Episodic Thoughts: “Three Kingdoms RPG” (Episode 11)

By on July 25, 2012 in NEWS, REVIEWS

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Three Kingdoms RPG <回到三國>
TVB Series 2012

Cast: Kenneth Ma, Raymond Lam, Tavia Yeung, Sharon Chan, Ruco Chan, Kaki Leung, Joseph Lee, Savio Tsang, Jimmy Au, Law Lok Lam, and Ha Yu.

Disclaimer

This is a watch as I write episodic thoughts and some information may not be accurate since this is memory based. Certain dialogue is reproduced with some creative license adopted. I apologise if there is any mistake. All opinion remains my own.

EPISODE 11

“Even if he intends to cause me harm, we must be the better man, by showing compassion is the only way to win over our enemies.”

I have been discussing or rather rambling about a potential spoiler using the hidden spoiler feature (if you’re reading this at JayneStars, you won’t see these ramblings since there is no way to hide the potential spoilers) and since this episode sorta addressed it, I think I can openly discuss my rambling discussion.

For the past 10 episodes I have been wondering whether Sima Shun will be Sima Yi, Cao Cao and his descendant’s celebrated strategist who in the end kinda won the war when his descendant usurped and unite and created a dynasty whose name I can’t remember right now and am too lazy to google. Because I saw the name Sima Shun/Sima Yi and so I thought Shun will go to Cao Cao camp and be Sima Yi and will be pitted against Zhuge Liang. Then many net friends say rumours has it Kan may be Sima Yi which to me is likely when the writer spontaneously combusted and in his dying moment mistakenly write Kan as Sima Yi. Another theory is another actor will play Sima Yi. The combined theory which I think is possible is the real Sima Yi died and Shun assumes his identity. So the question remains why Shun runs to Cao Cao. Maybe before he leaves for modern times he impregnated Song Yau and as spoilers already indicated he will return an old man and reunite with Song Yau whose son may be grown up. Anything can happen. Why I reveal all this is because in this episode Shun reveals his ambition.

And also good news to Shun-Liang shippers. Tonight, the lovebirds will each other’s sentences and they will find that their one true love is one another. It is that moving. But before that, here goes the brilliant entrapment of Adviser Hon although seriously, it isn’t brilliant, it is just that Hon is stupid.

Recap.

But before that, I must apologise for the lack of dialogue recap because as I am writing this, it is midnight and I am tired.

Ok, recap!

BUT before that, I also must apologise that I missed the first 10 minutes of this episode and so what I write may not be what it is since I missed the pivotal first 10 minutes but being a long time TVB watcher, I basically can tell you probably my recap leading up to the missing 10 minutes is most probably correct.

And now let’s do this Shun’s style as in open your mouth big big, be very expressive and say…

Ok ok, RECAPPPPP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

ZGL is missing. He has been missing for 3 days. Even Hon does not know where he is as he has searched everywhere (my feeling is Shun kidnapped him without telling us viewers what is going on, as if he will kill ZGL but in actual fact, come on, you think ZGL can be kidnapped? NO WAY! HE IS SUPER ZHUGE LIANG!! HE HAS HIS OWN NICKNAME; THE Z MAN!!) Anyway Hon and his assistant pulled Shun who is holding the broom upside down ala ZGL into the store room and question him if he killed ZGL, where is ZGL, etc and Shun feigns ignorance and does not even admit seeing the assistant in episode 10 proposing to kill ZGL himself. And so Hon and assistant are baffled and they decided to follow him since Shun kinda disappears every day for a few hours to no one knows where.

They followed him, and to a very quiet place with a very rundown shack and they peeped in and they could see a tied up ZGL and a very devious looking Shun putting dirty buns (he scraped the bun on the floor which is filled with sand) and as ZGL cries “You’re a cruel devious man! Don’t you dare!!” and stuffed the bun into his mouth, shutting up as Shun angrily scolds him for denying him his merits and laughing evily as he says “Eat! EAT!! STUFF THAT CHOK FACE OF YOURS!! YOU THINK YOU ARE SO CHOK!!!!”.

