Most yaoi mangas have a heavy sexually-oriented plot, but 19 days by Old Xian (well, to be fair it’s shounen ai) focuses a lot on the emotional and individual personalities of the characters—Zhan Xi Xi, Jian Yi, Mo Guan Shan, and He Tian. I honestly think, hands down, this is the best gay comic out there.
The expressions of the characters appropriately conveys their feelings, especially the funny moments.
You learn about their past, their concerns, their frustrations, their intentions, in a non-nagging way. Every character is equally exposed to the audience, which makes it impossible to choose which ship (Zhan Zheng Xi x Jian Yi vs. Mo Guan Shan x He Tian) you like best, because you get to know them through their thick and thins. They become your babies.
The carefree attitude and the emotional rawness and at the same time maturity of these high school boys make you laugh and cry and scream.
Also, I must give immense credit to the artist for the emotional narrative
and thoughtful execution.
Today’s post is gonna’ be a rant disguised in a more serious term such as “analysis” of the characters because as I said, it’s hard not to talk about my babies. (My friends probably got annoyed by how I keep hounding them about the goodness of this manhua so I shall pour it to the world instead.)
Since the other characters seem to start off by revolving around Jian Yi (and Jian Yi revolved around Zhan Xi Xi), it makes sense that Jian Yi should start first. Jian Yi … is a puppy.
He’s warm, clingy, cute, and has no shame. And he doesn’t hesitate to jump out to help his friends, which makes him all the more adorable.
This guy She Li looks fucking scary, and Jian Yi thought it was a good idea to taunt him directly to demand justice for Mo Guan Shan (redhead).
And look at those freaking facial expressions. They’re so … spot. On.
So we are given little bits of Jian Yi’s past and family background. So far we know that his mom is a badass who is superior to He Tian’s scary af brother.
His background is ever the more mysterious since he hides everything by being jolly and smiley all the time.
As for Jian Yi, I don’t think he’s scared of anything, except the thought that Zhan Xi Xi would hate him or something like that. He wasn’t even scared when he got kidnapped. He just got even funnier. ತಎತ
He’s someone who doesn’t hesitate to put an arm around someone if he wants to. Literally. Even if the friendship is unrequited.
Talent: Lack of shame and being clingy
Zhan Xi Xi acts all cool and distant, but his heart is actually the warmest, and he sees through Jian Yi’s smile.
He is definitely the seme. ɷ◡ɷ His gay is being awakened by Jian Yi’s confessions and so far his potential is shining bright and we love it!
He’s normally the most rational one (He Tian being the evil one; Jian Yi being the rash one; and Mo Guan Shan just being the ultimate tsundere) who’s able to remain cool-headed in most situations, except for the one time he cruelly grabbed Mo Guan Shan’s balls with a straight face.
He obviously loves Jian Yi. When Jian Yi kissed him, he looked confused for a second, which hurt Jian Yi because he thought his best friend was disgusted at him. But Zhan Xi Xi recovered almost immediately and chased after Jian Yi, and their parting hug just tell so much about their relationship.
No matter how shamelessly Jian Yi scratches his balls in front him, Zhan Xi Xi still accepts him.
Talent: Thinking things through maturely
He Tian. Is twisted. Af. This guy is scared of nothing except his friends getting hurt.
And his confidence is unrivaled.
I was a bit unsure of how I felt when he forcekissed Mo Guan Shan. But aside from that, their interaction gets funnier and funnier and you get to understand how much he cares of “Little Mo”.
He’s a really complex character, especially because like Jian Yi, he hides a lot of his personal stuff from his friends. When we got insight into how innocent and cute he was when he was younger, it almost shocks us how “sinister” he’s gotten. Lmao.
He Tian is lowkey gangster.
Like Zhan Xi Xi towards Jian Yi, he wants to protect Mo Guan Shan. This is confirmed through his flashbacks which show his brother telling him the only way he can protect his loved one is to be stronger. And he became really strong.
Not sure why his relationship with his brother is so stiff now. Is it because his brother killed his doggie? His brother is such a bitch. He seemed to admire his brother a lot at first.
Talent: Being a strong badass and protecting his loved ones
Okay. Mo Guan Shan. Is fucking tsundere. And I love him. I can relate to him because he’s broke. ≖‿≖
Look at how Jian Yi just warms up to a stranger/Mo Guan Shan’s mom immediately, and how Mo Guan Shan just casually curses while eating apples. This tells so much about them. And Mo Guan Shan looks like he loves his mom very much! (ಥ﹏ಥ)
(And Jian Yi should put his hair up more often because he looks hot and he should seduce Zhan Xi Xi…)
He Tian is probably the only person Mo Guan Shan is scared of.
And the times he dreamt about He Tian and checked his penis when he woke up—OMG SQUEEEE ಥ◡ಥ!
Mo Guan Shan’s personality is pretty straightforward. He doesn’t give a damn, at least when it doesn’t concern Jian Yi and He Tian. And you know he’s broke and in desperate need of money.
His family background doesn’t seem to be as complicated as that of Jian Yi and He Tian. It seems like the more smiley members of this squad have it rougher.
His frequent cursing probably sound cute to He Tian.
19 days has the stunning mix of funny and emotional moments that reveal bits of the characters’ personalities, which creates a sense of attachment between the viewer and the characters! And the more you read it the more serious your dilemma is of choosing between Zhan Xi Xi x Jian Yi and He Tian x Redhead!
It’s weird because when He Tian was first introduced it seemed like he was gonna’ be Zhan Xi Xi’s love rival. But I’m so glad that didn’t turn out to be the case because then it’d be so hard to choose.
I can’t wait for Zhan Xi Xi to initiate a kiss or something!!! This manhua just sweeps my heart away!!!