Fan Fiction: Critiquing Your Own Stories

Years ago when I was still active on Winglin and other online communities, there was an explosion of different authors and readers alike coming out with websites or their own page to critique different fan fiction authors. Whether it was to help the authors improve their writing techniques or just something fun to do, it was quite an experience. I never submitted my stories to any of those websites but found them intriguing because I learned of how an author’s perspective could be versus how readers see it. It’s so obvious for everyday, published authors to go through this process. But at that time when I started posting my stories online, it was a new experience for me and it opened my eyes to some levels.

So, what’s the point of this post, right? Especially when I’ve been lagging soooo much on stories. This is an attempt to get back into it. Because the following will be an activity like the title said. I’m going to have fun and critique all the fanfictions I’ve ever written. Yes, I won’t leave anything untouched. But before I do, here’s a disclaimer for those who haven’t read the stories yet (so don’t say I didn’t warn you):

NOTE: The following contains spoilers (obviously from the title), SO if you haven’t read my stories yet, DO NOT proceed.

The beginning of the story had great potential and felt refreshing. It paved a nice and peaceful picture and a hopeful feeling because it described the two major characters’ feelings and goals in life. The humorous exchanges between several characters led readers to believe it would be a fun story. Although it had some typical formula of a small-town family with the scenic backdrop to pave the way, there was some mystery with various characters that readers could look forward to exploring. All in all, it paved a promising picture.

The problem with this story was that it was too wordy. It was one of my first attempts at writing fanfiction so it got so messy with descriptions. It didn’t take into account “show instead of telling” so it felt flaky and corny. In addition, because there was a setback with the last few chapters so it dived into the morbid side without intending to in the first place. It completely took away from the main plot and its lighthearted feeling that was established in the first place. A bad call. Like the feeling when the writers totally gave up and just wanted to end it already like how I often criticize them, lol. Also, the feeling of the celebs chosen was so random and unorganized, like lumping a bunch of people together just because. It felt like a test run.

Heaven’s Gift

The setting at the beach at the beginning of the story was promising and lighthearted. It presented a typical picture yet also let readers see a glimpse into each major character’s personality with a dash of humor. It seemed like they didn’t change much over the years, except for the circumstances around them. Light humor continued to occupy the scene, paving the story and pushing the major characters together–or apart–as time went by. There were some surprising details to the plot but it lacked some details here and there, not allowing the full potential of the plot to be explored.

HIDE & SEEK

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Honey In Tea

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Neurotic

Like some other stories, it started out describing the scenery and then introducing the characters. The weather, once again, like some other stories, gave hints to what the plot was going to be like. There was some side humor but just subtle, not too much. It was saying like the story meant business and it was no time to joke around, not really.

It was an interesting concept although it didn’t take in a lot of rules of sci-fi and went off the rails regarding technicalities. However, what made up for it was the layout of the major characters. It kept consistent and featured three female leads. What broke the rule for the third one was leading into a happier, hopeful ending than was predicted. It also gave more character and depth to one of the so-called villains and even allowed for that person to redeem himself and had a start over.

Payback

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Scheming Nature

This was a typical setup of two pairings that were living on the opposite side of society. They met and interacted and somehow became entangled in a complex scheme. It provided a sense of mystery to the overall story and made the readers want to know what was to come and where the story was heading toward. The ending was a bit of an unknown, especially after the intense confrontations between two of the major characters and how it went down. However, it proved to be going on a typical route with allowing all problems to be resolved in a more favorable manner.

This story attempted to mock the life of gangsters and how it was supposed to be yet failed because, in the end, it was equally cliche and was corny in a sense of allowing some bizarre details to come into play. Although having the theme of gang-related activities as the backdrop for the plot, it failed to achieve its intended effect because of the halfway compromise of the mood as an overall. Sometimes, it edged toward the side of intensity or darkness that could push past the barriers of safety but it was shy of making it into something much more.

Slanted Thoughts

The story started out really random, bordering childishness because of the constant fights between two of the major characters. However, it evolved into a sadder story because of what happened at the end. Although it attempted to resurrect the atmosphere with some side humor, the plot never recovered with the happiness felt at the beginning of the story. It was later explained in the second part why it was so and eventually leading the plot into a darker path than was originally intended to–or so it seemed when compared to the beginning of the first part. What the plot lacked severely was the explanation and more details into a certain mysterious organization that impacted some characters’ lives so many years and ongoing. Some of the undertones provided a hint about how they were a big deal and were not to be messed with. Yet it failed to back up the claim as the story went along and eventually wrapped up. It also never explained why Tammy’s character had so much impact on what Wallace’s life was going to be and yet left him alone after he had apparently restored his memories. Or was it because it was to emphasize how scary he was if he returned to his past self? Or because the organization didn’t care how things turned out and that it was only important they kept everything a secret? Some things were never answered.

