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Wednesday, September 19, 2012

THE KING MAKER [TVB][2012][O] : First impressions

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BASIC INFO
Title
The King Maker

Chinese Title
造王者 aka The One Who Becomes Emperor (I think)

First Broadcast
13.08.2012

No. of Episodes
28 - strange number

Synopsis
Wikipedia

Cast
Kent Cheng - Tung Chiu (Right Chancellor)
Wayne Lai - Yu Jing (future Left Chancellor)
Pierre Ngo Ka-nin (Chiu Kwai Sing (1st prince)
Chris Lai Lok-yi - Chiu Kwai Wo (2nd prince)
Kristal Tin - Yim Sam Leung
Natalie Tong - Yu Ching/Fan Hung Ying
Elaine Yiu - Tung Yuk Kiu
Kingdom Yuen - Empress Gung-shuk
Florence Kwok - Consort Wai
Patrick Tang - Yu Tsing/Sheung Hei
KK Cheung - Yu Bok-man (Former Right Chancellor)
Eric Li - Tung Ming Hin
Joseph Lee Kwok Lun - Yeung Chi-san (current Left Chancellor)
Kwok Fung - Emperor of Southern Song



19.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 28, LAST EPISODE
 
Added review of this series in Reviews Database here. Written by yours truly. This post is considered closed. Any comments do post in the review itself.




 More after Read More link.



16.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 28, LAST EPISODE

And not a minute too soon! I mean the series was going circles but yes there is an ending, everything explained and whilst I laughed very hard at the ending, it was actually a fitting ending.

Remember my prediction? Bold is actually what happens.


Tung Chiu - dies but I suspect he will kill himself dramatically in front of everyone or is executed but not before he makes a speech as to why he was a noble man but after 10 years of suffering he became the man he is today and so we will like pity him and all and this will give Yu Jing his final chance to make his "Be noble, dude" speech to his face

THE REAL ENDING:  WRONG! He didn't die because Yu Jing promised Yuk Kiu who died for him to let her father live and he did, exiled to a remote island, being brought food every 1 month by Yu Jing himself.

Yuk Kiu - goes dramatically insane

THE REAL ENDING:  WRONG! But she died to save Yu Jing, in a way sorta insane since that man doesn't love her anymore.

Sheung Hei - tortured by Tung Chiu and dies to save his siblings who are not worth saving

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! And the most pitiful character.

Hung Ying - actually becomes concubine since she may actually get pregnant and from the looks of it may even be empress one day when empress to be falls from grace

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! She became empress when the empress fell from grace. And to me the worst ending because I hated Hung Ying. 

Empress to be - falls from grace, got kicked out OR learns her lesson and becomes good friends with Hung Ying

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! Thrown into cold palace and like Yu Jing said; "Someone tried to create a plot to blame others and this person did it so stupidly!!" but I felt they were too harsh on her because after all, Hung Ying the classless woman provoked her with her constant "I WILL BE EMPRESS BECAUSE I AM PREGNANT" speech.

Kwai Sing - Becomes emperor, realises Yu Jing is always right but not before we know the final truth, that he ain't the real son of the emperor which means ...

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! But not a happy end for him because he sorta became a puppet emperor. A disappointing character actually.

Kwai Wo - May return just yet to takeover Kwai Sing and it will be my fantasy that he refuses to take the throne as the rightful heir because he knows Kwai Sing will be a better emperor than he ever will be and stylishly walk away OR he may be forgotten by the writers

THE REAL ENDING:  SORTA CORRECT! He later moved to a remote place with pregnant wife and mother. I actually thought Kwai Wo should be Emperor. I mean he had no chance to be emperor since he was now ordinary guy.

Sam Leung - dies from the evil plans hatched by Tung Chiu OR survives and actually marries Yu Jing and they run away together to travel the world but this is unlikely since TVB is sadistic these days

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! 2nd most pitiful character, dead!

Yu Jing - probably won't die but stay back as Councillor/PM since if Tung Chiu is gone, someone must takeover his position OR he refuses the position and travels the world since his girlfriend is dead, his brother is dead and sister is happily married. Could be!!

THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! But interestingly he in the end controlled the government, he was sorta like the defacto ruler to Kwai Sing's sorta puppet ruler like how Tung Chiu and Yang Chisan was BUT he did it for the good of the kingdom, he became the shadow PM and teacher and ensured Kwai Sing rules fairly and justly. So yes he had the most power as the King Maker but he didn't want the power, he just wanted it to be exercised fairly. All these we see 5 years later. Anyway he did make a pact with Kwai Sing that he will leave his throne 10 years later and to surrender to 3rd prince who is the real heir but no such dilemma occurs since within 3 years 3rd prince died of illness. So Kwai Sing is now the real emperor for life.

Ming Hin - dies or denounces his father and got exiled


THE REAL ENDING:  CORRECT! Kinda sad end when he said to his father "I just wanted to achieve glory...". I mean with a bad father like Tung Chiu, how can he ever have any chance at all?

In the end we see Tung Chiu and Yu Jing seeing each other and Tung Chiu laughed "I am not sure if in the end you won or I won..." and the truth is, neither did. Tung Chiu may laugh and seems carefree but he lost his 2 children that in his selfish self he did loved. Yu Jing may sigh and be in great power but so many died for him and he had to wake up everyday to ensure Kwai Sing is a good emperor and doesn't go the wrong route which is a heavy burden as Tung Chiu once said "You will have the burden of wondering if that illegitimate bastard you put on the throne chair will be a good emperor or a bad emperor, you will wake up every having to face the burden of ensuring he goes the right route..." which is a heavy heavy burden.

Anyway when Yu Jing after 5 years were toasting those who died for him, I was thinking that will be a rather long scene since a lot of people died for him. Yes yes it was just Sheung Hei, Yuk Kiu and Sam Leung.

As for what happened to Pang Kwok Chu, he died a very happy man, knowing the emperor's family is totally destroyed, his real son on the throne, Pangs will be the ultimate ruler and he encouraged Kwai Sing to kill him, he didn't and so he pushed the knife held by Kwai Sing into his own heart and actually died smiling.

Weird dude.

Emperor died from heart attack, never woke up. Empress died being poisoned by Tung Chiu.

Messy! But in the end just those few people. A very small kingdom.

I might a review on this. Anyway 28 episodes, bullet train style of the same 1 hour route each day. That's what this series is about.

15.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT/ENDING SOON!

My prediction ...


Sheung Hei - tortured by Tung Chiu and dies to save his siblings who are not worth saving
Hung Ying - actually becomes concubine since she may actually get pregnant and from the looks of it may even be empress one day when empress to be falls from grace

I WAS RIGHT!! Hung Ying is really pregnant and Yu Jing is not above using his own sister anyway. Well she becomes concubine and I hate her more. I can understand why the would be empress hates her as well.

Now on Sheung Hei, probably the most graceful male character in this series and he is dead. Again like I predicted, tortured by Tung Chiu, died to save Yu Jing but he actually killed himself. I feel Yu Jing is like a mass murderer. Everybody dies but him. He always gets set up. I feel Tung Chiu is a smarter more ruthless man but unfortunately he is also power crazy and looks borderline insane in this series.But darn good performance by Kent Cheng who sorta went OTT in some scenes but for good reasons. Tung Chiu is losing control and he still thinks he is right. Such a combination plus power is of course deadly and intoxicating. He feels he is treated unfairly. Crazy route.

And also right on Kwai Seng not being the emperor's son but he being so upset and all, maybe he should just drink less and stop saying so loudly "I AM NOT MY FATHER'S SON!!!" at the top of his lungs would have been more realistic.

Back to Sheung Hei. I cried when he died. Life isn't fair. Why is everyone dropping dead because of Yu Jing? And Yu Jing cried "How many more must Tung Chiu kill before he lets me go?" when my answer will be "Those he kills are related to Yu Jing. Maybe Yu Jing should have said HERE TUNG CHIU! The kingdom is yours! I am retiring!!", because the way I see it, the real emperor is useless and has zero opinion who can be swayed very easily and the would be emperor isn't the rightful heir. Yu Jing should have insisted on training 3rd prince, the rightful heir.

But this last 3rd episode sees the return of the most noble male character and interestingly it is Yeung Chisan's son, Yeung... errr.. Kuk I think.

Dramatic stuff but why do I feel the fire is just not right and the ingredients sorta undercooked?


11.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT/ENDING SOON!

Ok, countdown to see if I am right!!

