HKTV: Voting In Progress

For fans of HKTV, super good news! They’re finally launching! That’s not all either because they had set up a poll on their website, asking the public to vote for which TV series should be broadcast first. Go here if you’re interested. Yes, people who have been tuning in – even if vaguely, might have learned that Ricky Wong managed to find a way so they could finally launch. The phrase “Where there’s a will, there’s a way” rings true in this case.

Anyway, the deadline for the voting is November 9. Results will be announced on the 10th.

NOTICE: HKTV died already, go here for the news article and analysis provided by llwy12.

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Miss Hong Kong 2001

Definite signs of deterioration. No doubt about it. Though the opening was interesting but still…the entertainment parts were always way better for some reason. I must say that each year they managed to come up with a different theme. Not bad. The contestants were introduced and they had to list why they were eligible to enter the next round. Man, most of them were definitely bragging. Guess they were testing to see if the contestants could be witty without being arrogant. BUT it was hard.

The hosts: Eric, Louis, and Sonija…

Judges: Pauline, Gallen, Charmaine, Hacken, and some others…

Definitely signs of TVB using internal resources more than ever. Gallen looked so handsome though! (mwuhahaha) Charm looked so cute in that outfit. (Okay, I know half of the population hates her but I love her since she won me over.)

Scenes when they were outside usually made them look better for some reason. Strange…

After Patrick Tang and some people performed, we were finally led into the questioning part. PHEW…not sure how worse it could get but whatever. Sonija got to introduce the contestants while Eric and Louis were in charge of grilling the contestants. GOSH…it was killing me. Eric and Louis should’ve killed them all already so they couldn’t pass. #6 was all right. At least she didn’t stutter. (Though it was all right that she mixed her languages.) Where in the world did they get all these contestants? AND poor Eric, had to look up so much. These girls were honestly too tall. #18’s question was funny. George Washington was still holding the ax, LOL! Darn! These girls were killing me. Shirley’s question was the easiest BUT she didn’t get it? How slow could she get? Only like about three could provide some decent answers.

Jordan Chan will take them to Japan? Poor Jordan! I actually liked the effects where Jordan was drawing/painting and the pictures came to live. That was about it. Then there was also the part they were transported to the city and other areas. Very exotic and cool. That was about it. No comment regarding the ‘beauties’. I thought they looked better when they covered up because their bodies were too much of a sight to me. (Seriously, I must agree with Eric that most of them looked like they haven’t gone through puberty yet.)

Last part before they picked top 12? Joey Yung and Ekin Cheng. (What a coincidence!) Joey Yung looked better than the contestants! (I know that was mean but honestly.) Interesting story. Kind of cute… I’d already gone out of the ‘Ekin’ phase so I wasn’t really paying attention. (But I think Ekin must have improved in his singing or something? Since he sounded better than the last time.) The settings were quite grand though. The crew totally made it happen.

Miss Photogenic? Shirley got it? Umm…no comment. I guess she seemed better than most of them for some reason.

They were each given a lamp and would take the label off. The ones who got the ‘X’ would be out.

Gilbert Lam was the person who introduced the judges at the beginning of the second part? Cool! I totally forgot about him! He’s so cool. Too bad he didn’t get to stick around much. Or perhaps that was better since it would be too much to stand.

(I didn’t want to say it before but I was seeing the pattern of Angels of Missions people in here. BUT of course, AOM was after this. Still interesting to see.)

I totally forgot that Leon was in here also since he opened up the show with his performance. (Snore-land though it was an upbeat song.) The whole time he was singing, I was like, “Hand it to Aaron already.” Mean, I know. But I was yawning too much. He’s not suitable for upbeat songs.

The next part was funnier though–much more entertaining–since Hacken was seen walking along with Natalis and Alan on the camels, trying to find their way to the show, LOL. Natalis and Alan were pondering if they were lost, LOL. And then Hacken was saying they heard Leon’s voice so they must be going in the right direction. Alan was even saying how Hacken was easily fooled by Eric’s words (i.e. he was the one who told them the directions, lol). Then the contestants got to tell everyone their dreams and/or goals. But Natalis, Alan, and Hacken’s rants were funnier. Eric had been in some sort of accident (according to their recounts) so he was unable to make it.

