I’m not ready to let go of this awesome drama yet, so I’ll probably keep on writing about the drama 🙂
In the art of story-telling, a writer must be skilled in creating characters. I think it’s one of the hardest thing, but yet the most important thing. For me personally, I’ll rather look at an average drama but with awesome characterization compared to a good drama with bad characterization. But then again…it’s hard to find an average drama with awesome characterization or otherwise, because good characters usually make good stories and bad characters make bad stories. Don’t you think so?
A good character is someone the reader or audience can understand, and someone who would eventually change throughout the story. The characters have to grow and change according to the situations which the writer would create for them in the story. No well-created characters remain the same from the start of a story to the end.
We audience connect to the characters, rather than the story. Though the characters, we will see and understand their story. That’s why I find characters development a crucial point in any drama. It’s something which can push a drama further besides a good storyline. The characters created must be realistic, and come alive so that they can tell us the story which the writer wants to tell.
For me, I think BBJX really scored a high in creating the characters. The characters came alive, and we went through their journey with them.
For this post, I shall discuss on the character Rouxi, how well written her character was, how her character went through various changes throughout the story and also what we felt looking things through Rouxi’s point of view.
Maertai Rouxi was originally a modern day 25 year old woman, Zhang Xiao, who unknowingly traveled to the past by accident.
(REFERENCE: Before being caught in the Qing Dynasty, Zhang Xiao (Rouxi) was seen fighting with her boyfriend. Her boyfriend was having dinner with a lady, and Zhang Xiao was jealous, accusing him of cheating. )
In the beginning of the story, Rouxi was someone who cannot accept sharing the man she loved with another person. She gets angered and jealous easily. After travelling to the Qing Dynasty, she cannot stand being there and looked for ways to get back to her modern-day life.
However, she was unsuccessful. She tries to adapt, but her character was someone who is unrestrained and uncontrollable. She likes to have fun and talk about her thoughts openly, without caring about others’ opinions.
For someone living in the Qing Dynasty, she can be considered bold, stubborn, straight-forward and fearless.
It wasn’t until 10th prince’s birthday that she realised that she can no longer take her life as Rouxi lightly. Previously, she was just living and adapting the way she wants to. However, after witnessing 10th prince being forced to marry someone he doesn’t wish to, she finally realizes that she might end up the same way, with someone else deciding her fate for her.
And as she continues to live seriously as Rouxi, she slowly falls in love and grows closer with the princes’…
Rouxi was such an interesting character, and we were able to see a lot of things from her perspective. She went through various changes and matured into someone who is able to live in that era.
Rouxi’s Development as a Character:
As an individual
As an individual, herself, Rouxi changed from someone who was not afraid of anything to someone who slowly learns how to be careful with every words and action. The light-hearted, fun-loving Rouxi soon disappears as she encounter numerous problems and heartaches along the way. The one who have to much to say turns into someone with little words.
Rouxi with 4th prince
She was wary of the 4th prince from the first moment she met him. Knowing him to be the future Emperor and a ruthless ruler, (not sure if ruthless is a correct word but cruel doesn’t sound right either. HAHA. Just understand that he’s extreme with his rules and punishment) she has always kept her distance from him.
However, distant soon changes into curiosity, and it eventually turns into a feeling she cannot change. She started off being careful with him, but soon after, she is no longer afraid of him and can even play pranks on him. However, towards the end, she ends up back to the square one, as someone who is afraid of him and of what he could do. As she got closer to him and fell in love, she temporarily forgotten the fact that he’s going to be extreme in his methods when he turns Emperor, which was the very fact why she was so careful around him in the first place.
Rouxi with 8th prince
She started off thinking 8th prince didn’t like her sister as she didn’t see him around at the manor the first few days she was there. However, when she finally meets him, she was swept away by his gentleman ways and attentiveness. She was unknowingly having a crush on him, but kept him at a distance for various reasons.
Feeling upset that such a virtuous man will end up in prison, she tries to change history through him but failed. Her feeling towards him started changing, with various mix of emotions. She was upset he didn’t choose her, she was scared about his outcome, and somewhere in between, she had a bit of resentment when he plotted against 4th prince which caused 13th prince to be locked up. There was so many different emotions, but lastly, she was still thankful to him for everything and is deeply sadden by his fate which cannot be changed.
Rouxi with the other princes’
Rouxi started off being as a by-stander. She wasn’t close to the princes’ at first and was looking at them as if their characters from her knowledge of history. (NOTE: In the first episode, she didn’t really consider the princes’ as friends yet. She looks at them and tries to relate them to the people she read from history books.) However, as she becomes more and more as Rouxi, she slowly develop friendships with the princes’ and also have feelings towards them (feelings as if friends – feelings).
I’m sure you’ve noticed, but there is a few light-hearted moments where we can remember that Rouxi is after all a modern woman, Zhang Xiao and the writer blends it in the story well.
For example, she wonders if her make-up is waterproof and worries about ruining the look. She makes fun of concubine selection as a beauty pageant. Somewhere in the middle where people might have forgotten the fact that she’s a modern day woman, the writer made use of the thought and inserted another light-hearted moment, where Rouxi was wishing she had a washing machine.
It was very little details which added a lot of difference to the story.
Overall, the character Rouxi really came alive and changed a lot from who she was in the starting of the story and the ending of the story. From a person who wants to go back to the modern world, to someone who is unwilling to return. From someone who entered the Qing Dynasty with lots of spirit and energy who ended up leaving the world quietly and silently.