Review: My Sunshine 何以笙簫默

I've recently finished another c-drama. LOL. Well I heard great reviews about the web novel on which it was based on and knowing that it came from the production company who brought us Boss and Me, I was eager to at least check it out. That and the fact that I'm rather fond of both leads, Tang Yan and Wallace Chung. It's a weird experience in that I can clearly identify that it's very much lacking, but I still compulsively watched it till the end.


The story itself is not very complicated. My Sunshine is about two young lovebirds, He Yi Chen (Wallace Chung) and Zhao Mo Sheng (Tang Yan) who got together during their college days but broke up due to some misunderstandings. Mo Sheng leaves for USA and their paths only cross again when she returns 7 years later. Therefore we are treated to double the romance and just one half of the angst. Sounds good?


The college romance is undoubtedly the sweeter one, with Mo Sheng falling in love at first sight with Yi Chen and doggedly chasing after him all over the campus. It doesn't help that Yi Chen is smart, handsome, popular but aloof while she's the polar opposite.  He's got an acerbic tongue as well, being a lawyer in the making, but she's just so adorably thick-skinned and counters everything he says with a bright smile. Eventually he just melts (well, my impression haha) under her incessant "attacks".

Well imagine this. Mo Sheng always carries a camera because she loves taking pictures. She sees Yi Chen on her first day in campus and snaps his picture. He gets annoyed and confronts her but she explains she was just taking picture of the scenery and he just happens to intrude into the picture. Yi Chen leaves but she asks him why. And so he tells her that he's "returning" the scenery to her (since she blames him for getting into her picture LOL). And does she give up? Heck no. She runs after him asking for his name and class, her excuse being to give him the photo later. He refuses and she threatens to go around the school asking for him with his photograph. Hah. And that's just the beginning of her "courtship".


There are quite a few scenes which I like from the college days because fearless and bubbly Mo Sheng is just so irresistible. In one instance, Yi Chen asks her why she is following him around all the time. And she just looks at him and teases, "Yi Chen, are you the stupid one or am I the stupid one? Sigh*, you are very smart so I must be the stupid one. I'm such a failure. I've been courting you forever and still you have no idea what I'm doing." Speechless eh? LOL.

In the drama, the flashbacks are interspersed between the present time, so you don't get the whole backstory at once. In the present day, Yi Chen is already a successful lawyer while Mo Sheng returns as a photographer and works for a  magazine. They first bump into each other at a local supermarket. Needless to say, this is the angsty phase. Yi Chen has never forgotten her but he is hurt and nursing a wounded pride. We watch as he struggles with his feelings - at first trying to ignore her return, then gradually finding excuses to see her, and eventually giving in to his feelings. On this time around, things are not as easy.


Mo Sheng is no longer the cheerful and fearless girl she was. She is more timid and hesitant. She has been through some rough patches in the 7 years they have been apart and it's not as easy to pick up where they left off. Plus, she was married at one point in the USA.


Yi Chen is heartbroken once more and it takes a while for these two to work out their issues. Well I shall refrain from revealing more spoilers but once they have reconciled, these two are the cutest couple ever. Well, I would say Yi Chen is like the perfect-est male lead ever. I loved the reversal in the adult phase if only because Yi Chen is so awkwardly adorbs. The casting for Yi Chen is pure love because Wallace plays him just the way I would have imagined him to be. Sadly, I think Tang Yan is less likeable as the morose Mo Sheng. I actually feel she is better when Mo Sheng becomes livelier but that just exposes her shortcomings as an actress. The younger actor and actress for their college scenes are wonderful as well.




 
There are several other main characters as well. Well, they aren't fleshed out much in the novel but here they get more screen time. He Yi Mei is Yi Chen's non-blood related sister. She crushes on him since young.  

Then there is Lu Yuan Feng, a photographer cum colleague of Mo Sheng. He likes Yi Mei initially but develops a bickering romance with Xiao Xiao, Mo Sheng's model friend also from college days. I quite like this other pair too.
 
 
Most importantly, there is Ying Hui. Mo Sheng's ex-husband. His character here is more antagonistic than in the book but ultimately he is a second lead and fares as such.
 
 
 
Yi Chen's fellow partners in his law firm don't have huge roles, but Lao Yuan provides some of the funnier comic relief. 

Overall, the show drags like hell. 32 episodes in all but even with the extra characters and storylines, I feel it would work best as a 20 or even just 25 episode drama. The flashbacks..oh my lordy the flashbacks. I swear the flashbacks take up 10minutes in each episode. If the flashbacks are completely different I could understand, but if you have to watch the exact same flashback for like the 10th time...Worse is I could not bring myself to fast forward because I was worried I could miss some new scenes.


One more thing that bugged me was the blatant product placement. ROFL. I suppose they are necessary evils but man I wish they could exercise some restraint and practice subtlety. I just burst out laughing everytime I see the drinks.

I did love the songs even though I found them a tad overused. As for the directing not so much. I feel like they try too hard to incorporate the sunlight in all the college scenes. Then again maybe that's the point. Well, for all my grumblings I did catch the show religiously every night during its entire run. So if you are prepared to waddle through some chunky flashbacks, My Sunshine is not a bad watch.



5 comments:

  1. I have many drama in my HD that i have not watch..every time i try to watch new drama i always end up watch this drama, Don't know how many time i watch it but i just randomly pick episode and skip it when in not intresting one..

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  3. I am just starting this drama. Started last night and now at episode 5. I usually max dramas at 20 or less episodes but I am braving this 30something episodes drama cos I love the young mo sheng. I hope my enthusiasm stays as there are many occasions I give up watching a drama half way. I loved Boss and Me but I fast forwarded a lot too.

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  4. I really liked this one despite the recycled flashbacks. Originally I think it was suppose to be longer but they did some scene cuts, for some I wish they had left to make it more intense. Overall this is one of a few I watch again. I usually only watch once and would be bored to watch again.

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