The next part was cool since they managed to invite this one pro acrobat lady to do some really cool tricks. Then Bernice Liu came out, dancing and singing. Cool. Suitable for the theme. She was so glamorous. Okay, the contestants had to use the objects given to describe one another. They were divided into pairs, of course. I loved Alan and Hacken! They were so funny, arguing with each other like that instead of asking the questions, LOL. Bernice changed again to continue the song–or at least until the next sets of contestants came out. Watching the contestants try to find some compliments to praise each other with the objects given was too funny! At least they were improving. OR it seemed to get a tad better than having them answering trivial questions. Bernice changed again! Whoa! That was fast. Anyway, still cool.

Okay, the next part of questioning–more trivial questions, LOL. There were three sets of questions–middle school, high school, and college. (OR something like that.) If they answered correctly, they would advance one step up. If not, they would be lowered one level. The questioning would start at their current educational level. The contestants changed outfits again. Nice outfits, LOL. I think the contestants were better in these set of questions since they were more used to the straight fact question/answer than the critical thinking ones. At least it was reassuring on some level since it would be more encouraging to watch. Shirley did slightly better in this one.

The next part was a really cute yet entertaining story. Aaron Kwok and Coco Lee. (I was a bit surprised that they were able to invite Coco to participate.) Aaron got to sing his “Para Para” song! LOL! (This sort of solved my question with why Aaron wasn’t opening before. This was more fun.)

Anyway, after that, we got to witness the contestants sing and dance with 60 children. The children were so cute! (I don’t know, I just didn’t care as much for the contestants regardless of how much they improved for this round.)

They were trying to do it differently this year. Getting rid of three at a time until they reached the top 5. Don’t know it would come to that but I guess it was something to keep people tune in. Hacken was so funny!

Eric’s return. Awww…Alan was subbing for Eric. Just when Eric returned, they made him be the bad guy to eliminate three contestants, LOL. Still funny. What was Hacken looking at, kept staring at Eric’s head? So funny that Eric was reassuring the others to come back next year, LOL.

More questionings. They were given a statement and then they had to pick if they agreed with the phrase or not. Then they had to argue for or against it. Alan was too funny! He lost during the first time! He and Hacken were cracking me up! Hacken was saying how Alan was only the witness and did not have to input. It got even funnier when they were attempting to translate for this one contestant. Then Alan translated before she was even finished. Natalis was poking at Alan for it. (Actually, he was pretending to talk about Alan with Hacken, LOL.) Man, it was way funnier watching the hosts argue. Man, Natalis’ comment!

They invited Anne to help with determining who had beautiful skin? Shirley got it. I guess the judges were careful and inspected everything so no complaints.#3, #9, and #18 got the creativity prize since they were able to impress the judges with their cooking skills and creativity.

I totally forgot that Jacky was in here! Cool! I guess it wouldn’t be complete without him. Jacky and Kelly Chen? OKAY…but for all the fun of it. Funny ending since he was just dreaming and his wife (portrayed by Kelly) was rousing him up. So much for it…(LOL) Again, save the best for last, right? Since it was supposed to be the last performance before they eliminated three more. But the top 12 got to return so they could announce the ‘most improved’ prize and the Miss International Goodwill. #4 got ‘most improved’ and #6 got Miss International Goodwill. Not bad. I don’t know. Somehow they looked better around this time.

Alan, Hacken, and Natalis were arguing over who should sing for the last part? But they ended up using the dancing routines to determine who was the top 4. At least they didn’t have to argue. That was interesting that Johnson Lee was one of the ones holding the sign up when they were answering the last round of questions. #2 and #3 got eliminated after that.

The ones who were eliminated had to come out and tell us who they supported to be the winner. #6 got third place, #4 got second, and of course, Shirley got first. Not bad. NOT the best of all time, but I guess it will have to do.

