Review: “The Hippocratic Crush” (By Bridget)

The Hippocratic Crush<On Call 36小時>
TVB Drama 2012

Producer: Poon Ka Tak
Genre: Medical Drama
Number of episodes: 25



Kenneth Ma as “Cheung Yat Kin”
Tavia Yeung as “Fan Chi Yu”
Him Law as “Yeung Pui Chung” or “Onion”
Mandy Wong as “Hung Mei Suet”
Benjamin Yuen as “Benjamin Lau”
Candy Chang as “Kan Ching Ching”
Ben Wong as “John Chong”
Nathan Ngai as “Cheung Yat Hong”
Raymond Cho as “Chin Ho Tat”
Gigi Wong as “Wong Siu Un”
Derek Kwok as “Lui Siu Yat”
Paisley Hu as “To Ka Man”
Catherine Chau as “Wong Hoi Kei”


Everything old is new again with The Hippocratic Crush.  The predictable “ratings guaranteed” material and story performed by a cast where 80% of the artists are virtual unknowns is more of a hit than a miss, even despite unfamiliarity with the cast, Tavia Yeung’s nose, and shaky acting.  There’s hope out there, people.  


While TVB is on its talent drain tailspin, can I add one person to the list?  Whoever gave this series its English title.  Please say thank you.  

Story-wise, there’s nothing new here.  Someone dies young, someone gets a tumour and doesn’t want to tell family, and a broken family is reunited.  I’ll leave some semblance of mystery by not identifying all the “someones.”  Despite the recycled plot, the series is a step up from its profession-series counterparts because it executes a more realistic portrayal of professions-in-training, rather than focusing on a bunch of children pretending to be aspiring professionals (The Academy) or supposed doctors who have nothing to do except lounge around in bars and sleep with each other all day (Healing Hands).  The occasional surprise in the plot also helps (e.g. Mei Suet and Yu Chai are full sisters, not half), as do some quality details such as Yat Hong’s memorial – which was sweet, intimate, and personal, and the proposal between Yat Kin and Yu, which was touching and romantic.

 It’s a shame that Him Law is such a tool in real life because he has a lot of potential as an actor.  While I’m probably the only person on the planet who doesn’t find him handsome. He looks like a beetle to me, with the beady eyes and small head that’s not proportional to his body, which really isn’t that great – people need to watch Korean dramas to really see some killer bodies! Him delivers a cute, funny performance here as the snappy, witty and clever Onion.  I liked his character arc, where he started off totally nonchalant and casual about his career, but gradually learns to understand the importance and even love the work. Him is believable as the character who goes through these emotions.  As long as he doesn’t take his shirt off in his next series, I will continue watching him.  

Mandy Wong reminds me a bit of an early Nancy Wu.  She has an acting academy background and to-be-realized potential as an actress. She is also a decent dancer as well. Mandy has that super-serious, “I won’t smile even if I pick up gold” thing about her that makes her seem unapproachable and not media-friendly.  Unlike Nancy, though, Mandy lacks a bit of the “it” factor, but still performs naturally as the cocky, biting Mei Suet.  I really wish she would have at least smiled more genuinely in the series; she looks so sullen through it all.  Even when Mei Suet is happy, the happiness looks forced. 

What can I say about Tavia in here that won’t get me shot?  Her nose is less distracting here than in The Other Truth, where she almost looked like a hawk because her nose was beak-like.  It was scary.  I read somewhere that she didn’t actually go under the knife, but that she gets injections?  Does that mean that if she stops getting the injections, her nose will “return” to its original size, or at least stop growing?  Because seriously, when people are talking more about your nose than your acting, maybe it’s time to stop the “Pinocchio act” (pun intended).  I know her fans love her, and her haters hate her (I know, I’m so deep).  Me?  I feel nothing for her.  

And that’s the problem.  In this series, Tavia once again demonstrates that she is just a safe actress.  She can emote much better than the even-more-boring Kevin Cheng or a lot of other hot siu sangs and fadans, but she never offers anything compelling or different.  Her performance in The Hippocratic Crush isn’t flat, but it’s bland.  She needs other, more interesting people to make her scenes interesting.  In her scenes with Kenneth Ma, for example, I’m watching Kenneth.  In her scenes with Ai Wai, I’m watching Ai Wai.  Even in her scenes with Mandy, I’m watching Mandy.  I’m never watching Tavia.  She doesn’t command attention on her own.  She either needs an interesting character, a well-written plot, or other actors to support her. 

Maybe one day Tavia will turn into Kenneth Ma for me.  Kenneth used to put me to sleep and have a lot of the same problems that Tavia does today.  My reviews complained about his lack of charisma and mediocre acting skills, but over the years he’s been able to translate a certain offscreen ordinary, relatable guy charm onscreen into his roles, such as Survivor’s Law II.  Tavia hasn’t been able to do this yet.  I mean, when you’re drumming up a supposed-romance with a rumoured woman-beater and you still seem boring, I doubt there’s anything really there personality-wise.  But who knows?  Maybe I just need to give her more time.  But first, I’d have to get past The Nose

As for Kenneth, he turns in what can only be called an uneven performance in The Hippocratic Crush.  In the earlier episodes, he was inadequate as the cold, unyielding neurosurgeon.  Seriously, what about Kenneth looks arrogant or strict to you?  He looked more like a kid trying to boss around other kids in the playground.  However, when Yat Kin evolves into a pseudo-mentor for the interns, he is believable as someone who is approachable, someone who is more than willing to teach and give advice.  Dramatically, his acting is also inconsistent.  In the scene where they’re pushing Yat Hong out of the operating room, he looked like someone trying to decide his next move in a poker game, not someone who has just been told his brother is brain-dead.  The other doctor who was pushing the stretcher looked more distressed.  And yet, the scene where he breaks down in tears with Tavia on the basketball court is easily one of the most poignant moments in the entire series; I cried along with him.  

I cheered when Ai Wai made his appearance in this series.  Another actor would have likely made Dr. Fan a stuffy, arrogant beta academic type, but Ai Wai’s interpretation of the genius / accomplished neurosurgeon who is relaxed yet capable is a breath of fresh air in the series.  Ben Wong, as the suspicious, confident doctor who had beef with Yat Kin was fantastic as well.  

Now onto the people who have little or no screen baggage, which is a lot of fun for reviewers like me.  

Candy Chang, who I read is a fellow Torontonian, is stiff and uncomfortable in her role, although her acting during the Yat Hong death storyline was better than expected.  Nathan Ngai, who I recognize from Home Troopers, is a little better here.  He really does look like a friendly, earnest little brother and some of that credit is due to his performance.   Catharine Chau is great in here and gives her character much more personality than on paper.  I always looked forward to her scenes in here.  I still think she should have won Most Improved Actress the year of  Dance of Passion because she is just that good.  I hope she comes back to TVB one day.  

Benjamin Yuen was a Mr. Hong Kong!?  For real?  He’s actually a pretty natural actor and decent to look at, too.  His best moments were when he was yelling at Mei Suet for being an ungrateful spoiled brat, and when he was threatened with HIV thanks to an ex-girlfriend.

Paisley Hu was fun to watch as the brash, super-professional, but good-hearted head nurse, and she made an interesting coupling with the wimpy, anxious Siu Yik, portrayed by the ever-dependable Derek Kwok.  

Flaws?  The recitation of the Hippocratic Oath, which scarily, I thought was taken more seriously and recited more formally in Taiwan’s They Kiss Again.  It’s also ludicrous to think that Mei Suet could have returned to the profession after botching a patient’s emergency surgery just to try to prove something (and nearly killing the patient while doing so).  In fact, I doubt she could have gotten into medical school in the first place.  Aren’t pre-med students supposed to take a bunch of personality tests so that schools can weed out those with self-importance issues?  Some of the acting is hilariously bad (Kyle Tse), but forgiveable since these are debut performances for them. 

Through the Grapevine

It’s confirmed– there will be a sequel.  My money’s on Yu dying.  

To Watch or Not To Watch, That is the Question

Lacks the star punch, but with a pre-sold audience and nothing else much to watch from TVB these days, the series does its job.  It’s all relative.


This review was written by Bridget, a Contributing Writer at Visit Bridget’s blog!

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  1. Haven’t watched much of “Hippocratic Crush”, but I heard it was a very professional (medical) drama series. The artistes were well trained by medical professionals before it was filmed. Good work and research done by TVB on this drama series.

    Not surprised of Tavia Yeung’s acting. In fact, she never stands out on her own in any series. I don’t remember her in any characters.

    Kenneth Ma is such a good-looking neurosurgeon. It is a good move for him so that he can stay as a 1st lead actor. I am sure he has gained a lot more fans after the airing of this series. Kenneth worked very hard to improve his acting skills. Though he is not very consistent in some episodes, we can definitely see some improvements. Moreover, his baby-face makes him look younger and harder to be a supervisor for interns (who are all mature adults.

    As for Mandy Wong, she seems to act pretty well in many roles that she has done so far. I think she should be more relaxed in her roles in future and smiles more. I still think Nancy Wu is a much better actress vs. Mandy Wong.

    1. I don’t know if I’m the only one, but I thought Mandy Wong did really well in A Chip Off the Old Block and Suspects in Love. In fact, I thought she was a newly signed professional actress to TVB instead of a newbie.

      But I can’t say the same for her in L’Escargot and in The Hippocratic Crush. She wasn’t as natural to me in those dramas, and these dramas were filmed after ACOTOB and SIL.

      1. Addy, I didn’t watch A Chip off the Old Block but did watch Suspects in Love. Agree that I first noticed her in SIL – what role did she play in ACOFTB?

        I just finished watching L’Escargot and think Mandy did pretty well. Of course, there’s room for improvement but so far I think she’s been pretty consistent in her performances.

      2. @Bridget – She plays Myolie’s younger sister, but she doesn’t show up until halfway.

      3. Addy, thanks for the note. Myolie? Think I need a break from her. Wasn’t Ron also in ACOTOB?

      4. @Bridget – Yep, Ron is also in it. As well as Sunny Chan and Shirley Yeung. And an amazing and star-studded supporting cast.

        I have complained many times here and in other forums that I did not like how Myolie won Best Actress for her role in Curse of the Royal Harem as I thought she performed quite poorly in it. (But of course, when considering the competition she had last year, Myolie’s performance was widely discussed and promoted), but this is not the cast for ACOTOB. She was excellent in it. The rest of the cast also did pretty well. Even Ron wasn’t boring, although he was just being the usual Ron. It was the supporting cast that pretty much carried the whole show.

      5. I like Mandy ever since A Chip off the Old Block, i think she’s pretty and her acting in that series was cute.

    2. Sandcherry, I read interviews that talked about how they had two doctors on the set too to help out the actors with the medical scenes, so I agree that it was good research done by TVB (for once!!!).

      I generally think Tavia does better in ancient series (Land of Wealth, for example); the only modern drama that I really remember her in – and where I think she did a good job – was The Building Blocks of Life.

      For now I think Nancy is a better actress than Mandy, although I think Mandy does have potential.

      1. I agree that Nancy is a better actress. Well, she has been in the industry for a while. I see a lot of potential in Mandy. She’ll make it one day.

      2. Mandy Wong is well trained as an artists. She graduated from the Hong Kong Academy for Performing Arts and was also in TVB’s graduating acting class of 2008. I heard that her father is a big chief of the Academy, and, as a result, TVB promoted her highly. Mandy was in the cast of many drama series. I do agree that she is pretty good as a new actress and has potentials to be better.

      3. They even have a real doctor in the cast. Marcus Kwok who played Dr.Tong Hon Pong (that specialist trainee who came to train at the hospital the same time as Tavia in episode 1) was a real doctor before he join TVB. According to his profile during the Mr.HK competition (he didn’t win), he used to work in ER. I read in AF that he helped out with the script too.

      4. Dr. Tong… the one who got married at the end?! He’s a real doctor? And a Mr. HK?! What a bizarre combination.

        @sandcherry: Ah, no wonder Mandy basically burst onto the TVB scene! She has connections. Well at least she’s better than other actresses who got opportunities based on connections (Toby Leung).

      5. @ Bridget

        Yes, the one that got married at the end. I have not watch the series beyond episode 1. But, SS from spcnet said Marcus’s character dated someone named Wing and got married at the end. So, must be him.

        An interesting post I found in AF on Marcus from someone who said he knew Marcus in real life.


