Eternal Love (三生三世十里桃花)

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(image credit: as marked)

I had this on my list but didn’t watch it until Netflix alerted me that they were going to take it off. Probably licensing expired. No matter, I had some time so I watched. What was sort of maddening was how I rushed to watch it yet found out later that they didn’t take it off after all. Probably they were able to renew the rights a bit longer. I felt deceived, that was all. On the upside, I finally watched it.

Main Cast:

  • Yang Mi (楊冪) as Bai Qian (白淺). I haven’t watched anything of hers since Legend of the Ancient Sword. Yes, that was so long ago. Yet I couldn’t find anything that interested me to watch. But I do miss her series, so I thought this was one of the lighter series compared to all other soaps, lol. (I’m not into really heavy soaps so it’s not about her, but more about me since I do love her since ages ago.) Anyway, this role of hers had evolved to another level. Because she was no longer just portraying a cutesy role but she had matured to a more serious role. Not that her past roles hadn’t reflected those traits, but I felt there was a deeper layer to her character. What I wanted to say, I guess, was because of the timeline, her character had gone from a naive, cute fox to a more matured goddess later. The time jump had allowed for her character growth throughout. She did really well throughout, showing her emotional state and her mentality at each stage.
  • Mark Chao (趙又廷) as Mo Yuan (墨淵) and Ye Hua (夜華). I know Mark could act but wasn’t really following him actively. So, I wasn’t sure how to feel for this one coming into the series. It wasn’t about him but more like I said above about steering clear of heavy soaps. I dived in not knowing much and stayed away from spoilers for the most part so didn’t know that he portrayed two characters. I thought it was one of those master and disciple romance again yet it wasn’t so. Mo Yuan and Ye Hua were different characters. They were brothers, twins, so in a way, Mark got to portray twins to prove his acting even more. Mixed feelings at times because his portrayal was wonderful as different events unfolded yet I thought the plot failed him somewhat (as Ye Hua mostly). Yet I realized it wasn’t the plot’s fault either but the source they’d drawn from was seriously flawed. I’ll discuss that elsewhere later so as not to overlap too much. As for here, Mark did well.


Qing Qiu Fox Tribe

  • Ken Chang (張智堯) as Zhe Yan (折颜). He appeared really little, like the majority of his dramas in recent years for some reason. Yet I enjoyed those Ken scenes, even the petty ones, lol. He was an interesting character and actually appeared a bit more in the novels because of his closeness to Bai Qian, considering how she practically lived at his place versus home.
  • Zhang Gong (张弓) as Bai Zhi (白止). Bai Qian’s father. He didn’t appear much but showed great bond with his children when he did appear, especially Bai Qian, considering how she was youngest and they were still so worried about her.
  • Ma Rui (马睿) as Fox Queen (狐后). She was a mixture of kindness and fierce at times. Yet she was a good mother overall to her children. Also, a good companion aside her husband, ruling the realm.
  • Leng Hai Ming (冷海铭) as Bai Yi (白奕). Bai Qian’s second brother, Feng Jiu’s father. All siblings feared him because of his strict ways.
  • Alan Yu Meng Long (于朦朧) as Bai Zhen (白真). Bai Qian’s fourth brother. It was mentioned that Bai Qian was the closest to him. Possibly during the time she was a little fox, her fourth brother took care of her the most and often took her on various adventures.
  • Dilraba Dilmurat (迪丽热巴) as Bai Feng Jiu (白鳳九). Bai Yi’s daughter. She was still a naive fox and really loved her auntie since they were the rare few female foxes of the family. She was often seen hanging around Bai Qian’s place. That was until she met Dong Hua and ended up stalking him for some time. I have to confess that I forwarded the majority of her palace scenes because it seemed like another story and somewhat unnecessary to the overall plot. I avoided palace dramas like the plague, so it seemed ironic to bump into it in this one. So yeah, had to. Considering how I was due for time at first. I’m not even sure I would come back to watch carefully because I slid the bar across and watch in fast time. But I did get the general gist of that story arch. That also led to the fact that I wasn’t sure if I wanted to check out the spin off. Because what else was there to tell? (Even if I was curious about her next adventure, it seemed repetitive going through the trials with Dong Hua again.) Aside from that, Dilraba was really cute in here.
  • Zhang You Hao (張宥浩) as Mi Gu (迷谷). He was funny. He was actually really old yet referred to himself as “big bro” to Bai Qian’s son, so I thought that was so funny. I felt bad for him at times, especially toward the end of the series when Bai Qian took it out on him when he had nothing to do with her feud with Ye Hua. He was quite loyal to her as well, so it seemed uncalled for that he received such treatment.
  • An Yue Xi (安悦溪) as Shao Xin (少辛). A snake spirit that Bai Qian saved and became her servant until she fell in love and ran away with Sang Ji. What happened had already happened, so there was no point in griping on that. Considering how Bai Qian didn’t really care about it anyway. It was mentioned only after Bai Qian was getting laughed at for so long that it got to her. However, what was redeemable about Shao Xin was that she never revealed the secrets of the Bai family nor say anything about Bai Qian being Si Yin at one point.
  • Li En Sheng (李恩晟) as Bi Fang (畢方). He was actually a powerful beast but allowed Bai Zhen to harnish him and used him for his ride around places. We (the audience) found out later it was because he was in love with Bai Qian so he wanted to see her as much as possible, even if he had to keep it all in. At least, until he thought he needed to step forward and be a hero in her life, lol.

