Sunday, May 4, 2014

[O] RUSE OF ENGAGEMENT / 叛逃 [2014] [TVB]

This is a collection of various commentaries and opinions about this series under one post. If you see this at the top, this means it is updated. For more under this post, do click the Read More button. I welcome your comments and your thoughts as well so do use Post A Comment and do indicate which episode you're talking about. Since this is a threaded comment system, you can reply directly to any given comments you wish to reply to. When this is done, I will move this to Reviews Database.




SYNOPSIS
Ruse of Engagement is an upcoming Hong Kong action/crime drama television serial produced by Television Broadcasts Limited (TVB), with Amy Wong serving as the executive producer. The drama follows the story of two brothers who are working as paramilitary officers in the Anti-Terrorist Force (ATF), a fictional intelligence agency inspired by the Counter Terrorism Response Unit of the Hong Kong police force. Warehoused for nearly three years.

CAST INFO
Ruco Chan as Carson Chong Yau-ching
Ron Ng as Alfred Chong Yau-kit
Aimee Chan as Jessica Chung
Yoyo Mung as Yip Chi-ting
Louise Lee as Tong Suk-fun
Kenny Wong as Allen Chung
Eddie Kwan as Ngo Sir
Lai Lok-yi as Negative
Leanne Li as Beauty

and many many more

SOME INFO



WHERE TO WATCH/DOWNLOAD (IF YOU KNOW HOW!)
I found a few places you can watch the latest episodes without English subtitles. You can also download the a bit higher quality version in MP4 format. However the comments in comments section are quite colourful. Remember to try all the MIRROR link if one is not available. Anyway try HERE or HERE.

NOTE
I have written recaps for 2 episodes which you can view after the jump link. Due to this incident with a sexist pig bully, I have stopped the episodic thoughts and back to just ramblings. However do share with me what you think of this series. Further, please do not repost without consent. 

IMPORTANT NOTICE
All GIFs you see in here? I took them mostly from Chinese forums, Asianfanatics and Baidu.com


05.05.2014
THE END OF A POST SAVE FOR SOME FEW THINGS
However reluctant I am to close this post, I must, until there is something new to add to this post instead of leaving it hanging like this. What else to add? Maybe more pictures and completing my review which will take some time. Other than that I have nothing new to add. Ruse Of Engagement has become my all time modern day crime drama from TVB and Ruco with it became my favourite actor in TVB, unless Bowie Lam or Kong Wah comes back. This is just to inform my rant on this series is complete. This opinion is probably the most complete for any series I have ever done, save for an episodic thought. I hope you enjoyed reading them as much as I did writing them. Anyway give me some time to complete the short review. Somehow I find it very hard to write for series I genuinely love.

A repeat, for convenience sake. Feel free to comment.

THE SHORT REVIEW : THE STORY & YES, THAT ENDING
Days after this series ended, I have been experiencing major withdrawal symptoms. No TVB series have made me feel that way for a very very long time and if it has to be this  imperfect series, so be it. As I am writing this, I am reminded by John Legend's rather romantic song everytime I thought about this series as a whole;

'Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections

Indeed. I love this series, for all its perfect imperfections. I may have been emotional about the ending but that is because I love this series for all that it is worth. I will say Ruse Of Engagement is the best crime drama from TVB, ever. It really isn't about the story. ATF is just an excuse. It is more on the characters where each character has a purpose and I don't see any character wasted in development and of course the action. The action is helped by the smart editing which ends almost each episode with some major revelation or better yet, a heart stopping mind numbing shock inducing cliffhanger that made me anticipate the next episode. For me this series works because I saw none of the previews, read none of the spoilers and basically just watched the nightly broadcast. I didn't hunt for spoilers at all. I waited, I was patient and I was duly rewarded. Frankly even if you know the spoilers, it will still shock you in some ways. The fast pace will leave you breathless, the intriguing story will keep you guessing (if not who then why) and of course as you fall for the characters, you became concern for their wellbeing. For me it was Yip Ting and Carson. For others it could be Carson, Jessica or Alfred. I even feel nervous for Negative. In fact I feel more for Negative than I do for Jessica. Unbeknownst to me, the entire story is in a way a love story. When I read articles declaring the love story as heart wrenching, I didn't believe it. I still don't but it is in the end a tragic love story centred on trust and betrayal. The title is indicative of betrayal, after all how can there be a traitor if there is no betrayal and mistrust? But at the end of the day it is about 2 people; one arrogant upstanding and very capable young man by the name of Carson who seems to have the world beneath his feet and the other, an aloof and sometimes not too warm beautiful young woman by the name of Jessica. Problem begins when they both met and fell in love. Problem worsens when Carson got shot in the head and presumed dead. Problem escalated when Carson discovers Jessica has a role to play to his failed execution. Problem came to a head when Carson had to balance between his sense of duty and his love for Jessica. And it all culminated into the last 2 scenes; Jessica's act of desperation where she feels she has no way out when she really do (but who are we to question the mind of a very desperate scared woman who has lost virtually everything?)  and Carson's final act to prove his love to a woman who is no longer there to witness it. There is a progression to the story. However much I dislike the ending, however much I cried and screamed and was in denial for days, at the end of the day Carson's final act is logical in the face of all that has happened. The ending may seem open, ambigious and frustrating, in the end if you accept the ending is Carson committed suicide, then everything else falls into places. Even I myself argued Carson, so self assured, so confident won't ever do something so stupid. But the earlier Carson who was cheeky and rebelious changed when he returned from the dead but still as cheeky and determined to find the traitor. Once he knew who that was, he was deflated. For love, he knew he need to bring Jessica into justice, there is always a way out for Jessica but for Jessica, she felt she was betrayed by a man she had wrongly loved.That final parting words by her;

My only regret is I only realise now I finally know that the one who loves me the most isn’t you. I have loved the wrong man

That must really hurt. In fact this particular line stayed in my memory for days. It made a huge impact for me because it was so full of hurt, so full of pain, and Jessica so full of herself.

And that is the problem with the ending. I generally have no problem with the suicide. I have no problem with any character except if this series wish to justify Carson's suicide as an act of love for Jessica or even as an act due to his immense guilt for his inability to protect her, then several things didn't make sense; such as Carson's insistence to arrest Jessica. That surely must make a sane man conclude Jessica would have killed herself after being driven to desperation. But the main  thing that made the ending seem frivilous and like a child with a temper tantrum rather than a genuine act of love is Jessica. And it is because of performance and also because of the writing.

Jessica is beautiful, smart, rich and decent, at first. But decent is not good enough. She is also cold and aloof at times and there is a good reason why she keeps to herself. However to make the ending convincing, to me Jessica has to be 100% pure. That is to say she has to be without a doubt a good person without any malice or undermining nature that defeats that purity and that whatever she does, she did it with a heavy heart. When it was revealed she was a mole and until the end, yes she did do a lot for Carson but her actions were not pure. Her only concern was herself and since Carson extended to herself, in the end everything she did for Carson she did it for herself. Her one minute of protesting of her father's treatment of Negative to her next minute of wanting to run away when Carson wanted to stop her father from experimenting on another Negative, her one minute of protesting of her father's willingness to release a dangerous virus to general populace to her next minute of wanting to sell the same virus to earn some money and until the very end her pettiness with regards to Carson and Yip Ting's relationship shows her in a very bad light. These didn't show her as 100% pure and so her actions not 100% genuine. By not being 100% genuine, when she killed herself all you could see is a stupid woman who made the wrong decision rather than Carson driving her to her suicide. Her final pronouncement to Carson was more hateful and spiteful than genuine regret and pain. And Carson's suicide to be with her in afterlife due to love, regret or whatever didn't make good sense or even a sad "happy" ending because in the end no one feels Carson a good man should ever die for a woman so selfish. I feel if Jessica was more straightforward in her non-straightforward ways, I would have felt anger at Carson's action and in the end feel rather apt for the ending. But all I felt was the ending was due to an indequate reason. And this is in part because of Aimee Chan's rather disconnected performance which I shall talk more later.

The story and the ending is one flow but was uninterrupted by some not very well developed characters and actions. But if you could just ignore that bit part (which is impossible) or perhaps embellish some characters with your own imagination (which is easier), then everything falls into its own place.

However I would have loved a less grim ending. It can still be grim but hopeful with Jessica given state protection and Carson retiring elsewhere with her. But in truth, if there is such a person like Jessica, I suppose such a person would kill herself. Not sure about Carson. For me the only end to change is with regards to Carson. He need not end up with the much positive character, Yip Ting but he need not die. It is so much more poignant to live in regret and doing things to remedy that regret than to just die smiling and thinking about heaven that may not exist. I'd rather Carson be burdened with guilt for the rest of his life.

Next : I will be talking about my favourite moments and performances.





28.04.2014
DOWNLOAD JUST THE ENGLISH SUBTITLES FILE FOR ALL EPISODES
I found the English subtitles file for all the episodes in SRT format. I tried with one randomly downloaded episode and it syncs. Strangely though the episode I tried it on, the later part doesn't sync. I am wondering if it was because I fast forwarded it. Anyway you can try and see. Best is of course if it is paired with the intended video file version. The English sub quality is very very good so I assume it is either fansub OR the DVD version. You can use the same SRT files (hardcode it, softcode it, just don't reupload it please) to watch with the ones you downloaded without the English subs. However a few provisos;

1. it only syncs with episodes where the opening theme is in full (you will know immediately when you watch).

2. it is just SRT files (episode per episode) so you will need to download the individual episodes (with the opening theme in full) to watch together (like with players that let's you watch with subs)

3. Just unzip the files into the same folder as your video files and remember to name the individual SRT files the same as the corresponding video file. For example;

ep1.rmvb
ep1.srt

Something like that.

4. Any player should load the SRT file automatically. If not, try downloading Media Player Classic which loads automatically.

5. If you have the version without the opening theme which means it doesn't sync, you can always resync the subtitle files. Or even with the opening theme but doesn't sync later on, you can resync. Like in Subtitle Workshop.

6. If you have MP4 version files (or avi, etc) and a good player in Ipad, you can load both files in Ipad and watch. Again only if it syncs. But in Ipad like some players do have the adjusting subtitles function.

EXAMPLE

DOWNLOAD
Zipped file here at mediafire or copy and paste the link below;

https://www.mediafire.com/?pfnex1ucz4h6qle


28.04.2014
BUY THE DVD! DOWNLOAD THE SERIES!
Can you believe it? DVD already out! Not expensive at RM49-90 but I am sure you can find one with discount (and I do mean buying the original set). You can see the example here which delivers to everywhere. It has subtitles also. Yeah for some! I am also happy TVB lately decided to release full episodes rather than sayyyy in the past some were edited like Journey To The West. Hopefully it is HD version. Looks like it. Am thinking if I should buy because of the ending. Let me think. I really do love this series for Ruco and Ruco alone. Or maybe I can hunt for the torrent. Not sure if there is one. Will keep you posted. Found torrents but I am sure from individual ripped files from internet version. Sadly they're always RMVB format. Why people? What is wrong with MP4? Small file and better quality or MKV format, even smaller file and even better quality? Why are the chinese still stuck at RMVB? I am seriously thinking of buying and hardcoding the English sub and uploading for everyone. Let me think...

Anyway if you don't mind RMVB (urghhh), see here. Looks credible. Or here (can separately download English subtitles! Checked a few episodes, looks good!), even more credible. Guaranteed all HD BUT not full HD.

Sorry, HUGE MISTAKE! Yeah! Let's see;

RMVB VERSION
No English sub file included but smaller file. Still HD. Torrent looks credible. No need to seed after finish although encouraged.

See HERE at piratebay.

MKV VERSION
English sub file included, checked a few and all looks good! Torrent file is probably 4 times the size of RMVB vesion but MKV encoding with HD will always retain the HD quality. This is HD but not full HD from the specs I see. Torrent link is credible and you will need to seed the completed file as payback. Fair enough.

See HERE at asiatorrents (just checked. registration is closed, invite only)


24.04.2014
RUCO + YOYO MOMENT
Cute. Missing this series very much.





23.04.2014
THE SHORT REVIEW : THE STORY & YES, THAT ENDING
Days after this series ended, I have been experiencing major withdrawal symptoms. No TVB series have made me feel that way for a very very long time and if it has to be this  imperfect series, so be it. As I am writing this, I am reminded by John Legend's rather romantic song everytime I thought about this series as a whole;

'Cause all of me
Loves all of you
Love your curves and all your edges
All your perfect imperfections

Indeed. I love this series, for all its perfect imperfections. I may have been emotional about the ending but that is because I love this series for all that it is worth. I will say Ruse Of Engagement is the best crime drama from TVB, ever. It really isn't about the story. ATF is just an excuse. It is more on the characters where each character has a purpose and I don't see any character wasted in development and of course the action. The action is helped by the smart editing which ends almost each episode with some major revelation or better yet, a heart stopping mind numbing shock inducing cliffhanger that made me anticipate the next episode. For me this series works because I saw none of the previews, read none of the spoilers and basically just watched the nightly broadcast. I didn't hunt for spoilers at all. I waited, I was patient and I was duly rewarded. Frankly even if you know the spoilers, it will still shock you in some ways. The fast pace will leave you breathless, the intriguing story will keep you guessing (if not who then why) and of course as you fall for the characters, you became concern for their wellbeing. For me it was Yip Ting and Carson. For others it could be Carson, Jessica or Alfred. I even feel nervous for Negative. In fact I feel more for Negative than I do for Jessica. Unbeknownst to me, the entire story is in a way a love story. When I read articles declaring the love story as heart wrenching, I didn't believe it. I still don't but it is in the end a tragic love story centred on trust and betrayal. The title is indicative of betrayal, after all how can there be a traitor if there is no betrayal and mistrust? But at the end of the day it is about 2 people; one arrogant upstanding and very capable young man by the name of Carson who seems to have the world beneath his feet and the other, an aloof and sometimes not too warm beautiful young woman by the name of Jessica. Problem begins when they both met and fell in love. Problem worsens when Carson got shot in the head and presumed dead. Problem escalated when Carson discovers Jessica has a role to play to his failed execution. Problem came to a head when Carson had to balance between his sense of duty and his love for Jessica. And it all culminated into the last 2 scenes; Jessica's act of desperation where she feels she has no way out when she really do (but who are we to question the mind of a very desperate scared woman who has lost virtually everything?)  and Carson's final act to prove his love to a woman who is no longer there to witness it. There is a progression to the story. However much I dislike the ending, however much I cried and screamed and was in denial for days, at the end of the day Carson's final act is logical in the face of all that has happened. The ending may seem open, ambigious and frustrating, in the end if you accept the ending is Carson committed suicide, then everything else falls into places. Even I myself argued Carson, so self assured, so confident won't ever do something so stupid. But the earlier Carson who was cheeky and rebelious changed when he returned from the dead but still as cheeky and determined to find the traitor. Once he knew who that was, he was deflated. For love, he knew he need to bring Jessica into justice, there is always a way out for Jessica but for Jessica, she felt she was betrayed by a man she had wrongly loved.That final parting words by her;

My only regret is I only realise now I finally know that the one who loves me the most isn’t you. I have loved the wrong man

That must really hurt. In fact this particular line stayed in my memory for days. It made a huge impact for me because it was so full of hurt, so full of pain, and Jessica so full of herself.

And that is the problem with the ending. I generally have no problem with the suicide. I have no problem with any character except if this series wish to justify Carson's suicide as an act of love for Jessica or even as an act due to his immense guilt for his inability to protect her, then several things didn't make sense; such as Carson's insistence to arrest Jessica. That surely must make a sane man conclude Jessica would have killed herself after being driven to desperation. But the main  thing that made the ending seem frivilous and like a child with a temper tantrum rather than a genuine act of love is Jessica. And it is because of performance and also because of the writing.

Jessica is beautiful, smart, rich and decent, at first. But decent is not good enough. She is also cold and aloof at times and there is a good reason why she keeps to herself. However to make the ending convincing, to me Jessica has to be 100% pure. That is to say she has to be without a doubt a good person without any malice or undermining nature that defeats that purity and that whatever she does, she did it with a heavy heart. When it was revealed she was a mole and until the end, yes she did do a lot for Carson but her actions were not pure. Her only concern was herself and since Carson extended to herself, in the end everything she did for Carson she did it for herself. Her one minute of protesting of her father's treatment of Negative to her next minute of wanting to run away when Carson wanted to stop her father from experimenting on another Negative, her one minute of protesting of her father's willingness to release a dangerous virus to general populace to her next minute of wanting to sell the same virus to earn some money and until the very end her pettiness with regards to Carson and Yip Ting's relationship shows her in a very bad light. These didn't show her as 100% pure and so her actions not 100% genuine. By not being 100% genuine, when she killed herself all you could see is a stupid woman who made the wrong decision rather than Carson driving her to her suicide. Her final pronouncement to Carson was more hateful and spiteful than genuine regret and pain. And Carson's suicide to be with her in afterlife due to love, regret or whatever didn't make good sense or even a sad "happy" ending because in the end no one feels Carson a good man should ever die for a woman so selfish. I feel if Jessica was more straightforward in her non-straightforward ways, I would have felt anger at Carson's action and in the end feel rather apt for the ending. But all I felt was the ending was due to an indequate reason. And this is in part because of Aimee Chan's rather disconnected performance which I shall talk more later.

The story and the ending is one flow but was uninterrupted by some not very well developed characters and actions. But if you could just ignore that bit part (which is impossible) or perhaps embellish some characters with your own imagination (which is easier), then everything falls into its own place.

However I would have loved a less grim ending. It can still be grim but hopeful with Jessica given state protection and Carson retiring elsewhere with her. But in truth, if there is such a person like Jessica, I suppose such a person would kill herself. Not sure about Carson. For me the only end to change is with regards to Carson. He need not end up with the much positive character, Yip Ting but he need not die. It is so much more poignant to live in regret and doing things to remedy that regret than to just die smiling and thinking about heaven that may not exist. I'd rather Carson be burdened with guilt for the rest of his life.

Next : I will be talking about my favourite moments and performances.


21.04.2014
THE MOTHER OF ALL TOUCHES
Only Mama Carson can touch Carson there, ok?



Ok, maybe not...




But one gives love, one causes nothing but despair. "Jesska! Jesska! Mur-de-rerrrrr" (Imagine Gollum). But only Mama Carson got almost cheek to cheek selfie ok?





21.04.2014
THE ENDING IS GOOD ENOUGH
I have calmed down. Despite the shortcomings of Jessica (or as Carson calls her, Jesska! Jesska!) as a character, I understand the ending why Carson (or as Jessica calls him, Carrrrrson) has to die by killing himself. So I accept that ending even if I am pissed it wasn't done beautifully storywise. In the end Jessica wins. It is always and will always be about her.

20.04.2014
"CARSON IS DEAD" ANNOUNCEMENT X 2 BY RUCO CHAN
I don't know how many times I wrote he is dead, he is asleep, he is dead, etc etc but this time it is Ruco again via his weibo posting yet another cryptic post together with a crying smiley. The first part is relevant but I am posting the whole message;


如果有正不選擇這條路能否再遇到 j ?只要自己覺得值得便去吧![泪]時間過得超快,要下次再遇妳們了!只要是值得我會繼續去做!妳你哋會在下一站等我嗎?[可爱]

The whole post is;

a. first half about Carson since the name is there;
c. 2nd half is definitely self promo about looking forward to showing us what he's got in his next series.

I assume j is Jessica. So basically the first half he said;

If Carson did not choose this road to take, how can he ever meet Jessica again? As long as he himself feels it is a road worth taking, do it!

Ruco, this time I disagree with you.

1. Carson's mother is worth 10 of Jessica;
2. people want to live, not pray to die;
3. Jessica took her own life and whilst it is her own choice, it was born out of desperation. Carson is not in the same league.
4. Carson does not look like a religious person to me.
5. In every religion there is where concept of afterlife and heaven can be seen, suicide always mean the person who committed suicide ends up in hell. And in different levels, so in the end the so called beautiful ending of Carson and Jessica together in afterlife is pure and utter rubbish.

Nobody ever thought of poor old Mama Carson. Someone should remind Ruco on this point in Weibo. Again Carson could kill himself but not for this version of Jessica. That's just bad justification and a good series pulled down by an insanely grim ending. It could be as grim but to live on takes more courage than to die. The so called meeting in afterlife is just pure rubbish. On TV I mean. Carson  is young and at the prime of his life. If Jessica could speak beyond the grave, it would she wanted him to live. Because living in regret is more impact than dying with happiness. I doubt Jessica wants him near her in the afterlife after the repeated betrayal by Carson. I just wish for once TVB had ended a series properly without using shock and questionable endings. They need not set an example but there are many reasons to live and Carson will have to live for his mother, for his brother and for the memory of Jessica. There is nothing romantic in the ending, it is just stupidity. In real life if there is such a person like Carson, I would have slapped him many times over.

In other words, Ruco, it isn't cute nor justified. Sometimes even level headed stars post stupid posts. I hope I have read wrong.


20.04.2014
MOST FAVOURITE MOMENTS 4 : CARSON + JESSICA (ACTUALLY CARSON ALONE)
Apart from Carson + Ting kissing, the following is probably one of my 2 most favourite moments which ironically involves Jessica (the other is the morning after scene, still looking for the screencaps). Why I like it so much because it involves one of Aimee Chan's better moments as an actress and also the way dear Ruco was sitting (last picture). I thought it was casual, masculine and practical.






GIF versions of the same scene. I believe this was where he made the promise to protect her and be with her always.





20.04.2014
CARSON + JESSICA SCENES PLUS CARSON ACTION SCENES
Carson may have killed himself, which negated everything good about this guy (he ain't a survivor!) but that can't negate the fact that he was a strong heroic guy, at the beginning. So here are some action sequences and also to fans of Carson + Jesska (curse you damn woman!!) ...







19.04.2014
OPENING THEME & DOWNLOAD
My emotion and acceptance of Carson's suicide has settled down. The ending is meant for different interpretation but I suppose the popular view is he killed himself and to me due to many reasons is unsettling. This is why Ruse Of Engagement will be remembered. I will not remember the ending fondly but prior to that, I shall remember this series for everything prior to the stupid ending. And it is stupid.

