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Monday, August 21, 2006

Maiden's Vow synopsis and cast

《鳯凰四重奏》 Maiden's Vow
(previously known as Phoenix Quartet)
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30 episodes, costume to modern drama
Note: 7th trailer added: Must see!

*Official TVB site*

Women's perspective has sympathy
Men's perspective is clear after soberness
A hundred years of relationships between two sexes face observation

One family's business passes through four generations of women and their destinies, reflecting the marital relationships of different eras; women face all kinds of pressure.

At the end of the Qing dynasty, Ngai Ju Fung's (Charmaine Sheh) family fortune is on the decline. She has no choice but to marry Wong Yuk Lun (Sammul Chan). However, he ruins his family's business. Fung is forced to sell the gift that her first love, Yue Chi (Joe Ma), gave her in order to open The Phoenix ("Fung Wong Lau"). Her story reflects the pain and sorrow of arranged marriages and shows how women can firmly face and resolve great oppositions.

During the May 4th (1919) event, Fung's daughter, Wong Jee Gwan (Charmaine) falls for her teacher, Li Gat Cheung (Joe) and they plan to elope in Tianjin. However, the two end up parting. Gwan returns to Beijing to bring up The Phoenix. Her story reflects the strives that women make for marital freedom, ending up fending for themselves.

In the 1960's, Fung's great-granddaughter, Bak Wai Jan (Charmaine) works in secret, unbeknownst to her husband, Dai Lap Yan (Joe). Out of retaliation, Yan has an affair. Their marriage comes to an end. However, this brings the two to work hand-in-hand for the better of The Phoenix. Her story reflects how women's fight for equality ends up with an interesting outcome.

In the twenty-first century, Fung's great-great-granddaughter, Dai Sze Ga (Charmaine) and Fong Ga On (Joe) end their cohabitation because they don't want to be restrained. After the separation, Ga takes hold of her family's long-time business and adds a new branch to it, extending its longevity. Her story reflects the freedom that women have gained at the expense of losing life's focus.

Translation credit to MetalAZNWarrior.


佘詩曼 魏瑜鳳  胡 楓 汪善琦  陳安瑩  祝銀枝
馬德鐘 余 賜  汪 琳 容德善  康 華 汪家璋
陳鍵鋒 汪毓麟  商天娥 董帶喜  李崗龍 霍培良
陳嘉儀 宋秀玥  陳霽平 花千紅  麥長青 連仲軒
劉 丹 魏秉藩  白 茵 連雅碧
秦 煌 曹公公  楊英偉 爾 克


佘詩曼 汪子君  李崗龍 霍培良  利嘉兒 顧小媚
馬德鐘 李吉祥  馮素波 莘 順  姚子羚 張 莉
商天娥 董帶喜  李天翔 范禮澤  魯振順 高大文
汪 琳 容德善  駱達華 徐力漢  黎彼得 校 長
康 華 祝銀枝  陳 琪 杜淑嫻  陳文靜 杜麗謹


佘詩曼 白慧珍  劉曉彤 呂瑛紅  黃智賢 賈而堅
馬德鐘 戴立仁  蔣志光 慕容超  邵傳勇 劉 廣
魯振順 高大文  梁麗瑩 錢智嫦  李家聲 馬 虎
沈頴婷 魯杏芬  袁潔儀 滕繼萍  陳山聰  畢夏裘
羅冠蘭 譚 卿  馬蹄露 溫婉柔


佘詩曼 戴思嘉  羅君左 鄒楚杰  姚樂怡 蕭玉貞
馬德鐘 方家安  朱婉兒 鄒楚娟  王合喜 鄧 鵬
郭德信 鄒鼎昌  程可為 邱鴻雪  伍慧珊 林向欣
盧宛茵 戴可兒  鄭子誠 何保泰

TVB mag issue 479 scans, credit to Bebe.

Image Hosted by ImageShack.usThe translation was a little brief and impromptu, so I apologize in advance if I made any (unintentional) mistake.