Nine Heavens

  • Vengo Gao (高伟光) as Emperor Dong Hua (東華帝君). He could have been the ruler of Nine Heavens yet gave it up. If not, the current administration wouldn’t be in charge. He wasn’t power lust so he didn’t care for those things. Yet he had a say in lots of things, especially if they impacted all of the realms. I liked him in a sense that he was indifferent to things and didn’t spare anyone’s feelings. That seemed cruel to Feng Jiu yet he had to keep himself level-headed to be able to make important decisions. Someone had to be that sensible person, considering how messed up the principles of the Nine Heaven’s were. Did he have his moments with her using his status to have the final say? Yes, but I felt those were deserved, especially the crazy girl who bullied Feng Jiu.
  • Jiang Kai (蒋恺) as Heavenly Lord Hao De (天君). Rule of the Nine Heavens. I don’t think I would be exaggerating if I say he was the most hated character in here, even beating out Qing Cang. Because, at least, Qing Cang had a purpose in the overall story. What was his purpose except to act high and mighty? It wasn’t like he was doing anything helpful through the whole story. He and his royal family sat around and judged others and made their lives miserable.
  • Mou Feng Bin (牟鳳彬) as Yang Cuo (央錯). Heaven Lord’s first son, Ye Hua’s father. He appeared powerful and bright like his father and seemed to play an important part in the overall story. However, it wasn’t so. That was just the surface and a misleading introduction at the beginning. He was just going through the motions of keeping his realm safe and not really having a special purpose in any of this really. I swear, he didn’t really stood for anything except saying some words to fill the void at times. Basically, empty talks.
  • Liu Xiao Ye (刘晓晔) as Le Xu (樂胥). Yang Cuo’s wife, Ye Hua’s mother. At first, I felt sorry for her. She couldn’t take control of her life and had to follow the rules of the heavens (OR at least those established by the current rulers). She had to live away from her son, etc. However, I was really annoyed with her later on. NOT just because she favored Su Jin. But it was because she acted high and mighty toward others in general, making her fit right in with her royal family. They were supposed to be model beings and protect mortals yet she, like the others, looked down upon the mortals and personally gave orders to abuse Su Su (Bai Qian). Not only that, but she was very ungrateful toward Bai Qian later. To scold Bai Qian for causing her son’s suffering? It was all her precious, favorite daughter-in-law’s doing, NOT Bai Qian. IF she didn’t think much of Bai Qian, she never thought that if it wasn’t for Bai Qian’s sacrifice at one point, Qing Cang would have escaped and unleashed the worst toward the world once again thus she and the rest of her royal family would die, instead of continuing to enjoy their spoiled, privileged life. She thought that she gave birth to Ye Hua so she contributed greatly to the overall picture? She didn’t realize she was used as a tool and discarded just like others by her royal family. Perhaps, she could have used her time to bond with others who also suffered and changed the world for the better. Yet she chose to become as despicable and condescending as her family. Not to mention how she wasn’t Ye Hua’s actual mother in that sense. It only happened because he needed someone’s body to be reborn and given an actual body. His real identity was Mo Yuan’s brother (which Mo Yuan claimed him when Mo Yuan woke up later so it was just courtesy that Ye Hua still acknowledged his current family. Because Ye Hua’s truth identity was the second son of the Heavenly Father.)
  • Wang Ruo Lun (王若麟) as Sang Ji (桑籍). Heaven Lord’s second son. Bai Qian’s fiance at the beginning of the story and later ex-fiance. It was messed up how things turned out with the marriage being easily swapped, etc. but at least they were associated only by the need for marriage alliance and not more. (At least, it wasn’t like someone who married the grandpa and got passed down to the the grandson. Yes, I will get there later.) His only sin was having an affair with Bai Qian’s maid and dishonored the family. Honestly, he was just another tool to the royal family and he disobeyed so he was punished and banished elsewhere. He actually liked that, being out of the limelight and all. I actually felt bad for him. The only thing that I was annoyed with him was how he tried to get some peaches from Zhe Yan’s garden. I meant, okay, he was just trying to satisfy his wife’s pregnancy urges by getting her some peaches yet he didn’t have to be so oblivious. Considering Zhe Yan’s relations to the Bai family, it was a bad idea.
  • James Li (李东恒) as Lian Song (連宋). Heaven Lord’s third son, Ye Hua’s uncle. He was actually the smartest of the three sons yet knew how to keep to himself and only spoke when needed. He was actually quite humble in that regard but didn’t lust power so he was safe for the most part. He was actually the most genuine and actually behaved like a deity than others only in named (or were born into that position). He supported and conspired Ye Hua at various points hence Ye Hua being closest to him. That wasn’t the only reason I liked him the most and spared him by not lumping him with the rest of the royalty family. I felt he was the most level-headed yet also treated others genuinely, not putting on airs.
