Episodic Thoughts: “Three Kingdoms RPG” (Episode 7)

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.


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.


“Please sit. I love to hear compliments … especially if they’re by you!” 

Not much happened in tonight’s episode so I will be brief. Mainly concerns Song Yau and Guan Yu. 

Recap starts. 

Song Yau says no to the marriage and she says “Because… I don’t want to leave master…” and Lau Bei says “Neither do I want you to but you’re of marriageable age, you should marry” and the 2 missus agree and so the wedding will proceed. 

Everyone in the household hears of Song Yau rejecting the marriage and gossips are passed and when it reaches Shun, it seems as if Song Yau feels she is not suitable for this marriage as she is not chaste any more. Shun hears that and goes see Song Yau and sees her crying and he thinks to himself “Poor girl, no wonder she doesn’t want this marriage. Not being a virgin any more is an issue in this age and times….” 

WHAT?! How does she not wanting marriage lead to her not being a virgin any more?! 

Anyway Shun approaches Song Yau who stopped crying when he sees her and gently says “I understand perfectly. In my hometown, Hong Kong, a lot of the girls aren’t that sort anymore. I mean I too often think about.. you know.. that since I was a boy. It is perfectly normal to lose it. However girls in Hk do use the pill so you just have to be careful” and Song Yau looks at him and says “You too?” and Shun says “It is no big deal you know. I mean that Chi Him is a great catch. But I understand why you feel you’re not good enough for him, because well.. you being not a … well…chaste any more…” and Song Yau shocked “I was just crying about my dead parents! I.. Brother Wan Shun, I am still a virgin…” and Shun was like “Oh….” and frankly I was laughing so hard I didn’t quite catch what happened next. She did however show him her jade pendant, a gift from her dead parents. Oh yes,  he did asked why she refused the marriage and she confesses “Because of you” and he slowly walk away as she slowly walks toward him and says “You taught me the freedom to love! I want to feel that sort of love. I want to find my own life partner and even if I choose wrongly I shall say I have no regrets because I chose him” and Shun was like “You remember everything I said?” and she says eagerly “Yes”. 

For a moment I thought she was gonna say she loves him. No no not yet. She just wants to find her own true love. Silly because Chi Him is a catch. 

Shun alone thinks to himself “I have ruined her with my freedom to love thing. What if she blames me in future? But she doesn’t want to marry and she should have the right to choose!” and so he devised a plan which I didn’t understand at first. He went to her asking to see her jade pendant once more, made a copy and paid a master to make another exact copy. Remember the word exact copy. Then he asks someone to deliver to Lau Bei’s home to Song Yau with a letter and the letter is purportedly from Song Yau’s recently deceased great grandmother from Jizhou that she never knew she had and in it he puts the exact jade pendant. 

Point it as Lau Bei says “I never knew she had a great grandmother. So that means she must mourn for 3 years” and so his wives will have to cancel the marriage contract and Chi Him will have to wait 3 years to marry Song Yau. 

Kinda brilliant plan except Lau Bei was busy looking at the replica pendant and he confesses being very stricken by this sudden change of events and having to reject the excellent proposal. One thing led to another and ZGL is tasked with looking into the pendant and the letter, in case Song Yau is being cheated or something. There is also a small scene of ZGL personally boiling his wife’s medicine. Very loving. 

ZGL and wife doing research and discovers the pendant is exclusive to Jizhou which is made using the “8 slices method” and ZGL discovers the corner of the replica is chipped. How can a master make such a mistake? So he asks his wife if the jade is supposed to be chipped by the corner and wife says no. So he has to investigate further. 

I tell you ZGL is one busy man. Check weather, devise war strategy, check on maid’s past and later settle disputes. 

