11 February 2017

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Candle In The Tomb 鬼吹灯之精绝古城 - Episode 13 (Recap)

Posted by SakiVI on February 11, 2017
SakiVI: We get a preview, or a synopsis of what we are looking for and the history. We might be dealing with a demon, people. But not quite yet.
kakashi: We also get the most boring episode ever. It's like a museum guided tour, just much more boring.
JoAnne: If my museum guide looked like Bayi I'd be ...well, I don't know what I'd be. Something good.
You'd be paying a lot of attention?
How could she pay attention with all that drooling?

Episode 13

Back to Bayi going down the water well. Why are they so curious to spend time in a tomb when it’s windy season and they have to find the Ancient City of Jinjue during the windy season? Silly archeologists.
Well, I'd also go have a look. Since they're here and there is nothing else to do?
Except find the Ancient City of Jinjue, you mean?
I'd want to take a look, too. The Ancient City is still just a possibility while this place? It's a sure bet right in front of their faces.
Bayi lands on the bank of the water source. He sees a decorated door above some steps. Oooh, a tomb entrance? Oh, it’s not decorated, it’s got animal skins
Oh, fashionable. But fur's a no-go.
I believe animal skins qualify as decoration in this case?
I was thinking that they had a feast of meat during the entombing ceremony?
Bayi comes back up and everyone questions him at once. They go outside and he tells them there’s nothing interesting. He is not sure there is a tomb or not, but come on, there’s a door! Go through it! (I was really puzzled by this response. I wondered at first if he was going to try to go in there by himself when everyone was sleeping) Anyway, in the book that he used, the Sixteen Characters Yin Yang Feng Shui Secret Techniques Book passed down by his ancestors, the celestial chapter says that if there is the correct star alignment and a water source, there is bound to be a tomb. But yet, it’s too close to the water source somehow. And so, Bayi thinks this may just be an escape route for the tomb builders or something.
I seriously do not care one tiny little bit.
Just someone elbow me when it gets interesting again.
But, guys. Look at that hair. (sheesh, and I'm known as the cranky one)
Other professor says they should have a look because Archaeology, and Professor Chen agrees because Archaeology.(I'm voting for t-shirts that say "Because Archaeology") So, that settles it, they’ll go down come the morn. Oh, and Bayi and Shirley have a moment over the soup.
Wait ... the soup is still a thing?
It only feels like forever, Kakashi.
I have to say I was a bit distracted remembering the soup and worried if there anything left because I knew they hadn't eaten. I would've made them eat first. You can't think properly on an empty stomach. I would've been cranky having to smell soup and expected to explain anything before I got to eat.
Next day, they go down as planned. Boy Student 1 stays behind with Anliman. He’s quite cute, this kid.
Yes, this one student is good-looking. It's the only thing he is, because why else is he there?
So there is a student left after the student couple gets eaten?
Here's a pic of Anliman though
His hat.  So cute.
Yup. Love the hat.
Down at the door, the reason for the animal skins is that they sealed off any cracks and preserved the goods inside. Shirley says there are no hidden mechanisms. Bayi says only people who know this sort of thing would know what to look for. She just looks at him
Yes, and now, move on. (I think he tried to boast a little)
I thought he was commenting on HER knowledge, maybe a little wink wink there.
I thought he was doing the whole "I know there is more about you than you are willing to say" thing.
Bayi and Other Professor carefully remove the animal hide in one piece - why is it preserved? - and then Bayi and Fatty try opening the door. They’re all wearing their gas masks, and Bayi and Fatty open the door. They go in with their rifle and shovel, Shirley following behind with her pistol, and they enter a dark room that lights up to show mummified bodies chained to pillars. Ew.
Ohhhh! *gets a bit excited*
*stage whispers* Lurch? You there, bud?
This was super cool.
Fatty wants to know why ghosts would light candles for a change? Professor Chen says it’s an old trick using white phosphorous which lights up when it has contact with air. Okay, I really don’t see how this would work because some air must’ve been in the room when it sealed off, so wouldn’t the phosphorous have lit up already?
Maybe they had tiny little vacuum pumps, the people who built this tomb?
They had a bunch of people at the door and they all sucked in really hard and then slammed the door shut.
Oh, the bodies look horrible. What is it with people and human sacrifice? Sick.
I was seriously excited here, waiting for someone to get attacked.
Shirley notes there’s no coffin. And then Girl Student gets a good long look at the bodies and throws up. So does Alien Aficionado. Fair enough, I would've too
Are we meant to like or pity these characters? Or identity with them? Cause believe me ... it's not working. 
'scuse me. The idea of an ARCHAEOLOGIST being repulsed by a mummy is...come ON. That's just ridiculous.
I've said this before. I just don't get them at all. What is with the throwing up here? You did up dead people for a living!!!!
no coffin
Bayi asks if Shirley is okay, and she deadpans she’s fine. Pffft. Dude, if she scared easily, she wouldn’t have gone on this trip. She doesn’t have her PhD to worry about
Professor Chen says this isn’t really a tomb, but an area for sacrifices. He says the customs of many small countries in the Western Regions were very similar. They tied criminals up in the desert to die of dehydration, and, when their bodies were completely air-dried, would move them into rooms like these, and pour fresh animal blood over their bodies. Charming.
This upcoming exhibition will not be suitable for kids.
So why are there no bloodstains on the sacrificial platform? 
Fake news?
I actually want to know more about this. What was the point? Why would they waste good fresh animal blood for this instead of something else? I wanted more explanation since nothing (and I mean NOTHING) else is really going on here.

