Bromance (2015)

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Ratings: 8.1/10 from 3,440 users
Reviews: 39 users

Because of one simple word from a soothsayer, Pi Ya Nuo has been raised as a boy all her life. By chance she saves underworld mob boss Du Zi Feng and his sister. His sister falls in love with Pi Ya Nuo at first sight. Things gets complicated when the she becomes "sworn brothers" with the mob boss, just as her 26th birthday comes closer, and with it her chance to finally read morelive as a woman. As her 26th birthday approaches, she must decide if she wants to return to a woman or continue to be Du Zi Feng's best pal.

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  • Also Known as:

    Ai Shang Ge Men

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Bromance: An Evolution of Cross-Dressing Dramas
Introducing the fresh Taiwanese drama, Bromance!

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36 people found this review helpful
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Feb 27, 2016
  • Overall 8.0
  • Story 7.0
  • Acting/Cast 9.0
  • Music 8.0
  • Rewatch Value 7.0
I had no idea what to expect going into it. And the little things I did expect were completely shut down. I don’t know if I’m just not yet used to the format/style of Taiwanese dramas, but it felt weird to me.

But I liked it. I'm so torn about what to rate it, I keep going back and forth between 7.5 and 8. It's like a 7.8

There’s just something about read more it that kept me watching.

I started watching when there were already eleven episodes out. I kept telling myself, “This is a good place to stop. I’ll do something else, I’ll go to sleep, and I’ll finish tomorrow” and then I’d finish the episode and hit the next button and the process would continue until I was caught up with the lives.

Here’s the thing: you have to watch this drama with an open mind. I’m sorry, but I could not take the plot seriously. It was pretty predictable, and, I know this is a korean term, but it was a makjang drama. I don’t know how else to describe it. It was so weird and cheesy and over-dramatic, but I found it funny and enjoyable. If you go into the drama expecting some serious movie-like mob drama, you will be disappointed.

It was so freaking cheesy. Like every possible cliche happened within the first episode. The entire drama was like this, but it didn’t bother me because I thought it was hilarious. I know some people get annoyed with cliches though, so I’m letting everyone know now.

Also, part of the reason I couldn’t take it seriously from the beginning was because everything happened so fast. Like a whole episode’s worth (or two) of plot set-up happened within the first like ten minutes? It moved really fast and it was really extreme. But don’t stop watching because of this.

Also there were some little details with the plot that bugged me. For example: not putting someone into dry clothes when they have hypothermia, a person who just had surgery walking around without crutches. The birth. But whatever, I’m a nit-picky person.

One thing that made me really happy was that Megan actually looked like a guy. The stylists did a really good job. It was the first time I’ve seen a gender-bender drama where the girl convincingly looked like a guy. Also, she blew me away with her acting. She did a really good job at acting like she grew up living like a boy. Her posture and the way she walked were so convincing.

The romance was so enjoyable, they had fantastic chemistry together. And they had so many amazing kisses! Like a ton of them! Passionate ones! The main lead was nice from the start, and was a genuinely good and caring guy. I am now a fan of Baron Chen.

There are some issues I had with the drama, I won't go too deep into them because most of them contain spoilers. Basically I docked points from the rating because of some issues I had with the plot and some of the acting. I thought the cast had great chemistry together, but the things that should have been taken seriously, I couldn't take seriously. However, overall I enjoyed it, which is saying something coming from a person who doesn’t really like gender-benders.

What really made me happy about this drama was that there was never any homophobia. “As long as two people genuinely love each other, does it matter who the partner is?” Like damn, the messages in this drama were so good, I’m kind of wishing they were actually gay to make a stronger point. The message still came across strong, and not just through our leads, but through the other couples too.

This was a fun drama, and despite the issues I had, I’m glad I watched it.

*I cut the review short because of spoilers. Read the rest of my review on my tumblr: kfan-obsessions.*
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32 people found this review helpful
Other reviews by this user
Feb 22, 2016
  • Overall 10
  • Story 10
  • Acting/Cast 10
  • Music 10
  • Rewatch Value 10
Bromance is the kind of drama that upon first look is remarkable cliché: a young woman cross-dressing as a man. For that reason it might fly under the radar for many drama fans. Aficionados will be familiar with the premise through Coffee Prince, You’re Beautiful and Beautiful Boys and might not be interest in another similar story as they’re pretty hard to top up in terms of innovation, script, performances and general read more appeal. Newcomers will likely dab through the first two considering the revered status both Coffee Prince and You’re Beautiful have in drama land.

Being familiar with previous dramas there was never an inkling to watch Bromance. It’s like eating the best ice-cream one has ever eaten in their lives. Once one has that experience it becomes borderline impossible to find another ice-cream whose texture might be better than that one. Coffee Prince, You’re Beautiful and Beautiful Boys are like vanilla, strawberry and chocolate ice-cream; the most amazing flavours in the planet for some, for others, might be mango, lemon and raspberry or any other flavour, perfect, unique, irreplaceable.

