Review: My Girlfriend is an Alien (2019)

My Girlfriend is an Alien 2019

My Girlfriend is an Alien is my favorite fun, light, funny drama of summer 2019! This 28-episode modern romantic comedy drama, with a sci-fi twist, is available to stream on YouTube with English subtitles as well as on the WeTV app.

The summary I read of this drama made it sound so bizarre (I’m assuming due to the auto-translation) but the basic premise is: the female lead, Chai Xiao Qi (Wan Peng), is an alien who gets stuck on Earth unintentionally and needs to get her homing device back from the male lead, Fang Leng (Hsu Thassapak), a CEO who happens to suffer from a specific kind of amnesia that causes him to forget the women in his life when it rains.

Wan Peng and Hsu Thassapak were both fantastic in their roles and had a lot of chemistry. I thought Wan Peng really pulled off the clueless boy-crazy alien without being annoying. (Maybe a hint of cringeyness at times, but overall I thought she was endearing.) As an alien stuck on Earth and unfamiliar with humanity’s customs, Xiao Qi approached everything with a positive attitude. The scenes with her talking turtle were so funny. Xiao Qi and Fang Leng had plenty of cute moments and kissing scenes, and I laughed so hard when Xiao Qi kept trying to touch his chest. One of my favorite things about this drama is that it wasn’t instalove for her (just instalust, lol) and we didn’t have to suffer through episode after episode of one-sided pining. Hsu Thassapak really pulled off both cold & serious and goofy & sweet. He really has a charming smile!

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Chinese Dramas on Amazon Prime Video: September 2019

Chinese Dramas on Amazon Prime Video

I’ve seen a lot of Chinese dramas added to Amazon Prime Video this year, but it seems difficult to actually find them so I’ve put together this list of some notable dramas I’ve stumbled across on the site. There are a good number of dramas from this year & the past three years! (Please note: all Amazon links in this post are my affiliate links.)

Heavy Sweetness (2018)

More commonly known as Ashes of Love or Heavy Sweetness, Ash-like Frost, this very pastel-heavy & hugely popular fantasy romance drama stars Yang Zi, Deng Lun, and Luo Yunxi.
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

Princess in the East Palace (2019)

This popular historical drama from earlier this year is more commonly known as Goodbye, My Princess. If you’re looking for a tearjerker, you’re in luck.
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video
» Read My Review

Legend of Fuyao (2018)

This fantasy adventure drama spans multiple kingdoms & a very large cast of characters. Yang Mi was great as usual, but I found Ethan Juan a real scene-stealer with his cunning & charm.
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

Love Me, If You Dare (2015)

Wallace Huo plays a criminal psychologist with a very high IQ but low EQ, who falls in love with his assistant, played by Sandra Ma, while solving some very violent cases. A must-watch for fans of crime thrillers!
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

Ruyi’s Royal Love in the Palace (2018)

Another Wallace Huo drama! I actually haven’t watched this, because it came out around the same time as The Story of Yanxi Palace, which kind of tells the same story but from a different perspective. I loved Yanxi Palace SO much that I just can’t root for Ruyi.
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

In Youth (2019)

Here’s a 2019 modern drama for you, about a group of young adults pursuing careers and love. The two leads, played by Zhang Yun Long and Qiao Xin, work at a PR firm. I loved the male lead’s tight-knit group of friends but I did skim through the middle portion of this drama. (Aside from Qiao Xin, the main cast are all rising stars in Yang Mi’s entertainment company, Jaywalk Studio.)
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

The Legend of Haolan (2019)

If you fell in love with Wu Jinyan after The Story of Yanxi Palace, this is her follow-up historical drama which I have heard great things about! I haven’t watched it yet because when it came out, I was still recovering from Yanxi Palace.
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

Legend of Dragon Pearl (2017)

I confess that I’m not a huge Yang Zi fan but I actually liked her in this drama! Qin Jun Jie stars as the male lead and I thought they had great chemistry (also, they dated in real life).
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

The Flame’s Daughter (2018)

I didn’t finish watching this drama and I can’t remember why, but I was very intrigued by the pairing of Dilraba Dilmurat and Vic Chou (who I will always think of as Hua Ze Lei from Meteor Garden). The supporting cast is great and includes Vin Zhang and Liu Rui Lin (a lot of Jaywalk Studio faces here).
» Watch on Amazon Prime Video

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Review: Conspiracy of Love (2019)

Conspiracy of Love 2019

Conspiracy of Love is a 2019 iQiyi web drama consisting of 24-episodes. I previously wrote a recap of episodes 1-3. This is a suspense/mystery drama with a twist.

My immediate reaction upon finishing this drama was: wow, what did I just watch?? But not in the good way.

