‘American Born Chinese’: Who Is Wei-Chen?

wei chen monkey

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Disney+’s American Born Chinese is one of the newest shows people would love if they were into action, fantasy, and friendship, all combined in a coming-of-age storyline. Of course, the series focuses on Jin Wang, who gets caught up in a massive live-and-death situation involving the entire world’s fate and a war between Chinese deities. One of the characters important to Jin’s journey was We-Chen, another central figure in the series. So, who exactly is Wei-Chen?

Sun Wei-Chen is the son of Sun Wukong, the legendary hero and Monkey King who became a legend in the world of Chinese deities. Wei-Chen stole his father’s Iron Staff due to a dream involving a mythical Fourth Scroll that he believed could stop an uprising against Heaven.

The entire storyline of American Born Chinese involves the journey of both Jin Wang and Sun Wei-Chen, as they try to stop an uprising by the disgruntled Bull Demon. In that regard, Wei-Chen dragged Jin into this war as he believed that the young boy was the guide that would take him to the Fourth Scroll. Now, let’s learn more about Wei-Chen.

Wei-Chen’s Background Explained

For those who love Asian mythology, American Born Chinese should be one of the best series to watch because it is a good mix of teenage drama, fantasy, action, and friendship. Of course, it is a coming-of-age storyline that not only focuses on the regular teenage character of the story but also on an unlikely deity that is trying to follow his own path in life. And we are talking about Wei-Chen, who was quickly introduced during the opening scene of the series.


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Wei-Chen was first introduced when it was mentioned that the legendary Sun Wukong’s Iron Staff had been stolen from him. Wukong, of course, is one of the most popular figures in all of the Chinese mythology due to how he was the figure that rebelled against Heaven but ended up becoming the hero that saved Buddha and Heaven. In American Born Chinese, Wukong is the venerable Great Sage that people go to for wisdom, as he traveled to India thousands of years ago to obtain the great scrolls that contained the world’s wisdom.


However, Wei-Chen had a dream that involved the Fourth Scroll that Wukong always believed never existed. As such, he left Heaven after stealing his father’s staff to follow his own journey on Earth, where he believed the Fourth Scroll could be found. And through a talking crane in his dream, Wei-Chen was made to believe he could find a guide to take him to the Fourth Scroll in modern-day California.

In that regard, Wei-Chen used his shapeshifting powers to disguise himself as a Chinese exchange student who attended the same school as Jin Wang. The school’s principal introduced Jin to Wei-Chen because he believed he could introduce the school to him, considering they were both of Asian heritage. However, Jin Wang didn’t know anything about China because he was born and raised in America by Chinese immigrants.

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Still, Wei-Chen thought Jin was the guide he dreamt about as the crane in his dream brought him to him. That was why he worked hard to gain Jin’s trust in the entire storyline even though the American-born Chinese teenager wasn’t interested in Wei-Chen’s friendship. Instead, Jin just wanted to live the life of a normal high school teenager that made friends, dated, and played sports.


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Wei-Chen, of course, had to face his own challenges throughout the first part of the storyline. Wukong came to his school to confront him and hopefully take him and the Iron Staff back to Heaven. But when the Chinese Goddess of Mercy, Guanyin, intervened, Wukong had no choice but to allow Wei-Chen to follow his own path in life. Guanyin served as Wei-Chen’s guardian on Earth as she was the one who believed that the boy should be allowed to follow what his dream told him instead of trying to follow the same path that his father paved many years ago.

Nevertheless, Wei-Chen also faced an even bigger challenge in the form of the Bull Demon, who had a score to settle with Wukong for taking his place as the Great Sage many years ago. Once Wukong’s best friend, the Bull Demon was now a vengeful deity that was looking to get his hands on both the Iron Staff and the Fourth Scroll so that he could put his nefarious plan into action.

What Happens to Wei-Chen?

A duel with the Bull Demon during the earlier part of the storyline was why Wei-Chen lost the Iron Staff to his father’s nemesis. Of course, it didn’t take too long for him to convince Jin that he was a deity with a huge goal. Despite that, Jin was still unsure about his role as Wei-Chen’s guide because he knew nothing about the Fourth Scroll or whatever happened between Heaven and the Bull Demon.

Wei-Chen eventually learned more about the nature of the Fourth Scroll from a banished deity named Ji Gong, who told him that the Fourth Scroll could be anything or anywhere. That was when Wei-Chen learned that the Fourth Scroll could be a product of two factions that used to war wage wars against each other, and he believed that the jade pendants owned by the families of Jin’s parents could be the Fourth Scroll. Jin’s parents were often fighting due to financial matters and when it came to raising their son. As such, Wei-Chen thought that the pendants, which could combine into one pendant, was the Fourth Scroll.

Nevertheless, Wei-Chen’s efforts were in vain because the pendants weren’t the Fourth Scroll. Stealing the pendants also almost ruined his relationship with Jin. And what made matters worse was that the Bull Demon kidnapped Wukong and held him hostage.

bull demon

Wei-Chen tried to save his father alone, only for the Bull Demon to thwart his efforts. This failure had Wei-Chen believing that his father had lost his life to a seemingly fatal attack. And that was when he finally got the help he needed from Jin, who saw a vision of the Bull Demon’s plans.

Jin assisted Wei-Chen by figuring out what the Bull Demon was planning to do with the Iron Staff during the autumn equinox. That was when they used the soccer game to draw their enemy out and try to stop him then and there. Using the beads he got from Ji Gong, Wei-Chen matched the Bull Demon, who planted the Iron Staff on the ground to use it to destroy heaven using Earth’s energy.


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Just as when Wei-Chen was about to fail to stop the Iron Staff, Jin placed himself between the staff and the sky to block its energy. Miraculously, Jin survived and learned from Sun Wukong, who was still alive, that he had been the Fourth Scroll all along. In that regard, Wei-Chen was successful in his mission to find the Fourth Scroll and in using it to stop the uprising by the Bull Demon.

After the soccer game, Jin returned home, where Wei-Chen was waiting to say farewell. Wei-Chen was thankful for Jin’s efforts and promised to try to figure out how Jin could stop the Iron Staff. And he said farewell to his best friend without making any promises about whether or not they would see each other again.

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