No Good Either Way

Reviewed by: sukting

November 09, 2014

Rating: three-point-five

How long 
21  episodes
The drama depicts the lives of office employees in Hong Kong working for their overbearing and abusive bosses. Although valued by their boss Ko Wai-ting, product designer Nga Lik and marketing officer Kar Wah of GOALTECH Scientific, Ltd. despise their department's general manager Wing Han, who is preventing them from getting a promotion.

Enumerating the "ten sins" of her, Kar Wah secretly start a business with their Indian friend Interpal. Nga Lik's girlfriend, Ling joins GOALTECH, and pressures Wing Han to step down. Nga Lik is later promoted to manager. As he and Ling's positions climb higher, they begin to exert similar pressure on their subordinates, also committing the same "ten sins."

Story/Introduction on characters
1. Chan Chin Pang as Mou Nga Lik, Alex
He is a witty chief product designer for GOALTECH who is manipulated into losing his promotion. With 3 other 'A's, they make up A4. He bears with it and later achieves success. He deliberately annoys Wing Han and she tries to find ways to dispose him with little success. He is not afraid of authority and has a good sense of humour. He finally gets his promotion to manager.

He normally gets his inspiration of products through playing games but Ling will disallow it. He likes freedom and dislikes to get restrained. He has to voice out his displeasure and both nearly get a divorce. Terrific Performance from Chin Pang – in fact I think he has more chemistry with Siu Wan than with Yu Lui. They create more sparks when they quarrel. He also looks dashing with the scarves around his neck.

2. Yuen Siu Cheung as Man Kar Wah
He is a marketing officer at GOALTECH who never gets a chance for promotion despite his many years of experience. He thinks that he is sure to get the promotion to spend money on a new car but is later burdened with debts. Thus, he wants to be his own boss but suffers from a loss instead. He lacks luck in his career and love. He likes Hei Mun but she already has a doctor boyfriend.

He committed a crime but he is lucky not to get jailed like the 4 who are sent to prison on the same day. His wish is granted finally as he becomes the manager. The same expected performance gotten from him – no surprise at all.

3. Tin Yu Lui as Ling, Ning Ning Zing
She is Ya Lik's girlfriend then wife who eventually becomes his direct supervisor at GOALTECH. You will laugh at the process. She goes for an interview as an accounting officer but Wing Han sees that she is obedient to choose her as her personal assistant to spy on Nga Lik and others. The guys laugh when she is led into the meeting room while the females do not know why they react like this as they have not seen her before. Why – all the guys are Nga Lik's best buddies and also best men for the wedding.                             
They plead with her to only reveal her status right on their wedding day – which they do to shock Wing Han when she has a tele-conference with her with no make-up on her face to embarrass herself. She is initially understanding and tolerates his work to even postpone their honeymoon.

Upon on the job, her strength is exposed and her character turns to create many conflicts with Nga Lik. Tin's presence here is only lukewarm. It doesn't create many sparks. It has more to do with the character which is too simple.  

4. Gill Mohindepaul Singh as Interpal Singh/Sing Siulung
He is Kar Wah and Nga Lik's self-employed Indian-Chinese friend. He fails to work long as a chauffeur as the boss doesn't like to hire someone who understands Cantonese. Ning Zing exposes him, thinking that he tries to cheat her friend. He stays at Kar Wah's place to pay the rent together. He dreams of becoming his own boss to set up a fruit juice shop with Kar Wah.

When it fails, he has to work for his stingy cousin. He falls for Kar Wah's younger sister and later becomes her boyfriend. He puts up a strong and hilarious performance. All should not miss him in here. 

5. Tong See Wing as Mou Kin Yee
She is Nga Lik's aggressive younger sister who works as a property agent. She uses drastic measures to earn business but id cheated by her boss to buy a ghost apartment. She has no choice but to pay off the installments. She is initially Yee Long's girlfriend but later breaks off with him as he doesn't help her to pay off together and keeps lying to her. Isn't she tired of taking up reckless roles all the time?   

6. Chan Chi-san as Yiu Yee Long, Aaron
He is Kin Yee's boyfriend and product designer at GOALTECH. He is a spendthrift and keeps lying to Kin Yee to avoid helping her to paint the apartment/paying off their loans. Although charismatic, Aaron is resentful and afraid of failure. He is bitter that Nga Lik 'steals' his idea for ES and steals it for Wing Han. He is later jailed with them and becomes a pizza delivery boy upon release. As usual, he is still wooden and I can't gather why he is successful for this role.  

7. Li Nga Nam as Dr. Shum Hei Mun
She is a selfless trainee doctor and Kar Wah's love interest. She saves him when he is drugged by Wing Han to cheat for a deal with a Japanese client. He invites her to Nga Lik's wedding and is disappointed to know that her boyfriend is Ling's friend, Dr Shing Kar Yan (in Cantonese, it means the whole family) but he never gives up the thought to try to woo her.  

8. Kwok Siu Wan as Che Wing Han 
The selfish and unscrupulous general manager of GOALTECH's Creative and Marketing department who is the root of the guys' problems. Her name is Violet (actually it should change to violent), V elder sister or bullterrier. Her ringtone has the Carmen music. She wants to control the design department together with the development department. She claims their credit and even destroys their promotion letters.

