Series / Chinese Paladin
Also known as Legend of Swordsman and Fairy
. Based on the first of a popular RPG series, starring Hu Ge, Crystal Liu, and Ady An.
Li Xiao Yao, a "Stinky Punk", journeys to Dream Island to find a cure for his sick aunt. There he meets and marries the love of his life, Ling'er. On his way back home with the cure, he discovers that he's been tricked by the Lunar Sect Cult so that they can kidnap Ling'er.
He awakens in his bed, having forgotten his entire trip to Dream Island, but having saved his aunt. He rescues Ling'er from the Lunar Sect Cult and is in turn rescued by a mysterious stranger who teaches him kung fu. Xiao Yao and Ling'er travel to the capital to meet her father.
Along the way, they meet various people, get harassed by the Lunar Sect Cult, discover both of their histories, save the world and fall in love with each other all over again.
This show contains examples of:
- Action Girl: Yue'Ru, who fights with a whip.
- All Love Is Unrequited: Yue'Ru to Xiao Yao, and Jinyuan to Yue'Ru, Taoist Mo Yixi and Queen Wu (and Mo Yixi and the Saintess) and to some degree in the beginning, Tangyu to A’nu.
- Amnesiac Hero: Xiao Yiao's poisoning with a memory-erasing drug by the Lunar Sect in episode 2 drives most of the dramatic tension.
- Arranged Marriage: Ling’er and Xiao Yao (sort of, her grandmother bullies him into proposing to her), Caiyi and Jinyuan in the backstory episodes.
- Back-to-Back Badasses: Yue'Ru and Xiao Yao, particularly when they're dungeon-crawling.
- Bad Boss: Yue'Ru to her maids and the family servants at first. We first meet her chasing two of her servants with a whip, and later has all of her maids hold fruits of decreasing sizes in their hands so she can practice precision whip strikes.
- Battle Couple / Bash Brothers: Yue'Ru and Xiaoyao are mistaken for the former while being the latter.
- Because Destiny Says So: Invoked at times by Ling'Er, who vacillates between accepting that You Can't Fight Fate and fighting for her marriage with Xiao Yiao. Invoked over and frickin' over again by the Sword Saint to both Xiao Yiao and Ling'Er as he attempts to persuade them to abandon their marriage and accept their separate destinies. The ending implies that he was right.
- Best Her to Bed Her: Played with with Yue'Ru, who after inadvertently killing Xiao Yao (he got better), only starts to like him after he beats her in a fair fight.
- Beta Couple: Tangyu and A’nu
- Betty and Veronica: Gentle, demure Ling'er and headstrong, bratty Yue'Ru.
- Big Eater: Ah Nu.
- Big Sleep: More than one character goes out this way.
- Blood from the Mouth: Happens more than once and is a pretty good sign that another major character is about to be scratched off the roster.
- Brainwashed and Crazy: Happens to Ah Nu.
- Break the Cutie: Ling'Er first appears as a lovable but naive girl who dotes on her grandmother and adores Xiao Yiao, whom she believes to be the hero who saved her ten years before. After the murder of her grandmother and handmaidens, a kidnapping attempt, her husband's poisoning, a sudden reveal of her own history, and a series of tragic coincidences which would have done Shakespeare proud, all that's keeping her going is pride and self-control.
- Break the Haughty: Yue'Ru starts off as a spoiled, headstrong Alpha Bitch....and becomes a kinder, more considerate Alpha Bitch after a grueling Humiliation Conga.
- Can't Live With Them, Can't Live Without Them: Xiao Yao and Yue'Ru, two good rival-friends who have been through everything, yet show a sort of playful hatefulness towards each other to mask their affection, the can’t live without them part becomes especially clear when Xiao Yao wakes up after the Monster Jail collapse and learns that Yue'Ru sacrificed herself to save him and Ling’er, prompting some denial on Xiao Yao’s part.
- Central Theme: Love is the greatest thing ever, except when it means sacrificing yourself.
- Cherry Blossom: Not so much the actual flower, though it does make an appearance in earlier episodes on Fairy Island; demonstrated through the flying “red dandelions” that Xiao Yao often tries to create and fly to make Ling’er happy.
- These red dandelions have been said in the series to not exist, yet when Xiao Yao travels back in time, he encounters the real deal as they float past him on the golden bird.
- Childhood Friend Romance: Tangyu and A'nu
- The Chosen One: Ling’er, the descendent of Nuwa and princess of Nanzhao, destined by birth to save the world. Can also be said about Xiao Yao.
- Cruel to Be Kind: Ling'er, while trying to break up with Xiao Yao. He puts a stop to this eventually:
"You know, you're terrible at being a bitch."