Which is why I am backtracking and am posting the opening theme which I absolutely love. I love the mix of music and dialogue, with some choice scenes which makes it so exciting. My most favourite moment is the first few seconds where a villain is shot multiple times by a machine gun and the way he got shot, his movements is super cool. Morbid I know but it is cool and I enjoyed my nightly reenactment of that scene every time it was on. I tried uploading to youtube but got blocked due to copyright issues so I uploaded to Dailymotion. If you can't see the video at all, and you really just want the start sequence, scroll further down to download the MP4 version of the 720p version which is not very good quality but isn't too bad.

WATCH THE OPENING THEME
If can't see embedded video, go here or watch directly at mediafire. If video no longer available, download the file.




DOWNLOAD OPENING THEME


19.04.2014
RAGING FIRE
Like in my heart over the ending, as exemplified by the following gif image (gotta love Baidu for all the GIFs);






19.04.2014
JESSICA AND CARSON MOMENT
Am trying to find that "Carson sleeping on sofa" scene in its entirety, surely Ruco's most attractive moment. Anyway this is for fans of Carson and Jessica which I found at some Chinese forum, sorta summarise the whole relationship.






19.04.2014
MOST FAVOURITE MOMENTS 3 : CARSON + TING
Ahhh Carson, you have loved the wrong person!!





19.04.2014
FACING THE TRUTH HEAD ON
Carson killed himself. The end. Out of character, so it is bad writing. But yes, Chococinno is the main sign pointing towards suicide. Plus creepy smile. Plus Ruco's post at weibo. Plus hand slack. Plus this is my way of closure and my disbelief the theme of tragedy is this main series' theme. In that sense, it made sense, however unfair or stupid the ending was. If there really was a Carson, his stupidity is to die for Jessica. She is not worth it or rather there are other people more worth living than being dead. The guilt is not emphasised enough although you can argue guilt is personal to all.



Bye bye Carson. Rest in peace. NOT!!


19.04.2014
OBLIGATORY WET SEXY LEGS SHOT
Interesting sexy wet legs photo. Am drowning in my sorrow with the end of Ruse Of Engagement, thereby ending my nightly chase. Confirmed. Netizens hated the ambigous ending.




By the way Ruco can swim very well.


19.04.2014
WHAT'S IN A NAME
Carson in this series is Carrrrrson (Canadian accent with their Rs)

Jessica in this series is Jesska (HK accent with their difficulty in pronouncing more than 2 syllables)

Alfred is always Ah Fad and not Alfred because I suppose Chinese and their inability to pronounce the R word. But Canadians can. So they will probably go Alfrrrrred.

And Ruco's version of "Jessica, calm down, calm down" sounded like "Jesska, kam don, kam don". He is not an English speaker so to speak so frankly it doesn't matter.



19.04.2014
THREE THEORIES ON THE ENDING
Just to round up the consensus amongst the netizens.

ONE : CARSON KILLED HIMSELF
Clue is the milky Chococinno and his weird smile and memories and Jessica's last parting words "I have loved the wrong man" was a huge blow. And he has one too many blows in his life and this was the last of it. If such is the case, frankly he should have grabbed the gun and shoot himself immediately after she did.

TWO : BULLET FRAGMENTS IN BRAIN CAUSED SUDDEN DEATH
Because well.. he did just die suddenly and dropping his head. Not even sleeping pills would have such fast and beautiful effect. But bullet fragments never bothered him for a large part of this series so this is too convenient. I'd rather he killed himself but for a better reason or rather for a better written Jessica.

THREE : HE WAS JUST VERY TIRED AND FELL ASLEEP
This is my theory simply because I doubt Carson had a good night's sleep since Jessica's death. The flowers was him paying homage to his past with Jessica, like how we visit the favourite places of our died beloved. The memories were him feeling nostalgic. The chococinno was a mistake from props. And Yip Ting is a smart cookie. If he had wanted to kill himself, she would have sensed it and stayed back and stopped him.

So in the end, TVB should just release a 30 minute special which gives us a more hopeful ending in line with Carson's character. Or have Mama Carson kick and whip his dead body for killing himself for an unworthy woman.


19.04.2014
MY SHORT COMMENTS FROM JAYNESTARS
Originally posted here at Jaynestars, here are some of my comments which relate to the plot. Now I am not sure if I want to write a review for this since I have stated many times how I feel about this series and performances in this post itself.


On Aimee Chan;

I thought (the suicide scene) that was her best moment.

But the screaming part (suicide scene) was well done. I have a feeling it was spliced together and not one continous scene. Because one second she is screaming, another she was calm immediately after the screaming.

Up to debate. I think she exceeded herself but in the end wholly inconsistent. Maybe her tears is too transparent, I know she cries hard but somehow can’t see the effect on her face. As for a character who lost everything, this series goes all out to show how tragic Jessica was. Truth is, she had a choice and she chose the wrong choices even until the end. The tragic one is Carson. Anyway stupid ending.


On the ending;

Very disappointed with the stupid open ending. Could have been perfect if ended it properly and now everyone will want to discuss and bombard Ruco’s weibo with the question on the ending. Just some shock tactic.

The script is bad only so far as to Jessica’s nature. she is like ping pong ball between decent to selfish, so it does not justify Carson’s immense guilt. Her last parting words were hurtful. It was supposed to have this impact like a woman realising she wasted her love on the wrong man but because of Jessica’s ping pong nature, I felt she was very selfish to the end. I understand the ending and I am ok with Carson killing himself if Jessica’s true nature was more well defined. Since it was not I find it stupid to have Carson killing himself for a woman who is not worth his moral compass so to speak.

It would have been great if Jessica was better written and so Carson’s arrogance (at the beginning) and his (if interpreted that way) choice in the end would have been more consistent and bigger impact (due to a fault arising out of his arrogance and not his sense of justice).


On the series;

Anyway Ruse Of Engagement, despite the insipid first 6 episodes and the confusing terrible last 5 minutes (due really to one character) is to me TVB’s best drama of the year and perhaps TVB’s best crime action drama ever. For the most part, it was flawless in action sequences and storytelling and cliffhanger. I suppose not even the stupid ending will hurt the series much. I also think Ruco’s worth just went up a million notches. Unfortunately so do Aimee eventhough many netizens are not very favourable to her performance. But they love Ruco-Aimee pairing which I don’t. Chemistry wise there is more in a 3 year old series than in recent one but I still feel Aimee was almost not receiving the electricity from Ruco.



19.04.2014
MORE ON THE MILKY CHOCOCHINNO AND LAST MOMENTS
Rat poison issit? Or obvious mistake?





Still think he just wanted a quiet moment with his memories with Jessica.

By the way love the way he sat.

19.04.2014
AIMEE CHAN'S BEST ACTING MOMENT
Aimee was mostly walking inaudible dead in this series except for few moment and this moment is one of those few moments. I found a picture of the moment she shot herself which was graphic so I think I will just post this moments before she shot herself. Am posting that moment as well. Her makeup is excellent by the way. Looks like someone very very mournful, which is Aimee's best look.




Was it me or did she flinched a little when she was supposed to be dead?


19.04.2014
MOST FAVOURITE MOMENTS 2 : CARSON + TING
As expected, the internet is raging with errr... raging messages about the stupid open ending or some call it ambigous ending. Ambigous, open, confusing, whatever, the ending IS urghhhhhh!!! Many can't believe Carson will kill himself since he was so strong before. Well guilt is a great motivator for many things. Or bullet fragments killed him which I think was so convenient if that is the case. I am sure Amy Wong may blog about the ending if she has a weibo.

Anyway thanks to DC, FOUND THE LAST KISSING SCENE of Carson and Yip Ting!! Yeah!!! That completes my collection. You know I never even try to find Carson and Jessica kissing scenes. Maybe I should at least find the strawberry eating scene.




19.04.2014
THE INEVITABLE CONCLUSION
I'd rather a clear ending that Carson killed himself with Ting turning back and see his slumped over body and crying. The evidence seems to point to the inevitable conclusion however much I am in denial; Carson killed himself. The chocochinno, the message to his brother, his resignation, his smile, his memory, his tired appearance, the flowers, the location, etc etc etc. If it was clearer, Carson dying is in a way a great ending. And when I say clearer, Jessica should have been clearer in the sense she is not conflicted (bad vs good) and have clear scenes showing her good conscience instead of some scenes derailing all that, thus making Carson's overwhelming guilt a bit too underwhelming.

But I shall stick with director forgetting chococinno is not milky and he is very very tired.

19.04.2014
RUCO CHAN REPLIES!
Yes he did! He posted a cryptic message accompanied with a very nice picture at his Weibo account;


In Cantonese;

為了正義為了無辜的人,我只能犧牲自已所愛,對不起!我們會在别的空間永恆快乐[爱你]有正義敬上

Maybe you can help to translate more accurate but my translator says;

For justice and for the innocent people, I can only sacrifice my own love. I am sorry! We will be happy together in another realm/space (I love you). Sincerely, Yau Ching
It could mean Ruco is revealing Carson killed himself or stating the fact; that Carson had to sacrifice Jessica to save the innocent and that they will meet again in heaven, etc. Doesn't mean Carson killed himself, just that he was very upset.

Ruco, if you want to help, why not post the last 2 paragraphs of the script itself? That will answer the question once and for all.

Of course he won't or can't. Because this is TVB's way of generating discussion topic. For me that is the "cheapest" way to do so. The more I see the ending, the angrier I am. Great series but pulled down by a gimmicky nonsensical open ending.


19.04.2014
A-HA!! EVIDENCE OF POISON!!
A lot of emotional fans crying about Carson and his choice to kill himself whilst there are small majority out there who thought he was just very very tired and so he was asleep. Plus sometimes you bring your loved one's favourite flowers to your  favourite place to like "pray pray" them.

Anyway my shock headline is because of the Chococinno, which is something Carson created for Jessica. Remember the colour of the Chococinno?



See? Black right?

Last scene of Carson;


Now looking like milk coffee or milk tea, except the straw is the same, the lime is the same. Perhaps that is poisoned Chococinno? Or maybe the director just forgot.

And  by the way if he was poisoned, that is the most cool looking poison-suicide. Nahhh.. just very very tired.


19.04.2014
OBLIGATORY NIP SHOT
I am drowning my sorry at the end of Ruse Of Engagement with lots of posts with pictures. There are sex symbols in any series; some may say Aimee Chan with her super short white pants or whatever else. For me it is Ruco Chan and here is an obligatory service to all womenkind (and some men) with his nip shot for you to enjoy. Ohhh la la.


Now before you think "wahhhh so sexy", do bear in mind he was being tortured/electrocuted here. But hey, white tee, wet, Ruco... great combination that will "electrify" you!

19.04.2014
MOST FAVOURITE MOMENTS 1 : CARSON + TING
Forget about the possibility of Carson killing himself over his guilt over Jessica's suicide. I mean seriously, this man was shot in the head, electrocuted twice, tortured, blamed, slapped, had guns pointed at him many many times, insisted on arresting the woman he loved and he will kill himself over a trivial thing called guilt? I mean seriously, he wanted to shoot her! Ridiculous ending if interpreted that way. What a way to give a final insult to such a strong character. I prefer to think since it is an open ending, it can mean he dies or he goes to sleep. I hate how commenters are saying he betrayed Jessica who helped him so many times. No one seemed to think Jessica wanting to leave the country when she found out about Negative's supposed death, how she wanted to SELL the virus for her own gain shows her true character. Jessica's last words "I have loved the wrong man" which is very memorable should have been Carson to say "I have loved the wrong woman". Really really hate the ending the more I remember it.

Anyway let's move to something more cogent, more lovely and that is the best moments for Carson and Yip Ting. I found a GIF on the kissing scene and more!! Yeah!! All from here. Best if I could find the one where Yip Ting remembers the kiss and it was a closer angle. That one cannot find!



And got picture version also!!


Another cute scene in GIF.


 


And the pictures version;



Also the hiding in bathroom scene.






It is sad indeed that Carson thinks of Yip Ting only as a friend. He wasted his love on Jessica, and any guilt. Let me clarify; guilt is a powerful emotion that can drive people to either do something stupid or do something good. But in this series, I don't see why Jessica's suicide should be the overpowering reason for Carson's guilt when he wanted to shoot and arrest her when she repeatedly said she will kill herself just minutes prior. Guilt could come from her final hurtful words, the sense that he betrayed her trust. But that is not in Carson's nature and to suddenly end it the way it did if interpreted it that way is really the series' downfall. Just a shock ending. Is it different? No. Is it expected? Not really. Is it refreshing? Hell no! Is it a good ending? No. Could it have been a better ending? Yes and it does not have to involve Carson together with Yip Ting. It can be as simple as a hopeful ending without all the forced negativity. Surely Carson would have realised Jessica would have killed herself with him forcing her to the corner so to speak. So again, it makes no sense, not in real life and not on TV.

And finally the filming version of the cuteness to close it all! Something good to remember about this series.




19.04.2014
CLOSURE
Ok lar, Carson poisoned himself lar. Closure for me lar. Let's move on to another Ruco series. When?!


18.04.2014
DID CARSON COMMIT SUICIDE?
Barely 3 hours into the last episode being broadcast, as expected in Ruco's Weibo itself people are reacting negatively to the stupid ending. Because they don't see why Carson could ever kill himself. It makes no sense and I agree. One even commented why not end with Jessica's death being faked and she and Carson ran away, forever? Can't be because Jessica wanted to sell the virus remember? Carson refused, remember? Many are not happy it depicted Carson as having possibly poisoned himself. If he did, that was such a clean sort of poisoning. Or the effect was too fast.

Again I repeat, I think he was just very tired. So let's wait for Mr Carson aka Ruco himself to comment a bit. In the end I think the series meant to end with him dying, to add to the tragicness and therein lies the series' main and biggest problem; Carson committing suicide is out of character and does not make for a good ending even if it makes for one debatable ending.

18.04.2014
HOW? TELL ME HOW?!
Every night I chased this drama, every night I blogged about it, every night I have Ruco in my dreams. Now it has ended! My night is incomplete! How can I ever survive? I am having Ruse Of Engagement withdrawal just barely hours after it ended!! I need another Ruco series! I don't want to rewatch Ruse Of Engagement. Once is enough for the time being. But oh, I already miss my nights with Carson and Yip Ting!! Now the same time slot will be occupied by a bunch of pre menopausal women into dancing! That's not sexy, not for me!







18.04.2014
EPISODE 25 [LAST EPISODE]
The big finale; the big end! Before the last episode is broadcast, a few predictions as mentioned previously;

Either Jessica dies or doesn't die and turn state witness.Jessica's dad dies gloriously.Negative lives because ATF found the data plans for vaccines.  Even though King clearly said vaccines were not really working but Dr Sze may be able to help.Carson waits for Jessica if she doesn't die.Ting moves to US to fulfill her promise to Papa.Mama Carson has her sons back.Last scene will be another major terrorist attack and we see Carson, Ngo Sir, Alfred and gang efficiently move to work and that will be the last scene. If this is true, very disappointed because that is TVB's typical ending.
We shall see!!

I hate the last 5 seconds. It will be debated till no end and that is the intended effect so let me start with the end.

Last scene was a grieving Carson sitting at he and Jessica's favourite cafe and Ting came by to say is leaving for US but she will always be there for him if he needs her. Alone, he drank his Chococinno and remembered Jessica and he smiled and said "So sweet" and last scene was him slowly closing his eyes and then his head slumped to his chest and his hands slacked and the end.

First reaction was "Shit! What a stupid open ending!" and someone in forums was right; TVB did adopt an open ending. So does it mean Carson died? As in killed himself? Looks like it doesn't it? But I will say that is a red herring. He was probably very tired from days from not sleeping and haunted by Jessica's suicide and he was probably just very tired. Carson won't kill himself because;

1. he is a survivor
2. he has a mother whom he loves very much
3. if he had wanted to arrest Jessica who repeatedly told him she'd rather die than go to jail even for one day, does this look like someone who will kill himself?

Of course at the end of the day you can be the one who said "Look, obviously he killed himself" but again the ending is open ending. It is for you to interprete and for me, whilst Carson may be broken by oh so many traumas, with Jessica's last words haunting him, I give him more credit and I see him as someone grieving and tired and just went for a sleep.

So let us all bombard Ruco's weibo and Amy Wong's email and just demand for an answer.

Why can't TVB ever end anything well? Why can't they just give this series a proper end to make it complete? Do I need to wait 2 decades like Looking Back In Anger to know the definite answer?

And how did it all lead to this?

Well blame the destroyer, Alfred. With that I need to start from the beginning.

The bad guys did wanted to make an airborne virus so as to sell more vaccines or antidotes and they tasked it to Carson and Ting to install 2 separate devices in 2 different shopping complex. Ting refused and was hung high above with the device strapped to her stomach with 5 minutes left before detonation. Carson meanwhile beat the guys who held him, handed over the device to ATF members who just arrived and with Alfred, rushed to save Ting. Eventhough Carson cut the device and Alfred threw it away, it detonated in air and the yellow powder spread to the shopping complex and Ting panicking said don't touch her, she could be infected. I thought in that case everyone is infected.

At the hospital, lo and behold, the device held no virus!! What? Ahhhh because previously Jessica exchanged the virus, downloaded the vaccine and deleted all files. Her father knew it was her and even wanted to kill her out of anger. She argued with her father about killing innocent people, etc etc. He rushed after her. She pushed him away and he fell chest first to the sofa and knifed himself with the letter opener and died. Jessica ran away, wrecked with guilt for killing her own father and she was a murderer.

Carson visited Ting at the hospital and received a call from Jessica. He did not inform ATF and rushed to find her at a church and she begged him to leave HK with her. But she also knew Carson was ATF mole because she deduced ATF arrived too soon and so she thought there must be a mole, especially Carson's personality didn't make any sense to be a terrorist. She said she loved him very very much and they could run. Carson asked why not give up the virus and vaccine data so to get lighter sentence but Jessica said no, she will never go to jail, not even a day. Carson rightly said she killed her father out of self defence. But at this point she was beyond reasoning. I thought if wasn't for her, everyone would have been infected. So in the end Jessica is a hero and so will not get any punishment at all. HK and their skewered sense of justice on screen is really frustrating to watch. Ahhh but when you think of Jessica so nice, what she said next was chilling and showed her true nature; she intended to sell the virus and antidote to any country that wants it so that she can have loads of money and open the cafe she and Carson always wanted to. WHAT?! Crazy isn't it? In the end this woman is just a bad person, just like her dad. Carson finally agreed to run away with her, but he SMS-ed Ngo Sir their position. Ting was afraid Carson will let Jessica go and so with Alfred went to find them.

Jessica retrieved the virus, trusted Carson of course and as they were running away Ting rushed to stop Carson and angrily argued with Carson. Carson roughly pushed Ting away and warned her to leave them alone and Jessica handed over the package to him and he promptly threw it at Ting and said "Give it to Ngo Sir!" and at that point Jessica knew she was betrayed by the one she loved the most. Argument ensued and Jessica turned around and walked away and Carson held a gun at her and warned her. Jessica cried angrily "Either you shoot me or you let me go! Make you choice! Shoot me if you dare!!" and she walked away and Carson was aiming at her when Alfred rushed out and stopped him and kicked the gun at Jessica's direction. See? Alfred, the destroyer because what happened next was Alfred's fault. Jessica picked up the gun, both guys said don't! Don't! But Jessica said sadly "This is the inevitable end. This is how it has to be. My only regret is I only realise now I finally know that the one who loves me the most isn’t you. I have loved the wrong man" (because Alfred was the one who wanted to let her go) and she shot herself through the head. Carson rushed forward and oh so much blood! Realistic!


Carson and Alfred cried their hearts out. Carson resigned from ATF, he needed time and space and he told Alfred he will be away for a little while to think things through and meanwhile Alfred will have to take care of mama. Alfred agrees. Doesn't sound like a man who is about to kill himself.

Meanwhile at ATF Beauty was cleaning out Jessica's stuff and was crying when I think Ngo Sir said Jessica wouldn't want them to be sad. Frankly, I doubt Jessica cared. 

And the ending was what I wrote at the top.

Why I said Jessica was the most selfish is evident in this episode. It was all about ME ME ME all along. She could have given the virus to ATF but instead she wanted to sell it. In the end she never cared about the general populace. Carson would have been better off with Ting because Jessica did not deserve him. What I dislike is Carson's reaction when Jessica said she was gonna sell the thing for money. I expected him to argue with her, but instead he just wanted to retrieve the item and arrest Jessica but there was no sense of shock or revelation or anger that in the end, Jessica's true nature was someone so selfish. So it does not make any sense to have him so grieving for someone whose nature in the end is not what he expected. It makes no good sense onscreen to have him feel so much guilt for her killing herself because in the end she is a bad person. I would have loved it if the ending redeemed Jessica; meaning she never wanted to sell the virus, etc but she was just pushed to a corner, thinking she had no way out and so thought killing herself was the only option. If such is the case it made sense for her final words for Carson to have haunted Carson so deeply. But because of that virus thing, her last words seem to be from a person so skewed in her sense of justice for herself and others. In the end Carson's guilt is unjustified for someone like Jessica whose last moment was all about her and expected everything to revolve around her.

Anyway I don't think Carson killed himself. It was just a stupid open ending to have everyone discuss about this series. For once I wished it was the ending I anticipated;

Last scene will be another major terrorist attack and we see Carson, Ngo Sir, Alfred and gang efficiently move to work and that will be the last scene.
Because the open ending was also TVB's typical way of destroying their own story. I'd rather Carson go backpacking or something. Or look into the faraway distance as he drank his Choccocinno and said "So sweet" and smiled as he thought about Jessica and giving us a picture of a man in contemplation and let us feel his grieve and that he will forever live in his guilt. Anything but the stupid ending.

Anyway I suppose the ending in any way shuts down the idea of any sequel to Ruse Of Engagement.

