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Only You: Episode 2

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This episode continues with Mandy’s job search. She’s so picky, LOL! Well, I guess she has a point regarding the requirements with knowing how to drink, please others, etc. It begins to feel like some special ‘socializing’ abilities rather than just the normal professionalism that employees have to acquire for their job titles. Anyway, Mandy soon meets with her mother at a restaurant for tea time (?) and finds out that her mother has set up a meeting with the match-maker, Chong Sze Tim. (Yeah, the same match-maker/wedding planner who helped Dee with the whole wedding arrangement in the previous episode.) Mandy’s still hostile – or at least semi-hostile – to the her while exchanging some words. Her mother of course interferes. However, Mandy’s attitude changes when the subject changes to that of wedding arrangements. Yup, she has already talked to Ling regarding the whole making money out of the wedding business when they met up for lunch, so it’s only right that she snatches at the opportunity when Madame Chong brought it up. Like it’s an easy road since her attitude just kills everything and Madame Chong wouldn’t want to commit suicide by accepting Mandy as a student. LOL! That would lead to major blood pressure problems in the near future. On a personal note, I don’t know, but I like Yoyo’s character so far. It’s kind of different from her previous roles. It’s not too good, too dumb, too kind, or too cruel. There’s this mixture of caring for her family yet she has this attitude that just drives people insane at times. In other words, NOT perfect yet not completely hateful either.
To steer away from that side of the main cast to the other side, LOL! Yeah, so I didn’t mention about Madame Chong’s family, right? So here goes, Evergreen Mak and Kristal Tin are part of that clan. Then there’s their son Zhong Chung Leung (Vin Choi) – more like stepson to Mrs. Zhong. There is also Ma Hui Ching (Natalie Tong) who is Madame Chong’s daughter. In a way, they’re a family business. In the previous episode, we found out that Chung Leung didn’t transfer his tuition fees to Hui Ching so now he couldn’t go to Australia to study because he had enrolled somewhere else to pursue a girl. His father is more than mad but couldn’t do anything about it – even after some major persuasion with the school. To top it off, they have another thing to worry about. Their main photographer, Summer (Kevin Cheng), is not back yet because of delays and couldn’t make it in time to take pictures for one of their clients. Mrs. Zhong immediately comes up with some medical excuse for Summer and tries to edge out of it. Nice? It seems that Kevin’s portraying somewhat of an irresponsible person – for once? NOT sure, but we’ll find out in a bit.
Because of Summer’s inability to appear at the time, King (Lai Lok Yi) tried to cover for him by offering his service when he was turned down by the customers since they did not trust him – though he was supposed to be backup photographer and was more than qualified to help them with the photograph session. After much frustration, he left again. So much for being nice and trying to help, I guess.
On the other hand, Madame Chong was offered a case to help this one family with an upcoming wedding but one of the requirements was that she was still happily married. This was the thing that couldn’t be fulfilled but Phoebe (Kristal Tin) jumped in to say that it was true and used crafty words to seal the deal. Madame Chong couldn’t turn it down so she had to seek out her disciple to handle the ceremony. She had no idea that her loud mouth disciple was the reason for her downfall. Or what seemed so because the disciple engaged in an argument with Lady Wong and accidentally spilled the beans regarding Madame Chong’s past. That got into the tabloids and caused Madame Chong’s reputation. I seriously do not blame Phoebe in this case since she wasn’t totally lying. Yes, she was manipulating the words to make it sound good yet she wasn’t bashing or picking on Madame Chong. She was just using good words to make Madame Chong’s reputation good. I blame the nosy disciple for not knowing when to shut up. Anyway, Madame Chong went to their client’s office to try and explain but the rep wouldn’t hear her. Luckily, the boss came and told them that she would see Madame Chong. After some explanation, the lady boss said that she didn’t care about Madame Chong’s past but admired her for her talents and wanted her to arrange the wedding and be there for the ceremony.
Back to Mandy’s side, Mandy somehow landed a job since it was Ling’s cousin’s wedding. She tried to pull it off but failed major time because she wasn’t paying attention when Ling was passing on information to her. Despite her crafty words and manipulation, she wasn’t convincing. But coincidences of all coincidences or maybe it was just planned that way so the plot would unfold later, but Madame Chong’s reception was also at the same hotel/restaurant. So they went head to head and had some exchanges. Mandy was still the typical Mandy, arrogant as always, LOL! Madame Chong didn’t want to argue with her anymore. Yet the little respect Mandy showed toward Madame Chong was letting her get into the Taxi first. But Madame Chong refused and so Mandy abandoned her courtesy and headed home. Yup, Madame Chong was shaking her head.
The episode ended with Mandy sitting on her bed and counting the  red packets. It showed that she had failed major time. Need to be more convincing. If only she would know that she still has a lot to learn.