Anyway meeting time with everyone, even Hon Leong and Lau Bei asks ZGL about his investigations and he asks to see Lau Bei in private but Lau Bei says “It is alright for  you to reveal your findings” and reluctantly ZGL explains the origin of the jade and all and he observes “The one given by the great grandmother is chipped by the corner. Interestingly..” and he reluctantly continues “so is the original…” and Shun thinks “Shit! I said exact replica!” and Lau Bei says “Yes I remember. A year ago when my first wife was giving birth, she held onto Song Yau too tight and the jade fell and was chipped and Song Yau cried for days about it” and  ZGL continues “That can only mean…” and Shun thinks “Please man, I know you’re brilliant but not for this one, please!!” and Hon eager to earn points in front of Lau Bei immediately stands up and says “Interesting! It is such a coincidence that when Song Yau expresses her reluctance to marry young master Yeung, the letter arrives with the announcement of death which means 3 years mourning period. A coincidence that the jade should have the same chip by the corner. It can only mean someone replicated the jade so as to send a false letter to avoid marriage for Song Yau..” and Guan Yu says “But the pendant is always carried by Song Yau. Who could have made a replica?” and Hon says smugly “Ask Song Yau” and Lau Bei says “Bring forth Song Yau” and Shun looks panicking and ZGL looks stricken as well. I think he knew what is going on. 

Song Yau arrives and Hon basically hammered her with questions and suggestions that she refused the marriage and she played a trick on them and master’s kindness and cheated him and on and on and on and Lau Bei was very angry that he felt cheated and Song Yau cries “I didn’t plan all this” and ZGL says “Maybe Miss Song Yau was confused, please forgive her my lord” but Lau Bei is very angry when Shun stands up and says loudly “I was the one who planned this, I borrowed the jade, I made a copy, I am to be blamed, please punish me my lord and ..” looking at ZGL “If you want to beg for mercy, beg on my behalf… please…” and Hon gulps as he says “Don’t admit to something you did not do you fool!” but Shun admits and everyone asks “WHY?!” and Shun says “Because my lord, have you ever asked her whether she wants to marry or not? Whether she loves that man or not? You never asked for her opinion. She wants to have the freedom to choose and who to love and who to marry!” and perhaps Shun was hoping for Lau Bei to go you’re so right but instead it backfired. Cheung Fei was so angry when he said “Song Yau, brother has treated you well but you have abused his kindness. You’re just a maid! You must listen to your master and his wishes! If he wants you to marry, you marry! Brother, Song Yau has abused your trust! She must be punished!!” and Song Yau cried some more as Lau Bei walks to her and says “I have always treated you like my daughter. I cared for you and this is how you repay me, by lying to me? What nonsense is this freedom to love? All marriages are arranged by parents, this has been the law of this country! I am to decide since I am like a father to you! You do not have a choice! If you insist on freedom of love, what sort of a woman does that make you, cavorting with men without the blessings of your parents? And imagine your 2 poor mistress, having to face the humiliation of rejecting an already agreed marriage proposal. You will marry Yeung Chi Him and that is the way the law is, if not you’re breaking the Han law!!” and Song Yau cries meekly, ZGL speechless and to Shun Lau Bei says “Just because you earned merits for the war doesn’t mean you can walk all over me” and I think Cheung Fei suggest Shun to be imprisoned and he says “I will make sure Song Yau enters the wedding palanquin, even if I have to tie her up and throw her into it” and ZGL tried to beg for him but Lau Bei refuses to listen. 


All these fuss over a maid’s marriage. If Lau Bei is that forceful during the way, maybe ZGL wouldn’t have to face such difficulties! Small matter overblown.


So Shun is being dragged away and all that when he says “STOP!!!!!” and here comes his brilliance. 

