Completed
afterrnoont
133 people found this review helpful
Jan 29, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 2
Overall 10
Story 10
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10

I Like You, Always Have and Always Will

Shining For One Thing tells the story of a woman who is unsatisfied with her current life. One day, she gets a chance to time travel back in time by deleting messages in her old phone. She goes back and tries to do well on her high school examination in hope of changing her future, but she was always sent back. It was only after several times that she realizes that there is more of her return to the past.

Shining For One Thing indeed has cliche troupes: childhood sweethearts, unrequited love, smart guy-cheerful girl, high school memories, and more. But what makes this drama stands out from other drama is that it has a logical, coherent, and tear-jerking plot, top acting, beautiful OSTs.

The drama storytelling is progressively paced and satisfyingly engaging without hardly any dull moment or substantial fillers. I particularly enjoy the fusion of romance, youth, and time travel. Furthermore, the love story between Zhang Wansen and Lin Beixing is very touching, if I were to use a word to describe it, their love is eternal. No matter what time and space, they would always eventually find each other and be there for each other. The cinematography is generally adequate, but some shots were beautifully shot and the color grading and filter used makes the drama even more fleshed out! In addition, the use of music scoring and the Impeccable OST encapsulated every essence of the story. The OST added so much emotion to the drama, it complements the drama montages and also the cinematography.

Zhang Jianing (Lin Beixing) and Qu Chuxiao (Zhang Wansen) did exceptionally well here! They added so much emotional nuance in the character, that makes the characters feel real so vivid to the audience. In addition, there is depth and richness from both the characters, each of their story and development arcs is also fleshed out. Not only the main characters, the supporting characters also did very well! Mai Zi is one of the characters I really applaud for, as a character he always does his best to protect his friends, even if he suffered physically and mentally.

All in all, if you love angsty time travel romance drama, do give this a try!

For those who have finished the drama, here are some easter eggs and theories:
1. Zhang Wansen didn't die in 2010, if you search his phone number (+86 13021991397) on WeChat, you can find his contact! Meanwhile, WeChat was launched in 2011.
2. Zhang Wansen didn't die, he's comatose and brought abroad by his parents. Years later, he woke up. But knowing that Lin Beixing is about to get married to Zhanyu, he doesn't come back. But he has the opportunity to time travel with Lin Beixing again - this explains why he always predicted the exam questions correctly and how his speech is exactly the same with what happened in the future, because he was from the future

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
flowering duck
41 people found this review helpful
Jan 26, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 2
Overall 9.0
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 8.0
This review may contain spoilers

Parallel universe and angsty love story that will make you cry a river

Time and space are illusions. Everything exists at the same time. But this story is about time travel. It's about the heroine who got to go back to her past. At first, she didn't know about the reason for multiple time travel. As soon as she realised, it's a tradegy. However, no matter what Lin beixing did, nothing's changed. The ending is different but the outcomes are same.

I love the way this story developed the logical but beautiful plot though it's a sci-fi. It might be typical school love story which genius quiet boy and sloppy cute girl chasing each other, but I love the friendships that Lin beixing had whenever she travel to her past. Every story is different when every character is same. I'm cheering for Lin beixing and Zhang wansen's true love.

If you love angsty love with a very light romance and cute friendship, this is for you. But if time travel is not your alley, you can pass by this drama. This is romance drama but i promise that you will drain your eyes.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
tsuyoi_hikari
20 people found this review helpful
Apr 1, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 10
Rewatch Value 10
This review may contain spoilers

A Purest Kind of Love Story That is Full of Fluff Then Make You Sob Uncontrollably

This is my all time favourite modern Cdramas. I never thought it is possible to replace Nobuta wo Produce as the best school drama in my heart but this drama did it. This is one of the most beautiful and poignant love stories I have the honour of watching. It made you cry a river and made you question is that possible to love someone so selflessly like that without asking anything in return. It is a purest form of love and this drama portray it beautifully with many surprising twist and revelations.

The most beautiful thing about this drama is their portrayal of love -- it is poignant, deep, pure and profound. I never thought I will get this kind of love story while watching a school drama but this drama did it excellently. Here we got a female lead who has been in love with someone else for so long. She got a chance to redo her life by 'time travel' to the past and she discovered that there is another boy who has been loving her for so so long and the boy has been protecting her in silent for all those years without her knowing.

