[Drama Review by angie] Precious Youth with Liu Shishi and Zheng Kai

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I know that a fair number of our readers are Liu Shishi fans and let’s be real, we all saw her grew up from her young girl years in Legend of the Condor Heroes 2008 to today, the respected and irrepleceable Liu Shishi! She recently came out with her modern drama Precious Youth with Zheng Kai. Although I didn’t watch it myself, we are extremly lucky to have a commenter (angie) who did and felt like sharing her thoughts. And she generously let me share the say comment/review/rant with the viewers of this blog! 😀

Context: One commenter was asking about opinions on the drama Precious Youth in an entertainment update post and luckly, someone was able to give a complete answer! Because she wrote so much and so well, I thought it would be a shame to leave this comment in the comment section and hence decided to give it a bit more spotlight ^^

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Words as written by angie:

Oh my god if you guys are talking about “precious youth” with Liu Shi Shi avoid the drama at all costs. I had high blood pressure from watching it and I truly only watched it because I love Liu Shi Shi and Zheng Kai. I want my time back though, because the drama was horrible. Imagine every cliche on Earth rolled into a ridiculous drama and sob at the horror. I’ll write a short synopsis of the drama in a moment so anyone who still plans on watching look away or read at your own caution. Also keep in mind that these are my opinions, although it seemed as if a lot of the comments I was reading on the videos mirrored what I thought: most people stuck around only for Liu Shi Shi’s beautiful self and hated themselves for putting themselves through the drama.

———-SPOILER ALERT FOR “Precious Youth”———

It starts out alright with the entire crew being students and having complicated relationships that carry over into their adult life. A bunch of unnecessary stuff happens and they’re pretty much all grown adults trying to adult and failing at it. I’ll skip the really really secondary characters and focus on the meat of the story. Liu Shi Shi and Zheng Kai’s characters love each other yet can’t be together because Zheng Kai thinks he’s doing the “right” thing by pushing her away as he has no stable career and is poor; classic example of a character being a noble idiot. Of course he regrets this and spends the majority of his time chasing after money/building his career and looking at her from afar. In the mean time one of the secondary leads from their school crew is chasing after Liu Shi Shi’s character romantically. Long story short, he’s a psycho and a huge backstabber who tries to ruin Zheng Kai’s life, but somehow cons Liu Shi Shi’s character into marrying him. It’s a horrible marriage built upon lies and backstabbing and he never gets over the fact that Liu Shi Shi and Zheng Kai’s characters once dated. It drives him cray cray actually and he does a bunch of really underhanded things to get her to stay with him including not letting her go to Paris for a one year fashion design internship or something at a famous fashion design place, switching out her medicine to make her especially fertile, and the list goes on. Eventually he snaps because he doesn’t believe that she is “just friends” with Zheng Kai’s character and he beats her, causes her to miscarry, and attempt to murder her with a huge vase. I know, it sounds incredibly stupid. What makes the drama worse is that her character is somewhat passive the entire drama. Zheng Kai’s character is a noble idiot. The multitude of side characters are also touched in the minds — the secondary female holds an entire wedding ALONE giving her sob story about how much she loves Zheng Kai and wants to marry him, while he’s off saving Liu Shi Shi’s character. If your eyes are rolling into the back of your heads I understand. I was ready to spew blood at this point in the drama which thankfully is almost the end in this point of my summary. But it gets worse. For absolutely no reason at all, after Liu Shi Shi’s character gets her divorce from the psychopath and starts an ambiguous relationship with Zheng Kai’s character again she goes off to Paris for the mentioned prestigious fashion thing and everyone merrily becomes friends again. Yes. Including the psycho. For no reason at all everything is fine again after he ruined the reputation and business of multiple people, sabotaged their businesses, beat one of their friends (Liu Shi Shi) which caused her to miscarry and then attempts to murder her, and is a general asshole of a person, they all become friends again minus Liu Shi Shi who is in Paris. The drama ends with Zheng Kai’s character going to Liu Shi Shi’s character’s fashion show in Paris and they stare at each other. The last 20 minutes or so are also so cheaply produced I’m amazed it was even aired, you’ll know what I mean if you watch it. Imagine someone using Windows Movie Maker from back in the day, that’s how cheap it looked. So I finally spat blood at the end, just kidding I didn’t spit actual blood but I was close to it, and thought to myself that if I could use a time machine I’d go back in time to tell myself that watching the drama isn’t worth it. Never have I ever felt so genuinely frustrated at a show, the characters, and the productions team. I’ll admit, the characters all looked physically nice minus the psycho who I ended up just hating on sight by the end of the drama. I wish Liu Shi Shi had chosen any project but this one, because she spends the majority of it looking so miserable that I wanted to pat her on the shoulder and tell her that things would be okay — her character I mean, not actual Liu Shi Shi who is living a great life. So that’s the end of my long summary of that horrifying drama.

