Saturday, June 15, 2013

HKTV Series Police Boundaries (警界線) -- Official Premiere of Entire First Episode (My Thoughts)

Police Boundaries (警界線
[Entire first episode from Youtube]

A few days ago, HKTV put up a ‘poll’ on their Facebook page, asking audiences to vote for which series (out of the 8 teaser trailer clips they released so far) they would like to watch the entire first episode of – HKTV would then ‘premiere’ the entire first episode for the series that receives the most votes.  Voting ended on Tuesday and the series that garnered the most votes was, not surprisingly, Police Boundaries (according to HKTV, Hidden Faces came in a close second).  Therefore, HKTV kept their promise and broadcast the entire first episode of Police Boundaries on Youtube yesterday (Friday).

So far, the feedback for the first episode has been overwhelmingly positive (based on comments in Weibo, discussion forums, HKTV’s Facebook page, etc.).  Since this is one of the series that I’ve been looking forward to watching since HKTV first announced the filming of it last year, of course I wasn’t going to miss the broadcast of the first episode (I don’t think I would have been able to forgive myself…LOL).

Anyway,   below are my initial comments from watching the first episode – I will most likely have more feedback later on (tomorrow) once I get the chance to re-watch the episode again in more detail…

My comments (so far):

.— I don’t know what to say except for – WOW!!  The first episode as well as the preview for episode 2 absolutely made me want to watch the rest of the series! 

.—The episode was fast-paced, thrilling, suspenseful, and so full of twists and turns that it literally kept me at the edge of my seat the entire time I was watching!  When the 11 minute teaser aired last week, I had already remarked how awesome that trailer was (reference this link for my initial comments on the episode 1 trailer) – well, the first episode was even better because we (the audiences) got to understand more of the plot as well as get a better picture of each main character.

.—I was actually quite shocked to find out the relationship between Dominic Lam and Liu Kai Chi’s characters (though from what was revealed in the first episode, it still isn’t 100% clear…but at least we know that, at minimum, the 2 of them, along with Dominic’s deceased wife, are very close friends).  But I’m actually really curious about Uncle Chi’s character – it’s obvious that he was an undercover cop at one point, but is he truly a good guy or will it turn out that he’s actually the main villain?  Whichever it ends up being, I am looking forward to seeing how this all unfolds – and with Uncle Chi’s top-notch acting, I am absolutely certain that his performance will be stellar!

.—Dominic was also absolutely brilliant in the first episode!  After watching the initial 11 minute trailer, I remember commenting that he didn’t have much screen time, but it turns out he does – it’s just that majority of his scenes are concentrated in the middle and second half of the episode.  The scene at the gun shop was quite intense – I will admit that I was so worried Dominic was going to hurt the little boy (Lawrence’s son)…the expression on his face was pretty scary (plus that little boy is just too darn cute and adorable…can’t bear to see anything else bad happen to him!). 

.—I know the feedback to the initial trailer from last week was that Lawrence’s acting was subpar – but after watching the entire first episode, I actually don’t think he was that bad.  Of course, when you’re up against such established veteran actors as Liu Kai Chi, Dominic Lam, Felix Lok, etc., anyone’s acting will seem like ‘child’s play’…however, if we put aside the comparisons to the veterans, I actually feel that Lawrence’s performance wasn’t really that bad at all.  At the very least, I (as an audience member) was able to connect with his character on an emotional level (that’s half the battle right there) and also feel sorry for his plight in the series.  Sure, some of his facial expressions, delivery of dialogue, as well as the way he handled certain emotional scenes still need some work,  but overall, I would actually say that he did a decent job for such a heavy role.

.—I am definitely interested in learning more about Joman Chiang – her performance in this first episode was very impressive, especially knowing that she is a ‘newbie’ in the area of acting!  She had good control over all of her scenes and even with the complicated dialogue (I’m assuming she is the female ‘military weapons expert’ character described in the plot summary), she was able to deliver the goods extremely well.  I don’t know about you guys, but watching her performance, I absolutely could not believe that this series was her first attempt at acting!  Looks like Joman has a bright future ahead of her as an actress….

.—Interesting that Lam Lei’s character dies in episode 1 – I actually thought that he would have a more significant role.  Also, is it just me, or does Lam Lei look really really old in this series?  His first few scenes were fine, but the ones later on in the episode weren’t – he looked way too old, thin, and sickly (so different from how he used to look).  Not sure what happened there but I just found it a little hard to concentrate on his scenes because I couldn’t get over how haggard he looked.  In any case, the plot twist involving his character was quite interesting and I assume that story arc is going to be an important one throughout the rest of the series.

