This is a volare special recap series for the official iQiyi web version of Legend of Yun Xi 《芸汐传》. Please note that these will all be image heavy posts that contain spoilers and/or deviations from the original webnovel!
Episode 1: Snubbing Dukes, Snagging Dandies (Preview Clip)
We open upon a grand procession making its way to the Duke of Qin’s estate (秦王府). The vast amount of red and brightly-clothed retainers indicate that it is a wedding party, though noticeably absent of the bridegroom that should be leading the line. The sedan chair carrying the bride stops at the gates, only to be told by the gatekeeper that the party has missed the auspicious hour and should come back tomorrow. Our very unhelpful wedding nanny easily agrees to turn back, only to be stopped by the bride herself. She declares that this wedding was mandated by imperial decree. Who dares to defy the emperor’s orders by rejecting her as bride?
Inside the estate, Grand Concubine Yi—the would-be mother-in-law—looks visibly displeased by the bride’s sheer gall. A quick factoid here: she’s the concubine of the ex-emperor, which makes her an stepmother of sorts to the current reigning monarch. Emperor Tianhui.
Tianning Country’s Grand Concubine Yi: She wants to use His Majesty’s status to suppress this concubine?
The crowds begin to send up a murmur. In a traditional wedding, this would be where the bridegroom kicks the sedan chair door before guiding his bride out of the carriage. With no husband in sight, the bride takes a deep breath to brace herself and gets out of the carriage on her own. Say hello to our protagonist Han Yunxi, who looks ready for a beatdown.
She walks straight through the gates (interesting note here—they actually decorated the estate for a wedding with those festive red drapes!) and greets her mufei—her new mother-in-law. Vexed but helpless, Grand Concubine Yi snaps at the servants to bring the new wangfei into her bridal chambers.
At night, Han Yunxi finds herself nodding off on the bed as she waits for her (still missing!) husband. (Poor girl, I wonder if she had anything to eat.) The audible groans of a man elicit her attention, and Yunxi goes to investigate (but unarmed—ack!). She’s hardly stepped out of the bedroom when a man crashes into her and grabs her in a chokehold. Lovely.
Unexpectedly, the first thing Yunxi says is “It’s you?!” She obviously recognizes the man, but he only threatens to kill her if she says any more. Han Yunxi then notices what looks like a puncture mark on his neck and a stab wound in his stomach, before wondering if the man has followed her all the way to the estate just to murder her. She clearly remembers him from a previous meeting, but he’s either too injured or too disoriented to know her on first sight. Han Yunxi privately rejoices over the fact that 1) the poison scar on her face is now gone and 2) she was wearing a face veil the last time they’d met.
The man seems to have a pretty weak grip due to his awful state of health, because Han Yunxi can talk quite freely despite being stuck in a chokehold. She tells him to watch out because they’re in the Duke of Qin’s estate now. The Duke of Qin is the second most powerful man in the country next to the emperor; moreover, she is his wife, the Qin Wangfei. If he tries to kill her, the Duke of Qin will never let him off. In response, the man collapses over her shoulder. Slightly panicked, Han Yunxi tells him he can’t die here—it’s her wedding day! (Not only does it put a damper on things, it’s totally inauspicious to have dudes dying at your wedding. Trust me.)
The next thing we know, Han Yunxi is poking through a collection of medicine bottles from what looks like her dowry chest while the man lies unconscious next to her. Dang it, those are some gorgeous containers.
And then we get a big, shiny spoiler for anyone who’s never read the novel or watched the promotional materials for the drama, because here comes the giant gold text that proclaims: Tianning’s Duke of Qin, Long Feiye. Looks like only Han Yunxi is out of the loop for this guy.
Ever the astute one, Long Feiye stares at Han Yunxi and manages to rasp out, “We’ve met.” Fade to black as we flash back to one month earlier.
We rejoin Han Yunxi at the foot of some tall stone cliffs past sunset. She’s dressed in black with her face concealed, equipped with rope and crossbow and arrow. (One has to wonder how many times she’s done this before.) After securing a line with her tools, she proceeds to climb up the cliff. Meanwhile, viewers take the easy way up and follow the camera to the clifftop, where more black-robed figures are guarding what looks like some freaky temple/altar thing with a three-eyed, six-armed statue in the center. I have no idea what this is, but all those weapons make me think of ritual sacrifices. =o=
Freaky temple statue. Can you imagine how popular this guy would be at those all-you-can-eat steak buffets, though.
