Lan Ling Wang: Eps 1-6

I was actually considering not writing about Lan Ling Wang considering almost every drama-blog I follow has been covering the drama already.  O_O  Also I guess you could say that I started watching it later than most fans who watched it avidly from day 1.  Instead I just marathoned straight through the first 6 episodes, haha!  Anyways so far this is not a groundbreaking drama for me but considering the heavier dramas I’m watching this season, it is a nice change of pace.  It’s about time I watch a fluffy drama to boost my spirits, eh?

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Of course the leading lady is played by Ariel Lin–she plays the role of Xue Wu, a very naive, spirited and clever young woman who just so happens to be….THE HEAVENLY MAIDEN PRIESTESS WHO CAN BRING PROSPERITY TO WHOEVER SHE IS WITH AND HAS THE DESTINY OF FALLING IN LOVE WITH THE MASKED WARRIOR LAN LING WANG WHO WILL DIE YOUNG WHILE BRINGING PEACE TO THE WHOLE WORLD.  Oh yes, even my run-on sentence doesn’t even include the entire backstory of Xue Wu’s whole ‘fate as the heavenly maiden’ thing but you get the idea.  It’s gonna be a tragedy.  I also think they’re emphasizing the whole “oh nooo Xue Wu is one step closer to her fate!! Oh nooo we can’t stop her fate from happening!” aspect way too much.  T___T  But the thing that will make this whole fate thing more interesting is whether or not this fate can be changed.  Is Xue Wu falling in love with Lan Ling Wang only because of her fate, or is it of her own free-will?  Maybe the predestination debate is too weighty for this drama but I’m curious about how it will handle the fate vs. free will paradox.

At first Xue Wu feels like the typical c-drama heroine–she’s adventurous, spunky, naive, and bumbling.  She brings a lot of life to the drama especially since she is often our source of comic relief.  There are several laugh-out-loud moments with Xue Wu even though some of the scenes are a bit exaggerated.  Pretty much all of episodes 1-6 show how Xue Wu always coincidentally gets into a sticky situation and then somehow saves the lives of both the male leads.  She may be naive and trusting but she is also very resourceful and has the stubbornness of an ox.  Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy Xue Wu’s character but I also wish that we could’ve had a heroine that is not a Mary Sue.  I feel like Xue Wu is Cinderella or something because she’s just THAT kindhearted and nice.  Also to make her even NICER, Xue Wu is still very trusting towards people even though she grew up isolated and was bullied by her village.  The poor girl gets double-crossed like three times in a row.  T___T”””

On the other hand though, I do like the subtle message about how even though Xue Wu is shunned by her village and grew up being told that she would amount to nothing in life, she actually will become a great priestess who plays a large role in the country’s fate.

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As for Lan Ling Wang, also known as Lord Lan Ling (literal translation), Chang Gong, or 4th Prince, I know a lot of the hype about him is that he exotically wears a fierce mask into battle….but really, it’s not that big of a deal.  T____T  So he wears a mask.  Whatever, I prefer him without the mask. :P  I won’t complain about how Feng Shao Feng is not blindingly beautiful enough to fit the role, since he still has a very regal aura and I’ve been staring at Daniel Chan instead.

I don’t really have much to say about LLW yet because he’s just so perfect.  He’s seriously like the knight in shining armor.  I think his character is much more interesting when he has to make difficult decisions as the general of the Qi Army.  For instance in episode 6 he is hunting down the spy from the Zhou kingdom (who happens to be the Zhou Emperor in disguise!) and makes the jaded decision to burn down a poor village.  It’s in moments like those where we see that actually LLW is not a God of War or the perfect hero…as a leader and as a warrior he must make difficult decisions that may go against his morals.  I also like the hints that LLW is usually not as gentle as he is towards Xue Wu–he is also a man obsessed with revenge and he has no mercy for the enemy.

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Obviously the OTP is LLW x Xue Wu, no doubt about it.  Let’s just list some of the things they’ve done, all in the time period of 6 EPISODES.  An underwater kiss, a fake marriage, a moonlit dinner, wishing on the stars together, riding on a horse together, bathing in the hotsprings together, AND THE LIST GOES ON!!!  However I’m not really on their ship yet.  I like their scenes together but the thing is that I’m not emotionally invested in their relationship at all.  In fact I don’t feel really emotionally invested in the drama yet.  Granted, it is too early to say that LLW and Xue Wu are really in love, and the story is still being set up but…somehow I don’t really care about the romance yet.  O___O””  BUT!  I’m happy to say that LLW is the one who is falling for Xue Wu first, BWAHAHAHA.

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But maybe another reason why I’m not fully on board with the LLW x Xue Wu ship is that our second male lead, Yu Wen Yong (Daniel Chan) has barely gotten any screentime.  My first impression of him is that he looks like a dead raccoon.  O______O  I kid you not.  He is not in good shape when Xue Wu first discovers him.  Don’t worry though…pretty soon, Yu Wen Yong will look like……..

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THIS.  *SWOONS*  OMG.  IS IT BAD THAT I’M ALREADY ANTICIPATING THE SECOND LEAD MORE THAN LLW?  I can’t explain quite why I’m already drawn to Daniel Chan (other than my tendency to root for the second lead) but already I love the aura he has.  Also so far I feel like his character has more complexity than LLW’s.  O_O  There are hints that he’s a very sly and sneaky guy who is really good at manipulating people.  Also he knows about Xue Wu’s identity as the heavenly maiden so I bet he’s gonna try to lure her over to his side!

