22 February 2017

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Candle In The Tomb 鬼吹灯之精绝古城 - Episode 17 (Recap)

Posted by SakiVI on February 22, 2017
SakiVI: Finally we are in the Ancient City of Jingjue and in a temple, woohoo! Maybe something will actually happen.
JoAnne: I've almost given up hope.
kakashi: It's an excellent episode. Well, I don't remember the details, but I'm confident it is.
Trotwood: I just watched it. Excellent is not the adjective I would have used.
 

Episode 17

Fatty notes everything is all black inside. Professor Chen says it’s because it’s all carved from the black magnetic mountains. Then he raves about the craftsmanship.
To Fatty: Duh
It's a very good looking temple!
It doesn't look all that black to me.
As they walk through the old temple, Bayi tells Fatty to keep his eye open in case of monsters. Gosh, I hope there’s one! Fatty’s all whatever, they have AKs now.
Yes, all that shooting at things really went well in previous episodes, didn't it.
Please. Please. I was really wanting a monster.
Look! There!!! Ah no. Sorry.  
Professor Chen then tells them that the stone pillars symbolize the different ranks in society. Lowest are cattle, then the ordinary citizens (hello, rude). The Pillars with huge eyes: Chen didn’t finish that thought. Fatty thinks one statue looks like snake, but I don’t see it. They all note that eyes are highly valued in the ancient Jingjue culture, and that story about the queen sending people to another dimension just by looking at them is raised again. Fatty says that’s a lie of the upper classes, and Alien Aficionado says his usual line. Chen just says you never know.
I feel like they should all be paying special attention to Shirley. Just in case.
Two thumbs up for the interesting stone statues!
Professor Chen is that teacher that listened to everyone and got ideas from even the wackiest kid. He's the  reason that Alien Student is probably focused and in school rather than doing something crazy and getting imprisoned or tortured.
Then they reach an empty part of the temple. Bayi hypothesizes that it symbolizes that other dimension the queen sent people off to. Shirley and Professor Chen both admire his thinking. Bayi wonders, though, could such an alternative dimension exist. I dunno. I’ll leave that to the science buffs on this blog to tell me.
Or it's just not finished yet, Bayi.
"Shirley and Professor Chen both admire his thinking." I'm laughing so hard. This sentence sums up about 50% of this show.
I was wondering if he thought that the people building it were just messing with people. Selling emptiness by saying it's another dimension. But I think I'd believe lots of stuff if I saw ants almost carry off my shovel.
Then, they see a stone stand with a stone eye on it. And Bayi is actually freaked out a bit, wondering if the queen really was a demon. Sidebar: what about finding water? Anyway, it looks a bit sick, that stone eye.
Two thumbs up for the stone eye!!
I was all for the finding water thing, too. You don't just "forget" that you are almost dying from dehydration because you're surrounded by pretty things. If anything, finding the tomb means finding water.
Oooh, the ceiling has an eye shape, and it is glowing red! Anyway, the group are approaching the eye. It’s made of jade and really does look like an eye. (I thought it looked fatty and gross and bulbous like an eyeball would, so didn't find it pretty at all) We get our usual Fatty wanting to know what it’s worth, and Chen telling him it’s priceless and to leave it alone.
That's ... probably not good. Things that glow red are usually, you know ... something.
As Chen lectures because no one is dehydrated anymore, Fatty strokes that eye in a really pervy way. Then, they all look up, and see the eye carved in the ceiling. And then Chen says the tomb and the river will be under the temple because the temple is the city center, and ancient Western Region countries often placed their royal families tombs in the city’s center. Oh, and that eye is staring at everyone. Fatty, of course, is right back at it trying to remove it from that stand it's on, and Shirley stops him. Actually, he tries to lie and say he was studying it, and Shirley calls him out on it. She wants to know what he is was studying. Chen tells him he could’ve broken it. Fatty says but look at the indentation on top as if he was looking at that all along but really he was just trying to figure out a way to answer Shirley so that it would prove that he wasn't trying to steal it.. Turns out it has seven sides, and Bayi says "just like Fatty’s pendant.And that pendant fits. And then the ground shakes. And some writing on the thing that the jade eye is on appears.
So maybe, in a really interesting twist, Fatty turns out to be super important. Possibly even supernatural.
HE IS IMPORTANT!!! Without him, the story would have ended here.
