Old Nine Gates 老九门 - Episode 28 (Recap)

SakiVI: A lot happens. People talk a lot too. Please read on.
kakashi: It's a drop-episode. Only true fans watched beyond this one. My annoyance reached new, unknown heights and I even fail at being funny in my comments below.
Either be true fans to keep watching, or be recapping it.

Episode 28 - Fo Ye Escapes Changsha

Back to Chief Lu threatening Hendry and Ryouko, and Ryouko refusing to drink Chief Lu's tea (what is it with him and tea? He likes it?). Hendry advises her to drink it, and since she listens to Hendry, she drinks it. He and Ryouko get to leave. Back at the Japanese Chamber of Commerce, Hendry yells at her with a really ugly mad face, and they hear that Chief Lu is tailing them. Hendry yells some more. I think he has to really enunciate to pronounce Mandarin judging by the way he exaggerates each syllable and it produces this teeth-gnashing effect. It's effectively crazy.
I don't know what to say. Okay, I'll say nothing
Hendry also says to Ryouko that he has always taught her to stay calm, and why can't she ever learn this? That's weird. She's a martial arts fighter: surely, she should know how to stay calm? Also, weird is how Hendry is acting like the boss when he is hired by the Japanese as a consultant.
He is not just a consultant. He's undead. Ryouko knows this and that's why she drinks tea with him.
Anyway, to get back to the recap, Hendry at least assures her Lu is only being annoying, and does not mean to attack. Then Hendry spouts off the following three expressions: 1) A new broom sweeps clean; 2) I will pull the carpet from under his feet, and 3) douse his fire. Wow, Hendry, you could also just say you'll get Chief Lu back for all this.
I'm screaming every time Hendry starts with "You Chinese have this saying".... WHY DOES HE TALK LIKE THIS! Go away!!!
All those idioms are aging.
Cut to the Huo mansion.
Look, they have the same dragons too! Everybody has them! 
Maybe one of our Chinese commenters will explain the significance.
Huo Niang is discussing territories with Chief Lu, namely those of Er Ye and Fo Ye. Apparently, despite Fo Ye having his own men at least, their territories, whatever is meant by that, land or businesses or both, are unguarded. Huo Niang wants both per their prior agreement.
Silly girl. That's too much for you to chew.
She wants Chief Lu's military backing to encourage the other Nine Gates to agree. Chief Lu just smarms that he can't keep his part so easily. And Huo Niang spouts that same idiom used by Chief Lu and Hendry, that Chief Lu plans to burn his bridges. Come on, people, try to have an original thought. Or simply say, "So, you want to be enemies, hmm?" Then we get, "We are people on the same boat." Seriously, these trite idioms are so annoying.

They go back and forth, Huo Niang reminding Lu that he is a newcomer to Changsha and his position is precarious. Then, she offers a bribe. Except, Chief Lu raises the Chen Pi issue. Annoying.
I know you like her, Saki, but she annoys me because she's not smart enough for this game. She is trying to do it like the boys ("go in with force and take what you want") but she should know that's going to end badly for her.
I empathize with her.  Also, I don't think it's true she's trying to do it like the boys so much as she is simply playing the game as it is laid out. I think she has it tougher than any of the boys, and so I am willing to cut her slack where I wouldn't a male Gate acting the same way.  
Cut to Chen Pi raising his own sign, Chen Mansion, on Er Ye's house.
*Sigh*. Megalomania. 
It's the Nose.
He's changed to full Evil Villain style, too, with his long coat and gelled up hair. What a pest he's become.
He has bad skin on his forehead, the poor boy. It kind of defeats the object of being scary.
On the other hand, our heroes need to hero against others, and those others can't be too clever...

Back to the Huo Mansion where Huo Niang comments on Chen Pi's new, showy style, and he responds with, "I don't like to talk about silly things."
You should not make men feel uncomfortable about styling up, Madame Huo.  
Why not? They feel free to comment on women's appearances.
Pfffft. Chen Pi and Huo Niang snipe at each other, and Chief Lu stops them by saying Fo Ye's territory goes to Huo Niang and Er Ye's to Chen Pi. They're still fighting, though, pffft.
A common enemy only carries you that far, does it. 
Anyway, the result is Chief Lu wants to take down all the Nine Gates, which Huo Niang and Chen Pi both call him out for being presumptuous.
I still don't understand what his game is. Is he just jealous that he's not in the club? Maybe. Like those kids who destroy the sand castles of other kids because they did not include them when building them.
Chief Lu has to back down with them both mad at him, kinda like hunting cheetahs that are never fully tame, and gets them to agree to split the territories as mentioned. Okay, so at least these two at least have some basic loyalty to the Nine Gates.
Managing these people is hard work. I hope it gives you stomach ulcers, Lu. 
Off they go to have a little party.
Sidebar: the food looks delicious to me. I am definitely hungry. ME TOO. Then, Chief Lu says he wants them to go into the tomb, and he'll take 30 percent. They actually agree.
And yet, they still know nothing. Good luck, idiots. 