        I knew Marcus when he lived here in Melbourne whilst working as a doctor. He was very hard working and I remember when he said he was returning to HK to enter the Mr. HK competition. To be honest I laughed when he said it, but as a friend I encouraged him to follow his dreams!

        Not only did he get into the competition he has made a name for himself in HK as a presenter and actor. I am very proud of him for a few reasons.

        1; He had the courage to leave the safety of a good career and follow his dreams.
        2; He always believed he could do it, even when it probably didnt look like it would workout for him.
        3; He is a genuinely lovely guy who never has a bad word to say about anyone and loves his family very much.
        4; You may not know this but he has a wicked sense of humour.
        5; He is probably one of the most dedicated and hard working people I have ever met.
        6; He has the knack of locking himself out of his house on regular occassions!

        Not everything in life is about the safest path to take, sometimes its good to take a risk or gamble on yourself. You may be surprised that you end up winning!

      6. Kinda a huge waste of a good education. Much like Michael Crichton except he became a writer and was richer for that

      7. ^ It might be what he’s passionate about? He sounds like an accomplished person, but I guess he’s not yet satisfied.

      8. duhhh nancy has been in the industry WAY longer than mandy. it doesn’t take an idiot to say nancy is a better actress than Mandy.

      9. Kinda reminds me of the other intern in this series who goes to med school for his parents, but then wants to become a mechanic or something instead? And then he decides to return to the doctor profession because saving lives is kinda important.

      10. Tavia was great in Fathers and Sons. That’s probably my fave modern drama with her of all times. Otherwise, I’m very meh about her these days.

    3. I feel as though Mandy is over exaggerating her roles? She played an annoying selfish housewife in L’Escargot and she really did annoy the hell out of me because the role was so exaggerated, not realistic.

      The same goes for her role as Mei Suet, over competitive and career driven. She was not friendly in the role and not forgiving even though Yu Chai was not the one that deceived her.

      1. You’re right. I do think she was OTT in L’Escargot in the way she spoke. She toned down in THC since her character is supposed to be serious. Ever notice how lighthearted she was in Ghetto Justice? I prefer that Mandy. Last serious, lighter. Not everything is a drama.

      2. She looks so arrogant in THC..I cannot stand the way she talked to yeung yi. And always putting her hand inside the pocket.

      3. She was TERRIBLE in LE. She brought zero depth and subtlety to the character. But apparently that role made her famous so it was good for her career after all.

  2. Thx for the review! I have to say I agree with u but I really liked Kenneth’s acting! Look forward to the sequel!

    1. I find Kenneth likeable in the series, but his acting inconsistent.

      What are your thoughts on the sequel?

      1. It was somewhat inconsistent but totally like able! I haven’t seen a good decent series like this one in a while so I would like a sequel!

  3. Hey Jayne,
    Can anyone just write a review? This review is more like a personal attack on the actors themselves more than a review. A person’s nose and violent rumors have nothing to do with the series but it gets repeated several times and doesn’t get to the point.

    This review is totally different from the comments and reviews the majority of audience have said abt THC I have read in other forums.

    If I have time, can I contribute and write one myself? or do u only post one review?

    1. I definitely agree with you. This review was useless and irrelevant. It attacked every actor/actress. Dissapointed.

    2. A review should be unbiased, like what Bridget did. Of course, there are pros and cons in every drama series. I don’t think the reviewer was attacking the artistes. She just tried to give us her opinions of their acting. I know fans of Tavia and Kenneth just love their idols. They don’t care if they act well or not. This is the reason why there are reviews done by professional reviewers, like Bridget and others.

      1. Thanks for the defense, sandcherry. No way am I a professional reviewer by any means, and reviews should be biased (as they are an opinion at the end of the day – otherwise it’s just a summary of the series). Thanks as always for your comments!

        I’m starting to think of putting a disclaimer on my reviews (I used to). Something like “if you can’t take criticisms of your idols, please don’t read”. Haha.

      2. I disagreed with Bridget. I think Tavia was doing very great job in this series. She gets lot of emotion in love sense which is not many actress can do. She learns the script pretty well and act good. I don’t see any issue with her nose only the fact it makes her face skinny. But overall she did very good job. I like her sense. She’s totally matched with Ken Ma.They are great couple. The doctor character should not be too handsome. Ken Ma was right picked in this series.

    3. No wonder the first sentence on Tavia that Bridget wrote is ‘What can I say about Tavia in here that won’t get me shot?’ Lol.

    4. i second you, Fez. It’s not a series review, it’s a personal attack on the actors. Since when a review would start with talking more about personal life than the characters? It you don’t like the series, please, give it a pass, don’t waste your precious time watching it and writing something like this. I just stopped reading after half of it. Please, give us a break. you should only write a review about some series that’s really “worthy” of your time.

      1. “It you don’t like the series, please, give it a pass, don’t waste your precious time watching it and writing something like this. I just stopped reading after half of it. Please, give us a break. you should only write a review about some series that’s really “worthy” of your time.”

        From reading the review, it is obvious that Bridget like the series. But, if you can’t digest a review properly, check out the stars. She gave it 4 stars.

        “I just stopped reading after half of it.”

        I guess it’s the part where Bridget start talking about Tavia in not a glowing way that you stopped?

        “i second you, Fez. It’s not a series review, it’s a personal attack on the actors. Since when a review would start with talking more about personal life than the characters?”

        The comment on Tavia is only 1 small part of the review. It is funny that you disregard the rest of the review and zoom in on that small Tavia section and declared the whole review as not a review.

      2. What personal attack? Her face is very much part of her performance and if the reviewer thinks her nose is a problem, it is her personal opinion. You don’t like, you don’t have to read. Bridget can write whatever she wants. I don’t think the attack is personal to the point it will be considered racist, disruptive, etc. It is part of her evaluation, her process of thought. I mean if I were to write this series’ review I too will dedicate at least 3 paragraphs on Tavia’s nose and my problem with it because if I can’t get past the nose, I can’t get the performance. It is a thought process. Again it is a personal opinion and an opinion is a good opinion whether positive or negative. You want a glowing review of how gorgeous Tavia is, go to her fan forum.

      3. Don’t write a review unless u really like the series? Haha… sounds a lot like censorship. I had no idea tavia fans wanted to form their own communist party.