1. Blind Marriage
In Qing dynasty, marriage law was very strict and traditional. While men can have many wives, women have to uphold their honor, chastity and submissive. They can do nothing but forced to accept their fate.

Ngai Yu Fung (Charmaine) was born in a rich merchant family and was raised as an educated and gentle girl. She grew up with Yu Chi (Joe) and they have feelings for each other. However, because Yu Fung's father business has gone into trouble, as a result Yu Fung was forced to marry Wong Yuk Lun (Sammul). To save her family business, Yu Fung have to let go of her feelings for Yu Chi.

After marrying into Wong family, Yu Fung realize that her husband was useless playboy who loves to gamble. Afterward, Yuk Lun also squandered his family fortune after being cheated by his uncle. His father also died because of this. At this time, Yu Chi returned from his apprenticeship with Royal Chef Eunuch Tsao and wanted to take Yu Fung away. However, Yu Fung could not bear to see Wong family in ruins...

2. Teacher - Student Love
During the May 4th era, due to political movement and western education, people's perception of marriage began to change. The younger generation wanted to have freedom in love and deciding their own marriage. However, teacher student relationship is still a taboo. In addition, women have to pay a high price to have freedom in love...

Yu Fung's daughter Wong Zhi Guan (Charmaine) is a mischievous and lively high school student. She fell in love with her teacher Lee Gut Yeung (Joe), an aspiring national revolutionist. However, Gut Yeung already have a blind marriage contract with fiancée Suk Han (June). Zhi Guan does not wish to follow her mother tragic footsteps, so she took the initiative to pursue Gut Yeung. Both of them eloped to Tianjin and begin a new life.

However, their passion fizzled after they encountered problems, especially financial means. Dejected, Gut Yeung shared his problems with a socialite, causing Zhi Guan to think that they're having an affair. They broke up and Gut Yeung continue his revolution struggle, while Zhi Guan returned to take care of Phoenix Parlor. Because she's doesn't know how to do business, she was forced to sell off the family business. At this time she bumped into Gut Yeung and they reconciled. Zhi Guan also gave birth to a daughter, but Gut Yeung went missing due to his revolution movement...

3. Gender Equality
In late 1960's , Hong Kong's economy was booming and people are more educated and have freedom in marriage. However, the concept of marriage is still the same, which is the husband goes to work, while the wife stays at home. A lot of women started working and they have to face pressure from both work and family.

Bak Wai Zhen (Charmaine) is Zhi Guan's grand daughter. She is a highly intelligent and capable woman. However, her husband Dai Lap Yan (Joe) is chauvinistic and think that women should stay at home after marriage. Wai Zhen secretly goes behind his back to work and end up being his superior. Lap Yan felt humiliated and brought his other colleagues to fool around as means to regain his dignity. Wai Zhen could not take it anymore and demanded a divorce.

At this time Wai Zhen and Lap Yan was assigned to come up with a promo plan for Phoenix Parlor. Thus, they get to understand each other further. Though Phoenix Parlor still ends up closing up, they reconciled their marriage. However, in the 1980's, there was a sudden rush for immigration. Lap Yan wished to expand his career in HK, therefore Wai Zhen had to sacrifice her career and immigrated to Canada along with their daughter.

4. Cohabiting
The modern women have a lot more freedom and equality, but they lacked security in relationships. With the trend of cohabiting replacing marriage, how do they handle their relationships?

Dai See Ga (Charmaine) is an independent and self-reliant girl working as beer promoter. Fong Ka Onn (Joe) is an engineer who does thing by careful planning. Even though their personalities are completely opposite, they fell in love and moved in together. However, due to different viewpoint in marriage, they decided to break up peacefully. See Ga started to practice using her great, great grandma recipes and hoped to reopen Phoenix Parlor.

See Ga tried finding investor for her restaurant but because of her inexperience, she was almost cheated. Ka Onn helped her and they manage to save Phoenix Parlor's reputation. They also discover that See Ga was pregnant with Ka Onn's baby, but after discussion, they decided not to get married just because of the baby. They will be both parents to their baby; not as lovers but as partner.

Other related links:
Characters and series pictures

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