The drama started off with the female lead is crazily in love with someone else but when she finally snapped and learn the truth about her fiancee, she never look back. She finally decided to live for herself and redo everything back. She get close to the male lead after figuring out that he is the cause of her time travelling and while getting close to him for selfish reasons, she never thought he ended up taught her many things in life; taught her how fun life could be, taught her to dream and also taught her to find herself and in the process, she ended up falling deeply in love with him. She finally understand that in order for people to love her, she needs to love herself first and things like the unknown, fears and uncertainly can only be overcome by oneself to finally become a better person.

The female lead is really awesome. She is fun, funny, interesting and her confidence is overflowing. She fights for her future and keep saying how she will protect the male lead confidently. Such a refreshing character! Lin Beixing is now my most favourite female lead in Cdramas. I wish all female characters are written like her. Such a strong and admirable young woman! Flawed but very lovable at the same time.

I always thought fun and extrovert male leads are my favourite but Zhang Wansen proved me wrong. I never though such shy, timid and introvert person can be so attractive and compelling. His pure love, sacrifices and selfless actions are portrayed delicately that you cant help but to fall in love with him. Plus, I love how stubborn he is when he refuse to concede to her requests lol. They boy might love her unconditionally but he is not ready to sacrifice his goals, beliefs, perspective nor personality for her which is also part of the reasons that made him so attractive.

The first 16 episodes are pure fluff, fun and hilarious. I love how simple it is with just pure fun without any misunderstandings. The leads are absolutely adorable & lovable together and they had this beautiful beautiful tacit understanding with each other. It is such a peaceful and healthy relationship. They face adversities and challenges together and it is absolutely fun to watch them. Then when the truth was revealed about the fall from 10 years earlier, this is when the drama become more serious and heartbreaking. When it was revealed what really happened -- something that we never knew from before -- the sacrifices, the regrets, the what ifs, the possibilities, coupled with how the reminisce scenes are structured, it tugs to your heart strings like no others that you ended up crying a river. Even during the happy scenes when she travelled back to year 2007 to save him, tears were falling profusely on my cheek while laughing or smiling at their happy and funny scenes. I guess knowing all his sacrifices to her, you cant help but to feel helpless how they can't end up together. Knowing the truth really put everything into perspective. The way she look at him while he's not looking -- just feeling grateful he is healthy and alive are just so relatable that you ended up crying just as much as her.

9.5/10 is the only appropriate rating for such a great drama. I love how fun and addicting it was and how it made me sobbing like a baby later. Plus, the OSTs are really great! The songs' lyrics told their love story to a T and it fits all the scenes perfectly -- it perfectly describe their relationship from each other's point of views. Love the ending as well!

EXPLAINATION ON THE ENDING

The ending were pretty much cemented Wansen is alive especially with how they keep going on in the whole drama that NO ONE actually know what happened to him. And for someone like Gao Ge who is both his childhood friend, neighbor and sit beside him in class who is still after 10 years didn't know what actually happened to him, I was adamant that he survives the fall even before the ending scene. Plus, if a student committed suicide or killed, they will surely hold a memorial for his class to attend but what we got here? Nothing and literally no one exactly knew what happened to him. Because a writer, wouldn't purposely make his death so ambiguous if she wanted to tell us that he's dead and the umbrella scene in the end is only in Xing Xing's imagination. In movies/dramas, every actions and words meant something and when it is made purposely so ambiguous (like Zhang Wansen's death during the whole duration of the drama), its actually a clue to the viewers.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
Alwayswithgyu
13 people found this review helpful
Jan 31, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 10
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.5
This review may contain spoilers

A Heartbreaking & Incredible "I like you"

