Thursday, September 16, 2004

[The Sun, 2004-09-15]

The new TVB production "Shine On You" started airing two days ago, and the Hong Kong Broadcasting Supervising Division has received three complaints so far. In the first episode, Michael Tao's character clipped fingernails, read newspapers and yawned constantly while being scolded by the principal. To make things worse, he indulged in mahjong, was late for school, and used questionable teaching methods in class. According to the complaints, these antics ruined the image of "teachers" and might consequently have a bad influence on students.

In an interview over the telephone yesterday, Michael said, "In that episode, I asked a student to 'go ahead and sleep'. I thought it was just for the dramatic effect, but the producer had a discussion with me and I realized there really are such teachers in everyday life!" He hoped the audience could use a little patience and see more of the plot before complaining. "We are trying to bring a positive message to the public here. Rest assured my character will become a responsible teacher later on."

Earlier, Shirley Yeung said teachers' life was "boring" while shooting a promotion piece for Miss Hong Kong. She was blasted for being disrespectful to teachers. The producer of "Shine On You" Mui Siu-Ching said that was a well-learned lesson. To be careful, they consulted the relative educational committees and only decided to show the episode after they were told there was no problem.

Mui said, "You have good and bad examples from every walk of life. It's more realistic (to have some not-so-perfect characters). We do want to bring a positive message to the public, so as the show progresses, Michael will become a good teacher, and those bad ones who never improve will get fired. As for playing mahjong, teachers are just normal people. They need entertainment after work too!"

Gloria Yip and Astrid Chan are parents themselves, and they have been paying close attention to children's education. When asked if she would let her kids watch "Shine On You", Gloria laughed, "No, I won't let them! They are too young to tell right from wrong. I only allow them to see some of the programs on children's channel."


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