A Synopsis of the Taiwanese Drama "The Outsiders"

by Jen Jefferson

Since the late 1980s, Taiwan's television market has evolved from three state-controlled TV stations to 100 24-hour cable channels. Throughout Asia, Taiwanese dramas in particular have become hugely popular. "The Outsiders," also known as "Fighting Fish," which aired for the first time in 2004, ranks as one of the most successful of the Taiwanese television shows sometimes called "idol dramas."

The Cast

"The Outsiders" features actor, model and singer Dylan Kuo, who plays the leading role of Yu Hao, criminal. Actress and model Ady An Yi Xuan is Xiao Yan Zi, his upper-class love interest. Michael Zhang and Lan Cheng Long are Yu Hao's closest friends, Yang Xiong Qi and Shan Zi, also street thugs.


Yu Hao, Shan Zi and Yang Xiong Qi are inseparable street guys, always in trouble. When Xiao Yan Zi saves Yu Hao by calling the cops on a gang planning to jump him, the two fall in love. Xiao Yan Zi, however, is an aspiring pianist from a good family, so two people couldn't be more different. Each episode of "The Outsiders" chronicles the tragic romance that ensues as their opposite realities become one.

Plot Twists

In the first season of "The Outsiders," Yu Hao joins The Triads, an organized crime gang. No longer just a bad boy, he becomes a full-fledged gangster to better protect Xiao Yan Zi. In "The Outsiders II," the second season, Xiao Yan Zi tries to manage the trauma of a sexual assault by one of Yu Hao's rivals by becoming a ruthless criminal herself.


"The Outsiders" originally aired on the Taiwanese television network GTV. Gala Television Corporation runs three commercial cable television channels --- GTV One (Channel 27), GTV Entertainment (Channel 28) and GTV Drama (Channel 41) --- as well as producing video programs. GTV's romance- and action-driven miniseries attract more viewers than many other competing Taiwanese stations.

About the Author

Jen Jefferson has been a writer and researcher since 2001. Her work has appeared in "Business Insights" and other publications. Jefferson has a Bachelor of Arts in English from The New School and a certificate in French from the International Language School in Montreal.