I was pulled into the story the moment I watched the trailers for this drama and it sure did not disappoint. It is a great time-traveling romance and suspense story that is brilliantly told. I went in thinking I knew what would happen but the story turned out quite different than I expected so don't go into the story with any judgment. The actors did an amazing job at bringing their characters to life and the soundtracks helped complete the story. They cast great actors for Wan Sen and Bei Xing because they were able to make the story touching but not pushy. There are definitely many drama cliches in this drama but they were used in a way that breaks your heart and makes you feel for the characters, Zhang Wan Sen and Lin Bei Xing. The romance between Wan Sen and Bei Xing is also written so beautifully tragic, which makes you can't help but keep watching them because you want a romance like that. You won't be able to stop yourself from hurting for Wan Sen and Bei Xing. Also, the script was written consistently despite the time-traveling element so there were no plot holes. The details of the main storyline did not change and you start to notice the smaller details. I totally fell in love with Wan Sen after watching this drama and now I feel empty and sad. There are certainly angsty moments in this drama and I cried a lot, but it is all worth it. The love story is an emotional journey that was worth watching how it unfolded. I would say enjoy the first half because the second half will break your heart. It hurts that a Wan Sen doesn't exist in real life. T_T But just enjoy the drama when you're watching because you'll be so sad when it's over. An "I like you" never hurt this bad. ALSO this drama is NOT DUBBED so all of the actors are using their real voices which is such a great thing because I hate it when a drama has a dubber who does not match the actor. So, I TOTALLY RECOMMEND this drama if you like time traveling and a cute romance! Once you fall into this drama, you won't be able to get out.

Now, some points that I really liked and didn't like:
.
.
.
Things I liked:
1. The cinematography- All of the scenes were filmed in a way to add emotions to what was going on. It makes the scene more tragic or happy. I couldn't help but screenshot some moments because it was filmed so nicely.
2. The acting!! - I have to compliment the actors who played Wan Sen and Bei Xing for their incredible job at playing the role. Wan Sen was so adorable and timid, which was only possible because Qu Chu Xiao did such a great job at embodying the character. Karlina Zhang was also just as amazing at playing Bei Xing and doing the emotional scenes so well. I can't imagine anyone else playing these roles because no one could have done it better.
3. the romance - Wan Sen and Bei Xing are so cute together. They are a cute dynamic that was fun to watch with cute scenes that were not too cheesy. My heart always fluttered watching Wan Sen be completely in love with Bei Xing and happy to do anything with her. Wan Sen's smile was so cute to watch. It's such a shame that Bei Xing took so long to notice him.
4. the music - the soundtracks were absolutely amazing! They all had lyrics that pertained to the story and characters. Noteably, the song titled "The World is Behind You" and "The World is Behind Me" and "Goodbye" were so heartbreaking to listen to. The first two of those songs were sung in different perspectives; one from Bei Xing and one from Wan Sen. When you listen to the lyrics, it'll make you feel even sadder for the characters if you weren't already. I have been playing these three songs on repeat because it just hurts so much.
5. Styling- I also liked how Wan Sen and Bei Xing always had different outfits when they were not wearing their school uniforms. This is the first time I have seen a drama do that which is nice to see. The outfits made Wan Sen more adorable.

Things I didn't like so much:
1. Supporting romance line- the romance between Gao Ge and Cao Yang was a bit boring and unrelated to the main storyline. so I skipped some of their scenes sometimes
2. Open ending- I wish that the drama could have ended with showing Wan Sen and Bei Xing meeting again and having some interactions because it ended so sadly.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
JustALittleAddicted
10 people found this review helpful
Feb 27, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 2
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 9.0

Painfully Beautiful

It was a rollercoaster ride. Legit sad one minute and giggling next minute. The OTP were tragic couple but so amazing together. I usually don’t do sadness in dramas, but I enjoyed every minute of this one. ML is incredible- smart, sweet, sensitive, sensible and, most of all, selfless in this love. FL showed growth and strived to love ML as much as he loved her and in striving for that, loved him just as much. No toxic relationship here. The time traveling was not confusing and very few loopholes compared to usual time travel dramas and the story overall was so good that I can’t even pick at the loose threads because I’m too busy reminiscing the chemistry of OTP and growth of individual characters. Even the side characters were fantastic where second couple was cute but didn’t take up too much screen time and antagonist were bad/annoying but just enough to move story along rather than create unnecessary angst. Even rando side characters like the teachers and parents are absolutely lovable. A beautiful love story and I would knowingly live through the painful parts again just to watch ML quietly support and love FL and FL realize her feelings for ML are actually deep care, respect and adoration.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
Under The Sad Rain
8 people found this review helpful
Jan 28, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.5
Story 9.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.5
Rewatch Value 9.5
This review may contain spoilers

Their situation will break your heart

This drama is not your typical Highschool Drama. Its not just about coming of age, friendship, first loves and struggles.
※※※※※
Why is the story unique?