Despite the stupid ending, wow what an end! I mean what a ride!! 25 episodes, minus the first 6 episodes, minus the last 10 minutes or so .. perfection! The adrenaline rush, the "high blood pressure" moments, all the cliffhangers and the second guessing, etc etc, all was on its way to make this series perhaps TVB's smartest crime drama ever. Or modern crime drama to be precise. It was stupid thanks to the few moments I have mentioned. The scene where Jessica argued with Carson was well written, the scene leading up to her suicide was harrowing. I did say Jessica in the end is a bad person due to her selfishness but in truth, it was a little sad to see her pushed to a corner like that. It also featured Aimee Chan's best acting even if she could have done with more tears, more red nose, more anger, more of everything.

I will say this much; the graphic content, the idea of Ruse Of Engagement is just fantastic. The last scene will not destroy the effort. Although I wished for a better ending, a more complete one, from episode 7 to 25, there were so many unexpected twists and turns that justifies Ruse Of Engagement as TVB's best drama of 2014. It may only be April, but I don't expect to see another drama as sassy, cool, smart, well paced, most time clever and at most times well acted as Ruse Of Engagement.

I will talk more in my short review later on but I will like to end my episodes commentary for episode 25 by saying this; even till the last moment, this series left me breathless. Except for the stupid open ending, TVB has exceeded all expectations with this one. Perhaps nothing is perfect.

Just 3 more observations;

Dr King is dumb.

What happened to Negative? Did he survive?

And I don't get why Carson even said to Jessica she will probably go to jail for a few years. The way  I see it, she won't have to because by turning state witness, she will be granted immunity and no jail time.

Anyway like I said, I don't think Carson killed himself. He was probably just very very very tired.

P/S I just remembered Carson has fragments or whatever in his brain from the head wound, remember? Could it be he died unexpectedly from that? Could be! BUT the doctor said the fragments posed no threat and he never had any problems from that so my guess is, no.


17.04.2014
EPISODE 24
1 more episode until THE END.

Good news first.

Negative is rescued. Alfred finds out he is indeed pig brain and that Carson is a good guy. But he doesn't yet realise Jessica is the mole.

Bad news.

Negative could die at any time!

NOOOOO!!!!!!!!

I have so wronged Negative. Even in throes of pain and confusion, when Carson was in front of him, he thought Carson was the mole. When he knew Carson wasn't a mole, he did his best to help Carson escape. And even if he was half a life, he fought until the very very end where he did die, until Alfred and Ngo Sir arrived at the changed location (Jessica helped to find out from the jovial but evil Dr King and told Carson, inadvertantly helped ATF), Ngo Sir injected something, CPR and Negative lives!

Yeah!!

But what were they doing with Negative?

Theory one : to develop some kind of biological weapon. The virus is similar to scarlet fever. Hmmmm why not a different strain of Ebola? Because due to theory two;

Theory two : Carson thinks because Jessica's dad want to develop a deadly but controllable infectious disease where he can also develop the vaccines and sell the vaccines. Smart isn't it? Except this is already said in Mission Impossible II plot. I read about Scarlet Fever, no deadly enough.

I agree with theory two. Negative now is serious but not dead yet. I worry most for him. Negative, the most misunderstood ATF agent. Oh and ATF all knows Carson and Yip Ting are the good guys. The revelation was so simple, too easy and no impact.

And who is Eva? She is actually Dr Sze's real daughter!! Her mother remarried and I assume she took her stepfather's name. Carson and Yip Ting and some guys were tasked with escorting her to the parking lot and kidnap her. Carson quietly told Eva to spray them with the given pepper spray and run for her life which she did and Carson and Ting pretended to stumble, etc but in the course of falling Carson did break his watch which has a tracking device. Ooops!

Jessica also felt something was not right and overheard her father mentioned a university, she rushed there and Eva ran into her car. Big mistake because Jessica was so slow to react the bad guy reached the car, knocked out Eva and told Jessica to drive with the threat of a gun on Eva. Carson and Ting realised all their effort came to naught.

At some secret hiding place, Jessica argued with her dad to tell him to stop whatever he is doing to the poor girl. Father scolded her to stay and not meddle into his things and guess what? All Jessica did was sulk and became very quiet. I find her a very conflicting character; she knew what he father did was wrong before Carson's appearance but she continued on. With Carson, she developed a conscience. And when she found out Negative died thanks to Carson telling her, she was upset. She tried to help Negative but couldn't. Carson then said they must stop her father from experimenting on innocent people and Jessica guessed her father may be making some virus for antidote thing and yet, she urged Carson to run away with her,not care a thing. She knew Eva was being kidnapped, but she argued no more. I find Jessica insincere and her only sincerest act was loving Carson which made her confront her father's badness. If not, she will still happily spy for her dad.

Anyway ATF was trying to track Carson but was hard to. So in the end, Carson and Ting will have to depend on their own wits.

So what will happen in episode 25?

Either Jessica dies or doesn't die and turn state witness.
Jessica's dad dies gloriously.
Negative lives because ATF found the data plans for vaccines.  Even though King clearly said vaccines were not really working but Dr Sze may be able to help.
Carson waits for Jessica if she doesn't die.
Ting moves to US to fulfill her promise to Papa.
Mama Carson has her sons back.
Last scene will be another major terrorist attack and we see Carson, Ngo Sir, Alfred and gang efficiently move to work and that will be the last scene. If this is true, very disappointed because that is TVB's typical ending.

I am excited for a good finale. Hopefully a good great end!!


16.04.2014
EPISODE 23
Papa is dead, ATF could get nothing out of Ting, Ting rushes home to find the USB only to find Ah Man already there demanding for the USB and what ensued next was super awesome because I never knew Ting could fight. They fought and Ah Man accidentally knocked onto glass and died. Ting ran away, Scaredy Bird's people everywhere and so she called the only person she can trust that is Carson but it was Jessica who picked up the phone and Ting didn't speak, put down the phone and in the rain ran for cover. She was all alone.

Carson found out about Ah Man from his 2 bosses (Ngo Sir and Sek Sir) and he went out to find Ting and actually found her sitting on some stairs. He suspected she would be around the area. And what ensued next was what I hope how it will end; Carson seemed to show remarkable concern for Ting. Ting cried she was all alone; she had nowhere to go and no one to turn to. Carson promised her he will protect her no matter what. He found out she was sick, took her home to Jessica where he deemed it was safest. He made Jessica go buy medicine, he touched Ting, was concerned about her, put her to bed and even cooked porridge for her. All these made Jessica exceedingly sulky and jealous despite his assurances but she pretended all is ok. Ting trusted Carson enough to give him the USB which contained the name list of Scaredy Bird but nothing of any importance since only names and I was like "Carson! That list is important! If there are members in ATF, what if one of them is in the parliament?!". That part was dumb. Anyway he gave it back to Ting to use as leverage for her safety. She was better later and she heard Carson and Jessica arguing a little where Carson made it clear he wanted to see Jessica's father to ensure Ting's safety; he will die for Ting. Jessica again very jealous and later Ting left them with a note that she will handle everything herself.

At this point I felt there is such a huge difference between Ting and Jessica even if their similarity is they love the same man. Even Ngo sir told Carson whether it is wise to have them stay together and Carson thought he meant Scaredy Bird but Ngo Sir said "No, I meant Jessica. After all having 2 women who are in love with you in the same house will compromise Jessica's better judgment" but Carson was sure she won't be like that. Is this some prediction on the last 2 episodes?

Anyway the difference. No doubt Jessica did everything for Carson, even if it meant helping Ting but that was the max of her conscience. She has no conscience for the other things she did or did not do. She did not hesitate to lie, cheat and use Alfred in her own way. But the worst is, if not for Carson, would she have walked away from her father? Ting is different. She vowed to help Carson, even if she was in love with him, everything she did was for the bigger picture; to find out the truth. She is not limiting her purpose to Carson. Hers is beyond that. I find Ting such a fascinating character and indeed a person with integrity. Even Carson is beginning to see Jessica's weakness and I hope this series will end with Carson falling for Ting even if it is only 2 more episodes.The concern he felt for her must be genuine! Must be!!

But credit to Jessica, she did help Ting, for Carson even she didn't like Ting. Ting went to see Jessica's dad, bargained her way to a deal and really, this woman can do anything.

Meanwhile Sek Sir left a trail of false leads, giving Ting an alibi to Man's death. The biggest two face is Sek Sir and luckily he is on the good guys' side.

Jessica's dad ordered Carson to investigate a seemingly unrelated and unconnected young woman named Eva. So far no leads as to who and why and what is with Eva. Jessica finds out 7th floor at her father's building is suddenly like a fortress. She also found out a Dr Sze (I think) was working for her dad or something. She told Carson because Dr King and Dr Sze are both prominent biologists and genetics expert. So far no clue as to what her dad is doing. Meanwhile Jessica is upset Carson is helping her father. She thought they can leave soon but now Carson is back with Scaredy Bird. Carson assured her he could not say no to her dad. Meanwhile Carson was told by Ngo Sir to investigate 7th floor.whilst Ting is tasked with following Eva. Carson climbed into probably the world's BIGGEST VENTILATOR DUCT or something. It was so gigantic, I had a good time laughing. Ngo Sir helped with getting the floor plan, guiding Carson via a tablet, etc etc. And guess what? All the security and Carson passed through them all via that air duct thing. Anyway he crawled and all and found a secret doctor's lab and lying on the table was an unconscious Negative!!

And ... this episode stopped there!

NO!!!!!!!!!!! I WANNA KNOW WILL NEGATIVE DIE!!!!!!!!!!

So what is daddy planning? Who is Eva? What is her connection to Dr Sze and gang since her past does not raise any red flag? What are they doing to Negative? What is Scaredy Bird's agenda? Super soldier or Manchurian Candidate or some virus carrier?

WHAT?

2 more episodes and I am dying from suspense. And it can only be so because despite some spoilers published, NONE OF THEM thankfully impacted the series much. This is one series with the least amount of spoilers, only if you don't go looking for it.

Anyway I love Carson and Ting together. One scene the destroyer called Alfred arrived at Jessica's place, Ting and Carson hid in the bathroom, Alfred wanted to wash his hands and went to the bathroom! No one was in there but Jessica could see them hiding behind the shower curtain, Carson wrapping his arms tightly around Ting's waist and yes, Jessica was jealous and rightly so! Why? BECAUSE TING AND CARSON LOOKED GREAT TOGETHER!! I want them together!!! I love how touchy feely he is with her. With Jessica, it was Jessica touching him mostly, especially after he discovered she is with Scaredy Bird. Is that intentional? When he found Ting, he was very intimate in the way he was concerned about her and touch her and etc. Again is that intentional? Can someone ask Ruco?

Alfred so far has something to do but nothing of any significance. ATF is now divided to front ATF and back ATF, each doing its own thing with Sek Sir being the most resourceful leader. Ngo Sir is in hiding and Eddie Kwan probably had another series to shoot at the same time. Female wise, Ah Man is strong but her death was quite shocking. Jessica is also strong but selfish and self serving sort of love. Ting is strong and is one of my most female character ever with her resourcefulness and bravery and her ability to fight and defend herself and yet is prone to girly weakness so to speak. Ting is giving, forgiving, trusting, sassy and really street smart.

Carson, what are you waiting for? Get Ting! She is the love of your life!

Will the last 2 episodes show Jessica betraying Carson by betraying Ting? I don't think so. She herself is curious what her father is doing and told Carson everything she knew. So I feel her love is genuine. But I have a feeling Carson seems to feel more for Ting at this moment but this could be because he feels responsible for Ting who had been his partner all these while.

Performance wise, Ruco excels. Look at the way he stared at Aimee's Jessica when she was acting jealous. Quite a masculine boyfriend. No complaints whatsoever.

Aimee Chan did well tonight as the jealous girlfriend who will do anything for Carson. As long as she doesn't cry and talk and go emotional. Some scenes she talked in such a way I still feel she was like "Is this script gonna be any longer? I feel like giving up!!" sort of way. I feel she has no deeper appreciation for words, for script.

In light of Aimee's awful performance, it showed Yoyo Mung in better light. She cried more realistically, the fear, the pain, the guilt, the anger, etc etc were better acted than that of Aimee whose Jessica had quite a huge inner emotional turmoil but could not express well enough. Yoyo also looks good with Ruco. I finally found an actress almost bearable with Ruco except Ruco should be paired with A-List actresses. I don't care who but enough with Aimee, Selena, Elaine and even Tavia.

Everybody else was good especially Vivien as Ah Man. Crazy scary character, good performance.

Episode 23 is still very very entertaining and  a better episode than episode 22. Poor poor Negative. What are they doing to him? Will he survive?

Great series. The best. TVB, END IT WELL!! SURPRISE ME!! What I love about this series at this point is even though there exists some obvious love triangle, the series is not beseeched by it. It is in fact ignored and well balanced and the main thing is still the plot about Scaredy Bird. The story about terrorism is weak but at least it maintains the consistency. That's what I love about this series. And also Ruco Chan. This is his breakout role if it had been released 3 years before. The Other Truth was his introduction to leading status, Reality Check was his breakout role as leading man and ATF by being released so much later is considered the first series where he is the true leading man and he did not disappoint.


15.04.2014
EPISODE 22
I am convinced this is how it will end.

1. Jessica tries to commit suicide but survives and becomes state witness and ends up with Carson and move somewhere to open a cafe perhaps.
2. Yip Ting leaves for US, thus fulfiling her promise to her Papa.
3. Negative dies.
4. The bad guys die.
5. Alfred offers a grovelling apology.
6. Mama Carson cries with relief that Carson is good and never bad.

This episode slows down, significantly and first time, no cliffhanger but still quite an ending. The writing falters. Frankly until now I still don't get what is Scaredy Bird's agenda. As to what they're doing to Negative, we shall see. I really feel fearful for Negative. Poor guy, an experiment to something.

Meanwhile Carson told Ngo Sir everything, including Jessica and begged Ngo Sir to help her become state witness and he says he will think about it. Carson goes back to Jessica and accepts her for who she is except this time he is half lying, half truthful. She wants to leave to open a cafe somewhere, he made some excuses when we know his real agenda. Jessica quits ATF, or rather her father quits ATF for her. Jessica also went to Yip Ting and half gloated, half sincere in telling Yip Ting she was also part of Scaredy Bird. Yip Ting was so angry she confronted Carson for not telling her the whole truth and demanded to know "Will you arrest Jessica?" and Carson admitted he will. Later Papa himself suffered a heart attack and wants to leave Scaredy Bird for US. Yip Ting searched the house and found a letter by Papa explaining how her father died. It seems Papa knew Dr Yip will be killed but it wasn't by Papa but by Edmond. Papa decided not to warn Dr Yip and he felt so much regret he raised Ting as his own. Ting in the end decided to forgive him and here lies the greatest difference between Ting and Jessica that Carson was too blind to see;

Whilst Jessica was all about ME ME ME, Ting told Carson she will not leave for US yet because "I won't abandon you, I will see this through with you" which is half confession of love and half the declaration of an astute, loyal and good friend; more than Carson was ever to her. Ting was selfless, Jessica was selfish. She only felt regret working for Scaredy Bird because of Carson and not her own moral compass. I pity her for her predicament but it is Ting that has my respect. A pity Carson won't end up with the better woman. Jessica is clingy and wimpy and just all about what she wants, how she feels.

Carson himself has no qualms in lying to Jessica of his true intention. Jessica thought Carson now part of Scaredy Bird means they will never part. I suspect so too because it all points to Jessica becoming state witness and stays happily ever after with Carson. I am hoping for Jessica to die and Carson ending up with Ting but it is already episode 22, 3 more episodes to go, I am afraid Ting and Carson is a non starter for romance. What a pity.

Performance wise, even Yoyo Mung did heaps better than the really awful Aimee Chan. I take back my word about her best work; her best was Last Steep Ascent.  In here, I can't hear her. She was mumbling again, mispronouncing words as if the dialogue did not matter. The scene she did well was twirling Ruco's hair in a later scene but when it comes to the doubt, the drama, the desperation, the eagerness, that "she wants Carson to agree with her but pretends to let Carson have the choice when she had placed her entire hope on Carson saying yes" sort of acting, she failed absolutely and totally. She cried like she had to force tears out of her eyes, like she was squeezing out sadness, or desperation. Her tears was lacking. Her delivery of the lines were inaudible. Her expression a single expression. She did mournful or happy well but nothing in between where more complex emotions is needed. She didn't ruin this series or this episode for me. But I lament the fact that Ruco was and still is perpetually stuck with actresses so beneath him, actresses that can't match his energy and enthusiasm in any given scene. It is time he gets better roles which stars men. Watch 3 Kingdoms RPG and how well he played off with Pierre Ngo and the other male actors. He needs a palace intrigue series without the love thing.

Ron's Alfred is the destroyer. Every time he investigates into something, someone dies or something terrible happens. His performance is uninspired, wooden and boring. Yes his Alfred is terribly written too but it is so obvious he is bulldozed by Ruco in every way possible that for a short time Alfred is redundant to the story.

Not a bad episode but seems to be losing steam in terms of action and drama.


14.04.2014
EPISODE 21
Not yet broadcast so a few predictions;

1. Mama Carson believes Alfred Carson has changed!
2. Alfred is butt hurt and argues that Carson has changed!
3. Jessica seeing Carson shooting Alfred might think Carson has changed!
4. Alfred will argue with Jessica about Carson having changed!
5. Perhaps some backbone for Jessica (and some scene finally apart from being rescued and being wallflower) where she will argue with Alfred about Carson actually never changed!

Point is entire episode will be about Alfred crying "Carson has changed!" and Carson going "Oh no I SHOT AH DEE!!" and we will all go yeahhhhhhhhhh!! Shoot one more time!

Ok, we shall see!

UPDATE
I was  right about 1, 2, hinted on 3 which was the only confusing and inconsistent part, a bit on 4 and a bit on 5.

All I can say is episode 21 is SUPER AWESOME! Some revelations aren't revelation like Jessica's dad is head of Scaredy Bird and Jessica indeed is a MOLE for Scaredy Bird, in fact she is the main mole!

No, the awesome cliffhanger shocking thing is how bloody well written this episode is where it takes its time to explain some scenes, connect the seemingly fleeting unconnected dialogue and giving us a big picture about Jessica. Now she has my greatest sympathy and Carson is put into a very very bad spot! Like how?

In this episode, we find out Jessica was the one who assisted the other dead mole to plant the tracker in Prof Wong's bed. She was the one who was trained and educated and deliberately placed in ATF as a mole, that she helped her father and was the apple of his eye until she fell for Carson. But still she continued to help and she even revealed the safe house location to her dad without knowing Carson was there. When she knew she was frantic trying to call her dad who ignored her and she even tried investigating on her own because she knew how Scaredy Bird works but Ngo Sir refused to listen to her. Then he dad promised her Carson will be fine but instead Derek who became uncontrollable took orders from her dad and shot Carson. By the way a repeat of this scene has our censors CENSORING or BLURRING that shooting part. Malaysian censorship, SERIOUSLY?! Anyway she argued big time with her dad which was why on her birthday with Alfred she was so pissed with her dead. Not because her dad insulted Carson before but because of a bigger better reason. And when Alfred advised her to move on with her life, she cryptically said she should but actually she meant leaving Scaredy Bird and not really moving on from Carson's death. When she found out Carson was alive and with Yip Ting, she knew Carson was with Scaredy Bird now. Question is did she really believe about Carson and Yip Ting's romance? Maybe. Because by then no one would tell her is Carson was fine. Which was why she kept asking Yip Ting about Carson, by then she was panicking and that was when Carson bombed ATF and she knew Carson was definitely with Scaredy Bird and so she approached her father to help Carson which his father than told Papa that he wanted to meet Carson. He was convinced Carson was one heart with Scaredy Bird and the pawn is Jessica. Finally he told Carson to meet someone (at that point Carson wasn't sure about Jessica) and it was a tearful Jessica who greeted Carson and here was Ruco's greatest moment.

He was very shocked to know Jessica was the traitor, he wanted to scream at her but you can see he kept himself in check, he controlled his temper at the tearful Jessica as he smiled a little and asked with gritted teeth "Are you working for Scaredy Bird?" and Jessica said yes and that was when he screamed and shouted at her "YOU BETRAYED ME! YOU LET THEM SHOOT ME!!! YOU ARE THE TRAITOR!!!!!!!!" and Jessica tried to pacify him and explained her predicament which really is very sad and I agree with Carson when he quieted down and said "You have done so much for me Jessica" and Jessica tearfully hugged him and cried "No one will ever part us, ever again! Not father, not Yip Ting, no one! No one!" and she cried hard as Carson was numbed with shock.

Because now the table has turned. His most loved is the traitor and had done a lot for him (not really the wallflower anymore) and did that all out of love and will he betray her? In this series, everyone is a traitor in some sense; Papa to Yip Ting, Yip Ting to Papa, Jessica to ATF, Jessica to her dad, Carson to Jessica, etc etc  etc.

This episode smartly and deftly connected the dots and I was so shocked at how well written it was. It was well acted and well directed. I almost couldn't breath and it ended with the cliffhanger again; Carson numbed with shock, Jessica tearfully happy with relief, and the whole question hangs, what will Carson do now?

Earlier, as expected Alfred was butthurt. Jessica did look distracted but she did her best to protect Carson and herself. In a way as you remember back to older scenes, now it all made sense why Jessica was so passive, why she did what she did. First and foremost, she really loved Carson and that will be her downfall. Second, her father loved her and that will be his downfall. And will ATF's trust in Carson be ATF's downfall?

Mama Carson stopped Yip Ting and found Carson and basically disowned him. Carson was so frustrated he cried to Yip Ting "HOW LONG MORE?! HOW LONG MUST I PLAY THIS CHARADE?" as he was about to lose his sanity and his reputation and all that he cares for. That was when he suddenly received a message from Papa that the big boss will see him.

Meanwhile poor Negative!! He was kidnapped and he was now prime target. Ngo Sir pretended to be seriously injured in the blast, hence his secret talks with the doctor at ATF. Whilst he supposedly recuperate, he will be overseeing the whole Carson operation. Back to Negative, he was experimented with. That Ah Man loved no one. Apparently Jessica's dad was experimenting with some drug with the help of Dr Yip (Ting's father) way back in Taiwan before Yip died and now there is a new Prof/Dr King (Savio Tsang) and I am not sure what they're doing to Negative but I have a feeling it is the Manchurian Candidate. Poor poor Negative but at least it was not Carson since Carson had Jessica to protect him now. She couldn't protect him then but she could now. Meanwhile everyone thinks Carson has left HK based on false leads planted by Ngo Sir and gang.