I really liked the first 9 episodes. When the story seemed to be about the female lead trying to uncover the truth/get revenge using all kinds of methods and entering a partnership with the male lead, it was enjoyable. They were an even, balanced match—both smart and driven, with their own goals. I thought they were a pretty cute pair. The male lead’s best friend is also a fun, kind-hearted character.

But after episode 9, the plot becomes increasingly convoluted and nonsensical. There are so many different people involved, their motives were murky (I never did understand Xia Yu Xuan), and a certain aspect was pretty far-fetched. From episodes 13-21, the plot just kept going back and forth with no progress, and then in episodes 22-23, the characters finally just flat-out explain everything. Even the final episode was disappointing; I was hoping for some fun scenes to reward me for getting through 23 episodes of ridiculousness. If you are watching for the romance, you’ll be especially frustrated. *sigh*

Note: On iQiyi, this drama is separated into two seasons of 12 episodes each.

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My Girlfriend is an Alien: Episode 1 Recap

My Girlfriend is an Alien 2019

I started watching the currently-airing web drama My Girlfriend is an Alien because I’m always curious about storylines involving aliens, and I am LOVING it. I have watched through episode 16 and despite things getting a tad repetitive in episodes 9-12, I’m still really enjoying it. The female lead is so charming, and since she’s not familiar with human norms you can’t really fault her for her behavior. There are so many scenes of her touching the male lead’s chest, lol.

The official translated summary is somewhat confusing, but the basic premise is that Chai Xiaoqi (played by Wan Peng) is an alien who gets stuck on Earth after she’s attracted by Fang Leng’s (played by Hsu Thassapak) hormones and saves him from a car explosion, becoming separated from her spaceship and losing her communication device in the process. In order to get the device back, she seeks him out. Fang Leng is a capable CEO who secretly suffers from a psychological condition that causes him to forget the women he’s met when it rains, and he enlists Chai Xiaoqi for help in treating his condition.

The other major characters include Chai Xiaoqi’s boss, who takes her in, and Fang Leng’s younger half-brother Fang Lie, who becomes a close friend of Xiaoqi’s. (If you watched Fall in Love, you’ll recognize Fang Lie! He’s played by the same actor who played An Yue Sheng. I feel like his acting has improved in this drama.) There’s also Fang Leng’s assistant and his doctor, his father and stepmother, and an old flame seeking to get back together with him. Oh, and Xiaoqi has a talking turtle.

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Review: Love Is Deep (2019)

Love Is Deep 2019

YIKES. After I wrote such a positive First Impressions & Episode 1 Recap, Love Is Deep turned out to be overwhelmingly disappointing. This drama is frustrating 40 episodes long because the same issues kept arising but the characters never seemed to learn and grow from them. I began watching half-heartedly in the second hand and the final storyline was awful. I can’t believe how they wrote the ending.

Ding Ding, the female lead played by Kang Ning, dreams of designing pet toys and finally begins pursuing her dream, facing the challenges of running an online shop and creating original designs. I loved that this was a major storyline that didn’t get pushed aside for the relationship. In fact, Ding Ding actually put her work first at times, which I really liked. That’s a valid choice! 👏

Ning Wei Jin, the male lead played by Hu Yun Hao, is a talented young surgeon, and although unexperienced with love, he is reliable, caring, and mature. I personally didn’t swoon over him but he was excellent boyfriend material. I liked his relationship with his younger sister Ning Wei Xuan and his best friend Gao Ren. He (and his sister) have a difficult relationship with their father.

The real highlight of this drama was Ding Ding’s best friend Xiao Feng, who gave the BEST advice. You could always count on him to call her out on her behavior. Basically, every time Ding Ding’s ex-boyfriend re-appeared in the storyline (which was way too many times), it would cause an issue between Ding Ding and Ning Wei Jin. It made Ning Wei Jin feel like Ding Ding wasn’t letting go of her ex, and Ding Ding never seemed to understand or care about how he felt. It seemed hypocritical on Ding Ding’s part given how she felt when she saw Ning Wei Jin with his close female friend.

As for the supporting characters, Ning Wei Xuan is a really energetic and lighthearted, and relentlessly pursues her brother’s best friend Gao Ren. Their scenes initially are so much fun—another highlight of the drama for me—and had me laughing out loud. However, there was a point when she really crossed the line and I no longer found her antics funny. I really wanted her to reflect over her actions and grow up a little. Also, while I loved Gao Ren, the introduction of the other doctor really showed how immature he was in comparison. (That other doctor deserved better.)

In conclusion: If you start to feel like you want to drop the drama, especially because of the storylines with the ex, then you should probably drop it before the last few episodes.

SPOILERS FOLLOW!