Later, the mysterious higher-ups tell Chief Lu to remove the surveillance on Hendry. Cut to Hendry and Ryouko clearing the air and drinking tea.
They never have to go to the toilet, amazing. Skillz.
Ryouko says she now trusts Hendry's judgment. And they flatter each other.
Get a room.
They're in one. :-)
I'd prefer one in which I don't see them.

Hendry says another Chinese proverb to say they are allied. Yes, yes, we know.

Next, Huo Niang and Chief Lu talking about how to corner Fo Ye. Chief Lu wants Huo Niang to go to the prison and convince Er Ye over to his side. Huo Niang says dunno if he'll listen. You don't say. Chief Lu puts more store on her old friendship with Er Ye, and he gets creepily close with her, though she isn't scared. I don't think she likes him, more like she is letting him think he is such hot stuff so he lets his guard down. Plus, I bet she has to handle a lot of annoying men trying to come onto her like this.
Right, she does not like him, she is playing him. But I think he is playing her too. They can play together for all I care. I don't actually. Care, that is. About these two.

Chief Lu then does something even more icky: he strokes his gun and slaps it down on the table like it's a metaphor for his manhood.
He says he will kill Er Ye if Er Ye does not cooperate. Huo Niang then picks up the gun, strokes it herself as if she likes it,
OMG, Saki, stop this! I'm gagging. 
and suddenly points it at Chief Lu who nearly wets himself.
I cheered. She reminded him Fo Ye is still head of the Nine Gates. I cheered again. However, she doesn't actually kill him. I booed. Still, Chief Lu learnt not to get overly close with Huo Niang, I hope - and not to talk about killing Er Ye so easily.
And the point of all this is....... *draws blank*.
I think it was to show Huo Niang kind of standing up for Er Ye. As in, if Chief Lu goes too far, he'll end up dead.
Yes, can that happen quickly please, the Dead Thing

Then Chief Lu says to his aide to tighten security around Fo Ye's mansion.
Great. He's a prisoner now? I guess Lu Fucker is still very afraid of Fo Ye and needs to keep him out of commission with force. 
Cut to Fo Ye and Xin Yue.
Fo Ye is sick in bed with lots of horrible memories, while Xin Yue is trying to soothe him.
Oh dear, poor Fo Ye. When did it get that bad?! And why?! Is the beast sitting on his back? And whispering into his ears?
She tries to feed him medicine which he throws up. Lt Zhang looks pretty (and cutely concerned) and tells her they are completely surrounded outside.
Patting his head through the screen.
Xin Yue tells Fo Ye that she will defend the mansion on his behalf. Fo Ye's eyes open.
Aw, she keeps calling him husband. He wakes up after 5 days and asks about Er Ye, and Xin Yue says forget him, get better first. Fo Ye says he has so many brothers outside, how can he rest, and Xin Yue forces him back saying, I need you too!
He only does what she tells him because he is too weak to do something stupid
And, OMG, Fo Ye reaches out his hand to her!
Her bravery finally registers, does it? And because he is so weak, he actually allows himself to express his feelings.
They discuss where to go, and Bei Ping is too far for Fo Ye in his condition. So, they'll go somewhere else. Aw, they're holding hands!
It's cute and all but it also made me worry about him a lot. It's like he needs strength from her and we've never seen him that weak and down before. 
And Fo Ye passes out.

Cut to Chief Lu visiting Ba Ye.
It's pretty in Ba Ye's house. I agree! It's actually the one I would like to live in most. It seems manageable too (in terms of cleaning and stuff). Ba Ye is telling fortunes, and when he meets Chief Lu, Ba Ye is very friendly, flattering the enemy. Chief Lu gives his particulars, and Ba Ye calculates his fortune.
And guess what? Three guesses.
He feeds him noodles? 
Chief Lu is married with two children.
And he was hitting on Huo Niang. So, not only was he slimy towards Huo Niang, he was slimy towards his own wife and kids.

