Temple of Two Gods Is Awesome and I Will Fight You If You Say Otherwise

You ever see Temple of Two Gods?

The best way I can describe it is…okay, did you ever read that one Seuss story about the two armies who go all fucknuts over which side to butter bread on? It’s like that, only the bread is swords and the butter is how to hold them.

Something like that?

It’s basically about these two clans/schools of sword-fu, and how they just chop the berserko shit out of each other over whether to hold their swords lefty or righty.

And it is…it is just fucking manic. It came out in ’87, right, the year I was born. Post-Enter the Dragon, post-John Woo. But pre-Crouching Tiger dropping graceful ballet Quaaludes into the kung-fu genre.

It’s caught between the legitimately berserk 70s kung-fu explosion, and John Woo’s reinterpretation of wuxia-as-ultraviolent-gangster-flicks. It’s caught between those two whatevers like a cornered animal, and it goes for your throat like one because of it.

Like, here’s the first five minutes, right? Flowing Brush (that’s the hero; he’s a scribe) walks into a restaurant and orders a drink. The bartender nervously serves him one…nervously, see, because there’s like, a dozen Left Clan guys off to the side.

Flow drinks his drink, pulls out a piece of paper and a brush. Writes something down (we don’t see what), folds the paper, and leaves it on the bar. He walks out. Exit stage whatever.

Left Clan Dude #1 walks over to the bar, picks up the piece of paper, and opens it.

It’s a bulls-eye.

Flow’s sword, out of fucking nowhere, punches through the back of the dude’s head, and pricks the bullseye dead center.

For the next five minutes, he fights the eleven or so Left Clan dudes in the restaurant.

Y’know how he fights them?

He flicks the target paper at them, stabs them through it, then repeats. He even does it to their swords when he disarms them.

And then the opening credits roll.

I love Temple of Two Gods.

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Josh Hechinger is a future writing superstar/cautionary tale. He lives in Pennsylvania.

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