I feel like I’ve fallen into a twilight zone and I can’t get out. In that weird place, a bunch of folks are cosplaying characters in the classic epic wuxia novel Demi-Gods and Semi-Devils by Louis Cha. Wallace Chung, having made a name for himself playing wimpy or douchey or emo wuxia heroes, has decided to wig out and don a bunch of rags and fur to play legendary Beggar Sect Leader Qiao Feng. Even worse is former Super Junior member and baby-faced cutie pie Kim Ki Bum making his first C-drama debut cosplaying the Prince of the Dali Kingdom Duan Yu. You know, as much as the majority of the casting for this latest adaptation of DGSD is completely unsuitable, I was at least open to giving it a chance. By keeping my expectations at below zero, this drama has nowhere to go but up, right? But seeing stills of Kim Ki Bum as Duan Yu has me grabbing my gut laughing my head off.
I’ve actually heard positive feedback about his performance in this past Summer’s other body-switch drama I Love Lee Tae Ri, where he played the adult version of a teenage boy who grew up overnight. Acting potential aside, his whole look as Duan Yu is just hilariously doofy and derpy. I don’t know how I can possibly take him seriously! As much as the C-netizens in general are mocking this adaptation already, I’m weirdly entranced by Wallace’s fur-laden scruffy pretty boy version of Qiao Feng. As usual, Wallace fangirls think he looks fantastic in every get up, and normally I would beg to differ vehemently, but this time I don’t think he looks half-bad. Granted he doesn’t have the onscreen presence to play such an awe inspiring hero, but if he looks dashing enough I might find some enjoyment in his scenes with Jia Qing playing both his OTP of Ah Zhu as well as her younger eviler sister Ah Zi.
What’s with the horrid turquoise colored robe? WHY? I cannot imagine any dye-maker in ancient China managed to produce a robe of the shining shade of bright blue. Even I would beat this douchebag up if I were an ancient dude and ran into his sauntering form walking on the street dressed like that.
Prince Duan Yu of the Dali Kingdom and his OTP (thankfully not half-sister) Wang Yu Yan.
Wallace’s costume fitting stills as Qiao Feng. If he just stood there these might work, but the LOL-tastic poses ruin the whole “I am a martial arts hero” effect for me. He looks like a kid playing dress up.
Zhang Meng is officially the least attractive Wang Yu Yan EVER. I may think the collective three beauties of Idy Chan (80s), Carmen Lee (90s), and Crystal Liu (2000s) can’t act their way out of a paper bag, but honestly this character is a giant flower vase anyways and just needs to look insanely pretty. Like a goddess level pretty, and those three ladies were stunningly beautiful in character. Zhang Meng? Not cutting it IMO.
Crystal Liu in the 2002 version.
Carmen Lee in the 1997 version.
Idy Chan in the 1980 version.