  • Li Xin Yi (李芯逸) as Yao Guang (瑤光). A high goddess who was in love with Mo Yuan. I thought she would be around longer. She seemed really unreasonable and all. Yet she was willing to step up and fight when the time called for it. So, I felt she wasn’t all talks in that sense. Sure, she let her emotions got the better of her and all. Yet, she wasn’t irredeemable like some in here.
  • Maggie Huang (黄梦莹) as Su Jin (素錦). If I had watched her in here first, no way in hell would I like her. Or more like she was good hence my hatred? I don’t know. Because I really liked her in Reunion: The Sound of the Providence as Chu Chu. When I thought of it more carefully, it was both about how frustrating the plot was and her character. So her performance was indeed impressive in its own way. As for her character, she was a spoiled brat who thought she was royalty because she was the only surviving member of her family. Sure, her ancestors suffered and sacrificed themselves for what they thought was a greater good. Yet what did she, herself, ever done that deserved such royal treatment? They pitied her, probably. But aside from that, there was nothing about her that she should be proud of. She was a really useless character, if you think about it. She was just there to cause a lot of trouble because they needed someone like that. Aside from that, she didn’t have other purpose for the plot overall. (Perhaps, in the novel, she was essential because she drove the wedge between Su Su and Ye Hua yet if it was adapted to focus on the bigger picture, she wasn’t essential. It depended on the scope of the story.)
  • Wang Xiao (王骁) as Si Ming (司命星君). Lord Dipper of the South. He seemed strict upfront yet was a really gossipy at times. Well, it made sense he had to keep a good front to do his duties and keep his job, considering how temperamental the royal family was.
  • Wang Ting (王汀) as Cheng Yu (成玉元君). Lian Song’s past lover. She was a very fun character and made the scenes less hectic. She was also one of the rare few genuine characters in the heavenly realm. Perhaps, it was because she used to be mortal and then ascended, instead of being one of the spoiled brats. (Not saying humans were good automatically. I meant, she actually ascended because of some good karma or deeds that allowed her recognition, unlike the royal bunch.)
  • Hummer Zhang (張藝瀚) as Ah Li (阿離). Ye Hua and Bai Qian’s son. Cute kid. He seriously made the last parts of the series much more bearable to watch because I was so anticipating for the ultimate family reunion.
  • Wang Xiu Zhu (王秀竹) as Princess Miao Qing (缪清公主). Princess of the Eastern Seas who saved Ah Li at one point and ended up liking Ye Hua. She wanted to marry him so much that she was used by Su Jin and was later dismissed to return to her homeland.
  • Liu Mei Lin (劉玫麟) as Zhi Yue (織越). Ye Hua’s cousin. Another typical spoiled brat of the Nine Heavens. She liked Emperor Dong Hua and bullied Feng Jiu at one point. There wasn’t any purpose for her in the story, it was just there to cause dramas. Then later, using her as a connection to reunite Bai Qian and Ye Hua at the end by letting her be the messenger for the news regarding Ye Hua. Again, NOT attacking the actress, just her character. I thought the actress was cute.
  • Chen Ke Fan (陈柯帆) as Yuan Zhen (元贞). Sang Ji and Shao Xin’s oldest son. I felt bad for him and I thought he would receive proper justice in the end yet didn’t. Sure, he said he learned a lot while in the human realm so I felt it was worth it. But what about the truth? It was worth something. And whatever the hell they thought his parents did (damaging the heavenly realm’s reputation, etc) wasn’t his fault. But I guess I shouldn’t apply reasonableness whenever it came to that royal bunch.
  • Zhang Ran Yi (张冉怡) as Xin Nu (辛奴). Su Jin’s maid. She was as despicable and as condescending as her master.
  • Yu Wen Tao (虞文涛) as Tian Shu (天枢). Ye Hua’s bodyguard.
  • Yu Xuan Hong Hao (于轩鸿灏) as Jia Yun (伽昀). Ye Hua’s civil assistant.
  • Yang An Qi (杨安琪) as Nai Nai (奈奈). Su Su’s loyal servant when she was in the Nine Heavens. I was glad Su Su had someone to care for her and confided in during her time in the heavenly realm. Yet it was too bad she was someone without power so she didn’t matter in the grand scenes of things (according to the royal family). I was glad, though, that Ye Hua entrusted his son’s daily care to her and NOT letting Su Jin near him.
  • Zhao Yan Song (赵岩松) as Heavenly Father (父神). The creator of Heaven and Earth, Mo Yuan and Ye Hua’s father. He was actually someone worth mentioning and actually did stuff for the heavenly realm. Unlike, the current administration who just knew how to scheme and judge others. He, along with the Heavenly Mother, sacrificed greatly in the grand battle of ages ago. They were the true legends, not those fake ones acting all royal. (Yes, I’m harping on it because I’m bitter each time I think about it. So this is my one time to get it all out before I move on.)