Bromance will not top up the most amazing ice-cream one will ever have within the genre. Not because it’s bad overall, not because the script is bland, blasé, inconsistent and positively appalling, not because the acting is awful dabbing into dreadfulness at times making one cringe in agony, or the music so loud one that one is left tuning the sound down as not to hear the screen coil in desperation. Bromance will not become a favourite ice-cream flavour for either aficionados or newcomers for the simple reason that afficionados already have their favourite ice-cream and unless there’s nothing to watch, which there is with interesting plots most likely will stray from it and newcomers have their flavours to discover and Bromance does not make the top list, regretfully.
Bromance is a really good drama surprisingly and rather addictive from about minute 2 of episode 1 to the point where one will want to binge watch it straight.

The script is very consistent and full of texture like a raspberry sorbet, with the right balance and essence; the acting from an audience point of view is compelling and believable, bring the story to life in what seems like an effortless manner alternating scenes of pure screen silent screaming to giggles to a very loud laughter and nearly jumping on the sofa like a teenager being silly, enjoying a really tasty ice-cream, and not feeling one bit bad about it. The highlight being the end of each episode with entails the start of the next one when one binges on 15 episodes of Bromance in a day and half. To think that there are dramas that still have that effect on someone after countless dramas, some really spectacular, others not really but that’s the life of a drama enthusiast.

Zi Feng is a triad leader and the general manager of an amusement park. He commands respect although not as a villain but as a man who works hard, loves his family and protects those he cares about. Zi Feng is so incredibly human that is surreal and that humanity is what makes the audience empathise with him. He’s lovable as a male character; he’s honest and caring, incredibly loyal with a great sense of justice and responsibility but also struggling with his feelings for the person he loves in the beginning, a woman pretending to be a man. Zi Feng falls in love with Pi Ya Nou as a person, not caring whether or not Ya Nou is a man or a woman.

Ya Nuo is a young woman living as a young man due to a fortune telling prediction that she should leave as such until she reached her 26th birthday. She meets Du Zi Feng with whom she becomes sworn brothers but over the course of time develops feelings for him. Ya Nuo is fiercely loyal, kind and generous putting everyone’s needs in front of hers. She complements Zi Feng in ways that many female characters do not complement the male and for that the writers should be credited for. Megan Lai performs Ya Nuo brilliantly giving the character a life of its own.

Zi Feng and Ya Nuo should go down in Taiwanese drama history land as one of the most amazing couples ever to grace the screen so in tune they are with one another, like Ying and Yang.

The OST is particular vibrant with two solid exciting tracks performed by Bii, Ephocal Times & Back in Time.

Overall Bromance is a breath of fresh air in drama sphere biased towards old conceptual premises, however the mix of flavours between gender bender echo chic cliché with an original setting and character frames is like putting different ice-cream flavours in a blender. One might think that the consistency looks slightly off, that the taste might be just too familiar to give it a try but it’s left in awe wonderland when trying it out, wishing for more, needing more, wanting more and realizing that the ice-cream is nearly over so it’s better to start enjoying it while it lasts and before it melts.

The best things in life are those one has to wait the longest to achieve but in the end it’s all worth it!
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Make a Recommendation More recs (10)Recommendations

Gender Bending because her missing mother insisted that the female lead had to be a boy. Female lead is confident strong, witty and smart but she really wanted to be herself rather than 'himself'.

Historical setting.
Recommended by Art T
Gender Bending because of family obligations and responsibilities. The female lead also knows martial arts and is chivalrous. She is strong willed and confident, with many friends.
Recommended by Art T

Comments (749)

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  • Reply
    YukiTsubaki 4 days ago
    Reveal Spoiler »
  • Reply
    Whiskas8 14 days ago - edited

    I really wanted to watch this but before I could even finish episode 1, I decided to drop it. The first few minutes already had a lot of stupidity I couldn't continue seeing more. I love genderbender series because those are hilarious, but where did the writers come from that it has a lot of detached from reality scenes happening one after another???

    • Reply
      YukiTsubaki 4 days ago

      How exactly is it detached from reality...? I don't get it. Although the acting was a liiiitle awkward at times, there are no events that happens to make it seem that its detached from reality. You're probably thinking about the 'reason' she kept her gender a secret. Although I get that its weird, you really shouldn't let that stop you from watching. At first I was a little put off about that, but the romance and comedy is really nice.

    • Reply
      Whiskas8 18 hours ago

      Thank you for your advice, I will try watching this again some other time. I just couldn't get into as I am craving for some makjangs as of the moment. :) I'm sorry if I ever offended you as a fan.

