thoughts by Z
It really is so beautiful.
Starring Shen Yue and Hu Yi Tian; aired in 2017; 23 episodes (plus a bonus episode)
I have rewatched this show many times already and I’m sure I’ll watch it again.
Shen Yue is always a delight, even if it’s a show not worth watching (*cough* Another Me *cough*), but there is something so absolutely magical about her portrayal of 16 year old Xiao Xi that I have such a hard time believing another script or character will ever be so perfect for her.
This character has such an over-the-top imagination that watching another actor’s lesser portrayal would make scenes like Xiao Xi standing atop her bed with streamers of toilet paper hanging off a chopstick in her hair while singing a sad lament about her father’s unfortunate demise (which he overhears, aghast) seem just too twee. But in A Love So Beautiful, I have already bought in to all the characters and their small town life, and I am already so in love with Xiao Xi’s youthful and unabashed naiveté, that it truly feels more like I’m peeking into her life rather than watching a show. She is just so good.
I am a person who is always so acutely aware of myself and how I might be being perceived by others, and I’ve always been this way. It’s hard to describe just how much I admire Xiao Xi.
When I think back on my past, I try to be kind to myself. I think that having too many regrets is kind of like a betrayal of the good right now, and right now has some good. Even still, if I had one piece of advice to give my younger self it might actually be this: it’s okay to like something and it’s okay if people know it.
I only wore clothes that were unbranded and unadorned.
I only watched TV shows that I wanted to watch when no one else was around.
I only joined in activities if someone else wanted to do it first.
And on. And on.
I had somehow developed a complex around having a personality.
I spent a lot of my 20s unlearning this behavior. One of the ways I’ve combatted it is by developing opinions on movies and TV show. I’m no critic, but I do like to pick out the parts that moved me or meant something to me, and to go deep enough to express (out loud) just why.
Hence this blog.
Xiao Xi, on the other hand, is so brashly and brazenly herself. She is a petite bundle of personality, and she steps into mishaps and overwhelmingly embarrassing situations time and again simply because she is following her passions and she is following her heart.
And that’s what makes her admirable. And that’s why I’ll keep rewatching.
In case you have loved the show and didn’t yet know, I recommend reading the book that A Love So Beautiful is based on. I’ve linked to the NovelUpdates site where you can find the links to the fan-translated chapters. It is well translated and a lovely, light read.