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Conspiracy of Love (2019): Episode 1-3 Recap

Conspiracy of Love 2019

Conspiracy of Love (谋爱上瘾) is a 2019 iQiyi web drama that began airing on August 12. It’s a revenge drama; the female lead Shu Bei lost her parents at a young age and enters Sheng Shi Group and gets close to its successor Sheng Jun for revenge.

Having watched several dramas in a row with innocent, kind-hearted female leads, I wanted something different and I’m seven episodes into Conspiracy of Love and enjoying it immensely. Although sometimes Shu Bei’s calculating actions make me cringe, I admire her craftiness and determination. I really hope she’s able to find some emotional closure for what happened in the past. I like her relationship with Sheng Jun because he’s not her target and they use each other, so it’s not unbalanced. Their bickering is very enjoyable. I also like that other characters are formidable opponents so it’s not like Shu Bei’s the only person who is scheming.

Sorry, there are no screencaps in this recap. Maybe for the next post though!

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Review: Go Go Squid (2019)

Go Go Squid 2019

I watched this drama as it aired in July, but I wanted to think about it more before writing my review. Surprisingly, I found Go Go Squid! enjoyable from beginning to end. It’s really Han Shang Yan’s story, a young man approaching the age of 30 who holds grudges and regrets, single-mindedly pursuing his dream of winning a cybersecurity competition for China. The romance storyline helps him let people into his life again and let go of the unhappiness he’d bottled up in his heart. There are much more flashback than I expected, but I loved all the team and competition scenes.

This 41-episode drama is available on Viki with English subtitles and YouTube.

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Love Is Deep (2019): First Impressions and Episode 1 Recap

Love Is Deep 2019

After finishing watching Fall in Love, Unrequited Love, AND Go Go Squid (review coming soon) recently I really needed a new drama to fill the void. I tried a couple episodes of Retourner Le Monde a Toi (Gu Li Na Zha’s new drama set in the fashion business) but wasn’t feeling it, and watched half the premiere episode of Mr. Fighting because I like Deng Lun and Ma Si Chun, but I wasn’t sold on that either. But then Love Is Deep hooked me!

Love Is Deep is about a girl who has loved her boyfriend for many years and worked alongside him as he started his own company. When she realizes he doesn’t love her the same way, she quits her job and decides to pursue her own dream of designing pet toys. Meanwhile, she develops a friendship with a handsome surgeon and his younger sister. The leads are both very likable and there are a lot of fun supporting characters. This drama is available on YouTube with English subtitles.

It was only after I started watching that I discovered this drama is based on a novel and I Hear You was based on a novel by the same author! Admittedly, I Hear You disappointed me but it did have a number of positives so here’s hoping Love Is Deep is better!

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Review: Unrequited Love (2019)

Unrequited Love

Unrequited Love was featured on my Netflix homepage (here’s the direct link) so I decided to give it a try. With a title like ‘Unrequited Love’ I had previously been hesitant to watch this because I thought it’d be too sad or angsty. However, this has turned out to be my favorite modern c-drama of 2019 so far! I loved it from start to finish, and enjoyed not only the central storyline but the wide cast of characters. Set in college, the drama features several different relationships, exploring unrequited love, the choices we make, second chances, and feelings not being black & white. There are a lot of moments of reflection and self-aware, relatable characters, and many moments that made me laugh out loud.

This drama is 24 episodes that are ~35 minutes each so it does not drag on, and is super easy to watch multiple episodes at once. I watched this right after Put Your Head On My Shoulder, and while they’re both set in college, they are so different—Unrequited Love is so thoughtful and mature, while Put Your Head On My Shoulder is light and fluffy.

It’s worth noting that this drama is based on a novel by Ba Yue Chang An (I’d like to read it), who also wrote the novels that the dramas My Huckleberry Friends (2017) and With You (2018) were based on. I haven’t watched either of those because they’re set in high school. There’s also a second adaptation of this novel that’s supposed to come out in 2020 starring Yi Tian and Hu Bing Qing and I plan to watch it as well.

Continue reading for my full review—there are no spoilers (aside from references to the promotional summary).

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Review: Fall in Love (2019)

Fall In Love 2019

Fall in Love is a Chinese web drama from YouKu that was released in June-July 2019. You can watch it on YouTube, although the subtitles are automatically generated and not particularly accurate.

I came across this drama on my YouTube homepage and randomly decided to give it a chance. The summary on MyDramaList was so vague that I had no idea what to expect, but I soon understood why.

Short version of my review: in the beginning, curiosity about the mysterious female lead compels you to watch Fall in Love, but once all the pieces are on the table the story becomes rushed and uneven and falls into some classic drama clichés.

Continue reading for my spoiler-free full review!

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