Steps

Just finished the series itself and must say that although it was a very nice series in general, I was quite disappointed with a certain part. Again, I should have known and shouldn’t have expected so much, but can’t believe they let Victoria end up with Dat in the end. Yes, he was a nice guy and all, but can’t they just stay as best friends? She rejected him once and now since Dickson wasn’t around anymore, she was back to Dat? I know it wasn’t like that and Dat had helped her and been there with her through thick and thin, but it was somewhat unfair for him because it was like settling for him since she didn’t have any more choices. The fact that Anita succeeded in playing the pity card made me even more mad. It wasn’t like Dickson had forced her into those actions when they were younger. They fell in love ages ago and she also made a choice to be with him and also made a choice to quit her dancing. It wasn’t like he brainwashed her or manipulated the situation to make her life worse. Whether those choices were good or not, she still made them. But it was made to sound like he owed her. He owed her nothing. Yes, separating a family and destroying the little girl’s family was a sad thing, but it sucked major time that they have to make things turn out that way. Why couldn’t Anita have been more independent and also make the little girl understand that her mom and dad were now separated but still loved her? It was dumb to separate two people who loved each other to go with responsibility because of guilt. Dumb plot. But very touching scenes between Dickson and Victoria with their parting scenes and their last dance. It ruined the story by making her end up with Dat–as I said already. It was like TVB needed to gift-wrap so they make it all nice at the end. On a lighter note, Kate did improve surprisingly. She did bring out her character really well regarding her smart and professional side, plus her vulnerable side as well. Really starting to like Matthew Ko also since really see his acting potential. He was able to portray his cute personality as well as the last few scenes of a responsible father. I was a tad disappointed of Stephen Wong Ka Lok as Dat since he seemed to be doing all right in Love Bond and all, but now he seemed to lack something in here? Couldn’t really see his difference or wasn’t impressed in the most touching scene of him either. I got confused with what he was trying to do. It was like he didn’t improve or something.

Another thing that made me not satisfied with this series was not exposing Judy. She was the manipulative hand behind many scenes in helping that one dude to embezzle the company’s money but she was never exposed although she did get what she deserved in the end. Since TVB love gift-wrapping so much, why didn’t they make that happen? Lame! Caring too much of one thing but not another.

Luckily, Tsun and Keung reunited as best friends again at the end, plus Tsun and Sum Ying were awesome together. They were a really great bickering couple as well as supporting each other in the end. The dance during the competition was very touching.

I also liked Sum Ying and Victoria’s friendship. It was very nice to see something that actually looked like true friendship in here. They can talk about everything and could support each other through different things. A very great scene between them was Victoria confronting Sum Ying to tell Tsun about her eye conditions, but Victoria ended up keeping the secret for Sum Ying instead.

Fala Chen as Ka Man was just amazing. Yes, her acting was really up to it since she was only in a few series but wasn’t raw like some new ones. She managed to show her menacing side but also her somewhat vulnerable side. Her past was a great obstacle to get past but glad that in the end, she knew when to stop and didn’t listen to Amanda to play dirty tricks on Sum Ying because she could see that Sum Ying wasn’t feeling well. In a way, her going to jail wasn’t a bad thing since she learned to take on responsibility and face the consequences bravely. Plus starting over.

Stephen Huynh – Unlike Stephen Wong, I could see his acting a lot better since he managed to play out each role really well. Been in quite a few series but wasn’t disappointing at all. He knew what he was doing and could bring out his character.

Wayne Lai and Claire Yiu’s chemistry wasn’t all that, but still not bad at all. Like their little story. A bit funny at first and later more serious.

A very nice series overall, except a few things were still unknown and others were too gift-wrapped that made me feel kind of mad.

Posted (on Xanga): Friday, October 3rd, 2008

Re-posted: Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

The Brink of Law

I must give this series a solid 5 on my scale. It was soooo good. The fact that the beginning to the end was so fast pace and the fact that it actually wrapped up quite well was good too. One of the rare TVB series that was so well written in recent years. Every one of the cast seemed to do really well also, which was amazing. Yes, there were some cliche parts here and there, but there were some of the most unexpected parts happening too. I was hesitant to watch it at first because I was so afraid that some cast might ruin it or wasn’t up to the part, dragging the series down, but several people surprised me totally.

What I like about this series:

