*contains spoilers* Finally have it written up!
When I first found out that [Heart of Greed] and [A Change of Destiny] were both airring, I was anticipating [Heart of Greed] a lot more and was sort of disappointed ACOD took the 7:10pm time slot instead of HOG. However, after watching the first few episodes, I really liked ACOD because the story was light hearted, funny and the storyline was really interesting…I didn’t expect to like the series so easily =) and started losing interest in HOG which I initially felt disappointed with because not much was happening..
The main plot revolves around the Book of Destiny which was thought to be able to predict future events if the secrets were revealed. The book had two parts; one with the pictures; the other with the explanation which were passed down through generations from two different families. This way; the secret to fate and the heavens would never be revealed because it was ‘forbidden’. The two families were generations of fortune telling/fate predicting; one was passed down to Yuen Wah, the other being Rebecca. Not knowing the other were the ones carrying the duty to safeguard the Book of Destiny, the two fall in love which was said to be forbidden or else bad things would happen. When they realised, they decided to go against fate and destiny by promising the other not to look at each others secrets and together they lived an ordinary life for awhile, giving birth to their daughter, Shirley. Soon, there was a war going on and Yuen Wah broke his promise to the wife; stole Rebbecca’s part and made some General at that time the new emperor who was said to lead the war to end. This caused trouble as the new Emperor wanted Yuen Wah to present to him all the Secrets to Destiny which caused Yuen Wah to get separated from his wife and daughter when trying to escape. The Book of Destiny is lost and we are moved to the current time the story is presented, where Yuen Wah has been looking for his wife and daughter..
Personally I liked the storyline and found it quite interesting; the ideas are good but I did like the first half over the second half of the story.
Actor and Character
- Steven Ma/ Yuen Hei:
I really liked Steven Ma’s performance and character in this series; probably my favourite~ I haven’t seen much Steven Ma roles but I have to say this one is my favourite of his ^^ He was so hilarious and funny to watch throughout the whole series so I really enjoyed his time on-screen! He played the mischievous one; wasn’t the type to be considered heroic at all and often tricked people/money, or acted to take advantage of the situations (note the first time he met Shirley! XD) I did pity his character though and how he’d always get picked on, tied up etc..
- Benny Chan/ Yip Yeung:
Haven’t seen Benny since The Biter Bitten, so was happy to see him here~his character can be a bit of a jerk but he’s extremely sweet when he’s with Selena~ which made me like the two a lot (more on them further down) In that aspect I like his character a lot and his bad boy-ish side to him seemed to slowly fade. I felt that there were some inconsistencies with his character, was he really such of a good guy? Like in the scene where Joel tied him and Mimi up, would he really crawl under Joel’s leg for Mimi? It seemed like Benny’s character would be one who would put his own dignity over others, but he didn’t. Did he do it out of bravery/courageous knowing Mimi was a girl, or because he knew Selena was her servant? In the scene where Benny’s mother gets killed I would have thought he would have gone insane and ended up hating everyone there but instead he was too upset and cried softly. I feel there was something missing in him through the series that made me feel his character was lacking something that made him unconvincing at times. I really didn’t like his character when was turning evil, though I already knew it was going to happen somehow. I didn’t like his character when he turned evil..he even tried to bury his own father alive so he could being king..
- Shirley Yeung/ Fok Yi Na:
I didn’t really notice her character much in the earlier half, because she played her usual type of role being ‘loud’ , ‘tough’ and exaggerated type. Sometimes I wonder doesn’t she get tired yelling so much? I think it was when Steven started going after her when I started to like her more and towards the end, I found her acting quite convincing especially in the part where Steven was burying her. I really felt sorry for her in the scenes where she was picked on by Benny and when he Benny blamed and yelled at her for Mimi; those mean words he said to her during their wedding and all..
- Selena Li/ Sum Yi:
I really liked Selena heaps in Face to Fate; I really liked her heaps here too. She was a clever one who thought through things before she took action. She’s also very loyal to her princess~I was really moved in the scene she chose the princess over Benny and cut her hair… leaving Benny heartbroken. Her love towards Benny was always very strong; she always wanted to give him chances to change. I wished she had a better ending..*sigh*
- Mimi Lo/Princess:
She was fun to watch for the first half of the series before she went back to the palace to marry Joel. She was tomboy-ish (or maybe she was just doing a good job acting as a guy when they were disguised in guy form), tough, aggressive and playful. I liked how she and Selena could fight and were really good with soccer! I didn’t like her character as much afterward. She became blinded by love so much to the extent she couldn’t see or come to learn the truth. She became weak, easily upset and insecure and easily used by Benny… She didn’t believe Selena who was her best friend, didn’t even have even the slightest doubt about Benny. Even after she finds out that Benny didn’t love her and had only married her to take over her father’s throne, she wanted to protect him till the end. This reminded me of Vivien Yeo’s character in [The Price of Greed] where she found out about Sammul and still defended him. Towards the end, her significance in the story fell..hardly had any screen time..and she went crazy. Like, in one scene in the last episode where Benny was eating up the gray stuff, we only see Mimi in the background but the camera doesn’t even focus on her. She doesn’t talk or anything, just sitting there at the back. It makes me feel I don’t really care about her anymore. Didn’t really pity her…she was also the factor that went into Selena and Benny’s relationship and ultimately ruined it.. I have to give her some credit for trying to impress Benny so much in the earlier episodes, but generally I didn’t enjoy watching Mimi and Benny scenes.
