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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 : I honestly don't remember.

Who : Taiwan's top TV actresses,Yue Ling and Liu Xue Hua , the ONLY 2 persons that I could recognise in this series.

What & Where : During the Ching Dynasty in China,it is basically,or even if we were to talk about detailed summary here,it is only one subject and ONE subject only.L-O-V-E ........LOVE!And the scarifices that comes along with it.

What Sacrifices : Please remember that they lived in a time where men are allowed to marry more than 1 wife.Please remember that they also lived in a time that reputation,either for men or women are like the most important thing in the world and also please please remember that they also lived in a time where women have not much say and not much to say.So in the end,this question sticks in your mind.What sacrifices?

The storyline : It's a very simple storyline that involves ,at most 5 people.First of all,let's just talk about the story.XinYue(or New Moon if you prefer) is the beloved daughter of a royal nobleman who also happens to be a general fighting in a war for his Emperor.(Against who,I am unable to identify).But they are losing as the enemies are approaching.So he did what he thought was the best action;he urged his beloved daughter to take his youngest son and run as fast as they could.Reluctantly they agreed.But all those that stayed behind,dad,big mom,small mom,brothers and all servants killed themselves.Whilst she was running with her little brother,the enemies were coming on too fast.She almost took the knife and plunge it into her brother's heart and her own but she couldn't and she ran and ran and she fell off a tiny sand-cliff and before her blurry eyes,she saw a heroic figure riding a white horse towards her and saving their lives.From that moment on,she admired that man.And in the camp where they spent a few days together before she went back home to nothing,she fell deeply in love with this man.The Empress (Liu Xue Hua) took she and her brother as her godson/god daugther and the General,the hero that saved her life asked why not she stay at his place until she settles down.Happily she agreed coz she was grateful,and in love.The guy liked her too.As the times go by,they fell in love when her little brother got really sick and both of them took care of him.And as predicted,the hidden passion became unleashed as they spent days and nights together,comforthing each other's fears.He knew he felt great passion which is kinda forbidden for this 17 year old girl that is like 25 years his junior.And then during one night in the army camp where she went in search of her wounded love,worried that he would be killed in the war zone,they ,very nicely put,made love and almost killed themselves but decided to face the music back home.

Ahh!What music you may ask?Well,you see this high ranking,good looking,kind hearted General named Nu Da Hai is very very married.He was a loving husband,and a loving father to two grown children,a girl the same age as Xin Yue and a son who is like 19 years old and also in love with his father's lover.There were great opposition to the marriage because well:

1) She is a Princess and the man's married so the Empress didn't like it.
2)The wife opposed for obvious reasons.
3)The mother opposed because she's on the wife's side
4)The son opposed because he wants her for himself
5)The daughter opposed because she felt betrayed that her best friend would go so low as to seduce her father and break up a happy family.

But in the end,they married.Why?The girl's sacrifice for that man.She gave up her Princess title(thus becoming an ordinary citizen with no privileges whatsoever) and also because the Empress demanded it because they slept with each other,so kinda redundant to oppose something that has already happened.

That was the start of the man's greatest nightmare and the girl's torture but I would beg to differ.

The Most Unimportant Characters : Xin Yue's male and female servant who married later in the series.They're unimportant because we really don't care about their non-existing plight and because they're so rude.They just don't know their position and they say things and do things without thinking.In my opinion,they're a waste of time to watch in this series and that is why I will not waste 'ink' and space to write about their so-called problems.

The Most Pitiful Character : Some might say Xin Yue but I would think it's the poor aged wife.For many years,she was the husband's only wife and then came this younger,much more beautiful girl into her beautiful,perfect existance.She became bitter,became angry.Not because she disagreed to him having a second wife but she didn't like the fact that the girl,who at first was about to be bethrothed to her son,now became her 'sister' instead.She thought this girl was,well to put it mildly,a slut that seduced her husband whilst they had given her love,protection and care.She felt cheated and wow,is this woman angry!On the wedding day,she refused to drink the tea offered by Xin Yue and instead,threw the tea at her face.Her husband who felt guilt for his dishonourable conduct couldn't quite say anything.Plus his mom stopped him.And then,when her husband's at work in the morning,she would use canes to beat her,forced her to cook,clean,kneel,and call herself "Nu Chai(meaning servant) for this woman.Xin Yue wanted so much to please her so she said nothing.And then she would insult her,and scream at her,throw things at her.The more Xin Yue shut up,the angrier this woman was.But she loved her husband.Xin Yue tried to ask him to visit her in her room which at one night,he did and they almost kiss and dear Xin Yue burst into the room to greet her husband.And so the torture continues.

