First Impressions: The Legend of Flying Daggers

img_2909Watched up to Ep 6 and it’s really not too bad! Not sure if it’s gonna go down the age-old wuxia route of familial revenge which can get a bit too dog-blood for me but for now, it’s still on my watchlist! The pacing maybe a little slow for some but I find it okay as it builds the characters – didn’t read the book or watch any previous adaptation so it’s a clean slate for me!

Actually picked this up because of Yang Rong and so far she is doing well! She looks ethereal in white (although not very tall) and she manages to balance the cold exterior of Xue Cai Yue with an innately good person interior without coming off emotionless (Yang Zi – this is what Xue Qi is supposed to be like!) or overly carefree (Tang Yan – this is what Wei Young should be!) – it’s letting down her guard away from prying eyes when we get a glimpse of her real self.

I have only seen Hawick Lau once before this in Thinking of Lu Xiang Bei and i thought he pulled off the dead dude with emotional baggage well. Here he is meant to be 20 and while it’s definitely a stretch, it did not make me throw my hands up in despair and disbelief! Perhaps because Hawick is older, his Li Huai doesn’t come off as goofy or too naive if it was played by say Jiang Jin Fu (Legend of Qin) or Elvis Han (Chinese Paladin 5). He is so far doing quite well portraying a man who just found his lineage and going on a path of self discovery as a diamond in the rough without being too reckless or annoying in doing so.

Like that the OTP doesn’t immediately fall in love despite Cai Yue saving Li Huai more than once and then having a moment amidst the (fake!) maple leaves !

Huang Ming plays Li Zheng, Li Huai’s younger half brother and I dearly hope he doesn’t go off-rails to be the main antagonist later. I like this character now and it would be nice if not every less talented sibling goes green with envy and tries to destroy the other. Emma Wu is Fang Ke Ke, Li Huai’s childhood friend who crushes on him and he obviously treats her like one of the guys. Emma Wu is cute-ish but she is the same in every role I have seen her.

One thing I would mention is that it’s interesting to see what happens when a woman makes a man (who obviously does not love her) marries her and live together as man and wife and grow old together (Li Cheng’s parents) – really can’t tell who is more miserable and even if there is no romantic love, would kinship love survive the years?

Please don’t go too dogblood and I would love it if the four main characters could go and explore Jianghu together rather than be rectangularly miserable together. 🙂


8 thoughts on “First Impressions: The Legend of Flying Daggers

  1. Yay! I love how positive your post is! Please do more recaps! Anyways, I’m up to episode 15. I’m excited for Crystal Yuan’s introduction into the drama, although I hate her voice actress. It’s only the beginning of her character arc, so I hope she doesn’t turn into a double-agent, or someone who is forced to betray the main characters for her position in YueShenGong. I’ve been interested in her since her Mystic Nine days. Huang Ming looks really good in ancient garbs. I’m surprised at how good Hawick is at acting a 20 year old kid, especially since he usually plays the almighty-high-and-above, cool guy! You’d be surprised at how hard it is to maintain and act a little, high-spirited kid all the time. I’ve always loved GuiGui’s characters, even though she plays the same one in every drama. She’s actually very beautiful, and could probably pull-off the most-beautiful-lady-in-the-world character in a drama, although I think directors are dead-set on casting her as the cute, annoying little sister type girl. I really like Huang Ming’s character. He’s so kind and trusting. I really don’t hope he continues to feel rejected (because I can’t stand that type of pain) but I wouldn’t mind him turning against his brother in a mind-controlled state.
    Also, I think it’s stupid how they both decided to get rid of the vine-type-of-cuff by choosing the treatment that forces them to never be able to love again.
    I also really like Kenny Kwan’s acting. IDK, it’s not anything spectacular, but his character is so adorable, and I’ve only ever seen him in The Classic of the Mountains and Seas, where he played a cool guy.
    Also, I predict that CaiYue’s ShiFu,with the mask is her father or something. The directors wouldn’t put him in a mask, if his identity wasn’t an important plot point.
    IDK what to say about YangRong’s acting. I’ve always liked her in evil, or bad guy roles ie. in Song in the Clouds, Legend of LuZhen and The Lady and the Liar. But I find her acting so intense/in-the-moment (?) that sometimes, it’s uncomfortable. IDK how to describe it. When she was crying over ShangGuanHuai on the mountain when they were looking for the Doctor-Couple, it really made me want to look away, because I felt like I was eavesdropping or had intruded into a very intimate moment between two lovers in real life.
    Also, Hawick’s face annoys me. His chin/lips annoy me, to be exact. It makes me think how great a couple he and YangMi are, because they both have weird chins/cheeks/lips (or whatever it is).
    All in all, I don’t find this drama that bad, even at the 15 episode mark. The acting is good. The plot so far is okay (it’s the promise of the future episodes that make everything good, but otherwise, it’s just okay). The costumes are great. It gives me Swords of Legends, Legend of Zu, Legend of Chusen and The Classic of Mountains and Seas vibes, because of how closed the whole story and settings are, and the style of the story. For reference, Ice Fantasy would be considered a really closed story/setting. The Four 2015 would be a less closed story/setting, The Classic of Mountains and Seas is somewhere among them. The Empress of China/Princess Weiyoung are quite open stories/settings, but IDK how fair it is to compare xianxia with historical…
    PS. ^ Wow what a messy post! My thoughts are flowing around in my head.


    1. Hi @Gemmy Wever ! It’s great that you are still watching and thanks for taking the time to write ! I am at ep20 and happy to say that it’s still watchable. I like the adventuring spirit (kinda like Classics of the Mountains and Seas but it got a bit too far out for me (2 Zhang Han ??) and couldn’t finish it – my fav character was Shangguan Jin (Kenny Kwan) and totally thought that he should get the girl!

      Li Zheng (Huang Ming) is still himself – please break the curse of the second male lead turning all evil due to jealousy of first male lead!! I think Kenny Kwan does better in cool quieter roles as here I think he has the same HK problem as William Chan in the Four where he overly mugs for the camera when he is meant to be “lively!”
      That’s why I appreciate Hawick’s Li Huai – I was quite allergic to Hu Ge in CP3 (the “playful” him and not his previous lives) and JJF in LOQ as always wonder why must an untrained male lead in wuxia bounce around like a dunce to demonstrate his naïveté / openheartedness before he is bestowed with great power/saves the world!

      Some parts do lag a little (those 2 old people!!) but overall it’s still entertaining! Will try to write a second Impressions on this soon !!

      Ps. I guess the pain in their hearts when they have feelings for each other is meant to show how star crossed they are ?


      1. Wow episode 20 already? Where do you watch these dramas? As far as I know, the latest released episode is 19 (unless you have a paid account on YouKu or IQiYi).


        1. I watch on or The latter updates even faster but the latter has Viet subs which can be distracting as I don’t read vietnamese !


  2. hahahaha! Oh dear! I cannot profess to being a wuxia drama expert especially since watching this unsubbed so you are most likely right 🙂

    haven’t had the urge to hurl something at the screen yet so gonna continue watching for YR and Hawick and see how far I will go !


  3. I finished ep 5 and thought this was hilariously bad, especially some of the dialog. Given that Flying Daggers has been a mainstay in the wuxia world, I’ll probably continue with this just for my own edification.


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