Physics are for wimps.
Warrior maidens are awesome.
sometimes the bad guy is just cooler
heroes are gallant
Dramas listed in this post: Princess Weiyoung, Love Me If You Dare, Princess Agents, Legend of Yu Xin, and the General and I. Everything can be found on viki.com.
Oh my f*cks, i love Princess Weiyoug and i’m slightly GEEKING out that you’re watching it, too.
I finished. Rooted for Tuoba Yu the whole time.
Barbara D. says
He’s just awesome! I was sad about the ending though. Do the others you mentioned also have that kind of ending?
I am still watching most of these, but the Princess Agents doesn’t have a happy ending either. It kind of just stops on a cliffhanger. I have a good feeling about The Legend of Yu Xin. It seems lighter and more fantasy than historical.
Barbara D. says
I’ll try that one then xD thanks for the recommendation! I do love historical though, the outfits are just beautiful! Have you tried any Japanese dramas?
Princess agents is SUPPOSED to have a season 2 – it’s based on an internet novel : https://www.novelupdates.com/series/the-legend-of-chu-qiao-division-11s-princess-agent/ – and the first season only covered half of the book.
Love me if you Dare is by the awesome internet author Ding Mo – and her books are a lot better than the shows that got made from them (though I like her shows as well. I think 4 or 5 of her books have dramas). You can find a list of her works that have been translated here: https://www.novelupdates.com/nauthor/ding-mo/
A lot of the fans who translated Chinese internet novels get permission from the authors first. My favorite translation webpage, https://hui3r.wordpress.com/ , only translates with author permission.
Jen G. says
OMG this is amazing! You totally made my day today! Thanks for the link of awesomeness! 🙂
Princess Agents is supposed to have a season 2 – they only covered half the novel in season 1. not sure what the status of S2 is though.
I think you would love Legend of Fuyao, it has a similar feel to Princess Agent where the heroine fights against destiny. This is a fantasy drama with magic and powers. It’s got a charming yet mysterious male lead
and a kick ass heroine.
It also has a happy ending.
Here is a link to the trailer
Legend of Yun Xi was awesome !! The Male lead is drool worthy , protective of his sweet wife (female lead) and always has her back in everything ! This is a very typical light hearted fluffy romance fantasy drama
For sheer fun and gorgeous costumes, there is The Monkey King series of movies. And have you seen Along with the Gods 1 & 2 (Korean)?
me too. I wish there was an alternate version where Touba Yu wins
Vanness Wu is life, loved him in Princess Weiyoung. Currently watching Bloody Romance, it has an all woman assasin guild and its just 36 episodes.
I quit that one. She was the worst assassin ever and I kept screaming at the screen, “Just kill him! Kill him! Cut his throat!”
“Just kill him”? You go, Girl.
“I kept screaming at the screen, ‘Just kill him! Kill him! Cut his throat!'”
Not related to Chinese dramas, but this is why I love John Wick. Finally SOMEONE has embraced the one-bullet head-shot instead of multiple shots to the body (which never seem to kill anybody)! Haven’t these people read Peter’s Evil Overlord List?? http://www.eviloverlord.com/lists/overlord.html
I loved the princess Weyoung. I think I binged the whole series in one week. Was tired the whole time on my 40+ hour job but could not stop watching at a reasonable time the evening after repeatedly. Which other drama would you recommend? I’m really afraid to start something new and not loving it as much as this one. Thanks for your help ?
Same! But I watched Bloody Romance purely for Prince Gong Zi, I just loved the fact that he is blind but awfully powerful too bad he wasn’t the male lead though
Princess agents was my favorite.
At least they somehow cut the harness loose, so the horses weren’t hurt when they tossed the chariot off the bridge.
Have you seen The King’s Woman? Vin Zhang is drool worthy ?
First time I saw him was in Love O2O where he was a side character. I liked that series as well even though the heroine kinda got on my nerves at times. It’s about a couple that meets through online gaming.
