Out to hunt for short dramas, I found this. Well, more like I was checking what was up with Qu Zhong Heng lately and found how much I missed. Then there was the whole reading the cast list and knowing that it was short so what was the harm, right?
- Kingone Wang as Lin Xin Yi (林信一). Is this the first time Kingone portray a father figure? I didn’t watch all of his past dramas so I don’t know. But it was new for me and I thought he was convincing enough because he was a young parent after all so it wasn’t like he had to be wise and inspirational. He just had to make the bond work. And someone needs to give this man more leading roles. He made it so natural and convincing–whether in those ‘idol dramas’ OR these types of serious ones.
- Annie Chen as Zhao Zhong Ci (趙中慈). Zhao Ba’s cute daughter. I found her personality quite likeable in here and what I thought was funny when her father reminded her Xin Yi was already married, etc since her father knew that she liked Xin Yi YET she had responded saying it was her business that she liked Xin Yi BUT his having a wife was his matter. It made it somewhat hilarious that she was that optimistic. Not that she was going to budge into a marriage, but she tried to joke about it without being too morbid over it since life always go on and she had been focusing on helping her father with their small restaurant so it wasn’t like she got all dramatic and focused on romance all the time like a silly girl kept dreaming. In short, I just like the way she carried on.
- Zhao Shun as Zhao Ba (趙爸). Another hilarious role yet wasn’t overdone. He could be wise in his words at times but could also be funny when the time calls for it. He sure was with the time and was willing to paint his face to cheer the little kids on. He contributed to the lighthearted feeling of a small community sticking together through time.
- Zhao Jun Ya as Coach Wang Tian Jian (王天見教練). A different role for him and this time a coach. Though possessing some sort of power as well but he wasn’t fierce. He was a great coach actually, balancing out between wanting to win and actually caring about the little kids’ well being. But I guess it left him no choice since Mr. Chen made it so obvious with his interference that Coach Wang was forced to become their supportive coach instead of those overly crazy coach who only wanted to win in expense to the players. Perhaps he have to possess the calm and patience personalities to train the players since they were little kids after all at this stage.
- Qu Zhong Heng as Chen Jia Fu (陳家福). Haven’t seen him in a semi-serious role for a while now. He sure was passionate about the game yet it was understandable in a way. And I think his character really brought forth some reality into the drama itself because parents often loved to interfere with the coach during practice and also during the game. SAD, but it happens so no one could deny these stuffs are so dramatic.
- Zhang Xi Kai as Lin Yi Sa (林以撒 ). Can’t blame the kid for having such an attitude. He was often laughed at by other kids for not having a father. (Well, his father wasn’t present for the most part and suddenly just returned.) I found it not too bizarre with his behaviors and/or reactions at times to his father. YES, he wanted a father more than anything so he could have someone to worship like the other kids around him. YET it wasn’t like he could brush off the man’s absent all these times – regardless of reasons. Besides, at that age, those moments of life were so precious that it was hard to let go of.
- Lin Chao Yu as Ah Ma (阿嬤). What I found interesting about her and the family was how she wasn’t involved in rescuing Yi Sa when his father tied him up to the chair. (NOT too abusive but still somewhat holding the kid in place for the moment.) Xin Yi’s response to Zhong Ci’s question about the grandma’s lack of interference was truly amusing. They do possess some sort of violence behaviors all right. Back to grandma, she sure was different from other grandmas who often only shielded the kid from a father’s attacks (whether harmless or not). It was like she was sending a message “You pair of father and son better resolve this one on your own, don’t pull me into it” kind of thing. Yet she wasn’t all passive in their life either. She was there for them, talking to them when they needed someone to talk to and even tried to put in a good word or two but that was all, she didn’t force the ‘good feelings’ into happening.
- Jill Hsu as Zhan Fang Wen (詹芳雯). Lin Xin Yi’s ex-wife. Can’t say much since she only appeared a little yet I must compliment her for not drawing the line though she had wanted the divorce, still painting a good image of Xin Yi to their son. First time watching her but I think she looked different from some past dramas? (Well, I had looked at some past pictures so was just wondering. But I guess because it was time and her image for this particular drama, it made sense.)
- Li Shi Cheng as Chen Yi (陳毅). Yi Sa’s side-kick. This kid sure got his hilarious moments–whether with or without his dad. It was nice seeing Yi Sa having a good friend since don’t we all have someone by our side when we were a kid? It sure bring back old memories.