Out of nowhere, grapple hooks descend from the sky and latch onto the temple. (Seriously, where are they launching from? A hot air balloon? Or did Ju Jingyi bring in some airships from one of her previous dramas?) Alarmed, the guards charge forward and get attacked by flying arrows, which conveniently kill them all. In the wake of their corpses arrive Long Feiye (you can tell who he is because he’s the only one with a shiny outfit) and Chu Xifeng (dude next to him) and their own team of black-robed men.
(Note that this is one thing both the drama and novel have in common: all of the dudes doing secret stuff wear black robes and black face veils/masks. Long Feiye’s men have quite fancy masks that cover their entire faces, but you gotta wonder how they breathe with those things on. Much less see properly.)
Everyone rushes onto the temple and start looking for secret door switches before someone conveniently activates it with their foot. Cue hidden staircase and a mad dash to the mystery depths beneath them. Meanwhile, Han Yunxi is still scaling the cliff, and you’ve got to appreciate her stamina and thick skin since she’s gripping that rope with her bare hands. Whistles. All this for the sake of some pretty flowers—cough, excuse me, rare medicinal plants.You also know she’s super cool and dramatic because 1) she’s wearing those flimsy cloth shoes with no grip in the heels at all and 2) the background music is full of choral chanting in a language most definitely not Chinese. Also the camera does this dramatic panning out thing so we can appreciate the scale of tiny HYX vs. massive vertical rock cliff. Nice.
Moving on, it’s a force-feeding scene! Some nasty men are downing a sort of amber-like liquid down the throat of an unfortunate chained boy who looks like he hasn’t had a haircut in months. The liquid turns his eyes red, his hair white, his fingernails black and causes dark veins to pop up all over his body. One of the men remarks on the Poison Sect’s unique methods of creating Poison Gu humans (Gu is a type of highly venomous insect, you’re welcome for the mental imagery now) and how it can even empower such a powerless child. “It really is at they say,” he adds, “Those who own the Poison Gu humans can own the world!”
Their gloating is short-lived, however, when our local duke and company rush in with arrows to kill them all. While Long Feiye’s men search the premises, he approaches the boy and suddenly gets flashbacks of another boy dressed in red and white, being chained and screaming in a similar situation while a man watches on. I can’t tell if he’s the boy in the memory or someone watching from the sidelines, but I guess we’ll find out another time.
Remember this dude, I’m guessing he’ll show up later.
Back in the present, the boy reverts to his normal black-haired self and falls to his knees in pain. He begs Long Feiye to kill him, but he only cuts the boy free from his chains. Meanwhile, his trusty subordinate Chu Xifeng has found what looks like a book on (poisonous?) plants. We also find out that this room used to be under the jurisdiction of the ‘crown prince’ before Long Feiye flashes back to another memory: a man in blue and possibly the same boy in red and white, both chained to tables in another experimental room. Again, I don’t know whether Long Feiye was the boy or if he was witnessing the scene from somewhere else. I’m guessing he might be the boy, though, because Long Feiye says there has to be more than one book after recalling (as the boy) how his captors wrote notes in a different, but similar, manual.
(Was our…Duke of Qin experimented on like the Poison Gu boy in his youth? Hold that thought.)
Long Feiye also makes an offhand comment about Emperor Tianhui, and how the emperor never would have let anyone else get their hands on the books. If that was the case, the crown prince must have hidden away the manual they found here privately without Emperor Tianhui’s knowledge. His subordinate comes back to report that they’ve found no signs of the Poison Sect here, so the group retreats. Long Feiye orders that they bring the boy back with them.
Outside, Han Yunxi is finally level with her flower, but just short of reaching it with her hands. Meanwhile, reinforcements of the dead guards have arrived to surround Long Feiye and his men, who find themselves backed up against the cliff edge. Long Feiye orders Chu Xifeng to take the boy and run first before leading the attack against the reinforcements. For some reason, Chu Xifeng and all the men leave (by jumping off the cliff, no less) first, leaving Long Feiye to fight off the enemies himself. (I know he’s strong, but…is that really alright?!)
Han Yunxi is still trying to grab her flower when Chu Xifeng and company fall past her on the cliff. She quickly retreats to her rope and meets eyes with him as he drifts past her, upside down.
Chu Xifeng: What the heck are you doing here?
Han Yunxi: Um, you’re asking me?!
