A Pillow Case of Mystery II

Reviewed by: sukting

July 28, 2013

Rating: three

Foreword After the success of part one 2 years earlier , TVB got into part2 with a partial new cast. How does it fare? Is it better or worse?

Story/Introduction on characters
1. Au-yeung Chun Wah as Sze Sai-lun He is still the intelligent Magistrate but now roams the country as his two wives die mysteriously when a boat goes missing and their bodies are never found. He then becomes Sin-yau County's new magistrate. He falls for Kwan-yau and marries her, not knowing that she has a motive. Upon knowing her reasons, he divorces her although he still helps her in clearing her brother’s name of killing someone.

Just as part one, he needs a pillow spirit to help him to solve cases. You will be amused – he doesn’t want to have it at first but the pillow keeps following him or Sau-yuk. He has to think over his hints as they can be very unclear at times. Unlike his grandfather-in-law, Tai-lik isn’t educated well and he has to think further.

I don’t like the role here as much as before as it makes him to be lustful and becoming like his mother to marry one woman after another – only eager to have children to extend the family line. Even though Kwan-yau explains to Yim-han that Sai-lun loves every wife deeply, I am simply not convinced. No surprise from his past roles, except on the impersonating parts of different animals and women when Tai-lik gives him hints.

2. Hsuan Hsuan as Ng Kwan-yau She is an inn-keeper but is also a con artist. She tricks people into believing that she can communicate with the dead. She actually checks out the facts first to earn more money so that she can save her brother, Kwan-yu out of prison. She has been taking care of her niece for years. In order to get Sai-lun to reopen the case, she marries him but is disturbed to know that he is the one to pass the death sentence on her brother. She decides to seek revenge on him but loves him in the end.

She is misled by Eunuch Yu to think that she is the culprit to cause Sai-lun’s family’s death as she brings some explosives to and leaves him for a while. Sai-lun tries hard to clear her name. She later remarries him and bears him a son. Not much changes from her usual headstrong roles, this is so boring. Luckily, the cases involving her are interesting to lure me to carry on watching.

3. Chan San Chung portrays So Ying-chun (born Guuwalgiya Jinchun), the son of the Eighth Prince
He changes his name to be a constable to make his dream come true. He has thought of himself to be smart but it is the opposite as all only give in to him. However, he is kind and likes to help others. He trusts others too easily and feels that all women should fall for him. He is Yim-han’s younger cousin and escapes from marriage to run away from the palace. It becomes his biggest regret to know that he has given up a good chance.

His family has arranged another wedding match for him as they can’t accept Mei-yan even if she divorces Sau-lun. He is poisoned by Yim-han upon knowing that she is the real killer and is about to tell Sai-lun. Mei-yan tries to save him by asking Tai-lik for help to jump off the cliff with the pillow. He later learns of Mei-yan’s love for him but it is too late when she dies. His role is funny indeed – have a good laugh when he gets into all sorts of trouble. San Chung has improved in his acting.

4. Tong Ning as Ting Mei-yan, She is the daughter of General Ting and is cheery. She is engaged to Ying-chun as her father rescues Ying-chun’s father in the past. She is also impartial but is pampered to insist her ways. She is enraged to be humiliated by Ying-chun on her wedding day. Thus, she disguises as a man to look everywhere for him.

She works as Sai-lun’s assistant judge and shows her wisdom. Later, she reveals her feminine appearance to charm him. You will laugh at the name she chooses – Luk Siu Fung! She then pretends to be Siu Fung’s younger sister, Siu Diep.

After that, she humiliates him when he wants to marry her and marries Sai-lun to spite him back. But later, she really has to marry him as her father is dying. She realizes that she still loves Ying-chun but it is too late. She has to pay for her decision to remain married to Sau-lun. By saving Kwan-yau who is trapped in the well by Yim-han, she becomes a full-pledged pillow fairy to help Ying-chun in his cases. He can only meet her in his dreams now since she is dead. The usual cute roles that she has attempted before so also nothing new.

