Fangirling Chinese Novels

My Sunshine (何以笙箫默): Episode 1 Review and Recap



Peanuts is on holidays and hoju is supposed to do the recap. However, being the weekend, hoju is too busy to write quickly so peanuts is back to the rescue, mid-way through, lol. Peanuts is sacrificing her holidays and birthday to fangirl WC with all of you so you better show your appreciation before she goes on a permanent strike :p The highlight of episode one is the airport scene which is a new addition to the novel and the supermarket scene which is a firm favorite with many.

My Sunshine Episode 1 Review & Recap (written by hoju & illustrated by chewywon)


The opening scene is set in an American airport where we are first introduced to Zhao Mo Sheng as she bids farewell to a man, whom we only get to see the backside of.  He says to her, “If you do not intend on returning to the US, then let’s not stay in contact.”  (Novel readers will recognize that they took a scene written towards the end of the story and used it to open the drama.)  And so, Mo Sheng returns to China and lands in Shanghai.  At the arrivals gate, Mo Sheng, alone and without friends or family to welcome her home after being away for seven long years, reflects, “How good it would be if he was still here waiting for me.”  Who is this he?3

He is actually there, brushing past her in the airport.  He Yi Chen has just returned from a business trip in Hong Kong and happens to be in the Shanghai airport at the exact time as Mo Sheng, coming within an arm’s reach of her.  Is this 有缘无份 “fate without destiny” for these two?  Even if you’ve never read the novel, we as viewers should be able to figure out that it is likely that their fated meeting is yet to come.45

Yi Chen rushes from the airport to another business meeting where he and a colleague are representing one party in a merger of two companies.  (Anyone think the office looks familiar?  If I said, Boss and Me and Wind Group’s office, would that trigger some memories?)  The opposite party’s lawyer, Xu Ying happens to be a former university classmate of Yi Chen.  When she greets him, however, the look on her face is like a girl who was jilted as she almost sarcastically mentions how Yi Chen was a celebrity figure in university and likely does not even remember her.6

The meeting officially kicks off with laptops opening up in synchronization, like an ad for Apple.  LOL.  This particular scene demonstrates Yi Chen’s sharpness and no-nonsense attitude in his work as, after Xu Ying does a nice little recap of previous meetings, he thanks her for basically wasting their time and both client’s money on things that have already been discussed. *clap clap*789

When the meeting ends, a sweet, soft-spoken girl comes to meet Yi Chen.(Interesting how she can head into the client’s office with no business purpose…)  Xu Ying, likely mistaking the girl as Yi Chen’s current girlfriend, jumps in to introduce herself, then glances over at Yi Chen and asks with that catty look on her face, wasn’t his girlfriend Zhao Mo Sheng?  We learn the girl is He Yi Mei, a TV anchor and Yi Chen’s “sister” of no blood relation. (Yi Mei changes job in the drama compared with the novel).10

Meanwhile, after stepping off the plane, Mo Sheng has immediately gone to a magazine called Treasure to interview for a job as photographer.  The editor-in-chief had been thoroughly impressed by Mo Sheng’s resume and extensive experience prior to this and hires Mo Sheng on the spot.  Her only question was, given Mo Sheng’s well-established career in the US, why did she choose to return to China to start all over?  After an awkward silence, Mo Sheng answers, she once went to university here and very much loves this city — a clear avoidance of the true answer.11

In the car ride, Yi Mei observes that Xu Ying appeared to be romantically interested in Yi Chen.  In a tentative voice, she suggests, perhaps he should consider her as a potential girlfriend, to which Yi Chen merely brushes off.  He receives a phone call regarding preparatory work to go to the United States, and Yi Mei hesitantly asks if he is going because he wants to find Mo Sheng.  He denies this and states it is for business.  Yi Mei is noticeably relieved.12

After Yi Chen turns down Yi Mei’s suggestion to watch a movie before having dinner, a dejected Yi Mei is preoccupied with her thoughts and nearly hits someone.  Yi Chen dashes out, offering his business card and any other help he can provide, but a mortified Yi Mei wants to stay in the driver’s seat.  After a hurry-up-and-get-out-here gesture and look from Yi Chen, Yi Mei guiltily walks out to the man and apologizes profusely.  The man, Lu Yuan Feng though, recognizes Yi Mei from TV and excitedly declares that his mom is a huge fan of hers.  He whips out a pen and asks her to sign her autograph… on the business card Yi Chen had just provided… and take a selfie with him.  Yi Chen watches all this with a look that has “ooooookaaaaay” written all over it. LOL.


