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[Mainland Chinese Drama 2017-2018] Nirvana in Fire: The Wind Blows in Changlin 琅琊榜之凤起长林

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Done with episodes 1-6, so far so good. I am liking what I am seeing so far. Also the approach of story telling isolates itself from its predecessor which is good. While the references of NIF is there, I can say that NIF2 can be a stand alone drama. 

 

Behind the scenes playlist : 

 

DSRBMqSUQAALqcd.jpgDSRBMqVVoAAl1zp.jpg

 

Spoiler

DSRBMqUVwAItLey.jpgDSRBMqVUEAA8fqw.jpg

 

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Had a gander of the first two episodes and really liked what I saw. Stylistically, I love how it's shot but what I'm particularly taken with is the Changlin family dynamic -- the father and the two brothers. (The kid that plays Xiao Jingping does bear some resemblance to the young Tingsheng from NiF 1) There's also the set up for future romance which is suitably lowkey for what seems to be predominantly a military drama. Much as I love its predecessor, this drama looks to be its own beast and demands to be approached that way.

 

I'm watching this on Viki. It's less work for me. :wink:

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Binged watched this yesterday and overnight. Now I'm up to date with the broadcast schedule. Do I need to say it? I love it. It's brilliant. There's something for everyone here. All these smart people in play does the heart good. Making the Changlin army the focal point of the plot was smart and its execution thus far very sound. The question of whether an army can be too powerful that its achievements surpasses its ruler is the nub of all the machinations motivated by fear and revenge.

Wow... I'd never thought I'd be saying this but there are aspects of this show that's making me rethink how I feel about No. 1. There will never be another Langya Bang No.1 but this spin-off is just as great and in some ways I think it surpasses the original because of the deep and abiding familial dynamic that is at the heart of it. The schemes are good, logical and meticulously thought through but it's the relationships within the Changlin family that has stolen my heart.

 

I went into this not expecting this to be as good as its predecessor but so far, I'm very impressed. I highly recommend it.

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@40somethingahjumma I have the same expectations when I started NIF2. However as the story progresses , the show is growing  in me. I love it. I think what NIF1 did not touch, is finally redeemed in NIF2 .

 

These could be spoilers , so I will hide them. The things I like about NIF 2:

Spoiler
  • The infusion of voodoo/black magic. An ancient practice in China that I was amused on how it become an integral part in the story telling. And the High Priest is creepy. :tongue:
  • The brotherhood between Pingzhang and Pingjing. I think this is what the most endearing because we see the early development of the brother's relationship and how it will resolve to become one of Pingjing's reason to become the ultimate heir of Changlin. In NIF1 , we only see bits of Jingyan and Lin Shu's friendship/brotherhood during their younger days. And in this sequel I am anticipating more angst because we witness their relationship before hand.
  • While in NIF1 we can identify who are the villain, in NIF2 we have more complex antagonists along the way which is more interesting to watch. So far we can already detect who will become the foes and friends later on yet it is very character driven on how their story arc will be developed eventually.

 

 

And I read one comment from twitter about Pingzhang

 

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Spoiler

One speculates that he could be Prince Yu's son. k5406.gif

 

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58 minutes ago, LyraYoo said:

@40somethingahjumma I have the same expectations when I started NIF2. However as the story progresses , the show is growing  in me. I love it. I think what NIF1 did not touch, is finally redeemed in NIF2 .

 

 

And I read one comment from twitter about Pingzhang

 

 

 

  Reveal hidden contents

One speculates that he could be Prince Yu's son. k5406.gif

 

Ah... I'm  a bit ahead of you guys...  Regarding Pingzhang... :D

 

Spoiler

He's not Prince Yu's son. Definitely NOT. Unless Xiao Tingsheng is lying. :wink: Anyhow he's probably a bit young to be Prince Yu's son. But he is the son of someone we met briefly in #1. Won't spoil it for you.

 

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22 hours ago, 40somethingahjumma said:

Ah... I'm  a bit ahead of you guys...  Regarding Pingzhang... :D

 

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He's not Prince Yu's son. Definitely NOT. Unless Xiao Tingsheng is lying. :wink: Anyhow he's probably a bit young to be Prince Yu's son. But he is the son of someone we met briefly in #1. Won't spoil it for you.

 

 

Awww thank you ! Haha, the speculations are also what making me enjoy this show. 

 

Some spoilers about the show :tongue:

Spoiler

DSNDV9hVoAAu0ZM.jpg

 

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8 hours ago, LyraYoo said:

 

Awww thank you ! Haha, the speculations are also what making me enjoy this show. 

 

Some spoilers about the show :tongue:

  Reveal hidden contents

DSNDV9hVoAAu0ZM.jpg

 

I don't consider any of that really spoilery :wink: but I will use the proper tags just in case.