Kun Lun Mountains

  • Lai Yi (赖艺) as Die Feng (疊風). Mo Yuan’s senior disciple, the second prince of the Western Seas.
  • Song Hai Jie (宋海颉) as Chang Shan (). Mo Yuan’s second disciple.
  • Ryan Zhang He (张赫) as Ling Yu (令羽). Mo Yuan’s ninth disciple. He was kidnapped by the Ghost Lord Qing Cang and forced to become his god son. He later died during the first war between the Nine Heavens and the Ghost Tribe. However, he actually survived in the novel.
  • Wayne Liu (刘芮麟) as Zi Lan (子闌). Mo Yuan’s sixteenth disciple. He was very rooted in his beliefs in good vs. evil at first. Yet when he met Princess Yan Zhi and helped her, his perspective changed and he realized nothing was that black and white regarding beings from different realms. However, he couldn’t get past the fact that he had to stay loyal to his realm and not associate with hers. If only.

Ghost Tribe

  • Lian Yi Ming (連奕名) as Qing Cang (擎蒼). Ghost Lord at he beginning. He was very ambitious and was very power lust, willing to sacrifice everyone and everything around him to make his dream of taking over the world come true. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I hated him less than Su Jin, Xuan Nu, Li Jing, and the majority of the heavenly realm beings combined. Yes, I knew he was evil, he hurt a lot of people, including his wives and kids. Yet somehow, as a character, he actually had a purpose to the overall plot. Not to mention, he was literally from the dark realms, everyone expected him to be bad. Unlike how the other realms who were supposed to be the protector of all beings yet were tenfold more hypocritical. (As for me including Li Jing along with the others, I will elaborate below in his section.)
  • Vin Zhang (张彬彬) as Li Jing (離鏡). Qing Cang’s second son who became the Ghost Lord after his father was sealed away. He was the definition of pathetic in here and not Sang Ji (like most people would think). I actually like Vin, okay? I also thought his and Yang Mi’s chemistry was cute at first and was wondering how I would get over it and how the storyline could move toward Ye Hua and Bai Qian and convince us they were the endgame. His character was full of flaws but wasn’t irredeemable. Yet his justifications made him despicable later on. It wasn’t his fault that Xuan Nu changed her appearance into Si Yin (Bai Qian) to seduce him. Yet what he said later was really something. Like his initial feelings for Si Yin were an illusion, an impulsive move, etc. Yeah, he could change his mind and all. What topped it for me was how he changed later on as well, saying he never forgotten about Si Yin. Why? Because he was bored of Xuan Nu by that time? Yeah, I felt really bad for him at one point and felt if he hadn’t fallen into Xuan Nu’s trap, he could have a happy ending with Bai Qian. Yet it just became excuses and trying to get others to pity him later on. So, I felt Bai Qian needed to see that version of him, the wishy-washy side that never seemed to make up his mind. At the end, they (the writers) wanted to redeem him to the utmost, so they allowed him to accept his own faults in the matter as well.
  • Bambi Zhu (祝绪丹) as Xuan Nü (玄女). Bai Qian’s childhood friend yet ended up betraying her later due to jealousy. Coming from watching her in HSDS, she got it cut out for her, lol. Yes, I watched that first and circled back to this, so the other one was my first impression of her. Seeing how she started was interesting though. She was indeed convincing and I liked how the production team did her makeup so that at various points, she did look like Yang Mi and vice versa at some angles. (At least, the scenes where the face didn’t change completely so we knew it wasn’t a switch of actresses at that point.) As for her character, I was surprised she wasn’t related to Su Jin, lol. Yeah, both were equally delusional yet caused Bai Qian’s suffering in different ways. Aside from that, I was actually confused as to why she did what she did if she didn’t know Su Yin was Bai Qian. Well, I guessed she didn’t want to be brought back to marry that other guy and this guy was the prince and all. Yet it was ridiculous. It seemed kind of forced and they needed a way to make her evil and unleash a bunch of events. I guess a reason wasn’t needed for one to do despicable things yet it just seemed kind forced. The writers couldn’t be blamed too much though since they managed to fill in some gaps that the novel never covered.
  • Du Jun Ze (杜俊泽) as Li Yuan (離怨). Qing Cang’s older son. He would have fitted right into the heavenly realm fine actually. Because he oozed of royalty and fitted right in with their mentality. His actions and behaviors were justified because he was considered evil anyway. At least, his motives were more forward. Did I hate him? Yes, but I had to go back and think about all the power grabs and realized he was that way anyway. It didn’t make it right or make him a likable character. It just made him easier to see and to be prepared, not like other realms that backstabbed others without them knowing.
  • Dai Si (代斯) as Yan Zhi (胭脂). Qing Cang’s daughter, Li Jing’s half-sister, Li Yuan’s sister from the same mother. She was the only reason that everyone in the family agreed on. That was protecting her because she was the little princess. She was just unlucky she grew up in such a place and would always be looked upon differently by the other realms. It was really tragic how she didn’t get to end up with Zi Lan. Yet I was glad she could start over later and raise her niece, living a normal life elsewhere. That was only in the series, though, because the novel never really covered more about her aside from some rumors here and there at times.
  • Huang Tian Qi (黄天崎) as Fire Qilin (火麒麟). He was the fire beast that Li Jing used as a ride. But it was mentioned that he was also his friend, considering how Li Jing had few friends. He was quite loyal to Li Jing and probably the only one who stuck with Li Jing till the end. In the series, it extended a bit so he saw and accidentally burned Su Su while trying to save her. Yet it wasn’t in the novel. So the whole Ye Hua suspected Bai Qian being Su Su only came from the fact that she played with the fan by placing it over her face, not any other mark, which seemed vague in some sense. In the series, it was said wounds from the beast’s fire couldn’t be erased, so that was how Ye Hua knew it was her. Regarding the child actor? It was nice seeing him again.
  • Ren Tao (任滔) as Golden Lion Beast (金猊兽). He was Qing Cang’s beast and was only loyal to him. Interestingly, he was the reason Ye Hua met Su Su since he roamed around and caused troubles down in the human realm that forced Ye Hua to go and hunt him down. That was why Ye Hua bumped into Su Su. He died later protecting Yan Zhi. Although, he wasn’t my favorite but I must admit it was touching in that sense. He made an exception, sacrificing himself to save the princess, not just knowing how to carry out his evil master’s plans.


