It Runs In the Family

Reviewed by: sukting

November 08, 2008

Rating: three-point-five

How long
15 episodes


It is a story of a pair of unidentical twins who are separated from each other when young. Their fireman father dies and their mother loses Lei Jau when they tour Macau. They stay under the same roof but do not know each other's identity. What happens between them when they grow up? Both have different personalities and there is a big barrier between them.

Story/Introduction on characters

1. Wong Ming Shing – Lau Ching Wan
He is the elder twin. He is a new upcoming movie director who is capable to make his movies become big successes. He is daring to try out new ideas. Ming Shing wins lottery and buys a house. His mother, Lai wants to save money so she rents it out to Fai and Sai. They can't move into the new flat as the construction gives problems so they have to stay in the old house. This creates lots of quarrels between the two families.

Both brothers later acknowledge each other. Lei Jau looks forward to spend their birthday together but Ming Shing ends up celebrating with his colleagues. His colleagues even get a bar hostess for him as a present. Kar Mun storms and leaves. Still, she helps him out as he knows nothing about doing business.

It is Kar Nam's birthday and the twins have promised to spend her birthday together. But the scheming Ming Shing takes the chance to date her individually to make Lei Jau wait alone the whole night. Seeing him upset and Kar Nam is unable to make a choice, he pretends to patch up with Hor Yan. He intends to force Kar Nam to return to Lei Jau. She ends up avoiding both men.

Ming Shing becomes a business partner with Chiu Mun but gets cheated when Chiu Mun seizes the company funds. Chiu Mun backs out to sell his shares to him. Ming Shing finds it tough to handle the company and gets drunk. Chiu Mun's lover discovers that Chiu Mun has cheated her and quarrels with him. A fire breaks out and she falls into a coma.

Lei Jau knows that Ming Shing is in danger and rushes to rescue him. Ming Shing thinks that he is dying and wants him to tell Kar Nam for him that he still loves her. This makes Lei Jau shy. Ming Shing is suspected of hurting the woman and gets involved in the suit. It is only through this process that he learns that Lei Jau really cares for him. Ching Wan does well in as this selfish but filial role.

2. Wong Lei Jau (Lo Sai) – Chow Sing Chee
He is the younger twin. He loses his memory after a high fever to forget about his family. He takes things easy as a gangster but has a strong sense of justice. He knocks into Ming Shing and quarrels with him. Matters turn worse when he stays in their home.

He has a Goddess of Mercy tattoo behind his back out of fun. He often loves to practice with the sword in the room. Thus Ming Shing thinks that he is from the underworld. But he really loves his father and will not do anything to upset him.

After getting along with Lai, he develops feelings for her. But not wanting to hurt Fai, he tries to avoid her.
He treats her to pineapples and she faints due to diabetics. He takes care of her in hospital. Fai becomes very jealous. Knowing that she misses Mun Cheung, he fakes his handwriting to draft letters to her.

He likes Kar Nam and a love triangle is formed. He is angry that Ming Shing doesn't treat Kar Nam seriously and knocks sense into his head. But he doesn't give up on her and both brothers woo her. She gets into a fix. Lei Jau feels troubled and goes to the comic shop. He gets to know Yuk Hou better.

Seeing his elder brother in trouble, he finally realizes how important he is to him to seek help from others. He decides to lie that he is the culprit. Luckily the woman wakes up on time to reveal that Chiu Mun is the one. So both brothers are together again. Sing Chee is really in top form as the self-sacrificing younger brother who is more sensible than Ming Shing.

3. Lo Fai – Leung Kar Yan
He finds Lei Jau on the street and adopts him. He receives very little education but he moves for Sai's sake. Sai is released from prison. He takes the rap for his friend but doesn't feel ashamed of it. He becomes a famous housing agent. Fai doesn't want to reveal to Lai as he is afraid of losing Lei Jau. He even wants to move out. Ming Shing notices that Fai has not been telling the truth on Lei Jau's parentage and confronts him. Fai has to reveal the truth. Seeing them back as a family makes him upset.

Lei Jau still treats him as his father and he continues to stay with them. You will be amused to see him overly jealous for Lei Jau's attention when Lei Jau coaxes Lai. When has he seen him doing that to him? Lei Jau replies that people will get the wrong idea if he does that!

He knocks into Ling on the street and she wants him to look for her missing contact lenses. This causes him to lose money in lottery as he fails to buy the lottery ticket. Fai feels sorry for her to lose her boyfriend and both become friends. He finally finds true love this time.

4. Fong Kar Nam – Chan Sau Mun
She is an independent orphan. She is also Ming Shing's subordinate. She often visits the store and befriends Fai. She helps him to gamble and win money and she acknowledges him as her foster father. She moves in to stay with Fai. She finds Ming Shing unfeeling to the extras and both have a conflict. She starts to find him approachable and is secretly in love with him. But her tomboyish dressing fails to attract him. Still, her persistence pays off in the end. I find Sau Mun better in headstrong roles but she still has a lot of chemistry with the two actors.