First of all, A highschool sweet romance that can make you giggle. Get ready to fall in love with the two adorable main leads.

Second, Its time travel but the present wont be affected. She was alternating a past with different time and space so everytime she comes back to present, everything is still the same.

Third, a right amount of thriller and mystery that makes you wonder all the time, what really happened on that day.

Lastly, it talks about sacrifice and giving up something important for the greater good and outcome.

Additional, it hurts to see that no matter how hard they try, everything is still the same. The world she was looking for was in front but it seem to be out of reach. Forbidden to.express their feelighs was a torture.
※※※※
How does the characters act?

Female Lead:

She was a good actress, her emotions as getting me infected. When she is sad, I am sad, when she is happy, I am happy. Her acting was superb to the point that she can pull me out to cry, I rarely cry on a drama.

Male Lead

He was great portraying his shy and feeble character but also manly. His acting was great.

Supports

All of them did great.
※※※※

Was the music pours in more emotions?

A good drama has good music.

The lyrics of the song was on point for every scene. When the lyrics say 'bye', the characters are getting separated.

The music was too emotional that it was the final straw to make me cry.

※※※

Will you watch again?

Yes, of course. I binge watch this in one day since I cant stop watching it. I watched this alone so I am totally Recommending this to my friends and family.

※※※

How did the drama do?

Added to my wall of favourites, I am quite picky when adding drams to my hall but this one deserves it there. I watched a lot of dramas and this one will be memorable.

Great with a lot of heartwrenching moments. Prepare yourself some tissue coz you will absolutely cry.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
KimberlyAmor
8 people found this review helpful
Jan 28, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.5
Music 10
Rewatch Value 9.0
This review may contain spoilers

"Lin Beixing, I like you" "Zhang Wansen, I like you. I like you so bad"

Disclaimer: I'm really not so good with words, sometimes I muddled with my own thoughts I just love this drama so I am writing a review.

Time travel/time loop dramas always left me confused, but this one didn't. The story was on how she was able to keep going to the past was ell explained. I understand all of it. I appreciate it that they make a flipping book sound whenever she goes back to the past so it's not confusing to viewers to think in what timeline she is on that very moment, So for that I am very happy with this drama. The first part of the drama will make you feel giddy, happy and hopeful that Lin Beixing can changed everything, while the 2nd part just tugs your heart coz the revelations on all of Zhang Wansen's sacrifices will make you want to protect him with your dear life. You just want them to be happy and safe. But universe has other plans.

The acting in this drama was pretty good too especially Qu Chuxiao. There was a little scandal about his personal life last year and I got disappointed I really thought I won't be able to watch him in any dramas anymore coz I'm afraid Ill be annoyed with him BUT I DID NOT. I can say he carried this drama on his back. He performed here the best. I was able to immersed in Zhang Wansen's world. On how he protects Lin Beixing again and again without her knowing. For female lead I could say her performance is so-so she was still able to convince me with her acting.. Supporting casts has great chemistry too. Yang Chaoyang and Gao Ge did their best..

I will confidently say the best part of this drama is their OST. OMG. I hope they released it on Spotify. I've said this before and I'll say this again. It's so easy to get into a drama whenever they have great ost.... You just jammed with them the next moment there are already tears in your eyes. ? Eargams. All of it..

Rewatch value is pretty coz it' goes with the flow having great ost...

Lastly I just wanna share my opinion about the ending. For me that's the ending is good. Not everything has to be perfectly happy ending. The last scene gave us room for our imagination. By that last scene I can say that the true meaning of this drama or the lesson it wants to portray is that. In the most strange way, life gives us another chance to live our life different. Because of Zhang Wansen Lin Beixing will be able to live well, live and love boldly.

