The Dragon Sword


Reviewed by: sukting

April 11, 2009

Rating: four

How long 20 episodes – 12 vcds

Foreword

Do you wish to see how Miu Kiu Wai and his real-life wife act as a couple? Both will not agree to act together again. This drama is one of the rare opportunities to capture the wonderful scenes of them together. The 80s TVB was pretty involved in period dramas adapted from novels or real histories. This drama is a fantasy title, starring the most popular artists at that time.

It consists of three independent story lines. A hunk will not be left alone but be surrounded by 3 stunning beauties. Who will Chi Wan - the hero be with in the end?

Story – to be divided into 3 parts

Part 1 - Rise of Chi Wan

Siu Tien is the head of Tou Yuen castle. He defeats Chi Lien Devil under the witness of Monk Mou Sam (cameo appearance by Wong Sam). Chi Lien Devil goes into disappearance while Siu Tien recuperates from his injury from the duel.

Monk Mou Sam learns that Siu Tien wants to choose a successor to pull out the dragon sword from the stone. Sau Tien has 4 disciples, Chi Fu (Yin Tin Hang), Ching Long, Bak Hok(Chan Tik Hak) and also Hak Pao. They spar with Mou Sam. From his observation, Chi Fu has potential but Ching Long is vicious in attack. Sau Tien also senses that and is wary that he may turn evil. Mou Sam wonders why he doesn’t include his son in the selection.

Siu Tien sighs – Chi Wan’s wits surpasses them but he is too lazy. So he has given up on him. Ching Long is determined to count on himself to win. Chi Wan cheats in a cricket game and gets punished at home. Ching Long is also punished for helping him to hurt those running after Chi Wan. Both can’t get off the wooden planks or they will get hit. Chi Wan apologises but secretly places a board to sleep on it.

Ching Long still receives his punishment faithfully the whole night. Chi Wan is witty to throw the board out of the window before Siu Tien arrives the next day. (It is funny to see how cunning he is.)Chi Wan is sent to get his cousin, Siu Ching at the city gate. She has a jade pendant similar to his. Her parents are dead so she comes to stay with them. (The following scene is memorable.)

Siu Ching is knocked into Chi Wan. He drops his jade pendant and thinks that she steals it. Both come to blows and he seizes hers. He later discovers his own in his boot. Siu Ching vows to teach the rascal a lesson when dressing her wound. Both are at loggerheads upon knowing each other’s identity. Ching Long teaches Siu Ching martial arts while Chi Wan is punished again. He attempts to cheat again but Siu Ching discovers it to notify Siu Tien. Now he has to balance himself on only one plank instead of the usual two.

The others are jealous that Ching Long gets to guide Siu Ching personally. She notices that he is often alone, unlike others who are chatty or outgoing. Ching Long’s mother deserts him at the castle after his father’s death. He works hard to prove that he isn’t a ill-fated man. Siu Ching sees how Ching Long loses after Chi Fu wins him.

The day comes and none of them can pull the sword out. Chi Wan doesn’t even turn up. This shows that none has affinity with the sword so all urge Siu Tien to let Chi Wan try. He also can’t get it out and hurts his back instead. (What a childish act to determine the next leader – does this mean that Siu Tien must be the leader forever?) Uncle Chung attributes his failure to his laziness and laments that his old master has no successor. Trouble will brew if no one can handle the sword.

Siu Tien discusses with the other elders. They decide to hold an open match. Chi Wan brings buns to Ching Long who practices hard at night. Uncle Chugn shakes his head – Chi Wan should have learned from him. Chi Wan wants freedom and doesn’t want to take over the post. Uncle Chung doesn’t understand why Siu Tien doesn’t name Chi Wan as his successor.

Chi Wan has patched up with Siu Ching and is only eager to keep her company. Siu Ching urges Ching Long to rest but he knows that Chi Fu is too strong.Chi Wan brings Siu Ching out to buy rouge for her. Why he doesn’t practice like the others? Who knows if he can win if he has tried? Siu Ching tells this to Chi Wan but he isn’t keen. His mother died when he was 3 and he hardly sees his father. He makes fun of her and she is annoyed for being deceived.

There is thunder and they hide in a cave. He is struck by thunder when pushing a boy aside. He faints and she brings him home. She offers to take care of him as she causes him to get injured. Chi Wan wakes up to see her crying. He has the luck to survive. Ching Long gets jealous of them. Chi Wan recovers and goes out to play with her again. He doesn’t feel painful when using his hand to put out a fire.

He doesn’t wish the others to know as his martial arts skills do not improve. Both cook a rabbit and some hooligans beat Chi Wan up. He burns them instead. He thinks that he is only lucky. All disciples bet on who can win and Ching Long is deemed as the loser. He gets offended and goes to the forest. Chi Lien Devil wants to eat a 1000 year jinsheng but it is poisoned by a cobra.

Ching Long wants him to pass his claw skills within 10 days in exchange to cure him. Ching Long learns that he must chop off a person’s palm with a red dot to master it. He manages to get it. Chi Fu practices in the garden and sneers at Ching Long wanting to be the head. Here comes the day of the match. Ching Long spars with Bak Fu and Siu Tien is aware that he is getting ruthless. He decides to announce his decision the next day. Ching Long is not happy to see the two together again.

Uncle Chung is unhappy over Ching Long’s win. Chi Fu hasn’t woken up and the other 2 are injured. He joins the lovers in the garden and both men do not expect Siu Ching to cook so well. Siu Tien brings out his seal. He announces Chi Wan as his successor to everyone’s amazement so Ching Long jumps. Chi Wan wants to pacify him but Ching Long accuses them of conspiring together. He will not let the matter go. Chi Wan must remember that he has no caliber.

Chi Wan can’t think of a reason why he is chosen. Although he has pulled out the sword earlier secretly, Uncle Chung hasn’t told Siu Tien about it. Because he is selfish? But why until today? He is troubled that Ching Long misunderstands him. Siu Ching brings some food for Ching Long. He urges her to marry him but she runs away. Ching Long asks Siu Tien why he isn’t chosen. Siu Tien replies that he should know the reason – he has shown the evil skill to defeat his juniors.

