Justice Bao - The Sword of Vengeance


Reviewed by: sukting

September 02, 2003

Rating: three

Chinese title: 仇之剑

How long
5 episodes

Foreword
This is considered Miu Kiu Wai?s last drama serial if I am not mistaken. He had declined offers from TVB because he was very busy with his optical shops. However he agreed to star in this ATV serial because this segment was short. This was a surprise as many couldn't believe his decision to join a rival station.

It is said that this segment had better ratings like the two segments that Jiao En Jun did with ATV earlier. Many have missed this Dai Hup for too long and were still curious to see how he looked after so many years. Still, he tries to be in top form by playing golf and exercising. What is the result and my impression?


Introduction on characters/story

  1. Liu Qing Yang/Song Qing Yun ? Miu Kiu Wai
    His real name is the former ? Qing Yun is an orphan and loses touch with his younger sister when their family is killed in a fire. What is worse ? Qing Yun?s blood has also been poisoned since young and this illness bothers him although he becomes a skilled pugilist and zither player when he becomes an adult. He is a cool and reserved man who doesn?t show his feelings easily.

    He finds out that Long Qian is his enemy so he decides to get close to his daughter. He changes his name. You'll be tongue-tied by the scene where he first meets her. Su Qin is learning how to play the zither from her teacher. Qing Yun comes to disturb and the master is so angered that Qing Yun plays better than him and leaves! Both are married later but they still don?t share the same bed. The wedding scene is quite upsetting. Qing Yun feigns drunkenness and Su Qin quietly removes his shoes. She looks so pathetic observing the candle flame and having to spend her wedding night like this.

    He loves her but lies to her that he doesn?t wish to pass the poison to her. But upon seeing how much she loves him, he melts and finally they are a real couple. Su Qin tries hard to make her father impart his Mie Yang skill to him. Qian initially refuses to give any pointers after seeing Qing Yun practise his sword skills. Qian finally gives in after seeing how Su Qin wishes to make him happy although he doesn?t fully trust Qing Yun.

    Qing Yun is reunited with Qing Ping when both discover each other at the old house they had both stayed in. Both are still bent on seeking vengeance but Qian finds out Qing Ping?s identity after she kills his man. In a fit to save her from being executed, Qing Yun abducts her. Qing Ping then wants him to kill her to disperse Qian?s doubts. He refuses at first but gives in to her later. He then has an ?act? with her in front of Qian and kills her.

    But at night, he can?t sleep and weeps for her death. Su Qin notices that when he climbs out of bed and sobs silently. She then discovers his secret and is devastated that he wants to kill her. He refuses to tell her whether he loves her but when she jumps down the cliff, he gets so worried and anxious. He saves her and she tries in vain to change his vengeful mind. His anguish, hesitation to kill Su Qin and anxiety when he knows that she is hurt are so real and should not be missed at all.

    Su Qin leaves a letter informing Qian of his identity before the couple retreat to a secluded spot. Alas, Qing Yun hasn?t changed his mind and is still set on revenge. He is surprised that Qian is on his guard and angered that he had been betrayed. During the duel, he loses an arm in order to save his own life. Luckily Zhan Zhao saves him and later with Justice Bao?s help, he changes for the better. He helps to prevent the Mongolians from attacking the country. Now he regrets ever letting vengeance blind him and for not helping the people. However, he is not able to forgive Su Qin and avoids her.

    Our swordsman Miu?s acting skills and martial art stances hasn?t turned rusty. Although he has put on some weight and is more matured, he is still impressive as the vengeful swordsman. He turned in a fine performance ? I really marvelled at the fighting scenes ? he still looks so stunning in the sword sparring scenes with Zhao Zhao, Long Qian or alone! I crave for more! This is the first time he has acted with two Taiwanese actresses ? one of them even plays his love interest. But surprisingly, they complement each other well.

    The same can be implied about his acting. He delivers emotional scenes well too. The part where he is in agony due to the headaches caused by the poison in his blood is so convincing. He didn't need to scream nor exaggerate his actions like Ma Jing Tao in ?The Eight Immortals? but it was enough to believe that he was really in pain. His hesitation in telling the truth to Su Qin was very real too.

    But the most impressive scene will be how he reunited with his long-lost sister. The way he tried to bring himself to kill her was the same as when he acted as Lee Sai Mun in ?The Foundation? when he had to kill Chun Sik Sik then. This seemingly heartless man is actually very emotional. At night, he weeps over her death. Just a tear falling down his cheek is enough to move you.

