Love Forward: Ep 12

Drama ReviewsTaiwanese Dramas

I felt like episode 12 definitely made up for my disappointment in episode 11.  If you’re not a die hard Ai Xing x Tian Ze shipper, I can see why you’d be getting impatient with Love Forward’s melodramatic turn and slow pace.  I was quite appeased by the Ai Xing x Tian Ze scenes, even though they were filled with cliches.  It’s precisely these cliches that point to them becoming an OTP in the future. (I WILL NOT GIVE UP HOPE) 

I thought they would try to get deep into father-son family issues, but thankfully they kept this part brief.  The basic point of reintroducing Tian Ze’s father is to show how alike they are.  Like father, like son.  I think the casting for Tian Ze’s dad was spot on because I seriously think they resemble each other.  This is one of the few scenes for comic relief, so I appreciated it a lot.  Grandpa is one of the awesomest characters in Love Forward. 

When he finds out that Tian Ze & his dad are representing opposing sides in the Meng case, he starts beating them up with his slippers.  Ai Xing and Zhi Xing just look on and root for Grandpa.  Hehehehe.  And then Grandpa switches to an umbrella to punish Tian Ze some more.  It’s a cute and heartwarming scene because Grandpa is scolding them because he loves them, not out of hate.  I love these family dynamics and I wish we could see more of this family reunited.  It’s an obvious contrast to the Meng family,which does not have such loving support and trust. 

“…we can never betray our family.”

It also says a lot about Ai Xing & Zhi Xing.  Even though they have no parents, they don’t feel like they have no family because they are loved by Grandpa & Tian Ze.  Even without biological ties, Ai Xing & Zhi Xing are right at home with Grandpa. 

“You’re the whisky in my bar.  You are my rice dumpling at the Dragon Boat Festival.”

Grandpa, I love you.  Bless his heart again, he tries to think of ways to resolve Tian Ze’s heartbreak. Tian Ze, in a random act of maturity and acceptance, tells Grandpa that he’s given up on Jing Jing.  He gives Grandpa a hug to thank him for caring so much about him.  I thought it was interesting that he was looking at Ai Xing while talking to Grandpa…

Grandpa still has much more insight and he sees right through Tian Ze’s strong act..

“It’s a lie if he says he doesn’t miss her.”

This scene was so heartwarming, I love the bond between grandpa & Tian Ze.  It also gave me hope that Tian Ze would finally MOVE ON with his life but you know…I doubt that’ll happen for the next 5 episodes or so……. T_T

All the scenes with Jing Jing & Tian Ze are the most awkward things ever. 

Jing Jing visits Tian Ze to ask him if he’s really gonna go against her family.  REALLY, Jing Jing?  Stop giving him mixed signals, you’re just making it harder than it already is for Tian Ze!!!!  Then she tries to hold his hand to comfort him but he pulls his hand away and tells her her mom was right–they weren’t suited for each other.  He says she made the right decision in breaking up with him.

OMG, TIAN ZE.  I doubted him when he seemed like he was getting revenge on Jing Jing, but now I think he’s trying to help her let go of him as well.  He’s assuring her she made the right decision so that she can move on without regretting it.  Tian Ze really has a heart of gold in the end.  Unfortunately Tian Ze’s attempt to finally make Jing Jing really let go of him doesn’t reassure her at all.  Jing Jing continues to look even more insecure and burdened as she wonders how to solve her family’s crisis. 

On a side note, Ling Li is also one of my favorite characters now.  She’s one of our sources of comic relief and I think she’s that one rare instance where overacting actually adds to her character. 

Anyway, we see Jing Jing struggling with herself as she decides to use her last resort to save her family.  A lot goes unsaid about Jing Jing’s decision.  Instead of spelling it out for us like Love Forward so often likes to do, we see Jing Jing begin to shut down and buck up so that she can move forward.  We see that Jing Jing is bracing herself to take the plunge and there’s no stopping her now. 

“Because I still have you, if one day the whole world misunderstands me, you have to believe me.”

Of course there’s also her fear that maybe even her best friend Ai Xing won’t understand her decision.  I think this is partly why she decides to make this move alone, without anyone else’s help.  I think a lot of people have a negative view of Amber Kuo’s acting in Love Forward but I actually think she’s not at fault.  Her acting is definitely improving and I think she pulled it off well in this episode.  The problem is more in Jing Jing’s character because she’s overshadowed by the other characters.  Jing Jing has been a very indecisive character in the past, but now is the time for her to put her plan into action.