  • The surprising chemistry between Mark Chao and Yang Mi. Yes, I was blew away. Even if it was so frustrating with some of the conficts and misunderstandings that weren’t properly resolved, I loved their chemistry when they were together regardless of time. And did you know his first life, the one who was the Heavenly Father’s son, he was actually an egg, not a lotus? He saw Si Yin at times going back and forth so he was familiar with her. The production team tried to glorify it with a beautiful golden lotus to give them more scenes or somewhat subtle connection at that point. (The other lady passed by the nest that day and ate the egg, that was how she ended up pregnant. That would have been funny if it was portrayed that way in the series so she could look even more undignified.) Anyway, their chemistry was so good, I tolerated all the side dramas, hoping to see a good ending for them. In a way, it was. Yet in some ways, it was choking that so many things were unresolved. (Yes, my petty ass is keeping score because I can’t stand that they suffered so much but some got away with it?) Will there ever be a chance for the two to work together again in the future? This time, a modern drama. I always thought Mark look better in modern dramas. (Well, Detective Di was different because they gave him a better image in there.)
  • Zhe Yan. He was funny. Seriously, he subtly sought justice for Bai Qian to different ways. I liked his style, lol.


  • The plagiarism that has dragged down the drama as an overall. Okay, I’m not going to get into it because it doesn’t matter which side you take, people just find justifications on both sides. Unless they’re the people on the inside, no one would know the truth about it, regardless of how much evidence either side produced, etc. Whichever side fans favored, the truth was bent that way. So it seemed unproductive. I just felt it was a shame this had become the focus for fights instead of an actual answer. No one was after the truth, really, they were in it for fights.
  • The toxicity of the Heavenly realm and their morphed perspective. I already said multiple times throughout this review about how much I hated them and their hypocritical nature. But that wasn’t all. Yes, there was more disturbing stuff. Like their twisted mentality with how it was fine to pass Su Jin around within the family tree. In the series, it was explained that she was only the Heavenly Lord’s concubine in name and that he never touched her (it was during one of their conversations) yet in the novel, it was never clarified, some of the details just happened like that, no further explanation. Even if there was no novel for reference, wouldn’t it have been disturbing regardless? Considering how they valued reputation and relationship dynamics (thinking mortals were below them), wouldn’t they have been disturbed by that? It didn’t matter if he touched Su Jin or not. It was still a very disturbing concept, passing her from grandpa to grandson like that. We all knew nothing ever happened between Su Jin and Ye Hua but once again, it was disturbing and twisted. How did the production team let it pass through? Or was it to show their hypocritical side? Like how oblivious they were to these things? And before anyone get into how Su Jin didn’t have a choice but to go along with the rules if she was passed around, not her fault, etc, let me stop you there. She planned it. Anyone who watched it knew that. She planned it all along. She read all the rules and did a lot of planning to get to that point. It was with intent and purpose, so she wasn’t a victim, not being able to change rules. She took full advantage of that rule and drawn up the plan herself. That was her roundabout way to become Ye Hua’s wife. Even if she couldn’t be the official wife and could only become a concubine. (Because that official wife spot was reserved for Bai Qian regardless because of the marriage alliance agreement they had with the fox tribe.)
  • The miscommunications throughout. I hated that Su Su and eventually Bai Qian (when she returned to her goddess form) trusted Su Jin’s words. I knew as Su Su, she was just a normal human being who didn’t know anything about the heavenly realm and was pushed into an unknown world and it was very scary for her. Not to mention how she thought she lost Ye Hua already. But to put her trust on Su Jin or her words? She said it herself to Ye Hua that Su Jin was lying and he shouldn’t trust her. But why did she trust Su Jin’s words? There were two major parts when she was Su Su. It was regarding how Ye Hua called her “Su Su” and how Su Jin made it like Ye Hua called her that to use her as a replacement for Su Jin herself. Yet, that was only Su Jin’s words. That was way before she learned how evil Su Jin was with the trap regarding her eyes. Even if she was scared and confused, she would at least know to not trust anyone because there were too many things going on, NOT jumping in to trust that one random person that suddenly appeared in her life. The second incident was definitely the one about jumping down to that place would get her home. (It wasn’t clear if she wanted to commit suicide anyway after what happened. The betrayal and feeling cornered and all. But what made it maddening was how she told Ye Hua about what Su Jin told her. She, herself, told him not to trust Su Jin not long ago. Yet she was telling him at that point before she jumped that she was listening