Chinese Remake of “A Step into the Past” is Actually a Historical Version of “Doraemon”

A Step into the Past <尋秦記> and Doraemon <哆啦A> don’t seem to go together, but if you’ve seen the Mainland Chinese remake of the classic TVB drama, then it will all eventually make sense.

Produced by Youku, the Chinese web drama A Step into the Past is a remake of the 2001 TVB drama, which starred Louis Koo (古天樂). The historical fantasy, an adaptation of the novel of the same name written by Huang Yi (黃易), tells the story of Hong Siu-lung, a modern special forces agent who goes back in time to the beginnings of the Qin dynasty 2,000 years ago. His mission was to witness the throning of Qin Shi Huang, but his time machine accidentally brings him three years earlier.

The Chinese web drama remake, which has been showing on Youku, stars Sean Chen Xiang (陈翔) as Hong Siu-lung and Niu Zifan (牛子藩) as the young Ying Zheng, before he becomes Qin Shi Huang. To make it different from the original show, the new remake adds more futuristic elements to the characters, rewriting Hong Siu-lung as a man from the year 2050 rather than the present day.

Throughout the show, Hong Siu-lung woos the ladies by showing off the gadgets from his world, including laser guns and a watch that shoots off a 4D image. Hong Siu-lung saves Ying Zheng like how Doraemon saves Nobita with his trusty gadgets. Hong Siu-lung also uses these gadgets to defeat his opponent Lin Chun (portrayed by Zhao Zhenting 赵振廷).

With such powerful futuristic weapons, it’s a wonder why Hong Siu-lung didn’t end up conquering all of China.

What do you think about the new remake?


This article is written by Addy for

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  1. I like wuxia movies. Who is that dude in the picture? Reminds me of some Kpop cute boys. I think this remake will appeal to teenagers. Not me. Sick of special effects with no depth in story line.

    1. @mangotango
      China has many really good Wuxia series I suggest you watch more before stereotyping that all Chins series are like that. That is actor and singer Sean Chen Xiang. He was in that one mainland series starring Kevin Cheng and Michael Tse. I forgot the name of the series at the moment.

  2. Am pretty sure it will lack heart. Somehow all cdramaa lack that element of.. Not sure how to put it. It looks good, it feels good, it may act good but it lacks that emotional depth. Very few has that

    1. @funnlim Totally Agree! Most C-drama/films these days are obviously just about money and tacky CGI. While classic TVB series might not be able to compare to Mainland’s props/scenery/costumes/etc but they had depth and heart in their stories. But I guess SARFT limits a lot of creativity from the writers as well…

    2. @funnlim
      I have watched many many China series and that is not the case. You need to watch the right ones. I actually feel the Hk series have that issue more these days, especially the ones from TVB.

  3. There are good Cdramas to be fair. Dramas with depth and heart without grandeur. Dramas which contain lines and scenes which leave a deep impression on me.

    But if they do not allow creativity particularly in terms of genre and storyline, the industry will stagnate in future.

    1. @mangotango

      That is true for series from all countries. There are definitely good China series but you need to watch the right ones.

      It is true that there are some restrictions but it does not mean they do not encourage creativity. I actually HK series, especially the ones from TVB very lacking these days. I cannot even finish most of them.

  4. The music kind of puts me off. I did not understand a word that they sang. Maybe they will have a softer ending theme with an ancient feel. What I liked about the TVB theme song was that it was catchy, had a mix of modern and ancient instruments and the lyrics were relevant to the story.

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