Thank you for reading.. Please give #一闪一闪亮星星 a lot of love. Zhang Wansen and Lin Beixing, in different universe I hope you are always happy together. <3

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
ennekube
9 people found this review helpful
Jan 27, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 8.5
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 7.0

Bittersweet youth drama with time travel elements

I was surprised at how much I enjoyed this youth drama.

BASIC PLOT
Lin Beixing is working at a zoo job she doesn’t particularly enjoy and preparing for her wedding to her high school sweetheart Zhan Yu when he abruptly dumps her and tells her he never really liked her. As she begins to accept the breakup and delete old text messages she unexpectedly finds herself repeatedly transported back in time to her high school days.

As Beixing travels between past and present, she begins to wonder if she can change the present by making different choices in the past. She finds herself learning more about a classmate Zhang Wansen who she learns passed away shortly after the gaokao. She also gets to know Yang Chaoxang (a boy obsessed with crosstalk), Gao Ge (principal’s daughter with good grades but a rebellious streak), and Maizi (orphan and seeming “bad boy” - but is he really?)

Can she excel at the gaokao this time? What really happened to cause Wansen’s death and can she prevent it? Will she revisit her relationship with Zhan Yu or find new love? The time travel element allows to glimpse different facets of the past and also learn what remains constant and what changes based on the choices Beixing makes.

OVERALL IMPRESSION
Beixing’s character is sunny and brave, and the friendships that develop as she travels to the past are heartwarming. The romances that develop will give you the feels and in one case break your heart. Like many youth dramas, there is an embedded message about not forgetting to enjoy life and friends in the moment even while focused on gakao (major high school exam), and another about only being happy when you are true to yourself and your dreams. There is also an additional darker element (I can’t reveal without spoilers) that adds depth to the latter half and a solid warning to youth. I liked this more than I expected and binged it

Recommend.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
Sinasina
14 people found this review helpful
Feb 20, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 1
Overall 7.0
Story 6.5
Acting/Cast 8.0
Music 10
Rewatch Value 6.0
This review may contain spoilers

The Mainland reimagination of Someday Or One Day

This drama is obviously very strongly inspired by Someday Or One Day, but in my opinion it cannot really hold a candle to it. One of the bigger problems is that the foundation of the plot is extremely unsteady. Specifically the time travel phenomenon has major problems. It doesn't really matter whether it's really time travel, or the implied alternate universe thing, things just don't add up, the FL is not making reasonable decisions based on either of those things. (Logically it's gotta be the second one, but if you think about that in detail, it becomes unreasonably dark and cruel real fast)
The first half of the drama is basically an extremely average high school cdrama, with all the problems those typically have and more. As per usual in good old cdrama fashion the "children" can only be "very good" friends and that's almost always tedious, at least when we don't transition to college life in a timely fashion. To add insult to injury beyond that we have ridiculous gangsters, even more ridiculous childhood connection flashbacks and finally an absolutely horrible second ML. Basically it's the same second ML character I've seen in Extraordinary You, but without the plot justifying his bullshit.
As for the OTP romance before the angsty parts started, I did just not feel it. Even if I completely ignore ML's stalker-y tendencies, I just could not get immersed in their romance. Based on the MDL comment section, the problem is probably with me ¯\_(ツ)_/¯. On the plus side, had I been more immersed, the events following the 13-14 episode long high school part would have eviscerated me, bullet's dodged there.
The ending is one of the worst endings I have ever experienced and I'm not talking about the largely irrelevant final episode, but rather FL's depressing final attempt to save ML in the episodes preceding that. Just to reiterate again, if it's not time travel, but the multiverse thing, then it's just the absolute worst.

I enjoyed some of the second couple's moments, but they had no plot relevance whatsoever.

The minor sloppy, or silly things in the plot are quite numerous, but ultimately those are quite easy to ignore, except in the last episode. That episode felt like fan fiction. The final scene is once again not great and thinking about that in depth - beyond it being just FL's fantasy - leads to quite silly conclusions.

The production values are through the roof, this is a very pretty show and the OST is up there with the very best cdramas, though they sure neutered Eddy Kim's song quite a bit..

