Sunday, September 29, 2013

Overview - Will Power

Hong Kong's two famous lawyers Wayne Lai and Moses Chan are facing off against each other in court. Wayne turns the tables to win the case, but it nearly costs him his life. After that, he changes his perspective on life. Senior Counsel Elliot Ngok is impressed and invites Wayne to work with him on a big inheritance case. Meanwhile, Moses is forced to return to his mentor Chung King-Fei's law firm due to debt problems. He begins to work with King Sir's daughter Fala Chen on cases. Fala is initially dating the wealthy Vincent Wong, but things go astray due to Vincent's grandiose yet unambitious attitude, giving Moses a chance to chase after her. The inheritance case is ready to go on trial with Wayne's ex-wife/Moses' ex-girlfriend Christine Ng sitting as the judge. As the two men prepare for another court battle, they begin to realize there is another truth to the case and the key person is related to Wayne's apprentice Jason Chan. They inevitably brew up a big storm in the legal world...

Preview of Cases
Will Power Promo Clips
Official Poster for Will Power

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Historical Context: Touch-Base Policy

Headline: HK government cancels Touch-Base Policy as of midnight (October 26, 1980)

We see it in TVB dramas all the time. A police officer stops someone on the streets and asks to see their identity card. Ever wonder why everyone in Hong Kong must carry their identity cards with them at all times? Well, read on...

Before 1949, people could move freely between Hong Kong (then a British colony) and China. But with the Chinese Civil War, waves of refugees from China rushed to Hong Kong. The population of Hong Kong increased almost three-fold in just five years between 1945 and 1950. The sudden large increase in population posed a huge problem. A heavy strain was put on public utilities, such as housing, education and social services.

Famous people who immigrated to HK during this time: Ha Yu, Kara Hui, Lo Hoi Pang

In 1974, the Hong Kong government introduced the Touch-Base Policy (抵壘政策), which stated that immigrants who reached the city and connected (ie. "touched base") with their relatives, could apply for Hong Kong residency. Those who were caught at the borders were sent back to China immediately.

The rationale behind the policy is that if the immigrants continued to live in Hong Kong with an illegal status, they would enter the black market for labour or participate in criminal activities. Moreover, the immigrants could serve as a source of cheap labour for the thriving industries.

Anyone who made it past Boundary Street was considered to have reached urban territory. 

Immigrants had to be south of Boundary Street before they were safely "in the city". When China ceded Hong Kong to Britain, the line was drawn at Boundary Street, with the north belonging to China and south belonging to Britain. Later, the British negotiated a 99-year lease for the "New Territories", making the territory north of Boundary Street part of Hong Kong as well. Although urban development sprawled up on both sides of the street, it was still traditionally seen as the separation between rural and urban.

However, the Touch-Base Policy did nothing to stop the influx of immigrants. If anything, it may have encouraged people to make repeated attempts to get to Hong Kong. In October 1980, the government abolished the Touch-Base Policy. Immigrants who had arrived before October 23 were given a three-day grace period to register for Hong Kong identity. After that, illegal immigrants were subjected to repatriation upon arrest.

Headline: HK government reminds residents over age 15 to carry their identity cards

The implication was that everyone above age 15 in Hong Kong was now required to carry their identity cards with them and present it to a law enforcement officer when requested, so as to detect illegal immigrants.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Will Power Promo Clips

Overview, Preview of CasesOfficial Poster

Promo #1

Promo #2

Promo #3

Promo #4

Promo #5

Promo #6-8

Extended Trailer

"Brother's Keeper" Theme Song

The theme song of Brother's Keeper is "Big Wheel" (巨輪), sung by Ruco Chan and Edwin Siu.

Both Ruco and Edwin have nice voices, which mesh together well and is very suitable with the melody.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

The Bobby Curse

Bobby Au-Yeung may be TVB's "Lucky General" in the ratings department, but his on-screen partners haven't been so fortunate. The "Bobby Curse" has taken quite a few casualties...