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Only You: Episode 1

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After watching the first episode, I must say I’m impressed. It might be too early to say anything regardless because I’ve read some spoilers but I’m willing to stay positive – for once (at least recently). This series is of course about weddings or more like the preparations for weddings. Well, it could be counted as everything surrounding weddings, such as preparations – as mentioned above – and the hardships they’ve gone through for it. The reasons for such a fancy and glamorous preparations could be for the the sake of saving face – as in this case, but actually turns out into a different reason and could account for a whole different reason in the end. I must admit I was thinking along the line of dragging formula as the wall crumbles when Mandy (Yoyo Mung) exclaims out her frustration and spills the beans about her recent job lost. But the whole event turns around all right in the end. It seems that this series would be a case per case thing instead of dragging it out with the whole jumble of stories like in the past series. Then they would save it for everything to resolve in the end or near the end. But it’s not. I like this approach better when it comes to theme related ones. I must say I’m not much of a fan of some of the cast members but watch anyway since I at least like some of the cast. Glad I carry on anyway because I like the development thus far and how the characters are – even if they seem annoying at one point or another. It is more on a serious level than some of the recent nonsense ones. However, you shouldn’t dive in if you just can’t stand the main cast because you wouldn’t enjoy it anyway. I’m willing to continue because the plot has convinced me somewhat and how the characters promise some sense of variety. There is of course the overall plot that ties the main cast together but most of the couples in here are probably appearing as guests for each case the wedding planners do. Can’t wait to see what else would happen.
So anyone wants spoilers? Well, the first story started with Mandy’s family preparing for Dee (Eddie Lee) and Rainbow (Leanne Li)’s wedding. Dee and Rainbow only wants a simple get together party among family and friends, but it has turned into a whole catastrophe because Mandy wants to show off to her other relatives and save face for the family. Then there’s also the whole thing with their mother (Suet Nei) wanting to do a traditional wedding after witnessing a professional match-maker/wedding planner going through the ceremony with a relative’s wedding. This professional match-maker is of course portrayed by Louise Lee. She is pestered by all family members before and after Mandy’s job lost, causing quite a nuisance for her. However, upon hearing the mother’s confession of how important it is to her to witness a traditional wedding and bringing luck towards her son and future daughter-in-law, the match-maker is touched and proceeds to do her best directing the mother throughout the preparations. On the other hand, Mandy is very frustrated with her job lost that she finally takes it out on her brother after finding out about the huge bill from the wedding pictures. So all parties are on the out that night, shutting themselves in their rooms – except for the mother. Their mother is worried and wants to cancel all arrangements with the match-maker the next day because of Dee’s rude behavior and hostility. However after some encouragements and persuasions, she proceeds with the planning. That night, Dee returns home to see his mother in the kitchen – more like just a glimpse of her in the kitchen – and mumbles about the nuisance of preparations in his drunk state. Yet the next day Dee finally understands his mother’s feelings towards the whole thing. Even Rainbow is touched by what her mother-in-law has done for her – and cooperates with the arrangements throughout, no longer complaining about the unfairness of not being able to plan out her own wedding, etc. Another touching moment occur when Mandy produces two watches as the wedding gift for her brother, which Dee remembers the promise Mandy has made to him since they were still young. After that flashback, Dee tearfully says that Mandy has remembered and Mandy returns by reminding him that she would never forget what she promised to him. See what I mean with a touching episode? Well, who knows what else could happen in the future but that moment really brings meaning into the whole theme. It brings forth more hope for weddings and/or marriages. (I’m a sucker for it.)