Fatty calls this fascism, and Other Professor dismisses it as common in slave-owning societies. Then, in an aside to Bayi, Fatty says there’s nothing there for them other than the mummies. He claims he’s trying to help the archaeologists, but Bayi dismisses him, pffft. Then Bayi wonders why there isn’t a coffin, making it a tomb? Fatty says they’re so unlucky that they never get to see coffins in tombs (What about Lurch’s coffin?) just as Shirley walks nearby. She asks what they are talking about, and they say maybe the coffins are under the water? She thinks there is a hidden mechanism somewhere.  
Okay.
Do you think Fatty EVER figures out that they're not going to get rich on this trip?
Then Fatty actually asks a good question which is why the tomb would be so hidden away? Then he trips over. That's his speciality. And look, there’s a mechanism. There’s a cover in the floor that perhaps might be the underground tomb. There are four handles, and the men minus Chen pull the cover up. Yes, there’s another tomb!
Thank God. Maybe someone will finally die? Or at least get chased by something with two legs?
A kangaroo? Gawd, I'm funny today. 
I love you guys. I'm happy to be with other people who are also waiting impatiently for someone to die.
Outside, Boy Student is bored and sits with Anliman who tells him, if you’re worried, go down to see them. Boy Student says the ones down there are worried about things up here. Then he asks for some horse milk wine. And Anliman doesn’t give it to him, ha. But then Boy Student pettily takes the bread they’ve just heated so Anliman has to heat another. People, leave the old man alone.
Anliman started it this time.
Actually, I thought Anliman was being snarly because the student was implying that they are worried that Anliman is going to run off so he's stuck up here with him.
Back to the team below. Bayi goes down first, then Other Professor who is so excited! He’s like a three-year old in a candy store. Other Professor babbles on about the details of the tomb and how it’s magical. And yep, there’s a coffin. Fatty is excited that there must be precious things in this tomb, and Bayi warns him not to get greedy. Fatty says, yes, yes, but he can increase his knowledge. That’s fair
They all get on my nerves big time. I'm so glad I'm not part of this expedition
That's the word. I was trying to remember it for a previous comment and all I could come up with was exhibit and escapade and I knew neither were right.
Professor Chen gathers everyone to look at the mural. It recorded things related to the Ancient City of Jingjue. Ooh. (so this might help them in their search for the city?) Chen says it is the tomb of Prince of Gu Mo, a satellite state of Jingjue’s. Over to the side, Bayi says the tomb will be much grander than that general’s tomb. You two, always insulting Lurch. No wonder he wanted to kill you.  
I miss Lurch.
Wouldn't it have been cool if he could've been on this expedition rather than those students?
The murals show the tribute given to the Queen of Jingjue. We see Gu Mo Wangtze kneeling before the queen to beg relief from the tribute. She refused to see him. Chen says that Gu Mo Wangtze was the incarnation of the Sun God of War. He slipped into the palace at Jingjue to assassinate the queen, but discovered a startling secret. The queen wore a veil in the earlier murals. But in the last one, she is shown lifting the veil and light beaming from her face at someone in front of her while the prince is watching.  
These pictures are so conveniently easy to read. And our dudes so conveniently always know exactly what they mean.  
Shirley says the queen was a female demon. She had lifted the veil and the person in front of her died because they tried to see the queen’s face. In fact, they disappeared. Of course, Bayi, and then Fatty, products of the Cultural Revolution, scoff at her story. Shirley says she is guessing to some extent, but that there is a basis for it. She and her father read a book called the The Great Tang Records on the Western Regions and that among the legends recorded there, there is one about the queen, whose eyes were the passageway to the netherworld. One look from her eyes, and a person disappeared. No one knew where the disappeared person went.
Umm...if she's known for having eyes that are a passageway to the netherworld and when she looks at a person they disappear, I think it's pretty obvious where they go.
Wouldn't it be cool if Shirley was a descendant of the Queen and that's why the blue bugs didn't bother her?

