾𝙝𝙚𝙣𝙜 𝙛𝙞𝙣𝙖𝙡𝙡𝙮 𝙩𝙪𝙧𝙣𝙚𝙙 𝙝𝙞𝙨 𝙝𝙚𝙖𝙙 𝙨𝙡𝙞𝙜𝙝𝙩𝙡𝙮. “𝙄𝙛 𝙢𝙮 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙡 𝙛𝙖𝙘𝙚 𝙞𝙨 𝙪𝙜𝙡𝙮, 𝙬𝙤𝙪𝙡𝙙 𝙮𝙤𝙪 𝙨𝙩𝙞𝙡𝙡 𝙬𝙖𝙣𝙩 𝙩𝙤 𝙨𝙚𝙚 𝙞𝙩?”
- - - 𝙓𝙞𝙚 𝙇𝙞𝙖𝙣 𝙬𝙖𝙨 𝙩𝙖𝙠𝙚𝙣 𝙖𝙗𝙖𝙘𝙠. “ 𝙄𝙨 𝙞𝙩? 𝘼𝙡𝙩𝙝𝙤𝙪𝙜𝙝 𝙩𝙝𝙚𝙧𝙚'𝙨 𝙣𝙤 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙨𝙤𝙣, 𝙗𝙪𝙩 𝙄 𝙩𝙝𝙞𝙣𝙠 𝙮𝙤𝙪𝙧 𝙧𝙚𝙖𝙡 𝙛𝙖𝙘𝙚 𝙢𝙪𝙨𝙩𝙣'𝙩 𝙗𝙚 𝙩𝙝𝙖𝙩 𝙗𝙖𝙙.”