A Watchdog's Tale

Against my better judgment, I watched it. Actually, it was more like I miss watching Maggie Siu so much that I decided to watch it anyway, considering how it was a comedy after all so it shouldn’t be too bad, right? WRONG…it was really a torture, especially when I’m not a fan of the pairing. There were things to consider and enjoy YET I did not enjoy the storyline or some characters as much so it was hard to hang on. Lucky some characters keep me watching until the end OR at least tried to hold on.
Likes:

  • Steven Ma as Chow Yung Kung. His portrayal of the character AND not the character itself. I couldn’t believe Steven was able to do it but I do not know why I doubt him anyway. YET I did not like the character at all despite all the righteous things that he did at times. He wasn’t all bad BUT I felt like he was too rude at times to forgive. Too over. Probably more realistic since he couldn’t change overnight BUT honestly, was really hard to endure. But like I said before, Steven managed to let us see that character well.
  • Steven and Ching Hor Wai as mother and son. I really liked their relationship. Despite all the times Yung Kung upset her or made her mad, she was still able to forgive him. She raised him all those years and really cared for him, teaching him all the ropes, etc. He was rude and arrogant at times BUT I liked it that he respected her and treated her well. Also, must clap him on for staying with her at the end too. I felt it wasn’t just because of love that he wanted to stay BUT it was because of her. Their bond was important to him and he valued it very much.
  • Raymond Wong as Ho Tin Yau. I really liked his character at first with his hard-working attitude and how honest he was, etc.
  • Raymond and Shermon? Come on now! Honestly, I was rooting for them. For once, I want to see a pairing worth rooting for, just ’cause Natalie portrayed a bigger role doesn’t mean he has to end up with her. Raymond and Shermon do look cute together.
  • Lee Kwok Lun as Cheung Tin Hung. Though he did kidnap his sister BUT I could forgive him since he was just trying to get some money and go establish himself. He just wanted to do something to prove to his family that he wasn’t worthless.
  • Maggie Siu as Cheung Tin Ngo. I really liked her hard-working attitude though she was too much of a workaholic. BUT it was hard to blame her since she was the only one that her father could depend on. I thought her overly obsessed with cleanliness was funny. I don’t really agree with her being with Kent though. I meant they were funny together and all, but I just don’t like Kent’s arrogant streak at times. (Okay, he was smart BUT didn’t need to act so high and mighty.)
  • Bowie Wu, Lee Kwok Lun, and Maggie being in the same family. I love this idea and collaboration really. It was really fun to see them like that. What was funnier was when Maggie was trying to search for the truth behind her kidnapping AND she was getting clues about the familiar ringtone. Then she realized that everyone in her family had that ringtone! Even the butler! What was even more interesting was Bowie and Maggie were father and daughter in The Blood of Good and Evil as well. (Wonder if they were father and daughter in other series too.)
  • Koni Lui as Ma Cheuk Ling. I really liked her in here and found her NOT fake like some people. Yes, she was an undercover cop BUT she was so down to earth. She had to play that role since she needed to blend in YET it showed much more when she wasn’t being a cop anymore. She was professional when she met up with her supervisor and Raymond that one time. But other times, she was really lovable.
  • Lee Kwok Lun and Koni Lui as a couple. I thought it was really cute and lovable for some odd reason since I usually don’t favor odd pairings. BUT they had great chemistry and their story was really innocent and funny. Couldn’t believe that they had something in common as collecting Hello Mimi! That was worth a few laughs all right.
  • Fred Cheng as Kwok Wing. They were wasting his time, right? He’s still not getting anywhere.
  • Kwok Fung as Chow Wai Wai. He was too funny. I enjoyed watching him at times. He was such a bully and was doing illegal stuffs BUT he was still hilarious to watch. He redeemed himself later and was so overly friendly that it was funny. AND not to mention how the bar was converted into some coffee shop or bookstore.
  • Queenie Chu as Steven’s ex-girlfriend. Man, she scared the world out of me and I thought Queenie did really good making that happen. Didn’t expect her to be able to pull it off with being so creepy and psycho. I’m not comparing her with others, but just basing it on her own performances thus far.