Slicing Boundary

This was a fun read, at least at the beginning. Sure, there were childish humor and constant competition between the two siblings–or so readers thought as it was with typical siblings rivalry. However, it took a dark turn, killing a major character unnecessarily. Was that an attempt to be overdramatic? Or was it because the writer just decided to give up and end it that way?

The Business

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The Dating Game

The story seemed really random but that wasn’t a bad thing. It hinted potential with so many major characters involved and how each was at a different point in their lives. It was fascinating to see how they all met and would become important–one way or another–in each other’s lives. The story shifted between humor and intensity and back again. Yet always managed to push the plot forward, introducing new characters or circumstances into their lives and how they would react to those situations.

Although the cast was so extended that it provided an outlet for many story arches yet because it was so crowded that it didn’t allow for a focus on some characters. Also, some of the characters had suffered from the inconsistency of personality, except for the main characters. It also created an unrealistic atmosphere with so many of their gatherings and their strong bonds over the years. It could be both good and bad but mostly it was unrealistic. Not to mention how ridiculously meddlesome most of them were of one another’s lives. The occasional stalking of various parties was equally bizarre.

The Other Extreme

The first scene already gave a snapshot of what the story was going to be about and how the dark mood predicted the inevitable ending for some characters. The weather foreshadowed a lot of the scenes that were to come for the story. The layout wasn’t bad yet the constant side randomness and humor involving the characters downplayed the overall theme for the majority of the story. It was actually character-based and not plot-based like it should have been. The lack of information on both gang’s background made it hard to relate and didn’t allow for more interest toward that side of the story. It became a wannabe gangster story because it didn’t say how or why they were fighting or fleeing for their lives. It was only covered briefly at the beginning of how both sides had been fighting since forever yet never revealed the real reason why.

Tri-Visual

The storytelling style was strange yet intriguing. It made readers want to read more and find out what was going on and what was the deal with these characters. Or if they could get out from the current prison they were in. However, there were only glimpses here and there and some side details of the characters. They could have been extended to a much more complex story.

True Friendship

This story started out introducing the main characters right away and hinted at their established relationship and how it would come into play later on. The story began lighthearted with some side humor and then took a more serious turn as the characters acknowledge much more complex issues surrounding their lives. In some sense, the story allowed the characters to face reality with a hard punch. But in other sense, it felt a little dramatic and forced. Yet the story was still written a dialed down sort of way, like some subtlety of daily life happenings that could edge toward blandness but jumped back with a kick to tell us that reality will strike again. It was a mixture of complexity and simplicity. It had this balance and one tip of the scale would lead the story spiraling away.

When Wishes Come True

The story introduced some promising aspects, such as the story being told from the main character’s point of view. There were also inspirational quotes involved. So that sort of gave a feeling of a legit book. However, it took a shaky turn and ended up being a typical high school, mean girl type of war. There were some interesting ideas but the execution was terrible and the plot dull. If at all, that was.

Winds & Rain

Extremely disappointing because it seemed like an attempt to crank out something that involved the two main characters. It seemed like an unfinished story and didn’t involve a lot of details. It would have been better to wait for some sort of idea to come forth before continuing with the story. It should have been a one-shot, then it would make more sense.

Conclusion

So, aside from being random for this post, what’s the point here? Of all the stories I’ve written, I only liked True Friendship. Yes, that sad. I took it slow and made it through without feeling like I needed to rush anything or wanted to write to please readers. It wasn’t like I didn’t add in random conversations or some bizarre humor. The story had both. But what was different was how the two main characters didn’t end up together but also didn’t downplay their relationship throughout. It acknowledged some of the more realistic aspects of life, even if it didn’t allow for the story to cover all. I did get stuck on it at one time but the time spent thinking about the plot as an overall and side brainstorming, it had allowed me to change the ending for the better, at least to me.

I also realized some things about my writing styles. Well, I already realized it for a while now but here’s an outright confession, lol. Some characters, especially the main ones, tend to fall into one formula. So I think that’s something to take into account to try to make it different in the future. Or least mix it up a bit.

If anyone noticed, I think I got influenced by Gu Long and Jin Yong at times, lol. No jokes. Sad, but I read those two a lot so I got influenced, especially with describing sceneries and stuff. But of course, I couldn’t go to their level. Not yet. The reason I said “not yet” is because I at least want to reserve some hope that one day I could reach another level. Or like find my own styles. For now, just recognizing the flaws is enough.

So that’s the fun post. More to come in the future, hopefully.

NOTE: This post will be updated from time to write as I add more stories to my blog or finish the current ones.

