Tuesday, August 18, 2009
Coincidentally (撞到正) - 1997
An interesting plot which revolves around past lives and present.
It is not like your usual reincarnation stuffs where you die and then meet again and then fall in love again.
ATV went out of the way to lead the audience to believe it that way when the drama start with this lady ghost haunting a brothel (played by Alice Chan).
Tong Jin Pang or fondly nicknamed Tong Sap Sam (Frankie Lam Man Lung)is the only son of the Tong family which was very wealthy in the district. They run a health products/traditional medicine hall specializing in bird's nests, ginseng, tonics, etc.
Jin Pang is a playful guy; and he spends little time with the family business and rather wastes his time away at the brothel; wasting the family's finances at the same time.
His mother is constantly worried about her only son; and instructed one of their young maids; Yu Chu (Annie Man) to watch over him.
Yu Chu is also a playful young girl and often lets Jin Pang slip away from her watch; causing her to be reprimanded and constantly punished by his mother.
Due to that, Yu Chu developed a hatred feeling for her young master; and often at loggerheads with him.
Jin Pang was also at the same time betrothed to his close cousin; Lai Khuan (Kristy Yang) whom he almost sold in one of his gambling bouts with a dead man in the brothel; angering Lai Khuan parents who were hesitant to marry their daughter to such a philandering young man and only relented after Mrs Tong begged them and promised them that Lai Khuan will lead a good life under her watch.
There was a vengeful lady ghost haunting the brothel which Jin Pang frequents and she was looking for her lover from the past life. In an incident, she found out that Jin Pang was her past lover and started to haunt him, trying to find out the truth on the day she committed suicide.
Mrs Tong was warned of this by a medium; and that was the reason of her worries for her son's well-being. The medium had predicted that Jin Pang will not be able to live for long and not past his next birthday which coincidentally falls on the 14th day of the 7th month in the Lunar Calendar (the festival of the Hungry Ghosts)
Mrs Tong tried to arrange for his marriage as soon as possible; despite the protests from Jin Pang to help him to counter this obstacle. At the same time, she also ordered Yu Chu to watch over him to ensure that he does not leave the house that night.
However, as fate would have it, Jin Pang slipped out of the house with Yu Chu's help who allowed him to help her sister who was sold to the brothel by their gambling uncle.
The angry ghost found out that Yu Chu was the one who caused the failure in her plan in the past life; as Yu Chu was the wife of her lover at that time when she was the prostitute who was in love with Jin Pang and in a struggle, both Yu Chu and Jin Pang died.
Mrs Tong was deeply saddened by the news and told Lai Khuan that she can return to her home as she was only married by name to Jin Pang and being her aunt, she does not want to see her as a young widow. The loyal and defiant Lai Khuan insisted to stay back despite her parents' persuasion.
In the meantime, Yu Chu and Jin Pang both had to adapt to their after-death life in the netherworld where they were given a guide by the old grandad and depended on each other.
They were still at loggerheads with each other; but often helped each other as well.
During their times with each other, they both start to fall for one another and became closer.
When Jin Pang learnt that Lai Khuan had not let go of him, he felt guilty and decided to appear in her dreams to advise her. However, this led to Lai Khuan believing that he still cared for her and she pined after him.
She even thought of suicide to reunite with him; despite Jin Pang telling her that he now loved only Yu Chu.
Jin Pang and Yu Chu then tried to set Lai Khuan up with his cousin brother (David Siu Chung Hang) who seemed to treat Lai Khuan well and was taking care of the Tong's business together with the former.
It was later revealed that this cousin brother was actually wicked and schemed to inherit all of Tong's properties.
It was Jin Pang's best friend (Eric Wan) who uncovered his plot and saved the Tongs. He was also secretly in love with Lai Khuan who finally accepted him after all the happenings as she was touched by his love.
At the same time, Jin Pang and Yu Chu were finally given a chance for reincarnation and then it flashed to the present where we see Jin Pang and Lai Khuan playing with their son and Yu Po (Yu Chu's sister) and her husband playing with their daughter.
They both named their children after Jin Pang and Yu Chu; which means that the duo had reincarnated as their children.
However, at the last scene, we see the duo appearing in their ghostly form when the family picture was taken.
I am guessing they did not reincarnate in the end?
It was a unique storyline; one which is totally out of your expectation.
Not much horror; but more of humor and focusing of family ties and relationships.
It was a touching drama which had the usual bad guy who wanted the family's properties; as a form of compensation for his status as a stepson and often sidelined in the family.
I think they should have focused more on the romantic development of Yu Chu and Jin Pang's relationship as it was like a sudden thing when they are together.
It left me at HUH, when did they officially declared or were together?
1. Yu Chu - Mainly because I have always liked Annie Man as an actress anyway, and I feel that she had done a great job in playing the fierce and unreasonable girl in most scenes and yet, showing how she wants to be cared and given attention as well.
2. Jin Pang - He was hilarious as the playboy and "Pai Kar Chai" who seemed to be philandering at all times. I loved how he softened down sometimes when he realized that he is in the wrong and I think he did show from his expressions how much he cared for Yu Chu. I think she was the only one whom he fell for; since the prostitutes in the brothel don't really count
Most Annoying character:
This goes to Lai Khuan played by Kristy Yang. I don't know what's with this actress as well; she's always playing the same old stereotypical roles where she's always so sad and pitiful and how she's always the damsel in distress. She is always weak and powerless and she must be given full attention.
She's had on the same facial expression in all the dramas I have seen her in; which is really annoying. I don't think she can really act; although she does have a sweet and demure look.
Secondly, I think her character was nice and naive and sweet but it ended there. She was soooooo annoying, doesn't she understand that Jin Pang had never like her right from the beginning?
I mean, come on woman, have some pride and self-dignity, how many times do you need a man to reject you before you come to your senses?
I know how loyal and devoted she is to her cousin brother whom she had admired and was infatuated with since they were kids, but she does need to differentiate between love and infatuation. Furthermore, Jin Pang never liked her at all in the first place.
Thirdly, why does she constantly want to break Jin Pang and Yu Chu up? She shows she is nice and giving and then she resorted to such nimwit ways to break a loving couple up; for her own benefit.
HELLO woman! They're dead; and even if she dies and joins them, there is still no way she can be involved in that relationship.
David Siew is always a villain; did you not notice? However, he was pretty convincing as the good guy who was actually evil within.
A few things that I must mention about the drama as well:
1. Costumes - I noticed that they were wearing the same outfits throughout the 30-episodes drama.
The prostitutes, aren't they supposed to be flamboyant and flaunting themselves off since they claimed that prostitutes make such a good living??
Jin Pang and Mrs Tong - isn't he the only son of such a wealthy family? Why only 2-3 outfits in every episode?
I feel that Jin Pang and Yu Chu had more outfits to change into after they died....funny! Maybe because they received more burnt gifts?
2. The props in the brothel. It seemed like the walls and doors are so fragile; and not convincing at all when Yu Poh banged on those walls where she was trapped in. I think a slight push would do the job anyway.
3. Lam Ching Ying had too little of an appearance in this drama; I was expecting more ghost-fighting stuffs from this veteran who often played his role well.
In summary, I think this is definitely an enjoyable drama to watch for the entire family.
It will definitely make you laugh!~