11 April 2016

The Imperial Doctress Episode 50 + Review

Last episode! How did it meet it your expectations? As for me, well, I didn’t have much expectations.

It’s New Year’s Eve again and Qi Yu and Yun Xian are having dinner with Qi Zhen and Ex-Empress Qian, plus the bitchy Mom. This scene is basically telling us Qi Yu and Qi Zhen are the best of bros again and Mom is still bitchy as ever.

After dinner, Qi Zhen and Yun Xian are having what seems like their final farewell. He makes her say the words he had written in the snow, which is “Jagiya”, the Korean word for “Dear” or “Husband”. He also asks her to call him Yuan Bao again. I actually find this to be a huge contrast to Yun Xian addressing Qi Yu as your “Your Highness” even though he allowed her to call him by his name.  

Speaking of Qi Yu he’s really dying this time. He won’t get to see the New Year. Yun Xian calls for Cun Xia. Why call for him when she’s the better doctor? Well he does come in time for something else. Qi Yu’s death apparently triggered her going into labour.

We switch scenes to Qi Zhen who’s being told that Yun Xian has given birth and Minster Wang wants to make this baby the Crown Prince. It’s all EDS and Tai Shi’s plan to get Qi Zhen to launch a coup d’état to regain his crown. Yun Xian had in fact lost her baby and the country needs a capable Emperor. Qi Zhen is hesitant to take the throne again. Then EDS kneels to him vowing she never harmed his mother and it was all Eunuch Wang’s fabrications. Why does this have anything to do with convincing Qi Zhen to take the throne again? Qi Zhen seems convinced but then he asks about Yun Xian’s condition. EDS promises she’ll check up on her once Qi Zhen agrees to be the Emperor. So the show is telling me that the almighty Emperor agreed to become Emperor again because of Yun Xian?

It’s a good thing Qi Zhen comes in time otherwise Yun Xian would have been buried alive with Qi Yu because his Mom is a lunatic.

Priest Wang! Hi there! I’m happy to see him but he’s telling us some bad news: Yun Xian hasn’t woken up since the loss of her baby. Qi Zhen had been visiting her everyday but it seems like she’s pretending to be unconscious around him. Grandma asked Qi Zhen why he would demote Qi Yu’s title to “Prince” (which means Yun Xian’s title is demoted as well) and he says it’s to protect their reputation. 

I’m not entirely sure whether Yun Xian hears his explanation but the moment we see her awake, she’s running for life to escape the court. She’s escaping because she can’t face Qi Zhen after Qi Yu has died. She ends up where Priest Wang is! And she’s doing what she loves: healing others (while scamming them). When Qi Zhen discovered she’s escaped he doesn’t chase her because he’s got the country and his Empress to care for. So this time the drama is telling us Qi Zhen’s a responsible man.

She bumps into Cun Xia. It may be an unpopular opinion but I sorta like seeing these two together. He’s here to repent for his sins in diagnosing Qi Yu incorrectly. At least he looks happy doing what he loves.

After a few years when Qi Zhen has brought peace to the country and Jian Shen has grown up (a bit more), he gives up the crown to him and he ventures out about on his own.

This journey of his was triggered by a medical book written by Yun Xian. Once again a very responsible man; he doesn’t leave to find the girl he loves until he’s finished his responsibilities.

And he finds her.

She’s also wearing the jade bracelet he’s given her.

The end.

♦ ♦ Comments ♦ ♦

The Romance. So how was that ending for you all? I don’t know whether it’s because I wasn’t in this drama for the romance that I don’t feel hugely disappointed for how little scenes there were of Qi Zhen and Yun Xian. For those who felt like they wasted their time waiting for just about anything to happen between Qi Zhen and Yun Xian I can reassure you the drama definitely wanted them to be together by showing how perfect Qi Zhen is for Yun Xian. He’s the only man to support all her endeavours without ever impeding her pursuits. He also isn’t selfish into wanting Yun Xian all for himself like Qi Yu and Ye Xian were. Qi Zhen allows her to do everything she wants and that’s the way he loves her. As for Yun Xian, the lucky girl who’s the recipient of all this love, truly does deserve all this love but it’s obvious in the end she’s chosen Qi Zhen. That jade bracelet is her answer. Plus, the absence of the mushroom hairpin is also the answer to her discarding Qi Yu. I actually think she’s chosen him since their time in Mongolia when Princess Tuo Bu Hua pointed out she doesn’t understand her own heart.

The Characterization. Sucked so much. Oh my god. The more hyped a drama is, the more I fear it for disappointing me so I’ve trained myself to not look forward to hyped dramas and I think braced myself pretty well for this but I’m am annoyed with how they treated Qi Yu. There’s an automatic trigger in Qi Yu’s character that tells him to turn to trash once Yun Xian returns him all for the purpose of glamourizing Qi Zhen’s worth. Then his character dies and the drama wastes it’s time to redeem his character. I’m pretty sure most of the audience is done with him. I was done with Mei Ling too but then the drama suddenly makes her character smart in a respectably way (i.e. her use of medicine, quite fitting for a drama “The Imperial Doctress”). If only the drama had placed more care into developing their villains instead of making them evil instantaneously this would have been more fun to watch. Pitting our good guys with these low class villains don’t make the good guys look that good.  

I was also tired of Yun Xian being the miracle maker. I scoffed a little at the drama’s poor attempt at making her a genius. I loved it when they introduced Zhu You with Priest Wang. Everything else after that was boring. The cow part was … amusing though. 

The Actual History. I am a complete novice to Chinese history but knowing a bit of it should explain why the ending unfolded the way it did. For the drama, the coup d’état was completely pointless but since it actually happened in history, the drama had to fit it in.

What happened in history: Zhu Qi Yu’s son was actually born and he striped the crown prince title for his own son, which is a huge disgrace to Zhu Qi Zhen. However Zhu Qi Yu’s son mysteriously died (it’s speculated that Zhu Qi Zhen had plotted to poison the baby) and shortly after Zhu Qi Zhen has seized the throne for himself with the help of the eunuchs. He also demoted Zhu Qi Yu to a prince position which didn’t last long because he dies soon too (possibly a little help from Zhu Qi Zhen). Zhu Qi Zhen’s second reign doesn’t last long though. He dies seven years later.

As for Tan Yun Xian’s character, yes she does exist, but in a different time frame to our Emperors. Qi Zhen was born in 1427 and she was born in 1461. That’s a 34 year age gap with Yun Xian being older. Not only that, Qi Zhen died in 1464 so if they did meet Qi Zhen would have only seen a 3 year old baby girl. In fact she was married to a normal guy and was a mother of four. The drama completely ignores these facts and just marries her love and passion for medicine to another character in history: Empress Su Xiao (family name: Hang). Now I finally understand why the drama insists on changing her surname from Tan to Hang. Empress Hang ascended the Empress position after Empress Wang was removed. She is the mother of Jian Ji (the son who was killed mysteriously) and she was buried alive (alive!) with Zhu Qi Yu when he died.

Yeah so basically the real Zhu Qi Zhen doesn’t sound like that nice of a guy.

Overall Comments. Was it obvious that I didn’t like this drama? Like I said, I wasn’t into the romance, I’m also not a fan of Wallace Huo and Liu Shi Shi, and then the characterization was so poorly done there really isn’t a reason for me to love this drama. However, there was certainly a lot of content fueling this and that’s what made me stay tuned, I wanted to know how they could play out the story when everything’s already written in history. I’m not too pleased with how they handled the coup just to be in line with the history, but they did purposely change the story so that Yun Xian and Qi Zhen could end up together. And I will leave this drama on that note.

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