Slightly weirded out, Han Yunxi decides it’s better to just keep trying for her plant instead. Meanwhile, Long Feiye has bought enough time for his men to escape, so he backflips out of the circle of men surrounding him to flee. Unfortunately, all of his enemies decide at this moment to bomb him with nifty hand grenades, sending him falling backwards over the cliff. At the same time, Han Yunxi finally gets her plant before the aftershock of her explosions send her swinging wildly across the cliff. The force sends her black face veil flying away but—never fear! She’s got a second veil right below it, and it’s artistically embroidered and everything. Unfortunately, her fashion sense doesn’t stop her from losing her grip on her rope and careening backwards into the air.
(I’ll give credit to the choreographer here for making both Long Feiye and Han Yunxi’s cliff falling scenes actually somewhat believable. If you’ve watched Chinese dramas, then you know how lame they can look. If not, check out a compilation of CDrama cliff fall fails here and here. You’ll notice that a lot of the actors start doing backstroke in mid-air instead.)
Anyways, Long Feiye somehow manages to fall even faster (I blame martial arts shenanigans for this) and catches Han Yunxi mid-air before both of them drop to the ground. The next thing we know, it’s daytime and Han Yunxi’s lying on the ground. No sign of Chu Xifeng or the others here—did they seriously just run all the way home? Han Yunxi wakes up to Long Feiye demanding to know who she is at sword point. Instead of telling him, Han Yunxi explains that she was just looking for a plant to cure her poison scar, but could only go hunting at night to avoid being caught.
Long Feiye just sort of nudges her handkerchief-turned-face-veil aside to see her poison scar (cough, it looks like someone drew it on with shiny gel pen I’m sorry cough) and kinda does this half-smirk or whatever at all (I can’t tell).
Side note: anyone else remembered the MC from Rooftop Prince when they saw Han Yunxi’s face veil? No?
Han Yunxi doesn’t wait, but opens her medical pouch and sprays him with powder, before attacking him with a stick on the ground. Not only does she manage to unmask him first, she sends him sprawling on the ground. Turns out that she’s poisoned him with a weakening agent that will wear off in an hour—plenty of time for her to run away and flee. She tells him she did it for self-defense because “Who knows what kind of person you are!” And then to rub salt in the wound, she finds Long Feiye’s stolen manual and steals it for herself as his ‘apology’ because it’s full of rare and undocumented poison plants.
Literally seconds after Han Yunxi leaves, Chu Xifeng arrives and asks if he’s all right. Long Feiye tells him not to worry and to tell General Baili to take care of the Poison Gu boy, before stating that he’ll catch up with him later. Poisoned and staggering on his feet, he leaves to chase after Han Yunxi while Chu Xifeng just…watches? And does as he is told. (Once again I must ask—is this really alright, Duke of Qin?! What are helpers for, if not to help you, ah?)
By the way, Chu Xifeng’s actor recently appeared in Legend of Dugu to play another Trusted Subordinate role.
Happy-go-lucky Han Yunxi is literally strolling through the forest while reading her new book when she comes upon an ominous section of bamboo woods swathed in nasty-looking green fog. Before she can do much, Long Feiye shows up quickly and very much recovered. In desperation, Han Yunxi runs straight into the toxic fog, taking a pill to protect her from its effects. The poison-ignorant Long Feiye has no choice but to stay outside. Han Yunxi promises she’ll keep her mouth shut about everything and that they’ll never meet again, but Long Feiye doesn’t buy it. She’s stolen his Poison Gu manual and seen his true face, so she can’t be allowed to live. Annoyed, Han Yunxi just deserts him and runs deeper into the poisoned woods.
It isn’t long before a certain figure dressed in red confronts her. New novel readers beware, here’s your first big spoiler. The man is none other than Gu Qishao, the master of Pill Fiend Valley, and he’s interested in the pill that Han Yunxi took to resist the poison fog. He quickly divines that she made it herself and she doesn’t deny it. She asks if he’s there to capture her too, and when he asks why she thinks so, she asks if he can help her escape instead. Gu Qishao wants to know why he should risk his life to save her, and Han Yunxi fully launches into flattery, saying that someone so otherworldly and handsome must be a kindhearted man.
Gu Qishao remarks that she’s got quite the sweet tongue before pointing her a way out. Meanwhile, he himself goes back to peek at Long Feiye just as the man leaves, and shows a knowing smile. Long Feiye ends up leaving the area on horseback, defeated.
