The White Flame

Reviewed by: ice_cream

April 10, 2008

Rating: four

Characters include:
- Lily Hong as Go Hiu Nam (Crystal)
- Charmaine Sheh as Yook Choi Ling (Charlie)
- Samuel Chan as Yung Dak Gei (Gei Gei)
- Kingdom Yuen as Gu Mei Lan (Gu Gu)
- Chan Hoi Yee as Bo Bo
- Claire Yiu as Ah Leng
- Gregory Lam as Man Gin Fai
- Hui Chiu Hung as Charlie's father
- Lou Guan Lan as Charlie's mother
- Chu MiMi as Gei Gei's mother


I found this series quite enjoyable where they had a cast of young people and shows the difficulties that many of the enrolled nurses go through in order to be a registered nurse.

Story Outline and Characters:

This story is basically about the lives of 7 people who begin their first year at nursing school through to their graduation. Throughout the series, we can see the lives of these 7 people grow, as they become more aware that they are grown-ups now. Like Charlie and Crystal who were enemies when they first enrolled in the school, but later became friends when Charlie took care of Crystal while she was sick and helped her through tough times with her family.

Charlie: She is one of those 'happy-go-lucky' sort of people who at the beginning of the series, never thinks of the consequences until the damage has been done. In the process of her training, she sees a baby dying and can't help but to think that it's her fault and so decides to quit nursing school. She cares for her family, especially her father because she believes that her mother abuses her father (hahaha, as if). Because her family owns a 'Hot Pot Restaurant' she usually dines there with her friends and a couple of side stories happen there too. When she finds out that her father has liver cancer, she understands why her mother was so 'abusive' towards her father, and hereon, her family becomes closer as they support her father at the times when he's in hospital. Later, she starts going out with Gei Gei as she finds that she loves Gei Gei. Her life changes as she progresses into a more older and mature person, and we as the audience can feel the growth in her.

Crystal: She comes from a rich family in which her father and 2 brothers are famous doctors. She herself also feels pressured to be a doctor, but unfortunately she does not make it to medical school and chooses to do nursing before transferring to medicine. So at the beginning of the series, her character is very 'cool' and acts like a 'know-it-all' sort of person so she has several arguments with Charlie, and the 2 become enemies. Later when she becomes sick, Charlie takes care of her, and from then on they become friends. Due to her 'cool' nature, her family believes that she is very strong and does not need help, and so they do not worry about her too much, but unfortunately she is a person who lacks care from her family members because they do not spend much time with her. While her mother is in Taiwan, an earthquake happens and this brings her and her family closer together.

Gei Gei: He is a person who thinks of Crystal as his high school sweetheart, but unfortunately she only thinks of him as a good friend. His mother, a cleaner and housewife, opposes his ambition of being a nurse as she believes guys should not be nurses and so Gei Gei becomes a nurse without his mother's knowledge. When his mother finds out, she is furious but at the same time she needs to go to the hospital for an operation. Here, the nurses take care of her dearly, and her perception of a nurse changes, and finally allows her son to become a nurse.

Bo Bo, Ah Leng, Chan Ga Lok and Dai Lo Fai: They are all friends of Charlie, Gei Gei and Crystal and they play supporting characters. Dai Lo Fai is an trainee nurse who is their senior. Bo Bo, Ah Leng and Chan Ga Lok are all friends of Charlie. Bo Bo is scared of basically everything including blood, so as to why she decides to become a nurse I have no idea. Ah Leng decided to become a nurse in the hope that one day she will meet a cute and rich doctor. She doesn't end up with any rich doctors in the end though. Chan Ga Lok is Gei Gei's roommate and also the joker of the group.

Gu Gu: She is a registered nurse with a great amount of experience in nursing. She relates herself to Charlie because she was very similar to Charlie when she was a trainee nurse. She has been married for many years, but throughout the years she opposes to having children even though her husband loves children. Later though, Charlie's views on children impact on her, but when she does decide to have children, it is too late for her. Also, due to her reluctance to have children, it causes trouble between her and her husband.

My Opinions:

This is my first review, so it's probably not that good, but I think it's worth a try. What provoked me to write on this series is that it's still fresh in my mind. Even though I watched it ages ago, I can still remember it, unlike many of the other series that I've watched. It's one of those short happy family dramas because there is no villain in this series. I don't understand the English title for the series, it doesn't make sense to me, compared to the Chinese meaning.

I can see improvements in Charmaine Sheh since her first series 'Time Off'. As I mentioned before, she is a 'happy-go-lucky' sort of person so we know that she does not have many troubles in her life as she's always had a happy family and so her character is very lively.

This is the first time I've seen Lily Hong in a series, and I think her acting is actually okay. Her crying scene when she ran out of her family home was very convincing. I don't know what else to comment.

I found Samuel Chan's character a bit unconvincing because he seems to be smiling throughout the series. Also he does not seem to have many expressions, a happy expression, the always smiling and the sad expression.

The supporting cast helped in the fact that they lightened up the atmosphere. The cameo appearances of Maggie Siu and Raymond Cho also helped to give the atmosphere a more 'hospital' feeling because of their characters in 'Healing Hands 2'.

Overall I found this series entertaining, but it does have its faults even though I don't quite remember them. It's been a while since I've seen it. The characters were okay, but it could have been better. The storyline was great so I would give it a 4.5 for the storyline, doesn't deserve 5 yet and a 3.5 for the cast because there is room for improvement, so overall I give it a rating of 4!

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