Shiguang Daili Ren or LINK CLICK came pretty much like a storm. I randomly spotted the promotional poster on MyAnimeList and decided to give it a shot. I believed it must be some kind of BL anime, or better said, donghua (animation produced in China).
I couldn’t have been further from the truth. This amazing donghua blew all of my expectations away and more! If you want to know why you should give Shiguang Daili Ren a chance, keep on reading.
The plot of Shiguang Daili Ren
The story of this donghua revolves around time traveling. Cheng Xiaoshi and Lu Guang work for Qiao Ling in a photo studio. However, they use the photos their clients bring in order to travel back in time and fix things about the past.
Cheng Xiaoshi usually goes back in time and takes over the mind and the body of the person who has taken the photo, while Lu Guang guides him, telling him what he should do and what he’s not supposed to do.
At first, this already gave me Steins Gate vibes. However, while Steins Gate is quite strict with the time travel aspect, in Shiguang Daili Ren, they are given much more leeway. They can change minor things, as long as they don’t disturb events that indeed could change the course of life, such as saving someone from death.
As much as this is a story about time travelling, sometimes the time travelling comes in second, being just a vehicle for exploring other themes.
For example, in the first episode, we get to witness a day in the head of a secretary, and get a glimpse into how women are treated by men in power. In the second episode, we see how money and business can break even the strongest friendships.
Parenthood is also a recurring theme, with a focus on parents that live in the countryside and their children who want to have a good life in a bigger city, with better chances. I believe it’s an interesting theme that isn’t explored as often as it could be.
The art got me speechless. The character designs are simplistic, yet gracious and beautiful. The animation for the most part is smooth, and quite different from what anime usually offers.
The strong point, I believe, lies in the beautiful backgrounds. There is a scene of rice fields flooded by water at sunset. Coupled with the music, it is one of my favorite scenes in the animation. So simple, yet so sophisticated and intriguing.
Usually, I don’t notice the background music in anime. But with this, the music doesn’t just fit the action, it heightens the experience. The songs played in key moments make them even better.
Also, it is one of those rare cases where both the intro and the outro theme absolutely slap. I have been listening to both nonstop and I am amazed to have found such great music.
If you didn’t know what to watch, or you wanted to explore animation from other countries apart from America and Japan, here you go. Check out our other articles for even more anime! Who knows, you might find new favorites.