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xʊ̜ŋ˧˥ meɪ̯˨˩˨liŋ˧˥ (♫)
Hong Meirin, Hoan Meirin
Hong Meiling in Touhou Hisoutensoku
More Character Titles
|Abilities||Usage of Qi|
|Occupation||Gatekeeper and Gardener of the Scarlet Devil Mansion|
|Location||Scarlet Devil Mansion|
|Show Music Themes|
|Show Official Game appearances|
|Show Print Work appearances|
Hong Meiling (紅 美鈴 Hon Meirin) is a youkai, though it isn't currently known which specific category she actually belongs to. She's the gatekeeper of the Scarlet Devil Mansion. She is known for her mastery of the martial arts, part of which can be seen from her movement which is performed with Shin-Kyaku (a move in Chinese martial arts).
- 1 General Information
- 2 Character Basis
- 3 Story
- 4 Relationships
- 5 Gallery
- 6 Spell Cards
- 7 Additional Information
- 8 Fandom
- 9 Official Profiles
- 10 Official Sources
- 11 References
Meiling is a proud Chinese-style martial arts master and a humanoid youkai.
Meiling is very laid-back, which sometimes gets her into trouble. She seems to spend a lot of time reading manga written by the tengu and taking naps while on the job. She isn't outwardly aggressive towards other humans unless they are trying to trespass on Scarlet Devil Mansion property, though it seems the only trespassers are strong enough to defeat her in the first place.
Meiling's mastery of Tai Chi Chuan is her main ability in combat, but other than that, she has no youkai-like ability. She is described as being well-rounded, with no particular weak point, which is likely why she was hired to watch the gate of the Scarlet Devil Mansion.
Meiling works as a gate guard at the Scarlet Devil Mansion. She is skilled in martial arts, and while she isn't very powerful among youkai, she has no weak points. She also performs Tai Chi Chuan daily, and has a nap at noon.
The character for Hong literally means "Scarlet" in Japanese and "Red" in Chinese. Meiling means "Beautiful Bell". The latter part of her name, Meiling, is at least a common Chinese name. These characters can be read in Japanese as "Kurenai Misuzu", and you'll sometimes see her name mispronounced or miswritten that way. Using English name order, her name would be Meiling Hong, which is used normally by Chinese diaspora or immigrants into Western countries.
Hong (紅) is "kou" in the on reading, Hóng in standard Chinese, and Hhong in Shanghaiese.
Hong could possibly refer to the Red Guards (紅衛兵), a youth movement of the cultural revolution of the People's Republic of China. This is reinforced by her clothing. The word "guard" also has the meaning of "gatekeeper" as well. Thus, it could indicate a pun, where "guard of the family name Hong = Red Guard."
The character for Hong, 紅, also appeared in the game's title (東方紅魔郷). However, it the name of the game in its developmental stages was 東方紅茶館, thus indicating that it has a strong relation to the 紅 of black tea (紅茶).
Additionally, her first name could also stand for 虹, a type of dragon, since it has the same on reading as 紅 as well as the same pronunciation in standard Chinese and Shanghaiese.
Her name was spelled by ZUN as in Immaterial and Missing Power and the corrected version of Sangetsusei as Hong Meirin. Her name became Hoan Meirin in Perfect Memento in Strict Sense. Though in pinyin, it would be "Meiling," there is not a single source within Touhou Project itself that states that it is spelled in this manner.
Meiling has aqua-colored eyes and long, scarlet hair that symbolizes both her name and the place that she's guarding. Her green beret and dress resemble traditional Chinese clothing. Her beret has a gold star on the front with the Traditional Chinese character "龍" that is read and pronounced as "lóng" in standard Chinese and means dragon. Wears white pants in her fighting game sprites.
- Embodiment of Scarlet Devil
During the events of Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, she bravely fought against the intruding heroines while trying to divert their path away from the Scarlet Devil Mansion, but ultimately failed. She ends up leading the player character to the mansion against her will.
- Immaterial and Missing Power
She was playable in Immaterial and Missing Power but didn't have a scenario.
- Touhou Hisoutensoku
In Touhou Hisoutensoku, she saw a roaming giant that she was certain was an incarnation of a God of Calamity, "Taisui Xingjun". However, those she warned didn't realize the seriousness of the dangerous situation they were facing. Thus it was up to Meiling alone to defend the Scarlet Devil Mansion and all of Gensokyo from this destructive deity. After defeating some people, she defeats a giant catfish, and then wakes up to realize it was all a dream.
- Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red
One day, a mysterious crop circle appears in the gardens of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, causing widespread speculation, rumors and gossip around the Mansion. Meiling, who was responsible for taking care of the garden, claims not to be the culprit, but admits that she's been tasked by Remilia to restore the garden to its original state now that her mistress has become bored with the crop circle pattern. During her interview with Aya, she notes she is quite worried, as she has no idea how to change the flowers back. Questioned about the crop circle's origins, Meiling vehemently denies falling asleep, so Aya goes on to talk about aliens...
