Monday, August 4, 2014

The Hippocratic Crush Review (2012)

Drama Rating: **
Personal Rating: Decent

A new set of medical interns have joined the medical staff at Mercy Hospital for their rotations. As they work with their seniors/mentors, aside from facing the challenges treating patients, they also encounter and have to deal with events in their own personal lives. How well will they cope?

*Spoiler warning*

This drama starts off with some focus and direction but soon enough begins to meander and disintegrate into a mishmash of short stories. The main focus (if there ever was one, would be the on and off relationship between Dr Fan Tze Yu and Dr Cheung Yat Kin) continuously gets shuffled aside while bringing to the fore the individual trials and tribulations of the rather large number of side characters. In this case, if the drama is dependent on multiple stories as opposed to a single overarching storyline, the entire cast needs to be strong to support the storytelling but given the weak cast, it simply makes the drama come across as messy and directionless.

The casting for this drama was quite mediocre. Aside from the two 'leads' whose acting was merely passable, the acting of the supporting cast generally left a lot to be desired. For some reason, HK dramas seem to give less screen time to the leads than dramas from most other dramas I watch and I'd actually be fine with that if only the acting didn't range from average to just plain bad. Tavia Yeung's Fan Tze Yu was probably the strongest cast member although her character sometimes felt a tad inconsistent (more of the screenwriter's problem). Kenneth Ma was passable as Dr Cheung Yat Kin but the rest of the supporting cast goes downhill from there. Shockingly, there were times when I really felt like I was watching actors reciting lines rather than acting.

Like most HK dramas, the soundtrack wasn't very impressive. The pieces that were created for accompaniment felt simplistic, cheesy and one-dimensional. It certainly felt as though little thought was put into composing the melodies and harmonies. Further, the music arrangement was done only in a very basic, simplistic fashion. The one redeeming factor likely was the fact that it didn't interfere with the storytelling and maintained its role in the background as a support.

This drama started off with a promising start but gradually fell apart under its own weight. IMHO, there were far too many distracting short stories in the series without one clear, overarching story or theme tying them all together. The stage seemed more like a revolving door of characters and individual stories without a clear goal. This was only made worse by the substandard level of acting within the supporting cast. This combination unfortunately dragged the drama's entertainment value down significantly.

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