Blast from the past – Part 1

It’s end of the year and I’m feeling a bit nostalgic for the dramas I grew up watching as a kid. Number one of my short list is TV musical The Legend of White Snake (新白娘子传奇) (1992). A classic that no other versions have yet to match in its addictive nature. Between the singing and the villainy good guys vs. virtuous bad guys, it exposed my childhood to a land of “grayness.” Because of this drama, I grew up with a mental flexibility of recognizing that people have multiple sides to them and actions speak louder than words. The downside is I tend to identify with the bad guys in Wuxia genre. I found them to be refreshing in their honesty about who they are and what they do. As oppose to those hypocritical good guys who do wicked things under the table.

I still get goosebumps whenever I hear their theme songs.

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The Advisors Alliance: Growling Tiger, Roaring Dragon 虎啸龙吟

I’m jumping the gun with this post because I haven’t watched the second part of The Advisors Alliance yet. But damn if I let spoilers stop me! (Well, considering the spoiler happened over 1500 years ago and posted all over the history books… There is a little I can do about it.) If I can’t fight them, I’ll join them.

A Chinese article titled, Just how amazing do you need to be in order to become a Sima Yi?, had me laughing like a hyena. It’s a cliff note version of the 2nd installment but it reinterprets the key moments of the show. It’s hilarious that they made Sima Yi a total fanboy of Zhuge Liang (which we already knew from 1st installment) even though they were fighting on the opposing sides. Or that his son, Sima Zhao, keeps voicing his unspoken thoughts, which made him want to do a facepalm every time.
Here is the link to the article for those of you who read Chinese or those who loves tons and tons of Gifs:

May I Love You 本来只想暗恋你

On youtube, I stumbled onto this cute, little Malaysian webdrama May I Love You (本来只想暗恋你). It caught my eyes because of this scene:

May I Love You

Apparently, a good looking guy from the school just gave a bento (lunch box) to a chubby girl. In public. For no apparent reason. As result, a whole gossip factory suddenly sprung to life.

What was the meaning of his action? The girl had the same question on her mind when she returned the empty bento back to him. He clearly was looking for a reply. And all she could think of was, “Am I supposed to pay for his home cooked lunch?”
May I Love You May I Love You

If a guy treated you to free food and drinks days on end and always act happy to see you, you might suspect that he probably had the hots for you. In Qingcheng’s case, she didn’t have the courage to consider that possibility. No way a guy like him would be interested in a girl like her. It must be a prank of some sort. Her roommate, however, dared to suggest that he just might. Does he need to serenade a love song to prove it? Her roommate joked.
May I Love You 本来只想暗恋你 May I Love You 本来只想暗恋你

Which he totally did.
May I Love You 本来只想暗恋你 May I Love You 本来只想暗恋你

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Stand By Me 一起同过窗

I heard about Stand By Me (一起同过窗) since the beginning of the year. People who had finished it said the drama should be a must-watch Chinese drama of 2016. Having finally watched it, I absolute, completely, 100% agree. Although their plot line doesn’t scream greatness: A lighthearted drama about the shenanigans of a group of college freshmen, their character development through relationships is the best I have seen in years. Whenever the show throws me a new nugget of information on the characters, it’s like finding another piece of puzzle, which makes me go, “Ooooh… That explains why…”

Stand By Me Yi Qi Tong Guo Chuang

Like discovering Lu Qiaochuan is a pessimist with hidden superiority complex. His major personality defect has to be that he can’t handle success. It gets to his head and turns him into a world class arrogant A-hole. The drama showed a glimpse of his big-headed tendency in the beginning, but it was resolved so quickly and joyously that I didn’t think much of it. Then later on, it became a huge problem when his growing ego alienated all his friends. I really wanted to smack him upside down for the way he treated Zhong Bai and the way he spoke to Li Luoxue. (Who does he think he is?! Don Juan?) However, it is the things he did after his success-high faded that continues to endear him to me. Sure, he was sorry. But more importantly, he took responsibility for his bad behaviors and (constructively) repaired the damages he caused. To Li Luoxue and others, a sincere, heartfelt apology and a solution to their class’ disastrous music performance. To Zhong Bai, his BFF who had been with him through thick and thin, no amount of groveling would do. So he didn’t try. He thanked her instead. Thanked her for putting up with him. Thanked her for trying to stop him from turning into an egomaniac. Thanked her for being his friend. To Ren Yifan, his other BFF who only ever wanted was for them to be the 3 musketeers (one for all, all for one), he asked him to do favor as if they had never stopped talking to each other. I’m sure Qiaochuan will lose his head again when the next success comes along. Fortunately on regular days, he is a considerate, down to earth, resourceful guy, which earns him cookie points. And, he is really good at salvaging fall-outs and that is why he still got friends.
Yi Qi Tong Guo Chuang Stand By Me

