I think many Chinese drama fans have been waiting for The Oath Of Love (余生，请多指教) to be screened for quite some time. If I’m not mistaken, its airing date had been postponed once or twice before this. While I’m not a big fan of the leads, I also can’t help but joined in the anticipation of a great drama. But all I knew about the story before I started watching is that the male and female lead is a doctor and musician respectively. I didn’t know what to expect and my impression was it is a typical lighthearted rom-com. I was wrong on that score but is the drama an interesting one? Find out in The Oath Of Love review below.
My rating: 8/10Episodes: 32 (TV Version) / 29 (DVD Version)Type: Romance, MedicalAired: March 2022Images Credit: WeTV Twitter
The Cast Of The Oath Of Love
- Yang Zi as Lin Zhi Xiao
- Sean Xiao Zhan as Dr. Gu / Gu Wei
- Zhai Zi Lu as Gu Xiao
- Daisy Li Mu Chen as Xiao Shan / San San
- Ma Yu Jie as Dr. Gao / Gao Xi
- Xia Zhi Qing as Lin Jian Guo / Teacher Lin
- Sunny Hao Wen Ting as Li Hui Juan / Madam Li
- Li Yun Rui as Shao Jiang
- Zhao Shi Yi as Yin Xi
- Zhang Yu Qi as Jin Shi
Lin Zhi Xiao
Zhi Xiao is a music student in her final year at university. She is also a cellist with a dream of playing in an orchestra. Zhi Xiao has a very strict father but maintains a cheerful and optimistic outlook in life. She is lovable and caring.
Dr. Gu / Gu Wei
Gu Wei is a gastroenterologist and surgeon. He is a very dedicated and caring doctor despite his cold appearance. Gu Wei is a workaholic whose only interest seems to be his work. He has no inclination to date despite being pursued as well as pushed by his mother. He is also a neat freak who is obsessed with cleanliness.
Gu Xiao is Gu Wei’s younger cousin brother. He is a playboy and an idler who comes from a rich family. He likes to socialize and waste his time fooling around with little idea on what he wants to do with his life.
Xiao Shan / San San
San San is Zhi Xiao’s best friend from their school days. She has just returned from abroad and looking for work. San San is a pub goer who is cunning and proactive.
Dr. Gao / Gao Xi
Gao Xi is Gu Wei’s colleague in the hospital’s Gastroenterology Department. They have known each other for a long time as they used to study medicine together and she has strong feelings for him. Her father is the hospital’s Vice President.
Lin Jian Guo / Teacher Lin
Teacher Lin is Zhi Xiao’s father. He is a school dean and a strict disciplinarian towards his daughter. He also doesn’t agree with her musical ambition and they often get into arguments. However, Teacher Lin quietly loves Zhi Xiao in his own way and worries about her.
Li Hui Juan / Madam Li
Madam Li is Zhi Xiao’s mother and Teacher Lin’s wife. She is a more understanding parent compared to her husband and often has to play a mediator role between father and daughter.
Shao Jiang is an accomplished violinist and Zhi Xiao’s senior at school. They are good friends and he has feelings for her since their high school days.
Yin Xi is Zhi Xiao’s good friend together with San San. She is also her college mate. Yin Xi has a boyfriend from her school days. They have been dating for quite some time and are always seen together as a loving couple.
Jin Shi is Yin Xi’s boyfriend who is also studying in the same university. He seems to be a perfect boyfriend who always listens to his girlfriend to make her happy.
Zhi Xiao is a cello player and a music student at university. She has just lost her place in the university’s orchestra due to a poor performance. Her parents didn’t show up for the concert as her father is against her ambition to be a musician. She quarrels with him over it and they find it hard to see eye to eye with each other with his strict parenting style.
Then, Zhi Xiao’s father is admitted to hospital because of stomach pain. The initial diagnosis is severe ulcer but Gu Wei, a gastroenterologist, insists on a second scan as he suspects it could be stomach cancer. Zhi Xiao is skeptical of him at first due to her encounter with him at a bar previously but changes her mind after she finds out that he is a good doctor. She wants him to be her father’s surgeon but he declines due to personal reasons.