So my prediction, as series ending soon...


Sam Leung - dies from the evil plans hatched by Tung Chiu OR survives and actually marries Yu Jing and they run away together to travel the world but this is unlikely since TVB is sadistic these days

I am right!! She dies, BUT from her own blotched plans and I feel in entire episode only Cho gang got it right; they blamed everyone but they also blame Yu Jing. She died for him. Whether she died earlier or later is not relevant; she died because of Yu Jing and of course thanks to Tung Chiu.
Was so annoyed with Natalie Tong and her OTT loud crying.
As for Kent Cheng, give him TV King award. I mean all his frustrations, his anger at the belief that his sacrifice was like the best thing ever for the empress as the empress dismissed him and he shouted "You don't believe me? You believe that Yu Jing when I spent 10 years of hardship for you and 1st prince? EMPRESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!". Wow!! Very angry man and scary is he thinks he is right. I believe Tung Chiu was a noble man 10 years ago but 10 years have taught him to be angry and crazy with power with the belief that he is really right. Of course you may say he need not do all evil stuff if only Yu Jing don't go all noble and just let Tung Chiu go but as this series teaches us, we make our choices, we stand by our choices, like Sam Leong did, and sadly died. Sad sad ending for Sam Leong.


11.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT/ENDING SOON!
I know I am supposed to feel pity for Hung Ying being bullied by the Empress to be and all that. But why do I feel I pity poor Kwai Sing's wife instead? I was so annoyed with Hung Ying. She showed disrespect first. Yes, wife should have been more open, more giving as the empress told her to be but can you blame her? She waited bloody 10 years for her husband to come back and when he did, he supposedly made the girl pregnant and wanted to make her a concubine. Of course reality is she must learn to accept the fact Kwai Sing will marry many women in future BUT I am sure she must be crying, "BUT WHY HER?!??!".

However the one catching my eye is Patrick Tang who hasn't caught my eye for a long time. I love his portrayal of Sheung Hei who is even more street smart than his older brother, Yu Jing whose "mouth is all about being noble" as they say but seriously, that's all that he is. I was so angry with Yu Jing for insulting poor Sheung Hei first as some eunuch who shamed his family, then as a undignified double crossing eunuch and today, classic!! As no better than a dog!!! Oh Yu Jing, such insults you can come out with.

Natalie Tong IS NOT READY for the leading female role so to speak. She shouts her lines, she is still way too dramatic in her acting and sometimes I feel like saying "Woahhhhh girl, not so close! Walk further back a bit! And for god's sake, not every acting must be the 'the world is ending tomorrow, let it all out' type of acting! Hated it when she cried. Vivien Yeo has improved so much and cantonese also a lot better but still a bit off. She now doesn't look as pretty as her youthful self but her acting has improved tremendously. Still a bit raw but at least not dramatically raw. Kristal Tin acts like she is reading from a book as  a Cantonese dictation sort of teacher. Wayne, oh Wayne is still... not meeting my very very high expectations. Kent Cheng is now back to being subtly scheming (KENT FOR TV KING!!) and did I mention Elaine Yiu whose Yuk Kiu is bound to go crazy in the end? Oh dear, acting is numero uno terrible. Not convinced at all.

So my prediction, as series ending soon...

Tung Chiu - dies but I suspect he will kill himself dramatically in front of everyone or is executed but not before he makes a speech as to why he was a noble man but after 10 years of suffering he became the man he is today and so we will like pity him and all and this will give Yu Jing his final chance to make his "Be noble, dude" speech to his face

Yuk Kiu - goes dramatically insane

Sheung Hei - tortured by Tung Chiu and dies to save his siblings who are not worth saving

Hung Ying - actually becomes concubine since she may actually get pregnant and from the looks of it may even be empress one day when empress to be falls from grace

Empress to be - falls from grace, got kicked out OR learns her lesson and becomes good friends with Hung Ying

Kwai Sing - Becomes emperor, realises Yu Jing is always right but not before we know the final truth, that he ain't the real son of the emperor which means ...

