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Winter break means TVB and chill~

After another dreadful finals season follows a much-needed winter break. Imagine this, it’s -22 degrees out and all you want to do is stay at home and hibernate. (hot take alert) However, as we all know Canada’s Netflix sucks and you have no one to chill with because you’re a proud member of team “single all the way” (sad reacts only). But don’t sweat it, we got your back homie! Here is a list of Cantonese dramas that can make cuffing season more bearable and your well-deserved hibernation more enjoyable. Who needs to leave the house when they can watch TVB all day every day, am I right? So, without further ado, here are our top 10 TVB dramas to watch during the winter break!!

Triumph In the Skies I & II (2003, 2013) 衝上雲霄

Genre: Action, Adventure, Romance

Synopsis: Samuel Tong (Francis Ng) and Vincent Ling (Joe Ma) are senior pilots at Solar Airways. As they both aspire to become the first Chinese captain of the airline, they find themselves working with a crew of talented and passionate characters while continuing along their journey.

Personal opinion: This drama literally made me want to become a pilot and the only thing that stopped me was that I get motion sickness very easily… Either way, if you want to travel around the world and you’re broke like me, then there’s no better way than to do so than from home while watching this TVdrama.

Quotes from execs: “This drama was my childhood”- Anthony

Heart of Greed (2007, 2008, 2017) 溏心風暴

Genre: Family, Business, Drama

Synopsis: Tong Yan Gai is a dried sea products store owner. Although successful in his business, he has a more complicated family background. With his wife, Ling Hau, they have 3 children. Unfortunately, when she discovers she has cancer, she is pessimistic about her chances. As she wants him to be happy, she encourages him to be with another woman who quickly becomes his second wife, Wong Sau-Kam. Luckily Ling Hau recovered, but conflict arises in the family as the two women continuously fight for power in the household.

Personal opinion: One of the most classic TVB drama that everyone should watch at least once. As this was part of my childhood, it taught me so much about love, family values and relationships. Also there are so many memorable quotes.

Quotes from execs: “headline: HOG FAMILY UNSUCCESSFUL BUSINESS -FROM ABALONE TO YING YEUNG” -Raymond

Line Walker Series (2014)使徒行者

Genre: Action, Crime, Romance

Synopsis: As five undercover agents go missing following the death of the chief inspector, his friend and colleague, Cheuk Hoi begins to investigate with hopes of discovering their identities and whereabouts. He meets an undercover police agent, Ting Siu Ka (Charmaine Sheh), who aids in his investigation of the other four missing agents. While seeing her life as an undercover agent, the truth begins to reveal itself, and it isn’t as anyone expected.

Personal opinion: This drama had me on the edge of my seat as the mystery unfolded, revealing twists and turns that nobody could have anticipated! To add to that, knowing that the characters’ lives could be at stake at any moment made it that much more suspenseful. Also, Charmaine Sheh and Raymond Lam looked so cool together 😋.

Quotes from execs: “Best Lam Fung drama before he leaves TVB!! Definitely worth watching if u like laughing or this type of drama😋”- Belinda

The Justice of Life (1989)他來自江湖

Genre: Comedy, Romance, Action

Synopsis: 明天 [Meng Teen], a former gang member, has been concentrating on an honest life, managing his family-owned restaurant. While living with his family, his cousin, He Xinyu, accidentally gets himself involved with a drug dealership. As Meng Teen tries to save his cousin, he gets drawn back into his previous gang life.

Personal opinion: Hands down funniest TVdrama I’ve watched. I think I watched it almost 4 or 5 times and it’s still just as funny as the first time!

Rating: 5/5, an oldie but a goodie

Life on the Line (2018) 跳躍生命線

Genre: Drama, Medical

Synopsis: Ever since he was young, Cheuk Ka-Kit has been determined to become an ambulance responder. He didn’t let his dream stay a dream, and joined the first responder force. While working with principal ambulance dispatcher, Mak Chey Tin and ambulance director, Tam Ka Jun, they will lead the team to rescue precious lives in challenging situations.

Personal opinion: If you have never been through a break up, this drama will force evoke those same emotions. This drama can warm your heart, but can also make you sob. Why settle on a drama that can do either or when this one can do both?

Rating: 5/5

Life Made Simple (2005)阿旺新傳

Genre: Comedy, Romance

Synopsis: Ding Sheung-Wong (Roger Kwok) is in his thirties, but has the IQ of a seven-year-old. His childhood best friend Wong Kei-Fung, used to role play with him as children. She would be his wife, and he, her husband, hence her nickname “little wife”. Turmoil begins to arise when Kei-Fung finds herself stuck in a love dilemma between Wong or Chi-Chung (Bosco Wong).

Personal opinion: The perfect brainless drama. You’ve worked your brain hard enough throughout the semester, you deserve a break. Life Made Simple and hibernation- name a more iconic duo.