So that leaves Wai Sir out of the whole Mole thing. It makes sense that it was Jessica; not in terms of espionage but in the later dilemma of Carson. And to make things very very clear, Jessica couldn't care less about Alfred. She had only eyes for Carson, did everything for Carson, worried about Carson, bargained for Carson, etc etc etc. Which makes sense that Jessica will either kill herself or dies protecting her father or Carson at the end of the series because I don't see how Jessica can ever get away without being arrested for treason and acts of terrorism. Do remember, she did them all voluntary until it involved Carson. Her conscience was limited to her love for Carson, not beyond which makes Jessica a kick-ass female villain like Ah Man except Ah Man loved no one but herself. The women in this series are really something I tell you!!

Performance wise, Ron Ng is like the supporting actor with the best seat in the cinema. He contributed nothing to the story, he only added to the mix the equation called stupidity in terms of his Alfred. Alfred is really dumb.

Louise Lee had a very emotional scene but I was thinking someone please tell this woman the truth! Anyway another stupid character who has zero trust in her own son. She guessed right about the spy part and then retracted that just because Carson shot Alfred and yet no one seemed to tell anyone that if Carson had wanted Alfred to die, he could have shot him in the head.

Yoyo Mung has some stuff to do but this episode is all about Jessica.

Aimee Chan delivered some of her best performance her and when I say her best, I do mean Aimee Chan's best but amongst other better actresses, she probably did not nail Jessica's emotional turmoil realistically. I mean there you are expressing your greatest regret about helping your father kill your beloved boyfriend which is pretty traumatising and do you sit cross legged looking like you're just pissed off? I thought her body language does not match her expressions which does not match her delivery of lines. In the later scenes as she tried to hold onto Ruco desperately, I felt she was holding herself back. It was no time to be proper but it felt too proper. Her delivery of lines were slow to say the least but again inaudible. At some point, I thought has she forgotten her lines? Why is she taking such a long pause? Will I have to wait another half hour before she finishes her lines? It is in fact her main problem. I couldn't hear her. Whilst she was good as Aimee Chan as Jessica, imagine a more expressive actress, someone who speaks clearer, what she would have done? The desperation, the hurt, the need to explain. Here was Jessica at her most exposed, her most vulnerable, she is exposing her weakness and her biggest secret to Carson,  a secret so devastating to Carson but she didn't care. Naively all she cared was Carson was fine and Carson was there and Carson will always be there for her, always. Aimee delivered about 60% of all that. It wasn't bad, but it could have been greater. And her cross her legs is just bad body language. I did not feel her anger, her hatred, her desperation. Her face however is great for mournful angry solemn contemplative scenes. But everything else just doesn't match. But if this is Aimee Chan on Aimee Chan alone, it was to me her best thus far. And what a revelation it was. No cliffhanger there BUT the connections, the past scenes, all made perfect sense. Was Aimee that consistent? I like to think so but I am not sure.

Ruco Chan is the star of tonight's episode. His anger, his desperation, everything is just perfect. Whilst Aimee's doesn't match, Ruco's voice, expression and body language as well as his delivery of his lines so crisp and clear are all in tune and in sync in perfect harmony. It was such an amazing performance and that moment when he tried to calm himself and then shouted at Aimee's Jessica was an amazing moment. Why Aimee did well is probably because she fed on Ruco's energy, not the other way around. Carson gambled his everything and it the shocking moment of this episode that perhaps he had gambled away wayyyy too much of everything. Ruco is consistent and he is great. Considering this was 3 years ago, I am just very happy that in 3 years he has improved tremendously in terms of body language, holistic approach to acting and this episode is the culmination of all that or rather the beginning of all things great.  Any viewer should be Rucofied by Ruco by now. Whilst he lacked subtlety in this series but you can see there is a change from brash open loud to a very controlled natural performance. I love him. He is officially my most favourite actor in TVB and I will emphasise on actor. He is not some teen heartthrob or sex symbol who can act. He is to me an actor who exudes sex, confidence and self assurance that is not the cocky type. The most exciting actor in TVB for now. His problem is a match in terms of actress and that is his downfall as an actor. No not Tavia! He is a better actor than some of the productions he is stuck with. I suppose a large part why I love this series was him but that isn't fair to the storytelling because the first 6 episodes were terrible and there was Ruco everywhere. So no, he is half the reason.

Eddie Kwan looks super fit but very little to do. Chris Lai is memorable as Negative and I hope his Negative survives. Vivien Yeo has a huge role in this series and in this episode and she is one scary woman.

Episode 21... 4 more to go for the big finale. From episode 7 onwards this series has been ending with cliffhangers making me wait eagerly for the next episode. 25 episodes seem so short but I think therein lies with the greatness of Ruse Of Engagement. If it knows how to end well, end big, end tragic and end great, 25 episodes is just the right number. I suspect the last scene will be rubbish but I do think TVB may yet surprise me. The suspense is killing me, the pace leaves me breathing hard and breathing fast and the plot's twists and turns may not be too suspenseful for many, some may even say predictable after watching previews or reading spoilers, but for someone like me who luckily avoided previews and spoilers for this series, every episode is a revelation. Even if my guesses were right, there were still a few surprises in story. That's what makes Ruse Of Engagement as at episode 21 such a cool sassy smart series. This is at this moment TVB's best action drama since forever and will be the standard for future crime dramas in terms of editing, directing, pacing and especially, storytelling.

What an amazing episode.

Please.... TVB God, please end it well!!


14.04.2014
ON A LIGHTER NOTE ...
Carson, punch that stupid brother of yours!!





Wow, 3 years on, Ron Ng has gained a lot of weight and in between also lost quite a few pounds too. Between Ruse Of Engagement, Triumph In The Skies II and the event (Apr 2014), he looks like he was slim, ballooned, slim again and now back to balloned again. Seeing him person in 2013, I can say he is of a bigger built, as in short, not fat but bigger sized. But in a way normal looking except on TV he looks big. Ruco Chan on the other hand looks normal on TV but in person, perhaps he was the thinnest then but in 2014 he looked very very slim and small in stature which surprised my friends and I. Sometimes what you see on TV ain't what you see in real life, much like Him Law who looks smaller in person. The 2 people who looks the same on TV and in person are Tavia Yeung and especially Myolie Wu. But all are rather good looking for the guys. Come on, as actors you gotta be good looking.

Episode 21 coming soon! So excited!!

By the way if you're just starting to watch Ruse Of Engagement, DO NOT READ MY RECAPS AND DO NOT WATCH THE PREVIEWS OR READ CHINESE FORUMS TO ENJOY IT AS IT SHOULD BE ENJOYED! I swear to you it will be totally awesome!

12.04.2014
JESSICA'S IDENTITY
Every role has a purpose, whether red herring or not. I kept saying Jessica is a double agent but now seems unlikely. But a mole for Scaredy Bird is also illogical since she should know what Papa and gang is doing and they know where Carson is. But then if her father is chief of Scaredy Bird, it explains why she despises her father, distances herself from him and does not mix with Ah Man since they're lower level.

So either Jessica is a double agent or, in the opening she held a gun to her own head which suggests her cover is blown, doing out of guilt, etc, meaning she is the ultimate mole in ATF, not Wai Sir.

Quite a lot of possibility. But to explain Jessica as a mole must first explain why no connection between Papa and Jessica as mole. Papa is Scaredy Bird's 2nd boss.

We shall see! Maybe at the end of the day she is just the wallflower.

Another problem is what is Scaredy Bird? It is not a terrorist group, rather they provide goods and stuff and services for any terrorist group. They're not of their own purpose, just money. So for me they're not terrorist group but experts for hire. But now it is moving towards being a terrorist group but with now discernable agenda. Why would anyone wanna work for Scaredy Bird? Purely for money? Doesn't make sense as a terrorist group, more sense as an organisation working to provide services for terrorist groups; like how Le Chiffer was in James Bond movie, Casino Royale.


12.04.2014
RUCO'S LONG JUMP
Frankly I don't get why Eddie should get all the ridicule for the long jump scene. Ruco's version is no more realistic or better. Relive that moment;



But kudos to them for doing the stunts personally.

11.04.2014
EPISODE 20
OMG, I AM SOOOOO WRONG!!!


But first I must say this is TVB's best action drama ever and if it ends great, it is to me a classic that all future action dramas should emulate. It is not without its problems, but the goods outweighs the bads by tonnes. Why this series is so enjoyable for me is partly because so far everything is spoilers free. I don't read Chinese sites so I can't read the usually spoilers ridden synopsis. English sites so far do not have any spoilers posted and if they do, AVOID AT ALL COST! Future episodes is so far still fresh for me because I know nothing.

And tonight's episode is the reason why this series rocks.

Why?

I was so wrong about Negative. The mole is the not famous one, the third person named by Ngo Sir after Jessica and Negative. Negative is having a relationship with Ah Man but he thinks she is an air stewardess. When he said he recognised her from the headquarters, I actually thought they met at Scaredy Bird HQ but in actual fact Ah Man may have shown herself at ATF or police station or some HQ. Ah Man has every intention of using him and Negative knows nothing. But he is now in a situation where Chinese says "Wash with water also cannot clear him". All those SMS and phone calls and all were red herrings. And this is why this series is great. So smart to divert our attention. But I do think there is a bigger mole in ATF. A small mole can't do much so Wai Sir is still on. Anyway I had my doubts when earlier Negative and that Cheung Yiu (I think, didn't catch his name) wheeled Derek to another floor and Alfred discovered Negative fainted on the floor, that third guy trying to kill Derek and Negative woke up and SHOT that third guy. Ngo Sir thought it was an excessive act but looking back, that guy was trying to kill Derek AND Alfred so anyway, everything is a red herring.

As for Carson, he had to bomb ATF to convince Papa he can work for Scaredy Bird. So he asked Ngo Sir who promptly said "Do it". No one will be at ATF that day so Carson went in with a bit of help by Ngo Sir. Ah Man drugged Negative and took his card and fingerprint and gave it to Carson as the inside help. If Carson was shocked to see Negative's name, he didn't show much. So he went in, put a bomb in the server room and guess what? EVERYBODY RETURNED TO ATF THAT DAY! Aiyoh Ngo Sir, what on earth were you doing? From no one will be there to even Jessica was back!

Anyway Alfred the idiot saw Carson in the camera rushed to apprehend his brother and if Carson really was a terrorist, he would have killed Alfred. He didn't. He beat him unconscious, hid him in the store room with a guard whom he also hit unconscious and promptly did a whole show of showing his face to ATF and Ngo Sir cried "Arrest him!!".

Meanwhile Jessica rushed to the server room to find out in the secret files if Ngo Sir found Carson and she saw him on TV and cried out to him and Carson was shocked and told her to run away because there was a bomb. But problem was seconds earlier Carson accidentally hit the alarm and so all doors were locked. With minutes to spare, Carson ran up don't know how many floors to rescue Jessica as Jessica barely managed to crack the code to open the doors and rushed out and KA-BOOM!!!

He ran out with Jessica as Jessica asked "Are you with Yip Ting?! What are you doing? Tell  me!!" and Carson can only say "Trust me! Yip Ting is helping me and no more than that. I love only you!" and he ran out BUT Alfred reached him first and pulled out a gun and I was like IDIOT!!! And Jessica rushed to Alfred when I thought for drama's sake, she should have stood between them and told Alfred "Ah Fad, let him go or you will have to shoot me first". This was the part I feel was badly written and Jessica as usual stood useless next to Ah Fad looking stricken BUT NOT DOING ANYTHING USEFUL.  Carson argued with Alfred, from Alfred not helping him to Alfred doing this to get to Jessica and Alfred actually admitted he fell for Jessica the first time he met her and just because Carson was his brother, he did not pursue Jessica. Frankly I was like "Alfred, you have overblown your attraction. You are not Carson's competition". Carson was kinda angry and said "If you don't let me go, you will regret this!" and Alfred challenged Carson to shoot him and the guys were reaching the 2 guys and Jessica stood next to Alfred WITHOUT A SINGLE LINE TO SAY when she could've said "Alfred, I trust your brother!" which shows how much she loves him eh? Anyway Carson did the cliffhanger thing; HE SHOT ALFRED ON THE SHOULDERS and ran and Jessica looked very shocked.

No, Alfred won't die but he will be very pissed off and anal and butt hurt about this in the next few episodes. As for Jessica, I think she will understand what Carson did. From the looks of it, Carson may still end up with Jessica instead of Yip Ting who right now has a crush on Carson. Point is, HE SHOT ALFRED! Woahhhhh!!! Amazing twist. For the past 10 episodes, every last scene is a cliffhanger, every last scene is a twist! I can't wait for the next episode! I hate Alfred and I feel his disloyalty to Carson is just typical TVB drama. It would have been awesome if Alfred wasn't so dumb and Jessica is not a mere jealous damsel wallflower in distress. Yip Ting is still the best heroine in this series. It is amazing Jessica even believe Carson on the run,. tortured, shot, tortured again, bombing ATF and now running again can ever find the time to romance another woman. I mean at which point he had the time? When he was in Zhuhai issit?

And have you ever seen a terrorist who wants to bomb a place full of people BUT whenever he encountered anyone, he never even hurt them, at all? Anybody would have guessed something is wrong.  I feel this is the stupid part. And I was pissed Alfred never asked Ngo Sir "Is my brother  a spy for ATF?" when Ngo Sir explained why he did what he did with Derek. No one asked. Only Mama Carson guessed right but I suppose she will feel Carson changed when she found out he shot Alfred. And ATF is in a total mess if there is more than one mole!

Poor poor Negative. I have so wronged him!! Ah Man is despicable!! Alfred is despicable!! Ngo Sir is super cool. That man is ruthless.

Acting wise, everyone including Aimee is doing fine except for Ron Ng who has ONE SINGLE EXPRESSION. Acting is not awful but inadequate to the greatness of this series and the fast paced plot so far. 

I can't complain much about the plot itself which is sassy, twistful of shocks and more shocks and to me is TVB's best written and paced action drama thus far ever. Until it ends badly. I hope not. But 2 characters remain problematic; Alfred for obvious reasons and Jessica who has nothing to do. Absolutely nothing. The writing could have given this woman some redeeming factor, some courage and some trust with a simple act of standing between the brothers but all she did was standing by the side. She is the ultimate wallflower thus far, seemingly with much to do when she really had nothing to do. I hope her character will be redeemed in the last few episodes, either by doing something proactive or dying.

Anyway I saw Episode 19 via downloading the episode and indeed it was censored but just a little but a very pivotal scene. Remember when Ting kissed Carson? He then kissed her back with vigour and Ting looked surprised that she liked the kiss. Quite a kiss actually. Other than that, nothing much is missed.

May I end my commentary for this episode with just one sentence; 

RUSE OF ENGAGEMENT IS SUPER AWESOME!!


10.04.2014
EPISODE 19
I AM RIGHT!!!!


1. Ngo Sir is not the mole
2. Since day 1 I said Carson will be a spy and yes I was right
3. I said Ngo Sir will recruit Carson as a spy and I WAS RIGHT!!

YES!!


Ngo Sir did what he did to create an environment where if Carson escaped, Scaredy Bird will recruit him and he did, with the help of Yip Ting. Ngo Sir doesn't care who saved Carson because he deduced that person has already betrayed Scaredy Bird. A smart guy. So now 3 people knows Carson is a spy; Ngo Sir, one higher up and the highest ranking guy, the Commissioner. They even begged Carson to help them. Oh and Mama Carson suspects as well. So why won't Alfred believe Mama Carson when she said she thinks Carson is back to being a spy? Why did he even suggest he will arrest and will not hesitate to SHOOT Carson because he firmly believes Carson will shoot him? Why does he ever believe that Carson on the run from ATF as a mole will have the time and mood to romance Yip Ting and cheat Jessica? Why did ATF recruit this idiot? I understand Jessica's confusion but I don't get why Alfred is so prejudiced. One simple explanation; he wants to believe Carson is bad so that he himself can be Jessica's saviour and true love. Douchebag of a brother.



By the way, Malaysia version of this episode is CENSORED!! That kissing between Yip Ting and Carson which in one flashback scene was rather long AND passionate (I think) but earlier was snipped off. If you happen to see the same scene in Youtube but full uncensored version, please tell me because the kiss in that flashback scene sure looks passionate.

Now it was a pretend kiss. Yip Ting, the smart one knew her papa and Ah Man were there to spy on them and she immediately hugged and surprised Carson, whispered they were being watched and she kissed him and he kissed her  back and so happens Alfred saw them kissing and immediately deduced "Ahhh my brother, a traitor on the run still has time to kiss another girl! I hate him!". Idiot isn't he?

Back in her secret place, Yip Ting explained to Carson why she kissed him and they both knew Ah Man and papa were still watching. So Carson casually kissed her forehead and even flirted with her and she grew a bit shy and smiled when she was alone.

Meanwhile Derek is awakening and Ngo Sir now suspected 3 people who touched the Prof's bag earlier where one of them dropped a tracker into the bag, hence Carson was trapped. One is Jessica which Carson dismissed and even Ngo Sir dismissed. Second was one ATF guy we don't care. Third is Negative and confirmed, Negative was in touch with Ah Man and so he was the mole. Ngo Sir used Derek's condition to create a trap and we shall know by tomorrow is Negative will fall into that trap. Even Alfred suspects something is not right with Negative. Jessica is on suspension so she won't be the mole as we all already know, for now. I believe there is a bigger mole in ATF.

Jessica was upset Carson refused to tell him where he was. Alfred thought Carson was ungrateful to Jessica when he refused to tell Jessica where he was AND for kissing Yip Ting.

At this point I was screaming all sorts of colourful language against Alfred. I do believe he will owe his brother a big apology. Question is will it end like how Brother's Keeper ended? You know, Sam got shot? Only this time Alfred will shoot Carson only to realise he was a spy for ATF when Ngo Sir rushed to Carson screaming STOPPPPP?!?!??! But Carson won't die and he will forgive the stupid useless backbone-less jerk baby brother.

And I hope Carson loves Yip Ting, quite simply because I am bored with Carson and Jessica. By the way Yip Ting was almost poisoned by Ah Man. Ruthless women in this series!

Performance wise, Ron Ng should just quit acting. He was terrible, or rather his Alfred was terrible. The character is the usual hot headed Ron Ng character and a very stupid one too. Ok I take back my word. Not quit acting but rather climb back up the mountain called Acting School and learn all that he can and then climb back down and give us more than 2 expressions for Alfred.

Love love love Ruco especially those flirting scenes. That man can flirt! As for kissing, I wouldn't know since the only most passionate kissing scene (long kissing scene) in his TVB career that I know of and it was censored!!

This series is sorta downhill a little BUT still so interesting and I am curious how it will all end. Still a smart suspenseful series except I hate the stupidfying of Alfred just to create some brotherly tension.

Now... if you see the kissing scene in youtube or a GIF of that scene, please do leave me the link!!


10.04.2014
THE TORTURE OF CARSON
My head is still spinning over Carson's torture, first by Derek and now by Ngo Sir. Such memorable events. This series if it ends well is fast becoming a classic. Tiger Cubs? Blahhhhhhhh!!! Ruse Of Engagement is not for cubs! It's a man's world (and resourceful women too).

09.04.2014
EPISODE 18
I can't breath!! Excellent amazing spine tingling suspenseful tight well written episode!! One question is answered. NEGATIVE IS THE MOLE!! But I bet Wai Sir is the bigger mole because Papa and gang did say THEY and did not just say HE or SHE!

Ngo Sir is on a rampage. He can't trust Carson and when he found out the so called triad member who saved Carson died 6 months prior, he had Carson strapped down and electrocuted in a scary torture scene!! And what did Alfred do? NOTHING. That guy has no backbone. Carson accuses Alfred of having personal motive; that he wanted Carson dead for Jessica. Even Mama Carson does not trust Alfred. I understand Ngo Sir's perspective but that guy is insane. I understand Alfred's reluctant but how can he ever agree on the sanction of illegal means? He should trust Carson that the person Carson is protecting is someone trustworthy! All they're doing is as if Carson is the mole. This is just insane. But what a great development. Carson with the help of Mama and Jessica will try to escape but that we will have to wait until tomorrow.

I can't understand Alfred's sudden total change. He surely should trust Carson's better judgment, instead he stays quiet and trusts Ngo Sir who gave the order to Carson to evacuate to a safe house leading to Carson's torture and near murder and now torture again! The most harrowing scene was as Carson was electrocuted, he cried to Alfred "Ah Dee, why are you hiding in that room? Why won't you save me? Ah Dee!!! Save me!!". My heart just curses Ah Dee and Ngo Sir. They're insane.

Meanwhile Ting has her Papa pointing the gun at her and ordered her to explain why she saved Carson. They know because they tortured the computer guy. Ting cried and gave the best lie ever even under fire; she was in love with Carson who saved her and she can't let the man she loves to die. Her Papa by that time will accept any reasonable explanation  but Ting really is cool under fire even if she was shaking with fear.

This is a scary amazing episode with Ruco Chan giving one of his best performance and this was 3 years ago. He looked like he was really being electrocuted.

Yoyo did well in that shaking scene.

Aimee is still inaudible in some parts but I will tell you what I love about her tonight; earlier she sat down next to Ruco and she touched his nape intimately and even toyed with the hair at the nape. This simple act is very  very intimate and she looked at him adoringly. If you were to tell me they had  a brief fling or were attracted to one another I will believe you. In fact there never was any rumour between them but that scene showed their familiarity. Strangely 3 years later in Outbound Love such intimacy was missing.

Ron Ng should learn to have more expressions rather than just worried looking. Here was Ah Dee not trusting his own brother and then seeing him tortured and brother accusing him of doing this for personal gain and how he looked? Worried, at the best of time. Very inadequate performance and as Carson accused him all the things about Jessica, Ron's Alfred looked away, looking I supposed guilty or worried or something. In real life I will lose total respect for persons such as Alfred. What a cowardly way of trying to gain Jessica. Of course in this series we must trust that Alfred truly believed his own brother was not to be trusted.

