A Zhai is a typical otaku who is obsessively in love with the most beautiful girl in school, Pei Ni, but he lacks the courage and social skills to do anything about it. When he discovers a technology that brings him a robot companion from the future, he accidentally programs the robot to model Pei Ni’s ideal boyfriend, instead of programming it to be Pei Ni herself. Now stuck with a male robot companion, A Zhai manages to reorder a female robot and customizes it to be his Pei Ni. But things get complicated when the robot Pei Ni falls in love with the male robot, instead of A Zhai, and the three live together in a hopeless love triangle. What will become of this terrible mess?
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Cast & Credits
I kept on saying and saying all the time I was watching, it’s not what I was expecting. What was I expecting? I’m not so sure anymore… Before I started it, some sort of average rom-com? When I was halfway into the first season, just an unusually funny comedy…
So first of all, I decided to watch it because I like the love robot trope, and “social” robot stories in general. I like them because I empathise greatly with those robot characters. They’re programmed to fulfil a specific role, but conflict arises when they try to fulfil that role whilst existing in an ever-changing social world. They either have to adapt or face being sent back to manufacturer. It resonates with me.
And this is indeed one theme of My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend. Adam and Eve are super-advanced love robots. They do everything perfectly according to their programming, but they can’t fulfil their purpose: their bonded one cannot love them. And this lack of fulfilment, for all three leads, is the drama’s main cause of conflict. They must learn to live with it, and accept it, because only from that point can they move beyond it. It involves a lot of give-and-take (A Zhai is mostly take :P), and also a recognition that people are capable of feeling many shades of love, like and care.
At the start we meet an A Zhai who has surrounded himself with nothing but anime, manga and dramas, who obsesses over a girl from a distance and only has one person in the whole world he can call a friend. Pretty pathetic for a male lead. :P Enter robots. A Zhai buys Adam and Eve out of self-absorbed loneliness, but rather than becoming bricks in the walls of his fortress, they become the bridge to the outside world. And through many conflicts and comical escapades, they become the catalyst for his change. Probably the most charming thing about this drama is being able to pinpoint all the moments, big or small, that contribute to that change. This drama is No.1 for character growth, and I don’t think any of it would have been as convincing without Bai Shu in the main role. He has a million expressions for every different moment, his timing is flawless, he can be infuriating, heartbreaking and loveable. He made me laugh through tears in the saddest possible scenes!
Now that’s the ~ emotions~ bit out of the way… Fundamentally, it’s just funny! It’s sitcom-esque. Nothing ever goes right for A Zhai; problems continually occur in his household and he inevitably ends up in some sticky situation. Though actually… it somehow flips through many genres and never seems to lose its way. We get some sci-fi thriller for a few episodes, then all of a sudden it’s a raunchy comedy, then a melo romance and so on… It’s refreshing.
Also, this little world is populated by an adorable bunch of genre-savvy characters who break the fourth wall, whine about their lowly status and even manipulate the plot to their own ends. And the effect is not at all patronising or obnoxious, which to me takes a lot of skill on the part of the writer. This sort of thing can easily go wrong, which is why I’m so delighted that it’s so right! All in all, it’s a screenplay with a genuine affection for TV drama tropes and conventions. (It’s also filled with references to anime, C-dramas, K-dramas etc. I didn’t even get half of them, but it was funny when I did.)
A little about those supporting characters… They’re all lovely in their own right, they don’t get in the way of the main plot, and through them we get a little extra exploration of the major themes. They live without shame in their otaku world, they build walls, they break walls (and not just the fourth one :P), they dream, they fall in love... They add an extra dimension.
Basically, watch with an open mind, not expecting one thing or another from the synopsis, and I’m sure this silly, ridiculous, full of warmth little drama will creep its way into your heart. Enjoy!
(Review for both seasons.)
Great showI absolutely LOVED watching this! I finished it in three days. If I didn't have school, I would probably have finished it faster. I can't wait for season 2!
Here are a few things I liked and disliked (in no particular order):
1 THE ACTING
LIKE: I really like the way Bai Zhu plays his character(A Zhai). His facial expressions and the way he brings his lines are adorable and unique. Some people seem to dislike A Zhai, which I kind of get when looking at certain scenes. Particularly the ones where he mistreats Adam or doesn't listen to his advice, which then results in problems that could've been avoided if he did listen. That aside I think he is a really fun character that brings life to the show.
DISLIKE: A ZHAI IS SUCH. AN. IDIOT! Seriously, I love him, but he is so stubborn, self-centered and in some moments pretty mean. Adam really didn't deserve the way A Zhai treated him in some episodes. Especially since Adam is the one who keeps saving and protecting A Zhai when things turn sour. Which is A LOT of times.
A Zhai and his best friend cracked me up everytime they were together. I loved it when they were scheming and going on missions together. You would think that two heads/two brains would be able to think of at least a simple, good working plan, but I guess that's not the case with A Zhai and Wang Fu Gui. They are also really bad at lying. It's funny to watch. Their friendship is really cute.
3 THE CINEMATOGRAPHY
The camera work is done very well. The set also looks great! The whole show gives you a comic kinda feel with all the sound/visual effects they've put in it. All this put together makes the show aesthetically pleasing.
LIKE: The story is surprising and unique. There are a lot of turns and twists that make you want to see the next episode as fast as possible. The pace of the storyline is just right. Not too slow, not too fast. I also like how they sometimes break the 4th wall by talking to us (the audience) directly.
DISLIKE: One aspect of the storyline that gets dragged out too much is A Zhai's obsession with Eve. FOR REAL, MAN It just keeps going on and on and on and on and on. I rolled with my eyes a lot.
5 A ZHAI AND ADAM
I can conclude from the comments of some other people that they mainly started to watch the show because of these two. I wouldn't recommend watching it just for them. Except for a few cute scenes, there isn't much action. I can't even say ''just watch it for their friendship' because as I said earlier: A Zhai is pretty mean to Adam. Unless there are more scenes coming in season 2 that will build on their relationship. 80% of this show is A Zhai chasing after Eve.
It's a really cute show and you should definitely watch it for the cool actors, the humor and fun scenes.