to Su Jin’s words? Or did that mean she was being bitter and just wanted to rub it in his face like: If you trusted her so much, I will now listen to her as well?) I know if she didn’t do that, she wouldn’t restore her goddess identity. But that was a terrible setup all around. But what topped it was when she was Bai Qian again, she still trusted Su Jin’s words and let Su Jin’s words get to her. Yes, she finally realized she had feelings for Ye Hua and was jealous and feeling insecure in some ways. Yet, she trusted Su Jin’s words again? The woman she claimed she didn’t like and wouldn’t trust? Really? Also, Ye Hua never ever found the time to tell her the truth or cared to explain when it mattered? At first, she didn’t understand the extent of the seriousness as Su Su and there could be spies around to report stuff back. But he never found the time to explain anything? He just took it like that? Then when she was Bai Qian, he never wanted to explain anything anymore? The woman he claimed he loved and waited for hundreds of years? I know he didn’t want to take credit for stuff when he did all of those other things to help her. Yet explaining some stuff regarding Su Jin would help. I know he didn’t care about Su Jin so he just didn’t want to mention Su Jin when they were together and that was that. But he think Bai Qian could read minds? Even if she was a goddess, she didn’t have that power. It wasn’t like he, himself, could do that either. Why didn’t he say anything? I know this was a flaw of the plot (and some part the novel because it drew from the sources) but it was frustrating to see the misunderstandings. I felt it was just a way to drag out the misunderstandings and more episodes. I know I complain about Feng Jiu and Dong Hua being too soapy from the palace scenes but at least their communication was less aggravating than this. Was that an attempt to make each pairing (or non-pairing) different? In a way, it worked, but it wasn’t any less frustrating.
  • No justice for Bai Qian. I thought the scene that was described by some synopsis as “seeking justice for Bai Qian” was a major turnaround and was supposed to be satisfying YET it wasn’t exactly. Yes, Su Jin did get her deserved ending YET that wasn’t all. I wanted everything exposed and explained why it was wrong and all her manipulations throughout. NOT to mention her enablers, namely her ex-husband (Heavenly Lord) and her now mother-in-law (Le Xu). The Heavenly Lord should have been severely punished. I don’t care if it would tarnish the reputations of the heavenly realm more or whatever chaos that ensued afterward. Like it wasn’t a circus already. He not only complimented Su Jin on her ambition (saying he liked it that she knew what she wanted and would aim to get it) but also encouraged her on, enabling her regarding the schemes with getting rid of Su Su. Even if he didn’t know that was Bai Qian, that was the point. A heavenly figure, who swore to protect all beings abused his power and wanted to get rid of a helpless human because it didn’t fit with his agenda? He was more despicable than Su Jin yet still dared criticize her cowardliness later on. He should have been stripped of his power and punished. (Don’t blame it on misogyny and how it was a men’s world hence they could only punish Su Jin. The author is a woman and her pen name is misleading.) As for the mother-in-law, she failed to acknowledge Su Jin’s wrongdoings yet could only blame Bai Qian. I found it so ironic that she became the exact people who made her suffer (aka the people who forbade her to see her son ages ago). Her? She wanted to control her son as well, wanting to pick the “right wife” for him, not the wife he picked. What was more, the scene where Bai Qian bowed and asked to clean Ye Hua up before sending his body back to Heaven was pathetic as hell. Sure, it showed her as a good daughter-in-law because she acknowledged them in a respectful way. Yet they were the ones who should have gotten down on their knees and thanked her for her sacrifices many times in the past going against Qing Cang. I know, that was one of the reasons why the heavenly realm feared the fox tribe and were even upset because of the power dynamics yet the least they could have done was be grateful of Bai Qian, NOT treat her like a pest. She had contributed more than they ever could. Yes, Ye Hua did sacrifice himself but what about the things she did? (Talking about that, I found it really funny that they didn’t like it that the power dynamics were shifted and they were in the weaker group and it made them feel uncomfortable YET they had no problem looking down on the weaker humans. Yes, once again dragging that out, but had to tie it together regarding that matter.) So, it was her duty or her job to protect them in the past? Or something? Or it was expected of her? None of them cared about her well-being in the past. Well, except her family, but they were her family. Only Dong Hua went out to investigate when the assholes just sat there on their nice thrones and waited. Yet when Ye Hua went against Qing Cang, they finally reacted? If they were so brave, why didn’t they face him themselves? So, I felt it was hysterical they criticized Su Jin for being a coward. (She was, but coming from that dude was seriously rich. He hid behind her to be safe after the whole exposure. If he had guts, he would have admitted the part he played in getting rid of Su Su schemes and more.)

