Our story begins with that which shakes the heavens and earth.
Like a thunderbolt in the blue sky, a startling fantasy begins to unfold!
Thunderbolt Fantasy: Sword Seekers (Thunderbolt Fantasy 東離劍遊紀)note is a Wuxia Puppet Show TV series, spearheaded by Japanese screenwriter Gen Urobuchi of nitro+ after he fell in love with the glove puppet shows produced by Taiwanese production studio Pili (known in the west as the creators of what became Wulin Warriors) after stumbling upon their works at a Taiwan anime and comic fan convention he attended; Figma creators Good Smile Company assists the show in character creation alongside nitro+'s stable of artists. Hiroyuki Sawano (later joined by Takafumi Wada) scores the show's soundtrack, while T.M.Revolution a.k.a. Takanori Nishikawa sings the theme songs and joins the Japanese All-Star Cast in season 2.
The sprawling series of 2 (soon to be 3) seasons of the TV show and two films is set in a fantasy world of swords, wizardry, and demons in the nation of Dong-Li, which in the past was ravaged by an invasion from the Demon Realm that split it from its neighboring nation Xi-You by the impassible Wasteland of Spirits, full of dangerous dragons and demon-worshipping barbarians. The main cast comprises the illusionist and Gentleman Thief Lin Setsu A and the wandering and taciturn swordsman Syou Fu Kan who has somehow crossed the Wasteland of Spirits unscathed; Syou Fu Kan's compatriate Rou Fu You, a wandering minstrel with an enchanted voice and a magical talking pipa named Ryouga, joins the main cast in season 2.
Season 1 focuses on Betsu Ten Gai and his Black Demon Sect seeking out the Sword of Divine Retribution, a mystical weapon said to have actually slain a demon god centuries earlier, but the sword is sealed away and its hilt and crossguard are kept by two guardian priests, the brother-sister pair of Tan Ko and Tan Hi. When Tan Ko is murdered by Betsu Ten Gai, Tan Hi escapes with part of the sword and crosses paths with Lin Setsu A and Syou Fu Kan. With Lin Setsu A's meddling, Syou Fu Kan is made to help Tan Hi retrieve the crossguard from Betsu Ten Gai to prevent him from taking the sword for himself. Lin Setsu A gathers a Rag Tag Band of other warriors including the one-eyed archer sniper Syu Un Syou and his protege Ken San Un, the demoness necromancer Kei Gai, and the assassin Setsu Mu Syou who actually wants Lin Setsu A dead.
Season 2 finds Syou Fu Kan reuniting with Rou Fu You and Ryouga, but the meeting is soured when he realizes that if his allies can find him in Dong-Li, so can his foes. The two work together to prevent the Sorcerous Sword Index, a compendium of dozens of magical and weapons, from falling into wrong hands. They must contend with the Femme Fatale Katsu Eiraku who is trying to prove herself to her master Kasei Meikou and corrupt Xi-You Imperial envoy Syou Kyou Ken who convinces his Dong-Li counterparts of the "danger" Syou Fu Kan poses to the public. However, Lin Setsu A has his own sights set on Syou Kyou Ken as a new mark, the ascetic monk Tei Kuu wanders the countryside questioning the meaning of his life alongside that of both the heroes and villains, and the Sorcerous Sword Index's most dangerous weapon the Seven Blasphemous Deaths is freed and it has a mind of its own to take over the world.
Season 3 is currently in production, but is set to feature Kasei Meikou leading a direct invasion into Dong-Li, assisted by none other than Kei Gai who seeks revenge against the heroes for their actions in the season 1 finale.