Re: Pingjing and where he's headed

Spoiler

 

It's pretty self-evident to me right from the start that this is as much a growing up story for Pingjing as it is a military-political tale. He is undoubtedly talented and very intelligent but he lives under the shadow of his older brother... quite happily I might add. Of course he's quite capable and when push comes to shove, he will pull his weight but when he's around his brilliant brother, he turns into a whiny child. Sadly, he will never come to his own while Pingzhang takes the spotlight. He will always be the Second Young Master. I think he's content to remain in that position and play second fiddle but it would be a waste. Already I see he has the potential to surpass his father and brother because he doesn't think the way others do. We've been given glimpses of his brilliance but they won't be much more than that if he's constantly overlooked in favour of his more responsible older brother.

As for the romance, well... I'm glad to hear they're headed for a happy ending although I never really had doubts in that department. As for thing being bumpy in the middle... well... that's to be expected after all.

I'll be sad to see Pingzhang go. He's such a great character and I have my own suspicions about where that thread leads.

 

 

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I like how characters act in a rational way based on their situations, intelligence and experience, quality writing. Any drama where characters are written that way automatically hooks me

 

 

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Drats! I thought that this was a five-days-a-week drama. I've run out of  episodes to watch now (RAWS included) that the most recent arc is done. What is an ajumma to do? Well, I'm going to have rewatch every aired episodes during the weekend. A tough job... but hey, it's gotta be done. :wink:

 

One of the themes coming out of this that I'm especially interested in is the issue of balance of power. It's true that a country is most often only as good as its leaders. There's no guarantee that the next generation will be anywhere as good as the previous one but should lives be sacrificed in the interim for the sake of maintaining dynastic longevity? The question for me is whether dynastic survival is always a good thing if the leadership goes from bad to worse or if the foundations have been thoroughly undermined.

The relationship between the emperor and the Changlin household is good at present. Both parties defer to one another respectfully. It's an ideal situation. The politicians are leery of Changlin's dominance in politics and what that means for the future. It's understandable that the old fogeys are concerned that a young crown prince who takes the throne won't have enough personal authority to exert himself over the country's most powerful army. They don't object to Changlin defending their borders but it feels to me as if it's not entirely about them being patriotic or just protective of dynastic interests. I can't help feeling that in there somewhere they're just as afraid of being irrelevant in the royal court.

 

Everyone thinks the villain is mad only because they don't really know how deep his scheme runs. It's madness in the extreme because they're only playing on the level of politics. He's transcended politics and only the wholesale destruction of the state will satisfy his bloodlust.

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10 hours ago, 40somethingahjumma said:

The relationship between the emperor and the Changlin household is good at present. Both parties defer to one another respectfully. It's an ideal situation

I feel that this very relationship is so hard to break or ignored because of the secrets and the past that the Old Prince also had lived through. The emperor and the Old Prince knows what happened, assuming that the previous emperor had explained to the current emperor the story of Nirvana in Fire. But one thing that I have seen is, history is repeating itself. 

Spoiler

In NiF, Lin Shu's family was destroyed because of the powerfulness of his father's army. That was how people were able to trick the emperor in wiping them all out. In this NIF2, it looks like they know how to fix the relationship between the emperor and the old prince, making it strong compared to how the first season was like. But yes, like you mention, there is no balance created and now history is going to repeat itself. 

1

 

What I am most curious about is, the crown prince and jingping are really fond of each other and are on good terms. I wonder how that relationship changed to the point that the others were able to convince the crown prince (later emperor) into not allowing the Changlin Amry to be dispatch later on in the drama? Or to put it in easier terms, how did the story change to make the crown prince no longer trust the Changlin manor? 

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Ok going on a bit of a rant having watched up until ep24

Spoiler

So I think I have a pretty good idea of how pingzhang is going to die now and am honestly so annoyed at how that plot is written. My understanding is that essentially he will sacrifice himself for pingjing and that's fine and all except I literally do not understand how this drives the plot at all. It feels like the script writers just needed to have him written out and was like hey, let's make this as sad as possible while adding literally nothing substantial to the overall story. And now I don't even understand the purpose of Pu Yang Ying, so he's basically there for the purpose of pingzhang's death? This whole part just feels like such a disjointed side plot. Like all this messy writing and then when pingzhang dies is when the actual plot starts, except then why waste half the drama on this? 

 

I guess I have high expectations for the writing and for everything to flow perfectly due to how well written NiF1 was. Honestly just disappointed because this whole middle plot line surrounding Pu Yang Ying and pingzhang's death is making me want to drop it even though I quite liked the first few episodes.. 