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Love In Penghu: Episode 1

*WARNING*: MAJOR SPOILERS AHEAD. If you DO NOT want to be spoiled, please DO NOT read. You have been warned.

(image captured by DTLCT)

The story began with one of Taiwan’s scenic landscapes, Penghu. Li Jin Shui just managed to launch another ship so he had invited the townspeople over for a little celebration on this victory. While he was chatting up with the guests, his son, Li Yi Ming was seen passing out invitations. After the initial speech, Li Jin Shui soon joined the others offstage to chat about the upcoming happy event. However, he also complained of his oldest daughter’s lack of presence in their hometown. Fearing that the atmosphere would turn sour, Li Yi Ming rushed to reassure his father that his sister would return, considering how she had promised to help with the banquet. However, Li Jin Shui was on a roll, stating that it wasn’t that he wanted to nag his daughter but it was more about worry for his son-in-law, Fang Jia Qing.

At that moment, Li Mei Juan was seen on the road with her driver, Ah Hong. She was stuck in traffic and had to improvise by riding her horse to a meeting. At the location, two artists–Fang Hua and Su Zhi Hui–were seen arguing while they were shooting wedding photos. Not being able to win the argument, Su Zhi Hui soon turned and asked the others where Li Mei Juan was. Soon after Su Zhi Hui’s outburst, Li Mei Juan arrived on her horse, attracting the attention of the crowd present. Hearing Li Mei Juan’s explanation, the couple soon turned to one another and Su Zhi Hui apologized for his actions previously. Fang Hua also looked quite apologetic and accepted his vows to her. Their argument dissolved like that and Li Mei Juan arrived just in time to save the day (or a tragedy from happening).

Li Mei Juan indeed returned to Penghu like she promised and was greeted by her young sister, Li Mei Yuan. However, this time, Li Mei Juan returned with a heavy heart, both because she’d been informed by her husband that her father was quite upset and because of what her boss said to her regarding some business ventures. And the reason why Jia Qing couldn’t come to pick Mei Juan up was because of the disagreements between Li Jin Shui and Lin Xiu Chun. Lin Xiu Chun was actually Xu Yong Yi’s mother, which was Li Yi Ming’s future mother in law. Yes, this disagreement was indeed severe, considering how Li Jin Shui was against the land development project of recent since he vouched it was destroying the culture of Penghu while Lin Xiu Chun said that they needed to make changes for the future generations to thrive. According to Yong Yi, this meeting was to discuss their collaboration yet it had escalated to be a blood bath.

Upon arriving at the scene, Mei Juan was horrified by what was happening. Yet Mei Yuan seemed unfazed by it and even encouraged the others who traveled with them to come and help her father. What Mei Yuan didn’t realize was how Lin Xiu Chun would soon be part of their family. It was indeed getting quite ridiculous. Attempting to call for help, but it seemed hopeless, so Mei Juan had to rush forward to remind her father about the engagement between the two sides. That was when Li Jin Shui finally told the others to stop fighting. It was useless because the crowd was too chaotic. Jia Qing actually pushed Li Jun Shui aside in time before he was hit by one of the signs the protesters used to defend themselves from one another. Jia Juan rushed forward to cover for her husband yet was unfruitful. It wasn’t until the police arrived that all parties stopped what they were doing.

At the police station, like a typical person leaning toward the old, traditional route, Li Jin Shui didn’t care for the police officer’s lecture. Yet he turned to his oldest daughter, Mei Juan, to scold her extended absence at their hometown–and that she even caused him to be arrested. Mei Juan was scolding her younger sister, Mei Yuan, for how she had handled the situation earlier. Then the whole matter just escalated to the two elders not wanting to see their kids married. It was indeed a very sticky situation for Yi Ming and Yong Yi. The police officer finally interfered and told them not to argue anymore. Jia Qing, fearing things might escalate, jumped in and vouched for all parties. The officer calmed down and even reminded them that it was Yi Ming and Yong Yi’s special day and told them not to cause more troubles. He said that the next time it happens, it won’t be so lenient on them. Jia Qing was the one who tried to make peace among all parties, apologizing to Lin Xiu Chun and then insisting on everyone getting some rest before they continued with the engagement–if there was going to be one anymore. Lin Xiu Chun scolded the Li family before leaving with her daughter. Then the next problem pushed itself into existence, which was Li Jin Shui returning to his previous topic, which was scolding Mei Juan for causing troubles for him, saying that she was probably born to go against him. Even though Jia Qing tried to interfere to disperse the intensity between both parties, but Li Jin Shui didn’t hear of it. He insisted that Mei Juan learned from Jia Qing instead of roaming around alone in Taipei like that, warning her not to do anything that would wrong their family name.

