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[TVB drama] [SilverSpoonSterlingShackles]Episode1-6 Thoughts

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发表于 2012-11-14 03:19:28 |显示全部楼层
Not written by me, copied from elsewhere
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Characters and impressions

The drama is set in the 1920′s and 1930′s colonial Hong Kong. Right off the bat we are introduced to Sir Arthur Chung (鍾卓萬) portrayed by Damian Lau, an extremely rich and influential ethnic Chinese barrister (said to have never lost a case in court). His frequent use of the English language reflects his highly educated background and abundance of connections with other prominent figures. Damian’s confident demeanor extends to his private life, always in control and quite the womaniser, flirting with any lady he fancies. The fact he can manage three wives at the same time must say something…


Mary Hon plays Koo Sam-lan (顧心蘭) the first wife of Damian. Being the eldest, Mary likes to make it clear to her ‘sisters’ that she’s Damian’s highest priority (though it doesn’t seem like she is). She can be rather fussy and childish at times, like waiting for Damian to help her up and escort her down the stairs when she’s fully capable of doing so herself. She has two children, played by Kenneth Ma and Sire Ma (more about them later)



Idy Chan plays Aisin Gioro Yee-yin (愛新覺羅·爾嫣), a Manchu ex-princess of the fallen Qing dynasty; the second wife of Damian. She is the first of Damian’s woman to be introduced in the series and the one he claims to love the most. Idy is classy, calm, collected and extremely witty. She is the one Damian would confide with and one who understands him most. She also has no children with him. So far, I quite like Idy’s character.


Elena Kong portrays Yvonne Yik (易懿芳) the youngest of his wives thus far (before Tavia gets into the picture) Elena uses her youth and sex appeal to capture Damian’s heart. She’s also the sweet talker, said to be the mediator who keeps things civilized in the family. However, I believe there’s much more to her than she lets on, as she seems rather sneaky at times (like trying to find out why Damian’s organizing such a huge birthday event for Idy).


Woah, steamy. Anyone else find this scene where Elena seduces Damian to be rather amusing? XD I can just imagine all the laughter during filming… how embarrassing.
Kenneth Ma portrays Charles Chung Kai-sun (鍾啟燊), Damian’s eldest son who is also a barrister. Ambitious, serious and a gentlemen, Kenneth is the typical good guy who works hard, is persistent and stands for righteousness. Fighting for Human rights, especially in regards to abolishing slavery, Kenneth soon finds himself entangled with Tavia Yeung’s business and tirelessly tries to help her. At the moment, I think his character is a little pale in comparison to his almighty father.



And of course, we have Tavia Yeung, who plays Hong Tsz-kwan (康子君) a famous Peking opera daomadan singer known by the stage name Sai Fenghuang (賽鳳凰). The only reason her character stood out for me was sadly because of her nose. OMG WHY IS IT SO BIG? D: It’s so long and pointy and..and.. urgh. Trust me, I really tried to ignore the nose, and focus on her acting and characterization and all that, but it’s just really difficult when it’s slapped on her face..and in our face. This is the main reason why I’m a little behind in watching this drama. It took me a while to really push myself to keep watching because all I could focus on was her nose. 


Tension as Damian flirts with Tavia, leaving her a little intimidated..
Her looks in this drama is a bit of a turn off for me, and I’m not sure if it’s affecting my view of her character. Innocently being brought back to Hong Kong from Shanghai and being held captive in the process should be enough for us to sympathize with Tavia. Tavia used to be a mistreated servant and at the age of 12 was forced to marry a 70 year old man. However, I just don’t like Tavia’s character here. She is innocent, but behaves in such a rude and ‘high horse’ manner that makes her not very likable. I also think it’s in her eyes. She doesn’t seem good in nature. Am I the only one thinking this? While she was in the prison cell looking helpless and desperate, I didn’t have any desire to see her freed. It was odd. What I was interested in though, was how she would escape or more specifically, how Damian would get her out of the sticky situation. That was the interesting part for me and the solution didn’t disappoint. In terms of Tavia’s character alone, it didn’t really impress me as there  weren’t any “wow” moments in her acting.
Rebecca Zhu plays Kwai Siu-yau (季小由), the poor young lady who gets accused of stealing before Tavia comes to her aid. This is the first time I’ve ever seen Rebecca, the much talked about Fala Chen look-a-like. Personally, I don’t see any resemblance and actually had no idea this girl was actually Rebecca until I checked her up on wiki. First impression was..urgh, she looks kinda ugly, but as I watched on her character started to grow on me and I now find her face kinda cute (albeit chubby). It’s funny how your perception of someone’s beauty changes when you get to know more about their personality.


Ron Ng plays Kam Muk-shui (金木水) a poor wanderer who gets into all sorts of fights, but deeply cares for Rebecca. I haven’t seen Ron act in a drama for quite some time, so hopefully his acting will be decent here. I don’t feel much for him, but I find his relationship with Rebecca cute, especially when he gave her the (real) pearl necklace.
Other thoughts

There’s a lot of English being thrown around and I can see how this can upset HK viewers (fine for us English speaking, but not so much for the average HK household). To put it into perspective, I was kinda thrown off in the few scenes where the characters were speaking in Shanghainese. Thankfully it was only very minimal.
After the first 3 episodes, I still don’t know where this story is heading. I have a vague idea that Tavia will end up being Damian’s fourth wife (pretty much a given), but not so much of overall plot. The family seems a bit too civilized at the moment, and everything appears close to perfect. The wives seem to get along, Damian loves all his wives, the children are well behaved and filial.. perhaps this is the calm before the storm..