Not yet. I will put it on my list.
The author of Love O2O also wrote Shan Shan Comes to Eat and My Sunshine – both are better adaptations, IMO (I liked Love 020 but the drama wasn’t as strong the others imo). My Sunshine’s main male character is the lead from General and I, btw.
Love the information about Chinese Dramas. On the list for future viewing!
Liv W says
I haven’t seen any of these but love your comments and reactions to them. So hilarious!
Hahaha…your posts on Chinese dramas have me hooked to them. Like Pam I have a huge list too. 🙂
Nonononono! I’ve been J, K, and C drama free for five years now. Your post is dissolving my resolve…..
Cynthia E says
I KNOW! Feel my resolve weakening.
Um, “Are those two matters connected?” and he’s looking at her chest. O_O I’m guessing he’s never seen a woman naked?
Or is she the one saying that? This is what happens when you come into a conversation in the middle.
At that point in the story….no, he hadn’t 😀 (Not sure if it’s clear in the drama but it’s clear in the novel)
I really enjoyed the first Chinese Paladin series from years ago with Crystal Lui, who by the way, will play Mulan in the new Disney movie. It was popular at that time. It had action, humor, drama, angst. I haven’t checked out the spinoffs.
christelle li says
Which drama is the last one about?
I haven’t watched many c-drama in a while. I’m all about k-drama these days.
Woo hoo! Thanks for sharing looks really cool.
Side note. Princess weiyang book is accused of copying from 200 other chinese novels. Got sued in court. And lose.
Plagiarizing from that amount of different novels and still keeping the story coherent has gotta be more difficult than just writing an original story oneself!! Or at least, it’s a superior talent in itself. Lol. (Not saying that plagiarism is funny!!)
As a side note, I heard the TV adaptation of Princess Weiyang isn’t even fateful to the source material, so I don’t know why the drama rights were bought in the first place. Just for the novel’s name recognition? But if it’s infamous for plagiarism, is that really the kind of fame the drama producers would want? Sigh.
Another infamous plagiarism case is that of Tang Qi’s (author’s name) Three Lives, Three Worlds, Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms, but the drama adaptation (called Eternal Love) with Yang Mi is one of the most beautiful, moving C-dramas I’ve ever watched, so I can’t help but recommend watching it despite everything else (the story is coherent from start to finish – which is some feat, for a C-drama, and the hero is to die for. one of the best heroes in any romance drama I’ve seen, and exquisitely well acted).
Another, more recent, C-drama I’ve seen praised a lot and which you might like because it really takes its time building up the characters and the story in a leisurely, step-by-step fashion (the content itself is quite intricate) is The Story of Minglan. It’s a pretty fair adaptation, though I’m personally unhappy about the stuff they did change from the book, especially regarding the hero’s characterization. (That’s just my personal issue, though.)
Another very good C-drama is The Battle of Changsha (the hero/actor is the one from Love Me if You Dare. soo pretty even if he isn’t the most sincere actor), centered around a big family with lots of colorful characters during a very tumultuous historical period, but it’s also pretty depressing because not a lot of people from that family survive (the heroine does, so at least there is a happy ending for her romance, though the overall aftertaste is still bittersweet for obvious reasons). Anyway, it reminds me a bit of The Bronze Horseman (novel), so I have a sweet spot for this drama.
p.s. I love hearing about your watching K/C-dramas. I’m a longtime fan of both.
Princess Weiyoug TV isn’t faithful to the source material at all. The novel’s name is The Concubine’s daughter is poisonous. I highly recommend the novel, but IT IS REALLY REALLY DARK! i was listening to the audio book and had to stop because of how dark it got, but it was amazingly good! characters were killed off that usually you don’t expect would be, and the machinations of all characters were amazing
Eternal Love is different. For one thing, it never go to court. The other party don’t sue her. For another, the plots are totally different. The only similar thing, as far as I can tell, is that the tone of the story is similar. Which Eternal Love author admit that she got her ‘inspiration’ from there.