      4. @anita

        I agree with you that reviews should be more focused on the characters instead of the actors’ personal life. However, I do believe that reviews are supposed to be biased. If not, might as well just read a synopsis. I wouldn’t say that Bridget was wasting her time, since her rating of a 4/5 shows that she indeed liked the series. I find reviews interesting to read, only because I can either agree or disagree with them. As for this one, I disagreed with about 90% of it, but it was entertaining =)

    5. im not saying that because i am not a ‘tavia fan’. i am an ‘on call’ fan. its unusual for me to read a piece like this because this is like the first and only negative review i’ve read. most magazine articles and over weibo and in asian discussion forums and some english discussion forums have nothing but praises for the series. From the script writing, the quotes, the production, the scenes, the operating theatres, the acting of the main characters and supporting cast.

      – She took one-two paragraphs talking about the nose (geez – who cares? i don’t care if she has small boobs either. what’s that got to do with acting?)
      – There were many teary scenes with Kenneth that was quite memorable that ppl were talking about it but you don’t mention it.
      – The cute and humorous scenes with Tavia and Him? No doubt he has improved a lot but you focus on his personal life more?
      – Mandy has nothing to do with Nancy Wu. Why drag Nancy into this? Why compare?
      – What about Gigi Wong? She did quite well as the mother who lost a son. you didn’t talk about her?

      There’s so many things you’ve left out but you dwell on certain unimportant issues too much. I just feel the review was poorly written with unsubstantiated criticisms. I can accept criticisms but it can written in a better way.

      @sandcherry: Are you blind? This person is obviously not a professional reviewer. I’ve never seen critical pieces written like this. It’s probably written by a Tavia or Kenneth hater. Just like how some of you guys said ‘the praises were from Tavia and Kenneth fans’, well then my conclusion for this review is ‘the criticisms must be from a hater’. There are pros and cons of a drama. But I find the reviewer emphasises on the cons too much, forgetting about the pros, so even if a series was pretty good, if you hate that person, then they will say its bad.

      I read and will move on. But I can’t help but to COMMENT and CRITICISE this review because its poorly written. Maybe the reviewer can take this into account and improve on her writing technique in the future.

      And mind you. I think for all reviews, you can have ppl who agree and ppl who disagree. Ppl who disagree have an equal opportunity to make a comment here as well. Just my 2 cents.

      1. Just because it has negative comments about someone doesn’t negate the entire review. Of course she is not a professional reviewer. If she is this would be in some news site and she would have been paid. It is a passion and I applaud Bridget for continuing to write and express her well formed opinion. I may not always agree with her, nor she with me but she at least expressed an opinion unlike those “OMG SHE WAS SO AWESOME” and the end. It is only poorly written because she dissed your favourite series or actor or whatever. If you agree with her, I am sure you won’t feel the same way. And what unsubstantiated criticisms? Call the actors to swear on affidavit or something? The people who disagree can make comments as well, unfortunately the comments are borderline abusive. Your idea of her to improve her technique is basically just to write a glowing review, so glowing not even an exploding nuclear reactor can match. Reality is Bridget writes what she thinks. SHE THINK. NOT WHAT EVERYONE ELSE THINKS.

        So Bridget, I know you wouldn’t care anyway what people say because you write because you love to write but let me say WRITE ON!!

      2. One more thing to add. Bridget’s review actually makes me want to watch the series because of the positive things she said about the it (it being a step up, and improvement etc). So, it isn’t that negative.

      3. Fez,

        Them are some strong words u have against Bridget’s review. Please submit your own review soon. Can’t wait to see how “good” your “critique” will be.

      4. feel bad for you fez, whenever A writes some things, and B responds, A always labels B as the “DIE HARD FAN” bla bla bla , can’t talk no nothing bad abt their idol kind of people…….. god i swear we need to have more reasonable human beings on this earth.

      5. Fez, it seems like you’re expecting more than you should from Bridget.

        First of all, based off your criticisms of Bridget’s review, what you seem to be looking for isn’t really a review but rather something along the lines of feel-good sentiment that is best provided from forums, chatterboxes, and non-analytic reviewers. Essentially, a review that affirms your enjoyment of the drama and makes you feel good about yourself for watching and liking that drama cause other people liked it too.

        Secondly, nowhere on this site is there a claim by the writers that they intend to write from a completely unbiased point of view nor do they claim themselves to be professional writers. Thus, these reviews are not meant to be taken in such a serious matter. Instead, I believe these reviews are meant to provide an analytic review from the writer’s own insights from what they viewed, injected with occasional doses of personal humor. There’s not necessarily a right or wrong way to write a review for a site like Jaynestars, Spcnet, and other similar websites that provide reviews for TVB dramas. This isn’t the New York Times (though we have a few writers here that write on that level) nor is it an Ebert and Roeper review. Even if it was, they would never review the way you just instructed Bridget to.

        And so, if you disagree with my reasoning and wish to disparage my comment and Bridget’s review further for not giving you what you wanted, here are some instructions on what do next:


        GO AWAY.


        Just kidding. Good day to you.

      6. The only way to settle this is a good old fashion ‘review-off’ where A analyzes and critiques B’s review using reasoned logic and the occasional disguised personal attack covered by flowery language, which is to be followed by B’s response of the same, and so on. Then let the readers decide who is ‘correct’. Otherwise…

      7. Fez,

        I don’t know if you’ll read the comments here anymore but I’m interested in the way you think. Mind giving my review a critique? All gloves off!

    6. “review is totally different from the comments and reviews the majority of audience have said abt THC I have read in other forums.”……. those reviews must have been written by their idols who blindly love them and do not pay attention to their acting.

      Some people just want to see their idols on screen in every episode no matter what they do.

      1. Didn’t the Beatles say “why can’t we all just get along?”

        OK, in all seriousness. I normally don’t respond to these things because nothing good comes of it but I would like to say 3 things:


        @sandcherry: Are you blind?

        That was uncalled for. The first sentence was unnecessary and you could have said everything you did against sandcherry’s opinion without that personal attack.
        No one who expressed their opinion against yours started with a “@fez – are you stupid?”

        Secondly, to those who disagree with me / my review for reasons they mentioned above, my approach has always been to agree to disagree.

