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Written by Riona


"Love? Everyone in this serial loved too much..."




SPOILERS! SPOILERS! SPOILERS!



Alt Title
Autumn of My Heart

Chinese Title
Lan She Seng Shi Lian

Translated As
Blue Life-Death Love

Cast-Character
Song Seung Hun-Quin Xi Song
Song Hye Kyo-En Xi
Wong Bin-Tai Xi

No. of Episode
20

Year of Production
2000

Language
Korean, dubbed/subtitles in Mandarin

Plot
Two baby girls were switched at birth by mistake. And when the girls were around 12 years old, they found out their real identity. En Xi was supposed to be the poor girl, and Xin Ai was the real daughter of the rich family. After a lot of confusion and heartbreak, the two girls switched places again. And En Xi was separated from her happy, loving family, and her older brother, Quin Xi, whom she loved very much. Soon the rich family immigrated to America.

Years later, En Xi was working in a hotel, owed by Tai Xi’s family, a friend of Quin Xi. Tai Xi fell in love with her. Quin Xi came back from America, and after much searching, he met En Xi again. Quin Xi was now engaged to You Mei, whom he met in America, and En Xi began going out with Tai Xi.

Soon, En Xi and Quin Xi discovered their bond was closer than a brother/sister relationship, and they decided to be together, against the wishes of their families. Tai Xi was angry and heartbroken. When Quin Xi broke up with her, You Mei tried to commit suicide. She slit her wrist, and even though she did not die, her arm suffered severe injuries. The doctor said she might never gain proper use of it again (she was an artist/painter).

Quin Xi felt responsible and stayed with her to nurse her back to health. En Xi, on the other hand, discovered she had leukemia. However, she was poor, so she could not afford treatment. She had prepared herself to die when Tai Xi found out about her illness. Even knowing she loved only Quin Xi, Tai Xi offered to take her to a hospital and pursue a cure. And Quin Xi thought En Xi and Tai Xi had gotten back together. The doctor You Mei her hand had recovered, but she thought Quin Xi would leave her again when he found out, so she didn’t tell him.

Soon the entire family found out about En Xi’s illness. Quin Xi was the last to find out. He got to the hospital just as En Xi fell into a coma. Quin Xi also found out You Mei had been lying to him about her injured arm. Quin Xi went into a shock, believing that En Xi would really die the next time he came to see her, but Tai Xi knocked some sense into him. He came to the hospital, and En Xi woke up while he was beside her bed.

Quin Xi took En Xi home with him. They spent many happy days alone together. Tai Xi saw them together, and was happy for En Xi even though his heart was breaking. En Xi’s condition got worse, and soon she was spitting out blood. The doctor predicted the worst scenario.

En Xi finally passed away. Everyone was there at her funeral, but Quin Xi was gone by the time they were flinging her ashes out into the sea. He was walking aimlessly, blinded by memories of En Xi, when he was hit by a car. He too died, and was finally reunited with En Xi.

Comments
The truth? I usually like beautifully tragic stories, because they make me bawl and form this tight, aching knot in my chest. Of course in real life I prefer happy endings, but sometimes it’s nice to watch tragic tales, you know? Just for a good, long cry.

I’ve heard endless praise for “Endless Love” even before I watched it. That it was so sad, that someone’s mother and all her neighbors and mahjong partners cried for days after watching this series. So I watched it.

And it was the most horridly boring, most slow-paced, slow-motion, most overly-dramatic series I have ever watched. I spent every minute cursing its redundant dialogue (“You’re going to die? En Xi is going to die. You can’t die, En Xi.” All said by one person, all in the same breath). Everyone moved and turned their heads as if in slow motion, I thought their necks would break from such strained movement. Everyone cried, as if they thought if the actors cried, the audience would cry, too.

NOT! I cry only if the combination of acting, story, and music is done magnificently, and there was no such magnificence in this series. It was, in a word, a drag.

I thought it was a tad unbelievable how a love between a brother and sister (even if not by birth) would blossom to be a romantic love. I thought they were too selfish to disregard their families’ feelings. I thought En Xi was so cruel to Tai Xi, and I felt sorry for Tai Xi, even though he was also a weak fool. But the biggest, weakest fool in this story is You Mei. God, how I hated her. Not because she was an obstacle between Quin Xi and En Xi, but because she was so pathetically spineless and a crybaby.

