I have to list names in order for this episode to make sense. It is clearly setting the stage by introducing an enormous amount of information early on. Thus, this episode is less about plot advancement and more about flooding our minds with info.
1.Xu Yourong 'Rong'er': Gives the Impression of being Serious, Reserved, and Respectable; daughter of Mrs. Xu and Sheng's Marriage Partner (neither know what the other looks like)-Lishan read moreAcademy
2.Nan Ke:Gives Impression of a daring, proud, loyal girl. In love with Qiu Shan
3.Black Gown: Nan Ke's Shifu/Wants to take down the Holy Empress
4.Qiu Shan Jun 'Quishan': Tiandiao Academy-Impression is that he is Capable, Rigid, Skilled, Moral (I think he is smug and judgmental)(I also think he is in love with Rong'er)
5.Bai Lougheng, Princess of Beast Clan: (My favorite) Seems to be adorable, playful, a bit of an airhead but extremely (book)smart and good at solving puzzles
6.Uncle Kim/General Yu Jui of Beast Clan: Caring/Babysitter for Lougheng/Capable
7.Mrs. Xu/Engagement Master: Presents as proud, arrogant, and concerned about status/images, Ruthless but seems to have Rong'er's best interests at heart
8.Mo Yu:No-nonsense, a favorite of the Holy Empress
9.Prince Chiuliu: No Opinion yet
10.Ya'er: A Cassanova-type, flirtatious and arrogant, direct
11.Tang Thirty Six: A little narcissism, disdainful, clever/inventive, respects intelligence
Places: They were just named by Mrs. Xu
3.Li Gang Palace
1.Tiandiao Academy: Considered the Best & Most Difficult to Enter
2.Guojiao Academy: Shut Down for Doing 'Unacceptable Things'
3.Star Hunting Academy: The Army
4.Qingyao Academy: Ladies Only
5.Cultivation in Zongsi Academy: Considered the Cruelest
6.Lishan Academy: Does not pull from the exam/Hand Picks members
1.World of Zhou Dufo/Holds a Great Power (accessed via Zhou Garden?)
1.Before leaving the mountain, Sheng receives an engagement agreement. When he was young his shifu saved the life of a girl, Xu Yourong. The grandfather of this girl engaged her to Sheng. Sheng plans to break the engagement since there is no guarantee if he will past the age of 20. As he leaves, he bows dramatically, and Yu Run, his buddy, is holding back tears and tells him he will wait for his return (but he probably thinks he will die and will never see him again)
2.In the next scene, Yourong is practicing her music when another girl engages her in a sword fight. It is actually a serious fight, this girl is Nan Ke of the demon clan and she wants her astrolabe. She succeeds, and she injures Yourong. As she is stumbling back, Yourong (who I will refer to as Rong'er) encounters Sheng. He gives her medicine to suppress the poison (also tells her she is poisoned) and tries to help her out with his mighty powers of negotiation. Nan Ke does not want to negotiatie, and pardon my language, she essentially b**** slaps him (this was funny) and Rong'er must intervene. She entraps her in a bubble that briefly makes her unable to move. Sheng and Rong'er flee.
3.Quishan intervenes (his entrance is very dramatic) and Nan Ke halts at the site of him. She says she likes him and does not want him involved. Quishan reveals himself to be a complete jerk by trampling on her feelings and essentially saying a demon is a demon (basically, you are evil, I won't be with you)(I feel bad for her, no girl should be spoken to like that! enemy of women). Because she does not want to fight him, she returns the astrolabe and leaves.
4.Sheng offers to give Rong'er treatment for the poison that will help suppress it but she explains she can use cultivation to take care of it (this gives the impression of a strong girl who does not like to rely on others). He respects this and they part ways, without learning each other's names...Sheng dubs her Ms Chijan (I think)(meaning first meeting) and describes her beauty as 'like the clouds' (OMG bwahahaha)
5.Meanwhile, Nan Ke returns to Black Gown (because, you guessed it, he wears a black gown) who expresses concern that her weakness could get in the way, but she insists she is loyal and will do her best to support the plan of trying to defeat the phoenix clan (human clan)
6. Qishan returns the astrolabe to Rong'er. She rejects his aid. We learn that in 2 days time they will meet the empress together and discuss the Zhou Dufu--apparently Rong'er can calculate the trajectory/has access to the key which can open it via Zhou Garden (I think they said this they talked very quickly/subtitles were fast). Both demon and human clans are looking for because inside is a strong power. (I have no evidence to support this but Quishan seems a bit off I wonder if he is black gown; plus you usually meet these masked people early on in the show case in point, Journey of Flower)
7.Sheng enters the city, is both awkward and interested as he explores the new things the city has to offer...
