VERY IMPORTANT NOTICE

A must read, if you don't already know ...








Written by Funn Lim


This review was posted many years ago, exactly when I am not sure but it should be within months from the original broadcast of this series. I am posting it as I have posted it originally.


SPOILERS ... SPOILERS ... SPOILERS



How Long : 20+ tapes.

Who :

Eric Wan Tin Chiu~ Fong Tin Yau
Joey Mun Yee Mun~ Ma Siu Ling /Grandaunt
Kenneth Chan Kai Tai~ Saan Boon Lung Yat
Kristy Yeung Kung Yue~ Wong Jan Jan
Cheung Kwok Kuen ~ Fong Fuk Sang
Lui Yau Wai ~ Au Yeung Ga Ga
Ng Ting Yip ~ Ken
To Man Jaak ~ Gam Jing Jung
Chan Wai ~ Miu Sin
Keung Ho Man ~ Go Bou
Cheung Man Chi ~ Saan Boon Mei Loi
Mak Ging Ting ~ Baak Seh
Wong Mei Fan ~ Ching Seh
Leung Bik Ji ~ Bik Ga
Ching Dung ~ Fung Ping
Wong Syu Tong ~ Hoh Ying Kau (Kau Suk)
Yeung Ga Nok ~ Lam Kwok Dung
Wong Oi Yiu ~ Ah Sau
Lee Yung ~ Herman
Gam Saan ~ Jeung San
Jung Yeung ~ Peter

What & Where : 2 periods of time,one in the 40's China and the second the 90's Hk.It is basically a tale about blood sucking vampires,bent on dominating the world and populating it with blood sucking vampires(or draculas,if you prefer that term).

The storyline : Interestingly,it started very promisingly.It's China in the 40's and a Ma ghostbuster (Joey) was on the trail of the Vampire King who will be awaken later that night.At the mean time,a bunch of Japanese soldiers led by the General,Ken Chan arrived at a small rural village looking for a fugitive,who is an anti-japanese guerilla who is our hero,Eric Wan.There,the people rather die than reveal his real identity as he was hiding amongst the crowds.Somehow they found out and as they fought and fought and tried to escape,our Ma Sifu is still searching for that Vampire King.Somehow,our two heros',being Eric and Ken and another little kid ran into this dark place and Ken killed the kid. Then the vampire king emerges from his long sleep with really long fangs and looking a bit dumb and also looking for food.He bit all three people there and the Vampire King disappears together with Ken Chan.And then what we see next is the 90's,with a very much alive Eric,with a very stylish look and sunglasses in broad day light catching criminals(he is a cop,a super cop in fact coz he has super-powers like jumping higher,running faster,better eyesight than everybody).And then we see the boy as a Standard/Grade 3 students who is a bit too old for his age because of the way he talks.Next we were introduced to Joey Mun as Ma Siu Ling,who is the next generation of the Ma Ghostbuster who seemed more interested in making money than doing what she does for a good cause.And how did they all meet?In Japan where Joey was invited there by a rich old Japanese man to catch some ghost in his hotel.She brought her best friend,Kristy who is a soft-spoken and sweet school teacher.She fell for Eric on first sight and he liked her too but not Joey.She is a bit of a skeptic when it comes to love.Then we meet Ken Chan who is this really old Japanese hotel owner who supposedly has a young grandson looking like him.But we know better.And then there is this much more complex love relationship happenning amidst all these dramas,like Joey realised she's in love with a vampire,but that vampire is seeing another vampire,well it's complicated.And because of this love for Eric,Joey lost ALL her powers and skills!

As more and more episodes go by,we discovered some startling truth that we all knew all along.Eric and Cheung Kwok Kuen(who plays a 60 year old trapped in a 9 year old body) AND Ken Chan are all vampires.The only difference is Ken has much more of a super power than they both,and he has a grown up daughter(Mei Loi) and few assistants,all vampires.And they have one sinister plot.According to some old prophecy,in 199(something,I forgot the year),vampires will dominate planet Earth and one Vampire will be the KING.Ken thought it was him and so he did many many things and killed many many people to realise this revelation.Until he saw Kristy,who looks exactly like his dead wife.But Eric and Joey sacrificed their lives to beat this Ken in his world domination and they succesfully killed him with the help of Mei Loi,his own daughter.AND YET THE STORY CONTINUES and that is where it starts to be rather tedious and downright ridiculous.

