C dramas stands for Chinese dramas, of which I watched an embarrassing amount. Thank you, Viki. I finished The Story of Yanxi Palace, got through most of the Scarlet Heart and Imperial Doctoress, and am branching out into others. I have to say, someone ought to cast Cecilia Liu in a comedy, because I have watched this woman cry prettily on the screen for a month now and I am all funned out with that.
I have learned a number of things about Chinese dynasties. Also, the English spellings of Chinese names make zero sense. It’s like letter salad that can’t possibly combine into what the actual names sounded like.
Because I am watching this stuff non-stop, I am now accidentally learning some Chinese words – I think maybe Mandarin. If you have any corrections, I would very much appreciate it. I am about to butcher this beautiful language with my English transliteration, so apologies in advance. I am writing it down the way I hear it, so it is definitely wrong.
For the purposes of this, all a are uh sounds. All e are eh sounds.
Huang Di – Emperor.
Huang Sha – Also Emperor, but only when addressed by others. Usually concubines. Who are crying. Bonus points for falling dramatically on the ground and wailing, “Huang Sha, Huang Sha!” repeatedly.
Muha – Imperial Mother.
Anya – regular mother.
Fuchi – father
Nya-nya(?) – Your highness, usually to women(?)
Need a word for Prince.
Jie-Jie – older sister.
Ge-ge – older brother.
She – yes.
She-she – also yes.
Hao – seems to be a formal way to say “I will do it.” (?)
Hala – enough.
Hala-hala – OMG, no, seriously enough.
Bu – No. Almost never said. This curiously mirrors my experiences with Japanese exchange students, who would go out of their way to never say no. One time I was told, “Not yes” in English, because it was judged to be better than no.
Hui chu ba (?) – seems to be part of the phrase “you go back first” which is used when someone wants you to leave. If someone could spell out the entire phrase for me, I would really appreciate it.
I’ve just abandoned Oh My General, which is utterly hilarious for the first 20 episodes, and then took a sideways turn, but the end of the first arc is happy, so I am cool with it. It is a very funny drama. She is a kick ass general. Her entire family has been slaughtered, so she crossdressed and protected the border for 8 years, winning battle after battle. First 5 minutes of the first episode, chases down a khan and cuts his head off. She looks like this.
And also like this.
So the ruling family is terribly worried about her, because she is popular and might want to revolt if not handled properly, but still the emperor gives her a huge title and invites her to the capital. She writes back and tells him, “Thank you so much. By the way, I am a woman.”
Everyone is stunned and the Empress Dowager has a brilliant idea. Lets marry her. And she has the perfect candidate in mind. Emperor’s nephew. He looks like this:
That’s right. He dances. With flower petals. Also he recites poetry, frequents brothels, sleeps till noon, and designs clothes. And pouts.
He pouts a lot.
It was superfunny and I enjoyed it until it decided to shift to the emperor, who is not my favorite character at all. Now I need to find another historical romance with an HEA. Also totally stealing this idea. Totally.