Review: Wish and Switch (TVB, 2012)

Wish and Switch (換樂無窮)
Genre: Modern Comedy
Length: 20 episodes
Producer: Lam Chi Wah

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

The Cast

Myolie Wu as Fan Suk-Heung
Selena Li as Hou Yuek-Hoi aka Hailey
Johnson Lee as Koo Ka-Yan
Vincent Wong as Wing Yiu aka Wayne
Angela Tong as Koo Ka-Kam
Kiki Sheung as Lui Wong
Ram Tseung as Fan Tai-Kit
Patrick Dunn as Benjamin

and Lau Kong, Mimi Chu, Tina Shek, Sheh Kit-Wah, Tony Yee, etc.

Synopsis in Brief

One day Fan Suk-Heung stumbles upon a magical website in the public library that offers her to trade anything under the condition that she gives up something on her behalf. Being a helpless housewife with numerous family issues, she becomes addicted to the trading game, that is, until one day she exchanges identities with her best friend, Hailey, upon becoming drunk. Realizing that it was a big boo-boo on her part, she soon becomes the third party between her husband and Hailey…

Characterization

After the infamous Curse of the Royal Harem, Myolie reverts back to her old religion of playing the “nice” character to sacrifice for everyone around her. Not that there is anything wrong with showing compassion and care for our loved ones, but ultimately there is a limit when others appear to be only taking advantage of ourselves. Expressing concern towards those who cherish and deserve it can be admirable, but blind compassion is simply not too intelligent. In fact, I’m just going want to be blunt and say Fan Suk-Heung was outright dumb. Hailey was not wrong and definitely not being mean when she blurted out the truth.

On the other hand, Selena plays the intelligent, ambitious, refined, calm, and seasoned-in-thinking Hailey and while she loves her husband, still has no problem marrying him even if he misunderstands her for liking him for his money. Selena tends to fare well as the intelligent type as her eyes are always on the alert. However, despite her ambitious dreams and intelligence, she seems to like to engrain a little bit of the little girliness in her characters. Perhaps even the producer saw this and wanted to eliminate this (at least physical wise) and therefore, her short hair — and although it looks clean and decent, long hair would’ve made her appear more elegant yet still intelligent.

The men were unpleasant to watch at one moment in time or another, specifically, Johnson’s loving-wife characteristic was more acceptable in the beginning while Vincent’s wife-neglecting actions were a big no-no, but were mysterious enough. Although his redemption didn’t happen until the final episodes and was told more than shown, I’m sure the audience was glad he and Selena had an unhappy ending. Johnson’s characterization, on the other hand, was simply messed up and while it was understandable, the extremity of his 360 degrees change was neither desired nor required.

Notable Mentions

It wasn’t the female leads. Nor the male leads, but Ram who played the passionate social activist whom we may have found loud, annoying, and useless initially. Well, acting wise, he definitely isn’t useless. When it comes to versatility, Ram beat everyone in the scenes where he altered between his male and female voice interchangeably and naturally.

Producer Lam’s team of scriptwriters didn’t create any likable characters this time and the amongst the main characters the biggest saving grace was Hailey perhaps, but I found Benjamin, the Wing family’s butler to be the most humorous of them all. Moreover, the two child actors had decent chemistry with one another and I enjoyed their bantering moments and comeback lines!

Overall Appraisal

There were little to no expectations for this series and thus, the lack of disappointment. Prior to watching, I was informed that a supernatural series was to be filmed and the identity change between the female leads would lead to enlightenment in the different perspectives of life. It ended up being not only cliched with nothing new, but we also had to put up with watching a dysfunctional family who relied on one person to do all the work. At the most, the series provided entertainment to some level, but nothing intelligent really.

Originality? Not really. Plot-driven? Maybe. Character development? I was glad for Hailey’s gradual change and realization of her flaws.

Verdict

It really makes sense to air this series at this time of the year when everyone is out celebrating the holidays. If I recall correctly, despite the rate of complaints by the busy Hong Kong citizens, no one bothered to call in to whine that this series was aired at an inconvenient time slot. That said, I would only tune in if I was seriously bored.

 

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