As for the actual fortune-reading, after Chief Lu offers Ba Ye a high-paying job, Ba Ye refuses, and tells him, "your enemy is too powerful, don't take bribes, and the more powerful you get, the shorter your life will be." Bwahaahahahaha! 
Ba Ye, two thumbs up!! 
And Ba Ye tells Chief Lu that if he wants to live long and prosper, he needs to resign his position and return to his hometown. Of course, Chief Lu doesn't believe any of this. He storms out, accusing Ba Ye of scheming.
Hahahaaaa, no, Ba Ye would never! Hahahaaaaa.
Except, we know Ba Ye wouldn't tell him a lie because he's an accurate fortune teller. Besides, Fo Ye will always have more Skillz.
It just shows once again how bad Lu is at knowing people. To even think Ba Ye would abandon Fo Ye for money... I'm guessing that Lu never had a friend or a sense of true loyalty in his life, so he will never ever get this.

Cut to the now Chen Mansion,
and Hendry stroking a porcelain eagle.
Seriously. All that stroking. 
He notes how quickly Chen Pi took over Er Ye's mansion and territory. Chen Pi is pleased with himself.
But Hendry reminds Chen Pi about his revenge. Chen Pi snarls he doesn't need reminding. Except, I kind of think he did because he was looking complacent.
It's because he knows (deep down) that Fo Ye really isn't to blame for Yatou's death. Go take revenge on the bacteria!

Cut to the Zhang mansion and Dr. Mo checking on Fo Ye.
She only undresses him a tiny little bit at his neck. #Fail
I guess she is either staying there, or can come and go as she pleases since she is a doctor. This is a logical question, Saki. I thought we discussed this. They can't figure out why Fo Ye is unconscious considering his vitals are otherwise okay. Nobody can. The drama doesn't know either. Lt Zhang looks prettily guilty
and kneels to Xin Yue, saying he was not careful enough.

Dude, don't stress yourself. You were told to wait in one room, and you couldn't stop the hair monster biting Fo Ye, so chill. Xin Yue also tells him to get up.
Yes, Visual Zhang, you did nothing wrong. And this is your chance to shine, boy! More screentime for you! Grab this opportunity!

Xin Yue says they can't stay in Changsha anymore. The soldiers could charge in at any time, and Fo Ye is gravely ill. With amazing strategy skillz, she tells them she has already notified Bei Ping, that the listening servants are on their way over, so Dr. Mo must help get them inside, and that Lt Zhang must tell Fo Ye's closest followers to assist. They both snap to attention, Lt Zhang, in particular, bowing his head.
She is HOT when she takes command. Give her an army! 
Cut to Chen Pi harassing the forest with his crab claw.
*Sigh*. Why. 
It looks cool, but I fear for the trees. Nature shouldn't be hassled so. Chen Pi remembers his grief at Ya Tou's death and sends leaves blowing. Is he causing this storm?
No, I think he just has a good knack for dramatic settings. He waits until there's a storm, take a few camera guys with him and then goes to harrass crabs or trees or whatever is handy. 

Cut to him storming into the Zhang Mansion to capture Fo Ye.
Seriously, anyone just comes and goes.
 Inside, Xin Yue stops him.
Nice pearls.
I like her style
She is totally fearless and tells him that if he bothers Fo Ye, who is on the brink of death, then she will use all the resources of the Zhang and Yin families to bring Chen Pi down.
But, he's too crazy to care, and sends the soldiers to search. Lt Zhang prettily remembers Xin Yue staring at the empty bed and her saying she must send Fo Ye away with Dr. Mo and the listening servants to save him from Chen Pi.
Gosh, she thinks of everything!  And she was right, Chen Pi came to kill Fo Ye.
The title of this episode gave this major plot point away though.


This episode was so busy, I couldn't really sum it up. I suppose if it has a theme, it's the villains consolidating their hold while the heroes strategically retreat.
One of the episodes that I ffwarded at the time. Those villains fighting between themselves... why do we have to see it. The only interesting or relevant point was Hendry enraging Chen Pi to go after Fo Ye, because apparently, Hendry really does not want to do anything himself. Not sure why. As for the rest ... the four villains still hate each other (we know that, thanks), Lu is still an idiot, Hendry still is creepy and Madame Huo is making a grave mistake. 
Hendry's skillz are inciting other people and plotting things, not actually fighting.

I'm happy to see Fo Ye reach out to Xin Yue for comfort while down with his PTSD. This was my first real indication that he considered them to be a couple.
I guess. Yes, those scenes made me squee back when I first watched. But he is too ill for it to be sexy. But yes, since we know how much Fo Ye values loyalty, it is pretty clear that she is making herself indispensible. She really saved his life this time (the other times, he might have found a way out for himself). That said, it is hard to understand why his condition is so bad. And the drama is not giving us ANY hints. I'm glad William got to lie in bed for a bit though, I'm sure this drama was very tiring to film.