How Come... : Joey lost all her powers?There is a rule in this Ma clan.If they want to practise this Ghostbuster thing,the girls must never ever fall in love,.And they must never ever shed a single tear for a man,if they do,POOF!No more powers which was what happened to Joey when Eric,in the first ending,had no choice but to suck the blood of Kristy who laid there dying of some wound.After he did so,he went beserk,crazy like you just had your first(and hopefully) last taste of some drugs,and he became violent.Joey would have to kill him but she couldn't.Instead she begged him to stop,and when she was begging him,she shed a single and then many many tears and so there goes her career.And what happened to Eric?He fainted into a coma.

Ken has much more power than Eric and the boy?Well,there is a rule in vampire world.If you suck human blood,you'll have super powers beyond all powers of normal vampires BUT you would be hooked on it.You cannot NOT suck human blood after your first suck and you'll crave for more and more and you'll become crazy,beserk even violent and you'll just wanna suck and suck.This was what happened to that little boy when Ken kidnapped him and forced him into a small room with no food but a human person.So he was so hungry that he sucked that girl's blood.Ever since then,he could not drink any other blood because the blood will taste like spoilt milk,sour.Joey had wanted to kill him but Eric begged her not to.In the end,the boy came to her himself but instead of killing him,Joey put him into a long long sleep until,hopefully a cure could be found.And there was in the first ending where there was this supposedly synthetic blood that has the same components as human blood but ain't human blood.So there cures his craving for human blood.

Ken and Eric the Vampires seemed stylish and normal whilst towards the end of the series where vampires are everywhere,those vampires looked and act like stupid zombies?Well,there is an explanation to that.Just imagine you are first generation so smart and all.Then you do the in-breeding thing and so future generations has more illnesses and problems genetically.Here,the Vampire King is the first generation.So he possessed all the great genetic advantages of a vampire.Then he bit Eric and Ken and everybody else which will inherit the fine qualities.By the time Ken bit another who bit another who bit another who bit another(you get the picture,right?),the genetics advanges are all jumbled up and all you have are poor qualities of the previous copy.That is why the later episodes vampires looked stupid.

Eric/Ken generation is not afraid of sunlight,sleep in coffins,afraid of crosses and talisman?Well,as above,the first generation vampires have all the normal things,like human qualities but with super power and hunger for blood only.As the later generations go by,more defects can be seen that is why,European Vampires(as explained in this series) are afraid of the sun and all the cross thing.Great explanation,isn't it?

Mei Loi,Ken's daughter would participate in the plot of killing her own daddy?Well,there is a sad rule in vampire world.You do not grow old,you will remain as you were sucked at that age.Which means everybody dies but you don't die.So Ken was sucked,he went back home to Japan a confused vampire.He hid himself from his wife and after many years,the wife died of old age and he still looked great.Afraid of impending eternity all alone,he sucked his only beloved child.In turn ,this child sucked her BF and his family(and her BF became her father's right hand man).And so started the hatred of the century.The father loved the child but the child hated the father and thus she did everything to rebel against him.And she killed him to stop him in his evil plot.

Ken want to dominate the world?Simple,as above,he didn't want to be all alone.Imagine this.You're the only chinese in an island populated by white people.Wouldn't you want some of your own gang?It was selfish.Why?Look below.

The "I don't Get It" Factor : This is one of the flaws in the script and possibly the mind of Ken the vampire if there is one.So you suck everybody and everybody becomes a vampire.But do not forget,you depend on human blood to survive.So the I don't Get It Factor would be,who then will be his dinner?Wouldn't they all will starve to death because no food by then?

Another factor that I don't get it is later in the series,where Ken and Eric is fighting all of a sudden they both changed into this tuxedo(glittering type) wearing,lizard head with horns and scaly bodied vampires.I mean ATV wants to show off the make up effects but they have over done it to the point of well,it's funny when we are supposed to be worried for their safety.Perhaps they should learn from Journey To The West make-up team.Just nice and brings out the highlight of the hair too.

The Many Sub-Plots : Plenty of unneccessary sub-plots here.Probably to make it longer.Anyway,there is this one with green snake and white snake plot,the Kuan Yin/Buddha plot,seven warriors plot,the many ghostbusting plots.Each have their well,special mention in here.

