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Monday, April 18, 2016

The Imperial Doctress

                                 
Episodes: 50
Synopsis:
The Tan family spans many generations of doctors, with many past ancestors who were imperial physicians. But when powerful enemies frame their family, the royal court passes a ruling that future generations of the Tan family are forbidden from practicing medicine. Thus the Tan family are forced to change their last name to Hang. Hang Yunxian (Liu Shi Shi) secretly learns the art of traditional Chinese medicine from her grandmother and helps to cure plagues and illnesses among the common people. Yunxian overcomes many societal obstacles in her passion and pursuit of medicine. And when she meets Emperor Zhu Qizhen (Wallace Huo), he wields a great deal of influence in Yunxian fulfilling her destiny to become the first female physician of the Ming Dynasty. 

Review:
    I enjoyed this drama for a lot of reasons. I watched it primarily because some of my favorite actors feature in this drama. The main character, Liu Shi Shi, has been a personal favorite since I saw her in the drama Bubujingxin. In this drama, I saw that beauty and strength once again (especially at the end of the drama). At the same time, her character was also very different in this drama but I enjoyed how she gave this very comfortable/familiar vibe. The emperor, Wallace Huo, is also a favorite simply because I absolutely enjoy his acting, his piercing gaze, and everything about him. 
       I appreciate this drama so much in the fact that the characters have both the societal/traditional values of the time back then (as it is a historical drama) but also want the best for our main character with a more advanced kind of thinking. All of the male leads (love interests) have continuously pushed the main character forward in her desire to learn more about medicine and to work as a physician. All of them did have the whole “the man is the dominant one and you are the female” type mindset at one point but they also took pride in the main character’s skills and admired her and respected her. They also slowly started seeing her as their equal as her skills came to play more often. I wasn't surprised when I liked the emperor more than Prince Cheng because I had a lot of issues with the character Yun Xian (our main character) loved. But I was surprised when I began to start liking Ye Xian more (her love interest when the emperor and Yun Xian were captured by the Oirat clan). He wasn't the best at times and had these dominant tendencies in which he would try to force her to do things such as marry him or be with him (etc) but as he developed more feelings for her, I truly saw his respect for her and admiration for her grow more and more. It got to a point where he put her on a pedestal and chose her happiness over everything else. He let her go and never went to disturb the life that she chose for herself.
         The emperor was definitely an all-time favorite for me. During his reign and during his fall, he maintained a benevolent king (hot-headed, yes...but a good king nonetheless). Throughout the drama, he respected her feelings and did not force his or her emotions into doing anything that would make her unhappy. He helped her rise socially so that she had more freedom to practice medicine as a woman. He supported her even when he suffered when he lost his power. He protected her the best he could in all scenarios and despite almost being killed, he comforted her first. His kindness and the freedom he gave her were absolutely amazing. He was also a great husband to the empress. He respected her and was extremely loyal considering he had an entire harem to his disposal yet he only maintained his relationship with the empress. He also had similar thoughts as Yun Xian to not hurt the empress by getting together. It was very evident to a lot of viewers that they definitely had chemistry between one another (Yun Xian and the emperor) but they couldn't be together because of other people, their morals, the situations at hand, and so forth.
        As for Prince Cheng...I did not mind him in the beginning. I was pretty open-minded to her liking him more and wanting to marry him. But I was already turned off in the beginning when he started to try to "temporarily" stop her from practicing medicine just to appease his power-hungry mother and to get married with her. When she chose not to, he would get upset or do something that made me annoyed. He continuously hurt her...on purpose or whatever. He got married to someone else to protect her but his wife would continuously threaten Yun Xian because she had the prince's favor.  When he later took over the throne when the emperor was captured by the Oirat, he became tyrannical over time. When the emperor and Yun Xian safely made it back home, he would get upset every time someone challenged his position as emperor. He would hit people. He would yell at people. He would say hurtful things. One thing that I refuse to forgive this prince for is that toward the very end of the drama, due to his jealousy, rage, and suspicion, he raped the main character (who was technically his consort but still she didn't consent) and afterward when she was evidently distraught he got annoyed that she wouldn't stop crying and defending the emperor. (So if you plan on watching this, I recommend being careful...I think around ep 45. They will have a scene before it warning about it happening so this is just a warning). He was a character I didn't like and afterward the screenwriters tried to redeem his character and make his apology seem sincere. But for me it was hard for me to view him as someone I would ever want our main lead to end up with ever.  However i did google the history in which this drama was based on and the screenwriters did try to keep it as close to history as possible from the emperor, the empress dowager, the kidnapping of the emperor and being held hostage by the Oirat, Yexian letting him go and Yexian's struggle over time, and the Prince becoming emperor and not giving up the throne, and his wives did include a woman with the last name Wang and a consort with the last name Hang (which was our main character's last name). Thankfully, the screenwriters hinted at a relationship forming between Yun Xian and the emperor at the very end of the drama because I wouldn't be happy that she lived her life being loyal to this emperor who was so emotionally abusive. 
          Also the OSTs of this drama were beautiful and befitting for a lot of scenes.
          I did have an issue in the beginning because Yun Xian's constant need to save people and against traditional/societal values that her family were trying to place importance on started to bug me. Her family wanted to make sure her reputation didn't go down the drain but she would constantly fight it. So I didn't like Yun Xian's relationship with her father in the beginning and I wished that she could have more balance since considering the time everything she was doing was unfitting for a woman. 

1 comment:



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