Monday, January 12, 2015

Tiger Cubs II Review

Producer: Lam Chi Wah
Genre: Police, action
Cast: Joe Ma, Linda Chung, Him Law, Oscar Leung, Mandy Wong

If Tiger Cubs II proved anything, it is that TVB cannot make a good sequel. Everything that made the first series enjoyable - the action, the adrenaline rush, the brotherhood and the brilliance of the SDU - is gone. It is replaced with immaturity and incompetence. The bad guys (including a group of handicapped people) ran circles around this supposed "best of the best" squad. In the first series, the SDU always came back with mission accomplished. In the sequel, I can't remember a case where they didn't fail in some way. Even the guest stars paled in comparison to the original, with only Nancy Wu and Johnson Lee as the biggest names.

The cases themselves had potential, but the ideas were poorly executed. The criminals could do whatever they wanted against the ineffective SDU team. But the SDU would always manage to take them out in the end with ridiculously convenient ways. The plot holes turned the whole series into a big joke. The punch line is of course the finale with the SDU getting run down at their own headquarters until they receive divine intervention by way of a bubble. The overarching case about Linda's blown undercover identity was muddled among all the other things that were happening.

Unlike the original series, which focused mainly on the action, the sequel tried to incorporate more conflict and emotion. That turned out to be the biggest undoing because every single character became annoying to watch. Ah Lai (Him Law) was immature, with his stubborn defence of his colleague and the poor handling of his relationships. Chin Sir (Joe Ma) was too laid-back as his team was falling apart and never even tried to explain himself. Ah Yuen (Oscar Leung) spends far too much time grieving. Ah Keung (Mandy Wong) was weak. And Madam Chung (Linda Chung)... she was in a league on her own. It is beyond me how someone of her mental fitness could pass the test to become a police officer again.

The acting from the cast makes the series twice as difficult to watch. Linda's performance can only be described as torture for the audience. It was a nightmare seeing those bulging eyes and clenched jaw. Her acting was as fake as the scars on her body. Joe was majorly lacking on the emotional scenes and had zero chemistry with Linda. Oscar lost his charm from the original series and was trying too much to force his signature winks in. Him and Mandy are relatively better than the rest, although they need to lighten up. Benjamin Yuen was unnoticeable except in one early episode. Timmy Hung does not leave much of an impression either. It says a lot when the best performances actually came from the guest stars, including Pal Sinn, Jade Leung and Nancy Wu.

Rating: 2.5/5. Flying Tigers? More like Tiger Prey.


  1. completely agree with you on this review, surprised you even took the time to review this haha! =P i was so disappointed with this sequel, would have given it a 1/5. really missed the action scenes and the suspense that kept me on the edge of my seat from TC1

  2. I agree with your review too.  Actually, I applaud you for even taking the time to finish watching the series, let alone review it!  I got so annoyed with the series that I stopped at episode 4 or 5 (I think) and didn’t even bother continuing.  This by far has got to be one of the worst sequels TVB has ever made (which is saying a lot considering how bad most of their sequels are in the first place) – this one definitely goes at the bottom of the ‘horrible sequel’ barrel.

    Just to give you an idea how bad this was – my mom is a long time TVB devotee and the typical ‘see lai’ who watches everything TVB and rarely ever complains.  She actually watched the entire series (like she normally does with all series) and even she could not stand how bad it was -- she kept complaining to me about Linda’s horrific acting (since when did being a tough cop mean that you need to have bulging eyes that look like they are about to fall out of your head?), Him and Oscar’s immature characters (why do they keep acting like children?), the incompetence of the SDU team (I feel sorry for whoever they are assigned to ‘protect’ or ‘save’), and the lame attempts at incorporating relationship lines (aka romance lines) that went nowhere and did nothing but detract from the series. And that’s actually just scratching the surface….LOL.

    I actually would have given the series 0 stars….ok, I take that back…I would have given it -5 stars (TVB should be giving ME 1 star back for each episode I had to sit through….kind of like a consolation prize for being tortured for 5 episodes….).

  3. Omg. Waited for so long for this to come out. I thought I could ignore the plot holes but I couldn't!! How can a mute person do sign language to a blind person?! And when she was signing, Chin Sir was just looking at her face? Suddenly he knows sign language? And Linda just pops up everywhere and over reacts all the time! Better off watching part 1 again

  4. Roflmao I had the same thoughts on Linda's acting. That is not a sign of PTSD that you have. They tried so hard to insert romance into an action series. Ruined the series with its "romance" story. Tiger cubs should be more bromance!

  5. could you do review for come on cousin

    1. Don't think I'm going to do a full review for COC, but here are a few thoughts:
      True to its name, the series felt very "hea". The plot seemed like it was hastily put together by mashing a bunch of random things. They tried to go for "outrageous" with the character and costumes, but the results were not appealing. Looking at Roger Kwok's messy hair for 20 episodes, I thought I was watching a drama about homeless people. There were occasional funny moments, but overall the comedy was lame. I hated Wong Cho Lam's fake accent and I didn't feel much about the songs either. The only exception was Ram Chiang's part, which was touching. It might have been better if it was 20 episodes or even less, but 30 episodes was way too much. It also should not have been the anniversary series since the expectations are even higher.

    2. @miriamfanz:  Agree with your assessment of COC except for 1 part:  the songs.  I was probably able to relate to the songs because most of them were from the 80s/90s era and almost all the songs were ones I was familiar with or grew up listening to (that was pretty much the only ‘commonality’ between COC and its predecessor Inbound Troubles – speaking of which, the sequel did not live up to the original’s expectations…Inbound Troubles was 100x better!).  To be honest, the songs and Ram Tseung were the only 2 reasons why I continued to watch this pathetic series – without either of those, I would’ve given up on this series after the first 2 episodes (even Roger being one of my favorite actors couldn’t get me to sit through this series, especially since I disliked his character in here). 

      Sadly, none of the anniversary series lived up to expectation last year (2014).  Hope TVB makes the right choice with the anniversary series this year.

    3. I quite liked COC. It was meaningful and this is very clear with message at the end about not to hea anymore. The series was seemed like a mish mash of random stuff at the beginning but after watching it all it didn't seem like that. It shows the spirit of hong kong and people striving for their own goals- Roger for his idealism for environment, Ivana to be singer, Louis for money and stability, Cholam for inheritance etc etc. And in the end, as long as you don't hea, you will achieve it. That to me is the central message and is the only thing that holds this loose series together. Of course there's still the comedy and songs and of course Ram Tsueng, those were the selling points. The comedy were at times lame, but there were laughter now and then. And I don't find Cholam annoying at all. His accent is not necessary nor is it funny, but it's a reference to his Guangdong accent in the prequel. He seemed the funniest in the series, though overly exaggerated character. But come on, this is a comedy, so I don't expect it to be serious right. Even if it's silly, as long as it's funny, then it's fine. Like the ending with the pandemic, that's is overly absurd but then again it's comedy. And the whole incident is not random, it's shows the whole hong kong relaxing and working to overcome the difficult times together- right back the message of the series. So I don't know why everyone hates this series. It was a good laugh and behind all this was the idea not hea and be friends again, reflecting the current hong kong situation. Not many series nowadays so meaningful. Clearly deserves to be anniversary series

  6. hello. does anyone know what the background song is during Louis and Corinna's dance in ep12 of COC is?

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