But let's examine the facts;

1. thanks to Ngo Sir, Carson was captured, tortured and shot
2. Ngo Sir made sure Carson is locked up
3. Ng Sir sanctioned the torture of Carson because Carson gave an untrustworthy story on how he survived but for sure it was Derek who shot him and if Carson is a mole, why shoot him?

So Alfred should have stopped Ngo Sir and argued with Ngo Sir rather than just standing there like a log of wood. Ngo Sir probably thinks Carson is Manchurian Candidate. But I don't get their logic, especially Alfred's.

My mind is still fresh with the torture scenes. It was THAT harrowing and scary. My mind is still filled with Carson begging Alfred to help. It was THAT memorable. My stomach has butterflies from tonight's revelation and scenes. I feel so much dread for Carson.

This episode is amazing. Thus far this series is amazing. I am however disappointed Negative is the small mole. But then already figured that out so no surprise. I am wondering how this series will end. How Carson can ever look at Ngo Sir or Alfred and be best buds or friends ever again after what happened tonight.

P/S Or will Ngo Sir approach Carson later to become a mole in the organisation? After all he has every cause to turn traitor on the surface due to ATF's betrayal? This series is 25 episodes, now already episode 18 but I do think the remaining 7 episodes can't be about Carson Vs Ngo Sir. It would be better for story to have Carson + Ngo Sir vs Scaredy Bird but ATF doesn't know hence Alfred going after Carson? Could be!!



08.04.2014
EPISODE 17
I will begin my commentary with this picture;


I have not much love for Yoyo Mung but I have 100% of admiration and respect for Yip Ting, the single most resourceful, brave and all round superwoman of this series. Why?

Let me explain by how Carson survived.

Pure great luck.

Carson woke up in a strange hospital in Zhuhai attended by 2 unknown strangers who seemed very sinister as they injected him with something. Actually they're the good guys. It was Yip Ting who saved Carson. Remember how she argued with her Papa after she was dragged away as Carson was shot? How she ran out into the rain? Well let's applaud her resourcefulness where instead of giving up, in the middle of the night she took a boat, drove the boat back to shore in pitch black, searched for Carson's body before ATF arrived, found him, cried and mourned for him then realise he wasn't dead, called the computer whiz kid and begged him to help, contacted her doctor friend who contacted his brain surgeon mentor in Zhuhai and hid him from enemies that not even Papa knew he survived. That was how awesome Yip Ting was. And in the end she cooked up a story on how Carson was found and survived so that there won't be much suspect eventhough Man (Vivien) first thought Yip Ting saved Carson. And she and Carson both have a mission; was Ngo Sir the traitor? And so Carson resurfaced and went back to ATF.

Whilst all these was happening and I suspect no more than perhaps 2 months or 3 months, our Alfred was busy wooing Jessica who in a moment of weakness allowed Alfred to kiss her forehead. What a woman eh? And the brother looked quite displeased with Carson surviving but then of course they were all prepared to accept Carson died.

Frankly Jessica does not deserve Carson. Yip Ting deserves Carson. Yip Ting is my heroine of the day. Whilst Jessica mourned and mourned and did nothing, whilst Alfred busied himself with thinking of ways to make Jessica happy, whilst Carson missed Jessica so much he moaned her name when he was asleep, whilst Mama Carson/Alfred consoled herself with Carson not being dead AND YET gave her blessing to Alfred to go for Jessica (seriously twisted family!), whils entire ATF did nothing but wait for Derek to wake from his coma, it was Yip Ting ALONE who searched, found, helped, assisted and consoled Carson.

Yip Ting is my new heroine! She is the new super awesome woman.

I was so annoyed when Jessica asked Carson if going back to ATF was the best decision since she does not wish to lose him again. Jessica, all about ME ME ME.

Carson, forget about her. Yip Ting is that sort of woman who not only can love you, she can HELP you by doing something and not do nothing.

What a great episode spoiled by the whole Alfred/Jessica story. As to how Carson survived, apparently Derek can't even shoot straight at point blank. The bullet went through forehead or somewhere and exited at the cheek or somewhere. Point is the bullet exited out and Carson was lucky Yip Ting came back for him. I think the explanation is a possibility since in real life have seen medical images of entire brain speared with some spiky thing and the victim survived because like Carson, the spear missed every important blood vessel in the brain. However how can brain surgery not have Carson shaving his hair?

As for who is the traitor, my family thinks it is Wai Sir. Carson and Yip Ting thinks it is Ngo Sir. I will say definitely NOT Ngo Sir but like Alfred said, there could be TWO traitors in ATF. It could be Wai Sir, it could be Negative or it could  be Beauty. My  best for who is Scaredy Bird's big boss that even Papa answers to is Jessica's dad. He is the most well known ke-le-fe if he isn't one.

Right now I still don't know who is the traitor or traitors.

Performance wise, except for wooden Ron who can't decide to display emotions of happiness that Carson survived or annoyance that Carson actually is back from the dead and Aimee Chan's inaudible recital of the script, I do feel her kissing Ruco and hugging him tightly is convincing although I find Jessica rather useless.

Ruco himself is pretty amazing in this episode. Yoyo Mung is serviceable. Her Yip Ting however is a great character and would have been excellent if she is portrayed by a more convincing actress that is of higher calibre than Yoyo Mung.

Now TVB can airbrush Yoyo from any promotional leaflet, but let me say this; her Yip Ting is pivotal to this series and is the obvious leading lady. All the Jessica bombardment does not in anyway eradicate Yip Ting's importance.

Anyway, I am very very happy there is no amnesiac Carson! This series is now full speed ahead!

Amazing series thus far.

P/S I forgot about Carson explaining how he survived. He should have stick with "I really can't remember" rather than the whole story about some gangster saving his life.

07.04.2014
EPISODE 16
I shall start my commentary on this episode with the ending.

CARSON SURVIVED!!!

Ok, we all know that but HOW?! He looked confused, he was in Zhuhai, in a hospital. Probably saved by some fisherman? Please, no amnesia pls!!

As for episode 16, it is heavily on Ron and Aimee, with emphasis on Aimee which really slowed things down. The start was exciting enough; Alfred wanted to kill Derek, he even shot Derek's head and even wanted to shoot his head a 2nd time. I find that refreshing. Why? TVB series of the past will show Alfred lowering down his gun and be very PC about his duty as a cop, etc etc but not this series. Alfred just lost his brother, he knew Derek killed his brother so in reality what he did and tried to do is very very reasonable and I am glad TVB went un-PC with that scene. Anyway Alfred got his wish and transferred to the investigative team.

Meanwhile the most resourceful leading lady that is Yoyo's Yip Ting is getting close to her ultimate aim; to find out who is the boss her Papa always claims to talk to. Is Papa the Boss or is there a Boss for real?

And then the rest of the episode is about Jessica's grief and how she stands back up again. Doesn't help when Alfred always made those Chocochinno thing and did with her all things his brother did, except to kiss her or sleep with her. She sees the DVD and thanks Alfred. No love yet, but Alfred seems keen to replace his brother as the love of her life.

All is good except I got so irritated when it is about Jessica and all about Jessica. Even Alfred in an amazing twist told his mom to take care of Jessica, make sure she is ok. Tell me; when is a girlfriend of a few months' grief is ever higher than that of a mother? I feel Jessica was so selfish; it was all about her. In fact I got so irritated that Carson's room is full of her photos. I know their relationship is close but never knew they were that close to the point her grief supersedes that of a mother. I find it ridiculous it was the mother who consoled the useless girlfriend who should have been the one to console Carson's mother, should have been the one taking care of the old woman rather than the other way around. I am not liking Jessica very much.

And this is compounded by the fact that Aimee Chan sucks in those talk-cry-grief scenes. Grief alone is fine, cry alone is fine but when she was talking as she cried (and she does look like she cried heavily hence my complaint...), I couldn't hear her. She was so soft in her speaking of her lines, she lost me as a viewer, apart from the ridiculous storyline about her grief. Someone told me Aimee Chan was acting and looks like she was acting and I agree with this person. But this was 3 years ago right? So she was raw? Nope. Same thing with Outbound Love. However the good news is (or was) that her intimate scenes with Ruco was well done. Marriage perhaps have made her more conservative and therefore ruined her performance in later series but in this series prior to her marriage or I believe dating Moses, she was believable in love scenes. But crying is not the same as laughing and even when she laughed some said she was acting but to me she was more natural in this series in terms of laughing. Which always made me wonder, how come there was never any rumour between her and Ruco back then? However crying is a different matter and quite simply put, she sucks. Her performance in this episode almost ruined the entire series for me as well as Alfred's eagerness to take his brother's place which seems inappropriate when Carson just died. The writing is weak in this episode and what a pity. The successful run of 6 or 7 episodes have been great. Luckily this episode ended with another great cliffhanger.

Now I am back to curious again; how did Carson survived?

07.04.2014
WHEN I WISH UPON A TVB STAR ...
Please please not make Carson a Manchurian Candidate! Please please not make Carson amnesiac!

Carson!! Where are you?! CARSONNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

06.04.2014
EPISODE 15
Another amazing episode with an amazing cliffhanger that makes me feel like I can't wait for Episode 16! Serious! This series is surpassing my expectations and like Storm In A Cocoon, it makes me feel like I can't wait for the next episode, which I haven't feel that way for a very very very long time.

Tonight we will still see Carson, but in some heart wrenching flashback. Who betrayed ATF? Let's put up a list;

1. Ngo Sir
Easiest target but definitely not him. In fact he is suspended pending investigation.

2. Wai Sir
A possibility but since he is leading the tactical team, maybe not him

3. Negative
My prime suspect and more so, Wai Sir so trust him he is now within the inner circle of ATF who is investigating who is the traitor. But then maybe it isn't him because it is also too easy. Moreover, someone who betrayed ATF knew where the safe house was, and knew Ngo Sir sent the prof there. Negative may be 2nd in command but would he have known this secret location? I don't know.

4. Beauty
Seems like a probably candidate since she is computer whiz and she should be able to find out many secret stuff but right now, not much of a suspect yet. But women in this series can be pretty ruthless, like Yip Ting and of course, the shocker herself played by Vivien.

5. Jessica
Probably a double agent rather than a mole. Her father since is a well known actor may be the head of the organisation which will add to Jessica's moral dilemma.

So who is the traitor? I am sure when Carson returns he could only trust his own brother and Yip Ting as everyone is a suspect. Or is this series gonna show him as a Manchurian Candidate? Amnesia, brainwashed into working for Scaredy Bird? Since he is missing, body is missing? I hope not, that is more like Homeland and oh so boring. I want Carson coming back angry as ever!

Last scene of this episode is so harrowing, I feel worried for everyone. For one, Chung Sir (the one who got kicked out of ATF and returned to CID) helped Alfred to get information and stakeout at a local cafe and got shot! I thought NO NO! He's deaddddddddddd! But he isn't and displayed such bravery (and resourcefulness) I wondered why ATF failed him in the first place. I find ATF themselves rather useless at this moment. The bad guy knew the police were there and took a hostage. This bad guy is Derek and he is ruthless! He was the one who electrocuted Carson and also shot him. The police put down the guns but Alfred stood his ground and said "I will not lower down my gun! You killed my brother!!" and then... HAVE TO WAIT FOR NEXT EPISODE!! NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!! What a cliffhanger! I do believe Carson himself would not have put down the gun as well!

Meanwhile this series shows the great difference between Jessica, the woman Carson loved and Yip Ting, the woman Carson will love. Whilst Jessica cried her heart out and visited the places Carson and she went to (normal behaviour of course - she has to mourn her great love), Yip Ting swallowed her pride and pretended all is ok with her Papa and rejoined the organisation to investigate her father's death as well as perhaps avenge Carson's death. She is a smart woman; she knows she is being watched. Whilst I do think the grief exhibited by Jessica is expected, and she is Carson's woman, I admire Yip Ting's resourcefulness. Do remember; she found out things even before ATF did, and she acted in ways that I consider even braver than ATF members. Whilst she wouldn't be expected to grief for Carson, she did because Carson saved her life before and she saw Carson as a good man and a good cop. But she stopped grieving as it is not purposeful to do so. What I disliked about Jessica is she gives up on everything. She totally gives up on even avenging Carson's death; she isn't angry, she is just very very very sad. And she is doing nothing. Alfred is investigating, Yip Ting is the new mole for herself but Jessica feels why bother? Why even care? Why even go on? Not that it is the worst thing ever to say so but I expected more fire rather than just giving up without trying. For that, I salute Yip Ting! But I won't condemn Jessica because like I said, her grief is normal but I would have hoped or someone in ATF, she would have displayed more courage in the face of adversity; more anger in the face of someone's treason and more determination in the face of her most loved's unknown fate. She just gave up.

Performance wise, everybody did well.

Aimee in the first half displayed the right grief, right sadness, right tears. But when she had to say her lines, and camera up close her face, I feel her crying is forced and I can't understand what she is saying. In fact one scene where she was talking to Alfred bemoaning about how she regretted not answering Carson's questions, she was crying hard but when a tear fell, she wiped it quickly. I feel she should have totally let go. In a later scene Beauty made her some salad and she looked distraught, hair in disarray, eyes red from crying which I felt was a very very good moment for Aimee as she looked like she has let go of herself. However the make up should have been lesser to give a more realistic effect.

Ron did some best acting in this episode, especially when his tear fell as he thought of his brother. Still wooden but at least in his woodenness I can see some fire in him.

Louise Lee was the one who provided the grief when she found out her son was dead and as told by Ron who had some fine acting in that scene.

Yoyo Mung is not the best actress but she is a competent one in here. I find her crying not as believable as it should have been but serviceable.

Episode 15 is another great episode since episode 10 or so. In the last 5 episodes or so, especially these 2 or 3 episodes, the action scenes were believable, the torture scenes scary and the performances a highlight. Story wise, the suspense is killing me. This is at episode 15 TVB's best modern action film. Forget about the great leap of faith by Eddie and Ruco or the terrorism plot, the fate of Carson and his beloved's reaction is worth your time to watch this series from episode 1. It has a nice buildup and right now, I am totally scared for Carson. Some scenes are violent and should be so, blood and gore TVB style which is already quite a lot and quite realistic. I hope TVB does not screw this up but since it was filmed 3 years ago, the fate as they say is already sealed. Thus far the plot and editing is tight and I could hardly breath from all the suspense and questions.

I know some of you are not watching this because of Aimee or because you don't like the leads. Let me assure you, Ruco is the leading actor, Ron is the supporting actor, Aimee is only supporting actress because it is abundantly clear, despite how TVB tried to whitewash everything, that Yoyo Mung is the undisputed leading actress. Even Vivien Yeo has increased screen time and Chris Lai also has a great amount of screentime in every episode.   Forget about not liking certain actors and so abandoning this series. I can't say the same for future episodes but thus far, this series is a series you must not miss. You can skip until Ruco and Ron joins ATF after their training because that's when the story starts. I think maybe Episode 7. By abandoning this series totally, you are missing out on this year's most suspenseful series which is rather smart and keeps you guessing. Some unknown or secondary actors are given prominent villainous roles and they all did very very well. Give this series a try because right now, it is the best thing on TV.

Oh Carson, how did you ever survive the gunshot to the head? HOW?!

06.04.2014
NGO SIR'S GREATEST JUMP, EVER
What a parody of the OTT silly Ngo Sir jump. I had a great time laughing and whoever did this has great skills and a great sense of humour. Fans who are offended should accept this as a compliment. First the jump was silly and the way Eddie Kwan jumped was silly but this parody certainly helps to promote this series. If you're wondering, no, the action sequences after this jump were mostly well done and realistic so do watch Ruse Of Engagement if you have a chance. You can start from Carson/Alfred joining ATF rather than during the training.

 



06.04.2014
YOYO MUNG AIRBRUSHED OUT OF THE PROMO OF THIS SERIES
I do not know about the contents but look at the cover of TVB magazine; no Yoyo Mung. TVB, pls be fair to her. She is the lead actress of this series (not Aimee Chan if you see the importance of Yoyo's Yip Ting and how many episodes she was in standalone episodes) and not one image on the cover. Rather sad that she is airbrushed out of the promotion of this series.



And thanks to some major spoiler in the ASTRO intro, now I suspect Aimee's Jessica is either a mole or a double agent.

04.04.2014
RUCO'S AGILITY
After episode 14, I need to calm down. I am like so worried for a character that does not exist. But in my heart, he does! Anyway calm down, calm down... let's see something nice which i found from here. Ruco's agility...



There are a few more but why I chose this is because this is probably one stunt he does not use wire. It really depends on the strength of his arms to pull himself up and over and then balancing so that he lands on his 2 feet. I wonder how many takes he took? A more trained actor (like kung fu trained) will probably climb up fast and jump over looking effortless but hey, Ruco's not bad! A bit clumsy, a bit heavy looking, kinda dangerous angle but really credible looking. He was thinnest here and I suppose his lightest and healthiest in some ways. He is bigger in Outbound Love, not out of shape but heavier. In this series, not only is he much thinner, even his skin is more... problematic. Stress must be getting to him. I noticed how the male actors all looked pretty tired. Imagine the action scenes they had to do!

I am looking for more screencaps but so far, can't find the episodes' screencaps. Like Outbound Love, can't find those nice beautiful shots of Luk Kung Tzi alone. Maybe I am looking at the wrong places. Any recommendation? Anyone?


04.04.2014
EPISODE 13 & 14
OH MY GOD!!! The end of episode 14 is like the best cliffhanger, EVER! I don't know about terrorism but the suspense in this series is top notch! Are you watching? If not you're missing a great sort of detective series. I never felt so anxious for a character before like I felt for Carson and my god, how did he ever escape the shot to the head? HOW?!??!?

The Chinese title says Traitor and I always assumed Carson was the traitor or a mole in the terrorist group known as Scaredy Bird. Boy was I wrong! And I am happy to be wrong! If I am right, traitor here refers to the one who betrayed Carson and Prof Wong. Who was it who betrayed Carson's final position at the safehouse? Can't be Ngo Sir, the easiest target. Is it Negative? Is it Wai Sir? Is it one of the ATF members? Carson who probably somehow survived the gunshot to his head will probably come back to investigate who was that traitor.

SO EXCITING!!

Everybody did well, even if I find the while ATF looking for Carson a bit farcical. Too many people arguing and doubting the big guy that is Ngo Sir. I however love the torture scenes, especially that scary harrowing scene of poor Carson electrocuted. Believe me, it leaves nothing to the imagination. For a TVB series, this series is pretty graphic and by being so graphic it ups the entire anxious fear factor. Episode 14 especially was gripping from start to end which culminated in that scene of Carson being shot. Fantastic scene! Earlier when Carson playfully proposed to Jessica, I knew his time was up. But up how? Ahhhh this series upped me by giving me a traitor amidst ATF.

Acting wise, mostly superb. Yoyo was good, Aimee did very well until she had to let her sorrow and angst go and that part where she ahhhhh urghhhhh was not great but earlier, when she saw Carson shot, great expression. The rest were ok but Ron was wooden for someone who just saw his brother got shot or heard his brother got shot. Ruco saves the day with a superb performance. Utterly impressive and I was so shocked at his execution scene. So shocked at his torture. And he fought till the end. What a man!

If you're not watching this series, you're missing a potentially first rate series of the year. I said potentially because it has may episodes to screw things up. Thus far, the last 5 or 6 episodes have been utterly impressive, top notch and amazing watch.

Now I shall wait for the explanation on how Carson survived and I bet Yip Ting will help him and I shall wonder who is the traitor? Please, NOT Negative!! (although it makes sense).

My only baffling or future baffling moment is how Jessica can fall for Alfred after what she witnessed? How she can so deeply love one man and then love another and who is his brother? Better have a good storyline for that!!


02.04.2014
EPISODE 12
TV must be having a fun day with April fool's day with me! I recorded and it turned out blank! No Ruco fix tonight! NO NO NO!!!!! Recording again, hopefully it works.

I LOVE THIS SERIES! (So far). I LOVE RUCO CHAN!! (always). OMG! If I can find an emoticon to put in here, it will  be love love love. I don't buy the whole terrorism thing BUT

1. the killing is very real. One scene, bad guy used a knife and cut the throat of another guy. No blood but you see the act of cutting and I was like woahhhhh super realistic!

2. action scenes all very real except how come the cars in car chase scenes all like very old model?

3. car chase scene very real and in one scene Yip Ting in a car that was crashed and turned and what nots and is perhaps Yoyo Mung's best acting because I am sure she felt the danger of that scene.

4. Ruco is cool, super cool, the way he steered the car, the way he rescued Yoyo and the way he teased her like 30 seconds later. In fact I am totally and absolutely in love with Carson, until the writers or editing team will eventually screw things up.

I love the last scene where she cried "Thankyouthankyouthankyou!! You saved my life, if not I would have died! I will repay you! I swear I will repay you!!" and Carson teasingly said "How do you plan to repay me? My life is very precious".

I know how she will repay him! She will stand by him when the world (including Alfred and Jessica) turn their backs on him! That's how! That's how true love is born!

Ahhhhhh Ruco oh Ruco, what a man! He is the thinnest here but ahhhhhh so manly!

Did I say Ruco so manly? Ahhhhhhhhhh......

As for the actual plot, poor Mama Carson and Alfred. She is poisoned with some toxic substance thanks to birds which breathed those toxins scratched her. She could die. Really! Poor Mama Carson.

And if anyone asks, who is the leading actor here? Ruco. Because he has most screentime. Who is the leading lady? Yoyo because her story is independent and she has most screen time.

RUCO! I LOVE YOU! I LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!

What a fantastic episode. Action packed, murder, explosion, car chase scene, intrigue, hero saving damsel in distress! Great acting! Even Ron Ng who has lesser and lesser scene was woodenly cute.

But Ruco is da man! He practically holds this series up.

And I still like Negative by the way.

P/S I did want to talk about how the number 4 as in 2014 was digitally inserted in I believe episode 11 or 10. But that is of no significance now. I regret not continuing with my episodic thoughts for this series but then it will just be emoticons full of love for Ruco Chan. Ahhhh what a man!

