Black and White (痞子英雄)

The problem with watching dramas is that while you’re vividly engrossed in each and every episode, your entire life becomes orbited around it – night and day, you’re thinking about what’ll happen next and you won’t sleep until you’ve finished watching every single episode. But once you’ve finished watching it though, it feels like there is this gaping void in your life and that you don’t know what to do with your future anymore. Leastways, that’s what my experience with Black and White was like.

Black and White is an “action/romance/comedy” police drama with a 4:1:2 ratio (my personal rating), respectively. Pi Zi and Ying Xiong are two cops who are as different as night and day (or, in this case, black and white). One is a lazy, hedonistic cop who sits in his luxurious flat, waiting for his sketchy sources to provide him with the clues to cracking cases, while the other is a diligent and violent cop who is constantly out on the streets trying to take down criminals. These two polar opposites are paired up to solve a case, and their investigations shed light on a country riddled with deceit and corruption.

Putting two people with personalities as different as these two definitely seems like a recipe for disaster. And to a certain extent, it really does become disastrous, but it’s all intentional. This drama is chock full of awkward encounters and comedic interactions between Pi Zi and Ying Xiong, and is ultimately about how these two bros (yes, I did just use the word “bro”) learn to get along with each other. This drama should instead by reclassified as a “bromance” instead.

(Look at that bromance.)

Regarding the romance in the drama, I have this to say: “What romance?”. If you’re the kind of person that watches dramas for romance and chemistry between characters, then I suggest that you cross this title off your list. The drama tries and fails miserably at trying to establish decent relationships between the two genders. It does really well with the bromance part, but the romance part sucks. First of all, the drama never fully establishes a successful relationship in all 26 episodes, despite there being blatantly obvious opportunities for them to occur. And the occasional brushes with romance that occur sometimes seem to occur completely out of nowhere, leaving us wondering if the entire script was ad-libbed.

Onto more serious matters now, for we must consider the plot itself. The whole plot circles around a conspiracy that even the highest reaches of the government is involved in, and the Black and White pair must find the truth behind the corruption and deceit. The basic premise sounds pretty cool and rather captivating, but the execution of this idea sort of fizzled and never really took off (the idea exploded in the hangar, if you will). The plot actually isn’t far too complicated and seems rather generic at times, but it felt as if some major plot consistencies were apparent, especially after I finished watching it. It was a rather disappointing mystery tale – I’ve seen arcs of Detective Conan that are more complicated and better thought-out than this drama. Furthermore, towards the end, when people began dropping dead left and right, I thought that the director went overboard. In a good mystery, there are unspoken rules about which characters can die and which ones shouldn’t, but in my opinion, I thought that the drama killed people that shouldn’t have died and left people alive who should have been killed off.

(Whoops. Just killed off another thirty people.)

But the drama wasn’t all bad though. For example, it introduced me to one  some incredible actors and actresses that I thought made the drama worth watching. Marc Chao and Vic Zhou as Ying Xiong and Pi Zi, Ivy Chen as Chen Lin. Excuse me for saying so obviously, but Ivy Chen is a goddess. She is beautiful, gorgeous, pretty, stunning…did I mention that she was beautiful yet?

(Please marry me.)


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