Quick Thoughts on the latest TVB Series Three Kingdoms RPG & Tiger Cubs
Three Kingdoms RPG
|Left to Right: Sima Xin, Zhuge Liang, and Zhou Yu|
Raymond Lam's Zhuge Liang is truly "chok." The phase "chok" is a popular Cantonese slang in Hong Kong to mean "to forcefully make oneself look more handsome". LOL. I love the fact that Sima Xin always teases Zhuge Liang for being chok. Raymond Lam's Zhuge Liang really brings the essence of chok to life. For the most part, the character of Zhuge Liang in this version doesn't deviate much from conventional perceptions. I can't say Raymond Lam is great in portraying Zhuge Liang, but he isn't unforgivably bad either. I think I would like this series more if TVB cast a better actress to play Zhuge Liang's wife. The current actress is too wooden and unconvincing in the role. I love that the writers incorporated this wife in the script because most dramas that incorporates Zhuge Liang tends to omit her. Unfortunately, the actress is not doing a good job in bringing that character to life.
Since this series is still being aired and only five episodes have been released, my comments don't reflect the entire series. I really hope the comedy will last throughout the entire series and not get abruptly overshadowed by the more serious political schemes. I also hope Kenneth Ma's character won't turn into an antagonist of Zhuge Liang. I prefer that they stay on the same boat and remain good friends. Unfortunately, I have a feeling the fact that Kenneth Ma's character bears the surname "Sima" foreshadows a fallout between these characters. I speculate Sima Xin is somehow related to the Sima clan that would bring an end to the Shu Kingdom, and perhaps will he even morph into Zhuge Liang's greatest nemesis, Sima Yi?
Main Theme Song:
I am no fan of Joe Ma, who plays the ground leader of SDU team. His recent Hengdian Studio scandal further tarnished my impression of him. Luckily, Tiger Cubs has an ensemble cast that I generally like and Joe Ma's character is also tolerable. The plot isn't character driven, but focuses more on different crime cases and action sequences. But don't expect any ingenuity in crime solving or any thrilling psychological game. Nothing really original in terms of writing crimes or cracking down criminals.
Despite TVB's deterioration and the gradual decline of Hong Kong film industry, I still feel Hong Kong makes some of the best cop series/movies in Asia. Hong Kong just really specializes in this genre. The pace of the storyline doesn't drag too much. Some cases may suffer from underdevelopment but it rarely overkill you in the frustrating details.
If you're interested, you can watch both of these series on AZDrama.net