Someday Or One Day has one of the most beautiful romances I have ever seen, it's written much more cleverly, the plot is sequenced much better and that show has much more charm across the board, it feels like a work of art as opposed to the TV equivalent of pulp fiction.
This month has been dominated by time travel dramas for me, but this is the worst one of the 4 that I've seen(Shining, Someday, Rainless Love, Reset), still I don't regret watching Shining for One Thing.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
festivalen
7 people found this review helpful
Feb 3, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 9.0
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 10
Music 10
Rewatch Value 8.0

Sweet, sweet abuse of the heart

My god, this drama is such a sight for sore eyes. Despite having absolutely 0 expectations for this, it's now living rent-free in both my brain and in the shattered remains of my heart.
This drama is pretty well rounded in all aspects - it's got the acting, the visual direction (color grading, cinematography), the OST, the charming characters, the engaging story, and copious amounts of emotional torture.

This review is not going to be concise /at all/. This drama quickly earned a spot on my favorites list and I have a lot to say. Seriously, I am perma-stuck in the pit named "Shining For One Thing". It's staying power is very strong.

STORY:
The directors and writers are total sadists. Absolute emotional terrorists. The story they've crafted is as painful as it is sweet. This is the only drama I've ever dreaded hearing the words "I like you". As lovely and cute as the first half(ish) of the story is, it's at it's best during the later half as events unravel and the writers really start to be EVIL.
Strictly speaking, the story isn't 100% watertight. Some scenarios are logic-stretching, and there's some off-details here and there, but there's nothing too egregious. Plus the stellar performances of Zhang Jia Ning and Qu Chu Xiao help buoy such faults.

Past the parallel-world/youthful-romance bits, this is ultimately a story about Lin Bei Xing discovering herself. In the beginning, she's like a rudderless ship - she doesn't really seem to care about her job, she doesn't appear to have any particular goals or ambition, she's fairly immature, and her longtime boyfriend has long since grown tired of her BS. At first, I found myself getting annoyed at her immaturity and her impulsive tendencies, but that's kind of the point here. As the drama puts it, fish swim in the waves but they don't know that the sea is behind them. For a long time, she was blind to so many things in her life, so it makes sense that she still has a lot of growing to do despite her age. These parallel timelines give her the opportunity to explore the world she was so ignorant about before. And in doing so, her character naturally receives that needed character development. And she absolutely goes through the wringer.

The parallel-world/youth-romance bits are equal parts sweet and painful. Lin Bei Xing spent her youth hyper-focused on Zhan Yu, thus shrouding her own "world" in mystery. There's so many things to be unraveled and discovered/rediscovered. In terms of storytelling, the parallel timelines kind of build on/play off of each other in a way. While the shorter timeline hops may feel inconsequential at first, they all serve a purpose. Later timelines provide more context for earlier ones, and it's super satisfying and engaging to see the pieces fit together as more is unraveled. However, the reality is quite cruel and some revelations are absolutely heart crushing. A lot of scenes will really hit different once you have the full context. The directors/writers really know how to break one's heart into 10 billion tiny pieces.

On the happier side, they also know how to make some endearing characters. This drama doesn't have a huge cast, but there's a lot of vivacity. The main leads are both very vibrant and alive, with Zhang Jia Ning and Qu Chu Xiao elevating them with their performances. The dynamic between the two is so cute. Also heart breaking.
Despite my issues with Lin Bei Xing's immaturity, it's hard not to love her. She's bright, bold, and a bit cheeky, just like her nickname (XingXing = star). She's a character that has a lot of maturing to do, but her charisma makes you root for her.
Zhang Wan Sen, the gentle shadow knight... I don't think I'll ever emotionally recover from him, this precious character. His character is so very detailed and carefully crafted, the writers really hit it out of the park. It's impossible to not have sympathy for him. It's impossible to not love him. Really raises the bar for male leads.
Of the supporting cast, most of them shined as well. Mai Zi in particular leaves a deep impression, for many reasons. He's such a good foil for Zhang Wan Sen and is another character that inspires a lot of sympathy...
Special shout-outs to Gazi and Yang Chao Yang for their lowkey comic relief.
Bonus middle finger to Zhan Yu and bonus double middle fingers to Lin Da Hai.

