adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

[personal profile] ohbthr: And we’re back! I’m taking the bullet point on this one, as everyone else was too busy staring in bleak despair. :p

On the nicknames: Listen, if the SID kids were better actors maybe I’d bother remembering their names.

[personal profile] kitsunec4: If the SID kids were better actors they would probably not be on this show.

[personal profile] rageprufrock: Hear fucking hear.

Read more... )
adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

[personal profile] ohbthr: This episode has an obscene amount of unnecessary flashbacks, you guys. Why.

[personal profile] tactless_yet_lovable: Because we’re supposed to suffer. As a bonus, this writeup hit during the High Holy Days of Commercialized Christmas/Fourth Quarter End Of Year Pomp and Business Circumstance, so we’ve all been suffering to the nth degree. Peak suffering. “I Can’t Believe It’s Not Hell” suffering.

[personal profile] hollyberries: ‘This is the worst timeline’ suffering

Read more... )

Join us here in two weeks for more discussion of Guardian, but in a modified format we haven’t quite figured out ourselves yet!

adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

A quick note: [personal profile] rageprufrock won’t be able to join us this week because she’s had to be a Responsible Adult. We’re jealous that she got to skip this one.

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: My notes for this episode begin, “I have no memory of this episode.” Then, all of two minutes in, I was swearing about how this was the shitty water CGI one.

[personal profile] lazulisong: I think this is the one that really gave Tam and I flashbacks to watching tokusatsu for eight hours straight and I still wasn't sure which one it was at first.

[personal profile] kitsunec4: isn’t this how all of our recaps begin? I mean, the, “I have no recollection of this place,” schtick?

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: I have regrets.

[personal profile] tactless_yet_lovable: Fucking Zhu Yilong and his goddamn everything. GODDAMN WUHAN BOYS AND THEIR SAD PINING CHEEKBONES. Between him and Wang Kai, Wuhan has did me dirty.

Read more... )

Join us here in two weeks for a discussion of Guardian: Episode 6, wherein the filler episodes continue and we really want some booze!

adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: And we’re back, just like the episodes of Guardian are on the YoYo YouTube channel.

[personal profile] kitsunec4: So don’t say we don’t hold to our stupid life decisions and follow through lololol.


Read more... )
Join us here in two weeks for a discussion of Guardian: Episode 5 and more yelling! Definitely more yelling!
adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars

In the light of the recent hiatus on recapping episodes of Guardian, A Disgrace to Scholars decided to implement a new group feature: If This, Then That. While Guardian is now back online and we will shortly be resuming our recaps (watch this space!), we assume many of you have already watched the whole thing— maybe more than once— and are jonesing for something new. This one’s for you!

(That, and it seemed a shame to waste all that effort when we’d already written most of this post.)

As you can probably guess from the name of the feature, the purpose is to take a drama that we have been featuring on the blog, distil it down to what we consider to be one of its key selling points, and make recommendations of other dramas you may want to watch that fulfil that same niche need. In other words: like Netflix, but more accurate! Theoretically, anyway.

We make the disclaimer that this is based on our individual— somewhat eclectic— tastes and you may not agree. In fact, we don’t always agree with each other. However, we will try to be clear about the reasons why we are recommending a particular drama in this category, and any significant flaws that may make it less appealing to some viewers.

As you may have guessed by this point, we are kicking off our first If This, Then That post with Guardian— and since the only redeeming quality Guardian has is the intensely gay chemistry between the main leads, that is forming the basis for our recommendations in this post.

We make no guarantee of actual quality for all of these (looking at you, Disguiser), but since y’all sat through Guardian, we’re going to assume that that isn’t necessarily going to stop you. (Although we will be upfront about the dramas we actually recommend as quality TV, as opposed to our “this is objectively trash but may fill the Guardian shaped hole in your life” recs.)

And so, without further ado, on with the heavily subtextual, intensely obsessive and/or pine-scented show!

Read more... )

Join us again on Monday for our inaugural recap of one of the dramas recced in this post, Nirvana in Fire!

(If you are wondering what this means for the Guardian recap, fear not, we will be resuming those recaps on alternating Mondays. Bad life choices and emotional whiplash for all abound.)
adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars
As you may be aware, Guardian is no longer available on the YoYo Television YouTube channel. We’re all hoping the takedown is in lead up to Guardian being licensed to a platform such as Viki or Dramafever, but until the show is once again officially available, the episode discussions will be on hiatus.


In the meanwhile, we have some more Canary Reports and part two of our In the Weeds feature coming your way, along with some new features in the works— keep an eye out!

adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: This fucking episode, guys.

Plot

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: So this is first filler/monster of the week episode. The first two episodes corresponded with the first arc of the novel, but now the writers are on their own and just making shit up.

