After wrapping up filming on the modern drama, “Storm Eye” (暴风眼) with Yang Mi recently, it was announced yesterday that Vin Zhang (张彬彬) is starring in a new fantasy drama called “Rattan” (司藤) with female lead, Jing Tian (景甜). However, the novel which the series is adapted from might belong to one of the genres blocked by the ban imposed by the government.
The series is based on the novel “Ban Yao Si Teng” (半妖司藤), which literally translates to “Half Demon, Si Teng.” Based on the synopsis of the novel, Jing Tian’s character is the half demon, “Si Teng” (司藤), who comes back to life after being killed 70+ years ago by a Taoist priest. In order to become a full demon again, she has to complete five tasks. Fast forward to present day, male lead,”Qin Fang” (秦放), played by Vin Zhang, who is in search of an ancestor’s benefactor, gets into an accident and his car crashes into the cliff. The tip of the cliff pierces “Qin Fang’s” heart, causing him to bleed. The blood drips to the bottom of the cliff, where “Si Teng” is buried and brought back to life.
“Si Teng” introduces herself to “Qin Fang” and says she was born in 1937. She forces “Qin Fang” to listen to her orders and become a tool in her plot for revenge. “Qin Fang” tries everything to break away from “Si Teng’s” control. However, while on the path of revenge, he gradually discovered his fate had already been determined over 70 years ago.”
However, netizens are worried about the genre of the series as the theme is about demons and spirits. Back in 2014, the Chinese National Radio and Television Administration (NRTA) had banned dramas that contained themes where “After the country was founded, animals transformed into spirits/demons”. Netizens suspect “half demon” was removed from the title to get around the ban. However, netizens left comments saying, “Then what are they portraying? Two people falling in love?”, “Even though it can’t be turned into spirits after the founding the country, but “Si Teng” became a spirit before the country was founded.”, “Then what are we watching?”.