I won’t even bother with the ‘Dislikes’ since it would be too much and I would never stop SO I’ll just leave it at that for the most part to spare even more negativity into the whole thing.

Safe Guards

That was a very great and satisfying ending. There were so many conflicts and hardships during the last few episodes but glad they found a clever way to resolve it instead of making it rushed like previous series. Really loved Ram Tseung in here as Ching Mun. He was so clever and carefree. Too bad his wife died but NOT for nothing. He managed to try harder and made others proud. His dedications toward the business was greater also. Plus they finally get their reward by getting the contract signed.
Really like Steven and Wayne in here as Tzi and Joong. Like I said in the previous reviews, really like Wayne’s acting and he’s a great team with Steven throughout–no wonder they’re singed up for 2 more collaboration after this series. It was a great decision.
Steven & Elaine – I don’t know why people are against it so much. They compliment each other so well with him being the strong/ ruthless and fearless leader with a sense of righteousness while she is the kind and understanding wife. Yes, she might appear to be such a weakling and seems useless for the series, but she does know a lot of things since she used to worked with her father before. She has the experience. Plus, I think this is a guy series so her character as Fung shouldn’t and wasn’t supposed to overshadow Steven, Wayne, or Ram’s characters. Plus considering during those ancient times (that was a LONG time ago), women aren’t supposed to participate in stuffs as much, especially business matter so it’s only correct that she shouldn’t be the strong type who stands around and talks away 24/7. So in conclusion, really like this pairing (of course it doesn’t top Steven & Bernice) but still a good pairing–even IF Steven has to pull most of the weight of the acting but it’s all right. He’s capable. Elaine wasn’t terrible but she needs more work in playing a calm character. I think she improved A LOT during The Gentle Crackdown II ’cause I thought she played out the kind and nice weakling better. (And she was a cute couple with Johnson Lee in there as well.)
Lai Lok Yi – I swear I don’t know why he’s in here. It’s like give or take. But maybe ’cause his character, Yee, caused Steven’s character, Tzi, to realize the importance of expanding their business to the seas instead of land like they’ve been doing. For the first time I can only say average from him–maybe ’cause he appeared too late in the series and didn’t get to contribute as much.
I must say that was a shocker when they revealed Ching Pung’s real identity. It was really hard to believe yet so convincing at the same time. ‘Cause it doesn’t justify for anything that their grandpa should believe in such omens as bad luck all these years. And even their father believed it, Ching Tong’s kind to his brothers, and would have gave Ching Pung great responsibility. The ending point explains a lot. It serves Ching Pung right for being so greedy. I think that it was such a grateful thing that the grandpa did to still raise and gave Ching Pung such a position (aka giving him access to the assets/ money) all these years. If a man found out he had been tricked, he would have kicked the kid out already but he didn’t. He still continues to raise Ching Pung and only made the “unlucky” thing as an excuse to cover up so Ching Pung could get a share of the family fortune in the future. Ching Pung himself was the one responsible for his downfall since he drove everyone to the wall, causing the mother to take such actions.
Ben Wong as the villain in here was interesting since he takes quite the big role. (Haven’t seen him in such big roles recently even if it’s as a villain.) Interesting portrayal and he was great portraying the calm and supportive brother at the beginning and later breaking away because he couldn’t take the failure. Hau takes the turn for the worse and thus leading him to cause more damage and to his downfall in the end. I like it that his ending wasn’t too lame, considering he learned to repent after he known of his son’s existence and began to see how good Tzi treated his son in the end. The scene was just right before his death also, not too dramatic or subtle.
Love Law Lok Lam’s last scene–although brief appearance,  but it is the most important part of the whole series, causing a turn back and a HUGE surprise for everyone. The role he played is of importance since he’s the only one to prove the credibility of the evidences gathered.
Considering how many years have passed with each of the events and conflicts going on, it makes everything more believable since TVB just jumbles conflicts in stories within months. The series overall was really good for recent ancient series. Although it wasn’t best but because of its flaws, it shines out in the sense of realism.
Posted (on Xanga): November 23, 2008
Re-posted: Saturday, April 17th, 2010

