These reviews are still far too long and take far too long to do. Time to try a new format change from next week, I think.
This week’s non-Exiern featured item is the UK TV show “Life on Mars”
As the narration says, after a hit to the head, our hero finds himself back in 1973. Is he mad? in a coma? or really back in time? Am I trying to say something here about this show? I don’t know, am I?
The sequel “Ashes to Ashes” is also definitely worth a look too. Yes, they’re both named after Bowie songs and use his work a lot. Yet another reason why to see them, as if one was needed.
Right, I’m not going to spend too much time on this episode (yes, I know you’ve all heard that before) but basically this is what happens.
Qi Sheng’s grandmother hears that the whole ‘online’ shopping mall has been a big success and tasks who she thinks is her grand-daughter to find an item.
In getting that item, Zhang Peng spies another forbidden item of great interest to him but has to remain hidden lest he get in trouble.
Predictably, there’s a mistake and said item gets sent to Qi Sheng’s grandmother by mistake. Basically because, deep down, Lu Li can be a bit of an idiot sometimes.
That letter that eunuch Qiang was writing gets delivered to the Qi Sheng instead. I think by the amount of serious side eye that Qi Sheng starts giving him after reading it, we can also guess what the gist of the content is.
Then, we get a demonstration as to how tight money must have been on this production after a word … a very long word from our sponsor
OK, this episode starts with Zhang Peng doing something for the grandmother of Qi Sheng. [NB: between last week's episode and this one, I'm getting really confused as to who was the previous emperor. I guess I could work it out and I could have re-edited both of these reviews as I wrote them at the same time and the day after Episode 10 went up but I don;t think it really matters, these are all people we never saw on screen anyway.]. She seems to like some sort of finger bending backwards massage thing and Zhang Peng’s more than happy to score gold stars and brownie points.
Have to think of something shorter to call the grandmother of Qi Sheng, so I’m going to go with former Empress. She tells Zhang Peng that the whole shopping mall idea seems to be working quite well. None of the official wives are fighting with each other. Zhang Peng says it’s because it’s providing “psychological sustenance” (i.e. distraction) as he’s doing some sort of finger bendy back thing that the former Empress likes and is basically being a big suck up in order to entrench his position as grand-daughter in law number one.
Qi Sheng might be Emperor now but the former Empress is still the one person who can give him a clip around the ear and put him back in his box. Next step is to find a vase that the former Empress is after. Presumably something by somebody famous which Zhang Peng manages to mix up with a contemporary (for him) artist. Not surprisingly, yet again the former Empress Does Not Get That Reference (would it have hurt to have watched less Korean drama and cracked open a history book or two? I mean, once again I did watch a lot of Korean movies and television but compared to this guy …).
Cut to an incognito meeting with a “dealer”. I’m starting to suspect this show was deliberately not taking things too seriously given that they’re quite clearly out in the open and Zhang Peng’s outfit to not draw attention to himself is exactly the sort of thing that would actually draw everyone’s attention to you.
Luckily, I’m guessing the budget didn’t cover any extras in the background for this scene and so they’re safe. Though probably the first clue to how seriously this show was in the very first minute of the very first episode where one of our hero’s jilted ex-girlfriend was racing towards him along a Chinese freeway in a clearly major city – on a horse. ↓ Read the rest of this entry…