As Zhi Xiao tries to persuade Gu Wei to take up her father’s case, she learns that he is facing a career crisis due to his loss of confidence in his ability to do surgery. On his part, he discovers that she is hoping to get back into her university’s orchestra while having to cope with her father’s illness. As they spend more time together and encourage each other, Gu Wei finds himself being attracted to Zhi Xiao but is clueless on how to express his feelings.
The Oath Of Love Ending (Spoilers Alert!)
Before I go on with the spoilers, do note that The Oath Of Love has 2 versions floating around the different platforms. The one that I watched is the DVD version which consists of 29 episodes. The TV version has 32 episodes. Thus, the incidents that I described in the following could be different from what you would get if you are watching the TV version. Nevertheless, it isquite obvious that the 2 versions are just segmented differently as each episode in the DVD version is slightly longer than the TV one. So, it is only logical that the DVD version would have fewer episodes.
Happy Or Sad Ending?
The Oath Of Love has a happy ending. Or it could also be considered as bittersweet. Don’t worry, the main couple remains together in the last scene. Zhi Xiao and Gu Wei got married in the last episode with her father walking her down the aisle. Gu Wei decided to get married within a few months as he knew Zhi Xiao’s father would not have long to live with his cancer relapse. On her wedding day, her father gave her 7 letters which he had personally written for each of her wedding anniversary.
After the ceremony, the scene shows a time jump to her 7th wedding anniversary. Zhi Xiao and Gu Wei read her father’s last letter together. The significance of that anniversary is that they would have crossed the dreaded 7th year itch in a marriage. Zhi Xiao and Gu Wei now have a 3-year-old son and they are still a happily married couple. She will be having her solo concert while he continues his work as a doctor. In their hearts, they reassure her late father that they are happy and doing well.
In the drama, viewers are not shown the passing of Zhi Xiao’s father. It is merely implied that he died sometime after her wedding because in an earlier scene, we are told that he has less than a year to live. Hence, the ending is bittersweet in that sense although the last scene is of the couple having happy moments together with their son.
When Did Zhi Xiao And Gu Wei Start Dating?
Zhi Xiao began to get the idea that Gu Wei likes her in Episode 9 after San San told her so. She realized that she also likes him in Episode 11 after being jealous of Gao Xi. In Episode 15, Zhi Xiao blurted out to Gu Wei that she doesn’t like Shao Jiang when she was sick. Gu Wei had wrongly assumed otherwise. When Gu Wei uttered that he actually likes her, she had already fallen asleep from the medication.
Gu Wei made his feelings for Zhi Xiao known to his colleagues in Episode 16. He also confessed to her then and they started dating. Their first real date and first kiss are in Episode 17. Gu Wei proposed to Zhi Xiao in Episode 27.
Is There A Breakup?
Zhi Xiao and Gu Wei didn’t officially break up but they did have a serious misunderstanding in Episode 23. Gu Wei was facing investigation following a complaint by a patient’s family. He was suspended and lost his reputation as a doctor. His application to go to Germany on an exchange project with a German hospital was cancelled. The initial plan was Zhi Xiao would go with him as she too had been recruited by an international orchestra and bound for Germany. Gu Wei didn’t want to hold her back and kept quiet about his problems.
Therefore, Gu Wei couldn’t promise Zhi Xiao’s father that he could take care of her when he met her parents. Zhi Xiao was hurt by his sudden change of attitude especially when he also avoided her. She only found out what happened to him in Episode 24 from his colleagues. Zhi Xiao then scolded him for trying to escape from his problems to wake him up. She was also angry with him for hurting her and wanted to leave for Germany as planned in Episode 25. Gu Wei tried to soothe her anger and coax her but was unsuccessful.