P P/S Yip Ting should be recruited as ATF agent. She could find out more things and make connection with several unconnected thing faster than the ATF analysts with their high tech computers. This shows sometimes leg work aka detective work is more effective than tech work.

31.03.2014
EPISODE 11
Yoyo is getting increasingly more screen time with almost half of each episode dedicated to her story which is independent on its own.

Anyway in tonight's episode I love one particular scene and it involves Aimee and Ruco which is very very intimate. I feel they were more daring in the past than in Outbound Love. Both hugging, speaking lines and in the morning both ate from the same fork. This is the intimacy I want to see which is believable. Fans of Ruco will probably scream in delight because he has never been manlier than in those simple scenes. And he certainly looks like he lost a lot of weight, back then. I personally think he is more playful here than in Outbound Love; something very attractive with a smart guy who is playful and yet will die for you to rescue you which by the way there is such a scene even if I feel sorta out of sync with the whole story. I still have issues with Aimee's consistency in terms of the intimacy between 2 characters but at least that scene that I talked about was well done. There were some kissing on forehead, hugging, etc which I feel were infinitely more intimate than what we see in other series some years later.

But there is a dilemma. If they were so close, she was so in love with him, what reason will the writers give for her to have a change of heart and fall for Alfred? For Carson to fall for Yip Ting is simpler; Jessica's change of heart. But after what is in this episode, how to justify Jessica's change of heart?

Story wise, it is getting interesting. My question though is .. is it a norm that every new character introduced that is not ATF member must be working for the secret organisation which ASTRO in its translation calls it "Scaredy Bird"? Kinda undignified name. This organisation is not a terrorist group; they're sort of like Ebay and Lelong.com.my for terrorist groups, meaning they facilitate and sell services and products. Interesting. Wonder who is the big boss?

Anyway let me write more about Ruco in this episode. I simply could not take my eyes off him. The way he sat, the way he slept, the way he interacts, I feel this series is a clear start to the change in him which we saw 3 years later. Very very masculine performance and dare I say, sexy as hell.

30.03.2014
EPISODE 10
First 30 minutes is entirely about Yoyo and her mysterious Papa. In fact quite a shocker about her best friend, Edmond's death and whether Papa can be trusted. In Yoyo's case, it seems no one can be trusted at all. Intriguing storyline. Still no idea about the organisation but it may have a bearing on the later story of Carson going rogue or as the title says, Traitor (in Chinese). Basically I think Carson goes undercover (again). We shall see.

Last 15 minutes is about Carson and Jessica being lovey dovey, meeting mom and then poor Alfred, who could only observe. He did get some he and Jessica alone time when one day he stumbled on her with a flat tyre.  Yeah, she's ATF, doesn't mean a car expert. Anyway one very telling scene was after rain, Alfred was wet and Jessica invited him to come up to her place for a cup of hot coffee. Alfred was eager until Jessica said "You can also change out of your wet clothes. You can wear your brother's clothes, he left a few at my place" and it was like cold water poured on Alfred. He made his excuses and left. Ahhhhhh... so Carson and Jessica has done the deed... you know.. s-e-x. Ohhhhhhh la la! And they hardly even kiss. A bit of peach feeding yes, but I still can't feel the sexiness between them. You know individually Aimee Chan is one sexy lady, Ruco is one sexy guy (well taste may differ) but together, it was like cold shower. I see the electricity from Ruco and when Aimee reciprocates, like how she did in this episode, briefly I feel potential but most of the time there is an acute lack of intimacy even when there was flirtation. I notice Ruco doesn't really touch Aimee nor does Aimee touch Ruco. That lack of physical contact is what is missing. I don't mean hug, etc but I mean that intimacy. I hope Yoyo has more with Ruco.

Last 5 minutes is potential new case with birds dropping dead all over HK and once again Mama Carson/Alfred sprained her ankle and fell down as the birds went The Birds on her.

Acting wise everybody is ok. Ron is growing on me, he has his limits and he works within his limits. Weakest is still Aimee. Even Vivien Yeo is scary in this episode with a very shocking plot twist. I think she has improved a lot. Anyway back to Aimee, somehow I still could miss her and not notice her. Sorry but I just can't see her in the forefront. Not that I could with Yoyo but she did quite well today except I don't think when someone is confronting their Papas about some ugly truth and shouting and crying that they would brush their hair aside even once. I find that not very very accurate portrayal. I feel she should look terrible instead of pristine. After all what she has learnt is pretty devastating; not one but TWO most important people in her life just confessed to betraying her trust. That must be very devastating.

Ruco Chan is darn masculine in here except he is also at his slimmest I have seen him in TVB. So he didn't look great like in Outbound Love or recent series but the way he sat, the flamboyant way and playful way and flirtatious way he talks really made Carson come alive and is a great juxtapose with the more serious and little brother Alfred. You kinda understand why Jessica fell for Carson first.

Overall, this series is slowly gaining momentum and I am enjoying it very much even if the plot is somewhat impossible. But it is enjoyable and fans of Ruco will want to continue watching. Dear lord, he is sexy! Without glasses and so slim, there is a certain rogue and roughness to his Carson that I find appealing. I just hated in episode 9 (TBC) where he sorta pleaded with Jessica for another chance. I understand the scene, I get the reason but I HATE watching him plead.

26.03.2014
EPISODE 8
The man who raised Yoyo is working for some terrorist group? Exciting stuff. Alfred finally knows Carson is dating Jessica, to his dismay.

This episode is mostly about Yoyo. I am still wondering what special group is she working for? The Illuminati perhaps?

Acting wise, my praise goes to Ruco for emoting well. This man is telling quite a lot of lies with the best intention. Yoyo's Reporter Yip is also very good at telling lies and investigating stuff. Here she will destroy a nemesis' laptop. She really should join ATF.

I really don't have much comment. Except maybe I know TVB is promoting Aimee as first lead in here but I feel her character so far is mostly in the background and for me quite forgettable. If not for Ruco who makes her Jessica interesting, I will find Jessica very very boring and right now, pointless.

25.03.2014
EPISODE 7
This series is growing on me. Exciting episode involving a plot by North Korean terrorists disguised as farmers to kill South Korean Minister of Agriculture visiting HK for WTO and how ATF or rather 1 woman investigated. I tell you this much; Yoyo's reporter should be in ATF. She knew so much and investigated so much and got so much I do think she is Jessica and Beauty combined! Carson will be put into dilemma and Alfred almost died. And Negative reminds me of a very competent worker who is working too long in one job. So far this episode is exciting. What organisation does Yoyo works for? What is her agenda? How will Carson explain how he found the terrorists and the guns without revealing it was Yoyo telling him?

Acting wise, Ron did well even if he ever has 1 expression. Ruco ruled the day with his versatility (and looking very good in semi formal wear) whilst Yoyo is competent. Aimee is like reading script and at some point I thought she might just give up on the dialogue with the frequent sighs and pauses. Eddie looks way too serious. It is Chris Lai that is making me look at him because I really do like Negative. Oh, there's Fred Cheng before the singing competition so all he got was minor scenes.

One scene very funny which was Alfred trying to get some info from a security guard of a building and he showed his card, ATF and the guard was like who are you? Never heard of ATF. So he called his friend, the guy who flunked ATF but he was CID and his friend got the info. Very funny.

One last thing. The nicknames for one is not silly but still unsuitable for such a high profile organisation. There is Jessica who is called Ka-Che aka Big Sister, Alfred is Ah Fatt, Carson is Ah Son, Negative, etc etc.

22.03.2014
EPISODE 6
Not only was Carson NOT failed, he passed with Alfred and is now ATF! Carson however is in the errr... investigative team (where Jessica is) and Alfred who really wanted to be where Jessica is is in Operations instead (the SDU-like team led by the ever smiling Kenny Wong). A lot of flirtation scenes between Carson and Jessica except Jessica is being careful because people of the same team can't have a relationship so she wanted theirs to be low key, so low key even Alfred didn't know. Except I feel no rush of electricity. There was Carson, electric bolts at every opportunity at Jessica who was like a wood that absorbed and did nothing else. I find her so wooden around him. Oh Yoyo appears and seems so weird, like in some terror organisation but we all know maybe it isn't. I don't know. We shall see. Meanwhile a note on Ron. He is at his very best when he is playing a younger brother to a much serious actor playing older brother. Except Ruco's Carson is supposed to be hot headed, passionate, playful but Ron's Alfred is so childlike. I love how he strutted into Carson's room and said "You promised to make dinner! Where is dinner?!" or something like that. On Ron could do that scene that way. Or maybe Bosco too but Bosco is best as a guy friend. Ron can have the same expression throughout but it works in a brother-brother relationship. I also like Negative a lot. I find him competent and level headed and heading for promotion if such a guy exist. Strictly professional with a dry sense of humour as well.

As for Ruco, I do find his super expressive acting a bit too excessive at times. Nowadays he seemed more controlled and a bit more subtle. The good thing about this series is you can compare 3 years before and after and some actors have some major changes, some unchanged and some just keep getting worse because they never quite improve. Who is who? I let you decide.

22.03.2014
EPISODE 5
Is this how HK train their ATF agents? Because they say 8 weeks training? Schedule seems to be like this;

7 weeks of arguments with boss/trainer and having issues with one trainee
3 days of reconciliation and pep talks
1 day of super dare challenge
2 days of more training like perhaps defusing a  bomb and recognising a terrorist
1 day of last day of test

What about art of interrogation? Analysis of terrorists? How to withstand torture? Something like that? I swear all these are inspectors level and they're  being trained like first year cadets.

What must Carson do to get kicked out? Even if he has the highest potential, he is too much of ME ME ME that he is such a burden to the entire team. But it was funny how he jumped over to the other building as a dare when Ngo Sir did it. By the way I find it amazing Ngo Sir is described as 51 years old because that is about the right age!! TVB is never about age accuracy!! Don't break your own standards TVB!

Let's see; Eddie was born in 1962 so that makes him about 49 at the time of this series. He looks good! He looks youthful. Ruco was born in 1977, about 33 when he was filming this series. A good 16 years of difference between them? Wow, Eddie looks great! He has always looked about the same size, hardly ever put on weight.

Back to the story.

Love story between Carson and Jessica which suddenly turned into kissing and I was like when did they start? I mean episode 4 they were still just friendly with one another? Kiss, hug, flirt, etc and still ZERO chemistry. I felt nothing. Switch to Storm In A Cocoon for real chemistry. So my conclusion is

1. Aimee is difficult to pair with any actor because no chemistry and her performance in here is ok since the character suits her but if you didn't point her out, I swear I would have just looked past her.

2. Ruco is difficult to pair. I wouldn't say in The Other Truth he was best chemistry with Tavia because I didn't see it that way. Ruco however is great with Louise Lee and some other actresses like Linda Chung and Ankie Belkie.

Ruco looks like a thug in here. True!! No glasses, so thin, hair same colour as the tone of his skin and his skin so tanned, he really looked like a gangster. Suddenly I miss his Luk Kung Tzi where he was bigger, cuter, handsomer and better hair with glasses.

Aimee looked so thin!

Ron looked ok. I tell you this; he may be wooden but he is best as delivering those witty one liner like he did tonight when he was asked "If I order you to die, will you die?" and he shouted "If sir order me to die you must have your reason sir!"

Had  a good time chuckling at that line. But no, I don't see how Ruse Of Engagement is interesting because it is typical TVB. I see nothing different or special.

No Yoyo tonight.

21.03.2014
EPISODE 4
Maybe episode 3 and I have no fate to be together. The day I recorded episode 3, it was raining so basically it was no show. I tried recording 2 separate sessions in the middle of the night only to find out next day before Episode 4 was broadcast that the decoder was switched off. And I couldn't wait so I went on to Episode 4, half scratching my head why they're now back in the academy. I won't be backtracking to Episode 3 unless you can tell me what's good, apart from the 2 brothers in shower together.

Episode 4 is ok. A lot of heated arguments, typical of cadets hating their trainers (Carson Vs Ngo Sir) that it feels it has been done before, millions of time. If Carson is so unhappy, and he is a senior inspector I believe, why not just quit and go back to CID? Is he so passionate about ATF or is it because of Jessica? And Jessica also is strange. She is obviously attracted to Carson (and as if the world is so small, Alfred is in love with her too) and yet avoided him or rather flirts but deflirts each time. This is so similar with Outbound Love, right down to the zero chemistry. I find Ruco more chemistry with his bro than with his girl. Yoyo's chemistry with him is yet to be seen. In fact Aimee has zero chemistry with Ron as well. I used to like Aimee a lot but with TVB throwing her to the forefront with every opportunity they could get, I feel I don't like her too much because let's face it; this was 3 years ago, so her acting is raw. Fast forward to Outbound Love, 3 years later and her acting is still lacking. She alone is ok. But with guys, somehow she seems to be holding herself back. I find her acting unnatural. In fact I feel Yoyo's appearance here as the nosy reporter was more flirtatious with Ruco than Aimee with Ruco and Yoyo wasn't supposed to be flirting with him yet. I see Ruco releasing the entire electricity charge on Aimee and all I can see is Aimee is like a wood; the electricity just cannot get through.

I enjoyed Ron and Ruco's scenes together even if I scratch my head why they're back to like school days in academy when Ruco's Carson graduated a decade ago. I feel something very immature about these 2 characters and hot headed as well, just to give a bit of drama with an estranged relationship between Ngo Sir and the 2 guys, especially potential top student, Carson. By the end of the episode I was wondering what Carson had to do to be booted out of the academy since he has broken every possible rule, including subordination. How can he ever work under Ngo Sir if he so resent Ngo Sir? Ahhhhh now that's the beauty of a TV series. 5 episodes later I am sure he feels he has misjudged Ngo Sir and now Ngo Sir is like his big brother! But still I feel everything is on a rewind when shouldn't we be told why in the first place Alfred ever believed his super cop brother Carson could ever be a gangster?? Was this told in episode 3?

Ron is still wooden but he fares best with another guy; he does best those buddy-buddy scenes and I enjoy those scenes immensely. I just find it painful when I am watching him being lovesick because he only ever has 1 expression; a very serious one. I also don't see why these 2 guys immediately zoomed into Jessica. A lot of series with Aimee in it it is always assumed she is so attractive in every way guys just fall for her. I don't get her appeal. In fact poor Beauty, no guys like her, except maybe Negative.

Chris Lai is ok, since 3 years ago, his acting is very very very serious and raw but his Negative is a rather competent ATF member.

Yoyo Mung is not my favourite actress. In fact I don't think highly of her acting. 3 years ago should be around the time when her acting was the worst simply because she wasn't paying attention, always seemed distracted. In here, her scenes are few but thus far she is not believable as a top reporter but I like her rapport with Ruco which speaks more than what Ruco has with Aimee. That will be the saving grace.

By the way in the beach scene as Carson and Jessica flirted with one another, she was shoeless and walking along the seashore, they talked, talked and then she left and she forgot about her shoes. Quite literally, her shoes' there but she just walked out of the camera. She is not scene per scene actress like Charmaine Sheh but she is certainly inconsistent.

So far this series is the usual standard and since this was 3 years ago, you can assume that was right smack during the time TVB was quite predictable and was exhausted in ideas. But since it is only episode 3, it is still too early to tell.

I can however vouch for Storm In A Cocoon which is becoming more and more interesting thanks to the cast. Steven Ma gave Ka Yeung such a masculine and yet educated personality and now we are left wondering did the unhappy and justifiably angry Ka Hin betray Ka Yeung? Ahhhhhhh drama! Drama!! Something which Ruse of Engagement has yet to show. I mean it is a show about terrorists, but it feels like a show about every criminal there is except terrorists. But don't give up on it just yet. It might hold a few surprises just yet.

19.03.2014
EPISODE 3
I wish I can comment more but it was raining heavily and the episode for me stopped at when the 2 brothers were bantering in Carson's room and then jumped to shower together. Very frustrating climax for me. But I plan to rewatch tomorrow and I shall write more!

EPISODIC THOUGHTS
Previously posted in the now deleted episodic thoughts blog for this series.

17.03.2014
EPISODE 1
Correct me if I am wrong; Chinese title is equivalent to "Traitor", correct? Or "Running dog"? I however love the English title.

I was expecting explosions from scene 1 but what we got is a song less opening and then it starts; bunch of Indians from Punjab with some drug deal gone wrong except it was no drug deal, the dealer was killed with a huge dose of anthrax powder. Yeah, I thought so too; that was so 3 years ago. Anyway the actors you see in this scene is also so 3 years ago; one has actually left HK. Anyway the Indians ran after some Asian dude at some shopping complex which obviously was late at night because the shops were closed and what ensued was an intense gun fight with someone abandoning her old grandma in a wheelchair between gun fighting Indians and ... guess who! GUESS!!

No NOT Ruco but Ron aka Alfred. A shootout and one funny looking Asian old man walked by with a limp, bang bang bang, Ron ran to old woman, pushed her aside and bang bang bang and Indians ran away and Ron was just there to shop.

Aimee at her home in front of computer working; yeah very diligent, saw the anthrax death news and rushed out. She reached the rooftop where the anthrax guy died and she checked and all and Ron was there (shopping complex was below) and Ron is I believe SDU. Then came I believe CID or some dept telling Aimee and Ron to get lost but Aimee said this man died of anthrax and so possible terrorism and therefore ATF should be given information. ATF = Anti Terrorism Force and yeah I know, HK got terrorism meh? Well as you can see this episode will explain why TVB should just make another series about SDU and forensics. And then Eddie appeared and he was head of ATF and officially taking over the case and I was like the rooftop had way too many cops. Ron was asked to drop by to ATF tomorrow to give statement which he did and I was like shaking my head; you know how irrelevant this series is when 20 something countries with high tech stuff can't even find a missing plane and here we have TVB's idealised super high tech building and equipment that even analysed criminals by the probable matching of BONE STRUCTURE And I mean entire skeleton. Place looked too blue, too modern and as usual with super high tech stuff in a series about super high tech professionals; they all were insufferable know it alls. However this was 3 years ago and so the bad habits of nicknames never ceased; this time Leanne Li's English name is Beauty.

Anyway Ron observed something not right with that limping old guy and so it was. Apparently one Japanese dude was no happy with some Japanese diplomat about something that involved Indians Punjab and frankly I didn't follow. I see not terrorism but assassination attempts to be made on the Japanese diplomat during the dragon boat race which by the way Ron was participating.

Meanwhile Ron walked past an alley and saw one guy beating the crap out of the idea. Suddenly it became Brother's Keeper except Ron was a cop and not a peanut cookie seller. Ron rushed to the dude who ran away and it turns out that's Ruco looking like a gangster bad ass which he was and he was also Ron's big brother, a huge disappointment to Ron and to their mom (Louise Lee again) who had pined for the return of the wayward son. Ron demanded Ruco to call home since they did not hear from him for 6 months and Ruco was like screw you! and left and Ron warned that he be careful if not he will personally arrest him.

He as in Ron and Him as in Ruco, so that I be very very clear.

Ruco turned out to be one of the gangster dude for some guy whose assistant was the guy who died of anthrax. He told Ruco to find that Japanese terrorist (in TVB world) and find out what happened. Probably this dude was dealing in anthrax stuff.

Ruco followed the Japanese dude one day and into the very place (Chinese opera theatre) where mom happened to work it. The Japanese dude successfully evaded Ruco and Ruco tried avoiding mom but Japanese dude attacked him openly and as Japanese dude (Sato by the way) tried to inject Ruco with a syringe probably full of poison (or Ebola for all I know), mom saw them and saw him son and quickly cried "Son, don't kill him! Don't murder him!"

I was like "But mom surely you can see HE is trying to MURDER ME!!" as they struggled and mom kept crying and I was like oh dear, Brother's Keeper all over again when Japanese dude tried to squeeze the life out of Ruco's neck and mom removed her shoe and finally did something useful like hit the Japanese dude with her shoe and he pushed her, she sprained her ankle and Japanese dude again ran away. Ruco wanted to follow but saw his mom like that, pretended not to care when he did as mom cried to him not to leave and be a useless bum and Ruco cried to leave him be and mind her own business and she threatened "If you don't admit you're wrong, if you run out now, don't call me your mother!!" and guess what he did? He ran out and also called for ambulance/police for his mom. As Louise was carried into the ambulance she looked into the crowd with hope against hope he is there and she indeed saw him for one second and she knew she can't give up on him, just yet.

Back at the club, Ruco got beaten to a pulp as he failed his boss about following the Japanese dude. Boss reminded then to stay in the club for next few days as he got something big for then.

Ron visited his mom in hospital who refused to take pain killers because she wanted to stay awake just in case Ruco dropped by for a visit and Ron being very emotional told his mom "He will never change, he will never ever change. When I saw him, I feel so ashamed he is my brother. Mother, it is time we give up on him. He is not the same man anymore, he is never coming back!" but mom being mom simply refused to give up even if her stubbornness was not due to certainty but rather love.

ATF found the Japanese dude to some building (ooooh so high tech) and to make long story short, they evacuated the entire building and again there was the old man disguise which was escorted by Chris Lai (yeah he is in this series). The ATF nearly caused a bomb blast when they almost knocked into the Japanese's apartment without checking. Anyway, Chris (here called Negative since his Chinese name sounds like that word) already knew something was wrong with the guy and had personally escorted him as he tapped into his radio receiver (like Morse code thing) and they all surrounded the Japanese dude who then took Chris by the neck or somewhere whilst holding a bug jar (ok not as big as a jar but small cylinder) of anthrax (so 3 years ago!!) and threatened to throw it to the floor and Chris struggled to break free and as the guy threw the bottle down (about to), Eddie shot him in the head (blood and gore in this scene-yeah!!) and oops, bottle fell and luckily someone dived and caught it in the nick of time (no butterfingers here! but the boss was crazy-he misjudged his shooting I tell you and if the guy succeeded, entire male cast all dead for the ATF segments and lucky Aimee will get to front the entire ATF herself, wit Leanne!!). Celebrations, etc but they were still checking into the whole terrorist against diplomat thing.