Kwai Wo - May return just yet to takeover Kwai Sing and it will be my fantasy that he refuses to take the throne as the rightful heir because he knows Kwai Sing will be a better emperor than he ever will be and stylishly walk away OR he may be forgotten by the writers

Sam Leung - dies from the evil plans hatched by Tung Chiu OR survives and actually marries Yu Jing and they run away together to travel the world but this is unlikely since TVB is sadistic these days

Yu Jing - probably won't die but stay back as Councillor/PM since if Tung Chiu is gone, someone must takeover his position OR he refuses the position and travels the world since his girlfriend is dead, his brother is dead and sister is happily married. Could be!!

Ming Hin - dies or denounces his father and got exiled

We shall see!!!

06.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT!
Sometimes I wonder does Yu Jing know who is the enemy, AT THAT MOMENT? Him going against Tung Chiu when Yeung Chi San and gang are still standing there is unbelievable. And I hate it that Kuk, Yeung Chi San's upright son is also thrown out of the country so to speak. Not fair! Anyway one scene stuck in my mind was when Yeung Chi San told Tung Yuk Kiu "Yes I may be in dire straits, but at least my son loves me and has me in his heart. I may be cruel to others but I love my family. You? And your father? He still uses you and you now use him, you both use each other. What sort of a relationship is that?"

Indeed!

Anyway will Kwai Wo have a come back? No doubt Kwai Seng is probably empress' and her former lover's son from the looks of it.

Very dramatic indeed. I still think Kent Cheng should be TV King. Impeccable performance of an ambitious man walking on tightropes, who is on the good side but uses questionable means. So now that the bad guys are driven away, his target is probably Yu Jing.



04.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT!
I sorta think this series is like an all rounder of the word "jang" aka steal or grab. Let's see; 2 advisers vying for top adviser post, in future 2 women vying for the love of one man, 2 princes vying for the position of crown prince, 2 mothers vying for top position for son... everything "jang" is this series.

Kent Cheng is deliciously ambiguously... ambiguous. He is like Prof Umbrage in Harry Potter series. She doesn't work for the bad guy that is Voldermort but doesn't make her the good guy because she is evil in her own way. Like Tung Chiu who is the master manipulator.

I shall say, Kent Cheng for TV King. Even Wayne falters but Kent Cheng, his every smile, every twitch of his eyes or eyebrow.. all conveying something. Fantastic performance.


03.09.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE ... I LOST COUNT!
Oh my... mymymy.... Tung Chiu is positively "the end justify the means" sort of guy. Yu Jing is noble but if follow his way, see where he ended up... siblings missing, girlfriend married evil dude and he himself thrown out of state for 10 years. No no... Tung Chiu is best for plotting the way to be emperor and Yu Jing is best for how to rule on as emperor.

I love Tung Chiu and Ming Hin's love-hate-use each other relationship! How I wish Jacky Heung is in this role. Sorta miss him.

Anyone feels Yuk Kiu got the bad end of the bargain? I mean Yu Jing after 10 years just stopped loving her. I feel bad for her. And I bet she will turn evil when she finds out Yu Jing is in love with Sam Leung.

As for Natalie Tong, I am annoyed. Why does she speak so loud? Why is she so dramatic even in relaxed sort of scene?


24.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 12 (I think)
This series is trying to complicate things. So is Tung Chiu good or bad or double crosser of the double crosser? Everybody is a mole and some is infernal affairs mole, some moles are triple crossers!!! Why confuse me?! And the music is too dramatic. I feel like having permanent high blood pressure watching this series. Anyway I have decided that Kent Cheng shall be my "Siu Sang" this year aka that best actor TVB award. However Kenneth Ma or someone younger will get but we all know, any siu sang of those age is not even fit to lick Kent's boots. Wayne Lai deserves a mention but the problem with his performance is it is ONE LOOK, ONE NOTE, ONE EXPRESSION, ONE POSE. I thought for Wayne Lai, this is simply inadequate. I expected better things for him and I hope soon he will change at least some pose, or maybe lift his eyebrow a bit rather than looking serious, worried, unbelieving. Chris Lai is ok, he has improved a lot, even Vivien Yeo has improved a lot, Cantonese better BUT both are still forgettable. Like I watched them and then I sort of struggle to remember what they did, their expressions.

So far this series is dramatic because the music and camera angles make it dramatic. If you strip away all that, it has a story to tell, but seriously, it shouldn't be so darn dramatic. Like drama queen sort of series, you know?


