First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

This was a little sudden for me. But what isn’t nowadays with them airing dramas within a few days’ notice.

The Legend of Xiao Chuo is based on a novel written by Jiang Sheng Nan, on real historical figures of the Liao Dynasty. Tang Yan will play Xiao Chuo (Chinese Name), who later became a capable Khitan empress after marrying Emperor Jingzong of Liao, and subsequently a regent for her son Emperor Shengzong. She was known for her knowledge of the government and its administration, and a strategic military leader, commanding her own army of 10,000 cavalry. As for Shawn Dou, he will not be playing the emperor….he’s playing Xiao Chuo’s childhood sweetheart, Han De Rang, later a trusted Chinese minister under her rule. This is where I think the novel embellishes on a few things, such as a love affair between our leads, a questionable royal birth, and the eventual burial of the two in the imperial tomb.

Airing today 11/3! Will I be watching? 🤷 I adore Mr. Sunshine but it doesn’t look like his role is meaty at all. Then there’s Charmaine looking beautiful with a knife to her neck. I don’t want to watch them suffer. Tell me what to do!

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  1. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    I am watching this solely because of Mr. Sunshine because I miss seeing him riding a horse while shooting arrows to top it off lol I like his character so far, nothing extraordinary, but very fitting for Shawn. I only watched up 2 and a half episodes. I don’t really care about Tang Yan’s character, she’s seems a little too rash and her personality is not to my liking. Rather I enjoy Charmaine’s character more, looking forward to see her relationship with the king’s brother – unfortunately, I think her character may be quite tragical. Not sure how far I’ll continue given I don’t feel Tang Yan’s or
    Jing Chao’s characters and I have to watch them work toward becoming emperor/empresses while the character I cared for are heading toward a more tragical path…

  2. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    Jing Chao always got this kind of character. Being an ‘unloved’ hubby and see his wifey loves someone else. Duh. But seems like he gets himself a happy family in real life

    So, is it a HE? She marries someone while loving another one?

  3. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    Looking at the obvious pregnant TY is already a distraction. I’m gonna have to skip this one.

    • 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

      You have an issue with pregnant women working?

      • 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

        I don’t mind pregnant women working, I encourage them to work. But Tang Yan taking on a role where she’s required to do action scenes while being pregnant is ridiculous. She knows they are trying/is already pregnant, Why not choose some easier projects? So what happened? The stunt lady did all the work for her. She only had to look pretty. Which is doing the drama wrong in my opinion. She should have taken on a romcom where she isn’t required to be a warrior, ride horses, and play rough with males. Safer for her and we can watch a true warrior queen on screen.

        I like Tang Yan but her decision here…. puts her on ice with me.

      • 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

        Let me give you an example, Gal Gadot did wonder women when she was pregnant as well but I see no sign of her belly. NO one even know about it until she mentioned it in the news later. This is not the same case with Tang Yan, there’s evidences everywhere. It’s so unprofessional. How am I to believe the character she is portraying? So don’t throw that ‘having issue with pregnant working’ as an excuse here!

  4. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    Feels like I have been seeing similar dramas like this for so long that it’s getting boring. And not a fan of Tang Yan’s acting so I will probably wait till its gonna end to decide whether to watch. Meanwhile, shall just rely weibo’s top search to know whether it will turn out like the typical big productions or “大女主戏”.

  5. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    It really put me off when I saw FL create situation to took the horse form the ML on their first encounter.

    Why many C-drama FL like to took stuffs form others? No conscious? (Noble Aspirations – Bi Yao steal stuffs from Xiao Fan, (The Legend of the Condor Heroes) – Huang Rong steal stuffs form Guo Jing.
    Is this kind of behavior is ok? Audience should think that the FL are bold, cute and naughty,…really?

  6. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    Disregarding the acting, the plot of the drama is reaaaaally boring. Or maybe it’s slow paced / slow burn? Either way the writing isn’t attractive

  7. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    I’m not warming up to the female lead—the character itself and the acting just are not coming together nicely. I’m going in this blindly—haven’t watched any of Tang Yan’s works before but watching this I could not help comparing her to Shen Yue (in Meteor Garden). The chemistry with the male lead is just not there—they are more like siblings than lovers and some of their supposedly loving scenes look really forced.

    What I liked about this show though is that our resident baddie, Liu Yi Jun as a doting dad/minister!!! He’s the one I’m looking out for here, along with Charmaine Sheh. I’m actually loving the storyline of the first sister (including her husband) than our actual leads. And so far, I like second male lead (Jing Chao) in the sense that his character is more layered compared to the male lead.

    So, to conclude, I will trudge on because of the other characters.

    • 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

      Well this is refreshing. I agree with all your comments. In my opinion, Tang Yan and Shawn Duo have zero chemistry. It’s like watching sibling getting along.

      There’s no denying that Tang Yan is beautiful and lovely to look at but seriously I am very disappointed in her acting. I have seen little to no improvement and for a high-quality production – it’s an absolute waste. All the supporting cast are amazing and unfortunately, it only serves to highlight how mediocre she is.

      It’s as though she’s a character moving along with the trope. Ticking the boxes under her do-list. As opposed to ‘being’ a pampered princess. Seemingly it’s meant to contrast and highlight her growth later on – I get it. But execution-wise, it’s just not doing it for me. This production is a heavy-weight. It has some well-known names in the industry so I do expect more and I don’t think it’s unreasonable. I don’t hate the drama or leads but I am disappointed that it hasn’t delivered the expectation around the character development and even the acting department. I may change my mind later on but for the last 8-10 episodes, I haven’t been impressed.

      I’m afraid the main couple is boring and just bland. I do feel that some of their love scenes were forced and just awkward to watch. Sadly, the criticism is not completely unfounded.

      A notable mention is Charmaine. I will admit Charmaine is EXCELLENT in this drama. I actually didn’t think she was that good in Story of Yanxi Palace and I didn’t understand what people were raving on about. But here, with her every expression, word and body language – she simply imbues a Khitan Princess. I really enjoyed watching her and especially her interactions with Yelu Yanchege.

      My favourite is the design of the costumes and cinematography – both are absolutely breathtaking! The storyline and plot though…is meh. So unbelievable and worth fast-forwarding.

      • 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

        I also liked Jing Chao’s character. He was a dark horse for me. His character was so much more layered than I’d expected but I do love a good surprise.
        He was very good and I just love his expression when he first met Tang Yan. I think it was love at first sight for me too (hehe).

        I actually felt that he was more suited to Tang Yan given their background and their goal and ambitions for the country. I felt that her father knew her better than she did so herself. I feel that Shawn will forever spoil her and treat her as a kid perhaps a little too indulgent. So one hand it’s heartbreaking but on the other, she really needed to grow up.

  8. 13 thoughts on “First Impression: What do you think of Tang Yan and Shawn Dou’s The Legend of Xiao Chuo?

    I like charmaine sheh’s story line better too. Though she has been my bias since the beginning even though she is like my mom’s age. Like literally the beginning, from her dramas in 2000? The heavenly sabre and book or something. Tang yan and mr. Sunshine has no chemistry so I skip their parts, even the 3rd pair of the 2nd sister has more chemistry. Definitely could be better, though I’m watching cuz of my ah sheh.

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