Now this is where I was fuzzy in memory; why would triad boss give one bag each to his member, including Ruco with specific instruction to leave it at specific area by 12 at the dragon boat race? He was gun for hire? Trying to emulate the Boston Marathon bombing? Anyway Ron was there and saw Ruco and followed him into the toilet and as he knocked open the door he saw Ruco in the act of opening the bag but Ron didn't see that; he saw only Ruco up to no good. Struggles when they heard a big bang and the bag was opened and in it bombs. Ron looked at a shocked Ruco and I think he said you brought bombs?

Hey Ruco was as clueless as Ron!!

Ending song was sung by Ron and Ruco with a rather fiery looking MV that I believe was filmed later; because Ruco had curlier hair and somewhat slimmer and Ron was much bigger in size and looked pretty tired.

No sign of Yoyo Mung.

The first thing that struck me about this episode is how raw everyone was. Chris Lai was raw, Ron was raw, Ruco was so much younger and raw and Aimee Chan definitely was raw. And you must remember, this was filmed 3 years ago and even the sets and the technology seems dated. Anthrax? Very 3 years ago. This was TVB 3 years ago; everything in your face.

I have nothing to complain about the brother vs brother thing except since this series was filmed, there was another series about the same thing with almost same cast. It is not refreshing. For whatever reason this series was warehoused (maybe subject matter is sensitive?), releasing it now is a few years too late for freshness. Whilst I enjoyed the first few minutes of fresh camera angles which you must watch in HD, after a while all those pause moments got to my nerves.

Performance wise, Eddie looked old and too tense. Louise could sleepwalk in this role but well, she has great chemistry with her "sons" and very heart breaking to see a mom so trying to convince herself her son will come home.

Ruco was ok. He was eager as you can see whilst in Brother's Keeper, he became more laid back in his acting performance; good for  being relaxed, bad because if this become a habit, he will become those zombified actors who did just enough to scrap through. I'd rather an eager Ruco. He looked handsome in here and so much younger but I prefer him with glasses. Without glasses, he not only looked rough (on point here!) but "yam yam sap sap". I prefer the accountant serial killer look. I am sure once he is in ATF he will be in suits or in those very cool looking ATF costumes.

Ron is Ron. Acting is worse than in Triumph In The Skies II but in retrospect, not as bad as I would think of him. 

Aimee Chan is the worst in terms of acting. I like the girl, I do but in here she was like reciting her lines. She clearly improved a lot in Outbound Love but the problem is in Outbound Love she was a miscast, in here the role suits her looks but her acting was like acting. If Yoyo Mung could trump her in here, I will saw it doesn't say much for Yoyo herself since her acting is also so-so. One wonders why Ruco is perpetually stuck with less than stellar younger actresses.

There were a lot more actors that I care to talk about like Kenny Wong (where is he now?), Leanne (weird performance, weird character), Chris Lai (wooden to say the least) and so many more. This is a big production filled with I will say 2nd class actors. Eddie is not 2nd class per se but if this was 1st class production, you will see Bosco and Moses somewhere, Eddie will be replaced by Michael Miu, Yoyo becomes Myolie and Aimee probably is still Aimee. That sort.

Not a bad first episode with a cliff hanger but in the end it feels a bit dated and so in your face that one would expect from a series by TVB which involves specialised field.

18.03.2014
EPISODE 2
Before I begin the recap, the English names in here deserve a mention. All very traditional, very sturdy like Alfred, Carson, Jessica and such. When I heard Carson I immediately saw a butler. It is however a very English-ish name which is like this series' a bit of old fashion stuff (Carson, Alfred) mixed with new stuff (Beauty).

2nd episode proves to be fast moving and answers some questions although I am sure before you started watching episode you already know Ruco aka Carson is a good guy. How he became pretend bad guy is sorta answered here. In fact episode 2 wraps up the whole brotherly rivalry thus far until of course Jessica gets between them and also answered the whole timeline thing.

For Yoyo's fan, no sign of her just yet.

The episode before, BOMB!

This episode opens not with BOMB! but curiously the Indians and the Chinese gangster (Carson's boss) robbing a bank. To cut the long story short, I do believe gangster teamed up with Indians to rob a bank but the Indians actually wanted to get to the USB which contains some decoder thing deposited into the safety deposit box by the Japanese terrorist whom ATF killed in Episode 1.  Gangster didn't know Indians wanted USB thing so was shocked with use of bombs.

Meanwhile at dragon boat race event which TVB was kind enough to tell us is in June 2014 (yes, 2014!) 3 guys tried to place a bag with bomb. One succeeded, one didn't and blasted himself to death and causing widespread panic which ATF quickly rushed in to assist, disperse, chase and what nots whilst 2 brothers were busy fighting in a public toilet. Alfred noticed how shocked Carson was when he saw the bomb and they heard the blast and basically Carson beat Alfred into a pulp, took the bag and ran for his life. Some ATF saw suspicious Carson and chased along and Carson ran and ran and ran and ran and with seconds to spare, threw the bag over the brige and into the err.. river I think. Or maybe sea but a bit too brownish to be sea so I shall stick with River. Carson was a bit disoriented because the blast was near his ears but he was acute enough to notice Alfred closing in one side and ATF in another and no choice, he jumped over the bridge into the river. Everyone stopped and looked. I have someone asking "How come none of them jump into the river after him?". Ahhhhh but this ain't James Bond and moreover, how to chase when someone jumped from high bridge to deep river below? Alfred wasted no time to tell ATF boss... he said his name so many times and all I can remember is Ngo...until I get his name right, I will stick with Eddie... anyway Alfred told Eddie who the guy was and Eddie had this look of enlightenment that Alfred didn't, like he knew something when he didn't but to Alfred's credit he did say "I don't think my brother knew there was a bomb in the bag. He looked as surprise as I was. And he did run away with the bomb and I think it was to take it away as far as possible from the public so as not to harm anyone. I think he is being used". Eddie did say to Alfred to contact him if Carson ever call him and Alfred fretting said "I don't think he will ever call me. He hasn't called for 6 months prior to this" and again this knowing look by Eddie.

Man, what do you know?! TELL ME!!

Pause.

I was very confused with the bombs. Weren't they suppose to go off at 12? 1 went off before, 1 went off after, and another didn't. Then I remember maybe the instruction was to just place the bombs by 12, not that it will blow at 12. Anyway one unnecessarily tense scene where Negative (Chris Lai) told Eddie he can defuse a bomb which he said and I quote "This bomb is minor, I can defuse it" since bomb disposal unit was late (ahhhh as usual!). So sweating with a few guys standing at a not so far distance away in tense mode, with 1 second to spare or rather 0 second the bomb was defused. My question is why not do as Carson did? Throw the darn bomb over the bridge and into the river since it is just a small and minor bomb? Why the whole tension sweat scary moment? Like making a mountain out of a molehill, like tension for tension sake? I have an answer to that and thanks to Carson which I shall reveal later.  By the way Negative is due for a well deserved promotion. Episode 1, he discovered the terrorist's disguise. Episode 2 he defused a bomb. Very useful fella.

Ahhh things got scary from hereon. If you think the bomb blast was scary (killed the person placing the bomb and hurting a few), what happened next is in TVB's terms is pretty graphic. But do not close your eyes because hey, graphic man! Something different!

Tension.. DID CARSON .. DIEEEEEEEEE?????

He didn't (thank God and thank you TVB!) and he and 2 other members were furious that their boss lied to them and went to find him, with guns and all. And proving HK is such a small world, guess who stumbled into Carson going into a car? Yes, Alfred and he took a lorry and followed them. Subtlety is not thy name! It was actually quite funny.

Meanwhile gangster boss is not happy he was used by Indian terrorists and he demanded 60% of the whole loot. Indian gangster wanted only the USD and said sure and then proceeded to machine gun them all and I think it was this one we saw feets upside down in bins which was pretty graphic. I applaud that scene. Why? Have you ever seen a merficul terrorist? Although I will argue they're not really terrorists. In fact I hope it is an ongoing investigation because in the end I still do not understand their agenda, what has it got to do with some Japanese diplomat by the name of I think Iwamoto and the dead Japanese terrorist and the USB which apparently perhaps can hack into some satellite. Anyway our 3 heroes heard the gunshots I think and Indians rushed out and started shooting at our 3 guys. 2 were dead and Carson narrowly escaped and hid in bushes when lo and behold, baby brother arrived in the lorry, got shot in the shoulder, fainted and was driven away in the lorry by the 3 Indians. Carson heroically followed by doing some nifty moves and cling onto dear life underneath the lorry and true to realism, he looked mighty uncomfortable, sweating profusely and seemed like he could let go any time due to tiredness.

ATF was following Alfred's signal and from the comfort of their super ATF truck, they followed in pursuit.

Pause.

Am I the only one who feel the interior of the truck (with so many people and equipments) were way larger than the truck itself? Anyway if you're wondering where were the women? Well Beauty and Jessica finally appeared but they were not in action but rather computer tech people, very important. In fact ATF seemed to be divided into 3 groups; the operations aka Eddie, the SDU like armed forces aka Kenny and Li Kasing and computer tech people aka Jessica and Beauty. No woman in the armed forces. And Eddie and Kenny seemed to be of equal rank/footing.

Continue.

They reached some warehouse, and a huge one. Lorry parked inside and again some nifty moves later, our hero of the day Carson quietly slid onto the top of the pile of wood and followed in quiet pursuit. He also took out his phone (Sony Ericsson, before the emergence of Samsung in TVB) and curiously filmed his surrounding. Why?  

You will know in...3...2...1..

Eddie received a call from some high ranking CID looking guy who said "My man is inside the factory. He followed in pursuit of 3 indians..." and you may think ahhhhhhhh Alfred's boss? Come on! You have seen enough of TVB series to know he was talking about CARSON!! Why? Because only Carson was awake to give such info. Do remember, Alfred fainted and in the lorry with the Indians, if he made any calls he would have been found out immediately! But how did Carson make the call or rather when did he make the call? Your guess is as good as mine.

Alfred woke up, fell ouf of the lorry but was discovered and dragged to the middle by a scary looking Indian who held a gun to his head but won't shoot because main boss(Gill Mohinderpaul Singh aka Q Bobo looking very menacing) wanted to use him as a hostage. Carson knew he had to do something if not baby brother is dead meat. 

CID boss arrived, met with Eddie and said he has one spy inside who can given intel and Eddie talked to Carson and asked is there another way in and Carson used his camera to show him and Eddie was surprised to see it was the wanted guy Carson who was confused what the heck was going on (after all he was investigating a triad boss and suddenly there were terrorists) and he finally knew Carson was a mole. He instructed his team to enter through one small window at the top. Meanwhile ATF briefed Carson to capture the computer device which was transmitting the USB decoder thing (but signal jammed by Beauty) and Jessica explained to Carson once he got the computer, do not removed the USB immediately as it will damage information and to input a kill code that was so long that Carson asked her to repeat it which was when the Indians found out there was some signal from inside the factory and so a spy was hidden in there. Indians screamed (realistically in English and when they conversed amongst themselves in Indian) that they will kill Alfred if the mole did not show himself and I missed something here because immediately Alfred knew it was Carson and he thought to himself "Brother is a mole? He is a mole!" and he knew he wronged his own big brother and he shouted "Don't come out!! Forget about me!!". Carson walked out and somehow captured the computer device with a few nifty moves and pointed a gun at the computer as Q Bobo pointed a gun at Alfred and each will exchange for the other. Alfred and Carson eyed one another and as Eddie said "Safety of the officer is paramount", Carson who already eyed his surroundings threw the laptop aside and away from Q Bobo, punched his way with Alfred, shot some canister which blew up and then some nifty moves to recapture the computer device thing all at one go. Woahhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!  Armed forced moved in and shoot, shoot, blast blast and guess what? ATF shot dead ALL the terrorists. So now we will never know what they had want to do or transmit to where.

All's well ends well. Suddenly Carson was smiling again and Alfred being wheeled into the ambulance expressed his regret, that he almost blew Carson's cover and almost caused his death and all that brotherly apology which was rather moving and Carson was ok with all that. He walked up to his boss and cheerfully greeted his boss and someone said to me "How can he be so cheerful?". Hey, a mole gotta know how to be optimistic, if not that is a lonely road to take. My bigger question is who he became a mole? His boss introduced him to Eddie and Eddie sorta chastised him for not following orders and he cheekily said "I have appraised the surroundings sir, and I feel my actions were justified" which sort of shut Eddie off. He was also introduced to Jessica who had this hero-worship look to her face and Carson cheekily said "You know your kill code was way too long. I thought it was much easier to just bring the whole computer thing to you" which was rather funny and very very true. I find Carson is similar with Ka Yeung in Storm In A Cocoon; both are pragmatists and think outside of the box. I think his answer was simply the best line in this episode. The kill code was too long.  And remember the whole Negative diffusing bomb moment? It shows ATF will follow the books. Kill codes, defuse a small bomb. A pragmatic man like Carson will bring the computer device to ATF or throw the bomb into the river. 

Carson was told by his boss his mole-days are over and he was very happy. Walking away, Eddie asked his boss about Carson and boss said Carson was in the force for 10 years of which 3 years were under him. His rank was I think Inspector? But higher ranking? Which makes me wonder, why would a high ranking inspector become a mole? How can anyone believe a highly decorated police officer ever become a gangster? This episode never explain, I doubt it will ever be explained. From the looks of it, he was a mole for 6 months. He didn't seem to be the highly educated one who took an academic route to his rank so he must have worked his way up. So why?

Carson went to see his mom who said police were looking all over for him and when she saw Alfred walking into the room looking like he could kill
 someone, mom panicked and told Carson to run because Alfred had said before that he will beat Carson but they ended laughing with each other, explained to mo what actually happened and obviously mom loved Carson more because she hugged him very very tightly. Some may say lucky Ruco got hugged by Louise but I will say all of Ruco's charm was always seem to be directed at Louise. It ended with all 3 hugging. Mom didn't seem so scared when Alfred told her about his wounded hand/shoulder.

Carson back at work, very happy, wayyyyyy too cheerful and was happy to know he solved 2 crimes in one and need not testify in court as everybody involved is dead. Then news arrived his boss wanted to see him.

Next scene is like the most set up of all set ups of a scene. It begins with Jessica trying to park her car and failed and Carson teasing that she is with ATF and she can't even park a car and she retorted that she was not a parking attendant.

Pause.

It is supposed to be some playful banter but Jessica looked pissed with Carson so in the end it was not a playful banter. It was like all the playfulness oozing from Carson and all the contempt from Jessica. I feel no chemistry at all.

Continue.

Jessica told him to park it then which he did. He was impressed with ATF building but Jessica said she can't bring him in for a tour even if she wanted to. He smiled and said she didn't have to since he can walk in himself as he stressed, he was INVITED by Eddie himself and Jessica looked... err... pissed? I know she is not supposed to look pissed but I suppose Jessica innately is jealous of super cop Carson?

Jessica could see Eddie and Carson in the room and Eddie was reading Carson's achievement but not to be outdone, Carson repeated what he knew of Eddie. And he even knew about ATF and Eddie asked what it was and Carson described ATF as a 6 floor building and he even knew what each floor is including the secret file room at 6th floor and Eddie was surprised that he knew so much and 2nd best line of this episode, Carson said he knew it all from the directory!! Except 6th floor did not list what it was for and so he deduced it was the file room. Ahhh Eddie was again shut into silence. And if this guy, so pragmatic, so observant is not in ATF who should be? Alfred? oh.. he will later on but I will question why. Alfred is more like brute force whilst Carson is more like cunning observation with some serious moves.


Next episode? My guess is how Alfred joins ATF as well.

Very fast paced episode, some graphic moment and seriously some very good lines thanks to Carson. I like how Carson and everyone speaks English to the Indians. Very practical even if until now I am not sure what was the whole thing was about. But Alfred is redeemed when he told his brother not to come out to rescue him. But it doesn't explain why on earth Carson was a mole and he was so good at it even his mother and brother believed he was a gangster.

Performance wise, the guys did well.

Ruco was eager to perform and you can see it. Since this is 3 years ago, you can see the over eagerness which is fine by me. This is a very physical role which I am sure later will turn into a very emotional one. But I kept thinking Brother's Keeper. If Brother's Keeper was better written, his Sam would have been a much better role than Carson.

Ron is Ron. He is not the best actor in the world but he is enjoyable to watch. His angry look is scary though.

Eddie is not smiling at all but I love how he looked bamboozled by Ruco's Carson in the last scene. But I am not convinced he is the head of ATF.

Q Bobo is scary as the terrorist and a pity he is no longer acting. The other Indian actors were great too.

Leanne Li is fluffy. I don't buy her as Beauty the tech girl.

Aimee Chan however has the distinction of being the worst BUT do remember this was 3 years ago when she had a habit of talking very fast for the first few lines and then slow down at which point you will start to wonder did she forget her lines and then she will finish the last few words slowly. Same habit today except her Cantonese now is better. However it is her acting that is getting to me big time. 3 years ago and 3 years later and still zero chemistry with her male costar. When one is obviously flirting, she became very reserved. On her own she was bearable but with others, she was so clearly super seeded by others more dominant actors that sorry to say, I did not notice her until she had to speak and I became annoyed again. She needs a more compatible male costar and it was Kenny Wong who almost did it in Last Steep Ascent. 3 years ago and 3 years now, I feel not much has change. She has potential but I feel she is not ready to be the lead or being given the spotlight. She should be allowed to grow behind the crowd of people and not pushed to the forefront. If you don't understand about chemistry, watch Storm In A Cocoon.

No comment on everybody else.

I am sure you're watching this series, right? Episode 1 was slow but episode 2 more than made it up with pacing and a tense storyline even if it does not make sense. I am looking forward to episode 3.

91 comments:

  1. Regarding ep 11, my thoughts exactly about Ruco and Aimee. They've so much more chemistry here than in Outbound Love. Both are less uptight doing the intimate scenes and believable as a pair of lovebirds (though in the initial episodes there was some awkwardness but this has clearly thawed since that last episode where Carson and Jessica had a fight regarding her dad). I'm really liking them as a couple here though generally i don't like Aimee. They not only ate from the same fork, he also ate her half of a cherry(?)! And yes, i can't agree with you more, Ruco's very masculine here and sexy as hell too. I'd love to be the damsel in distress and have him sweep me off my feet to safety!

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  2. Hi! Tried registering but has been minutes and I still haven't got the verification email. I wonder is it because I am using gmail?

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  3. Funn, are you reviewing Return of the Silver Tongue? Sorry, didn't know where to comment.

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  4. Which actress do you think would have portrayed Yip Ting to your expectations? Frankly I can't think of an age-appropriate actress of a higher calibre..agree that Yoyo Mung isn't the best choice though. Maybe Kristal Tin could do better? Yip

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    1. Sorry to say Kristal lacks classiness that Yip Ting has. I am hoping for Ruco and Charmaine Sheh match. Charmaine can be Yip Ting. She is good at strong female characters despite looking like a frail dependent woman.

      As for age appropriate, that is hard to find. I still say Charmaine who is 2 years older than Ruco but then Ruco looks older than his real age.

      Or perhaps Fala.

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    2. I don;'t mean to say Charmaine is a better actress. But she is of higher calibre.

      Delete
    3. Or Kate Tsui. At least give her a different role to do.

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    4. Kate Tsui is great looking but her acting is only so-so. She often can't contain herself from giggling when reciting her lines!!! That's a bit annoying!

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  5. I think Yoyo's doing fine. I like her in ROE; she's looks like the smart independent type. I can't think of anyone else who can do a better job. Kristal's too loud, good for aggressive roles (already type-cast). Kate will be too busy trying to look good to play Yip Ting. She'll be more obsessed with her spider lashes, long wavy hair and knee high boots to play this smart but i suspect, rather plain-looking character. Never a fan of Charmaine but she may be suitable but i don't think she's necessarily better. Fala, no no, i can't get over how bad she was as Holiday.
    Btw Funn, i thought i saw yr name registered as a new member of the fan club. You shld try logging in if you havn't already tried.

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  6. Yes I am registered but I can't access the post until I verify via email and I haven't received any email.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes I am logged in. I can log in but I can't access the forum's posts for as long as I don't confirm/verify via my email and since I did not receive the email at all, it means I am registered but not allowed to see the posts.

      Delete
  7. I wonder if this spoiler is true:

    Wikipedia said that Carson becomes a traitor and joins the organisation. .

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    1. I do think so and as speculated, he's a spy sent by Ngo Sir perhaps.

      Delete
  8. Ruco has lots of fans!

    I agree on the possibility but I think maybe the teaming up is later? Or maybe they already teamed up prior to the torture but needs to make things look credible enough for Carson to later join the organisation as a spy?

    Could be!

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  9. spoilers..(maybe)

    I think Yip ting will die...

    because theres a new poll in tvb fun asking what will happen in the end, and the options are
    A. 兩兄弟反目 日嘉離開
    B. 有傑遭遇不測 有正抱憾
    C. 有傑日嘉終成眷屬
    D. 日嘉走入絕路 有正悲痛

    but nothing says about yoyo's char
    p.s. anyone please help translate
    really dont know how to translate

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    Replies
    1. Probable, because she died saving Carson as her way to payback how he saved his life. But am hoping for Jessica.

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    2. What are the options? I can't read chineseee... (T.T)
      Hmm...I'm probably the minority that hopes for Carson to end up with Jessica...
      Although chances aren't very high considering more and more evidence/ hints are pointing towards Jessica as the mole..

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    3. Indeed! But that is not the smart part!!

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    4. Just saw the episode today. Wow, the expression of Carson looks exactly the same at Brother's Keeper :P

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    5. Yip Ting can't die since there isn't an option for it... The most likely and typical TVB ending is for Jessica to die, and if you read the spoilers it seems very likely.

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    6. Here's the translation:

      A. Two brothers against each other. Jessica leaves.
      B. Alfred encountered accident. Carson regrets.
      C. Alfred and Jessica married.
      D. Jessica into point of no return. Carson grieved.

      I'll pick option D.

      Delete
  10. Funn, you shared 2 sites to watch/ download. However, I couldn't seem to find the dl links. Only to watch online.
    Any idea where I will be able to dl this?
    One of the better tvb production of late, and would like to re-watch this sometime..

