Saturday, January 30, 2010

Comeback #2 : Born Rich Special

It is easily noticable that a majority of Born Rich's cast consists of veterans making their comebacks. Yep, I'm talking about Ray Lui, Jamie Chik, and Kenix Kwok. There is Gallen Lo and Anita Yuen as well. The second issue of my Comeback feature will focus on these Born Rich cast members...

Two Weak Comebacks

Gallen Lo - When a Dog Loves a Cat

It is still a mystery to everybody to why TVB's #1 brother ever agreed to film this series in the first place. Winner of the Best Actor award 3 times and popular for his dramatic roles, it blows my mind why he took part in this series.

The Script: First off, when a dog loves a cat? Just by looking at the title, you know it's going to be cheesy. This series was obviously targeted for the youngsters. After all, I really doubt grown adults would want to sit around watching talking dogs and cats falling in love with each other.

The Role: I only watched the first three episodes or so over a year ago. I can only recall that Gallen's character was stubborn and hated dogs as it is related to his wife's death. The role wasn't anything challenging for Gallen nor did it allow him to showcase his versatility.

The Performance: As stated above, the role wasn't a challenge for Gallen.

As one of the most loved actors from TVB, Gallen could've done so much better when picking which series to be his comeback. Why did he waste his time on this production? It seems so out of his 'type.' Gallen strikes me as the actor who prefers roles in dramas. Of course, he's had his comedic roles, Old Time Buddies being his most notable one. So why would he want to take part in a lighthearted and weak scripted series like this?

Anita Yuen - Love Exchange

After secretly getting married to fellow TVB actor Julian Cheung, Anita became inactive with TVB for quite a while. In 2007, she made her comeback to TVB with Love Exchange. Though it recieved moderate ratings, it didn't get very good buzz and was quickly forgotten.

The Script: For a series with such a promising sales clip, Love Exchange turned out nothing like it. The plot was draggy and the mystery wasn't cleared up until the last episode. In other words, just a weak script in general. Despite being a rather anticipating series, it disappointed.

The Role: Another typical 'weak, housewife' role. TVB, enough of these!

The Performance: Like always though, Anita delievers a solid performance despite the bad characterization (and hairstyle).

A year later though, Gallen and Anita returned to the screen in 2009's grand production Born Rich. That turned out to have it's good sides...and it's bad sides.

Gallen Lo - Born Rich

Role: A conman named Sa Fu Loi, he takes up the identity of Cheuk Yat Ming to be rich. Although he is at first a lovable villain for his humor and principle that he will not hurt women and children, he later becomes a dispicable man. He does not let anyting or anyone stand in his way, which inadvertantly almost causes his little brother's death. however, the sudden change in character and heart was too sudden. Although it is inferred his actions were a result of a newfound greediness, his "greediness" was never justified.

Performance: As always, Gallen delivers a solid performance. He is charming and funny as the humorous and compassionate man at the beginning. After Sa Fu Loi's sudden "greediness" takes over, Gallen gives evil stares and cold expressions that managed to send chills down my spine. Even though character developement was sloppy, Gallen was able to showcase his versatility. Unfortunately, he didn't manage to get into the top 5 for Best Actor. It looks like winning this award a fourth time is not in this "big brother's" future.

Anita Yuen- Born Rich

Role: Cheuk Yat Sum is the tough and clever PR person of her family's bank business. She is met with the struggle of being in love with someone who she thinks is her step brother. At the same time, fellow collegue and former playboy Topman makes wholehearted and sweet efforts into courting her, resulting in the business woman being stuck in between the two men she loves.

Performance: Perhaps tough but kind women are the characters Anita portrays best. Not only did she give a lovable and realistic performance, she had wonderful chemistry with co stars Gallen and Joe.

And then, we've got our other three leads...

Ray Lui

Role: At first a smart businessman and good husband, he becomes a weak, indecisive, (don't forget annoying!) main protagonist after his kidnap. From the even more annoying love triangle with Angie (Kenix Kwok) to all the hard ship he brought on to his family and loved ones, he is deemed my most disliked main protagonist of the year, right after Chung Yau Shing.

Performance: Average performance. Solid, but nothing special. Then again, I have the tendency to not pay attention to the performance of characters I hate and get irritated by.

Kenix Kwok

Role: I've never seen a 3rd party as determined (mentally unstable is more like it) than Angie. She stopped at nothing for love and to get Marcus (Ray Lui). That did not make her evil and conniving. Instead, she just looked plain desperate. She had the potential to be a villain, but our wonderful script writers decided to turn her into a lunatic instead.

Performance: For such a versatile and natural actress as Kenix, Angie was a complete waste of the actress' talent. Why Kenix even accepted the role in the first place puzzles me. I think it's safe to say Kenix's comeback is the worst of the year, if not ever.

Jamie Chik

I'm pleased to see that the same oh so wonderful script writers who created Angie's character decided to give returning actress Jamie more than just a housewife role. Although her only job is being a house wife and mom, she is intelligent and clever. She stands up for what she believes in, even if it means angering somebody. Jamie's "Connie" is easily one of my fav characters.