Yuan Feng is being introduced by Treasure’s editor-in-chief to Mo Sheng. He also gets a scolding from her for being so careless as to injure her hand. Mo Sheng volunteers to take over his assignments to the boss’s delight. Yuan Feng is grateful and introduces her to other colleagues. Coincidentally, he also helps her to find a place to stay as his friend’s house which is currently vacant as he is overseas. Mo Sheng moves in there and starts to reminiscence. “This city is so big, can I still meet you? I am back, Yi Chen.”1516

Arrrrrgh, the favorite supermarket scene of a majority of the novel’s fans. So tense, so emotionally charged with the ending theme song being played in the background. WC is such a good actor. Peanuts has taken over the recap as hoju who is a Wallace Huo’s fan will never praise WC sky high lol. “She has not been a part of my life long ago.”  One of peanuts’s famous line is uttered after Yi Chen has gone home, instead of in the supermarket like in the novel.



Yi Mei: Don’t you want to go and say hello?
Yi Chen: Let’s go!

Did you notice Mo Sheng knock down RIO canned drink lol?



I think this song Long Time No See is sang by Tang Yan in the drama. If you remember, I mentioned this song before in my first impression of the drama post. There is also a YouTube link of the song in English. This song is suggested by Tiffany because it is very appropriate. Although it is a bit slow, very melodious and sentimental. Wallace looks so sad, sob sob….The next morning, he even told Xiang Heng off. Did Feng Teng’s book racks become Yi Chen’s file racks? Also, do you notice Yi Chen’s office look more like a warehouse than a law firm 😦

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Poor YiChen! He could not even concentrate. He had to call his colleague to cover the conference call for him using the excuse that his laptop is not working.

Poor YiChen! He could not even concentrate. He had to call his colleague to cover the conference call for him using the excuse that his laptop is not working.

Yuan Feng is complaining to Mo Sheng about how difficult Xiao Xiao is known to be. Then she makes an appearance and Mo Sheng recognizes her as her best friend cum room-mate during her university days, Shao Mei. After the photo shots, they have a drink to catch up. Their conversation follows the novel pretty closely so I do not want to repeat my translation here. After their drink, Xiao Xiao says she is not feeling well and does not want to continue with the photography session.2223

17 thoughts on “My Sunshine (何以笙箫默): Episode 1 Review and Recap

  1. Thanks!!! You are so much appreciated Peanuts…and Hoju…a d the rest of the crew…so don’t go on strike pleeeeeaseee…pretty pleaaaasssseeee…T.T…

  2. Just stopped by to say hello before leaving for my vacation. I was eagerly waiting for your recap since I don’t have time to watch the episodes. The drama seems to start well. I hope they will move faster and go directly to the meat of the story : their life as a married couple.
    Wallace is sexy as lawyer He 😉
    thank you Hoju and Peanuts. Happy birthday peanuts

    • Have a safe trip, going to France or China ;). I am slow and a bit sub std this time bcos the timing of this release is all wrong 😦 my internet connection is super slow and I do not know how to type on my iPad:( from Thursday onwards after my vacation, you will get daily up to date recap provided my art director also has time.

  3. haha, I’ve been waiting for this! what i love about this series so far is how we get to revisit the settings and props from “Boss and Me”. 😀 Thanks for the cap. Today two episodes was nice. they get that missing picture from wallet conversation and I almost melted from their chemistry. Haha. I was kinna disappointed that the rest of ep 3 and 4 was of their youngers day, but that’s my inner shipping girl want to see wall and tang yan together. >.< I can't wait for tomorrow and more of your recaps!

  4. Thanks so much for the recap! Happy birthday peanuts!

  5. Thank you so much peanuts for sharing your vacation time with us.
    The first episode is off to a good start.

  6. First, thanks for the recap and Happy Birthday to you, Peanuts. I’m sorry but after watching the first four episodes of “Sunshine”, the drama just doesn’t strike a chord with me the way “Best Times” did. Hhmm, did WC play the character of He Yi Chen a bit too well until he ended up looking like a cardboard character? I kinda failed to connect with his character thus far. Since I’m not acquainted with the novel, I just have to ask this question – Did WC play the character the way it should be at the beginning of the novel or did he go a bit overboard in his acting here? On the contrary, I’ve never read “Best Times” either but I was completely smitten by WC the actor and Lu Li Cheng the character after just the first episode of the drama version.
    On the other hand, I thoroughly enjoyed watching Ep 3 and 4 featuring the young actors as He Yi Chen and Zhao Mo Sheng during their university days. I thought they did a marvellous job in flushing out the purity and innocence of first love. They were like a breath of fresh air in the drama. In this case, I think the production team did the right thing in using fresh new actors for the university day romance. Baby face aside, there is no way WC can flush out that kind of freshness at his age now. Just my two cents’ worth. 🙂

    • Thank you for your warm wishes. I think you need more time to warm up to Yi Chen. When I first read the novel, I do not like him. I only started to like him after WC got the role lol. The novel is short so everything happened very quickly and more exciting. The drama is following the novel very closely but with a fair bit of boring additions eg the office. If not for WC, I honestly feel a bit bored and prefer boss & me.

