Love Like The Galaxy (星汉灿烂) is adapted from the novel written by Guan Xin Ze Luan (the same author for The Story of Ming Lan) and at the recent Tencent Annual Drama Line Up, they have confirmed Zhao Lu Si and Wu Lei. There’s a time-traveling element in this drama. Our heroine in the modern world grew up in a divorced family; she lives with her grandma, making her quite wild and unruly, she does what she wants. On chance, she time-travels to the past and becomes the youngest daughter of a General’s family. Due to war, her parents are constantly in battle, bringing along her three older brothers for years, leaving her behind with her grandma. When they finally return, years of estrangement creeps in but her father and brothers dote on her. Except for her mother, who is extremely strict with her and our girl fans the fire by fighting right back. Despite mom being a tough lady, going to war, etc, she expects the opposite of her daughter – to be gentle, to be well-read (actually, she just can’t read ancient Chinese because she’s from the modern world), to be graceful. Since she’s of marriage age when they return, they become concerned that their daughter’s personality doesn’t fit in with the rich, high-ranking sons of officials, so they think it’s safer to settle for a low-ranking family. However, their troublesome daughter repeatedly meets with several high-ranking men, getting engaged and breaking the engagement several times.
Cue harem story. Lol.
The first man she picks is not a man she loves, but a man she has reins over. He’s basically a puppy who does as requested by the heroine because he likes her. The second man she meets is our male lead – the emperor’s adopted son. He comes to believe that she really likes him but at the time she’s engaged to Guy #1, and so he waits for the engagement to break to swoop in. She is the most drawn to him because of his complicated background and righteousness. Guy #3 is the type that spars and criticizes her constantly whenever he opens his mouth but deep down he is nursing a big crush.
In the last few years, I’ve gone through several drama droughts, where I wasn’t interested in any of the dramas coming out. As the popularity of IP adaptations continued to surge and seeing the more light-hearted comedies released, I decided it was time to venture into the source medium.
However, where to start was always puzzling and how should I prioritise this growing list of Chinese novels I accumulated? I’m not sure if I’m alone in this, but after a while I became overwhelmed and now those books on my TBR list just sit there, whilst I find other novels to read. I normally visit Douban when I want to find a new novel to read, but Douban has three ways of arranging their novels; their comprehensive arrangement (whatever that may mean), arrange by date or arrange by rating. As the ratings lover that I am, here is a list of highest rated romance novels on Douban.
Seeing this picture really cemented the fact that Li Ying is married and with a child. She’s worked hard for years and now has created a family all on her own, and this drama seems to be the perfect representation of her work ethics and personal growth.
I spent the past weekend jumping onboard the Minglan wagon (up to ep 12)! Yay to me! It is indeed slower in pace and conversations tend to drag out between people I don’t want to care much about, but there’s quality and build-up in character and plots. It’s a type of drama that simmers, no need to rush at all. I was watching idly and didn’t start caring until Minglan’s mother met her demise during childbirth. It broke my heart seeing little Minglan running around with her short, clumsy legs trying to get help for her mom. The shot of mom on her deathbed surrounded by her own pool of blood kinda sealed any compassion I could have had for the character of Mistress Lin. She just stood and watched another pregnant woman die! The fact that she went through childbirth before and knew the risks and pain and still schemed til the end….ARG. Redeem her character? NOPE. Solid no from me. Another thing is I see a lot of novel fans upset with Minglan for returning Qi Heng’s affections, but realistically speaking, the Minglan in the novel is not the same as the Minglan in the drama. She’s not a jaded time-traveler who has fine-tuned her heart. Here she is just a normal girl having a handsome and gentle suitor at her door. What’s not to like about the said gentleman? It’s portrayed realistically to me because how many of us could say we married our first love? A life time is a long time and in that time frame, you will like, hate, and love many before your wisdom and maturity set sights on the right man at the right time.
But before that time, let me wallow in the deadliest illness of drama – second lead syndrome. xD