Siu Tien is disappointed in him but will give him a chance to repent. If not, he will kill him. Chi Lien Devil urges him to kill Siu Tien as he will help him. Chi Wan promises to be sensible as he is going to be the leader 3 days later. He starts reading but can’t ditch his playful nature. Blood handprints start appearing everywhere. It is the coronation ceremony the next day.

Chi Wan detects that Siu Tien knows the origins of the blood palm. Siu Tien takes out the dragon sword. Uncle Chung notices that Chi Wan can’t sleep as he is worried about Siu Tien. He guesses that something will happen. Chi Wan suddenly realizes that Siu Tien has aged so much and promises to help him. Siu Tien passes the sword to him.

Ching Long and Chi Lien Devil lure Siu Tien out to kill him. Later, Ching Long kills Chi Lien Devil to prevent him from seeking revenge. A disciple, Siu Long picks up the dragon sword and leaves. The elders want him to manage the castle matters but he prefers to stay at Siu Tien’s grave to weep there. He offers the position to Ching Long. Ching Long realizes that Siu Long knows of the matter and kills him but he manages to tell Uncle Chung about it before his death.

Chi Wan pretends that he is still in the dark and tells him where Siu Long is, lying that he is still alive. Ching Wan goes to the hut with his sword and sees Siu Long’s body. Chi Wan confronts him but is no match for him. Thunder strikes again and Chi Wan faints. He realizes that he is still alright when he opens his eyes. (Chi Wan is definitely a moron to be so reckless.)

Ching Long has tied him up, wanting to torture him. He lies to everyone that Chi Wan has turned mad and he has to lock him up. Uncle Chung reveals the whole story to Siu Ching. He suspects that Chi Wan is in the secret chamber and will rescue him out to let the elders decide what to do. All demand to know the truth and Ching Long admits it. Even the blossom flower trap isn’t his match.

All are stunned to see him displaying evil skills. They have no choice but to give in to him. Ching Long buys something for Siu Ching but she insists on leaving. It is he who causes her to lose all her relatives. He forbids her from leaving. Chi Wan sneaks out with Uncle Chung and stays at a village. Siu Ching is nearly raped by Ching Long. Ching Long decides to comb the town. The two men dress as villagers to escape.

Bak Hok is hot on their heels but Chi Wan burns them to death with his palms. All are shocked but Chi Wan still loses. He decides to get the dragon sword to spar with Ching Long. All are stunned to see him pulling it out but it loses its power. So Chi Wan gets locked again. Ching Long vows to master Level 10 of Chi Lien Skill.

Ching Long gets the sword and wonders why it loses its power. He tells Siu Ching that he will kill Chi Wan at noon the next day. He wants her to give herself to him – to marry him. Siu Ching pretends to be ruthless to Chi Wan. Ching Long lets him go in front of her but still gets men to go after Chi Wan’s life. H manages to get away.

He meets Mou Shing (Bak Mun Piew) and Mou Shen (Lo Hoi Pang) on the way. Both men are looking for a talented man as their disciple. He deceives both men to become their disciple – learning from each person their skills at different times. Although annoyed, they are impressed by his wits and teach him everything. He is grateful to them.

Many sects decide to join forces to go against Ching Long as he has killed many since he takes over. Chi Wan improves his skills and promises to return soon. The elders remind him not to be too kind to others. They disguise as masked men to attack him to test him. He recognizes them through their strokes. Those who have offended Ching Long will be treated as his enemy.
One poor man is Uncle Chung. Luckily, Chi Wan saves him on time.

Uncle Chung laments that Siu Tien has accepted the wrong disciple to ruin their reputation. Chi Wan goes to Siu Tien’s grave to promise revenge. Chi Wan learns that he has wronged Siu Ching. Ching Long slaps her when seeing them together and forbids her to go out again. Chi Wan can’t concentrate on his training. Uncle Chung knows what affects him as he brings him up. Ching Long masters the 10th level but Chi Wan attacks him. He flees when the dragon sword breaks into two. Ching Long manages to fix the parts back.

The pugilists discuss on how to subdue Ching Long. All coax Chi Wan to steal back the dragon sword to figure out how to use it. Ching Long knows that Siu Ching shields Chi Wan but he can’t find him in her room. He manages to escape with the sword. Chi Fu suggests a plan to lure them out. chi Wan practices with the dragon sword but they find it ordinary.

One asks if he needs to master any special skills as Uncle Chung recalls Siu Tien doing that. Chi Wan blames himself for being lazy. Now he doesn’t know where Siu Tien has kept the manual. (We should also blame this father for keeping everything from his son.) Ching Long cuts off Siu Ching’s finger to lure Chi Wan into the garden. He is surrounded.

However, the pole formation that Ching Long has devised can’t trap Chi Wan. Chi Wan kills Chi Fu, pinning him to the ceiling. He also escapes an umbrella trap, killing Bak Hok. Ching Long refuses to release Siu Ching. The claw skill comes to compete with the sword. Ching Long kills Siu Ching by mistake when she shields Chi Wan.

Both men fight at the bottom of the well. Chi Wan is transported to another place. He sees Siu Tien’s images displaying the dragon sword skill. He finally masters the skill. Ching Long seals the well but Chi Wan kills him unexpectedly so he is exploded to pieces. Chi Wan returns to carry Siu Ching away. He recalls the past and the sword is in the castle again when he puts it back.

Part 2 – Who is the devil?

A villain tries to steal the sword but Chi Wan beats him. The person gets away on horseback. Chi Wan knows that he is unable to win him without the sword. The person has white hair and this is only the start. The pugilists from the 4 sects meet. Many killings occur so Shaolin is holding a praying session for them. Chi Wan is playing chess with Uncle Chung in the garden. He wishes to avoid trouble but it keeps coming to him. These pugilists’ masters are missing after receiving an invitation to meet at the castle.

Chi Wan looks at the invitation cards. They are from the castle as even his seal is the same. He deduces that someone is framing him. Who can invite the top 4 pugilists besides the castle? Who can harm them? Chi Wan decides to look for them. Uncle Chung hears someone and the person flies to a tree.

The four disciples follow them as they are afraid that they will sneak away. Chi Wan explains that they need to trust him. But there is only one route from Shaolin to the castle. A masked man kills many. Once Chi Wan sits down, he smells blood. On the way, there are many bodies and the inn is burned. It looks like they are being followed. The next clue is to go to Xing Far Brothel.

Al l see a Taoist doing a ritual and the streets are quiet. All the courtesans are killed in one night. Chi Wan picks up a jade. Siu Bak attacks him – Chi Wan smiles – he has forgotten that Siu bak is a busybody. Only one survivor, Yin Fong is still alive but is barely alive. The monk recognizes the jade belonging to his master but lies that he has not seen it before. He discusses with the other three. Yau from the beggar sect doesn’t wish to lose to Siu Bak in seeking out information.

Siu Bak comes to a forest. Both sides can’t find the woman. The pills for Yin Fong are missing so they have to protect her. Chi Wan is sure that one of the disciples is the culprit. They pretend to protect the pill making process. Yin Fong is kidnapped – the monk actually hides her in the hall and lures the rest out. All discover this and he has to admit to it. How is Shaolin going to face the world?

Siu Bak assures him that maybe his master is innocent as the case is unsolved. The poor monk has nearly killed himself over this but gives the pills later. Yin Fong awakes and describes seeing the 4 masters. They have commanded all courtesans to see them. She is remorseful for causing their deaths. Chi Wan senses that someone is playing hide-and-seek with them. why lead them to Phoenix Town?

Chi Wan sees a woman trying to drown herself and saves her. A lustful man uses the name ‘4 sect leaders’ to rape the women. Siu Bak decides to write in his book. All wait outside a hut – the 4 disciples hope that the rascals are not their masters. But they are dumbfounded to see them arriving. The court officials come and are killed by the 4 masters. The village head hopes that they can stay to help.

Chi Wan suspects a trap – the mastermind will not stop. A woman is in the water and Chi Wan thinks that she is trying to kill herself. He pulls her up - she is only trying to catch fish. She is Tin Kiu. She asks if he is married and he gets shy. Siu Bak finds her unreasonable. Since he has touched her, they can’t drag and Chi Wan has to meet her father.

Siu Bak warns her not to follow them since she isn’t decently dressed. He finds her cute but she only likes Chi Wan. If not, he will woo her. Chi Wan has no time for romance and follow the 4 disciples. Tin Kiu blocks them for chasing the men. She shows her sash but Ching Wan manages to dodge it. He uses a cloth to tie her up. (This scene is eye-opening indeed!) She can only loosen a few hours later.

It is too late for them to go after the 4. Tin Kiu insists that Chi Wan must marry her. He is willing to accept any punishment except marriage. He is annoyed when she keeps calling him ‘future husband’. She shouts that she is being molested but later tells others that she is just fooling them. He doesn’t want her to design the traps for him and he runs away again.

They stay in the jungle with Yin Fong. They are all trapped as they are imposters. These people are not the same ones in previous dealings so Siu Bak affirms that the real culprits are still on the run. The disciples insist on their masters’ innocence. They should stay and wait. Siu Bak points out that they are only deceiving themselves. The village head is also like that as he wants to hold someone responsible. They get a letter from Tin Kiu. She is here to cook for Chi Wan.

She is a woman and new to the rapist. Tin Kiu offers to be the bait. The 4 men come into the room. Sure enough, they are the masters. Chi Wan manage to subdue the 4 with the sword. They disappear when hearing a note from a flute. Who do they do this? They must have been controlled by someone or they should recognize their own disciples. The mastermind’s western skill must be invincible.

All visit Tin Kiu’s father, Yat Siu. He must be highly skilled like her. But surprisingly, no, he doesn’t know martial arts and is just buying antiques as a businessman. Yat Siu knows that all weapons can’t match to the dragon sword. It is from Tibet – a story he has read from a manual – Siu Bak’s work. Yat Siu looks at the no.1 sword. His eyes sparkle but returns it to Chi Wan.

He reveals that the 4 masters must be under a hypothesis skill. Only the silver hair demon knows it. He has disappeared for 10 years and the skills vanish. Why does he come again? Chi Wan recalls the man he has seen at the castle. Yat Siu notices that Tin Kiu is polite to Chi Wan to get his attention. Chi Wan still refuses to marry her, saying that he is not good enough for her. Yat Siu hopes that he doesn’t take it to heart as Tin Kiu is very willful.

Siu Bak deduces that the mastermind’s motive is to lure Chi Wan out to get the dragon sword. The 4 disciples come for Tin Kiu. Siu Bak is looking for a quiet spot to write his book. He will make sure that he will not ruin the 4 leaders’ reputation. Tin Kiu comes to apologise to Siu Bak but he doesn’t accept because he is never angry with her. She is direct and he admires for that.

The 4 disciples decide to kill Siu Bak as this affects their sects’ reputation. He insists to be truthful. He promises to clear their names if the truth is out. The 4 are reckless and can ruin everything. If chase them back, they will be in another fix. At least they can watch them now. They wait the whole night with no result. A masked man tries to steal the sword but fails when Tin Kiu comes in.

She can’t sleep and goes to Chi Wan’s room. She knows that she is too direct so she prays to the moon, hoping to marry him. He hugs her close to him, touched. Siu Bak breathes in poisonous fumes and walks in a trance. He tries to attack Chi Wan and runs when hearing the flute music. The silver hair demon observes them and set a ghost trap. He demands to have the sword but Chi Wan injures his arm.
Siu Bak is dying. There is a ruthless valley that grows a 3000 year old Lotus from Tien San. But the demon will not lend it to anyone. Tin Kiu follows Chi Wan to the valley. They cross into the ruthless valley and she passes the muddy trap. She is tied to the poles. Bats appear and Chi Wan kills the snakes. He sets her free and they remove al lthe grass. Finally, they see the demon but he will not give the medicine.

