After 7 episodes I am a bit torn about ‘Ring Ring Bell’. On the one hand, I love the chemistry between Peter Ho and Janine Chang. On the other hand, Janine’s character Xiao Xiang is really getting on my nerves.
So let’s go back to why I decided to watch this drama in the first place – Janine. She’s one of my favourite TW actresses! (OK – so I’ve only seen her in ‘The Hospital’ and ‘Black and White’ but both dramas I really enjoyed.) As for Peter Ho, I only remember him from a movie I watched a while ago (Sophie’s Revenge) and thought he was good looking. Actually, I was more interested in watching Xiu Jie Kai in a series again (yes, because of ‘The Hospital’ & ‘Black and White’ again).
In that respect, RRB has been hugely satisfying so far. OK, so Xiu Jie Kai is pretty much the bad guy here and you want to punch him in the face, but Peter definitely compensated for that. He is so ridiculously charming and has great chemistry with Janine. (Actually in the back of my mind I’m hoping for some ‘secret’ that Xiu Jie Kai might be hiding for his true reason for leaving Janine, but I’m getting the feeling it’s just wishful thinking…..)
Let’s face it, TW idol dramas are not exactly known for their creative storylines. RRB started off with a chance meeting between Peter and Janine in an elevator 7 years ago. They both felt a ‘spark’ between them but because of some misunderstandings they didn’t get together. Some years later, Janine is now a single mother who has ‘lost the radiance and beauty of youth’ and Peter is now heartbroken and divorced.
So we all know how it will end, the theme song is a dead giveaway. But it’s about the journey not the destination right? If the ‘journey’ is done well, it can still be a great series. My biggest problem with it is how stupid Janine appears to be. She’s always the damsel in distress and Peter is always in the right place at the right time to ‘save’ her. It was cute for the first couple of episodes but this is happening over and over again. She is also not very good at making decisions, and a lot of times I just want to slap some sense into her and say ‘what the hell were you thinking?’
It is truly frustrating to see Janine struggle through different situations time and again. She tried so hard to live a new life but just kept failing. Like when she went to lots of job interviews but still couldn’t find a job. In the end what happens? Peter gives her a job. ARRGGGHH.
I’m not sure whether RRB will improve story-wise. I’ll still stick with it purely for superficial/shallow reasons. However, I do love the bickering between them, especially Peter’s occasional English outbursts! It’s like Peter will scold her being so stupid but deep inside he has feelings for her. SO CUTE. Maybe with these lowered expectations I will enjoy this series more.
Another important element in any drama is the theme/sub-theme songs. At first I was neutral towards them but now I rather love the ending song by Peter Ho and Della Ding – “Next year’s Valentine’s Day”. OK, so Peter is not a strong singer (at all) but my view is probably tainted by the beautiful ending video (both the opening & ending themes included below!). Peter and Janine just looked perfect in there. YES, truly OTP. I just love watching them together.