Performance: While not a breakthrough, Jamie was convincing and elegant as the rich but clever woman. Two thumbs up from me.

Characterization for the series was not perfect (obviously). There were quite a few lovable characters but they couldn't make up for those annoying ones who dominated the screen, *coughcoughMarcusandAngiecough*. The ensemble's acting is one of the strongest of the year, but acting can never make up for a terrible script...

Script: The script is the typical 'starts off strong but goes downhill FAST' kind. While the first 10-15 episodes are a joy to watch, it becomes unbearable in the second half. The length of 41 episodes was definitely too long. It dragged on and on and it never seemed to end. What's there more to say?


  1. when talking abt this show to my friends, i often refer to it as the one with all the "old biscuits". hahaha.... among the veterans here, i dislike gallen more than ray in the show. gallen looks so old with v thick skin (literally) and scary leery eyes. so much so that they make my hair stand, so it's weird seeing anita being so smitten by him. as for kenix, yes, she's a lunatic. the unconvincing part is she was such a lunatic before she got ray but became a good understanding kind (and maybe even weak and docile) person again after she got him. it's like she has split personality. creepy! the one and only person that helped to keep me going in this ultra draggy serial is anita. gosh. i can only say, watching this serial is very draining.

  2. Old biscuits, lol! :D

    Agreed, Gallen hasn't aged too well. Meanwhile Ray still looks very young. Angie was just an unrealistic character to begin with, all she cared about was love. The sudden change was creepy. :/ What did you think of Jamie, Joe, Kenneth, and Sharon?

  3. Lol, where is Topman? He was like my favorite character by the end of the show yet he didn't even get a spot on your review?

    Wow, lots of sarcasm is detected in this review, but I'm not one bit surprised. I didn't even bother to review this series & you should know why. ;)

  4. BTW, it takes a lot of guts to be someone like Angie. She was too obsessive over Ray and the change from being long time no see friends to being in love w/ him came too abrupt. It flew out of know where. So what happened to the 12 years that they were apart? Unless she was never fully over him, I still find it impossible for her to change her heart so quickly. Lol, not to mention I don't see what's so attractive about Yat Yuen either. Yatming and Topman were so much more tempting, haha.

  5. well for jamie, i think she's got a good role and she acted well in it, but nothing spectacular. Joe was great. he's another person besides anita that's helping me get through this series. kenneth to me is forgettable, both the actor and the role. same as sharon. altho' i like her, her role is quite inconsequential to this super draggy series.

  6. by the way, i'm waiting to read your views on beauty of the game too! ;)

  7. this post was great! thanks! (:

    i think i know what i'm getting myself into if i should ever attempt this series. haha :D
    and yes, Gallen hasn't aged well at all; on the other hand, Ray still looks young - i still can't believe he's 54, whereas Gallen is only 48.

  8. Thanks for all the comments! :)

    Liling- Like I told you last night, it was hard to format this post. Now that I look at it again, this post really does seem like a review. Don't worry, I'll write a BR post sometime soon which will include Topman. :D

    I find it very unlikely she wasn't over him through out the 12 years. It may have still been a small crush with some regrets, but I don't see why she'd be so obsessed. LOL, you even like Yat Ming more than Marcus? That's saying a lot. Whatever, Topman still tops everyone else for me. :)

    queen_owl- I know, Jamie's role was great and so was her performance, but in the end she was 'overshadowed' by the rest of the leads. Plus, out of a level headed, intelligent individual and obsessive lunatic, the latter is obviously going to stand out more. Just not for positive reasons, haha. I loved Anita and Joe together! I thought Kenneth was adorable, but you're right that he was forgettable. I still loved when Benz complained to Kenneth about being the tangerine though, and Kenneth didn't mind being the tangerine for Sharon. The two are cute together, but they don't contribute much to the draggy plot. I definitely wouldn't mind for them to be paired up together though. :)

    A review of Beauty should be up before the end of my long weekend! (Hopefully)

    kRysTaL~ - I've lost track of all the series you're planning to watch that I completely bashed, haha. Wow, Gallen is 48? My dad's around his age and he looks so much more younger. And he doesn't even have the magic of the entertainment industry's enhancement and make up! Lol.

    Thanks for all the comments, girls! :)

  9. Uh, did I say that? Lol, I don't like either Yatming or Marcus, but Yatming was a more INTERESTING character while Marcus was kinda on the boring side. His affair was just stupid.

  10. hahaha lost track of the series i'm planning to watch? yea, it's a lot; you know, once i'm done with one, a new one comes out and it just goes on and on haha :D
    LOL! Gallen really hasn't aged well. i mean, look at Raymond Cho, he's 45 yet he looks like 10 years younger :) haha and not to mention our favourite, Michael Miu who's 52 :)

    always nice to see a great post from you!

  11. Liling - Oh, gotcha. Seriously, how does TVB expect us to feel for a protagonist who has an affair?

    kRysTaL~ - At least Gallen's still a great actor. But his face always makes him look tired now, lol. Raymond aged 10x better than him, though a little short, haha. Michael seems to get younger each day. :)

    Aw, thanks! :D