I Am a Singer (China) Season 4 - Hwang Chi Yeul

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[UPDATED 31 Jan 2016)

From I can See You Voice to Immortal Songs 2, this talented guy is creating waves wherever he goes. His voice is like drugs. I'm addicted. And he's so witty. Currently, he's one of the contestants in I Am a Singer (China) Season 4, with first episode aired on 15th Jan 2016.  I miss him in Immortal Songs 2, but glad to see him performing internationally. I look forward to more amazing performances.

Week 1: Hwang Chi Yeul - That Person

This song is part of Baker King Kim Tak Gu OST, originally sang by Lee Seung Chul. Hwang Chi Yeul sang this song in Immortal Songs 2 during Lee Seung Chul week and received praises from the legend for his powerful vocals. I personally prefer his performance of this song in I Am a Singer more. He gave more variations in his vocal range and for his first outing, I thought it was a solid performance deserving his second ranking at the end of the show.


Week 2: Hwang Chi Yeul - From the Beginning Until Now

This song brings back memories of Winter Sonata. It is one of the OST in the series. I used to put Winter Sonata OST on repeat mode for months. I just love the soft and melancholic melodies of its songs. When I read that Hwang Chi Yeul was going to sing this song, I was curious how different it's going to sound like with his husky voice, because I love the original as it is. He started singing in Mandarin, which gave him 'A' for effort. I don't know if he did well because I don't speak the language, but based on the audiences' responses, I would assume he did just fine. Or maybe the audiences were too kind?

I must confess that I wasn't captivated at first watch, maybe because I still had my bias for the original. Nevertheless,  once I dropped my bias, it was, in typical Hwang Chi Yeul manner, a performance full of emotions and amazing vocals. The song arrangement seemed to be divided into so many parts within the short song time, that I wish the higher, upbeat part would go slightly longer. It just dropped back to slow too sudden before I was fully absorbed in the upbeat part. 

I was delighted at minute 2.35 when he raised his voice like that. For some reason that point reminds me of how typical Malay singers singing emotional rock ballads. I almost never heard other singers do it like that, at least the ones that I've listened to.

He was ranked second place again, behind Coco Lee, who captured the audience by a large margin. 

Week 3: Hwang Chi Yeul - To Have You On This Road

He performed one of Jacky Cheung songs,  一路上有你 . He sang the whole song in Mandarin. His Chinese fans in the audience must be very happy coz now they could sing along with him. He did his signature move - bended on one knee - for this one. Haha. He performed 6th and ranked 3rd for his performance, again behind Coco Lee who placed 2nd.

Splash Splash LOVE

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There's something envious about a short story that is well-written and get all the points across without seemingly rushed. I love writing but always fail to pick a subject that I can write to form a short story. My line of thoughts always think of long-winded plots that will take a lot of chapters to reach a conclusion, which then causes them to never be written at all. I really appreciate writers than can pick to write about anything and make a complete story about a topic in just a few pages long. 

The same can be said about short films or short series. Splash Splash Love, a 2-episode series starring Kim Seul Gi (Oh My Ghostess) and Yoon Doo Joon (Let's Eat) is one good example of getting the message across without being draggy. It feels like a coming-of-age series. It tells the story of a high school girl who's bad at math and was on the verge of losing hope due to the high academic expectations of today's society. It's a common problem faced by many teenagers, I suppose. On a test day, she decided to ditch the test and wandered pointlessly in the rain. By chance, she noticed a strange occurrence while staring at a puddle. She was then transported to Joseon time, which was suffering from a drought season. There she met the King of Joseon, later known as King Sejong. Together they faced a life-changing experience and fall in love.  

Short and sweet, while maintaining connection and consistency, it's a beautiful fiction written with a purpose. Life is meaningful. A human being is born with a purpose, with an innate talent, even if one has yet to realize that him/herself. It's going through life while finding purpose and being useful to self and society is something we should strive for. Some may be academically-challenged, but being observant of your surroundings may just be a useful trait that can save your lives. We may have talents that we can nurture. We shouldn't run away from our problems, but face them as if our lives are on the line, giving it our best shot. We shouldn't let our worries of a future that has yet to come stop us from living the present in earnest, giving and contribute to the people that we care and to the society in general. 

I love the fact that this series maintain a light mood without going into heavy melodrama despite the seemingly bleak ending for the love story. I love how the girl realizes that despite being in love with a Joseon person, a King to boot, she has to go back to her time and face her sense of insecurities and live her life without running away from her problems. I love the fact that the King, while thinking she was all he needed to give him strength to carry on, realizes that the girl is better off in a future that he envies than got stuck in his world. Their parting (not really a spoiler since we should all expect that, right?) was heartbreaking, but at the same time gave off a hopeful vibe somehow. We meet, we love, me part, we live on. 

Fun Fueng (Daydream)

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The story begins with Athit, a driver, pretending to be his boss, Ratrawee. And Wilailuck, a servant, pretending to be a high-class woman by stealing her mistress, Montira's, dresses. They both go on a date and fall in love at first sight not knowing that the other one is lying. When the two bosses know about this, they demand for both of the servants to tell the other the truth, but they continue to lie. When Ratrawee first encounters Montira, he immediately falls for her and tells Athit to continue lying. Ratrawee and Montira got to spend times together and started to fall in love, too. Will both couples be able to accept each others' true identities at the end? - viki
Unless I read some great reviews, my go-to lakorns normally are the ones with either Anne Thongprasom or Ken Theradeth. If they both are in it, even better. But those two are quite a veteran in the industry already and new generation is booming so might as well I find a new anchor, like finding a new actor/actress that I like. I found this drama while browsing viki site and recalled the same title was mentioned at another website so I thought I should give it a try. I was excited to see new faces in the cast as well. As the summary says, this is a series about mistaken identity in the beginning, and pretty much concealed identity throughout the series. The rich guy likes the rich lady and the driver likes the maid. Let's be honest, It is a pretty straight forward coupling, right? Should be no issue, but I guess there's no drama in that so they switch identity and problems ensue. Let me just go straight to what I don't like about it: