Since we’re still sheltering in place, I’ve been trying to read more and have been watching a lot of Chinese Dramas. I usually have to watch it with English subtitles to fully understand the intricate plots of crime and thriller shows, but for light romances, I can get by pretty well with my one semester of college Chinese Mandarin when English subtitles are not available. I’ll take what I can get. I do speak Cantonese so Mandarin is slightly easier for me to make out.
These are the latest batch I’ve binged watch and enjoyed. All the below are fully subtitled so you can enjoy them without trying to make out what they are saying thru facial expressions and gestures. Most of them can be found on Viki and/or YouTube.
1. Remembering Lichuan – I mentioned this one in a previous post already, but I’ll call this one out again. This is actually an older one from 2016 and I found this by accident. At the time there were no subtitles and I struggled a bit with it, but fortunately, it’s all available with English subtitles on YouTube now. Let me forewarn you, this one is sad. Out of all the ones on the list, this is the most memorable to me. Bring out the tissues. This one actually made me want to visit Kunming afterwards. I even found the hotel (The Green Lake Hotel) that’s across from the lake. You’ll understand its signifance if you watch it. Joan Chen also stars in this.
2. The Gravity of a Rainbow – I watched this after watching Remembering Lichuan. This also stars Godfrey Gao. It’s about the difficulties that a couple faces when the parents don’t approve of the relationship. You can really see that Godfrey matured as an actor in this later role. I watched this on YouTube.
3. Put Your Head on My Shoulder – The female lead accidentally ends up living with the male lead and falling in love. This is a fun fluffy college romcom with some hilarious scences. I watched this on Viki.
4. Love O2O – Initially, I had a hard time starting this one and had to attempt it a few times. After getting over the first episode, I was hooked. This one is highly rated and is a fun watch. The male lead is instantly attracted to the female lead when he saw her quick slim hands playing an online role-playing game at an internet cafe. He becomes her love interest online and eventually offline. I love how the male lead is not detracted from his loyalty to his girlfriend despite all the rumors and people surrounding them that want to split them up. I watched this on Viki.
5. Go Go Squid – This is another one that I had I get past episode 1 to really like. The female character is instantly attracted to the male lead who is a former famous esports gamer when she met him at an internet cafe. She does silly things to try to get his attention. The show focuses on their relationship and also his journey into leading his esports team to victory. I watched this on Viki.
6. Love and Destiny – I really liked this one. Some reviews were pretty harsh on the male lead character’s looks, complaining he looked too old. But, he’s the God of War and he’s suppose to be couple of hundred years old. So what if he’s a bit more mature? I thought he did a great job. I was instantly hooked. I watched this on Viki.
7. Arsenal Military Academy – Normally Republican era dramas are not my favorite genre but the two leads convinced me to give it a chance and I was instantly hooked. I loved the camaraderie between all the cadets at the academy. It had moments of silliness and then serious scenes, so it’s a good balance. I watched this on Viki.
8. The Love by Hypnotic – This one has a lot of kissing, which is very unusual for a C-Drama. The leads have excellent chemistry. It’s a cute fluffy show. The female character uses hypnosis on her husband. I watched this on Youtube.
9. General and I – I really liked this one. The female character is an excellent war strategist and goes against the male lead. He falls for her but she betrays him due to her loyalty to her childhood friend and master. It’s frustrating to see to see them come together and get separated, again and again, but their love is enduring. I watched this on Viki.
You’ll notice that 1 & 2 stars Godfrey Gao. Unfortunately, he passed away on November 27, 2019. I’m still perplexed by his death. He was young and fit so it’s unbelievable that he died of cardiac arrest. I’m glad that his work will live on.
If you’ve seen any of the above, let me know what you think? Do you have any recommendations for me?