C-Drama “General and I” starring Wallace Chung & Angelababy
“General and I” tells the love story between a female strategist and an undefeated warrior from the enemy state. They were childhood sweethearts, fated to love each other. Destined to serve their country but committed to their vows to never betray one another, the two geniuses are often forced to choose between loyalty to their country or to each other. Will love conquer all? Will they choose patriotism over love between a man and a woman? Or will they have the best of both worlds?
Adapted from the novel “A Lonesome Fragrance Waiting to be Appreciated” written by “Feng Nong,” TV drama “General and I” starring an all-star cast including “Wallace Chung,” “Angelababy,” “Sean Sun” and “Gan Tinging” has become one of the top rated TV dramas of 2017 earning top dollars for Huace Media. The drama aired earlier this year in January in mainland China, but still making its round worldwide.
Despite the drama’s success it didn’t come without setbacks. Fans of the novel complained that they made too many changes to the already perfect story from the novel. I bid to disagree; I think the changes were refreshing. The childhood love story makes sense as to why the male lead was so set on making her his wife. It still remained the same in that he fell in love with her zither playing skills. In the novel, he questioned her actions whereas in the drama although some of her actions were questionable but he trusted her.
In the novel he went to war because he was ambition driven. In the drama he went to war because of the unlikely circumstances that force him to save “Bai Ping Ting.” The drama humanized “Chu Bei Jie.” “Bai Ping Ting” left “Chu Bei Jie” in the novel because of a selfish misunderstanding; she didn’t even reason with him before leaving him. In the drama she left him for the greater good; leaving he can set his priorities straight, to save her life, to save his life and to bring peace into the world. All these changes I think were refreshing and necessary.
Another criticism of the drama was the overuse of CGI. What’s a Chinese drama without CGI though? Personally I felt most of it was done quite beautifully. There were times where it wasn’t even necessary and they could have eliminated the scene altogether; for instance the horse riding scenes where it was quite obvious they were not riding with just their body shot in the picture.
Then there were the rumors that they two leads used body doubles, a rumor the producers since shot down. The producers came to Wallace’s defense saying Wallace insisted on doing his own stunts. It was rumored that the leads spent no more than 10 days filming and the rest was left for the body doubles. Is that humanely possible? Some people have no common sense. However, Angelababy was pregnant during the filming, so its not surprising if she needed a body double. Notice all those scenes where she was supposedly on the horse solo or with Wallace, they never had a clear shot of her? It was either a distance shot, or CGI screen where she was riding on a wooden horse. I think a lot of viewers were nit picking because the leads apparently got a hefty pay check for their roles. It was reported Wallace and Angelababy got a payout of anywhere from 14 -20 million each for their roles. That’s enough to make some people feel they’ve been overpaid lol.
Viewers complained about the constant use of slow motion in the fight scenes. I actually enjoyed this because like the director mentioned it was suppose to highlight the emotions in the given scene. His approach he contended was suppose to be for the cultured audience not the tasteless ones *ouch*. I can understand his artistic approach because I enjoyed all fight scenes. They were beautiful and fluid, especially the fight scene where Wallace used a flute as a weapon and the fight between the Wallace and Sean where they were surrounded by the mountains.
However, there goes a saying “after the storm, calm follows,” after so many episodes aired, the criticism lost its wind as more people appreciated the drama for what it is. The media had praises for Wallace’s solid performance and how the drama has gotten better over time. Although many continued to criticize Angelababy’s flawed acting, people continued to contribute to the ratings.
I actually came across this drama by accident while watching “Eternal Love” aka “Three Lives Three Worlds, Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms.” While searching for some information on the drama I came across an article about the dramas that earned top dollars for Huace Media, and “General & I” was listed as the top earner for the period so Shampoo and I both started watching the drama together. She’s been nagging at me to do a review, but I haven’t finished the drama myself to do a complete review.
The drama isn’t without flaws, but overall I think its one of the better Chinese dramas I’ve watched in a long time. The entire cast was good looking; from all the leads to the minor characters like the palace maids. I’ve never seen a drama with so many attractive people. The cinematography is beautiful and tastefully done. The music was heart wrenching and very fitting to the story. The fight scenes were impressive and on point. The love scenes were to another level. The costumes were gorgeous and extravagant. The venues and sets were phenomenal. It was certainly was a well financed drama. Luckily this drama comes with an abundance of beautiful stills and promotional posters for me to use.
Lets start with an introduction to the characters…
To be Continued….
The drama can be watched on youtube @