Why is she the most pitiful you may ask?Because of what her husband said.He said that he felt no more love/passion/desire for her and if she just be nice to Xin Yue,they could be the best of friends.As a woman married to this man for decades,how would you feel if your husband said that to you and every night he would sleep in the other woman's room and not yours?But after a while,her anger is like so boring to the viewers.Although we pity her,there is a limit to her anger that we as viewers could tolerate.So she shifted her focus on her children and hope on her only son.But the son,amidst pressure became a gambleholic again and again and because of this great disappointment,she tried to hang herself,but saved by her husband.Though she has less anger,she is still crying in every scene.You could say she is also The Most Unreasonable Character.Depending on how you see her predicament.

The Most Saddest Character : The son.He fell for Xin Yue on first glance.His mom noticed and wanted to marry his son with the girl but as fate would have it,she became his mother instead.He was bitter,so bitter that during one time,he was involved in this physical fight with his father over the woman.And as they fought,Xin Yue tried to come between them and the son kicked her instead.And what did the father do upon this slight miscalculation of the kung-fu kick?He slapped his son hard.After that incident,the son never forgave the father.So he is kinda sad you know.Then he married this Princess,young and pretty.He was happy but he's not in love with her.And he tortured her with his gambling ways,until he realised that his mom almost killed herself,his father dragged him back home,and his wife got pregnant.He felt bitter because he thought he could never live up to his father's expectations ,that he was a disappointment in his father's eyes.But his father told him otherwise,that he is his only son and he loved him no matter what.And so the relationship healed but alas!Look further below if you want to know why.

The Most Irritating Character : To me,surprisingly,the heroine,Xin Yue herself.Why you might ask?She knew the man is happily married but she went ahead with her seduction with her hopeful eyes.She knew the woman would beat the hell out of her but she still went ahead with her pleading eyes.She knew the son was fighting with the father and she still went ahead with her well,peacemaker eyes.She was ungrateful is how I see it.They gave her a home,the woman gave her love and care like her own daughter,and she repaid her kindness by betraying her.Though you might say,he loved her and so he married her because of this.But does love matter so much until one forgets about ones own place in this place called life?She was wrong but that doesn't mean that the woman can beat her.There are times when her actions are noble but somehow it's just irritates the hell out of me.She wanted so much to please that woman ,what she didn't realise was that her presence irritates the hell of this poor woman.Or that she didn't realise that by abandoning her little brother to join her husband in war(thinking and gotten news that he was hurt in the war),she had abandoned what her father left her to take care of,her brother.For that,she was not only careless,selfish and stupid,she was irresponsible.But you might say,she's only 17,she's young.True but that doesn't mean she's not my first choice for The Most Irritating Character and also The Most Irresponsible Character.

You might ask why don't the first wife go in search of her wounded husband?Well,like I said,responsibilites.Someone has to take care of the house,the children,the mother.Love isn't everything and it doesn't surpass everything in priority in life.

The Most Difficult Person To Be... : Nu Da Hai,no question about it.Trapped between his love for Xin Yue and his sense of responsibility for his wife and kids,he could do neither at the end of the day.Of course he didn't know that his first wife was torturing his beloved Xin Yue but still,he I felt was the reason for this woman's insane actions towards Xin Yue.He should not have said what he said and he should have spend more time in her room instead of going to Xin Yue's every night.Probably,he should be The Most Hated Character.