The culprit revealed at the end is Patchouli Knowledge.
- Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth
As gatekeeper of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, Meiling was also in charge of vetting invitations for Remilia's part to celebrate the completion of her Moon rocket. She gave a speech about how she would not let anyone through without the proper invites, but the residents of Eientei simply walked past her while she was giving it. Meiling managed to get them to show her their invites, but got bombarded by so many invites from so many rabbits that a whole slew of people (the Eientei group included) got by. Inside the mansion, the group ran into Sakuya Izayoi, causing Reisen Udongein Inaba to remember how powerful Sakuya was and think about how her job of managing the entire Scarlet Devil Mansion put her on a whole new level compared to that gate guard.
- Silent Sinner in Blue
During the party to celebrate the completion of Remilia's Moon rocket, Meiling was briefly shown guarding the gate as invitees walked by (expanded on in Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth above).
About two months later, in an unrelated incident, Eirin Yagokoro infiltrated the Scarlet Devil Mansion and met Patchouli Knowledge in the library. Patchouli wondered what happened to the gate guard, to which Eirin commented that she played tough, but all it took to get past her was a "light greeting".
Meiling's win quote against Sakuya in Touhou Hisoutensoku implies a friendly, if somewhat formal, relationship between the two of them (rather than the comically abusive relationship often depicted in fan works). Meiling also tells Sakuya that she always goes easy on her, so they do likely spar often. If it were a formal match, she would (and could) very easily take the Chief Maid down - or so she claims. Sakuya is shown to care for Meiling, though is strict about her not slacking off.
Remilia, being the type of person she is, tends to tease all her subordinates, and Meiling is no exception. She does get mad at her sometimes if things don't go her way, but the two are generally on friendly terms, and in Touhou Hisoutensoku it's suggested that Remilia reads some of the same manga she does.
- Patchouli Knowledge
Patchouli is the friend of her mistress, Remilia, and sometimes berates her for not thinking enough and spending too much time reading senseless comics.
- Flandre Scarlet
Flandre is Remilia's younger sister. It's unknown what kind of relationship the two have, however.
- Fairy Maid
It is unknown if Meiling has any authority over the fairy maids in the mansion. Certainly, some fairies come to help her out in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil, but Perfect Memento in Strict Sense seems to imply they just join in Meiling's battles on a whim, and most instead usually point and laugh.
He is her sworn enemy.
He is the avatar of Taisui Xingjun.
Meiling at a loss regarding the "crop circle" in Bohemian Archive in Japanese Red
Meiling greeting Sakuya at the gate in Strange and Bright Nature Deity
Meiling's appearance in Inaba of the Moon and Inaba of the Earth
Meiling's sigil in Grimoire of Marisa
- Sadly, despite reaching some level of recognition by becoming a playable character in Immaterial and Missing Power (albeit through a downloaded patch), Meiling was the only character not to have a storyline. She is almost universally considered a bottom tier character in the game as well, despite the fact that she has some of the most impressive combos in the game, as shown here. Whether this was by accident or if Twilight Frontier was making fun of her is unknown.
- Many of her lines in Touhou Hisoutensoku indicate that Meiling has boastful pride in China. "You're all not there yet! You're all children compared to 4000 years of history!" The script also reveals that she reads manga created by the tengu, compares Yuyuko to a Jiang Shi, and notes that Tenshi and the Celestial read Chinese works. (Many of Tenshi's win quotes in SWR come from Chinese classics.) This is how Chinese characters in Japanese manga and anime are almost always depicted: a pervasive stereotype of the alleged common traits and pride of Chinese people.
- If Meiling loses to Youmu in Touhou Hisoutensoku, the latter will ask if Meiling shouldn't just use a weapon, namely a green dragon blade. This can be a source of confusion, since many would imagine the legendary Green Dragon Crescent Blade wielded by the famous Chinese general Guan Yu, but women seldom use pole arms in Chinese martial arts. In Japan, the term has become a common misnomer for the liuyedao and other Chinese sabers. As Youmu admits she has only heard about them in stories, the use of her local, incorrect term is likely intentional.
- One of her Skill Cards in Hisoutensoku resembles Krizalid's Typhoon/Tuhon Rage from KOF '99, 2000, and 2002: Unlimited Match.
- Meiling is sometimes compared to Chun-Li from Street Fighter on notable traits.
- Meiling looks very similar to Orange.
- Despite her sometimes joke status in fanon, Meiling is often considered a difficult boss fight in EoSD on Lunatic if not Hard as well.
- Meiling has a tendency to be portrayed as a joke character that chronically naps, often earning herself as knife in the head from Sakuya (if not out of breast envy) as well as additional poor treatment from the rest of the SDM.