She also prevents the guys from seeing Wai Ting. She even tries to seduce Wai Ting and even deceives all in the company that she is becoming Mrs Ko soon. When that fails, she seduces and helps Bo Ping instead. Siu Wan is a jewel! She shines in here as a horrifying boss – also very beautiful although the role is sluttish.   

9. Au Kum Tong as Ko Wai Ting
The sincere C.E.O. of GOALTECH who gets bullied around by his wife's family. He is also startled to know that his company is totally manipulated by Wing Han and he tries setting things right. He accidentally pushes her down the stairs to cause her to have a fractured leg. He often dismisses Bo Ping's ideas as he is wary of him. It is a wrong move of him to make her return to stir up plenty of trouble.

10. Yeung Ming as Ho  Zing Zik
He is Kin Yee's upright and prudent supervisor who has a crush on her. He finds her too ambitious and greedy and points it out to her. He punishes her for rushing out to the open traffic just to get a deal. When seeing her in financial difficulties, he loans money to her. He also helps her to paint her apartment.  Surprisingly, both do not become a couple in the end although he suggests to her as she wishes not to be reckless again to make the wrong choice.

11. Cheng Chi Sing as Kar Bo Ping
He is GOALTECH's another director – or rather sleeping partner. But now he gets interested in the business. He conspires with Wing Han, See See and Yee Long to seize the company. Luckily, the four of them are jailed in the end.

12. Ma Tai Lou as Gan See See
She is the financial controller and is Wing Han's close aide. She is unable to resist the advantages that Wing Han offers and sinks deep.

13. Chan Hong Kin as Choi Wing Shing, Alvin
He is Nga Lik's subordinate and is one of A4.

14. Yeung Chiu-hoi as Leung Lok Hin, Adam
He is Nga Lik's subordinate and is one of A4.

15. Ho Kei Wan as So Siu Ling
Wing Han plants this spy in Nga Lik's department so his plans always fail. She calls her her thermometer. But when her identity is exposed, all the guys forgive her.

16. Lam as Chan Oi-in
She is Wai Ting's wife who becomes overbearing after marriage. She comes from a rich family and gets the wealth from her father to support him. She suffers a stroke while scolding him and goes into a coma. Although, Wai Ting hopes she can recover, a part of him hopes that she will not wake up. After she wakes and remembers, she is heartbroken but he promises to treat her well.

17. Cheung Mei Nei as Mun Kar Lai
She is Kar Wah's younger sister who has a son and is shattered to know that her husband cheats on her to have a pregnant mistress in China. Her ex-husband runs into debts and throws their Indonesian restaurant which is debt-ridden to manage before he escapes.  Siu Long gives her support and both become a pair.

18. Leung Kar Kei as Wong Sui Chui
She is the nurse that Wai Ting hires to take care of his wife. That is why Wai Ting is being spied at home.  She has warned Wing Han not to spike Kar Wah's drink but she will not listen. That lands him in hospital. Wing Han accidentally uses the remainder on herself and thinks that she is successful to lure Wai Ting into bed. To her dismay, he only asks Sui Chui to look after her. Finding her going overboard, Sui Chui reports her to the police. 

Interesting facts from Wikipedia
TVB signed Chan Chin Pang in here who subsequently had to turn down a role in The Confidant. At the time, No Good Either Way was known in Chinese as The Chok Family or The Chok Clan (Chok 氣一族), but the working title was later referred to as producer Wong Sam Wai's New Drama for a majority of the drama's filming duration due to the ambiguous meaning behind the Cantonese vernacular "chok." Viewership is over 30points daily.
Most favourite character                 
My top choice is Nga Lik, he is witty and cares for his family and friends. He has a strong sense of justice. Anyone will love to befriend him.  
Most hated character
Definitely Wing Han, she is so detestable. Many will hate her very much for being so evil. It is sad that Siu Wan is not nominated for any award.  She definitely deserves a lot of credit for this drama to work!

It is sung by Chin Pang, Siu Cheung and Gill. It is only ordinary as they are not professional singers.

I like this drama as it is very realistic. Employees are like meat on a chopping board. We never know when our salaries will be reduced. It is like a troop of soldiers to work hard continuously. The bosses have their own constrains and looks at issues from a different angle.

It is for survival that they attack each other but all have to work for the sake of the company. "受薪" to be paid sometimes become "瘦薪" salary reduction when the company is not doing well or when the cost of living increases but there is no salary increment.

Backstabbing is very common and I really like the way they present Wing Han as a hateful superior. I am sure that others feel the same too as every company has a black sheep. The supporting cast has also done a good job. It fails slightly when Wing Han is away for a few episodes – without a scheming person to create havoc – how can life be interesting? Waves start to rise again when she is back – Ling or Gilbert is simply not good enough to fill the shoes.

This drama does not get big shots then but now it is proven that Yu Lei and Chin Pang are now Best Actress and Best Actor award holders. A decent drama can polish a person's acting in the process. I hope that TVB can shoot such dramas more often in future.

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

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