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IMO the quality of the costumes, set and action scenes are rather average.  But OMG…….this c-drama actually does the CG right!!!  *MIND BLOWN*  The scenery is stunning and I also like the fantasy feel to some of the places.

Of course there are some bitter naysayers out there who are all ‘omg the CG is so fakey it ruins the drama MEHHHH’.  In response to those people….Gee someone has high standards.  =____=  Trust me, this CG is the GOOD CG in c-dramas.  The CG is great, it’s not overused, and it really enhances the beauty of the drama!

Overall

So far this drama is an enjoyable watch with plenty of fluff and a surprisingly fast pace.  I do find it a problem that I’m not as emotionally invested in it as I would like to be, but I hope that this might change as the drama progresses and gets more serious.  Also I’m really excited to see the second male lead play more of a role in the drama now that his identity as the emperor has been revealed!

Lastly, here is a really beautiful piano version of the ending theme song.  I actually enjoy it more than the actual ending theme song itself although it has no vocals!

Lan Ling Wang Ending Theme Song (Piano Version)

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24 thoughts on “Lan Ling Wang: Eps 1-6

  1. Daniel Chan does a fantastic job at portraying the conflicted Yu Wen Yong. He has this charm attached to him that although I dislike his actions, I can’t help falling for him. Second lead syndrome. I love how beautiful the scenery is for this drama and it does carry the fantasy theme with it. And that piano is beautiful.

    • I think Daniel Chan has really good stage presence and charisma. I can’t wait to see more of his character although I’m sure he will do some questionable things. Glad you like the piano song, to me it is hauntingly beautiful.

    • I totally agree. I think he was the first male lead that I was honest-to-god praying to get the girl…obviously I knew it wouldn’t happen, but he’s just such a fantastic actor and character. He has such a multifaceted personality, and is such a flawed man but perfect king. I think he’s actually a better ruler than LLW. LLW was too nice and honorable…he’d have made a good rallying point and morale-raising general, but as king he wouldn’t have had the conviction to make the tough decisions. Yu Wen Yong has seriously become one of my favorites in all time. Especially when he shows his softer side to Xue Wu and tells her “I will prove to you that he can die for his people but only I can die for you.”

      • Second lead syndrome!!!!!!! One of the best second leads for sure!!!! Wait do you remember which episode that quote was in? Because I can’t remember. >__<

  2. Ahhh, the hype all over Daniel Chan. I geddit. I sorta crush a little over him too but he can be rather ruthless, not that LLW isn’t when he needs to. I’m already on episode 20. And I’d rather if I could skip from 20 to maybe let see…25? It’s not boring but I hate parts like that. Not going to spoil you but you’ll see it coming soon…… >.<

    • I will definitely watch the Daniel Chan scenes. HAHA…but I’m not looking forward to the more melodramatic parts. I will probably skip over those melodramatic scenes. =_= I’m not very enthusiastic about the rest of the plot based on the spoilers I’ve heard. Well it will take me a while to catch up with you to ep20!

  3. Hi there :) It’s my first time commenting on your blog even though I’ve read a few posts before. Just wanted to say that I’m also looking forward to seeing more of Yuwen Yong. Not that I don’t like LLW with Xuewu because they are the OTP after all and have some chemistry, but somehow having Yuwen Yong in the picture just makes things a lot more interesting. It feels like he’ll want Xuewu for the sake of power but it’s how he’ll fall for her (and how deeply haha) that I want to see!

    • Hello~ I agree Yu Wen Yong makes things way more interesting. Once he comes on screen I instantly pay attention. :P I watched a bit ahead…and surprisingly YWY doesn’t string XW along, instead he admits to her point-blank that he’s using her. O_____O A bold move there..

      • Definitely bold! I have to catch up soon and figure out what’s up his sleeve. He may be ruthless but I really don’t think the acts of kindness back at that poor village were staged. Can’t wait to see him unveil his layers to XW!

        By the way, it looks like they are making another drama based on LLW except it’s adapted from a novel and it will focus on his wife. Have you heard about it?

          • It’s called Lanling Wangfei (Concubine Lanling). They haven’t announced the actor who will play LLW yet. The concubine will be Zhang Hanyun and YWY will be played by Fu Xin Bo. I’m trying to locate a copy of the novel online so I can at least see what it’s about. Apparently this novel is considered a must-read for those who are fans of LLW the historical figure.

  4. I’m so glad you decided to cover this drama. I thought the first few episodes moved really fast in terms of LLW & XW. This drama, while definitely not the best, is turning out to be better than I expected! Ahhhh can’t wait for the next few episodes to come out! And I look forward to reading your recaps :-)

    • Yeah I feel like there should’ve been a bit more time for feelings to develop between LLW & XW…but at least they didn’t drag it out too much? The thing I’m worried about is, now that they already love each other there are bound to be several more obstacles in the future. >_>

    • I agree that the first few episodes moved really fast between LLW and XW, but in a way I think it’s because the story was set up such that XW always admired LLW since she was young, so when she found out that the mysterious stranger who’s always been so kind to her is actually LLW, she falls head over heels for him like instantaneously. What I do worry about, is whether the pace of the show will slow in the latter episodes because they’ve already fallen in love so that more obstacles can be thrown in their path hmm.

      That, and I hope that LLW and XW don’t act stupidly in reaction to the obstacles :/

      • Lol I actually got the feeling that it’s LLW who is falling head over heels for XW first. But you’re right, XW has been crushing on him since she was a kid. O_O I hope that XW will discover that LLW is not really the ideal hero that she used to idolize though.

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