Two films were released in both Japan and Taiwan (and internationally on Crunchyroll) expanding the Thunderbolt Fantasy universe. Thunderbolt Fantasy: The Sword of Life and Death was released in December 2017 and is split into two halves. The first half focuses more on Setsu Mu Syou and his past with Lin Setsu A and why he seeks his death; this was based on a light novel Thunderbolt Fantasy Gaiden, which also includes a similar story about Kei Gai's past with Lin Setsu A. The second half of the film serves as a comedic interquel between seasons 1 and 2, with Syou Fu Kan meeting a man posing as him who has been telling tall tales of the events of season 1 which overstate his own importance in the battle against Betsu Ten Gai and the Black Demon Sect. The second film Thunderbolt Fantasy: Bewitching Melody of the West came out in October 2019, and focuses on Rou Fu You and how he came to be one of Syou Fu Kan's equals and allies in the protection of the Sorcerous Sword Index, along with fellow musician Mutsu Ten Mei. The film also introduces the sadistic Xi-You Imperial Princess Chou Fu, who gave Syou Kyou Ken the quest to retrieve the Index for her father the Emperor.
In addition to the Gaiden light novel mentioned above, two manga were released that adapt and expand upon the events of season 1; one of these manga is subtitled Otome Gen'yūki (乙女幻遊奇) and retells the story from Tan Hi's point of view (available for free online). In the build up to season 2, the Takarazuka Revue's Star Group staged a musical adaptation of season 1 to accompany their other original stage show Killer Rouge (Killer Rouge／星秀☆煌紅)note , which toured around Japan and Taiwan in August 2018; Pili even made a Lin Setsu A puppet dressed up as his Cross-Cast Role actress Yuzuru Kurenai's outfit in Killer Rouge to promote the tour.
Important Note: For the convenience of editing, all names and terminologies for this work will go by, or lean towards Japanese romanizations used by Nitro+; further comparison between languages of character names are all listed in their character page.
This show provides examples of:
- Act of True Love: In the manga, even though Ken lost Tan Hi's trust after he was forced to abandon her, but he is willing to risk his life to regain her trust by letting her injure him. He even risks his own life protecting her from being crushed by a boulder caused by Youjyarei.
- Adaptation Distillation: The manga leaves out some of the live action's character poems, simplifies the action sequences, like Syou Fu Kan's signature move, and removes some directorial focus.note
- The manga leaves out Tan Hi fight against Betsu Ten Gai and Lin using his illusion on her to fight Syou Fu Kan was cut completely. Instead Syou Fu Kan fights Betsu Ten Gai in her place.
- Adaptation Expansion:
- The manga shows the Black Demon Sect razing the village after Syou Fu Kan leaves and has some Kick the Dog moments for Betsu Ten Gai.
- Some characters have been shown have additional fights between certain characters in the manga which wasn't in the show.
- Some of the character's personalities expanded to learn more about them that wasn't explored or shown much in the show.
- Flashbacks that wasn't seen in the show like when Lin was Ren Ki's student and watched his master making the Soul Echo Flute, and the time, Ken reminiscing cherish memories with his sworn brother together when he's fighting Un Syou.
- Adaptational Villainy: The manga version presents the Black Demon Sect and Betsu Ten Gai as more sadistic than their original counterparts.
- In the original series, Betsu Ten Gai acts like an Evil King who only deals with matters that he deems worthy and kills people only when they stand in the way of his great ambition. However in the manga, Betsu Ten Gai seems to enjoy stabbing villagers and torturing his subordinates when they fail.
- In the original series, Chou Mei appears to be very loyal towards his master and following orders. However the manga portrays him much darker as he doesn't mind hurting his comrades and doesn't care when they fail, tortures his victims in his torture room and enjoys their suffering. He even willing to use his comrades as a distraction by throwing them at the enemies before finishing them.
- Alien Sky: The season 2 opening shows two moons in the sky above Dong-Li. And an eclipse accompanied by a Godzilla-esque dragon.
- And the Adventure Continues: Syou Fu Kan travels for parts unknown and is still on his mission to dispose of the legendary swords while Lin Setsu A is intrigued enough by Syou Fu Kan and the prospect of other villains to defeat so he decides to follow him.
- Anyone Can Die: Urobuchi and Pili International Media are notorious for killing off main characters in the masses and with little forewarning (to the point where the latter caught the former off-guard), and Thunderbolt Fantasy is no exception. Of the thirteen named characters, only five survive in the end.