5. Lee See Jit as the new Pillow Spirit, later revealed to be Ngau Tai-lik, He is kind and likes helping others. He becomes a castrated man, from the Ngau village in order to give his mother a better life to fight for a chance to work as a eunuch in the palace. Since then, he becomes feminine. However, he believes the wrong person Eunuch Yu to die in the end.

Eunuch Yu entrusts him to give a box to a woman Mou Dan. Tai-lik finds out too late that it contains explosives and Eunuch Yu kills him with a pillow. He loses his memory and is a partial-fairy to need Sau-lun’s help to solve cases to become a full fairy. He is grateful to Sai-lun and also apologetic for causes his family’s deaths so he saves Kwan-yau when she is bitten by a snake in the well.

He is supposed to vanish for food but as his kind act moves the gods, he becomes a peach tree that makes Kwan-yau survive for months in the well while waiting for rescue. After that, all other women also come to eat his fruit. Sai-lun two other wives also become pregnant after eating the fruit. See Jit is brilliant – he sends you sprawling to the ground with Tai-lik’s hints. Yet, he is also natural and reserved as Tai-lik when he is down and out.

6. Lee Fung portrays Chiu Yuet-ngor, Sai-lun's mother She is very particular about things and all find her difficult to get along. Actually, she is kind at heart and her only wish is to have grandchildren. She keeps wanting Sai-lun to remarry. That is why she keeps getting matchmakers once she gets into the new county and that attracts Kwan-yau’s attention.

7. Lui Shan portrays Pong Got-ngoi, She is Sai-lun's official wife. She is well-educated and is very kind. She treats everyone well and doesn’t fight for status. She manages the household finances well. Knowing that Sai-lun doesn’t earn much, she tries to save.

8. Yeow Ying Ying portrays Ka Sau-yuk, She is Sai-lun's second wife/concubine. She grumbles not getting complete love from Sai-lun and sees how he marries one after another. She forgives Kwan-yau as she clears her name of killing someone although Kwan-yau sets her up for faking her miscarriage caused by her. She is actually a compassionate person.

9. Liu Kar Fai portrays Szema Jui-fung, He is the head constable who works for Sai-lun. Ever since his wife dies with Sai-lun’s family, he doesn’t remarry and only visits the prostitutes. That is how he finds out where Tai-lik works before his death. He doesn’t like Ying-chun that much as their ways of solving cases differs very much. Still, he admires him for his efforts and guides him along. He also teaches him martial arts, wanting him to improve.

10. Law Ho-kai portrays Ng Sau-shun, He is Kwan-yau's uncle and owner of the Dragon Phoenix Inn. He is also an impulsive gambler although he is good at counting money.

11. Chan Mun Ching portrays Tit Kim-lan She is an employee at Dragon Phoenix Inn. She knows martial arts and resuces Kwan-yu countless times during attacks from the soldiers.

12.Lam Chi Sin portrays Chukot Leung, He is also an employee at Dragon Phoenix Inn. Unlike the others, he is scholar-like but fails the entrance exams so he is too ashamed to return home. He later marries Kim-lan.

13.Wai Kar Hung portrays Golden-haired Rat He is an employee at Dragon Phoenix Inn. He is good in martial arts like Kim-lan and protects them well.

14.Dai Yiu-ming portrays Assistant Lui Ming He is Sai-lun's assistant judge. He is dedicated to his work and manages the cases well, looking for details. Although he isn’t intelligent, he knows what to ask.

15.Lok Tung portrays Ting Ting She is Mei-yan's younger cousin. She disguises as a man with her to look for Ying-chun. She supports her in everything she does.

16.Luk Wing-chi portrays Ng Hei-lam, She is Kwan-yau's six-year-old niece. Sai-lun dotes on her and she treats her like her father whom she has never seen since birth.

17.Lau Yuk Chui portrays Princess Mucideri Yim-han She is educated and treats all well. Ying-chun is like her younger brother so she dotes on him. She is easily jealous of others. Knowing that Acai’s first love is Mou Dan, a courtesan , she sets her mind to kill her at all costs with Eunuch Yu’s help. She doesn’t know that Sai-lun‘s family also perishes with her. She gets vindictive to kill all in order to keep this a secret. When it is revealed, she kills herself.