Chi Wan pretends to leave but stays. Tin Kiu sits by the sea to wait and jumps around. They are trapped when trying to steal the antidote. Tin Kiu threatens to destroy the plant if the demon kills them. They trap him instead as he releases them. They manage to return on time to rescue Siu Bak. Just then, Siu Bak becomes mad and hits Yat Siu’s arm. Chi Wan feels suspicious as he sees him bleeding.

Siu Bak is grateful to them for saving him. Yat Siu assures him that he only hits him slightly. Chi Wan suspects that Tin Kiu is not related to the scheme as she treats him well. Her mother died when she was young. Chi Wan is fierce but nice to her. It is extraordinary that Yat Siu keeps lots of weapons. Siu Bak pretends to be the white hair demon to spar with her.

His chest still hurts but proves that they are not conspiring together. They want to play chess with him in the garden. Both young men see that the sand doesn’t have his footprints. His skills are not under them. He wants to use his weakness to reveal his identity since he is so eager to get the sword. Chi Wan wants to practice his skills in Leng Chi Cave so he cancels his date with Tin Kiu.

He has injured himself by using it for too long. A masked man seizes the sword and finds it to be fake. The real sword is still with Chi Wan. Sure enough, the man is Yat Siu. Siu Bak is hit and Yat Siu flees with Tin Kiu. Yat Siu is more evil than they think. Tin Kiu is disappointed in him. He goes to Tibet with her and forces her to stay in her room.

Tin Kiu uses her sash to trap the subordinates but Yat Siu locks her up this time. Tin Kiu sees the 4 leaders but they show no response. She will not eat food offered by a villain. She doesn’t want such a father. The guard knows that she is righteous and teaches her to pretend to submit to Yat Siu to find a chance to escape. Tin Kiu promises to bring him away as he is forced to be a slave.

Tin Kiu feels bored in the castle as she isn’t allowed to walk around. The two younger men decide to find the 4 masters faster than their disciples. They bump into Yat Siu’s followers to buy women’s stuff for Tin Kiu. The followers are later killed and they lose the clue. Siu Bak learns that Yat Siu nearly takes out the sword in Tou Far castle – is there any relation to this?

Chi Wan only knows that the sword is made by Elder Tin Ho. Siu Bak wants to find clues. Will he cause harm to the 4 leaders? Yes, as they are not useful to Yat Siu now but after second thoughts, he can use them to threaten the two men. Chi Wan suggests using the sword to lure him out. But what if they lose the sword? Siu Bak disapproves and both quarrel.

Yat Siu intends to steal the sword. But all have no confidence. The two have a chess game to rest their minds. Siu Tin has told him that this helps to know other people’s thoughts. Even though they lose, they must be careful with the soldiers on the chess board. Siu Bak is confident and positive. Yat Siu is careful in every step. He is too scheming to sacrifice everything to get what he needs.

Siu Bak believes that he will appear soon. Chi Wan is not afraid of him. He has one more burden – Tin Kiu. Even the beggarsect can’t seek Yat Siu out. Siu Bak deduces that he is recuperating from the injuries caused by Chi Wan. A man is selling a sword for 10 taels of silver. Chi Wan must be thinking of something or else Yat Siu could have discovered him by now.

Tin Kiu wants to sneak out in the night Yat Siu is practicing his skills. She steals the token of authority to leave the castle. The 4 leaders do not move and the guard is killed so she leaves in tears. The monk saves Tin Kiu and is now their chess piece. She pretends to use the toilet but feels weak and can’t escape as the monk has pressed her acupoint. She is a demon girl in their eyes.

Chi Wan can’t release her even though she knows nothing about Yat Siu’s deeds. She cries as she thinks that he doesn’t trust her. Will he hate her because of Yat Siu? No, although they suggest killing her. Siu Bak suggests usin her to lure Yat Siu out. Yat Siu can’t leave the castle but knows that Chi Wan will save her at the city gate since he loves her.

The 4 disciples are ready to kill her but Siu Bak pretends to be a masked man to save her. The two men are too engrossed that they miss one man on the tree. Luckily, Siu Bak notices him and this is more cruel than killing the 4 leaders by using them to do evil deeds. The 4 disciples regret not killing Tin Kiu. They suspect that the culprit isn’t Yat Siu as he hasn’t recovered. So it is best to stay to get her to avoid getting attacked.

Yat Siu misses Tin Kiu and harasses the sects. Since he demands for her, he can’t be the one to kidnap Tin Kiu. They suspect to be Chi Wan’s doing although he is with them all the time. They send men to tail the two young men and confront them. Chi Wan prevents them from hurting Tin Kiu. They dislike him for shielding her unless she brings them to rescue their masters.

But how can she bring them to kill her father? Chi Wan hopes that she will help as she is the only one to know their whereabouts. Chi Wan promises to let Yat Siu off. The pugililsts are trapped at the bottom of the hill but the fire net trap can’t stop them. Yat Siu decides to use the confusion spell. All suddenly feel dizzy and lose their judgment. They sit down to concentrate. The 4 leaders appear and the disciples follow.

Chi Wan escapes with Tin Kiu. Soi Bak falls off the cliff. The 4 disciples return, silent. They underestimate Yat Siu’s skills. He can let them go if they give up the sword. Tin Kiu knows it isn’t easy to escape and suspects that the 4 disciples are up to no good. She is right when they try to steal the sword. Chi Wan decides to exchange the sword for their masters then. He hopes that he will not have to kill anyone. After being the pugilistic leader, he doesn’t want to sacrifice hundreds of lives.

Tin Kiu knows of a way – to use her as exchange. Yat Siu gets the sword and breaks his promise. What he gets is still a fake sword. He uses daggers while Chi Wan holds Tin Kiu’s neck. To save all, he can kill her. Chi Wan suddenly faints. Yat Siu has poisoned his food at the inn. How can he get out now? The sword belongs to him.

