Although Chinese dramas can get draggy with the typical 60 to 70 episodes, usually running at 45 minutes, any Chinese drama fan can testify to the fact that character growth is rarely neglected during the generous runtime. Whenever something unjust is done to a character, they don’t get their revenge quickly, they plan and plot and build it up into something dramatic and fantastic. Here are some women who sent us from saying “Poor sweetie” to “Yas, queen!”
These are in no particular order and is based wholly on personal opinions. Comment your favourite Chinese drama comeback lady below!
Zhou Ying from Nothing Gold Can Stay (played by Sun Li)
HARDSHIP RATING: 6/10 Zhou Ying was a mischievous, clever young lady who can overcome ever circumstance she finds herself in, making it profitable for herself. She was harassed by a rich young lord who fell in love with her spunky attitude and was infuriated when she refused to marry him. She managed to escape and entered the manor of another young lord, this one a kind young man who was tasked with the family business. He adored her and her desire to learn about the business and was intrigued by all the ideas she presented. He married her and became a doting husband to a wild young woman. However, he was sick and died soon after they had been married. Zhou Ying practically went mad with grief and was isolated and tormented by her husband’s family, who scorned her because of her low birth.
COMEBACK RATING: 7/10 Zhou Ying grieved the loss of her husband, but his strong morals kept her going and made her determined to make the family’s business successful and legitimate, upstanding in its business practice. She ran the business and handled the finances, despite people being shocked by the idea of a woman running a business. Even when she became pregnant and had a child, she still cherished the memory of her husband and carried on the business to honour him. Even though everyone was against her, Zhou Ying grew stronger from her sadness and became a better version of herself.
Bai Qian from Ten Miles of Peach Blossoms (played by Yang Mi)
HARDSHIP RATING: 10/10 The fox goddess Bai Qian was not only betrayed in her first life but her second life as well. Her hardest times came when the Demon Lord cursed her, and she became mortal, losing her memories and living a life isolated on earth. She was found by another god who was her reincarnated lover, and he fell in love with her once again, eventually bringing her back to the Celestial Realm with him to be his wife. She gave birth to a son, and even though she was shunned by the other Celestials, she was content. However, a jealous Celestial who loved her husband framed Bai Qian for destroying her eyes. Her husband believed the other woman and took Bai Qian’s eyes to replace them. Bai Qian was now blind and betrayed, and she was not allowed to be with her son, as he was a Celestial and she was not. In a fit of grief and despair, she threw herself off of a terrace and into a portal that was said to be able to return her to where she belonged.
COMEBACK RATING: 6/10 Instead of killing Bai Qian, the portal broke the curse that the Demon Lord had placed on her, returning her abilities and making her a goddess once again. She returned to her Fox Tribe and became a leader with her thousands of years of wisdom and knowledge. She eventually fell in love again with her husband and returned to the Celestial Realm with him. She reunited with her son as well. She also went to the jealous Celestial woman who had taken her eyes and stripped them from her, leaving her as blind and alone as she was.
Li Weiyoung from Princess Wei Young (played by Tiffany Tang)
HARDSHIP RATING: 7/10 The leading lady was a princess of a kingdom before her entire family was killed. She befriended the shunned daughter of the prime minister: Li Weiyoung, eventually taking on her identity when she was killed. As Li Weiyoung, she was taken back to the Prime Minister’s mansion and had to be aware at all times due to the schemes of the concubines. She falls in love with the prince Toaba Jun but is framed for his mother’s murder and stripped of her title, demoted to a palace maid and being forced to watch the man she loves to marry the woman who framed her and destroyed her life, causing Toaba Jun to hate and avoid her. Tormented at every step, Li Weiyoung lost everyone she loved as well as being taunted by those responsible for her downfall.
COMEBACK RATING: 5/10 Throughout the entire drama, Li Weiyoung remains a kind, sensitive soul who will not let anyone steal her passion and her joy of love. No matter where she goes, people are drawn to her and cannot help but love her, even the cold-hearted prince Toaba Yu. However, she becomes more clever and outspoken as the series progresses, and she becomes a force to be reckoned with eventually becoming The Empress. However, her biggest form of revenge was never losing her kindness and joy, no matter what struggles came her way.
Rong Le in Princess Silver (played by Zhang Xue Ying)
Hardship Rating: 8/10 Princess Rong Le, an amnesiac, is betrothed to the crown prince, Wu You, of a neighbouring kingdom who has no interest in marriage. Although they fall in love over time, Rong Le is instead married off to a power-hungry general named Fu Chao who manipulates every one around him, including Rong Le, who he claims to love and slowly becomes obsessed with. It is revealed over time that Rong Le isn’t really a princess, and the family she thought she had was a lie. Also, Fu Chao poisons Rong Le, and in a delirious state, she stabs Wu You in the heart, believing him to be her brother who also manipulated her. When she realizes what she has done, Rong Le is so consumed by shock and despair that her hair turns silver.
Comeback rating: 6/10 Once Rong Le recovers from the poison, she starts practicing martial arts again, determined not to let herself ever be vulnerable again. She turns the tables on her husband, rescuing her true love Wu You from his dungeon and running away with him. She becomes a powerful political leader alongside Wu You, and wears her silver hair proudly, even though she is scorned for it. She doesn’t let her grief define her, and she moves on with her life, becoming more powerful than she ever thought possible. Even when her hair returns to normal, she still carries herself as a woman who was hurt and came back even stronger.
Hua Qian Gu in The Journey of Flower (played by Zhao Li Ying)
Hardship Rating: 9/10 Hua Qian Gu was orphaned at infancy and feared by all of the villagers due to her strange ability to attract demons with her scent. She is saved from danger by the kind immortal Bai Zi Hua and follows him to Mount Chang Liu, a sect that trains their sect into immortals, in hopes of becoming his disciple. Once she becomes his disciple, she falls in love with him and goes to desperate measures to retrieve an artefact to save his life. When she does this, however, she is punished by the sect by being pierced with swords, blinded and burned, and completely helpless, she was banished into a savage desert where crazed criminals roam as well as hungry beasts.
Comeback rating: 10/10 The last straw is when Hua Qian Gu’s best friend dies, and her grief causes the seal repressing her demonic powers to break, and she becomes a demon. Once she becomes a demon, she becomes a force to be reckoned with: shunning Bai Zi Hua, imprisoning her longtime bully, becoming the master of a powerful evil sect, and declaring war on the sect that mistreated her. Throughout her revenge spree, it is made clear that her heart died along with her best friend. In the end, however, she lets go of her grief and rage and accepts the apology of Bai Zi Hua, showing her strength by ignoring the temptation to lose herself to her revenge.
I hope you enjoyed my article and maybe gained a bit more respect for these leading ladies, and if you dropped the drama, perhaps you will now want to try watching it again. Thank you all for your support, as I am still rather new to writing articles.