Rating: 4/5

Every Step You Take (2015) 陪著你走

Genre: Modern romance

Synopsis: Due to an unfortunate accident, magazine photographer Sung Tin Chung (Myolie Wu) list her eyesight. However, she was not deterred by her blindness, maintained her optimism and, found strength from her new life motto, “Love Conquers All”. After breaking up with her boyfriend, Tin Chung crosses paths with her new neighbor and advertising guru Kan Yin Chong (Moses Chan), who was facing a midlife crisis. The love story begins with Tin Chung’s aid dog, and so ensues a series of comedic events.

Personal opinion: This drama taught me love and patience. Thank you, next. Mild cheese, WHO NEEDS A PARTNER TO GO THROUGH CUFFING SEASON WHEN YOU HAVE TVB LOVE DRAMAS.

Rating: 4.5/5

A Fist Within Four Walls (2015)城寨英雄

Genre: Action

Synopsis: The setting of the story takes place in the Kowloon Walled City during the early 1960s, when a majority of the city was ruled by HK triads. The walled city was a largely ungoverned settlement at the time, with high rates of gambling, prostitution and drug use, earning the name “Three Lawless Zone”. Bajiquan masters form a brief alliance to protect the city from gangs, but conflict arises when one of the masters are poisoned and murdered.

Personal opinion: I remember ditching my friends on the MTR because I needed to go home and watch this drama. Absolutely astounding, educational, intense, ludicrous and amazingly entertaining. With the historical background of the story and the tradition of HK martial art, this is, without a doubt, my favorite TVB drama of all time.

Rating: 6/5

Shine on You (2004) 青出於藍

Genre: School, Romance, Comedy

Synopsis: Successful business executive Ga Jai Choi (Bobby Au Yeung) was assigned to be the headmaster of a band 3 secondary school. His business-oriented goal caused dispute between teachers and students however, it had improved the students’ academia. Unfortunately, the school was facing an impending closure but, Ga realized that he had come to care for the school and its students. So, he joins everyone for a final plea against its closure.

Personal opinion: I love high school dramas, it makes me feel young again (Ok, I am 20 but still), it makes me reminisce on the good old secondary school days in Hong Kong.

Rating: 4/5

Another Era (2018) 再創世紀

Genre: Business

Synopsis: The business world is a miniature reflection of the society. Greed, fuel, manipulation and ambition, are key elements in the business world. In the past 10 years, Hong Kong has successfully become one of the world’s most important financial districts. This story reveals the darkness behind the success stories of the Hong Kong tycoons and the competition between the three largest business company in Hong Kong.

Personal opinion: I feel so empowered by this drama series. If you are a scheming person like me, you will definitely enjoy this drama. Every episode is a brain teaser! It also manifests Beyonce’s song “Who run the world? GIRLS!”

Quotes from execs: “Good start! But everything started to slow down midway through”- Karming

Legal Mavericks (2017) 踩過界

Genre: Crime, Action, Mystery

Synopsis: The blind lawyer, Man Sun-Hop, struggles to gain trust in his legal profession as nobody has faith in his abilities. However, his determination and perseverance guide him into developing other heightened senses. This will allow him to seek truth behind the cases along with his fellow private detective, Kuk Yat Ha and female legal executive, Chiu Ching Miu.

Personal opinion: TVB version of Sherlock Holmes. I LOVED THE CHEMISTRY BETWEEN THE CHARACTERS.

Quotes from execs: “It’s one of the few “recent” TVB dramas that I actually got hooked up really quickly”- Kristie

The Seventh Day (2007) 最美麗的第七天

Genre: Romance

Synopsis: Different people have different attitudes toward love — even those born on the same day, in the same year, do not necessarily share the same views. Yau Chi-Wing (Kevin Cheng) and Hui Wai-YAn or Don Dum (Bosco Wong) were both born on the seventh day of August, but one takes relationships seriously while the other is very materialistic and sees love as a tool to get higher up the social ladder. Wing fell in love with a with Yan who had brain cancer. Don Dum gets caught up in a love triangle because of his stud-like personality.

Personal opinion: We added this on the list because Karming highly recommended it and swore that this was his favorite drama mainly because the actress is his bias. Personally, this drama is very similar to Korean dramas; deadly disease, close death experience, first they pretend to be dating, then actually fall in love, same birthdays and etc. If you are interested in those cliche story lines or you trust Karming’s taste in canto drama then you should definitely watch this!

Quotes from execs: “I really like this, I actually watched it a couple times. It never gets old!” — overly excited Karming

Hope you enjoyed our list! Of course there are plenty of other TVB classic’s that we omitted, but these are a few of our very favorites. Now, what are you waiting for, go on and hibernate & TVB!!!

The Hong Kong Student Network is an undergraduate club at McGill that celebrates and promotes Hong Kong culture.