- April Fools' Day:
- TBF Project announced a crossover collaboration between Thunderbolt Fantasy and Touken Ranbu on April 1, 2017, with a video showing Lin Setsu A facing off against Mikazuki Munechika (who both happen to be voiced by Kosuke Toriumi); expected for release on April 1, 2205. This, obviously, is a non-canon announcement project. The link to the making of the video can be seen here.note
- To follow up on 2017's joke, 2018 has Syou Fu Kan encounter and summon Touken Tanbu's Sengo Muramasa (this time both are voiced by Junichi Suwabe), expected for release in 2206.
- Then we have character designer Shinov Mimori with his hands full in undergoing a school game project titled: Thunderbolt Fantasy April Fool 2017 Happy School Life, complete with a fighting game system.
- Character designer Satoshi Minamoto launched a fashion magazine called Thunfan Fashion featuring Syou Fu Kan on the main cover.
- Ball of Light Transformation: The Black Demon Sect and Setsu Mu Syou use "Meteor Walk" to travel long distances in a short time.
- Bloodier and Gorier: The manga compared to the series has more gruesome deaths. And the series is Bloodier and Gorier than Pili which says a lot.
- Bilingual Bonus:
- Some terminologies were Lost in Translation on the Crunchyroll version, such as the bread Syou Fu Kan ate in episode 2 is the Chinese flatbread: Shao Bing , and the Demon Birds the Black Demon Sect uses for transport are called Miyoku (魑翼 Chī Yì in Chinese,) which were all mentioned within the Japanese dub but never reached the English subs.
- The East Asian demographic were not surprised by Lin Setsu A being a Phantom Thief compared to the western audience since Lin Setsu A's Art Name in Chinese/Kanji was already a giveaway. Crunchyroll's translation is "Enigmatic Gale," a bit of a stretch to the actual meaning: "Thief of the Wind Dust." It's most likely they mistook Lin Setsu A's alias as his Art Name, but it's also likely that they translated it that way to cover up the spoiler.
- Season 1 begins with Syou Fu Kan taking a paper umbrella from a Buddha statue in order to protect himself from a storm. The final scene has him return a similar umbrella to the same statue, and stride unprotected into an oncoming storm.
- The Seal Guardians ended season 1 guarding a sword containing a Sealed Evil in a Can like they were in the very first scene.
- Season 2's opening begins with a scroll opening while its ending ends with a scroll closing.
- Calling Your Attacks: You can't survive a fully hammed wuxia world without one.
- The Cameo: Super Sonico, Nitro+'s mascot, appears as an actual character (headphones and all!) in the second special.
- Cast Full of Pretty Boys: While nitro+ did provide a bit more variety with their original 2D character designs, Pili Co.'s physical puppet renditions are notorious for beautifying every . single . darn . character, including our token old pops Ren Ki. Seriously, just look at all those lavish eyelashes!
- Chastity Couple: Tan Hi and Ken San Un. They are never seen hugging or kissing before and after being Happily Married. They are only seen Holding Hands instead.
- Cliffhanger: Season 2 ends with Kasei Meikou and his organizations are planning to start a full invasion of Dong-Li with the help of Kei Kai.
- Clothing Damage: Although it rarely or never seen in the show, but the manga adaption does this a lot.
- Costume Porn: Every single outfit on the show are extremely detailed and look simply fabulous
- Deus ex Machina: First season finale. Lin Setsu A suddenly revealing that he's one of the greatest swordsmen in the world, while it comes out of nowhere, is not an example, since it just ends up making things worse... but Syou Fu Kan revealing the Sorcerous Sword Index, whose existence hadn't really been hinted at before, and immediately using it to resolve the plot of the season certainly qualifies.
- Distant Reaction Shot: The final clash between Lin Setsu A and Betsu Ten Gai was so big that it literally left the planet smoking.
- Dramatic Wind: A staple of Pili's works.
- Decapitation Presentation: In the manga, Chou Mei brings Tan Kou's head to Tan Hi as he wants her to sink in deep despair and agony. It implied that Betsu Ten Gai was the one who cut off Tan Kou's head.
- Death Is Dramatic: The only logical exit from this world.
