Jan 19, 2012|
HK Magazine: Why did you start your blog?
TVB Pal: I wouldn’t say that I am a fan of TVB, but I grew up watching TVB dramas. My family always switches on the telly when we have dinner, and my parents never watch any other channels. When you watch the soap operas, you can spot problems right away. In the beginning, I did not intend to start a blog just to criticize TVB. But some of the longer and more constructive entries got good feedback from readers, and so I started to talk more about the phenomenon of TVB.
HK: What are the more popular entries?
TP: Recently, I opened a Facebook fan page for my blog. My friend sent me a picture with three gummy bears tearing another gummy bear apart. So I added the caption “When Heaven Burns” and the TVB logo [in a recent episode, three young men eat their friend to survive when they are stranded on a snowy mountain]. The picture went viral, and I got a lot of “likes.” Another popular entry is about how [actor] Bosco Wong has had the same haircut for five years. Don’t get me wrong, I like Bosco and everything, but the haircut is pretty boring now.
HK: What are the other problems with TVB dramas?
TP: TVB helps to reinforce patriarchy. Actually, it’s not just TVB; it’s a problem for the advertising industry, too. In TVB dramas, women always give birth to sons, and people will congratulate them. How about baby girls? These details may seem trivial, and some people say that it’s reflective of Hong Kong society. But that’s a spiraling cycle that could distort the values of Hongkongers.
HK: You also talk about homophobia.
TP: All over the world, there are more and more homosexual roles that are not derogatory. But in TVB dramas, people are always worrying when they suspect that someone is gay. And then they feel relieved when they find out that characters are not gay in the end. This is one of the favorite plots TVB uses, but it’s degrading to the LGBT population. Also, many of the gay or lesbian characters are always murderers, or murdered.
HK: Do you think TVB performers are bad actors?
TP: Many of the TVB actors and actresses have the potential to put up excellent performances, and they can perform very differently in movies. One recent example is Myolie Wu from “Life without Principles” [directed by Johnnie To]. TVB likes to assign its actors and actresses the same kind of roles, creating inertia for them.
HK: Would you say that you have a love-hate relationship with TVB?
TP: I grew up watching TVB dramas, and [the channel] is a part of my life. I have complex feelings about it. As the biggest TV station in Hong Kong, it has the resources and talent to produce good-quality programs. There are more free TV stations coming in the future future, and I hope that the competition will motivate TVB to improve its quality.
Visit www.tvbmademeopenthis.wordpress.com for more entries critiquing TVB.