As a pro TVB serials watcher of at least 15-16 years of experience, I believe that I should be hired as a professional critic to assess the quality of their series. Though I’ve been on a hiatus for the past one and a half year(can’t believe I’ve lived this long without TVB..), my evaluations are still quite reliable.
My strength is in recognising which actors/actresses should rise in the ranks, be binned or which kelefeh to be given a chance to. My weakness however lies in the olden days serials as the language is far too flowery for my banana ears which is only adapted to simple modern cantonese.
But hear me out.
There are too many repetitive patterns in TVB shows.
1. Enough with the parted lovers who miss each other so much, who go out at night to walk the streets of Hong Kong, only to cross paths with each other yet not being able to see each other because they were being blocked by a passing car, a large crowd of people, crossing the roads in different directions, a cart selling put chai kou etc.
2. EVery pair of lovers who were never meant to be must ALWAYS have an emo english song. It’s sweet in the beginning, but it makes the song cheap by the end of the series.
3. There are only three ways to die unnaturally in TVB shows:
– kena bang by car
– jump off roof(alot of roofs to jump off in Hong Kong)
– kena stabbed in the stomach by some angry acquaintance.(it’s never the head, or the back or the heart. Always the stomach.)
4. There are only three professional jobs recognised in the TVB world:
– The occasional pilot serials get picked up to. (I loved Triumph In The Skies!)
5. Every big company has family problems and mafia as brother in laws.
6. Back alleys are meant for beating people up. Rubbish bags and baskets are ALWAYS ALWAYS thrown to wart off scary thugs. I am suspecting that TVB owns a collection of black bags filled with styrofoam and the brown baskets are theirs too. Oh, let’s not forget the sticks. They never seem to differ in size from series to series. Believe me, try and look properly the next time you see some pathetic bastard who owes the loan shark money gets cornered in a narrow alley. The sticks are always half a metre taller than an average TVB actor.
Besides watching the actors steal the limelight on the idiot tube, you might want to pay a little attention to the kelefehs in the background too. It’s quite interesting actually.. infact, I’ll even call it kelefehology. There are kelefehs who can act and kelefehs who cannot act. Granted that if your face got problem you’re stuck being a kelefeh for decades on end. But you’re so versatile as an actor which is why they’ve maintained that actor as a kelefeh for so many decades.
But sometimes, miracles happen and a not so good looking actor gets to rise in the ranks and become a main star. Bobby Au Yeung. For him, it’s all about charisma which got him so many leading roles and his cheekiness.
Every now and then TVB will hire a couple of extras and like me, an experienced TVB watcher, you will laugh your ass off at the mediocre acting. There’s just NOTHING in their eyes and the tone of their voices are monotonous. In recent serials, I suspect they’ve taken on a Cast-A-Kelefeh-In-A-Recurring-Role campaign. These newbies have no emotions in their eyes and are very unenthusiastic about their acting. At least they don’t over act. That would be worse.
I do pity kelefehs who have always been casted in the same role for decades on end. Crazy retard, bad mafia side kick, loan sharks, side kick to company CEO, rapist, family doctor, family lawyer, mistresses, prostitutes etc. it’s always the same people. And you think to yourself, how much are they getting paid to be a kelefeh actor for so many years with TVB? Do they go back to their flats and live their mundane lives? I mean acting as kelefehs for so many decades surely cannot offer you a lucrative lifestyle? It makes me so sad.
Some acting tips here for actors, young and new, old and er..old:
If you can’t use your eyes to act, don’t resort to using your lips for further enhancement of facial expressions. It just makes me feel like slapping you.
If you’re crying, where are the tears?
There are many more ways to pretend to be drunk then just walking in a zig zag line. In TVB, the only form of drunkaism is happy and singing. There are other types of drunkards too you know: angry, violent, crying, depressed, brooding, sleeping, housecleaning(ahha mel~~) etc.
If you’re blushing because you’re in love, try something else aside from the whole looking down and away whilst biting your damn lips.
It’s high time that children below the age of 6 be sent to acting classes before being able to act on any serials. The child usually says, “Papa mama ngo hou tong ngo ar.. huhhh huhh huhh..huhh huhh huhh..” with a straight face so you don’t even why the hell they’re making those noises then you slap your forehead and go, “oh i see, the kid is crying.”. Tsk tsk. Really spoils the show.
However, there are so many reasons for me to love TVB forever and ever:
the cantonese phrases, (la la seng, ham pa lam, lei ge sei wu li ching, ngo tung lei hui sei gor!!, sam cheong leong tuen etc.), the falling in love moments between cute TVB actors(Steven MA!!!, Michael Tse, Ellesmere Choi) and any other deserving actresses(aside from Anne Heung Hoi Lam, Flora Chan(she’s okay with Joe Ma), Kenix Kwok etc. should just retire from TVB.) and I have to admit some of the police shows are actually quite nice. *paiseh* Especially when Bobby Au Yeung stars in them *paiseh*.