However, Zhi Xiao found it hard to leave her parents and Gu Wei behind. So, she decided stay back and even tried to plead with the complainant on Gu We’s behalf when she thought he would lose his medical license. They reconciled in Episode 26.
Any Love Triangle?
Gao Xi has feelings for Gu Wei from the very beginning. They have known each other for a long time and are colleagues. However, the feelings were unrequited. Gu Wei drew a line with her but his parents liked her and regarded her as a future daughter-in-law. When Gu Wei announced that Zhi Xiao is his girlfriend, Gao Xi confronted him for an answer in Episode 16. He told her that they are too alike to be lovers and hence, not fit for each other. She then left for a break abroad.
In Episode 27, Gao Xi wished Gu Wei happiness after she learned that he had proposed to Zhi Xiao. He hoped that she will find her own happiness too. Gao Xi was at their wedding and there were signs that a colleague was interested in her.
Shao Jiang also loved Zhi Xiao since their school days. But he held back at that time because he thought that she was too young back then. Then, he left to pursue his musical studies abroad. He met Zhi Xiao again after a few years in Episode 12 and hinted at his feelings. Shao Jiang confessed to her in Episode 18 but got rejected. She felt that her affections for him is like a sister towards a brother. Despite her rejection, they remained as close friends. In the last episode, he attended Zhi Xiao’s wedding with his girlfriend, An Fei, who is also his agent.
Gu Xiao was attracted to San San at first sight. He opened a cafe for her and recruited her as manager in Episode 10. All along, they had an ambiguous relationship until Episode 19 when he confessed his love for her and asked her to be his girlfriend. In Episode 24, he left for abroad as per his father’s request when he lost the cafe after losing all his money in a get rich quick scheme. He just sent an apology message to San San and cut off contact due to guilt.
Gu Xiao returned home to attend Gu Wei and Zhi Xiao’s wedding in Episode 28 and met San San again. San San had borrowed money to buy over the cafe and was recruiting staff. Gu Xiao asked if she would hire him and was told to send him his resume which implies that she was prepared to accept him back. They were seen together during Gu Wei and Zhi Xiao’s wedding.
Yin Xi and Jin Shi broke up in Episode 19 after she found that he had lied to her to be with his friends and he complained that she had always been too clingy. Jin Shi tried to talk things over in Episode 22 but failed when Yin Xi demanded an apology first. In Episode 26, Jin Shi informed Yin Xi that he had applied for internship in another city. They still have feelings for each other but lacked communication. Jin Shi was at Gu Wei and Zhi Xiao’s wedding in the last episode and expressed his intention to get back together with Yin Xi.
The Oath Of Love Review – It’s More Than Romance!
In a way, The Oath Of Love surprises me. I thought it would be a pure fluffy kind of romance drama but it is certainly much more than that. Yes, the romance is there with loads of diabetic sweetness. But what is more touching to me would be the father-daughter relationship.
When the drama begins, I thought it would be that typical strict parent cliche storyline. But that family relationship is very well-developed to show another side to the strict father and his unique bond with his daughter. There are arguments but there is also an obvious love for each other. As this is well-executed, viewers will feel the touching moments as the story inches towards the finish line apart from the enjoyment of the down-to-earth romance.
Courtship Progress As The Plot
If you want to watch how a relationship progresses from meeting to getting married, this is it. It is a love story that is more relatable and grounded in reality compared to a sports star’s romance in Hello, The Sharpshooter or a contract marriage in Once We Get Married. Basically, The Oath Of Love is a love story about 2 people who have a chance to get to know each other better after a bad first impression due to an unfortunate situation.
So, you will have the whole works of the couple starting off as acquaintances, getting attracted, growing closer, being jealous and uncertain of each other’s feelings, and finally confessing. Thereafter, you will also witness their relationship progress as they learn to adapt to each other’s different lifestyles and deepen their maturity as a couple after undergoing challenges and quarrels.
