Review: Ode to Joy Season I

As Ode to Joy II  欢乐颂 2 is geared up for release, here’s a review of season 1 of the hit series from 2016.

Witty dialogue and a cast of memorable characters make Ode to Joy one of the most fun sit-coms in a while.  Unfortunately, the  series is often dogged down by attempts to shift to a melodrama that makes the ff button a necessary friend.

The series focuses around the unlikely friendship between five women who share a floor in an apartment complex in Shanghai. There’s Andi (An Di?), the business professional with a fear of human touch, Qu Xiaoxiao, the heiress fighting  for the family inheritance,  Fan Shengmei, the gold-digger with an entitled family, Qiu Yingying, the happy-go-lucky college grad,  and Guan Ju’er, the ordinary white-collared girl who has never said no in her life.

Coming from a misogynistic rural  family, Fan Shengmei (Jiang Xin) is vain, self-centered, but also righteous and protective. She would lie to help out a friend, but also to save face. The first lets her befriend the women in the apartment complex, but the second gets her in trouble  as she falls for men who use her vanity to play her.  When she falls in love with a  man faked his own wealth to date her, she is caught between love and vanity.  Imperfect, complex, and sharp-tongued, Fan’s characterization is perfect.

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Couple stills for Ode to Joy 2

Season 2 of Ode to Joy has released stills of the five ladies Liu TaoJiang Xin, Wang Ziwen, Yang Zi and Qiao Xin and their respective pairings. I’m still interested in checking out the premiere, though I’ve been keeping hopes low after season 1 fell short of expectations.

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Stills for The Advisor’s Alliance

After seeing stills like these, I come to appreciate the sheer variety of costuming styles that exist in China and how they grow side by side.

The Advisor’s Alliance 军师联盟 has released stills.  Starring Wu Xiubo, Li Chen, Liu Tao, Janine Chang, Tang Yixin, Zhang Zhixi, Zhai Tianlin, Yu Hewei, and Zhang He, I will admit I’m getting a bit impatient for a more official release date.

More stills below the cut.

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The Advisor’s Alliance continues run of quality stills

Didn’t really like Liu Tao’s character in The Legend of Miyue. Hope she fares better in this one.

The Advisor’s Alliance 军师联盟 has released more stills, giving us a look at the various settings the drama will take place in.  Starring Wu Xiubo, Li Chen, Liu Tao, Janine Chang, Tang Yixin, Zhang Zhixi, Zhai Tianlin, Yu Hewei, and Zhang He, this is definitely on list of dramas that need to be put on the fast-track for release.

More stills below the cut.

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Breathtaking first trailer for The Advisors Alliance

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I need an official glimpse of Sima Yi’s adversary Zhuge Liang. The feather fan in the trailer is not enough…

The Advisors Alliance stars Wu Xiubo as Sima Yi, a politician and strategist of Cao Wei in the Three Kingdoms period. Sima Yi served as a strategist to three rulers, including warlord Cao Cao (Yu Hewei) and Kings Cao Pi (Li Chen) and Cao Rui (Liu Huan).

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The Advisor’s Alliance wows with more

I think this is the more realistic period-pretty we all want a dose of time to time.

The Advisor’s Alliance 军师联盟 has released more stills shortly after the last release.  Starring Wu Xiubo, Li Chen, Liu Tao, Janine Chang, Tang Yixin, Zhang Zhixi, Zhai Tianlin, Yu Hewei, and Zhang He, I think it’s amazing how much these costumes seem to transform the actors into their respective roles.

More stills below the cut.

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28th Golden Eagle Awards

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Please excuse me as I take a trip down memory lane…

The Golden Eagle Awards is a prestigious biannual television awards ceremony, and prides itself on being “the people’s award”. Unlike the Flying Apsaras Awards (government recognition) and Magnolia Awards (industry recognition), Golden Eagle spreads the love more evenly, and usually several dramas and actors are acknowledged.

In previous years, the Best Actor and Actress of the night were decided by online voters and a panel of judges, and presented with the Audience’s Choice award (golden statue) and Best Performing Arts award (crystal statue). This year the two awards were given to different actors, with the nominee that received the most votes from the judges winning the Performing Arts award.

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The Advisor’s Alliance releases stills

Nice concept poster! :)

The Advisor’s Alliance 军师联盟 has released more stills.  Starring Wu Xiubo, Li Chen, Liu Tao, Janine Chang, Tang Yixin, Zhang Zhixi, Zhai Tianlin, Yu Hewei, and Zhang He, really looking forward to this one as well.

More stills below the cut.

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The Advisor’s Alliance releases posters

See!! We can have nice posters!!

The Advisor’s Alliance 军师联盟 has released more stills.  Starring Wu Xiubo, Li Chen, Liu Tao, Janine Chang, Tang Yixin, Zhang Zhixi, Zhai Tianlin, Yu Hewei, and Zhang He, those who wanted to get a look of the costuming can start off with these.

More stills below the cut.

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