21 thoughts on “The Experienced TVB Serials Watcher”
Although Witness to a prosecution is not entirely a police but a forensic drama, I love it to bits. I like the theme song too. Do you have them (the theme song)? I generally enjoy TVB’s period dramas more than the modern ones. What’s your opinion on TVB’s historical or ancient dramas? I’m currently waiting for Forensic Heroes hehe. Anyway this is a good post on TVB serials, I enjoy reading it 😀
jo: oh ya! witness to a prosecution was damn good. but don’t you notice that EVERYTIME he solved a crime was by accident? nah, i dun have the theme song… why ar?? i like the modern ones more.
haha.. i think i’ll write one on historical and ancient dramas. thanks;D
wah, certified TVB drama fan.
Gotta love all those repetitive patterns you observed from all the TVB dramas, you hit the nail on the head!
Everything becomes so predictable after watching TVB series for the past many many years but i still love TVB series! I like predictable dramas and movies wan la, hahahah. Boring me :p
jo: ahahha memang. hehehehe.. cannot miss it one la..so many years of tvb watching. hahahaha good good. tvb drama series can be so addicitive even though they are predictable.
It is so true! I mean the repetitive pattern.
You missed out one important tag-line,
“Lei mm hou gor lei. Coi gor lei, wo zau thiu lok hoi”
jo: lol forever one la that one!
reallyyy? but bobby au yeung’s whole “cheekiness” factor is getting a bit annoying too. oh and in tvb, the only way to get over a broken heart is to get drunkkkkk. hahaha!
jo: lol, it might get old after awhile hor? hahaha..yes. no such thing as eating chocolates. unless it’s those career woman comedies…*rolls eyes*
the children crying part is so so funny! and it is so so so so true.
jo: and annoying dun u think?:D
Ey! I did zig zag once when I was drunk!
jo: haha ya mou~~
Sorry, not was. Its ‘am’
yup, TVB serials are very educational. must watch more often, heh!
jo: ehehhe teach me cantonese la
although tvb series are getting trashy and we still hope it will get better thesedays since they have all these mega productions wahahaha…
jo: their mega productions are good ler… *chants Triumph In the skies, triumph in the skies*
i don’t watch tvb dramas, but what about that ang moh guy who can speak chinese. the same ang moh guy again and again, if i’m not mistaken.
jo: that’s right!! why did i miss him out
Way to go!! They even awarded the Mat Salleh you see in almost all mat salleh role available “Chiu Kap Mou Tek Keh Leh Feh” I think you know who, always the british army that wanna sell cocaine, or the chef from France etc. He lead quite a normal life, and adopted >6 dogs. I watched it somewhere on tv before too. haha
My record of watching tvb is finishing War and Beauty in 2days ++!!
jo: ahahha oh that show featuring the kelefehs one rite? haha yeah i know who:D i can’t understand war and beauty. too deep for me;(
I’ve not watched TVB dramas for quite a while now – I don’t think I’ve missed anything, IMO. (Although I liked Ada Choi’s diversity).
Got tired about the doctor-police-fireman-lawyer repetition, the only people they have not made a show about is postmen only – there should be a show about postmen or postal workers.
jo: lol you’re wrong there. do you remember seven sisters??/ 😀 Anne Heung the ghost lived in the post office where Gallen Lo the postman was working at.
haha, tvb dramas are so predictable.
like if its a rich family (modern or old drama), sure got some super crisis, they become poor or something coz of a relative yang pembelot. then they have to overcome their differences.. blah dee blah.
nevertheless, i’m still addicted and love tvb lots. hehe XD
jo: lol yala./big familes = dramas. *rolls eyes*
OMGGGG!!! I love steven ma!! so freaking hot. the epitome of “tall, dark and handsome”. *slurps.
and him in pilot outfit!!!!!!! *double slurps
lol. i sounded desperate =P
jo: ahaha join the club! (which consists of my mother and me so far) and since when he wore a pilot uniform?
Haha, this is so true ’bout TVB dramas but still i enjoy watching ’em especially old ones
jo: hehehe… old ones? period dramas?
I don’t know when that was, but it sure wasn’t back when I still watched them…
Anyway I wasn’t talking about comedic shows with a postman, but more like a drama with postmen and their everyday lives.
jo: ahh..true la. can it be exciting? dun think they have one about sailor. ohmigod…. do u think they’ll ever do a sci fi?? HAHAHA that would be the worst show in history
HK X-Files? Gawd forbid. 😛
jo: HORRORS! 0_0
Ahhh! The throwing of the rattan baskets and rubbish bags thing! Oh gosh, I laughed right at the spot when I was reading it. SO TRUEEEEE.
jo: hahahhaa YES!! It’s funny coz it is DAMN fricken true!;D:D
lol. opps.. doesn’t steven ma refer to ma tak zhong?
jo: hahaa.. who is ma tak chung? NO! that’s JOe ma!!! who is also fricken hot la..:D Steven Ma Chun Wai. go google him. Yum!Â
Normally the pembelot for the rich family is the 2nd uncle – Yee Sok. Agree or not? Like, Yin Chi Sui Fan and Revolving Hotel or smtg, also Yee Sok is the baddie wan….
jo: WAHAHAHAHHAHAHA damn funny. yes it is .. yes ..
triumph in the skies 2 will be out soon 🙂
too bad my fav charmaine sheh is not acting. 🙁
jo: aiks, yes meh? i googled it, heard that they’ve given it to the mainland to handle?