      Hence WC nailed his character perfectly. If you paid attention to the drama conferences, WC did mention this character is different from lu li CHEng. LLC is likeable from the start but best time get annoying later. If would have been better if they did not add so much on the office and focus intensely on the OTP.

      WC and the youngster Leo also have a chance to act as the young Yi Chen as they give out different feeling. The feedback in baidu is pretty good. Unfortunately the rating is worst than expected 😦 Poor WC, never acted in a rating winner b4. The adaptation is faithful to the drama yet I am more attached to the novel. Maybe some novels are just not meant to be filmed. Anyway if is still early days to give a verdict, just be patient as not everyone falls in love at first sight :p

      • I guess I’m one of those weird people who will only watch a tv drama in its entirety if I like the first two episodes. I might also have expected too much from a character that has been voted China’s No. 1 Favourite Male Character in Chinese romance novels. I guess I prefer male leads who have a mean devilish streak in them like Lu Li Cheng. LOL!
        I actually had high hopes for “Sunshine’s” tv ratings despite the fierce competition from you-know-what drama after watching its trailers. But, like you said, some novels are just not meant to be filmed into a long tv drama. Perhaps it’s time for Mainland China to break the trend and start producing medium-length ones like all those 20-episode Korean dramas for a plotless novel like “Silent Separation”.

    • When I first read the novel, at the beginning, I thought Yi Chen was a jerk. In fact, I thought a lot of people were unreasonable and jerks with how they cast all the blame on Mo Sheng without asking for her side of the story. One of my favourite quotes from a Chinese fan reader is, “Yi Chen chose to not accept anyone’s care. Mo Sheng lost everyone’s care. ” Yi Chen chose to put up a cold shell around him as a self-defence mechanism and lick his wounds for 7 years. He was angry and bitter, and it showed in his actions, words, and overall bearing. Probably not the most likeable of characters traits. Without giving away spoilers, as the story progresses, you’ll learn what sort of baggage Yi Chen also carried along with his love for Mo Sheng and what a big step it was for him to put everything behind him and choose her again. Yi Chen is known as a male idol/god in the c-novel world, not because he is perfect as a person — quite the contrary, in fact, because, as you have experienced, he has many character flaws — but because of his faithfulness and choosing love over other things that could have consumed him. Many love him, not all do after the story ends, but most agree that he is worthy to be admired.

      So, yes! If WC’s Yi Chen is appearing extremely bitter and unlikeable to you right now… well, he’s spot on to that part of the character! Trust us in that, he does get better….

      As for the university-aged YC and MS, yes, I agree! Just finished writing my opinions on that for the next episode. 🙂

      • Hi, Hoju. Thanks for your insight on Lawyer He’s character in the novel. Aaahhh, now I get it; how Lawyer He is revered for his faithfulness to love and that’s what makes him ‘perfect’ in the eyes of his fans. Too bad he’s not my cup of tea. While I’m all for ideal guys who are faithful to love, it would be even more perfect if they are less dull and more spunky yet heart-wrenching like Lu Li Cheng. Yah, yah, me and my obsession with the latter. LOL! And yes, I will trust Peanut’s and your faith in Lawyer He and finish watching this drama if only to lend some moral support to an amazing, unique and one-of-a-kind individual called Wallace Chung. 🙂

  7. Happy birthday Peanuts. All the best dear!
    Thanks Hoju.

    anyone knows where i can watch this with or without engsub? thank you! the recap helps me alot. me and my friends (they are silent readers). Hoju, once again.. thank you!

  8. Happy birthday Peanuts..hope you’ll continue wipe clean after eating as your gift to me… :P.
    Thanks Hoju for the recap..I watch it in youtube without subs and being confused cause there are a little bit different from the novel.. I recognized that the office just the same like fang tend office also the apartment too.. did both of them actually share room friend..LOL.. @yui: you can watch it in youtube from croton.

  9. Where can I watch this with eng sub?

  10. The atmosphere created by this episode was great. I like most of the changes made, although I am not sure about how I feel with market scene happening in a shopping mall. I envisioned this scene to be very crowded, with a certain liveliness that can only be attained at the market.

  11. Don’t care about ratings; I simply adores WC in this character. Superb acting! I have repeatedly watched this drama over 5 times already! Call this obsession whatever, lol!

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