Kuan Yin and Buddha Plot :At the second ending, Kuan Yin is worried that the world will be congested with Vampires.With all the deaths and sufferings,Buddha had decided to kill off all mankind via his palm by crushing the earth.Kuan Yin begged to perhaps there might be another way.Of course there is.And this brings us to this second sub plot.

The Five Warriors Plot : At the second ending where Ken is resurrected into this heartless vampire bent on dominating the world(again)but this time he is just a puppet of another scarrier(not vampire) human with super powers.Well,prophecy has it that the world will have a King of all Kings but he could be stopped by five warriors from the long ago legend,where seven warriors sacrificed themselves to trap this mean evil dude.Guess who are these 7 warriors?Some we have seen in earlier episodes that died,plus Eric and well,Ken!And Kristy is the virgin whose blood is needed to dominate the world(too complicated to explain in here).I mean this is ridiculous story but well,they fought hard and everybody dies at the end and before they died(which includes Joey),Eric requested to Buddha/Kuan Yin that they all be given a second chance and he requested that when they were fighting with each other(where the boy actually died but was alive because the vampire bit him),and the vampire never got to bit ay of them.So the boy died,Ken went home to Japan and lived a happy long life,his daughter Mei Loi grew old with her BF/husband very happilly,Joey and Kristy all lived in the 90's AND Eric appears in their lives looking like we knew him in the first episode.Weird I know and weirder still,he is not the Eric we know but probably his son!And then they all have this deja-vu thing when thay all sat together for a friendly gathering.Do we all smell a sequel here?

The White snake/Green snake Plot: If you know this chinese legend,you would understand why the woman waited for her love that wasn't there and there was this crazy old monk after centuries being trapped in some stone escaped and only wanted to do one thing;to kill white snake.Well,if you don't know,this is why I am doing this.

Legend has it that there was this white snake and green snake who after thousands of years,took the human form.White snake fell in love with a nice scholar who is a human.She lied about her true identity and married this man and lived quite happily until one nosy monk who could not tolerate human-devil love relationships(just like those in Journey to the West series) decided to tell the husband her true identity.He didn't believe him and the monk told him how to get her to reveal her true identity.He made her drunk one night and in the midst of drunkeness,she became her true self,a white snake and poor husband died from shock.Now you know why in this series,that past love was referred to as a traitor,a coward and a useless man.Sad.

Is Ken That Bad...: Actually,no.He's just desperate.He really loved his daughter to the point that when he was given a chance to rectify the past,he took that chance.Meaning he,Joey and Eric travelled back to the 40's and will try to kill the Vampire King before they all get bitten.If they did got bitten,they'll kill themselves.Which means that Ken himself will be killed but to him,this was the only chance for him to ask for forgiveness from his daughter and give her a normal life with her BF and have her call him "Daddy" again after like decades of hatred.Of course it failed,thanks to one of his very selfish girl-assistant who didn't want to die when she did for the first time.And in one of the most touching scenes in this series.they are all thrown into the past with only a thread to hold them to the present time.The bad girl didn't want them to come back (except for Ken)and so she threw the lights which held the threads into the time hole.Mei Loi seeing this grabbed hold on one and was sucked into that time-hole and as she was sucked further in,her father saw her and held on to her but alas,failed.And so his daughter disappeared and her father became even more bent on dominating the world, until the first ending,where Kuan Yin brought her back from the third dimension to kill her father.

And he was very reluctant to suck Kristy's blood.And when he was brought back to life,the first thing he did was scream "Noooooooooo!!!!",because he was at peace.After being a walking zombie for so many years,death seemed like a very ideal resting way.He was also on his way,probably to reincarnation but was abruptly brought back to life.Poor vampire.So, he isn't that bad,just very lonely and desperate for companionship in a life of eternity.

The Best Episodes: The earlier ones,before tape 16.After that,it disintergrate into silliness.

Why? : Well,remember I mentioned first ending and second ending?They should have end it when Ken died and everybody is hurt and all.But they decided to stretch the story and after that,it just became a piece of boring series and even ridiculous in the ending.Such a great pity because it was very interesting and they had to over-kill it.It then became a comedy.

The Verdict : It was very interesting at first but well,as I have said again and again,shame on the writers for giving us crap for the next 5 tapes.

Is it worth Renting : The first few episodes,YES but if I were you,I will stop at the first ending to avoid disappoinment.If you're a fan of any of the above named actors,well,this should be it.In fcat,there is this nice winter scenery of Japan.