Where The Legend Begins

I must say that I have never read Three Kingdoms properly so I do not know how accurate it was. But it was not that hard to tell that Cao Cao was supposed to be the villain. That was interesting to see that they shown him as an honorable person to his sons at the beginning. It also presented a different perspective to the story of the Three Kingdoms.
This focused around the Cao household and what roughly happened during the wars between Cao Cao, Sun Quan, and Liu Bei. They briefly mentioned some historical context to move the story forward but Sun Quan and Liu Bei never appeared, which was understandable since if the others were to appear, it would’ve stolen the spotlight from Cao Cao and therefore defeating the purpose of revolving the story around Cao Cao in the first place. But they managed to put in the famous ‘Battle of Red Cliff’ (Chi Bi) and how badly Cao Cao was defeated, causing his downfall (or at least made him lose the will to fight any longer).
This story began with Yan Fuk’s dream of Lok Sun being punished for causing the rift between her husband and this other god. It was all a misunderstanding but Lok Sun still got punished and the other two gods were spared of the punishment. Yan Fuk was actually the reincarnation of Lok Sun.
Yan Fuk suffered the same fate as Lok Sun because she was stuck between two men–whom were brothers (and incidentally Cao Cao’s sons). Yan Fuk’s only fault was that of her beauty. If that was even supposed to be a fault at all. Even Cao Cao himself has fallen for Yan Fuk at one time though Yan Fuk skillfully persuaded him that he was her respectable elder since he was her father’s friend. He finally thought it through and decided to resolve the conflicts that his two sons were going through to win Yan Fuk’s heart. Yan Fuk, of course, favored Cho Chi Kin (portrayed by Steven Ma) from the start because of their shared love for poetry and the likes. They had this tacit understanding and complemented each other very well. Chi Kin’s older brother, Cho Chi Woon, claimed from the beginning that women were trouble and those beauties only destroy men (and the country in general). He even wanted to kill Yan Fuk at first but when he finally met face to face with her, he immediately fell in love with her. That led to the conflicts between him and his brother.
At first, Cao Cao wanted Chi Kin to succeed him as the leader of the Cao/Cho household, but he later reconsidered and changed his mind, letting Chi Woon be the leader. He never knew that Chi Woon was not using his own talents to win over Chi Kin for the power. Others failed in vain in convincing him that there was some stronger power behind Chi Woon helping him. They were right and that was the pretentious Si Ma Yi. Chi Kin did not want to fight with his brother but he was driven to the wall with his brother’s despicable/underhanded method of winning that he was pulled into the conflict in gaining power as well. (Not to mention how he knew that only he could help the citizens live a better life after gaining power. Chi Woon was not a good choice where citizens were concerned because he would do anything to gain power. Chi Woon was like their father in that way.) Cao Cao also knew that Chi Woon was not the best choice so he wanted to marry Yan Fuk to Chi Woon so she could be his adviser and guide him in the right direction. However, he never realized there were other parties and forces involved so his plan was crumbling apart. Aside from Si Ma Yi’s constant schemes to get rid of Chi Kin’s allies, there was also Yan Fuk’s supposedly good sister Kwok Huen stirring things up to sabotage Yan Fuk due to jealousy.
There were too many things going on at the same time that it was hard to explain. You just have to watch it to know what really happened and understand the conflicts better. Who was the big winner in the end? Si Ma Yi of course since Cao Cao failed to listen to the others and gave too much power to Chi Woon that when he finally found out about Chi Woon’s beyond cure state, it was too late.
Aside from all those political conflicts and side romance stories, I found several scenes memorable–touching even, which were:

