Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Burning Flames III Catches Fire in HK Ratings

Hong Kong TVB's new prime-time drama, Burning Flames III (烈火雄心3), got off to a hot start with ratings peaking at 38 points and averaging 33 points in its first week on air. However there was a drop off in viewers as the week wore on, raising concerns that initial interest may be starting to fizzle. Viewers have complained that there are too many confusing flashbacks slowing the pace of the show.

The series is set in the Hong Kong Fire Department and stars Wong He (王喜), who was in the original two series back in 1998 and 2003. Kevin Cheng (郑嘉颖), who was also in series 2, plays the fire chief, and other cast members include Bosco Wong (黄宗泽), Myolie Wu (胡杏儿) and a former Miss Hong Kong, Aimee Chan (陈茵媺).

The first two series were much-loved at the time, and a six-year wait for viewers since series 2 has built up a great deal of anticipation for the next installment. However criticism began almost from the start, not just with the flashbacks, but also with factual and continuity errors which netizens are delighting in identifying and posting on the net. It will be interesting to see over the series' run if Burning Flame III can continue to post 30-plus ratings figures, or will the number of viewers continue to drop off.

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