I watched 《少年杨家将》 because I wanted to know the story of the Yang family. It seemed apt to watch all these interesting dramas set in the olden times, after I had watched movies like Legend of the Condor Heroes, Return of the Condor Heroes etc, comprising of the “new batch” of idols. Hu Ge, who acted as Yang Liu Lang was Guo Jing in LOCH, and Yuan Hong who acted as Yelu Xie in the drama was Yang Kang in LOCH. It seemed ironic that the enemy of the Yang family was next cast as their descendant.
As usual with the “shao nian” series, this story takes place before the main stories at a time when the characters were younger. This story revolves around how Yang Ye, the father taught his family values like loyalty and the unyielding spirit as well as a deep sense of patriotism. As with all dramas with villians, the Yang family has always met with trouble, which resulted in the deaths of Yang Ye, Yang Da Lang, Yang Er Lang, Yang San Lang and Yang Qi Lang.
The ending few episodes of the drama was most touching and heart wrenching. When the Prime Minister told tales to the Emperor, you just feel so angry, but then you felt angrier because the Emperor couldn’t discern who was his loyal subject and who wasn’t. Just because he lacked faith in the Yang Family, five men died.
When the wife of Wu Lang knocked him unconscious, resulting in him being unable to go to his father’s and brothers’ aid, I felt a sense of disappointment and anger. It was as if the person who was his wife could not understand him at all. That he would rather go into battle and die with his family than to run like a coward knowing that his family was being killed off one by one. I could understand how he couldn’t forgive her after that.
The accumulation of emotions from intensity of the battle and what seemed like a slaughter, coupled with betrayal, mistrust, capture of the upright people and finally the scene where they brought the bodies back to the capital just seemed to make it even more upsetting. But then you develop a sense of how evil war is, and that sometimes the soldiers from both sides are innocent, but they die all the same. Plus they die so fast and in such huge numbers, it’s impossible to bring their bodies back to their family.
The only gripe I had is that the upright people die so epic-ly but the evil villians just die in a simple painless manner. Is it really that easy to catch the Prime Minister and convict him?
The video below is the theme song for the drama. I liked it very much. I like how the way chinese words can be strung together to form longer meanings but the number of words used is very minimal. Enjoy.