Overview

Episode 4, 5 and 6 of [Silver Spoon, Sterling Shackles] focuses a lot on Damian’s ladies, especially Idy and Tavia. We learn a bit about Idy’s past and her involvement with her previous lover Chai Yat-fai 齊日輝 (played by Ben Wong). My impression of the characters are already changing, and I may have spoken too soon when I said his wives seem to get along. These episodes clearly show they don’t. What makes this series amusing is the way the wives verbally attack one another whilst pretending they have nothing against them. The sheer amount of passive aggressive behaviour demonstrated by these ladies is enough to make one puke. Tavia’s appearance in Damian’s life is already alarming all three of his ladies (Mary, Idy and Elena). Clearly, her mere presence and association is starting to annoy them (due to their status differences), and they aren’t afraid to show it. Even if they weren’t rich, having another lady stick around their husband is bound to get similar reactions. The wives do not like her, including Idy who seems to be the most rational one amongst them. Do I feel sorry for Tavia? A little bit, only because they said such mean things to her when she was “innocently” invited to his party as a guest. However, the fact she actually has a crush on Damian means they’re not just false accusations. I found it funny how they thought Tavia was trying to hook-up with Kenneth..heh. Says a lot about the age difference…


Mary and Elena give Tavia a dirty while they walk passed..
Idy & Ben’s history

A bit about Idy. Previously I thought of her as an “extremely witty” woman, but now she comes off a little weak. We learn that she previously had a relationship with Ben when they were both young and she even eloped with him. However, Ben was a poor fellow and due to their class differences, she had a hard time coping with the transition. Suffering from the cold and hunger, Idy eventually left Ben and returned home to her mother.  I found this act to be rather cowardly and questions Idy’s determination and willpower. I feel like I’ve lost a bit of respect for her… I guess love doesn’t conquer everything.


Idy and Ben in their younger days
Now her love for Damian is also questionable, and tension arises between the two when Damian finds out Ben had returned to Shanghai from London and was actively looking for Idy. Ben is unaware that Idy has already married to Damian and of course, he wouldn’t let that happen so easily. The two men cross paths on the business side of things and Idy realises Damian tried to send him away. Upset by his lack of trust in her and in the heat of the moment, Idy moves back in with her mother. This leaves Damian rather angry and hurt that his genuine love for Idy is still not enough for him to win her heart completely.


Damian is upset his wife still has feelings for another man..
Tavia’s confused heart and Damian’s mixed signals

Damian is extremely upset over his argument with Idy and becomes heavily drunk while in Tavia’s company. When she takes him back to his hotel room, he forces himself on her, pashing her until he loses conscious . If she really was a slutty low-life, she would have taken advantage of the situation. However, she looks rather uncomfortable though not totally bothered, seeing as she left him a note and didn’t seem too upset. If anything, it stirred up some more feelings inside her. To be fair, Damian was the one flirting with her and leading her on..clearly he was enjoying her company.



Damian forces himself on Tavia in the hotel room
Fight for the first dance… Mary and Elena

What follows after was quite an amusing series of events where Mary and Elena organise a huge western party for Damian; both hoping to have Damian’s first dance. Elena and Mary both missed out on going to Shanghai with Damian (due to an accident cause by the two being petty) so this was a golden opportunity for them to get some spotlight. The relationship between these two character is a little strange to me..in a funny way. They both want Damian’s attention, but they’re still willing to help each other (in this case, Elena spends time teaching Mary how to dance). Perhaps it’s because they both know Idy is Damian’s favourite, so they have the same common enemy. Still, they are both rather childish, jealous little woman. Who could blame them though? If I had to share my husband with several other ladies I think I would be just as upset and jealous XD So glad marriage is monogamous these days…


Mary tells Elena she wants to learn to dance
And of course, things never work out as planned XD. Tavia shows up at the party accompanied by Kenneth, and they figured she’s trying to hook up with their son. Imagine their surprise when Damian tells them he was the one who invited her and even asks her to have his first dance. This causes outrageous jealousy among the ladies, but the purpose was really to anger Idy. All he really cared about was making her jealous.. because he wanted to her care. Idy eventually shows up to the party (albeit reluctantly) seeing the two dancing but soon collapses due to her illness. Upon seeing this, Damian drops Tavia (while in the middle of the dance) and rushes to his wife’s side. Tavia feels completely used.


Tavia, more than just a chess piece?

After the event, the relationship between Damian and Idy not only mended but grew stronger than before. Meanwhile, Tavia feels more and more confused, disappointed and helpless. She doesn’t understand Damian’s confusing mixed signals. One moment he’s showering her with expensive gifts and compliments, and the next he’s acting like there’s nothing between them. The audience is left thinking.. does Damian actually like Tavia, or is he really just using her? Personally, I think he finds her to be quite the interesting character…


小豬這周一定要中Mark 6


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发表于 2012-11-14 12:54:38 |显示全部楼层
The tension between Idy and Damian is the best part of the show by far. I wish to see more dramatic twist and profound dialogues between Damian and his so called "true love", Tavia's character. Their romantic relationship is somewhat unconvincing to me. Hopefully there will be more conflicts and tensions between the two as the plot moves further.
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