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roddy

First Episode 15, 中国式离婚 - Chinese Style Divorce

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roddy

A part of the Grand First Episode Project -- See this thread for more info.

21st May: 中国式离婚 - marriage and divorce - mostly divorce - in modern China

Youku - Emule

Vocabulary

In this case, we can say 'here's one we made earlier' - here's a selection of quotes from when we watched the first episode of this show some two and a half years ago. Anyone who keeps watching will find threads for most if not all episodes at the bottom of this very forum.

Geraldc:Having now watched the first episode of 中国式离婚 in its entirety, the closest western programs to it are "Cold feet" in the UK and "thirtysomething" from the US.

It's definitely watchable,

Roddy: 肖莉's pretty cute, I hope we get to see the girl the husband prefers . I don't think we can rule out the possibility of some 肖莉 and 宋健平 action in the near future - shame on you, 健平! But 小枫, don't nag so. And what about 当当 and the as yet unseen 妞妞 - puppy love?

One bit I didn't quite get, is when 小枫 and 李先生 were having lunch and he forgot about the favor he meant to do, he said 我小时候让猪亲了 - I was kissed by a pig when I was a kid. I googled and there's a few examples of this but I can't quite figure it out - does being kissed by a pig make you lose your memory?

Gougou: I liked it from the intro on (which hit a weak spot...). I also found it to be much easier to understand than I expected (which does not mean I didn't need a dictionary in pretty much every scene.)

And also viewing notes I typed up back then:

1) 1:00 We see Song Jianping and Lin Xiaofeng at their respective workplaces. Lin Xiaofeng talks to a colleague, commenting that language teachers aren't in as much demand as maths teachers for home tutoring (家教). Lin phones Song to remind him of a lunch meeting.

2) 4:08. Car crash (车祸). Victim Dongbei phones Song to ask for help.

3) 6:40. Song phones Lin but can't get through. He goes into the operating theater.

4) 7:51 Lin and Dangdang are waiting at the restaurant. The men are late, and they have to take a larger room, meaning more expense. She asks for a discount. Cut between the operating room and the big, empty restaurant.

5) 9:00 李先生 arrives. Lin hopes he can help Song get a better job, but Song still hasn't arrived. 救人一命胜造7级浮屠 - better to save one life, than build a 7-storey pagoda. 下馆子 - eat out.

6) 10:00 Operating room. We find out the victim is Song's neighbour and 干儿子 - godson.

7) 11:00 Restaurant. Song asks Li to speak to his brother-in-law about helping Song move jobs. Li has forgotten and says that when he was small he 让猪亲过. He makes a call.

8) 11:45: Song back at the hospital talking to a colleague about the music he listens to while operating. 贝多芬, 肖邦 - Beathoven, Chopin. His colleague is surnamed 肖 and claims that the 肖 family always produces talent. Song asks him if he knows what is the correct standard for surgery (什么以这为标准) and answers his own question. Watch out for the perfume / actress joke as they leave the hospital

9) 12:50. Restaurant. Li can't get through on the phone, but remembers he has heard the position is already filled. He tells Lin that he is sure Song will be in demand at any hospital and promises to ask around, then leaves.

10) 14:10Hospital canteen, Lin meets a retired director of the hospital 老赵who praises Song as 才华横溢 - full of wit and talent. Lin tells him he's still an ordinary doctory, with no change since he retired - 跟你退的时候没什么两样, except that he is older. The director complains about duck ribs being the same price regardless of size and suggests the canteen staff weigh them. 物有所值 - get value for money. They argue, Lin intervenes and it becomes a 原则问题 - a question of principle. Director collapses.

11) 17:20 Song arrives home and helps an attractive woman (ah, we'll be seeing her again, I bet) up the stairs with her bag.

12) 18:00 We meet Dangdang, who tells his dad mum's gone to the canteen.

13) 18:20 Back at the canteen, the ambulance arrives. After the director is stretchered away the canteen woman ask Lin to stay and help her explain what happened, but Lin gets upset at being called 阿姨.

14) 19.45 At home, Lin tells Song what happened. We hear the director's wife wailing outside.

15) 20:33 Later. 又怎么了 - what's wrong this time? She tells him the director worked all his life and died arguing over the price of duck ribs and asks what the point is of staying at that hospital, apart from reputation. She urges him to go to a joint-venture hospital - 合资医院 and tells him that his 3000Y isn't enough for them to 过好 - to live well. He offers her some Chinese medicine to control her temper. Surprisingly he doesn't get slapped.

16) 23:27. Hospital. Song interrupts a card game, and after he's gone we get a hint of something going on with him and 肖莉,but 肖 who we met before tells them to stop talking nonsense - 扯谈.

17) 24:49. Back with the woman who Song helped earlier.

18) 26:18 Lin and Dangdang.

19) 26:55 Previous woman - 肖莉? - and her husband. 妞妞 is mentioned, presumably their daughter.

20) 28:00 Lin and Song going to bed. Song is friskier than Lin - 你不想我想, and Lin complains about being called 阿姨 by the 丫头 (roughly 'wench') in the canteen She worries about living a monotonous life 平平淡淡一辈子,like 老赵.

21) 30:15 Next day.

22) 30:55 Lin's mother calls to tell her her brother will visit.

23) 31:47 They meet him at the train station. Brother is called 小军. On the way home he courageous rescues a woman from her violent husband. 我打我的老婆跟你有什么事 - what's it to you if I hit my wife?.

24) 33:12 At Lin's mothers. Dangdang wants to sit next to (挨着) 小军. Song has to leave to see a patient.