  • Steven Ma and Bernice Liu – This was before Steps but we could see that they definitely have chemistry as lovers as well as a team. Their characters always meet wit-per-wit so it was really interesting to watch in general. Steven was very clever as Chi Ko (Ken) the lawyer. Bernice Liu’s character, Wing, was a surprise since she was supposed to be a psychologist but it turned out she was a cop. That was a great twist also. Her moves were great with the kick and all. She did look like a cop.
  • Ron Ng and Kate Tsui – Surprisingly, both improved from their previous performances. What was even more surprising was Ron was actually impressive in his role. Although he still needs work, I think I wasn’t prepared to see him perform so well, so natural and not exaggerating or too woody like past series. (The reason why I want to avoid watching him as much as possible in the past.) But this was totally different. Kate is really working hard nowadays and deserves some kind of recognition for her improvement. Their chemistry wasn’t bad at all either. At first, I wasn’t all for the idea but was surprised. Such a tragic that Ron had to die at the end. It was a shocker since there was only about 30 minutes more until the series ended. The scene where Kate cried so hard after they discovered the body was very touching and Kate really brought the scene out. It was such a heartbreaking scene. I think she did even better in this scene versus when Kenneth’s character died.
  • Law Lok Lam and Ron Ng as father and son – Although they were not really father and son, Leo still respected and treated Chin Pang like his father. Too bad they had to meet the same fate in the end.
  • Michelle Yim was really good as the villain with some psycho obstacles of her own whenever she felt threatened. It was a great choice to cast her as Kam Chi because she outshone Elliot Yue and convinced the audience that she was the only villain and that she was the leader, instead of Elliot’s character, Chin Lung.
  • Shirley Yeung – Yes, she was an annoying villain–very manipulative and probably even more hateful than Michelle Yim’s character, but I must admit her character played a very important role in causing many ruptures between different characters, especially Kam Chi and Chin Lung. It was a surprise also that Shirley could play such a role also, aside from her annoying spoiled roles or cute, funny ones. (Possibly due to pointers from Michelle Yim?)
  • Steven and Kenneth as best friends – Great to see them together as buddies at the beginning, joking and laughing together. Not to mention being there for each other at harsh times.
  • Mary Hon – She finally got a role worth praising again although her character sacrificed a lot. Luckily, everything turned out all right in the end.
  • Yoyo Chen as Steven’s step-sister – The fact that she was annoying for the first few episodes was just a start, but the turning point was really great and not fake since it took such a gunfight/massacre for her to realize the importance of family. It was also interesting to see the shift in expression–both eyes and face–how she was so mean and nasty at the beginning and nice and calm toward the end. Her acting was worth a mention since it was quite convincing.

The only complaint I have for this series was probably seeing Fred Cheng as a small character in here. It was like wasting his acting for a role they can’t find to fill. But I guess he was busy filming other series? It better be. It would be a shame if he shifted down in the ladder again. Since he really has potential.

Great series overall.

Posted (on Xanga): October 11, 2008

Re-posted: Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

The Greatness of a Hero

Another TVB mistake in warehousing a series. But I think I could understand this time because of the possibility of the complex language used in ancient series versus the modernized language we’re all used to. This was surprisingly good from the beginning to the end–even when there were hints of frustrations from several characters.

Like Factor(s):

  • The cast. I was doubtful if it was going to work and was one of the reasons why I did not watch this when it first came out. But I was glad I did since the cast worked together really well. There were roles that you thought not possible but it was nice to see the collaboration.
  • Kent Cheng and Sonija Kwok as Dik Yan Kit and Cho Yuet. It was very strange that they were actually my favorite couple in here. Maybe because their relationship was on a more mature level than the rest of the couples in here. It was also possibly because of his age and her responsibilities for the family. However, they complemented each other really well despite the age difference. Their story was touching and memorable. At first, I thought it was the pity thing that he took her in and somehow married her later. But it was not that. There was an actual indication that when his wife passed away, she matched-made them, saying that they shouldn’t hold back and lose the opportunity. It showed they must have grown to admire each other for their personalities instead of just the whole ‘pity for her’ factor or ‘repaying his gratitude’ element.
  • The Dik’s family. I liked how they got along with one another with support and care for the majority of the series. And it was a bit unrealistic that everyone treated Cho Yuet so well but they probably wanted to portray the loyal family with the well-behaved children, plus an understanding mother-in-law who could sympathize with the daughter-in-law’s past and would not pick on Cho Yuet in unreasonable manners–although she admitted that she was hesitant of their marriage at first.
  • Sunny Chan and Bernice Liu as Sung Ting Yuk and Dik Ching Lyun. This was the second time I saw their collaboration and it was not bad at all. Liked their scenes for the most part.
  • Wayne as the villain. Okay, I usually do not like seeing my favorite actors as villains, but Wayne is an exception since it’s a good reminder that he isn’t just portraying all these silly guy roles. He was so convincing as the evil guy.

Dislike Factor(s):

  • The costumes/ hairstyles. I know they probably tried their best with the colorful outfits and the sophisticated hairstyles and trying to make everything worked, but it looked so bulky with the hairstyles that it was a bit disturbing. It made me feel sorry for those people wearing such thick hair pieces, especially the female cast in here.

Anyway, it was a good series overall. It was not the best but because it wasn’t trying to be cheesy that made it more likable on different levels.

*The funniest thing was I was watching it about the same time as The Threshold of a Persona so I was thinking ‘same cast’ and it added to the craziness of watching both of that and A Great Way to Care at the same time.

Posted: August 8, 2009

Re-posted: Sunday, March 28th, 2010