        Lastly, this debate has made me realize how long I’ve been reviewing and those I have met through reviewing, because wow you people took the words right out of my mouth (you guys know who you are). So many thanks to those who have not only shared this reviewing passion with me, but those I’ve gotten to know through this passion (regardless of whether our views agree or not!) and will get to know through sharing our opinions. Can’t wait to continue / begin some intelligent debate with you all!

        And that is my last post on this issue.

    7. i fully agree with you, was abt to complain myself.. haha…

      if it’s a review on the show shouldn’t it be ON the show, and not about how the actors acted? if so, it should be review on acting in THC…

      support everyone to send a review to Jayne, so she’ll start posting them… crappy or not crappy, bashing or not bashing.. just write away

      1. The acting of the actors is part of the elements of a show.

      2. too bad the review focused too much on some ‘other appearance’, acting and way too little bout the show itself.

      3. You don’t get it do you? Whatever other elements is still within the show’s elements unless she brings up some unrelated rumour and yap about it. Bridget didn’t.

      4. @hello

        Very sound logic. I suppose those speed signs on the road mean you must travel that particular speed, nothing less and nothing more because it is the ONLY number written on any particular sign.

    8. Fez,
      “This review is totally different from the comments and reviews the majority of audience have said abt THC I have read in other forums.

      If I have time, can I contribute and write one myself? or do u only post one review?”

      A review of an artistic work, such as a drama or film, is an expression of one’s personal reaction to it. There is no right or wrong way to write a review, which is an opinion. However, how well you express and qualify your opinion is another matter.

      Bridget’s reviews tend to focus more on the acting performances rather than the technical and artistic analysis of a drama. Thus, she may focus the review on her reaction to the artists involved in the drama more. As an involved audience member, there may be a tendency to draw upon knowledge of the artists’ personal lives compared to the characters they portray onscreen.

      We do publish multiple reviews on the same dramas, to offer multiple perspectives. You are welcome to write your own review and submit for publication should your view differ drastically from current published reviews for the same titles.

    9. How is it not a review? She discussed all the actors and their acting and the plot. What is “missing”?

    10. totally agree it’s really personal attack to the artist

  4. I’ve always been impressed with how natural Benjamin is on Camera. I’ve started noticing him from a movie he did with twins ah sa and (I think) Raymond lam. He has the potential to be take lead roles.

    1. I started noticing Benjamin in Suspects in Love. I loved all the scenes with him and Mandy, esp. the bridge scene when he asked her to wait for him for a month.
      TVB is definitely promoting him lately. I read somewhere that he signed with another TV station. Can anyone confirm?

      I thought most of the “intern” actors were pretty good, considering it was their first drama. Kyle Tse did seem a little stiff though. I was laughing at the scene when he was crying in the housemen house before his friends came home. He is good to look at though. 🙂

      1. Benjamin was in SIL?! Where?! I don’t remember him in it at all… oh wait, was he one of Him Law’s boxer friends?

      2. yep he was one of the friends.

        what movie, i didn’t know about that – i like all 3 of them

  5. Ahh…I agree!

    I’ve been reading on forums how others (Tavia’s fans) have been praising her non-stop. For the record, Yat Kin and Yu Jai are tailor-made for Kenneth and Tavia.

    I thought Tavia did well, but is this a one-time thing because of the script and character development? I find Tavia not as annoying in this series because her character is there to support Kenneth’s. She does her job in complementing her costar.

    1. I don’t blame Tavia’s fans for praising her non-stop. Fans can support their idols, it’s kinda the point. 😉 What I have issues with is blind fans who support their idols no matter how badly they perform. Like I’m a Linda Chung fan, but I’m not going to praise every performance of hers, especially when she doesn’t really deserve it. Same with Raymond Lam.

      What I like about Tavia’s character in the series is – as you say – how she compliments and understands Yat Kin. The letters she writes to him were thoughtful and a sweet gesture. I did like their story in the drama.

      1. Yes, the “blindly” praising.

        I think what made this series a success is a combination of a well-written script/dialogue and acting. The dialogues in this series were actually thought-provoking.

      2. I have seen so many of those die hard fans that blindly praise their idols regardless of whether they act well or not…

      3. oh my bridget… linda, raymond… i feel bad for you on the raymond fan haters LOL

      4. Actually to each of our own…everyone adore their idols in different ways..There is no right or wrong to like their idol blindly too. Instead of focusing Tavia’s nose, why not focus more on her acting in THC. And indeed THC is really a fantastic drama which makes audience tear.

      5. OMG.Bridget.^^.I SOO AGREE WITH U.Your top most comment.

      6. I’m kind of agree with Momo on the different ways of admiring someone. You think and you know yourself isn’t tat “blindly” but other ppl can all you die hard whenever they want without looking back to themselves’ admiring method. But I just find it’s funny to how TY fans often react when someone dun comment good on her. Other than posting reasons to make them think she is good, they often choose to attack other commenters. It’s funny. I don’t say all react this but many of them.

  6. I don’t like the nicknames given to the characters. They seem deliberate and not natural. Why can’t TVB call characters by their normal name? Why the main characters always have to have nicknames? And those characters actually introduce themselves to someone using their nickname e.g. Tavia introducing herself has ‘Yu Jai’ on her first day of work.

    “Benjamin Yuen was a Mr. Hong Kong!? For real? He’s actually a pretty natural actor and decent to look at, too. “

    Yes, Benjamin is the 3rd Mr.HK winner in TVB’s Mr.HK competition. Benjamin actually has more acting experience than other Mr.HKs because he used to act in movies when he was younger, but, quit and went to do other jobs after he get less and less work offer. He was in the ‘Young & Dangerous’ prequel as the young Dai Tin Yi (Michael Tse’s character in Y&D).

    1. Oops. wiki said he acted as Chao Pei instead. I must go and rewatch that movie. I always thought he’s Dai Tin Yi and wondering why there’s no young Chao Pei.

      1. What is the name of the prequel ,do you mean the movies Those were the days or legend of tai Fei?

    2. Kidd, never thought much of the nicknames thing but now that you brought it up, I can see what you mean. Seems especially silly for Tavia to introduce herself with her nickname given that they are medical trainees and hospital work needs to be taken seriously. Not saying there should be no camaraderie between co-workers, but there should be some semblance of formality during workplace introductions.