We next pan over to Gu Qishao’s estate in Pill Fiend Valley, where one of his subordinates, Zhu Ye, is busy harvesting dried rose petals. His other subordinate and guard Bai Su is watering some flowers. Cut to a scene of Han Yunxi walking in fresh air before crossing through a tunnel and stepping on a wire laid across the ground. Rather than a trap, it seems to ring a bell at the estate just as Gu Qishao descends some steps. While Zhu Yu and Bai Su are alarmed by the notice of an intruder, Gu Qishao reassures him that he’s expecting their guest and tells him to go back and mind their tasks. The two girls are surprised since it’s the first time he’s been amused to see a guest, instead of ordering them to kill the intruders outright.
Han Yunxi ends up a cave system (really the secret entrance to Pill Fiend Valley) and takes a break on a rock. Gu Qishao emerges from another door and fools with her by rapping on the rock, causing her to spring up in alarm. But rather than Qishao, she looks around and sees a rabbit lying on the ground instead. The rabbit doesn’t run away because it’s injured, so Han Yunxi decides to treat its wounds. Uh, apparently its ears were injured because that’s where she scatters her powder (the bottle looks suspiciously like the poison she used on Long Feiye, btw) and ties it together with a strip of white cloth. The rabbit scampers off then, but not before Han Yunxi catches in. As if by fate, her second veil falls as well, revealing her face to a spying Gu Qishao. He feels…something, that’s sure, but it’s unclear what.
(Pauses to say a quiet prayer for the LFY x HYX ship, which is currently nonexistent. Heck, LFY seems more interested in the manual and the Poison Gu boy’s welfare right now.)
Han Yunxi then pours out her woes to the rabbit in her lap, including how 1) some dude tried to kill her when she was just picking plants to cure her face, 2) her father dislikes her, 3) her father’s second wife and daughter bullies her, and 4) her mother is dead, though she’s convinced she’s ‘only missing.’ (It’s cuter than it sounds, ahaha.) She ends up naming the rabbit Bai Er (白耳, or “white ears”) for its big, fluffy white ears.
Child Qishao and his mother with the rabbit.
Seeing this, Gu Qishao has a flashback to his childhood of a similar rabbit with bandaged ears. Once again, Gu Qishao’s character was combined with novelverse Jun Yixie, so we see him in a palace in his youth for the flashback. Because the rabbit was treated with a medicine called 白侧耳 Bai Ce Er, child!Gu Qishao decides to name his bunny Bai Er. (Are we seeing a remake of the Martha meme in LOY land?!) Whatever the case, this puts Gu Qishao in a good enough mood to walk out and reveal himself.
“Lass,” he starts, “It looks like you’re a pretty loving person.”
Han Yunxi instinctively covers up her scar before standing up and confronting him. “You’re the master of this place?” she asks.
“How do you know?” Gu Qishao asks back.
“There was so much poison fog, but you were completely unharmed. Moreover, this cave looks completely natural, but the valley here is so deep that no one can enter it easily. I can only believe that you’re the master of this place.”
Gu Qishao chuckles and comments that she’s quite bright, to which Han Yunxi thanks him for helping her out. She asks if the man outside (Long Feiye) has left yet, to which Gu Qishao replies that nope, he’s still there. Han Yunxi respectfully asks Gu Qishao to ‘be a good man ’til the end’ and let her stay awhile longer. Gu Qishao agrees, but only if she tells him why he was chasing her in the first place. Han Yunxi then launches into a dramatic narrative: “On a dark, windy, and moonless night, a hard-working young girl scaled up a cliff to harvest some medicinal plants. But then…”
Meanwhile, Gu Qishao is sifting through his own impressions. To him, Long Feiye was a noble-looking man who wielded a sword of Northern Li Country make. He’s certain that LFY is no ordinary man, but he’s never seen anyone like him in Northern Li. He wonders if LFY is actually from Tianning Country and disguised himself as a Northern Li resident, but he doesn’t have enough spies in Tianning to know for sure.
“Don’t you think he’s strange?” Han Yunxi’s thoughts interrupt him just then. “Please believe me, I’m really telling the truth.”
Gu Qishao states he judges people based on ability, not truth or lies. He comments that Han Yunxi’s poison skills seem legit and asks her to come with him instead.
Scene change back to Tianning Country’s capital city. A messenger runs to the palace and reports to Emperor Tianhui that the Duke of Qin has returned. Annoyed, Emperor Tianhui says he feels unwell and that he’ll meet Long Feiye another day, but to receive the man in a royal carriage. Crown Prince Long Tianmo and a eunuch is waiting at the city gates on horseback when Long Feiye’s palanquin comes in. A closeup reveals that the palanquin is empty, and there is nobody sitting inside. The eunuch announces an imperial decree, causing the entire procession to halt. Everyone is forced to kneel and listen to the eunuch speak.