Differences from the novel:

  • There were many subplots involving homosexuality but it was slashed from the series because of rules and all. Can’t blame the production team, they didn’t want to get into trouble. I must say, the vibe wasn’t that good for danmei shippers, lol. Obviously, because it was a straight romance so the others were only glossed over at times or some rumors here and there. They weren’t accepted and some even made fun of the other characters. Or the vibe seemed that way. It made sense because of the context of the novel to some degree. (NOT piling on the author because I actually didn’t pay attention at all to the news outside during the fiasco until I looked up more info to do review for this. These were just my interpretations. I could be wrong about the vibe.) Anyway, some of the details of the theme included:
    • Ling Yu wasn’t kidnapped and forced into being Qing Cang’s godson. Qing Cang was actually gay (or bi but it wasn’t clarified) and wanted to add Ling Yu to his harem. Ling Yu refused and attempted to commit suicide several times to protect himself. He also didn’t die in the war YET when everything settled down at the end of the story, someone told him that Qing Cang actually mumbled his name before dying (or something like that). So, the war was half about Qing Cang wanting to take over the other realms (aka extending his power) and also because of Ling Yu. Possibly it was especially because of his obsession with Ling Yu. The series emphasized that he was only using Ling Yu’s godson situation as an excuse to start a war and take over the world.
    • Li Jing didn’t know Si Yin (Bai Qian) was actually a woman in disguised until later. He hated his father for “engaging in such activities” as he put it and didn’t realize he was gay as well–as he confessed to Shi Yin that one time. However, he didn’t realize that Bai Qian had somehow exuded her womanly traits that had sparked his attraction to her. After Xuan Nv successfully seduced him, he told Shi Yin that whatever he felt for Shi Yin was just a sudden impulse and a mistake. Regardless of reasons, he broke Bai Qian’s heart. She initially wanted to complete her trainings before returning home and telling her parents about them and finally revealing her true form to him, etc. Considering how they broke up, she had no reason tell him the truth. It wasn’t until they met again later in the cave that he learned she was actually a woman and the famous Bai Qian of Qing Qiu.
    • Die Feng’s brother was also gay. He initially thought Bai Qian (who was dressed as a man at that point when she entered the palace under the guise of Zhe Yan’s servant) was in love with him hence crying or seemed overly worried at various points while taking care of him. Yet Bai Qian had to make up a story to steer away from the awkwardness.
  • Some things were never explained thoroughly so the series had to do a lot of filling gaps. Like how Ye Hua and Lian Song’s conversations and schemes at one point to escape, etc. Or like Ye Hua’s knowledge of how scheming Su Jin was but he wasn’t able to protect Su Su completely under the current situation hence pretending not to care, etc. That was the downside of having the narration in first person and only from Bai Qian’s perspective. If she didn’t know about it, we (the readers) didn’t know it either, except for that one chapter that was from Ye Hua’s perspective. And no, once again, I’m not piling on the author regarding details. I came to accept the majority of novels nowadays, the authors just wanted to provide gist here and there and sometimes ignore the details, etc. I was just stating here that this author also did that.