Later at home, Mei Juan noticed their finances were all messed up. Jia Qing told her that her father had been lending people money left and right hence their money was drained, and that her father told them to pay back slowly, etc. Mei Juan told Jia Qing to tell her father to treat business and personal matters separate, and that he should try to stop her father. Jia Qing reminded her that her father couldn’t be reasoned with or he wouldn’t be Li Jin Shui. Jia Qing soon expressed how he wished she would return by his side too, not just her father worrying. Mei Juan finally told Jia Qing the good news of her returning to Penghu for a project. She, of course, didn’t tell Jia Qing of her boss’ decision to send her to Shanghai after the Penghu project. Yet Jia Qing was already happy about her being there. Jia Qing then told her that her father was just upset that she wasn’t there for the New Year celebration. Mei Juan told Jia Qing that her father wasn’t all that present during times either, remembering how he was missing on all those past holidays. Jia Qing jokingly commented that she and her father were indeed the same. Anyway, Jia Qing promised to help patch things between her and her father, and Mei Juan said that she would go help Yi Yong with the engagement banquet.

Upon arriving, Mei Juan had to reassure her brother and Yong Yi that her father wouldn’t sabotage the engagement. However, she soon realized she’d brought the wrong wedding dress. Yi Ming was in a panic since it would rile their father up even more. Mei Juan soon tried to improvise and said that she still had time to fix it so that their father wouldn’t know. She told Yong Yi to go fetch some supplies for her while Yi Ming went to fetch Mei Yuan to help with the fix. As Mei Juan rushed to sketch a blueprint, Yi Ming returned with Mei Yuan and Yong Yi with the needed supplies. The four of them rushed to work on the dress after Mei Juan briefed them of the plan. And while they were busy at work, Jia Qing rushed in and dragged Mei Juan away from the scene. She didn’t want to go yet he insisted. He was showing her how her father was practicing a speech for the banquet. Yet when he realized they were there, he mocked and criticized Mei Juan, not wanting her help when Jia Qing explained. Mei Juan told Jia Qing not to try anymore since it wasn’t like their relationship could be improved with just a few words from Jia Qing.

The day got even worse and worse–if that was possible because Li Jin Shui wanted to enter the room to see the new bride in the wedding dress. Stalking didn’t help so Yi Ming had to comply by opening the door. With Mei Yuan’s help in covering Yong Yi, they tried to wing it through by saying that the new bride was just shy. However, after some brief speech, he soon pushed Mei Yuan aside and discovered that the wedding dress wasn’t the one his wife used to wear. (Yes, that was why they were all covering it since he wanted his daughter-in-law to wear the one his wife wore.) Mei Juan confessed that it was her mistake. Yi Ming and Mei Yuan quickly spoke up to defend Mei Juan, saying that Mei Juan already tried her best and it was beautiful enough. Li Jin Shui, upset, scolded them once again, stating that their mother’s wish was to attend her kids’ wedding so that was the reason why he wanted the daughter-in-law to wear the dress, not just because it was beautiful. Mei Juan soon apologized for her mistake but was scolded by her father once again, repeating another phrase he previously scolded her with, which was that of saying she was a terrible daughter. Mei Juan spoke up again to clarify that she was apologizing to her mother, not to him. He wanted her to clarify her words. Mei Juan reminded him of how he kept staying at sea and leaving the house for her mother to tend, burying her mother’s talents and dreams. She even reminded him that he wasn’t around when her mother died. He asked her what the family would eat if he didn’t go out to sea and fish. She said that her mother had said that same thing yet she asked him if he’d ever considered that her mother also had her own dreams, not just existing to take care of the family. So since her mother died, Mei Juan had promised herself not to be like her mother, wanting to fulfill those dreams. He told her that she wasn’t able to take care of the wedding dress matter, how could she do anything else. He even added that she couldn’t compare to her mother. Then he said they could do whatever they want since no one cared to hear what he had to say anyway. When he left, Jia Qing tried to persuade him to stay but was unsuccessful. It wasn’t until Wen Tian Hao, Yong Yi’s cousin and also Mei Juan’s coworker, came that things were resolved. He brought the correct wedding dress to them, which earned a hug from Mei Juan. Then Mei Juan helped Yong Yi change to the correct wedding dress. While that was happening, Tian Hao congratulated Li Jin Shui. He had no idea there had been a disaster going on earlier. However, what was more troubling was the glare that Jia Qing gave him.

Rookies’ Diary: Favorite Character(s)

This is like WAY overdue by now since I first planned it in 2011. YES, that long ago. But I guess better late than never. I initially wanted to list all characters and then discussed them before wrapping up with saying who my favorite characters are. Yet I couldn’t really do it now since I have practically forgotten about half of the characters already, especially part 2 since I couldn’t even remember some of them, except for the ones I really liked. So I’m going to list the ones that I like and actually remember.

