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Thread: Yau Tan Tze - the wuxia "protagonist" who wasn't?

  1. #1
    Moderator Ken Cheng's Avatar
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    Default Yau Tan Tze - the wuxia "protagonist" who wasn't?

    DEMIGODS AND SEMIDEVILS by Jin Yong features a remarkable *three* (instead of the typical one) protagonists: Deun Yu, Kiu Fung, and Hui Juk. Yau Tan Tze is not generally considered a protagonist of the story, but when you look at his character arc, he sometimes sure looks like one.

    To, wit, Yau Tan Tze:

    1. Lost his parent to tragic circumstances early in life.

    2. Sought revenge against the party (Kiu Fung) who killed his parent.

    3. By sheer luck, survived numerous calamities and discovered an exquisite martial arts technique that enabled him to become one of the most powerful fighters in wulin.

    4. Became involved in a romance with an attractive young wulin girl.

    This is basically the common character arc of a wuxia protagonist.

    Yau Tan Tze was not intended to be a fourth protagonist of DGSD, and indeed, his fate is much more pathetic than expected of a wuxia protagonist, but the structure of his story does reflect many aspects of the typical wuxia protagonist character arc.

  2. #2
    Senior Member Ian Liew's Avatar
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    Perhaps at the start he was intended as such. Jin Yong's choice of title did imply that his story would have eight major characters, maybe something along the line of the Tianshan Seven Swords. Somewhere along the line he probably got tired and turned some of those he had written into antagonists and supporting characters.

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    yeah , looks like he is 1 of the 8 , perhaps the other is murong fu

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    Perhaps, JY's initial idea was to have 8 heroes to fight against the Khitans.

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