Hidden Treasures 
Victim: Eileen Yeow (7 day relationship)
Fate: Killed in car accident

Witness to Prosecution II
Victim: Jessica Hsuan & Mariane Chan (wives)
Fate: Both died in a fire

Forensic Heroes
Victim: Jay Lau (wife)
Fate: Died from poisoning

Father and Sons
Victim: Edith Wong (ex-wife)
Fate: Died in accident

A Pillow Case of Mystery II
Victim: Kenix Kwok & Annie Man (wives), and their three children
Fate: Killed in ship explosion

Always and Ever
Victim: Esther Kwan (fiancée)
Fate: Dies at the hands of Bobby three times

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Always and Ever vs No Regrets

The Cop - Bobby Au-Yeung vs Wayne Lai

 《巾帼枭雄2》剧照再现 邓萃雯黎耀祥续前缘 - 留阳旭日的日志 - 网易博客 - 林邑良民 - 林邑良民

The Heroine - Esther Kwan vs Sheren Tang


The Sister - Mandy Wong vs Fala Chen


The Sidekick - Pierre Ngo vs Pierre Ngo

The Family Picture


Friday, September 20, 2013

TVB Stickers

Many thanks to Nicole for these wonderful stickers. My favourite one? Of course the one with Ruco! :D

Want some too? You can order stickers and posters from her site ( You can even customize them to put your favourite artist on it. Definitely a must-have for the TVB-loving fan!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Joey Yung - Skylight

My recent obsession is Joey Yung's "Skylight" (天窗). Love the elegant melody and Joey's beautiful voice.

The song is about a couple on the verge of break-up. They both know in their hearts that he has cheated, but neither are willing to say it. They enjoy a final dinner together before gracefully calling it quits. Rather than exposing the naked truth, why not leave a little room for imagination?

Sometimes, things are better left unsaid, because the consequences of saying can be much harsher than you would ever expect.

On an unrelated and more personal note, a message to a beloved friend:


Monday, September 16, 2013

Michael Tse - 狙擊王

Whenever TVB releases a drama with the words "狙擊" in the title, there's one thing you can be sure of: Michael Tse will be in it.

1. E.U. (學警狙擊)

2. Lives of Omission (潛行狙擊)

3. Friendly Fire (法網狙擊)

4. Sniper Standoff (神槍狙擊)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Triumph in the Skies II Review

Producer: Sharon Au, Joe Chan
Genre: Modern, romance
Cast: Francis Ng, Julian Cheung, Fala Chen, Myolie Wu, Ron Ng, Kenneth Ma, Elena Kong, Nancy Wu, Him Law

Imagine the series as a plane flight. After a lengthy delay, passengers finally get to board the flight, where they are unexpectedly welcomed by an unfamiliar tune. Nonetheless, it’s been a long wait and everyone is just happy to be on board. The plane has a smooth takeoff. As the plane makes its climb, the passengers look out the window, seeing the city they are leaving and looking forward to the journey ahead. The plane starts cruising along at 9,000 m. Everyone is settled in comfortably and the flight attendants hand out some snacks. The passengers were expecting the main course, but they accept it anyways. The attendants come around again, this time with drinks. Still no main course. By now, some people start to get restless. They check the flight tracker and find the plane is still at the same level. Nothing wrong with this height, just that we had expected the plane to fly higher. Then slowly but surely, the plane starts losing altitude. Why? Because Holiday is controlling it. Not everyone notices, because some are no longer paying attention. The few that do complain loudly. Finally, before anyone realizes, the plane has touched down for a safe landing.

Fans of the original have waited ten long years for a sequel, so everyone is understandably excited for this series. Not even a crappy theme song can change that mood. The first few episodes don’t disappoint. Bright, beautiful scenery, with everyone looking sharp in their uniforms. Captain Koo is especially charming and steals the spotlight just as easily as he steals women’s hearts. We relieve memories from the original and find out what our beloved Sam, Isaac, Roy and Coco have been up to in the past ten years. But further development of these characters eludes us for 20 episodes. Instead, we are served with random side stories and a lovesick Holiday. Gradually, some viewers get bored and find something else to do. For those who stuck around, we wonder: is anything exciting actually going to happen? The short answer is no. There are some bumps along the way, but it is mostly a calm flight from start to finish.

