With the perfect amount of bright colors and modern silhouettes without looking tacky, The King’s Woman 秦时丽人明月心 first caught my eyes because of its look (and Dilraba). The series is adapted from the prequel to animation Qin’s Moon and retells the attempted assassination of Ying Zheng (Zhang Binbin), the king who’ll eventually become China’s first emperor, by Jing Ke (Liu Chang), modified to become a huge love triangle featuring Gongsun Li (Dilraba).
The series opens with some classic clichés that they work in with mixed ability, including but not limited to having a long-lost childhood true love that you’ve only met once, no one recognizing the female lead is female, accidentally sharing a bed, the rich guy pretending his underling is his superior because we all know relationships that start with lies end well, and one or more lead’s guardian dying, but not before reminding them to hate their romantic interest for their parents’ sins.
Zhang Binbin is surprisingly (to me) the best actor of the bunch, and nails all the romance scenes, be it awkward first meetings, head over heels in love, or possessive creep. Dilraba feels a bit out of her elements in the more serious scenes , but is as cute as well in the romance scenes. I couldn’t get any chemistry out of her and Liu Chang, though. The pace is great and dialogue colloquial if not witty, and I was able to enjoy most of it without wanting to fastforward (okay, I admit I skipped all the political parts without the leads).
I probably won’t watch the rest because the leads are clearly going for the Stockholm Syndrome cliché soon, but I do recommend it for those of you who like historical romance. Watch it on YouTube here.