Hunter (2021) poster
Your Rating: 0/10
Ratings: 7.8/10 from 68 users
# of Watchers: 498
Reviews: 3 users
Ranked #100465
Popularity #11878
Watchers 68

One day, two forest policemen who had been guarding the mountains and forests for 20 years fought desperately with a poaching gang. One died and the other was seriously injured. The whereabouts of the poachers were unknown. Five years later, Wei Jiang who had left the Forest Public Security Bureau was asked to help find a missing forest ranger, newbie Qin Chuan. In the process of getting acquainted with the environment, the two met a local nature reserve veterinarian Ye Xiao Wan and the leader of an enthusiastic animal protection organization Saina and others. Unexpectedly, they came across the trail of poachers and decided to deal with them. The vicious poachers and the bloodthirsty wolves had wandered on the edge of life and death several times, but they still marched forward fearlessly. Edit Translation

  • English
  • magyar / magyar nyelv
  • עברית / עִבְרִית
  • dansk
  • Country: China
  • Type: Drama
  • Episodes: 8
  • Aired: May 24, 2021 - Jun 1, 2021
  • Aired On: Monday, Tuesday
  • Original Network: Hunan TV Mango TV
  • Duration: 60 min.
  • Score: 7.8 (scored by 68 users)
  • Ranked: #100465
  • Popularity: #11878
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated

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Cast & Credits


Hunter (2021) photo
Hunter (2021) photo
Hunter (2021) photo
Hunter (2021) photo
Hunter (2021) photo
Hunter (2021) photo


18 people found this review helpful
Jun 6, 2021
8 of 8 episodes seen
Completed 10
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 7.5
Rewatch Value 9.0

Dances with Wolves

Originally known as Hunter, this drama was re-titled to The Wolf Hunter which is consistent with its original Chinese name, 猎狼者. It is neither focused on the animal nor about hunting it. The “wolf” here (狼 or ‘lang’) is a metaphorical representation of poachers, and the term is used frequently throughout the drama.

I’m just going to say this right off the bat. To me, The Wolf Hunter is one of the year’s best C-dramas. In terms of the production values and design, screenplay, cast, action choreography, cinematography, and the absolutely stunning vistas of the breathtaking untamed Xinjiang wilderness and natural landscapes where principal photography took place. There are countless beautifully framed shots and scenes littered throughout that watching this drama for the scenery alone is quite worth it.

Having said all that, the drama is not without its flaws. There have been reports that the drama was scaled down from 12 to 8 episodes, purportedly to cut out the more violent and gory scenes. Whatever the reasons may be, certain editing issues and scene transitions that affect the continuity of the story development are clearly noticeable. The drama unfortunately also lacks a compelling original music composition as part of its soundtrack to match the grandeur of the visuals. Last but not least, I wanted to catch more glimpses of the furry wildlife that the rangers are protecting but, to no avail. Sadly, all I got were horses and sheep.

Notwithstanding the gorgeous visuals, this drama may not appeal to everyone because of the inherently dark nature of the story.

The drama is set in China’s Northwestern frontiers of Xinjiang where regions of vast deserts and mountains can be found. The narrative is based on the struggles faced by local law enforcement (the police and auxiliary force of rangers) in protecting the abundant wildlife in the surrounding nature reserves from unscrupulous poachers whose illegal fur trading activities have been running rampant for years with little regard for the law.

The plot centres on the titular character, Wei Jiang, as he overcomes the burden of guilt from his past (along with PTSD) to wreak vengeance upon the very same group of poachers who had brutally murdered his partner 5 years prior to the events of the present day. It is a simple story which is conveyed in a no-nonsense, raw, gritty and visceral manner that explores themes of retribution, redemption, family, and friendship. The tone is sombre with atmospherics that at times feel dismal and dark. The depiction of violence is balanced with the presence of psychological suspense. Some elements of slice-of-life are also added into the storytelling.

As a psychological thriller, the drama succeeds in delivering palpable tension and suspense. There are many such moments that are akin to a Mexican standoff where you just don’t know what is going to happen next. The action sequences are quite expertly executed as well, with scenes of gun battles, car and horse chases, close range melee in both the great outdoors and enclosed spaces. The dialogue, delivered as a live recording instead of the usual overdubbing, is compelling and realistic.