18. Lee Shing Cheung portrays Samala Acai Yim-han is adamant to marry Acai. Thus, she arranges him to get adopted by an influential family. Then she gets the emperor’s approval despite of her parents’ objection. Acai becomes the princess’s consort and intends to marry Mou Dan upon knowing that she is pregnant to escape elsewhere. She goes missing and he is upset.

Still, he is on good terms with Yim-han and helps her in telling Ying-chun to accept his fate to marry Princess Sin Sin. He also helps to threaten Mei-yan by lying that Ying-chun’s family is not doing well financially to make this decision. Upon knowing that Yim-han is the culprit, he tries to kill Sai-lun and his friends. When that fails, he kills himself to cover this up.

19. Lee Kong as Eunuch Yu He works under Yim-han’s orders but he is as ruthless as his mistress to go all out to kill. He never expects Yim-han to kill him when the others are after him as he pretends to hold her as hostage.

20. Chan Chi Yiu as Princess Sin Sin She is demure and kind. To please Ying-chun, she even learns cooking. She is concerned over his well-being whenever he runs after criminals. When knowing of their family’s motive to let them marry, she discloses the truth to him, hoping that he will get happiness.
Interesting facts

TVB Anniversary Awards 2010
Nominated: Best Drama. Best Actor (Au Yeung Chun Wah), Best Actress (Hsuan Hsuan) The ratings were 30 to 37 points which was quite impressive. The first drama had highest at 36 points.

TVB decided to shoot this serial but it could not cast Ho Yin as she did not even consider signing a part-time contract. She only wanted to accept commercial tasks. Many rumoured that she was disillusioned for not winning the best actress award and was not valued by TVB. TVB decided to use Husan since many accepted her combination with him in 《赌场风云》and《洗冤录》 and there was a guarantee in viewership.

TVB had considered other actresses too but most were inexperienced. Lai Chi wanted to take care of her younger brother. See Mun wanted a holiday after shooting 《东山飘雨西关情》. Kwok Sin Nei and Ng Hang Yee were shooting 《新网中人》and《烈火雄心3》at the same time. Thus, even though Hsuan signed a part-time contract, she got to shoot this drama while shooting <<老婆大人Ⅱ》. Another reason was Chun-wah also insisted that he worked best with her among so many actresses..

Most favourite character The first is Tai-lik - he is kind and self-sacrificing. Ying-chun is second as he also produces comic relief here.

Most hated character I really hate Mei-yan. All women will be shy to reveal that she is seen naked by a man but she isn’t afraid to – just to spite back at Ying-chun to insist marrying Sai-lun. Even though Sai-lun tells her to think twice, she will not listen. She doesn’t consider Kwan-yau and his other wives’ feelings at all. She is a totally selfish person.

Song It is ‘Don’t underestimate me by Wong Cho Lam’. His MTV appears at the end of the drama. I like the song. This is strange – why not get him to act in this drama? Even as a minor role such as Leung is good enough!

The cases here are equally engaging except the ‘ghost painting’ case. It is an easy guess to the killer’s identity. Due to the working of former cast in here, we can see their closeness. The new cast to join them also gives a refreshing feel. Adding See Jit is a smart move, seeing how he acts with ease makes you forget that this is actually his first debut periodic drama.

The exchanges he has with Sai-lun are highlights of the drama. Sometimes, the hints that he gives are really unexpected to the truth – although close but not what we have in mind. It puts the two actors’ acting to good test. They are really good in carrying out scenarios to react again – not afraid of revealing their shortcomings to make others laugh. I am glad that they have it for almost every episode so that I will not get bored!

I like Ying-chun’s role as he is really wacky although I don’t welcome Mei-yan’s presence, though. She is just there to create trouble for the rest. What an unexpected number of episodes to end at 21- however, the ending isn’t as fast-paced as predicted. They should have stopped at 20. I am quite let down by Chun-wah and Hsuan’s acting. I feel that they could have done better. This drama becomes a showcase platform for others instead. Will there be a part3? I am waiting eagerly for it.

Sukting’s ratings :
On acting : *** (Scale of 5)
On story : ***1/2 (Scale of 5)
On song : *** (Scale of 5)

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