My drama-viewing rut of sorts came to an end recently. I wouldn’t say an abrupt end, but I feel more motivated to keep up with a couple of dramas and actually feel some emotions toward a drama! Wheeee. I feels like it’s been a while since I’ve fangirled over a drama lead and thanks to Chris Wu, it’s giving the motivation to keep watching Rock n’ Road.
Story Outline from Rock N’Road’s Facebook page:
Lin Wei Zhen (Kimi Hsia) was a famous child actor but lost her popularity after she grew up. She is at a low point in her life. In contrast, legendary music producer Zhou Shu Yu (Chris Wu) is at the peak of his career. All the singers he collaborates with become famous and best selling. Wei Zhen enters Shu Yu’s world through a song. However, Shu Yu is betrayed by his girlfriend Yang Jia Xin and his partner/assistant Xu Li Da and lost everything. The trouble prone Wei Zhen was the only one who will continue the journey with Shu Yu.
Episodes 1 to 3 are off to a fairly solid start. They provided a good overview of the characters and although it didn’t scream ‘OMG, MUST CONTINUE WATCHING’, each episode didn’t feel boring and sets up the main turning point as described on the story outline. Judging from the preview of episode 4, we’ll finally get to see some conflicts between Shu Yu and Li Da / Jia Xin next week? I thought we would get to see it much earlier but at least now, the writers have provided a pretty comprehensive setup of the events leading up to this major change in our main character’s lives.
Zhou Shu Yu (Chris Wu)
After hearing a lot about him from last year’s King Flower / Substitute Princess, I can see why Chris has fangirls!
Now that we’ve got that superficial out of the way (These scenes are all in episode 3 by the way) let’s talk about Shu Yu. The drama starts off in 2005 with Shu Yu, Jia Xin, Li Da and others in a band all dreaming to be stars. Fast forward to the present, Shu Yu is a respected music producer and the main contributor to Jia Xin’s popularity. He’s very passionate about his music and hates pretty much everything else revolving around the entertainment industry especially dealing with the media. In episode 1, we see him giving a rare interview but when the host asked him about his private life (romantic rumours with Jia Xin), he was very displeased and in retaliation, kissed (or pretended to kiss) the host sending shockwaves through the audience.
I think Shu Yu’s biggest strength is also his greatest weakness. While he has shown dedication and determination in his music, he’s also very stubborn. Because of how serious he takes his work, he wants things to be done his way, and ONLY his way. A few times we’ve seen his staff and the Deputy Director (Li Da) made a decision already only to have Shu Yu step in later and veto it all, even if everyone else have to re-do all their work. For years, the partnership of Shu Yu, Jia Xin and Li Da had been working well. However, at the beginning we see many cracks appearing as Shu Yu insists on doing things his way, while Jia Xin wants to insert more of her personality in her albums (including writing her own song) and Li Da… well, he tries to please both sides although we will probably see later that his ultimate alliance is with Jia Xin because he’s in love with her. Music is fairly subjective right? After working together for so many years it feels like there is a lack of trust between the trio if Shu Yu consistently dismisses other people’s suggestions and insists on everyone following his vision. That’s pretty arrogant. There is definitely potential for growth in his character.
Relationships-wise, Shu Yu and Jia Xin had been dating for a period of time. They’re keeping it a secret (from the press) though, which later affects Lin Wei Zhen as Jia Xin lies and says the girl the paparazzi photographed was Wei Zhen instead of her. At the moment I’m not really shipping Shu Yu with Wei Zhen or Jia Xin. Actually, I thought him and Jia Xin would be heading off to doom since she stole Wei Zhen’s father’s song but in episode 3, in the scene where she was taking off his shirt because Wei Zhen spilled coffee on it, and when they were in the car… I thought they were quite cute. That doesn’t mean I particularly like Jia Xin, but just the way he looked at her and their couple interactions, I could see that he still have strong feelings for her. As for the OTP (?) – it’s very hard for me to see past hyper-Wei Zhen at the moment. More on that below.
Lin Wei Zhen (Kimi Hsia)
Oh what can I say about our Energizer bunny Lin Wei Zhen?
