Ellis writes, “”they (autoethnographers) must use personal experience to illustrate facets of cultural experience, and, in so doing, make characteristics of a culture familiar for insiders and outsiders”. Well, growing up, I had always thought that all TV shows and music were completely original in production and was completely ignorant when people told me otherwise. This has to do with the fact that while I was growing up, I just listened and watched whatever my parents were watching. But through BCM and the use of Twitter, I have realized that there is a lot of overlap in Asian television dramas in terms of character tropes. Two Asian television dramas that had many similarities were this week Chinese screening of ‘Guardian’ (2018) and the Korean drama ‘Guardian: The great and lonely God’ (2016).
Just a side note before I get on with my blog post, this will not be going towards my main autoethnography project but the similarities in this week’s screening and the K-drama was just too good of an opportunity to pass off. Also Spoiler Alert for those who haven’t watched either drama……
Before comparing the similar characteristics of both dramas’ main characters, I would like to mention the resemblance in character arcs a set of minor characters. Guo Chang Chang and Yoo Deok Hwa both are humans who know about the supernatural world and work alongside the main characters. These minor characters both have character developments along the way and become a vital member of the team they are in.
The main male characters in both of these dramas have similar characteristics to one another. Shen Wei and Kim Shin are both powerful figures in the Dixing and spiritual world who conceals their identity in the human world. These powerful figures can conjure swords out of thin air and can play with life or death. Most importantly, they both also remember their pasts on meeting the 2nd male lead. On the other hand, Zhao Yun Lan and The Grim Reaper both don’t remember their past lives but connect with the male lead. This ‘Bromance’ formed in both dramas have been present in Korean dramas like;
Do Bong Soon (Anh Min Hyuk & In Guk Doo)
The Heirs (Choi Young Do & Jo Myung Soo)
But recently, I have noticed an increasing number of Chinese dramas being made from gay novels e.g. ‘the untamed’ (2019).
While this has been widely accepted in Western countries, people who live in Korea and China are split on their views on the LGBT community. This partly has to do with the government’s restrictions on television (The guardian’s banning on Chinese broadcast). Anyway, I could go on all day about this topic so here are some videos to look up if you are interested in Asia’s opinions on the LGBT community.