There seems to be a perpetual raincloud hovering above 2020. Yesterday, the Internet was flooded with news of yet another celebrity’s passing.
Taiwanese TV personality Alien Huang was found dead at his Taipei home.
Preliminary investigation suggests that he slipped and hit his head.
The tragedy was widely mourned, as he was an influential presence to many a 90’s kid.
To commemorate his impressive career and achievements, here are ten facts about Huang.
1. The Meaning of ‘Alien’
Huang named himself Alien to symbolize an attitude of creativity above all. He believed that we should always be evolving, and remain undefined like aliens.
On the other hand, he was given the nickname Xiao Gui (little ghost) by director Doze Niu during the filming of Freedom of Half Grown-Ups.
The show marked his TV show debut. Xiao Gui was originally the name of his character.
2. Huang Was Super Multitalented
Huang had a career in the entertainment industry that spanned 18 years.
A singer, actor, and TV presenter, he first appeared on a nature-discovery show for children named Follow Me, Go!.
He was also a member of boy bands HC3 and Cosmo, before going on to release solo albums after the groups disbanded.
Apart from that, Huang starred in numerous popular Taiwanese dramas and films, including KO One and Mysterious Incredible Terminator.
3. Huang Was a Fashion Designer
On 11 Sep 2008, Huang founded Alien Evolution Studio (AES), a streetwear and merchandise brand that doubles as an exhibition space.
Carrying on with the idea behind the name ‘Alien’, the tagline of the brand is ‘Deconstruct to Reconstruct’.
Huang channelled his impeccable style into his designs of clothing and collectible toys, often as a casual reinterpretation of punk rock fashion. Many of the clothing lines are results of collaborations with Japanese designers and brands.
AES has three outlets in the cities of Taipei, Taichung and Kaosiung, Taiwan. Currently, all outlets have suspended their operations indefinitely.
4. He Had a Knack for Art
Since young, Huang had possessed a knack for art. As a child, he frequently placed in the top three in poster design competitions.
In February this year, the artist held a solo exhibition titled “Dear PaPa”. The event showcased artworks that were dedicated to his father.
While he was normally too shy to vocalize his love for his father, he stated that he didn’t want to regret it when it’s too late.
The exhibition ended victorious, with all 11 of his paintings and collectibles sold.
Now it’s extra depressing to know that it was his father who discovered his body.
5. Huang Was a Certified Lifeguard
Before Huang began his acting career, he spent a summer going through professional lifeguard training.
For a month, 17-year-old Huang practised in a 5-metre deep pool every day.
Typically, only 50% of trainees would pass the program but Huang graduated top of his class and successfully obtained a lifeguard certification.
Though he wasn’t of age to be a practising lifeguard, he interned at various places and observed countless frightening incidents.
Through tough training, he gained resilience and perseverance.
Over the course of his career, he would often think to himself: “I was able to handle the grind of a lifeguard trainee and earn the rights to save lives – there’s nothing else I can’t do.”
6. He Was No Stranger to Singapore
Huang was no stranger to the little red dot.
He was a familiar face at the Singapore Entertainment Awards and even bagged awards for five consecutive years from 2010 to 2014.
Besides, he participated in local productions such as TV show Joys of Life. He was the main cast alongside Zhang Yaodong, Rui En, Chloe Wang, Andie Chen and Kate Pang.
He also starred in local film Already Famous, written and directed by his co-star Michelle Chong.
In a behind-the-scenes video, he revealed that to prepare for the role, he made himself drink and appreciate coffee.
He also learnt how to make coffee the Singapore way.
His last Singaporean project, Fat Hope, is scheduled to hit silver screens in November after nearly seven months of delay due to the pandemic.
7. Rainie Yang Was Huang’s First Love and Close Friend
Huang was an alumnus of HuaGang High School of Performing Arts, where he was granted admission by achieving first place out of thousands of applicants.
There, he met Rainie Yang, whom he dated for three years. They were each other’s first love. The relationship ended when Yang debuted in the entertainment industry and dropped out of high school.
Yang was the only girlfriend Huang acknowledged throughout his 18-year career. The two remained close friends and even regarded each other as family.
Understandably, Yang was heartbroken over his passing. She wrote on her Facebook that she “won’t pretend to be fine, because it’s impossible.”
💔謝謝大家對我的關心我不會假裝我很好 我沒事因為不可能好 不可能沒事鴻升的離開讓太多愛他的人都感到非常不捨知道消息後我很擔心鴻升家人的心情他們一定比我還要痛上好幾倍看到媒體新聞報導著他的好很欣慰因為他真的非常努力…
8. Huang Was Best Friends With Show Luo
One of Huang’s best-known hosting gigs has got to be 100% entertainment. He joined the series in 2005 as a locum and was promoted to main host the next year.
For a decade, Huang and co-host Show Luo formed an iconic duo that was practically the childhood of 90’s kids.
The two were close friends. Together with their other best buds, they formed a tight-knit group named ‘Party Boys’.
Unfortunately, it was rumoured that they had a falling out in 2015 when Luo overheard Huang criticizing his fans. The latter subsequently quitted the show, and the pair grew apart.
Regardless, the news of Huang’s passing still surprised and saddened Luo, who posted “Why did this happen…” on his story in response.
9. Huang Had a Sweet Tooth
Latte and desserts – breakfast for champions, eh?
Well, it used to be breakfast for Huang, who had a serious case of sweet tooth.
A year ago, health screenings revealed Huang to be a three-high patient: high blood pressure, high blood sugar and high cholesterol.
Huang’s father was worried to learn of his condition. To ease his father’s concern, Huang decided to change his diet.
Since then, he opted for black coffee during breakfast and avoided carbs at dinner. He would also work out or jog two days a week.
Eventually, he brought his levels back to normal.
10. A Tattoo Of His Father
Huang’s torso was almost completely obscured by tattoos.
Most notably, he had a portrait of his father inked over his heart.
As it turns out, Huang’s father experienced severe health complications before. The two went to get a tattoo of each other when Huang thought he was going to lose his father.
There was also a Mickey Mouse tattoo above the portrait on his chest to represent his father’s Chinese zodiac – rat.
I’m not crying, you are.
RIP, Alien Huang (Xiao Gui), and our heartfelt condolences to his grieving family and friends in this difficult time.