  • The part where Lau Sik Sik died. I actually cried at that part because of her tragic ending. She was an orphan who was brought into the brothel to be trained as a singer and later was recruited by Cao Cao’s first wife to fight against Yan Fuk. Yet, she was not a petty person. She knew and understood that Yan Fuk was a talented person and someone whom she could befriend since they shared some common interests. I felt that she was more on par with Yan Fuk and could be considered as the good sister than that of Kwok Huen. (Since although Kwok Huen used to be from a rich family and her beauty was stressed at various times but she could not be compared to Sik Sik’s elegance or grace.) The conflicts between Cao Cao’s wives had caused Sik Sik’s death. Not to mention how Kwok Huen had sided with Cao Cao’s second wife to try and replace Sik Sik by copying Sik Sik’s singing style. Sik Sik, like Yan Fuk, only wanted to live a simple life–but it was impossible with the circumstances surrounding them. Priscilla was a good choice for the role and her voice matched one of those ancient singers.
  • The part where Yeung So died. Yes, death was an unavoidable thing around the Cao househould since Cao Cao was a very suspicious person, always thinking that others were plotting against him if they did anything out of the ordinary–according to him. Yeung So’s death was caused by his stubbornness and unwilling to let go and some traces of arrogance that had made others feel threatened by his talents thus wanting to get rid of him. Perhaps he should’ve listened to his master before taking actions or at least be more cautious toward what was going on. However, he should not be blamed in totality since he was desperate to help his good friend, Chi Kin. In fact, he was a loyal friend. He had never shown jealousy toward Chi Kin or Yan Fuk considering how others had compared them to him with their ability to solve various problems. His death scene was really tragic considering how they showed Chi Kin and Yan Fuk remembering back to the past about their group of friends going to the inn to drink and talk about various matters. Also, the poem he uttered out before his death and the the song version came on accompanying the whole scene was very well done. A very touching moment. (Not to mention the letter that Yeung So left behind for Chi Kin.) Though lack of screen time (or what it seemed like), Gilbert did very well in portraying his character with his brilliant side and the somewhat stubborn side as well.
  • The part where Chui Fau died. Though ironic since she was an annoying character throughout with her petty antics in trying to get rid of Yan Fuk yet she turned out all right in the end. Her only fault was her stupidity since she did not understand Cao Cao’s plans yet only wanted to support her husband throughout. It was really pathetic and beyond frustrating that when Chi Kin was telling Cao Cao how he did not like Chui Fau but Cao Cao did not listen. He brushed it off and proceeded with their marriage anyway. However, when he discovered why it was a big mistake in letting Chui Fau marry Chi Kin, he immediately sought to eliminate the obstacle (or so he thought) for Chi Kin. I felt that it was very ironic since Chi Kin finally learned to accept her and she finally learned how to become a good wife (minus the whole high dreams of wanting to be a queen one day). What was even more tragic was leaving behind their son without a mother. I felt that scene was equally memorable with the other two death scenes since it highlighted the conflicts and enhanced the rift between Chi Kin and his father. She did not deserve to die however stupid she was.
  • The part where Yan Fuk died. It was sad yet frustrating at the same time though I knew from the beginning that she would die. It was probably her fate and if tying in with her Lok Sun identity, it could be explained that her time in the human world was done and she had served out her sentence after learning all the things about the human world. Yet it was giving Kwok Huen and Si Ma Yi the satisfaction of her death since they eliminated the biggest obstacle of their lives.

