Drama: Moon River (明若曉溪)
Airs: Two Episodes every Tuesday & Wednesday
Synopsis: In an alternative universe of Hana Yori Dango/ Boys Over Flower/Meter Garden what if the heroine was more than simply a gutsy girl but one who can kick some serious backsides and our hero was actually nice for once?
Episode 1-4 Summary
As the school body president, our hero Mu Liu Bing is not only from an elite background but is also smart and a natural leader. Surprisingly, Liu Bing seems strangely un-offended by Xiao Xi's guts to beat up one of his people and remains silent even when the whole school waits to see what he would do to punish Liu Bing.
In a flash back we finally gets some answers as to why Liu Bing seems extra patient with Xiao Xi. Apparently on Xiao Xi's first day at school she inadvertently chanced upon a bunch of Liu Bing's father's men trying to forcefully take Li Bing away and uses her famous fighting skill to rescue our
While everyone at school avoids Xiao Xi like a plague, but fortunately Xiao Xi also gains a fan in Dong Hao Xue who despite being the school principal's daughter insists on becoming Xiao Xi's friend.
Eyeing the thermos in Xiao Xi's hand with doubt, Liu Bing tries to find any excuse to not drink the strange medicine Xiao Xi insists that he has to take. Frustrated with Liu Bing's stubbornness, Xiao Xi decides to physically persuade Liu Bing to drink the medicine.
Unable to bring himself to drink the truly nasty smelling medicine Xiao Xi brewed for him, Liu Bing secretly dumps it down the toilet. However, still moved by Xiao Xi's thoughtful gesture especially when he finds out from her roommate that she had not slept for two days in order to brew the medicine properly, Liu Bing can't seem to stop thinking about Xiao Xi whenever he sees the thermos.
Deciding that maybe Liu Bing is not such a jerk anymore, Xiao Xi starts to feel guilty that she has been the cause of so much trouble to him and Jian Che. Vowing to stay away from Liu Bing and Jian Che from then on, Xiao Xi starts to hide from the boys whenever she sees them.
Rushing to Xiao Xi's house to stop her from packing up to go home, Liu Bing successfully makes Xiao Xi too angry to leave by accusing her of running away like a coward.
Proving not all rich girls are bad though, Xiao Xi's new friend Hao Xue seems even more determined to not turn into rich jerks like many of her fellow students but to find a way to be rich and kind.
The always calm and collected Liu Bing loses his cool after an argument with his father and taunts a bunch of guys in a bar. Hauling a giant statue home by herself, Xiao Xi is alarmed when she sees a drunken Liu Bing stumbling past her with a bunch of thugs following closely behind.
I am in love! I had fairly low expectation of this show but this one is sure turning into a big surprise. Now, the plot is pretty predicable for sure but I really do like the fact the characters in Moon River are surprisingly refreshing even if on the surface they should be stereotypes.
It is probably not fair to compare this show to Hana Yori Dango since Moon River is based on a novel but come on! Three guys in a super rich elite school and a poor girl that doesn't fit in? Any self respecting drama addict would make that comparison.
Plus the heroine even starts to like the violin playing second male lead first before she will fall in love with the hero! I rest my case.
Anyhow, since my mind keeps comparing Moon River to Hana Yori Dango I have to say I really like Xiao Xi and Liu Bing's characters more than the leads in Hana Yori Dango. It is probably just personal preference but I love that instead of the bumbling angry hero in Hana Yori Dango, Liu Bing is actually smooth and smart. Of course the cool exterior that Liu Bing keeps on at all times just makes it even more comical whenever he loses it in front of Xiao Xi.
On the heroine's end, I find Xiao Xi's character rather endearing. I was afraid Xiao Xi's innocence might get annoying but so far I have find her obstacle filled journey to maturity really gratifying and worth cheering for. It doesn't hurt that Xiao Xi often does the most surprising thing at the oddest time which makes the show that much more funny to watch.
All in all, I have high hopes for this one! By the way, as a fan of Hana Yori Dango I do feel the need to clarify that it is one of my favorite J-drama so do watch it if you haven't!