When I love or hate a drama it’s soooooo much easier to write about it. The words just come pouring out because my FEELS are so vivid either way, but for recently wrapped modern C-drama Lighter and Princess I’m having a tough time writing about it but still think the drama is worth devoting a post to. Starring Chen Fei Yu (Arthur Chen) and Zhang Jing Yi, the drama is adapted from a popular romance novel and the two leads are age appropriately cast and visually a near perfect coupling onscreen. She’s an idealistically grounded but obstinately stubborn girl with eyes only for him and he’s a tightly wound coding genius who somewhere learned how to kiss like a bandit. I watched 90% of the drama, skipped the inevitable separation and betrayal by others angst because fast-forwarding to the present was a better use of my time. The drama is actually good, decently directed, minimal plot stupidity and the side characters are nicely used to advance the plot as the requisite friend/rival/enemy/coworker roles.
The chemistry between the leads was there, some scenes more than others, but the drama felt like one long detour that didn’t need to happen for two people who clearly want each other then and now. They could have battled the evil betraying classmate together even in the present time and got the same conclusion, so the staying apart ultimately felt superfluous which lessened the final catharsis when they do get back together. But the ending was nicely done as some issues are not resolved but everyone moves on. I wanted to watch the drama to see what all the hype around Zhang Jing Yi was as one of the shining stars of the new gen and she’s really good but has room to improve, her limitation being her dialogue reading is a bit muted and she stares too much in scenes that don’t need it. Chen Fei Yu was the surprise for me, he’s really improved (and matured nicely from the really green youth he was in Ever Night) and whatever acting room to grow he has to do is buttressed by his natural onscreen star charisma.