After Elder Tin Ho makes the sword, he and Siu Tin invent the dragon 10 strokes. He takes the sword so it will return to Yat Siu. It is no use letting them off as they are all poisoned. Tin Kiu is disappointed that even she is poisoned. Siu Bak wakes up and counts himself lucky to be alive. He meets Stone Man, a fortune teller. He uses his eyes and knows that it is half good and half bad.

It will be beneficial if Siu Bak sacrifices his life. Stone Man has revealed too much and thus goes into retreat. Now he breaks his vow to save the pugilistic world. Tin Kiu gives Chi Wan the antidote and releases them. They tell Chi Wan to eat the only antidote as he is the only one who can deal with Yat Siu. Tin Kiu is dying while on the run. She forbids him to return and should go alone. Yat Siu is on his heels.

Chi Wan escapes with an injured arm. Tin Kiu faints and Siu Bak saves Chi Wan. Yat Siu saves Tin Kiu and she begs him to let Chi Wan off. It is too late to save her now. He kills her with his own hands to end her suffering. He shouldn’t have used the poison but blames it on Chi Wan. Siu Bak suggests looking for Elder Tin Ho. The 3 old men are friends and stay at Chi Wan Mountain. They only found a secret.

Tin Ho passes the sword to Siu Tien as he finds Yat Siu scheming. Tin Ho uses the 1000 year metal to make it. He has a shorter sword from the remaining metal but no one can find it. Siu Bak notices that his weak spot is the skull. Chi Wan breaks the dragon sword to pieces. Siu Bak sacrifices his life to let the sword pierce into his body and Yat Siu to save the pugilistic world.

Part 3 – The remaking of the sword

Siu Bak dies and he is contented to have half of the sword buried with him. Chi Wan id devastated to find Tin Kiu’s grave. Lang Ou wants to spar with the dragon sword. Even the Shaolin abbot loses to him and he wants to be the no.1 expert. His last target is Chi Wan. He is annoyed when he will not spar with him. It is Chi Wan’s birthday two days later but he doesn’t want to make it into a grand affair.

He meets Yin Nou and villains say that she is from the devil palace. She denies knowing them and they are not scared of Chi Wan. He brings her home and learns that her father is dead. So she has no other relatives. Chi Wan promises to help her. The 4 leaders are here to celebrate his birthday. The pugilistic world is peaceful because of him. Chat Sat Leader demands for Yin Nou.

The 4 leaders are not his match but he doesn’t dare to challenge the dragon sword. Yin Nou decides to leave but Uncle Chung and Chi Wan persuades her to stay. Lang Ou wants an escort agency to send his sword to Chi Wan. He wants him to spread the news that the two swords are to be challenged. Yin Nou adds poison to Chi Wan’s soup. He is about to drink it when Lang Ou sends his sword to him.

After looking, Chi Wan praises it to be a good sword. A swordsman’s life is the sword – why is Lang Ou not afraid that he will not return it? He has confidence in himself. A beggar faints in Chi Wan’s room after drinking the soup. He releases the poison and Yin Nou is touched as he says that the beggar is innocent. He can’t let him die because of him. He has disregard his safety.

Yin Nou suddenly feels painful and goes out to meet Chat Sat Leader. She begs for her antidote. Why hasn’t she killed Chi Wan? She loves him? She denies as the castle’s defence is strong. Chi Wan offers to get a physician for her but she declines. She wonders why so many want to harm him although he is nice. He replies that this is unavoidable as he might be bad in their eyes.

Chi Wan knows that Lang Ou isn’t inferior to him. Uncle Chung worries that the secret of the broken sword will be leaked. Chi Wan shakes his head – he could have spar with Lang Ou if that has not happened. ang Ou is angry that many bet on the duel result. Lang Ou is poisoned by the poison hand. He wants Lang Ou to kill Chi Wan. Lang Ou drinks the antidote but kills the poison hand. This despicable man should not stay alive. Lang Ou now worries for Chi Wan.

Chi Wan returns the sword to Lang Ou – he is not sick but he can’t tell him the reason. Lang Ou jumps – he will not kill a coward who doesn’t have a sword but he will not let it off. Chat Sat Leader gets to know this. Chi Wan shouldn’t be avoiding Lang Ou. He wants Yin Nou to check out as he wants both to die. Actually it is easy for them to spar as they should get Chi Wan to start fighting.

Chat Sat Leader sends men to destroy Siu Tien’s grave and even his ashes are missing. Who does it? What good can they get? They should deal with him. Chi Wan is very upset and bursts into tears. (Kiu Wai is remarkable in this scene.) He returns to the castle and receives a letter from Lang Ou. He must go to Butterfly Hill to spar with him in order to get the ashes back.

Chat Sat members are behind this. They threaten Yin Nou to help them or they will kill her. Chi Wan kneels in front of Siu Tien’s tablet with the empty pot. He asks Siu Tien to wait for him to bring him back. Lang Ou is too eager to start without asking questions upon seeing Chi Wan. Chi Wan stands aside – he isn’t fit to spar with the dragon sword so he uses an ordinary sword. Lang Ou hits him and stops.

Chi Wan’s heart isn’t with the sword and he isn’t honourable if he wins. Lang Ou denies writing the letter upon knowing it. In fact, he is the one who gets another letter to come here. He vows to help Chi Wan and wants him to concentrate the next time. He helps Chi Wan home. Uncle Chung is worried when Chi Wan isn’t back then. Lang Ou knows that although Chi Wan is highly skilled, he will be even better with the sword. Chi Wan is touched to know that Yin Nou hasn’t slept the whole night.

Lang Ou promises to get the ashes back within 3 days. Yin Nou brews medicine for Chi Wan and Uncle Chung is amused that he isn’t as fast as her. Lang Ou is a man who keeps his promise. Chi Wan finds it worth knowing such a friend although he is injured. Lang Ou locates the ashes at the Leng Wan Pagoda and seizes it back from Chat Sat members. He clears every hurdle, using his wits.

Chi Wan offers incense to Siu Tien and is grateful to Lang Ou. Uncle Chung is fed with Lang Ou still wanting to spar with his young master. Chi Wan agrees to it although he has not completely recovered. He brings Lang Ou to the sword room and reveals that the sword is broken because of the white hair devil. Why does Chi Wan tell him this secret? Because he is a true swordsman.

