This show has quickly became a favourite,like a Chinese peaky blinders.
Initially, I didn't realize that the premiere was packed with so much, too much, seemingly. Now, having looked back on it a fair amount, the realization has presented itself in that, for a premiere, it had way too much going on. In comparison, this second episode was more fleshed out. It wasn't as packed to the brim. A better job was done with this episode in that regard.
And, to be fair, I guess it makes sense why the premiere was packed to the brim. But I feel like it would've been better to have focused more on gradually and naturally fleshing out the main plot and the subplots, as well as the characters, over the course of every episode instead of diving head-first into everything in the premiere.
It was revealed that Bill has a gambling problem and that he and Leary seem to go way back, too. Furthermore, a glimpse into Bill's personal life was also given to us; his wife and children, his family life; even Leary's reaction to Bill having gambled some of the money that he gave him had more substance and gave more substance to Bill's character as well as Leary's character than in the premiere.
Bill's wife seemed to have a disapproving tone directed at Bill when she asked Lee about what his wife feels about his new assignment; she cast a side glance at Bill as she said it, too. And in the premiere, Bill said to the Chief of Police that he thought he was to be transferred by year's end, giving me the impression that there has probably been tension between him and his wife because of his job. And now that he's in a squad that's to patrol Chinatown, tensions between the both of them will likely increase.
I guess it's better those things were revealed in this episode. After all, it's more gradual and natural for stuff like that to happen throughout the season/further along into the season, and that's fair. But I feel like having a look into Bill's personal life with his wife and children should've been in the premiere, and then, his gambling problem along with more depth given to the relationship and dynamic between him and Leary be shown in this episode.
I feel like the reason that led to Ah Sahm's arrest wasn't naturally written. Penelope happened to drop her glove; Ah Sahm notices it on the ground and goes after her. She's conveniently walking past an area with a Chinese servant that has Irishmen, two of which are drunk; you do the math. Conflict ensues, and Ah Sahm comes in to rescue the damsel in distress. And, of course, there's a misunderstanding along with discrimination against the Chinese and the recent killing of two Irishmen by Ah Toy, leading to Ah Sahm's arrest. I don't think the way that progressed was natural. But I like that it wasn't just discrimination being the reason why Bill arrested Ah Sahm. Lee didn't see how the fight started. But because he was punched by one of the Irishmen, he was on the ground as were the other two, and Ah Sahm was the last one standing; presumably, that's when Bill looked over in that direction. That was solid writing and filming.
It seems like Ah Sahm is using his arrest as a way to atone for whatever it was that he did that led to his sister agreeing to marry Sun Yang to protect him. Penelope told him, "What do you have to lose?" [speaking to the police and telling them what happened, and for him to not give up]
He feels like he already lost and is giving up, referring to being arrested and in a jail cell. But I think that's on the surface. I feel like he was referring to his sister as well when he said that. To him, he feels like he already lost her. He has no motivation to try to prove his innocence, but Penelope may have planted a seed.
Wang Chao and Ah Toy are characters that stand out to me and who I feel are both wild cards. Chao has got himself in every pie, so to speak, and based on the look of his back that was shown, he's probably fairly good at fighting, too. I can't read him. I have no idea whether he'll be the type of character who'll come and save the day when you least expect it or the type of character that'll grow to be the most dangerous force to be reckoned with; maybe that's the point.
From the look of things, Ah Sahm caught Ah Toy's interest in the premiere, and she looked to care about Ah Sahm's arrest in this episode. She can handle herself, both physically, as proven by her performance at the end of the premiere, and less physically, as seen when she had Li Juan punished for ratting out Ah Sahm but specifically bringing the Long Zii into her brothel. That's a good sign for him; to have someone like her in his corner, something that she even brought up to him in the premiere. She could be a possibility that'll intertwine with Ah Sahm's situation of being in jail.
This is pretty graphic. I love it.