ACTING:
Acting is fairly solid across the board - there's not really many holes in this category, The main leads are the biggest standouts (their tears are my tears), but the supporting cast pulls their weight as well.

Qu Chu Xiao!! I really have endless praise for his performance as Zhang Wan Sen. Truly, I could go on forever. Its a complete and detailed performance - the tone of his voice, his body language, his micro-expressions, all his careful gestures even when those aren't the focus of the scene. He comes across perfectly as a quiet teenager with a monumental crush. Believable and natural. The director duo and writers surely deserve praise for this too. I can't imagine anyone else as Zhang Wan Sen.
Likewise, Zhang Jia Ning!! Much like Qu Chu Xiao, Zhang Jia Ning brings a lot of soul to Lin Bei Xing. Her performance is really infectious and charismatic. Zhang Jia Ning found a perfect balance that makes XingXing feel genuine and super likeable, not overboard at all. She's just incredibly charming in this role.

Out of the supporting cast, Jiang Yun Lin as Mai Zi! For someone who has only had 2 previous roles, he's quite charismatic! Imo, he had more presence than Wu Zi Xe did (though that's not really Wu Zi Xe's fault).
Again shout-outs for Sun Tian Yu and Luo Ming Jie for nailing their humorous characters without veering too hammy.

OST:
I feel like a lot of C-webdramas have pretty perfunctory BGM. Like Youtube vlog quality stuff. This is not the case here. All the tracks here are so, so perfect. From the instrumentals to the insert songs, everything fits to a T.
Some of the lyrics can be a little on the nose, but the production team matches them up so well with each scene that it adds extra meaning and ultimately enhances the scene. Even the instrumental tracks are finely placed. It's just really good attention to detail, which in turn helps build this drama's slightly melancholic/bittersweet atmosphere. Also helps me cry even more haha..ha.. :'')

PRODUCTION:
A drama is a team effort, so I do want to give some praise to the production team here for their work. Regardless of the story quality or the acting, this is a really beautiful drama to look at and hear. They had a clear visual direction and atmosphere in mind, and it really shows. The lighting, the color grading, the cinematography, the perfectly matched OST - all these add up to make a really aesthetically pleasing viewing experience. The only complaint I have is that the occasional dubbed-in lines are often quite noticeable.
As far as I can tell, this was directed by a duo who are both fairly new and young. This is their first credited work I think. A duo to keep an eye out for.

REWATCH:
This drama has me in a vice-grip. I look forward to eventually totally rewatching this - I feel like having the full context of Lin Bei Xing and Zhang Wan Sen's past will give that sweet first half a slightly different flavor. Next time, I will bring more tissues.

Ah my poor heart...

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
uhsame
6 people found this review helpful
Feb 9, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 8.5
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 9.0
Rewatch Value 8.0

The Emotional Damage is Strong in This One

The majority of Shining For One Thing is really full of amusing and adorable scenes, primarily involving our main characters' interactions. Then there's a mystery aspect thrown in here and there to make the audience want answers. The balance between those two elements gradually makes the audience care for the characters. So as everything starts to unravel, the emotional impact of it works. Too well, in fact.

The alternate universe premise in this drama is so well-done. The reason for how it starts and ends adds so much depth to the story, characters, and especially the romance. The romance between Zhang Wansen and Lin Beixing is the heart of the story. There are many regrets in the romance here, and it'll undoubtedly make you drop a few tears, if not buckets. The romance will not only make you cry, but it will also give you lots of serotonin.

Till now, I'm still convinced that I'm in love with Zhang Wansen. The dude, for real, stole my heart and won't give it back. In all seriousness, he's a fantastic character, and Qu Chuxiao did an excellent job portraying him. Lin Beixing appealed to me as well, although she does not always act like a mature 30-year-old. That is my only criticism of her. Zhang Jianing did an excellent job of portraying the joyous and persistent Lin Beixing. Then there's the second couple. Unfortunately, I didn't connect with this pair. I like them as individuals, but I thought the pairing seemed a little forced.

