Chun Tu Mi (Zhuang Da Fei), who was born in a military family, aspires to become a litigator. It’s unthinkable for a woman of her time, but with the support of officials Han Wu Wei (Fan Zhi Xin) and Kang Zheng Yuan (Qin Tian), who acknowledge and encourage her potential, she perseveres, and meets a mysterious assassin (Huang Jun Jie).
I wasn’t expecting to see Huang Jun Jie again so soon after his so-called scandal, and the poster for Miss Chun is a Litigator really doesn’t sell it well, but I don’t regret giving it a try anyway, because while it’s not quite on the same level as other unexpected gems such as Maiden Holmes or The Imperial Coroner, it still makes for a very nice watch.
The characters are undoubtedly Miss Chun is a Litigator‘s main asset, starting with its eponymous heroine. We’ve grown a bit too used to immature female leads, or ones who are confident to the point of being unbearably arrogant and unpleasant. Tu Mi, thankfully, falls under neither of those categories. She’s very much a well-mannered young lady, with everything that entails, good and bad. What I mean by that is that yes, she can argue like a pro in front of a judge, but she’s also innocent and sheltered. She’s very empathetic, but that doesn’t mean she can’t be petty as well either. In other words, she feels very human, complex and well-rounded.
She’s surrounded by several amazing men, most notably Han Wu Wei and Kang Zheng Yuan. As childhood friends, the duo hardly need a glance to understand each other, trust each other beyond anyone else, and of course, bicker like an old married couple. Actor Fan Zhi Xin really shines here: his facial expressions and body language are very lively, and work especially well in contrast with Qin Tian’s more sober, yet still expressive Kang Zheng Yuan.
Sometimes, though, characters only work as part of a pair, but that’s not the case here. While they’re amazing together, Kang Zheng Yuan and Han Wu Wei work just as well apart: the former reveals unexpected mischivousness, while the latter shows that he does, in fact, deserve his position. They also have a really nice dynamic with Tu Mi, one as her mentor and the other as her friend.
For once, the male figures in the heroine’s family aren’t a letdown either: Tu Mi’s father and grandfather are both amazing. The show introduces very early on the tight relationship she has with the former, and the man never disappoints, always offering her unwavering support. It’s very refreshing, for once, to see a father encourage his daughter on the path she chose for herself, as hard as it may be, and promise to always be there for her.
On the other hand, this also leads to some very emotional scenes, as Chun Da Shan is very aware of how tough a world it is for a woman, especially one whose reputation has been ruined because of how unconventional she is. He will protect her as long as he’s able, but what about when he’s passed?
Another thing about Miss Chun is a Litigator that I find pleasant is how satisfying the case endings always turn out. The story always finds a way for the court hearings to end in a way that will leave you feeling both accomplished and satisfied.
In truth, the one issue I have with Miss Chun is a Litigator is how underdeveloped the romance feels. Tu Mi and Ye Cha hardly interact in the first half of the show (in which Ye Cha barely shows up, to be honest). Were Huang Jun Jie’s scenes butchered out because of his so-called “scandal”? Was the story originally written that way? Their scenes together are pretty cute once they do start talking, but it’s a bit light compared to the sheer amount of scenes Tu Mi shares with other characters such as Han Wu Wei or even Kang Zheng Yuan.
In truth, this isn’t much of a problem given that the story focuses more on Yu Mi’s ambition to become a litigator rather than her love story, but it’s still a bit disappointing.
All in All…
A very nice watch, which definitely benefits from a lovable cast of characters. The main question I’m left with is: is there really a second season out there? Rumor has it that the show was originally 40 episodes, so why are there only 20 now? Huang Jun Jie went back to acting in the summer of 2022, and I gather from the fact that Miss Chun aired that he’s on his way to a comeback. So what’s going on here? Is there a season 2 waiting to be aired? Only time will tell.
Title: Miss Chun is a Litigator
Starring: Zhuang Da Fei, Huang Jun Jie, Fan Zhi Xin, Qin Tian
Number of Episodes: 20
Genres: Romance, Investigation, Friendship
My Rating: ★★★★☆