Lang Ou is disappointed and Chi Wan knows his feelings. They don’t get to spar but this is worse than losing a duel. Yin Nou learns the truth from a drunk Lang Ou and is forced to revel this to Chat Sat Leader when she is in pain. Chi Wan asks why she is troubled. If someone deceives him, what will he do? If it concerns lives, he can’t forgive the person. He doesn’t need the sword to deal with them.

Lang Ou recalls telling the secret to Yin Nou. She can’t force them and wants to kill herself. She is sent to kill Chi Wan but she can’t bear to kill a nice man. She can’t defy Chat Sat Leader as she is poisoned. Lang Ou dips her into a pot and both men force the poison out. Chi Wan doesn’t blame her but he will think of a way. Chi Wan stands near the beach. He can only duel with the members.

Lang Ou decides to stay as he is responsible for causing this mistake. If he declines, he isn’t treating him as his friend. Chi Wan has many servants so is scared of implicating them. Chi Wan plays the zither at the entrance of his home. Chat Sat Leader wonders why he is still so calm. There are no guards outside – is it because he is luring him to enter? It is easy to kill Chi Wan since he is without the dragon sword.

Yin Nou yells that there is a trap inside. Chi Wan pretends to realize that she is the spy now. They surround the castle and the servants can’t get out without food although they are safe in the secret chamber. Chi Wan wants them to escape from the secret route. He feels letting Siu Tien down. Chat Sat Leader has Tien, Dei Yan devils to help him. Chi Wan knows that this battle is unavoidable.

Lang Ou assists him but chat Sat Leader kills Uncle Chung. The three escape and a poison dart hits Chi Wan. Chi Wan’s wound turns green. They hurry to bring him to Divine Physician Zuo Ming. His hand suddenly loses all senses but Yin Nou pretends to be calm. Lang Ou goes after Yin Nou – does she keep anything from him? Is Chi Wan’s condition serious? Why does she pray for his safety?

She replies sadly that since his hand feels numb, the poison is spread and he is expected to die within 12 hours. Even though she doesn’t say it, Chi Wan is also aware of this. He is the one being poisoned – how can he now know it? The two advise him to rest while they look for the physician. Lang Ou sees through a devil’s disguise when he pretends to be the physician taking the medicine for him.

Yan Devil’s disguise is good but the physician is left-handed, not right-handed as him. Yin Nou’s arm is hurt. Lang Ou turns to a villager with a boy. Although he denies to be the physician, he uses the left hand and the healing medical child standing beside him has a strong smell of medicine. The physician will not save Chi Wan because the pugilists keep fighting against themselves. Moreover, he doesn’t want to offend Chat Sat Leader. Luckily, both save him from being killed by the members.

The physician then agrees to treat Chi Wan. If not for Chi Wan’s formidable skills, he will not be able to save him. He removes the poisonous needle or Chi Wan will be maimed for life even though he recovers. Cat Sat Leader is mad with the 3 devils for failing their tasks. Chi Wan’s hand still hurts but he insists of practicing. He must find Elder Tin Ho to fix the sword. The physician wants him to rest for 3 months or he will still die. Lang Ou will help him to do it as he wishes to help the sword restore its glory.

They reach the destination but Elder Tin Ho has passed away. They look for Taoist Shek, who is his junior. Upon knowing that it is the dragon sword, he refuses to fix it. It happens 10 over years ago. Elder Tin Ho is capable for making swords but Taoist Shek knows how to repair swords. Elder Tin Ho boasts of making the best dragon sword so Taoist Shek makes the vow not to fix it if it is broken.

Yin Nou roasts a chicken in the garden and lures him out. He praises her cooking but they fail to change his mind. He then decides to help them if she is able to come up with a different dish per meal daily. Taoist Shek looks at the sword. It can be done if he has the second part. Lang Ou doesn’t have it as Chi Wan hasn’t given it to him. Any sword is easily fixed but this sword is made from a 1000 year metal. Chi Wan sighs – how can he take it out – he has buried it with Siu Bak.

He can’t open his grave. Chi Wan sits by the river. Yin Nou knows that Siu Bak will not blame him. Lang Ou also thinks that Siu Bak will not blame him as he loves swords too. He follows them to get it. The innkeeper sees them and blurts the news to Chat Sat Leader. He even adds poison to their tea. Lang Ou opens the coffin after praying. Siu Bak still looks like he is still alive but the second part of the sword is missing. Someone has taken the tip away.

Taoist Shek blurts out in the inn, thinking it is with them. But Chat Sat Leader is pleased to know that the sword tip is not with them. After trying Yin Nou’s cooking, Taoist Shek decides that others don’t cook well. Lang Ou knows who steals it – it must be Ying Yeung Hak, Yee Tin Hang (Lok Mun Kuan). He is capable of stealing all kinds of antiques.

Tin Hang steals it to keep it so they go to an antique shop. They hope that the boss will have dealings with him. Taoist Shek breaks some antiques to force the boss to tell the whereabouts. (The others are baffled to see how he behaves.) Tin Hang appears and admits that he has never seen such a good sword. He knows where it is. Someone tries to buy broken sword tips with a high price. Chi Wan gathers that it must be the doing of Chat Sat Leader.

Tin Hang knows that they will not give up but he can never give it to them. Lang Ou blurts that no one can escape from his sword too. Tin Hang hides and wants him to get into his maize. He will give it to them if they get out. Lang Ou leaves a mark on places they go. He urges Yin Nou to pull one of the snakes that he sees hanging from the side to release them from a trap. (This swordsman’s judgment is never wrong so far!)

Tin Hang admits defeat and keeps his promise to open the chamber but he finds the tip missing. His henchman sells it for 100 taels of silver to Chat Sat Leader. Tin Hang promises to get it back. The place is now guarded so they have to use their wits. They fall into a trap when they get to the 7th level of the pagoda. They can only wait. The one who designs the trap is dead but his successor is alive – that is Tin Hang himself. Normally, he will be able to fix a secret route out.