To Lau Bei he says “My lord, you said you treat Song Yau like your daughter, correct?” and Lau Bei agrees and “You say it is the law of the Han that parents decide the marriage of the children, correct?” and Lau Bei agrees and “If not law is broken, correct?” and Lau Bei also agrees when Shun hits the jackpot; “Then my lord, YOU ARE BREAKING THE LAW TOO!!!!” and Lau Bei and everyone, even ZGL stunned as Lau Bei flustered says “ME?!” and Shun continues “Yes you! Because may I ask, are you Song Yau’s father?” and Lau Bei was like “No.. but I treat her like my own..” and Shun says “Yes, you treat her like your own. You have never officially adopted her have you? No? You’re not her father, you did not take her as your goddaughter officially, she is just your maid in your household whom you treat like your daughter but in the end she is NOT your daughter, therefore you can’t decide for her marriage and if you did, you’re breaking the law for deciding marriage for someone unrelated to you and you too should be punished because a master is a master, he is not the same as a parent and no one is ever above the law, not even a master!” and Lau Bei gulped as Shun continues “And everyone here who does not advise my lord of the Han law is also breaking the law, so all of you must be punished as well!!” and everyone is flustered as ZGL says “I agree with Brother Wan Shun’s observation. No one is above the law, not even my lord” and Lau Bei finally says “fine, Song Yau you’re not my child, nor my adopted child, you’re free to love whomever you want” and he walks away defeated and Song Yau smiles happily as ZGL looks at Shun approvingly and to Shun that would  be the best prize ever. 


Sounds good doesn’t it? Fair argument, I agree. BUT this scene is also darn stupid. Why? Because by saying what he said, it means all those years Lau Bei treated Song Yau nice has been wasted. To Song Yau he is nothing more than a master. All those father figure talk means they were pointless. If you’re Lau Bei wouldn’t you feel disappointed? And what about the 2 wives? So what are they to Song Yau? Such an argument is potentially harmful to relationship as it breaks a relationship rather than save oneself. It sounds great but the actual meaning is Lau Bei is just a master to be obeyed and nothing more.I find that incredibly insensitive thing to say. Of course she can’t be forced to marry but there must be a better way out of this mess. 


Song Yau thanks Shun and confesses “I really don’t want to marry” and Shun says “Not even to a great catch like Yeung Chi Him? and what if you ended up with say.. a cold bun like you’re holding? One you can’t stomach?” and Song Yau says “Since it is my choice, I shall live by it” and Shun asks “Even if you become a spinster?” and Song Yau says “What’s wrong with being a spinster?” 

Nothing wrong of course. 

ZGL sees Shun at his place and Shun says “Are you hear to deliver the news that I have been sacked?” and he said sacked in the modern lingo which confuses ZGL as he explains what it is and ZGL says “NO. I am here to say brilliant argument brother Wan Shun..” and Shun says happily “Please sit. I love to hear compliments” and he thinks to himself “especially if they’re by you!” as he smiled brilliantly and ZGL says “I must admit, I never dared think anyone dared to scold and accuse his lordship and when you did, I was afraid of what might happen to you as this has never been done before. I must express my admiration at your brilliant plan. You’re really something brother Wan Shun and I am inspired by your quick wit” and shun says “Yeah for a moment I thought I was dead meat. I could have sailed through if not for the busybody Hon Leong intent on earning some merits” and ZGL says “But you made your points and I must congratulate you and thank you as well for your assistance.  although if you try that again I won’t guarantee you won’t be.. the word you said.. sacked” and they laughed. 

Shun couldn’t stop smiling when he sees Kan at the courtyard and Kan notices and Shun just keeps smiling as Kan says “He only complimented you and you can’t stop smiling!” and Shun says “The first time it was just him admitting he should have taken me as an assistant and that he has underestimated me. But this, it is really really him complimenting me, effectively saying he was inspired by me.. I am now his muse!! Imagine, from best friends to… soul mate…” and Kan asks innocently “Are we soul mates brother Wan Shun?” and Shun immediately says “No. We are like superior and inferior” and Kan says knowingly “Oh I see, I am your younger brother!” 