5. Chuk Ling – Mah Ching Yee
She is the Kar Nam's aunt who has very good upbringing and is very elegant. Many say that she is vain to still wear contact lenses at her age. She sets very high standards for herself and is hard to work with. She only reveals her feelings to Kar Nam. She breaks up with Chiu Mun and decides to give up the fame that she has worked hard for to leave his company.

After knowing Fai, she becomes more flexible and sets new targets. She is poles apart from Fai but admires his honesty. Both break through all obstacles to fall in love. You will really laugh at this woman. She loses her contact lenses whenever she sees Fai. Fai gets impatient. She might as well refrain from wearing them since she keeps going for the wrong men.

6. Lee Mun Cheung – Cheng Bak Lum
He overhears her and pretends to be Lei Jau. Ming Shing suspects his motive and he pretends to want to kill himself to get their sympathy. This man brings a whore home to sleep on Lei Jau's bed. He even steals money and frames Lei Jau. Lei Jau finds out his evil deeds but can't tell Lai. Lai even thinks that Fai misleads her younger son to get indulged in gambling.

He loses a lot of money to Fai and goes into hiding. The twins finally hunt him down to beat him up and force him to return the money to Lai.

7. Lee Yuk Hou – Ng Ying Sai
She loves comics so she opens a comic shop. Lei Jau is a comic lover too and both become friends. There is once that she reads comics overnight so her eyes become swollen. She wears her glasses to work. Lei Jau exclaims that she looks cuter with glasses so she remains this way. She becomes Lei Jau's girlfriend.

8. Ke Hor Yan – Cheung Feng Nai
A third rated actress who becomes Ming Shing's girlfriend because she wants to be famous. She ditches him when she gets a rich boyfriend so Kar Nam feels sorry for him.

9. Yu Chiu Mun - Lok Ying Kuan
He has many girlfriends and knows that Ling is faithful to him. So he isn't eager to get married. It is only when he runs into financial difficulties that he changes his mind. One of his girlfriends is jealous that Ling is his no. 1 girlfriend so she lies to her that he has AIDS. However, she sticks by him and they forward their wedding plans instead. But seeing that he hasn't changed, she breaks up with him.

He gets into financial difficulty when she leaves the company. He only realizes that she is the only person nice to him but there is no turning back. Having cheated women of their money, he has to pay the price of staying in jail.

10. Bak Lai – Ng Yuen Yee
She is the twins' mother. Lai misses Lei Jau and goes to the temple. The prediction lot she gets states that he is near her and she is puzzled over it. Lei Jau is definitely near her but she doesn't know it. In fact, she is hostile to him. Mun Cheung loses to Fai in gambling and goes into hiding so Lai keeps looking for him.

Lei Jau thinks that his neighbour's home is on fire and rushes in to save the child. This changes Lai's impression of him. She starts to detect that his gestures are similar to Ming Shing and suspects that he is her son. She is overjoyed when he is really her son. But she is saddened when both go after Kar Nam. They promise to make up later. She is consoled when both have different girlfriends later.

Interesting scenes

Mun Cheung pretends to learn English but he actually gambles with Fai. They often play the cassette aloud to trick Lai.

Lei Jau brings Kar Nam to a posh restaurant but dedicates an old Kuan Cheng Kit song. He has to sing aloud when Kar Nam demands to know the title of it. The other customers stare at him in surprise.

Lam Kar Dong acts as an stuntsman. Have fun – he laments that the 'tattoo' painting on his body can only last for 1 day as sweat will clear everything. Sure enough, the picture becomes unclear when he comes over to scare Lei Jau. Lei Jau's friends are butchers and fix windows. When Lei Jau's friends say that they use the knife and also fixes the 'guns', they turn pale.


The song is by Chung Chan Tou, Ah Bee. The title is 'sunshine despite the heavy rain', 暴雨驕陽. It is a terrific song that all should not missed. His singing is as good as always and it is written by him. The lyrics really shows brotherhood well.


Who gets the idea to rope in the two wonderful actors to act in this drama? We can observe their powerful performance then. They don't look like twins but they behave like them. Their gestures and the ways they talk at the same time show how much chemistry they have! It is little wonder that both clinch the best actor awards when moved to the big screen.

Sing Chee shows his comedic talents to make me laugh all the way. Ching Wan isn't my idea of a Casanova as said in the drama with his plain looks. If Ching Wan is considered doing well, Sing Chee is excellent. The actresses are paler in comparison as they don't contribute much to the plot. Their existence is only shown to confuse the men to make their choice.

How I wish this drama can span to 20 episodes instead of 15. You will like it as much as I do. I don't think the two actors will act in dramas again. So this is a masterpiece that all should cherish.

Sukting's ratings :

On acting : **** (Scale of 5)

On story : ***1/2 (Scale of 5)

On song : ****1/2 (Scale of 5)

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