And the author even go to third party (who is supposed to be real famous in this field) to rule for her if she really copy that other novel. And that third party said no.
PS some of the accusations is like “All novels with greek gods are copying percy jackson!” I rolled my eyes so hard at that one. But some sentences are suspiciously similar as well.
Crispina Chong says
Your c/k-drama posts make my day <3
I absolutely adore Chinese dramas! They help me escape reality. Honestly though if you want a good one with romance- Story of Ming Lan! It’s amazing with great characterization. I started reading translated Chinese novels because of these shows. Lol.
Shannon S Kelly says
That has been one of my favorites. I keep coming back to it.
Have you tried “in time with you”? It’s one of my all time favorite Chinese dramas.
Lady Jaye says
The development and ending of Princess Agents left me so angry that I can barely stand to speak of it even after all this time.
Um I’ve never watched any Chinese dramas but I’m getting the impression that they are a Asian version of the old Zorro films with more modern special effects?
Flashing blades – check,
Jumping between carriages and horses while recuing damsels – check
subtitles – Check
Do they have noble hero’s defending the peasantry?
Actually if I find any free time I might watch one of these as they look like fun, any recommendations for the best series to start with, something fairly easy to understand preferably with a HEA.
I always wondered how you got the “angst” or “drive” between two main characters’ love life to always hit the sweet spot. These Asian dramas just capture it like nothing else and you have been impacted too ?. Not to mention the badass attitude of all the characters that just cut through their enemies in completely impossible odds. Love the recommended dramas.
Heather Wohltman says
I absolutely love Princess Weiyoung!! That and Moonlight Drawn by Clouds have been my favorites so far. I would recommend The Rise of Phoenixes on Netflix. The first 3/4 of the series is amazing but the ending kind of disappointed me. But the beginning and middle more than make up for the disappointing ending.
I loved that series so much and I completely agree with you. I literally started yelling at my tv at the end but the beginning and middle were so good that it compensated for it. Not many shows do that. I found a blog – ninja-reflection.com
She reviews k/c/j – dramas and she actually started translating all the best part of the novel Rise of Phoenixes (because it isn’t available in english) and the novel ends MUCH differently than the dramas. Also Feng ZhiWei is waaaay more bada** in the novel.
Reading her translations has been therapeutic to get over the terrible ending.
Heather Wohltman says
I’ll have to look at that to see how it should end then! Because for being as good as it was it deserved a better ending.
I mostly wonder if their actual eyebrows are covered or if they’ll grow back. Also admit to wondering if the hair is a piece which is attached everyday and how they remove all that primer & lightening shimmer foundation every night.
Also – may I just commend them for working on wrist strength so they can properly swing those (lightened prop) swords about?
All right I now have something to watch this weekend.
Damn sis, viki needs to start paying you lol
The guy in the last set of pics is v handsome ?
Speaking of c-dramas and gallantry… There was an explosion on the set of a c-drama a few years ago. The actress playing the heroine (a Taiwanese Popstar who was filming in China) and the actor playing the male lead were both caught in the blast. He made sure they tended to and brought her to the hospital first even though he suffered severe burns as well and his injuries were more intense.
Which drama was this?
On October 22, 2010, Selina was seriously injured in an explosive accident while filming the television series I Have a Date with Spring (我和春天有个约会), along with co-star Yu Haoming. Selina suffered third-degree burns on more than 54% of her body and needed to undergo skin grafting treatment/operation where her hands, legs, and back were injured.
Tried watching C Dramas, but didn’t really get it. Felt like the humor was lost in translation. ? Loved the costumes, though
of the dramas listed Love Me If You Dare, Princess Agents, and the General and I are ones I have seen. Haven’t finished two but they are good. Really enjoyed love me if you dare
What was the last group if pictures? That looks like I might enjoy it. I am new to ,Chinese dramas
Whaa, you have watched ‘General and I’? The drama version has more angst than the novel version (the novel version is more fast-paced) and there are some plot changes although it leads to the same happy ending.