Tin Hang finally gets the tip for them. They do not know how to thank him. Both men become great friends. Tin Hang urges him to help to avenge his father and grandfather who are forced to make traps for Chat Sat Leader. He wants to stay to deal with Chat Sat Sect so he destroys his own home. Chat Sat Leader gets the ghost axe and is pleased.

All are delighted after Taoist Shek fixes the sword but the power vanishes when Chi Wan practices with it. Why? Taoist Shek sighs – this is what he fears. The sword will forever stay like this. Chi Wan can use Tin Long 10 strokes but he must find the 3 evils, lust drunkard and gambler to do something for him willingly. It might help but he can’t tell them. He will only say when he brings them here.

Chi Wan’s injury hasn’t recovered as yet but he insists of going out. Lang Ou spars with him and Chi Wan is not his match. He only uses a little of his strength so how is Chi Wan going to approach them? What if he dies and the sword no longer work? He will find the men for him. Chi Wan is adamant and still practices at night. Lang Ou teases Yin Nou – why so worried for Chi Wan to thank him. Both set off again.

Taoist Shek laments that he can’t go as he needs to protect Chi Wan. Lust is captured by the constable and doesn’t know why Lang Ou doesn’t lock him up after helping him out. Lang Ou doesn’t wish to force him as he recalls Taoist Shek’s instruction. Lust doesn’t wish to owe him a favour and follows him. He is mistakened when he sucks snake poison out for a woman and all are pleased that he mends his ways.

They see many headless corpses on the way. They must be killed by the ghost axe. The 3 demons do not know what Chat Sat Leader is up to. He wants 3 people with 6 toes to help him to train up. Gambler chops off people’s arms or dig out their eyes when they lose. Lang Ou wins over him but turning the dices into powder. So he follows them.

Chi Wan can’t sleep and the two old men tease him for missing Yin Nou but he must rest well. The 3 demons come to capture Yin Nou. She doesn’t have the 6 toes. Lang Ou tries to save her and learns about it. Why does she work for Chat Sat Leader since she is a kind woman? She grows up there and her parents are his followers. They are killed when her mother refuses to submit to him. She has waited long for a chance to seek revenge.

Chat Sat Leader must sacrifice the 3 6 toed-people to dip his axe into their blood for 7 days to increase his power. Actually the 3 demons have 6 toes so they have to be careful to guard their secret. They go to the brothel but the courtesans are puzzled on why they don’t remove their boots. Chat Sat Leader kills the three after knowing their secret. Before dying, they urge Lang Ou to restore the sword faster.

Drunkard loves wine till he makes a wine that contains blood. So he kills many people. Thus this town prohibits wine as all must be given to the magistrate. Lang Ou and the others sneak into his residence. They are annoyed to see many pools of wine. There is a strong wine smell in the room but they discover that he is only a corrupted magistrate who only wants it for his own use.

They reach another village and find all dead. They are afraid of vampires. Sure enough, Drunkard is behind this. Lang Ou sneaks into his hideout and gets him. He sneers that Lang Ou knows nothing about drinking and will not dare to drink 10 cups of wine. To the men’s dismay, Yin Nou offers to drink the 10 cups and she is not drunk! Drunkard loses but he discovers that she has cheated – she hasn’t drink at all.

Drunkard then wants her to find a wine that he doesn’t know within 1 hour. Lang Ou is troubled as
Drunkard has drunk everything. Yin Nou returns with a cup and Drunkard finds that he has not tasted it indeed. It is very fragrant and he admits defeat. She will have to tell him the answer when the sword is ready. Chat Sat Leader wants blood from 100 men and he starts killing around.

Al l are back. Taoist Shek wants the 3 as the dragon sword is righteous. It will show power against them as their blood is evil. So they need to sacrifice their lives for it. Chi Wan doubts this to be a good way and rejects it. So are the 3 – they leave but are attacked by Chat Sat Sect. They manage to run away from Chat Sat Leader. They are terrified to see how he mixes the blood.

Chi Wan lies in bed but can’t sleep upon knowing that they are captured. He takes the dragon swords and goes alone. The two men spar and Lang Ou takes Chi Wan away from Chat Sat Leader. The two can’t withstand Chat Sat Leader strokes. The 3 are evil but are won over by Chi Wan. Chi Wan obstructs Chat Sat so that they can escape. He sets up a formation to delay him.

The 3 evils decide to sacrifice as they feel ashamed. He can save them so they will save other lives. Chi Wan’s formation is destroyed as he struggles alone. Lang Ou comes to his aid after helping Taoist Shek to set up a furnace. Before jumping into it, Drunkard wants to know the answer from Yin Nou. What he has drunk is only water. No wonder – he has never drink it. They jump into it and their souls are sealed into the sword. The sword is ready again.

They finally kill Chat Sat Leader. It is their duty to remove the evil .Lang Ou urges Chi Wan to spar with him. It is his greatest wish all along. Their skills are at par so Chi Wan isn’t confident. Chi Wan can’t hide from him forever but he assures Yin Nou that he will be careful and will not leave her along. Both men have a duel near the sea. Chi Wan wins by a stroke.

Lang Ou thrusts his sword into the sea. He will never use a sword again. He doesn’t want to end up like Chat Sat Leader to become evil and hopes to meet him in future. Chi Wan also decides to retire from the pugilistic world when he gets home. His family is now ruined. Yin Nou will wander the plains with him for a quiet life. Chi Wan leaves the sword in the stone again. He hopes that someone is able to pull it out to help the pugilistic world in future.

Introduction on characters

1. Yong Chi Wan – Miu Kiu Wai
Chi Wan is formally a good for nothing. He is extremely lazy, playful and cunning to find easy ways out. After Siu Tien’s departure, he is transformed to a mature and intelligent man. He will weigh priorities and also makes wise decisions after serious consideration. He is involved in 3 relationships. The first two leaves him lots of regret and anguish as they die for him. That is why he treasures the third one.

