Best and Worst of TVB: 2008 Edition

The year is almost over so I decided to give me opinion on the best and worst on various subjects. Here's a recap of what you may have seen in this past year:

(Warning: there might be some small spoilers)

Ancient: The Four, Legend of Demigods, The Gentle Crackdown 2, The Master of Tai Chi, Silver Chamber of Sorrows, When Easterly Showers Fall on the Sunny West

Modern: Pages of Treasure, The Gem of Life, Your Class or Mine, War of In Laws 2, Survivors Law 2, Forensic Heroes 2, Last One Standing, Catch Me Now, A Journey Called Life, Wasabi Mon Amour, Moonlight Resonance, When A Dog Loves a Cat, The Seventh Day, Love Exchange, Speech of Silence, The Money Maker Recipe, D.I.E., Best Selling Secrets, Off Pedder

Best Ancient Series: This was a difficult choice because there are certain scenes that are very memorable from each series, but as a whole, I didn't find any one series truly outstanding. I loved Wayne Lai's performance in The Gentle Crackdown 2 but the other parts were not as good. Therefore, I will choose... The Master of Tai Chi. Why? Some people thought that this was a little boring, but I enjoyed it. It's possibly because I usually rent my series that I don't have to wait every day to watch it. Instead, it's easier to get absorbed when you can continiously watch the episodes. I thought Raymond and Myolie did a good job in their roles and I think they always have fantastic chemistry. Derek Kwok also shined as did Selina Li. Storywise, I heard that it was shortened from 30 to 25 episodes but I didn't notice any weird jumps in storyline, so I guess it was a wise choice. For the most part, the series is somewhat sad and a little more deep than the fluff that is in other series so I choose this as the best ancient series.

Best Modern Series: No, it is not Moonlight Resonance. It was good and can capture your attention, but a lot of the story did not flow well and seemed to jump from scene to scene. It had a lot of holes. Can someone please tell me how it showed Moses starting to like Tavia? It just went from him really liking Kate, not having any romantic feelings for Tavia at all, and then all of a sudden, to make the "perfect ending", he did like her. Don't get me wrong. I did like them as a couple but I think the biggest thing missing is character development in this series.

So what series should you not miss? There are 2. The first is War of In Laws 2. The first few episodes are some of the funniest I've ever seen on TVB series. The rest of the storyline flows well and the chemistry between the 3 leads has a lot of sparks in all aspects: love, family, fighting, etc. I can go on and on but I'll just tell you my favorite scene. Liza's hand gets trapped in the window so she starts to get a little crazy and starts to comb her bangs with a kitchen utensil!

What's the other series? Last One Standing. Why did I keep hearing about complaints that were sent to TVB concerning the so-called violence? It was not and these type of useless complaints stall TVB's progress in making more interesting storylines. They tried to make other suspenseful/mystery dramas in the year such as Love Exchange and Catch Me Now, but those failed. They started out with a little mystery, the whole middle is filler which has nothing to do with the storyline, and the end goes back to solve the beginning. Last One Standing exceeds because it's a smart drama with an excellent cast (Kevin Cheng, Roger Kwok, Yoyo Mung) and is suspenseful throughout. Every episode leaves you wondering what will happen next and if you were to watch one series, this is what I would recommend.

Worst Series: What would I not recommend? The Speech of Silence and Love Exchange. I love Michael Miu but even he couldn't save this supposed mystery drama. Let's just say they could have shortened it to about 5 episodes since the other 15 was kinda stupid. As for The Speech of Silence, I would only suggest it to super Kate and Kenneth fans. I think the thing that irritates me the most is how they make Kate's deafness in the series as such a major hurdle. There are a lot worse things that can happen to a person like missing a limb, etc. She looks prettier with the longer hair but nothing disguises how average her acting is and I especially don't get how she got nominated for best acting in this role. To me, there's nothing unique or memorable about this series and I would say that this is the worst series of 2008.

Best Comedic Couple: Bosco Wong and Myolie Wu, otherwise known as Boscolie. They are just so cute and funny in WOIL2. Runner Up: Benz Hui and Liza Wang- very interesting and I never would have thought that they would have such cute chemistry!

Best Dramatic Couple: Niki Chow and Kevin Cheng in The Seventh Day- This is probably the last series you will see them together in since they are rumored to have broken up, but it's a must see if you love happy yet also sad endings. Runner up: Linda Chung and Steven Ma in A Journey Called Life. I wish they developed the couple more in the beginning but the hardships they go through together really did show why the series is called A Journey Called Life.

Worst Couple: Kate Tsui and Raymond Lam in The Four. Other than Selina and Kenneth, all the pairings in this series kinda sucked. I wish they put some bigger female stars to match with Sammul and Ron but I guess it's okay because the good chemistry came within "The Four". Actually, I think they should have switched Selina and Kate's role since I've liked Selina and Raymond together ever since their last pairing.

TVB Potential

Each month, I'll be highlighting one actor and one actress that I see great potential in. They currently don't have lead status but hopefully they will in the near future. I hope TVB sees their potential before they look for other opportunities. I'll start with the people of 2008 since there are some people I want to mention.

For the guy, I was thinking of Edwin Siu at first because he did a great job in Easterly Showers for a newbie. He's very natural and has good range, not to mention cute. However, there was one guy who did a better job- Raymond Wong. He's not new to acting since he's been in both movies and ATV, but he recently started acting in TVB series which I think helps both of them. There are constantly more and more females entering TVB (and bad actresses at that) because of the Miss Hong Kong contests but not as many males. I'm sincerely hoping that they stop trying to scout guys through Mr. Hong Kong because the results have mainly been horific.