Pause.

You and I both now such a scene is an act. ZGL getting tied up and fed dirty buns? Not The Z Man!!

Hon and assistant are now convinced Shun has kidnapped ZGL but they’re unsure if he will kill ZGL or just torture him although Hon admits “The way Wan Shun tortures him…but will he kill that ZGL?” and so they wait at the cliff for any sign that this may be a set up when assistant pushes Hon “Master, we can kill ZGHL and blame Shun!!” but Hon says “Wait. Let me think. This can be a trap. Let’s wait and see” and zoom 6 hours later, at night and assistant say “Master, this is our best opportunity!! If we don’t do it now, we will never have this chance. This is not a set up. See, no one! No one at all! Master I will do it!” and never before have I seen an assistant so eager in doing his master’s evil deeds. But Hon says “No, this is too simple.. no. We must be sure, because if captured for killing an adviser, the punishment is death. We must be 100% sure. Let’s go back”.

At the mansion, Hon sees a very worried Lau Bei and asks “Is my lord worried about ZGL?” and Lau Bei says “Yes. I am having meeting with Generals Guan and Cheung to discuss a way to solve this mystery” as I can’t remember who said this “Some people have sighted Adviser Zhuge around *, and then some says ** and some even says he is as far as the ***”

PAUSE!!

*, **, *** represents the 3 places I didn’t hear correctly but * is near, **, is far, *** is like very very far.

Continue.

“Adviser Hon, perhaps you can suggest what we should do?” as Hon says “My lord, I will suggest dispatching a search team to search from the nearest * to the farthest ***” and Lau Bei says “I agree”.

Alone, assistant pushes Hon to kill ZGL as it is fool proof but Hon says “It is not fool proof. It is suspicious. Let me think..” but that guy says “But Master, if not now, WHEN?! Let’s do it!!” as Hon says “I need to be sure this is 100% fool proof…wait… it will be 100% fool proof if we kill…” and assistant says “ZGL!” and Hon says “NO! Wan Shun! If we kill Wan Shun, no one will ever know ZGL is there and he will starve to death!” and assistant is delighted as Hon says “Fine the assassin and tell him to kill Wan Shun” and assistant says “Brilliant, master! Brilliant!”.

What a misguided pair.

Shun walking on a quiet road when suddenly an assassin appears and Shun shocked almost died as he fell to the floor when suddenly someone came out and subdued the assassin and I thought “KAN!!” but no, it is the worser ke-le-fe than Kan, it is Chiu Chi Lung himself!!

Hon knows the assassin has been captured and he says “Who knews Chiu Chi Lung was waiting for the assassin. It is only a matter of time that assassin will say we are the culprits” and assistant says “So what should we do?” and Hon says “Don’t say anything, let me do the talking”.

Pause.

Well technically they just asked assassin to kill a servant that is Shun.

Continue.

Hon and assistant before the big 3 and the assassin by the side on his knees and Lau Bei asks angrily “This assassin says you hired him to kill Wan Shun. Why do you want to kill Wan Shun?” and Hon kneels and says “My lord, I wanted to kill Wan Shun to save your reputation” and everyone was like what? and he goes on “He has defied your orders. He has insulted you. He thinks by his merits he is above you. Such insubordination must not be tolerated, if not everyone will act that way with my lord. I know my lord is too noble to order for his death and so I have decided to do this deed for my lord” and seriously, it does sound logical. Except Shun walks in and says “And you still think you can make an excuse after everything you did?” and Hon quickly says “And my lord, I have evidence to show the disappearance of Adviser Zhuge is because of Shun and I believe Wan Shun killed Adviser Zhuge” and he shows the written official reports and Lau Bei sees “Die ZGL!”, “You’re a pig (Zhu) ZGL! A PIG THAT DESERVES TO DIE!” and “DIE you pig! DIE DIE DIEEEEEEEEEEEEEE!!!!” and Shun says “These were just my childish rambling they mean nothing” as Hon says “It means you have intention! He killed Adviser Zhuge” as Shun says “Before you say anything else, you might want to look there” as Shun looks behind Hon and Hon turns and there enters ZGL. Hon knows he has been tricked.