Li Xing Wen (李興文) – Ding Hao (丁浩)/ Đinh Hạo. A very strict yet effective leader. He seemed fierce yet he also cared for his soldiers’ well-being. He often encouraged new ideas yet also warned others to be cautious of all actions, especially how he had advised An Bang many times throughout. Considering how he had been in a similar situation in the past and wouldn’t want the same incident to happen again. The actor sure delivered and I have no complaint about him.

Yao Yuan Hao (姚元浩) – Sun An Bang (孫安邦)/ Tôn An Bang. Very, very tough with his routine and was a no-nonsense type of guy. However, his only weakness was caving into his younger brother’s attitude. He later learned to loosen up among others, not just for the sake of his younger brother but had managed to learn how to interact and get along with others. His role was beyond cool if you didn’t watch BTS. I think BTS sort of ruined it for me yet at the same time showed the hardworking attitude of cast members. Because in the BTS, it showed that he NG’ed so much that Tang Feng got impatient and yelled at him. I’m sure Tang Feng was kidding though, but it was indeed a riot to watch with how the cool, fierce dude wasn’t so cool anymore.

Fu Zi Chun (傅子純) – Yang Hai Sheng (楊海生)/ Dương Hải Sanh. Very funny and such a smooth talker. A smart-aleck but wasn’t too hateful with his way. Initially, a player and could flirt with any girl. Yet since he met Yu Ting, he had changed somewhat of his way so one could see his sincerity. Of course, he can’t be too serious or it would be too boring for his character, lol. But it was convincing to see how he had proved to Yu Ting he was serious about her, not just a casual date or two to show off some sort of record. His most admirable characteristics must be his righteousness and his loyalty to his friends. It made him heroic in that sense.

Tang Feng (唐豐) – Luo Gang (羅剛)/ La Cương. Could be quite hot-headed at times but definitely righteous in many ways. Growing up with such a harsh childhood, it was hard to blame him. He was also quite gifted in different areas too, but again, his hot-headedness got in the way of his path. He could be funny and was seen joking around at times with the others when he was finally accepted within the group. (Or after the misunderstandings were resolved.) And although I sympathized with him on many things, eventually I was tired of watching some of his side dramas. I felt that I liked him better with the guys joking around or competing for the sake of the training than seeing him morbid all the time. Or maybe I didn’t like seeing Tang Feng in depressing roles or moody situations, lol. NOT sure, but yeah.

Liu Xiang Ci (劉香慈) – Wang Sheng Nan (王勝男) / Vương Thắng Nam. A tough character. Both intelligent and daring, she was a convincing heroine. She was a hardworking person and didn’t care for anyone’s senseless gestures. Yet she was also caring toward the soldiers in her own way. That didn’t mean she spared them the rod either.

Pang Yong Zhi (龐庸之) aka Ah Pang (阿龐) – Yu Shan Ren (余善仁)/ Dư Thiện Nhân. He could be silly, unreasonable, senseless, and a pervert–among many other random bits. But what was admirable about him was he was able to keep to his word. Not a tattle-teller, especially that one disagreement with Luo Gang. He also was willing to keep one eye closed for some people as see fit, especially that one time when he sided with Yang Hai Sheng when YHS was picking on Xiao De Ji.

Hao Zi (浩子) – Cai Hao Zhi (蔡浩志)/ Thái Hạo Chí. Mixture of seriousness and silliness, depending on the situation. He was just one of those guys that add to the list of crazy characters.

Ah Xiang (阿翔) – Qiu You Shun (邱有順)/ Khâu Hữu Thuận. There was more of a plot going on for him since he was having some very harsh times with the financials and that had caused some misunderstandings and obstacles throughout. Yet he wasn’t all bad. It was just that he wasn’t in a situation to joke so lightly like others–even if it looked like he didn’t care.

Novia Lin Ruo Ya (林若亞) – Qiu Jing Wen (邱靖雯)/ Khâu Tĩnh Văn. She didn’t appear much, but she was the typical gentle and kind medic. She was also able to joke at times, not too one dimensional or boring. Yes, she could be so naive at times or seemed clueless, like that one time she got lost. But it wasn’t pathetic. It was somewhat cute in a way.

Zhao Jun Ya (趙駿亞) – Wang Wei (王威)/ Vương Uy. A mixture of serious and silliness yet was different from the randomness of others in here. He seemed cold-blooded or cool on the outside yet his caring for others was undeniable. He was seen helping the new recruits straighten up at the beginning somewhat, and later joined in on some of the recruit’s craziness as well. The difference between him and Shan Ren was his ability to distinguish between professional and personal matters. On top of that, he was quite hardworking, because he was also seen studying at various points of the show to enter the special training and programs, etc. He was quite ambitious but wasn’t bragging about it at all.