If I Were The Scriptwriter : End it earlier.Not give viewers cheesy sub-plots,really confusing and stupid endings.Do away with the heavy make-up and laughable costume.Concentrate more on the flow of the story and not just suddenly give an entirely different story so as to help salvage the dignity of Ken's character.Find some one who is more noble ,kinder looking and respectable looking to be Kuan Yin and Buddha.Do away with the ultra-boring green/white snake sub plot which doesn't fit into the flow of the story at all.Somehow,only JTTW can contain all these stories and still remain dignified.This is the mistake of the writers.I know if we could buy the concept of JTTW,this should be ok.But that one has an underlying theme,Buddhism and that concept fits into the story of a mythical world.This present series is set in a modern world,where we could buy the existence of ghosts and vampires but devils like snakes?And what was that with the five warriors plot?It's just so shameful to make a good series into a joke.

Special Mention : Whatever Joey was wearing in this series.Wow is all I can say.So modern,so stylish and the skirt,micro mini skirt too when her job requires her to kung fu kick.And the tools she was using,the powder case that contains well,her tools of trade.Her gadgets are my most favourite and most imaginative things in this series.A pity the story isn't so.

Is it BETTER than…: I Have A Date With Spring?different story altogether but similiar title.Interview With A Vampire with Brad Pitt and Tom Cruise?Both have their weaknesses but the western one is much much entertaining and superior in the storyline.But some might find it boring and the acting a bit stiff.All those Mr Vampire movies ?NO WAY!You want good old scary chinese vampire story with a touch of comedy in just under 2 hours?Well,Mr Vampire movies will be it,especially Mr Vampire I.Scary.

Interesting Facts: This was a mega hit for ATV.In their own birthday bash,all those best actors and best actress categories are all from this series.Joey and Eric won.So reportedly,Kristy wasn't pleased coz after all,she is supposed to be big sister of ATV and she lost.Well,at least she gotta kiss both Aaron Kwok and Ekin Cheng and earn lots of money.

A sequel is on the way with the same casts.

Interesting Observation : It's interesting you know to observe the difference in the concept of Western vampires and Chinese vampires.Not in this series but generally.Well,western vampires are much more stylish and daring.They could be bats or humans.And they aren't afraid of the cross or any religion so the only way to kill them is to put a wooden stake through their hearts.Whilst chinese vampires usually wear Ching Dynasty official clothings,are very very scary and has no brain to do the thinking.All they want to do is suck and suck.But one good thing though.They're afraid of chinese Gods and anything associated to it.And usually,they're portrayed as lost soul trapped in a lifeless body.Usually those that died in the most horrible circumstances or buried in the most evil feng shui place.In real life,some years back in Johor,Malaysia,there was a few cases reported of a few bodies buried in this particular cemetary where eventhough they died for decades but they still looked like they're sleeping,supple skins and black hair.In fact,blacker than when they were alive with long dark nails.This, some would refer to as a vampire in the making.So proper things must be done.Not that it will jump up from the coffin or something like that(though reportedly one body suddenly opened her eyes when the Ghostbuster Sifu tried to destroy her body) but it will be some sort of a bad curse for that person's future generations.And in chinese folklore and beliefs,never ever let a black cat jump over a dead body coz it might well,get up.

Another interesting observation is people assume that when you see a ghost,you flash a cross sign and there it goes away,afraid.I really don't think so.Like a movie I watched,the character said that it would depend on the ghost's religious beliefs.If it believes in Chinese Gods,then even a cross they won't be afraid.If they are atheists,I would advise you to just ignore it and go to sleep and pray real hard for the morning sun to come.And then get some expert to look at the Feng Shui of the place you encountered the ghost.Not all ghosts are Six Sense-ish.But as the old chinese sayings goes,Humans are afraid of ghosts equivalent to 3 points but ghosts are afraid of human equivalent to 7 points.Then why some see ghosts?Probably they're born with such ability/gift/curse or some is because they're low in their luck so they see such things.It's a question whether you believe in such things or not but one conclusion that I can say;these old stories and beliefs scared the hell out of me when I was a child and well,even now,especially with those bodies that never decompose.


1 comments:

  1. I really love those kind of vampire stories sometimes its more exciting and thrilling. Chinese ATV Parts

    ReplyDelete

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