Kudos to the production crew for not only providing authentic gear and equipment, but also for achieving the right look that convinces me the actors really do belong in the actual setting. Everyone looks weathered and rugged, with the right amount of facial hair and sunburn to match their equally ragged outfits.

In terms of the acting, I thought that the main cast are exceptional and fit perfectly into their respective roles. Qin Hao needs no introduction as the consummate mastery of his craft clearly shows in his portrayal as the lead, Wei Jiang. I’m quite impressed with Yin Fang who plays the second lead, policeman Qin Chuan. He is relatively new in dramas but rather prolific in films where I’ve last seen him in Operation Red Sea. There are a number of familiar faces in the supporting cast which I found rather amusing. Notable mentions include Sui Yong Liang (Young Blood), Zhao Wei (Tribes & Empire), Yin Zhu Sheng (TRoP, Ever Night) and Qu Gao Wei (NIF2, Tribes & Empires). These experienced actors certainly raised the quality levels of the production. I won’t elaborate further on who plays which character so as not to spoil the intrigue but suffice to say, everyone has done commendable work as far as the acting is concerned.

On the whole, The Wolf Hunter is a compelling drama that’s comparable to Western productions and it gives me vibes of The Revenant, True Detective and Fargo. With only 8 episodes at an hour’s length each, the storytelling is compact and tight while the portrayal is utterly convincing. This is one of the few C-dramas that contain absolutely no useless fillers, illogical plot holes or unrealistic characters (and cast, for that matter). This drama is absolutely recommended viewing.

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7 people found this review helpful
Jun 16, 2021
8 of 8 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 7.5
Story 7.5
Acting/Cast 8.5
Music 7.0
Rewatch Value 7.0
I went into this series expecting more (or any) scenes about the lives of herdsmen, forest guards and wildlife. Instead the focus, for the most part, stays fixed on dealing with past traumas and personal vendettas, falling more on the side of a slow-burn thriller, with some interesting twists and fast-paced arcs.

The split narrative between the 'police group' and poachers group, where each side had things to resolve between themselves, worked quite well. There was a slow rising tension as more light was shed on the characters' pasts, new issues kept surfacing, and both sides kept moving slowly towards another collision point. These explosive or suspenseful 'encounters' between the two groups were the best and most spectacular parts of this series.

Unfortunately, the pacing lagged in some episodes. Unrelated conversations kept happening one after another, while the plot didn't move an inch. I think ep5 suffered the most from this. But don't drop it there! Cause in ep6 the tension skyrockets:)
Another small annoyance was needing to suspend my disbelief much too often. I even got to rolling my eyes a few times watching how the events unfolded. If you like to see a well trained, professional, physically fit police force working together or are allergic to stubborn heroic fools with minds and mouths filled with glory, duty and noble sacrifices, then you might be a tad frustrated with the plot;)

The highlight of this series is definitely the visual storytelling! - not only incredibly beautiful landscape shots of snow-capped mountains, lonely roads and arid plains, but also very intriguing compositions that go for your emotions. I loved both the dynamic fight sequences and the long static shots that let me fully digest all the visual elements.
The director knows how to build a deliciously tense atmosphere, giving enough breathing room to bask in the simmering tension, search for clues, consider the situation from all angles, and wonder who's gonna make the next move in this game of wild hunt...

Final thought or a bit of extra (skippable) complaining:
I've seen a few comments that this series got cut by four episodes, which I think really clipped its wings. Not sure if the censors or the network are to blame, but it's very frustrating to see another good, original story get somewhat ruined by thoughtless editing. I think 'Hunter' had the potential to be exceptional if:
- it either got the chance to tell the full scripted story - giving us better developed characters, more cohesive storyline and a proper closure
- or it got further cut (prefereably removing any mention of the police - perhaps changing the MLs into ex-poachers or roque forest guards), turning it into a no-frills psychological thriller.
At eight episodes, this show is regrettably stuck in between, shooting itself in the foot with unbalanced storytelling, weak characterization (except the poacher brothers! They were the most compelling by far) and overly solemn, rushed ending.

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  • Drama: Hunter
  • Country: China
  • Episodes: 8
  • Aired: May 24, 2021 - Jun 1, 2021
  • Aired On: Monday, Tuesday
  • Original Network: Hunan TV, Mango TV
  • Duration: 60 min.
  • Content Rating: Not Yet Rated


  • Score: 7.8 (scored by 68 users)
  • Ranked: #100465
  • Popularity: #11878
  • Watchers: 498

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