“You see, this operation kill pig (Zhu being Zhuge Liang) is to capture you! Adviser Zhuge and I have always been in cohorts. I overheard your plans and I thought what should I do when I know you plan to blame me for Adviser Zhuge’s death? I know I can never outsmart you so I decided to be more devious than you. I went to Adviser Zhuge and told him what happened and he accommodated my plan just to capture you. Hence, this is operation kill pig!” and ZGL says “It is true. Wan Shun told me of your plans and I agreed to follow his plans to capture you” as Shun says “I deliberately let you see me torturing Adviser Zhuge and was hoping you will rush in to kill him when no one else was there because General Chiu was waiting for you guys. But you both waited for 6 hours and did nothing and poor General Chiu who also waited for 6 hours, being fed on by mosquitoes”

Pause.

Rather funny line lost in translation. And Chiu Chi Lung actually crouched for 6 hours.

Continue. But do forgive me for some creative license used in the following dialogue which is not verbatim but is true in spirit.

Hon says loudly “My lord, they trapped me! They are out to get me!!” when Shun says “Save it!! Lord Lau Bei knows your tricks. I told him!!” and Hon still defiant says “I didn’t do anything! No one is dead! I didn’t do anything then! No law has been broken!” as ZGL steps forward as he calmly says “You failed on 3 counts” as Hon says “What 3 counts?!” as ZGL says “All of which is the intention. You have every intention to kill me and blame Wan Shun. That is the 1st count. If you have barged in and killed me, that would be the completion from your intention to an act. You would have been guilty as charged then. When you came back and failed to report my whereabouts, that is the 2nd count. And Lau Bei says grimly “Remember when I asked you what should I do with all those sightings? I was giving you a chance to redeem yourself and reveal where was Adviser Zhuge but you disappointed me” as ZGL continues “And the 3rd count is when you decided to hire assassin to kill Wan Shun so as to kill me. All 3 counts, intentions leading to a conspiracy to murder me. You have immoral intentions and that in itself can’t be tolerated when someone is devious within themselves, when their intentions are devious” and perhaps this is the 1st instance of conspiracy to murder? and Hon want to argue some more when Shun says to him loudly “Oh for god’s sake, save it! YOU HAVE LOST!! YOU ARE DOOMED! YOU ARE NO MORE!! I HAVE WON IN THIS GAME OF WIT!! ADMIT YOUR DEFEAT! THIS IS TOTAL LOST!!!” and Hon knowing Shun is right slumped onto the floor in shock. His assistant begs for mercy and Hon begs “My lord, spare my life, please spare my life” as Lau Bei angrily says “You 2 will be executed!” and shock and all as Hon cries for mercy when ZGL says loudly “My lord, please listen to what I have to say. Please spare their lives. Whatever their evil intentions may be, they were directed at me and I will admit I am partially to be blamed. It is because of your treatment towards me have led to this end and for Adviser Hon to feel he was unjustly ignored. I am to be blamed too. My lord, consider his merits. He has faithfully and loyally worked for my lord for so many years and coming up with strategies to win wars (but ZGL, before you came, Lau Bei was always losing!), consider these deeds as his merits and so consider his merits to show mercy on him” and Shun says “But he totally deserves this end. He wanted to kill you!” and ZGL says to Shun “Even if he intends to cause me harm, we must be the better man, by showing compassion is the only way to win over our enemies” and Shun shrugs as Lau Bei walks to ZGL and actually gave him a formal bow as he says emotionally “Adviser Zhuge, today you have moved me with your benevolent and compassionate heart, even to your enemies who wanted to kill you and yet you’re begging on their behalf for mercy. And so it shall be… YOU BOTH will be imprisoned for the rest of your life so that you may take those years to reflect on your wrongdoing!” as Hon cries “Thank you my lord, thank you adviser Zhuge. I will repent. I will repent, I swear!!”

and I hope he does. Is this the last we see of Hon? And who would choose lifetime in prison as against death when the prison back then is like 1 year is like 10 years as Shun says?