Let’s play a game called “Guess Who’s In the Palanquin”
After a whole bunch of bombastic praises, the eunuch waits for the Duke of Qin to officially accept the decree. When nothing happens, both the crown prince and the eunuch dismount from their horses to approach the palanquin on foot. Just before they reach it, Chu Xifeng stops to greet them and says that the Duke of Qin has a cold because of complications from an earlier injury, so he can’t be exposed to the wind.
Long Tianmo doesn’t buy it. He says that his imperial uncle (Long Feiye, who is technically Emperor Tianhui’s younger brother in the clan despite being around the same age as Long Tianmo) is known as a God of War and had defeated an army even when outnumbered 10 to 1. How could a mere chill keep him down? Chu Xifeng tries to stop him again, but to no avail. He moves to open the palanquin screen and—nope he doesn’t, because Long Feiye himself opens it from the inside out. Did our male lead just pull a magic trick?
Long Tianmo: Oh my God! (i’msosorryimperialunclepleasedon’tkillmeOKplz)
Long Feiye: Oh my God. (not this crap again Tianmo)
Chu Xifeng: Oh mah Gawd! (squee His Highness is the bestest)
Long Feiye steps out in full armored glory and rebukes Long Tianmo for his words—if it wasn’t for General Baili and Chu Xifeng’s help, he might have long died on the battlefield. The so-called ‘God of War’ is only an exaggeration by Tianning’s populace—is the crown prince ignorant enough to believe such drabble? A cowed Long Tianmo agrees completely with Long Feiye’s words.
As the procession continues its way through the city, we get a glimpse of Han Ruoxue, Han Yunxi’s younger half-sister, as she gushes about her crush, the Duke of Qin, who’s apparently the world’s most eligible bachelor to boot. Her servant wonders if he’s too out of their league, but Han Ruoxue says that’s not necessarily true. Her father is an imperial physician, after all, so a marriage between their clan and his would still be a suitable match. The servant girls wants Han Ruoxue to go home because she’s snuck out of the estate and her father is already angry that the eldest daughter (cough, Han Yunxi cough) didn’t go home last night. Han Ruoxue shrugs it off, saying that she’ll be fine because father dotes on her the most.
Back in Pill Fiend Valley, Gu Qishao is telling Han Yunxi about his wide array of medicinal plants. He proposes a challenge to Han Yunxi: if she can find three plants he names, he’ll not only believe her story but agree to help her with a favor as well. Han Yunxi makes him do a special pinky-promise to seal the deal (Ahh, I love cute moments like this.) She has a time-limit of 4 hours to fulfill his conditions.
It was so cute I had to find the GIF and paste it here. >u<
Interestingly enough, one of the ingredients Gu Qishao tells her to find is the exact same flower she was searching for on the cliff—the one that can help cure her poison scar. If she fails, she’ll have to spend the rest of the days as a servant in Pill Fiend Valley. Han Yunxi tells him not to underestimate her and gets to work, relishing in the fact that she already knows what one of the three plants look like. She reduces the time limit to the time it takes to burn a single stick of incense, earning a smile from Gu Qishao. In the process of plant-hunting, she also observes—accurately—that Gu Qishao is someone who prefers poison plants over medicinal ones like her.
Beautiful but deadly.
After quickly finding another specimen of the flower she was hunting on the cliff, she finds and talks about the second plant, a highly toxic flower which only comes into full bloom after its roots leave the soil to absorb the last bit of water into its system. The second the flower comes into bloom, Gu Qishao rushes in and grabs her by the arm, causing her to drop the plant. Finally, she finds the last plant, Wall-Hitting Ghost, because it looks like a weed and sticks out amongst all the other orderly plants in the field. Despite not knowing how 2 of the 3 plants looked like, she was able to figure them out by their documented properties, earning Gu Qishao’s respect.
Gu Qishao asks her what she wants, and Han Yunxi instantly lays claim to the flower she needs to cure her scar. Gu Qishao agrees, and in turn Han Yunxi tells her to take care of the injured bunny from the cave and they part on good terms. Gu Qishao’s subordinates ask if they need to kill her for knowing the entrance to Pill Fiend Valley, but he simply tells him there’s no need. If the girl wants to come again in the future, they should let her in. Bai Su notes that they’re not supposed to expose their actions while undercover in Tianning, and that getting involved with the girl would only hurt her in the long run, but Gu Qishao simply brushes it off and walks away.
