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About morganian

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  1. I loved Chen Kun as Ning Yi. If I had issues with NiNi or Chen Kun's characterisations in this series, I don't think I would have finished watching all 80 eps. However, I am not a Mandarin speaker and sometimes I wonder if I needed Chen Kun and NiNi's facial expressions and tone of voice to put some colour into all of those subtitles. In other words, is Chen Kun's expressiveness/'overacting' more off-putting to native speakers and more enjoyable for subtitle-dependent viewers? It would partly explain the mixed reception between the original audience in China and the international Netflix audience (aside from the shorter episode run, bad local publicity and anti-Chen-Kun-NiNi sentiment). Sorry about switching back to an old topic and not Mary Sue stuff. Have been away...
  2. That is an interesting suggestion. I wonder how Chen Kun would have acted out one of the other roles in the show, ie one of the antagonists? He seems versatile enough. Would he have made Ning Qi more intriguing as a character? Or the 4th Prince of Dacheng? Sometimes a show is only as good as its antagonist and, judging by the previous comments of this forum, these final antagonists weren't up to scratch.
  3. It gets pretty brutal. There are some moments when FZW and NY work/scheme together like of old but for the most part the writers continue throwing obstacles between the two of them getting together as the series unfolds: the initial oath forced on by Qiu Míng Ying, the second oath by FZW, FZW’s involvement with HLZ, FZW or NY blaming each other for the deaths of loved ones or innocents, hurtful confessions, etc. There are also a few missed opportunities where the two of them just don’t commit. Minhai is the only time they are both on the same page when it comes to ‘double happiness’. So very cruel. As per Chen Kun’s interview, you really do feel like sending a razor blade in the mail to the writers (interview below). Aiyoooo.
  4. Hehe, thanks for sharing @Pollen Ainne. That review summed things up well and made me laugh too. It looks like a whole bunch of non-Mandarin-speaking Netflix viewers have been leaving positive reviews on Rotten Tomatoes too, which is great. The audience score is now at 96% (as of yesterday).
  5. Chen Kun and the co-director might have been able to play go but maybe the editors do not. Thankfully, I don't know enough about Go be annoyed at these inconsistencies, but it does seem at odds with all of the detail that has gone into the set, costume design, sound effects, etc. Why on earth do you want a photo of crazy Ning Yi? Lol.
  6. Hey, can someone explain the conversation between Official Zhao and Ning Yi after Ning Chuan’s death? Does the emperor know he was poisoned by an unwitting Zhao? Or are both NY and Zhao just filling in the gaps and feeling guilty about everything? Something missing in translation perhaps?
  7. I think you’re right there. I’ve been watching Chen Kun/Nini movies to fill the void post-series. So far, I’ve watched Beautiful Accident, Mojin, Love on Credit, Legend of Wu Kong and Suddenly 17 and none of them are doing it for me. Will still try to watch Painted Skin, Mulan, etc for completeness but rewatching RotP is much more fun. Though Chen Kun’s upcoming project The Weary Poet (?) sounds kind of cool; I must try to see that. Yeah, NY seems to be just as canny as ever in Jinshi. I guess I am looking for patterns/themes with the second watching. Another event that is mirrored is drug-induced madness. Both NY and FZW develop some form of madness. Interesting how both hurt the people they love during these periods: NY does this physically and FZW does it verbally. It’s probably just a plot-device but I also want it to mean something thematically. I keep on wanting to make the series more intellectual than it already is. I am itching to put forth a quote from the series and a ‘Discuss’ after...just like an English Literature essay exam.
  8. Heh, you did write an essay there. But it's good. Much better reading this stuff than lots of 'Wow, Chen Kun, he is so hot. Whenever he arches his eyebrows, it makes me swoon.' Lol. Poor HZ! He's so uneducated in Tiansheng's ways. Always about to offend the Emperor. Unable to answer FZW's riddles. He seems to be a catch in his own kingdom (handsome, princely, skilled) since Liu Mudan's sister is obsessed with him, but he's an outsider at Tiansheng's court and hence seen at a disadvantage by the court ladies. Even FZW says 'Who would want to be admired by someone who looks like him?' But yes, he's certainly much more consistent with his public displays of affection towards FZW. From the get go, he wants to make her his concubine, and this lusty regard grows into a more respectful love. And I think FZW learns to appreciate this. She calls him her 'safe harbour' (not sure of the wording exactly)? And it was nice to see him in his own element in Jinshi, where he was admired, respected, and loved by his people. It would have been interesting for the show to do a role reversing here, where NY, a Tiansheng prince, would be shown at a disadvantage, but there wasn't enough scope for that kind of thing in the latter episodes. As for Gu Nanyi, yeah, you're right: very little romantic undertone at all. Though, sometimes I get confused in some scenes, like the show wasn't sure what direction FZQ and GNY's relationship should be taking. Like what was he doing, sleeping on her bed, and then rolling over to look at her look at the moon? Is there more romance between these two characters in the book? Did the show make a decision somewhere along the line to tone down the hint of romance between these two so that they could focus on NY and HZ? That final scene with GNY having a flashback; what was that? I wonder what happened to him in the end. So messy!
  9. As per discussion above, I think culturally and historically 'I like you' is extremely blunt and forward already. 'Please be my first wife' would have been more appropriate and just having one wife (no concubines) would demonstrate the depth of feeling. 'Please be my Empress' is really pushing it to the next level and demonstrates a desperate and selfish love without thought for the consequences. Ning Yi's displays of affection are so reserved compared to Helian Z's. Helian is extremely forward...which, in the context of the show, hint at him being barbaric, an outsider, uncultured, etc. I think, this is one small reason why FZW cannot take him seriously (even before she is full-on in love with NY). And then, compare this to Gu Nanyi's affection. He loves FZW, but he makes it something more appropriate for his station. Apart from the initial 'perving on my mistress while she's in her PJs', he keeps it pretty G-rated after that. Thoughts?