      Ahhh, that explains why Benjamin is a natural actor. Wonder how old he is?

      The Y&D prequel is actually one of my favourite HK movies (and think it beats all the other Y&D movies)… I think I’ll have to rewatch it again b/c I didn’t recognize Benjamin Yuen in there!

      1. Benjamin is 31 now ,i think this guy act good as goalkepper in the TVB football serial which start by Bobby Aun Yong and Him Law.

      2. Bridget and others, I agree that Tavia should not introduce her as “yu chai”. Medical professionals are serious people, not someone in arts and dramas. People should be introduced with full names (first and last names), not with nicknames. Nicknames can only be used among very good friends. Even so, other doctors have to call Tavia as Dr. Fan generally. Dr. Fan can be called “Yu Chai” only at happy hours or at social gatherings.

      3. i had the exact same sentiments as you when watching the first few episodes. yat gin tau as a nickname was reasonable, as was yeung chung, as they encompassed their real names but yue jai, tong yuen, ming tai zi, etc. etc. were awful. to be fair, tavia only introduced herself as yue jai after marcus referred to himself as tong yuen. still, would be more convincing if they all had english names. i mean, who doesn’t have an english name in hk nowadays?

      4. @anoninhk, as long as they can pronounce the English names properly in the series, I have no issue with this. 😉

      5. Bridget:
        First, thanks for defending me. I was not blind, but I really thought the reviews submitted on this website were done by professional reviewers …….. at least I thought you were professional after reading your reviews.

        Secondly, I agree with you “as long as they can pronounce the English names properly in the series”. So many artistes in TVB do not speak English properly (with the correct pronunciation). It sounds rather odd if those medical doctors cannot even pronounce the English names correctly.

      6. @sandcherry, no worries! To be honest I don’t think those people would care regardless of whether the reviews are done by professionals. As people already mentioned above, they didn’t like my review because it didn’t agree with their opinion. Unfortunately the way they expressed their opinions was using abusive language. To them, the review is “bad” or “badly written” simply because it didn’t tell them what they wanted to hear. Many others commented on the fact that their opinion disagreed with my review, but they didn’t resort to personal attacks or insults, and for that, I respect those ones.

        Btw, I’ve noticed that some of them have continued their abusive commenting / targeting towards you in their comments in other articles. All I can say is, ignore them. They are not the first and unfortunately will not be the last. Some people are simply unreasonable.

        And agree on the English pronunciations!

    3. Was Benjamin in the original Infernal Affairs. The scene where Anthony Wong’s character was thrown off the building and dies, I think Benjamin was one of the cops who was firing at the gang members. Or was that someone who looked like him?

    4. I was pretty surprised to see Benjamin when I rewatched Infernal Affairs for the umpteenth time

      1. He looked like a little boy in there…definitely much better looking now, so manly. lol

  7. ” In the earlier episodes, he was inadequate as the cold, unyielding neurosurgeon. Seriously, what about Kenneth looks arrogant or strict to you? ”

    Eh I thought he was fantastic as the super strict mentor, the way he screamed at Him Him was probably one of the best scene. But with a face like his you know he meant well!

    1. Him Him? Is that what we’re calling him now? Lol. I remember that scene now that you mention it, but overall I don’t think Kenneth can do strict or angry. He looks too nice. Lol.

      1. All along we have been calling him Him Him! Anyway I think THAT is the point with Kenneth’s character isn’t it?

      2. Kenneth Ma is too good-looking and baby-faced. How can a baby look very angry and mean or strict? This is his drawback. He always looks like a very nice guy.

      3. @ Bridget

        “Er, why do we call him Him Him?”

        Because Tavia calls him so. I remember a news article said Tavia called Him Law, Him Him.

  8. Bridget I really like the way you write!
    Great Job!!!

  9. I actually just finish the drama and I pretty much agree with Bridget for the most part…and I have to just add one thing about the hairstyle! OMG! seriously, I feel like TVB is making every single male actor and female actor share the shame freaking dame hairstyle it’s pissing me off! LOL!!!

    1. it’s been like that for years. almost every man in hk will sport the same hairstyle for a certain period of time. for a few years, raymond, bosco, kenneth, etc. etc. all shared the same hairstyle. it was that god awful side swept bangs, spiky on one side of the parting and long on the other side look. couldn’t stand it.

      short hair was “in” for girls last year for some reason but thank goodness, tavia is growing it out. she looks way better with long hair and it distracts attention from her nose.

  10. Bridget, I also noticed the part where they were pushing Yat Hong out from the operating room, and Kenneth looked clueless. He showed no emotion in that scene, and I thought that was really unrealistic, considering your brother just died. The doctor pushing Yat Hong out was almost in tears in that scene, but at the same time he was a doctor in real life so I guess it was easier for him to get into that particular scene.

    1. “Bridget, I also noticed the part where they were pushing Yat Hong out from the operating room, and Kenneth looked clueless. He showed no emotion in that scene, ”

      Maybe he was stunned of his brother’s sudden death, that’s why he didn’t register much emotion? Sometimes a sudden death of a loved one can leave you looking clueless. Like it was so surreal. I see nothing wrong with that.

      1. i didn’t pay too much attention to his acting in that scene as i was crying my eyes out. i would have ventured the same guess as funn – maybe he was completely dazed? too ashamed to face his mother? or too ashamed to face himself? he was already quite subdued in the operating room. i think he held onto his emotions until the scene in the basketball court.

      2. Yeah, I noticed that too. I was surprised that he barely showed any emotion for that scene. He looked pretty dang complacent.

      3. I’ve not watched that scene, but, from personal experience and from listening to the experience of others, it is very possible and not abnormal to register no emotion at the moment you know of the death of a love one. It may be shock, it may be you don’t know how to respond. But, it’s not abnormal. The emotion might come later like what happen to Yat Kin, or the person might response in some other ways that show he cares (e.g. cherishing the belongs left by the love one etc).

      4. Funn, it wasn’t that his face had no emotion. His expression was one of deep thought. If there was no expression at all, I can buy the “he was just too shocked / dazed” argument. But the fact that he looked like he was thinking about his next move in poker game or something, the expression wasn’t quite right for the situation.

    2. I think he was trying to be strong for his mother when he needs to be. When the events caught up with him, he had a substantial emotional crisis.

