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Anime TL;DR 
Live-Action First Impression
Once Upon A Time In Lingjian Mountain Live-Action Season 1 (2019)


A story that follows Wang Lu, a young genius, who enters the Spirit Blade Sect and embarks on an unconventional journey towards immortal cultivation.

The Spirit Blade Sect was established in the year 4233. Through years of producing martial arts prodigies, it has been hailed as one of the five great sects. As the nine continents face a crisis, a genius by the name of Wang Lu joins the Spirit Blade Sect and comes under the tutelage Wang Wu.

Despite Wang Wu’s beauty, she is hundreds of years in age. Famous for having a sharp tongue and an erratic temper, she and her disciple Wang Lu engage in endless squabbles while trudging on a path to becoming the strongest sage in all the lands.
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TV Rating




  • How well the story flows and keeps you engaged.

Poor < Fair < Good < Great


November 12, 2019





Adapted from the manga “Spirit Blade Mountain” written by Xian Man Dong Man.

TL;DR First Impression

Once Upon A Time In Lingjian Mountain is a live-action drama adaptation of Congqian Youzuo Lingjianshan (从前有座灵剑山). This means “There was once a Spirit Blade Mountain”) and is a Chinese xianxia web novel series written by Guowang Bixia (国王陛下, a pen name meaning “His Majesty the King”).

You may have seen my previous review for the anime series Spirit Blade Mountain, which is based on the same xianxia web novel. I do enjoy that series despite some of its flaws. The live-action drama, however, got me perplexed due to both the plot and dialogs being all over the place.

I wanted to like this drama as I enjoyed the anime version. the production is very good and so is the special effect. Unfortunately, the narrative and dialog is a mess. It’s a very typical Chinese writing that is only meant for Chinese viewers. They don’t explain much of anything and continually barrage you with names and information.

I am now very wary of any Chinese drama where there are a lot of attractive people on the cover. These series tend to emphasize the packaging over the substance. If you enjoy watching beautiful characters making dull jokes and doing non-sensical things, then the show is for you. I did not find the jokes very funny and simply watching good-looking actors doing silly things isn’t enough to keep my attention. I don’t think this show is for me.

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All images are copyright to their respective owners.

Photo by Nicolas LB, Jon Flobrant, and Yvette de Wit on Unsplash.

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