 

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1 hour ago, JoycceeDreamer said:

I feel that this very relationship is so hard to break or ignored because of the secrets and the past that the Old Prince also had lived through. The emperor and the Old Prince knows what happened, assuming that the previous emperor had explained to the current emperor the story of Nirvana in Fire. But one thing that I have seen is, history is repeating itself. 

  Reveal hidden contents

In NiF, Lin Shu's family was destroyed because of the powerfulness of his father's army. That was how people were able to trick the emperor in wiping them all out. In this NIF2, it looks like they know how to fix the relationship between the emperor and the old prince, making it strong compared to how the first season was like. But yes, like you mention, there is no balance created and now history is going to repeat itself. 

1

 

What I am most curious about is, the crown prince and jingping are really fond of each other and are on good terms. I wonder how that relationship changed to the point that the others were able to convince the crown prince (later emperor) into not allowing the Changlin Amry to be dispatch later on in the drama? Or to put it in easier terms, how did the story change to make the crown prince no longer trust the Changlin manor? 

 

Whatever the emotional ties that bind Yuanshi and Pingjing together may be, the crown prince/future emperor is very young and will undoubtedly be vulnerable to the manipulations of his mother, the empress and her brother, the Grand Secretary. Once the emperor dies, the young ruler could inadvertently become a puppet for the Xun clan unless he is able to exert his own authority without succumbing to the pressure of conforming to their agenda for good or for ill. That will be a true test of his mettle. Whether history repeats itself in its entirety depends on how this plays out.

I find the Grand Secretary a fascinating figure on some level. I think in a real enough way he does care about the future of the country even if he can be self-serving as the next politician. His fear that the balance will tip in favour of the House of Changlin is not unwarranted. Fear in and of itself can be helpful if it triggers the right reaction. But if he starts becoming obstructionist for the sake of keeping Changlin in check then it becomes about him vs Changlin and not about the good of the country. Whether he can maintain that distinction as seen in the recent epidemic arc, that remains to be seen.

 

1 hour ago, alleycat said:

Ok going on a bit of a rant having watched up until ep24

  Reveal hidden contents

So I think I have a pretty good idea of how pingzhang is going to die now and am honestly so annoyed at how that plot is written. My understanding is that essentially he will sacrifice himself for pingjing and that's fine and all except I literally do not understand how this drives the plot at all. It feels like the script writers just needed to have him written out and was like hey, let's make this as sad as possible while adding literally nothing substantial to the overall story. And now I don't even understand the purpose of Pu Yang Ying, so he's basically there for the purpose of pingzhang's death? This whole part just feels like such a disjointed side plot. Like all this messy writing and then when pingzhang dies is when the actual plot starts, except then why waste half the drama on this? 

 

I guess I have high expectations for the writing and for everything to flow perfectly due to how well written NiF1 was. Honestly just disappointed because this whole middle plot line surrounding Pu Yang Ying and pingzhang's death is making me want to drop it even though I quite liked the first few episodes.. 

 

 

I beg to differ... :wink:


 

Spoiler

 

As I see it, I think his "death" is "needed" at the very least, for Pingjing to come out from under his shadow and become a/the leader of the House of Changlin.

I would also dispute the idea that Pu Yang Yin was written in just to kill off Pingzhang. Killing off Pingzhang for PYY is a means to an end... the complete distablization of Changlin which will lead to a weakening of Liang's military power and then ultimately ending in the destruction of Liang. I believe that's clearly mapped out throughout the storyline and there's a conversation between PYY and Grand Sec Xun which more or less intimates that.

 

Pingzhang is the hinge on which all of it turns. Getting rid of him will leave Liang vulnerable in the long run. As least that's what PYY thinks because he doesn't see Pingjing as any kind of real threat. And sure, Pingjing as he is now, isn't ready to be any kind of military leader but I'm sure that's one of the main themes in this story... is that he will become the man he needs to be as he's thrust into greater responsibility.

 

 

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Spoiler

Oh I'm not saying he shouldn't die or anything, but I have an issue with how he's going to die (assuming I'm correct). He could have died on the battlefield, he could have died after being framed etc, but I'm just not that into this whole noble sacrifice thing. And I get the whole Pu Yang Ying plotline but it's just not very...sophisticated in my mind. I guess that's what it comes down to, cause I just don't find the plot surrounding Pingzhang's death  very sophisticated story telling. It seems a bit Idol-y to me.

 

36 minutes ago, 40somethingahjumma said:

 

I beg to differ... :wink:


 

  Reveal hidden contents

 

As I see it, I think his "death" is "needed" at the very least, for Pingjing to come out from under his shadow and become a/the leader of the House of Changlin.

