Ho Ching

Reviewed by: sukting

September 25, 2008

Rating: two-point-five

Chinese Title: 豪情

Are you a fan of stories from the Shanghai era? This might be the right drama for you if you don't mind the predictable storyline.

Story/Introduction on characters
1. Yung Yee Sang – Lui Leung Wai
He is very studious and although he comes from a humble background, he strives hard to be successful in life. He has wanted to lead a quiet life but circumstances don’t allow it. After Yuen Shan’s death, he hasn’t wanted to fall in love again but Ying Chun changes his mind.

He is at loggerheads with Chan San as they are business rivals. Their marriage is short-lived when Chan San frames him for drug trafficking. He clears his name but loses his wife. Leung Wai did a very good job as a man who goes through so many bad patches in life.

2. Ko Hon – Lam Chun Hin
He is a rickshaw puller and is Yee Sang’s buddy. Like him, he wants to be successful in life. It’s hard to bully him.

Once, he sends a rich man to the harbour. He is later attacked by a group of hooligans. From the bottom of the plank that links the harbour to the boat, he grabs a knife from below to defend himself. He joins forces to eliminate the evil druglords in the end. Chun Hin also gives in a remarkable performance.

3. Kong Chan San – Wong Ying Choi
He is a terrible brat. Many suck up to him because of his wealth. He has good connections with the underworld. His only failure in life is his inability to marry Ying Chun. Determined to get her, he frames Yee Sang and kidnaps her. This forces him to work with the other ganglords to fight back. He rapes Ying Chun and Ying Chun kills him with his gun. Ying Choi shines as a villain again. Many will detest him for his horrible acts.

4. Lam Hung To – Lok Ying Kwan
He is Yee Shang’s supporter to become rich as he admires his guts and abilities.

5. Mou Kin – Ng Man Tat
He is Chan San’s henchman who helps in his evil deeds.

6. Ngai Pang – Yeung Kwan
He spoils Chan San rotten as he treats him like his own son after his friend’s death. He soon regrets his act as this jerk gets into so much trouble.

7. Yip Yuen Shan – Mak Lai Hung
She is Yee Sang’s first girlfriend. Gentle, sweet and kind, she wins his heart easily. Seeing that Yee Sang is about to get killed by Chun San’s killers, she shields him and dies in his arms instead. Thus Yee Sang needs a longer time than others to accept Ying Chun.

8. Fong Ying Chun – Lau Kar Ling
She is well educated and is strong-willed. She works in Chan San’s company but has never liked him. She is Yuen Shan’s friend and is sad to witness her death. She used to be very westernized but dons a cheongsam after her marriage to Yee Sang. Unable to face Yee Sang after her rape, she ends her own life.

Kar Ling has also presented herself well. Unlike the usual ‘snobbish’ looks that she had in other dramas, she has succeeded in looking more demure and weak.

9. Lau Ying – Tsang Wah Sin
She is Hon’s wife who goes through a lot with him to get married. She often throws tantrums at him as she has a very bad temper. She learns of Chan San’s plan to harm the men and is too late to stop this as Chan San’s men strangle her to death. No surprise from Wah Sin here as she is just reprising her role in other dramas.

10. Fung – Lau Ying Hung
She is Chan San’s mother who spoils him rotten too.

The theme song is by Cheung Hok Yau which is very easily forgettable.

TVB used to shoot a lot of Shanghai-setting dramas in the 80s. Why were they so well-received? That is because TVB had a good stable of artistes then. They looked and acted well in their parts in their traditional outfits.

However, this drama isn’t considered the best among them all because of its weak plot. I would prefer ‘The battle among the clans’ as the story is more compelling. However, the cast redeemed themselves in here. Otherwise this is such a third-rated story that will not lure you to continue watching.

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

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