Review: Daddy Good Deeds (TVB, 2012)

Daddy Good Deeds (當旺爸爸)
Genre: Serial
Length: 20 episodes
Producer: Mui Siu Ching

Rating: 2.5 out of 5 stars

The Cast

Ha Yu – Daddy
Steven Ma – Lam Fat
Linda Chung – “Yu Chu” aka Second Sister
Evergreen Mak – “Ah Wai” aka Big Brother
Cilla Kung – “Yu Bo” aka Third Sister
Nancy Wu – Wendy aka Big Sister-in-Law
Edwin Siu – “Ah Yap”
Chow Chung – Lam Fat’s father

and Sharon Chan, Susan Tse, and Elena Kong made appearances as guest stars.

The Review

Prior to viewing, this series seems to be the definition of everything lame — and really, despite watching all twenty episodes and laughing at some of the character’s dialogues, it the manner in which this work was produced fits all the characteristics of the new “typical” TVB drama: family-oriented, a loving daddy, sweet daughters, overdramatic “trials and tribulations” the family will face, stand and support each other until the end, and of course, the expected overplayed happy ending before the credits roll. Well, it seems like Mui Siu Ching has discovered a new niche for herself and her series, despite not being critically-acclaimed does do well in the ratings department.

Immediately after the first episode, Daddy reminded me of Family Man, the series in which Flora Chan won Best Actress for. Family Man was one of my first TVB series back in the days and I remember enjoying the warm, light-hearted series and sisters quite a lot. Daddy didn’t give me quite the same feeling, not because of the series itself, of course, but because I’m at a different stage in my life and I watch dramas for different reasons. That said, if I watched Family Man today, I probably wouldn’t have the same good nostalgic feelings for the series either.

Ha Yu was probably the best and the only choice TVB had to play the “Daddy.” After the infamous duo-logy of Heart of Greed and Moonlight Resonance, which was produced by Mui’s husband Lau Ka Ho and it was probably the husband who recommended Ha Yu to Mui to milk him in more fatherly roles for the sake of emotional appeal to pull in ratings, who else has a better image of a father than Ha Yu? The actor played his given role convincingly; plus, he has can exaggerate in a good way. That’s a compliment, by the way. 🙂

Steven and Linda were a couple, what else is new? Despite having chemistry, the duo still appeals to me as more as brother and sister than lovers, mainly because I’m more aww-ed by the way Steven treats, cares, and advises Linda as a big brother in real life. Supposedly, they look physically compatible as onscreen lovers, despite Steven being in his forties (he does have a baby face) and Linda only in her mid twenties. Also, can’t say they had any breakthrough chemistry here either. However, I do find Steven’s less than perfection character here more “realistic” than his honorable heroes in the past. Those are hard to relate to sometimes and being overly righteous can become a tad bit preachy and hypocritical when everyone around you isn’t that perfect. Instead, I like his imperfections for a change. He can be loud, but still smart. He’s generous and loyal to friends, but doesn’t sacrifice his all and would request for what he minds should be his own.

I really think Linda gave one of the weaker performances here or more precisely, with her level of experience and with her A-lister status, we expected more. She nails her emotional scenes in many series well, but I assume she doesn’t not very funny in real life. Because her comedic skills are only limited to raising her voice and proudly shouting her lines most of the time.

Baby sister Cilla met my expectations this time primarily because I didn’t go in with much expectations for the actress. The only series I’ve seen her with significant screen time was The Four. She was awful back then. Emoting killed her. Modern series are more relatable, even for artists themselves; I can see Cilla being more natural in her delivering her lines. And she toned down the yelling she did back in River of Wine. So a happy face for that. 🙂

Nancy has the most solid acting skills amongst the females here, but probably the least likable character. Reason why is that her character is the typical snobby, nosy, and selfish housewife. Since this is a comedy, I’m not going to bother going into describing the details of each character. However, the other thing is we know TVB is begging for more people to fill their artist department when Evergreen is paired up with Nancy. Who else sees the mismatch?

Edwin seems to be happily and gradually climbing up to first supporting or perhaps, if he’s lucky enough, even lead actor. The actor has really came a long way and improved heaps since his, ahem, Aqua Heroes days.

I don’t have any particular favorites or least favorites for this series. The review may seem vague, but for a comedy like this, we can’t really expect a “critical” review. That would be too harsh. Ouch.

Overall Appraisal

This is definitely nothing new. I would understand why people will call this lame. Everything from beginning to end is predictable. If anything comes across as crafty are the rhyming dialogues which Mui’s team came up with. It was a good hearty laugh, but that was about it.

Final Verdict

If you have time, tune in. I see it as something I will play in the background while getting ready in the morning though. It’s always smart to start off your day with a good laugh.

Jue: As I was typing this review, I just realized that Cilla’s last name is Kung, but her Chinese name is “Lok Tung.” How is it so? It must be one of those Michele Reis is “Lee Ka Yan” and Michelle Yim is “Mai Suet” types of names, lol. 😀

Btw, Sharon Chan’s guest appearance by the beach was mesmerizing!


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