“If we finish what we started last time, would you let us off?”

Jing Jing’s decision shows the degree of her family’s desperation.  Jing Jing is scared to death of Ren Wei and yet she finds the courage to look him in the eye fearlessly.  It’s in this moment when I went omg, she’s actually going through with this no no no, and also when I realized just how far Jing Jing has come.  There have been hints all along that it would turn out this way.  Jing Jing broke up with Tian Ze to protect her honor.  How sad that she’s decided to trade her body for her family.  :'(

The fight between Tian Ze and Ai Xing really got me in the heart.  Maybe it’s just because I’m such a fan, I don’t know, but it really got to me because this is where they really break and unleash all of their anger and frustration.  So far Ai Xing hasn’t really gotten the chance to show her darker, more complex side but these couple scenes are when we finally get to see that she’s really worried herself. 

Ai Xing blows up at Tian Ze for not stopping Jing Jing from possibly sleeping with Ren Wei.  Tian Ze says he has no right, and what  gives her the right?  Ai Xing, still such a loyal friend, says that even so, she’ll still try to stop them.  She starts hitting Tian Ze while yelling at him for not doing anything.  AUGHHH the heartache!!!

Ai Xing: “You know she broke up with you because she’s afraid of being unfaithful to you.  How can you leave her alone?”
Tian Ze: “What’s the use in stopping her?”  

Also Ai Xing’s reaction when Jing Jing lets go of her hand and tells her to go.  OMGGGG.  You can just see that Ai Xing’s world is falling apart.  She’s trying to hold things together but even Jing Jing chooses to go with Ren Wei, and Tian Ze chooses to turn a blind eye. 

Thus starts the cliched scenes which are LOVE LOVE LOVE.  Ai Xing finds Tian Ze in the rain.  She tries to get him to go home but he shakes her off and yells at her not to care about him anymore.  AHHHHHHHHHHH.  She defiantly takes off her hood and says fine, since he wants to stand in the rain all pitifully, she’ll stand in the rain too.  TIAN ZE, TIAN ZE.  CAN YOU FIND ANYONE ELSE AS LOYAL AS AI XING????

We finally see Ai Xing break down.  For me this was a significant scene because this is the time where we see Ai Xing in her most vulnerable and candid state.  She always wears a smile and yet she herself isn’t as confident as she seems. 

“You think I’m not sad and hurt to see you like this?  I tried so hard to help you two.  But I don’t know how things turned out this way.  You’re sad, I’m even sadder than you.  I don’t know what to do anymore. “

Tian Ze walks home like a zombie.  Yet another cliche—Ai Xing walks behind him the whole way home.  Tian Ze looks around at all of the remnants of his happy memories with Jing Jing & Ai Xing.  ANOTHER cliche–Ai Xing dries off Tian Ze with a towel and cleans his wounds on his fist.  I LOVE THIS.  YES YES YES.  And to finish it off, Tian Ze starts crying again and Ai Xing just hugs him and pats his back.  No words are said but she’s there for him.  AHHHHHHHHHHHH.

ONE MORE CLICHE TO GO.  Of course, the obligatory fever after standing in the rain!!!!!!!  YESSS!  Tian Ze worries over Ai Xing when he finds her with a high fever.  He rushes her to the hospital. 

It’s so cute seeing how careful Tian Ze is with Ai Xing.  *-*  MY OTP…MY DREAM…IS COMING TRUE..

Tian Ze repeatedly calls Ai Xing’s name when she wakes up.  She gazes at him lovingly while her vision goes in and out of focus.  I was wondering..why is she smiling at him?  Is it because she’s glad to see he’s ok?

Jing Jing finds herself standing on the street across from Ai Xing’s apartment.  She looks up at it but then turns to walk away.  As she walks away, we see a taxi pull up.  GUESS WHO’S IN IT???  Tian Ze carries Ai Xing up to her apartment while Jing Jing walks away. 

Oh, and on another note, Ren Wei reveals the truth to Mr. Meng, and Mr. Meng dies from what appears to be a heart attack?

