(Roy Qiu…why you so hot part 23)
Gong xi fa cai!
Since there is no Office Girls tonight due to the airing of TTV’s version of Kouhaku, I’m reduced to watching previous episodes.
And the more I watch, the more I wonder what if Qiu Ze did not accept the role of Qin Zi Qi and it went to another actor?
This post is not meant to discredit or compare Roy unfairly with other actors, and vice versa. We all have our biases, this is just for fun so no need to go all protective over your idols, ke yi mah? It’s just a game of — what if Qin Zi Qi was portrayed by ______ ?
Qin Zi Qi as a character is basically the typical male role with the prince syndrome that’s all over all types of dramas from Korean to Japanese to Taiwanese. I suppose the prince syndrome does cut across cultures hahaha! Qin Zi Qi is cocky, brimming with confidence, arrogant, naughty, childish to a certain extent and yet, despite all these negative attributes, is adorable. He is also steadfast, stubborn and behind all that hot air, has a good heart.
Roy portrays him with a good sense of sensitivity and hilarity, not overdoing the cockiness to the point of being annoying, and not overplaying the drama to the point that he’s screaming GOLDEN BELL. He creates a good balance between the light and heavy sides of his character and what comes out is a distinctive portrayal that the audience might find hard to disassociate from him even as he plays other roles in the future. This is the downside of playing such a character that will remain in people’s memory, but that also means he has been successful in his job as an actor. The upside is, a successful role like this will certainly pave the way for more work for him, if it hasn’t already.
So, again, what if another actor played Qin Zi Qi? Let’s see.
Jiro has been in a lot of idol dramas and he brings this certain breeziness to his characters. I don’t know if it’s because of his real personality or that he still lacks acting depth. He’s certainly not wanting in personal experience to get dramatic inspirations from but when I watch him, I expect him to do a Patrick Li type of physical comedy. If he played Qin Zi Qi, it could have been difficult distinguishing him and Shi Te Long especially in the funny parts. They’d have looked like a manzai (a stand-up comedy style in Japan); to be fair, the Roy-Patrick pairing does give off that manzai air and they get away with it, with laughter to spare.
Chunnie is so pretty in person and I see this as his downside as an actor. Roy is pretty too but Chunnie’s features are softer. His Qin Zi Qi would have been snooty and stand-offish all right, as Chunnie does snooty well, but it would have lacked that roughness that makes Zi Qi a joy to watch especially when he’s swaggering around wearing his ego on his sleeve. Chunnie can’t do a swagger like that, not even in Sunshine Angel.
Joe has played a lot of characters afflicted with the prince syndrome, think It Started With A Kiss. He can do snob and cocky but the effect will be different. I also wonder how Joe can do the flirty side, when Qin Zi Qi used to make googoo eyes at Zheng Kai Er. I just couldn’t picture it.
Imho, Mike would be able to do a Qin Zi Qi the way we know the character now. It’s not only that Mike and Roy look the same–of course, not everyone will agree on this. He and Qiu Ze have so many acting mannerisms the similarity is so uncanny. Sometimes it gives me the creeps to see Roy act out a scene in a way I have seen Mike act too. But obviously, if it’s Mike, Zi Qi would have a deeper voice although Roy can do a mean impersonation of him like what he did during one of the BTS.
Needless to say, Qin Zi Qi would be different depending on the actor playing it. Each actor brings different interpretations to the same role as they take with them not only their acting skills but personal experience too. Image and attitude also play big parts. If they have psychological barriers of being an idol, it will show.
I’m glad though that Roy got to play Qin Zi Qi. Based on the title, perhaps the writers did not plan to make Qin Zi Qi such a major character; perhaps this drama was planned to tackle office ladies’ lives and their relationships. I mean, why call it Office Girls anyway? Roy has been playing secondary leads in Taiwan dramas since he returned from the military and this was his comeback to leading man status. I suppose not even the producers expect the role to inject freshness into his career. Otherwise, they could have called it Office Girl and the Poor Heir.
I don’t mean to say they have to be literal with the title. Judging from the quality of writing that we have seen on the show, the writers are not mediocre. They like to experiment and so many times have steered clear from the cliches. They do it every now and then, yes, but they have not gone full monty on stereotyping the love story. If they did, they would have broken up Qin Zi Qi and Shen Xing Ren, separated them, made Qin Zi Qi fall into Zheng Kai Er’s traps–there were so many that if the writers wanted to take the cliche route, Qin Zi Qi could have fallen into one of them. Of course they dragged the drama for 11 episodes more but who can blame them for their good business sense? TTV has earned NT$5 billion the previous year thanks to producing some of the highly rated dramas of 2011. From a business point of view, makes sense, as Qin Zi Qi would say. From a fan’s point of view, why the hell not if it meant prolonging the happiness of watching Qin Zi Qi onscreen?
Xie xie Qiu Ze for bringing Qin Zi Qi to life. Two more episodes to go but I already miss you.
Indeed, Qiu Ze, you’re the hottest thing to happen on Taiwan television in 2011.
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