———-END SPOILER ALERT FOR “Precious Youth”———

Hope that was enlightening for anyone who read that!


3 4 5

source: in the comment section of this entertainment update.

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26 thoughts on “[Drama Review by angie] Precious Youth with Liu Shishi and Zheng Kai

  1. Jo says:

    OMG!! I had this in my list of things after i catch up with my drama but I’ll skip it haha this sounds like a straight up Thai Lakorn including the illogical things at the end. And I LAUGHED SO HARD AT THE WINDOW MAKERS CONNECTION 😂😂😂 thanks, this week has been exhausting and I need a good laugh😘

    Liked by 1 person

    • angie says:

      No problem! I’m glad you had a good laugh, I almost wish some brave soul cut out that terribly produced section so you could see how cheaply made it looked! Speaking of illogical things, does anyone feel like lately so many dramas are illogical!? I sometimes drop by to check out what my mom is watching and all of her Chinese dramas have the craziest characters ever…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Jo says:

        Agree! Majority the Asian Dramas ive seen this year have some illogical aspects to it idk if they are running out of things for the characters to say or do. I watched a drama where this woman was the cause of some of the characters death or downfall and BAM at the end all was forgiven

        Like

      • j says:

        @Jo. I agree entirely! Gosh. idk why they had to put the audience through all the pain of watching nice, reasonable lead characters being mentally tortured by their evil, petty, or completely unreasonable spouse, parent, and relatives. If only there is a way to let the producers, directors and scriptwriter know how annoying those kinds of plots are to watch. A lot of it is just to drag the number of episodes to 40.

        Like

  2. Omg hahahahaha same! I started this but when I saw the extended trailers to get an idea of the drama’s future directions I was like NOPE, this is waaay to convoluted for me. Mr Pyscho practically abuses Liu Shi Shi’s character and I just couldn’t put myself through that, even if it was a drama.

    Taiwanese drama ‘Ying Ye 3 + 1’ is a much more light-hearted high school drama with dear Qiao En jie jie and Ming Dao. My OTP from my early drama days ^_^

    Like

    • angie says:

      Omg! I haven’t thought about “Ying Ye 3 + 1” in ages, back in the days when I loved Qiao En x Ming Dao I squealed so much while watching anything with them together…good days. I’m looking forward to her new drama with Wang Kai, “Stay With Me”, it looks beautifully shot from the trailers/promo pictures so far!

      Like

      • YEAH!! MingEn ftw 😀
        Ikr and the PD team went to Paris as well? Aah, must be lurrve.

        And we’ve got heaps of bromance material with Wang Kai and Qiao Ren Liang– saw that clip of the boys playing around *cough* spooning *cough* on the bed hahaha.

        Like

  3. Thanks for taking one for the team and watching this hahaha. I adore LSS and am still patiently waiting for the Strange Hero Yi Zhi Mei sequel that may never happen LOL.

    Like

  4. Cc says:

    As much as I love liu shi shi, this drama was not good…………… It was………REALLY…… bad and poorly written…. I mean viewers can give it try but it’s not good…. Maybe shishi next modern drama will be better…. No offense

    Like

  5. Lizzie says:

    Thank you for having the tenacity to finish it! I persevered till ep 12 I think and even my great love for Zheng Kai couldn’t get me through. Wasn’t a fan of LSS until Imperial Doctress but methinks her brand of “subtle acting” (or lack of acting depending who you ask!) may have worked in old dramas with the elaborate hairdos and costumes but in modern times, she just comes off colorless. The second female lead definitely has issues but I was actually more vested in her story with the attached older dude – I thought it explored platonic friendships and its pitfalls pretty well until the whole show became a just too unbearable!!