Anyway I find the points about intention is very well argued by ZGL and I feel this part is brilliantly written. What led to Hon’s downfall is not. I mean he already knows Chiu Chi Lung was waiting and then saved Shun and arrested the assassin (who by the way Lau Bei forgot to hand out a punishment!) and since if Chiu Chi Lung is there, then Lau Bei and everyone else would know! So when Hon suddenly turns on Shun is really stupid. Because when Chiu Chi Lung appeared I knew Lau Bei knew. ZGL says his downfall is his intentions but I will say his downfall is the writer’s stupidity in cloaking the stupidity with a great comeback dialogue by ZGL.

ZGL drinking tea at his place and Shun comes in as I think ZGL asks for him and ZGL says “Please sit” and Shun says “I better go, I have loads to do” but ZGL motioned for him to sit and so Shun sits and drinks the tea offered by ZGL as ZGL says “I must thank you. Your operation kill pig was brilliant. I owe you my life. If it was not for you, I would have been dead” as Shun shyly says “Ahhh no big deal, I would have done it for anybody else, not just you” as ZGL says “I know you have helped me greatly in many situations, and for that I am grateful” and Shun smiles shyly and means to get up and leave since he is a servant with work to do when ZGL says “You may stay here, you need not go back to do those servant’s job and if you would accept my offer, to be my assistant” and Shun is like “WHAT? SERIOUSLY?!” as ZGL nods and smiles a little when Shun says “But am I smart enough to be your assistant?” as ZGL says “Of course you are. You are smart, and with a few tricks up your sleeve. If you use your intelligence wisely, you will carve a great career for yourself” as Shun says “I know… I need to use my wit for better reasons.. I swear I will never interfere with you and your wife anymore. I mean to see a man so devoted to his wife, you’re like almost extinct 100% good man. I swear I will work hard and not disappoint you” and ZGL locks eyes with Shun and smiles as he pours more tea for a very very happy Shun.

Pause.

I am very happy that FINALLY we move away from selfish Shun to a more humbled Shun. Under ZGL’s tutelage he will be a better man unless TVB wants to play with our fragile minds and hearts which they will. Anyway a favourite moment of mine, for the reason because just these 2 men together, a master and his disciple, like Obi Wan and his Luke Skywalker.

Continue.

Shun gets back his old place and he is very happy when the butler calls him Assistant Wan Shun. Anyway he thinks to himself “I AM ZGL’S ASSISTANT!!!!” and the he becomes serious as he says to himself “I must not disappoint him. Must make him proud. But never in history have I read of a Sima Shun achieving great thing who is under ZGL. So how now? Ahhhh there will not be butterfly effect and there will be (and he says this in English) WAN SHUN EFFECT!!!” and he sms his sis as he writes “Sis, I am now ZGL’s assistant! I have decided to stay back and make a name for myself since I can’t go home. I will carve a career for myself and hopefully reach the history books. My phone does not have much battery left. Soon we will lose touch forever. Sis, know that I love you and take care of mom, dad and even brother. Take good care of yourself and always remember I miss you. Take care sis” and he switches off his phone as he screams “I WILL CHANGE HISTORYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!”

and that is why I don’t like Shun again. Still some selfishness in him. And this is where I believe my theory of Sima Shun as Sima Yi will begin taking shape. Because history books do not have Sima Shun, but it has a Sima Yi. But that also means he will work for Cao Cao unless we are talking Infernal Affairs here. You know, spy thing? But good that he has an ambition.

The rest of this episode is on how Shun avoids Song Yau who doesn’t get that the guy isn’t into him. When Shun hears the singing lady is back, he rushes to her only to find the woman behind the veil is actually the 2 missus of Lau Bei here to make sure he doesn’t cheat on Song Yau. Still Song Yau knows nothing. Even when Shun sees Song Yau looking intently at an old loving couple tells Song Yau “You know why they’re so loving? One is because they are in love with one another but 2nd more important reason is a couple in love should spend more time apart, with private time for oneself rather than spending together the whole time, like ZGL and his wife, both more in love than ever when spent time apart. You know what I mean?” and so Song Yau believes Shun’s twisted logic and decided to “Let him carve his career and I will leave him alone for awhile…”.