Read more... )

Join us here next week for a discussion of Guardian: Episode 4 and more amazed confusion at why we keep rewatching this show! So much!

tammaiya: (Default)
[personal profile] tammaiya


Hi guys, welcome to A Disgrace To Scholar’s first In the Weeds feature post, this time focusing on the topic of queer subtext in East Asian popular media. I'm going to go a bit broader than our usual remit in the sense that I'll be talking about anime and video games as well as dramas— there will be spoilers for some of the examples I’m discussing, but I'll make sure to give warnings in advance when I'm about to talk about a particular fandom in detail (they are also tagged on the post, for the curious).

This topic is going to be covered in two posts. Part one is going to be looking at the concept of “queerbaiting” and why it is inappropriate to apply that term to these kinds of relationships in East Asian media. Part two, which will be posted next week after our discussion on episode 3 of Guardian, is going to take a more in-depth look at what the signs of an implied same sex relationship actually look like.

So, without further ado: welcome to my TED talk!

So what am I discussing, and why?

This feature is specifically examining quasi-canon subtextual/implied same-sex relationships in popular East Asian media, particularly in relation to (1) the reasons why creators often leave it to the audience to read between the lines rather than outright confirm, and (2) the signs that imply that kind of authorial intent.

There are a number of things I may touch on, but will not be discussing in detail, including pure fanservice and “no homo” tropes (except to the extent that it’s relevant to help draw this distinction), or about the actual BL genre, both of which are more than extensive enough topics to fuel their own discussions. (Anyway, at least in terms of Chinese/Taiwanese BL, [personal profile] hollyberries is far more qualified than me to talk about that.) However, in the second post, I will be talking about the “grey zone”, where fanservice and quasi-canon overlap, or it’s not possible to tell which it is or whether the author even intended to imply anything at all.

As for why… first of all, I find that being able to interpret these hints really deepens your understanding and enjoyment of the source material, and because a lot of them lean on cultural signals and genre tropes, they can be easy to miss or misinterpret for a western audience. Personally, I love this shit, and I wanted to share at least a taste of this joy with our readers, especially since we are currently reviewing a drama based on a BL web novel where the lead characters lean hard into that relationship in spite of the censors, and it is particularly pertinent as we lead into our discussion on episode 3 of Guardian (or, as we refer to it, the Sad Lesbians episode).

The second reason is that I’m choosing to be optimistic about the possibility that spreading a little more understanding on the topic might cut down on the number of western fans slapping the label “queerbaiting” on things where it really doesn’t belong. (Possibly futile, I know, but this is one of my pet peeves and hope springs eternal.)

Read more... )

To summarize: this is the way these stories get told. For now, at least, it is in many cases the only way these stories get told. If the choice is between queercoded quasi-canon subtext (which, for Guardian and Yuri!!! on Ice, is an understatement) and no queer relationships in these genres and mediums at all, personally, I am more than happy to take the subtext. It is also worth bearing in mind that progress often happens in stages; you don’t leap from zero to 60 with representation. These shows are stepping stones— and in the case of Yuri!!! on Ice, a very big step that personally left me stunned.

So please, whatever you do: think twice before calling these stories queerbaiting, and if you see someone who does— maybe link them over here?

Join me again next week for Part 2 of this In the Weeds special feature: Recognizing the Subtext Signs.
adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars


Introduction

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: AAAAaaaaaAAa we won’t be falling down.

[personal profile] kitsunec4: We won’t be falling down, but we’ll certainly be jumping head first into where we left off at the end of episode 1. As I’m sure more than one viewer of Chinese dramas have noticed, episodes often do not wrap up neatly within the space of one to two episodes. This might be a function of how broadcast works with batches of episodes released at once and a very truncated airing time period compared to say, American TV.

Read more... )


Join us here next week for a discussion of Guardian: Episode 3 and a rousing chorus of “Cell Block Tango.”

adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars

GUARDIAN: Episode One

Introduction


[personal profile] moggiesandtea: Oh hell, I realized this means I'm going to have to watch this episode again.

Plot

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: Okay, I sat down with my computer and a notebook, then realized that I would have to pause every time I wanted to write things down, because subtitles. Anyway.

Episode 1 opens with the opening credits and a title song that grew on me more than I want to admit. Also, the opening credits are spoilers. I think the editors were less concerned with dramatic tension and more with Zhao Yunlan and Shen Wei sharing significant looks.
Read more... )

Join us here next week for a discussion of Episode 2 and more yelling! Definitely more yelling!


adisgracetothescholars: red seal text on white background, saying "a disgrace to scholars" in Chinese (Default)
[personal profile] adisgracetothescholars

Who we are

[personal profile] kitsunec4: We’re a group of mumblety-something professional ladies spread across at least five to six time zones with far too many feeling about topics wide and varied (the current one of which seems to be a hyperfixation on Guardian).

[personal profile] moggiesandtea: We also apparently enjoy doing media analysis while yelling about the above mentioned feelings.

What we’re doing

[personal profile] kitsunec4: ...bad decision making. A lot of it.
Read more... )


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