Legend of a Heroine


Reviewed by: sukting

December 10, 2009

Rating: three

How long
20 episodes

Foreword
It is rare for Suet Lei to be the leading actress of a drama as she isn't as famous as her elder sister, Mai Shuet. It is an adaptation of Liang Yu Sheng’s novel 《女帝奇英傳》. Did the cast live up to the standard?


Story/Introduction on characters

1. Fan Qiu Niang – Suet Lei
She is the daughter of a general but was kidnapped by her master long ago. She is trained to be a killer to take the lives of corrupted officials and heartless men. But she doesn’t lose her kind nature. She is skilful but doesn’t seem so in the end. She is nearly dead till she gets a secret manual to increase her inner strength through evil means. If not for Xiu Yuan, she might have died.

2. Wen Xue Ji – Ou Hoi Ling
She is a courtesan who sells her talents but not her body. However, all men have designs on her as she doesn’t want to meet them easily. She becomes close to Shi Yi but Xian Yuan violates her. She nearly wants to kill herself but Shi Yi saves her. He even teaches her martial arts to defend herself. She has her sweet revenge after killing Xian Yuan.

3. Tian Ruo Mei – Choi Sin Yee
She is Fu’s daughter who was pampered from young. Bitter that Ning escaped from home to avoid marrying her, she hunts him down although she knows no martial arts. Tired of being rejected so many times by him, she rejects him when he accepts her later. Another reason is that she feels shameful of Fu’s evil deeds. Ning grows to like her for her frank nature and both become a couple in the end.

4. Miu Ching – See Ming
She is an abbess who is bitter after she is a loser in love. She abducts Qiu Niang and trains her to become as vicious as her to seek revenge. She actually works for Lan Ling Ge. After knowing that she kills her parents so that she will continue working for her, Qiu Niang is forced to kill her.

5. Yang Shi Yi – Lo Lok Lam
He is Che’s capable general and bodyguard. He is always around when the officials meet at Guang’s home so Guang finds it hard to kill them. He is won over by Xue Ji’s poetic talents and both often meet. Love blossoms between them.

6. Zhan Xiu Yuan – Lau Siu Kuan
He is a pugilistic expert but he isn’t aware that his wife knows martial arts. After knowing that Fu is evil, he brings Qiu Niang to serve for Ning’s father who is a righteous official. Both go into retreat in the woods after getting rid of Fu with the help of Shi Yi and Xue Ji.

7. Zhang Sun Ning – Wan Tin Chiu
He is the son of an official. He dislikes arranged marriages so he leaves home, disguising as a wanderer. Another reason is to seek out Lan Ling Ge to disband it. Although he is rich, he isn’t proud and loves to seek adventure. He will not be afraid to reveal his feelings when he loves someone. He is later involved in the court struggle and has no choice but to return home. He is imprisoned with his parents by Fu and is badly wounded. He is touched when Ruo Mei goes against her father to save them out.

8. Tan Chu - Choi Kwok Hing
He is Guang’s lackey who is always up to no good.

9. Tian Fu – Kong Tu
He pretends to be righteous but he is as evil as Guang. Besides Ning’s father and Guang, he is the other powerful official in court. Thus he establishes good relations with Zhang Sun's family by making use of his daughter. He makes use of Qiu Niang to kill Guang. After learning evil skills from Jing Jing Er, his martial arts skills improve heaps and bounds.

10. Duan Xian Yuan - Cheung Chan Wah
He is Guang’s son who is equally ruthless. He shows interest in Xue Ji but Shi Yi teaches him a good lesson by beating him up. Thus, he harbours hatred towards him.

11. Kong Kong Er - Lok Tak Wah
He is the one who teaches Fu evil skills. He enjoys glory and power so he is willing to work under Fu.

12. Fan Che – Ling Mun Hoi
He is Qiu Niang’s father who is kept in the dark that she kills many corrupted officials. However, he approves of her actions after knowing her reasons.

13. Mrs Fan – Tam Siu Ying
She is Qiu Niang’s mother who has been pining for her since her disappearance. She is glad when her family is reunited again. Her happiness is shortlived when Guang learns of Qiu Niang’s identity to kill her and Che.

14. Cui Xiu Zhi – Lee Ying Tong
She is the inn-keeper of Lan Ling Ge but is also a female killer. She adores Ning and persuades Guang to let him join them. Ning knows that she has not lost her kind nature and pities her. He tries to help her whenever he can. Guang drugs him and Xiu Zhi seizes the chance to get close to him. I really laugh when Ning pulls his loose shirt upon waking up. He looks as shy as a woman in front of her. Normally women are the ones are afraid to be taken advantage of but this case is definitely extraordinary.

15. Duan Guang – Cheung Yau
He loves battles and thus the other officials avoid coming into conflicts with him as much as possible. He sets up an assassin unit, Lan Ling Ge to kill those who oppose him.


Conclusion

The initial focus is on Qiu Niang’s growing up process. The latter part is focused on the three pairs of lovers. Suet Lei is past her prime. She looks awkward to act as a teenage Qiu Niang. But she gives her best in later scenes. The others are more comfortable in their roles and make a Liang adaptation come alive. It is a pity that it doesn’t get that much attention as the cast is unknown. Do watch it if you have the chance.

Sukting’s ratings :

On acting : *** (Scale of 5)

On story : *** (Scale of 5)


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