Instead of due to being childhood sweetheart, the general actually started to be interested in Pingting due to her playing Qin. Later, he eventually fell deeper for her due to her brilliant tactics (which most of the time were used against him?).
From the way I read it in the novel, it was likely Pingting who actually fell in love first. Meanwhile, the general was more like feeling intrigued and slightly obsessive of her in the beginning.
In the drama, the general is made looking more charming and gentle (though I didn’t really object?). But in the novel, he is straight out ruthless so chance of him suddenly having deep feeling for someone is close to nothing. There is a sentence in the novel that made quite an impression to me. It was during the first night they slept together (for Pingting, it was days after she surrended herself to save the Hua family from execution, still using the identity as the maid ‘Hong’).
The sentence more or less sounded like this:
“That night, in the quiet Zhen-Bei Ducal Residence, the two people, respectively from Gui Le and Dong Lin laid together. One losing soul, the other losing heart.” (A Lonesome Fragrance Waiting to be Appreciated – Volume 1 Chapter 8)
P.S: I had a pretty confusing time figuring out which one is losing the heart and which one is losing the soul?
Also, the original title for ‘General and I’ is ‘A Lonesome Fragrance Waiting to be Appreciated’. In the drama, the one who acts as Bai Pingting (Angelababy) is so beautiful. In the novel, Pingting is considered very plain. Her charm is actually her intelligence. But in that era, intelligence is not considered something good to posses in a woman. Woman should be obedient, quite, and looking pretty. That’s why “The Lonesome Fragrance” part in the title is to represent the heroine Pingting.
I should end my comment here but please please let me include the translated-version of the novel’s synopsis. I didn’t intend to convince you to read the novel version, just sharing my appreciation because the words used by the author were just so beautiful to describe their conflict!
Bai Pingting has always been contrary (to) the saying, “A woman’s virtue is ignorance.”
Although she serves the Marquess of Jing-An as a maid, she leads a life far richer than most women. Her plain appearance is not what defines her — but her intelligence, far beyond many wise men.
Although Chu Beijie was an enemy general, she still cannot help being attracted to this man, despite the many lies and conspiracies…but between love and loyalty, she must make a choice. She can only hope that man’s love for her isn’t as deep as she thought.
One is a soul who seemingly destroys peace while the other aspires to be the sword that saves. Between them, lies a mountain of hate…
Who of the two most cunning people on earth cast the trap and just who captured the other?
(Source: novelupdates(dot)com/series/gu-fang-bu-zi-shang/ )
So poetic right?? (although it might be just me who thought that?). Thank you for reading thus far!
Annette Chung says
I’m digging the K-dramas right now, thanks to your Moonlight Drawn By Clouds recommendation. I’m now watching Goblin, which has a nice start. My favorite thus far (and one I would recommend) is Healer (Ji Chang Wook & Park Min Young). Pretty badass character, and the heroine isn’t weak or TSTL either.
If you dig the Grim Reaper and Sunny storyline in Goblin, I recommend you follow up with ‘Touch Your Heart’. Not connected but worth the watch!
I second that! I did not know k-dramas existed till the post about Moonlight Drawn by Clouds or Love in the Moonlight! It was wonderful! I loved it! Enjoyed the story, humor, romance, costumes, intrigue, action, acting, the martial arts, and relieved it had a HEA after all the tears!
It had me hungry for more… thank God for viki which has a whole bunch of k-dramas, but even better is being able to get some from the library. Watching it on a full screen is so much better than on my phone! My system does not carry too many, but libraries are able to order out of system, within or outside of state, though the latter costs $5… a small price to pay since buying them can be very expensive, though I am buying some. Hope the two lower priced ones from Malasia are good.