Raymond first caught my attention as the good guy turned bad in Central Affairs and thought that him and Michelle Ye made a pretty good on screen couple. He was relegated to supporting roles to begin with in A Marriage of Inconvience and When a Dog Loves a Cat, but he truly shined in Easterly Showers. Not only did he make a cute couple with Charmaine, he showed his sweet side with her, his angry side with Joe Ma, and some touching crying scenes with his parents. Sadly, the ratings were relatively low and not that many people were able to see his true talent. His next series, Sweetness in Salt, with Tavia and Steven, will also be warehoused, but hopefully, he will get more opportunities in the future.

For the females, I choose the very young and underrated Yoyo Chen. My favorite scene of Best Selling Secrets (even though I think that this is from last year) was when she found out that Vin Choi's character didn't like her. To make him feel better, she pretended that she liked someone else and pretended to be happy in front of him. As he walks away, her smile melts away and she slowly starts to cry.. with real tears! It wasn't the fake loud crying where you can hear but you see no tears, but it was quiet and somber. Very understated yet super effective! The other series that she made an impact in was in Tai Chi. She was probably only in it for 10 minutes to be paired up with Derek Kwok, but her scenes were quite intense. She was looking for revenge for her parents not knowing that Derek was responsible and she even died a tragic death to save him as well. She had a sad life with a sad ending. I'm hoping that TVB will promote her some more but I'm not sure if she will be since I don't know what type of roles she's getting and I don't hear that much about her. However, she is in the 2009 calendar with other "rising" (using that term very loosely) fadans. That gives me hope.

Here's to hoping that 2009 will be the year that both Raymond Wong and Yoyo Chen will get a breakthrough!

Singers on TVB

With the recent additions of Raymond Lam, Linda Chung, Myolie Wu, Wong Cho Lam, and Bosco Wong to the music scene, you might forget that it started off with singers entering TVB. How did they fare?

Niki Chow
I think she is one of the success stories since I think she is the only one to win an award at TVB's anniversary. I believe she started off in Hard Fate, which was only the beginning of Kevin/Niki pairings. She soon moved on to leading roles in Under The Canopy of Love, The Gentle Crackdown, and The Seventh Day. Her next role is playing Adam Cheng's daughter in King of Pool. How's her acting? I think it's pretty good! She's quite natural on screen and had chemistry with both Kevin Cheng and Moses Chan. However, she was criticized for winning the Most Improved Actress award because others were believed to have deserved it first. I can't say I would disagree because although she was good in Gentle Crackdown, I wouldn't say that it was a breakthrough role. Although she is quite charming in her roles, I don't think any of them have been particularly memorable. Her singing is pretty but not very distinctive.

Yumiko Cheng
Speaking of Gentle Crackdown, Yumiko played the lead in the sequel along with Steven Ma and Wayne Lai. I think she's lucky that Wayne was in it and totally shined in this role which made it easier to forget what bad acting skills she has in this. She's not very natural and I know I shouldn't blame her for this, but her hair was hideous! I don't know what made TVB give her a lead role (maybe it was the embarrassement of having her pants pulled down in a TVB produced show?) but let's hope that she doesn't get this chance again. I've actually never heard her sing so let's hope her singing is better than her acting.

Eric Suen
So far so good. He plays the middle child in Pages of Treasures and is okay so far. He speaks his lines fluently but there is nothing memorable about his acting though. Maybe it's the character, but I haven't seen any crying scenes yet so I can't quite fully judge yet. However, I can see him improving.

Joey Yung
I've seen her in 2 TVB series- one with Roger Kwok and the sequel to The Academy. From that, I can see why she doesn't act that much. She can be cute in her comedy role but none of it seems very natural. I was also distracted by how big her head seemed in On The First Beat. She already started off on the wrong foot by being the third party between Ron and Tavia, but she didn't bring anything to the role that made me want to be sympathetic towards her. I think she falls into the "trying to be too cute" trap.

Miriam Yeung
I've only seen her act in A Taste of Love, opposite Raymond Lam. Since this was filmed a long time ago, I'll give her the benefit of the doubt, but she was pretty bad. She always seemed to have a "duh" look on her face and she has no facial expressions at all. She's also pretty flat when speaking her lines devoid of any emotion. Whether happy or sad, her face and words all seem the same. I hope her acting has improved!

Paul Chan Family Dramas

Paul Chan recently received the Lifetime Achievement Award from TVB (deservingly so). He's great as a villian as proved in The Silver Chamber of Sorrows, but I love him playing the lovable dad. His most recent series, Pages of Treasures, may not be doing so well in the ratings but the storyline is very touching. I'm currently on episode 15 and there were a few scenes that melted my cold black heart.

My recommended Paul Chan family dramas:
Family Man w/ Flora Chan, Myolie Wu, Sonjia Kwok, Moses Chan, and Michael Tong- He plays a single dad to four daughters. The ending made me cry, in a good way, and smile at the same time.
Love Bond w/ Bernice Liu, Kenix Kwok, Michael Tao, and Moses Chan
Life Art w/ Kevin Cheng and Gigi Lai- Many people thought this series was really boring since the theme song by Kevin is so slow.... but, I liked it! Why? Paul!


I started this blog a while ago but I didn't really know how I wanted to format it or what kind of pictures to use. After a while, i just forgot about it. I realize that it doesn't really matter exactly what it looks like as long as the content is interesting and people can express their own opinion. So here's to a new start...