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Heroines of the Yangs
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Heroines of the Yang (32 Episodes)
Part I - Breaking the Tian Moon Trap

* reviewed by TVB Square

Main Characters:
Amy Chan Sau Man - Mok Kwai Ying
Vincent Jiao En Jun - Yang Zhong Bo
Gilbert Lam Wai San - Ye Lut Hou Nam
Annie Man - Yang Pai Fung
Lai See Kar - Yuen Loh
Chung Yeung - Yang Zhong Yuen
Tam Bing Man - Pong Tai See
Cho Chui Fen - Sheh Tai Kuan
Gong Suet Far - Empress Siu

What, when, where and who
You should be familiar with the story of the Yangs in the Song Dynasty, if you not, you should takes some Chinese History lessons, or you can just read my review. As for me, I always enjoy the story of the Yangs, because it was an emotional story, I remembered I saw so many different versions of the Yangs' story when I still in the Elementary school, but I really like those, even today, I still remember every single character, and their stories...

To be brief, here is a little background of the Yangs: In the Song Dynasty, there is a small country named Liao, its emperor wants to take over the Song Dynasty, so he sent out many Liao soldiers to fight Song. The Yang family is very loyal to the Song, Sheh Tai Kuan, the chief of the family, sent out seven sons as well as her husband to fight the Liao, but only one son (the sixth son Yan Zhao) came back. The fourth son was captured by the Liao, the fifth son became a monk and never came home. And, all the others died! The tragic event changes the Yangs forever, in only one day, everyone in the family becomes a widow other than Princess Chai (Yan Zhao's wife)

In this series, the story focus the relationship between Yang Zhong Bo (the son of Princess Chai and Yan Zhao) and Mok Kwai Ying. How Zhong Bo and Kwai Ying met, how they falling in love, how the Yang family dislike Kwai Ying at the beginning, how Kwai Ying became Zhong Bo's wife after many misunderstandings, and so on... Although these two are the main characters in the story, they only appear about 75% of the series, I guess the producer wants to make the story even, and gave other characters even chances to get on the screen...

So, here comes other focuses: Yang Pai Fung and Ye Lut Hou Nam. Ye Lut Hou Nam is an evil man, who set up the Tian Moon Trap, wishing to destroy the Yangs. Pai Fung is a servant in the Yang family, she grew up in the Yang family, and is royal to her masters, however, she falling love with Hou Nam... poor girl, all she wanted is to change Hou Nam to a good man, but he is way too evil, therefore, Pai Fung and Hou Nam's relationship didn't last long at all.

I think the main focus here is the entire Yang family, how they support each other, how they being so loyal to the emperor even thought the emperor misunderstood them so many times. Also, how they survived the evil Pong Tai See's traps one after another. You will feel mad about what they have to go through... too many misunderstandings, too many evil traps!

Here comes one more focus, the story of Yang Zhong Yuen, which I think, he has the most emotional outcomes. Zhong Bo's fourth uncle (the one got captured in Liao) was remarried to the Princess of Liao, and Zhong Yuen was born, he grew up in Liao, raised by the Liao people, he never knew his father is a member of the Yangs until Empress Siu told him. Zhong Yuen was very loyal to Liao, he treats Empress Siu as his mother (Zhong Yeun's father and mother both died when he was seven). So, Zhong Yuen wants to prove his loyalty to Empress Siu by going back to the Yang family and tries to persuade them to leave Song and work for Liao. Meanwhile, Zhong Yuen set up some traps to get the Yangs into the prison, so that he can persuade them, however, he realized how loyal the Yangs are, and how good they treat him as a member of Yangs. Zhong Yuen regretted about how he treated the Yangs, but he could not face Empress Siu as well, being stuck in between the two countries, he could not show loyalty to Empress Siu, and also helping the Yangs...

 

Series Links
Spcnet Review in English

 

THE FACTORS
- Hate Factor
Evil man: Pong Tai See
You will hate this character from the first moment you see him, because all he thinks of is how to get the Yangs killed. This guy will make up anything, and everything possible to throw the Yangs into prison! His part was a little dragging as well, yeah, of course, who will ever likes to listen to what he says!

Poor acting: Gong Suet Far
As Empress Siu, she did a horrible job! I do like her outfits, because those looks good on her, however, her acting just don't prove a thing. I can not stand the way she talks!

- Love Factor
Vincent Jiao En Jun and Amy Chan Sau Man
Vincent is one of my favorite Taiwanese star of ALL TIME! I used to obsessed with him LONG TIME ago. It's been a while, I have not see him on the screen.. Now, finally catches his amazing performances in this series, it was a great! His character Yang Zhong Bo is a very responsible man, who is also very loyal to his family, his country, I really love this character, and his chemistry with Amy Chan's Mok Kwai Ying. These two characters shines the entire series!

Gilbert Lam and Annie Man
As a villain, Lam did an excellent job! You will hate him, you will pity for him because of his background, you will wish he and Annie can be together... however, the producers just don't like happy ending for this couple. Lam could not change, he is still evil no matter how hard Annie tries to help him.

- Pity Factor
Yang Zhong Yuen
As I said above, this character has the most emotional outcomes, because he got stuck in between two countries, in between two people he loved the most (Tai Kwan and Empress Siu). He begged Empress Siu to stop the war and suicide! Poor guy! But, his death did not stop Empress Siu to invade Song... I felt so sad for his death!

- How Come Factor
Facts or Fiction
I saw so many versions of the Yangs' story, and there are lots of parts are the same, but lots others are totally different! For example, when did Vincent's character Zhong Bo died? In this series, he did not die, and his son was born, as part II of Heroines of the Yangs, when he died, his son is already a teenager. However, in the recent production of the Yangs series, starring Carmen Lee, it's called "The Lady Warriors of the Yang Family", Zhong Bo died before Kwai Ying realized she is pregnant! He died in Tian Moon Trap. So, which version should I believe in, I really have no clue! Also, the ending, supposedly, Mok Kwai Ying is the one who destroyed the Tian Moon Trap, however, in this series, she was giving birth in the Tian Moon Trap, the birth of her son destroyed the trap, it was weird...

Best Scenes
Here comes the list:
1. Everytime Vincent and Amy together
2. When Amy got crazy, you can see how much Vincent tries to help her, but he could not
3. Zhong Yuen's death, short, but emotional
4. The love chemistry between Annie and Gilbert, however it was really short!

 

THE COMMENTS
- The Performances
The best performances award belongs to Vincent Jiao, not just because of the fact that he is one of my all time favorite Taiwanese star. Vincent did an outstanding job here, especially in the crying scenes, it was touching! His relationship with Amy was really tough at the beginning, but they got stronger as many difficulties comes along. Also, thumbs up for Amy, she is a great actress, very perfect fit for the character of Mok Kwai Ying. Annie Man's performances were enjoyable as well, she looks a lot younger in this series, but I really like her! Gilber's evil skills is at the top in here, I totally hate him to the bone, but loves his performances!

- The Storyline
There are LOTS of misunderstandings, if you can leave with that, you will enjoy the series as much as me! There are also some parts, where you might falling asleep, that is when the character Pong Tai See is in it, you do not want to care what he has to say, but if you can also live with that, you will love the series!

- Worth Watching?
Very classic story telling, very memoriable performances by the main characters. A must see for all Vincent, Amy, Gilbert and Annie fans! One of the most watchable ATV series of all time, I guess this is all I have to say!

 

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Heroines of the Yangs
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5 - Excellent
4 - Good
3 - OK
2 - Not so good
1 - Don't watch


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