Kan.. wrong!!! When he says inferior, he said “kai dai” if I remember correctly and that is like master, servant sort of relationship. Kan hears “kai dai” where “kai” is adopted and “dai” is little brother so he thought Shun says little brother which is nicer sounding. Poor Kan, really a kai dai in this. Anyway the things Shun will do just to get ZGL to compliment him a little. It was very funny to watch and my favourite has to be when he thought “especially if they’re by you!” 


Next up Guan Yu’s problem. Someone in the camp reports a strange incident where all the prisoners seem to be extra helpful and respectful towards an older ordinary prisoner and after some investigation by Chiu Chilung that prisoner is actually General Yingshun, one of Cao Cao’s most trusted general. Cheung Fei is very angry and rushes into the prison to kill Yingshun because just 3 years back Yingshun buried alive hundreds of Cheung Fei’s men. Right at that moment Guan Yu came and saved Yingshun and he says he must save Yingshun because 13 years ago when Yingshun was still an army fella with Sun Che, he led armies to save a trapped Guan Yu and his 500 men. So to Guan Yu he owes Yingshun his life and will do anything to save Yingshun whilst Cheung Fei wants to kill him. Cheung Fei screams “I will kill him if not how can I look at my men in the eye?!” and Guan Yu says “I will stop you! If not I shall be accused as someone who forgets his roots!” and each scream kill, don’t kill, kill, don’t kill. Not even Lau Bei could persuade them to reconcile and had to bath in hot spring alone as Cheung Fei says he is busy reading (“Read? 3rd brother is only interested in weapons, he doesn’t read!” says Lau Bei) and Guan Yu says he is sick (“Sick? For all the years I have known him he has never been sick! Clearly an excuse! How can I reconcile them if they avoid one another?!” says Lau Bei). Things are so bad, Cheung Fei’s men fight Guan Yu’s men and Shun who sees what is happening says to Shun “This is like Manchester United versus Chelsea!” and by this time Kan just takes his word for it. 

In the end Lau Bei suggests a majority vote by the 10,000 men since this affects them too and Guan Yu and Cheung Fei agree. After voting, 11000 plus says execute, 2000 plus says do not execute. 


Didn’t they say they have 10,000 men? What are the extra 1000 plus? Phantom voters? 

When Guan Yu hears this he sighs “If that is the case I shall accept our men’s majority vote but because I am duty bound by my loyalty and my pledge to save Yingshun, I shall seek brother’s permission to retire to farm for the rest of my life” 

Sore loser. 

Cheung Fei shocked, even Hon rushes forward and says “General Guan, is Yingshun worth your sacrifice? I urge you to rethink your decision” and Guan Yu says “My mind is made up” and Lau Bei sighs “Fine. I know I can’t persuade you otherwise. You’re free to do” and so Guan Yu walks away. 


Seriously dumb man! You can repay his assistance by giving him an easy death instead of a difficult one. After all Guan Yu you pledged your loyalty to Lau Bei and this Yingshun is the bad guy! 


Guan Yu goes to the prison and faces Yingshun who asks “How?” and Guan Yu says “I have asked to retire. I am sorry but your fate is sealed” and that man shakes Guan Yu as he shouts “You promised to save me!! What sort of a man are you to break your promise???” as 2 other prisoners suddenly dropped a knife and Yingshun grabs the nice and holds it to Guan Yu’s throat and Guan Yu’s steadily says “My life is for you to take as my repayment towards my debt to you” but Yingshun drags himn out and everyone rushes there and Cheung Fei shouts “Let my brother go!!” as Yingshun says “Let me go or I will kill him” and Chiu Chi Ling shouts “Get ready a horse!” and Lau Bei says “Don’t hurt him” and Yingshun says “You better hurry, or else I will stab his neck” and he presses the knife on Guan Yu’s neck and Guan Yu, now sorta mad says “You can take my life if you want but do not use me to threaten others” and he moves and the knife digs into his neck and… 


Yingshun is arrested and Guan Yu saved. 

