Mo Dao Zu Shi or Grandmaster of Demonic Cultivation is one of the most popular donghua – Chinese animated works – currently airing. Thousands of fans are eager to see the culmination of Wei Wuxian’s adventures. But where did it all begin? Is the animation based on a manga or light novel and is it complete or ongoing?
For those craving more Mo Dao Zu Shi content, we have good news: the series is based on a novel penned by Mo Xiang Tong Xiu which first made an appearance between 2015 and 2016 on the Chinese website Jinjiang Xexuecheng. Later in 2016, print copies became available. The novel is already complete, so you don’t have to wait for new updates.
At the time of writing, the novel is not available to read in English translation, but this will change before 2021. From December onwards, the novel will be published in English by Seven Seas Entertainment.
Of course, the fun didn’t stop there, as the novel inspired an award-winning manhua adaptation. Unlike most Japanese manga, the Mo Dao Zu Shi manhua is structured like a webtoon, not unlike Korean works such as Solo Leveling. The manga is being translated in the Wecomics app, and it’s one of the most faithful adaptations, second only to the audio drama, which was supervised by the author.
If you’re sad that Season 3 of the donghua is likely to be the last, you can rest assured that there’s plenty of content after the Season finale. While you might feel there’s no point in reading the manhua or novel after having watched the donghua, both are highly recommended. In fact, the animated version, with its color-coded characters and pretty art style might be a good place to begin, as the novel has a lot of characters, and it might help to have them visualized first.
Besides, both the novel and the manhua are much less censored in the portrayal of the two main characters’ queer romance, and several scenes were not included in the animated version, so you will be able to better appreciate the fuller story if you leave it for the end.
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Finally, Mo Dao Zu Shi inspired a live-action, The Untamed, which is available to stream on Netflix. This story diverges from the original a bit more and it’s more heavily censored, but it’s still fun and exciting to watch.
The Mo Dao Zu Shi donghua is currently available on Tencent’s international platform WeTV, and while no English dub is available yet, the series is getting a Japanese dub.