24.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 11 (I think)
OMG! The plot thickens! So Tung Chiu is not bad in the sense he is truly infernal affairs, but he has his own motives. He is actually despicable too! So is he working for Jins? Or the Mongols? Or he is purely self serving? Poor Yuk Kiu. Her father uses her, twice. Poor poor girl. And poor Sheung Hei, with his real brother Yu Jing quite clearly calling him names when he is an eunuch, how can he ever brave himself to reveal his true identity to him? This series is still super fast, super dramatic but damn it, KENT CHENG MUST WIN BEST ACTOR!!! Forget the so called TV Queens, TV King. HERE IS YOUR TV KING DAMN IT!!


24.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 9
Poor Tung Chiu. No one understands him. But he did use his daughter Yuk Kiu. Poor Yuk Kiu, such suffering. Between these 2, they have made so many sacrifices for country and family, not sure if worth it. Funniest moment was in Episode 8 when Yeung Chi San's son was the one who saved Kwai Sing and took him to the empress and it was Yu Jing who says he can be trusted and I was like "Hey! That's the bad guy's son!" and indeed, more honourable than his own bastard father. Really funny moment. It is however Yu Jing that I dislike. With his mouth full of honour speaking, etc, he certainly failed his own siblings.So far the series has slowed down a bit BUT is still way way way too dramatic with the constant dangerous soundtrack and the fast moving cameras. And one more thing; Sek Sau. What the hell happened to him? Acting so terrible! I mean he was always terrible but now so damn pretentious sort of acting. But it suits his character who is a traitor. Yu Jing, don't work for Cho Gang!! They're run by traitors!



23.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 8
I WAS RIGHT!! Tung Chiu was "Infernal Affairs"! But poor thing. Only the Empress trusted him and knew him well. As usual, Yu Jing though upright and patriotic is not very cunning. Anyway this series is too diluted. Too many other factors that at times I thought I was watching some Jing Yong wuxia series. Natalie Tong is dramatic, again.


15.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 3
I think I will stop commenting at episode 3 until I write a review proper. The series is now going in rounds but still entertaining. However the editing is terrible. The scene of Yuk Kiu meeting with Yu Jing in jail should be before she met with Yeung Chi San and agreeing to marry him, not after because meeting Yu Jing signifies her end with Yu Jing before agreeing to marry that creep. The same goes for her talk with her father who wanted to kill himself and her and the revelation that Yeung Chi San will only let them go if she agrees to marry him but that scene already happened before that so her shocked expression does not make any sense. And the way the father said it, entire family will die if she doesn't agree to his demands but no worries, daddy will protect you is to me in a way pressuring the daughter to marry that creep! If Tung Chiu is a bad person, I will believe he is pushing her towards that marriage but he is not, so all the things he said to me is like pushing the daughter to say yes. Yu Jing is too gung ho in wanting to serve his country to the point his father died, his siblings sold as slaves!! And I don't see how Tung Chiu will want to serve 2nd prince unless he is being threatened but he doesn't seem to be that sort threatened so him fearing for his son's life seems out of place. of course if he has no fear of death for his entire family, the series would have ended at episode 3.
Anyway still interesting though. Will keep watching.


14.08.2012
WATCHED UNTIL EPISODE 2
This episode is as fast as episode 1. What's the hurry? Anyway this episode will explain a lot but does not explain how the rivalry restarts and goes on for the next 12 years.