Meeting with everyone, Guan Yu says “But how can the knife snap?” and I was thinking eh I thought you learned some steel neck stance or whatever and Lau Bei explains “Thanks to Adviser Zhuge and of course Wan Shun” and Hon looks at a smiling Shun as Cheung Fei says “I know something is going on when Adviser Zhuge keeps looking at Wan Shun!” and Lau Bei explains “It was all a plan, by Adviser Zhuge” as ZGL explains “Please accept my apologies General Guan for not telling you the truth. I know General Guan will stand by his oath to protect Yingshun so I arranged for the votes by the soldiers on Yingshun’s fate… ” and Hon says “But surely you can’t predict the results?” and ZGL says wisely “I could because it was obvious. It is a matter of an old good deed versus a recent bad deed and memories are short, people always remember the recent deeds and so I knew General Guan will fail in the votes” as Hon says “But the suggestion to retire was by General Guan himself, you couldn’t have predicted that?” and ZGL says “General Guan is a persistent man and I know he will hold himself to his oath and so will leave if he couldn’t fulfil his oath, and I know he will see Yingshun before he leaves and…” and Shun shouts “This is where I come in! I made a fake knife that will snap when pressed..” and ZGL continues … 


The lovebirds are now finishing one another’s sentences!! 


…” and I arranged for 2 men to be there as prisoners and take the knife and threaten General Guan” as Ho says “But you couldn’t have predicted what Yingshun would do” as ZGL says “It was a rather simple equation (sorry this is my own word-I didn’t mean for him to sound like Prof King), Yingshun expects General Guan to safeguard his life but when General Guan tells him he will retire, the natural instinct of Yingshun is to protect himself so he would have acted the way he did” and Guan Yu nods as Hon knows he has lost the argument of rather sound logic and ZGL says “General Guan, I must apologise again for not informing you. General, this elaborate plan is simply to show to you the true nature of Yingshun. And by him doing what he did, you no longer owe him any debt whatsoever. You’re free from your oath. And for that, I must again for the 3rd time apologise to you for leaving you in the dark..” and Guan Yu returned the show of respect as he says “Thank you brother Zhuge for releasing me from my oath to Yingshun..” 

and we see Shun smiling widely as he looks at ZGL who if I remember correctly, looks back, smiling slightly. 

Oh get married soon!! What a lovely bromance!! 

No thoughts on the performances tonight except to say Kenneth Ma is really defining the act of a no. 1 fanboy. Raymond is ok, smaller movements even if he looks unsure as to how to move and all BUT why does he speak like he is caressing me? Why is he speaking in such breathy hush tones? 

As for Tavia, nice performance for a very unimportant role. I find her so .. oh never mind you know how I feel if not see recap for episode 6, zoom straight to the bottom of the recap. 

Kaki Leung… not to say she is bad but I find her unmemorable. It is like after her scene I had to struggle remembering her face, her gestures, even her dialogue. 

No comment for everybody else. 

As for the story itself, I get the oath idea of Guan Yu and all but I find it silly. I doubt Guan Yu will do that because it is an important enemy against them. For me the oath is repaid by giving Yingshun an easier death because he must die, no doubt about it. Imagine Guan Yu showing no mercy to poor Song Yau over a small wedding matter as he was very harsh although not as vocal as Cheung Fei who is in character with the way he reacted and yet he showed so much mercy to the man responsible for so many deaths. Loyalty is not repaid this way! 

And I feel all the men except for ZGL and Shun were ganging up and bullying one poor woman that is Song Yau. They were unbecoming of gentlemen that they were supposed to be. For me that scene was too dramatic for no good reason. 

So is this how Tavia’s role is? Fall for Shun, angry at him for making life difficult for ZGL and Lau Bei later on and then losses him when he returns to present time and awaits his return and all that? What a waste of a good actress.

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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