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  11. I bet Negative was some sort of super soldier candidate

    Also, in the preview, Aimee was appearing threaten Carson with a gun on her head, intriguing

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    1. Poor Negative. That scene was so scary,

      Jessica and gun.. I don;t think threaten but I think she knew she would be arrested and so she wanted to kill herself. I mean death is her only option unless she turns state witness but against so many terrorist groups, I suppose that would be her death sentence.

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  12. Hi, Funn.... I think I'm gonna watch Ruco's another series after ROE ends. Any recom? ^_^ Carson makes me like him now.

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    1. You want fluffy or you want drama or you want short but sweet?

      Fluffy is Slow Boat Home and I hated it. Drama is Reality Check which until ROE was his best drama. Short but sweet is 3 Kingdoms RPG and he appears towards the end when Sun Quan appears.

      Another recommendation is somewhat a comedy, No Good Either Way. A lot of people condemn but I thought his chemistry with Kristal Tin was very real and it was to me an enjoyable series for what it is worth. Anything older will have to ask his fans since ATV days.

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    2. I'm one of those who love NGEW and can't understand why a lot of people don't like it. It has lots of witty dialogue and Qiu Bo bo and Louis Yuen add to the comic factor. Ruco is not his usual serious serious character here except towards the end and he has amazing chemistry with Kristal despite what many said that she looks too old for him.

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    3. Check out "The Other Truth". It's a good one!

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  13. Okay, I'll try his drama...Reality Check. I love to see Ruco-Carson wf Louise Lee. I love to see when he's back to home to get his clothes, and then Louise saw him. This scene is so good, love to see him giving LL a lil hug b4 leaving home. And when he gives LL a novel, and how he teases LL about his gf .. No 1 or No 2? Hahaha .this scene is just so sweet. In Reality Check, I can see both of them again. Oh yes, how about Brother's Keeper?. His character is so tragic? Anyway, Ruco really shines in ROE. He's so thin but looks charming. Thanks for your reply, Fun. I'll visit this site often to know more about this guy. Hahaha..... in fact, now I remember that he roled as a baddie in When Lane Merge. I nearly forget till my friend told me that he used to role as villain.

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  14. He is good in Brother;s Keeper, his handsomest however the series sucks.

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  15. 'Not a bad episode but seems to be losing steam in terms of action and drama'
    ...ooh, i thought tonight's episode was much better than last night's with the right element of suspense from Chris' part of the story and the shooting scene at the end. Also we finally learn the truth about how Papa was involved in Yip Ting's dad's death. Thank goodness Aimee wasn't required to cry very much tonight.

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  16. I think Ruco-Carson is the most handsome now..... I managed to sneak a peek on Book Keeper piccies.... he looks a bit heavier and looks more gloomy.

    I haven't seen Epi 22 yet. I just guess that Carson and Jessica won't be together. They are now in two different worlds: cop & baddie can't be tog. I guess Jessica will be jealous on Yip Ting, and that's may d reason why the couple quarrell just like in the opening song... 3 more episodes to enjoy.

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  17. hmmm... youku and tudou are mean to me. No mandarin dub of Epi 22. Since I don't understand Canto, I can only see the pictures... Hope that they upload Mandarin version sooner...

    Ruco looks really good with that white tee. He's thin but he's got musle. Has anybody noticed that Ruco wears Carson grey cap in ICAC 2014 promo event? If it's the same cap, we can say that he keeps his stuff neatly.... after 3 years, he still keeps and wears the cap.

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    Replies
    1. "If it's the same cap"

      Same style but I don't think same cap.

      Delete
  18. I guess by now we are all in agreement that Yip Teng is a pretty great character (Not a big fan of Yoyo, and probably never will be). But I like Yip Teng.
    She's resourceful, smart, forgiving, loyal, etc.
    Although I still feel it would be rather forced to have Yip Teng end up with Carson, for in 25 episodes, 22 episodes have been aired (Thats what I've been up till anyway) and there's no sign that Carson has any interest in Yip Teng..
    If anything happens within 3 episodes, and Carson suddenly realises he loved Yip Teng the most, I find that unconvincing. Reason: Carson is not the type that doesn't know what he wants or likes in life..

    On Jessica, I guess we overlooked one thing.
    While Yip Teng and Carson both have the benefit of knowing that this is an "operation" to them, Jessica doesn't.
    Yip Teng could tell that She would see till the end of the "operation" with Carson, because there is an end. To Jessica, Carson is with Scaredy Bird, and there is no end to it. She wants a peaceful life with Carson. She clearly loved him. And she clearly knows that if it's not because the dad wanted to make up to her, he would've got rid of Carson.
    In fact, Papa wanted to get rid of Carson before Jessica's dad interfered. Indirectly, Jessica saved Carson. To Jessica, it's about WE (Carson and her)..

    No doubt Jessica's moral compass is well...screwed.
    But she was brought up that way. She was never taught to love, never taught to feel for others. She even mentioned it on her birthday. She has been very independent, and never felt love until Carson comes along.
    She was brought up to assist the dad, to succeed the dad...
    May not be the best way to put it, but real life stats show that a child who's abused are more likely grow up to abuse others.
    We could argue that after all the education and growing up, and maturing, she should know better. But statistics, show that may not necessarily be true..
    Yip Teng was brought up thinking she was righteous all along, selling the information to the weak and the needy to stage protest and all..so, naturally, her conscience is a lot clearer.

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    1. "To Jessica, it's about WE (Carson and her).."

      I disagree. Everything she did, on the surface was for Carson but in truth for her own self serving reasons. She felt no guilt, no conscience for all that happened except when it concerns Carson whom she is clinging on to her. She expected Carson to love her, that's the bargain for helping him. If Carson betrayed her? She probably will turn ugly. Yip Ting on the other hand expected nothing in return.

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    2. "but real life stats show that a child who's abused are more likely grow up to abuse others."

      She was not abused. Her father was loving towards her. She did all she did because she loved her father and she didn;t think anything of whatever she was doing. So again I disagree. Jessica is not only a flawed character, she is not the sort who matches Carson's integrity. And it is possible for him to fall for Yip Ting. He showed high levels of concern for her, but I don't think this series will emphasise on love. So far it is pretty awesome because love takes a back seat.

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    3. I don't mean in literal since of her being abused.
      It's more as an illustration to say that parents have very big role in shaping the personality, and the development of their children.
      In this case, Jessica has been "shaped", from day 1, to assist the dad, not questioning whether it's morally, or legally correct.
      No education would be able to change that...well, of course, not for everyone, but some.
      The case of abuse was just something I recalled reading a while ago. Irregardless how successful, how smart the child turned out to be, the person has a lot higher chance to be an abusive parent, if she/ he had one.

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    4. Also, under any normal circumstances (that's Jessica's perspective - no mission on-going, no operation on-going), she wasn't expecting Carson to love her in return. They are together, he loved her. She helped him because that's the mutual understanding between them - love, and relationship.
      And we all know, the flip side of love is hate. So I wouldn't be surprised if she turned ugly if he betrayed her.
      Because all the while, in her head, they are with Scaredy Bird...but otherwise, leading a very much normal life. Not a double agent, not a mole.
      Yip Teng on the other hand, has justice in her head. She wanted justice for her dad, and probably now for her Papa. She wanted justice for the people she may have harmed. She wanted to bring Scaredy Bird to justice.
      Which is why I said she has a clear conscience, a motive, and a goal.
      Jessica, has none of the above. Her conscience was only limited to the person she loved - Carson. That goes without saying, for her moral compass, well, non existent. She has no issue with cheating or lying or hurting anyone else, except Carson.
      But rather than seeing that as an exception, I see that it's the norm for her. Carson, made the exception. Because she was just brought up that way.

      Hence, I find her character tragic. She has nothing. Not even a clear conscience.

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  19. Your episode synopsis is amazingly accurate, Funn. I always come to your site after watching each episode.

    Keep up the good work! :)

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  20. Having read all the comments, so many people are complaining about Aimee Chan's acting as Jessica.

    So, in your opinion, which other TVB actress would YOU cast to portray Jessica?

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  21. "there was no sense of shock or revelation or anger that in the end, Jessica's true nature was someone so selfish.

    ...perhaps he loved her too much and was willing to accept her for what she was.In any case, he had to play along with her, as she was clearly beyond any reasoning by this time since she kept emphasising that she'd rather die than go to jail. He couldn't show his disgust at her then but you could almost feel his disgust later as he said to her "if you run , I will shoot". I can't help wondering however if he'd let Jessica go after he had retrieved the package from her if Ting hadn't arrived at that time and reminded him that he had to be impartial. Have to say that i didn't see Carson's death coming, though there were hints that his injury wld come back and haunt him. I'd rather think that he died as a result of his earlier injury which he never fully recovered from (hint: the intense headaches) rather than suicide but having him sip at his drink and utter those words "so sweet" threw me a little off course,

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    1. "I'd rather think that he died as a result of his earlier injury which he never fully recovered from"

      The intense headache was present in the first few episodes after the head wound but after that non whatsoever. If that is so what a convenient plot device even though the doctor said it posed no threat.

      The word "So sweet" was as uttered by Jessica when she first drank the drink. He was just remembering their past. I don't think he died. Just a way to discuss and debate and waste our time lingering on the ending when we should be celebrating the series for being awesome despite the stupid ending and stupid beginning.

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    2. "...perhaps he loved her too much and was willing to accept her for what she was."

      I'd rather think this series is going all out to show Jessica is such a tragic character betrayed by Carson but so many little things doesn't add up to her so called tragicness. I think it was more tragic for Carson having to have fallen for her. Jessica is one skewed character.

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    3. "even though the doctor said it posed no threat"......
      well, the doctor is not always right! Or perhaps that was the red herring.

      It's debatable if he did commit suicide. Perhaps out of character with the Carson we've come to know but possible as he was wrecked with guilt. Also the flowers and the drink seem to hint at it. If he did, I'll say the ending doubly sucks (his death if from his injury sucks but committing suicide is doubly worse). TVB!!!!!!!!!!! I hate you!!!!!!

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    4. I thought the flowers and drink and the same seat was his way of dealing with his grief. But yeah does point to

      a. someone killing themselves or
      b. just to relive the past.

      Let Ruco answer it in his weibo!!

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  22. This open ending is driving me crazy. I watched the last part again and now i think he might have committed suicide (clues: telling Alfred to be a good policeman, take good care of mum....sound like last words to me). Also that little smile he gave before he sipped at his drink......poison? And the poison tasted sweet to him as he could now be reunited with Jessica. Gosh, this will give me a few sleepless nights.

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    1. Carson died at the end.

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  23. stupid isn;t it? Carson is a strong person, even till the end he wanted to arrest Jessica and he will kill himself? Nahhh.... and his last words were actually he wants to go away for a little while to think about things, Alfred meanwhile to take good care of mom. Doesn't sound like someone killing himself.

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  24. "What I dislike is Carson's reaction when Jessica said she was gonna sell the thing for money. "

    Funn, Carson actually gave a look of shock and backed off when he heard Jessica's "plan". I think all along he keeps thinking Jessica is not bad in nature, that she was influenced by her father. He couldn't accept the fact that Jessica has turned into another "Terrorist Chung", just like his father.

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    1. Not enough. The ending, if true negates everything. Even Carson is blinded by his love for Jessica. But the thing is the series as smart as it was isn't that deep. We are meant to think of Jessica as tragic, Carson having to bear the guilt of betraying her when I don't feel it is justified. But the worst had to be telling an already emotional woman that she will go to jail for a couple of years only. In HK there is no state witness and immunity, etc.

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  25. Hi Funn: Here are the gifs of Yoyo remembering the kiss:

    http://www.weibo.com/1769364925/AFmWja5sD?mod=weibotime

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  26. Lots of photos of Ruco Chan here. https://facebook.com/TVBSeries

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  27. Next Ruco series should be "All that is Bitter is Sweet", co-starring Linda and Raymond Wong, but you'll have to wait till at least September for it to air I believe.

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  28. FinaLLY..... it ends!! Gonna miss Ruco so much!
    I feel surprised to read comments on Carson commited suicide. Watching the last scene, I don't think that he did it. He just feels sorrowful and guilty..... for once he almost shot Jessica - his loved one. The last scene of Carson and his bro, he said that if I were you I would not harm my loved one.
    For me, the last scene is "sleeping beauty" But I also notice the colour of cochochino....it's lighter....poisoned?? OH!! I hate open ending actually. But is this a sign that there'll be a sequel?

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    1. That's why! Was the chococinno deliberate or a mistake? And thanks tp Ruco's own cryptic Weibo post.. but like you I still think he was just very very tired.

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    2. Probably just milk chocolate hence the "so sweet" comment. The one with Jessica was probably dark chocolate. Just a possibility.

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  29. Could have written Carson manage to convince crazy terrorist Jessica to give up the virus and elope with her. Jessica dad is rich. If he is any reputable eBay for terrorist, they could just settle down somewhere

    But then again if this happened, it may not conform to broadcast standard

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    Replies
    1. But the thing is that Jessica was not a "crazy terrorist" 10-20 minutes earlier. She was trying to fight with her dad to stop him from hurting "innocent people"!

      It was totally out of character for Jessica to then want to sell the virus for profit. This made no sense at all!

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    2. There were clues about her selfishness, just the writers weren't sure which part to amplify.

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    3. Yeah. It was a bad writing. This series not bad, albiet Alfred ruins everything,

      No idea why Ron always get such characters, haha

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  30. That was what Jessica wanted. Out of character for Carson to do so. Could have shown Jessica giving up the virus, turn state witness, no jail time and Carson settling down with her somewhere else in witness protection program.

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    1. The ending is really awful. Is this why they froze this series for 3 years?

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    2. Yes, you really should write to TVB and complain, Funn. This is probably the WORST ending for a series that I have ever seen.

      As bad as the movie "LOST IN TRANSLATION" where Scarlett Johansson whispered to Bill Murray to end the film.

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    3. Funn, you can voice your displeasure here:

      https://www.facebook.com/tvbcom

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  31. The irony if it's suicide- Carson was wearing the (amulet) bracelet from his mum.

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    1. Irony is I think he promised his mom several times he will be ok, he will take care of himself? And in the end he killed himself for a woman who hardly made an impact in this life as opposed to his mom. This is why I hate this ending. Jessica does not justify his suicide and the ending sucks.

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  32. oh my!! I have prepared to see Carson heartbroken since I guess that he can't be with Jessica. Bad vs evil can't be tog. But....I've not prepared to see he killed himself !!!! Oh, Noooo! He's a strong character, a man of integrity.... but he killed himself....?? TVB should have create a better ending that in line with the characterization. If Carson killed himself, he should shoot Jessica....perhaps her shoulder ike the one he shot his own bro. Then he feels very guilty....

    TVB wants to create an unforgettable ending......but this ending makes me disappointed to see Carson die. Not enough reasons to make him die....NO!!

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  33. After cooling down..........
    try to "understand" why Carson dies......
    I come to this idea....

    He wants to love his woman forever....ever....
    He doesn't want to be a traitor in love.
    He commits suicide to prove his faithfullness

    OH..... Carson why r u so stupid?
    The scriptwriter makes u stupid, arrrgghh.....

    Despite the ending, ROE will be 1 of my fave TVB series.

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  34. The opening theme is awesome and very different from other dramas which typically begin with the theme song. The music is catchy and heartpumping and enhances the impact of the accompanying clips of explosion, gunfire and other highlights from the drama. Love everything about ROE except that super-sucky ending. Suffering from post ROE (rather post Carson) syndrome - i would have re-watched the drama but thanks to the horrible ending, I've no wish to at this moment.

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    Replies
    1. Me too. Tried watching the last scene again as confirmation and it is painful. Frankly if Jessica's role had been more clearer as in innocent and clearly used, and Carson seem more ruthless, his suicide would have made me cry. But since Jessica is so undefined, his suicide right now is just sucky like you said.

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  35. wow...thanks for the gift and screen cap.
    Love the way Carson sleeping on the sofa..... so eye-catching & sexy ^ ^
    Love the way Carson sleeping on his own room and Alfred wake him up. He's just so cute like a lil boy. ^_ ^
    I also love the hospital scene - Jessica sleeping beside Carson.

    oh yes, can u see in the series Carson lying on Jessica's lap? Both are in the cafe - Jess sitting on d bench, Carson lying on her lap. I can only see it in the opening theme song, but not in the series. Am I rite? Or did I miss this scene??

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  36. can u see in the series Carson lying on Jessica's lap?

    Should be in earlier flashback scenes when Carson was shot and Jessica was remembering their good times,

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Funn, thanks...I'll go back and re-watch that episode ^ ^

      I'm starting to see BK.... just to see handsome Ruco.
      I can see that his character is the most pitiful one. He is a young handsome inspector. His hotel security officer look reminds me of his Keith role in TOT. Very good-looking!!
      I feel bored with Edwin + Kristal scenes, so...I hv to fast forward their scenes. Sorry...for out of topic ^^



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  37. Thinking about this, the last ending where the hero dies in TVB I remember was To Catch the Uncatchable

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Do you mean Catch the Uncatchable....Joe Ma vs Damian?
      I still can accept that Jack-Damian died... since he's the "thief" (although he can be regarded as the "hero")

      But Carson.....? I still prefer another ending : he's still alive rather than suicide. Or he just feels tired and sleeps and dreams. Perhaps, if he has to die, it'll be wiser that it has something to do with the brain fragment -- related to he's being shot once.

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    2. This one:

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/To_Catch_the_Uncatchable

      "In the last episode, during taking a wedding photo with Vivi, Mok spotted a thief sneaking into another's bag and decided to rush out and chase the thief. After chasing the thief, Mok finally caught a thief for the "first" time in his career. After handing the criminal to his colleagues on duty, he told Vivi that he will be returning in 5 minutes on the phone.

      In the original ending of the show, after he hung up, he falls down looking towards the sky seemingly happy. Scenes of memories and sorrow background music "Someplace Good" kicks in, with the show ending with the wedding photo of the couple turning black and white with Mok slowly fading away, leaving Vivi alone in the photo, which implies that Mok had DIED after falling down.

      This ending received a large amount of feedback; in which one side praised it for its groundbreaking, unorthodox dour ending in a comedy drama, in contrast to TVB's usual endings (also known as the "happily-ever-after-plus" ending.) The other side criticized it for the unexpectedly dour ending in a comedy drama, which was too sharp of a contrast to the lightness of the series.

      The latter opinion WON out after they flooded newspapers, internet forums and newsgroups, and TVB claims that it is an original unedited ending, in which Mok still falls down but managed to get back to the photo shoot, albeit pensively. The ALTERNATE ENDING was shown on 27 August 2004 in local entertainment programme TVB Starbiz (娛樂大搜查), and was not included in any subsequent releases overseas."

      So, if there is enough people complaining to TVB, they will do something about it. :)

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  38. Relax, he was only justifying for Carson. Doesn't mean his post is stupid. But i think he's clearly implying that Carson committed suicide. Arrrrrrrghhh! I can't accept that my hero Carson would do such a stupid thing like that! What a stinky ending to an otherwise great drama. TVB scriptwriter, have him die if you want an unforgettable and sad ending but suicide is just sooooooooooo lame outrageous and wrong for Carson!

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    Replies
    1. He is not implying. He is confirming. And that is no time to justify. I think it is stupid post in light of the Korean ferry disaster where everyone is anticipating some high numbers of suicide because of guilt. Not that Ruco has such impact but sometimes such stupid ending does not need justification. It is like he endorses it and I find that offensive. Ruco or not, that is one stupid post. I am surprised no one wrote back what about the mother? All seems to cry tears of sadness and joy of reunification of J and C in heaven so to speak. How skewered is that? The ending is ok but never ever justify it.

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    2. i didn't want to outright say confirming.....still very much in denial......still very indignant and pissed.

      "All seems to cry tears of sadness and joy of reunification of J and C in heaven so to speak."

      ...i thought so too, it's odd. So warped!

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  39. The ending clearly showed that Carson committed suicide with the poison chocochino drink.

    Fine. But killing himself over a woman? That is not at all consistent with his character in the series which is confidence, decisive, rational thinking.

    Horrible writers… trying to create a dramatic ending… end up screwing it up!

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  40. Now that Ruse of Engagement is over, is there any other TVB show worth watching right now?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. None I can think of unless M Club is your thing.

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    2. I don't find TVB comedy funny. I prefer watching suspense cop shows.

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    3. Is Swipe Tap Love worth watching?

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  41. No I won't enjoy it! No no no!!!!! Jessica KILLED Carrrrrrson. Damn that bewitching evil woman!

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  42. Going through serious withdrawal symptoms after watching this series. What a horrible ending! Cannot believe they killed the MAIN characters in such cowardly way.

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  43. ROE is over....but my impression on Ruco is still going on and on.

    For me, finding ROE is just like finding a gem in the box. After hiatus of watching TVB, Ruco is the 'x' factor that pulls me back to TVB dramas.

    These days, K-dramas are booming in my place and all my 'drama friends s' to whom I have chit-chat on dramas are watching K-dramas. I'm not following K-dramas. My friends don't update me on TVB dramas since they are not interested in watching TVB anymore. Luckily, I've TVB updates on my FB. So, one fine day, I saw ROE poster in FB. I find the title which has lit meaning "Traitor" is someway interesting (perhaps bec of my personal experience). At that time, no friends are watching with me. No spoilers since I'm downloading from tudou. 1 day 1 episode. Those earlier episodes telling about ATF training are just so so for me.....but then it's really moving on......and I am soooooo glued on RUCO!!! The way he jumps over, runs, kicks, rolls over for action scenes attract me. His body is just so light that he can do those moves smoothly. The cheeky, playful, smart, serious, furious, upset, suffering facial expressions attract me more and more. ^_ ^. I promote ROE to my drama friends to watch this series, but it's a pity they don't continue. I know they have another focus. So.... I'm so glad that I find Funn's blog.

    Funn & Ruco lovers, thanks for being my 'companion' to watch this series. Watchin' drama with companion is really different for me. Sometimes I may miss some points that others notice them. Sharing thoughts and comments are just fun for me. Hope to see u again in other Ruco's dramas.

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