- Deconstruction: Of Ragtag Bunch of Misfits. So you got The Chessmaster assembling a rather strange group of people who really have no reason to get along and even less reason to trust each other. In other fantasy works, they learn to resolve their differences and even have some camaraderie. They don't here.
- Deconstructor Fleet: The final episode turns many wuxia tropes on their heads, Urobuchi style.
- The mighty MacGuffin has no mystic battle power of its own and is incidental to the protagonists' goals, plus it is nowhere near unique as a legendary world-saving weapon.
- The strongest swordsman in the series turns out to be the one who has abandoned the art rather than the one with the most impressive kills.
- The final battle is resolved by a character who sees all 'legendary' weapons as simple expendable tools instead of devoting the whole series towards mastering one like most of the cast.
- Both of the series' main protagonists were already leagues beyond all the other characters but simply saw no need to reveal their full abilities until they absolutely needed to.
- Deconstructor Fleet: The final episode turns many wuxia tropes on their heads, Urobuchi style.
- Dwindling Party: Tan Hi gathers a group of allies to travel to the Seven Sins Tower, and by the end of the series, only Tan Hi, Lin Setsu A, Syou Fu Kan, and Ken San Un remain alive, with Kei Gai's fate unknown because demons can't necessarily be killed.
- The season 2 stinger reveals that The Bus Came Back for Kei Gai.
- Easter Egg: Three of Syou Fu Kan's 36 swords are swords belonging to characters of Pili's various titles. A fourth sword belongs to a character from the tabletop roleplaying session-turned-anime: Chaos Dragon, for which Urobuchi was both part of the anime adaptation staff and a player in the original TRPG campaign. But this also brings up the issue of whether Syou Fu Kan can really use up his entire sword collection as he plans to do within his journey at Dong-Li.
- Everything's Deader with Zombies: You have a demoness necromancer and a valley full of zombies that serves as the first obstacle for the Seven Sins Tower.
- Evolving Credits: The second season's opening has a few variables depending on the episodes. As soon as Rou Fu You shows up, Lin Setsu A's battle-ready pose is replaced by Ryouga's sword transformation, which is then replaced by the Seven Blasphemous Deaths emerging from a pool of blood once the cursed sword takes center stage in the story. Additionally, once Rou Shin Kai kills Katsu Eiraku and takes the Seven Blasphemous Deaths for himself, his clip is updated to his new attire. The ending credits shortens Katsu Eiraku's clip and lengthens Rou Shin Kai's around the same time.
- Lin Setsu A and Setsu Mu Syou: Both shared bird motifs, sporting elaborate feather accessories, red eye colors, contrasting long ponytail hairstyles, and the name "Setsu" within their Japanese pronouns.note Setsu Mu Syou is a strong swordsman feared by everyone day-in-out due to his reputation as an antisocial, merciless assassin; but he only targets those who have potential relations to Setsu A and seems to be a decent person deep down inside.note He is also one of the the most straightforwardly honest persons of the team aside from Fu Kan, Tan Hi, and San Un, who's true to himself and of others; and has no problem in keeping promises and speak out whatever is on his mind. On the other hand, Setsu A is a friendly and social Non-Action Guy, but with sly intentions hidden from the public eye; his words are not to be trusted, no matter how genuine he may sound like.
- Betsu Ten Gai and Syou Fu Kan: Both are sword collectors, but Betsu Ten Gai resides in a castle, dresses himself in jewelry and rich fabrics, and desires swords to basically bolster his own ego while having a total disregard for the lives of others. Syou Fu Kan meanwhile is a wanderer, dresses in basic leathers and furs, and collects swords not for his own sake, but to keep them out of the hands of people like Betsu Ten Gai, while choosing a style of fighting that very much forces him to consider the weight of each life he might take. As a bonus, it means he doesn't need a sword because of his skills, while Betsu Ten Gai wants a sword to match his abilities.
- Food Porn: Given Taiwan is best known for their melting-pot of gourmets, it's a no-brainer TBF will give all their might in food promotion.
- Team Setsu A's lunch hour in episode 3, and Betsu Ten Gai's banquet table in episodes 8, 9 bears a great deal of elaborately-detailed food.