.—No Leila in the first episode (bummer) – though it’s obvious from the second episode’s preview clip that she will appear starting with that episode.  Definitely look forward to seeing her.


  1. I thought Lawrence acted better than Dominic, who's actually quite bland. No comment on LKC but for me, Lawrence was definitely the star of the first episode - he acted well and was convincing as the protagonist.

    1. @Anonymous: Well, since Lawrence was obviously the focus of the first episode, I'm not surprised that the others may not stand out as much yet. I personally felt Dominic did fine...but to your point, I actually have a feeling Dominic's character will be more prominent later on as the storyline plays out more.

  2. llwy12 besides the gun shop scene Dominic was kinda of bland in episode 1. As for Lawrence Chou his acting was decent after watching the entire episode compared to the preview. The part where hugged his son at the gun shop was heart wrenching. That's not to say he doesn't need to work on his dialogue deliver which seems to be unclear at certain points.

    As for Joman Chiang she's not exactly a newbie in acting maybe in tv series but she's had a few roles in movies. So far she's done a great job as Lawrence's wife and the weapons specialist.

    So glad there aren't weird love triangles in this series yet. Unless they're pairing Leila with Lawrence which would cause problems (please don't! Let them stay as comrades). If not I do appreciate how they made the "younger male lead" a married man. I really like the subtle problems in his marriage after his son got injured all because he's too focused on catching the criminal responsible. You can definitely feel Joman and Lawrence's care for their son.

    The piano playing from the son although very fake (cause filmed better), should resonate with alot of Chinese parents since they push their kids to learn piano especially those with disabilities.

    1. @sport3888:  True, though like I said earlier, I have a feeling Dominic’s character will be less bland in the rest of the series, especially after he becomes the triad boss (which sounds like it will happen starting in episode 2). 
      But yes, agreed about Lawrence….I think some of the netizens were a bit too harsh about their comments towards him.  Sure, he needs some work on the acting, but he really wasn’t bad at all – at the very least, he was able to evoke an emotional response from me with his scenes, which already gives him a lot of ‘points’ in my book. 
      Oh, I didn’t know Joman Chiang had some acting experience….in any case, definitely great job from her! 
      Definitely agree with you about the love triangle thing….that was pretty much TVB’s “specialty” in their series and after overusing it so much over the years, I got sick of it as well.  I’m actually not sure how they are going to treat the love relationships in this series either, but hopefully they will focus more on the action and police-related storyline rather than the love relationships.  I also felt they did a pretty good job with Lawrence and Joman’s relationship in episode 1, but whether that will continue is hard to say (based on the preview, looks like the 2 of them will experience even more obstacles and difficulties in their relationship).  Not sure how Leila will factor in, but I also hope they don’t go the love triangle route with her and Lawrence and Joman (though it’s hard to say because don’t forget that Leila and Lawrence made that movie together recently where they played a couple and it was pretty well-received)….
      So true about the plot…knowing TVB, they would have employed their usual ‘drag out the plot’ tactic…LOL!  I definitely liked how the first episode was fast-paced, but yet the flow was fine and things made sense for the most part (though there were some illogical aspects of the plot, but I’m willing to give them the benefit of the doubt because this is only the first episode – some of the illogical aspects might end up getting worked out later on). 
      Overall, I agree with the majority sentiment that some parts of the plot were illogical (though, as I explained above, I wouldn’t judge them on this yet, since those parts might work themselves out later on), but overall it was still an awesome, action-packed, well-filmed first episode!

  3. I was also surprised that Lam Lei died so quickly. I thought it was going to get a significant role, guess not. There were so many unexpected outcomes in the storyline.
    The son getting hurt,
    the confrontation at the gun shop
    Lam Lei getting killed
    Vincent Chou being in a coma for half a year

    1. I mean seriously if it was TVB they would've dragged the confrontation until the very end! lol I was expecting HKTV to do the same.

  4. overall episode 1 is quite interesting but the acting of some of the actors and actresses quite bad and lawrence is one of them.

    6 months past and he still has the same look from hair not grown at all to no facial hair and everything. I understand if his wife shaves his daily but she gels his hair every day too? It's perfectly comb and gel as soon as he woke up lol

    come on hktv, u can do better than this :)

  5. Hktv will be back online july 2014 and police boundaries will be hitting on the internet in july