Miu is normally outstanding and dashing in period dramas. There is no exception for this one – he is definitely in top form. It also puts his acting abilities to great test – it is rare to see him acting with 3 famous actresses in one drama and he is simply brilliant as he has chemistry with all of them. One complaint though on his outlook, though – why invent a chrysanthemum fringe for him for the rebellious Chi Wan? The second part has his hairpiece extremely ugly with beaded straits on the top.

2. Yong Siu Tien – Ko Hung
He is Chi Wan’s father who is the head of Tou Yuen Castle. He is worried over Chi Wan’s future. Although he is strict with him, he is never the successor he has in mind. But seeing how ambitious his four other disciples are, he has no choice but to give him the post. It is a pity that he doesn’t live to see him becoming a fine man.

3. Ching Long – Lau Ching Wan
He is the first senior and is the expected successor. But all look down on him as his skills are mediocre. Driven by greed to be the head of the castle and disillusioned when Siu Ching doesn’t love him, he chooses the dark path to become evil. Ching Wan is very raw then as he first started out. I find that he looks better in modern dramas.

4. Uncle Chung – Yu Chi Ming
He is the royal servant who treats Chi Wan like his own son. Thus he only wishes Chi Wan to take over his master and tries to create chances for him. Chi Wan is close to confide in him all his woes and joy.

5. Chu Kot Siu Ching – Tsang Wah Sin
She is a cheerful and lively person who knows little dangers of life till Ching Long’s appearance. He ruins her life and thus she has sacrificed her life for him. Wah Sin is just being herself – there is little breakthrough here although she manages to show a change in Siu Ching after her marriage to become moody. I never know that period dramas create permed curls but surprisingly, Wah Sin looks well in it.

6. Chi Lien Devil – Lee Kar Ding
This devil is evil but easily made use of. He wants to use Ching Long to spite back at Siu Tien. Never does he know that it is the reverse instead. No one will pity his death when he has his justice deserts. One of the veterans – Lee never fails to catch our eye with this vicious role.

7. Sheung Gun Siu Bak – Wong Shu Kei
He is a nosy person who is upright and truthful. Armed with a fan and a brush, he is equally an expert in martial arts. He enjoys recording things down in his book to publish it and make known to the world. That is why people adore reading it to know the facts and some can’t wait to end his life to silence him. Like Siu Ching, he also loses his life to save the pugilistic world. Shu Kei is also convincing in the role as he looks every inch a scholar but yet delivers the punches well.

8. Yim Tin Kiu – Chek Mei Chun
Tin Kiu is outspoken and isn’t as shy as other traditional maidens as she doesn’t grow up in China. Although her father is evil, she preserves her kind nature and helps to seek out the 4 elders, willing to be the bait. She also sets her heart to win Chi Wan by her own efforts. She is willing to go against Yat Siu. Pretty as always, Mei Chun does a promising job – she looks so elegant fighting with the sash. Her chemistry with Kiu Wai is perfect – no wonder they are married in real life.

9. Yim Yat Siu – Shek Kin
He is evil but pretends to be a kind person. He has wanted the dragon sword all long. Unfortunately, he gets to meet two men at their prime who is not just observant but also highly skilled – Chi Wan and Siu Bak. It is sad to see him killing his own daughter with his own hands. They expose his scheme and he should be honoured to be killed by the dragon sword. Shek Kin is also a ‘notorious’ villain in dramas during his younger days so he is also formidable in this role.

10. Gong Sun Lang Ou – Kam Kok Leung
He is a swordsman who is eager to carve a name for himself. Yet, he never takes advantage of others. Neither is he careless as he always outwits others. In fact, he is a true friend whom all can count on when in need. He braves through all dangers to solve all Chi Wan’s problems. Many will complain that Kok Leung has more screen time than Kiu Wai in the last segment but I don’t mind it. This is giving him the right recognition that he deserves as he often gets evil roles. He proves that he can be a righteous swordsman too.

11. Chat Sat Leader – Lau Chi Sing
He is extremely scheming to plant a spy to harm Chi Wan. Never does he realize that she will go against him. But he never runs out of ideas to achieve his aim to destroy Chi Wan. He is another villain to get killed by the dragon sword.

12. Yin Nou – Chan Sau Mun
She is once Chat Sat Leader’s pawn who has no choice but to do his bidding as she is poisoned. However, she ends up falling for Chi Wan. She then sets herself again Chat Sat Leader and helps Chi Wan to get rid of him. Sau Mun is also doing well. One oversight by the clothes unit though – it seems that she is often wearing long dresses. How can someone run fast in that outfit whenever she is in trouble and it is so inconvenient for her to drag the train when climbing mountains. She looks so awkward in it.

Favourite character

Chi Wan – he is perfect. The only flaw will be he doesn’t wish to burden others but often end up becoming more seriously injured to worry the others.

Most hated character

Ching Long, he is the worst villain among all as he doesn’t hesitate to cut off Siu Ching’s finger. How can he bring himself to do it since he loves her so much?!

Song
It is by Hui Chi On – a very trendy and fast-paced song although the lyrics are traditional. I take some time to accept it as it doesn’t have any traditional instrument to play it!

Interesting facts

Lai Yiu Cheung starred as one of the gangsters involved in the cricket fight. It can be enjoyable to see how big pillars first started out. TVB recycled clothes that Yung Mei Ling wore. But Miu Kiu Wai wore clothes that are specially tailored for him and they are worn by actors in latter dramas. How unfair they can be!

TVB drama vcds can be quite expensive. I waited for years for the price to drop to S$13. I immediately grabbed it and had not looked back since. It was indeed an excellent drama.

Conclusion

The storyline is impressive although the flying and stunts are a bit fake. But let’s remember that it is from the 80s. Overall, it is a great series with a perfect cast. I don't know why TVB series are so boring but the classic ones are so good, to lure me to switch a disc after another. With a line-up of topnotch artistes, a plot of complexity and variety with a series of action scenes, it offers you great entertainment.

Sukting’s ratings :

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

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

On song : *** (Scale of 5)


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