Anyway, right after Moonlight Drawn by Clouds, I watched Sungkyunkwan Scandal and loved it! A very smart woman disguised as a boy who got roped into attending a university where woman are not allowed. It had all the elements I enjoyed in Moonlight Drawn by Clouds. There are 20 episodes. Highly recommend! It takes place in the same period of time as Moonlight.
Just finished watching Love From the Star about an alien from another planet who first showed up 400 years ago in that same historical period… they do a great job flashing back, but most takes place in the current time where he falls in love with an actress. There is more humor and wackiness, but there are also lots of serious moments and some tears… there is also a sociopathic serial killer so there is also some suspense. I love the first two more, but still enjoyed this one a lot.
I would love to hear what others are watching and what they think. Want to continue to explore k-dramas. I don’t mind crying along the way, but I want there to be a HEA, so knowing that is important! Thank you, Ilona and BDH for opening up a whole new world to me! I also appreciate the different views and also hearing from people from different countries, etc. All of this expands my horizons, views, and is very enriching! This blog is the first and only I have experienced and participated in… thank you to the Andrews and all!
I Looove light-hearted HEA K-dramas! What’s Wrong with secretary Kim and Strong Woman Do Bong Soon checked all the boxes. Highly recommend both. Both on Viki but Strong Woman is also on Netflix.
Kim M says
I LOVE Strong Woman Bong Soon from a romance perspective, but there is a side crime story that I thought was a bit odd. I also thought Accidentaly In Love, (Netflix) was a great romance. Love 020, the movie is also fun especially if you play online games. The series of the same name has additional backstory, but I like the female lead in the movie better. I like a HEA and they are sometimes hard to find in Asian movies and series but all three of these have HEA.
Thanks for the tip on Viki! I was not aware of they existed and now see many binge sessions in my future!!!
OOh I just finished watching Princess Weiyoung. I do wish Touba Yu wasnt the bad guy lol
I loved the aesthetics of the show but I had issues with how the female characters (other than Weiyoung) kept cry loudly at mishaps. Such a stereotype
It kinda worries me that I was able to recognize all of those dramas by the screen shots. I’m currently watching Princess Silver only 13 episodes in so far but really enjoying it.
It kinda worries me that I was able to recognize all of those dramas by the screen shots. I’m currently watching Princess Silver only 13 episodes in so far but really enjoying it.
….I have seen all of those dramas ;p
And yes, quite often logic is to be ignored, just roll with the flow XD
Doris Toh says
Try this tittle : Oh! My General
Totally agreed! Oh My Venus was my first kdrama. I had to suspend logic and I really enjoyed it. Lol ?
Holly C. says
Dang it ladies! I started watching Princess Weiyoung last night and got sucked in. 3:00am!!! But worth it. I got hooked on C-dramas last summer with the new Meteor Garden. Highly recommend.
Candy Daniels says
I have a serious addiction going on with Korean dramas. I’m currently really enjoying “Kill Me, Heal Me”. On my “want to watch list” I have “Moon Lovers: Scarlet Heart Ryo” and “Ice Fantasy”. “Love 2.0” (based on the webtoon “Just One Smile is Very Alluring”) is geeky and cute. 😀
haechi, is this year’s big drama, I quite like Jung Il-Woo which he is in Cinderella and Four Knights which is a nice ride too.
I mentioned Legend of Fuyao earlier, Another great drama is Princess Jie You. Its about a marriage of alliance between a Han (Chinese) princess and and the king of Wusun (Turkic). To strengthen the alliance between Han and Wusun, the Han court sends Princess Jieyou to marry the Wusun king. Along the way the princess falls in love with the kings brother who was charged to escort the princess safely to Wusun. It’s currently not on Viki but eng subbed episodes can be found on Dailymotion. I really enjoyed it the 2 main leads have great chemistry, in fact the 2 actors married each other not long after making this drama!
Here is the link to the first episode!
Hey Ilona If you liked Tuoba Yu then I think you would totally dig the male lead in Princess Jie You. In this drama the male lead occasionally gives off a Jack Sparrows vibes, is a tease and fights like Legolas!