Derek Chen De Lie (陳德烈) – Lin Bo Wen (林博文)/ Lâm Bác Văn. Funny at times yet could be depressing at others. Sure, I like Derek Chen, but only like the character when he was joking around with Hai Sheng, not with the whole Tian Xin thing. It was driving me insane, to say the least.

Ye Jia Yu (葉家妤) – Zheng Yu Ting (鄭玉婷)/ Trịnh Ngọc Đình. A teacher. She was not only cute and pretty but was also quite witty as well. She was seen in constant banter with Hai Sheng. The two were sure a match made in heaven with their arguments, lol. She wasn’t just the typical naive girl though since I said she was seriously witty. She was quite grounded, like the majority of the characters in here.

Debbie Huang Di Jun (黃荻鈞) – Jin Bi Ying (金碧瑩)/ Kim Bích Oánh. At first, I found her quite interesting and couldn’t wait to see how they might cover some other stuff with her being a higher authority figure. However, she sort of lost ground when it was only focused on her crush on An Bang, etc.

Qian Jun Zhong (錢君仲) – Ye Da Tong (葉大同)/ Diệp Đại Đồng. Hilarious at times and just plain silly at others. From the start, we know he tried to dodge from having to serve by coming up with different schemes. After he failed, he had no choice but to do as told. Yet he was driving others insane, especially Shan Ren.

Xia Zheng Feng (夏政峰) – Wu Yong (吳勇)/ Ngô Dũng. Probably the most talented among all the side characters. ‘Cause he was seen knowing a lot of stuff too. His vast knowledge of the jungle and his other side tips shaped his character quite well. Although he was clueless around girls, that only made it funnier and realistic as well, considering how they couldn’t all be pros, lol. He was indeed younger than some of the guys in here so it made sense. He also had a knack for singing and rapping with the others so all of those traits made his character stood out as well.

Lin Dao Yuan (林道遠) – Lai Hu (賴虎)/ Lại Hỗ. I don’t know. I just can’t like him that much. NOT because of what happened at the end. Since I’d already gone past that. Considering how now I finally revisit the characters, it had faded with the other thing. But I just found his character as quite unnecessary as some others in here. Perhaps, it was more enjoyable seeing him joking around with others and the whole F4 craziness, but aside from that, his character alone was just annoying in some ways. Well, it added to the realistic of the military since not everyone was as hardworking there, but it was just pushing my patience too much at times. Yet I think Lin Dao Yuan did a good job with the character since he’s actually really, really smart outside. (I remember watching this one game show years back, it was impressive.)

Pan Bo Xi (潘柏希) – Shi Jun (石俊)/ Thạch Tuấn. The poor guy that was trying to get acknowledgment from his father. I really felt his frustration with trying to prove to his father that he could do it. He was working so hard, having endured so much pressure yet the father just plain shrugged it off like it was nothing. On top of that, he was being gang-bullied by Xiao De Ji and the others. It was just plain madness. I really enjoyed his storytelling from time to time from his diary though. What was really admirable about him was his loyalty to others and although he realized how he had to work harder than some others in here yet he wasn’t envious of them. He’d even seen it as a challenge or took them in as role models to work harder.

Ah Gan (阿 竿) – Chen Tian Bin (陳添彬)/ Trần Thiêm Bân. Seriously funny and could be a riot. He was smart and was a smart mouth at first yet learned to mingle with the others later.

Tang Zhen (唐臻) – Yan Xiao Rou (嚴小柔)/ Nghiêm Tiểu Nhu. Sooooo cute. I just loved watching her clumsy moments in here. She was probably the only naive character on the female side here. Although the others were young too, she believed in a lot of stuff that the other girls didn’t, lol. It was a riot. But I guess cute in her own way, not too exaggerating.

Achel Chang/ Zhang Xin Yu (張芯瑜) aka Xiao Xiao Yu (小小瑜) – Ye Xiao Yan (葉曉燕)/ Diệp Hiểu Yến. Cute and hilarious. She could be so mean, but it wasn’t her fault. NOT exactly, lol. Seeing her getting into some bicker with the others was funny. And for this character, XXY got to show off her swimming skills at various points so it wasn’t all lost. Then she got to sing for the soundtrack too so that was fun.

Jacky Chu (祝釩剛) – Xu Jia Cheng (許家成)/ Hứa Gia Thành. He didn’t appear much but was a promising character. He was seen at odds or having conflicting views with Sun An Bang. However, he agreed to help them later regarding An Bang’s case so he wasn’t all hostile. It was just that he was a doctor so he didn’t like seeing the strict ways An Bang was enforcing with the recruits.

