source: Mingpao - tvb channel.com April 27th
translator: Tamaya @ asianfanatics.net
ref: AF fans discussion thread
Fans’ Micro Blogs Disagree. Steven Ma Not Afraid To Take On World Cup. TVB Dispatches Ghost Writer Into Battlefield.
The 2010 June World Cup is already an attention getter but TVB is not idle, either. It has decided to once again dispatch its Lucky General, Steven Ma, into the battlefield to lead his Ghost Writer series (aka Pu Song Ling) based on Liao Zhai stories against World Cup. But Steven Ma fans complained online that TVB once again chose their idol to do battles, and to have him once again bite the bullet. Turn out that Ma Zai has prior experience of going head to head with World Cup. In 2002, “Where the Legend Begins”, a series he was in, though battling World Cup still managed to draw in impressive ratings; hence Steven comforted his fans on his weibo* that this second time around he still got 'it' as he has every confidence in his series.
As the male lead for the 1st quarter highest rated series, A Watchdog Tale, Steven will once again don the battle armor to pit against World Cup. The recent grapevine had Steven’s Ghost Writer airing right after Sisters in Pearl commencing June 7, which also happens to be the battle time for Word Cup, hence the heated discussions among fans online. On one hand, there were fans berating TVB for choosing Ma Zai to bite the bullet, and that whenever a difficult battle arises, it always dispatches him there. On the other hand, there were fans who think it is because Ma Zai was a “Lucky General” that’s why TVB dispatches him to this battlefield, in hopes of elevating ratings; hence, they should all unite to cheer Ma Zai on. "Ga Yao!"
Seeing his fans disparate opinions, Ma Zai wrote a blog entry*. (Steven did post a weibo entry but it is not the message written by this reporter hence not going to translate something that Steven did not even write let alone post.)
Actually Steven fans should not be too overly concerned because Ma Zai can be considered TVB’s Lucky General, plus Ma Zai has prior experience pitting against World Cup. His 2002 WTLB garnered impressive ratings for TVB - its average rating was well over 30 points, and was one of the highest rated series in its year; its ratings were not unduly eroded by WC. So it had to be that TVB thinks highly of Ma Zai thus decided to give him another opportunity to flex his muscles. As to whether he will win this battle this time around? Will have to wait and see if this series has the goods to entice!
TN: When rumors of Ghost Writer being slotted to air in the lower half of the year (June-July) first surfaced in early April, other fans rejoiced but my suspicious antenna instantly shot up to its highest alert, no way TVB would be so 'nice' towards Steven so I googled World Cup's schedules and sure enough they overlapped with Ghost Writer's timeslot. I brought that info to Steven-ma.org for discussions, which later spilled over onto sm baidu and sm weibo.
Steven asked weibo fans which series they prefer airing first on tv:-
Clamine (Tamaya) weibo response:
2010-4-24 10:20 喜欢蒲松龄先播但不要在 (6/11 -7/11) 播出，因为是非洲南非第十九届世界杯足球赛还有最好不要跟林峰杨怡谈情说案对争(5/24 - 6/25)
2010-4-26 04:15 回复@程颖曦:天呀！我知道你是无意的怎么你这话看得那么刺眼呢？蒲松龄档期撞世界杯,知道吗？ //@程颖曦:今天看到一则消息说蒲松龄会接档掌上明珠于6月7日播出。本来以为是小道消息不足为信。刚刚看到江荣辉在微博发了这个好消息。恭喜马仔的蒲松龄逃过呗海发的命运！
2010-4-26 04:19 唉！我还以为蒲松龄档期还能改，看来是不会了！好吧！蒲松龄就跟世界杯打个漂亮的仗吧！！
baidu fan discussion thread1 baidu thread 2
Tamaya: What Steven actually wrote in his weibo is what I have posted previously in Steven Ma AF Thread:
*Seeing how much thoughts you all expend on my behalf, I am truly touched. Frankly, 4th brother* I have never minded how other people treat me. What fear there is, is the fear that I am the one at fault. If not, then why fear anything else? What’s there to worry? Life is like that, can’t expect to have the whole world’s approval. Only hope that before the eyes are shut (died) there are no unfulfilled wishes, then at least can depart with no regrets! (Mutual sharing of thoughts) link----------------------------------
Is this what they call "double" talk? Double back to back dispatching of his series overseas! Double (three if not for SITS overseas dispatch) back to back dispatching of his series to graveyard New Year's time slots! Now double dispatching his series to battle World Cup? "Lucky General" or "Not welcome in homes" (per Ms. Lok's label) , Whatever! Just meaningless labeling. And about TVB thinking highly of Steven's series? Yeah right, who are they kidding?
Note: Steven never said he is unafraid to take on World Cup. In fact, he did not comment on PSL or World Cup at all when this article was posted online. The said reporter put words into Steven's mouth. The above Steven's weibo message was what he wrote right before this article came out having read his fans' angry comments on GW's timeslot.
related AF discussion thread
----- in Chinese ------
Fans微博各持己见 马浚伟毋惧撼世界杯 TVB派《蒲松龄》上阵
Fans Micro Blogs differ on opinions. Steven Ma Not Afraid to Take On World Cup. TVB sends Spirit Writer to Battle.
6月举行的“世界杯”，虽然已吸引了球迷眼睛，不过TVB未有松懈，打算再派 福将马浚伟上阵，以聊斋故事《蒲松龄》对撼世界杯；不过，马仔的Fans却在网上抱怨TVB再揾偶像出战，又要他啃猪头骨。原来马仔对撼“世界杯”已有前 科，2002年以他有份主演的《洛神》对阵都赢得不俗收视，所以马仔亦在微博上安慰Fans，今次依然对自己充满信心。
成为本年TVB第一季收视最高剧集《老友狗狗》男主角的马浚伟，再度披甲上阵对撼世界杯。近日有说马浚伟主演的《蒲松龄》会接《掌上 明珠》于6月7日起开始播出，刚巧亦是“世界杯”开始决战时期，所以马仔的Fans都在网上讨论，更有Fans大骂TVB揾马仔啃猪头骨，次次有难打的仗 都揾他上阵；但亦有Fans认为马仔是“福将”，TVB才会再派他上阵，希望争取更佳收视而已，所以应该全力为马仔加油。
马仔的Fans其实不用太担心，因为马仔在TVB都 算福将，加上马仔对撼“世界杯”原来已有前科，2002年他有份主演的《洛神》，TVB以此剧对阵赢得不俗收视，平均收视逾30点，是当年最高收视的剧集 之一，并未有输蚀，所以今次应该是TVB看得起马仔，再给个好机会让他显示实力。至于能否再胜一仗？就要看剧集是否吸引了！