I would also dispute the idea that Pu Yang Yin was written in just to kill off Pingzhang. Killing off Pingzhang for PYY is a means to an end... the complete distablization of Changlin which will lead to a weakening of Liang's military power and then ultimately ending in the destruction of Liang. I believe that's clearly mapped out throughout the storyline and there's a conversation between PYY and Grand Sec Xun which more or less intimates that.

 

Pingzhang is the hinge on which all of it turns. Getting rid of him will leave Liang vulnerable in the long run. As least that's what PYY thinks because he doesn't see Pingjing as any kind of real threat. And sure, Pingjing as he is now, isn't ready to be any kind of military leader but I'm sure that's one of the main themes in this story... is that he will become the man he needs to be as he's thrust into greater responsibility.

 

 

 

 

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I have also found myself liking this show more than I expected. Namely, as others have echoed, the family dynamic is very strong and loving, so the I look forward to some heartbreaking scenes later. 

 

Xiao Ping Jing is extremely well-loved by the people around him, even the Emperor dotes on him. I was quite touched when it was revealed that, in part, making Ping Zhang the heir apparent was in order for a free spirit like Ping Jing to remain carefree. 

 

I dislike the way Pu Yang Ying is styled. In fact, I couldn't tell if he was a really pale older lady or a really pale and fine-featured man in the opening segment. The actor, Guo Jing Fei, is a very good actor though. I recently binge watched "Decoded" on Viki and was so startled to see him there. 

 

I catch the show on Dramafever and so far have found the script's different plot twists to be well executed and unexpected (but I'm the kinda viewer that goes along for the ride instead of tries to anticipate events). 

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4 hours ago, JoycceeDreamer said:

I feel that this very relationship is so hard to break or ignored because of the secrets and the past that the Old Prince also had lived through. The emperor and the Old Prince knows what happened, assuming that the previous emperor had explained to the current emperor the story of Nirvana in Fire. But one thing that I have seen is, history is repeating itself. 

  Reveal hidden contents

In NiF, Lin Shu's family was destroyed because of the powerfulness of his father's army. That was how people were able to trick the emperor in wiping them all out. In this NIF2, it looks like they know how to fix the relationship between the emperor and the old prince, making it strong compared to how the first season was like. But yes, like you mention, there is no balance created and now history is going to repeat itself. 

1

 

What I am most curious about is, the crown prince and jingping are really fond of each other and are on good terms. I wonder how that relationship changed to the point that the others were able to convince the crown prince (later emperor) into not allowing the Changlin Amry to be dispatch later on in the drama? Or to put it in easier terms, how did the story change to make the crown prince no longer trust the Changlin manor? 

 

The Crown Prince is a kid hes easily brainwashed and swayed but maybe comes to see the light later on. 

 

 

2 hours ago, alleycat said:
  Hide contents

Oh I'm not saying he shouldn't die or anything, but I have an issue with how he's going to die (assuming I'm correct). He could have died on the battlefield, he could have died after being framed etc, but I'm just not that into this whole noble sacrifice thing. And I get the whole Pu Yang Ying plotline but it's just not very...sophisticated in my mind. I guess that's what it comes down to, cause I just don't find the plot surrounding Pingzhang's death  very sophisticated story telling. It seems a bit Idol-y to me.

 

 

 

 

Spoiler

Doesnt he die due to poisoning , i dont see how that is a noble sacrifice thing??

 

If you dont like how this story's plot is you must really hate almost every Chinese drama. 

 

I think we should wait and see exactly what happens before we judge this harshly, if he does die for his brother i wont exactly hate that either. 

 

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After watching the first 18 episodes with English Subtitle, "I like it!" :glasses:

I expected  Nirvana in Fire #2 to be boring, but the Xiao family grow on me. The love between the 2 brothers and the Father is fun to watch. Especially the interactions between Father and the 2nd son. so far, the story is not that crazy (especially with the wacko High priest) and i love how Ping Jing flirt with Dr. Lin. This romance is low key and sweet to watch.

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4 hours ago, 40somethingahjumma said:

 

  Reveal hidden contents
 

 

Something in my mind that I am thinking about... 

Spoiler

I don't know why Mr. Duan didn't tell that PYY guy (shaman/Ritual) how smart PingJing is? Or did he mention but I missed it? Cause, Mr. Duan knows how smart Ping Jing is. So it's funny how everyone is willing to take Ping Jing lightly, which is why Ping Jing was able to prove them wrong later (I hope...). 

 

 

5 hours ago, alleycat said:

Ok going on a bit of a rant having watched up until ep24

  Reveal hidden contents

 

May I ask something? 

Spoiler

Mind sharing what you think is how Ping Zhang is going to die? I doubt he is going to die just from saving Ping Jing from how he is in ep. 24. I don't truly know what happens because I don't know Chinese but going off what I see, I have a general sense of what is going on. 

 

 

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