Sunday 5 October 2014

"Incisive Great Teacher" 《犀利仁师》

About 3 weeks ago, I found this "Incisive Great Teacher" 《犀利仁师》drama serial on the Jia Le on Demand channel on Singtel MioTV. What first attracted me to watch this drama was, of course, the lead actor who is Nicky Wu (吴奇隆). Next in line was the lead actress who is Cecilia Liu (刘诗诗). They were also the lead actor and actress in "Scarlet  Heart 1" 《步步惊心》 and "Scarlet Heart 2"《步步惊情》.

"Incisive Great Teacher" 《犀利仁师》is a period comedy drama. Liu Ao Tian (starring Nicky Wu) is a government agent sent to work undercover in Hong Wen College (the school appointed by the emperor to implement the new policy of girls attending school). His mission was to ensure that the new policy would be implemented successfully and to prevent sabotage of this policy by the "traditional forces".

Lu Yun Fei (starring Cecilia Liu) also went to work in the same school upon the challenge of Liu Ao Tian. Thus she became the first female teacher. She was very good in martial arts but not so good academically. As such, Yuan Fang and his classmates were doubtful of her capability as a teacher. Through her efforts and some help from Liu Ao Tian, she eventually got the 3 bells, one from Nie Wen Xing (starring Huo Zheng Yan) who represent the teachers, one from Murong Yue who represent the female students and Yuan Fang who represent the male students so that she could continue working as a Teacher. 

Fan Da Tong (starring Ye Zu Xin) enrolled himself in Hong Wen College to be close to his ex-fiancee Murong Yue in the hope of wooing her back. He was assigned to a hostel room with Song Wen Wen (starring Wu Ying Jie). Fan Da Tong and Song Wen Wen initially had some disputes prior to entering Hong Wen College. However, after being classmates and room mates for some time, both of them had learned to care for each other. Once, they were practicing for their kick ball game (now known as soccer). Song Wen Wen passed out and was sent to the sick bay. Liu Ao Tian, who also assumed the role of the school's physician, took Song Wen Wen's pulse and realised that Song Wen Wen was actually a girl. He then questioned her intention of disguising as a boy and asked her to quit school before getting into trouble. By disguising herself as a boy, it is considered as deceiving the emperor in their times which could result in execution. (I think she dressed as a boy in order to get the scholarship as the scholarship was only meant for boys).

At some point, Fan Da Tong knew that Song Wen Wen had to quit school if she could not win the soccer race. Hence, he was determined to help her and in the process, did not concern himself over Murong Yue. In the mean time, it was his good friend Wu Tian Bao who helped Murong Yue to get the cheerleading lead dancer role. Song Wen Wen was touched by Fan Da Tong's care and help. Fan Da Tong was also very concerned about Song Wen Wen. However, Song Wen Wen could not reveal her true identity to him. There was once when Song Wen Wen got drunk and said she should give her blessings to Fan Da Tong and Murong Yue. This caused him to misunderstand that Song Wen Wen was in love with Murong Yue. He felt upset but could not understand why.

Throughout the 24 episodes that I have watched so far, the characters in the serial kept mentioning the emperor but did not mention the name. I deduced from the English subtitle that the emperor was a lady because it was typed as Her Majesty. So, the emperor should be Wu Ze Tian. A check on the internet proved that I was right. The drama serial was set in the Wu Zhou dynasty (an interuption of the Tang Dynasty) when Wu Ze Tian was the emperor. Wu Ze Tian was the first and only female emperor in the history of China. I am not sure if Wu Ze Tian would appear later in the drama serial. 

It was also mentioned many times that Liu Ao Tian could never be an official in his lifetime but the reason was not made known to us yet. So, in working undercover as a teacher, he also put his heart into teaching the students how to be a good official by imparting certain values to them. In episode 24, he gave the students the task of investigating the reason behind the price hike in rice. He said this is important in helping them to understand how this could accelerate into a major problem that could rock the country's stability if it was not handled properly. In this instance, he was teaching the students practical economics. He also asked his superior to inform the emperor of the price hike situation and to intervene before the situation got worse. 

The drama serial was very funny. I think this is the first time I have watched Nicky Wu acting so cute and funny. His other drama/movie characters were usually "cool" and serious. His character, Liu Ao Tian was usually serious when teaching and talking to other people. However, whenever he was with Lu Yun Fei, he became very cheeky. 

Lynn happened to see me watching this drama and was hooked on it too. She found the drama very interesting and hilarious at times. As this was a period drama set in a school, there were many chinese poems, idioms, proverbs etc. used. It's an alternative way to learn chinese and more entertaining. 

There are another 20 episodes to go. Waiting impatiently for Jia Le Channel to continue its broadcast...