Brief Character Intro of Beauties Without Tears

If I have to name a drama that I really want to see now is probably Yu Zheng's Beauties Without Tears. I know this fact even shocks me. Despite my reservation about his personal character and plagiarist habits, Yu Zheng once again manages to put together a cast I like in befitting roles - Zhang Meng, Ada Choi, Han Dong, and Hawick Lau. The one actress I have qualms about is Yuan Shanshan as the politically shrewd Dayu'er (future Empress Dowager Xiaozhuang). And I heard she's the #1 main female lead. NOOO~! Okay, I'll skip over her parts and watch Zhang Meng's gorgeous Hailanzhu and focus on the beautiful costumes.

Trivia: this is the drama that caused Mo Shaoqian to go BALD in Sealed with a Kiss mini-movie!

Beauties Without Tears is the third installment in Yu Zheng's "Beauties" series after Schemes of Beauty and Beauty World. I'm more interested in the love story between Hong Taiji and the ephemeral, Hailanzhu (Consort Chen). I heard in history Hong Taiji was so grief-stricken by the death of his favorite consort that he fainted upon her death and lost his appetite to eat. In less than two years, he followed her footstep and died. Even during the midst of a battle, Hong Taiji abandoned his troops to rush back to Mukden Palace in Shenyang to see Hailanzhu when he heard about her rapidly deteriorating health.

Hong Taiji and Hailanzhu. They will share a love/hate relationship in this drama.

Hawick Lau as Hong Taiji or Huang Taiji:
Jurchen Chieftain Nurchaci's 8th son. Founding emperor of the Qing Dynasty. He will fall crazily in love with Hailanzhu and use Dayu'er to keep his ambitious brother in place.
Han Dong as Prince Dorgon:
Hong Taiji's ambitious younger brother. Nurhaci's 14th son. The powerful Prince Regent under the reign of Emperor Shunzi. Harbors romantic feelings for his sister-in-law, Dayu'er.

Ada Choi as  Zhezhe (Jerjer in Mongol):
Born of the Mongol Borjigit clan. Hong Taiji's principal wife. Future Empress Xiaoduanwen. Paternal aunt to both Hailanzhu and Dayu'er.
Yuan Shanshan as Dayu'er  (Bumbutai in Mongol):
Concubine of Hong Taiji. Mother of Fulin (future Emperor Shunzi) and grandmother to Kangxi. Younger half sister of Hailanzhu. Niece of Zhezhe. She devotes her life to her husband, but she later discovers he has fallen deeply in love with her sister, Hailanzhu.

Zhang Meng as Hailanzhu (Harjol in Mongol):
Favorite concubine of Hong Taiji. Half sister of Dayu'er. Niece of Zhezhe.  She simply wanted to live a rustic life on the Mongolian plains with her fiancée, Zhuolin, a great Mongolian warrior. Tragedy strikes when Zhuolin gets killed in battle and she is forced to marry Hong Taiji.

Future Emperor Shunzi, his Empress (left) and favorite concubine (right).

Dayu'er and Prince Dorgon
Dayu'er gets punished and her aunt comes to the rescue?

Hailanzhu looks gorgeous here!

An expressionless Hailanzhu after her marriage to Hong Taiji

One of Hong Taiji's 5 Major Consorts of Chongde Palaces

Prince Dorgon and his principal wife, Xiaoyu'er. She is the full-blooded younger sister of Dayu'er.

Hong Taiji at camp with his troops.

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