Hopes were high for the new mainland historical drama, Legend of Chu and Han <楚漢傳奇>, which stars Taiwan’s Peter Ho (何潤東) and mainland China’s Chen Daoming (陳道明). The drama premiered on December 27, 2012 and after only more than a week of broadcast, many criticisms were voices. Viewership ratings dropped each day. The audience asked the director, Gao Xixi (高希希), “Why would you want us to watch 80 episodes of this?”
The first complaint aroused from a statement from the director that they had invested 240 million RMB for the production of the drama. According to Gao Xixi, the graphics of a drama were the most important, so they would ensure the satisfaction of the audience by using real fighting scenes, as well as reconstruct the palaces and other architecture to achieve the best filming effects. Nevertheless, the audience was quick to claim that his statements were complete lies. Netizens pointed out that the graphics were of poor quality, which seemed to be Photoshopped. Many obvious mistakes were also present. For example, spinach was not found until the Tang Dynasty, but it appeared in the drama, which took place in the Qin Dynasty. Other errors include the failure of lip-syncing by the actors in one of the scenes, as well as how words were wrongly written.
A second complaint by the audience was about the dragging plot of Legend of Chu and Han. Since the story line is set at the end of the Qin Dynasty and the start of the Han Dynasty, during the Chu-Han Contention, the audience anticipated seeing the numerous famous events that took place during that time period, such as the Hongmen Banquet. Sadly, those exciting events were not even the focus in the drama. According to netizens, useless scenes aired instead.
Another major complaint by the audience was the miscast of Chen Daoming and Peter Ho as the famous historical figures, Liu Bang and Xiang Yu respectively. Adding to the disappointment, the highly anticipated rivalry scenes between the two historical figures barely exist in the drama. In fact, the audience pointed out that Xiang Yu hardly has any screen time. One netizen angrily remarked, “Even the dog beside Liu Bang has more screen time than Xiang Yu!”
Scriptwriter Responds to Criticism
Not only were harsh remarks directed at Gao Xixi, but also at the scriptwriter of the drama, Wang Hailin (汪海林). Wang Hailin revealed that the script was written for Chen Daoming back in 2005, focusing primarily on the character, Liu Bang. However, director Gao Xixi later joined the crew and turned it into a drama focusing on both Liu Bang and Xiang Yu, casting Peter Ho. Wang Hailin retorted that the script was altered, and his work of seven years turned into a “Gao Xixi production”. Unwilling to be wrongly accused of the drama’s terrible script, Wang Hailin posted the original script of the drama on his Weibo.
“Legend of Chu and Han” Trailer
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This article is written by Shirley for JayneStars.com.