Hello! I’m Lin Wei Zhen. Before I turned 15 I filmed 30 commercials, participated in the Seven Lights Show. I was awarded Cute Fairy, Tomato Sister and the first place for Soy Milk Princess.
I’ve been brainwashed by her introduction and this is NOT a good thing! It seems like Wei Zhen has been living in a bubble, deluding herself that based on those exaggerated performances, she can become a star again. It’s admirable that Wei Zhen has a lot of determination, perseverance and dedication, but you wonder after 100+ auditions, when will she actually take a look at her life and really think about which path she should go. It doesn’t help that her mother (wonderfully named Mei Nu aka beautiful girl) just keeps encouraging her, telling her she will become a star one day. It seems like things hasn’t changed since she was 15. Sometimes it feels like Wei Zhen has to keep going because she doesn’t want to disappoint her mother, even when she’s having doubts of her own.
Wei Zhen: I entered all those competitions. What can I do if the judges don’t like me! When I was young, they all said I was really cute!
Shu Yu: When you were young? How old are you? Still talking about when you were young? It’s so great that you were the “Little Princess of the Hot Springs”? It’s so great that your father knows how to compose music? If we take away all those things, what is Lin Wei Zhen left with?
Do you understand yourself at all? Do you know your strengths? What suits you? Do you know? That’s great, you don’t know anything. Then I’ll honestly tell you this – if you still don’t know what you’re doing, don’t even think about becoming famous!
OMG You have no idea how much I was rejoicing as Shu Yu said that. Someone needs to talk sense into Wei Zhen and it does seem like she is going down the right path when she ends up working in BS (Jia Xin/Li Da/Shu Yu’s company – lovely name). I know… Wei Zhen might feel hurt in the short term, but at least Shu Yu was completely honest with her. As for the Wei Zhen/Shu Yu potential pairing, to be honest I don’t really ship them at the moment. It seems like Shu Yu admires the side of Wei Zhen who is so dedicated to achieving her dreams, but at the same time, gets rather irritated at her antics LOL. Afterall, Wei Zhen has good intentions but the way she’s expressing them, doesn’t make people want to listen.
Xu Li Da (Mike Lee) and Yang Jia Xin (Nita Lei)
Besides being cute (I can’t believe he’s 37!), I really don’t have a lot to say about Li Da for the moment. I feel bad for him being the ‘middleman’ between Shu Yu and Jia Xin, but it’s so obvious he’s in love with her right? So ultimately he will take Jia Xin side? I do have one complaint though. Apparently Mike Lee is quite well known amongst the Taiwanese drama/movie circles. (I mean the Taiwanese Hokkien language not Mandarin.) Maybe that’s why he doesn’t speak that clearly? I can hardly understand his mumbles.
As for Jia Xin – I know she is evil, stealing Wei Zhen’s song and all, only thinking about herself when she just ‘conveniently’ named Wei Zhen as the one who was in those photos with Shu Yu. And I guess without ‘seeing’ how she allegedly suffered when rival fans were targeting her, it still feels like a bit of a ‘first world problem’. She’s probably used to being treated like a princess for a number of years, all she ever thinks about is herself. Plus she has Li Da who will dodge any bullets for her.
However, I do enjoy the Shu Yu / Jia Xin scenes. Even after the ‘fight’ they had about stealing Wei Zhen’s song, they talked about it and Shu Yu was so sweet afterwards. And the flashback scene back to 7 or 8 (?) years ago when Shu Yu hit the lowest point of his career (because of a singer who committed suicide because of him?! I don’t remember the details.) and Jia Xin stepped out and declared – she will only sing Zhou Shu Yu’s songs. They obviously have a lot of history together. Maybe I’ll be less sympathetic of her when she ‘betrays’ Shu Yu? Will she? Really? I’m just relying on the story outline here.
Gosh, this post took so much longer than I intended. My internet speed has been snail-like for the past couple of days I haven’t caught up with Episode 4 yet. Plus with Aaron Yan / Tia Li’s Fall in love with me premiering last week that’s another drama I’m keeping an eye on. (Although after watching the first 15 mins or so, it really doesn’t look like anything new.) Since I’ll be away from the middle of next week to pretty much the end of the month, I won’t be able to watch anything! Maybe Ruse of Engagement? HAHA.