Chinese Title: "Leet For Hung Sum III" (roughly translates to flaming heroic heart)
No. of episodes: 32
Myolie Wu as Ying
Kevin Cheng as Rex
Wong Hei as Sing
Bosco Wong as Encore
Aimee Chan as Easy
Steven Wong as Lam
I never learn, do I? While not a complete miss, BF III is still one huge letdown. You'll have to look pretty hard to find something you like in here.
Let's start with the good, since that list is much shorter.
1. The friendship between Sing and Rex. A well-written story though it wasn't as well-portrayed (see below).
2. Bosco Wong: Finally. A performance from him that I enjoyed. It's not brilliant acting by any means, but at least he has improved somewhat in the dramatic moments while of course still being funny as usual. He has little chemistry with Wong Hei who plays his mentor, though he has enough with Aimee Chan who plays his love interest. The major problem with him is that he's too thin to convince as a fireman.
3. Rebecca Chan: Her mother-son chemistry with Bosco was fantastic as was her performance. I always looked forward to her scenes in here.
4. The camaraderie between the firefighters. One thing that TVB is consistently good at is writing scenes of brotherhood and friendly banter.
And then comes the bad.
1. Myolie Wu: I can't believe I'm saying this, but her performance in BF III was riddled with unnatural acting, which is bizarre because I was once a fan of hers. Is it possible to un-improve?! It didn't help that that she has no chemistry with either Kevin Cheng or Wong Hei in here. I wish I could say I can write this performance off as a minor discretion but Myolie has yet to deliver since her wonderful performances in Net Deception and Golden Faith... which was many, many moons ago. To be honest, I found her Ying annoying from beginning to end.
2. Wong Hei: A gifted actor and poster child for the Burning Flame trilogy, but golly, it was beyond uncomfortable watching him as the lovesick, suicidal Sing. I commend the casting folks for casting against-type, and Wong Hei acts well in this series (especially in the earlier parts as the temperamental Sing), but his performance just made me squirm. Sometimes you just can't convince as certain characters.
3. Bosco's wardrobe.
4. No friendship chemistry between Kevin and Wong, which makes their storyline more than a little forced.
5. The romantic storyline between Ying and Rex. I was bored to tears with both Myolie and Kevin … and am still in disbelief that the writers left Sing in a coma for 15 episodes to put me through their torturous (for me) relationship.
6. Who the hell named Aimee Chan's character?! See below.
7. The actor who played Kevin's boss. He nailed the arrogance but his acting was awful.
8. Elaine Yiu. Can't she stop playing the spoiled little sister roles? I'm so irritated with her.
9. The length. Mainly because there are too many things wrong with this series.
And then the rest.
1. Kevin Cheng: Probably the best-looking actor of TVB's current generation. He has lots of charisma and looks good with many female stars, but I think I finally figured out the problem with him. He has a problem connecting with the audience…er, or at least with me. He can act, but he has yet to make me cry, or laugh, or feel anything except "hmm, that was ok"... and yet I've seen almost every single one of his series. To Kevin, I'm just indifferent. If there's one thing that is consistently missing in his performances, it's passion. When I watch him, I simply don't care. BF III is another example of his forgettable textbook acting (look sad when you're supposed to be sad, look happy when you're supposed to be happy, etc.) … and despite getting lots of promotion and opportunities, Kevin has remained stagnant and has yet to deliver a compelling performance.
2. Aimee Chan: Her first series and she's surprisingly tolerable. Does she have potential? I have no friggin' clue. I do, however, know that you shouldn't name a girl Easy.
3. You know a series isn't great when you're fast-forwarding through the scenes with the leads to focus on the ke-le-fes instead. The actresses who played Easy's friends were hilarious. Sam Chan is funny as Bad Luck Ming, as are some of the other actors who play the firefighters.
4. Steven Wong overacts less in this series as hothead Lam, but there is no way he's leading man material.
To Watch or Not To Watch, That is the Question
Time is precious, dear friends. Save it and skip this.
Through the Grapevine
Guess who's dating in real life? Bosco and Myolie. It was actually a BF III producer who spilled the beans. Now let's all say a collective "I told you so!"