- Yu Lung Sheng as Dan Dan (丹丹). Crazy dude who contributed to the scenes and also part of the comedic team. I really enjoyed his appearances from time to time, especially during the game when he was trying to get the others to cheer even louder than the other side, scolding them for ‘not eating yet’ hence no energy, lol.
- Kingone Wang and Zhang Xi Kai as father and son. Mixed feelings, but I guess considering what happened between them, it was hard not to witness intensity. Yet when they got along again, I was convinced. The scene where they did the dance for victory the night before the game showed their bond and how they were loosening up to one another. Then the scene where Xin Yi finally fixed his son’s shoes and tied ’em for him showed that Yi Sa didn’t have to be envious of Chen Yi anymore.
- Zhao Shun and Annie Chen as father and daughter. Hilarious all right. It was funny how they were able to joke and she still reserved a strong sense of respect for him. It wasn’t like they didn’t have their bickering moments since according to their conversations, they had a fallout (sort of in the past when she was married to this one dude years ago). Yet it showed how forgiving and caring he was, willing to take her in again upon learning her fallout with the marriage. It wasn’t like he was celebrating on her heartache or bad luck of relationships, but it showed that he wasn’t egoistical and all out on the ‘disowning’ stuffs often seen during those dramatic moments. He proved that he was there for her and she was his precious daughter. What was more was how they were able to put everything in the past and joked about her stroke of bad lucks and interacted so comfortably without the element of guilt contributing into the whole factor, especially on her part. They were family after all and their bond totally threw some hope into life in general.
- Kingone and Annie as a couple. Refreshing and cute. Though it was subtle but I could dream that they could possibly end up in the future? Serious, lol. If there’s any opportunity in the future, I want to see them pair for real in some other dramas. (Or did they already?)
- Qu Zhong Heng and Li Shi Cheng as father and son. I totally felt it with their interactions and all. One of the hallmarks of their bonds was seeing Mr. Chen constantly fixing his son’s uniform and shoes during practice sessions. Though Mr. Chen’s overly involvement in the baseball team had given them a lot of pressures, but I felt somewhat touched to see him taking the time to help his son and cheered the kids on. AND with the dramas often implying how father and son relationships were strained because of childhood stuffs and the father always working, etc (AND it does happen in real life), but I was glad to see a different side.
- Kingone Wang and Zhao Jun Ya as friends. Found it interesting since they knew each other since they were famous stars during their school days. I guess it also reminded me of different bonds during high school and into the college years that some of the guys at my own high school had as well. Quite real with their talk and somewhat jab at one another. Then there was the whole intensity between the two of them that one time at the baseball field, but was soon resolved after Xin Yi worked off some steams proving himself. The others got to witnessed the two pros competing against one another in that match. Not bad at all, wasn’t forcing us into believing they were good friends. There were no over-killed lines, but typical guy talks–or sometimes more action to prove their points (like the little game that one time as mentioned above). And I thought it was more realistic in a sense because don’t guys do that more often? At least the majority of them, not involving in cheesy talks or overly unrealistic mushy conversations.
- Kingone Wang, Annie Chen, and Zhao Shun as the hilarious trio. I found their scenes together quite funny and cute in a sense. Either when they were just talking random or serious topics, it was really addicting to watch. Those times when they were talking by the sea area were mixed with humor and also provided some background stories to the plot. Then the time when they were on their way to the game? Zhao Ba was complaining about Xin Yi’s choice of transportation, LOL! Lucky they made it in time or Xin Yi would never hear the end of it.
It has been a long time now since I witnessed some unified feeling between all the cast. It’s like we know who are the main characters, but the togetherness feeling overrides the atmosphere, making it transcend all barriers. It’s more real in a sense that those other characters aren’t in the background and are just there for the sake of it, but everyone’s part of the major scene. One of the scenes that proved their unification was during the celebration party at Zhao Ba’s place when Mr. Chen was giving his little speech and expressing his pride for their place, etc. Everyone was cheering him on and it made it so heart-warming with everyone clinging together to achieve one goal – to make their people proud of what they do.
What made this particular drama realistic was how they didn’t win in the end. I meant so they managed to gain some points after Yi Sa entered the game, but it wasn’t like suddenly everything turned into a miracle. That was life. Not like they could always win. They learned a lesson, and what was important was how Yi Sa kept his promise he made with his coach. Then there was the whole thing with Xin Yi considering of becoming a coach to help the team as well. It was an ending to a piece of their life and then a new chapter began. Life was always full of changes and just didn’t stop like that. Nice little story indeed.