    His anger when he knows that Su Qin had betrayed him is also well delivered. He gets so mad with her for appearing with the zither he had given her because he can never play anymore. So mad that he nearly wishes to destroy it! A pity that they both don?t end up together in the end.

    However, many will find his clothes familiar looking ? because Jiao En Jun also wore them in ?Heroine Of The Yang?! This shows how low ATV?s budgets are ? how I wished that they had spent more money to give him a wider wardrobe.

  2. Zhan Zhao ? Lui Leung Wai
    I don?t know what is wrong with me but I was very happy that he only appeared in a few scenes here. Maybe because I wanted to see more of Miu as I am a fan. Both actors acted well despite having worked together for the first time. He is a loyal friend. At first, he befriends Qing Yun because he admires his skill.

    Later when he finds out that Qing Yun killed his own sister just to seek revenge, he tries hard to dissuade him but to no avail. Upon knowing of his illness, he tries to get Gong Sun Ce to cure him. He blames himself for coming to his friend's rescue too late causing him to lose an arm. So he tries hard to seek out evidence of Qian?s evil deeds in order to bring him to justice. Both succeed in defending the country too and he is glad to have changed him for the better.

  3. Long Qian ? Lam Wai
    He is an evil man who loves battles. He kills the whole Liu family for their riches. However, he dotes on his only daughter very much. But I wonder why he doesn?t impart his skills on her??? He doesn?t trust people easily too and he suspects Qing Yun?s motive for marrying Su Qin.

    However, he keeps his promise to Su Qin and preserves Qing Yun's life and only takes his arm. But he still wants to destroy his skills. However Zhan Zhao comes in time and rescues him. Long Qian is later executed but he shows no remorse at all for all the killings.

  4. Long Su Qin ? Di Ying (the actress as Ah Seng?s natural mother in the Taiwanese Serial ?Ah Seng?)
    She is so beautiful and gentle here. It is hard not to like her. All along, she thought that she was happy but after her marriage, she discovers that the truth is harsh. Qing Yun refuses to share the same bed with her but she still keeps it from her father. She is puzzled as to why Qing Yun refuses to let her father know about his illness too but she gives in eventually. When Qing Yun?s identity is revealed, she gets so upset. When he refuses to tell her whether or he loves her and still points at her with his sword, she jumps off the cliff.

    Qing Yun gets worried and rushes to her side. She faints with a reassuring smile knowing that he is still concerned about her. When she wakes up, he gets so concerned and sits by her bed to allow her to lean on his side while she gives him a sweet smile. How touching this scene was!

    But her stupid act of telling Qian the truth causes him to lose an arm. Their ties end there. She is upset that he wants to break all ties with her by wanting to break the zither. She begs him to leave it for her to keep as a reminder of him. The parting scene is very tragic as Qing Yun refuses to look at her and lets her leave.

    Di Ying is quite impressive in making tragic roles come alive, not losing to Lau Suet Wah. No wonder, she is so famous in Taiwan.

  5. Liu Qing Ping ? Yang Bao Wei (Yin Li in Taiwan 94HSDS)
    A very vengeful woman. Instead of being grateful to Qing Yu for having saved her from execution, she chides him for making Qian lose his guard against him! To obtain his trust again, she persuades him to kill her ? what a stupid decision ? doesn?t she know that this would cause him much agony??? He has sleepless nights over it as he regrets the act.

    This actress has acted in a few serials in Singapore before she moved her base to Taiwan. Most of those were period dramas so she has adequate experience. She is quite a natural actress and her periodic look is also stunning. Unfortunately, she isn?t famous. Do watch out for the scene when she dies. It is quite sad when she sees Qing Yun for the last time after he reluctantly slashes her in the throat.

Conclusion
I really must complain that this segment only had 5 episodes. I didn't get enough of Miu Kiu Wai. I had longed to see more of his fighting skills but unfortunately they were reduced to a minimal. What a waste of his talents because it is so difficult to see a good Dai Hup these days. When he displays the stances with confidence and poise, I tell myself this is the Dai Hup that I have been missing for so long! Nowadays, the younger actors really pale in comparison to him in looks, acting and agility. No wonder he ended up in so many period dramas in TVB during his early days with the station.

Do try to watch this segment as I don?t think Miu is going to act anymore. It is still worth your time even though it contains long-winded dialogues typical of most Justice Bao dramas.

Sukting's Ratings :
On acting : * * *1/2 (Scale of 5)
On story : * * * (Scale of 5)


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