The queen wanted to be worshiped and all who opposed were killed. However, she didn’t rule for too long because she died of a disease. Then, the slaves and the neighboring regions formed an allied army and destroyed the queen’s empire. But when they tried to destroy her tomb, a sandstorm destroyed them. And now the legend goes that if anyone tries to steal from the queen’s tomb, a horrible sandstorm will destroy any way they have of finding their way out of the desert. Ooh, here’s a warning, guys! Don’t take anything when you get to Jingjue! 
I like this story. But couldn't we have, you know, heard it and then moved on, let's say to ... a monster?  
There are really not enough monsters in this drama at all.
(Eating popcorn. Waiting for someone to die)
Anyway, it seems our Gu Mo Wangtze escaped and plotted to kill the queen via poisoned tribute of golden lamb. And that’s how the queen got sick and died. As for the prince, he died soon after and was buried in this tomb. (So, open the coffin?)  
So ... does that mean they're near Jingjue?
So why would that prince have a mural telling her story in his tomb?  Why wouldn't it tell his story?

Professor Chen seems overcome. He is thinking of Shirley’s father and the many matters of back then, but we don’t know the details. Anyway, he agrees that Shirley’s Appa will rest in peace if they find Jingjue.
Hmmm .. why?
Because she'll fulfill his dream.

Then, Bayi, after not believing the female demon angle to the story, says, a female demon is dangerous, do we need to go? Then, Shirley says that the queen being one is just a legend. Bayi is confused, and Chen says, we have to gather all the facts to guess better (in life, this is often true). He’s really excited. And then Bayi says he’s a materialist and atheist and that he really can’t believe the queen could make a person disappear with one look. Then Shirley, who really seems to know everything, says that in Kansas, there was a pathology stay of a boy who did as the queen of Jingjue did: make things disappear with his eyes. She said that scientists studied him and found his brainwaves were different from a normal human, making him capable of creating a transportation energy via his visual nerves. Sure, why not. Anyway, the problem was corrected with a magnetic helmet.  
And on they babble.  
Why a helmet? Wouldn't he just need goggles?
And why Kansas?
Shirley then explains that the clothing and accessories of the figures in the mural show that they are about people from Jingjue. (Sidebar: unless people are using something extreme like panniers or unusual like saris, most clothing styles across the world look pretty similar in outline form such as we see on these murals, which, now, come to think of it, look a bit different from the usually pants, skirts and tops, and actually like something out of the Mahabharata)
Well you for sure can't get them at JC Penney.
Fatty gets greedy again, and Other Professor scolds him for it, saying the murals are for the country. Honestly, I don’t get why Fatty is all angry that Shirley might be stealing from these tombs when he totally is planning on exactly that and selling to Americans if he can.  
Because he's Fatty.
Because whatever she steals, he can't.

Moving on, Fatty does suggest opening the coffin, but Archaeology! They’ll have to come back after they’ve got permission to excavate or get proper protection. And Bayi supports them on the surface. Ha, he and Fatty are totally coming back ahead of all those permissions etc.
I doubt that. They would never find this place again, would they? 
Well they could hire Anliman, but they'd have to come up with a cover story, and I don't know if Bayi wants to outright lie to the old guy.
Then Professor Chen sees something amazing in the murals. Shirley looks up the notebook, and yep, that’s the same Zhagelama Valley with a split in the mountain range as drawn in the book. They are looking at a mural of the Ancient City of Jingjue!
Oooooh      
Is this going to be on the test later?   
Something falls, scaring them all, and Boy Student came down for his own Archaeology moment. Anliman had slept so he came down. So, Fatty and Bayi go up ahead of everyone else.  
Will Anliman still be there? Dun-dun.
I was still semi-convinced he'd be gone, but it's not like they wouldn't be able to see him off in the distance.
Unless a sandstorm is brewing.

Comments:

The history was all very interesting, but I would’ve liked the live action version a la The Lost Tomb, not the mural manga we saw here.  
I was bored to death.
You watch, we'll get 10 minutes of action in the last episode and that will be it.
Also, everyone be sure to follow the Mahabharata link to a very funny short movie. You’re welcome. 

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