8.We are introduced to Bai Lougheng of the beast clan (I like her a lot) she has just awoken from studying but it seems to be the last thing on her mind. She wants to go play. Uncle Kim (general) explains she must go to Tiandiao Academy. It seems her Meridians are blocked and they need some good doctors to fix it. We learn she also enjoys breaking sword formations (a puzzle lover?)
9.A silly scene unfolds as Sheng enters a restaurant entitled golden wings and expects the real deal. He runs into Lougheng here who brings him to an Inn. She also sniffs him and concludes he 'smells wonderful'. A shady guy has been following her but he runs off every time he spies Uncle Kim.
10.Elsewhere, Black Gown meets with this shady guy, who complains it is hard to track beast princess. She has something called the Interspacial Bug, a powerful tool of some sort. Black Gown will go to the demon king and obtain his Demon Smoke to use against it.
11.Elsewhere, in a scene that is purely fan service, Quishan swims half naked in order to achieve a green glob of 1,000 year old lotus seed. He delivers this glob to Rong'er who acknowledges his act because apparently it is guarded by dangerous beasts (this guy has to be up to no good I am really getting that vibe from him). I think he is in love with her.
12.In the 'capital' )I am not sure what to call it, Holy Empress is holding morning court. The empress acknowledges the importance of preparing for an attack from the demon clan (her outfits are so pretty). She also declares that the Examination period is to begin and people should begin to select scholars, and she confirms that Guijao will not open for apparent crimes committed.
13.Meanwhile, Sheng visits the engagement master. There he meets Mrs. Xu, the daughter, I believe, of the man who engaged him, and the mother of his fiancée. She is extremely cold and rude, and basically implies that Sheng has no class because he hasn't seen any of the sites the city has to offer nor has he tasted the rare tea she prepared for him (as if to say he could not recognize or appreciate its worth). She insults his shifu, says he is a nobody, and will not marry Rong'er. He then says that he planned to break the engagement (offending her) and now he is not going to break it unless she apologizes to his shifu. He leaves.
14.Outdoors a girl who serves Rong'er explains that he should just agree to Mrs. Xu's terms because she will try to kill him. He refuses. (Mrs. Xu has her left hand man 'take care of this' and she says that Rong'er only has eyes for Quishan...somehow I think that is wishful thinking)
--This feels like a Grimms Fairy Tale, like when the prince meets the poor girl, not realizing she is a princess and insults her--
15.Holy Empress says the 6 Ivy Examination will start, Mo Yu will assist the Prince of Chiuliu. She meets with the empress and is close enough with her to have a bet. She insists that Ya'er will be the star of this year's examination, but the empress finds him to be frivolous and immature. She would bet on Rong'er if she would participate (I don't think we find out who she thinks will win)
16.We meet Ya'er who is exactly as the empress describes him. Mo Yu feigns indifference when she sees him, he calls her Sister Mo, and he basically announces that he is arrogant and domineering--just as his clan is perceived...
17.Sheng accidentally wanders into the area where scholars are applying for the exam. We learn all about the schools. Before we learn why Giajiao is shut down, a guy shows up with mechanical wings. He is Tang Thirty Six, a show off who normally rides mythical beasts. He is the Eldest Young Master of Wenshui Tang Family, renowned, and known for their wealth. He pulls the wings in and makes it rain silver, and everyone greedily tries to grab the silver but Sheng, who looks bored and uninterested. This attracts Thirty-Six's attention, and Sheng compliments his wings but points out some failures in it. This (I am so glad he is not unable to take criticism) seems to earn Tang's respect and he seems to respect intelligence. He wants to know more about what could be improved...is this a new friend?
Comments: No real plot advancement yet. I find Sheng's character a little hard to pin down because he will seem mainly smart/wise and yet suddenly naïve and innocent, like when it comes to the battle. The jury is still out on him. Some of the characters seem promising. The sets are nice. The opening song, I personally don't like but the shows music so far seems good. I don't like fan service and hope to see less of that. I hope to see more of demon clan as they interest me.