- Nitro+ introduced in more detail, a couple of snacks that appeared in TBF through twitter. Such as Syou Fu Kan's Shao Bing, Tan Hi's Walnut Biscuit, Ken San Un's Dried Tofu, Setsu Mu Syou's Stir-Fried Watermelon Seeds, Betsu Ten Gai's Roast Chicken, Chou Mei's Stir Fry Sweet Mui Choy and Pork Belly, and Lin Setsu A's...Cheesecake?! note
- Foreshadowing: This series is relatively full of them.
- Lin Setsu A's role as a Phantom Thief is foreshadowed as early as the first episode.
- Betsu Ten Gai stares into the eyes of Zan Kyou and seeing both Syou Fu Kan and Lin Setsu A, he expresses surprise that Lin Setsu A is "opposing" him, then laughs maniacally.
- Setsu Mu Syou mentions that Lin Setsu A "took something very valuable from him", and for that reason, hated him.
- Near the Demon Spine Mountains, Betsu Ten Gai just decides to "amuse himself" and go back to the Seven Sins Tower when he talks about The Chessmaster nature of Lin Setsu A.
- Compared to everyone else's weapon, Syou Fu Kan's sword is unremarkably plain and makes a dull wooden "clunk" sound whenever drawn or sheathed.
- Kei Gai and Syu Un Syou siding with Betsu Ten Gai is foreshadowed in a scene where Lin Setsu A notices some Onyx Demon guards cleaning up a table that was set for three people...one of them being Betsu Ten Gai of course.
- The opening sequence prominently features the series' MacGuffin sword being bent like a cheap plastic prop in the middle of a strong gustnado. It may seem like questionable CGI, but the sword gets twisted in the exact same way during the climax of the last episode.
- Lin Setsu A's role as a Phantom Thief is foreshadowed as early as the first episode.
- A Good Way to Die: In true wuxia fashion, named characters that are fatally wounded will still remain beautiful while making a dying statement and dropping to the ground in slow motion.
- Gorn: If you are a Mook and going up against Supernatural Martial Arts masters, you will probably die in a gruesome fashion. Contrast with A Good Way to Die if you were fortunate enough to have a name.
- That second bit is averted with Chou Mei, who has his organs explode out through his back.
- Gratuitous English: In this show of ornate Taiwanese puppets penned by a Japanese screenwriter, series composer Hiroyuki Sawano manages to put some English into the main Leitmotif "thunderBOLTfantasy":The Land is cloaked in deepest blue
The shadow of eagles across the moon
Endure the pain, it's easy now
In words can I say it?
- The second season opening theme "His/Story" gets half of "thunderBOLTfantasy"'s lyrics as part of its chorus.
- Hidden Depths: All of the renowned heroes that the co-protagonists encounter (up to and including the main villain!) turn out to be small fry in comparison to what the two of them really are.
- Homage: In the manga adaption of chapter 4, the scene where Betsu Ten Gai kills an innocent young boy seems to be based on one from Tales of Berseria where the main heroine helplessly witnesses her younger brother killed by her former teacher and brother in law in the Japanese version.
- Hot Springs Episode: Only in the manga, where Lin and the guys (although Tan Hi was listening through the other side), discussing the three requirements they need to pass through the three barriers.
- I Have Many Names: Since the story takes place in an ancient Chinese setting, most characters will have at least 2 names for themselves: their given name and an art name. Lin Setsu A takes the cake in having an extra alias, which gives him three names. What makes it worse is all characters have three different voice overs, giving them at least three different additional readings to compare with.
- For those who find themselves confused by this, remember: The characters have the same given name and art name (and alias, if you're Lin Setsu A) regardless of what version of the show you're watching, they're just pronounced and rendered into English differently depending on the version.