    Like

    • angie says:

      Actually I agree! I think her brand of “subtle acting” suits ancient setting types of drama much more which relies half on what is verbally said and half on actions that carry a lot of meaning– like a deep emotional stare or a subtle nod of the head. Liu Shi Shi really come off as colorless this entire drama except for the part where she’s frightened of her psycho husband, I think it was in part due to horrible script writing and in part because it felt like she was attempting to make her period drama acting work in a modern drama and it really did not work.

      Like

  6. Thank youuuu… But need to say goodbye to this dramaaaa.. Aiyaa.. Was this drama doing well while airing?

    Do you have any recommended airing cdrama?
    I have no stock haha.. Currently just watchinv kdrama and jdrama..

    Like

    • angie says:

      I think it did actually get a lot of views because of the star power that the leads have, but eventually it just started pissing all the viewers off and everyone had something bad to say about the story. xD

      I’m watching “The Mystic Nine” right now, plot wise a little weak but visually so appealing and lovely – it’s a very easy watch but if you’re looking for amazing acting and story line, hopefully someone else has something to recommend!

      Like

    • j says:

      Surprisingly, I am really liking “Decoded”. I find the drama part of the series quite touching. The lead character has a lot of character development. But you have to be patient at the beginning. That may be the first dozen of episodes. This is my first time wanting to finish a title in this genre. I’m usually afraid this genre may have too many gun scenes. The technical aspects of this series are actually not entirely accurate though. So don’t try to learn the subject from this series. The cinematography for the action sequences took a bit getting used to at first.
      There are a few fresh faces that rarely appeared in TV series before. So there are some promising new actors to watch. I usually don’t like watching Ying Er, but she is ok in this one.

      This is the first time I watch Cheney Chen. This is his first TV series. His first lead role. He spent a lot of time and effort to learn how to speak, walk, move his limbs, control his facial expressions for his character. He practiced a lot of different tongue twister exercises to say things that are appropriate for his character. I appreciate his hard work. I also enjoy watching his interview on Hunan TV. I dislike the actress who plays the military instructor though.

      This series is based on a novel by Mai Jia. The book has positive reviews from The NY times, The Economist, Wall Street Journal etc. I didn’t read it though.

      I like it that I don’t have to watch long scenes with horrible mothers again like I did with both Huang Xuan series in 2016.

      Like

      • Lizzie says:

        So with you on this! I actually thought it was realistic that he ended up with Zhang Li – I mean they were essentially in Communist China’s CIA!! I tried Yes, Mr Fashion because of this show but couldnt get past ep 2. OuYang Nana’s character was way too weird for me but Cheney Chen is quite versatile – he is like a different person in Yes, Mr Fashion!!

        Like

    • Lizzie says:

      I am also watching Chinese Paladin 5, not super addictive but I find it decent – Elvis Han is a good actor and I thought that the more modern outlook on this version was pretty refreshing. Gulinazha is also pretty (not sure why she gets so much hate though – there are many other actresses that cant act as well but they are pretty well liked) and her character is realistic. Am shipping Joe Chen and Gina Jin but I am not sure if it will be a happy ending for them (or me!)

      Like

  7. Ann says:

    I was thinking about watching this too… did you know this drama had a production budget three times larger than almost all Chinese modern day series and the producer/staff of the popular Korean series, You Who Came from the Stars?? Kinda disappointed even the quality is bad

    Like

    • x says:

      > “did you know …”

      Oh dear. That’s horrible! Are these staff/prod famous for other series? I didn’t check out the writer(s). Don’t know who the weakest link is. If the script is crap, there’s no need shelling out lots of dough for other things??!

      I can’t watch Amazing Boyfriend, the semi-remake of … Came from the Stars’ either. The Korean actor they use there is so …. He reminded me of Arnold Schwaz… idk if that drama also has a K team.

      Like

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