So Kent willingly took the blame of exposing his teacher of wrongdoings and the wrongdoing was simply being too boastful as the teacher of the emperor. Wayne's dad knew he would be busted by Joseph so he asked Kent to expose him first, so as to let Kent get a promotion rather than Joseph. Kent refused by his teacher pleaded with him and he also  made a promise to his teacher that he will stop Wayne from entering politics. All this explained to Wayne who was confused why Kent helped and pleaded with the emperor when Wayne was most certainly gonna be punished for his role in the "great leap forward" Song Dynasty style; getting the people to donate steel to make new weapons when Wayne's original idea was to get rich merchants to donate and make better weapons, but it became a tool for officials to be more corrupted and get the ordinary folks to donate which was a burden to them, resulting in a steel factory to be blown up and killing a lot of innocent lives, where 1st prince was there to save the people. He was there on advice of Kent to check out the place, Kent never expected the factory to blow up then. Anyway Joseph kidnapped Wayne's siblings to force him to admit his fault and then blame it on Kent and 1st prince. Wayne did not do that, he in fact exposed Joseph as he promises to die to prove his innocence. But all in the end was Joseph demoted 3 ranks (still wearing purple!) and 2nd prince escaped without a scratch and now 2nd Prince's mom, Florence who is the brains wants Kent to work for 2nd prince. Not sure how she's gonna get him to do it because Kent seems loyal to 1st prince. Meanwhile 1st prince volunteers to talk terms with Jin Dynasty and Florence said he has to be the Crown Prince to go there and she in fact, to the surprise of the empress recommended 1st prince as crown prince. But there are devious plans probably to kill 1st prince and Wayne. At Jin, it seems Songs do not eat lamb. Why? Because Jin once made their rulers pretend to be lambs and paraded around to humiliate them. Supposed to be a peace talk escalated to war of words as Wayne became very angry and quoted Yue Fei (who by the way was from Song Dynasty). Poor Kent just looked on, knowing peace talk is over. His expression was funny!! Anyway Wayne reconciles with Elaine and will marry her soon but she is also lusted after by that evil Joseph. Meanwhile the emperor is useless.

Are you watching this series? I find it filled with great performances.

Anyway my sis told me something very interesting. Why Guan Yu aka Guan Gong is now so worshipped and it seems Guan Gong was deified during Qing Dynasty. There was someone who was also considered and that was Yue Fei aka Ngok Fei. But they went with Guan Gong because Yue Fei was famous for beating Jin and Jin was invaders and Qing did not want to remind Han folks they were invaders! Interesting. Truth is Yue Fei is bigger than Guan Yu in terms of historical importance and although I wouldn't say much bigger but Yue Fei is much more popular than Guan Yu. If Guan Yu is famous for loyalty and brotherhood, then Yue Fei personified loyalty and patriotism which in the end costs his life. Now to think of it, Yue Fei is huge.

13.08.2012WATCHED UNTIL  EPISODE 1
1st episode like a speeding bullet. Everyone speaking so darn fast but clearly of course. Thus far what I can understand is Wayne Lai is the son of exiled PM of the Emperor of Sung Dynasty, or rather one of the 2 PMs as Lee Kwok Lun is the other PM. It seems emperor has 2 PMs.Or maybe PM as in "sing seung" as in Malay translation says Bendahara, Wikipedia says Chancellor but I suppose their role is similar to a Prime Minister, which is why in 3 Kingdoms RPG I refer to Cao Cao as PM Cao. However since Wikipedia so confidently writes Chancellor, I shall continue with calling them Chancellor.

In place of Wayne's father is his brightest student,Kent Cheng which everyone says betrays his teacher to takeover his position so from episode 1 we have rivalry between Wayne and Kent. In fact this episode starts with the end where we are told Pierre becomes Emperor and so Wayne who is one of the 2 Chancellors now wants Emperor to remove Kent as the other Chancellor and Kent angrily tells Wayne "Enough! I have had enough of your nonsense for 10 years!!". WOW, powerful stuff. In fact their rivalry dates back to 12 years ago and we find out Wayne is supposed to marry Elaine Yiu, daughter of Kent but Wayne broke it off out of anger. He himself has 1 younger siblings, one boy and one girl. He then went to Lee Kwok Lun who got his position thanks to his sister who became the favourite concubine of the emperor, and mother to Lai Lok Yi. Kingdom Yuen is the empress and mother of Pierre Ngo.

From the start I know each will mentor one prince. It sees Kent mentors the wiser and more compassionate elder prince, Pierre who is not in favour with his father. Wayne sorta starting to mentor the more cruel and reckless 2nd prince, Lai Lok Yi.

But I read here that Wayne will mentor Pierre who emerges as winner whilst Kent mentors Lai Lok Yi eventhough ep 1 makes it clear he doesn't look highly upon Lai Lok Yi. So I am confused how each changed sides if Wikipedia is accurate.

By the way Florence Kwok is mother of Lai Lok Yi. Poor woman, now a mother of such a grown up son.