- Defeat by Modesty: Xiao Yao "wins" his first fight against Yue'Ru by essentially goosing her.
- Denied Food as Punishment: Happens to Yue'Ru as part of her Humiliation Conga / Character Development.
- The Ditz: A’Nu, even though she’s more sweetly innocent and annoying than ditzy.
- Divine Parentage: Ling’er and her mother Queen Wu are both descendants of Nuwa, the Chinese Goddess of Creation.
- Drunken Master: Taoist Mo Yixi. He calls himself that.
- Evil Cannot Comprehend Good: Bai Yue cannot comprehend love.
- Evil Chancellor: Bai Yue to the King of Nan Zhao.
- Evil Uncle: Though not by blood, Bai Yue is A’nu’s “uncle” and the same can be said of Ling’er, since she is the princess.
- Face–Monster Turn: Bai Yue does this to A’nu.
- Family Relationship Switcheroo: Happens to Ah Nu.
- Flash Step
- Generation Xerox: Ling'er and her mother Queen Wu, who were both seemed to be destined to die after saving the kingdom, and leave behind all that they loved.
- Gentleman and a Scholar: Jinyuan.
- Give Her a Normal Life: Xiao Yao travels back in time to attempt changing the past so that Ling’er wouldn’t be in the situation she is in now, but he failed.
- The Good King: Ling'er's father. Though good, he's not particularly bright.
- Go Out with a Smile: Yue'Ru, in the monster jail and possibly Ling’er
- Half-Human Hybrid: Many characters in the series, but most notably, the descendents of Nuwa like Ling’er, whose true forms are half human-half snake
- Heroic Sacrifice: Several times.
- In the backstory, the demoness Nuyuan accelerated her own death, attempting to save her husband's soul by use of a mantra intrinsically harmful to her nonhuman nature.
- The High Queen: Queen Wu.
- Honor-Related Abuse: Tangyu’s to Elder Shi, Yue'Ru to her father in refusal to marry, and possibly more
- Hope Spot: Cruelly used in the final episode.
- If We Survive This: A’nu to Tangyu whenever they are in a dire situation
“If we survive this, A’nu will marry Little Precious Tangyu.”
- The Ingenue: Ling'er starts out as this.
- It Was with You All Along: Love was always with Bai yue, except he didn’t recognize or realize he had had it, until the end, when he dies, with that understanding and having seen unconditional and undying love be proven to still exist in the world.
- I Want My Beloved to Be Happy: Yue'Ru who sacrificed herself to save Ling’er and Xiao Yao when they were in the Monster Jail. And Tangyu sacrificing himself to save A’nu by slicing his hand and jumping off the gourd to lead the attacking blood-crows away.
- Kick the Dog: Most notably, Xiao Yao to Yue'Ru; in the monster jail, after Xiao Yao finally gets together with yueru before going in to save Ling’er, his memory comes back and shows him that he was married to Ling’er, where he sees an unconscious Ling’er, he rushes to her side and tells her that he would never abandon her, making it seem that he has forgotten about Yue'Ru and how Yue'Ru had always been there for him
- Kill 'em All: Can be said for basically everyone in the series save for Xiao Yao and A’nu and Tanyu, though they were turned into birds.
- Lady of Black Magic: All the descendants of Nu'Wa fit this, both in personality and powers: Zixuan of Chinese Paladin 3 is an Ice Queen priestess who takes on the undefeated Demon King in single combat; her daughter Qing'er, The High Queen, who has similar, though lesser powers; and granddaughter Ling'er is a Lady of War.
- Lady of War: Queen Wu, General Nan Man.
- Laser-Guided Amnesia: happens in the very first episode. Xiao Yao doesn't actually remember he's married to Ling'er until more than halfway through the series.
- Leaving You to Find Myself: Ling'er. With her duties as princess and descendant of Nuwa, she decided that she cannot be with Xiao Yao and insisted that Xiao Yao and Yue'Ru get together.
- Like Brother and Sister: Xiao Yao and Yue'Ru, who often fight monsters in harmony and sync with each other, like archetypal martial arts “siblings”.
- Love Dodecahedron: Inn scene: A’nu loves Xiao Yao, Xiao Yao loves Ling’er, Ling’er loves Xiao Yao but refuses that, Tangyu loves A’nu, Jingyuan loves Yue'Ru, Yue'Ru loves Xiao Yao
- Love Makes You Evil: Can be said of A’nu, whose newfound romantic love for Tangyu prompts her to make a deal with Bai Yue to do “whatever it takes” to bring back Tangyu from the dead, consequently trading her soul for Tangyu’s life, making her an evil conscienceless killer under Bai Yue’s spell, which is only broken by Tangyu’s undying love for A’nu
- Love Transcends Spacetime
- Love Triangle: Xiao Yao loves Ling’er, Ling’er loves Xiao Yao, but believes that Yue'Ru, who loves Xiao Yao, is a better choice for him.