  • Reply
    claudya87 Apr 17, 2017 - edited

    I can finally admit that I hate gender-bender series. There! I said it! and this series is to blame on my definitive choice.

    • Reply
      ReilaNimu Apr 23, 2017

      I don't like the theme all that much either, even though Coffee Prince is my favorite drama.

  • Reply
    Meshe Apr 7, 2017

    Still can't decide if Qing Yang knew Ya Nuo was girl from the first time he saw her or if he's just that laid back.

  • Reply
    Liang-Ying Mar 20, 2017 - edited
    Reveal Spoiler »
    • Reply
      YukiTsubaki 4 days ago - edited
      Reveal Spoiler »
  • Reply
    KianaRose Mar 17, 2017

    Dropped.. I really wanted to like it but it was too awkward for me to watch

  • Reply
    Leene Feb 22, 2017 - edited

    the development was quite weird and outrages but still some parts managed some comedy laughter.
    -spoiler alert below-
    like jumping off a roof just to bring her a already wet jacket and some emergency crew opened the door later. then crying out like as if his not someone you just knew a few weeks. i mean yes u cry for the person who risked his life to try and save u... but the extreme emotional seems weird when their feelings only just started developing? weird.
    but still i managed to watch the drama, in a fast forward motion, they are still plots worth watching but many time their scenario is just ridiculously weird.

    • Reply
      fudanshidesu Mar 3, 2017

      to me... jumping off a roof just to bring Pi Ya Nuo an already wet jacket seemed like the right thing to do.
      In my mind it was absolutely necessary = natural/essential for the plot! They had me thinking "why don't you jump over and help her, you moron" even before he got the idea to jump. x^ ^x

    • Reply
      USDramalover Apr 7, 2017

      I laughed SO so so so hard when he did that. Her sobbing and her please donts just made me laugh so hard. They barely know each other, why so dramatic!?

    • Reply
      Leene Apr 22, 2017

      IKR. the development like epic quick

  • Reply
    bojinator Feb 17, 2017 - edited

    ANYOBODY KNOW WHERE THE 30 EP VERSION IS? I know I watched it...

    • Reply
      Leene Feb 22, 2017

      when they air sometimes is different numeric episodes when aired.
      like some listed 16episodes but when u watch online there is 20episodes instead.

    • Reply
      bojinator Feb 22, 2017

      lol ikr, i wanted to watch the 30 ep version again for nostalgia x'D spoiled me

    • Reply
      All_In Mar 3, 2017 - edited

      Netflix has 30 or 31 episodes but basically what they've done is they've taken one episode and split it in half so on Dramafever this is a 18 episode drama but it is the same content as Netflix just waaaaay longer episodes. I notice Netflix does this with a lot of T-Dramas ...don't know why.

    • Reply
      bojinator Mar 3, 2017

      lol idk.

    • Reply
      fudanshidesu Mar 3, 2017

      An average episode in Taiwan is 1h and 10 minutes, in the West it's 40 minutes. ^ ^

  • Reply
    bojinator Feb 15, 2017

    the leads chem is off the charts...I almost think they fell in love for real...

  • Reply
    Vegmeh Feb 12, 2017

    Just finished the series for the second time, One of the best dramas out of Taiwan. The story line is fast paced and the actors are really good! One of the top gender benders for me second to Coffee prince.

  • Reply
    Annalisse Feb 8, 2017
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  • Reply
    Emily Jan 6, 2017 - edited

    Don't think too much while watching it and you'll have a great time

    • Reply
      CherryChu Jan 8, 2017

      I second this! (Since I was thinking too much...)

  • Reply
    naydesu Dec 6, 2016 - edited

    I heard is an awesome drama, should I give it a try?

    • Reply
      wildetiger Dec 17, 2016

      Oh,yes!For me was the best drama of 2015-2016.

    • Reply
      naydesu Dec 17, 2016

      Thanks <3

    • Reply
      wildetiger Jan 8, 2017

      Welcome.Did you watch it yet?

    • Reply
      naydesu Jan 8, 2017

      Not yet, there are so many dramas I want to watch, but i'll watch it soon.

  • Reply
    Steph Nov 13, 2016

    Really thin on plot, and what's there is pretty ridiculous, but this earns points for being really gay-positive (pretty much actually a gay drama in disguise, actually...) and for avoiding the cliche drama of most gender-bending romances. Also, there's a lot of really hot kissing.

  • Reply
    Valerie Nov 13, 2016
    Reveal Spoiler »


  • Country:

  • Type:

  • Episodes:

  • Aired:

    Oct 18, 2015 to Feb 21, 2016
  • Aired On:

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  • Duration:

    1 hr. 15 min.


  • Score:

    8.1 (scored by 3,440 users)
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