  10. This is my first C-drama (small screen) so I can’t compare RotP to Legend of Fuyao and Nivarna on Fire. All I can compare it to is the Western series I have access to. RotP is slow initially. While it has some action sequences and some romance, it is more of a political period drama a la The Crown or Victoria. The romance also creeps along at the pace of an English 19th C period drama (Jane Austen or any BBC period production) where hand-holding is as steamy as it gets. If you like those kind of shows, then you might appreciate RotP. However, @mspilgrims, it sounds like you haven’t got the bug (though maybe skipping through makes world/story immersion much more difficult, especially when the strength of the show is in the characterisation/acting). I commend you on your perseverance though. Episode 37 is the equivalent of 3 Western series seasons; that’s a lot of investment into something you’re not quite that into! I would have given up at episode 10 on any show that I thought was ‘meh’, regardless of how highly rated it was.
  11. Yaaasss. Sexual tension and an intellectual type of romance FTW. Sometimes less is more with the romance. Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, a classic romance novel, has lots of sexual tension, witty repartee between the main protagonists, and not a single kiss in sight! Ok, RotP’s FZW and Ning Yi’s romance should have pretty much been wrapped up after the death of Feng Hao and Mingying...but it was still pretty good for 40+ episodes. The romance is there even when they spend no screen time together. I just love how FZW and NY think about each other’s welfare, even in the early stages. FZW gives up her plans to travel the world when Master Zong tells her either Prince of Chu or the Crown Prince will die from the power struggle. NY is always adjusting his plans to make sure his little raccoon is safe...
  12. I have been rewatching the series from the start. Currently enjoying Wei Zhi and Gu Nanyi's separate adventures from Ning Yi at the academy. There's a nugget of information about Emperor Ai's fourth son being in cahoots with Dayue and I've finally recognised Ning Ji sitting next to Shaoning in the classroom! So much fun!
  13. I didn't make note of this until you pointed it out. But yes, you're right there. NY's movements are somewhat unorthodox for an emperor. FZW even expresses surprise at seeing NY on the bridge... Though, in fairness, NSZ probably never felt safe on his throne. He got to his position by rebelling/force, so he would always worry about Dacheng or the new Lord of Minhai replacing him. Ning Yi, while one of many contenders to the throne, is born royal and therefore has the self-belief in his divine right to rule. He would be less afraid than his father of being removed. Not sure if anyone else here has read the Philippa Gregory series based on War of the Roses, but the first Tudor king never felt comfortable on his throne (extremely paranoid ruler who had to take care with the power brokers at court) whereas his son, Henry 8th was much more secure. It's maybe a similar scenario with NSZ and Ning Yi?
  14. Yaasss. This is why FZW has to die in all alternate fanfic endings for this screen series. Or at least live as someone else and never be with NY. Otherwise, their love is doomed to some hellish awfulness. :'( I cried so much when she said that vow. It was HORRIBLE. I don't know why Ning Yi said that at the end. He heard her vow. Did he have a lobotomy between episode 51 and the final episode? Ugh!
  15. Lol. The books are in no way literary masterpieces. Haven't heard of Bates Motel. Hubby watches Mr Robot. Will have to ask him whether he thinks I'll like it. Just finished watching second seasons of Harlots and Handmaid's Tale. Strong female protagonists and heavy stuff (i.e. women's rights, sexual assault, dystopian). Not something that will brighten up your day. I've been going through movies by Chen Kun an Ni Ni: Beautiful Accident, Mojin, Suddenly Seventeen. Seeing the actors in other roles is helping me get over my RotP addiction. Oh my, this made me laugh so hard. Imagining Yu Luo in the scenarios that Feng Zhi Wei/Wei Zhi has been in is going to entertain me for hours. For instance, when everyone is at court and Ning Yi's temporary birthmarks are revealed? Yu Luo would have fainted straightaway! You're right there. Ning Qi did some of the most damage to Ning Yi, mostly affecting the women in his life, and yet Ning Yi was just 'meh'. And that rubs off on us viewers. By the time Ning Qi becomes a power in court, Ning Yi had matured somewhat. His change of heart was a result of that protracted near-death experience in Minhai. While Ning Yi was always at risk of being killed off in battle or by assassination, the weeks/months of not knowing whether he was going to survive his illness gave him a lot of time to reassess his priorities. Grudges didn't matter so much any more. I think they still did to him, but it was like he was going through the motions. I love his admission to Prince of An after he was found 'drunk'. It sums up his frame of mind perfectly: 'Insults received cannot be washed away. They are always there. Father's eyes cannot be opened wide. He never sees me...Will you be the second Ning Yi? You'll end up sad. You'll end up disappointed.' If Ning Yi had never fallen ill in Minhai, he would have never let his emotions for the women in his life rule his heart. He would have pushed them down deep like Prince of An and continued on his bloodthirsty quest for power and revenge. He would have schemed from inside the prison to get back at Ning Qi. He probably would have even tried to avenge Shaoning's death; they didn't get along in life, but Ning Yi would have definitely found her murder an insult to his sense of justice. Gosh, only in RotP would your older brother be like 'Oh little Shaoning just tried to kill me again. I guess I'm still in her bad books. Too bad she's dead now.'
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