Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 6)
Bullet Brain <神探高倫布>
TVB Series 2013
Cast: Wayne Lai, Edwin Siu, Natalie Tong, Ngo Ka Nin, Sire Ma, Joe Junior, Corinna Chamberlain, Brian Burrell, Lau Dan, and Davily Leung.
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 apologize if there is any mistake. All opinion remains my own.
“Columbo, you can fool everyone but you can’t fool me”
The series continues … to suck. I don’t think the series is interested in showing Columbo investigating something. They could have used a movie studio as a background and the story will still be the same. It sucks because I hate Columbo. And hating a character doesn’t make a series suck, unless like this series, everything is on a repetition mode, on a never ending loop. I am waiting for Ping On to do the right thing; shoot Columbo and end all our misery. What a waste of talented actors. Since Lee Tim Shing promised the plot will pick up soon, and I hope not like at episode 20 but at episode 7, maybe there is still hope left in this potential turkey. I mean, make it a phoenix but right now all I can see is turkey.
Anyway recap. At least this episode answers some answers we sorta know already.
As Columbo explained, we see flashback and I was very happy to see Dai Hei again, and he was entering HK illegally when I believe Fei Lung’s father is known as Uncle Tin (I stand to be corrected) was the police doing the border patrol duty ran after him and Dai Hei begged “Please sir, please let me enter! I have to see my father. I was informed he just died and I need to see him one last time. Please!” but Uncle Tin refused Dai Hei and Dai Hei tried to run, they struggled when Uncle Tin rolled off the hill and Dai Hei held on to him as Uncle Tin cried “Please help! Don’t let go!” and Dai Hei shouted “I will never let go, hang on!!” and a police dog arrived and the dog bit Dai Hei and screaming in pain, Dai Hei never let go, not until a backup police came and pulled Uncle Tin up and still the dog was still biting until the dog was ordered to stop and bleeding and in pain, Dai Hei begged to be let go and Uncle Tin said “Son, you should go to the hospital” but Dai Hei cried “I need to see my father, please sir, please let me go” and Uncle Tin in a moment of kindness said “Go, I didn’t see you, go now” and his colleague understood and Dai Hei slowly walked away whilst still bleeding and Uncle Tin explained to his colleague “I have never met a more fillial son than that Mainlander over there, he is truly a good son”/
Everyone, and I mean EVERYONE who has met Dai Hei will always comment what a great guy he is. None of these will say that to Columbo if they knew his true nature. I can’t believe I enjoyed such a short scene which is because I really like the simpleton Dai Hei. I wished this series has focused on Dai Hei more, and how he became a better Columbo to solve crimes and all and not this crap we have now.
Uncle Tin finally remembered and they had a happy reunion and Fei Lung was introduced and Columbo shook his hands eagerly as if he was so very happy to see Uncle Tin and Fei Lung. One man wasn’t smiling and that was Ping On who thought to himself “Columbo, you can fool everyone but you can’t fool me”.
Indeed! What is potentially despicable about Columbo is he exploits his own past good deeds for his own current advantage. He is not above using what Dai Hei did to advance his (Columbo) own purpose. Whilst essentially that is nothing dangerous, since he is only in the end exploiting his own self and burning his own bridges but it could hurt those who genuinely care for Dai Hei with such a deception Columbo is playing. So far Columbo has yet to hurt others (except for the poor banker couple). What is truly interesting though is how Columbo uses the truth to gain something. Technically he did meet Uncle Tin, Dai Hei would have been grateful for what Uncle Tin did but Columbo wouldn’t have cared less. Like I said, technically Columbo didn’t lie about his past but that doesn’t make his intention genuine, sincere or noble.
Anyway a short deviation in terms of story where Uncle Tin went to visit Fei Lung but was rudely greeted by the bad ass lady landlord (were lady landlords during those times so dastardly?). Anyway in the end Uncle Tin asked Fei Lung to move in with him, Fei Lung was reluctant and Uncle Tin persuaded him by giving him his keys and said “Your mother would have wanted you to succeed, she would have wanted to give you a comfortable home so you may pursue your ambition. She would have approved of my suggestion. Why not.. why not you move in, and I move out until you’re ready for me to move in with you? I am old, I am near death anyway, I could live outside for a while. You’re still young, the world is ready for you to conquer, you need to be better rested, a better place to call home, not this place” but Fei Lung was reluctant but Uncle Tin walked away and as he walked out Fei Lung with tears called out “Father!” and Uncle Tin was crying because finally Fei Lung has forgiven him.
Later Scott met with Fei Lung at the pub (well, 60s sort of pub) and Scott said he was happy to learn Columbo seemed to like Fei Lung and told Fei Lung to plant a hearing device in Columbo’s room, if not Fei Lung can resign or something like that. In the end Fei Lung steadfastly refused and said loudly “Sir, I only wish to do my job well” and he left and Scott was angry of course.