- Luke, You Are My Father: it is revealed to the audience that Bai Yue is the adopted son of Elder Shi. This reveal comes seconds before Bai Yue disintegrates his father.
- Malevolent Masked Men: the Lunar Sect Cult.
- Meaningful Funeral: Used multiple times.
- Menacing Stroll: Bai Yue's default pace.
- Mentors: Taoist Mo Yixi to Xiao Yao. Elder Shi to Ling'er.
- Now, Let Me Carry You: Ah Nu to Tang Yu after he loses his arms.
- The Oner: After the escape from the Demon-Locking Pagoda, Drunken Sword Immortal wakes Xiao Yiao to tell him of Yue'Ru's death. The scene begins by cutting back and forth between their faces as they talk, but then after the truth sinks in, the camera follows the two of them around the room in a five-minute-fourteen-second tracking shot as they begin to process the consequences of everything that's happened to far. Coincides with Xiao Yiao's second My God, What Have I Done? moment (the first was when his amnesia abruptly ended).
- Our Love Is Different: Tangyu to A’nu in the abyss, where Tangyu proclaimed his love to A'nu. A’nu told him she will marry him, though she wasn’t serious because she has a crush on Xiao Yao.
- Outdoor Bath Peeping: The first time Xiao Yao met Ling’er.
- The Paragon Always Rebels: Jiang Ming.
- Peaceful in Death: Ling’er
- Perfectly Arranged Marriage: Ling’er and Xiao Yao
- Pietà Plagiarism: Xiao Yiao and Ling'er in the final episode.
- The Power of Love: Several times. Ling’er and Xiao Yao, Ling'er manages to break her convenient amnesia because of it.
- Pyrrhic Victory: The entire series, and especially Xiao Yao whose True Companion dies in the fight against Bai Yue.
- Shipper on Deck: Because Everyone Can See It, at one point, most of the cast is trying to get the leads together.
- Sky Surfing: Done on swords, no less. Drunken Sword Immortal also flies around on a giant wine gourd.
- Sole Survivor: The Sword Saint is the only living witness to the massacre at Mt. Shu. (Because it took place a hundred years ago, and he was four years old at the time).
- So Proud of You: Elder Shi to Tang'yu. About ten seconds before his death.
- Spin-Offspring: Chinese Paladin 1 is set in the future of the Chinese Paladin 3 world, and Ling'er is the granddaughter of two of the main characters.
- Spoiled Brat: Yue'Ru, whose father let her get away with anything for years because he was grieving for his wife. Most of her character development involves growing past this.
- Stable Time Loop: Goddess Nuwa sends Xiao Yiao back to the events of first episode's opening, and his attempts to change the past just create one of these.
- Sword Drag: Done by Brainwashed and Crazy Ah'Nu right after she kills her father.
- "Take That!" Kiss: The Sword Immortal plants one on the Priestess when she is trying to get him to stop drinking and moping over the marriage of Qing'er to the King of Nanzhao. She makes the mistake of telling him she understands the theory about 'love', and the following lines result:
Priestess: "You're disrespecting the Priestess of Nanzhao!"
Sword Immortal: "Yeah, I know."
- Ten Minutes in the Closet: Xiao Yao and Ling’er in the first episode on Fairy Island.
- Too Important to Walk: Elder Shi does this as a means of impressing on Ling'er that she is after all, a princess.
- Trauma Conga Line: Dear God, this series. Everyone gets this treatment.
- Trickster Mentor: Xiao Yao to Jinyuan.
- Tragic Hero: Ling’er, who dies, and Xiao Yao, the only one left among the living. Oh, and Drunken Sword Immortal, who lost years of his life in a waking dream, then the love of his life, Qing'Er, then finally his own life, taken by his mind-controlled bastard daughter mere days after he discovered she existed. Yeah, there are a lot of those here, actually.
- Unholy Matrimony: used multiple times as a way of showing The Power of Love.
- The fox demon and snake demon couple.
- In the backstory, between Jiang Ming and Nuyuan.
- What Is This Thing You Call "Love"?: Villainous example in Bai Yue.
- Xanatos Speed Chess: Jinyuan and Bai Yue play it. Bai Yue is particularly good. For example, his response to having an angry Papa Wolf and Mama Bear charging in on a Roaring Rampage of Rescue is to have them arrested for trespass and adultery.
- You Already Changed the Past: Xiao Yao, not being genre savvy about time travel, finds this out the hard way.
- You Can't Fight Fate: Ling'Er's faithfulness to her marriage with Xiao Yao leads to her death.