The Best Scenes : Every scene that involves the wife,Xin Yue and the father and son tension.Classic scenes of madness and torture.I don't know which is worse.The fact that this woman is torturing this poor girl who refused to scream or the fact that I cheered for this cane wielding first wife.She already said,don't come to my room but that girl just never listens and so I thought,well if people already threatened bodily harm if you enter their premises and you still enter,then you do deserve the consequences of your actions.

The Worst Scene : Since this series is like so long ago and some of you might have read the novel already,I might as well tell you the ending.And frankly,I hated the ending.You see,the family reunited after one incident where the first wife insulted the Empress and the Empress wanted to kill her as a punishment,it was her husband ,children and Xin Yue,her number one enemy that begged for her life.She realised she ain't so bad after all and after a careful consideration,felt why not be peaceful and so her husband doesn't love her anymore,she still have her children.So he had to go to war again,and this time she asked Xin Yue to follow him to take care of him.And her son too.But alas,during one time where the son was quite careless,an enemy charged towards him with a sword and it was his father that pushed him away and his father was the one who got killed.Xin Yue ran to his side in the camp,cried and he told her to live a good life but she said something like she won't let him walk alone in the passage of death and she killed herself and they died together,buried side by side.

Why Do I Hate This Ending : Does it matter that I hated the ending?To some maybe not but to those that haven't watch this one,why not share some opinion.Even till the end,she was selfish.The first thing that came to mind was,what about her little brother?He's like orphan now.This girl acts with her heart and never think before she acts.Which makes her irritating till the end and frankly,I laughed when they died.I know,poor man who just made his peace with his family.But look closer and you'll know why.Even till the end,she must possess him wholely.If you looked carefully at her character,she might seem willing to share but the truth is she wants his love all by herself.Even when he dies,she must follow him.Whatever happened to the Rose-Jack kinda ending in Titanic where the girl lived on and lived a full life?No,she must possess him wholely,heart and now,SOUL so again,poor wife,daughter,son,AND little brother.I am sure her father would turn in his grave several times if this woman ever really lived.Shameful too.

Special Mention : The dresses,simply amazing especially the women's.So we have been cheated by TVB,that always shows us simple designs.In this series as in Huan Zhu Ge Ge,we can see the glory of the Ching Dynasty,the wonderful mandarin collars,the beautiful and very colourful dresses and the buildings(though a bit limited but still great).Taiwanese series always invest so much into the fashion when it comes to a production concerning the Manchurian/Ching Dynasty period.Simply amazing.

Is it worth Renting : If you can find it,yeah,why not.But be forwarned.Never has one series got everybody so emotional than this one.Emotions such as anger and bitterness and hatred will surface eventhough you thought you are a happy person.This series will invoke such deep feelings that the ending is a bit of an anti-climax.Older people will hate it though but people like our age who enjoys a jealous rivalry will absolute adore this one.And then ask yourself,would you do the same if you were in her position?

Is is BETTER than…: ALL Taiwanese series that contains the same old thing called LOVE and rivalry?I am afraid NOT!Sure the costume dramas type would contain these kind of torture scenes like the most notable one,the Plum Flower series.Modern ones do not have such scenes but can still get on your nerves like For Better OR Worse which starred Yue Ling,Lin Rui Yang and Xiao Qiang.In that series,you'll end up cheering for the mistress and not the 'poor' wife.

Like I have written somewhere before,you must take note of a few facts before proceeding to watch a typical Taiwanese series.Most notable ones would be that it's very very long,it's very repeatative ,you'll end up hating the supposed heroined and hero and end up pitying the viliian,which must be a woman.A man can never invoke such feelings in us.AND they cry in every scene which is like every 10 minutes.So enjoy!

Other notable TVB series would be Happy Ever After,the fight between Kong Wah-Nadia Chan-Hong Wah and Bobby-Nadia Chan-Marianne Chan.But that one is only so mild and everybody has a happy ending.That is why I am like so amazed at Taiwanese series.They can bring the story to the point where the hatred is so extreme and we as viewers would think that no way they can end it peacefully and yet they could,very logically too.Amazing.