25) 34:49 Hospital. Song is seeing patients, including his neighbour who promises to sell his motorbike after Song tells him he'll wind up taking a tour of all the other departments if he keeps on riding. The neighbour has changed mobile phone number as he's avoiding a girl called 小丽 as he has 又换了新人了 - got a new one. Song asks why it's best to always tell a girl she is your second girlfriend, rather than first or third.

26) 38:00 Lin and her mother talk about 老赵, and her mother tells her husband not to die first. Lin speaks to her aunt (姑姑), who bought her up for a while, on the phone.

27) 40:05 Hospital. We see that woman again, she is 肖莉

28) 40:15 Minibus to the funeral for 老赵. 肖莉 can't make it because of work.

29) 41:50 Coming back, Song is asked if he's prepared for his application to attend an overseas conference. He hasn't.

2430_thumb.attach

Edited by renzhe

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imron

Yep, this is a great series, and is far less predictable that one first imagines, with the plot changing direction several times before the end. All in all a good watch.

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gougou

Quite true! However, the last, uber-dramatic episode was predicted in the discussion of, what was it, episode 4?

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renzhe

Here's a quick recap of the vocab, based on a wordlist posted by the user wrwills, found in this thread.

家教 jiā jiào family education / upbringing / private tutor

当初 dāng chū at that time / originally

供 gōng offer (information etc) / supply

担挑 dān tiāo to carry a burden (???)

老婆 lǎo pó (informal) wife

老公 lǎo gōng (informal) husband

我根本躲不开你呀 I cannot avoid you

车祸 chē huò traffic accident / car crash

担架 dān jià stretcher

挨 ái next to / suffer (hunger) / endure / drag out / delay

俗话 sú huà common saying / proverb

救人一命胜造7级浮屠 saving a life makes one a 7th degree Buddha

浮屠 fú tú Buddha / Buddhist stupa

烤鸭 kǎo yā roast duck

乳猪

巧 qiǎo opportunely / coincidentally

干儿子 godson

记性 jì xìng memory

著亲

下馆子 xià guǎn zi eat out

打包 dǎ bāo doggie bag / take-home bag from a restaurant

利索

修鞋 xiū xié repair shoes

楚留香

凭 píng lean against / proof / to rely on

才华横溢 cái huá héng yì brimming over with talent (esp. literary) / brilliant

资格 zī gé qualifications

秤称

物有所值

原则问题 yuán zé wèn tí a question of principles

餐盒我盯你也不是一天两天了啊 "I've been watching you for more than a couple of days"

负责任 fù zé rèn responsibility for / blamed for / be in charge of

招进 zhāo jìn invite to enter

鸭架

计较 jì jiào to haggle / to bicker / to argue

前途 qián tú prospects / outlook (for the future) / future

指望 zhǐ wàng to hope for sth / to count on / hope

名声 míng shēng reputation of a person or thing

行情 háng qíng market price

有余 yǒu yú to have an abundance

肝火 gān huǒ irrascibility / spleen

旺 wàng prosperous / flourishing

值班 zhí bān to work a shift / on duty

别扯谈 -- I think this is a typo, should be 别扯淡 i.e. don't talk nonsense

烦死了 annoying to death

甘心 gān xīn to want to do sth / satisfied

舅舅 jiù jiu (informal) mother's brother; maternal uncle

脚丫子

我打我老婆跟你有什么事儿 me hitting my wife is none of your business

这种男人太没有出息了 this kind of man really has no future

打女人是什么能耐啊 how can one tolerate beating women?

姥姥 lǎo lao (informal) mother's mother / maternal grandmother

抱歉 bào qiàn "sorry" / to apologize

普外 pǔ wài out of the ordinary

心慈手软

统计 tǒng jì statistics

杜冷丁

瘫子 tān zi paralyzed person

躲 duǒ to hide / to dodge / to avoid

蛔虫 huí chóng roundworm

滥情

心脏病 xīn zàng bìng heart disease

可怜 kě lián pitiful / poor

瞧 qiáo look at

霸道 bà dào the Way of the Hegemon, abbr. of 霸王之道 / despotic rule

姑姑 gū gu paternal aunt

演出 yǎn chū to act (in a play) / to perform

追悼会 zhuī dào huì a memorial service / a funeral service

胸外料

论文 lùn wén paper / treatise / thesis

抓紧 zhuā jǐn grasp

Edited by renzhe
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simplet

I just marathoned through the whole show in about a week, and all in all I thought it was very good. Pretty slow paced, and it's getting a bit out there toward the last 5 or so last episodes, but still quite gripping (by the end 小枫 is so far gone that it's getting a bit hard to watch). The show is tackling some pretty heavy issues head on, I thought it was really informative in terms of men-women relations in China and 面子. The whole thing with 娟儿 and the baby kind of took me by surprise too.

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roddy

Great to see these old topics bumped.

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realmayo

Gave up on this about 5 hours in, started to get a bit too stressful! Otherwise, good stuff. but comment at #5 about 小枫 makes me think I made the right choice. And happily found a cheerier alternative to watch. 

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imron

It settles down for a bit in the middle, and the focus moves off 小枫 and 健平, and moves on to 娟儿 and Dongbei.  It then switches back to 小枫 and 健平 for the end.

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realmayo

All the contrived "tension" moments were stressing me out, e.g. will she find them doing this, will it look like they're doing that, etc etc. Maybe I'll revisit later.

 

In the meantime I found a fun series with Shu Qi from 1999, 难得有情人, I first saw bits of this in 2001 when friends in China were hooked on it. Maybe I'll First Episode it. Started getting into 秘密图纸 too.

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renzhe

Maybe I'll First Episode it.

Please do!

Started getting into 秘密图纸 too.

Very underrated, that one. For all its faults, it had one of the best atmospheres of any Chinese series I've watched.

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