- Infinity +1 Sword: All of the Magic Weapons of Divine Teaching are considered to be this in every way, but the Tengyouken (Tiān Xíng Jiàn) is believed by Betsu Ten Gai to be the most powerful of them all and that is why he wants it for himself. He surmised this because he has studied the records of the War of Fading Dusk and listened to the communications of the Demon Realm, and the only Demon God not accounted for is You Ja Rei, who he believes was actually slain by the wielder of the Tengyouken. Throughout season 1, Syou Fu Kan constantly doubts the veracity of the myth, and he is proven right when Betsu Ten Gai finally steals the sword and releases a spell that has been keeping You Ja Rei sealed under the Tan Clan's sacred grounds. Up until this point, Syou Fu Kan's skepticism is seen as unusual in a world of might and magic, until You Ja Rei awakens and he faces her solo, unsheathing one of the thirty-six even more powerful magical swords he's been keeping hidden the whole time, when he's been using an intentionally dull piece of wood painted silver to look like a sword for the entire season.
- It Began with a Twist of Fate: It was raining and Syou Fu Kan needed an umbrella...
- Kicking Ass in All Her Finery: All girls (and guys) wear bedazzling fancy clothes, and can kick major ass just fine without tripping themselves up.
- Badass Cape / Badass Longcoat / Badass Long Robe: Due to the nature of controlling puppets from the inside, Pili puppet costumes are required to have long gowns and robes to cover up the puppeteers' arms. While the capes are there for bonus badass looks when they are performing live, flying, or just standing in the wind, Word of God indicates that in Setsu Mu Syou's case, because of his lean bodyframe (and least amount of clothing layers on top), he has to wear a badass cape, otherwise his puppeteer won't have anywhere to hide himself during the shoot.
- Pimped-Out Dress: Judging from both 2D design and puppet production outcome, of all characters, Lin Setsu A, Tan Hi, Setsu Mu Syou, and Betsu Ten Gai takes the cake of wearing the most pimped outfits.
- Meaningful Name:
- The series title "Thunderbolt" and T.M.R's theme song "RAIMEI (thunder roar)" both pays tribute to Pili Co.'s company title: Pili (霹靂) stands for "roaring thunder and flashing lightning" in Chinese.
- Complying to Chinese tradition, all characters go by names that has something to do with their motifs, and or characteristics.
- Medium Blending: Taiwanese state-of-the-art puppets with CG effects to create additional monsters, perform flashy battle scenes, and render the weather.
- Mooks: The mask wearing, robed swordsmen of the Black Demon Sect. They possess massive amounts of Undying Loyalty to their leaders, considering the Curb-Stomp Battle they witness occur to their comrades and still continue the Mook Horror Show when fighting Setsu Mu Syou and a serious Syou Fu Kan.
- Nice Shoes: Considering the usual close-up on the puppets' boots which is to show that they are walking, the boots design is very stylish with sets of gems particularly on Setsu Mu Syou◊, Betsu Ten Gai◊ and Lin Setsu A◊.
- Nonchalant Dodge: Syou Fu Kan, given his laidback attitude, barely moves but he is able to dodge his enemy's attacks and Betsu Ten Gai doesn't care if some high power attack comes to him because he could just dodge it.
- Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: Lin Setsu A has put together quite a party to take down Betsu Ten Gai, to wit: a wandering swordsman who recently arrived from another country; a sheltered warrior priestess; a cynical archer and his Keet sidekick; a demon necromancer who hates him (but is willing to put that aside for the sake of the mission); and a psychopath assassin who also hates him, and is along specifically for the opportunity to kill him.
- Rapunzel Hair: Everyone, in fact, it might easier to list characters who don't have hair that reaches beyond their waist.
- Red Baron: Characters are famously known by names like, the One-Eyed Impaler, the Night's Lament, the Screaming Phoenix Killer, and the Enigmatic Gale.
- Scry vs. Scry: It's a series filled with Kung fu masters.
- "The battle will end in nine moves."
- Secret Test of Character: Both Kei Gai and Syu Un Syou deliberately held back during the trials that they were recruited for in order to get a better sense of Syou Fu Kan's skills and motivation.
- Sequel Hook: Syou Fu Kan still has 35 swords of mass destruction to dispose of. And Lin Setsu A knows if he advertises that to the world every single villain in Dong-Li and Xi-You will be after them, and will be perfect marks for him.