What I found the most frustrating and pathetic was Chi Woon knew from the start that Chi Kin and Yan Fuk were the real couple yet he kept wanting to win over Chi Kin and marry Yan Fuk. Yet afterward, he would blame Yan Fuk for being unfaithful when she had tried her best to make it work–because of what she could not change with the forced marriage. It was probably Cao Cao’s fault also for thinking that he could just plan anything and it would go accordingly. However, I just felt it was really dumb to blame everything on Chi Kin and Yan Fuk when Chi Woon was the one being unreasonable and unfaithful throughout. Chi Woon never loved Yan Fuk to begin with, he was only obsessed with her beauty and how badly he wanted to win over Chi Kin. (If not, why would he fall for Kwok Huen’s schemes?) But in a way, it emphasized Cao Cao’s downfall and how his family would never gain power for a long time so that was their deserved fate. But I felt Chi Kin and Yan Fuk were the victims of time, considering how they only wanted to have a simple life yet were forced into such conflicts.
What I found the most admirable was the friendship between Chi Kin, Yan Fuk, Shik Shik, and Yeung So. They knew each other’s talents and capabilities and shared interests thus becoming good friends yet they seemed to live in the wrong time (as mentioned above). They were so comfortable with one another and was really happy at that one inn where they would meet and talk about various topics, composing poems, or drink to their friendship.  Their bond was what made Shik Shik and Yeung So’s deaths even more tragic and touching. No one was able to stop it from happening, especially in Yeung So’s case. Shik Shik was unexpected. But Yeung So’s was predictable considering how he was taking such actions but he chose it anyway, knowing it would bring him trouble. The others did not have any power to prevent it from happening and could only witness it in frustration or sadness. The scene with Yan Fuk reminiscing about the past and Chi Kin practicing his swords skill while Yeung So was being transported to the appointed site for the beheading process reflected their state of emotions well. Each time, it was like the ones whom were left behind would hurt more with continuing to carry on no matter how hard it was. It was like until the end that Chi Kin finally died as well that their bond finally broke. Though their story would probably remain behind with those who knew them.
What was a bit interesting and amusing all at once was the relationship between masters and servants in here for several cases. What I meant was Yan Fuk and Yau Seen versus Kwok Huen and Song Yau. Both servants were loyal to their masters but one out of gratitude and respect contrary to the other with blind trust/beliefs. It was interesting how Kwok Huen was able to brainwash Song Yau into helping her throughout with the various plots. It was ironic that Song Yau said Kwok Huen saved her so she would do anything to protect Kwok Huen yet if it wasn’t for Yan Fuk saving Kwok Huen in the first place, none of that would’ve happened. But Song Yau got what she deserved in the end for being so blind with helping Kwok Huen. I also felt that June was better in portraying her role so her character was more convincing and May Kwong was not as good so it was hard to understand how her character was becoming that way.
Acting? Honestly, Steven and Ada were the ones that I was really impressed with among the four main cast. Moses was all right but I thought he could not make me sympathize with him even when he was being under-estimated by his father. I guess it was mostly due to the fact of his ironic character, stating that women were trouble but he just dived right in to it and could not resist temptation and just turned around blaming them in the end. It was pathetic. And for some reason, I could not feel the bond between him and Steven as brothers but could feel more with Steven and Evergreen Mak’s. Maybe it was because how Chi Woon had always been so calculative (aka keeping scores) and had been silently jealous with Chi Kin that made it hard to see their brotherly bond. Yes, there were traces of their bonding with how they played that one game at the beginning of the series, but I felt it was always Chi Kin/Steven pulling the weight or effort to mend things with Chi Woon/Moses. Evergreen’s acting seemed stronger than Moses’ though he was not placed into one of  the lead roles. He still delivered his part and made his loyalty toward Chi Kin/ Steven convincing and admirable. He was an honest person but he knew the importance of family–unlike Chi Woon who was blinded by jealousy. Perhaps, putting Moses alongside Steven was a bad idea since Steven would shine without trying. Ada probably looked more compatible with Moses than Steven (or what I thought of at the beginning) but Steven and Ada’s acting made up for it with their chemistry and interactions throughout. What about Sonija? Let’s just say that she did better in her recent roles. Because honestly, Sonija was what made it hard to see what was the fuss about her beauty. Maybe it was only Chi Woon who was blinded by Kwok Huen’s words and seduction method but there wasn’t anything important about her. Possibly that was why Kwok Huen was so jealous of Yan Fuk and wanted to get rid of her. Even Irene Wong did WAY better than Sonija in portraying her role. Although it was a different type of character considering their characters’ personalities but Sonija failed to capture the essence of the character thus making it unconvincing or show any signs of significance.
However frustrating that was, I still find it one of the better TVB series since it managed to capture an interesting side of the story. It was another perspective to consider since we were always told from the point of view of the other two famous figures, Sun Quan and Liu Bei. What I wanted to complain about was the make up for the cast. The guys were all right but the girls were more noticeable. Except for Priscilla’s make up, the rest of the female population seemed too pale or too old somehow. I’m not saying that they’re old, I’m just saying that the make up made them look that way. All the female cast chosen were not ugly at all yet the make up failed to bring out their beauty. Even though Ada looked stunning in her costumes but she still looked like she was too tired or something.

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