Overall
I didn’t see Mr. Meng’s death coming, I guess I didn’t see all of the hints in the previous episodes.  I thought Ren Wei would want him to live so he could make him suffer more, but apparently he got impatient and decided to let the bomb drop.  Ren Wei is such a revenge driven, jaded character.  His ending scene just proved it..that he’s living for the sake of avenging his family.  I think the last people he loved were his immediate family members.  Is it even possible for him to love again?  I rather doubt it and I have no clue how Ren Wei’s character will be redeemed in the end.

I think the last scene with Jing Jing/Tian Ze/Ai Xing basically spelled it out for us the shift in relationships.  If that last scene does not symbolize Tian Ze & Ai Xing getting together, I just do not even know what to say.  PLEASE LET IT HAPPEN. 

I think Love Forward is trying really hard to gain more depth with its characters, but it just does not have the script or storytelling methods to make it work as well as it could’ve.  Jing Jing’s character is meant to be conflicted and in a moral crisis, but the drama doesn’t convey her conflict as well as it could.  I think the reason why people don’t like Jing Jing as much is that it’s hard to empathize with her. 

At this point Love Forward really needs a time jump of a few months or something so we can get Tian Ze out of the dumps and just MOVE ON.  I wanted Tian Ze & Jing Jing to break up but I didn’t want the fall out to last 4 episodes. 

heisui

I'm heisui, an Asian drama blogger and the creator of My Drama Tea. I love stories and writing, so I watch dramas and blog. I especially have a penchant for Japanese and Chinese dramas, and those hidden gems that are waiting to be discovered. Oh, and I'm Legend of Zhen Huan-obsessed!
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  • I am so watching this episode tonight when I have time. Sounds like a lot of cliches, but I cant wait to see AX/TZ!!! As for Mr. Meng’s, I had a feeling after 11 that he wouldn’t make it through to the end. Will Ren Wei be satisfied now?

  • I’ve never really liked Jing Jing or Ren Wei. I understand where they are both coming from – ie. family matters – but that doesn’t give them a pass at making all those choices. I agree that most viewers would probably think it’s slow paced but since I ship AX and TZ so much it’s enough for me to have those tidbits of scenes together until they become the OTP – which I’m still hoping they’d be. I mean, if it’s still gonna end up with Jing Jing and Tian Ze or Ai Xing and Ren Wei I might just flip the table right there and then. Let’s all hope for the best.

    • I definitely agree about Ren Wei..I don’t like his character. As for Jing Jing there are times when her indecisiveness and self centeredness annoy me. But I think that’s part of her character growth–she starts out as a very selfish person and now she’s trying to become a selfless person. On the other hand Ai Xing is already a selfless person, but she has to learn to live for herself and not just for other people’s happiness.

      I think I’ll cry if Ai Xing and Tian Ze don’t end up together……really……I’m this obsessed with them…

      • Same here. I tried to look for clues as to who whould end up together but it’s crazy looking at their photo releases. There are picture with AX-TZ and Jing-Rei but then there’s those AX-Ren and Jing-TZ pictures. Crazy. Looks like we just have to wait… Haha.

        • In their group pictures it’s more AX/RW and JJ/TZ. But I don’t know, I’m still holding onto the hope that maybe they’ll ignore the MV/posters and just let AX/TZ get together.

  • Ok, back after watching it. I was laughing so hard at the beginning with Grandpa’s awesomeness and almost crying when Ai Xing finally started breaking down. & now that I’ve watched it, I’m curious about Ren Wei’s revenge. Is it over with Meng’s death? Or does he still have more to go since he mentioned Meng plus another man ruined his father? What do you think?

    • I don’t think Ren Wei’s revenge stops here..I’m not sure about the other guy but I think Ren Wei will continue to control Jing Jing as some sort of pay back to her dad. There’s no way he’ll just suddenly be cleansed of all of his hatred after Meng’s death…so I think he’ll just direct his hatred towards Meng’s remaining family members.

  • AHH! My shipper heart exploded with Ai Xing and Tian Ze scenes! I mean it was a lot of cliches but duuude.. I can’t help but love them.
    Ren Wei is frustrating me because of this revenge business… Jing Jing too at times because she was kind of giving mixed signals to Tian Ze and poor guy is already suffering.
    Grandpa is <3 . He's the best!
    Thanks for the recaps! Really love hearing your thoughts. 🙂

    • Yes I LOVED the cliches because they were all with Ai Xing & Tian Ze. If they were with Jing Jing & Tian Ze I probably would’ve gotten annoyed.

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