  11. A proverb in Chinese” “Audience’s eyes are sharp and bright”. Perhaps Kenneth Ma did not realize that flaw in that scene. Hope he will do better in the sequel.

  12. Funny review really enjoyed reading it 🙂 and totally agree that everything is relative. This series is good bc the average Tvb series these days are most crap.

    1. Maybe we should have a crap-o-meter? Which is least crap and which is most crap? Because to me to use the word GOOD and put it in the same sentence as in TVB series is errrmm… rather mission impossible. Ok maybe too harsh a comment but crap is crap. THC is not crap, until the brother dies. Then it became crap. Sad but still crap.

      1. I still love Kenneth Ma though.

        By the way the poses in the poster reminds me of Forensic Heroes. Do all professionals pose that way??

      2. It’s true that this series is far from being perfect e.g. killing off the brother, the relationship Kenneth with his superior (with his wife.

        The most unbelievable was TY wearing heavy make-up during the whole show even in her sleep and her own operation, hehe.

        Hehe, a crap-o-meter would be great la! I consider this series good bc it had some touching scenes and dialogues with a deeper meaning which I liked.

        Yeah you have to pose that have to be a professional according to Tvb, LOL.

      3. I guess make-up is a super must to any actress. Without having makeup, the audience may not be able to recognize the actress!!!

      4. Yes, but how much of it is applied. Tavia looked as if she loaded her face with a bunch of foundation in comparison to Mandy. Her makeup is even heavier than Mandy’s when she was sick. I’m guessing her face NEEDED all that coverage.

      5. It seems like once you’ve applied such heavy make up you can’t go back. Tavia used to be so much prettier without the heavy foundation and eye make-up.

      6. Crap-o-meter? With numbers? Or are we talking about well, gory descriptions (I won’t go into graphic detail) of different kinds of crap?

        And yeah, I suppose that’s the new chok à la professional look.

      7. Bridget,
        “Crap-o-meter? With numbers?”

        Visually speaking, instead of assigning stars, we can have Hershey kisses…hehe never been fond of the these chocolates for that reason.

      8. Jayne,

        HAHA Hershey kisses! I love it… I’m all for it if that’s what the website decides.

        But wait, so that would mean the less Hersey kisses the better right? 5/5 on the Hershey/kiss crap-o-meter scale would mean that it’s the most craptastic series?

      9. Bridget,
        Yea, more Hershey kisses would make it have a higher crap rating, so not a good thing. Umm…I don’t want to change people’s perception of Hershey kisses, should that be their favorite snack. 🙂

        I think it would best to stick to the current star system, keep things positive, and look for the good things that do exist in TVB dramas.

        You are welcome to give “zero” stars if you would like, but that is quite harsh, as there must be some good aspect to a drama’s effort.

      10. Good point, LOL. I guess we can keep the crap-o-meter part of the comments.

        I think the lowest rating I ever gave a drama was 1.5 stars, which I consider pretty bad already… as you say I don’t think a series ever really deserves 0 stars.

      11. Bridget I have no problem giving a 0 star to craps like the old crappy series I shall not name or like the recent cursed series. I don’t care there were good elements, but since someone suggested look at the series and not individual performances, I will not hesitate to show 0 or in terms of crap-o-meter, a full 10 for a belly full of crap.

    2. Thanks, exoidus. Aside from the ‘everything is relative’, it also helps I find to go in with no expectations, which was pretty much my approach to watching THC…or anything from TVB these days, for that matter. 😉

  13. crappy review, why are you so focused on artist connections , ‘it’ factor, or him law as a tool in real life??

  14. Did anyone else notice that Dr. Fan’s character was not the most observant person? He did not know that his ex wife suffered from depression when they married, he didn’t register that his housekeeper had dementia and his own daughter was ill.

    I wouldn’t want him to be my surgeon…

  15. I saw Tavia in real person and her complexion is good and flawless…She doesn’t really need thick make up at all…Well…her character in this drama is really brave..I like the matching of Kenneth Ma and her together..Really have chemistry..Hope to see them together soon

    1. Yes, love Tavia/Kenneth pairing….amazing chemistry. THC is a great series !

    2. LOL, what a joke! I doubt this because I saw Tavia without makeup and she’s nothing close to “flawless.” Pleaseeee.

      1. Oh gosh, I one saw some photos of Tavia with either little or no make up and she scared me…

      2. @Jenn : You mean you saw her in real person too..The meaning of flawless = complexion without scars, blemishes or pimples…

  16. @Bridget: First of all, as a neutral party (I like Kenneth, though I wouldn’t consider myself a fan of his and I’m definitely not a fan of Tavia’s) as well as a ‘non-professional’ reviewer myself, I applaud you for taking the time to actually write a review and sharing your thoughts/opinions with us. Of course, everyone is different and processes/interprets things differently — if we all thought the same and had the same opinions about everything, we’d be robots, not humans. I personally had a different opinion than you with regard to the series and the performances of some of the artists (which I already detailed in my own review of the series, so won’t go into that here), but nevertheless, I respect your point of view — it’s not going to change my opinion of the series or the artists, but it does give me some good ‘food for thought’ as well as insight into other people’s perspective on things.

    Also, just a comment regarding the makeup and physical attributes thing — again, that’s a subjective thing and in my opinion, it’s neither right nor wrong to include that stuff in a review. Personally, I rarely include stuff about physical appearance in my own reviews (outside of the occasional spur of the moment ‘so-and-so looks so handsome in ancient costume’ comment…haha) only because I’m just the type of person who naturally doesn’t care about that kind of stuff (for the record, I didn’t notice the heavy makeup thing with Tavia or the nose thing for that matter — goes to show I generally don’t pay attention to any of that stuff…LOL).

    Anyway, I have no intentions of taking sides nor commenting about the arguments posted from either side….just wanted to contribute my two cents from a general perspective….

    1. llwy12, thanks for the comment!

      I personally include physical appearance comments in reviews for a few reasons:

      1) The unfortunately reality is, looks are a huge part of the biz, and unless you have Wayne Lai acting skills, you will be judged for physical beauty.