- Yuen Wah
I think his acting here is just as good as his previous roles. He can really pull it off as a fortune teller; a wise one that can predict destiny, yet acts dumb to avoid certain situations (I liked his different identity) I felt sorry for his character and was really happy for him to reunite with his daughter…too bad it didn’t last very long..
- Joel Chan
Every time I see him, I’m expecting to see him as some sort of bad guy or jerk. Has he ever played a good guy before? And here he is again xD I’m surprised he found the Princess’ picture (Mimi) as being pretty, I personally found the portrait quite scary lol I didn’t like his character in the series and didn’t pity him when he died either.
- Benny and Selena
I really liked this couple because they were so sweet together! They look good together and were really compatible *You guys can probably tell by the large amount of Screen captures focusing on this couple that I’ve made hehe* They just got along so well from the start when Selena was a ‘guy’. They went through a lot together and I enjoyed all their moments especially in the earlier episodes.
Because he didn’t want Selena to suffer with him, he lets her go back to the palace by putting on an act so she would leave him. Even after Benny turned evil, he still loved her. He ends up betraying her and marrying the princess so he can become king..Their love story would have been so different if Joel didn’t come and ruin their wedding ceremony. Benny’s obsession to become king completely took over him, putting himself as his first priority. However,I still can’t deny that Benny still loved Selena. After what Selena had said and got beaten up, Benny chose not to admit what she had said but when he was in the carriage, he cried. At the same time, in Benny’s point of view- Selena had betray him instead. He didn’t have any intentions to kill Selena, and I believe he wouldn’t kill Selena even though he said he’ll get rid of anyone who gets in his way. In the final episode when Steven set up the place to make Benny think he became the king, he was telling Selena that she was his Queen. In the end, I didn’t really like how Benny turned crazy with Mimi. It seems like Benny only cared about Mimi, in their own little world..but what about Selena then? She ends up taking care of the two =\ What kind of happiness is that?? I feel sad for this couple that it had to end this way and I wished they got a better ending…
- Steven and Shirley
A funny couple! Its nice that this series has both couples which are different. Steven and Shirley is more of the arguing funny ones and I guess that comes with what their characters are like. I did find their relationship a little artificial because Steven started pursuing Shirley to try gain her trust to find out where the Book of Destiny was and he eventually succeeds in tricking Shirley in falling for him by his false actions. After that, I couldn’t tell when Steven actually liked Shirley and I couldn’t see any specific moments that changed his view about her, falling in love with her for real. Maybe it was the part where both of them were about to be drowned? I felt the two were just hanging around together rather than being in love. I am happy for this couple and glad the two got happy ending =)
- Steven and Benny
I enjoyed the moments when Benny and Steven were together (when Benny is not acting evil), they are so funny, they they seemed to be able to think alike (for example, in the episode when they were trying to sneak into the palace) Both of them were interested in the Book of Destiny. I also liked watching the two change from being enemies to becoming good friends and how the two helped one another (like when Benny was imprisoned, when trying to help Selena and Benny elope, when trying to help save Shirley’s mother). These two seem to feel some special binding connection with each other because they were born at the same day and time- back then, symbolizing the same person. They made heaps of references to that through the series.
- Steven and Yuen Wah
I enjoyed their moments! Especially in the early episodes where Steven just kept following him, clinging onto him and won’t stop bothering him, constantly calling his as his Si Fu because he wanted Yuen Wah to accept him. Their relationship grew throughout the series and they cared for each other a lot. It feels like he treats Steven as his own son and at the end, he passed the Book of Destiny to him.
- In this series, Shirley, Selena and Mimi all know how to fight and defend themselves. Steven and Benny don’t. It doesn’t make sense towards the end how Benny was able to fight the kings guards protecting the Imperial Graveyard, and escape the King’s men when his plan was revealed. It also seemed that it was very easy to get in and out of the Palace.
- For the earlier half of the series, Mimi played the tough, spoilt princess, having everything her own way, but after returning to the kingdom, she didn’t even try to refuse the marriage arranged with Joel.
- Didn’t the King say he left the throne to his son(who was very young?) How did his brother take over?
- In episode 15, Benny’s clothes suddenly changed from poor rags, to expensive silk..no one questioned him where he got the money.
- How did Benny end up predicting everything so well in the Book of Destiny afterwards? (other than the wrong interpretation about him being the King). Same with Steven’s character. I was trying to convince myself that Steven learned a lot from Yuen Wah but I still have doubts about it.
Recommend this series?
Yes! Definitely =D For those who like a neat short 20 episode light-hearted series, this one is pretty good.
I think its a shame that this series was released at the same time as Heart of Greed which took all the attention.. I hope when people finish [Heart of Greed], people would come back and give this series a go.