Due to my love of the television series Monkey, based on the Chinese tale Journey To The West, I’ve decided to write a series of blog posts about each episode. It gives me something to do and keeps me off the streets. I’m finding myself, kinda, obsessed with the Journey To The West story, I’ve been watching the very entertaining modern Chinese movies, Journey To The West: Conquering The Demons and Monkey King 2 are especially enjoyable, Monkey King 2 my favourite movie, so far, of 2016. I’m also going to start reading the four volume English translations of the original Chinese story just for added means of obsessing about Monkey and keeping myself warmly enveloped in something that gives me a great deal of happy cheer.
Anyways, onwards to the first episode.
Monkey and his monkey followers have been fighting incessantly against every demon and monster on Earth. This fighting has been heard in Heaven disturbing the peace of the Jade Emperor while he visits his mistress the Star Vega.
Monkey fights, and kills, the evil demon King Havok (I’ve spelt havoc incorrectly because it reminds of the Marvel mutant brother of Cyclops Alex Summers/Havok), and eventually Monkey steals himself a powerful magical weapon, a wishing staff, from the Old King Dragon of the Western Ocean. The Dragon King complains in Heaven and Monkey eventually receives an invitation to meet the Jade Emperor becoming the horse manure shoveler, a position Monkey finds beneath him, and rebelling he’s finally given the honour of being in charge of magical peaches that can upon eating give a consumer magical powers and immortality.
Monkey being a beast of the Earth ends up eating the fruits that have been forbidden to the Heavenly Host and kept for only the most privileged of immortals.
The Jade Emperor throws a banquet and invites his special guests, those immortals who are allowed to eat the peaches, but when maidens visit the orchard to pick the peaches they discover Monkey has eaten them. The maidens insult Monkey and he once again causes terrible torment in Heaven running amok and fighting with the Heavenly Host and especially those spirits who are destined, one day, to be Pigsy and Sandy. In Heaven the Pigsy and Sandy were friends. Pigsy lusting after the Jade Emperor’s concubine ends up thrown to Earth becoming a Pig Demon. Sandy due to his ineptitude in his Heavenly position ends up thrown to Earth becoming a Water Demon.
In Heaven Monkey zooming about on his magical cloud ends up pursued by Heaven’s armed forces fleeing to Earth Monkey lays waste to the Heavenly Army. The Jade Emperor seeks help from Buddha the All-Powerful Buddha bets the rampaging Monkey that he can’t travel beyond Buddha’s mighty palm.
Monkey summons his magic cloud and flies to the end of the Universe suffering terrible conditions and temperatures Monkey eventually arrives at the five pillars at the end of the Universe and deciding that he’s the only being to ever do so he leaves his mark in graffiti and urinates up against one of these five pillars which are then revealed to be the fingers of Buddha. Having lost the bet Monkey is imprisoned beneath a massive mountain.
In Heaven the Jade Emperor is thankful of the Buddha’s intervention who let’s the Emperor know that a holy man must journey to find holy scriptures that can save humanity from themselves and their out of control desires and misery.
On Earth evil bandits plan on murdering a young priest, Tripitaka, but the priests religious solemnity frightens the bandits away from the village they’ve pillaged and burnt.
The first episode is all kinds of great bonkers ideas with a few brief moments of fighting action. Monkey, Sandy and Pigsy are flawed characters bold and arrogant, ignorant and naughty. Buddha’s plan to have the trio accompany Tripitaka to India to obtain the scriptures that can potentially save the human race is a means to teach the trio humility, selflessness and goodness.