      2) An actor’s physical appearance often has significant relevance to the role they play. If you look 40 and your character is 20, then I will say, the actor is wrong for the role. If the character is supposed to be drop-dead gorgeous, and the actor is only average-looking, then again, the actor is wrong for the role. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it’s to each their own whether someone looks the wrong age or not pretty enough for the role. What I’m saying is that physical appearance needs to be judged in these cases.

      In Tavia’s nose case, it’s not the same thing. It’s because it’s so distracting to me that it takes effort to try and notice her acting in the series. The heavy make-up I can forgive (and didn’t bother commenting on in my review) b/c Tavia is not the only one who wears it these days, and ever since HD became prevalent I found pretty much everyone wears it, including guys.

  17. love this series! It’s my favourite series of the year.

  18. Tavia did well in this drama.nothing to do with her nose or smtng else. What a bad review I ever read.

  19. Another great review, Bridget! You’re making me itch to write again. Hehe. And I just liked you even better cuz I have lots of family in Toronto and I just realized the connection =D

    1. Thanks, Iris! Write write write! I miss your reviews. A lot of people who started reviewing around the same time I did have dropped off; I hope you and they make a comeback.

      It seems there are a few contributors to JayneStars who are from Toronto. 🙂 Glad to know there is another connection.

  20. Pushing biasiam aside, Tavia’s acting did make me cried, at the scene where she was convincing her maid/nanny/’grandma’ to go back to the family and at ep 24 where she exploded at Kenneth for revealing how she was trying to hide her emotions… Well, just want to say that if her acting isn’t good, I wouldn’t have cried in those scenes. Maybe in this review, if you’d been less harsh about Tavia and her nose, probably you won’t get this critic comments that much because really, you did mentioned a tad bit too much on Tavia’s nose here. IMO, Tavia’s nose was a distracting to me as well but I chose to ignore it. If I can do it, I’m sure you could too. Then again, we’re different people so…yeah. I still am excited to see the sequel though, and I want both Tavia and Kenneth and the other casts back for the sequel.

    1. For the record, the word NOSE was mentioned a total of 6 times in the review lol … should’ve signed it off with a picture of a NOSE instead of your name.

      1. You always can choose to ignore the comments about the noses. Your complaints on the mention of the nose appeared more than 6 times in this topic, so should you sign in with a picture of the nose and a crossed line instead of your name? Oh well…

      2. I was just stating the FACT. Can’t I state a fact?

        “You always can choose to ignore the comments about the noses.” If that’s the suggestion you’re giving us, then I suggest you give the suggestion to the writer as well. She obviously can’t ignore the nose. But she finds it extremely difficult to ignore it, just how some readers of her review find it hard to ignore her way of writing and try to embed it into every second sentence.

        “you sign in with a picture of the nose and a crossed line instead of your name? Oh well…” … No why should I? I’m not the one who brings up the nose everytime Tavia’s name comes up. If you are so obsessed with the nose, maybe you should too.

      3. @fez: too bad I’m in love with something else more than the nose so I can’t make it so much like you. Every single moment I saw you in this topic and maybe in other reviews, I see you say how bad do you feel about the mention of the nose. If you are addicted in talking about it, sure tat you can always use it.

        The existence of the nose is an obvious fact. If yoy want to state the fact and you are doing so, why can’t Bridge?

      4. @bridget: laugh is always good for health :). Sorry for tying your name wrongly above. Im using cellphone so there might be mistskes.

    2. You can ignore it but that dun mean other ppl can ỏ have the duty to do such thing, right? You can see that different ppl different thinking so if want, just ignore the nose and the comments about the noses. There is no point to complain about the mentions of the nose many times this way (if you don’t want ppl to talk about the nose).

      1. I think @kk has all right to give their suggestions. When you write a review, you can’t expect everyone to agree with you and praise you. There’s always criticisms and the writer has to accept that. If she can’t accept that, then don’t post up a review. Several readers have pointed out the problem with this piece of writing, the continued emphasis of the NOSE especially (which clearly stood out) – and they are all but stating the fact.

        My suggestion to Bridget is – if the nose annoys her soooo much – then ignore it or don’t watch any series with Tavia in it. Coz Tavia’s nose will continue to stick out and if she can’t take it or it affects her life so much, then don’t watch it lol.

        But @Fox, It seems that you are encouraging positive comments to be posted by negative comments to be ‘ignored’. Why’s that?

      2. How to define possitive and negative. I don’t find Bridget is tat negative and also don’t find your comment is this possitive, then wat’s up? You are really thinking tat you re representing for justice? LMAO ah. Bridget doesn’t expect to all praises to her reviews. In fact you are the one who is dreaming of all praises to your “voice of justice”. Maybe among TY fansclub you are but wmeone said here is a common forum and your TY isn’t goddess or untouchable here. Too bad.

        @Bridget: maybe you can take fez’s suggesstion and try to avoid TY’s series without your faves. I did that and I don’t feel any regret as someone will be more silent. Consider this decision. To make someone like something isn’t easy but to ignore something totally isn’t thay hard. Let someone just live in the castle of illusion is even easier

      3. I guess this is an extreme comments between 2 people…Those who love and appreciate Tavia will not really focus on her nose. Those who dislike her will just keep commenting about her nose…We all have our own favourite artists so we should not be too hard on those we don’t like. Anyway, there is no right or wrong. Overall, THC is really a nice drama which make us tear in some episodes..And the new pairing of Kenneth Ma and Tavia give us a fresh feel too…

      4. Other than the nose, ppl also can dislike her acting, her physical appearance (including new eyes, new chin, new cheekbones), her way of interupting others in interviews, her bad sense of humour, her great money eager and else. The nose is one factor, not all that someone can dislike on her.

        Of course, if you like someone, you have to see something from her/him to make you like. If not, you can’t like this person. On the other hand, if you dislike someone, there are also some reasons for you. However, it can’t be reason to say that your opinion is totally true and others can’t say something opposite to your comment.

  21. Overall, I thought this was a good series minus a few medical/factual indiscrepancies and the pathetic excuse for TY’s abandonment as a child. The series does offer a rare glimpse of the medical profession albeit a bit exaggerated.

    @ TY fans: I don’t know if anyone noticed, but I was wondering if the TY fans can help me identify her handsome looking timepiece from “The Other Truth” and “Yes Sir, Sirry Sir”. I noticed that she was wearing a different one in On Call 36.

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