Wouldn't it be funny if Shirley is the descendent of the demon Queen and Fatty is the descendent of her lover or errand boy or something and Bayi isn't tied to her at all? And that is really the unease that Fatty feels because the pairing is wrong? I know. outlandish, but I have to really entertain myself here.
At Professor Chen’s request, Fatty starts to tell the story of how he got the pendant, and, at Bayi’s insistence, tells the truth. Fatty’s dad fought some bandits in the Taklaman Desert, and they got the pendant from a man with a black beard. Then, it was a birth gift to Fatty. And then Fatty steals the jade eye because he has to be annoying in some way or another. Fatty thinks that the eye belongs to him because his pendant, that his father stole in some battle with "bandits" (one person’s bandit might be another person’s defense) fits in it. The team tell him it’s an artifact and not his, and Bayi has to tell Fatty it’s an artifact and belongs to the country. Shirley suggests the jade eye might be the mechanism to get to the underground river, and so Bayi take it back from Fatty.
Face it, Fatty, you're not a couple anymore.
Don't take the toys away from the doggie! Doggie might bite!
Oh noes! A snake!
It comes out of the hole that had been covered up by the eye.
I told you, danger! What a climax.
And Bayi drops the jade eye! It shatters, hahahahaha. No time to cry over broken jade though, because the eye on the ceiling is moving. A giant, moving bubble bursts out of the eye, hits the ground, and, gosh, darn it, it had more snakes! We next get this hilarious scene where Shirley, Bayi and Fatty are gunning down the snakes, and aiming a stun grenade, and the professor is screaming, "Be careful of the historical site! Be careful of the historical site!"
I'm giggling.
I was laughing, too. "Be careful of the artifacts"? Who is he kidding with demon snakes around?
Fatty throws the grenade and whoops! It hits the ceiling and flies back at the group. Seriously, why is he there, again? They all run, except Bayi who bats the grenade back and there’s this big flash of light and - well, I’m not sure. All the snakes seem to be still, but nothing blew up, and that podium the eye was on moved a bit, and Bayi and Shirley held on to each other and then got embarrassed about it, but what actually happened? Anyone?
Not a clue. Nothing ever really happens, this is more of the same. 
The snakes had enough and thought "let's go chill elsewhere".
Shirley said they were afraid of bright light, but it looks like they all died from it. 
Anyway, Bayi wants to leave right away What about the need to look for water?- nope, no one was near death after all! - when Shirley sees that the stand for the jade eye has grown taller. She walks towards it, and Bayi tries to order her back, and she says there’s something up with it. Telling Fatty to stay back, Bayi goes with her, and, they carefully avoid the snakes who are either dead or unconscious, but thankfully, still. The ceiling eye is still glowing red, as Shirley examines the eye stand. There is a circular base now. The two think how to turn it so that it gets them to the river and tomb, and not set off a trap. Hmm.
If only there were some traps *starts praying*
Bayi sees there are 16 pillars and they are similar in arrangement to the Sixteen Dragons of Toudi. Sidebar: DaFudge? There are also 16 giant doors. Some ancient Han Dynasty tombs also used this contraption, says Bayi. He has everyone back up. Then he asks Shirley if she trusts him. She does. Cool. Bayi says they should turn it clockwise, and counterclockwise. As they prepare to turn the podium, Shirley asks if Bayi will regret it. Regret what? And Bayi says he is returning the favor of her saving his life before. Er, how does this return that favor? This episode is not very clear to me. He also asks if she trusts he has this ability, and she says she does.  
He already asks her this. Why does he ask her again? Why do people say half the things they do in this drama? And did anyone notice how perfect his hair still is? Bloody perfect. 
she is also quite stunned
Bayi tells everyone to hide behind the pillars and to run if something happens. Then, he says to Shirley that they should turn the podium 5 steps towards yang, clockwise, and 1 step towards yin, counterclockwise. I love how he just says Yang and Ying first and Shirley is all "what? speak so I can understand!" So he has to tell her what he really means in regular person speak.  They do exactly that. We see ALL the turns. In slo-mo because that fake rock is fake heavy. It is a bit nerve-wracking, especially as nothing happens for a minute (I was so expecting for this to be an utter fail), and then, a trap door opens in the floor.
And he knew this pattern because why?
He knows things, JoAnne.
I was asking this, too. It seemed completely random. What does 5 and 1 have to do with the pattern of 16 they had been talking about earlier.