It may seen uneventful at a glance but the down-to-earth romance is easily relatable which actually minimizes the annoyances and boredom level. There is no over the top confession or proposal like in those rich CEO rom-coms or toxic third parties despite the love rivalry. You are just watching a couple’s work-in-progress relationship and their lovey-dovey moments which feel realistic and endearing.
Leads’ Chemistry Is Evident
One of the main reasons The Oath Of Love feels warm and sweet is because of the visible chemistry between Yang Zi and Sean Xiao. They have such a natural affinity for each other and this can be seen in their interactions in the clips at the end of each episode. I’m not sure if those are scripted or otherwise but they looked vey comfortable and friendly towards each other.
Therefore, their portrayal as lovers in the drama is very convincing to the viewers. It is just like You Are My Glory whereby the couple’s sizzling chemistry basically carried the show and made the audience believe in a fairy tale romance. So, Yang Zi and Sean Xiao did a good job with their roles in The Oath Of Love and interacted with each other in a way that viewers could feel the lovers’ vibe.
Yang Zi’s acting is also great here and she plays the much younger Zhi Xiao with ease. Perhaps it is not much different from her role in Go Go Squid! and you will get to see her youthful innocence and cuteness here again. In the drama, she is supposed to be 9 years younger than Sean Xiao’s Gu Wei and you can feel the older man-younger woman romance pretty clearly with the way they portrayed their roles despite them being about the same age in real life.
A Young Female Protagonist
Zhi Xiao in The Oath Of Love actually reminds me of Gu Sheng Nan in another age gap romance drama, Dating In The Kitchen. You will be able to see the different temperament between the girl and the much older guy in both stories. Hence, be prepared that Zhi Xiao will be a little immature, impulsive, and bad-tempered compared to the more stable and calmer Gu Wei in The Oath Of Love.
Nevertheless, Zhi Xiao is not annoying because she ain’t a spoilt brat. But she is certainly not a perfect girl which adds a dose of realism to the character. She is also not a matured woman if you are expecting one like in Why Women Love. To me, Zhi Xiao is more like a cute and lovable girl-next-door.
Side Couples’ Story Lacks Completeness
Generally, The Oath Of Love is a sweet and touching drama. But if there is one weakness, I would think it has to be the side couples’ story. Perhaps they lack screen time to make their romance more complete and the ending better presented. There are 2 side couples in the drama and both have their own issues. Unfortunately, these are not fully explored and their ending seems rushed and superficial.
Well, I suppose the screenwriter needed to close off their story anyway and viewers are thus given a simplistic account of what happened to their relationship. On one hand, it is good that the side couples’ screen time was kept to a minimum to avoid dragging the drama out. On the other, it seems forced when you watch till the end. But I guess most viewers won’t be deeply invested in their story given their limited screen time which means the lack of completeness could also be overlooked.
My Verdict – A Romance To Watch
The Oath Of Love is definitely one of the better romance dramas on the list. It combines romantic love with family relationship to give us a heartwarming and bittersweet tale. A father’s love for his daughter means that he will always hope that she can marry well and has a good man whom he can entrust her to. As for the girl, being in a relationship and the sweetness that comes with it will tend to make her feel that he is the one. The father will have his doubts and worries while the daughter will look for his acceptance and trust in her judgement.
The romance itself is well laid out with the relationship developing at an even pace. There is no rush and sudden shift from friends to lovers but a gradual progression that is realistically portrayed and feels natural. The dating phase has the necessary fluff and loving moments littered with kisses here and there to get your sugar level rising. The sparkling chemistry of the leads adds to the overall attraction to the couple and their romance. Chances are you will be addicted to them once you start watching.
For this The Oath Of Love review, I would give it a score of 8/10. It is a simple love story but beautifully written and executed with no over-exaggeration or overly dramatic scenes. If you are a fan of the leads, I think this is a must watch. You will like Yang Zi’s cuteness in her role while you will also be taken in by Sean Xiao’s alluring smiles. It is a drama that is easy to follow and will touch you in unexpected ways. So, I would recommend a watch for this one.