TVB sequels all have a common formula: forget about the very profession that enticed viewers in the original and insert as many love lines as humanly possible. Triumph in the Skies II follows this to the word. First, there’s the Isaac-Summer-Josie-Teddy rectangle. Then there’s the love not-sure-what-shape with Sam/Holiday/Zoe/Daniel/Jayden. And don’t forget the whole Heather/Roy/Tony/Mr. King pyramid. We’re learning more about geometry than aviation.

The original series was heavily focused on romance as well, but the problem with the sequel is: one, the imbalance between love and work and two, the ill-development of the love lines. Many things were missing, such as how Sam falls in love with Holiday or the cause in Jayden’s character change. 42 episodes is a long time; there should be no need to rush at the end. Too much time was wasted on irrelevant things (Eliza’s mom, anyone?), such that development of the main characters was stunted.

Still, Triumph in the Skies II is the highest rating drama of 2013, so there must be reasons for its success. There’s the nostalgia from the original and watching how the characters have grown up. Surely, the actors themselves have matured and it’s great to see the chemistry amongst the cast working together again ten years later. The series is light-hearted with no evil, back-stabbing, scheming sort of stuff. There’s the hot, steamy, sexy sort of stuff, but of course, we’re talking TVB here. There’s also a fair share of tear-jerking moments that will probably make you cry more than Fala. There’s laugh-out-loud moments, what-the-heck moments and many I’ll-never-fly-in-a-plane-again moments.

All in all, a series to laugh, cry, relax and enjoy, and before you know it, it’ll be end and you will realize it has been a wonderful journey after all.

Rating: 3.5/5

Monday, September 09, 2013

Julian Cheung Cover

Julian Cheung's cover of the original Triumph in the Skies theme song "歲月如歌"

Everyone's jumping onto the boat (or plane, shall we say) to take advantage of the popularity of Triumph in the Skies. Chilam's version is at least better than EEG newcomer Angela Hui's version (link), but still nothing can beat Eason Chan's original. 

"Sniper Standoff" Theme Song

The theme song for Sniper Standoff is sung by Michael Tse, named "Sniper Life" (狙擊人生).

Sunday, September 08, 2013

Always and Ever vs Triumph in the Skies II

With so much time-travelling going on at TVB, let's look at who's been zipping through time lately:

Adrian Chau
(see exactly how he travels through time, courtesy of weibo user)

KK Cheung

Rebecca Zhu

Quinn Ho

Brian Burrell

Vincent Lam

And... Justice Bao!
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Saturday, September 07, 2013

Time-Travelling Dramas

Humans have travelled to the depths of the seas, conquered the heights of the mountains and even left a footprint on the moon. So what's stopping us from time-travelling? Well, apparently, we’ve done that too…

Always and Ever – Bobby Au-Yeung’s soul zips through time, travelling from the Song Dynasty to the 1950s and back to the present, as Bobby tries to escape from the evil curse befalling him and his lover (Esther Kwan).

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A Step into the Past – Louis Koo agrees to participate in a scientific experiment to go back to the Warring States period and witness the coronation of the future Qin Shi Huang (Raymond Lam). But a critical error during the transportation process leaves Louis stuck in the past.

Image result for A Step into the Past

Three Kingdoms RPG – Avid video gamer Kenneth Ma is taken back to the Three Kingdoms period, where he meets his idol Zhuge Liang (Raymond Lam). Kenneth uses his knowledge from video games to help Zhuge Liang in his military endeavours.

A Chip off the Old Block – Ron Ng finds himself back in the 1960s, where he meets the younger version of his father (Sunny Chan). They go through many things together and Ron slowly begins to gain appreciation for his father’s selfless principles.

The King of Yesterday and Tomorrow – The Yongzheng Emperor (Kwong Wah) and an assassin (Maggie Cheung) are both warped forward in time to the 21st century. Yongzheng uses the same diligence to navigate the modern corporate world as he did when he was fighting for the throne.

To Get Unstuck in Time – Roger Kwok is able to communicate with his father (Benz Hui) from 20 years ago through an old telephone. Father and son work together to solve crimes that spans across time dimensions.