Aside from romance, the drama also discusses dreams. There's Zhang Wansen, who aspires to be a veterinarian without borders, Gao Ge, who wants to study art, and Lin Beixing, who has no clue what her ambition is. Those are just a few examples. I appreciate this aspect of the drama because it creates relatability and realness. It, overall, adds more depth and elevates the story from just being romance. The side characters are also quite enjoyable. There's the confident Gao Ge, the misunderstood Maizi, and the friend you can always turn to, Yang Chao Yang. However, Zhan Yu didn't do much for me. Visually, it's a pretty drama. The OSTs do not disappoint either.

Overall, it's a wonderful drama following an emotional romance. It's not perfect, but it does bring out lots of emotions.

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Completed
Danielle A
7 people found this review helpful
Feb 14, 2022
24 of 24 episodes seen
Completed 0
Overall 8.5
Story 9.0
Acting/Cast 9.0
Music 8.0
Rewatch Value 5.0

A Youth Drama with a Twist

This is a youth love story with a pinch of mystery and a whole lot of heartache. Initially, I was interested in this drama because not only did I keep hearing about it but also because it has been compared to Someday or One Day which is one of my top favorite dramas.

For me, comparing this drama to Someday or One Day was setting the bar a bit high. While Shining For One Thing shares similar themes of youth, mystery, and a deep love between the main couple. Someday or One Day’s focused more on the fantasy and mystery aspect while Shining For One Thing focuses much more on the youth aspect.

Things I Loved:
- Lin Bei Xing (FL) is smart, capable, and brave. I loved those moments when she wasn’t afraid to give her opinions openly and without caution.
- Zhang Wan Sen (ML) is incredibly sweet and though he’s very smart, he’s not cold, just a bit shy. I don’t think he has a mean bone in his body and loves fiercely, albeit quietly.
- Mai Zi, everything about him is pretty much wonderful and anyone should be so lucky to have him as their friend. He is friendship goals.
- There are some absolutely heart-wrenching scenes as well as some really beautiful happy scenes.
- The cinematography was done very well. There are many beautiful and memorable scenes throughout this drama.
- The OST is fitting and complimented the story and scenery very well. (I’ll be adding a few songs to my OST playlist for sure.)


Things I Didn’t Love:
- A lot of scenes were repetitive, (mostly flashbacks). While this is to be expected in any sort of time-loop/time-jump/universe jumping genre, they flashback to the same scenes over and over and over. If I saw the fire scene one more time I swear…
- They spent a lot of time on the youth and school stuff which I wasn’t really expecting. I understand this is to show the relationship building between the mains but there is this huge mystery looming in the background and there were several episodes where it had very little focus if at all.
- I could have completely done without the 2nd couple. Even now, having just finished the drama yesterday, I can’t remember anything interesting about them.
- Although there are wonderful and thrilling scenes, for me, it felt very “hurry up and wait”. What I mean by this is that I often felt like I was waiting for an exciting scene to happen but when they finally happened, to me they felt a bit rushed. Something about the pace of this drama just felt a bit choppy.
- “Why is no one calling the police?!?!” <- I must have said this to myself at least a half dozen times. There are so many times when the police should have been called which likely would have prevented the very event Lin Bei Xing was trying to avoid.
- A lot of things about the universe jumping weren’t explained. In a drama like this where you’re trying to piece together the mystery yourself, I find it frustrating when you’re left with too many hows and whys. In that aspect, the drama feels incomplete.


Overall, I’m happy I watched it. It was mostly very enjoyable and I think people who like the youth genre will love this drama. However, for me, because it was compared to Someday or One Day my expectations were different and I think that may have hurt my opinion of Shining For One Thing. This is not a bad drama by any means, it just didn’t hit me as hard as I was expecting it would.


Would Recommend
Will Not Rewatch - (However I will watch the movie when that is released)

Read More

Was this review helpful to you?
Shining for One Thing (2022) poster

Details

Statistics

  • Score: 8.6 (scored by 3,514 users)
  • Ranked: #450
  • Popularity: #1534
  • Watchers: 10,447

Top Contributors

102 edits
44 edits
31 edits
25 edits

Popular Lists

Related lists from users
Who is Your Favourite Cdrama Couple? ❣
296 titles 4000 voters 267 loves 68
Best Time Travel Dramas
141 titles 1070 voters 116 loves 34
Chinese Dramas of 2022 !
471 titles 83 loves 2

Recently Watched By