First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

After “Princess Agents”, I was in serious need of some fluffy, light-hearted content. Thankfully I’d just happened to see a trailer for “Let’s Shake It, ET”《颤抖吧!阿部》and because it reminded me a lot of “Go, Princess, Go” and was different from any of the C-dramas I’d watched before, I wanted to check it out. While it may not be getting as much attention as “The King’s Woman” or “Xuan Yuan Sword: Han Cloud”, this is my favorite show right now. I know most people are waiting for it to be subtitled before watching so I wanted to give an overview of the series and what happened in the first few episodes as it’s a comedy well worth watching.

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This is a short 24 episode series, twelve of which have aired so far (they air four episodes a week on Monday and Tuesday). I’ve been watching this series on Youku’s app. Except for An Yue Xi, I didn’t recognize any of the other actors, and, looking them up online, it seems like most of them are pretty new. Despite knowing very little Mandarin, I actually could follow the story pretty well (and Google translating the Baidu episodes synopses helps fill in the blanks).

Most of the comedy is visual and I’ve watched enough C-dramas by now that it’s pretty easy to figure out the storyline. Just take your standard palace intrigue drama and add goofy space aliens. It’s a cute story, with some cute couples and a lot of laughs.

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Abu Cha Cha is an alien who was arrested for trafficking in primitive species by Captain Duo Miao. Unfortunately, as she was being locked away, Duo Miao’s ship was attacked and she, the Captain and another prisoner, a black, gassy cloud in a robe, crash landed on earth.

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In the meantime on Earth in ancient China we are introduced to the Tang family:

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Tang Qing Feng (Zheng Ye Cheng) is the (adopted) eldest son of General Tang and also a young general in his own right. While he and his buddy, Xiao Zhi He, are interrogating a man, they hear the ship crash and go to investigate.

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They fight with the mysterious cloudy figure from the ship and we find out that Qing Feng has a necklace that can repel alien attack. (Hmmm…)

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General Tang’s second daughter, Tang Qing Ye (played by An Yue Xi, who is also starring in another Youku series, Rakshasa Street), is quiet and demure. (According to one synopsis I found online, she may be an illegitimate daughter.) She and the Crown Prince, Li Yi (Zhao Dong Ze), are secret sweethearts.

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The General’s first daughter, Tang Qing Yun (Chen Chen), is shown receiving a royal decree announcing that she is to marry Prince Li Yi. Much celebration ensues in the Tang household. (The Prince, however, is not happy with this turn of events. I’m guessing Qing Ye’s illegitimacy is the reason for this betrothal.)

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Qing Yun’s mother finds out about Qing Ye’s secret affair and decides to send Qing Ye away. But Qing Ye is poisoned just as she is preparing to leave and then two assassins attack her as her maid tries to help her escape.

Abu Cha Cha is wandering about the woods after the crash, trying to figure out how to survive in the Earth atmosphere, and witnesses Qing Ye being killed by the assassins whom she scares away.

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Qing Feng, who has come to save his sister, thinks Abu Cha Cha is a demon who has murdered Qing Ye and stabs her, seemingly killing her. But instead Abu Cha Cha’s spirit joins with Qing Ye’s body and the dead girl comes back to life much to everyone’s surprise.

As Abu Cha Cha gets used to being in a human body and interacting with her new family, who aren’t quite sure if she’s now possessed by a demon due to her sudden change in personality, she discovers Duo Miao has also survived the crash and taken on the body of a cat. Later he discovers he can switch to human form (played by Wang Yan Yang) while still retaining his cat tendencies to jump on furniture, paw at table centerpieces and lick people. (And now I want a cat…)

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Abu Cha Cha’s quirks include hitting people with bricks when they get in her way, an insatiable craving for meat and pretending to be a houseplant as a method of disguise. She also finds that if she touches someone Qing Ye knew, she gets flooded with all of Qing Ye’s memories and feelings about that person though she doesn’t quite understand them.

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Qing Feng is a clean freak who keeps a plethora of weapons (and a feather) in his robes at all times. He is worried about his sister, whom he also seems a bit fond of as well. (Remember, he’s adopted so it’s okay.) He decides to keep a close eye on her as he figures out who tried to kill her and why.

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As Abu Cha Cha and Duo Miao try to find a way to get back to their home planet, their search intersects with Qing Feng’s past (an evil twin and where did that necklace come from?) and the palace intrigue that has affected the Tang family, as well as discovering other aliens who have been secretly living on the planet already.

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Also Abu starts finding herself falling in love with Qing Feng and worrying about how he will react when he finds out who/what she really is.

