Guo Jing and Huang Rong in the new Return of the Condor Heroes
One of the most redeeming qualities about the new adaptation of Return of the Condor Heroes is the cast for the"middle-aged" couple Huang Rong and Guo Jing. Compared to the first installment in the Condor Trilogy, the character of Huang Rong is written in a much less favorable light the second installment. No matter how "unpopular" Huang Rong becomes during her middle age years, she remains my favorite female character in the Louis Cha/Jin Yong's universe. My second favorite character also coincidentally happens to be her daughter, Guo Xiang, who not only inherited the mother's beauty but also her brains.
Anyway, I just love Yang Mingna's Huang Rong. She looks beautiful, sharp, and smart. It also helps a lot that she is paired with a quite handsome Zheng Guolin as her beloved hubby, Guo Jing. Guo Jing and Huang Rong definitely look more compatible and gorgeous together than the main OTP of the drama. I watched almost every single adaptation of Return of the Condor Heroes except for the Singaporean version. Except for the 1983 Andy Lau and Idy Chen version, I was dissatisfied with the actress who portrayed this character. I could not for the life of me associate her middle-aged self in Return of the Condor Heroes with the spunky, witty, and wickedly intelligent Huang Rong I saw in Legend of the Condor Heroes. Besides the change in characterization, something abstract was always missing in the portrayal. Though I would not be able to admire Xiaolongnü's beauty in this remake, I could at least enjoy the prettiness of Yang Mingna's Huang Rong and her endearing relationship with her hubby.