I watched the first three episodes of the Chinese period/adventure/romance (alright, alright, wuxia) drama, Romance of Red Dust
Our heroine, Hong Fu Nu (the gorgeous Shu Qi) is the pet assassin of the evil minister. The evil minister (EM) has a whole squad of assassins, male and female, to take out anyone who opposes him and Hong Fu Nu, picked up from the streets when a child, is one of them. (There is a subtext of a past relationship of some sort between her and Du Gu, the assassin trainer, who is kinda hot).
In between assignments, she is EM's plaything, and has to submit to him in his bed (there is actually a pretty horrid flashback, which basically shows that he took her virginity as well).
She hates the killing, she hates her boss, she hates having to be a whore. She is dead inside. Until one day her paths cross with Li Jing (Wallace Huo), an enthusiastic, idealistic scholar who sees her as a person. So when she is ordered to assassinate him, she saves him almost on impulse, and they go on the run...
I've been promised OTP, angst and other awesome things.
So far I love it. It might be my fave wuxia except for Return of the Condor Heroes
I just love the unusual take in this story, which is so far heroine-centric, and is about the redemption and growth
of the heroine. Who is the jaded one, the soul-dead one, the non-virgin. When Hong Fu Nu saves Li Jing's life instead of killing him as ordered, it's not love, not yet. It's just she has seen him be kind to a pair of starving children, and has seen him be a good, enthusiastic, warm person. Something wakes up in her that is long dead: she loves his idealism and sweetness so far, not him yet.
Which is so awesome, because she is the damaged one, the more experienced one, and he is the wide-eyed innocent. Though I've read that's going to change and he is going to be able to kick butt super-well, which is awesome as I prefer strong heroes :) But as of now, I think she is slowly falling for him, as much for his belief that she is good as for the fact that Wallace Huo is hot :)
Here are some pics:( Pics here )
In other news, I am up through ep 14 of Tenjou Tenge
. Oh my. Shin (Maya's brother) is SCARY. He is a psychotic, incestuous freak. Yikes. I have to say the families in this give me the creeps: we have Maya's family, with the psycho, incestuous-codependent brother (and somehow, I still find him fascinating) who killed their parents (!!!!) And Mitsuomi's family? In the past, we have the super-psycho father who is OK with ruining people in order to turn his son into an ultimate fighter (as he thinks he is too kind) and now we have Mitsuomi beating on his brother to toughen him up. Yikes. I have to say that in TT, I find the backstory a lot more interesting than in the present story. So cool and so messed up. Also, the adviser dude? So made of awesome. The characters I love are adviser guy, Maya, Mitsuomi and (in a weird way) Shin.( A few caps, of course Maya/Mitsuomi-centric )