  • Bai Qian’s alcoholism issues. Yes, this bugged me throughout. I’m one of the rare few that do not like seeing characters indulge in alcohol regardless of how the authors wrap it up in a nice package or glorify it. (I even have beefs with Ling Hu Chong and Qiao Feng drinking so much, hello. Why should I give newer authors a pass?) Especially, during the ending how she drank so much that it disabled her mostly from the battle. Sure, Ye Hua had a hand in stopping her but I felt her energy was drained by then. It was trying to show the pain she was going through but it turned me off even more. Her lashing out on Mi Gu was the last straw. She could lash out and kill all those in the heavenly realm for all I cared, but taking it out on people who actually cared for her and even led the villagers to drive those forces away to defend her honor? Yeah, that was frustrating all right. She didn’t have to be perfect for me. But I hated that she became a monster to the people who cared for her. Even if it was just Mi Gu at that time. Then what drove me insane was her bowing to those hypocrites to get a proper send off for Ye Hua. So, she had the energy to yell at Mi Guo yet bowed down to those assholes? Also, the part where she caused Ah Li to be drunk and all. Sure, he wasn’t human so he could endure more. Yet keep arguing about it and saying he shouldn’t be spoiled like that? Um, Ye Hua lost his wife and came back from the dead himself and was trying to really hard to raise his kid (and also trying keep the other crazy witch away from his innocent son). It was all he had left, so, of course, he had to be extra careful with Ah Li. Sure, she suffered greatly as Su Su but at that moment, she didn’t know she was Su Su (since she already drank the other potion to forget). But can’t she think for his situation in her current state? (Yeah, I know at that point she had started to like Ye Hua as Bai Qian and was insecure in some ways yet that wasn’t helping her case either.) Not picking on her because she was a woman who loved wine. I understood the nature of her character who enjoyed a good bottle of wine and understood wine. I just didn’t like that she never seemed to know where the limit was. No matter how she bragged about her alcohol tolerance level, it seemed too extreme. (Just like Ling Hu Chong and Qiao Feng.) She even touched the wine that Zhe Yan saved for her brother and his wife. Again, no limit, no control whatsoever.
  • Did Bai Qian ever loved Mo Yuan? This was an ongoing question and often brought up by Ye Hua more than others. In the novel, it was only clarified through inner thoughts from Bai Qian. But she never clarified any of that to the other characters. In the series, the production team filled in those gaps by allowing Bai Qian to directly tell Mo Yuan how much she respected him and will make up for the past by respecting him and being filial to him from now on. He was disappointed, as it was obvious their relation meant more to him than that. Yet he accepted it and sent his well-wishing to her and his brother. Mark’s acting was definitely on par between the two characters because of how he interacted with her. Mo Yuan was more controlled and composed in that sense when it came to her, protecting her, etc. Even if he had strong feelings (like how upset he was when Yao Guang abducted Si Yin), it was directed at the other party, not her. He was always gentle and patient toward her. Yet Ye Hua was more forceful at times and wasn’t afraid to show his feelings for her.
  • Zhe Yan and Bai Zhen. Okay, they were actually popular during the airing of the drama and stuff. I know I said I didn’t pay attention, which was true regarding those other aspects and rumors. I’m a Ken fan so I only followed what was relevant to him so I saw pictures of them together or clips shared or funny exchanges between the two characters. However, the other day I read something about people defending the author regarding how she wasn’t against danmei and listed some of the pairings in her novels. I don’t know about the others since I didn’t read her other novels. But when did Zhe Yan and Bai Zhen get together or was considered a couple? It wasn’t properly stated. They seemed like really good friends–based on Bai Zhen’s lack of appearance (even less in the novel compared to Zhe Yan because the series was more generous to him regarding scenes). But it wasn’t clarified exactly. AND don’t tell me about hints and how it was implied at various parts. Because defenders of the authors said hints and vague implications weren’t proof of the author’s wrongdoings. So by that logic, you can’t bring up hints and what was implied as proofs either. Also, if Zhe Yan and Bai Zhen did have a romantic relationship, it would have been super awkward. Zhe Yan had bragged numrous times that if it wasn’t because he gave up on pursuing the Bai siblings’ mother ages ago, they wouldn’t exist, so they should be thankful to him. (Okay, I get it, it would have been like Yang Bu Hui and Yi Li Ting, but seriously? I didn’t care for those two either and felt Yi Li Ting didn’t even deserve Bu Hui. It was fun at times to see how different adaptations portrayed their relationship and because it was portrayed by some people I liked. But as for characters, he was meh. I knew what happened to him was tragic but he was an asshole regarding other stuff.) Back to these two? Yup, still confused. They were funny. But they weren’t a couple.
  • The majority of the supporting cast went on to film The Flame’s Daughter. Yes, it was interesting how that turned out. And I did back-watch so I watched the other one first. But it was fun to compare the various roles those cast had in here versus the other one.

Recommended? I think if you care about the plagiarism, you would have to separate the product the production put out and the author. So, in a way, you’re just supporting the cast and the crew who worked hard on it. Aside from that, if you enjoy fantasy soap, it would be a treat for you. The reason why I watched it in the first place was because I haven’t watched a Yang Mi series for ages now. Sadly, yeah, I like her but some of the productions of recent years were quite heavy so didn’t want to. In some ways, it was worth it for me. In other ways, it fused my anger so bad that I had to take a major break before actually doing this review. Yes, that was one of the reasons for the delay. The other reason was, obviously, real life stuff. Anyway, that was it for me. You can decide for yourself whether to watch or not. You have to really love the cast to get into it though.

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