- This persists even after 12.3 debunked this dynamic between Meiling and Sakuya as she merely remarks on getting back to work
- 12.3 has also debunked the dynamic of Remilia treating Meiling coldly as it shows them being friendly with one another.
- Seki/Red Shine has started a trend of Meiling assuming the form for a fluffy panda, which is shown to be very friendly to most people. This form is not helpless as it has been seen jumping out of a pitfall of Tewi's to considerable heights. A few other artists have copied the trend.
- She is more widely known as "China" (中国, pronounced Chuugoku), the one whose real name is never remembered.
- In fanworks, she doesn't take that well which leads her being shunned or defensive of her name. Many Meiling fans don't take it that well either.
- It is known that in 2ch, there was a debate on how to read Meiling's name. One side said Hong Meiling, and the other said Kurenai Misuzu. The debate ended (sort of) when a user said "Why don't we just call her 'China', as her clothing seems to identify her the most." As a result, even after ZUN said "Hong Meiling" is the correct pronunciation in the Meiji University talkshow "Dawn of Touhou," people kept on calling Meiling "China". However, due to the emergence of other memes, this one has become less frequent - many traces of it still remain, though.
- Meiling's nickname is further ingrained into the minds of fans by her clothing, and also by the name of her stage BGM, "Shanghai Teahouse ~ Chinese Tea". Her stage theme tends to be more frequently remixed by fans than her boss theme, "Shanghai Alice of Meiji 17", to the point where "Chinese Tea" became her theme in Touhou Hisoutensoku.
- A popular Flash animation called "My Name is Hong Meiling" spawned the meme "Sakuya-san, Sakuya-san, cleaning stop! Room cleaning stop!" (after which she gets stabbed in the forehead with a knife).
- She is commonly referred to as the "lazy guardian" of the Scarlet Devil Mansion, though whether this stems from her actual personality or from the nickname "China" is unknown. Many Japanese people complain about the reliability and quality of products manufactured in China. There are many fanfics that depict an enraged Sakuya behind a sleeping Meiling in front of the gates to the Mansion. The implication is that she has the "Chinese" quality of "Shinrai no Chuugoku" (信頼の中国, which translates to Reliable China), with much intended sarcasm.
- Her relationship with Sakuya seems to be a popular topic for fan work, including comics, music and games. One running gag involves her being stabbed in the head by Sakuya's knives. This is usually due to her inability to keep unwanted visitors, mostly Marisa, out of the mansion. In canon, Meiling doesn't appear to be chastised for failing to keep Marisa out (canonically, she is known to be rather versatile at her job and the witch is the only known person whom she can't stop from intruding, though Marisa tends to come in via a friendly visit).
- It is also common for fan works to depict Meiling caring for Sakuya when the latter was a child. This scenario is somewhat plausible due to Meiling being a youkai and Sakuya being human, making it likely that Meiling is several decades older than Sakuya.
- Additionally, they both have the distinction of being the only characters in Embodiment of Scarlet Devil to have braided sideburns with ribbons. This fact supports that setting.
- In the MUGEN community, Meiling is known for her "Chuugoku Satsu" attack, an obvious parody of both her nickname "Chuugoku" (China), and the signature attack "Shun Goku Satsu" (Instant Hell Murder) of Akuma from Street Fighter.
- Due to her comedic scenario in Touhou Hisoutensoku and the nature of one of her battles (with a rather simplified background image), fans have made numerous jokes regarding drug experimentation on Meiling's part.
- In fanworks, Meiling seems to be some sort of big sister or playmate to Flandre (rather than Remilia). In comedy works, it can be to throw Meiling in the way of more danger. In serious ones, her laid back approach to her job and uncontrollably friendly nature as well as her seeming toughness make her a natural choice for reaching out to an otherwise isolated Flandre. Many fan works depict the two going out of their way to help each other on numerous occasions.
- She is also seen as a big sister figure for other younger characters such as Cirno.
- Her race remains unconfirmed, but she's commonly associated with dragons due to her many shared motifs with them, such as her use of rainbows, hat, and name, and possible inspiration by the Chinese Hong. This is most prevalent during depictions of her theoretical EX mode in which she often adopts dragon characteristics.
- Though some use the term "Ex-Meiling" to refer to Meiling getting serious, often showing considerable amounts of power/durability and hiding it for various reasons.
- In some fan works, Meiling is known to say "JAOOOO" (じゃおおおお), a war-cry attributed to her. This cry originated from the 2nd Touhou M-1 Grand Prix (Comiket 73).
- "登場人物 [Character]" (in Japanese). Tasogare Frontier. http://www.tasofro.net/touhou123/chara.html. Retrieved August 31, 2011.
|This page is part of Project Characters, a Touhou Wiki project that aims to write proper descriptions for all official characters of Touhou Project.|