* fangirling you like whoa

Vanness Wu & Autumn Concerto

For most far east dramas I'm willing to put up with a lot of male leads if they're eyecandy, can act a bit and don't actually have a negative impact on my viewing of the series.

Seeing Vanness Wu in Peach Girl (2002) caught my attention - definite pretty, seriously flexible and with a certain charm (the pic on his wiki entry doesn't do him justice really). I never really paid attention to him when he was in F4 (Meteor Garden/Meteor Rain) and I'm betting most people dismissed him as eyecandy that probably couldn't act. Still, was curious and checked out his recent work.

It was then that I found Autumn Concerto which just finished airing in Feb and since it was a ratings hit, I decided to give it a try (the poster probably convinced me though XD). There was something about the drama that had me watching it from start to end, and I really got hooked by the interaction between family (father/son, grandma/son etc.) and the leads.

While I tend to prefer more humor than angst in my dramas and am not sure about whether I could rewatch it apart from the kid Xie Le's scenes which were adorable, I still found the story more solid and generally satisfying than the majority of Taiwanese dramas tried so far.

Usually I get distracted by the actors themselves (Mike He, Ariel, Rainie etc.) but in this case, I was surprised how hooked I was by Van Ness Wu's performance and his portrayal of Guang Xi. While the heroine held her own, she didn't really click with me on an emotional level per se. On the other hand, was empathizing with Vanness even when I probably was supposed to side with the heroine haha. His performance was very human during many moments, even considering the melodrama inherent in this genre.

There was something about Autumn Concerto that reminded me a lot more of Korean dramas than Taiwanese ones TBH (which is a definite compliment since I <3 Kdramas) And things tied together better in a lot of ways than standard TV fare too for the genre. I liked how the writers ran with certain tropes and averted others pretty neatly. Not to mention, a lot of Taiwanese dramas seem to lose plot threads and have gratuitous fanservice without content a lot of the time, which didn't happen anywhere as often here (thank goodness!)

And the kid playing Xie Le was SO ADORABLE :D :D And Xie Le and Tang Tang...OMGOMG SO CUTE. Chris Wu as the secondary male did a great job as well - and I just discovered his performance in Fragile in Love (boy on boy hotness yay!).

I think the only thing that was a real peeve was that it took till the final episode for the leads to really be seen happy together again *facepalms*

Vanness Wu's acting abilities have definitely improved a hell of a lot though I generally found the cast performed really well so maybe it was due to the script and directorial direction of Chen Hui Ling too?

Do want to check out Vic Zhou's recent Black & White and rewatch Mars since I can't remember it TBH and he's the only other one from F4 I could stand remotely.

But Vanness has made me a complete fangirl - eyecandy and he can act well and he just *clicks* (which isn't always a guarantee) His physique makes me drool too, as opposed to the majority of teen/early 20s east asian actors who are just insanely skinny usually.

But anyway, the search for a decent Taiwanese drama over the weekend was a success \o/ More about the general viewing tomorrow though XD
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OOh Autumn Concerto looks great, I haven't actually seen a Korean Drama for a long time so hopefully this won't fall short on my expectations. I'm trying to find out where I can get my hands on it without using torrents (those drive me crazy).

OOh Black and White, it starts of alright but for some reason I can't seem to find the motivation to keep up with it... Love Mars :D
OMG my F4-fangirly glee is suddenly very very happy that I've seen this post ♥ Now I'm off to find Autumn Concerto! *___*
Thanks for linking me to this from your comment! I was quite surprised to find that this is a Taiwanese drama :) I used to watch a lot of them when I first ventured into Asian dramas, mostly because I understand/speak Mandarin, and it's always really nice to practice lol. But they're just SO low quality plot, acting and filming-wise compared to Korean and Japanese dramas that I stopped and I just couldn't get into any more. Which makes me sad because I really want to like them for the sake of Taiwanese pride, but just can't.

Not to mention, a lot of Taiwanese dramas seem to lose plot threads and have gratuitous fanservice without content a lot of the time

SO TRUE. And so annoying! Have you seen Love Contract? They had THREE DIFFERENT ENDINGS that all made no sense, just to pacify the viewers, I think.

Oh I hated Peach Garden :( I finished it, but it just annoyed me the whole way through. I think it might have been the last Taiwanese drama I watched, for good reason.

ANYWAY. Your pictures of Vanness Wu have totally swayed me (shallow, I know)! I'm really liking his new non-Meteor Garden hair. And your comments about how awesome this drama is, especially emotionally/acting. I'm quite intrigued now and will definitely check out this drama!

Aww I love Mike He! Devil Beside You is probably one of my favorite Taiwanese dramas.

Btw, MARS the drama is really not that good compared to MARS the manga. Maybe it's because I have huge sentimental value for MARS, as it was the first shoujo manga I ever read, and I still love it in this intense, fierce way - so no way could the drama have lived up to my expectations. I also think it's that its themes somehow don't translate well onto the screen because there is just WAYY too much crying in the series, and Barbie is just not a pretty crier. Vic Zhou doesn't look as good in it as he did in Meteor Garden for some reason...it might be the hair?

(sorry so long, obviously been keeping all of this in for a while. I need more Asian drama fanatics on my flist lol)