Here are some of my recommendations for C-dramas!
Must watch Fantasy Dramas:
– Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms aka Eternal Love ( Happy Ending)
– Legend of Fuyao (Happy Ending)
– Ever Night (Cliff Hanger. Part 2 in the making)
– Goodbye My Princess (Sad Ending)
– Ashes of Love (Happy Ending)
– Flame’s Daughter (Happy Ending)
– Legend of Yun Xi (Happy Ending)
Period/ Costume Dramas:
– Legend of Ming Lan (Happy Ending)
– Princess Jie You (eng sub found on dailymotion–Happy Ending)
– Kings Woman (Sad Ending)
-Nirvana in Fire. The first season (Happy Ending)
Goodbye My Princess (aka Eastern Palace)?
What! I never knew you were a fan of c-dramas!
At risk of repeating everyone else’s recommendations, here’s a list of some of my personal favorites, curated since I was a kid to now as an adult:
– Princess Pearl/ Huan Zhu Ge Ge (an oldie but a goodie. STILL holds the record for highest TV ratings in all of China!)
– Nirvana in Fire season 1 / Lang Ya Bang (historical, strategizing, political machinations galore. Revenge plot with a bittersweet ending. Lots of excellent characters and great bromances.)
– Empresses in the Palace / Zhen Huan Zhuan (LEGENDARY palace harem drama. Follows the life of an innocent girl who becomes hardened by the terrible plots of the emperor’s harem.)
– The Disguiser (takes place during Sino-Japanese war. Spies, politics, mystery, complicated family ties, and amazing fashion.)
– Return of the Condor Heroes (a Jin Yong classic. Nuff said!)
– Story of Yanxi Palace (2018’s best pick. Wonderfully accurate costuming and set design, great plot and characters. Of course, it’s about harem machinations and inner-palace scheming!)
– Guardian (sometimes silly, sometimes serious. Supernatural, crime-busting, reincarnated warriors/detectives! Now with hot men!)
– Meteor Garden (suuuuuch a classic high school romance. Cheesy, yes, but there’s something so satisfying about it at the same time.)
And two dramas that I’d personally avoid even though they are somehow very popular:
– Eternal Love / Three Lives, Three Worlds: 10 miles of peach blossoms (A very popular drama, but this, unfortunately, comes from a plagiarized book that continues to be very successful. I choose not to support it, and I highly recommend for anyone who consumes Chinese media to do some research about this incident before proceeding.)
– Princess Agents (also highly anticipated, but I found this to be a poor showing. Just personal opinion!)
Oh no that’s unfortunate! I never knew that! Cuz It is one of the better filmed dramas out of all the recommendations listed. I don’t know, I’d still say you should watch it just for the
great performance put out by the actors and the hard work and effort put into this drama by the director and her crew. It is one of the most beautiful and moving dramas I’ve ever watched. I think I’ll always think of this drama as the work of the Directors and not the authors work. I don’t think watching this drama is considered as supporting plagiarism as I believe the film itself has slight differences from the novel version. This drama is not the authors work anymore. In the hands of the film director it is her creation now. If anything I would still recommend watching the drama for its beautiful costume and imagery and the wonderful acting from the main leads especially Mark Chao(male lead) and his stellar eye acting performance, that man needs no words he can convey so much with just his eyes alone!
On the other hand, if you decide to read or buy any of the the books by the plagiarizing author in the future and already knowing that they plagiarized, then that would be supporting plagiarism.
Just finished watching Princess Weiyoung. Am currently bawling. I thought this was gonna be a comedy like Oh My General (awesome rec, but you were right as usual. The emperor plot line needed to be trimmed. It bored me so much I skipped 65% of the show). I Googled the actors and apparently Weiyoung and Tuoba Jun are happily married irl. I’m gonna imagine this is their current incarnation and will finally get the hea they so deserved. ?
Also, is it just me or did the spoiled eldest daughter look a LOT like the youngest Kardashian sister?