Ricky Jiang Jun Han (江俊翰) – Chen Zhan Hong (陳展鴻)/ Trần Triển Hồng. Tough and no-nonsense type of guy. He was a strong leader and was convincing in that area.

Enson Chang/ Zhang Yan Ming (張雁名) – Tang Kai Yu (湯凱宇)/ Thang Khải Vũ. Like I said in the other post, it was such a shame that he wasn’t able to appear more because of the accident. The little bits of his character made me really liked him more, and he was like a breath of fresh air among all those new authoritative figures who were already so intense.

Okay, the others I didn’t list or had to erase because I could no longer remember, LOL! Too bad, but I didn’t want to go back and dig it up. But who are the top 5? Well, I have to divide into two groups, for guys and girls, since there are seriously too many characters. I would say my top 5 for the guys would be Yu Shan Ren, Wang Wei, Yang Hai Sheng, Wu Yong, and Shi Jun. Many might be shocked why I didn’t pick Luo Gang, although I claimed to be a Tang Feng fan. It wasn’t because of how the ending turned out with the triangles or whatever else. It was more like I said that it was too much to bear with his background and all. It sort of faded for me over time. It was also because I liked him more with others than his individual character. Sure, I acknowledged he was awesome throughout and a powerful character–and had enjoyed his performances during different trials a lot. But put aside all his talents, there wasn’t much to go on for me. It sure was a tough decision in dropping him, but I didn’t want to put him in just because of Tang Feng. Shi Jun seemed like the weakest link at times, aside from Bo Wen (lol), but I felt his story was intriguing aside from the constant bullying and the frustration of watching him enduring all the pressures from his father. His story could be elaborated in part 2 if they had decided on that route. But perhaps it wasn’t Pan Bo Xi’s time yet since most of the focus was on the other members of the cast, even some of the ones I didn’t care for got to participate in the soundtrack and much more. In a way, I was glad I held back on this post because I felt I could finally stand back to observe without the bias of because a favorite person portrayed a character, I had to pick that person. Stepping back and just focusing on the characters after the buzz had died down had helped heaps. Oh yeah, I almost wanted to put Tang Kai Yu in but had to resist. This was due to the fact that he only appeared a bit and his character wasn’t properly developed yet so that seemed like only a bit of obsession thus I didn’t put him in the top 5 in the end. It was too obvious that Shan Ren and Wang Wei made it because they’d been my favorite characters right from the start. Even if I didn’t like Ah Pang much (mostly due to the fact that I had watched him in not so likable roles in the past) and I had no idea who Zhao Jun Ya was. They were my favorites together as friends or were fine when they were involved in other scenes with their own side stories. I found them hilarious and addicting to watch. Yang Hai Sheng was invincible. He was a riot in many ways yet wasn’t just all talks either. He had real capabilities so that sort of fused his arrogance at points. But he wasn’t all bad. He just couldn’t help but be obnoxious at times. It was how he was. He got this incurable teasing habit. But that was what made him fun to watch. Yet like I said before, his righteousness and loyalty made him admirable in many ways. He helped Shi Jun to fight off the bullies at one point. He also tried to protect Bo Wen by hiding the magazines from Bo Wen that one time. The things that did matter, he didn’t brag about. And Wu Yong? Need I say more? He was just different yet still hilarious. Sort of odd at times yet wasn’t all clueless either. He wasn’t outright rude with others since he did call Hai Sheng “Hai Sheng Da Ge” (海生大哥) at one point or another. He was also the teasing type but wasn’t cruel. It was his way to get others’ attention or it was just some harmless prank.

So moving on to the top 5 girls: Zheng Yu Ting, Qiu Jing Wen, Yan Xiao Rou, Ye Xiao Yan, and Wang Sheng Nan. Yes, I placed Sheng Nan last. Again, not because of what happened in the end. It was more because I got sort of side-track later on with liking other characters more. I got it that she was a tough leader and all, but it sort of faded for me with other conflicts going into play, etc. Still, one of the coolest characters, just that I got pulled in more by others along the way. Although Jing Wen didn’t appear much, I really liked her. Like I said, a mixture of maturity and somewhat innocence. It was cute. Xiao Rou was just hilarious to watch with her clumsiness. She made it cute without being too over the top, etc. Even though Xiao Yan was the youngest (I think), she was more mature than her age. Considering how her mother ran the shop, she had to help with luring customers in and all. So she wasn’t so clueless with stuff. She made it funny, even when she was being mean. Or tried to, lol. Actually, it was a tough call for me with placing Jing Wen, Xiao Rou, and Xiao Yan. I felt like they could be on the same scale for me. All funny and lovable in their own way. I saved Yu Ting last on purpose. She was like a chameleon in here, both appearance-wise and personality-wise. She made it addicting to watch like it was with some other characters in here. I wasn’t sure if it was because Ye Jia Yu had to work on several dramas at the same time like some of them, but I liked how her hairstyles and attires were changed gradually throughout the drama. It was like showing her sense of style as the character and also made us see that she wasn’t just always wearing the same type of clothes. It was like Director Wang–or perhaps the production team as an overall–had decided to make it more realistic with not going the lazy route by letting some people’s hairstyles just stay the same or always wearing the same set of clothing. I got it that we all wear some similar outfits all the time and can’t just toss stuff out and be wasteful like that, but in other dramas, it was always the same set of styles. In fact, even Xiao Yan had different hairstyles and a variety of outfits too. Same with Xiao Rou. In fact, various characters in here showed differences when they were on or off duty or in different settings. That was what made me feel like their characters consisted of realism.

