If Empress of China has topped the ratings game then Journey of Flower 花千骨 is a close second, proving the intrinsic appeal of the fantasy wuxia genre once again.
Journey of Flower can be aptly classified under sadistic romance 虐恋, which is not a genre per se but rather a term coined to mean exactly what it says, a gut-wrenching rollercoaster of a love story.
Adapted from fresh果果's popular novel of the same name, Zhao Li Ying (Legend of Zu) and Wallace Huo (Imperial Doctress) take the lead as the ill-fated lovers Hua Qian Gu and Bai Zi Hua. She is destined to be the death of him but he takes her in as his disciple anyway.
Given that the series became a smashing success when it aired in 2015, it seems safe to say that JoF won the battle by casting two very experienced costume drama regulars whose overall feel seem perfect for the roles.
It's no secret that I didn't enjoy Journey of Flower as much as everyone and their mother but I'm now so tempted to watch the DVD uncut version to see if I can become a convert.
For synopsis, cast and ratings, see 2015 c-drama recommendations.