Back at the Han Estate, Han Yunxi’s younger brother lets her in through the door. Unfortunately, she walks right into the path of her father, Imperial Physician Han Congan, who lectures her on her lack of propriety and respect towards her sister. Her father doesn’t believe that Han Yunxi only went to pick medicine, while her stepmother adds fuel to the flames by stating that she should know better and behave herself. Hurt, Han Yunxi demands to know whether anyone would be interested in her as she is now, with the poison scar on her face. In response, her father slaps her for back talking. As punishment, he orders Han Yunxi confined to her rooms to think over her wrongs.
Back in her rooms, Han Yunxi stares at a painting of her mother while her other stepmother (Han Congan’s other concubine) tries to console her. Han Yunxi says that her father has never liked her since she was young, while her stepmother, Lady Xu, resents her mother for stealing the status as proper consort. If it wasn’t for this stepmother and little brother Han Yunyi, she would have left home long ago. The one bright spot left in all of this is the fact that she has the last ingredient she needs for her cure. Her stepmother promises to make her the medicine she needs according to her directions, while her brother vows that it’ll succeed this time for sure.
Night falls. Alone in the estate, Han Congan picks up an ingredient list and marvels at the fact that Han Yunxi’s figured out how to cure the poison he placed (secretly) on her face without any outside help. He thinks of his first wife, Lady Tianxin and Han Yunxi’s mother, before nodding to himself. Then he scatters a bottle of unknown white powder into one of the medicine brews slowly bubbling over the fire…
Prescription formula containing all the ingredients for the antidote to Han Yunxi’s poison scar.
Long Feiye hasn’t kept idle. He’s had Chu Xifeng made investigations and discovered the area behind the poison fog belongs to Pill Fiend Valley, headed by a very mysterious master. Apparently, the valley is also full of poisonous plants, and no one can enter the valley alive without the master’s permission. However, that doesn’t stop large numbers of people from trying to purchase medicine there. Long Feiye and his men rush to the valley entrance under the guise of people who want to purchase medicine, interrupting Gu Qishao from his mofumofu time with Bai Er the rabbit. He only comments that the visitors have come ‘sooner than he expected’ and faces them from beyond a veil of poison green mist.
There, Long Feiye and Chu Xifeng attempt to gain passage into the valley with gold, but Gu Qishao’s having none of it. Chu Xifeng calls him out on that—you’re a business, but you don’t want our cash? What’s up with that? Gu Qishao only says that he’s the one calling the shots here. May I also add that Long Feiye also has an epic eye-roll expression to match:
Long Feiye: I can’t believe this self-entitled prick
Whatever the case, Gu Qishao rejects every offer from Long Feiye’s side and makes to leave. Cue the end of episode 1!
Here’s my space to rant.
First of all—there are two versions of Legend of Yun Xi currently floating around the net. To avoid confusion, I’m posting this recap now, which comes from iQiyi’s official site for the series. The other one is from some company with a YouTube channel and not much else, and follows a different order for the scenes and pacing. After reviewing the two versions, I’ve decided to stick with this one as I prefer how it handled the info dump of the first episode. (The other one sent us into detox system lala-land waaaay too fast and flash-backed to scenes we hadn’t even seen yet, which I disliked.) If you want to read the recap along with the right raws, then just click on the iQiyi link at the top of the page. It’ll be there for every chapter.
In an earlier behind the scenes post of LOY, the production team mentioned that they were going for “古风 Lite” for the series—aka they wanted to keep the ancient aesthetics, but be free enough to take some liberties with historical accuracy. Which makes sense, since the original setting takes place in some unspecified time in ancient China with a completely non-existent set of characters, dynasties, and power factions/sects. I love the fact that the first thing we see upon sliding into the opening song is this overview of Gu Qishao’s gorgeous estate in Pill Fiend Valley (shh, ignore the obvious CGI).
You can see the 古风 in elements of the gates, plants, and architecture, but those triangle thingies in the bottom left and the extra curvy styles of the roof are definitely creative liberties. I also like the typeface and flourishes—it’s elegant, but light and airy as well. I’m giving kudos to Long Feiye’s voice actor too, he has a swoon-worthy voice. Kyaa kyaa~ Now, time for Episode 2! >u<