Anyway so far episode 1 is very interesting with some heated exchanges between Wayne and Kent, both supremely great actors. Pierre is ok though from the looks of it, he and Lai Lok Yi should switch roles because I can't see Lai Lok Yi as someone reckless or threatening but he can do kind prince. Maybe Pierre will go evil later on. Elaine Yiu is a complete miscast as daughter of a high ranking official. She looks like the maid but her acting has improved a lot since Safe Guards. Kwok Fung is here as the emperor. No comment. Florence is pretty and that woman has serious acting skills but pity her, mother of Lai Lok Yi! Kingdom Yuen is someone I haven't seen for a long time. Too much makeup, she doesn't give me the empress aura. She looks like a fake empress. Why didn't they cast Susan Tse? Too strong for that character? But the empress looks wise and conniving too. Wayne here is supposed to be some talented scholar who takes life easy and paints, and write poems and drink fine wine, until his father got exiled and he vows to stop being so muddleheaded and seek justice for his dad. Entire episode 1, Wayne is in angry mode which can turn some viewers off.

I do like how such a simple scene can set up the personalities of 2 very different princes. For Chris Lai, it was when he recklessly shot the arrow against the Jin camp and in turn, battle begins and 300 dead. Just imagine the situation as North Korea and South Korea facing one another at the DMZ. That sort. It shows how reckless Chris is. Then there's Pierre who speaks of his people's interests first in a very sincere way, and in the end how he saved those poor folks being burnt and all that, disregarding his own life. I think that's how he won Wayne's respect.

Hopefully this series will have a balanced conniving people. From ministers to princes to their mothers, everybody is conniving! So we know Pierre wins the battle of the princes but the question is how? And why everyone is convinced Kent was the reason Wayne's father was exiled? I believe there must be a misunderstanding as Kent said to his teacher "My conscience is clear!". Intriguing. And this is about Southern Song Dynasty which apart from Justice Pao as in Song Dynasty, I know ZERO about this dynasty so I shall let TVB educate me.

Oh by the way, Eric Li plays Kent's son. An upgrade for Eric eh? He still looks positively evil though. And the poster sucks. BIG TIME.

FAVOURITE FROM THIS EPISODE
A quote by Wayne's father before he was led away by guards;

"DON'T BECOME AN OFFICIAL!! DON'T TAKE THE IMPERIAL EXAMS!!"

Of course Wayne refused to listen. If not, episode 1 is the final episode.


9 comments:

  1. I wonder if the saving people part by first prince Kwai Seng is taught by Dong Chiu. Dong Chiu did predict that the oven will burst and told Kwai Seng and then said "..and I need you to do something" and then the scene move away.

    But, no matter what, the prince still need a kind and selfless heart to actually go in and save the people. He was truly risking his life back there. He could die.

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  2. Ep 2 explains it. Tung Chiu told him to go there to check out the area, to win people's heart but he never expected the thing to blow up so soon, so what the 1st prince did was selfless act.

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  3. This series really run like a bullet train. I thought subsequent episodes will slow down a bit, but, fast. I read the episodes summary of the series. Only 5 episodes, already so many things has happened.

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  4. Up to episode 9, do you like Kingdom Yuen's Empress? I find her acting excellent especially in crying scenes, not so dramatic - very subtle.

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  5. I like Kingdom Yuen and the empress who is very kind and understanding but I think she is a complete miscast as an empress. She just doesn't have the air of an empress. That role would have been better for Rebecca Chan or better yet, Susan Tse.

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  6. I will watch this after the whole series is finish.

    Will look out for Kent's and Patrick's performance since you said they are good.

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  7. Hung Ying - actually becomes concubine since she may actually get pregnant and from the looks of it may even be empress one day when empress to be falls from grace

    Kwai Sing - Becomes emperor, realises Yu Jing is always right but not before we know the final truth, that he ain't the real son of the emperor which means ...

    You also kind of have the above mentioned 2 predictions correct. Thus, you sould be a TVB script writer:) Actually, after watching TVB for more than 20 yrs, I also can forsee where the storyline will be heading:P Anyway, this drama at least is more exciting than GJ2. By next week, lets see how many ticks you get:)

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  8. Next week? Ahhh no need By today we shall know. Last 2 episodes!

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  9. Haha, yah forgot you get to watch them on Sat. I live in Aust, the one who won some gifts from you last year. I won't stay up to watch TVB concurrent broadcast so I'll watch the last 2 episodes next week. Anyway I don't mind spoilers:)

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