You know he could have just told her his real feelings rather than flirt with her and touch her nose.

Pause.

Oh this scene scares me!! Why? Tavia Yeung, so thick with make up and yet lipstick so pale, she looks sick. And the closeups really magnify her nose every time she turns and shows us her side profile. It was a scary look. Why did she ever do that to herself? And can TVB just loosen up a bit on the make up? So so thick!!

Continue.

Shun back at mansion and sees Lady Choi’s 2 men and knows she is here. Why?

Lau Bei thanks Lady Choi for allowing Xianye to sell the exclusive Xiangyang vermicelli and Lady Choi is very polite and smiling as she says “Oh it is no big deal. We help each other! Sigh..” and Lau Bei asks what is going on as she says “My husband is very sick, he won’t last long.. and there is the problem with who shall succeed him” as Lau Bei says “My lord has 2 sons, both as capable” as Lady Choi says “Both as capable? Eldest Lau Kei is nothing but a useless fool. He is not up to task. But my son, Lau Chung will be a good leader don’t you think? I hope you will put in a good word for my son so that my husband will choose him as his successor. With the elders’ support, my son’s bid for the position will be stable and strong” but Lau Bei avoids making that promise and rushes off when Lady Choi says “So what of the issue I spoke to you just now?” as Lau Bei without facing her says “Perhaps Lady Choi should return to Xiangyang now” and he leaves and Lady Choi fuming.

Meeting. ZGL says “Since she has asked my lord for support, it must mean the chief of Jingzhou has yet to decide…” and Cheung Fei angrily says “That sei pat poh is troublesome!!” as Lau Bei says “She asks for my support for Lau Chung over Lau Kei” as I think Guan Yu says “Lau Kei may be a better man but he is a weak man nonetheless. He can’t rule over the state of Jingzhou convincingly and now with Sun Quan at one side, Cao Cao at the other, I don’t think he can handle it” as Shun says “So the one with the biggest army and most control and therefore more suitable for the seat is Lady Choi and her son Lau Chung and yet their characters are not ideal” as Lau Bei says “Therefore my dilemma. Adviser Zhuge, what do you think?” as ZGL says “I will choose a benevolent compassionate ruler who has the potential to rule justly over one with military strength and I believe Lau Kei has the strength in character to be a good rule” and Lau Bei smiles “Yes, he is my choice too!!” when a secret messenger from Jingzhou arrives and the chief asks to see Lau Bei on urgent basis.

Lau Bei rushes to Jingzhou and sees a coughing and dying Lau Biu and as he coughed Lau Bei says “I know why you see me. It is about who will succeed Lau Biu. It is either Lau Chung or Lau Kei, I know and…” and Lau Biu whilst coughing hard says “I have chosen.. my successor” and Lau Bei surprised says “You have? Is it your eldest son Lau Kei or your second son, Lau Chung?” as Lau Biu coughs hard and with difficulty says much to the shock of Lau Bei, “I … have… chosen… to ….. give…. Jingzhou..to……….you….” and cue the shocked look of Lau Bei.

So is this a case of the famous saying ‘Lau Bei borrows Jingzhou, once borrowed never returned’? which means someone who takes something from you and never returns it.

Exciting ending moment but then Lau Biu made a wise choice. Lau Kei is too cowardly and Lau Chung is controlled by his menacing mom. Jingzhou will be sucked dry if under their hands.

I love those Shun-Liang moments.

Performance wise, no comments. I like the fanboy Shun rather than jilted lover Shun so for me Kenneth Ma did well tonight without going OTT. Raymond too, I like how he stares at Kenneth Ma, not gay or whatever but rather like a disapproving headmaster.


This Episodic Thoughts was written by Funn Lim, a Contributing Writer at JayneStars.com, and was originally posted at http://3kingdomsrpg.blogspot.com

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