Even though some people might also have liked En Xi because she was sweet and kind, and remained so even after life dealt her one crisis after another, until finally she died of an awful disease, but I also thought that was a tad unbelievable. Nobody could be THAT noble, in the face of such odds. I’m not an inhumane bastard, but I do not feel sorry for a charater if it was painfully obvious that this character was MADE for us to pity her.

The first part of this series was actually decent, with the confused feelings of parents of both families if they were going to switch back their daughters, because even though not their flesh and blood, they loved them as if they were their own children. But it rapidly degraded to a slow torture.

The only redeeming trait of this series is Tai Xi, and I’m informed that most people actually liked this not because of Quin Xi and En Xi, but because of Tai Xi’s selfless sacrifice. But I thought him too selfless and too willing to sacrifice himself that it was also unbelievable.

In short, I have no good thing to say about this series except the music. At least the themesong is nice to hear.

Favorite characters
None. But if I had to choose one, it would be Tai Xi. But that’s only because I felt sorry for him because he let En Xi step all over him.

Favorite actors
None. Even though the actors were handsome, they held no real appeal for me. En Xi is indeed beautiful, but I thought her innocent, porcelain, child-like face too unreal. And maybe because both times I watched a series by this actress, she tried so hard to gain my sympathy by acting so depressed and “poor poor me, take pity on me” that I ended up liking her even less.

Favorite lines
None. All dialogue in this series were overdone and overly dramatic. Not to mention redundant.

Best Scene
When both sickeningly sad characters finally died and put an end to our torture? Just kidding. But the answer is also none.

Saddest scene
The entire dang thing is so sad, it makes me weep (not). But to be honest, if it weren’t so irritatingly slow, I might have liked it more.

Well, there was this one scene. I felt sorry for En Xi’s real mother. When they were kids, Xin Ai hated her “mom” for making her do hard work and for not having a privileged life. Xin Ai was overjoyed when she found out she was really the daugher of the rich family in school, and she was all-too-willing to go back to her real family. But the rich mother also loved En Xi, and at first could not accept Xin Ai even though she was her real daughter, but in the end accepted her too and wished she could keep both daughters. She went to En Xi’s real mother and told her she could provide En Xi a better life and a better education, and she would return En Xi to her when she was grown up.

En Xi’s mother was sad that Xin Ai apparently hated her so much, and when she saw that in En Xi’s heart, her mother was not *her*, it was the rich mother she’d grown up with, she finally agreed to give En Xi back. But En Xi decided to stay with her real mother, and mother-and-daughter embraced and cried in each other’s arms.

Happiest scene
Probably when brother and sister found each other again, although *I* felt no happiness for them at any part.

The BEST part – the LOVE factor
Love? Everyone in this serial loved too much. En Xi and Quin Xi loved each other so much, they made their families and friends angry and heartbroken. Tai Xi loved so much, he was willing to throw away his money to cure En Xi’s leukemia, even though he knew she didn’t love him. You Mei loved Quin Xi so much, she resorted to suicide and then deceit to get him back. And of course, both parents love their daughters very much, too.

But if you were to ask me which love touched me the most, I would say… none. Except perhaps the parents’ love for their children, that never gets old.

Worth Watching?
If you like slow, angst-ridden dramas, this might be for you. But if you were like me, maybe you should save yourself the trouble. And don’t let the awesome five-star reviews influence you too much, maybe you’d better see it for yourself first before you form any conclusions.

Rating


Interesting Facts
The director of Endless Love also directed a new series called “Winter Song” or “Winter Sonata”, starring my (currently) most favorite Korean sweetheart, Bae Yong Jun. It’s getting popularly known as “Endless Love II”. Naturally, I will watch it, but solely because of Bae Yong Jun. And I am almost afraid that it might be another slow torture like this Endless Love. For my sanity’s sake (and for my love for Bae Yong Jun), I sincerely hope not. I will write a review for that after I watch it.

Links
Here’s a chinese “Endless Love” series and actors links page: CLICK HERE

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