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There are several different cuts of Meteor Garden. This wiki currently goes by a 19 episode version (VCD), which is believed to be the closest to how the series first aired.
Episode 1 (第1集), also titled "Chapter One" (Chapter 壹) or "Overture" (序曲), is the first episode of the Taiwanese drama, Meteor Garden. It aired on April 12, 2001 on CTS. The episode introduces the main characters, including Dong Shan Cai and Dao Ming Si played by Barbie Hsu and Jerry Yan. Tthe second episode followed on April 19.
Ying De Academy is ruled by a group of rich and powerful bullies, the F4. Lower-class student, Shan Cai tries to avoid them until her friend is targeted. She stands up for her and gains an enemy in the F4's leader, Si.
Winter break has ended and Dong Shan Cai returns to Ying De Academy, a predominantly upper-class university. She and her friend, Li Zhen, are among the few lower-class students. The two friends walk to class together, and see Ah Shu packing his things. He previously angered the ruling clique, the F4, by standing up to them. As a result, Ah Shu received a red card and eventually decided to quit school. Shan Cai becomes angry, watching her classmates and professor whom make no attempt to help Ah Shu. She tries to follow after him, but Li Zhen stops her and reminds her of the F4. After a couple seconds of class, Shan Cai leaves to yell out her frustrations on the roof. The F4, meanwhile, arrive late to school.
Sometime later, Shan Cai and Li Zhen are carrying equipment for their physical education class, when their professor accidentally spills soda on the F4's leader Dao Ming Si. He apologizes and runs away, thinking Si may hit him. In his haste, he knocks over the basket held by Shan Cai and Li Zhen. Si kicks it when he walks by with his friends. However, Hua Ze Lei picks it up and briefly makes eye contact with Shan Cai. After school, she goes to her part-time job where she works with her best friend, Xiao You. She complains about the F4 and how they control the school. Fascinated, Xiao You asks her "Are all four really that bad?" Shan Cai thinks about it and remembers Lei, whom she says is "different."
Xiao You comments on how Shan Cai has changed from the person who was always standing up for others. Realizing she is right, Shan Cai considers leaving school. Her attempts to convince her mother fail and she reluctantly agrees to stay at Ying De. That night, the F4 go to a bar where Xi Men's latest girlfriend works. A fight breaks out with the girl's boyfriend, resulting in the F4 beating him and his friends. The next day, Li Zhen slips near the stairway. The box she is carrying lands on Si. She apologizes, to which he says "If apologies could help, would we still need the police?" and pushes her aside. Shan Cai confronts him and ends up calling him and his friends "parasites." Si grabs her chin and then leaves.
At home, Shan Cai realizes her hopes of being "low profile" are gone. The next day, she expects to find a red card in her locker but finds it on her back instead. Her classmates begin bullying her, which gradually worsens as the day goes on. Feeling guilty, Li Zhen gives Shan Cai a bear with the voice message "I'm sorry." She feels better briefly but eventually returns to the rooftop to yell. There Shan Cai finds Lei there and he lends her a handkerchief. After school, she discovers her broken scooter and has to walk home. Si drives by and informs her that he will try even harder to bully her. The next day, Shan Cai challenges the F4 by giving them her own red card. Mei Zuo and Xi Men find it amusing, while Si grows angry.
Si later hires some students to scare Shan Cai, though they actually attempt to assault her. Lei stops them and, despite his seeming indifference, cheers her up when she starts to cry. The next day, Shan Cai punches Si in retaliation for the incident. He spends hours in his pool after school thinking. Later, Shan Cai finds Lei in the music room. She attempts to thank him, though he does not accept it and promises to stop going to the roof. Shan Cai is not put off by his gruffness. On her way home, two men kidnap her and bring her to Si's house, where she is given a makeover. Si reveals that he wants her to become his girlfriend. She rejects him, saying "I'm someone whom no amount of money can buy."
Cast and characters
- The episode covers the first, second, third, and fourth chapters of the manga.
- In the original cut, this is the only episode to play the opening theme around twelve minutes in. All of the following episodes have it at the beginning.
- Qian Hui gets a nose job, which Bai He calls Julia Roberts' nose. Roberts, an American actress, was at the height of her popularity at that time.
- Li Zhen gives Shan Cai a bear that records voice messages. A similar toy is given by Makiko Endo to Tsukushi Makino in the first episode of the anime.
- Lei mentions a friend who taught him to stop his tears from flowing by standing upside down. The friend he is speaking of is most likely Teng Tang Jing.
- Jerry Yan's line "If apologies were enough, we wouldn't need the police," which comes from chapter one of the manga, has become particularly associated with Yan over the years. He also used the line Count Your Lucky Stars (2020), in which he costarred with Shen Yue from Meteor Garden (2018).
- Shan Cai is bullied by her classmates by covering a pay phone in glue, causing her hand to become stuck. A similar situation happens in Meteor Shower (2009), in which Zheng Shuang's character is also bullied by classmates but her hand is stuck to a toy horse instead.
|Meteor Garden series|