Another notable one that would be quite close in comparison would be Legend Of Lady Yang or Yeung Kwai Fei,the one with Heong Hoi Nam and Kong Wah and plenty of other jealous women in here fighthing for the affection of one man.I haven't seen it yet but I have a feeling it will be a very entertaining series.Look out for the review in the TVB section.


Interesting Facts : This series was written by the same person,Chung Yao that gave us the extremely popular Huan Zhu Ge Ge.You'll notice the similarities in the time period in all her novels are set in.Always Ching Dynasty.Why you may ask.It's the time of great great fashion sense,except maybe the men's hair.Which by the way,if the men does not have this kind of hairstyle,there goes their heads.

The actress Liu Xue Hua (the one that plays the empress) if from HK but made it really big in Taiwan long long time ago.She was once the lover of the man who plays Nu Da Hai but they broke off a long long time ago.

The actress that plays Xin Yue,that is Yue Ling once went out,for many years with an unknown actor,Xie Ju Wu who made it big with the very interesting ghost story series,The Chinese X-Files.But they broke off.Reportedly,he felt that he couldn't cope with the GF's success.But another report would be that he found someone else.By the way,Yue Ling should be 31 this year.And she is the only actress that I know off that wanted to gain weight instead of lose weight.

Interesting Fiction: None for this series since the only issue in this series is LOVE and LOVE only.What is so fictional about that ?


2 comments:

  1. Anonymous3.3.13

    The worst character in the show is Nu Da Hai. He deserts his wife who stood by him and gave him children for Xin Yue. He makes her endure so much pain, having to put up with his infidelity and anger from his children but later expects her to accept Xin Yue. He openly says he doesn't love her anymore...he is truly ungrateful and heartless yet tries to make excuses for his selfish behaviour. I don't understand how a man like him can exist. He doesn't really appear to be in love with Xin Yue but rather in lust...being so physical with her all the time...that's not what love is. He is worst than Xin Yue, the most detestable character in the show....he deserves to die a thousand deaths. I don't understand how the author can write such a story and portray Xin Yue as the "victim" in the show...it defies logic

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  2. Anonymous29.5.16

    Haha your review is so....so, so, so damn funny, I liked that miscalculation kungfu kick the most. And the going home to hear music! Yeah, my favorite part was the music part, Xin Yue got yelled at and I wished the kids know how to say something more hurtful because oh boy, that lady was not hurt at all... and their father is still comforting her the whole time, very angering scene to watch and entertaining. And it's hard to hate on Liu De Kai.
    Yeah, pretty much like your review, we all hated Xin Yue, we hated everything NO MATTER WHAT! She stole the husband so:
    1. Her sacrifice & went to see him at war is detestable
    2. No matter how much the first wife torture her, she is still detestable, rather deserving it
    3. Even to her death when she die with the husband still makes her detestable
    Detestable, detestable, detestable to the end (or at least to me), I would never accept any of her noble things noble but ONLY hateful. This was the first time I've seen like a drama with the main characters this detestable (but it's still quite entertaining to watch). I can really see why an old man like Nu Da Hai is much more attractive than the son. Also, his acting is always superb. Xin Yue is beautiful, extremely elegant, and very very very calm! Her only one mistake is for seducing Nu Da Hai, and that made her hatable to the point of nothing she can do to redeem herself. She did excellent on her role, be the b**** but keeps acting nice without annoying me, if she was too annoying I wouldn't be watching, I just don't feel bad for her at all but I don't hate her like wanting to rip her apart too, so... she really wasn't annoying (of course quite annoying to be a cry-baby-pretender every time, but at least she really does have beautiful crocodile tears).
    I couldn't blame Nu Da Hai much because he at least knew he was wrong and tries a few times to stop himself, here Xin Yue... was all the way to the end, never admitting herself wrong and try to stop herself once from adultery.
    Overall it was great castings and acting, everyone did acted so well! I realized clothes were also same ones worned in Princess Pearl, interestingly Ruby and Vicki somehow look much more beautiful in them! Just my opinion. I think the New my Fair Princess have much more beautiful women clothes, however the ladies still didn't manage to pull off and look as nice as Ruby and Vicki though. I did enjoy this series way much more than the peach blossom one by Qiong Yao too.

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