We would think Yu Hao’s ostentatious behavior makes him the comic relief of the drama. Nope. Qiaochuan’s other roommates, Xiao Haiyang and Bi Shisan, would have us laughing with tears too.

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The Big Boss 班长大人

The Big Boss (班长大人) has a theme for each episode, which doesn’t carry over to the next one, so the enjoyment of the show fluctuates depending on the episode I watch. Episode 4 is by far the funniest. Ye Muxi decided to consult her class’ weight loss guru for a way to slim down after her nemesis called out her weight gain. She didn’t expect that she had to actually do hard work to lose weight. Or that the guru, who is usually the most laid back person in the class, would turn into a monster whipmaster on her.

I laughed so hard watching the chocolate breakup scene.

Did you ever experience moments when no matter how much you eat or what you eat, you kept feeling hungry? My mom called it, “the growth fat.”
The Big Boss

Being chubby is nothing to be ashamed of. A person should love his/her body no matter what size it is. The problem being, Liao Danyi made an objective observation that she could no longer button up her jacket because she had been snacking nonstop. She strongly objected to his statement.
The Big Boss Huang Jun Jie The Big Boss

How dare him for calling her fat?!
The Big Boss Eleanor Lee The Big Boss Huang Jun Jie

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Let’s Shake It 颤抖吧!阿部

The idea that we had multiple encounters with outer space aliens in the ancient time fascinates me to no end. And, scifi romantic comedy lET’s shake it (颤抖吧!阿部) is right up that alley. What is an advanced civilization alien supposed to do when it crash landed on earth with no way of getting back into space? Merge with the locals, of course.

Abu Caca is a smuggler of primitive species, which includes apes from earth, also known as, humans. Her day of reckoning comes when the ship that was transporting her to galactic prison blew up and crashed on earth… Among the primitive apes. *Gasp. Without protective gear against the earth’s atmosphere, she had to merge with a local life form to survive. A tree worked just fine for her purpose. But she and the tree were rudely interrupted by a murder in progress of a human girl. Always motivated by profit margin, Abu tried to resuscitate the girl in the hope of selling her to the highest bidder. She and the girl were, again, rudely interrupted. This time by the girl’s brother who thought she was a demon trying to suck the life force out of the dying girl. One banshee screaming after another, he stabbed her right through chest and sent her atoms flying.

Let's Shake It Let's Shake It

The girl died. She atomized. But her antenna survived, which is really the essence of her entire being, and it merged with the dead girl. Voila! The girl lived once more! Well not exactly. It’s more of Abu successfully body snatched an earth life form.

Let's Shake It Let's Shake It

Thus, Abu begins her con of pretending to be a human girl as she searches for a way to get back out to space. I wouldn’t say she is successful at it, but humans do have a tendency to ignore the obvious…

Let's Shake It Zheng Ye Cheng Let's Shake It An Yue Xi

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Obsessed 著魔

Taiwan became the first Asian country to lift the ban on same-sex marriage in May 2017. As result, I expect there will be many BL/GL Taiwanese dramas going mainstream. BL webdrama gets a bad rap for having super cheesy, pretentious, terrible acting and/or plot that is awkward if not painful to watch. However, HISt♂ry series’ Obsessed (著魔) came highly recommended. Granted, it contains many of the pitfalls of small production and their storyline is nothing to write home about, their main characters, however, more than make up for the drama’s shortcomings with their sizzling chemistry. I can watch them all day long doing whatever-it-is-they-do-together.

HIStory Obsessed

The chemistry mostly comes from Shao Yichen trying to deny his attraction to Jiang Jinteng. Not because he is playing hard to get. Rather, he is a man on a mission to not fall in love with his ex again. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
HIStory Obsessed Bernard Shen Jun Ren You Cheng

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