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6 Toxic Male Leads From Chinese Dramas Who Are Total Red Flags

I’ve watched a good number of romantic Chinese dramas and this means I’ve fallen in love with twice that amount of male leads. 

Chinese screenwriters can craft a mean script and sometimes, the male leads are too toxic to handle.

So in this post, I’ve rounded up six absolutely toxic male leads in romantic Chinese dramas that made me scream in annoyance several times. 

1. Hong Ye from Circle of Love

The gist of this historical Cdrama is that the female lead’s entire family was killed and she believes it’s Hong Ye, who is the male lead who did it, so she approaches him under a guise to get her revenge. 

But, it turns out he didn’t actually kill her family, but he did force her to abort her baby, constantly manipulated her, drugged her, and gaslighted her seriously.

Hong Ye made it to my list of toxic male leads and tbh, every time he cried and regretted something, I did a little dance inside. 

2. Dao Ming Si from Meteor Garden

This highschool Cdrama is based on a very popular manga that has already been adapted a good number of times, but no matter how many versions I watch, this is still hands down my least favorite – They were so poorly suited and the “chemistry” was missing. 

Shan Cai, who’s poor and disadvantaged, lands a scholarship to one of the most prestigious schools in China and her frequent run-ins with Dao Ming Si, the irritable leader of the F4, marks her as a target.

You guys, he was physically violent at times, assaulted her with good (most popular scene & you can watch clips on YouTube), and was generally emotionally manipulative – I dearly wished she would go with the second male lead. 

Let me also quickly point out that the height difference trope is very cute, but with the way their relationship was so dastardly antagonistic, I couldn’t help but feel irritated. 

3. Li Xun from Lighter and Princess

To keep it short, Li Xun was borderline abusive, and manipulative, and the way he kept manipulating Zhu Yun just to wash it all away with one over-the-top gesture irked me to no end.

You guys, he cheated on her with multiple women and there’s this time that he made a move to K-word her when she rejected him. 

4. Run Yu from Ashes of Love

Run Yu is the second male lead in this drama and he was so obsessed with her that it made him do some very crazy things.

The funny thing is that the male lead is his brother, and he didn’t even think to respect her feelings or her boundaries. 

He practically stalked her, threatened her, and even kidnapped her at one point because she wasn’t interested, and if this doesn’t sound toxic, I’ll change my name. 

5. Emperor Yin Zheng from The King’s Woman

If you’ve been watching Cdramas for a while, you’ve probably heard of exactly how toxic this character was.

You guys, Yin Zheng could literally have any woman he wanted but once he set his eyes on Sun Li, he was taken.

Ultimately, this drama ended with two deaths and lots of collateral damage that could have been totally avoided. 

6. Cang Xuan from Lost You Forever

Can Xuan was too obsessed with the female lead and didn’t care about anyone else’s feelings, and I know this might be romantic to some, but it felt too off.


What do you think? Are there any toxic Cdrama male leads with red flags so big they could be spotted from far away? Let me know in the comments below. 

And don’t forget to check the related posts below for even more recommendations of dramas that will keep you hooked all day.

Happy watching!

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