I figured we should finish our big gay book-club at the same place we started: the “resurrection and revenge” (among other things!) of the infamous Wei Wuxian, in Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation (魔道祖师 / Mó Dào Zǔ Shī). Whether we’re talking fans whose fingernails got thoroughly gnawed awaiting the translations, or entirely new readers just discovering Mo Xiang Tong Xiu, this is probably the series they recognize at a glance. And honestly, if you’re a gay person online, the iconic image of two bunnies—one white and one black, sporting respective white and red ribbons—has probably crossed your timeline at some point.
As for me, separating my initial read of Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation from my fond memories of its live-action adaptation The Untamed is, maybe, an impossible proposition. Despite differences in settings, timelines, and narrative elements, the two texts share the same beating heart through the characters and their relationships. Plus, inside the fandom, word-of-mouth details from the novels constantly circulate as background for the show, like, “okay, so, the dismembered corpse parts are significant because—” or “in the books, they’re about to awkwardly fuck in some bushes.”
Same as the other installments, though, I’m aiming to give these novels their due consideration as novels first and foremost.