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Helping them along the way:

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Xiao Zhi He (Wu Hao) – Commander of a group of Keystone Cop-like guards who like to spend their free time hitting themselves in the head with bricks. He also apparently has a very impressive…manhood…

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Xiao Ru Yi (Xu Hao) – Zhi He’s older sister who is also a bad ass fighter and appears to be secretly working with Prince Li Yi’s brother (though not very happy about it). She is quite fond of Duo Miao as a cat though I have a feeling she’s going to become even fonder of his human form. (And either she’s into some light bondage or just enjoys having Duo Miao chained up in her room.)

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Plotting against them:

Li Yi’s brother, Li Fu (Gao Hai), who wants the throne for himself.

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And these brother/sister servants of General Tang’s wife who keep track of Qing Ye/Abu Cha Cha’s every move.

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So far I’ve really enjoyed the story and the production value. I think this is the first time I’ve been watching the costumes so closely as I love how they dressed An Yue Xi for this role with a slightly more modern version of the traditional costumes.

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But mostly I love how well they do the visual comedy without being too over the top about it. Sometimes it’s a small thing like the characters seriously discussing a plan to save their friend while Duo Miao, in human form, periodically paws at a houseplant. Or funny moments like Abu Cha Cha making a space gun which Qing Feng doesn’t even notice because the mess she makes is triggering his OCD. Or even just the random, silly vignettes that appear in some episodes.

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I was really needing a laugh and I enjoy silly, slapstick humor when it’s done well which is why I love this show so much. If you like cute, silly, goofy humor and need something short and sweet between those heavier dramas, I highly recommend checking this one out.

  1. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    I think most people would recognise the male lead as well, he was meiren shixiong in Just One Smile is Alluring 😍

    • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

      Good to know. I will have to check that one out.

  2. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    Qing Feng is totally giving Cesare Borgia vibes with his feelings for Qing Ye. Yes, they are not blood related but this fact didn’t became know until well into the story. Even prior to that, his feelings and treatment of Qing Ye had a decidedly romantic bend. Particularly when you compare it to how he act with the other sister. I guess faux-cest has come to Chinese series. At least it’s not a full on Cesare/Lucrezia Borgia deal.

    The show is a fun watch and I’ve enjoyed it more than Eternal Love, another silly-not-to-be-taken-seriously series that everyone have been raving about.

    • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

      “Faux-cest”. Thanks for the term. This does lower my enjoyment for the drama though. Kind of creeped out. During vast majority of Qing Feng’s life Qing Ye was his biological sister, as far as he knows. Unless he was already inclined to have romantic feelings for her, it’s hard to see how he could change. Plenty of dramas with “I only see you as a sister/brother.” and nothing the woman/man could do to change that.

      • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

        The writing and directing certainly suggest (at least to me) that QF feelings for QY was beyond the brotherly kind. It’s not as if he only started to see her romantically after finding out that he was adopted or that it’s now an alien in her body.

        There was a scene in an early episode (ep. 3 or something) when he got shy because they were too physically close. And when he found out that he was adopted and thought to himself, ” So you are not my sister after all” and then his face got red when QY came up close to him. Which makes me think that he had been thinking if only QY wasn’t his sister and was actually happy to find out that she isnt (although i’m watching subtitles so the translation could be off). Not to mentioned the countless looks and actions that are more typically used to depict romantic rather than brotherly love. Checked out the griefing montage when he found out that QY is dead and an alien is now occupying her body. It got all the hallmarks of a man losing his love.

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          May I ask where you watched it with English subtitles? Although I understand some Mandarin but would love to understand everything. Especially the conspiracy in the palace.

          Thank you.

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          So far no one has it with English subs. I know a little Mandarin and have watched enough costume dramas to figure out what is going on and then some scenes I’ve just been translating the subs myself to understand what is going on (did some translations for clips on YouTube). I’m currently working on translating subs for the whole series now that it’s finished just to help improve my Chinese reading and writing and so I can better understand some parts. (Duo Miao Miao and the cat species he inhabited, Liang and his whole deal with the Eyes of the Universe, etc…)

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          Thanks for the info.

          I’m halfway through the series and loving it so much that I am considering translating the series as well. I was searching around to make sure there isn’t already subs out or anyone starting to sub it in English. A friend and I are finishing up our translation project The Journey and looking for another project to do.

          Since you’ve already started on translating, we probably won’t pick it up. However, if you’d like some help, and are happy for us to join you in translating the series, please let me know. =)

          Do you mind linking me to some of the youtube clips you’ve translated?

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          @ Enid and @Linja, maybe we could work something out, English-Subbed videos released to other fans. I can encode the videos (with subs) and do the uploading. 🙂

          Enid is family so I have her contacts, but if Linja and Co want, we can chat over the details somewhere else. ^^

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          @ Kappy

          Yes, my friend, Sophie, and I would love to chat about it with you. Our emails are ****, ****


        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          Thanks ladies! I edited the comment so your emails aren’t public and get spammed. 🙂

          You’ll receiving an email shortly to join the subbing project! ^_^

    • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

      Yeah, the faux-cest is the only thing that holds me back. I mean of all things…the hero’s sister? Tho, I sort of like this one better than Eternal Love. Eternal Love was a little too cringe-worthy. But none of these can touch Go Princess Go despite being more polished in some ways.

    • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

      I kept thinking everyone in the family knew he was adopted because of him asking the General about the necklace.

      • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

        I thought it was a secret that the dad kept? I need to rewatch this. I marathoned through like 12 episodes last Sunday. It is a blurred to me now (lol). I would imagine that the mother would’ve treated him poorly (maybe?) if she knew he wasn’t really the dad’s son?

      • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

        I don’t think that’s the case. At the very least, Qing Feng was unaware of his adopted status until episode 10 or so, so wether or not the rest of the family knew, that doesn’t really change QF rather inappropriate affection for QY during the first 10 episodes.

        • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

          Episode seven is where the General tells him about his mom though they don’t let us hear the full conversation. I thought that was the point where it all came out.

  3. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    She’s an alien caught for trafficking in primitive species?!! LOL.

    The quirky humor sounds right up my alley. Thanks for the write-up Enid!

  4. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    I thought it would be the usual fish out of water, fight for the throne type of drama and wasn’t expecting much. But it’s actually quite funny!

    Abu is a really cute and likable female lead. Laughed so much when she pretended to be weak and pitiful with falling leaves and all (à la Jiang Ying Yue in GPG) but it just didn’t work on Qing Feng XD

    The drama isn’t really romance-focused which is great cos I prefer watching the different character relationships (such as Abu and Duo Miao Miao with their hilarious antics).

  5. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    You might want to change the first daughter’s name to Tang Qingyun. You used her bro’s name Tang Qingfeng.

    This show is way more polished than The Eternal Love and GPG that I have to think they’ve a bigger budget despite being produced by a streaming site.

    Like the above commentor, I was also about to say, it’s Haomei looking all dashing and grown up! The last few eps have been a bit mushy and serious. But the preview hints at the comedy returning which I’m looking forward too.

  6. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    Oh, yea, speaking of Xuan Yuan sword, does anyone know where can I watch subtitled in English?

  7. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    I binged watched this drama ever since I read this review.

    Positives & Negatives:

    The production value in LSIET is definitely higher than GPG. They have a lot of different sets and outside filming and visually appealing structures/clothes/CGI/aliens. But I must say that the direction/camera work for GPG was better, tighter and less messy. LSIET is kind of all over the place, which is part of its appeal and yet it’s confusing at the same time.

    After watching up to episode 17, I must say that I still like GPG more than LSIET, if only because the romance was written better lol. @tokkita was right; this drama isn’t as lovey-dovey as GPG and only one of its main focus, so the outcome is that I feel there’s more bromance/womance than there is genuine romance, although I still felt very touched in certain climatic moments between the two leads. It doesn’t happen as often (as I like), but when it does happen, it packs a wallop of feels.

    LSIET also attempted to be funnier than GPG and had more unexpected quips and parodying clichés than GPG. I laughed quite a bit because I love when shows flip tropes on their heads, which this drama did in spades. But while I really liked its sense of humor, I still think GPG is funnier, although LSIET had more laughable moments. It’s not the quantity of laughs; it’s the quality of laughs, am I right?

    When it comes to being cute, though, LSIET had GPG beat. The main couple is adorable. An Yue Xi herself can win the show on her own. Her acting always had some restraint so when you feel like she’s about to go OTT, she never does and stays as her excitable, adorable and rambunctious self. She’s absolutely personifies the word adorable. Not to mention her sidekick, Captain Cat. He can’t prevent himself from acting like a cat, after being turned into one and back to human-mode. This leads to a ton of hilarious moments when he gets distracted by cat things, like fish or paws around.

    Though I do wish for more lovey-dovey moments and tighter script, the drama is definitely worth a watch. Even without the romance aspect, it pulled me in. And the comedy (for a Chinese drama) is hilarious. Great rec and find!

    • 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

      Definitely agree regarding the romance. As it goes along I find myself more and more into Duo Miao’s story, especially his relationships with Abu and Ru Yi. I’m still waiting to see how the story works out as my one issue with Go Princess Go is the last part of it just went full on romance and dropped the humor so I’m curious to see if this series can maintain both.

  8. 24 thoughts on “First Impressions: Let’s Shake It, ET (Cdrama, 2017)

    Really enjoying the humour and alien aspect of this drama. An Yue Xi and Zheng Ye Cheng are perfect in their roles. Both are cute and funny in different ways (she’s adorable silly and he’s serious dorky). I couldn’t get into GPG after watching a few episodes, so I think LGSIET is better.

    And yes, I love Abu Cha Cha’s wardrobe. I half expect her to start doing ballet sometimes =P

What do you think?