Despite getting good ratings, the newest adaptation of The Investiture of the Gods 封神演义 has been widely-panned for changing up the familiar Chinese mythology that audiences have come to love. Compared to the TVB drama Gods of Honour in 2001 which is hailed as a classic until today, it had major differences in the characters and their motivations.
Comparison between 2019 vs 2001.
Luo Jin plays the main character Yang Jian who will eventually become the Chinese god Erlang Shen. Da Ji is his main love interest as the two grew up together as brother and sister. In the 2001 TVB drama, Chin Ka-lok’s Yang Jian is a supporting character.
Claudia Wang as Da Ji starts out a righteous woman out for vengeance. She is painted in a different light compared to the villain from 2001, played beautifully by Irene Wan.
Deng Lun plays the nine-tailed fox demon that lures Da Ji to the dark side. In the 2001 version, the seductive foxtress is played by veteran actress Michelle Fung. Not only has the gender been switched to a male character, but in the process of helping Da Ji exact revenge, Deng Lun’s fox demon falls in love with Da Ji.
Yang Jian’s trusty sidekick Xiao Tian Quan is known as the Celestial Howling Dog. In the new version, she’s a woman named Xiao E, played by He Dujuan, who harbors hidden feelings for Yang Jian.
Gods of Honour led by Benny Chan focuses on the story of the Chinese deity Nezha as the main character. It follows his journey from rebellious youth to a hero that deserved a seat in the investiture of the gods. Liang Zhenlun plays a much smaller role as Nezha in Investiture of the Gods.
Below are a few other side by side comparisons of the characters such as Yu Hewei and veteran actor Yu Chi-ming‘s Jiang Ziya, Collin Chou and Timothy Tse-sing Cheng’s Zhou Wang and last but not the least, Hai Yitian and Joseph Lee Kwok Lun’s Shen Gongbao. What do you think?