I am very selective in my watching of Taiwanese Dramas. I tend to watch short idol dramas of about 20 episodes. Starhub has many but not every show manages to sustain my viewing – mainly because most have exaggerated acting, or are loud.
I was attracted to this drama because of its cliché script – can platonic good friends become lovers? The couple is down to earth, compatible in every sense and portrayed realistically without acting cute, or dramatic that is so common in many Taiwanese shows. In fact, I would call their acting understated, which is refreshing.
You Qing and Da Ren have been best friend since high school. Now at 30, she sells shoes and he works for the national airline. Whenever she is feeling down, her first reaction is to call Da Ren and he’ll pop by with cans of beers. She feels the ticking of the clock and mistakenly thinks her much younger colleague is interested in her, until she finds out that he is gay. Da Ren unwittingly accepts his colleagues’ affection, even though he is really interested in You Qing. Their families, in the mean time, assume they will eventually get together.
When You Qing discovers how serious Da Ren’s relationship with his girlfriend is, she realises that she actually likes him. Da Ren breaks off with his girlfriend when she finds out that he has always been in love with You Qing. Just as they are both free to pursue their love, You Qing’s ex returns to her. Dejected, Da Ren accepts a post in Singapore. (Yes, we get yet another shot of Singapore’s MBS and Merlion. )
What’s frustrating (to their families and to the viewers) is the misconception Da Ren and You Qing have, that revealing their true feelings would destroy their comfortable friendship, something they value more. Actually, I would think the same. After all, if I have a platonic male friend like Da Ren, who can read her mood so well and says the right thing when she is depressed, I wouldn’t want to lose him too. Examples: Da Ren leaves some ‘credits’ with their noodle stall knowing that she’ll forget her wallet. When she complains the difficulty of being a woman, how she has to remove her make up before going to bed even when she is dead beat, he tells her to teach him over the phone the steps and imagines himself removing her makeup for her. ‘First, you pressed the cotton pad, soaked with eye-makeup removal, to the eye for a few seconds, then gently swipe away. Next, you turn the other side to clean away the lip stick…’ How I wish for that too!
A bonus to watching this is the track 我不會喜歡你, often sang a capella by the lead actor Chen Bo Lin. The track remains irritatingly lodge into my brain after each episode.
Chen Bo Lin looks young to partner Ariel Lin but that’s ok, since man often looks younger than woman of the same age.
If you are a romantic like me, you would enjoy this drama too.