- The Movie (#1) shows Lin Setsu A doing just this, setting up season 2 by revealing the evil organization Kasei Meikou' scorpion-themed lady assassin Katsu Eiraku and the corrupt Xi-You government official Syou Kyou Ken both preparing a venture across the Wasteland of Spirits to chase after Syou Fu Kan and his Sorcerous Sword Index, as well as his ally Rou Fu You and his talking pipa Ryouga preparing their own journey to get ready to lend their aid.
- Season 2 ends with Syou Fu Kan somehow in possession of two more swords than he started off with, and now Kasei Meikou is planning a full on invasion of Dong-Li with the assistance of Kei Gai.
- The Movie #2 shows us Mutsu Ten Mei and Ten Kou Ki Shou as two of Syou Fu Kan's other allies, but with no explanation of why they never caught up with him again, which Lin Setsu A remarks upon in The Stinger. It also introduces Imperial Princess Chou Fu and her unseen father, who are also likely to show up in season 3.
- Single-Stroke Battle: Almost every battle between two main characters ends with the two duelists clashing in this manner, and only one surviving.
- The South Paw: Due to the mechanism of the puppets, all puppets' left hands are designed to be their most expressive part, hence why they all wield their weapons with their left hands, making them left-handed. Puppeteers are mostly right-handed. Therefore, the puppets are designed to fully occupy their puppeteers' right hands by supporting the puppets' full body, and control most of the puppets' internal mechanisms, including head tilts, eye blinks, and the puppets' right arms; while their left hands control the left hands of the puppets and their puppets' foot movements. Our mister archer, Syu Un Syou and dual wielder, Setsu Mu Syou could pass as Heroic Ambidexterity due to Syu Un Syou's use of his right hand for arrows, typical for right-handed archers, and Setsu Mu Syou for his usage of dual sword-fencing.
- Subverted in the manga adaption. Where everyone wield their weapons right-handed with the exception of Lin Setsu A and Betsu Ten Gai, who are actually left-handed.
- Spell My Name with an "S": Due to the nature of Japan and Taiwan's cooperative release, all character names and terminologies have three official readings: Japanese, Mandarin Chinese, or Taiwanese Hokkien depending on the voice over adaptation the audience is watching. The official English subs from Crunchyroll keep the Mandarin Chinese character names, translate the terminology, attacks, and "art name" epithets to English, and include translations for the Nenpaku poems.
- Strange Minds Think Alike: Lin Setsu A has the right idea to stop he rampaging demon god. Just get a new legendary sword to seal it again! Trouble is, where do you find one in a jiffy? It's a good thing Syou Fu Kan has 36 of those and he's thinking that's a good solution as well.
- Supernatural Martial Arts: In true Wuxia fashion, characters can perform weapon based Ki Manipulation due to their training.
- Sword Beam: A good portion of swordsmen can pull this off in grand style.
- Sword Sparks: Littered like fireworks. They're so spectacular, you need to wear goggles to prevent them burning your eyes.
- Technicolor Eyes: This is the first time Pili Co. has ever given their puppets eye colors in magenta (Tan Hi), teal (Betsu Ten Gai), bright red (Setsu A, Setsu Mu Syou, Ryou Mi), and sky blue (Ken San Un) to give them a more "anime" edge thanks to the collaboration.
- Theme Music Power-Up: The climax of an episode's fight is accompanied by "thunderBOLTfantasy" playing.
- Weapon of Choice: Expected from weapon designer Makoto Ishiwata, each weapon is direct reflection of its wielder. A behind the scenes video about each character's weapon can be seen here. 
- Wham Line: "He was asking for help to swindle one of the Demonic Weapons from a little Seal Guardian".
- Where It All Began: The final battle is set near the Shrine from where Tanhi was escaping from the beginning.
- World of Ham: Traditional Chinese Puppet shows have been done by male-only actors using hammy tones of speech. The Japanese voice actors followed suit with their dubbing for this series.
- Would Hit a Girl: Most the villains like Black Demon Sect, Syu Un Syou, and Setsu Mu Syou are willing or don't care about killing a women whether their good or evil.