Chen is so happy. And Shirley asks how Bayi knew about the turns? Bayi goes into his own professorial mode and says the Sixteen Dragons of Toudi is a giant-door technique passed down from ancient times, and called giant doors because these contraptions are mostly used for ancient passage doors. And the technique of calculation is according to the evolution of Luo numbers and the pattern of the stars in the sky. Once again, DaFudge? Although, I’m laughing at how everyone’s attentive in class. Alien Aficionado in particular is a good student, asking what Luo numbers are. Bayi just says he wouldn’t understand, which annoys all the students, even Girl Student who was supposedly on the brink of death from thirst in the last episode.
Ah, that whole Feng Shui thing he insists he knows barely anything about but has clearly memorized word for word, page after page.
I know that stuff too! I saw it in Old Nine Gates!!!
Yup. His knowledge is no "wow I just happened upon a book in the library and skimmed it when I was bored" variety. He knows a LOT more than he lets on.
Shirley and Bayi go first down the stairs, and Fatty complains about Bayi and Shirley being in sync. Look, they make a great couple, Fatty! More importantly, the air is getting damp, yay! That means the river is nearby. As they go along in the dark with just their flashlights, which is making me feel rather claustrophobic, they see some eyes carved into the walls, When those Jingjue people got a theme in their heads, they really went for it! They keep walking, and they can all hear the water, except Fatty for some reason, and then, yay, there’s the water. They rush to drink, though frankly, I no longer believed they were thirsty.
I kept waiting for something to jump out of the water to suck their faces off or bite off their hands. Or at least the water to have some kind of poison in it. But nothing. Just water.
Did that percussion grenade make Fatty deaf? He can hear them, though. Just not the water. Hmmm. And what kind of percussion would stun snakes and deafen one person partially but not at all anyone else?
Oh, now I remember that I was also a bit puzzled about this part in the story. I started to hope that maybe Fatty had been bewitched or something ... you know, something exciting, but nope. He just temporarily doesn't hear well.
I remember thinking that maybe there wasn't any water and that he, being the least intellectual, wasn't fooled by the delusion of water. And that they'd get to what they thought was water but it was only a mirage, and they ended up trying to drink sand.
Fatty tries to rest after drinking his fill (he also starts singing loudly), and Bayi tells him they’ll rest when they get back to Beijing, ha. They go to look around, and the archaeological team settle down to get specimens or something and to get food and rest like Bayi ordered/suggested they do. Then Bayi calls them along to see a sluice door on the other side of the river. Shirley wants to go look. Bayi sees a contraption and looks at all the big-eyed statues around. One looks like it will rotate. Fatty, in the meantime, finds an underwater bridge. Bayi gets all military on him and tells him, "retreat!" As Bayi looks around, he realized that the contraption has already been set off by someone before them. Writer-nim, this is a total letdown. You should’ve set off the contraption for us!
Uh, who before them? Who's waiting for them? A very hungry Shirley-dad? A very nasty dead Queen?
Or BOTH of them together? 
Something better happen soon. We need another death.
Bayi goes off to check out the door, Shirley with him. Fatty wants to go too, but is left to guard the professor. That’s the life of a sidekick, Fatty.
And I thought. THAT is the end? That?
*checks for hidden tracks, comes up with nothing* 

Comments:

They all forgot they were near death pretty easily. This archaeology team is tougher than it looks. But I’m getting annoyed with the way this show seems to build up to something like a possible trap, and then telling us, oh, never mind. We had that same issue with the Russian tomb raiders where we thought we had a human enemy, but, oops, no, they’re dead. And that Wangstze’s tomb: nope, can’t open the coffin. No traps, either. Come on, at least in The Lost Tomb, something was always coming for our heroes!
As a traveler, I guess I'd be pretty glad that nothing much happens. As a viewer, though, this would totally suck if it weren't for the mystery of Bayi's perfect hair.
Hahaha. Hey, I get it! This isn't a show for the viewers. They made it for those INSIDE the story. If you think about it that way, it makes perfect sense!
I don't get it even looking at it from that perspective.
The video version of an endless series of photos your friend INSISTS you look at it, of them standing next to some poorly framed 'landmark'...except they can no longer remember anything about it, or why they took the shot, but 'it was really interesting, I couldn't believe it when I heard it!'  No.  No it is not.  And if it was, then you lead a really boring life.

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