So now that I got this topic out of the way, I’m not sure when would be the next time for a Rookies’ Diary update. But perhaps when I couldn’t resist and go back to watch? Who knows?

*All images were captured by DTLCT.

Seasons in the Sun: DVD Release

(Credit was marked on photo)

The official English title is finally known, lol. OR at least it was for me.

Here’s the DVD boxset for those who are interested: http://www.yesasia.com/us/seasons-in-the-sun-dvd-end-taiwan-version/1036312582-0-0-0-en/info.html

Chun Nuan Xiang Yang Tian: Characters

Yes, I’m attempting the “Character Descriptions” seen here. I’m not translating all since I got lazy halfway through, LOL! Or more like it’s taking up too much time. I might go back to fill in other details later.

Zhao Jun Ya (趙駿亞) as Wu Fu Chuan (吳福川)

Wu Fu Chuan is a handsome young native Taiwanese. Growing up in an economically challenged household, with his father absent, he uses his hard-earned money to support his mother and brother.

Upon setting sights on the fine-looking Run Lian, he found her unforgettable. Adding on Run Lian’s graceful and gentle demeanor as well as her sense of filial and love for her family that has deeply touched Fu Chuan’s heart.

Lin Ruo Ya (林若亞) as Xu Run Lian (徐潤蓮)

Run Lian was born into a simple and honest Miaoli Hakka family. At a young age, she had to leave her village life and traveled to the city to work in a factory. Her graceful, tranquil demeanor, her diplomatically manner when dealing with life situations, and her persistence in the goodness, has allowed her to be well-received at the factory. In addition, Run Lian’s refreshing demeanor along with her graceful, stunning outer appearance has drawn in many pursuers. However, only the candid, kindhearted, filial, and caring Fu Chuan could deeply touch Run Lian’s heart. In the end, both were able to get married.

They mutually acknowledged, cherished, and support one another, experiencing the lifestyle of impoverished, hardworking and facing adversity within many trials. Finding a way out for their livelihood, taking hold of all the hardships and turning it into a scenic view. Two people’s beautiful destiny yet upon blossoming, they were met with challenges and trials.

Zheng Ping Jun (鄭平君) as Fu Chuan’s father (福川父)

As Fu Chuan’s father, he has been busy taking care of his business outside of the household. As hospitable as himself, he has friends everywhere (as well as investments).

Wang Mei Xue (王美雪) as Fu Chuan’s mother (福川母)

As Fu Chuan’s mother, she’s a person who really understands the principle of “dealing with relationships between people (人情世故).

Jiang Gui Pei (蔣桂沛) as Run Lian’s father (潤蓮父)

As Run Lian’s father,

Ding Ning (丁寧) as Run Lian’s mother (潤蓮母)

As Run Lian’s mother,

Liang Jia Rong (梁家榕) as Wu A Qiao (吳阿巧)

Fu Chuan’s oldest sister.

Su Bing Xian (蘇炳憲) as Tong Bao (通寶)

Fu Chuan’s brother-in-law.

Wu Huai Zhong (吳懷中) as Wu Fu Zhi (吳福枝)

Fu Chuan’s younger brother.

Wang Shu Qiao (王書喬) as Xu Xiu Zhen (徐秀貞)

Run Lian’s younger sister.

Wang Jia Liang (王家梁) as Zhu Qi He (朱溪河)

???

Wei Ru (韋汝) as Wu Xin Ying (吳欣穎)

Fu Chuan and Run Lian’s oldest daughter.

Yvonne Yao (姚采穎) as Shi Cui Bi (施翠碧)

Lady Boss of a breakfast lounge. Because of Run Lian’s ongoing support and suggestions, both become good friends. Frequently go with Run Lian on different quests.

*All images were from DaAi’s Official Website net hence belonging to their rightful owners. All translations were done by DTLCT.