Columbo wanted to see Uncle Tin but was told Uncle Tin took a day off to help Fei Lung move houses. Columbo dropped by for a visit and whilst everyone was busy with something else, he planted a small hearing device inside the huge wooden Guan Yu statue and he offered Uncle Tin to buy him tea. Before Uncle Tin left, he took out some I believe $20,000 from his deposit box.
Outside they were at Columbo’s favourite restaurant serving his favourite duck and Uncle Tin gave Columbo the money and Columbo asked “This is enough to buy your son the position of an Inspector, is that what you want?” and Uncle Tin cried “No no, I am just thankful Fei Lung is under you and I hope you will take good care of him” and Columbo looked offended as he said “Do you know why I chose your son? It is because he has the potential to be great. Did you know he requested to be transferred to the tactical team? I knew I couldn’t lose him so I offered him a promotion. Uncle Tin, you don’t have to give bribes. Your son has a good future on his own effort and by you giving this money to me, you’re insulting my faith in your son’s capabilities and insulting your son’s potential. I will pretend I did not see this or heard what you ask of me. Good day Uncle Tin” and he left.
Back at home, Uncle Tin was sighing and he kept saying “I quite nearly blew it!” and Fei Lung asked him “What is it dad?” and Uncle Tin said “I know you will grumble but oh, well you deserve to know and you will be very happy to hear this. You have got yourself a good boss. I offered Columbo money, not only did he not accept it, he even scolded me!” and Fei Lung predictably got angry but Uncle Tin said “I told you even knowing you will be angry with me because this is something to be proud of! Son, he is a good boss. He chose you for your potential, he recognised in you your talent. He is better than that gwailo Scott. You have got yourself a good boss son!” and Fei Lung was smiling happily too. Then Fei Lung told his dad about Scott and what he asked of him and Uncle Tin told Fei Lung to be wary of Scott who was not sincere whilst to trust Columbo who was sincere. All these Columbo could hear through the hearing device and Columbo smiled smugly as he said to himself “Scott, you think you can win but I tell you, no one can ever get the upper hand of Columbo!”
And so Columbo has himself Fei Lung and Eva who trusted him completely and Ping On who knew his true nature but will not abandon him.
Eva met with Columbo (they had nicknames for one another, can’t remember what but shows they may be at dating stage or flirting with one another) and Eva wanted to chat with Columbo at his home.
Surprisingly again, Columbo was very candid with Eva, telling him about his past with Mui Mui as Eva wanted to hear about the story of the girl behind the clay figurine and again we see super speed flashback. BORING! But one good thing though was seeing how honest Columbo was with his inner deep buried feelings with Eva. And Eva liked him even more. By the way Columbo told Eva how he persuaded Ping On to stay and work with him rather than go back to England with Joanna his wife. Despicable. But other than this lie, basically whatever he told Eva was the truth. Interesting. Bad isn’t it? That he retains the memory of Dai Hei but none of his goodness.
Ping On at the station and ordered by Scott to charge the couple who tole $500,000 from the bank and asked Scott “What about the boy?” and Scott thundered “Do I look like some daycare centre? Let the welfare deal with that!” and he saw the heart wrenching scene of the mother crying to hold her son and begging Ping On to help her and dragged away. Ping On couldn’t take it anymore and cried “I CAN’T TAKE IT ANYMORE!!!” and he rushed to Eva’s room, entered without knocking and said to a surprised Eva “Madam, I have something to say about Columbo. I.. I…” and Eva angrily said “WHAT IS SO IMPORTANT YOU DID NOT KNOCK AND JUST ENTERED? WHAT?!” and Ping On saw what Eva was looking at and it was old newspaper cuttings and in it was an injured Dai Hei in uniform and Ping On remembered some very intriguing scenes of Dai Hei holding someone’s hand who was holding a gun to his temple and shoot.. and Ping On stared at those report and Eva was angrily saying “WHAT IS IT?!” and Ping On said “… Well, I wanted to talk to you about… Columbo’s injury in the past” and Eva said “How did you know I wanted to know about this?” and Ping On said “I heard you took his old file” and Eva said “Yes I do want to talk about this. You were a victim too and yet your statement you gave was very short, not much details” and Ping On said honestly “Madam, I suffered from severe post traumatic stress, I couldn’t remember much what happened that day” and Madam asked “What about Columbo?” and Ping On said “He rather not talk about it” and Madam continued “He never investigated his own shooting?” and Ping On said “No, he didn’t want to so we never did and so the case is closed” and Madam said “And you can’t remember, even now?” and Ping On said “No”.
So… Ping On himself didn’t remember what happened but all we know is Dai Hei was shot in the head. And yet in the flashback Dai Hei was holding someone’s hand who was in turn holding the gun and Dai Hei was forcing that unknown person to shoot him which that person did at point blank. This is probably the most intriguing part of this episode. Did Ping On actually forgotten or maybe he knew but rather not say anything? Why Columbo never investigated what happened to himself? Could it be Ping On who shot the bullet? Now this is interesting. Unfortunately to get to that answer perhaps that stupid doll will be broken a few more times.
Anyway Eva got this brilliant idea to do something for Columbo, like investigating who did what to whom in Columbo’s only unsolved crime. And she dragged Fei Lung with her who just got promoted to CID.
Was there CID in 60s?
So they went to this old rundown place and Fei Lung wanted to wait for backup but as usual Miss I Am So Confident didn’t and to cut the long story short, they stumbled into some evil mainlanders who basically almost choked Miss I Am Now A Total Idiot to death, if not for Fei Lung who punched at her chest, gave her CPR, etc. And when she woke up, what did she do? She saw a few of the top of her buttons unbuttoned and proceeded to slap him hard and Fei Lung angrily said “You nearly died! I was trying to revive you!” but he still carried her into a car and as he was carrying her, she looked at him with admiration and as she was in the car, she lied down on his lap and closed her eyes and smiled as Fei Lung looked sorta worried, oblivious that probably Miss I Need A Hero is falling for him as well.
Seriously, this girl has a problem. She has a Damsel In Distress Complex. She needs help.
Anyway for 6 episodes we now see a theme between 2 couples and I have thought of the perfect themesong for each couple.
For Fei Lung and Eva, especially Eva, her themesong is I Need A Hero by Bonnie Tyler (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OBwS66EBUcY).
Some choice lyrics, imagine Eva singing..
I need a hero. I’m holding out for a hero ’til the end of the night.
He’s gotta be strong
and he’s gotta be fast
And he’s gotta be fresh from the fight.
I need a hero. I’m holding out for a hero ’til the morning light.
He’s gotta be sure
and it’s gotta be soon
And he’s gotta be larger than life!
larger than life.
Somewhere after midnight
in my wildest fantasy
For Ping On and Dai Hei, it is definitely more from Ping On to Dai Hei, his themesong is Rick Astley’s Never Gonna Give You Up (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6_b7RDuLwcI).
Some choice lyrics. Imagine Ping On singing …
Never gonna give you up,
Never gonna let you down
Never gonna run around and desert you
Never gonna make you cry,
Never gonna say goodbye
Never gonna tell a lie and hurt you
Columbo needs a themesong too, but let me think about that one.
Anyway story wise, the scene of that short flashback by Ping On is a big jump in the rather stagnant storyline but alas, too short. I am very irritated with Eva and her impulsive childishness. She does not deserve Fei Lung. As for Fei Lung, at episode 6 he showed himself to be a truer hero than Columbo. Problem with Edwin in this role is immediately I thought HE IS EVIL! I am sure I will have the same feeling if Matt Yeung is in the same role. So I am happy to be surprised. Natalie Tong is still not seen except for same old flashback but I hope her character makes some impact.
So far the biggest impact to me is Dai Hei. I just hate Columbo. I hate how everybody believes him, suck up to him, fear him or like Ping On who seems so spineless at times by protecting him. But then he was driven by love and by guilt.
I do pity the banker couple but hey, they did steal from the bank and in modern times the reason as to why they do what they did will be good for mitigation but they’re guilty as hell. Poor kid though.
There is better be a better way to redeem damn Columbo because as of now, I hate him.
And I hate this series for being so damn repetitive.
Performances wise,Pierre Ngo is still good. Wayne is one sided because his character never became someone else but between his Dai Hei and Columbo you will see a massive change and so I appreciate the wide difference. He is a wonderful actor that is let down by a sluggish script. Sluggish doesn’t even begin to describe the story which is limping towards total paralysis until something drastic is done, soon!
But let me predict. In the end Columbo becomes Dai Hei again. But I love to see Ping On dying to save Columbo so that Columbo as Dai Hei by retaining all his memory as Columbo will live in perpetual regret but alas, doesn’t seem to be the case. But then we are talking about Lee Tim Shing who never really gives his main couple a happy ending that last, just momentary happiness either in terms of the timeline in the story or shown on screen. So it could be possible that Ping On will sacrifice himself for Dai Hei/Columbo.
I hope episode 7 picks up not just the pace but the story. Make it go somewhere. Let Columbo actually investigate something. I can’t take it if the next 19 episodes is about personal problems. Please!! OH PLEASE SPARE ME THE DRAMA!
- Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 1)
- Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 2)
- Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 3)
- Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 4)
- Episodic Thoughts: “Bullet Brain” (Episode 5)
This Episodic Thoughts was written by Funn Lim, a Contributing Writer at JayneStars.com, and was originally posted at http://p2e-bulletbrain.blogspot.com.